Thursday, June 30, 2011

Flag Cake

Repost from last year: Since this weekend is the 4th of July I thought it would be a good idea to show you again the flag cake. When I saw the demonstration on how to put a flag cake together here, it looked so fun. I knew I could make it a healthy cake. And I wanted to make it for the 4th of July. I'm posting it now because I live in Utah and we still have our statehood celebration coming up on the 24th. So it can be made again. If you live outside of Utah keep this in mind for next year. :]

It doesn't have food coloring, which is nice because in the original recipe you have to use tons of red food coloring to make the stripes, and it's made from a cake mix. You really can't tell very well in the picture the white and red stripes, white is on the bottom layer, then red, white, and red again. I guess you could put a few drops in this cake if you wanted to make them a little more visible. The only thing I wish I would have done different is frost it the day I served it. I frosted it the night before because I wouldn't have time the next day and the frosting started to blend into the layers. Other than that it was a very moist, yummy berry cake! Have fun with it!

Low Gluten Flag Cake


2 tablespoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon xantham gum

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/4 cup evaporated cane juice

1/4 cup oil

1/4 cup applesauce

2 eggs

1 cup rice milk

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


3/4 cup applesauce

3/4 cup blueberry puree

3/4 cup strawberry puree

Preheat oven to 350*F. Grease and line bottom of three 9" round cake pans with parchment paper.

In two separate bowls (you're making a double batch, the recipe above is for a single batch) mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, xantham gum, salt, and evaporated cane juice. Then add eggs, oil, applesauce, rice milk, and vanilla and mix well. Divide the batters into thirds, about 2 1/2 to 2 3/4 cups, into three separate bowls (If there is left over batter you can make cupcakes). In one bowl add 3/4 cup applesauce, this will be your white layer, and mix well. In a second bowl add 3/4 cup blueberry puree, this will be your blue layer, and mix well. In a third bowl add 3/4 cup strawberry puree, this will be your red layer, and mix well. Bake each cake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool completely. Take another piece of parchment paper and top each cake with it, then wrap in plastic wrap and freeze over night.

How to assemble:

Take cakes out of freezer. Allow to sit on counter for a few minutes to thaw slightly. Remove plastic wrap and parchment paper. Take white and red layers and cut in half length wise. Put one half of a red layer on plate and frost and very thin layer of white cream cheese frosting. Place one of the white layers on top and frost a thin layer also. Off to the side stack the remaining red and white layers on top of each other and place the full blue cake on top of them. Take a bowl, about 3" in diameter, and place it upside down on top of the three layers. Take a long knife and while holding the bowl in place, cut down through all layers of cake along the out side edge of the bowl. When finished take the outside part of the blue layer and place it on top of the slightly frosted white layer of cake. Frost the inside edges of the blue layer. Next take the inside round part of the last red layer and put it into the round hole of the frosted blue layer. Thinly frost the top of the red layer. Then take the inside round part of the last white layer and put on top of the red layer inside the blue layer. Frost the entire cake, top and sides. You can choose to top cake with extra blueberries and strawberries or just leave all white. You can either throw away the remaining pieces of cake or make them into a trifle. I did the trifle option, I post that recipe later.

This cake is a huge hit at any 4th of July party. It is a big surprise to see the flag on the inside when you cut into it. Have fun and enjoy and healthier alternative!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday!!

If you've followed this blog for a while you know how much I LOVE finding good HEALTHY snacks. Sometimes they are easy to find and other times I've had to search for them, another reason why I do Fun Food Finds Friday, so you don't have to do the work. :] Well Yahoo Shine posted 13 healthy snacks. I went through the list and there was only one that I've tried. Of course I have tried different name brands of healthy dried fruit, but not the one that they listed. It's always fun to see new things pop up. So go check out the list here. And remember happier healthier snacking!!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Tahitian French Macarons

These are sinfully delicious!! I've made them several times and I've taken them to baby showers and to neighbors. All of the reactions are the same, "Don't these have tons of coconut in them" nope, "Are you sure these are gluten free?" yep, "They're not really fat free are they?" pretty close. The texture is so fun, crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. I didn't change that much from the original recipe for the macaron base except for the rootbeer variation (click here for original recipe), but I used a completely different filling to make them almost fat free. Try these you'll love them!! Oh and I've frozen them and they freeze great! Just thaw and they taste like you've just made them.
Tahitian French Macarons

Macaron Base


3 egg whites, aged*

5 tablespoons evaporated cane juice

2/3 cup almond flour

1 1/2 cups organic powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (amount will differ with variations)


In a food processor, mix almond flour and organic powdered sugar until well mixed. Sift the mixture through sieve, and divide in half.

In a medium sized mixing bowl, whip egg white until foamy. While beating on high, slowly add evaporated cane juice. When soft peaks form, add extract and food coloring if desired. Beat until stiff peaks form, has a glossy texture, and mixture doesn't drip from the beaters.

Fold half of the almond mixture into the whipped meringue. When just blended, add additional dry mixture, folding until mixture is blended. Don't over mix. Place mixture in a piping bag fitted with round tip, or a large zip lock bag and cut off one corner. On a parchment lined baking sheet, pip small circles, about the size of a quarter. Once cookie sheet is full, tap sheet firmly against the counter, or flat surface. This helps the macaron to get it's pied shape.

Let dry, uncovered for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 300* F. Once they have sat for 30 minutes bake for 15-17 minutes. Tap cookie sheet firmly against the counter one more time before baking. Cool completely. Pipe a small amount of meringue frosting (see recipe below) on flat side of macaron, top with other half making a sandwich. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

*Aged egg whites: covered and set at room temperature overnight. (left mine out for about 3 hours and they were at room temperature)

Meringue Frosting


6 tablespoons evaporated cane juice

1 large egg white

1 1/2 tablespoons water

1/4 teaspoons cream of tartar

pinch of salt

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (amount will differ with variations)


Bring a few inches of water to boil in a sauce pan that can hold an electric mixer bowl above the water. Whisk the evaporated cane juice, egg white, water, cream of tartar, and salt in the bowl by hand. Set the bowl above the boiling water and beat with an electric hand mixer at high speed until stiff peaks form, about 9 minutes. Remove from the heat; beat in the vanilla. Pour into a piping bag fitted with a round tip, or a large zip lock bag cutting off on of the corners.


Rootbeer Float

-Use 1 teaspoon Rootbeer extract in place of vanilla to the macaron base

-Don't change anything with the meringue frosting

Guava Raspberry

-Use 1/2 teaspoon raspberry extract and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract in place of the vanilla, and 3 drops pink food coloring to the macaron base

-Use 2 -3 tablespoons frozen guava passion fruit concentrate to meringue frosting in place of vanilla, and 2 drops pink food coloring to the meringue frosting.

Kiwi Lime

-Use 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and zest of 1 lime in place of vanilla, and 5 drops neon green food coloring to the macaron base

-Use 3 tablespoons kiwi puree and 4 drops neon green food coloring to the meringue frosting. (For every 1 kiwi I pureed I added 3 teaspoons evaporated cane juice)

Pina Colada

-Use 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon banana extract in place of vanilla and 5 drops of yellow food coloring to the macaron base

-Use 2-3 tablespoons frozen Pina Colada concentrate (Bacardi's) in place of vanilla to the meringue frosting.

Banana Cream Pie

-Use 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon banana extract in place of vanilla and 5 drops of yellow food coloring to the macaron base.

-Don't change anything with the meringue frosting.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

I'm sorry about missing Thursday's post. My Internet was down for 3 days! Luckily I already had made my Fun Food Find Friday post. It sure makes me think that maybe I should be thinking ahead. :] My husband is the computer tech in our family and he was out of town. I do have some great recipes for next week though, so stayed tuned. :]

Friday, June 24, 2011

Fun Food Find Friday!!

When I first walked by this Walden Farms Caramel Dip, I thought it sounded too good to be true. It claims to be fat free and calorie free and sugar free. How could that taste good? So I bought some. It does have splenda in it, which I always try to stay away from. But other than that it wasn't too bad. I'll be honest it wasn't the best caramel dip I've ever had but it was the best fat free caramel dip I've ever had. My kids didn't mind it and my sister didn't think it was too bad either.

I found this at the health food stores.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday!!

Now that summer is in full swing around our house I find myself more and more busy. It can get like that during the school year too. But it is a little different in the summer time. Mostly, I think, because I want to be out enjoying the sunshine just as much as my children do.

When you first start cooking more healthy and cut out fast food and processed foods, it can seem like it takes for ever to get dinner on the table. So today for our Wisdom I thought I would share some tips and things that I do to help make things a little easier and go more quickly when it comes to getting dinner on the table.

The first thing I do is, I always have a salad ready in the fridge. I wash my lettuce and cut it up at the beginning of the week and put it in an airtight container in the fridge. I usually will add cut up carrots to it, but the other vegetables I don't add until we sit down to eat. That way the lettuce will stay nice and fresh and won't wilt. By doing this I don't have to prepare a salad everyday, it's already to go.

Second I always have vegetables and fruit on hand. This takes care of the other sides for dinner and cuts your time down if you were trying to prepare another side each night.

With just those two simple things it cuts out a lot of your preparation time and stress. Now you just have to worry about the main dish. And on really busy nights, when it's already 6 p.m. and I don't have time to cook anything, I just run down the street to the grocery store and buy a rotisserie chicken for the main dish and dinner is ready in less than 15 minutes.

I hope those tips are helpful for you and your family. If you have a tip you would like to share I would love to hear about it. Happy Healthier Eating!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Mexican Casserole

I love how quick and easy this recipe came together. It has a very good Mexican flavor to it. If you had a rotisserie chicken on hand it would make this dish even quicker to put together. This recipe calls for ingredients that I always have on hand, another reason why I liked it so much. So if you're having a long day and you don't know what to make for dinner that's quick and easy, this is the dish for you!

Mexican Casserole


3/4 pound boneless skinless chicken, either breast or tenders, cubed

1 tablespoon butter

1 heaping tablespoon taco season mix, found here

1 can black beans, drained

1 can corn, drained

1/2 cup salsa

2 tablespoons water

1 cup shredded Mexican-style cheese, or what you have on hand

1 1/2 cups crushed plain tortilla chips


Preheat oven to 350*F. In a skillet cook chicken in butter over medium heat until chicken is no longer pink inside. Add taco seasoning, beans, corn, salsa and water. Stir and cover. Simmer for 10 minutes to let the flavors merry together.
Transfer chicken mixture to a 9x13 inch baking dish. Top with crushed tortillas chips and bake for 15 minutes. Then add cheese and bake until cheese is melted, then serve and enjoy!!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Chicken and Veggies

People ask me all the time what I eat, especially those who know me well. I've even been asked to say exactly what I've eaten the day before. Eating healthy really isn't that hard once you've started it. And if you have healthy food already in your house it's easy to just throw something together without a recipe.

Today is an example of that. One night a few weeks ago I didn't know what to make for dinner. I wasn't really feeling inspired to cook and spend a while experimenting on something new. When I looked in my fridge I found squash, zucchini, chicken, onions and garlic. So I chopped up all of the veggies and chicken. I started by cooking the garlic, onions and chicken in a skillet (If you add those three ingredients and then turn the heat on there is no need for oil or fat because the juices from the chicken and onion are plenty of liquid as long as you keep the temperature low and cover with a lid while cooking). Once the chicken is cooked through I added the rest of the veggies. Then a little salt and pepper. Cook for a few more minutes until the veggies are cooked to your liking and there you go. A quick, easy, healthy meal with what I had in my fridge. Happy Healthy Eating!!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Fun Food Find Friday!!

I'm always on the look out for healthier snacks I can put in my purse or in the car for the kids when they get hungry while driving or when we're out running errands. I really like these One Organic Food Bars. The blueberry flavor was my favorite. My kids like them both. They also have a lot of protein in them.

I found these at the health food stores.

Thursday, June 16, 2011


It was national donut day a few Friday's ago. So I went out and bought myself a donut maker and started experimenting. I am loving this little machine! We have had so much fun the last couple of weeks! Besides being extremely low fat, these are so easy to change flavors to make them very unique. They are fast to make and really don't take that much effort.

Basic Donut Recipe

1 cup kamut, spelt, or whole wheat flour

1/2 cup evaporated cane juice

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 egg

1/2 cup rice milk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

4 tablespoons applesauce


Stir flour, evaporated cane juice, and baking powder together. Then add egg, rice milk, vanilla and applesauce. Beat with electric mixer for one minute. Pour batter into a large ziplock bag. Cut off the tip when ready to pour into donut iron. Squeeze batter into each donut shape until almost full, make sure not to have any batter in the middle or you will not get your hole. Follow cooking directions of your donut iron, and enjoy!!

Yields about 35 donuts

Basic Glaze


Organic powdered sugar



In a small bowl pour powdered sugar, add a very small amount of water. Stir until sugar is dissolved. If you need to add a little more sugar or water you can. The consistency should be a little thick but not too thick. Dip one side of donut in glaze and place on to cooling rack until glaze drys, then enjoy!


Carob Frosting

Melt Carob chips in microwave in a small glass bowl. Click here for more detailed instructions. Dip one side of donut in carob. Then place onto cooling rack until carob sets, then enjoy!
Butterscotch Frosting

Melt Butterscotch chips in microwave in a small glass bowl. Follow instructions on the back of the bag. Dip one side of donut in melted butterscotch. Then place onto cooling rack until it sets,then enjoy!

Banana Coconut Donuts


1 cup kamut, spelt, or whole wheat flour
1/2 cup evaporated cane juice
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 egg
1/2 cup rice milk 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract

4 tablespoons applesauce

Banana extract


Organic powdered sugar


Stir flour, evaporated cane juice, and baking powder together. Then add egg, rice milk, coconut extract and applesauce. Beat with electric mixer for one minute. Pour batter into a large ziplock bag. Cut off the tip when ready to pour into donut iron. Squeeze batter into each donut shape until almost full, make sure not to have any batter in the middle or you will not get your hole. Follow cooking directions of your donut iron.

Banana Glaze: In a small bowl add organic powdered sugar, a little banana extract and a little water. Stir until sugar dissolved. Add more sugar if needed to make it thick. Taste to see if you need to add more banana extract. Dip donuts in glaze, then place on cooling rack until glaze sets, then enjoy!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday!!

I love it when I can find a second opinion that supports my opinion. On Fun Food Find Friday's I like to post about healthier treats and snacks. A lot of the things I post are things that I give my children instead of candy, or candy bars, or sugary snacks. Now that it's summer it is the time for travel and family vacations. I use a lot of those healthier snacks to give my kids when we travel but I also have a little cooler with fruit and veggies in it. It really does help my children to be more relaxed and not hyper while driving if they are eating healthy snacks instead of all of the sugar. Something every parent hopes to avoid, the "hyper/crazy" kids in the back seat. :] If you want a list of the snacks and treats I use go to my treats tab. For the second opinion click here, and remember happier healthier eating!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Slow-Cooker Chili Chicken Tacos

Here is another wonderful recipe for the crock pot/slow cooker. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I love the slow cooker for the summer so the over and stove don't heat up the house on those really hot days. We haven't have very many hot days yet this summer. But we have had one so I pulled out the crock pot. I thought this would be too spicy for my kids at first, but it wasn't. It has the perfect kick to it and a slight sweet after taste. I loved it and so did my kids!

Slow-Cooker Chili Chicken Tacos


2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast

4 teaspoons garlic, minced

1/2 cup prepared tomato salsa

2 tablespoons diced green chiles (I used the one in the small 4 0z can)

2 teaspoons chili powder

2 Roma tomatoes, diced

1 teaspoon dried cilantro leaves

1 teaspoon salt


favorite taco toppings


In slow cooker/crock pot, combine chicken, garlic, salsa, chiles, chili powder, tomatoes, cilantro, and salt. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. Before serving remove chicken and shred using two forks and return to slow cooker. Serve in corn, whole wheat, or brown rice tortillas with toppings and enjoy!!

original recipe from

Monday, June 13, 2011

Cornmeal Pancakes with Citrus Syrup

I felt like having breakfast for dinner the other night. These were so delicious!! They have a fresh taste, light feeling but also very filling. My kids loved them! To me these just feel like a summer pancake. I hope you enjoy them!

Cornmeal Pancakes with Citrus Syrup


1 cup kamut flour or corn flour

3/4 cup cornmeal

1 tablespoon evaporated cane juice

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cup rice milk

1 teaspoon applesauce

2 teaspoons finely shredded orange peel or lemon peel

1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice, or regular orange juice

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 cup evaporated cane juice or honey


Preheat skillet or griddle to medium heat or 375*. In a medium bowl stir together flour, cornmeal, evaporated cane juice, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl combine eggs, milk, and applesauce. Then add liquid mixture to flour and blend.

Pour about 1/4 cup batter onto hot skillet or griddle. When sides start to dry and bubbles pop turn over and cook for another minute.

For Syrup: In a medium sauce pan combine the orange peel or lemon peel, orange juice, lemon juice and evaporated cane juice. Bring to boil over medium high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, about 15 minutes or until reduced to 3/4 cup. Serve warm or cold, refrigerate remaining syrup for up to 1 week.

Orginal recipe from

Friday, June 10, 2011

Fun Food Find Friday!!

Surf Sweets Gummy Worms is our Fun Find for today. These are great, you can not tell the difference between these and other gummy worms made with refined sugar and corn syrup.

You can buy these at health food stores and

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Chicken Chimichangas

These are so delicious!! I always thought chimichangas were deep fried, so when I found this recipe, I was more than excited to try them. My kids liked them so much they asked for them the next day for lunch. We had eaten all of them for dinner. They were so upset they couldn't have leftovers for lunch. Needless to say these have made it on our "make at least 2 times a month" list. :] I hope you like them as much as my family did. Oh and I took some to my neighbor when she was sick and couldn't cook for her family. They also loved them. :]

Chicken Chimichangas


1 cup salsa, divided

3 1/2 cups chopped cooked chicken

1/2 onion, diced

1 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

3/4 teaspoon dried oregano flakes

1/2 teaspoon salt

10 whole wheat, or brown rice tortillas

1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Toppings of your choice: guacamole, sour cream, shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes


Preheat oven to 425* F. Grease a baking sheet with cooking spray.

Combine 1/2 cup salsa, chicken onion, cumin, oregano and salt in a large sauce pan. Cook over medium heat until most of the liquid evaporates, stirring often for 15-20 minutes. Spoon 1/4 cup of mixture in the center of each tortilla; top with 2 tablespoons of cheese.

Fold in 2 sides of tortillas to enclose filling. Fold over top and bottom edges of tortillas, making rectangles. Secure with wooden tooth picks. Place, folded side down, on greased baking sheet. Repeat with remaining tortillas. Bake for 8 minutes; turn and bake 5 more minutes. Remove tooth picks before serving. Top with your favorite toppings, and enjoy!!

*Helpful tips

-Make sure your tortillas are warm. If they are not warm before you start to fold them, the edges will begin to crack and filling will fall out.

-Spray the entire bottom side of tortilla with cooking spray before adding filling to the non spray side. This will also help the tortilla from cracking.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Chicken Corn Quesadilla

When we finally were able to move back into our home I spent most days cleaning and painting. I didn't spend a lot of time in the kitchen. So I found lots of easy and quick healthy things to feed my family. This was one of their favorites, maybe because they can use their hands. But really there is a lot of flavor in these quesadillas for how quickly they come together. So if you're in a rush this is something you can fix up really quick.

Chicken Corn Quesadilla


Corn tortillas

1 Store bought rotisserie chicken

1 tomato, diced

1 4 oz can diced green chilies

grated cheese


sour cream



Preheat a griddle to 375*. Remove skin, and pull meat off of the rotisserie chicken. Spread a little butter on the outside of two corn tortillas. Place both of the corn tortillas butter side down on the griddle. Spread some of the green chilies over one tortilla. Then sprinkle cheese and add some chunks of chicken and tomatoes on that same tortilla. Top with other buttered tortilla, once it is cooked, butter side out. When cheese is melted and tortillas cooked remove from griddle. Use a pizza cutter to cut into triangle shapes. Top with sour cream and salsa, enjoy!!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Gluten Free Cinnamon Spice Cupcakes

Here is another gluten free recipe using Gluten Free Pantry cake mixes. I really liked the taste of these. They don't have hardly any fat in them, even with the frosting, which is always a plus when it comes to dessert! Then you don't feel so bad when you have two, or maybe three. :]

Gluten Free Cinnamon Spice Cupcakes


1 spice cake mix from gluten free pantry

2 eggs

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons rice milk

1 1/3 teaspoons GF vanilla extract

1/2 heaping teaspoon ground cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350*F. In a large measuring cup add tablespoon of lemon juice, then add rice milk until it measures 1/2 cup. Then add the extra 2 tablespoons; Set aside. Place cupcake liners in cupcake tin. In a medium mixing bowl mix together all of the ingredients. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Let cool on wire rack. Frost with Meringue Frosting, found here, Sprinkle with Cinnamon and enjoy!!

Recipe inspired by Wendy Paul

Friday, June 3, 2011

Fun Food Find Friday!!

Today our Fun Food Find is Gluten-Free cake mixes. This is the brand of cake mix I used for yesterday's recipe. I used a few of their products now and I'm really pleased with them so far. They have good flavor.

You can buy these at Health Food stores and some Grocery also carry them in their Gluten Free section. Just ask the store where their Gluten Free section is.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Gluten Free Churro Cupcakes

I hope you all had a fun holiday weekend. Mine was fun, and a little longer, spending time with my family and good healthy food. :]

There are lots of recipes out there that call for a cakes mix. I've been experimenting with some gluten free cake mixes. The biggest problem with them is that they are much smaller than normal cake mixes. So you have to do a lot of math to change recipes to make them work. You don't have to worry about that with this recipe, I've already done those changes and of course a few more healthy changes of my own too. :] I really liked how these Churro Cupcakes tasted. I also loved that I didn't have to make frosting for them, though you can if you want to. If you like cinnamon you love these!

Gluten Free Churro Cupcakes


1 Gluten Free Pantry old fashion cake mix

2 eggs

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons applesauce

3/4 teaspoon GF vanilla extract

1/4 cup evaporated cane juice

1 1/3 tablespoons cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350* F. Line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners. In a large bowl mix together cake mix, eggs, applesauce, and vanilla. Put 2 tablespoons of batter in each cupcake liner. In a small bowl mix well; evaporated cane juice and cinnamon. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of cinnamon mixture on top of batter. Then fill each liner with batter until 3/4 full. Bake for 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Sprinkle the top of each cup cake with remaining cinnamon mixture. Cool on wire rack and enjoy!

Makes 12 cupcakes

Recipe inspired by wendy paul