Category Archives: Cooking + Food

Dark Chocolate Antioxidant No Bake Protein Bars

Everyone loves a good no bake recipe.  Why is that? Maybe I ask because I enjoy baking.  But I guess I can also appreciate a good no bake recipe every once in awhile.

Dark Chocolate Antioxidant No Bake #Protein Bars | | #nobake #chocolate

Let me get your attention right away. These are Chocolate protein no bake bar. A little chocolate always makes everything a better.

Dark Chocolate Antioxidant No Bake #Protein Bars | | #nobake #chocolate

They also have goji’s and blueberries in them (hence the antioxidant part). You could use any dried berries you wish, but that’s what I went with.

Dark Chocolate Antioxidant No Bake #Protein Bars | | #nobake #chocolate

Dark Chocolate Antioxidant No Bake Protein Bars



  1. In a small bowl soak your dried fruit until it has plumped a little. Squeeze excess water from fruit and place into a medium sized bowl.
  2. Combine all your other ingredients and mix well.
  3. That's it. For reals.
  4. Store them in the fridge.

Save 20% off your entire order at using code FLS20 at checkout

You’ll notice that my berries look a little smooshy (highly technical term) in the photos. And that’s because I did soak them for a little. You don’t have to do this, but a lot of times gojis are a weee on the hard/very chewy side. You might also need to barely adjust the moisture otherwise (add more applesauce and or peanut butter) if you don’t soak your fruit.

This is mold I use when I make a lot of my protein bars. It’s a silicone mold with 9 spaces. It’s called a “loaf pan” but it’s certainly not loaf size at all. So don’t be fooled by the amazon description.


What’s your favorite no bake recipe?
Do you make your own protein/energy type bars?

Celebrating a #morningwin with belVita and Oikos

Disclaimer: I have partnered with belVita and Dannon to help promote the belvita and Dannon partnership. I have been compensated for my time commitment to the program which includes writing about the promotion and product. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.

If you are one of my friends on FB, you may have seen this complaint from me the other day about early mornings:

Too Early

I am an early riser most days because I’m a busy gal. Well what happens when your Dad is kind enough to keep your kids overnight? You may forgo the early rising thing every great once in awhile (I’ll admit, it was nice). But that didn’t mean I had any less work to get done the next morning, so sometimes a quick breakfast is equally as nice.

belVita + Okios for the #morningwin |

And let me tell you, I’m a firm believer in breakfast. I can’t imagine skipping it, it’s my favorite meal of the day (hello Brinner!), but sometimes schedules aren’t so cooperative. When this opportunity arose, I thought it would be cool to give my busy friends a good quick a yummy breakfast suggestion.

This was my first time trying the crunchy belVita biscuits. I picked up the golden oat flavor, although my friends have mentioned the blueberry are really tasty, so I’ll have to try those next too (They are also available in: cinnamon brown sugar, chocolate, and apple cinnamon). I like the crunch of these, and that they weren’t overly sweet. As they were sitting on my desk this morning next to my coffee – I couldn’t help but dunk those suckers in there a few times. Good choice I might add.

19 grams of delicious whole-grain, 3 grams of fiber, and B vitamins. Nutritious sustained energy to fuel you all morning long.

belVita + Okios = #morning win |

And while the belVita (cookies – let’s call em what they are), were a new to me product, Oikos Greek Yogurt certainly isn’t! If I buy a flavored greek yogurt, this is the one I personally prefer. I made the switch to only purchasing greek yogurt a few years ago when I realized it contains twice as much protein compare to regular lowfat yogurt. I love the key lime flavor, and my new favorite has been:

Stamos <3 |
Stamos. I mean pineappple. Clearly pineapple. Really though, great yogurt the flavor selection is good, and they are readily found at any grocery store.

While even I the overplanner, and notetaker, have one of those rushed and overslept days from time to time, Laura Stack (aka The Productivity Pro) reminds us of a few ways to get the most out of our mornings:

Create your own #morningwin |

  • Do as much as you can the night before. Leave as little preparation as possible until the last minute.
  • Spend 20 minutes at the end of each day planning your to-do list. When you download the next day’s activities beforehand, you can devote your morning to enjoyment rather than stress.
  • Be sure to start your morning with a delicious balanced breakfast. Together, the nutritious steady energy of belVita and 12 grams of protein in Dannon Oikos Greek nonfat yogurt will help you get more out of your mornings.

And, seriously just try to get this commercial out of your head. I dare you. It’s been stuck in my head for days. That’d be a true #morningwin.


Have you jumped on the greek yogurt bandwagon?
What’s your favorite yogurt brand? Have you tried either of these products?
Stamos just gets better looking with age doesn’t he?!

Disclaimer: Although I was compensated for my time on this campaign, all thoughts, comments, and Stamos photoshopping remain my own.

Double Chocolate Spiced Brownies

Disclaimer: This post contains products that were sent to me from the company to test; I was not paid for this. This in no way reflects my thoughts within the post.

Chocolate and spice really isn’t an odd combination for me, my most favorite chocolate ever is Chuao Chocolate Spicy Maya . It is amazing. If you’re familiar with what a lot of people call mexican chocolate you’ll understand this. It’s delicious dark chocolate with hints of spice and cinnamon.

Chocolate Spiced Oats

Chocolate oats with pumpkin spice “frosting” and walnuts.

You may have noticed proof of this favorite flavor combination of mine via some of my instagram oat porn as of late, you can tell I’m a fan of the combination of chocolate and spice. Double Chocolate Spiced Brownies These are such a nice dark color because of the Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Cocoa – love that stuff! These are also gluten free, low fat and minimal sugar because I used Swerve. If you’re not familiar with Swerve Sweetener, you can read a previous post where I talked/baked with it here.

Double Chocolate Spiced Brownies

I guess technically these could be called “cupcakes” or “muffins” because that’s the type of pan I used – they’re just so rich and yummy, I’m sticking with brownie.

Double Chocolate Spiced Brownies



  1. Combine oat flour, cocoa powder, baking Soda + baking Powder, Swerve (or other granular sweetener that measures like sugar, instant coffee, and pumpkin spice mix in a bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl combine pumpkin puree, greek yogurt, water + vanilla extract.
  3. Combine wet and dry ingredients together, fold in nuts and chocolate chips.
  4. Spray a muffin tin and spoon mixture into pan.
  5. Bake at 350 for 16-19 mins (mine took 18).
  6. Let cool for a few mins and remove from pan.


I wouldn't suggest using paper liners on these, they would stick - so use an oiled metal tin, foil cupcake liners, or silicone ones.

There quite a few alterations you can do within this recipe to suit your liking.

  • You can use “regular” unsweetened cocoa instead of dark if you don’t have it.
  • Use another sweetener – although I like Swerve a lot. Doesn’t have an aftertaste and it measures like sugar!
  • Leave out walnuts, and chocolate chips if you wish
  • Replace the pumpkin spice with cinnamon, or omit.

You also have the option of making these gluten and dairy free if you use the right chocolate chips like these from Chatfield’s.

Double Chocolate Spiced Chocolate Brownies |

While you can omit and or replace the spice and dark chocolate in these, give it a try. There’s just something about rich chocolate with a warm spice that makes me happy. I think Swerve had it right – chocolate please!

vitacostsmallPS: You can buy Swerve at Vitacost.  If you’ve never shopped at Vitacost – do yourself a favor and go here first and sign up. You’ll receive $10 off of $30 – and you can also extend this offer to your friends later!


Do you like dark chocolate?
Nuts or no nuts?
Have you ever tried spiced chocolate?

Get Yo Swerve On With Some Lemon Zucchini Loaf

Disclaimer: This post contains products that were sent to me from the company to test. This in no way reflects my thoughts within the post.

I got my hands on some Swerve - and I was/am really excited.  I had been wanting to try it for a long while and every time I went to place a Vitacost order, it seemed to be out of stock. Swerve was nice enough to send me a little goodie box and I’ve been having fun testing it out in some recipes.

Swerve |

I had a zucchini hanging out in the fridge to use before it went bad, so this seemed like a good way to use it. I love zucchini bread (and uh zucchini muffins, and zucchini bread protein pancakes) – and perhaps being sick and tired of winter some sunny lemon sounded like a good idea.

Lemon Zucchini Loaf |

Forgive the low light photo, it was an icky day outside – and the bread didn’t last long enough to get any better pictures. Yes, the family enjoyed it that much. I’ll definitely be making it again very soon and I’ll post better pictures for you to drool over.

Lemon Zucchini Loaf


  • 1 1/2 C. Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1/2 C. All Purpose Flour
  • 2/3 C. Swerve Granular Sweetner (or other sweetner that measures like sugar)
  • 1 Tbsp. Baking Powder
  • Wet
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/3 C. Canola or Coconut oil
  • 1/2 C. Milk + 2 Tea. Vinegar (let sit 10 mins), or buttermilk
  • 1 C. shredded zucchini
  • 1 Tbsp. Lemon Extract
  • Lemon Glaze
  • I mixed Swerve Confectioners Sugar, more lemon extract (around 1-2 tea.), and a small amount of milk until the consistency was what I was looking for.


  1. Combine milk (I used skim milk) with vinegar (I used apple cider) and let set 10 mins
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line or grease a loaf pan and set aside.
  3. Grate your zucchini and set it aside. You can peel the zucchini beforehand if you do not want any green specks in your bread - but it's not necessary.
  4. Combine your dry ingredients into one bowl
  5. In another bowl beat your eggs, add your milk, lemon extract, and finally your zucchini.
  6. Combine dry and wet ingredients until just mixed. Pour into loaf pan and bake for about 45-50 mins .
  7. Let cool, remove from pan and spoon glaze over the top of the bread.


based on this recipe.

Swerve is a zero calorie, non-gycemic, natural, and non GMO sweetener that measures like sugar. All those attributes are important when it comes to cooking up things for le hubs, because he is a type 2 diabetic. You can read here as to why Swerve is a good choice for diabetics. Swerve is made from a combo of erythritol and oligosaccharides.


I really love that I found a great confectioner’s sugar replacement – because darn, who doesn’t love a good glaze on something??! I’ll be talking some more about swerve and sharing some more recipes in the near future! The short of it is though, that I really have enjoyed it – and it’s a great product.

vitacostsmallPS: You can buy Next Organics at Vitacost.  If you’ve never shopped at Vitacost – do yourself a favor and go here first and sign up. You’ll receive $10 off of $30 – and you can also extend this offer to your friends later!


Have you ever heard of swerve?
What’s the last thing you baked?
Are you ready for spring?

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