Snickerdoodle Cookie Protein Bars




If you've been following my healthy treat recipe journey for a while, you know I really am obsessed with cookies. I also love cinnamon! Naturally, with that said, snickerdoodle cookies are among my top favorite types of cookies. I love them because they aren't too sweet and have that subtle cinnamon flavor. I had an idea to make sugar cookie protein bars but thought....why not add cinnamon? And I , of course, thought of snickerdoodle cookies. These bars have a soft and chewy texture, much like the cookie. They also have the perfect amount of sweetness. You can really enjoy these for breakfast (they'd be fabulous with a cup of coffee) or for dessert. Enjoy!

Ingredients

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (or oat flour)
1/3 cup Vitacost xylitol (or sweetener of choice)
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoon butter extract
2 egg whites
1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)

Method

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8x8” baking dish with parchment paper and set aside.

2. Stir together oat flour, almond meal flour, protein powder, xylitol, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon in a mixing bowl.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the remainder of ingredients. Pour this wet mixture into the bowl of dry ingredients.

4. Stir mixtures together until batter is smooth and well combined. Batter will be thick.

5. Spoon batter into prepared dish and smooth down with the back of a spoon.

6. Sprinkle with more xylitol and cinnamon, if desired, and bake in the oven for 10-14 minutes. Let cool for 30 minutes.

7. Cut into 10 even squares. Enjoy!

Makes 10 servings
1 serving is 1 square

Macros for 1 serving
167 calories, 7.7g protein, 16.7g carbs, 9.5g fat, 1.8g fiber, 4g sugar

Nicolette’s Tips
* For a lower carb option, replace oat flour with ¾ cup coconut flour and an additional ¼ cup almond meal flour (¾ cup total of almond meal flour). You can also decrease the carbs by using a zero calorie sweetener instead of using xylitol.
* You can use regular coconut oil instead of liquid coconut oil. You will need to melt the coconut oil first and also make sure the milk and eggs are at room temperature.




Hot Chocolate Protein Cupcakes

I am currently in the mood for a warm, comforting cup of hot cocoa. Most of the time I crave coffee, simply because....caffeine. But hot chocolate gives me that extra feeling of content. Take it easy, Nicolette. I was also in the mood to bake - and when my moods collided, these cupcakes were created. I am in love with these! I must say that an edible cupcake version of hot chocolate is bound to make anyone squeal in delight. Being that they're macro-friendly too, you can enjoy them without any guilt!


Mini Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Protein Donuts





Peanut Butter. Chocolate Chips. Mini. DONUTS!! I am so happy I made these. As I pondered on what kind of donuts to make, I reminded myself of two flavors that always go well together. Chocolate and peanut butter. It's a match made in heaven. Speaking of heaven, these taste heavenly and are packed with some extra protein and healthier ingredients so you don't feel as guilty eating these as your would regular donuts. I enjoyed these for both breakfast and dessert. Enjoy!

Ingredients

½ cup whole-wheat pastry flour (or 1/3 cup oat flour)
2 tablespoons xylitol (or sweetener of choice)
½ tsp. baking powder
1 whole egg
¼ cup unsweetened almond milk (or milk or choice)
2 tablespoons sugar free chocolate chips


Method

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a mini donut pan with non-stick spray and set aside.

2. Whisk together all of the donut ingredients, except chocolate chips, until smooth.

3. Stir in chocolate chips until well combined

4. Evenly spoon batter into donut pan, filling 12 mini donut molds.

5. Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Enjoy!

Makes 12 servings
1 serving is 1 mini donut

Macros for 1 serving
67 calories, 3.2g protein, 6.8g carbs, 1g fiber, 3.5g fat, 0.3g sugar

Nicolette’s Tips
* You can make regular sized donuts as well. Just increase the cooking time.
* For a lower fat content, substitute coconut oil with applesauce or plain greek yogurt.


Spinach & Pine Nut Quinoa with Seared Scallops






Ingredients

Quinoa
½ cup pine nuts
2 cups spinach, chopped
¼ cup parsley, chopped
1½ teaspoon lemon zest
2 teaspoons lemon juice
½ tablespoon ghee butter (or regular butter)
1 teaspoon minced garlic
¼ cup yellow onion, chopped
1 cup quinoa, rinsed & drained

Scallops
8 Sizzlefish scallops
Flavor God Everything Seasoning (or seasoning of choice)
½ tablespoon ghee butter

Method

1. Toast pine nuts in an oven at 350 degrees F for 8 minutes.

2. Heat ½ tablespoon ghee in a skillet on the stovetop over medium heat. Add garlic and chopped onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Pour this mixture into a large bowl along with the first 5 ingredients.

3. Bring chicken broth to a boil in a medium saucepan. Pour in quinoa then reduce the heat to low and let simmer, with lid on, until all liquid is absorbed, about 8-12 minutes.

4. Spoon cooked quinoa into the large bowl on top of the other ingredients and let sit about 5 minutes then stir.

5. For the scallops, melt ghee butter in a skillet over medium to medium high heat. Make sure the scallops are completely dry then sprinkle each scallop with Flavor God seasoning (or seasoning of choice) on both sides.

6. Cook scallops in the skillet for 2-3 minutes on each side. Serve immediately with spinach and pine nut quinoa. Enjoy!

Makes 2 servings *Note: the quinoa makes 6 servings
1 serving is 4 scallops with ½ cup cooked quinoa

Macros for 1 serving
380 calories, 19.4g protein, 36g carbs, 17.3g fat, 1.8g sugar, 4.1g fiber

Glazed Lemon Protein Sugar Cookies




I was typing out the recipe for these thinking "I wonder what they would taste like without any egg"? So, I typed up an eggless cookie recipe and went to work in the kitchen. These turned out better than I expected! I already love anything lemon flavored. And we all know (and if you're a new reader of my blog I will let you in on the secret) I LOVE COOKIES! These were delicious to me. Even my husband had some. And by some I mean he had 4 at once. He's not even a huge lemon fan but he raved about these. Success! Enjoy :)

Ingredients

Cookie
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
2/3 cups oat flour
2 tablespoons xylitol
1 teaspoon lemon zest
¼ teaspoon baking powder
1½ tablespoons lemon juice
¼ cup coconut oil, melted
¼ cup coconut milk
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon butter extract

Glaze
½ scoop vanilla protein powder
Juice of ½ lemon
6 tablespoons coconut milk

Method

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with foil and coat with non-stick spray.

2. Place the first 5 ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir together.

3. Pour the remainder of the ingredients into bowl of dry ingredients and stir until batter is thick and smooth.

4. Using a small ice-cream scooper or tablespoon, drop about 2 tablespoons of cookie dough onto sheet pan, making 14 cookies total.

5. Flatten each cookie with a fork, making a crisscross pattern, and bake in the oven for 10-14 minutes or until cookies are golden brown.

6. Whisk the glaze ingredients together and drizzle on each cookie. Serve immediately.

Makes 14 servings
1 serving is 1 cookie with glaze

Macros for 1 serving
80 calories, 3.7g protein, 6.1g carbs, 4.9g fat, 0.3g sugar, 0.7g fiber

Beef & Black Bean Burgers





Can you please take a moment and look at that MEAT!!!! And yes, it is just as delicious as it looks. This ground beef I got from 5280 Meat just melts in your mouth. These burgers are so simple to make but pack on a ton of flavor. The black beans add a bit of protein and fiber to them also. I put some tomato, spinach, goat cheese, and avocado on my burger but regardless of how you make yours, I can guarantee you'll love this recipe. Enjoy!

Ingredients

1 lb. ground beef (I used 5280 Meat – 85% lean ground beef)
¼ cup cooked black beans, mashed
¼ cup onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
1 whole egg
3 tablespoons wheat germ
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground pepper
Optional: 1 tablespoon Flavor God Everything Seasoning

Method

1. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

2. Using your hands, mix ingredients together until well combined.

3. Evenly divide meat mixture into 4 sections and, using your hands, form each section into a burger patty.

4. Heat a grill pan on the stovetop over medium to medium high heat. Cook patties on each side about 3 minutes or until desired doneness is reached. Enjoy!

Makes 4 servings
1 serving is 1 burger patty

Macros for 1 serving
264 calories, 26.1g protein, 5.4g carbs, 17.3g fat, 1.5g sugar, 1.5g fiber

Chocolate Walnut Protein Energy Bites






Check these out! Seriously. These little bites of heaven are chocolatey, scrumptious, and decadent treats. They contain NO dairy either. I love treats like this because they are a perfect pre-workout snack that will get you going thanks to the healthy protein, carbs, and natural sugars they contrain. You can also choose not to bake them. I tried them both ways and they're perfect no matter what you decide. Enjoy! 

Ingredients

¼ cup unsalted walnuts
¼ cup oat flour (or whole wheat flour)
¾ scoop chocolate protein powder
2 teaspoons dark cocoa powder
¼ cup dates, pitted
1/3 cup sugar free maple syrup (or regular maple syrup)
Optional Toppings: melted sugar free chocolate

Method

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray.

2. Soak dates in a bowl of water for 10 minutes and drain.

3. Pulse walnuts in a food processor until a fine crumble forms.

4. Add dates to walnut mixture and pulse until smooth.

5. Add remainder of the ingredients, except rolled oats, to the food processor and blend until completely smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl a few times to ensure the mixture is well combined.

6. Spoon batter into a mixing bowl, stir in oats, and place in the fridge for 30 minutes.

7. Remove from fridge and roll 2 tablespoons of batter into a ball. Repeat until 16 energy bites are made.

8. Place bites on baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and serve immediately. 

Makes 16 servings
1 serving is 1 energy bite

Macros for 1 serving
82 calories, 2.9g protein, 14.6g carbs, 12.6g net carbs, 1.9g fat, 7.8g sugar, 2g fiber

Tuscan Herb & Feta Turkey Meatballs






I LOVE meatballs. I eat them with a lot of different things...like pasta, salad, rice, veggies, eggs, or by themselves. These are packed with so many bold ingredients. Even so, they aren't overpowering and have a great balance of textures and flavors. Feta and Italian seasoning go so well together. The Tuscan Herb olive oil from Vitacost is delicious and adds a special flavor element to these meatballs. This time, I made some pasta and tomato basil marinara sauce to enjoy with this dish. What will you make? Regardless, I think you will thoroughly enjoy these!

Ingredients

2 lbs. lean ground turkey (93/7)
½ cup low fat crumbled feta cheese
¼ cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 tablespoon Flavor God Everything Seasoning
2 whole eggs (or 3 egg whites)
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 small onion, diced
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground pepper

Method

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

2. Combine all ingredients, except the ground turkey and olive oil, in a large bowl and stir until mixture is well combined.

3. Add the ground turkey to the mixture and, using your hands, gently mix the ingredients until well combined.

4. Take about 3 tablespoons (or use a small ice cream scooper) of meat mixture and roll into a 1½-inch ball. Repeat until 32-34 meatballs are made.

5. Place meatballs on a non-stick baking sheet and drizzle with Vitacost’s Tuscan herb olive oil.

6. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Let sit for 10 minutes then serve.

Makes 8 servings
1 serving is 4 meatballs

Macros for 1 serving
281 calories, 25.7g protein, 8.4g carbs, 13.8g fat, 1g fiber, 2.1g sugar

Nicolette’s Tips
* To make your own breadcrumbs, add whole wheat bread of choice to a food processor and pulse until crumbs form. Toast in the oven at 325 degrees F until golden brown.
* I ate my meatballs with pasta and Vitacost’s tomato basil marinara sauce. Delicious!

Chocolate Mousse Protein Cheesecake with Peanut Butter Sauce


Is there anything that goes better together other than chocolate and peanut butter? I am not sure there is. This cheesecake was so light and fluffy that it reminded me of a mousse. The texture is awesome, in my opinion. It isn't as dense as a typical cheesecake but that is what I like about it. I will certainly be making this treat again. Enjoy!

Ingredients

Crust
2 Tbsp. coconut flour
1¼ Tbsp. unsweetened applesauce
1 Tbsp. baking stevia or xylitol

Cheesecake
3 Tbsp. baking stevia (or sweetener of choice)
½ Tbsp. cacao powder (or unsweetened cocoa powder)
¼ cup low fat cream cheese, at room temperature
¼ cup plain greek yogurt
2 egg whites
2 Tbsp. sugar free maple syrup (or honey/regular maple syrup)

Peanut Butter Topping
Water

Method

1.  Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a 4.5” mini spring form pan with cooking spray.

2.  Stir together crust ingredients in a small bowl until mixture is crumbly. Press & mold the crust mixture into the bottom of the spring form pan.

3.  Place the cream cheese and greek yogurt in a mixing bowl and, using a hand held mixer, beat until smooth and creamy. Add the baking stevia and blend until smooth. Add the remaining cheesecake ingredients and mix until well combined.

4.  Pour cheesecake mixture into spring form pan and bake for 15 minutes. Turn the oven temperature down to 180 degrees F and bake for another 30-35 minutes.

5. Remove from oven and, using a knife, gently separate the crust from the pan and let it cool on a wire rack for about 2 hours.

6. To make the sauce, combine the peanut powder with water, adding 1 Tbsp. of water at a time until desired consistency is reached. Drizzle on top of cheesecake and add cacao nibs or chocolate chips, if desired. Enjoy!

Makes 4 serving
1 serving is 1 slice with sauce

Macros for 1 serving
145 calories, 12.7g protein, 8g carbs, 7.2g fat, 3.3g fiber, 2.4g sugar

Nicolette’s Tips
* Make sure all cold ingredients have reached room temperature before mixing.
* I wrap my spring form pan with foil to prevent any leaking through the cracks while it is baking.
* Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 1 month.



Mini Banana Coconut Protein Donuts






You know what is so great about donuts. Well, specifically these donuts. Let's go over a few things. They are mini basically meaning it's ok to have like 3, 4, 12...right? They have a surprisingly sweet crunch from the coconut flakes that are baked on top. I love different textures so this excited me when I took my first bite. It took me a total of 20 minutes to make them (including cooking time - not clean up time though. Thanks husband!). These are not too sweet and go perfectly with a cup of coffee :) And there's an added boost of protein. What I am trying to say is these are worth making. Enjoy!

Ingredients

 ¾ scoop banana protein powder
¼ cup whole-wheat pastry flour (or oat flour)
2 tablespoons xylitol (or sweetener of choice)
½ tsp. baking powder
1 whole egg
3 Tbsp. coconut butter, melted
¼ cup low fat milk (or milk or choice)


Method

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a mini donut pan with cooking spray and set aside.

2. Whisk together all of the donut ingredients, except shredded coconut, until smooth.

3. Evenly spoon batter into donut pan, filling 12 molds. Sprinkle with coconut flakes.

4. Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Let cool slightly.

5. Drizzle with additional coconut butter, if desired. Enjoy!

Makes 12 servings
1 serving is 1 mini donut without additional coconut butter  

Macros for 1 serving
62 calories, 2.9g protein, 5.6g carbs, 1.2g fiber, 3.8g fat, 0.4g sugar