{Healthy} Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn

(To see the ‘Happy’ version of this recipe, click HERE)

This was no easy task my friends. I had many attempts at trying to make a popcorn coated in vibrant purple chocolate healthier, and many failed.

There were many popcorn ideas that could have worked, and that I could have very well eaten…But when I put it to the test against my family, a lot of times they just said…No. Actually more like no way, gross, disgusting, is that coconut oil??

(Healthier) Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

I still wanted it to be coated in white chocolate, because after all, that’s what the Happy version of the recipe was. (Actually, I don’t think that candy coating is real chocolate…)But I knew that I had to makeover that purple color, use REAL ingredients, and still leave it tasting delicious…if not better!

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

I could have easily added purple food coloring to the white chocolate, but I wanted to take it one step further and NATURALLY color the popcorn. The secret to the popcorn color was freeze dried blueberries. I blended them up into a fine powder and mixed it with the chocolate, which naturally tinted it!

Healthy Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

The best part was that my kids and husband ate it without any complaints!

Don’t worry, they had a few things to say about the dinner I made later that night…Glad they are back to their normal selves…

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn
 
Serves: 9 cups
Ingredients
  • 9 cups popped popcorn
  • 1 c. good quality white chocolate
  • ¼ c. freeze dried blueberries
  • 1 tsp. coconut oil
  • eye sprinkles
  • bug sprinkles
Instructions
  1. Add your popcorn in a large bowl.
  2. Melt the white chocolate in the microwave, 30 second increments.
  3. While the white chocolate is melting, add the blueberries to a blender.
  4. Blend until fine crumbs,
  5. Add the blueberry dust to the white chocolate and mix together. Add the coconut oil to the chocolate and melt in the microwave for an additional 10 seconds.
  6. Pour the chocolate over the popcorn, and fold until its completely coated.
  7. Pour popcorn on prepared baking sheet. Add sprinkles, pressing them into the top of the popcorn so they stick to the chocolate.
  8. Put in the fridge for about 10 minutes to set.
  9. Store in sealed bags.

 

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

(Someone is totally ready for pumpkin and Halloween season, don’t you think?)

Healthier Blueberry White Chocolate Popcorn via The Diva Dish

SO! What do you guys think, how did I do?!

Are there any recipes you would like to see a Happy version and Healthy version of! Let me know in the comments!

If you are looking for freeze dried blueberries, there is a link below: (affiliate link)

{Happy} Purple Monster Popcorn

It’s no secret that I LOVE to indulge when it comes to eating, especially dessert. I’ve always been a dessert maker by heart, but I do my best to strive and eat healthy majority of the time.

Over the years as I’ve been a ‘Healthy Lifestyle’ blogger, I’ve been finding that I don’t always want to focus solely on healthy food. My goal has always been to help others build a happy and healthy life, in all aspects. A part of that is not always eating the healthiest food. I know, I know…But let me explain.

Purple Monster Popcorn via The Diva Dish

Food is definitely a love language, and it brings people together. We get together to go out, vacation, spend holidays, and spend time with the ones we love eating delicious food that we will talk about forever. We all know that one place that made the best “such and such”, and we dream of going back there again.

To me, that’s ‘Happy’.

That doesn’t mean that healthy food doesn’t make me happy, because it does. But when you allow yourself to indulge every once in a while, I truly believe that It brings forth a different kind of Happiness!

Which is why this next series that all about Happy Food vs. Healthy Food!!

Purple Monster Popcorn via The Diva Dish

Since I love to make ‘Happy Food’ every so often, I knew I wanted to share this with my readers. I decided to introduce a series where I will make a recipe ‘Happy’ and then a few days later a ‘Healthy’ version of the ‘Happy’ recipe will be posted!

Make sense?

So today is a ‘Happy’ chocolate covered popcorn, and in a few days, I’ll have a healthier/cleaner version of this same recipe, which will be the ‘Healthy’ recipe!

I’m really so excited and already have a lists of recipes that are going to get Happy and Healthy makeovers!

So here is our first Happy recipe:

Purple Monster Popcorn, Happy Edition via The Diva Dish

{Happy} Purple Monster Popcorn
 
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 9 cups
Ingredients
  • 9 cups popped popcorn*
  • 1 c. purple candy chocolates, I used Wilton
  • 2-3 TB. mini candy eyes, sprinkles
  • 2-3 TB. halloween sprinkles
  • *Use a popcorn that is lightly salted and little to no butter. If it has too much butter, the candy coating won't stick.
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, add your popcorn.
  2. Prepare a large baking sheet with parchment or wax paper.
  3. Melt you chocolate in the microwave, 30 seconds at a time, until melted.
  4. Pour chocolate over the popcorn and gently fold using a spatula until chocolate has evenly coated the popcorn.
  5. Pour the popcorn on the baking sheet, and then sprinkle the sprinkles on top. You can press them in a little so they stick to the chocolate.
  6. Allow the chocolate to harden, about 30 minutes.
  7. Break it apart and store or place in decorated bags or cups!
  8. Enjoy!

Links to the products I used:

Purple Monster Popcorn via The Diva Dish

I’m so excited to share the Healthy Version of this recipe for you! See you in a few days!

 

 

Links to the products I used:


(Affiliate Links)

 

Healthy Caramel Popcorn

Due to the fact that Monday night’s around our house are basically a national holiday, being Bachelor night and all…How about the perfect trash TV treat to go with it, eh? Eh?

Healthy Caramel Popcorn via The Diva Dish

I know it’s ridiculous to how much I look forward to a scripted once in a lifetime romantic television, and I probably should end my night reading a book that will makes my brains all smarts n’ stuff…But, like have you ever seen the Bachelor?! How could you not love it?! Everyone is emotional, drunk, bat shiz crazy, and after a day of messy kitchen’s and back talking toddlers, it’s just what I need.

Is that sad?

No, no It’s not. Because today my 5 year old told me I was ruining her life because her pony tail was crooked.

BRING ON THE CRAZY!

Healthy Caramel Corn via The Diva Dish

The best way to watch the Bachelor in my opinion is with a group of girls. Everyone’s dressed in yoga pants bringing forth delicious goodies, and we all pile together on a couch to judge other crazy women. I’ve tried watching it at home with my husband, but he just mocks me. Especially during the scenes where the girls are in bathing suits…OH he just can’t leave the room because he HAS to tell me how ridiculous this show is!

He doesn’t get it.

It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, and people are working on themselves and really finding out who they are! Pure gold.

And trust me, I’m pretty sure we would all find out who we really are as we traveled the world with our Boyfriend and his 16 other girlfriends. LIKE…Oh crap. I’m awesome.

Healthy Caramel Corn via The Diva Dish

Healthy Caramel Popcorn
 
Ingredients
  • ½ c. popcorn kernals
  • 2 TB. coconut oil
  • ⅓ c. coconut sugar
  • salt
Instructions
  1. Get a large baking sheet out and set aside. This will be used to pour the popcorn on once done.
  2. Add coconut oil, coconut sugar, and popcorn kernels to a stove top popper. Turn the heat on medium/low and stir the popcorn mixture together continuously. (This allows the coconut sugar not to burn.)
  3. As the popcorn begins to pop, continue to stir the mixture slowly until the popcorn begins to decrease to a slow pop.(If you open the lid, the popcorn will have made it's way to the top.)
  4. Pour the popcorn on the baking sheet, and spread it out. Let it cool, then enjoy!
  5. Store in an airtight container for 3-4 days.

This popcorn was amazing! The second It was ready to eat, I couldn’t stop. I love the fact that it’s made with a natural sugar, and there is a little bit of crunch and caramelization on there. I had this on the counter in a jar while family was in town and people could not get enough of it!

Now…Before we get to this weeks dinner menu and workout schedule, I thought I would leave with this…

Unknown

Basically how we are when it’s time to eat, right?

weekly dinner

Monday: French Bread Pizza, using whole wheat french bread, veggies + fruit

Tuesday: Cilantro Lime Chicken Burgers w/ Roasted Corn, and fruit

Wednesday: Slow Cooker Chickpea Curry w/ Brown Rice or Quinoa, Naan Bread (Recipe to come!)

(Use THIS recipe as a substitute!)

Thursday: Whole Wheat Oatmeal Pancakes, and scrambled eggs +spinach

Friday: Turkey Meatballs (sans tomato sauce), Mashed Potatoes, Roasted Carrots

Saturday: Night off!

workout

Monday: Run (I started a couch to 10k app!), 10 minute stretch

Tuesday: Walking kids to school, HIITilates Booty Workout, via Blogilates. Quick Leg & Butt Sculptor, via Blogilates, stretch

Wednesday: Run (Couch to 10k app.) 10 minute stretch

Thursday: Walking kids to school. Instense Ab Burn, Via Blogilates. Bikini Arms, via Tone It Up!

Friday: Bikini Yoga Flow, via Tone It Up

Saturday: Run, (Couch to 10k app), 10 minute stretch

Sunday: Rest

 

Enjoy your week! May it be the most romantic and exciting week of your life!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts

*My kids request donuts often, and I love baked donuts that I can make from home as a healthier alternative! These are made with pancake mix, so half the work is already done for you! Enjoy these Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts with your kids anytime without the sugar overload!*

********************************************************************************************

We live somewhat close to a donut shop, and every so often on a  Saturday we will walk over with the kids and get them their favorite chocolate donuts! There is also a green juice place next door, so usually I’ll grab my breakfast there and then stare them down with jealousy as they eat.

It’s a wonderful family tradition.

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts from The Diva Dish

I’ve made quite a few baked donuts at home, but I always seem to have a problem with the texture. Especially if I have used bananas in the batter, then I just feel like I’m eating a circle sized banana bread. But lately I’ve been baking with pancake batter, and for some reason the texture has been just perfect!

Light, airy, but still cake like. All that’s missing is a rich chocolate frosting with 1/4 cup of chocolate sprinkles on each donut.

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts from The Diva Dish

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts from The Diva Dish

Even better, these things bake up in a little over 10 minutes, and you don’t have to wait in a long line only to find out the parent in front of you took the last chocolate donut that would have belonged to your 4 year old. Thank goodness for a game of rock, paper, scissors with your husband to see who has to relay the message to her…#firstworldtoddlerproblems

Speaking of my husband, he ONLY eats glazed donuts. I just. I can’t. It’s all about the cake donut my friends. Am I right?

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts from The Diva Dish

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts from The Diva Dish

Also, I’ve talked about my love for Kodiak Cakes before, and I swear they aren’t paying me to say this, but they have been my favorite pancake mix to use! I just LOVE the ingredients, so if you haven’t ever tried it, definitely do so!

And while you are at it, drizzle some good quality melted chocolate over the top of your donuts. When the chocolate hardens on the soft donut it’s OH SO GOOD!

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts from The Diva Dish

5.0 from 1 reviews
Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts
 
Ingredients
  • 1 c. pancake mix-I used Kodiak Cakes
  • 2 TB. cocoa powder
  • ¼ c. coconut sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 TB. melted coconut oil
  • ½ c. milk of choice
  • ¼ c. mini chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Whisk the pancake mix, cocoa powder, and coconut sugar together.
  2. Then add the egg, coconut oil, and milk and whisk until combined.
  3. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  4. Grease a donut pan.
  5. Add the batter in a large plastic bag, and then cut the corner off.
  6. Pipe the batter into each donut, filling almost all the way to the top.
  7. (This should make about 5 regular sized donuts.)
  8. Bake at 350 for 12-14 minutes.
  9. Let cool and then remove from the pan.
  10. Top with desired toppings~I drizzled some melted white chocolate over and it was delicious!

 

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts from The Diva Dish

Healthy Baked Chocolate Chip Donuts from The Diva Dish

In the spirit of Valentines, feel free to sprinkle a touch of pink love on each donut. It appeals to little eyes even more! No pink box needed ;).

Preschool Lunch Ideas

When my oldest started going to preschool, one of the things I was most excited about was packing her lunch.

And maybe the break too.

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

I loved the idea of packing her food that she would be excited about and all the other kids would be…I don’t want to say jealous, but I kind of want to say jealous.

Her first year of preschool when she initially started I remember going ALL out. Like cutting things in shapes, making themed lunches, and putting a lot of effort into her lunch.

But then my youngest at the time was becoming more needy, life became more busy, and I just became too tired.

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

(Sidenote: Isn’t she the most beautiful think ever? We are in trouble.)

After that I had to have a realization with myself that her lunches didn’t have to be fancy/time consuming (or PIN worthy), but they could still be quick, simple, healthy, and toddler approved.

Fast forward to now I’m a busy mom of two with one on the way, which technically makes me a lot slower. I have a hard working husband and bags under my eyes.

Most likely I haven’t prepared anything the night before, and we are running late because a certain someone refuses to change out of the Elsa pajamas.

So lunch prep has to be quick.

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

Here is my lunch DISCLAIMER 🙂 :

My oldest is SUPER picky, so I try to appeal to her taste/preferences when she has lunch at school because I’m not there to monitor how much/what she eats.

I try to add one new thing a week, just letting her slowly try different foods.

Her lunches don’t always have vegetables. It all depends on what I have on hand, and if I don’t pack a veggie she likes, then I will make sure to incorporate veggies later on that day. (Snack/dinner time.)

I pack sweets. Some are homemade, and some aren’t. She LOVES chocolate/which chocolate chips, so that’s usually her ‘treat’.

 

Here are 12 lunches that I prepared at the start of this school year. Again, nothing fancy. Just simple/quick/healthy/toddler approved.

1- Grapes, Carrots + Dip, White Chocolate Chips, Nut mix, PB + J Sandwiches

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

2-Sunflower seeds, Hummus Sandwich, Grapes, Raspberries, Fig Bar, Blueberry Greek Yogurt

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

3- Turkey, Mozzarella Cheese, Baby Tomatoes, Crackers, Berries, White Chocolate Chips

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

4- Grapes, PB+Honey+Banana+Cinnamon Sandwich, Shredded Mozz. Cheese, Carrots + Dip

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

5- Dehydrated Snap Peas, Shredded Chicken, Salad w/ tomatoes and croutons, Blueberries, White Chocolate Chips. (My daughter LOVES salad!)

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

6-Apples, Blueberries, Sun Chips, Bagel w/ PB +Honey+ Cream Cheese + Cinnamon, Tomato slices, White Chocolate Chips

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

7- (Halloween Theme), Peanut Butter Spider Crackers, Tortilla chips, Bat cheese, Blueberries, Candy Corn, White Chocolate Chips, Carrots + Dip. (I wanted to use guacamole but my avocados were bad when I opened them!)

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

8- Cute Oranges, Homemade Biscuit Turkey + Cheese Sandwich, Carrots, Dehydrated Snap Peas, Craisins, Sugar Cookie

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

9- Dehydrated Snap Peas, Hazelnut Butter, White Chocolate Chips, Cutie Oranges, Turkey

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

10- Blueberries, Plain Greek Yogurt + Honey, Chocolate Chips, Dehydrated Snap Peas, Pretzel Sticks, Cucumbers +Dip

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

11- Blueberries, Shredded Chicken, Chocolate Chips, Ants on A Log, Pretzels

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

12- Berries, Chocolate Chip Cookie, Cream Cheese + Crackers, Applesauce

Toddler School Lunch Ideas, The Diva Dish

Like I said, nothing fancy :)!

What do you pack your kids for lunch? This coming fall I’ll be making two lunches, I’ll definitely have to post more of those experiences because my girls have WAY different food preferences :)!

Healthy Banilla Peanut Butter Milkshake

I don’t know about you guys, but this is kind of how I feel after the holidays…

Tired, chocolate all over my face, hair in a bun because I’ve been doing lots of “relaxing”…

It’s not pretty.

Healthy Banilla Peanut Butter Milkshake, The Diva Dish

I know in years past I’ve written out a few things I learned the previous year, and goals that I wished to accomplish the following year. But I won’t do that today.

Because I’m really bad at deadlines and goals.

And because I said I was working on a breakfast e-book last May, and I hoped to have it done by the start of the school year 2014.

And It’s not done. Not even close.

I actually didn’t make a ‘list’ of goals for this year because If there is anything the year 2014 taught me it’s that things happen, and plans go out the window, and most likely we won’t be prepared for things to come.

How’s that for motivation?

Healthy Banilla Peanut Butter Milkshake, The Diva Dish

Let’s cut the Debby Downer crap and say even though this was a ‘harder’ year for me (and maybe some of you too), I was tremendously blessed and I think I may have turned into a grown up.

Almost.

Bachelor starts Monday, so there’s that.

Healthy Banilla Peanut Butter Milkshake, The Diva Dish

SO whatever this year may bring, I say Bring It On! If there is ONE thing I’ve learned this year it’s that no matter what, things will be ok and work out for the best.

Unless of coarse there really is a chocolate shortage like everyone is talking about, then by all means START FREAKING OUT!

And don’t forget to drink a lot of milkshakes. Healthy ones and some not so healthy ones ;)!

Healthy Banilla Peanut Butter Milkshake, The Diva Dish

Healthy Banilla Peanut Butter Milkshake
 
Vegan, Diary Free, GF, Healthy
Ingredients
  • 1 large banana cut into slices and frozen
  • 1 spoonful of natural peanut butter
  • 2 tsp. good quality vanilla extract, or vanilla bean paste
  • dash of salt
  • a few splashes of non dairy milk
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients in a blender and blend until nice and creamy!
  2. Sip through a straw or eat with a spoon! Enjoy!

Healthy Banilla Peanut Butter Milkshake, The Diva Dish

I promise I’m going to start working hard on that e-book! I already have TEN recipes, but I really want to have at least 25. So if there are any special breakfast request, let me know! The goal for this book is quick, healthy, easy, kid friendly, and of coarse delish! 🙂

Healthy Banilla Peanut Butter Milkshake, The Diva Dish

P.S.

I also swear I’m going to work on painting my nails more often. #nomorechippednailpolish

P.P.S

Im having a baby in like a month or so?! AHHHH! I can’t wait to kiss that little baby’s face!

Spinach Artichoke Dip

Excuse me if this post doesn’t make any sense. That Frozen movie is on in the background, and well, I’m repeating line for line in my head along with trying to type this up.

Do you wanna build an artichoke dip?

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

Where was I?

If you are new here to The Diva Dish I’ll fill you in a quick bit on my family. I have two little daughters, who some how have become WAY smarter and sassier than I ever could be. I love them so much it hurts! I also have another daughter on the way this February!! I’m married to the hardest working babe I know, and he could eat every single day of his life LOVES McDonalds.

And…This is a healthy lifestyle blog.

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

I get a lot of emails and comments from parents who feel like they don’t know what to do because their little one “just won’t eat healthy”, or “only loves macaroni and cheese!” They wonder how on earth I do it, and why I am so lucky to have kids who love vegetables and are disgusted from fried food and cheesy noodles.

All I have to say is…

Dang! I must be a good liar! 😉

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

I’m here to break the news to you my friends….My kids are NOT good eaters.

Their picky-ness and my desire to raise my family living a healthy lifestyle is why I started this blog in the first place. I knew that there were others out there struggling with the same issues I was, and I wanted to share my successes and well..my fails.

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

So here’s the deal, Let it go. OMG, sorry…Frozen.

But seriously, I’ve learned to ease up a little. If I stress and cry and force feed, it never ends pretty. If I spend 75 minutes making this healthy incredibly stressful dinner, I most likely will have each child take two or three bites and then they are done. SO I keep it simple.

I’ve made a wide range of food for them, but I’ve paid close attention to which types of ‘foods’ and healthier foods they prefer/enjoy.

For example, my oldest doesn’t like things too salty, too sweet, mushed together, or funny looking. My youngest is the opposite. She likes flavors and will try almost anything. But she eats like a bird, so when I feed her I try and make sure it’s filling and full of fats/proteins/etc.

Doing that has allowed me to play with their food preferences and make some of the food they love and prefer a little healthier.

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

So WHY artichoke dip?

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

A while back we were eating at a restaurant with family when someone ordered spinach artichoke dip as an appetizer. When it came I joked with my 4 year old (the flavor/mushed together food hater) if she wanted to try some. She shockingly did, and ate bite after bite.

Now here’s the deal.

Spinach artichoke dip at restaurants are most likely not healthy. There is probably a lot of butter, cream, unhealthier fats, and lots of cheese stuffed in there. So do I stop her from eating it?

NO.

She’s not on a diet. She’s a growing girl, and a picky eater. Are some fats and a lot of butter going to just RUIN her? Of coarse not.

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

I think we tend to get too ‘healthy crazy’, almost to the point where we forget that our kids are growing and NEED substance. I’ve had a hard time in the beginning because I was trying to watch what I ate, and keep things light not super heavy. But kids can’t survive off salads, smoothies, lettuce wraps, chicken and veggies.  (Honestly, I can’t either. I need chocolate!)

So here is my ‘healthier’ version of spinach artichoke dip. It has healthy fats, veggies, protein, etc. Everything our growing kiddos need! And, adults with chipped red nail polish too, of coarse!

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

5.0 from 2 reviews
Spinach Artichoke Dip (Healthier)
 
By The Diva Dish
Ingredients
  • 3 TB. coconut oil
  • 3-4 TB. minced fresh garlic
  • One 10 ounce packaged frozen spinach, drained and thawed (Can use fresh spinach)
  • 1 can artichokes, drained and roughly chopped
  • 3 TB. coconut oil
  • 3 TB. flour
  • 1 can light coconut milk (13-14 ounces)
  • 1 c. plain greek yogurt
  • 1 c. grated parmesan cheese (can experiment with ½ c.)
  • salt & pepper
  • Parmesan cheese grated for the top (optional)
Instructions
  1. In a sauce pan add your 3 TB. coconut oil and melt.
  2. Then add in your garlic and cook over medium heat for a couple of minutes.
  3. Next add in your spinach and toss into the garlic/oil mixture.
  4. Cook over medium/high heat for about 3-5 minutes.
  5. Add the cooked spinach to a strainer and strain the juices back into the pan. (Press the spinach to get it all out.)
  6. In the same pan, add your artichokes.
  7. On medium/high heat, cook the artichokes for a few minutes until they have some color on them.
  8. Remove the artichokes from the pan and place on a plate and set aside.
  9. In the same pan, add the other 3 TB. of coconut oil and flour. (Reduce heat to medium.)
  10. Whisk together until a paste forms.
  11. Then slowly whisk in the coconut milk.
  12. Continue to whisk on medium heat, or a little higher, until the mixture becomes thick.
  13. Next whisk in greek yogurt and combine until creamy, followed by the parmesan cheese.
  14. Stir until everything is melted and combined.
  15. Sprinkle a little bit of salt and pepper in.
  16. Next, fold in the spinach and artichokes.
  17. Pour mixture into a greased baking dish, 9x9 or which ever size you prefer.
  18. Eat immediately, OR top the dip with a little extra shredded parmesan and bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 minutes.

 

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

I served this at my parents house and everyone ate them with baked pita chips, but my 4 year old loves them with salty tortilla chips! Who knew?! You could easily dip carrots or cucumbers in this too, which I think would be a great alternative to the bread.

But…Bread is so good.

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

Protein Packed, Veggie Full, Kid Approved Spinach Artichoke Dip (Made Healthier!) From The Diva Dish, http://thediva-dish.com

I probably should go fix my nail polish while my girls are napping huh? That’s right. The girls are asleep and Frozen is still on. I don’t even know who I am any more…

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I’d love to hear about your kiddos, their food preferences, and if they are picky or not and what you do with them to encourage them to eat!

Orange Rolls

It’s not December is it? Because my girls are still wearing their Halloween Costumes, and I think my husband just threw away out our pumpkins last week.

IMG_9254

Although, I feel like it is December because we’ve had treat after treat being dropped off at our house and I’ve been consuming more than enough peppermint, eggnog, and gingerbread sugary treats.

I’ve learned that being pregnant in December is just cruel, because you already have food aversions to healthy foods, and carbs and sweets are the ONLY thing that sounds good. Throw in the cold weather, which equals sweat pants and oversized sweaters and well…

HOLY CRAP. I now have a baby bump in the front….

And in the trunk.

IMG_9256

Fast forward to cinnamon rolls.

My daughter and I have this cooking bond, which is my most favorite thing in the whole wide world. She will watch cooking shows, look at food pictures, and be right beside me in the kitchen.

Lately her and I have been recording every episode of The Pioneer Woman. Boo loves her show the most, and I think because a lot of her food looks.so.good!

That and she has horses, dogs, a farm, and usually dessert ready to eat when desired. Every 4 year olds dream right?!

And mine.

IMG_9257

During one episode she made these delicious orange rolls that seemed SO easy to make. I loved how she made everything in a pot, and I could let the dough sit in the fridge for two days and pull it out when we needed.

Of coarse her rolls are amazingly delicious as is, but I decided I wanted to play around with the ingredients to see if I could make them using coconut oil and sugar.

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I’ve made cinnamon rolls before using those ingredients, so I was excited to try this version with a citrus twist! I think cinnamon rolls are the perfect Christmas morning breakfast, and Orange rolls seem even better!

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My little helper. She snacked on blueberries while spreading the marmalade. And by snacked I mean ate the entire thing.

She’s currently at a pack a day. I’m worried.

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One thing I’ve always done with cinnamon rolls is cut them using dental floss. It’s something my high school boyfriends mom taught me. (HI!!)  She was a great cook, and I would often try and help her in the kitchen.

Then we would all joke how I was a horrible cook.

And now I have a food blog.

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The great thing about these rolls is that the dough can sit in the fridge for at least a day or two, so if you want fresh warm rolls in the morning, you don’t have to start the rising process at 3 a.m. All it requires is about an hour of rising, so now you can start at 5 am. (Because who sleeps in on Christmas morning?!)

Oh yea, my husband.

Ba Humbug.

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I’m so glad that Christmas morning is only two weeks away, because I don’t think I can wait any longer to have something sweet!

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Oh wait…Is that the doorbell?

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5.0 from 1 reviews
Orange Rolls
 
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman's Orange Rolls
Ingredients
  • 2 c. full fat coconut milk, regular milk, or milk of choice
  • ½ c. coconut oil
  • ½ c. coconut sugar or maple sugar
  • 1 pkg. active dry yeast
  • 4 cups, plus ½ c. extra reserved, flour. (You can do half whole wheat half all purpose)
  • ½ tsp. heaping baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ TB. salt
  • Melted coconut oil for the inside
  • coconut sugar for the inside
  • orange marmalade (a natural brand)
  • cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves for the inside
  • sprinkle of salt for the inside
Instructions
  1. To make the dough:
  2. In a pot over the stove, heat milk, oil, and sugar.
  3. Whisk together and heat just until the mixture begins to boil. Then remove from heat and let cool until the mixture reaches 110 degrees. I use a candy thermometer.
  4. When it's cooled down so it's warm but not hot, sprinkle the yeast over the top.
  5. Let it sit for a few minutes.
  6. Then add in the four cups of flour, and stir together with a wooden spoon. Be careful not to over mix too much.
  7. Let the lid sit on top of the pot in a warm place and let it rise for at least an hour. You want it to almost double.
  8. Once that happens, then add in the remaining ½ flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Stir together.
  9. You can make the rolls immediately, or cover and put in the fridge for the next morning, or a day or two later.
  10. When you are ready to make the rolls, get the dough out of the fridge and roll it into a large rectangular shape.
  11. Spread a layer of orange marmalade over top the dough, followed by some melted coconut oil to coat the entire surface. Then sprinkle on some coconut sugar, followed by a sprinkle of cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground cloves. (I didn't measure, I just kind of sprinkled over the top until it was coated. (Not heavily with spices, but just enough.)
  12. Begin to roll the dough, starting with one side and working your way to the other.
  13. Cut the rolls and place on a baking sheet.
  14. Let the rolls rise for at least an hour. (If the dough isn't cold from the fridge it might not take that long.)
  15. Bake the rolls at 375 for 15-18 minutes, or until desired. (We like ours a little under cooked.)
  16. Top with the glaze or frosting of choice immediately.
  17. For the glaze I used the pioneer woman's recipe, only because my husband insisted, but you can use a healthier recipe by using cream cheese, some honey, orange juice, vanilla, and orange zest!

For the original recipe go HERE on the Pioneer Womans site.

For a healthy frosting recipe, check this out HERE on Naturally Sweet Recipes.

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My husband insisted if I was making the rolls ‘healthier, (as if I was putting kale in them), he wanted the original frosting. He was in charge of pouring it on and well…they were swimming in it.

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I removed the rolls onto a separate tray so they didn’t become soft little pillows of sugar. Although, that sounds good.

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I promise I’ll post a non-sweet recipe next time. Something with kale. 🙂

 

Mini Pancake Muffins (Pumpkin)

Who doesn’t love pancakes in the morning?! What if we turned them into Mini Pancake Muffins perfect for those little hands! (And not to mention, perfect to eat when time is short!) Keep reading for the recipe!

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I’ve never understood people that don’t eat breakfast, or aren’t very hungry in the morning. I feel like they can’t be trusted…

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I go to bed thinking about what I’m going to have for breakfast, I wake up in the middle of the night wanting that breakfast, and I get up in the morning rushing to go eat that breakfast. Almost before I do anything, like put my glasses on. Or get my children out of their bed.

Luckily for me, my girls are just as excited about breakfast, and usually remind me at 6 in the morning it’s time to get up RIGHT THIS SECOND and make it for them because they might pass out of starvation.

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My four year is the most particular about the foods she eats, so I usually get asked every morning if she can have Cheerios, water, and five pounds of blueberries. As easy as it is to sometimes let her get her way, I’m trying my best to offer her different suggestions. (And let’s be honest, blueberries aren’t cheap when you buy them by the pounds…)

I usually can do pancakes with her, but not waffles. Unless I lie and tell her it’s a pancake, then I’m in the clear. But don’t add blueberries to the batter because she will react as if you cut off all her hair in the middle of the night while she was sleeping. Dramatic? No, total reality. She definitely doesn’t get it from me…

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So I took a big leap of faith and decided to make muffins out of pancake batter. I thought it would be fun to make them bite because for some reason kids LOVE mini foods! I added a few chocolate chips on top, which was a risk, but it definitely went over well. I also thought about making these banana muffins, which you could do, but I bought 47 cans at the beginning of pumpkin season so I’m trying my best to use those up!

Oh boy…these were good!

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My girls dipped theirs in pure maple syrup, but you could definitely drizzle it on top as well! Even adding a little melted butter or coconut oil on top would be heavenly!

These, my friends are 4 year old dramatic princess approved!

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Mini Pancake Muffins (Pumpkin)
 
Ingredients
  • 2 c. pancake mix, I used kodiak cakes protein pancakes because they have the best ingredients
  • 1 c. milk of choice
  • 1 chia egg=1 TB. chia seeds mixed w/ 3 TB. cold water. (let sit for 5 minutes.) OR one egg
  • ½ c. coconut sugar
  • ¼ c. melted coconut oil
  • 1 c. pumpkin puree-Can sub mashed banana
  • 1 TB. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 TB. pure vanilla extract
  • Chocolate chips to top muffins with
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and whisk until combined. (Leave out the chocolate chips.)
  2. Spray a mini muffin pan with oil, or use mini muffin liners. Add batter to the pan, filling about ¾ full. Top with a few chocolate chips.
  3. Bake in the oven at 350 for 18-20 minutes, or until they are done.
  4. *If using an egg, these may cook faster than if using a chia egg, so watch muffins carefully!)

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Just looking at these muffins makes me hungry for 2nd breakfast!

Wait, what? You don’t have 2nd breakfasts? Oh…It must be a 29 weeks pregnant thing than right?

Right????!!! 😉

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

We are basically in the fall/holiday season and I’m fully ready to embrace boots and sweaters. I’d also like to sip hot chocolate at the same time, while eating pumpkin & apple pie, with a pumpkin spice candle burning in my kitchen while listening to Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer.

Also..I’d like it snow.

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

Unfortunately my kids are still pant-less and wearing T-shirts around the house, and my air condition is on full speed. And the larger I get, the more I desperately want to wear oversized comfy clothes, but I sweat like a sinner in church…

Would this be considered complaining?

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

(Side note: I just love that little face!)

But of coarse I have so much to be grateful for, and this afternoon when my little peanut woke up from her nap I decided we would do our best to bring the Fall season to us. And since it’s the season of..giving? (Isn’t is always?) We decided that sharing a piece of Fall with someone else would be best!

This pumpkin bread is the perfect recipe for when you feel like giving. It makes enough to make one loaf for you and one loaf for someone else.

Or 4 smaller loaves for you and 3 special friends.

Or even muffins for lots of friends if your popular.Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

You can use canned pumpkin, or if you are feeling creative you can make your own FRESH pumpkin puree! (There is also a really embarrassing video tutorial too! Win win!)  I usually try and make a large batch every season and then bathe in it.

HA! I mean, not bathe…BAKE!! Oh my gosh…so awkward. 

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

And of coarse, save the mixer spoon and a few chocolate chips for those little mouths. Leave the bowl for yourself…

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread
 
Ingredients
  • 3 c. white whole wheat flour
  • 1½ c. coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 c. melted coconut oil, cooled
  • ⅔ c. water
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 c. pumpkin puree, canned or fresh
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 bag chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, and spices. Set the bowl aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl, add the oil, water, eggs, pumpkin, and vanilla. Mix until combined, and then with the mixer on low add in the dry ingredients until combined.
  3. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  4. Grease two large bread pans, and divide the batter between the two.
  5. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 45-50 minutes. Let the bread COMPLETELY cool in the pans before removing.
  6. Enjoy!

Recipe slightly adapted from this lovely and delicious Pumpkin Bread from What’s Gaby cooking!

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

Make sure you wrap up the loaf nicely with a sweet note and a burlap ribbon! Then grab your flip flops, sunglasses and 50 SPF as you head out the door to make your delivery…

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread, http://thediva-dish.com

Also, run the air conditioning in the car so the chocolate chips in the bread don’t melt…

#Immelting