Easy Cashew Truffles – Vegan
September 18, 2014
Thursday’s mean one thing… truffle time! Okay, Thursday’s can mean a lot of things. But this particular Thursday is all about the truffles. Cashew truffles to be specific. I am a huge fan of cashews. Who isn’t though?! Hm. Should we start a cashew fan club? That would be one great club.
Anyways! I haven’t had cashews in a long while because I was all about the Raw Till 4 life. Well now that I’m no longer about that life I’m here with some celebratory truffles! They are so rich and decadent. I think I might dream about them tonight.
As always, they are so easy to make too! I made the cashew part, popped them in the freezer for a while, went and explored in the woods, and then I came back to cover them with chocolate. So easy and oh so addictive. I tried to snap pictures really quick because I wanted to eat them so bad! So you might want to make two (or three) batches of these little guys. Especially if you plan on sharing! Luckily I don’t have to.
makes 8-10 truffles
1 cup cashews, soaked for 8 hours or overnight
1/2 cup dates
2 tablespoons coconut sugar
Blend ingredients together until smooth. Roll out balls onto parchment paper and place into freezer for 1-2 hours.
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
2 tablespoons cacao powder
1 tablespoon maple syrup
Blend together ingredients.
Remove truffles from the freezer and cover with chocolate. Repeat 2 times. Serve, enjoy!
What I Ate Wednesday – Vegan Diet
September 17, 2014
Happy Wednesday guys! Welcome back to another “What I Ate Wednesday.” I have been having major technical issues today so I apologize for the not so great iPhone photos! They’re all that I could get up here tonight and I’m lucky that I was even able to get them up! Anyways, I still wanted to share with you all because I worked today and wanted to show you a working day’s worth of food. I eat about the same when I work. So it’s not too different. My job is quite laid back and I’m able to eat whenever I want for the most part. So snacking is easy! But it requires more “to-go” foods which are something that I’m not so great with. It’s all about preparation though. If you’re prepared then eating healthy at work should be quite easy!
For breakfast I had a green mango smoothie. I used to eat mangoes all the time and I wanted to rekindle my love with them this week. So good! This smoothie was bananas, spinach, coconut water, and mango. It was a perfect way to start off the morning. I usually do just banana and spinach smoothies but the mango was a great thing to add for a change!
I was so excited for lunch today! Any time that I finish a jar of peanut butter that means one thing… overnight oats! I love having a bit of left over peanut butter in the jar for the oats. I mixed 1/2 cup oats with 1 cup of almond milk and some chia seeds, let it in the fridge overnight and then added blueberries and a pear to it this morning before I left for work. The easiest lunch ever! This jar is tall enough that I’m able to fit a spoon inside of it so I just screw the lid on and it’s ready to go. The best.
I did eat non gluten free oats a few days just out of curiosity to see if they would bother me. They did. I didn’t feel so great after eating them. I was interested to see how it would go though. I’ve been trying to experiment with food more to make it fun. This was a learning experience and it’s back to gluten free oats for me!
I love Trader Joe’s dried mango more than any other dried fruits ever. I don’t live near a Trader Joe’s so when I go I stock up on packs of these. The cashiers probably think I’m crazy. Crazy in love with this mango. Yes. I love that it’s just mango, no additives like most dried fruits that I find. I ate about half of a pack today as a snack. It’s addictive! And so good.
I came home from work and went straight out the door for a run. So when I got home I was starving! I wanted to make something filling and this is what happened. Seasoned rice, beans, carrots, mushrooms, broccoli, russet potatoes, sweet potatoes, and dijon mustard. Such a delicious bowl of goodies. I love dijon mustard and it’s also something that I haven’t had for a long time. This was a great way to reintroduce it back into my diet. As many of you know, I’m not a vegetable fan at all. But I find it very easy to eat them when I add them to bowls like this! I’m actually starting to enjoy them. (Crazy, I know.)
That’s it for today guys! What did you have to eat today? Let me know! I’d love to hear from you.
Balance Series #1: Healthy Food Relationship
September 15, 2014
The Balance Series ~ Week 1
Hi guys! Welcome to the Balance Series! The other day I was thinking of new things to share with you and I thought that it would be awesome to share how I’m finding balance in all areas of my life. Maybe then it’ll help you guys find a little more balance in your life too!
This will be a 4 week series consisting of four different areas in life that I believe are important to have a healthy amount of balance in and can be a struggle at times for a lot of us. Week 1 is going to be all about having a healthy relationship with food. I think that a majority of us in today’s society have struggled with our relationship with food. We’re surrounded by so many “miracle” diets, calorie counting programs, photoshopped models, and crazy expectations as to what our bodies are “supposed to” be. But none of those things contribute to a healthy relationship with food or ourselves.
Some of you are probably wondering where this Balance Series has stemmed from. Well I’m here to share that as well! I have been both gluten free and vegan for over a year now. Within that time I found happiness and balance in all areas of my life, even in areas that I didn’t know I needed improvement in. But when I began to eat more Raw Till 4 at the beginning of the year things changed. In the beginning I was fine, but in the last few months of it I became very strict with my intake and I wasn’t feeling the balance that I needed. I knew that I needed a change. I didn’t know how to go about it but slowly I started eating a “regular” gluten free vegan diet once again. All of my issues have disappeared or decreased a large amount which is why I came up with the balance series.
Let’s get balanced!
Recognizing that your relationship with food is off balance.
There are a few ways that I’m able to recognize when someone has an unhealthy relationship with food. With a large portion of my life involving food (running this blog) I am asked quite often about food related topics and have become very aware of how people react to different foods and conversations about it. A majority of people see diets as a normal thing. When you attend a cookout or party there will almost always be someone there who declines a piece of cake or shares with you that they’re on this new and amazing diet. Weight Watchers, Atkins, Nutrisystem, gluten free just for weight loss, low carb diets, the cabbage soup diet, Jenny Craig, etc. I’m sure that there are so many more but those are the only ones that I can think off currently. Anyways, we all know that diets like that aren’t something that people do for fun. They’re expensive and usually leave us feeling exhausted and moody. Yuck.
The problem with diets is that they’re not sustainable long term because they deprive you of nutrients that your body needs and they rely on a lot of processed foods. When you eat more whole plant based foods then you begin to crave less and less of the processed foods. But at the same time depriving yourself of a piece of cake at a birthday party also relates to negativity.
That’s where the balance comes into play! Life is about balance and one piece of cake every once in a while is actually good for you! When you restrict yourself of something that you’re craving, then you’ll actually end up eating more of that thing once you finally give into that craving. Doing that often leads to feelings of guilt and shame. Food should never be associated with either of those things. The constant feelings of negativity towards oneself becomes exhausting and frustrating. Once you realize that this is something that you’d like to improve in your life and that there is so much more to life than fitting into that dress or losing those extra 5 pounds, then you’ve actually done the hardest part and will continue down the path towards food balance.
Taking the path towards food freedom.
To take the path towards food freedom there are some objects that need removed to create a clear path of success and happiness. Remove all calorie counting devices, scales, clothing that “you’ll fit into someday”, and negative people from your life. Creating a clear and positive space to focus on yourself and your happiness is so important.
The scale and calorie counting really have the potential to control a person. Isn’t that crazy?! I used to weigh myself at least once a day and my mindset for the whole entire day would be reflected upon that number. I also tracked my calories which had the same effect on me. I know that I’m not the only one who was like that either. Do we really want to live like that?! I don’t. I no longer weigh myself or count calories and haven’t for months. Realize that the extra 5 pounds that your body is carrying around isn’t the problem, the mindset that you’re set in is the problem. Becoming happy with yourself no matter what number the scale says is when everything else will fall into place.
I also find it to be so important to surround yourself with happy, positive people. If you’re surrounded by people who constantly talk negatively about themselves and judge others, then that will ultimately reflect back onto you. No one wants that! You want (and deserve) to spend your time and energy on others who bring you up and compliment your life. Find those people. They’re out there, I promise!
Inspiring yourself and others throughout your journey.
Staying motivated and inspired to treat yourself well is a key component to finding balance. Try new foods or a new restaurant that you’ve never been to. Order that dessert that you’ve always wanted to get. Practice eating intuitively, this book helps! Make time each day to prepare and eat your foods. Listen to your body to find out which foods make you feel great.
There are so many ways to have a healthy balanced relationship with food. Different things work for everyone. You just have to explore and figure out which ones work best for you. Drop the fear of weight gain and the unknown. Explore and make it fun!
Now it’s your turn to share! Have you struggled to find balance with food? If so, how did you overcome it? I’d love to hear from you!
Double Chocolate Ice Cream Bars – Vegan
September 13, 2014
Today is all about chocolate. Well a lot of days here at Create N Plate are about chocolate. But I have yet to receive any complaints about that. So the chocolate posts are here to stay. I present to you the double chocolate ice cream bars. Mmmm. I have a few of these still sitting in the freezer and every time I open the door I can’t handle how good they look (and taste). My mom (who’s anti vegan food no matter what it is) even commented on how good they look tonight. But still won’t try them. I’ll have to work on that because I truly believe that these are delicious! Meat eaters, vegans, and anyone in between will love these as much as I hope you love yourself. After I finish this post I’m going to grab a few and dip them in peanut butter. I’m so excited. That’s the most exciting thing that I’ll be doing on this Saturday night. I know that you’re all jealous!
These bars are SO SIMPLE. I know that I say that with almost every recipe I make. But really guys, they are. I believe in all of you so I definitely think that you’re all capable of making these and should have all of the ingredients in your house already. So let’s get started!
Double Chocolate Ice Cream Bars
Chocolate Ice Cream Bars:
4 frozen bananas
1 tablespoon cacao powder
Blend together bananas and cacao powder. You might need to add a drop of water to get the bananas blending. Blend until smooth. Pour ice cream into a small parchment paper lined pan. Freeze for 8 hours or overnight.
You can choose any size pan that you’d like depending on how thick you’d like your bars and by how large your bananas are.
4 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
3 tablespoons cacao powder
1 tablespoon maple syrup
Blend ingredients together until smooth.
Remove ice cream from freezer and cut into even bars. (I had 6 bars) Dip bars into chocolate sauce until covered and set on parchment paper. You can drizzle chocolate on the bars instead if preferred. Your ice cream bars, your choice! Once all bars are covered store in freezer or serve and enjoy!
September 12, 2014
Happy Friday to you all! So today I wanted to share my workouts from this week with you guys. I haven’t done a post like this in a very long time but I’m excited to share!
I’m not a member of a gym and every workout that I do is free/accessible to any of you reading this. So basically we can workout together even if we’re far away from each other. Fun!
I’m also not one to follow a schedule so I don’t follow any kind of workout routine whatsoever. Next week will be completely different just like every other week. I like to keep things interesting and do workouts that I feel like doing each day. I don’t want to make a plan and then dread my workout. Workouts are meant to be fun!
Let’s do it! But first, we’ll start it off with me showing off my huge (*sarcasm) muscles on Snapchat to set the tone.
Okay, let’s do it! For real this time.
Saturday I did a 6.2 mile bike ride followed by about 50 minutes of free flowing yoga. I love doing outside workouts when the weather permits. Since Fall is basically here I know that my bike riding days are limited and I enjoy getting to do it while I can! Plus I always do my yoga outside too. There’s just something about being in the grass that makes it that much better.
Sunday I love to start off my morning with a run and then some yoga. I ran 2 miles through the woods near my house and then did about an hour of yoga. The run that I did consists of running about 1/2 a mile up a hill, then a mile through the woods, and ends with 1/2 a mile back down the hill. I love running up and down hills. I always try to cool down with with a long yoga sequence too. I love how stretchy I feel after running and can just sink into my yoga practice.
Sunday afternoon I went on a nice and easy 7 mile bike ride with my mom and sister. It was fun to just take it easy and enjoy the ride and beautiful weather that we had that afternoon!
Monday was a busy and chaotic day so I just did a quick wake up yoga flow. I just listened to my body and moved the way it felt like moving. It was probably about 10 minutes and left me feeling great.
Tuesday was my day off of work so I went for another hilly 1.8 mile jog followed by a 5 mile bike ride and 40 minutes of yoga. I planned on running longer this day but I just wasn’t feeling it. Do you ever get days like that? It was just a bad run and so I hopped on the bike and all was well! I finished my running and biking with this yoga sequence. I do this sequence a lot. I find it to be a great practice for cooling down!
Wednesday I wasn’t really feeling biking or running (my usuals) so I went to Youtube and found a cardio video to do. I did this one. It was pretty easy but still a nice workout! It was the first workout video I did from Fitness Bender and I think that I’ll try out some more of theirs sometime. I ended my workout with this yoga sequence. I love Tara Stiles as many of you know. I practice Strala Yoga regularly and love all of Tara’s videos.
I finished off my evening with a 2 mile easy bike ride to wind down. I missed biking much more that evening than that morning obviously. I’ve bike more this summer than ever and it’s great!
Yesterday I was quite tired and didn’t do any workouts. I did a bit of yoga in the morning but that’s it. Rest days are important!
Today my ankle was feeling kind of sore from twisting it the other day. I decided that I didn’t really want to do much of an impact exercise on it because it’s telling me that it needs rest. Listen to your body even if it’s frustrating to do so! I did this leg workout and this arm workout. I found both of those workouts so long ago and always go back to do them on occasion! The arm workout says it’s for beginners, but trust me it’s a challenge! The leg workout is great too. Definitely some of my favorites that I’ve found on Youtube so far. I finished that off with this yoga video from Tara Stiles. So fun and easy going!
That’s it for this week! What types of workouts do you typically do? Since the weather is changing I’ll probably be doing more inside workouts that I’ll get to share. Stay tuned and have a good weekend!