Simple Peanut Butter Banana Energy Bites

If you follow me on Instagram, you know I like to spend a good amount of time in the kitchen - it's often my outlet to get refreshed and stay creative. Although I could spend hours perusing cookbooks and stalking food bloggers, I like to make things that are simple and allow room for a little improvisation. The easier, the better. After all, what's a recipe without a little wiggle room? 

A couple of weeks ago when I interviewed Carly for my latest Wholehearted Hero post, I asked if she'd consider sharing a recipe with us. She was thrilled to contribute and offered me a recipe for easy protein energy bites. I tried them a few nights ago and was so pleased with the result - they may become a new staple in my kitchen! They are easy to make and can be made with a variety of different mix-ins. The perfect mid morning or afternoon snack and only 133 calories per 2 bites!

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 banana, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened coconut flakes (optional) 
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (optional) 
  • 1 Tbsp honey

Instructions: 

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl
  2. Using a fork, mash and stir until all ingredients are well blended (add more oats if texture is too sticky)
  3. Refrigerate for 30 minutes 
  4. Roll dough into 1 inch size balls 
  5. Store in airtight container in the fridge for up to two weeks
  6. Enjoy!

Simple Fall Apple Crisp

Anyone else want to bake, smell and then eat all of the yummy fall goodness around this time of year? Each time a new season rolls around I'm convinced it's my favorite, and right now I'm in love with all things pumpkin, cinnamon and apple spice (I mean, who isn't?). When I work from home I almost always have some sort of fall scented candle burning, but this past week I decided to try a few things in the kitchen. Who needs a candle when you have an oven? 

Last week I baked Love & Lemons GF / vegan pumpkin oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and created my own version of a (refined) sugar free apple crisp. I documented the process on my Instagram stories and got so many requests for the recipe, I decided to post it here. 

Disclaimer: I'm not a nutritionist or an expert baker. I simply enjoy baking and thought I'd share this little experiment with you! I've been inspired by so many other bakers and used bits and pieces of things I've learned over the years to create this little recipe. Enjoy!

This recipe is a bit more crumbly and not as heavy than a typical crisp because it's gluten, dairy and (refined) sugar free. It's super easy to make and once you put this in your oven, it will make your whole home smell like fall. It tastes delicious by itself (might have had some for breakfast yesterday...) or even better with a scoop of homemade vanilla ice cream on top. 

Ingredients

  • 3-4 medium sized apples cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup pecan pieces or halves (you could also use another kind of nut, like almonds or walnuts) 
  • 1/2 cup ground almonds or almond meal 
  • 1/4 cup organic pure maple syrup (or honey) 
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (melted) 
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 1 tsp cinnamon + more for sprinkling on top of the apples 

Directions 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Mix dry ingredients together then add syrup and coconut oil. Mix till combined. 
  3. Place the apple pieces in the bottom of an 8 x 8 pan and generously sprinkle cinnamon over the top. Stir to evenly coat the apples. 
  4. Pour crisp ingredients on top of apples and layer evenly. 
  5. Bake for 38-40 minutes. 
  6. Let cool and then serve! 

Serves 5-6 people 

I'd love to hear your thoughts and see pictures of your own fall apple crisps!