Dark Chocolate Vegan Cake (gluten free)

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As a huge fan of Food52, I was extremely eager and excited to try their vegan dark chocolate cake.  The cake is super chocolatey, but is still light and fluffy.  You can double the recipe to layer it and frost to make a birthday cake, or simply add some spice to make it have a kick.  After playing around with some flours, I was able to adjust the recipe to make the perfect gluten free vegan chocolate cake!

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With this chocolate cake, I wanted to still keep it light, but add in some flours that had fiber to keep me full.  So I added whole grain flours like brown rice flour, teff flour, and oat flour. Out of these, the teff flour is especially healthy because it is actually a complete protein, and is rich in iron and magnesium.

Some people wonder why their chocolate desserts do not come out as chocolatey as they would like.  This all comes down to the quality of the cocoa powder you are using in my opinion.  Make sure to use unsweetened cocoa powder because there is no sugar to take away from the cocoa flavor.  My favorite is Scharffen Berger’s natural cocoa powder.

This recipe is very quick and easy to make!  I hope you enjoy it!

Dark Chocolate Vegan Cake (gluten free)
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Gluten free, Vegan, Refined sugar free
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 60g white rice flour
  • 40g brown rice flour
  • 50g arrowroot flour
  • 40g teff flour
  • 20g oat flour
  • ⅓c high quality unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1tsp baking soda
  • ½tsp salt
  • 1tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1c dairy free milk
  • ⅓c melted coconut oil
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾c coconut sugar
Optional
  • dash of red pepper and nutmeg
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Place them in a large bowl.
  3. Add the apple cider vinegar to the milk and beat until it's frothy. Whisk in the oil, vanilla, and coconut sugar.
  4. Add about a third of the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix them together. Add another third, keeping mixing for a few moments, and then add the final third.
  5. Pour the cake batter into an 8 or 9-inch springform cake pan that have been greased. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

 

Oatmeal Cookies (gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free)

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Oatmeal cookies are a staple recipe in American homes, but a lot of times, these cookies are overly sweet and buttery.  So what better way to start the year than with some good old healthy oatmeal cookies?  Don’t worry, they don’t taste off or unrecognizable.  In fact, they taste just like normal oatmeal cookies, but without any of the bad stuff!

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I was determined to make oatmeal cookies that were enjoyable yet had good, wholesome ingredients.  For sugar, I used coconut sugar because it has a rich and caramel like flavor, but doesn’t compromise the consistency of the cookie.  Coconut sugar also has a low glycemic index (35)!  I like to add some maple syrup, which has sources of calcium, magnesium, and potassium.  In addition, the flour blend along with the oats is full of protein and fiber.  Since coconut oil can have a strong flavor in cookies, I use a coconut oil that has a less intense coconut taste from La Tourangelle.  For chocolate chips, make sure they do not have any milk products if you’re sensitive or allergic.  Also, it’s best if it doesn’t have soy lecithin because it can contain traces of milk.  I use Enjoy Life.

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These cookies are hearty, grainy, and with the perfect amount of sweetness.  They don’t take long to make, and are perfect for a snowy day!

Oatmeal Cookies (gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free)
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 32
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 50g millet flour
  • 50g potato starch
  • 50g sorghum flour
  • 40g brown rice flour
  • 20g hazelnut flour
  • ½ tsp xanthan gum
  • ⅔ cup coconut sugar*
  • 2-3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3 cups gluten free oats
  • 2 handfuls of chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, beat coconut oil and coconut sugar until creamy.
  3. Add in eggs and vanilla, and mix.
  4. Add combined flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt with electric mixer.
  5. Add oats and chocolate chips.
  6. With a cookie scooper, place the dough onto a lined cookie pan and lightly press down on the dough.
  7. Bake for 10-15 minutes.
Notes
*Can be replaced with normal granulated sugar, but it will not be refined sugar free.

 

Rustic Italian Ricotta Cookies (gluten free, dairy free)

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Ricotta cookies were the dessert of my childhood – I remember coming home to the smell of sweet ricotta, lemon, and aromatic vanilla.  But when I became dairy free, that family cookie recipe was difficult to replicate.  For all I knew, I would never be able to taste those special cookies again…

Until now.  After altering the family recipe several times, and discovering Kite Hill’s ricotta, I was able to enjoy ricotta cookies again, and now share it with the gluten free and dairy free community.

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These ricotta cookies have a light and crusty outside, but are airy and soft in the inside.  They’re sweet, with subtle flavors of vanilla and lemon.  To make this recipe as delicious as it can be, you might want to try to use a good quality vanilla extract, such as Nielsen-Massey, since they have more vanilla flavor than alcohol.  Also, if your diet includes dairy, then you can swap the Kite Hill ricotta with normal ricotta.

They’re delicious out of the oven, as well as the next day!  Long live the tradition of the ricotta cookies!

Rustic Italian Ricotta Cookies (gluten free, dairy free)
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Dairy free, Gluten free, Italian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 20
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup vegan butter (I use Earth Balance)
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 8 ounces Kite Hill ricotta (dairy free)
  • 1-2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-2 tsp lemon juice
  • 100g brown rice flour
  • 75g white rice flour
  • 55g potato starch
  • 50g millet flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, mix the butter and sugar until creamy. Beat in the egg. Stir in the ricotta, vanilla extract, and lemon juice.
  3. Combine the flours, baking powder, and baking soda, and mix into the wet mixture.
  4. If you have time, refrigerate the batter for an hour.
  5. Scoop the batter with a cookie scooper, and drop onto the prepared cookie sheet.
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Let the cookies cool for 5-10 minutes.

 

How to Marbleize Cookies

Despite the winter holidays passing, cookie decorating is a great skill to have for anytime of the year.  My favorite technique is marbling them!  It’s pretty, and wonderful for any occasion.  Decorating cookies is a great skill to have because you can do it for anything, and it’s impressive!  The marble technique is really easy, and elegant.  My friend and I made and decorated cookies for a bake sale of the Make A Wish Foundation Club in our school.  Together, we made Martha Stewart’s royal icing which is actually gluten free and vegan depending on the meringue powder you use.  Everyone was so amazed by how beautiful they all were!

So, are you ready to marbleize some cookies?

Instructions:
Step 1:  Separate a quarter of the icing, and dye it with food coloring.  (In these pictures, we did not use natural food coloring.  If you want to, I recommend these.)

Step 2:   After making your icings, fill a bottle for each color you use, such as these.

Step 3:  Make a border with the non-dyed icing, and fill the inside in zig zag motions.  Border the outside of the cookie slowly, and exerting even force throughout.  Then, pipe zig zags with the icing within the border, leaving some spaces blank.

Step 4:  Using a toothpick, even out the icing, covering the negative spaces.  After smoothing it out as much as possible, gently tapping the cookie on the counter top to make the icing settle.

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Step 4:  Using the colored icing, pipe an asterisk onto the wet non-dyed icing. 

Step 5:  Starting on a colored mark on the outside, use your toothpick, and slowly circle around the cookie, and into a spiral shape toward the center.  This will create a marble look.

Step 6:  Let the icing settle.

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And there you have it – gorgeous, festive, and impressive marbleized cookies!

 

Gluten free Vegan Cinnamon Loaf

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Cinnamon loaf is a great way to kick start the holiday season.  Easy, versatile, and quite delicious, gluten free and vegan cinnamon  loaf is at your disposal.  I was inspired to create a loaf that was hearty and included all elements of cold weather flavors.

  • cinnamon
  • nutmeg
  • brown sugar
  • pumpkin

To my surprise, it turned out amazing.  You can have a slice for breakfast (with almond butter and gluten free oats), snack, or dessert (with melted chocolate).

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When baking gluten free and vegan, things may turn out very moist – almost to the point of being raw.  However, this recipe perfectly balances the tough ‘crust’ with the moist inside.  As soon as you take a bite, you’ll fall in love.

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There are so many things you can add/alter to this recipe to make it your own.  For example, if you don’t like pumpkin puree (or simply don’t have it), just replace it with some applesauce.  Or if you want a little more crunch to you’re loaf, replace canola oil with canola olive oil blend, or just olive oil.  If you want this loaf to be more dessert like, add more sugar or chocolate chips.  Not so much of a sweet tooth – cut down the sugar, and add in some gluten free oats and flaxseed meal.  I love to add nuts such as walnuts or pecans.

Any way you have it – it will be delicious!

Gluten free Vegan Cinnamon Loaf
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert, Breakfast
Cuisine: Gluten free, Vegan
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 250g gluten free flour blend*
  • ¼ cup packed brown sugar, or coconut sugar (I used light brown sugar)
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup almond milk
  • 1-2 tbsp lemon juice
  • ¼ canola olive oil blend (or just canola oil)
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin puree or unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • a dash of nutmeg
  • 2½ tsp baking powder
  • salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
Optional
  • ¾ cup walnuts
  • ⅓ cup gluten free certified oats
  • flaxseed meal
  • chocolate chips
  • additional spices
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 4 by 8 inch loaf pan. (I like to grease it with coconut oil)
  2. In a large bowl, beat the milk and lemon juice until bubbles appear. Then add the oil, applesauce or pumpkin puree, and sugars and mix well. Stir in vanilla.
  3. Sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in the mixture. Stir until smooth.
  4. Gently fold in add ins.
  5. Bake for 50-55 minutes. It should be slightly browned.
  6. Let cool for 15 mins in pan, and then transfer it to a cooling rack.
  7. Once it cools, it's ready to eat!
Notes
*Can be replaced with all purpose flour

 

Peanut Butter Cup Eyes

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For those people yesterday like me, who ate no candy due to dairy and gluten intolerances, have a chance to catch up today with these awesome peanut butter cup eyes!  They were an experiment of mine that finally have been perfected.  The secret – two types of peanut butters – roasted and raw.  The roasted flavor enhances the chocolate, and the raw peanut flavor paired with the coconut oil and maple syrup, add delicacy.  Did I forget to mention that these peanut butter cups only have 5 ingredients?  It’s that simple.

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They taste just like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, but with no dairy, no gluten, no refined sugar, or even citric acid.  Instead, the coconut oil and maple syrup accentuate the peanut butter flavor, which creates a very delicious taste.

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Also, just adding a dollop of chocolate on top of the peanut butter make it that much more fun to eat!

Peanut Butter Cup Eyes
Author: 
Recipe type: Candy
Cuisine: Gluten free, Vegan, No refined sugar
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 32
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup roasted peanut butter
  • ¼ cup raw peanut butter
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 6 tbsp maple sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 7 oz chocolate (I used dark chocolate)
Instructions
  1. Place cupcake liners in mini cupcake pan.
  2. Mix the peanut butters, coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla together.
  3. Melt chocolate.
  4. With a spoon, fill ¼-1/3 of the cupcake liner with chocolate. Repeat with others. (No need to freeze)
  5. With another spoon, fill the cupcake liner with the peanut butter mixture.
  6. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours, or freeze for around 20+ minutes.
  7. Place a dollop of melted chocolate on each peanut butter cup. Refrigerate for another hour, or freeze for 20 minutes.
  8. If wanted, remove each cupcake liner to create a true peanut butter cup effect!

 

Kitchen Sink Chocolate Cookies Autumn Style (gf,v)

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I am a fan of chocolate, pumpkin, and oats, so why not combine them in a cookie?  My kitchen sink cookies  are all of the things that make up Autumn.

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… with deep flavors of chewy oats, rich cocoa, and subtle flavor of pumpkin, these cookies are perfect.

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They’re wonderful for a quick snack and can be made with so many variations to make it your own.  Some things to add many be some pecans, nutmeg, pumpkin spice – there are endless possibilities!

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You’ll love them!

Kitchen Sink Chocolate Cookies Autumn Style (gf,v)
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Gluten Free, Vegan
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 16
 
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup gluten free flour blend
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ⅓ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp flaxseed meal
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • ⅓ cup pumpkin puree + 1 tbsp water
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ cup rolled oats (I use Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Oats)
  • ½ cup chocolate chips
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees f.
  2. Beat sugar, oil, flaxseed meal, and pumpkin puree (with water) together. Mix in vanilla extract.
  3. Sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Mix with wet ingredients.
  4. Fold in the rolled oats and chocolate chips. *
  5. Scoop out the dough with cookie scooper 2 inches apart on parchment paper.
  6. Bake 10-12 minutes.
Notes
*this batter can be refrigerated for up to 3 days, and be baked later on.

 

Dark Chocolate Walnut Cookies (gf, df)

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The weather outside is getting colder, and what does this mean?  More chocolate. These cookies are perfect for just that – days that are not too hot, but not too cold.

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Chocolatey, rich, deep, and slightly nutty (with an option of spice too) are a a wonderful combination for a delicious cookie.

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I have tried these cookies several times, and in different ways.  I loved the taste of adding a dash of red pepper to the cookie batter, because it just boosted the chocolate flavor even more.  Also, for those who like their cookies on the softer side, try baking these cookies for around 10-12 minutes. They are made with flours that are usually handy in a gluten free kitchen.  If not, just replace the rice flours with a gluten free flour blend.

Enjoy!

Dark Chocolate Walnut Cookies (gf, df)
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Gluten free, Dairy free
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 28
 
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup brown rice flour
  • ½ cup white rice flour
  • ¼ cup almond flour
  • ½ cup cocoa flour
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts
  • 10 oz melted dark chocolate*
  • optional
  • a dash of red pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees f.
  2. Melt chocolate at 30 second intervals for 2 minutes 30 seconds.
  3. Mix eggs, sugar, oil, and vanilla extract. Then slowly add in melted chocolate.
  4. Add flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  5. Fold in walnuts.
  6. Scoop out batter with cookie scooper and place on parchment paper 2" apart. Lightly press down.
  7. Bake for 14-16 minutes.
Notes
* I used 80% dark chocolate and used ¾ cup sugar. However, if you do a lower percentage, it is more sweet, so add less sugar.

 

Chocolate Chip Cookies (gf, df, and paleo friendly)

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One of my friends kindly made me some gluten free dairy free chocolate chip cookies from Simple Mills, a healthy mix company.  Their products feature simple, minimalistic ingredients such as almond flour, coconut sugar, etc..  When I tried their chocolate chip cookies,  I fell in love.

So, I rushed home, determined to make my own version and perhaps, even better!  And I did.

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This classic recipe is super easy, and could be made with the ingredients in your household.   Also, there’s a paleo option!

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To compare tastes, I also made Simple Mill’s chocolate chip cookies.  Their cookies were sugary and crunchy, while mine were hearty and had more depth in flavor.  Overall, it depends on what you prefer in a chocolate chip cookie!

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Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Cookies (gf, df, and paleo friendly)
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Gluten free, Dairy free, Paleo option
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • ⅔ cup almond flour
  • ⅓ cup coconut sugar
  • ¼ cup arrowroot powder
  • ¼ cup coconut flour
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar*
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp flaxseed meal + 1 tbsp water
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp melted vegan butter or coconut oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • chocolate chips (however much you want)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Mix flaxseed meal with water let rest for 3 minutes.
  3. Mix wet ingredients in bowl.
  4. Mix dry ingredients in separate bowl.
  5. Put dry into wet. Stir.
  6. Bake in oven for 14-16 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes.
  7. Eat!
Notes
*if paleo, skip this ingredient

 

Gluten Free Dairy Free Vanilla Bean Mug Cakes

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Vanilla bean mug cake

A mug cake is something you can make under 5 minutes without having to go crazy with all the ingredients…  The problem is the mug cake’s taste and texture.  We’ve all experienced the moment our mug cakes were too gooey or too dry, or that simply tasted like dog food.  Fortunately, you’re in luck because an easy, delicious, moist mug cake is coming your way.  After several test tries, and the help of my friends, I was able to create a delicious cake.  I mean mug cake!

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You can do so much with this recipe like add in cinnamon, nutmeg, or some dark chocolate chips!  My final test of the mug cakes included vanilla beans, and my friends (who are not gluten free or dairy free) said, “This is it.  It’s so good!” And they are right.  Enjoy making it and eating it!

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Gluten Free Dairy Free Mug Cakes
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert/Snack
Cuisine: Gluten Free, Dairy Free
 
Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp coconut flour
  • 2 tbsp oat flour*
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • 1½ tbsp granulated sugar
  • 4 tbsp almond milk (or dairy free milk)
  • 2 tbsp egg white
  • ¼ tsp coconut oil
  • vanilla extract and vanilla beans
Instructions
  1. Mix dry ingredients together in a coconut oil greased mug.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix in almond milk, egg whites, and vanilla extract.
  3. Pour wet ingredients in dry. Mix. Add in coconut oil.
  4. Mix until combined. Do not over mix.
  5. Put the mug into a microwave for 1½ minutes.
Notes
*you can grind oats in the food processor to make flour

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