Paleo Peppermint White Hot Chocolate

I figured since it’s December it’s finally acceptable to start posting all the cozy winter drinks, even if it’s still not that cold in California compared to the rest of the country. I mean it was 40 degrees when I woke up this morning and I kinda felt like I was going to die, ha ha! Well not really but I have become wayyyy too acclimated to California weather after living in basically the North Pole (Idaho) in college.

I remember the very first time I busted my arse slipping on ice while walking to class and having my nose hairs freeze to icicles only to instantly defrost once I walked into my classes, yikes! Oooh the fond memories of living in the arctic lol! I was a California girl through and through though, no matter how long I lived there I still was the crazy girl wearing flip flops in the snow. One thing that got me through the brutal winters there was hot chocolate, lotttts and lotttts of it!!

I wish I had this peppermint white hot chocolate recipe when I was there, I think it would have been the perfect drink on those blustery days! It has such a creamy, buttery flavor with a wonderful pop of peppermint that just makes it outta this world yummy! You can find the RECIPE HERE! You could also add my homemade marshmallows to make this hot chocolate epic!

I had so much fun creating this recipe with my friends over at Vitacost, they always make my shopping experience amazing! So many great paleo options to shop on their site with deals every day and SUPER fast shipping, like Amazon Prime fast you guyssss! I hope you make a mug of this belly warming drink to help you celebrate the most wonderful time of the year!

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Vitacost. Thank you for supporting the companies that make Paleo Paparazzi possible! I only work with companies I’m passionate about & align with the mission of Paleo Paparazzi. As always, all thoughts are 100% my own.

Maple Roasted Butternut Squash with Bacon Crumbles

It’s Thanksgiving week here in the U.S. and I have all things turkey, cranberry and pumpkin on the brain! But what about butternut? It seems to not get as much attention as pumpkin and that’s just a cryin shame. Roasted squash is just divine and my favorite way to eat this humble little veggie!

I also want to mention that there’s just nothing better than adding bacon crumbles to, well….everything! But especially butternut squash! I love the flavor of caramelized butternut chunks mixed with herbs and crisp salty bacon pieces!

I first created this side dish for a holiday party and now I’m adding it to the blog because it has stolen my heart. It’s the perfect side dish to bring to a Thanksgiving meal, or really any meal for that matter. I hate showing up to a party with a boring vegetable side dish, that’s just the worst! This side dish is easy enough to make and everyone seems to absolutely love it!

I added in some maple syrup to help give it a little more punch of sweetness, but feel free to leave it out if you’re doing a Whole30. If you make this recipe, I’d love to know what you think in the comments below!

Maple Roasted Butternut Squash with Bacon Crumbles

Ingredients

  • 2 large butternut squash
  • 12 oz. pkg of bacon
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp herbs de provence
  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line 2 baking sheets.
  2. Cut 2 squash in half lengthwise, scoop out seeds, discard and remove stem.
  3. Pierce each squash half with a fork, rub a little oil on each and place cuts down on lined baking sheet. Cook for 20 min on top rack.
  4. Place bacon on a lined baking sheet and place on bottom rack, cook at the same time as the squash until crispy, about 15-20 mins.
  5. When bacon is done, set aside to cool and crumble. Remove squash from oven and let cool down a few mins. before handling.
  6. When squash is cool enough to touch, remove skins (carefully slice off with a knife). Cube squash into uniform bite sized pieces (about 1").
  7. Add cubed squash back onto baking sheet, add oil, maple syrup, dried herbs, salt and pepper. Cook an additional 30 mins. until squash is caramelized and roasty toasty!
  8. Remove from oven, add to a large serving bowl and add crumbled bacon into the squash bowl and mix well.
http://www.paleopaparazzi.com/2017/11/maple-roasted-butternut-squash-bacon-crumbles/

Black Charcoal Waffles with White Chocolate Frosting

I’ve been wanting to try charcoal waffles for quite sometime now. I first set eyes on them on instagram and was immediately intruiged by their deep inky black hue. I had tried charcoal in a drink at my local juice bar labeled as a detox drink and also used it as a DIY teeth whitener, so the next natural step was to try it in some food! It only takes a small amount of activated charcoal to make your black waffle dreams come true and they are just WAY too much fun to serve for halloween or maybe even a gothic party!

If you consumed copious amounts of candy or sweets this holiday, these waffles will be your BFF. The activated charcoal in them will help your body on it’s way to detoxing! The white chocolate can be drizzled on top of the waffles like a sauce or you can break them up into smaller bite sized pieces with the white chocolate used more like a frosting! I also added in some chopped pumpkin seeds on top of them for a fun festive flair! You can find the recipe HERE! These are also a perfect after Halloween detox food that’s a little more fun than broccoli, lol! If you give them a try, I’d love to know what you think?! We had so much fun making and eating them at my house!

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Vitacost. Thank you for supporting the companies that make Paleo Paparazzi possible! I only work with companies I’m passionate about & align with the mission of Paleo Paparazzi. As always, all thoughts are 100% my own.

Paleo No Cook Caramel Apple Cheezecake

I’m super excited I can finally share this Paleo No Cook Caramel Apple Cheezecake I made using the new Vitamix Explorian E310. Vitamix sent me this new powerful and compact blender about a month ago and it was killing me that I couldn’t share it with all of you! I was sent this product for review purposes, but as always, my opinions and views are completely my own.

When I was thinking of a fun recipe to make in my new Vitamix I could’t help but re-create one of my absolute favorites, a cashew dairy free cheesecake but with a fall twist. As the weather is finally starting to cool down here in Northern California and the leaves are just beginning to change my mind naturally turned to apples and caramel! I mean, what’s not to love about that magical combo?! Just one look at those luscious layers and you’ll want to make this!

This is pretty much a raw cheezecake minus the cooked apple topping. The crust is made by blending together nuts, dates and cinnamon so there is absolutely no baking involved, huzzah!! It’s really close to a Larabar in texture, taste and goes great with all the flavors of fall in this yummy recipe! The caramel sauce is made mainly from dates which is a great way to make a raw healthier version of caramel, but it doesn’t taste healthy at all!

I’ve been making these raw no bake cheezecakes for years in my older and larger Vitamix 6300 model. But I wanted to see how it held up with the same amount of work in the smaller Explorian version. Well, to my surprise, It worked out perfectly and it was much easier to scoop things out with the smaller 6 cup container. The pulse switch also makes it easy peasy to grind up nuts, which was awesome for when I had to make the crust! AND it fits nicely under my cabinets to make more space on my countertop, which is a major score as I have a small kitchen!! I will also be bringing it with me when I travel because sometimes a girl needs her blender by her side on a fun trip!

I love that even though this blender is smaller and more compact, it doesn’t skimp on power, the motor is very powerful and gets the job done extremely well! It also has a hand dandy knob giving you 10 variable speeds that you can adjust according to whatever dish you’re whipping up! It’s what i’ve really loved about Vitamix for the last 3 years, the power and ease of use!

Paleo No Cook Caramel Apple Cheezecake

Yield: 12 servings

Ingredients

    For The Crust:
  • 3/4 cups raw unsalted almonds (I used Trader Joes's Blanched slivered)
  • 10 soaked medjool dates, pitted
  • 1 tbsp water or as needed for blending
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
    For The Filling:
  • 2.5 cups raw unsalted cashews (soaked for 5 hours or overnight)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • pinch of salt
    For The Caramel:
  • 8 soaked medjool dates, pitted
  • 4 tbsp coconut cream
  • 2 tbsp coconut nectar or maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • a few pinches of salt
    For The Apple Topping:
  • 4 medium granny smith apples, chopped (about 4.5 cups)
  • 3 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • a few pinches of salt

Instructions

    For the Crust:
  1. Soak pitted dates for 15 mins. in hot water, drain and remove.
  2. Add the almonds to the vitamix and use the pulse button to grind them up into really small chunks.
  3. Add the rest of the crust ingredients to Vitamix blender and pulse until well combined
  4. Add more water for blending if needed until you get a mixture that's sticky and easily holds together so you can press it to the bottom of your pan.
  5. Evenly press and mold your crust mixture across the bottom of your 9" spring form pan with your fingers. Wet your fingers if needed to make this part easier. Set aside and clean out the Vitamix to get ready to blend the filling.
    For The Filling:
  1. Drain soaked cashews and rinse well, add them and all other filling ingredients to the clean Vitamix. Blend until the mixture becomes silky smooth and pour into the springform pan on top of the crust.
  2. Cover and place into the freezer until firm, about 5-6 hrs.
    For The Caramel:
  1. Soak pitted dates for 15 mins. in hot water, drain and remove.
  2. Add all ingredients for the caramel into the Vitamix and blend until smooth, put into the fridge until the cheezecake is frozen.
  3. When it's ready, spread caramel evenly on top and put back into the freezer until apple topping is ready in the next step.
    For The Apple Topping:
  1. In a large skillet or saucepan, melt coconut oil over medium heat; add remaining topping ingredients. Cook, stirring constantly, until apples are tender, about 8 to 9 minutes.
  2. Remove and set in fridge to cool down.
  3. When cooled down, remove the cheesecake from the freezer add the apple mixture to the top. Sprinkle more cinnamon and coconut sugar on top if you wish.
  4. Let thaw a few minuets, slice into 12 equal pieces and enjoy!

Notes

*Keep cheesecake frozen until ready to serve. When ready to serve leave out on counter to thaw for a few mins. before cutting. Leftovers can be re-frozen.

http://www.paleopaparazzi.com/2017/10/paleo-no-cook-caramel-apple-cheezecake/

Even though there may be a lot of steps, this is still an easy one to make! I hope you like this recipe as much as me and my family! Be sure to let me know what you think in the comments below!

Dry Salsa

Have you ever heard of Dry Salsa? If not, welcome to your newest obsession! I hadn’t heard of it until my friends over at Vitacost introduced me to it. I loved the concept so much I decided to create my own version of it. It’s basically a bunch of seeds, dry chilies and a touch of oil to keep it together. Some versions also include peanuts or nuts but I decided to keep mine nut free. I just used pumpkin seeds, sesame and sunflower seeds. You can also add in spices or other flavors to make different versions. I’m thinking of doing a lime one soon and have a few other ones in the queue.

When I did a search for dry salsa, I only found a few links and one of them was for a company named Salacious making it from scratch and selling it at The farmer’s markets in L.A. If you don’t want to make it yourself you could order it from them, theirs sounds amazing! If not, you can always just DIY it as it’s super simple to make and tailor to your liking. You can find the recipe I created for Vitacost right HERE!

It’s a really awesome condiment to have on hand to spice things up and add a bit of heat and umami to any dish! I love it on tacos and what’s great is it adds that punch of flavor but won’t leave your taco soggy, cool right?! it’s also great for breakfast on top of your eggs and as a dip with chips adding in some more crunch and perfect heat! I picked up all of my ingredients at Vitacost, they make it SO easy to keep my pantry stocked with healthy products and ingredients! Plus they carry tons of Paleo and Whole 30 products that I love! I hope you enjoy the recipe and if you make it don’t forget to share it with me on Instagram. Just use the hashtag #paleopaparazzi so I don’t miss your creation!

 

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Vitacost. Thank you for supporting the companies that make Paleo Paparazzi possible! I only work with companies I’m passionate about & align with the mission of Paleo Paparazzi. As always, all thoughts are 100% my own.

Pepperoni Pizza Bites with Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

It’s back to school and you’re looking for something easy to make, that maybe doesn’t require any cooking at all?! A fun snack-able treat that won’t leave you feeling sluggish afterwards too?! These pepperoni pizza bites are great because they are grain-free and crust-free. They take little to no time at all so they’re perfect on a busy day! The base is just a thin slice of the most tasty uncured pepperoni, I mean how simple is that? I found the uncured pepperoni at one of my favorite places to get all my pantry staples, Vitacost! I actually found almost all of the ingredients there minus a few.

I also made a quick pesto that uses sun dried tomatoes and gives it a nice pop of flavor! You can add them to a 375 degree oven for a few minutes if you want to eat them hot but either way they are delicious! The pesto is also made with sunflower seeds instead of pine nuts so you could safely add them to a lunch box. I added diced mushrooms, mini peppers and olives to mine, but feel free to top with whatever you or you kiddos love! These are totally customizeable and would also make a lovely appetizer! You can find the recipe HERE! I know you’re going to love them!

 

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Vitacost. Thank you for supporting the companies that make Paleo Paparazzi possible! I only work with companies I’m passionate about & align with the mission of Paleo Paparazzi. As always, all thoughts are 100% my own.

Paleo Sour Cherry Gummies

These paleo sour cherry gummies are tastiest and easiest way to add some quality gelatin into your diet! And gut healing gummies really don’t get any cuter than when they’re shaped like little woodland creatures! Especially the hedge hog ones, they definitely bring out the kid in me! I made these sour cherry gummies because my husband has a serious affinity for anything gummy! So it’s a great way to get him to eat grass fed gelatin and would be a great one if you have any kiddos! I’d rather have him downing these instead of a bag of Haribo peach rings (his childhood favorite) any day!

I used this woodland creature mold that my mother in law gave me as a gift last year which is freaking adorable and also silicone, so it’s easy to get them out! I’ve been trying to brainstorm something fun to make in them ever since and finally settled on some delicious gummies. I think it’s actually an ice tray, but where’s the creativity in that, lol! I keep getting messages about where to find the mold, so if you don’t know, well now you know 😉 You could use a smaller gummy bear mold, or even just add the mixture to a smallish pan and use little cookie cutters to make them into cute shapes! Go wild and have some fun in the kitchen!

I think these are perfect for back to school! Such a cool treat to add to a lunch box instead of a cookie or a Twinkie! And they jiggle so kids would have a blast playing with them and eating them 🙂 You could even add some probiotic powder to the mixture after it cools down a bit to make this packed full of even more gut healing goodness. I just buy the capsules and empty the powder inside into the mixture before it sets up. Then it could also be a daily probiotic supplement, I think the kids would really love that! Heck I really love it!!

Paleo Sour Cherry Gummies

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 18 large gummies

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Place cherries and all other ingredients into a small sauce pan and heat up on med-high heat until honey is dissolved and your liquid turns a bright red color.
  2. Add contents of the sauce pan to a high speed blender (I used a Vitamix) and blend for a few seconds.
  3. Strain out any skins if you would like and return mixture to the saucepan on med-high to heat up for a few mins.
  4. Add saucepan contents into the high speed blender (I used a Vitamix) again and add in your gelatin a little at a time, making sure it is all completely dissolved into the liquid. Pour into molds and refrigerate for 20- 30 mins depending on the size of your molds.

Notes

Can sub out fresh cherries for 100% cherry juice or tart cherry juice. Can also use all lemon juice if you don't like or have apple cider vinegar, i just think it adds a nice kick.

Not enough molds, just add any of the extra mixture to a pan and cut out into shapes with a cookie cutter or into small cubes with a knife.

http://www.paleopaparazzi.com/2017/08/paleo-sour-cherry-gummies/

I also created a lovely pin below to make it easier to save this recipe for later on Pinterest! Happy Jiggling!!

Paleo Berry Crumble Bars

Omg you guyyyyysss! These berry crumble bars are not only paleo, but they have a little sneaky ingredient added into the filling to help your hair, skin, nails, gut and joints! Can you guess what it may be?! If you guessed collagen, then you get 10 points for being so smart! These babies are a little bit sinful but the collagen bumps up their goodness level for you so you don’t feel as guilty!

I made these for 3 days straight when I was testing them out so I could get them just perfect for you! My husband started getting a bit too used to having them on hand and was sad once I was done testing them lol! We binged on these cuties and are taking a tiny break before we make them again, but it’s SO hard!! This recipe is grain free and paleo but it’s hard to tell! I love when that happens!! It uses almond and cassava flour which gives it a nice crumb. I also added freeze dried strawberries and raspberries on top to give it an extra pop of berry flavor, but that’s totally optional.

I got 90% of my ingredients for the crumble at Vitacost. They make it so easy to shop for organic, non-gmo and paleo friendly products and it ships super quickly, score! I love not having to head to the store and search for everything, if you’re like me and adore online shopping in your pajamas and quick shipping, you will fall in love with Vitacost! Not to mention their customer service is the best I’ve seen and you get free shipping for orders over $49! So are you ready to make these delicious berry crumble bars?  You can find the RECIPE HERE ! I just know you’re gonna love them!

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Vitacost. Thank you for supporting the companies that make Paleo Paparazzi possible! I only work with companies I’m passionate about & align with the mission of Paleo Paparazzi. As always, all thoughts are 100% my own.

Mini S’mores Cookie Cups

The warm sun beating down on your skin as you glide down the river on an inner tube, months of camping and campfires with endless s’mores, ahh yes… the epitome of summer! Endless amounts of s’mores is definitely on my list of things to make happen this season, and these cute mini s’mores cookie cups are gonna help me accomplish that goal! They are such a fun way to modernize your typical summer s’mores and are easy for little hands to hold to and enjoy!

What’s fun about this recipe is that you don’t need a campfire to enjoy them! You can make these any old time you feel like having a s’more! They are easy enough to whip up a batch ahead of time and bring to your next summer potluck or picnic! My husband has been requesting these on repeat ever since I made the first batch! I have a feeling these are going to be requested a lot at future family gatherings this year, and I don’t mind it one bit 🙂

I loved switching up the classic graham cracker base by making a cinnamon-y cookie cup to hold everything in! The mini chocolate chips in the cookie portion are optional, but I think they make it a bit more fun than the traditional version! I used a kitchen torch to get the tops all toasty but a quick pop under the broiler works just as well! You can find the recipe for these cute little summer snacks I created for Vitacost HERE. It was so easy to find all the ingredients on the Vitacost website! All the paleo friendly products they have are combined in one easy spot, so all it takes is a click of the mouse and no driving around town to find the ingredients! That means more time for fun in the sun with family and friends!

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Vitacost. Thank you for supporting the companies that make Paleo Paparazzi possible! I only work with companies I’m passionate about & align with the mission of Paleo Paparazzi. As always, all thoughts are 100% my own.

Easy Grilled Chicken Pesto Kebabs

Hey guys, I’m so excited for the three day weekend coming up! So much so that I created these fun new simple Chicken Pesto Kebabs for the grill. I know most of you here in the states will be celebrating by firing up the BBQ and making delicious treats to enjoy with family and friends. I wanted to share something that was easy enough, so that you have more time to enjoy your loved ones!

Memorial day is all about celebrating and honoring those American heroes who lost their lives serving our country. My uncle lost his life in Vietnam, so I always honor him and the legacy he left behind with my family on this special day. My Mom wanted to name me after him and said if I was a boy, my name was supposed to be Kenneth. When she found out I was a girl, she thought Kendra was a perfect fit!

Last year I got to spend some time in D.C. with my Mom and Dad and we got to visit the Vietnam Memorial Wall. It was a humbling experience, to say the least. I was in tears capturing this special moment as my Mom gently rubbed her brother’s name onto a sheet of paper to take as a keepsake.

I know this was kind of a deep post, but I didn’t want it to just be about the food, Memorial day is so much more than that! I think we get caught up in the traditions of a holiday, sometimes forgetting the reasons behind why we celebrate them. Feeling grateful for all those who have served and currently serve our country so we can be safe at home.

Easy Grilled Chicken Pesto Kebabs

Ingredients

  • 1.5 lbs. boneless chicken thighs, trimmed & cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup pesto (recipe here)
  • pint of cherry or grape tomatoes
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • metal or pre-soaked wooden skewers

Instructions

  1. In a large shallow container add the cubed chicken, 1/2 cup pesto and let marinate for 20-30 mins. or overnight.
  2. Pre-heat your outside grill to medium heat, can also be done inside on an oiled grill pan on medium.
  3. When chicken is ready, thread it onto the skewers along with the tomatoes.
  4. Sprinkle each skewer with salt & pepper to taste.
  5. Cook on the grill 3-4 mins on each side or until the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165–175°F.
  6. Remove from grill and slather on more of the leftover pesto sauce!
http://www.paleopaparazzi.com/2017/05/easy-grilled-chicken-pesto-kebabs/