Tag Archives: Grain-Free

Grain Free Banana Macadamia Nut Bread

Last week Amazon had a flash sale on some of my favorite paleo/gluten-free cookbook authors’ ebooks, so I took advantage and downloaded a bunch of ebooks to my ipad, one of them being the The Zenbelly Cookbook by Simone Miller. With Easter rapidly approaching and Simone’s book loaded with delicious recipes, I decided to create a grain free banana macadamia nut bread to see how I liked it.  Safe to say the 2015 cookbook challenge has struck gold once again.

grain free banana macadamia nut bread

There’s a strong stigma surrounding grain-free baking, especially if you are dealing with someone who prefers your standard white flour, butter and sugar.  But truth be told, grain-free baking results in some pretty tasty treats.  I’ve had people tell me that sometimes they like the grain or gluten-free version better than the original (see: gluten-free carrot cake cupcakes).

I still haven’t decided if I will bring this bread to our family’s Easter brunch, but it’s definitely a hit in our house.  The macadamia, coconut and banana remind me of those delicious pancakes I had in Maui, and the chocolate chips just make this bread that much more awesome.

If you haven’t experimented with grain-free baking before or are curious to try it, then I highly recommend this recipe!  I tend to feel better when I don’t have gluten in my diet, and this grain free banana macadamia nut bread is the perfect thing when you are looking for a quick breakfast on the go or want a sweet (but not too sweet) treat.

Grain-Free Banana Macadamia Nut Bread (adapted from the Zenbelly Cookbook)


1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (about 3 bananas)

3 eggs

1/4 cup softened unsalted butter

1 tbsp vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups almond flour

1/2 cup tapioca starch (original recipe calls for arrowroot powder)

2 tablespoons coconut flour

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp sea salt

1/2 cup unsweetened coconut

1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts

1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips


Preheat your oven to 350F and grease a loaf pan.

Combine your bananas, eggs, butter, vanilla in a bowl and mix until well blended.  In a larger bowl, mix your almond flour, coconut flour, tapioca starch, baking soda and salt.

Gently pour your wet ingredients into your dry ingredients.  Add your macadamia nuts and chocolate chips.

Pour your batter into your loaf pan and bake for 50-55 minutes.  Cool, eat and enjoy!

Gluten-Free Carrot Coconut Cupcakes

For awhile now Karla from Foodologie and I have been following the LA Cake Club on Instagram and have found ourselves drooling over the delicious cakes that are enjoyed at each gathering. Karla had the genius idea of founding a cake club in Orange County, and so the OC Cake Club was born.  For our first inaugural meeting, I decided to make some gluten free carrot coconut cupcakes with mascarpone frosting.

gluten free carrot coconut cupcakes table

This cupcake inspiration actually came from the birthday cake that the Englishman made for me this year.  Since I’m not the most well versed in cake baking, I decided to keep it simple and make cupcakes instead.

The recipe comes from Elana’s Pantry and I followed it almost to a T, with just a couple of modifications here and there.  For the frosting, I simply mixed mascarpone cheese and powdered sugar which was the perfect complement to the cupcakes.

If you are new to grain-free or gluten-free baking I highly recommend checking out Elana’s recipes.  She doesn’t use any fillers like xanthan gum and she uses minimal ingredients.  Plus, everything I’ve made from her blog comes out delicious.

Gluten Free Carrot Coconut Cupcakes (makes 10 cupcakes)

gluten free carrot coconut cupcakes pin


1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour

3 eggs

2 tbsp olive oil

1/4 cup honey

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tbsp cinnamon

1 1/2 cups grated carrots

1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

For the frosting:

1 small container mascarpone cheese

1/2 cup powdered sugar


Preheat your oven to 350F.  Line a muffin tin with paper liners or coat with cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl whisk your eggs, olive oil and honey together until well blended.

Add your almond flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, carrots and coconut into the mixing bowl and continue to mix.

Gently spoon your batter into the muffin tin and place in the oven for 18-20 minutes.

gluten free carrot coconut cupcakes tin

While your cupcakes are baking, mix your mascarpone cheese and powdered sugar together either using a hand or stand mixer.

Remove your cupcakes from the oven and let them cool for 15-20 minutes.  Gently spread your frosting on top of each cupcake.

gluten free  carrot coconut cupcakes frosting

I’ll admit I am NOT the best when it comes to frosting cupcakes, but I promise these taste delicious.

I brought my cupcakes to the OC Cake Club and they were shared amongst the group along with Karla’s beautiful gingerbread cake with rum-soaked pears and Robyn’s 7-up cake and a bottle of almond champagne from Tanaya. One day I will be able to make something as lovely as these ladies.

gluten free carrot coconut cupcakes OC cake club

The cake club was a lot of fun and we are already planning our next one for early November.  I’m thinking I might need to do a holiday themed cake…

Grain Free Pumpkin Zucchini Muffins

In case you haven’t heard, it’s been quite hot in Southern California.  I’m talking sleep with all the windows open, don’t want to turn on the oven hot.  We finally got a couple of days with cool(er) temperatures, and I used the opportunity to finally light my pumpkin candle and whip up some grain free pumpkin zucchini muffins.

grain free pumpkin zucchini muffinsEven though pumpkin recipes have been popping up all over the web since August, and pumpkin spice lattes have been available for weeks now (really Starbucks?), I always try to wait and bust out the pumpkin until the weather starts to give a hint of fall, and then it’s all pumpkin, all the time.  So consider these grain free pumpkin zucchini muffins a taste of what’s to come over the next few months.

The inspiration for these muffins came from Balanced Bites’ Carrot Pumpkin Spice Muffins, only I used a combo of eggs and egg whites, and swapped carrots for zucchini instead.

At first I wasn’t sure how the zucchini-pumpkin combo would pan out, but I was pleasantly surprised!  These muffins also have just a small touch of sweetness from the maple syrup (the good stuff from Canada since we know it tastes better), and contain minimal ingredients.

grain free pumpkin zucchini muffins pinGrain Free Pumpkin Zucchini Muffins (makes 12 muffins)


1/4 cup canned pumpkin

2 cups shredded zucchini

3 eggs

3 egg whites

1/2 cup water

3 tbsp maple syrup

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup coconut flour

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp ground ginger


Preheat your oven to 350F.

In a small mixing bowl whisk your eggs, pumpkin, vanilla, maple syrup and water until well blended.  Gently fold in your coconut flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ginger.  Mix well.

Gently spoon your batter into paper-lined muffin tins and place in the oven for 35 minutes.

grain free pumpkin zucchini muffins bowlRemove from the oven, cool and enjoy!  They are the perfect breakfast/snack/anytime treat.

What’s your favorite pumpkin recipe?

Paleo Banana Cacao Nib Muffins

Sometimes when I want to bake, I only want to make a few of something.  Meaning, I don’t want an entire loaf of bread or a dozen muffins.  That’s why these paleo banana cacao nib muffins are perfect.  Minimal ingredients + 3 muffins total.  What’s not to love?

Paleo Banana Cacao Nib Muffins Close

I used an extra large muffin pan, so these would be perfect with a layer of peanut butter (and jelly!) or just with a nice pat of butter on top.  I’ve been packing them in my work lunches to enjoy as a mid-afternoon snack as well.  And since bananas are the perfect post-run food, I’ve found these to be especially tasty after a long, sweaty run.

These paleo banana cacao nib muffins are only sweetened by the banana in the recipe, so if you want something a little sweeter add a tablespoon of honey.  If you don’t like the taste of cacao, semi-sweet chocolate chips would be a nice addition as well.

Easy muffins that are ready in under an hour.  Wins all around.

Paleo Banana Cacao Nib Muffins

Paleo Banana Cacao Nib Muffins (makes 3 large muffins)


1/2 cup almond flour

2 tbsp ground flax

1 egg

1 banana

1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 tbsp cacao nibs

1/4 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp salt


Preheat your oven to 350F.  Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray or line with paper liners.

Mash your banana in a small bowl.  Add your egg, vanilla and almond milk and mix well.  Set aside.

In a larger bowl mix your dry ingredients: almond flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, ground flax and cacao nibs.  Gently fold your wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and mix well.

Scoop your batter into your muffin tins and place in the oven for 35-40 minutes, or until the tops begin to turn golden brown.

Paleo Banana Cacao Nib Muffins

Dig in and enjoy!