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Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars (vegan)

I know. It’s taken me way too long to post the Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars.  I posted this shot week’s ago and I’ve only just had the time today to get it out to you all.

I’m actually vacationing right now in Palm Springs, California. We’re here for about five days and of course, it’s 40+ degrees. We went out for a run this morning and had to stop because it was way too hot.  It didn’t help that we got up a lot later than I wanted to. My body has been naturally waking at 5am, and then 6:30am as the days go by. This morning was 6:30am and I thought, what am I going to do until James wakes up. But then, I happened to fall back asleep until 8:15am!! What!!! I hate losing precious day time.




So, by the time we shuffled out of the building, it was 35+ degrees.  But we ran and made our way to one of the gyms and did some weights.  It’s so important to integrate some form of exercise on holiday.  Sure, it is a time to enjoy life’s pleasures. But, as soon as we get off of some form of routine, we lose our commitment to our health goals.

That’s why James and I make a point to get in early morning exercises.  This could be a run, a hike, the gym, or just a good walk.  I do eat relatively healthy on holiday simply because that’s when I feel my best. It’s also the fact that I need to rejuvenate. But, I’m not exaggerating when I say that we do still indulge. For us, it’s a cocktail by the pool and some amazing red wine for dinner.




Do you see the perspective of balance that I am giving you? There’s a lot of this (exercise and healthy food) and a little bit of that (those indulgences).

Okay, so it doesn’t help that I have pictures of these epic Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars embedded in this post. Hahaha…sorry, about that. But, to be real here, these bars are very balanced. Are they 100% healthy?  Not exactly. Maple syrup is still sugar but I actually made these bars to be as low in sugar as possible without compromising the taste.

For those with peanut allergies, you could totally use almond butter.

Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars (Vegan)

ingredients

For the chocolate crust:
3/4 cup ground almond meal
2 tablespoons raw cacao or cocoa powder
1.5 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 tablespoon melted coconut oil
Pinch of sea salt

Peanut Butter Filling:
1/2 cup creamy or crunchy natural peanut butter ideally without salt (*I personally love crunchy for the texture)
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 tablespoon melted coconut oil
Pinch of sea salt

Chocolate Topping:
1/4 cup raw cacao or cocoa powder
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon of peanut butter (this helps to incorporate the maple syrup so it doesn’t sink but you can omit ensuring that you blend it well)

Directions:

– Line a loaf pan with parchment paper and set it aside.

– In a medium bowl, stir together all of the chocolate crust ingredients until a moist dough is formed. Press the dough evenly into the bottom of the lined loaf pan, and place it in the freezer to set (about 10 minutes).

– For the filling, in a bowl, stir together the peanut butter, maple syrup, coconut oil and salt.

– Remove the crust from the freezer and pour the peanut butter filling over the top, using a spatula to spread it out evenly. Return the pan to the freezer to set.

– For the top layer, combine the cacao/cocoa powder, melted coconut oil, and maple syrup, whisking well to break up any clumps. Once the mixture has become a smooth chocolate sauce, pour it over the peanut butter layer, and return the pan to the freezer to set until firm. This should take about one hour. About 10 minutes into the freezing process, I add a sprinkle of coarse sea salt.

– Once ready, grab the edges of parchment paper to easily lift the solid bar from the pan. Use a sharp knife to slice the bars to your preference.  I dip the knife into hot water to help cut them. Otherwise, they may crack (although, I kinda like that look!)

These can be stored for about two weeks in the fridge. They can also be frozen.

Roasted Carrot Hummus

Happiness is …. Spring time!  I’m sure that you’re with me on that, right?

I am sitting in a massive craving for some sun and warmth, and mostly, REST. James and I are off to Los Angeles and Palm Springs in exactly two weeks to do just that. I’m also curious in exploring the L.A Health food scene for both research and inspiration. Even just walking through Whole Foods in the U.S is an experience all in itself since a lot of the products I see online are not available here. So, now I get to try them myself!

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Maca + Bee Pollen Fat Bombs

I might be a bit behind the times since I’ve only just started to eat bee pollen. I mean, why have I been missing out?

What is bee pollen exactly?

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Basil Pumpkin Seed Pesto (vegan)

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I’m ready for Spring. Like, ready yesterday!!! How about yourself? I think even my digestive system is confused. Normally, when the weather starts to warm up, I start craving more raw foods but that hasn’t quite happened to me yet. We have been having constant rain in Vancouver and I know that other parts of Canada and the U.S are experiencing boughts of snow. Isn’t that cray-cray?

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Gratitude + Matcha Green Tea Truffles

I got to tell you, this past week wiped me out. I’ve been getting up at 5am as I had started my study plan for my nutrition certification.  But, then a few things happened this week that presented a bit of a set back. But, I surprised myself this week.

I was surprised that my reaction to these situations were calm and collected. No joke, a couple of years ago, my emotions would have gone off the deep end. The DEEP-END. Crying, moody, disconnected. We’ve all have had those feelings at some point. So, where did I attribute the change to?




GRATITUDE. Straight up, simple gratitude.

In the midst of the week of having those issues, I turned on the national news and saw footage of the recent attacks in Syria.  I was in shock and disbelief. The images, if you haven’t already seen, are haunting.  And, like many, I immediately felt lucky that I live in such a safe country.  I sleep in a warm bed with someone who loves me and who will protect me.  I continued to tap into that feeling for the rest of the week and when another set back happened, I immediately went to that space.

Gratitude is an amazing practice. In my {free} Weekend Stress Detox Program, we go through the importance of this practice and how you can easily incorporate it into your life.  Get the program HERE. Now, onto the recipe!




How surprised are you to see that I have another matcha recipe for you?

Hahaha, I know.  I’m matcha crazy. But, listen, here’s why.

Matcha is crazy good for you. Here are some of the many benefits:

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How To Make Cauliflower Rice

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You guys…I’ve just completed the last of my 12 case studies as part of my nutritional certification. I’ve got a bit of fine-tuning to do but seriously, I almost fell of my chair when I realized this.

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5 Things That I Do Daily For Healthy, Vibrant Skin

Healthy & Vibrant Skin

It’s Sunday morning and I’m in a Seattle coffee shop after waking from a deep, restful sleep in my hotel room. James and I often go to Seattle (Bellevue to be exact) to start the holiday season off.  If you’re in the area, Bellevue starts their annual Snowflake parade which just zaps you into the holiday spirit immediately! We’re also here to do a little bit of shopping too and to relax before the craziness of the holidays begin.

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Grain Free Chai Spiced Apple Muffins (Paleo)

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One of the great things about transitioning into the different seasons is the change in flavours. Besides pumpkin, root vegetables, spice, and apples take centre stage.

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Dairy Free Pumpkin Spiced Almond Milk

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I’m dropping in quickly this Saturday morning before I hit the gym.  I just wanted to share this simple and quick recipe – Diary Free Pumpkin Spiced Almond Milk. When I was back from my recent trip down to Arizona and Sante Fe, we did a little stop over to Trader Joe’s.  It’s a great place to grab organic produce, organic dairy, and even organic canned foods and it’s affordable.

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Healthy Poblano Chili and Bean Soup

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I’ve been wanted to go to Santa Fe, New Mexico for years.  I’m not sure why. My guess is that for many, the area is a spiritual destination full of semi-precious stones and crystals and copious amounts of churches.  It’s also an area rich in history especially driving over the Rio Grande and driving through parts of Route 66.

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