Maple Alps

breakfast

3 Healthy & Energizing Smoothie Recipes

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps4 Comments

Smoothies are a quick and easy way to get a tasty fruit fix, and I make them as often as possible. I love to start my day with one, and when I have friends over they’re the perfect alternative to coffee on a sunny day. My family loves them too, and I find that smoothies are one of the best ways to get kids the vitamins and antioxidants that they need.

I’m always looking for new recipes that are vegan-friendly, healthy and delicious, and the three recipes in this post tick all those boxes. They’re also great energy-boosters, thanks to the matcha green tea powder.

If you haven’t already heard about matcha tea, let me tell you why I love it. It’s known to increase energy levels and improve concentration, so it’s great for getting me through a busy day. It’s also full of antioxidants which help to boost the immune system and protect against diseases. It can even give your metabolism a boost which helps with weight loss too.

Matcha is the perfect smoothie ingredient and I love the long-lasting boost that it gives me - especially when I have a busy day ahead. Make sure you get high-quality matcha though as this ensures it's got the maximum health benefits and non-bitter taste. I recommend Evergreen Matcha, as they source their premium grade matcha from sustainable farms in Japan so it's packed with the maximum goodness.

For the following recipes, simply add all the ingredients to your blender, whizz up, and enjoy.

3 Healthy & Energizing Smoothie Recipes | www.maplealps.com

 

Energy-boosting strawberry, banana, and matcha smoothie

This smoothie is perfect for breakfast at the start of a busy day. The fruits not only taste delicious but are also packed with mood-improving vitamins and nutrients, and the matcha tea will give you all the energy you need to take on anything.

 

What you need:

●      2 cups strawberries (fresh or frozen, but if frozen thaw them first)

●      1 banana

●      1 kiwi, peeled

●      2 scoops vanilla protein powder

●      ½ cup plain low-fat yogurt or ½ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk

●      2 tsp matcha

 

Boost Your Immune System with this Ginger Matcha Smoothie

This smoothie is packed full of tasty goodness. The matcha is an incredible source of antioxidants, and the ginger and fresh orange gives your body some vitamins and a kick to help fight off any this drink a lovely warming finish which helps boost your immune system.

 

What you need:

●      1 tsp matcha

●      1 lime, juiced

●      1 cup orange juice, freshly squeezed

●      1 tbsp chia seeds

●      2 tbsp fresh ginger, grated

 

Note: if you don’t like the spiciness of the ginger, simply leave it out!

 

Antioxidant-rich cacao and matcha smoothie

Did you know that raw, organic cacao is full of antioxidants? It’s a true superfood, and it has all of the calcium, iron, and magnesium that your body needs. It also has over 40x the antioxidants found in blueberries, so cacao and matcha are a health-boosting dream team.

 

This smoothie is delicious as an afternoon pick-me-up and is perfect if you need an energy boost. And, drinking this smoothie regularly can promote weight loss and will help protect against diseases.

 

What you need:

●      1 ½ cups almond milk

●      1 tbsp cacao powder

●      ½ tbsp matcha

●      2 tsp maca powder

 

Note: if you want to increase the iron content of this smoothie you can add a handful of spinach. Or, if you want to even out the strong cacao taste with some extra sweetness, blend in ½ tablespoon of maple syrup.

 
3 Healthy & Energizing Smoothie Recipes | www.maplealps.com

 

 


Erin Young is a health writer, tea expert and owner of two tea brands: Evergreen Matcha in the USA and Zen Green Tea Matcha in Australia. She partners with sustainable tea farms based in Kyoto (Japan) to ensure the best possible quality matcha green tea powder.

 

 

Zen Green Tea: Facebook & Instagram


 

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (vegan)

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps11 Comments

Before I got married, I always had this idea in my head about going running with my husband. We would get all cute in our coordinating (but not matching) gear and go down the street. Everyone would look at us and think in their heads: wow, what a healthy power couple!

Yeah, well, reality looks a little different than our imaginations sometimes. The first time we ever went for a run together, I was consistently about 3 blocks behind at all times. I blame it on my short[(er)-than-his] legs. For the last few months, however, we've been running at the same pace and it's been great (especially when deer come out of nowhere and I know I'm not alone....)! I hope the neighbours think we're a healthy power couple. Never mind. 

Also great? The things that happen in our kitchen when I get serious cravings on a productive day. Like Mexican food for a solid week, and fresh cinnamon rolls for breakfast. Or freezer meals that will last a month!

Then there are those times I see brown bananas on the counter and get really excited...

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

The thing about bananas in our house: they don't last long enough to turn brown. You see, there's a banana-eating machine in our home roaming wild. My husband. It seems as if no matter how many bunches I purchase, they are all gone before those beautiful brown spots even get a chance to develop. So when I see a brown banana? Well, I pounce, and delicious things tend to happen.

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

When I was growing up, it seemed that the family we carpooled with always had these little chocolate chip banana muffins. This always baffled me because I never associated chocolate with breakfast. At the same time, it intrigued me, and after trying one, I knew that life would never be the same. 

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

I knew some kind of banana chocolate mix would happen when I saw those brown babies on my counter. I think I have some sort of chocolate theme when it comes to muffins! I have no idea how, but they turned out on the first try - I even gave the bulk of them away!

Without further ado (it's not like you're reading any of this anyway), here is the recipe!

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

What you need:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat white flour

  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • 2 very ripe bananas, mashed

  • 1 flax egg (1 TBSP ground flax mixed with 3 TBSP hot water)

  • 1 tsp pure almond or vanilla essence

  • 1/2 cup vegan butter, melted

  • 1/4 cup non-dairy milk (I use non-sweetened almond milk)

  • 1/3 cup vegan chocolate chips
     

What to do:

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease muffin tin (I use olive oil).
2) Prepare flax egg by combining the flax and hot water and leave to sit for five minutes.
3) Mix flour, sugar and baking powder in a large bowl.
4) In a separate bowl, mix mashed bananas, pure almond essence, vegan butter, non-dairy milk and prepped flax egg.
5) Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well.
6) Stir in chocolate chips.
7) Distribute the batter evenly into the muffin tin (I'm still working on the even part...)
8) Bake for 25 minutes, until the muffins pass the toothpick test.
9) Remove from oven and cool on rack.

 

Apple Pumpkin Crisp (vegan)

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps4 Comments

I was a really poor student when I was in university. I struggled most months paying rent and making sure I had food to eat because no matter how many job applications I sent out no one ever bit. That year was a year of amazing miracles, and I never went hungry or homeless but I'll never forget one lightbulb moment I had one day. I seriously had no produce in my tiny city apartment but some apples that were already on the edge of becoming dehydrated snacks, and not much in my fridge but almond milk (that was actually half water because I had to make it stretch) and ketchup. I managed to scrounge up the ingredients for an apple crisp and let me tell you: that evening, I felt rich. Since then, I've especially appreciated a good apple crisp - especially when the weather is cool!

Apple Pumpkin Crisp (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

After making some pumpkin treats the other day, I found that not only did I have a basket full of apples to consume, I also had some leftover pumpkin puree. What?! Dream-come-true much. I decided to try something new, and what came out was this delicious apple pumpkin crisp. Why not?

Apple Pumpkin Crisp (vegan) | www.maplealps.com
Apple Pumpkin Crisp (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

It turned out to taste a lot better than I thought it was going to, so I decided to share it with you today - in honour of all things pumpkin anyway. I added some walnuts to the topping, and it just added a level of deliciousness that is out of this world! I also topped it with some coconut cream, and oh boy!

Apple Pumpkin Crisp (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

Apple Pumpkin Crisp

What you need:

Filling

  • 6 medium-large apples (I used granny smith), peeled and chopped

  • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree

  • 2 TBSP lemon juice

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 3 TBSP arrowroot starch

  • 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger

  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

Topping

  • 1 cup old fashioned oats

  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour

  • 1/3 cup organic cane sugar

  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts, roughly chopped

  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 cup olive oil 

What to do:

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2) Add all the ingredients for the filling to a large bowl and mix well until combined

3) Put mixture into a small baking dish and set aside

4) Rinse and dry out the bowl you used for the apples and mix together the oats, flour, sugar, walnuts, salt and cinnamon. 

5) Add the olive oil to your dry ingredients and mix well, until completely coated.

6) Pour the topping onto the apples in the baking dish, coating completely.

7) Bake for 30 minutes until the top is a nice golden brown.

8) Best fresh, but refrigerate up to 3 days.


Have you ever added pumpkin to your apple crisp before?


 

Almond Coconut Chocolate Granola

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps5 Comments

Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day, and I love having a huge variety of things available every day. One of the things I have always loved to have in my pantry is granola. Not only is it so easy to make and customize, it's fairly easy on the wallet as well compared buying the natural granola in the grocery store. It only takes a few minutes to put together and bake, and even though it also takes only a few minutes for it to disappear as well, it is definitely worth it. 

Almond Coconut Chocolate Granola | www.maplealps.com

Now that the weather has cooled off and I can no longer fully enjoy springing out of bed to eat a refreshing morning meal, I decided I'd better switch up my granola to be more Autumn-themed as well. I was working on making a gingerbread granola and decided that would have to wait until at least the end of November. Then this was born in a very good last minute decision. Adding cocoa to granola puts it on the edge - healthy, but with the subtle, flirtatious taste of chocolate. Okay, it may not be sooooo subtle...I added chocolate chips - which adds a whole other amazing dimension.

Almond Coconut Chocolate Granola | www.maplealps.com

Does adding chocolate chips mean it is technically a dessert? Nah, though I wouldn't mind eating a bit after dinner. Or for dinner. I am adult, so that means I can do whatever I want, right? Sure.

Almond Coconut Chocolate Granola | www.maplealps.com

Almond Coconut Chocolate Granola

What you need:

  • 5 cups old fashioned oats

  • 1 cup sliced almonds

  • 1 cup dry shredded coconut

  • 2 TBSP cocoa powder

  • 2 tsp cinnamon

  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

  • 1/3 cup pure unrefined coconut oil

  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup pure maple syrup (depending on your sweet tooth)

  • 2 tsp pure almond extract

  • 3/4 cup vegan chocolate chips

What to do:

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare a large baking sheet by putting parchment paper on it

2) Mix dry ingredients well in a large bowl

3) Melt coconut oil in a small saucepan and whisk in maple syrup and almond extracts

4) Pour wet ingredients over dry ingredients and mix until oats and nuts are well coated

5) Spread granola evenly on the baking sheet (you may have to use two)

6) Bake for 15-20 minutes, being careful not to let it burn

7) Allow to completely cool and dry, then crumble the chunks and add the vegan chocolate chips

8) Store in an airtight container

 

Do you make your own granola?


 
Almond Coconut Chocolate Granola | www.maplealps.com

Simple Maple Almond Granola

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps15 Comments

I am so glad that the summer is almost here. I always look forward to the fresh fruit of the summer, and the chance to eat outdoors again. There is something about enjoying fresh ingredients in the out of doors that truly creates extra happiness in life. Though it's been chilly, the sun has been shining more, which has made me crave more fresh fruits and veggies as I enjoy it. Naturally, granola came to mind as I was deciding what I wanted to eat for breakfast this weekend. I found some gorgeous raspberries to pair it with and set to making a simple maple almond (not alps) granola.

Simple Maple Almond Granola | www.maplealps.com

I have always loved granola. It has the right amount of crunch and flavours that I love. It also creates an atmosphere that only granola can make. Perhaps it's linked to memories of camping and breakfasts in foreign homes and places that make it so special - or maybe I'm thinking about it too much - but I think you understand that I enjoy granola.

Simple Maple Almond Granola | www.maplealps.com

I like to experiment with different flavours and combinations. I love that granola is so versatile! Around Christmas, I like to make a gingerbread version, and in the summer I like adding coconut. This time, I decided to go simple and add some almonds and maple syrup. What a delicious combination! I love eating it with fresh fruit and some soy yogurt! So much yum!

Simple Maple Almond Granola | www.maplealps.com

Simple Maple Almond Granola
Makes about 7 cups

5 ½  cups old fashioned oats
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp sea salt
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup roughly chopped almonds
½ cup coconut oil
¾ - 1 cup maple syrup (depending on your sweet tooth)
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp pure almond extract

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare a large baking sheet by putting parchment paper on it
2) Mix dry ingredients well in a large bowl
3) Melt coconut oil in a small saucepan and whisk in maple syrup and vanilla and almond extracts
4) Pour wet ingredients over dry ingredients and mix until oats and nuts are well coated
5) Spread granola evenly on the baking sheet (you may have to use two)
6) Bake for 10-15 minutes, being careful not to let it burn
7) Allow to completely cool, then crumble the chunks and store in an airtight container
 


Do you like granola as much as I do? What kinds of foods "feel like Summer" to you?