Pumpkin Spice Latte

Pumpkin Spice Latte

‘Tis the season for pumpkin everything. I can smell it in the air! It’s the time for Pumpkin Spice Lattes and I have one for you without the guilt and hefty $6 tag. 

Maple syrup replaces the usually heavily sugared version. Almond milk makes this deliciously dairy-free (Starbucks uses milk in their pumpkin puree). I even make my own pumpkin pie spice to go along with it! 

Wanna know how to make your own Pumpkin Spice Latte to warm your soul this Fall? Check it out below! 

Pumpkin Spice Latte

Makes 1 drink – can be easily doubled 

IngrEdients 

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin puree (I use canned)
  • 1-2 tbsp maple syrup 
  • 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice, plus more for serving
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup strong coffee – I used a brewed  Nespresso espresso pod run through twice

For pumpkin pie spice:

  • 3 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp nutmeg 
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground all spice

Instructions

  1. Make pumpkin pie spice. by whisk all ingredients together until combined. Store in a small jar or container.
  2. In a small saucepan, add in the milk, maple syrup, pumpkin puree and pumpkin spice. Heat over medium heat until hot and whisk often. Once heated, remove the saucepan from heat and add in the vanilla and coffee.
  3. For extra frothiness, add milk mixture into blender and blend until frothy and blended. 
  4. Top with more pumpkin spice!

Enjoy! 

xo

 

 

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Double Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

Double Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

Guilt-Free Double Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes? Yes, Please!

Looking for a delicious, guilt-free chocolate cupcake that’s gluten-free, oil-free, refined sugar-free and freakin AHMAZING? You got it here!

Not only do these cupcakes taste insanely good, they are also good for you! The added zucchini in this recipe makes sure that these cupcakes are insanely moist and you don’t even taste it! It sounds crazy, but holy crap, once you taste these you will understand!

You have more benefits by using tahini as a replacement for traditional oil and almond flour, which is full of protein and gives these cupcakes a more traditional texture! Ps. These can also be made into a cake, if you desire. I’m just feeling muffin and cupcakes right now.

Fudgy chocolate coconut cream frosting puts this dessert over the edge! If you’re looking for a super chocolatey & rich dessert, check out the recipe below! Don’t forget to tag me in your creations on Instagram, with the hashtag #bitchininthekitch! Happy baking!

Double Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

Adapted from Make Thyme for Health

Ingredients

For the cake:
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 2 eggs (or for flax egg – 2 tbsp flax + 3 tbsp water)
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar or organic white sugar
  • 1 cup oat flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 1/4 cup of dairy-free chocolate chips
For the frosting:
  • Can of full-fat coconut milk or cream
  • 10 oz dairy-free chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Make sure you have a chilled can of coconut cream – in the fridge for at least 6 hours, if not overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F and line cupcake tin with paper liners. You can also make a cake out of this – if so light grease a loaf pan.
  3. Combine the almond milk and ACV in a measuring cup and allow to sit for a few minutes to curdle. If using flax egg, combine flax with water in a small bowl and allow to thicken for a few minutes.
  4. Shred the zucchini and allow it to drain on paper towels while you prepare the cake.
  5. In a blender, combine all the ingredients (except for the zucchini). Blend for 10 seconds, scrape down the sides and blend for another 10 seconds. Add in the shredded zucchini and chocolate chips, then fold into the batter with a spatula, until well-combined.
  6. Pour the batter into cupcake liners or in loaf pan. Bake in the oven for 18-21 minutes for cupcakes, and about 45 minutes if you are making a cake. Toothpick should come out of the centre clean. Allow to cool completely before  frosting.
  7. For the frosting: When coconut cream is ready, flip can over and open with a can opener. Pour off the water. Scoop only the solid white coconut cream into a bowl. Set aside. Melt chocolate chips in the microwave, at 30 second intervals. Once chocolate is melted, pour into the bowl with the coconut cream. Whip it with electric beaters until smooth! If you are having trouble beating it, let the cream sit out on the counter for a bit to warm up. Spread on the cupcakes once frosting is at room temp and easily spreadably.
  8. Store cupcakes in the fridge to keep frosting from melting!

Enjoy!

xo

Amanda

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What I Eat Before & After a Workout

What I Eat Before & After a Workout

What I Eat Before & After a Workout

I cannot stress enough how important it is to provide your body with the proper fuel to perform at its best in any workout sesh. Whether your spinning, doing a barre class or circuit training, giving your body the nutrients it needs will help you push harder and get the most out of your workout.

Being a spinning instructor, fuelling my body to provide it with enough energy to teach and do my own training is vital!

The perfect pre and post workout meals or snacks include a mix of protein and carbohydrates, as well as other nutrients to give you energy and help replenish your muscles and feed your cells. Here’s what I typically eat before and after I workout!

Before your morning workout…

You’ve heard it about 1000 times, but first and foremost… HYDRATE. We go about seven to eight hours throughout the night with no water, so it is important to drink at least 16 ounces (that’s about 2 cups) of water to avoid dehydration.

I’ve never been the type of person that was able to function without getting some sort of food into my body. But, sometimes it’s hard to eat before a morning workout. About 45 minutes before a morning class, I’ll have a glass a water, big cup of coffee and my go-to slice of gluten-free bread, 1 to 2 tablespoons of nut butter and a banana. If I’m really not feeling like eating much, I’ll just eat the banana. Bananas are great before a workout because of their easily digestible carbs and potassium, which our body sweats out!

After your morning workout…

About 30 minutes after my class (if I’m teaching or training) I am usually starving! Keep hydrating with water and aim for a meal thats high in protein and has some carbs. Protein will help repair and grow your muscles, while carbs will give you energy and fuel your muscles. I usually have eggs (over-easy, scrambled or poached), half an avocado and some berries, which are high in antioxidants and help with muscle recovery. Sometimes I make myself protein pancakes or a berry protein shake – vegan protein powder, almond butter and lots of berries. Another great post workout breakfast is oatmeal or overnight oats, with almond milk, chia and hemp seeds, cinnamon and fruit – you can add maple syrup for sweetness.

Before and after an afternoon class…

If you are hungry before your afternoon workout (in between lunch and dinner), have a light snack that consist of power foods and water. Trail mix that consists of a good mix of nuts and seeds. A great recipe to try is my grain-free granola! If you didn’t already eat oatmeal in the AM, a small bowl of oatmeal or overnight oats will give you energy, or the classic sliced apple with almond butter.

Depending when your class is over, dinner may not be right away. So post workout, grab or make yourself a protein shake to help the body recover.

If dinner-time is right after your workout, focus on a lean protein and complex carbohydrate filled meal. Baked fish or chicken with lots of veggies (Brussel sprouts, broccoli, squad & carrots), turkey chilli (click for recipe), zoodles or sqoodles with veal or turkey meat sauce. Meat is not the only option for protein, you can also go for beans, nuts, seeds, tofu, etc. Most importantly, don’t forget to hydrate!

Before and after evening or night class…

After eating my protein and complex carb filled dinner, I’ll grab a snack to fuel myself about 30-45 minutes before the class. Once again, opt for trail mix/granola or an apple with almond butter.

After class I’ll have a small snack, as I am usually going to bed soon after. Greek or coconut yogurt with fruit, two hard-boiled eggs or a small protein shake. Continue to hydrate – I usually have a cup or warm lemon water before bed regardless if I worked out before or not.

Diet and exercise go hand in hand. Therefore, my goal is to make sure my body is fuelled enough to get the most out of my workout or have the most energy to instruct my class! No matter what workout you are doing, remember how important providing your body with the correct nutrient is and DON’T FORGET TO HYDRATE!!!

xo

Amanda

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Paleo Blueberry Lemon Loaf

Paleo Blueberry Lemon Loaf

Grain-free blueberry lemon loaf loaded with Quebec wild blueberries and topped with a delicious lemon glaze! 

If you’ve ever had Quebec wild blueberries in the Summer, you know that they taste like nature’s candy. After heading to the market on a beautiful Summer day, I cannot help but get inspired by all the fresh produce. 

Since my diet currently limits grains and starches, I’ve been on a mission to make amazing grain-free desserts, without compromising taste. Grain-free dessert tend to be dry and lack in good texture. But not this loaf.

This blueberry lemon loaf is insanely moist and tasty! It’s packed with protein from the almond flour, eggs and healthy fat from the coconut oil or ghee! The lemon glaze is not a requirement, but boy does it make this loaf delicious! Check out the recipe below! 

Paleo Blueberry Lemon Bread

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour, sifted
  • 1/4 cup arrowroot powder or tapioca flour
  • 1 tsp bakin soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, ghee or butter 
  • 1/3 cup honey or maple syrup
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries 
For the Glaze:
  • 1/3 cup coconut butter 
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tbsp honey or maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • hot water 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan and cut a piece of parchment paper to line the pan.
  2. Combine almond, coconut and arrowroot/tapioca flours, baking soda and salt in a large bowl and set aside.
  3. Whisk together eggs, coconut oil/ghee/butter, honey/maple syrup, lemon juice and lemon zest, until fully combined.
  4. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix until well incorporated.
  5. Spread half the batter on the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle half of the blueberries on top. Spread the other half of the batter on to top. Sprinkle the rest of the blueberries over top of the batter.
  6. Bake for 35-40 mins, until toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Watch carefully and make sure the top doesn’t burn – if it does, cover with foil. 
  7. While loaf cools prepare the glaze. Whisk together all of the glaze ingredients, except for the hot water. Slowly add the hot water 1 tbsp at a time, until you have a glossy, fluid consistency. Once loaf has cooled, pour glaze over top and let drip down the sides!

Enjoy!

xo

Amanda 

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Eating Your Way to Good Skin

Eating Your Way to Good Skin

You are what you eat.

If you know me, you know that I am a product hoarder. Makeup, skincare, hair products, you name it, I’ve tried EVERYTHING! Now don’t get me wrong, I do believe that a solid skincare routine can change your skin for the better. However, I am a firm believer and prime example of the saying you are what you eat. 

Before eliminating gluten from my diet, I went through a major rough patch with my skin. Never having teenage acne, having break outs at the age of 23 made no sense to me. I tried almost EVERY product and spend thousands of dollars trying to fix the issue from the outside. Not only to help with the acne breakouts, but also to help with the eczema breakouts that were all over my body. 

One of the first symptoms I saw disappear when going off gluten was my eczema. In barely a week, all the red, itchy patches on my skin disappeared and now I rarely get an outbreak. As I cleaned up my diet even more, my acne started to clear and my skin started to glow again. 

I believe that eating foods that helped me clean out my gut, prevent inflammation and maintain balance in my body cleared my skin. Keep reading for what foods I found to have helped my skin the most. Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or dietitian, this is just to give you insight on what I know has worked for me. 

  1. Cut out refined sugar. Refined sugar spikes insulin levels which cause inflammation in the body. Inflammation causes acne and eczema breakouts, therefore it is important to find foods that reduce it, not cause it.
  2. Eat anti-inflammatory foods. Not only do we want to eliminate inflammation causing foods, we want to eat ones that help reduce existing inflammation. Foods and spices such as green-leafy vegetables, celery, beets, pineapple, ginger and turmeric work to reduce inflammation. 
  3. Cut out dairy. The theory behind this is that dairy can cause an over-production of hormones. This increase in hormones (such as progesterone and insulin) can lead to increased inflammation, aging and acne. Especially, if you are allergic to dairy or lactose intolerant (DUH.)
  4. Drink a glass of lemon water each morning. Lemon water right when you wake up helps to detoxify the body and boost your metabolism. It also helps to alkaline the body and balance pH levels. This in turn reduces skin inflammation and flare ups. 
  5. Cut out coffee. As a coffee addict, this was one of the hardest things for me to do and I am still not completely off coffee. However, coffee is a diuretic which means it dehydrates the body and skin. Since the key to good skin is hydration, too much coffee can dry out the skin and give you under eye circles. Replace your coffee with green tea or matcha, to benefit from the caffeine without the dehydration. I’ve been drinking the YOUR TEA Skin Magic Tea everyday and have been noticing a difference in the clarity and brightness of my skin. 
  6. Drink more water. HYDRATE. HYDRATE. HYDRATE. How many times have we heard those models with perfect skin say its all about hydration. As annoying as it may sound when they say it, hydration is VITAL to maintain good skin. At least 8 cups of H2O a day is recommended, more if you work out.
  7. Eat lots of healthy fats. Heathy fats such as fish, nuts, avocado, olive oil and coconut oil are irreplaceable in repairing cells, reducing inflammation and healing the skin. Increase your intake of these healthy fats to see a difference in your skin and body. 

Hope you guys enjoyed these tips and can’t wait to hear about your experience with cleaning up your diet! 

Xo

Amanda 

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