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Citrus Hibiscus Sangria
 

CHEERS TO A HEALTHY, SEASONAL SANGRIA MOCKTAIL. CAN MAKE INTO COCKTAIL VERSION TOO IF THAT’S YOUR THING!

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Having From the Roots just turned 1 yesterday and the website getting a face-lift, I wanted to celebrate with something, fun, fruity, and flavorful. What better way to celebrate than with a drink?

From the Roots has become way more than I have ever imagined. I started out just posting recipes I have created throughout the years and now it has turned into so much more. Within this year, we have been invited to do pop-up events, catered for parties and grand openings for businesses, collaborated with major health product companies, became a brand ambassador for Further Food, Banza, Manitoba Harvest Hemp Foods, and have connected with so many amazing people - YOU!

I couldn’t have done this without YOU, so thank you so much! Well, I could keep rambling, but let’s get to the recipe! I made this into a mock-tail form originally for a Galentine’s Day event. It was such a big hit! But TBH, it would be an even more hit if you added wine or prosecco to it…  But you can do whatever you like! ;)

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When making sangria, it is best to use seasonal produce so that you can the best, full-bodied flavor from the fruits you are using. For this recipe, I cut up blood oranges, apples, and lemons. The tea I used is Stash’s Wild Raspberry Hibiscus so I added fresh raspberries and fresh mint for a refreshing beverage.

You can also make this drink ahead of time by brewing the hibiscus tea with mint the night before to store in the fridge. When you are ready to make the drink, add the hibiscus tea with the juices and mineral water with fresh cut fruits. It’s that easy!

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Want more drink recipes? Check out The Holiday Mule, Strawberry Watermelon Mint Agua Fresca, and Watermelon Lime Refresher.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients:

  • 4 wild raspberry hibiscus tea bags

  • 4 cups filtered water

  • ½ cup organic cane sugar

  • ½ cup fresh mint leaves

  • 1 liter sparkling mineral water

  • 1 qt 100% pure juice (pomegranate, strawberry lemonade, cranberry)

  • Orange

  • Lemon

Garnish

Apples, raspberries, fresh mint, blood orange, lemon, lime, grapes, blackberries

Directions:

  1. In a small saucepan, add water and sugar and bring to a boil over medium high heat; stirring until sugar has dissolved.

  2. Remove from heat; add hibiscus tea and fresh mint. Cover and let steep for 15 minutes.

  3. Pour tea mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl or large pitcher and add ice.

  4. Stir in mineral water, juice, and freshly squeezed juice of orange and lemon.

  5. Chill drink in refrigerator until completely cold.

  6. 30 minutes before serving, add sliced fruits for presentation and added flavor!


Notes:

  1. I like using Santa Cruz and R.W. Knudsen 100% juice brands. My favorite combo is mixing ½ qt. pomegranate and ½ qt. strawberry raspberry juice.

  2. For tea - I like using Stash’s wild raspberry hibiscus tea.

  3. To make this into a cocktail, replace mineral water with red wine or prosecco.

 
Roasted Beet Hummus
 

As healthy as it is beautiful!

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I can’t stop staring at this hummus. It is just too beautiful to eat. It almost makes me feel like this isn’t even hummus at all, but rather magical food made for unicorns! But once you take off your rose-colored glasses, you see that this is, in fact, made with beets.

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Now, don’t beets have an earthy taste? Yes, they do. However, once you add citrus and umami flavors to this dish you will see their best side and not their dirty, earthy side.

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As you can see, you can make roasted beet hummus for Valentine’s day, girl’s night out, Sunday brunch, #bachelormonday… you get my drift!

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Making this for my weekly meal prep is a breeze. There are so many people asking me for healthy snacks and this one is it! I love taking ½ cup to work with veggie sticks and peppers to for my afternoon snack. With the tahini, chickpeas, and beets, this snack is super filling. Bonus - it’s a conversation starter at your job, too!

If you are obsessed about beets like I am, check out these beet recipes: refrigerator pickled beets and avocado deviled eggs.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


ingredients

  • 1 can chickpeas (drained, rinsed, and deshelled*)

  • 2 small beets

  • 1/3 cup tahini

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • 1/2 fresh lemon

  • 1 Tbsp white miso paste

  • 3 clove garlic (minced)

  • S&P to taste

instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

  2. Wrap the beets in tin foil and roast for 45 minutes to 1 hour until cooked through.

  3. When beets have slightly cooled, remove the skin away.

  4. To a Vitamix or food processor, add the chickpeas, roasted beets, tahini, lemon juice, miso, and garlic. As the mixture is blending, slowly add the olive oil. Blend until smooth and creamy; scrape the sides down if necessary.

  5. Add S&P to season as you are blending. At this point, you may want to add more lemon juice or garlic depending on your preference. I like to blend for at least 5 minutes to ensure the consistency is smooth. You may need to add more olive oil or water to thin the hummus.

  6. When you have reached the desired, creamy consistency, transfer hummus to a bowl and add fresh herbs and toppings like dill, parsley, sesame seeds, pine nuts, and extra olive oil.

  7. The hummus will keep for up to one week in the fridge.

*This step is optional but if you have the time, it’s worth it! For a super creamy hummus, de-shell as many chickpeas as you can when rinsing.

 
Strawberry Basil & Goat Cheese Crostini
 

An elegant and simple appetizer to serve or to bring to any party!

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A crostini is a small piece of toasted bread that is best served with toppings. You can really do any toppings for this crostini, but my favorite is with this strawberry basil and goat cheese.

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This recipe is similar to bruschetta given the tomatoes, basil, and garlic. However, instead of your regular bruschetta, I’ve added a twist with the strawberries, goat cheese, and balsamic glaze. The tartness in the goat cheese pairs really well with the sweetness of strawberries. What really takes this crostini to the next level is rubbing the toasted bread with garlic. All you have to do is simply cut a garlic clove in half and gently rub the cut side of the garlic clove over the toasted bread. What a game changer!

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Strawberry basil & goat cheese crostinis make the perfect appetizer for any party or occasion! Whether it’s for a romantic Valentine’s dinner, a picnic, or a small get together, know that these crostinis won’t take much of your time but will still impress!

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If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients

  • 1 whole grain bread (or baguette)

  • 4 oz goat cheese (softened)

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • 1/4 cup fresh basil (chiffonade)

  • 1 cup chopped strawberries

  • 1 cup chopped cherry tomatoes

  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 Tbsp pure maple syrup (or honey)

  • S&P

  • extra virgin olive oil (for cooking)

  • balsamic glaze

instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

  2. Slice your bread and place them on a baking sheet. Spray or brush both sides of bread with olive oil.

  3. Bake the bread for 12-15 minutes until golden brown, flipping the bread slices halfway through to ensure both sides are toasted evenly.

  4. While bread is baking, in a small bowl, combine chopped strawberries, cherry tomatoes, and basil to olive oil, maple syrup, and salt and pepper until fully combined. Taste the mixture to make sure the desired full flavor is there.

  5. Once the bread has slightly cooled, gently rub garlic cloves on each slice.

  6. Spread softened goat cheese on each slice and top with the strawberry basil mixture.

  7. Drizzle balsamic glaze on top and enjoy!

Notes

  1. I like using this balsamic glaze brand but you can get this at any grocery store in the condiment/vinegar section!

 
Fudgy Paleo Brownies
 

Foolproof staple brownie recipe that is also gluten-free, dairy-free, and nut-free!

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Growing up, brownies were my least favorite dessert. Maybe because the flavors were too rich or the texture was too dry, but nonetheless, I stopped eating them. Of course I would get the judgy looks and sneers but hey, they didn’t taste good to me! That is, until I had a fudgy vegan brownie at this bakery in Atlanta and I was floored! It was like the heavens opened up with arms wide open and sucked me in!

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Too much? Well, that’s how I feel about these brownies! Now, this recipe didn’t happen overnight (perfection doesn’t happen overnight). As a food blogger, sometimes recipes can be made simple and it just clicks. Other times, not so much.

This recipe did not instantly click. It started out as a Mexican hot chocolate cookie that had the batter of a brownie but baked similar to a cake and ultimately dried out after a day or two. But the flavor was there and that’s where I went. Long story short, here we are and I am so glad!

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Adding a healthy twist to an old fashioned brownie can be cumbersome at times. Luckily, this brownie is free of everything “bad” yet it tastes just like your typical sugar-filled brownie. This way, we can still ride that amazing “sugar high” but not feel so bad.

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How do we get there? Well, we adapt and understand the ingredients that we are using. For example, coconut flour is used to replace all-purpose white flour. Coconut flour absorbs liquid so we only use ¼ cup. Baking powder is a great leavening agent but since this is a paleo recipe, we use coconut sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract instead. This combination gets whipped until a “ribbon stage” is reached.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup coconut sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 8 oz dark chocolate chunks

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

  • 1/4 cup coconut flour

  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chunk

instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a 9x9 baking pan with parchment paper. Spray with a non-stick spray and set aside.

  2. In a small saucepan or small bowl, melt 8 oz dark chocolate and oil in 30-second increments if using the microwave or low heat on stove top until smooth and glossy. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.

  3. Using a hand mixer or KitchenAid mixer, combine coconut sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract and whisk together until the mixture reaches the “ribbon stage” (when you lift the whisk, the mixture should stream down evenly in “ribbons”).

  4. In a medium bowl, whisk dry ingredients (coconut flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda)

  5. With the mixer/hand mixer on low, add the melted chocolate and dry ingredients until fully combined. Fold in ½ cup dark chocolate chunks.

  6. Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth the surface.

  7. Bake for 17-20 minutes until edges are set and the inside is slightly underdone.

  8. Let the brownies rest in the pan for 15-20 minutes. This is the hardest part but so worth it!

  9. Store in fridge for up to a week or freezer for up to a month. I personally like making these to freeze so that I can have brownie bites for my ice cream!

 
Healthy Dog Biscuits
 

Easy homemade treats for your furry loved ones, complete with a carob and peanut butter glaze!

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You are probably thinking to yourself, “This girl would be the type that makes food for her dogs!” Haha, well, in this case, yes. However, in general -- no! Who has time for that!? This recipe actually happened out of boredom during one of Kentucky’s finest winter storms. I was trying to occupy the kids (my dogs Rory and Emmy) as they were getting cabin fever so I looked in the pantry and this is the result!

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These healthy dog biscuits are super easy to make and completely safe for your fur babies. The good news is that you probably already have some of the ingredients such as flour, oats, baking soda, and peanut butter.

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The key ingredients for these dog biscuits are natural peanut butter, coconut oil, and pumpkin. Most people know that peanut butter is a great protein source and coconut oil has healthy fats that give dogs that shiny coat, but pumpkin is great to soothe their digestive system as it contains a high amount of fiber.

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Every time I have chocolate my dogs go crazy. Of course I’ve never given them chocolate before but I guess they smell the sweet flavors and want it. Because of that, I made a glaze using carob powder with the peanut butter. Carob powder is a great alternative to cocoa powder. For dogs, this is 100% safe! Carob powder is naturally sweetened as well.

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As you can see, the dogs love these biscuits and I think a lot of that has to do with that drizzle!

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Coconut oil is used in the drizzle so keeping your biscuits out at room temperature will melt the drizzle so it is best to store in the fridge or freezer. Personally, the dogs love frozen treats because it takes them longer to chew so I just store in the freezer. Once you make these treats, you will be set for a long time as this recipe makes around 70 biscuits. These are also great as gifts so spread the love!

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients

  • 1 ¼ cup old fashioned oats

  • 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour

  • 1 cup 100% pure pumpkin (canned)

  • ½ cup peanut butter

  • 2 eggs

  • ¼ cup coconut oil (melted)

  • 1 tsp baking soda

Carob and peanut butter glaze

  • 2 Tbsp carob powder

  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil (melted)

  • ¼ cup peanut butter

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients together: oats, flour, and baking soda.

  3. To a small bowl, mix the wet ingredients together: pumpkin, peanut butter, eggs, and coconut oil.

  4. Incorporate the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix together until it forms a ball. If the mixture is wet, add flour or oats gradually. Knead dough until the flour is incorporated.

  5. Sprinkle whole wheat flour to a flat surface and roll out dough mixture using a rolling pin.

  6. Use a cookie cutter to cut out small dog bone shapes or just bake into little circles like cookies.

  7. Bake for 12-15 min on a parchment lined baking sheet.

  8. As the biscuits cook, whisk together the glaze ingredients until smooth.

  9. After the biscuits have cooled for at least 5 minutes, drizzle glaze over the biscuits and place in the fridge for the glaze to harden.

  10. Best stored in the fridge or freezer.

Notes

  1. Makes 65-70 small dog biscuits

  2. Since these are homemade dog biscuits, it would be best to store in the fridge or freezer. They may mold if left out at room temperature for over a week.

  3. All ingredients used for this recipe are considered safe for dogs, but it’s always a good idea to make sure there are no dog allergies/sensitivities to any of the ingredients.

 
Mindful Matcha and Mint Chip Energy Balls
 

A tiny burst full of superfood energy! Dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan, paleo friendly, and naturally sweetened.

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Matcha to me is like a fine wine. I only want to drink it during those special occasions when the timing is just right.  Matcha is also not the cheapest thing in the world so you can probably see where I’m going with this but in all reality, I cherish the benefits and the robust flavor that goes along with it.

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You see, matcha comes from the same plant as green tea but since it is made from the entire leaf, it packs in a more concentrated amount of antioxidants and beneficial plant compounds. Matcha powder can stand on its own, but why we can take it up a notch by adding cordyceps mushrooms, ashwagandha, ginger, and wheatgrass.

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Okay, let’s pause. I’m sure some of you are asking, “What the heck are these ingredients and why are we adding them”?

Cordyceps Mushrooms: Improves energy, endurance, and strength while helping to reduce fatigue.

Ashwagandha: An herb that can reduce anxiety and stress, help fight depression, boost fertility and may even boost brain function.

Ginger: A spice that is beneficial for people with indigestion and related stomach discomfort.

Wheatgrass: Is prepared from the freshly sprouted leaves of the common wheat plant, Triticum aestivum. Benefits include weight loss, decreased inflammation, lower cholesterol and better blood sugar control.

So, wouldn’t that taste like dirt? I thought the same thing until I used Further Food ‘s mindful matcha powder. The matcha flavor that I love so much masks the earthy flavor of the superfood ingredients, making this powder adaptogenic (herbal pharmaceutical) and superfood enriched! If you are interested in trying their matcha powder, use fromtherootsblog10 for 10% off your first order!

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Matcha can stand on its own, but combining matcha with mint and chocolate really takes these energy balls to a new level. Peppermint extract and cacao nibs really bring out the refreshing tones of matcha while being naturally sweetened with medjool dates.

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I love knowing that I can treat myself to these  first thing in the morning for that burst of refreshing energy or have one as an afternoon or pre-workout snack.

Matcha obsessed? Check out these matcha and carob cookies.

I was not financially compensated for this post. All recipes, photos, and opinions are my own.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients

  • ¾ cup superfine almond flour

  • ¼ cup coconut flakes

  • ¼ cup cacao nibs or mini dark chocolate chips

  • 8 pitted medjool dates

  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil

  • 1 Tbsp filtered water

  • 2 tsp mindful matcha powder or regular matcha powder

  • ½ tsp organic peppermint extract

  • Sprinkle of pink himalayan salt

Directions

  1. To a food processor or high powered blender, blend medjool dates until the dates form into a ball. Scoop out and set aside.

  2. To the food processor, add the rest of the ingredients except the cacao nibs and blend until a fine meal is achieved - about 20-30 seconds.

  3. Add the dates back in and blend until fully incorporated: not crumbly, not tacky, but more mold-able. If the mixture is too dry, add 1 tsp water in increments. Be sure to taste the dough for desired flavor. Personally, I like to add more peppermint extract to the dough.

  4. Take the mixture out of the processor and transfer to a small bowl. Fold in cacao nibs or chocolate chips.

  5. Scoop out 1 tablespoon amount and form into a ball. Repeat until all dough is formed into balls.

  6. Chill in refrigerator for 10-15 minutes before serving.

  7. Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to a week in the refrigerator or freezer for up to 1 month.

Notes

  • Makes 10-12 balls



 
Fluffy Gluten-Free Pancakes
 

A must have recipe to keep in your arsenal of breakfast recipes!

https://fromtherootsblog.com/fluffy-gluten-free-pancakes/

After seven months of testing out this recipe, I am finally here to say that this is my most favorite gluten-free pancake mix! It’s been a long road but so worth it! You’re probably wondering, why this long!?

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Well, I didn’t want to compromise a pancake’s flavor, texture, and simplicity so I basically did everything against that for so long. You see, like the world’s view on nutrition in how it may seem complicated, overly expensive, and trendy, that was the viewpoint I was taking. Strip all that away, and now you’re left with a no-fail, go-to, gluten-free pancake recipe.

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But like most gluten-free pancake mixes, you need to know some tips in order to make them fluffy like a regular buttermilk pancake.

Tip #1: Let that batter rest!

Tip #2: If using eggs, be sure to use at least one egg white.

Tip #3: Make sure your baking powder and baking soda is fresh.

Tip #4: Do not over-stir the batter

Tip #5: Make sure the batter is of a thicker consistency.

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These are great tips I have learned throughout my years of cooking Saturday stacks for my husband, going on 5 years now! We are a bit pancake obsessed.

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Have you ever wondered why you’re still hungry after eating a plate of pancakes? Well, regular pancakes do not contain high amount of healthy fats and protein so even if you are not gluten intolerant, these pancakes provides the perfect amount of density to keep you fuller longer!

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This GF pancake mix is also very forgiving so if you would like to add fresh fruit, chocolate chips, or additional spices, you can!

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If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients

  • ½ cup superfine almond flour

  • ½ cup GF whole grain oat flour

  • ¼ cup arrowroot starch/flour

  • ⅓ cup plant based milk

  • 2 whole eggs

  • 1 egg white

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1 tsp organic cane sugar

  • 1 tsp baking powder

  • ½ tsp baking soda

  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon

Directions

  1. In a small bowl, whisk dry ingredients.

  2. In a different bowl, whip egg white and eggs until fluffy. Incorporate the rest of the wet ingredients to the eggs until combined.

  3. Slowly whisk wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Do not over-mix.

  4. Let your batter rest for at least 15 minutes.

  5. Heat a large skillet or griddle on low-medium heat or at 375 degrees.

  6. Grease skillet or griddle with butter.

  7. When the skillet/griddle is hot, using a small ladle or ¼ measuring cup, ladle pancake mixture onto skillet.

  8. Cook until small bubbles appear on the surface of the pancake. Slip a spatula underneath, flip and cook for 1-2 minutes until cooked through.

  9. Repeat the same process for the second batch.

  10. Top pancakes with your favorite toppings like almond butter, blueberries, chocolate chips, and maple syrup!

Notes

  1. Makes 6-7 medium size pancakes

  2. Here are the flour brands I use for this recipe: superfine almond flour, GF whole grain oat flour, and arrowroot starch/flour.


 
Superfood Dark Chocolate Bark
 

A healthy chocolate treat that will satisfy any sweet tooth!

https://fromtherootsblog.com/superfood-dark-chocolate-bark/

Any sweet tooth's out there?! Me, me, me!! My sweet tooth is bad, especially during the holidays. I’m all about balance and intuitive eating but when it comes to sweets, I have zero control! I work at a university so for the past two weeks there has been at least one sweet item in the break room. When my pants started to feel a little tighter than usual, I decided to put an end to it!

To satisfy my sweet tooth without feeling guilty, I created a superfood dark chocolate bark that is super easy to make and is loaded with all the good things, sans added sugar, dairy, and gluten.

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The dark chocolate base is made with only 4 ingredients: dark chocolate, maca powder, quinoa, and MCT oil. Quality dark chocolate is quite nutritious as it contains high amounts of fiber, iron, magnesium, and copper. Not only is maca powder popular for increased energy levels and vitality, it provides a sweet “honeycomb” flavor to the chocolate.

Toasted quinoa provides a nutty crispy texture to your bark while providing high amounts of protein and fiber.

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MCT oil is easily absorbed throughout the body providing your body an instant source of energy that can be converted into ketones to fuel your brain. I like using this brand: Sports Research

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Not only is the base full of superfood ingredients, so are the toppings! I used a random mix of just about everything but you could use whatever you have in your pantry. For example, I used bee pollen, goji berries, cashews, cacao nibs, pepitas, and coconut flakes.

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This bark is rather bitter but with a honeycomb undertone. If you prefer your bark a little sweeter, then gradually add 1 Tbsp of pure maple syrup or honey until desired sweet flavor. If you do not have MCT oil, you can use coconut oil instead. Coconut oil does not replace MCT oil as far as nutrition, it just provides an oily consistency that you need when melting the bark.

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If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients

  • 1 bag (10 oz) organic dark chocolate

  • ½ cup quinoa

  • 2 Tbsp MCT oil (or coconut oil)

  • 1 tsp maca powder

Toppings: cashews, almonds, pistachios, goji berries, cacao nibs, bee pollen, chia seeds, coconut flakes

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees

  2. On a parchment paper lined baking sheet, spread quinoa in a single layer.

  3. Toast quinoa in the oven for 5-7 minutes or until lightly brown and toasted.

  4. While the quinoa is in the oven, melt chocolate by placing the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and nuking the bowl in the microwave in 30 second increments.

  5. When the chocolate is completely melted, add the toasted quinoa, MCT oil, and maca powder. Stir to combine.

  6. Transfer chocolate mixture onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Spread chocolate using the back of a spoon to spread it out into a rough rectangle.

  7. Scatter toppings over the chocolate while it is still warm. Feel free to get creative!

  8. Place baking sheet in the fridge for up to 1 hour or until the chocolate has set.

  9. Use a sharp knife to chop the slab into rough pieces.

  10. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.




 
Raspberry Almond Thumbprint Cookies
 

A healthy take on the classic holiday cookies that are gluten-free and dairy-free, with a soft and chewy texture!

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I immediately think of thumbprint cookies when it comes to the holiday season. Thumbprint cookies alway seem to make an appearance around Christmas, and with good reason! The fruit jam on top of a soft, pillowy cookie is all I need to get my gears going for the holidays!  Baking thumbprint cookies can also be a great family activity. The little ones can roll the dough into small balls and press their little thumbs into the dough creating a small well for the fruit preserves or jam.

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My favorite organic fruit preserve is raspberry but you can choose any flavor. This recipe in particular is reminiscent of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches thanks to the almond flour, so pairing raspberry, grape, strawberry, blackberry, or blueberry preserve works great. I like using these fruit filling brands: Tiptree and Crofter’s

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In addition to the almond flour, I also use gluten-free whole grain out flour. I use this brand but you could also ground your own oat flour by pouring oats into a processor or vitamix and blend until the oats turn into the consistency of flour.

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If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients

  • 1 cup almond flour

  • ½ cup GF whole grain oat flour

  • ½ cup coconut sugar

  • ¼ cup creamy almond butter

  • ¼ cup melted coconut oil (room temp)

  • 1 egg

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • ¼ tsp baking soda

Filling

Fruit preserve or jam of choice such as raspberry, orange, strawberry, blackberry, grape, etc.

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. In a medium bowl, mix coconut sugar, almond butter, coconut oil, egg, and vanilla extract until combined.

  3. Add both flours and baking soda until combined.

  4. Place cookie dough in the refrigerator to chill for at least 30 minutes.

  5. Scoop about 1 Tbsp of dough and roll into balls. Place on a lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart.

  6. Push your thumb in the center of each dough ball and dollop with raspberry preserve. Use enough to fill the well.

  7. Place in the oven and cook for 12-15 minutes until cookies are lightly brown.

  8. Let the cookies cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet and then transfer to a rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator for longer storage.

Notes

  1. Makes 12 cookies (1 Tbsp serving)

 
Baked Hot Chicken
 

A healthier twist on the classic Nashville hot chicken. Baked, gluten-free, dairy-free, and full of spicy flavors!

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Living so close to Nashville, it’s imperative that you get Nashville hot chicken; it’s a cardinal sin if you don’t! As I’m getting older, my body takes a little longer to recover from all the grease and gluten. I mean, YOLO when you can but sometimes it takes a toll on your body!

What’s my solution? I created a healthier twist on the beloved hot chicken. I use coconut oil to decrease the amount of grease. I also chose to bake the chicken. That way, I’m only dying to get seconds and thirds instead of just dying from the grease! So, let’s talk about this chicken!

https://fromtherootsblog.com/baked-hot-chicken/

The trick to getting chicken moist and flavorful is all in the marinade. Typically, buttermilk is used in creating a moist chicken (sorry for using moist three times!). However, I used almond milk to keep this recipe dairy-free. The trick here is to add lemon juice or apple cider vinegar to the plant-based milk of your choice. The acidity helps to thicken and basically curdle the almond milk. You won’t even notice a lack of buttermilk, and when you add it all with pickle juice and lots of seasonings, you get an awesome Nashville hot chicken!

The breading is simple using a gluten-free baking flour. Lightly coat/spray the chicken with coconut or avocado oil to crisp the outer coat. Chicken thighs are best with this recipe as the skin releases mouthwatering juices into the meat underneath as it cooks. The skin also protects the meat from direct heat, which helps the thighs to cook gently and to retain its moisture.

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A complexity of sweet and spicy flavors are incorporated into the hot chicken. What really takes the chicken over the top is using honey infused with chili peppers. I love using this brand as you can find it in most grocery stores!

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Ingredients

  • 2 lbs chicken thighs

  • 3 Tbsp pickle juice

  • 1 cup GF baking flour

  • Hot sauce (optional)

  • Coconut oil or avocado oil

Buttermilk mixture

  • 1 cup unsweetened plant based milk (almond)

  • 1 Tbsp ACV or fresh lemon

Seasonings

  • 1 Tbsp cayenne

  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika

  • 1 tsp garlic powder

  • 1 tsp onion powder

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp creole seasoning

  • 1 tsp sugar

  • ½ tsp black pepper

  • Dashes of red pepper flakes

Directions

  1. To make the “buttermilk”, add vinegar to the milk and sit for 10 minutes or until milk mixture is curdled/activated.

  2. Whisk all seasonings together in a small bowl. Remove ¾ of seasoning mixture and coat the chicken thighs inside a Ziploc bag. Add the “buttermilk” mixture along with pickle juice and a couple dashes of hot sauce (optional). Toss to coat and refrigerate for 2 hours or up to overnight.

  3. When ready to cook, preheat oven to 425 degrees.

  4. Prepare the flour mixture by whisking ¼ of seasoning mixture to 1 cup GF baking flour.

  5. Working with one piece of chicken at a time, dredge chicken into flour mixture both sides and place chicken on a baking rack. Repeat until all chicken is coated.

  6. Spray or brush tops of chicken with melted coconut oil or avocado oil.

  7. Bake chicken for 20-25 minutes. Take chicken out and coat tops with hot sauce (optional). Flip the chicken and spray or brush bottom of chicken with oil until coated.

  8. Place back in the oven and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes or until chicken reaches and internal temperature of 165 degrees.

  9. Let chicken cool for 5 minutes and then drizzle honey with infused chili peppers (optional but so worth it!)

 
The Holiday Mule
 

A seasonal spin on the classic moscow mule.

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I used to be a bartender for a catering company so I’m surprised that this is my first official adult bubbly post. But to be honest, I’m not much of a drinker. I would rather eat my calories than drink them if you know what I’m saying! When I do drink, it’s usually at social gatherings. So, with the holidays in full swing, here is my all-time favorite holiday drink!

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Moscow mules are very simple to make. No need to make a fancy simple syrup or use various spirits, all you really need is:

Lime

Ginger beer

Vodka

Ice

To take your moscow mule to a seasonal level, you can add natural fruit juices like pomegranate, cherry, and cranberry. These fruits are great for your health and would be a great healthy addition to your beverage.  I’ve been loving the holiday mule with cherry juice as cherries are great for exercise recovery and muscle soreness. During the holiday season where there is a higher risk of cold and flu, cherry juice can strengthen your immune system.

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If you are hosting a Christmas party, your guests can choose what fruit juice they prefer and you can simply combine all ingredients into your copper mug and stir -- no need for a cocktail shaker, although you may feel fancier using one! This cocktail is super easy and can be very festive with garnishes like pomegranate arils, frozen cranberries, rosemary sprigs, orange slices, and lime wedges.

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If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


The Holiday Mule - A seasonal spin on the classic moscow mule. 

ingredients

  • crushed ice

  • 2 oz vodka

  • 1/2 lime

  • 1/3 cup fruit juice (pomegranate, cherry, or cranberry)

  • 5 oz ginger beer

Garnishes

Pomegranate arils, frozen cranberries, rosemary spring, orange slices, and lime wedges

instructions

  1. Fill your copper mug with crushed ice.

  2. Measure 2 oz of vodka, and pour into mug.

  3. Squeeze up to half of lime and ⅓ cup of preferred fruit juice into mug.

  4. Top off with ginger beer until full and stir.

  5. Garnish with your favorite toppings and enjoy responsibly! ;)

 
Chicken Shawarma Bowl
 
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Chicken Shawarma Bowls - Bursting with flavor, fresh and full of color!The fascination for chicken shawarma started fairly recently. I put sole blame on this cute Mediterranean restaurant, Cafe Arazu, located a little too close to my work, lol.

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This type of chicken shawarma is very different than what I’m typically used to but is still amazing in its own way. The classic way of cooking shawarma is to mount large marinated chicken chunks onto a large rotating skewer. The chicken then slowly roasts against a gas burning grill. The restaurant that I typically go to for lunch does it differently by marinating the chicken in a wonderful blend of cumin and turmeric. They finish it off by grilling the chicken.

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If you haven’t figured it out yet, grilling is the exact route I’m going as well! While it would be nice to have a rotating meat skewer with a gas burning grill at my house, it’s not ideal or practical!

Now you can prepare just the chicken shawarma and add them to wraps or just as appetizers with a nice aioli sauce, but what I have found to be my favorite is to put everything in a bowl. Bowls are an easy way to load up on veggies while adding a grain and protein to keep you full and nourished.

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The ingredients that I added to my bowl can be interchanged depending on your preference so have fun with it! I paired a quick and easy tomato salad to go along with the chicken. You can find the ingredients for the salad below. I also added some roasted sweet potatoes which I seasoned with smoked paprika, garlic, and oregano.

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Being an advocate of meal prepping, this recipe has been in my lunch meal prep for three weeks straight! (Okay, mainly for recipe testing but hey, I cannot complain!) And I could go on and on about this recipe but the biggest thing I love about it are the flavors! Every part is bursting with flavor that you can’t help but want more!

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Not pictured: asparagus (for the meal prep picture)

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!

Bursting with flavor, fresh and full of color! Gluten free, dairy free and meal prep option!


ingredients

Chicken Shawarma Marinade

  • 1 lb boneless chicken breast

  • 1 lemon

  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)

  • 1 tsp turmeric

  • 1 tsp cumin

  • 1 tsp smoked paprika

  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

  • 1/2 tsp salt (more for seasoning chicken)

  • 2-4 tbsp EVOO

Sweet potatoes

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes ((diced))

  • 1 tsp smoked paprika

  • 1 tsp garlic powder

  • 1 tsp oregano

  • 2 tbsp EVOO

Tomato salad

  • 1 small cucumber

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes

  • 1/2 red onion

  • 1 small bunch of parsley

  • 1 tbsp pure maple syrup

  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

  • 1 tbsp EVOO

  • S&P to season

Garnishes

1 small bunch parsley, lemon wedges, feta, goat cheese, tahini, aioli

Other ingredients

Veggies of choice, 2 cups cooked quinoa

instructions

  1. Season chicken with salt and pepper on both sides and add to a Ziploc bag. Combine the seasonings, oil, and lemon juice to chicken and marinate in the fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight preferably.

  2. While your chicken is marinating, prepare the sides by starting with quinoa first. Cook quinoa in a rice cooker or stove top as directed.

  3. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. To a small bowl, add diced sweet potatoes, seasonings and oil. Toss with tongs until sweet potatoes are fully covered in oil and seasonings. On a parchment lined large sheet pan, place sweet potatoes on a single layer. You should have room to add the asparagus but make sure that the veggies are not too crowded and on a single layer.

  4. Cook veggies for 20-25 minutes, flip veggies, and cook for 10-15 minutes or until nice and crispy. (if you are cooking with asparagus and not broccoli, you may need to take the asparagus out after the first flip)

  5. Prepare the cherry tomato salad by dicing all veggies and adding to a small bowl. Add the vinegar, maple syrup, chopped parsley, and oil and toss until combined. Add salt and pepper and season to desired taste. I like this with more vinegar so I usually add another tbsp of ACV or a squeeze of a lemon wedge.

  6. When you are ready to cook the chicken, heat a medium skillet on medium high heat with oil. For a faster cooking time, dice chicken then add to the heated skillet and cook 3-4 minutes per side. You should have some marinade left over in the bag, I like to add that to the skillet so the chicken is covered in the sauce (the flavors are amazing!)

  7. After the chicken is cooked through, prepare your bowls or meal prep containers by adding the mixed greens first, then cooked quinoa. Add your veggies such sweet potatoes, asparagus, etc. Then, add your tomato salad, chicken, and top with a lemon wedge and parsley.

 
The Ultimate Foodie Gift Guide
 

Healthy food lovers, aspiring chefs, eco-friendly...we have it all!  

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  1. Mini Waffle Maker - pair with quick waffle mix or a homemade waffle mix and this would be the cutest gift!

  2. Vitamix - Complete splurge but I use mine just about every day! True investment if you love to make smoothies, soups, ice cream, plant-based milk, flour, etc.

  3. Food Processor - Everyone needs a processor! I use this one just as much as the Vitamix.

  4. Chef Knife - A good chef knife is essential! I bought this one a couple years back and have only sharpened it once! It’s also a splurge but you can usually get this one on sale!

  5. Glass Food Storage Containers Set - I have been using these for years and still in good condition! They are glasslock, BPA free, oven safe, and microwavable. Great for the meal prepper!

  6. Instant Pot - Pretty much self-explanatory. Currently on my Christmas wish list!

  7. Stainless Steel Drinking Straws - Why pollute the planet with plastic straws when you can get these reusable drinking straws?! Great as a stocking stuffer!

  8. Cast Iron Skillet - Because it’s a sin if you don’t have one!

  9. Morning Beautiful Mug - Well, really anything from the “Hearth and Hand” by Magnolia collection!

  10. Dutch Oven - Non-Negotiable kitchen staple. Just love Chrissy Teigen's kitchen line at Target right now!

  11. Stasher Bags - A great eco-friendly replacement for Ziploc bags. They are reusable, heat, bake, and freezeproof!

  12. Anthropologie Cheese Board - Great for the party hostess on your list!

  13. Bee’s Wrap Food Wraps - Do you see a trend here? Lol Eco-friendly, reusable, and plastic-free food storage alternative to plastic wrap!

  14. Anthropologie Perasima Platter - I absolutely love everything Anthropologie so you could just go straight to the website’s kitchen section!

  15. Sriracha Keychain - Great for the condiment lover!

  16. Nutrition Stripped Cookbook - One of my all-time favorite food blogger/dietitian. Her cookbook is a great start if you are new to eating nutrient dense whole foods.

Most of these products will be on sale for Black Friday so check them out soon!

Leave us a comment if you love this gift guide! We would love the feedback!

 
The Ultimate Fitness Junkie Gift Guide
 

From stocking stuffers to fun splurges, we have it all! 

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  1. Adidas Ultraboost Shoes - Currently on my Christmas wishlist! This shoe is great if you are a neutral runner.

  2. Athleta Cozy Karma Asymmetrical Pullover - Because, who doesn't like a good cozy pullover!

  3. Skylar perfumes - Currently my favorite clean, hypoallergenic, and cruelty-free perfume. I know I'm weird, but I have to smell good before a workout. It just makes me think that I won't smell like nasty sweat afterward! Lol, my favorite scent is coral!

  4. Further Food Turmeric Tonic - This powder is great to make instant golden lattes! Bonus, it's made with natural anti-inflammatory & immune boosting ingredients. A win for those really heavy workouts! Here is a discount code for 10% off your first purchase, FROMTHEROOTSBLOG10.

  5. Hair Ties - Great as a stocking stuffer!

  6. Gaiam Yoga Mat - Great for the yogi and they have many patterns!

  7. Mario Badescu Facial Mist - I love these inexpensive mists for post-workouts. Feels refreshing and smells heavenly!

  8. Vooray Workout Bag - The cutest yet functional and affordable workout bag I have seen. Currently on my Christmas wish list!

  9. Elite Surge Jump Rope - If you are a Crossfitter and/or do DU's (double unders), then you will love this jump rope! Personally, I wouldn't get this style if you are just jumping rope as a warm up because the string is very thin=rope burns!

  10. RX Bars - Great to throw in your workout bag for a pre or post workout snack!

  11. Natural Vitality - Anti-stress powder that is great in restoring healthy magnesium levels, supporting a healthy immune system, and keeping bones strong. Magnesium is an essential mineral that supports blood sugar levels, promotes normal blood pressure, and is required for producing and storing energy. I love taking this supplement after a long run, when I'm stressed, or if I'm having trouble sleeping.

  12. Mountain Ocean Skin Trip Moisturizer - This is the only lotion I use! Hands down, the best moisturizer I have ever owned. It also has a very subtle coconutty beach water smell.

  13. Knockout Leggins by VS - Best workout leggings ever and bonus, they have pockets!

  14. Qalo Wedding band - Whether you are engaged or married, these inexpensive rings are great to wear at the gym especially if you do weightlifting, gymnastics, or CrossFit type workouts.

  15. Sports Research Collagen Peptides - Collagen is an important nutrient needed to ensure the health of your skin, hair, cartilage, joints, and bones. I like to add a scoop of collagen with MCT oil in my coffee every morning.

  16. Foam Roller - Because, who doesn't love a good foam roller!

  17. Hydro Flask water bottle - Little pricey but worth every penny! Has a BPA free straw lid and double-walled, insulated which means water stays cold for up to 24 hours, what!?

  18. IABMFG shorts - If you can’t seem to find squat proof workout shorts then look no further. I love this particular style because of the fabric and length but they also have many fun patterns and different inseam lengths. One pair is expensive but this website is always giving out really good discounts!

  19. Nutrition Stripped Good Food Good Vibes t-shirt - Great to workout in because it is lightweight, breathable, and sends positive vibes!

  20. Beats PowerBeats 3 Bluetooth Wireless Headphones - By far, the best pair of headphones. I have gone through many, let me tell you, but these bad boys will stay in your ears through long runs, heavy HIIT and cardio sessions and just casually walking the dog.

Most of these products will be on sale for Black Friday so check them out soon!

Leave us a comment if you love this gift guide! We would love the feedback!

 
Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole
 

Perfect for the holidays or as a side dish! Bonus - vegan, gluten-free and naturally lower in sugar.

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Let’s be honest, the only time I think about eating sweet potato casserole is during Thanksgiving; amiright?! Like a complete cooked turkey, it seems like sweet potato casserole only falls within a Thanksgiving side dish category.

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Maybe after you make this, you can see that this side dish can be made year-round! I’m thankful for that because when recipe testing a month before Thanksgiving, I was glad this could be eaten with most any dishes. For example, we had this casserole with my pecan crusted spiced salmonand broccolini and it was amazing!

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When it comes to sweet potato casserole, I have noticed the toppings can fall within two categories: marshmallows or with a crunchy texture. I fall in the crunchy texture category 100%! Personally, I am not the biggest fan of marshmallows (I know, I know -- crazy, right?). If you enjoy marshmallows, you can still go that route.

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What I love about this recipe and what sets this casserole apart from the rest is the secret ingredient: oranges. After watching Samin Nosrat’s Salt Fat Acid Heat on Netflix, she made a good point that many Thanksgiving dishes lack acid which is why cranberry sauce is often served. With that in mind, I knew I needed to change that! I’m so glad I did because the orange zest and juices completely elevate the spices and sweetness in the sweet potatoes perfectly!

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The rest of the ingredients are pretty standard for a traditional sweet potato casserole sans butter and heaping cups of sugar. To make them naturally sweeter without adding so much sugar, I simply baked the sweet potatoes instead of boiling them to maintain their natural sweetness.

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With Thanksgiving in mind, I would bake the sweet potatoes a day before the big day so that when you are at the point of cooking all your casseroles/side dishes, you will just need to prepare the mixture and topping and pop them in the oven 23-30 minutes. It’s that easy.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole with a crunchy nut topping - Perfect for the holidays or as a side dish! Bonus - vegan, gluten-free and naturally lower in sugar.

ingredients

  • 3 large sweet potatoes

  • 1 cup plant based milk

  • 1/4 cup orange juice (1/2 orange)

  • Zest of 1/2 orange

  • 1 tsp cinnamon

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

  • 1/4 tsp allspice

  • 2-4 Tbsp pure maple syrup

  • 1/2 tsp salt

Crunchy Nut Topping

  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

  • 1/4 cup chopped almonds

  • 1/3 cup GF old fashioned oats (regular is fine)

  • 1/3 cup GF all purpose flour (regular is fine)

  • 1/2 cup light organic brown sugar (coconut sugar is fine)

  • 4 Tbsp cubed coconut oil

instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  2. Use a fork to poke holes in sweet potatoes and place potatoes on a foil-lined baking sheet.

  3. Roast for about 45 min to an hour or until fork tender. Allow potatoes to cool for 5-10 minutes before discarding the skin.

  4. Lower oven temperature to 350 degrees while potatoes are cooling. Spray an 8x8 inch pan or a 1 ½ quart to 2-quart oven safe baking dish with nonstick cooking oil. Set aside for later.

  5. Place sweet potato flesh in a large bowl and add milk, seasonings, orange juice and zest, and maple syrup. Use an electric mixer or potato masher to beat mixture until smooth and creamy.

  6. Pour mixture into a prepared baking pan and smooth top.

  7. To make the crunchy nut topping: Whisk together nuts, oats, flour, sugar and oil.

  8. Sprinkle topping all over the sweet potato mixture.

  9. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes.

Notes

  1. You can make this casserole ahead of time! Cover and place in the fridge. When ready, bake as directed.

  2. If you do not have coconut oil, you can use vegan or regular butter.

  3. Don’t make the mistake I did and use quick oats! First bake is crunchy but reheating will make the topping mushy so use old fashioned oats!

 
Chai Latte Donut Holes
 

Made with nutrient dense filling and a coconut butter glaze, you will soon fall in love with a healthier take on donut holes...bonus - no bake!

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Starting out as a new blogger, it can be easy to follow seasonal trends. For example, my Instagram feed was filled with pumpkin spice this and pumpkin spice that for a month! Now, in all genuineness, I truly love pumpkin and all things pumpkin spice, but I know not everyone feels the same way!

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So I went back to what life was like before pumpkin spice, chai spice! When I was in school, I would have collections of chai teas from coconut chai teas to dark chocolate cayenne chai tea; I was obsessed! Now that I have perfected the chai spice mix, I think this nostalgia will never leave!

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I’m chasing rabbits here, the focus lies on these chai latte donut holes that are out of this world! Probably my favorite “energy balls” to date! The reason why they are called donut holes is because of the mouthwatering glaze! The glaze is made with coconut butter and coconut oil that hardens at room temperature. It provides the perfect shine while cracking just as you take a bite!

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The “donut holes” are made with nutrient dense ingredients that are nothing like a real donut. Unlike a fried donut hole, you will feel satisfied eating one or two. Bonus, these donut holes are naturally sweetened with medjool dates!

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The DIY chai spice mix really takes you down chai latte heaven in these bad boys. With a cup of coffee or tea, these chai latte donut holes are the perfect match!

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If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!


ingredients

Donut Holes

  • 1/2 cup walnuts

  • 1/2 cup cashews

  • 1/2 cup almond flour

  • 1 cup pitted dates (about 12)

  • 1 tsp chai spice mix

  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

  • 2 Tbsp water

Glaze

  • 1 Tbsp coconut butter

  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil

  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup

  • pinch of cinnamon

instructions

  1. In a food processor, add all donut hole ingredients and pulse until desired consistency (picture for reference). You should blend until a tacky dough forms. You may need to add more water if the mixture is too dry.

  2. With a tablespoon or cookie scooper, scoop about 1 Tbsp per ball to create 14 round balls.

  3. Place balls onto a parchment lined baking sheet and put in the freezer for up to 10 minutes.

  4. While the balls are in the freezer, make the glaze by adding all ingredients to a small bowl and warm in the microwave in 30-second increments until mixture is melted. (separation is natural - just stir well before glazing).

  5. Take the balls out of the freezer and roll each ball into the glaze mixture using a spoon. Place back onto the parchment paper and put back into the freezer for 30 minutes.

  6. Repeat the previous step again and put back in the freezer for 30 minutes or until glaze is set. You can repeat this step up to three times (or until mixture is used up) but I have found the glaze is perfect in two rounds.

  7. Store donut holes in a storage container for up to two weeks or freezer for up to 1 month.

Notes

  1. Even though the glaze is the best part, the chai latte donut holes will still taste just as good if you omit the glaze; they will just be chai latte balls!

  2. If you would like a single serving amount of chai mix and pushed for time, simply add 1 tsp cinnamon, scant ¼ tsp cardamom, ¼ tsp ginger and a pinch of cloves. Just start slow with each seasoning and taste as you go since these spices are naturally strong.

  3. With that said, if using chai is new to you or you're worried about the donut holes being too spicy, start by adding a ½ tsp of chai spice mix and gradually increase to the desired flavor.

 
DIY Chai Spice Mix
 

A must-have pantry staple that’s perfect for tea, baking, and other recipes.

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It never dawned on me that I needed to make my own chai spice mix until I strolled past every grocery store’s herb and spice section to find no chai mix in sight! Now, sure there is chai spice powder and chai tea but there are times that I would just like to have the seasoning.

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The perfect chai spice mix can enhance so many traditional recipes that you may not have thought of. For example, add a teaspoon or two of chai spice mix to plain pancake batter and you my friend, will have chai spiced pancakes!

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This mix is also great to have on hand if you would like to make a latte, chai latte donut holes or to add to most recipes like pancakes, oatmeal, donuts, bread or vegetables like sweet potatoes...the possibilities are endless!

Seasonings that are used in this chai spice are quite traditional so feel free to mix things up if you would like! For this recipe, I used cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, and cardamom.

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You can add all the spices to a mortar and pestle to make sure the seasonings are fully incorporated and nicely grounded or you can simply mix all ingredients using a small whisk or spoon. Funnel seasonings into a spice jar and store in a dry place until ready to use!

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To make a chai spice latte:

  • Add 1 cup plant-based milk, 1 cup water, 1 black tea teabag, ½ tsp chai spice mix, 2 tsp honey and simmer in a small saucepan for 5 minutes. Add a cinnamon stick and star anise to really enhance the flavors! Discard tea bag, optional cinnamon stick and star anise, and pour into a mug and enjoy!

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!

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ingredients

  • 3 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 1 1/2 tsp cardamom

  • 1 1/2 tsp ground ginger

  • 1 tsp allspice

  • 1/2 tsp cloves

  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

instructions

  1. Add all ingredients to a mortar and pestle or small bowl and combine until fully combined.

  2. Transfer to a spice jar and store in a dry place until ready to use!

Notes: ⅛ tsp black pepper (optional for spicier flavor)

 
How To - Creating A Morning Routine
 
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A great article I read recently explained that the first three hours of your day will make or break the rest of your day. This makes sense since our brain and energy levels are most vulnerable in the morning after being well rested.

When I was in college, I would use this time to do most of my studying since I was more awake and susceptible. Now that I am working and taking classes again, I take about an hour and a half getting ready/commuting to work. As soon as I get to work at 8AM, I tackle the most important tasks. By 11AM, my mind is ready for a break. From the time I am awake until 11 AM, I completely unplug from social media. This has become a vital non-negotiable since I can get VERY easily distracted.

Everyone has their unique constraints so I would encourage you to find a way to apply this in your life. Dedicating the first 90 minutes of your work day completing tasks at the top of your list will make the rest of your day easier. I like to think of the analogy “eat the frogs first”. “Frogs” are basically the things you don’t want to do, but actually need to do. This analogy along with the first three hours of your day not only improves your efficiency and time management skills but also leaves you free to do the things that you enjoy doing for the rest of your day. 

#protectyourmornings

One thing I know for sure is if my morning routine before going to work is not smooth, then the tone for the rest of my day is off. To help create a morning routine for you I have laid out what my morning routine looks like plus things that I have done/have seen work for others.  

TBH, my morning routine isn’t exactly Instagram worthy with drawn-out yoga sessions and meditation breathing exercises. I do not work from home and have a long commute to work so this routine is very cut and dry. But I am showing this because most people out there follow a limited morning routine before work.

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My morning routine changes seasonally so at this moment, my routine looks a little like this:

  • 6:15AM - “Rise and shine, give God the glory, glory children of the Lord!” My mother used to sing this every morning so it just sticks. This is the time where I only go on my phone to turn the alarm off (no morning technology), snuggle with Rory and Emmy and do morning stretches.

  • 6:20AM - Take the dogs out to go to the bathroom. I use this time to start drinking my liter of water (recommend getting a hydro flask so that you wake up with fresh cold water) and get my legs moving while soaking up the morning air.

  • 6:45AM - Getting ready. I am a morning shower girl so I will shower, start my skincare routine, apply makeup, fix hair and put on clothes related to that day.

  • 7:15AM - Smoothie time! I usually whip up my morning green smoothie or PB&J protein smoothie bowl and put it in a glass mason jar to bring to work. While that is blending, I start my cup of coffee and put it in my Yeti cup so that it is still hot by the time I get to the office. Lately, I have been adding almond milk creamer, MCT oil, and collagen peptides in my coffee. I get my lunch box packed which consists of a meal prepped lunch, smoothie jar, snacks like an apple and almonds, homemade kombucha, and water.

* Elevated coffee + morning green smoothie is key in keeping me full and energized for the rest of the day!

   +7:30AM - Give Rory and Emmy a little treat, xoxo’s, and head out of the door!

You might look at this morning routine and think, “this seems pretty standard”. Well, not only is this routine standard but there is a lot involved that takes place before the morning starts. Dedicated planning takes place beforehand so that I don’t feel rushed in such a short amount of time. Things like having my water bottle ready, lunch meal preps, and setting the coffee timer to maximize my time getting ready. If I neglect any of these things then I will feel rushed leaving the door and I’ll go in to work frazzled and anxious.

Starting your day off on a healthy start also plays a key role in optimizing your morning! Drinking water and getting your greens in first thing in the morning sets you up for success. There are other things that are healthy/stress-free that can inspire your morning routines. Let’s talk about things that you could look into more.

Tips for Creating A Morning Routine:

  • Set your alarm 15 minutes earlier than usual so that you have more time to practice your morning routine without rushing or use this time to pray, stretch, journal, meditate, etc.

  • Drink water! My teeth are super sensitive so I do this every other morning but lemon water is great first thing in the morning.

  • Set your intention for the day. This practice is used in meditation but if that seems overwhelming, just simply give yourself a few minutes to tune into yourself and to set an intention.

  • Schedule your morning routine the night before. This is a great practice if you are new to setting a morning routine or if you have a week or day that you know will be busy.

  • Meal prep! If you haven’t noticed from my blog, I am a huge meal-prep advocate. This helps so much in cutting time out of your morning to prepare breakfast, lunches, and snacks.

  • Stretch! It’s a great way to increase flexibility, increase blood flow to your muscles, and reduce stress and body ache. Here is a link for simple stretching movements and ROMWOD which is a great mobility program.

  • Sweat it out! If you are a morning person or who has more time in the morning then workout! Working out first thing in the morning is great to release those endorphins, boost your metabolism, and you will most likely be more focused and alert the rest of the day! Due to my schedule, I work out at night but my Saturday morning workouts are my most favorite because of these reasons!

  • Eat breakfast! When we are sleeping, our metabolic rate runs slowly and at a conservative rate, but once we are awake, our bodies need to break out of a fasting metabolic state. Eating a healthy breakfast that’s nutrient dense like whole grains, vegetables, and lean proteins will keep our metabolism healthy!

  • Take it one item at a time. As you are creating a morning routine, take things 1 at a time so that you don’t feel overwhelmed. Drinking a liter of water, dedicating 5 minutes to stretching, and meal prepping was not an overnight success for me. You have to be consistent, intentional, and forgiving but you will get it!

I hope that sharing my personal routine and providing informative research about the a.m. will help and encourage you to cultivate your own morning routine. I would love to hear about your morning routines and what you have found really helped you!

Source: https://www.inc.com/benjamin-p-hardy/this-morning-routine-will-save-you-20-hours-per-w.html?cid=search

To keep you motivated and alert here is a From the Roots Morning Routine music playlist:

https://open.spotify.com/user/sonymusic/playlist/68gThuZOHUfzo4f5r4nXg4

 
Spookylicious Green Smoothie
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Spooky take on the classic morning green smoothie - behold the Spookylicious Green Smoothie!

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

Halloween is my Christmas! Hands down! You know that movie, Halloweentown? It is my dream goal to live in Halloween Town where it’s Halloween every day! Wouldn’t that be amazing!?

Anywho, because of my love for Halloween, this recipe was a lot of fun creating!

If you remember anything from my morning green smoothie, this is exactly the same recipe but with fun Halloween garnishes and a small craft project.

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

Notice the Frankenstein faces on the glass? I did that using just a Sharpie retractable-fine point marker.  What I love about using a Sharpie pen is that if you make a mistake on the glass, you can wash it off easily with a little soap and water. You can also check out this link for other ways to clean your glass.

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

The Halloween garnishes are just as easy as the Frankenstein art. You can choose whatever fruit you would like but for the fruit kabobs, I used kiwi and blackberries. Blackberries reminded me of little brains and I love the contrasting colors in the kiwi with the smoothie color. The fruits should go through a wooden kabob with no problem, I would just recommend cutting your kiwi at least 1” in length so the kiwi doesn’t tear apart.

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

This next part is my favorite -- banana ghosts! I usually tell you to use a ripe banana in all my recipes but for this, you need to use a green to yellow banana. The banana needs to be firm so that it’s easier to handle and that it doesn’t fall off the kabob. Instead of using sugar eyes, I used dark chocolate chips for the eyes and mouth. You should have no problem inserting the chocolate chip directly into the banana. If you do, you could probably use melted dark chocolate or peanut butter as a sticking agent.

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/spookylicious-green-smoothie/

And there you have it, Spookylicious Green Smoothie!

Recipe for the smoothie can be found here.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!

Pumpkin Pie Chia Pudding
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https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

Pumpkin Pie Chia Pudding - Simple, six-ingredient chia pudding that’s thick, creamy and nutritious!

Whether you are tired of hearing about pumpkin spice or can’t get enough, this recipe is perfect for both parties! The only reason why I know this is a fact is that my husband says so! Haha.

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

Usually, after photos have been taken, Michael will stick one ear out of the room to wait for those magic words: “Honey, would you like to eat this?” This time, he ate the entire jar before I could tell him what the special ingredient is in my chia pudding! For the record, he despises pumpkin pie spice everything!

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

See, I say this to tell you that pumpkin spice is here to stay! Not because of the spice, but because of the pumpkin that usually follows it! Pumpkin is an awesome fruit that is highly nutritious! Two of my favorite health benefits of pumpkin is that pumpkin is a powerful source of fiber and contains beta-carotene.

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

Have you ever wondered how orange vegetables and fruits have vibrant colors? It’s because of this powerful antioxidant called beta-carotene! Our body converts beta-carotene into vitamin A which is an essential vitamin for our bodies. We need vitamin A for healthy skin, a strong immune system, and good eye health. That is why I love pumpkin so much!

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

https://fromtherootsblog.com/pumpkin-pie-chia-pudding/

Enjoy this pumpkin pie chia pudding for breakfast, as a snack or even as a dessert. I’m sure chia pudding would be good warm but I have only tested this chilled. You can also use the leftover pumpkin puree in pumpkin pie protein smoothie or the elevated pumpkin spice latte recipe found on my Instagram.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo to #fromtherootsblog on Instagram. We love seeing what you come up with!

Pumpkin Pie Chia Pudding

DSC_1029.jpg

Pumpkin Pie Chia Pudding - Simple, six-ingredient chia pudding that’s thick, creamy and nutritious! 

  • 1 Tbsp heaping pumpkin puree

  • 2 Tbsp chia seeds

  • 1/2 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)

  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice seasoning

  • 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder (optional)

  • 1 Tbsp honey

  1. In a small mason jar or container, combine all ingredients until fully combined.

  2. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours or overnight.

  3. Eat chilled and top with your favorite toppings like pepitas, coconut flakes, bee pollen, pecans, honey, nut butter, or pomegranate seeds.