Tag Archives: paleo

Chocolate Pumpkin Chia Pudding

Can we talk about chia pudding for a second?  Apparently it’s been all the rage for quite some time now and I have yet to try it.  I don’t know why because I love chia seeds in bar form and in oatmeal, but for whatever reason I never made pudding even though it is ridiculously easy.  After realizing I had a large bag of chia seeds in my pantry that were dying to be used, I decided to make pumpkin chocolate chia pudding, because it’s been too long since I have made anything with pumpkin.

chocolate pumpkin chia puddingThis pudding is only sweetened with honey.  That’s it.  With the holidays coming up and the abundance of desserts that are bound to come my way, I’m trying to keep the sugar intake in check until Thanksgiving, and then all bets are off.

But it turns out that this pudding was so good I just may need to make it again amongst all the holiday treats.  Maybe add some peppermint to it as well.  ‘Tis the season!

Chocolate Pumpkin Chia Pudding pin

Chocolate Pumpkin Chia Pudding (adapted from this recipe, gf/vegan/paleo)

*Makes 2 servings


1/4 cup chia seeds

1 1/4 cup almond milk

1 tbsp cocoa powder

2 tbsp pumpkin

2 tbsp honey


In a large mixing bowl combine all of your ingredients until well blended.  Place bowl in the fridge and cover for a couple of hours so the pudding has time to solidify.

Chocolate Pumpkin Chia Pudding closeupSpoon pudding into bowls and enjoy!  If you want to add a little decadence to your pudding add some chocolate chips, whipped cream, or even some candy cane bits.  Like I said, ’tis the season!

Chocolate Pumpkin Chia Pudding overhead

What kind of pudding is your favorite?  Growing up, I loved rice and tapioca pudding.


Grain-Free Pumpkin Date Muffins

Yes, another pumpkin muffin recipe.  Guilty as charged.  But these muffins are different because they are grain-free pumpkin date muffins and may be my new fall favorite.

grain free pumpkin date muffinsIt all started when I was on my 10 mile run this weekend.  Usually when I’m running I think about what I want for breakfast (since I run early in the morning) and what I really wanted was the Carrot Banana Muffins that I’ve made from the True Food Kitchen cookbook numerous times.  But I did not have any carrots or bananas in my house, and the last thing I felt like doing after running 10 miles was hopping in the car and driving to the store.  Naturally we have an abundance of canned pumpkin in the house, so I decided to see if I could sub the pumpkin in for the carrot and banana in the True Food Kitchen recipe.

To be honest, I didn’t take many pictures while I was making the grain-free pumpkin date muffins because I wasn’t sure how they would turn out.  But they turned out delicious!  Almost like mini pumpkin cakes sweetened with maple syrup and dates.

If you want to make these “true” paleo muffins, I would swap the maple syrup for the honey, otherwise these muffins are grain-free and gluten-free which is perfect for a wide variety of diets.

So embrace the pumpkin recipe overload because these are delicious.  Trust me.

grain free pumpkin date muffins pinGrain-Free Pumpkin Date Muffins (inspired from the True Food Kitchen cookbook)

*Makes 12 muffins


2 cups almond flour

3 eggs (I used 1/3 cup + 3 tablespoons egg whites)

1 cup pumpkin

1 1/4 cup dates, pitted

1 tsp salt

2 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup coconut oil

2 tbsp maple syrup

1 tbsp cinnamon


Preheat your oven to 325F.  Lightly grease or line a muffin tin with paper liners.

Place your dates in a food processor.  Pulse until dates begin to resemble more of a paste.  Add your pumpkin, almond flour, eggs (or egg whites), coconut oil, maple syrup, baking soda, salt and cinnamon to the food processor and pulse until everything is well blended.

(If you don’t have a food processor you can still make these by hand, just make sure your dates are finely chopped.)

Gently spoon your batter into the muffin tins and place in the oven.  Bake for 40-43 minutes.  You’ll know the muffins are done by sticking a toothpick in the center and seeing if it comes out clean.

grain free pumpkin date muffin tinThese muffins have a nice texture to them and are perfect with a pat of butter, chocolate spread, peanut butter, etc. etc.  And since there is minimal sugar in them, they are practically a health food (or so I tell myself).  I just might have to try these muffins as a grain-free pumpkin date bread next.

grainfree pumpkin date muffin close upWhat’s your favorite pumpkin recipe?  Is there something I need to try out next?



Flourless Pumpkin Brownies

We recently spending an afternoon cleaning out our pantry and I stumbled upon a few cans of pumpkin that had been sitting pretty since last fall.  I’m a firm believer that pumpkin tastes good any time of year and after some quick googling, decided to whip up a batch of flourless pumpkin brownies.

I’ve actually been a fan of flourless desserts for quite some time now but for whatever reason never make them.  I think my appreciation for the flour-free dessert stems back to when one of my former employers took our staff to a cooking school for a team bonding activity.  We were broken up into teams, and then in true Iron Chef fashion had to create a variety of dishes using a secret ingredient.  We were then judged and could enjoy our dishes as our dinner.  Of course for this challenge the secret ingredient was corn, so I couldn’t eat really any of the dishes with the exception of a flourless chocolate cake that was made for dessert.  So while the rest of my team chowed down on corn-studded guacamole, I enjoyed a dinner of flourless chocolate cake which was oh so delicious.

But back to these brownies.  They are made with pumpkin, egg, cocoa powder and almond butter which adds a nice flavor.  The original recipe called for unsweetened cocoa powder and agave syrup, but I had neither so I used semisweet cocoa powder instead.

The Englishman and I enjoyed these as a Sunday night treat while watching Nik Wallenda walk across the Grand Canyon on a wire.  Did anyone else see that?  So stressful.  Thank god we had brownies to comfort us.

These brownies are a perfect treat when your sweet tooth strikes but you don’t want to go too overboard.  Of course, if you made these into a brownie sundae, I wouldn’t object.

Flourless Pumpkin Brownies (adapted from this recipe)


  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup almond butter
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup semisweet cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips


Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F.  In a large mixing bowl add your pumpkin, egg whites, cocoa powder, almond butter, vanilla and baking soda.  Mix until well-blended.

Pour your batter into a greased brownie pan and top with chocolate chips.  Because this is a flourless mixture, the batter will be much thinner than traditional brownie batter.

flourless brownies bakedBake in the oven for 30-40 minutes.  Remove from oven and let the brownies cool for 15 minutes before cutting into slices (I didn’t wait long enough for mine).  The brownies will be light and gooey and delicious!


Shrimp Scampi with Spaghetti Squash

One of my favorite dishes is Shrimp Scampi.  I actually blogged about it last year when I made it with Trader Joe’s Lemon Pappardelle pasta.  This time I decided to try the shrimp scampi with spaghetti squash and the results were fantastic!

The key to making delicious shrimp scampi is the saute.  I generally saute my shrimp with a little butter, olive oil, and white wine which gives the shrimp a lovely flavor.  It’s also important that you don’t overcook your shrimp, or they will become a bit too chewy.

Again, this dish also pairs nicely with pasta of your choice, but if you are looking for something more low-carb, try it with spaghetti squash!

Shrimp Scampi with Spaghetti Squash


1 lb shrimp, peeled and de-veined (OC locals, get your shrimp from Santa Monica Seafood!)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon butter

2 shallots

2 tablespoons capers

1/3 cup white wine (in this particular recipe I used chardonnay)

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1/3 cup lemon juice

salt and pepper to taste

half of a spaghetti squash (if making for two, use a whole squash)


Cook your spaghetti squash by either roasting it in the oven or quickly cooking in the microwave for 10-12 minutes or until tender.

Heat butter in a large skillet.  Chop up your shallot and toss in the skillet.  Cook shallot until it is golden brown.  Add in the olive oil.

Add your shrimp and sautee for one minute.  Pour in the wine, season with salt and pepper  and sautee for an additional 1-2 minutes.

Add the parsley, lemon juice and capers and mix well to coat.  Continue to cook shrimp for roughly one more minute or until done (the shrimp should be pink).

Scrape the insides of your spaghetti squash out with a fork and put on a plate.


Add the shrimp scampi mixture and enjoy!  Pair with fresh veggies of your choice.


Fresh, light, and full of good ingredients.  This dish cannot be beat.