Tag Archives: baking

Chocolate Banana Muffin Bars

Can you believe we are already 11 days away from the end of May, and about to enter Summer? I can’t stand how time is flying right now and that our son is two months old. I remember writing recipes in October, basking in the second trimester glory, anticipating what the end result will be, and boy was it a journey (interested in my story? Here’s the link to my blog post).

This recipe was sitting in my notes on my phone for a very long time, probably since September last year, when I wrote it down while I was contemplating what to do with overripe bananas, because regardless of a pandemic or not, I always have at least two bananas that are about to RIP. Scrolling through my recipes I stumbled upon it again and as the ingredients are pretty simple, I decided that it’s about time I make it and see how it turns out – the result is AMAZING. Even my husband said they were good, and he is my biggest critic when it comes to cooking and baking.

These muffin bars are gluten free and made with Thrive Market cassava flour, calls for just one cup of sugar (both coconut and cane), two ripe bananas, and one of my favorite chocolates from Hu Kitchen. What I love about this recipe is that the bars came out so fluffy with a perfectly golden bottom, each bite has a delicate flavor of banana, and the chocolate literally came oozing out. This recipe yields approximately 12 smaller bars, but that depends on how you slice it 🙂

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 ripe bananas, smashed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup cane sugar
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup whole milk (you could sub almond or oat milk too)
  • Vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup Cassava Flour
    • You can find my favorite cassava flour on Thrive Market –> hit the banner to the right and it’ll bring you there!
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
    • (I do recommend Hu Kitchen because they are a paleo-friendly and “back to human” style eatery located in NYC but you can find their products here. I LOVE their crackers too!

Preheat your oven to 375* and pre-grease a 9×9″ brownie or baking tin. Begin by adding the wet ingredients into a bowl (eggs, bananas, vanilla, sugars, and milk). Blend to combine. Then layer in the dry ingredients – I like to pour the flour in a bit at a time so that it doesn’t fly everywhere. Mix to combine until smooth, there will be some chunks because of the banana.

Add in the 1/2 cup of chocolate (I coat the chocolate with some flour so that it does not sink to the bottom) and fold in with a silicone spatula or wooden spoon. Pour into the tin and bake for 20-23 minutes. Let sit and spread on some almond butter, a dollop of whipped cream, or eat them all in one sitting with a cup of coffee and Bravo Below Deck marathon… no judgment. Stay safe friends!

Chocolate Chip Almond Butter Banana Bread

I admit this was not supposed to be a banana bread. I had every intention of making my almond butter collagen muffins (linked here!) and instead decided on pouring the entire batter into a loaf pan and praying it came out edible. If you know me, you know I’ve struggled with a banana bread recipe, and I can get quite stubborn when trying to figure out the measurements. For this recipe though, I did actually swap out a few ingredients, add in some, and eliminate collagen altogether. Thankfully, this time around it came out damn near perfect, and tastes SO good that it’s already gone. I’ll blame my insatiable hunger from breastfeeding on that.

Now that I’m not completely novice to baking, and from chatting with some close girlfriends who love to bake, I have come to the conclusion that not everything needs (or should) be substituted with healthier ingredients. Sometimes, recipes require specific measurements of particular ingredients and I find that swapping more than maybe one or two (possibly three if you have done it before – which in this case gluten free, all purpose flour) can alter the authenticity of the recipe, thus resulting in poor taste and texture. For this banana bread, I nixed the collagen, swapped whole milk for almond milk, used an all-purpose gluten free flour, and added chocolate chips. I truly think that this banana bread worked so well because it has minimal swaps, I’ve used the flour before (Bob’s Red Mill all purpose GF flour is amazing!), and almond milk is not too hard of a swap anyway. I will be making this again in a few days as my bananas go bad – or I just “happen to forget about them.” The texture in this bread is spongey, with a soft and chewy mouthfeel, the perfect hint of banana and almond butter, and the right amount of sweetness from the coconut sugar and banana.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 large ripe banana (I mean LARGE)
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 tbsp (or really large spoonfuls) of almond butter
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 1/4 cup GF all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
    • *note: toss the chocolate chips in some flour before adding to batter so that they do not fall to the bottom of the pan.
  • Pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 375* and grease a loaf pan with oil spray or butter. Whisk together the banana, almond milk, sugar, eggs, extract, almond butter, and avocado oil in a medium sized bowl until everything is JUST combined, try not to over mix. In a separate bowl or in a measuring cup, add the flour, soda, powder, and salt and whisk together. Add a bit of flour into the wet ingredients and whisk to combine. Continue to pour the flour into the wet mixture as you mix little by little. Once all the flour is mixed in, add the chocolate chips and fold using a silicone spatula or wooden spoon. Pour into the loaf pan.

Top the mixture Bake for 40-45 minutes, testing the inside of the bread with a knife; if it comes out clean then it is done! The result is a decadent, tasty, perfectly baked gluten and dairy-free banana bread you can hoard all to yourself, just like I did! NOMaste and stay safe!

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

One of my colleagues and I were chatting about baking, and how I am not the world’s best baker, we got to talking about me developing a chocolate chip cookie recipe – because every home cook and baker deserves to have their version of a chocolate chip recipe – for her three daughters. I immediately regretted offering to do this because let’s face it, I’m way more of a cook than a baker, and even though I continue to persist and try baking regardless of my failures, I still hesitate that whatever the baked good is will be super dry, tasteless, or taste way too “healthy.” Well, today was the day, and I got rave reviews on this one. I must say, even my husband thought they were delicious too.

I’ll admit that I added a bit too much coconut oil in this recipe, and not enough flour which caused them to drastically spread on the baking tins, so to get the perfectly round shape I used a biscuit cutter (oh well, sue me). I was told by my husband, my colleague, my mother in law, and a friend who I showed the picture too that these cookies remind them of Tate’s cookies, which I happen to really enjoy. I mean, I don’t think a compliment gets better than that. These cookies are not only gluten free, but made with coconut oil, coconut sugar, grass fed butter, and Lily’s stevia sweetened chocolate chips. They’re basically breakfast cookies, you’re welcome!

Here’s what you’ll need for these bad ass cookies: (note: I adjusted the flour and coconut oil to scale back the coconut taste, and to keep the cookies a little more intact and less spread)

  • 2 and 1/4 cups gluten free 1 to 1 baking flour, I prefer Bob’s Red Mill (or you can use Cassava flour)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup organic cane sugar
  • 1 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 stick grass fed butter, unsalted and softened
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 2 cups chocolate chips, I used Lily’s (this brand is a very “clean” brand which means the ingredients to make the chocolate chips is reliable and has no hidden chemicals or ingredients)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

To start, preheat your oven to 375*. You don’t necessarily have to grease the pans, but if you feel you want to, go ahead. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

Whisk together using a hand mixer the butter and sugars until creamy and fully blended. It is SUPER important to use softened butter in cookie recipes to maintain the structure of the cookie. It’s also important to be specific (as I am currently learning) with measurements: too much butter or oil will cause the cookies to spread too far (ehem, my mistake).

Add in the coconut oil, vanilla extract, and eggs, and blend on medium speed. Continue to blend until the mixture combines, approximately 3-4 minutes. For this specific cookie recipe, I poured the dry into the wet mixture a little at a time (basically separating my pours into thirds). I blended after each time I added in some dry ingredients. Once all the flour was combined I added in the chocolate chips and blended some more.

Using a spoon or an ice cream scoop, scoop some of the cookie batter onto your baking sheets. You should be able to comfortably fit 12 cookie dough balls on each tray. You’ll have to reuse the sheets as you bake because this recipe yields approximately 40 cookies. OHHH YEAAAA! Bake each back for 11-13 minutes or until golden brown on the sides. Transfer to a cooling rack, let the pan sit to cool down, and repeat.

I am sincerely loving experimenting in my kitchen, with a baby in tow, and a dog sitting at my feet waiting for me to drop dollops of cookie batter on the floor. These cookies will become a staple in any household, and certainly a tradition in mine! NOMaste ~