Dark Hot Chocolate Cookies

Tags

, , , , , ,

I am so happy to finally be posting this recipe.  I  made my first batch of these not too long ago and they were great right out of the oven, but the next day they were a little dry.  I’m the kind of girl who loves a soft chewy cookie.  I’ve played around with the recipe and these are AMAZING.  I am so excited at how good they turned out.  Right out of the oven they are warm and gooey, the perfect treat to warm you up during cold weather. The next day these still taste amazing and they don’t lose that gooey, soft texture.  Make these for your next holiday party and you will be a hit.  They are also gluten-free, vegan(optional) and figure friendly so you can have a few and feel good about it.

IMG_2703

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup almond flour plus a few tablespoons-set aside
  • 12 pitted dates soaked(then drained) for 1-2 hours to soften
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp hot cocoa mix(preferably with no added sugar) or raw cacao powder*
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla stevia* or vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 cup dark chocolate(higher the dark chocolate the less added sugar, for vegan cookies, use vegan chocolate)
  • shredded coconut(optional)

*Shop at iherb.com and you can use coupon code OZI624 to recieve $5.00 off your first order, which means you can try the stevia only a few dollars!!!

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Combine 1 1/2 cup almond flour, soaked dates, vanilla stevia or extract, salt, hot cocoa mix and baking powder in a food processor or blender and pulse until dates are all chopped and mixture is combined.
  2. Add dark chocolate to a small glass bowl and put in microwave for about 1 minute, keep close eye to make sure chocolate doesn’t burn. Take out of microwave and stir until all chocolate is melted.photo(2)
  3. Add melted chocolate to a medium bowl, stir in coconut oil.  Add the date/almond flour mixture and stir to combine all ingredients(get messy and use your hands, it’s the easiest way).  If your mixture is a little too moist add a little almond flour(no more than two tablespoons)
  4. Roll batter with your hands, into bit sized balls and place on a nonstick cookie sheet(if you are using coconut roll the balls into the coconut before placing on cookie sheet).  Cook in oven at 350F for 8 minutes.  Take the cookies out and let sit for about 7-10 minutes, this is very important because the cookies continue to cook.
  5. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container for up to three days(trust me, they won’t last that long)

If you are interested in working together to focus on your health and lifestyle click here. Come join me for inspiration, motivation and tips on Facebook here and follow me on twitter here. Don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter and receive a free three day detox here.

Advertisements

A Holiday Gift For You!

Tags

, ,

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter than you know I am a huge fan of Gabrielle Bernstein.  Last summer I read her book Spirit Junkie, I was immediately hooked.  She has a positive message, and is truly invested in helping people live happy, healthy inspired lives, which is a message I can relate to.  Gabrielle has a special gift for all of us this holiday season.  Her new book May Cause Miracles is available in January if you pre-order it now, you are invited to TWO free group coaching session with Gabrielle, that will take place on December 3rd, and December 10th. This coaching session will focus on “Manifesting your desires in 2013” and I think that is something we can all benefit from as we focus on new goals and New Year Resolutions. Don’t miss it, I guarantee it will be food for your soul!!!  To register and participate in the event click here! Hope to “see” you there! 🙂 xxo

To learn more about Gabby here is a little Q and A with Gabrielle Bernstein, Author of May Cause Miracles

In this Q and A Gabrielle gives us crucial guidance on how to truly manifest and achieve our goals in 2013. To top it off she’s also offering a FREE group-coaching course {EMBED LINK http://gabbyb.tv/free-december-group-coaching} in December on the topic of manifesting.

Q – You are a self-proclaimed manifesting maven. Can you demystify this topic for us?

Gab- We are always manifesting. Each thought we have creates an energy flow within and around our physical being. This energy attracts its likeness. So if you’re thinking, “I suck,” then your energy kinda, well, sucks–and you attract sucky experiences.

The opposite experience occurs when you think high-level thoughts like, “I rock!” When you think and feel, “I rock,” you exude an energy of confidence and in turn attract great experiences into your life. Each thought you have informs your energy, and your energy manifests into your experiences. Your thoughts and energy create your reality.

Q – You talk about manifesting mishaps. Can you tell us more about this.

Gab – Manifestation has become a buzzword lately. Though it’s totally awesome that the Law of Attraction is now trendy, it also can be a bit misleading for folks who are unwilling to do the heavy lifting. If you truly want to use your energetic power to manifest greatness, you must clear all that blocks you from believing in your greatness.

A Course in Miracles teaches that on some level, you’ve asked for everything that happens in your life. Your intentions create your reality. There’s no need to beat yourself up: simply recognizing how your low-level thoughts negatively affect your life is the first powerful step toward changing your experiences. Begin your manifesting process by getting honest about how your low-level thoughts, energy and feelings of disbelief block you from receiving what you desire. Once you get clear about the blocks, you can begin to clean them up to clear space for positive manifestations to occur.

Many people, when trying to manifest, focus too much on the outside form rather than the internal condition. From A Course in Miracles’ perspective, what’s important is our internal experience: whether we choose to experience love or fear. When we commit to our internal experience of love, we begin to attract more love. Many people approach manifestation from a place of “How can I get something to feel better?” Instead, the focus should be: “How can I feel better and therefore be an energetic match for attracting more greatness into my life?” The emphasis must be placed on healing the internal condition, not getting a hot new car or boyfriend.

 

Q – You have Five Principles for Manifesting Your Desires can you share them with us?

Gab: Here are my five key principles for genuine manifesting. When practicing these steps, make sure to stay committed to the goal of feeling good first and attracting stuff second. Continue to remind yourself that when you feel good you energetically attract goodness into your life. When your primary function is to be happy, then whatever comes to you is irrelevant. Happiness is your true manifestation.

 

Principle One: Clear Space

Before you begin the manifestation process you must take the necessary time to release all your disbelief in your power to be happy. One of the best ways to clear the blocks of disbelief is to pray for release. Begin a daily prayer practice of asking the Universe to set you free from all the limiting beliefs that block you from believing in your greatness. Stay open for signs from the Universe and show up for the assignments that are brought to you. Universal assignments come in many forms. Maybe you’re guided to the relationship that brings up all your shit so that you have to finally heal your fear. Or maybe you lose your job so that you can learn the lessons of self-reliance and strengthen your self-love. Trust that these assignments, however tough at times, are incredible opportunities for you to clean your energy and clear space to call in what you desire.

Your job in this step is to pray for guidance to clear all that blocks you from believing in your greatness. Then allow the Universe to help guide you to whatever assignments you need to aid in the healing process. Show up for the assignments and trust that the more you clean your thoughts and energy, the more positive experiences you will attract into your life.

 

Principle Two: Get Clear

Clarity is king when it comes to manifesting your desires. You must have clear intentions for what you want to call in–otherwise you can manifest a lot of what you don’t want. Focus on what you desire and then make a list of all that goes along with it. If you’re getting clear about the job you want, make a list of all the things about the job that make you happy: the office, the people, the salary, etc. Be unapologetic about what you want. This list helps you clarify your intentions and access a vibrant mental picture of what you desire.

The most important part of this step is to clarify how you want to feel. When you get clear on how you want to feel, you can begin to access that feeling. That feeling is what makes the manifestation come into form. You can write a thousand lists and make a million vision boards, but if you don’t clearly feel what you want to experience, it will never truly manifest into form.

 

Principle Three: Think It, Feel It, Believe It!

Now let’s put these steps together. Take your clear intention and spend time every day sitting in the feeling of what it is that you desire. You might access the feeling through meditation and visioning exercises. Or call on the feeling when you’re in nature or doing a form of exercise you love. Let the thought inform the feeling and let the feeling take over your energy. The more you feel the feeling of what you desire, the more you believe it is on the way. From a metaphysical perspective, if you believe it then it is already here. So make time for contemplating, thinking, feeling and believing.

 

Principle Four: Chill!

The next step is crucial to the manifestation process. In order to truly manifest your desires into form, you gotta chill out! A Course in Miracles teaches: “Those who are certain of the outcome can afford to wait and wait without anxiety.” Take this message with you and allow your faithfulness to guide you into the belief that what you desire is on the way. Also trust that the Universe has a much better plan than you do. Though you are clear about what you want, you cannot control the timing or the form in which it comes. Stay calm, relax and trust that the Universe has your back!

 

Principle Five: Know the Universe Has Your Back

When you’re in the know you’re deliberate about what you want. When you’re in the know you no longer vibrate energy of fear or disbelief. You just know. As your disbelief wilts away, wanting is replaced by knowing. Getting into the know happens naturally. When you diligently practice steps one through four, you will clean house, get clear and feel happier. This process is healing and powerful, and it leads to a deep inner knowing that you are right where you need to be. Accepting your greatness in this moment, right now, is what manifests more greatness. Being in the know helps you accept that you already are living in your desired manifestation. When you feel it, you live it–regardless of what is happening on the outside. In time, the Universe catches up with your energy and your desires come into form. This process of allowing the manifestation to follow your internal faith is the true process of co-creation.

Stay Committed to Happiness

Stay committed to this five-step process and trust that you’re exactly where you need to be. Is your main desire to feel good? Trust you will be given everything you need to create that feeling. Know that feeling good is the true manifestation–and everything else is the icing on the already delicious cake!

 

Q – Next week you’re offering a free course in Manifesting. Can you tell us more about this?

Gab:If you want to learn more about Manifesting you can get two free video coaching sessions on the topic. December 3rd and 12th I’m leading a course called How to Manifest Your Desires in 2013! The course is free when you order my new book May Cause Miracles. You will also receive my guided meditations, audio book intro and Authentic Power lecture. To learn more about the course click here http://gabbyb.tv/free-december-group-coaching

To pre-order the book and get your gifts & course click here http://gabbyb.tv/may-cause-miracles-earlybird

If you are interested in working together to focus on your health and lifestyle click here. Come join me for inspiration, motivation and tips on Facebook here and follow me on twitter here. 

Soul Food Living

You can approach the holiday season in two ways.  You’re either stressed, overeating, running around like crazy, trying to make all the obligations you agreed to attend, trying to find the perfect gift for everyone and stressing some more, OR you can have a plan.  A plan of action to take care of yourself. Start to treat yourself like your child or pet, seriously, people(in the US especially) treat their animals better than themselves.  The plan is something to live religiously by during the busiest time of the year, and hopefully continue it has we move into a new one.

I love the holiday season.  For me the holidays start with Halloween and go all the way into the new year.  No I don’t start listening to Christmas music before Halloween(okay maybe one Mariah Carey Christmas song, it is too good!).  I enjoy decorations, gatherings with friends and family, good…

View original post 1,413 more words

Happy, Healthy Holidays

Tags

, , ,

You can approach the holiday season in two ways.  You’re either stressed, overeating, running around like crazy, trying to make all the obligations you agreed to attend, trying to find the perfect gift for everyone and stressing some more, OR you can have a plan.  A plan of action to take care of yourself. Start to treat yourself like your child or pet, seriously, people(in the US especially) treat their animals better than themselves.  The plan is something to live religiously by during the busiest time of the year, and hopefully continue it has we move into a new one.

I love the holiday season.  For me the holidays start with Halloween and go all the way into the new year.  No I don’t start listening to Christmas music before Halloween(okay maybe one Mariah Carey Christmas song, it is too good!).  I enjoy decorations, gatherings with friends and family, good food, holiday cocktails, lights, music, skating, and all the festivities that come during this time of year.  Unfortunately many people around the world do not look forward to the holidays.  I heard a statistic today on the radio saying that 45% of people in the US are NOT looking forward to the holidays.  That is almost HALF of the country, in a bah-humbug, Scrooge mood.  Not acceptable, we need to change that.

Many people start to change their lives after the holidays.  This causes people to binge more than they normally would.  If they know come January 1st or 2nd they are finally going to start eating healthy and get in the gym they decide to “get it all in” while they can.  And when I say getting it all in I mean, over eating, stuffing your face, over boozing from Thanksgiving until New Years Eve.  I am certainly guilty of being one of these people.  I’ve told myself I’ll get back to healthy eating after the holidays, and eat whatever is in front of me, have too many glasses of wine, without any thought as to how it will make me feel afterwards.  And the results are never pretty, over bloated, unmotivated, and no energy, no wonder people are feeling like Scrooge.
I designed this holiday guide to help beat some of the stress and pressures of the holiday season.  It isn’t something to read once and hope you can follow, it is a tool you should use throughout the holidays. Maybe start with one thing and focus on it for a day, then focus on another thing.  It is meant to be a guide for you so you can have a happy, healthy holiday season.

7 Happy Healthy Holiday Tips

  1. Love Thyself. This is the most important one to try to follow.  We give so much compassion to other people and are there to support our loved ones, we need to do this for ourselves.  If you’re always telling yourself negative thoughts then you’ll start to become that negative person.  But, if you’re telling yourself positive thoughts then you’ll start to become a positive more glass half full person. When your mind goes in a negative place and says something like “You ate and drank way too much last night what is wrong with you, why did you do that” change that thought to a positive one “You ate and drank to much last night and today you will focus on healthy clean eats”.  Keep it positive and love yourself.  Having trouble getting started? Here is a great website called The Daily Love that will bring love to you each and everyday, click here and check it out.
  2. Keep Looking Forward. Don’t look back and beat yourself up about past decisions, look forward and focus on the small positive things you can do for yourself.  Two weeks ago I ate WAY too much apple pie.  My husband, Angelo loves making apple pie this time of year and it is so good.  I even asked him not to make it(I know how I am, I don’t keep sweets in my house because I will eat them) but we had people visiting and next thing I know my whole house smells like yummy cinnamon apple pie, and I’m eating more than necessary.  Three days later when the pie was gone, instead of going to a negative place and focusing on what I had done, I focused on what I could do to help my body recover from sugar, saturated fat, and inflammation overload.  If you overeat pumpkin pie, stuffing, or consume too much eggnog, do not let negative thoughts take over in your head, the minute you let the negative thoughts in, you’ll go right back to that pie and eat even more, then emotional eating begins.  We can’t change what we did yesterday but we can control what we will do today.
  3. Move!  Make sometime to get some type of movement in.  I’m not saying go to the gym for an hour everyday. Know yourself and take on what you can handle. If you don’t workout at all maybe this holiday season you’ll start parking in the back of the parking lot, and take the stairs instead of the escalators.  Get up 10 minutes early to do some stretching, lunges, or light weightlifting in your house.  If you are already an active person write yourself a workout schedule every week.  If you write it down in a planner you are more likely to stick to it instead of coming up with excuses.
  4. Get a buddy on board.  You don’t necessarily need someone to workout with and cook meals with, but tell someone who you know will support you, that you want to have a healthier holiday season.  You can tell a partner, friend, family member, just make sure it is someone who will be a positive force in your life.  Your buddy is a great person to help hold you accountable and makes you feel a sense of support without being negative.  If you have a holiday party where you will be tempted with lots of sugary treats, let this person know ahead of time that you only plan on having one cookie, or plan on sharing a with someone.  Making someone aware of your intentions will help you stay focused on your goals.  If you can’t think of someone who is a positive influence for a buddy having a health coach is a great option.  Even I have a health coach and had a phone session with him last week, it left me feeling inspired, motivated and exciting about what is to come.  You can find out more about working with me as a health coach here.
  5. Take time for YOU. It’s so important to take care of yourself, we spend our lives taking care of our kids, parents, friends and pets, we have to do the same for ourselves.  You have to look out for yourself and be your biggest supporter.  Find 5, 10, 15 or even 30 minutes everyday to relax.  Have a cup of tea, call a friend you know will make you laugh, go for a walk, take a bath, or sit in silence.  Meditation is a great tool to help you wind down, some of my favorite meditation apps(all are free) are “Take a Break”, and “Silva Meditations” they provide you with free guided meditations.
  6. Get religious about juicing or blending. Juicing and blending are a great way to start your day, especially if you know you’ll be at a holiday party with tempting treats in the evening.  If you like smoothies, green smoothies are a great way sneak some veggies into your diet, and energize your body for the day. If you don’t have a juicer or blender try your local juice shop, make sure to tell them you don’t want any added sugar in smoothies or juices. If the juice is to bitter for you try sweetening it with NuNaturals Stevia(use coupon code OZI624 to get $5.00 off your first order-which means you’ll get to try Stevia for free) a little goes a long way.  You can check out some smoothie and juicing recipes here and here.
  7. Have gratitude.  Angelo and I started a tradition while we are eating where we say what we are grateful for.  We started this about three months ago with the intentions of it being a gratitude journal instead of writing it down, we talk about it together.  While we are eating we both share what we are grateful for that day, we usually say three things. Studies show people who regularly express thankfulness in their lives, have a positive attitude, live a happier life, sleep better, and have improved relationships, read full Psychology Today article here.

The holidays should be happy, cheerful, and a time of reflection.  Holiday pressures can cause great stress, so we have to take care of ourselves first.  You don’t want to enter into 2013 feeling burned out and regretting what you did in the last month.  Taking care of yourself will make it easier to brush off the things that usually stress us out.  I wish all of you a Happy, Healthy Holiday Season!!!

If you are interested in working together to focus on your health and lifestyle click here. Come join me for inspiration, motivation and tips on Facebook here and follow me on twitter here.

10 Healthy Foods To Buy In Bulk

Tags

, , , , ,

I must admit ever since my college days I have had a slight obsession with Costco.  As much and I love it I also struggle because I do love to support local farms.  I love the farmers market during the summer months, and I make it a point to regularly visit my local health food stores.  I also however, am a girl on a budget.  I’ve walked into health food stores and spent over $80.00 with only two bags of groceries not exactly budget friendly.  As much as I love health food stores, I certainly don’t do all my shopping there.  I go to at least two different grocery stores a week, it takes planning but I enjoy it.

There are different types of memberships you can at warehouse style stores, the cheapest one is about $35.00 and can save you hundreds, totally worth it.  I buy one or two boxes of organic mixed greens a week at the health food store it’s about $7.99 a container at Costco the same brand and size is only 3.99.  I hear people often say that it is expensive to buy healthy foods.  Not if you do it right.  It takes a little planning in the beginning but once you have it down, you will Costco: Healthy and Affordable a pro, and actually enjoy grocery shopping, because not only will you be getting the best for your buck, but you’ll be keep your family healthy.  Stock your house with healthy foods, and you will eat it!

I’ve done a lot of the work for you and put together a list of some of my go-to buys at Costco.  All healthy choices, that help me make the right choices throughout the week. Here are the top ten items I always get from Costco.

  1. Organic Chicken Breast comes with six chicken breast total, two in each pouch.  Use them right away or store them in the freezer for future use.

2. Organic Ground Beef no hormones, no antibiotics and this also comes separated into three different packages, perfect to throw in the freezer. 3. Avocados filled with heart healthy monounsaturated fats, avocados are something I consume regularly. I put them on sprouted grain toast, or in a scramble, I also throw them on salads or eat them plain!

4. Earthbound Organic Mixed Greens this is by far my favorite deal at Costco.  I love that I can get this for such a low price, and when you eat salads as much as I do it is worth it! Tip: when buying greens at Costco, check expiration dates. Get the container with the latest expiration date, so you know you are getting the freshest one.

5. Organic Kale What are you gonna do with all that kale? Make some no-stick-on-your-hips kale chips.  This is a new development at my Costco.  I about passed out when I saw a huge bag of organic, already chopped kale.  I know kale has become quite popular in my “health food world” but you know something has gone mainstream when you see it at Costco.  I was so excited I HAD to be with the baby kale in the photo 🙂 6. Unsweetened Almond Milk when I get almond milk I always get the unsweetened version.  Sometimes they have vanilla sometimes its plain, either one works as long as there is no added sugar(read label to be sure). I love these in my smoothies, tea, steel cut oats, and it’s a great replacement for milk.

7. Organic Quinoa oh yes, I do love quinoa. Quinoa not only supplies you with protein but it is a complete protein(contains all nine essential amino acids) very unusual  for a grain.  If you’re a vegetarian, or meat eater looking to decrease your meat consumption but are worried about protein, this is your secret weapon.  Use it in place of rice or cous-cous, you can even try it for breakfast!  8. Raw Shelled Hemp Seeds I throw these in every smoothie I make, sprinkle them on salads, or add them to steel cut oats.  Hemp seeds do not have a distinct taste, so you can mix them in just about anything.  They contain essential amino acids, and are high in Omega-6 and Omega-3 essential fatty acids. 9. Pistachios my favorite kind of nut.  If you not a pistachio fan, they have, cashews, almonds, peanuts etc.  I try to get the unsalted kind but it isn’t always available.  If you’re watching your salt intake make sure to check you labels! As an added bonus these are already shelled.

10. Organic Eggs if you follow my blog you know how much I love eggs.  Not only are they a great way to start your day, but you can also hard boil them and keep them on hand for quick on the go snacks.  Try out some egg recipes here.