Thursday, September 18, 2014

Birdseed Bars

When my husband told me he had a lot of work to do and it was going to be a late night, I enthusiastically responded with "I'll make you espresso cookies!"

After I got into the kitchen though, I decided to play around with a new bar recipe, since that's what I'll be selling at several locations beginning in October (!!)
(Can you tell I'm excited??)

When he asked what smelled so good, I struggled with a name.  "They are Banana Mocha Bars...Espresso Seed, that's not right.."  I mumbled as I pulled the pan from the oven.  He nonchalantly asked if he could have some birdseed.  Glancing at the bars, I had to admit; they look a tad bit birdseed-y.  Hence, the official name: the Birdseed Bars.

Minus the espresso, birds would probably love this bar very much.  When I was little, I remember covering pine cones with peanut butter and then rolling them in birdseed to hang outdoors.  This is not at all the same thing, even if it looks kinda like that.  The bars are rich, filling and packed full of nutrients, with absolutely no gluten or even oats.  They are a pure, clean treat and I recommend them highly.  The texture is a bit crumbly; I suggest chilling them in the fridge or letting them cool completely before cutting and serving.

Birdseed Bars
yields 6 to 9 bars


1 tablespoon chia seeds mixed with 3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
2 teaspoons raw cacao powder
2 tablespoons espresso or strong coffee
1/2 cup hemp seeds
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/3 cup dried banana (or dates), diced fine
1/4 cup sunflower seed butter or almond butter
optional: 1/4 cup nondairy rice chips or cacao nibs


1.  Mix the chia seeds with water; set aside.
2.  Preheat the oven to 325 and line a 8" square pan with parchment paper.
3.  Stir the espresso and cacao into the chia mixture.
4.  Fold in the remaining ingredients, stir well, and pour into the pan.
5.  Bake for 18 to 25 minutes or until turning golden and slightly firm.  Let cool completely on a wire rack, and wrap individually in plastic wrap for great portable bars.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Pumpkin Cacao Brownies


I know, I know.  It's not quite autumn, but still, the pumpkin craving is hitting.  Since I discovered a can of organic pumpkin in my cupboard, I haven't been able to stop thinking about pumpkin...everything.  Breads, muffins, cookies, raw bars--I can't get enough.  I might go as far as to say my favorite thing about fall is pumpkin.  Yup. I would definitely say that.

This brownie had to be tinkered with a bit.  Upon first bite, my husband replied "Umm good but a little too earthy," which is his way of suggesting it could use some work.  The result is a chocolatey pumpkin dessert that is not too sweet, but the honey is still a must.  (Or maple syrup for very strict vegans).  Enjoy with the optional spicy sweet pumpkin topping, and you too will be immediately stoked for fall.

Hello, September!

Pumpkin Cacao Brownies


3/4 cup pumpkin
1/4 cup + 2 TBSP raw honey or maple syrup
2 eggs (or 2 flax "eggs")
2 TBSP raw cacao powder or 3 TBSP cocoa
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
sprinkle sea salt
1 cup gluten-free flour
optional: 1/3 cup nondairy chocolate chips or raw cacao nibs


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease or line an 8" square pan.
2.  Whisk wet ingredients, and fold the dry ingredients into wet, folding the optional chips in last.
3.  Bake for 35-38 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Serve plain or top with:

pureed pumpkin
raw honey or syrup

Stir the pumpkin, honey and spice together to form a "frosting" and spread across a brownie.  Sprinkle with additional cacao nibs.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Banana Seed Bites


This is a quick, portable bar or cookie ball that I invented late one night when I was quite famished and craving "dessert."

It's easy to make, and keeps well (4 to 5 days at room temp or 12 to 14 refrigerated).  I like to make a batch and pop them into my lunches during the week.  This is a very flavorful one; I highly suggest replacing your go-to packaged energy bar or treat with this nutritious option.

Banana Seed Bites


1 cup organic sunflower seeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
2/3 cup gluten-free oats
2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 bag Barnana (dried banana) (about 20 pieces)
2 tablespoons sunflower seed butter or almond butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon raw cacao powder
2-3 tablespoons filtered water
1/4 cup goji berries (optional)


1.  Food process all ingredients together!  Add more water if necessary, stopping the processor or blender as needed to scrape down the sides.
2.  When mixture forms a ball or sticks together well, it's ready!  Shape into 2-tablespoon sized balls, and dehydrate in a food processor or bake at a low temperature (under 118) for 4 hours**
3.  Cool to room temp and store in a sealed container.

I can assure you this is a great pre- or post-run snack.  Or breakfast (like all my recipes, ha!)
Nothing like a protein boost to start the day mixed with a little natural sweetness.

**Alternately, store in the fridge.  Option to not dehydrate and simply enjoy as is!