There is nothing quite like a nice, steaming cup of hot chocolate on a winters day to warm up your bones. The luxurious taste and feel of drinking hot chocolate that then warms your whole body is exquisite! It is thick, silky and rich tasting!
I think what makes a cup of hot chocolate so satisfying is that there are so many health benefits from drinking it. Skip those store-bought hot chocolate packs, and make your own cup of cocoa using real cacao powder; the higher the cacao content and less processed the cocoa, the greater the antioxidants.
This hot chocolate is thick, creamy and so satisfying. It gives you that warm glow and because of the ingredients used it fills you up too!
- Handful of raw cashew nuts
- 1 banana
- 1 tbsp cacao nibs
- 1 heaped tbsp oats
- 1 heaped tbsp cacao powder
- Coconut milk
Blitz the cashew nuts and cacao nibs in a blender with a little of the coconut milk until it forms a paste like texture.
Add in the rest of the ingredients.
Heat the coconut milk and then add it into the blender (there is no guidance on the milk, just use what you feel is right for you. I like my hot chocolate thick so i didn’t use too much)
Blitz until combined and creamy
You can add more milk if it is too thick or more oats/banana if you need it to be thicker.
To give the hot chocolate that extra winter taste add in some cinnamon and top with some squirty cream.
This recipe is simple and easy to make and tastes deliciously smooth. The coconut bites are ideal to give as treats to the little ones or to wrap up and take out on days out. I like to keep them stored in the fridge, they are a great for a nibble or with a nice cup of coffee.
They are not entirely a healthy treat but contain no added sugar. A nice crispy chocolate coating with a moist creamy filling
- Tin of coconut milk 400ml
- 250g desiccated Coconut
- 3 tbsp Coconut Oil
- 2 tbsp Brown Rice Syrup or 3tbsp of sweetener
- 200g Dark Chocolate (The darker the better)
Add the coconut milk to a pan and heat up over a medium heat. Add in the coconut oil and sweetener. Once heated up add in the desiccated coconut and combine well. Keep mixing until it thickens and clumps together.
Take away from the heat and place the mixture into a square tray. Press down to compress the mixture.
Place in the freezer for 1 hour until the mixture sets and becomes hard.
Melt the chocolate in a pan with a tbsp of coconut oil.
Take the coconut mixture out of the freezer and cut up into squares, about an inch by an inch.
Place the coconut chunks into the chocolate, once all coated take them out and place onto a piece of parchment paper.
Put the coconut bites into the fridge to set.
Now enjoy! Your own little taste of paradise
Keeping children hydrated is important as they are less heat tolerant and are more likely to feel dehydrated, especially when they are doing physical activities and hot days. Children, especially younger ones need to be encouraged to have a drink as they are more likely to go through the whole day and forget to have one.
When my children were babies I always encouraged them to drink water in between milk times and I carried on that as they grew older. My children are very active, so I always like to have water readily available for them to drink to keep them healthy and energised.
Did you know that the amount of fluid a child needs to drink depends on many factors including their age and gender, the weather and how active they are? Children aged 5-11 should be consuming about 6-8 glasses of water a day.
A recommended daily amount of fruit and vegetable juice should be limited at one small glass (150ml) and they should really only be drunk at mealtimes. The best choice of drink to keep hydrated throughout the day is water – this doesn’t provide extra energy or risks them harming their teeth
My 5 top tips on getting your children to drink more water:
- Make sure water is readily available-When we are out and about I like to fill up a sports bottle with water and take it with us. I always carry one with me, so the children get a drink all the time, it also ideal to fill up from a water station when empty. Buy a water dispenser for the home. We have one in our kitchen, placed near to the edge of the work top. The children help themselves to water when ever they feel thirsty. We bought a Kilner one from Dunelm Mill, but they are available from lots of shops
- Be persistent. Keep offering them water, especially during and after being active. The more you offer it throughout the day they will eventually become accustomed to drinking it and get into the habit of remembering themselves
- Add in some flavour with fresh fruit and vegetables. We like lemon and lime but you can add in strawberries, melon, pineapple, mint, cucumber and berries. You can even freeze the fruit in slices and add them into the water to cool down as well as giving flavour
- Offer food that has a high content of water. Fruits, vegetables, smoothies, soups and even pasta and rice absorb water as they cook. Homemade ice lollies and ice cream are a great way of introducing more water to a child
- Remove temptation. Stop buying juices and fizzy drinks (or hide them away from the children) they will soon start drinking water if there is nothing else to drink. We still have juice but they are no added sugar types and are at the back of the cupboard away from there little hands.
Remember children will do as their adults do. So, if you drink water then they will too!
How do you encourage your children to drink more water? Please leave a comment below 🙂
A raw food diet is about eating mostly or all unprocessed and uncooked foods so you get all the nutrients without the dangerous additives. It’s a great way to cleanse the body, your skin becomes a lot clearer, you will have a lot more energy and it improves your digestion. It means cutting out refined sugar and only eating food that is raw or heated up in a dehydrator that is below 110 Fahrenheit.
I took the steps to removing refined sugar from my diet over a year ago. I did miss the sugar taste at first but after a while my taste buds changed – for the better.
Raw food doesn’t have to be all fruit and veg, you can still enjoy deserts and treats.
Making raw snacks are easy to do and have a fulfilling taste. Take a look at our raw date bars here
These little bars of goodness are so delicious full of nutty flavours with a rich deep, dark chocolate
125g ground rolled oats or oat flour
125g ground cashew nuts
60ml maple syrup/rice syrup
2 tablespoons coconut oil
350g dates – medjool
95g merdian smooth peanut butter
1 tbsp coconut oil
20ml water (if needed)
Raw Chocolate topping
100g coconut oil
60g cacao powder
4 tbsp maple syrup (50ml)
- Make the base. Grind up the oats if you do not have oat flour in a blender. Add in the cashew nuts with the coconut oil and syrup – if like me, your blender is too small then grind the oats and cashew nuts separately and then combine a bowl with the coconut oil and syrup. It should be the consistency of dough, but not too wet. Press the base mixture into a square or silicone tin. Place into the freezer to set.
- Make the caramel. Blend the dates, peanut butter and coconut oil together – I blended the dates first and then mixed in the peanut butter and oil. Chop the peanuts into pieces and add them into the mixture (you could keep them whole if you prefer) Add on to the top of the base and place back in the freezer.
- Make the chocolate. Melt some coconut oil and in the cacao powder and maple syrup. Mix together. Pour on to the caramel and place it back into the freezer to finish setting. Leave for a few hours or overnight. Cut into chunks.
Raw snickers need to be stored in the fridge or freezer as the chocolate melts.
These little snicker bars are so tasty and very Moorish. You get the creamy texture from the base and caramel, the sour bitter taste from the chocolate and sweetness from the dates and syrup.
Raw food and no baking is becoming very popular. I am always experimenting in different ingredients to make healthy nutritious snacks for my children.
When I was diagnosed with Cancer last year, I researched what food the body needs to help fight those bad cells. As a family we changed our diet and now consume more foods that are not baked and that are raw, with no added GMO and organic. Does it help? I don’t know but it tastes good and we do feel more healthier.
These energy balls are mostly made from medjool dates that are high in fibre and an energy booster. They are simple and quick to make and are super healthy.
- 24 Medjool dates (or similar) de-pitted
- 2 tbsp refined Coconut oil
- 1tbsp maple syrup
- 2tbsp ground almonds
- 2 tbsp organic cacao powder
- 3 heaped tbsp organic oats
- 2 tbsp smooth peanut butter
- 1tbsp chia seeds
Place the dates and coconut oil into a blender and blitz to a paste, add in a little bit of water to smooth it up.
Add in the peanut butter and ground almonds and blitz to combine it all.
Empty into a bowl. Mix in the cacao powder, maple syrup, oats and chia seeds.
Place in the fridge for half hour.
These balls are quite oily because of the coconut oil.
Take out of the fridge and take a heaped tsp and shape within the palm of your hands to make a ball.
Wrap each ball in some cling film and store in the fridge.
These balls are ideal for grab and go food as they are stored in the fridge and wrapped in cling film it makes it easy for the children to grab a healthy snack when they need one.
They are high in fibre, minerals and vitamins promoting a healthy bowel. They also provide energy for people who suffer from anemia.
As long as you have the base of the dates and coconut oil you can experiment with adding in different ingredients. Our next one we are going to add in desiccated coconut or even roll the balls in the coconut or cacao powder. You could even add in dried fruit.
Thank you for reading 🙂
Brighten up your day with this nutrient packed drink. It’s not only refreshing but also good for your stomach, joints and aids digestion. The star ingredient of this tonic drink is Turmeric, which is known for its anti inflammatory and immune boosting properties.
It’s like sunshine in a glass. Ideal for those cold winter mornings, with the added ginger in the drink it gives a little warm kick to it. What’s great about this drink is that it can be drunk warm or cold.
This easy to make tonic is super healthy and tasty too. It makes a great addition to your diet giving you a boost of energy and is packed with natural healing ingredients.
Carrots: Rich in vitamin A which maintains vision. Cleanses the liver. Boost immune system. The Beta-Carotene is a major antioxidant
Oranges: Vitamin C for a healthy immune system. Promotes proper digestion. Protects the cardiovascular system
Turmeric: Prevents inflammation. Controls blood pressure. Prevents cancer growth cells
Ginger: Reduces pain and inflammation. Aids digestion process. Strengthens immune system. Assists in the death of some cancer cells
Lime: Anti inflammatory. Prevents fatigue. Balances PH
- 4 Carrots
- 2 Oranges
- 1/4 Lime/lemon
- Coconut Water
- 1 Knob of Fresh Root Ginger
- 1 Knob of Fresh Turmeric
- 1 tsp Turmeric powder
- Pepper to taste
Add all of the ingredients apart from the coconut water and pepper into a blender and blitz together. We used our juicer and threw the oranges and lime in with the skin on, this can give the drink a bitter taste.
Turmeric is a natural dye, so be prepared for all of your equipment and hands to be yellow/orange after.
Add as much coconut water that you want, depending on the consistency of the drink you want. Add some pepper to taste. Stir together.
Enjoy! It’s as simple as that!
Looking for a guilt free snack? Well look no further.
These nutty date bars are nothing but full of goodness. They are guilt free, healthy and delicious. What makes them special is that they are made from raw ingredients. There are no artificial flavourings, preservatives, added sugars added into the bars. You get the sweetness from the dates and coconut and a little crunch from the almonds and flax seeds.
Make them up in batches and store in the fridge ready to grab and go.
- 20 dates, sliced and de-stoned (medjool dates)
- 2 tbsp coconut water
- 3 handful of blanched almonds
- 2 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
- 1 tbsp desiccated coconut
- 2 tbsp almond butter
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 2 tbsp ground milled flax
- 1 tbsp flax seeds
- 1 tbsp cacao powder
- 3 tbsp organic oats
- 3 tbsp oat bran
- Place the dates and the coconut water together in a processor and mix together until you have a paste.
- Add in the almonds and mix again, until the paste and almonds are ground together.
- Place the mixture into a bowl
- Add in all of the other ingredients and combine together (we added in the oat bran and coconut flour towards the end as it was too sticky)
- You may need to use your hands to mix well
- Place the mixture onto a sheet of cling film and model it into a square by pressing down with your fingers
- Place a sheet of clingfilm ont op and press down. Use a rolling-pin to get it flat and as square as you can.
- Put in to the freezer for a couple of hours
- Take out of the freezer and remove from the clingfilm. Cut up into bar shapes.
- Wrap each bar individually in cling film and place back into the fridge ready to eat.
These bars are very versatile and once you have the date mixture you can pretty much add anything you want.
They are perfect for picnics, pack lunches and to add into your bag for some food on the go. They are full of fibre and protein.
It’s National Trail Mix Day on the 31st August, yes, You heard correctly. There is a national holiday all about nuts, fruit and seeds.
The great thing about trail mixes are that you can pretty much add anything you want to together, knowing that they are full of goodness and it will be full of flavour. You will get the sweetness from the dried fruits and the crunchiness from the nuts and seeds.
Nuts.com have teamed up with Brittany from Eating Bird Food to celebrate with a contest! I have been challenged to create a new trail mix or my own. I had to choose two items from a list and then add other items to the mix. We chose Goji berries and Cacao Nibs (click on Goji and Cacao to go through to the website)
The Pop of colour Trail mix Ingredients:
- Pecan Nuts
- Freeze Dried Strawberries
- Dried Mango
- Goji Berries
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Coconut Slices
- Cacao Nibs
- 1tsp Chia Seeds
- 1tsp Cinnamon
- 1tsp Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
Most of the ingredients above can be found at www.nuts.com
Trail Mixes are simple to make. We used 3tbsp of all of the ingredients, but its your choice on however much you want to make. Add all of the ingredients into a plastic zip lock bag, close it up and shake away. Rub the mix together through the bag, ensuring that all of the oil and cinnamon evenly coats the ingredients. Get the children involved in the mixing and choosing the ingredients.
Empty the contents from the bag onto a tray to dry out a little. Once ready, place the mix into smaller snack bags and store in the fridge or a cupboard ready to be grabbed as you leave the door.
Trail mixes are ideal for snacks on the go, pack lunches, picnics, adding to your breakfast or topping onto a yoghurt.
- Cacao nibs are high in Fibre, magnesium and potassium
- Goji Berries are high in vitamin A. The blue-red colours found in goji berries are natural anti-oxidants which may help protect the body against oxidative damage. Contains Lycium barbarum polysaccharides which may benefit the immune function, and may reduce fatigue.
- Almonds are a good source of fiber and protein. Naturally low in sugar.
- Pistachio nuts are rich in vitamin B6 and E, they are good for your skin and immune system
- Pecans are a good source vitamin B1, thiamin. Rich in protein and critical minerals for growth and metabolism.
- Chia seeds are among the healthiest foods on the planet. They are high in antioxidants, fiber, protein and omega 3 fatty acids.
- Pumpkin Seeds are high in Zinc which is good for the immune system and omega 3 fats. They are rich in vitamin k, E and B. Full of Protein. Contains huge amounts of zinc, a mineral very important in preventing osteoporosis
- Coconut oil contains fatty acids with powerful medicinal properties
This is our entry into the competition for a chance to be featured on the nuts.com blog, also to win a trail mix selection.
This lovely leafy soup is flavoursome and a great way of eating your five a day. It is very filling, light and healthy.
I have recently changed my diet due to my diagnosis. All the fresh food that I buy is organic and I have cut out all added sugar produce.
- 450g fresh spinach
- 1 handful of kale
- 3 potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped and diced
- 450ml vegetable stock
- 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
- Grated zest of lemon and half lemon squeezed
- 1/2 tsp of grated turmeric
- salt and pepper to taste
- Extra virgin coconut oil
- Place the onion and garlic in a pan with 1tbsp of coconut oil and cook for 1-2 minutes until the onion is soft. Add in the potatoes and fry for 1 minute. Add in the stock and simmer for a further 10 minutes.
- Add in the spinach, kale, turmeric and lemon. Place a lid on and cook for 15 minutes or until the spinach has wilted.
- Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
- Pour the soup into a blender and blend until smooth. I like it a bit rustic so I don’t blend for too long as I think that it tastes better.
- You can freeze the soup or reheat it up and serve.
You could swirl in some cream at the end and add salt and pepper to taste or even some chilli.
Hope you like it 🙂
Do you like sushi?
Sushi is so easy to make, not only is it healthy but is also very tasty. Sushi doesn’t have to have fish inside the rolls, you can use a selection of salad, vegetables or just rice on its own. They are ideal for pack lunches or picnics.
TO MAKE SUSHI YOU WILL NEED:
- Sushi rice
- Nori Sushi sheets (roasted seaweed)
- Sliced long strips of peppers
- Seafood sticks
- Sliced strips of cucumber
- Sliced strips of spring onion
- Sliced carrots
- sliced strips of salmon
- Rice vinegar
You will need a sushi bamboo rolling mat, all supermarkets stock these and only cost about £1-£2
- Boil the rice as per the instructions on the packet. The rice will need to be rinsed before cooked. Bring the rice to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes, turn off the heat and leave for 25-30 minutes with a lid on the pan. Once cooled down you can season the rice with rice vinegar by folding it into the rice.
- Place a sheet of Nori onto the bamboo mat
- Spread out the cooked rice evenly onto the Nori, leaving a 1cm gap at the top and bottom, this is to seal it when rolling. Make sure that the rice is a thin layer as it will roll easier. TIP keep a small bowl of water near by as your finger will get sticky from the rice when touching it.
- Place the fillings of your choice on the rice in a line across ways, remember you have to roll it so don’t put too much in
- Begin rolling the Nori away from you, using the mat to press the roll firmly, this takes a bit of practice but after the third roll we had it spot on. Roll the mat all the way round the Nori and press down firmly all the away along, this compresses the roll and helps to keep the shape. I taught my 11 year old how to do it an dhe found it quite easy
- Now you should have a long sausage shape which you can cut along evenly (about 1-2cm) to produce your sushi
- Serve with sliced ginger, soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce or if you like it spicy, wasabi sauce
- The boys really enjoyed trying to eat their sushi with chopsticks, even the little one had a go
Our sushi went down well and was all gone in no time. We used one whole pack of rice and Nori sheets and it fed five of us.
Why don’t you give it a go, Hope you enjoy 🙂