Hi everyone! My name is Leanne from Healthful Pursuit and I am beyond excited to be here with you today.
As you know, Amy is one talented, inspirational, and creative woman. When I first came across Simply Sugar & Gluten Free I was on a quest for sugar-free inspiration, and Amy’s recipes did not disappoint. Have you tried her yeasted buckwheat pancakes? I die every time.
After becoming a holistic nutritionist in 2008, I started improving my personal health by creating recipes to support healing and balance throughout my life. Soon my friends and family were begging me to document my gluten-free kitchen creations so they could make them too. So, after months of planning, I began Healthful Pursuit. My goal was simple, to connect and learn from people, share my story, insight, and possibly inspire those looking to make healthful changes in their lives.
A couple of months into blogging, I realized I was sensitive to sugars, in addition to my corn, dairy and gluten sensitivities. At first I panicked – how is one supposed to share indulgent recipes when they can’t eat sugar? Thankfully, blogs like Amy’s helped me find my way through the sugar-free realm. It wasn’t long until I was replacing sugar with medjool dates, unpasteurized honey, coconut sugar, fruits, and stevia (stevia is a scary one, but if done right, it can taste amazing).
My personal road to health has taught me about the importance of high quality ingredients, how to listen to our bodies to optimize our health, and best of all, how to have fun in the kitchen. And believe you me, I’ve had my fair share of kitchen fun, specifically when I made my own dairy-free, sugar-free yogurt parfaits.
By making your own yogurt you can:
- Save money
- Use any kind of milk you want – hemp, cashew, almond, oat, sesame…
- Add massive doses of probiotics
- Make all sorts of unique flavors – lavender, honey, chocolate hemp, rose, apple cinnamon, pumpkin spice, or carrot cake!
- Be proud of yourself for making something that your body will thank you for!
These Berries n’ Cream Parfaits with Homemade Coconut Yogurt are bursting with flavor, fiber, and nutrients. Best of all, they don’t require a yogurt maker. Just a cooler, a couple of jars, and you’re set. There is a secret ingredient in the yogurt… think you can guess what it is?
… chia seeds!
- 2 cups homemade coconut yogurt [recipe below]
- Raspberry sauce
- 1 cup raspberries, puréed
- 2 tsp arrowroot powder, diluted in 2 Tbsp water
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp lemon juice
- 1 cup willy vanilly protein granola or a gluten-free granola of your choice
- Strawberry topping
- 2 cups strawberries, diced
- 1 tbsp apple juice
- 2 tsp coconut sugar
- Zest of 1 lime
- Juice from 1 lime
- 1 tsp mint, chopped [optional]
- 2 tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut
- Mix the apple juice, coconut sugar, lime zest, and lime juice in a medium sized bowl. Add the strawberries and place the bowl in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Dilute arrowroot powder with cool water. Set aside. Heat the raspberry purée and lemon juice in a small pot on medium heat, whisking for 2-3 minutes. Add the arrowroot mixture to the raspberry mixture and continue to whisk until boiled. It should get thicker over 2-5 minutes. Once you’ve reached the desired thickness, allow to cool before dividing between two glasses.
- Raspberry sauce should already be at the bottom of your two glasses. Top with yogurt, then granola, strawberries. Repeat once more and top with mint leaves and shredded coconut.
- 800mL (a generous 3 1/4 cups) reduced fat coconut milk
- 2 tbsp coconut butter
- 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
- pinch white powdered stevia – if you don’t like stevia, use 1-2 tbsp coconut/palm sugar or honey
- 2 tbsp freshly ground chia seed *see note
- 8 servings of non-dairy probiotics – I used this acidophilus
- Medium sized cooler + boiling water OR 1 towel + heating pad
- Place coconut milk, coconut butter, vanilla, and stevia in a blender. Turn on high for 8 minutes. (This should heat your yogurt to the desired temperature. If you have a weak blender, transfer to a saucepan and bring to a boil, reduce and simmer for 4 minutes before bringing back to the blender to add your chia seed.)
- Continue to blend while adding chia seed. Blend until mixed before turning blender off and removing lid.
- Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes.
- Add probiotics, return lid and pulse.
- Place boiling water in cooler to the 3 inch mark. Once the yogurt has cooled, pour into 2 – 1000mL (1 quart) mason jars and place in the cooler for about 15 hours. You may have to change your water halfway through to ensure it’s hot enough. Refrigerate for 8 hours.
- Once the yogurt has cooled, pour into 2 – 1000mL (1 quart) mason jars and wrap in a heating pad [set on lowest setting] and a towel. Allow to sit for 15 hours. Refrigerate for 8 hours.
The chia seed is what thickens the yogurt. If you make this yogurt with other nut milks, more chia seed may be needed. For example: almond milk yogurt will need a total of 4-6 tbsp ground chia seed. I found that anything past 4 tbsp of chia begins to taste very chia-like. Another alternative to chia would be agar agar flakes but I would start with a small amount of 1-2 tsp until desired consistency is met.
What other fun do I have in my kitchen?
Well, there are my favorite breakfast cakes, otherwise known as 5 minute Quinoa Flake Bakes. All of the flavors I’ve made were good, but Double Chocolate Crunch was definitely my favorite. These cakes are quick to put together, sugar-free, filling, and delicious. Would you believe me if I told you there was avocado hidden in there?
Another was a recipe I created for my birthday not too long ago. These Maple Oat n’ Apple Jars were the perfect gift of nut buttery, oatmeal, sticky goodness.
This Carrot Cake Loaf with Cream “Cheese” Icing is a regular at our house. I like to eat it a couple of hours before my weekly long run. I kid you not when I say I run quicker with this in my tummy!
Lastly, I couldn’t go without sharing one of my sleepy smoothie recipes. All measuring and preparation is done the night before you enjoy this delectable breakfast. All you have to do is wake up, throw in the blender and enjoy. My favorite? Sleepy Cookie Dough Strawberry Cheesecake.
Although sweet treats are my favorite, I promise you I make tons of balanced recipes too. After all, healthful living is all about balance!
Thanks, Amy for inviting me to guest post today. I hope you all had just as much fun as I did! Please feel free to visit by my blog, Healthful Pursuit, to say hi, or connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, or StumbleUpon.