Healthy Paleo Granola Bars Recipe with Chocolate Chips Close up

Hi LOVElies-

Happy Monday! Have you been in the granola bar/energy bar aisle of the grocery store lately? I seriously spent 30 minutes in one aisle reading the ingredient labels trying to find a healthy Paleo granola bar without preservatives and most importantly all of the added sugar! Ahhh! I am not too proud to admit that having prepackaged granola bars that I can eat on the run is something I rely on for those super busy days that I can’t sit down and make a healthy snack.

But all of these sugary granola bar options are overwhelming…

AND expensive.

Healthy Paleo Granola Bars Recipe with Chocolate Chips top view

What gives guys?

So this is why I am bringing you a healthy chocolate chip granola bar recipe to add to your meal prep! No added sugar, just cacao nibs or dark chocolate. The dates give this recipe the natural sweetness that you crave without artificial icky-ness. Not to mention that dates have so many health benefits: lots of minerals and vitamins, digestion benefits, even bone strength and cholesterol benefits.

Plus this recipe includes flaxseed and chia which are the hot new ingredients in all the grocery store options. The chia and flaxseed will give you that sustained boost of energy without tanking your blood sugar later.

These granola bars have been my solution to the overwhelming grocery aisle. I am saving money and time spent reading labels in the store.

Best of all…

I have the confidence of feeding my body with real food, and real ingredients all from my kitchen.

Healthy Paleo Granola Bars Recipe with Chocolate Chips

What you will need for your Paleo Granola Bars Recipe

  • 1/2 cup of raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup of raw almonds
  • 10 large medjool dates
  • 1/2  cup of unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon of chia seeds
  • 2 teaspoons of ground flaxseed or flaxseed meal
  • 1/3 cup of cacao nibs (or dark chocolate 60% or darker!)
  • pinch of seasalt

How to prep your Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

  1. Grab your dates and soak in hot water for about 30 minutes.
  2. While your dates are soaking, throw the cashews and almonds in a food processor, process for a few pulses until roughly chopped.
  3. Throw nuts in large mixing bowl
  4. Drain and remove pits from dates.
  5. Place dates in food processors and pulse until they reach a creamy smooth consistency.
  6. Mix the date paste, nut mixture, coconut flakes, vanilla extract, chia seeds, flaxseed, cacao nibs, and sea salt  until fully combined.
  7. Line a medium sized bread loaf (8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″) with parchment paper
  8. Using your hands, press mixture into the bottoms on the loaf, distributing evenly.
  9. Place in refrigerator for an hour
  10. Cut and serve!

Healthy Paleo Granola Bars Recipe with Chocolate Chips Close up

Meal Prep Tip- Store in air tight container. I usually just seal mine individually in sandwich sized ziplock bags and make sure I have all of the air pressed out. I keep them in the fridge until I need them. Before I start my day, I just throw my granola bar in my bag! Easy enough. No need for an extra container. I can eat it in the car when I am running around knocking out my to-do list.

Thank goodness for healthy car snacks on busy days. Seriously.

Share this recipe with someone you know that lives off of those prepackaged granola bars! It will change their world! I hope you enjoy this recipe guys, I know it is one of my favorites! Leave me a comment below!

Bacon Wrapped Venison Meatloaf cover

Bacon Wrapped Venison Meatloaf

Hello There LOVElies!

These mini bacon wrapped meatloaves are bite sized and packed with flavor! I recently brought them as a appetizer to a dinner party and they were the gone before you could even blink. (I get oddly satisfied when my appetizer is first to disappear at a dinner party.)

They were such a hit! I even surprised a few “venison skeptics” when they didn’t even realize it was made with venison and not ground beef.

Did you know that ground venison has LESS saturated fat and MORE protein than ground beef? oh YES!

Today I am bringing you a sweet little “meatloaf” recipe that can turn even the greatest venison skeptic. It is cute and mini and best of all…… wrapped in bacon. Those are like the two all time qualifiers for a winning recipe in my book: 1) it is miniature 2) its wrapped in bacon.

I had leftover venison so I gave this recipe a second run as a main course for dinner one night. They were so easy to make and I served with with a side of my creamed cauliflower. It totally gave me my “meat and potatoes” fix while being healthier than steak and potatoes!

Bacon Wrapped Venison Meatloaf main

The key to cooking with venison is simply seasoning it well. I loved this recipe because it uses common seasonings that I already had in my kitchen. All I really needed was the venison and bacon! You can always sub the ground venison with ground beef and it will still be oh so delicious!

BUT

I dare you to give venison a try. It will not disappoint, especially if you are living a Paleo lifestyle or just wanting a high protein option to add to your diet.

Grab your muffin tin, and get cooking!

Bacon Wrapped Venison Meatloaf cover

What You’ll Need for your Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf with Venison

  • 1 lb of ground venison
  • 1 teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon FlavorGod garlic lovers seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon of onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 8 thin bacon strips

Bacon Wrapped Venison Meatloaf seasonings

How to prepare your Venison Mini Meatloaf

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and spray a muffin tin with non stick spray
  2. In a medium bowl mix together the ground venison with your spices listed above.
  3. Divide into 8 equal portions and roll into balls
  4. With each strip of bacon, roll the bacon within the muffin tin so it forms a circle on the outside rim of the muffin tin
  5. Place each portion of seasoned venison in the middle of each bacon lined muffin tin
  6. Bake for 30 minutes
  7. Let cool, and remove with tongs
  8. Place the mini meatloaves on some folded paper towels to let any extra oils be absorbed. Then transfer to your serving dish!

Bacon Wrapped Venison Meatloaf topview

If you have a hunter in your life that is always offering you venison, or if you know of a family always looking for venison recipes… SHARE this recipe with them today! Maybe they will share some of their delicious venison supply with you! I hope you guys enjoyed this simple, cute, and oh so delicious mini bacon wrapped meatloaf recipe!!

 

Coconut Flour Blueberry Muffins

Hey there LOVElies!

So… I have to admit, blueberry muffins fresh out of the oven are my complete guilty pleasure.

Left unattended, I can devour more muffins than I would like to admit!

So this morning I am sharing a lovely little dairy free blueberry muffin recipe made with coconut flour and without milk. That’s right, no milk, DAIRY FREE!

I like to think it makes my guilty pleasure a little less guilty since it fits into a paleo diet and cuts down on those carbs! The coconut flour also makes this recipe gluten free if any of you LOVElies are living the gluten free life.

If you want to turn your blueberry muffins into paleo lemon blueberry muffins, read to the end! I have an option for all of you lemon obsessed readers out there too! YUMM

Tips from my kitchen—  Just a few insider tips on this recipe.

COCONUT FLOUR tends to make baked goods much more dense than typical flour which can be such a bummer when the goal is light fluffy warm muffins! I tend to error on the side of LESS than the called for amount to prevent this. For this recipe, try filling your measuring cup just shy of a cup and make sure you never pack your coconut flour. If you notice your flour is clumpy, break it up with a fork so you don’t add too much. This should keep your yummy treats nice and fluffy.

COCONUT OIL needs to be completed liquefied before adding it to any recipe. If you try to add it while still solidified you will find it clumpy in your muffins as well.  Melt your coconut oil on the stove top or microwave. Coconut oil melts at such a low temperature that it will only take a second and your recipes will come out perfect every time!

Delicious Blueberry Muffins

Dairy Free Blueberry Muffins

Yield: 12 muffins

What you need:

  • 1 cup of coconut flour (remember- barely a cup!)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 4 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 4 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup of fresh blueberries
  • Optional – 1 Lemon for Lemon Zest and 1 teaspoon of lemon extract (if you are feeling FANCY)
  • Optional – Crumb topping (walnuts, coconut flour, coconut sugar, and coconut oil)

Preparing Coconut Flour Muffins

Crumb Toppings

What to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Line a muffin tin with baking cups or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Mix together loosely filled cup of coconut flour and baking soda. Set aside.
  3. In separate bowl, whisk together honey, coconut milk, melted coconut oil, eggs, and vanilla extract
  4. Using a spatula, fold the wet ingredients into the coconut flour mixture.
  5.  Gently fold in the rinsed, fresh blueberries
  6. Fill muffin tins 3/4 of the way full
  7. Bake for about 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean
  8. Let cool on wire baking rack to prevent further baking or browning
  9. Dig IN! YUMMM

Finished Coconut Flour Mix with Blueberry Muffins

Lemon Blueberry Muffin Option
If you want to try a dairy free LEMON blueberry muffin. Add 1 teaspoon of lemon extract into the wet ingredient bowl (during step 3!) Grab that lemon and zest about 4 tablespoons worth to your final mixture (during step 5!)  You will end up with an awesome combo of tang and sweetness wrapped up in that baking cup.

Make sure you store any leftovers in the refrigerator to keep them nice and fresh.

Pour yourself a cup of tea, sit down and enjoy a muffin. You deserve it! While you are at it, go ahead and share this recipe to that big ole world of social media. Better yet, comment below on how your muffins turned out! I can’t wait to hear from you guys. ‘Til next time LOVElies!

Avocado Banana Greensmoothie

Good morning LOVElies! Memorial weekend is coming up… that’s a 3 day weekend!!!  YAY! Hmmm… should I make a spontaneous trip to Florida?

Hehe We will see!  Times like this, makes me miss the beach so much Anyhow, I know you’re dying to see what smoothie I’m making today, right? Lol jk!

Well for breakfast this morning: a yummilicious Avocado Banana GreenSmoothie… Mmm YUM!

What you need:

  • 1/2 an avocado
  • 1 banana (ripe)
  • 2 BIG handfuls of baby spinach
  • 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk

Have an AMAZING day! Muahz!!!

Bacon with Fresh Jalapeno

Hello LOVElies! I’m feeling a little spicy today.  This is one of my favorite quick and easy jalapeno dish.

Fresh jalapenos, stuffed with sweet Korean potatoes, wrapped with bacon. Then drizzled with homemade spicy veganaise and topped with crushed red peppers and cilantro…,/p>

Mmmm YUM!  See you on my next post! Muahz!

Paleo Chinese Broccoli

 

Hello LOVElies! It’s been an amazing day today. Work was great and the weather was unbelievably nice compared to what we have been having. For dinner tonight: dish one- Paleo Chinese Broccoli

What you need:

  • 1 bunch chinese broccoli
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 TBSP coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup tamari gluten free soy sauce

What to do:

On medium high, melt the coconut oil. Saute the garlic until gold brown. Add the broccoli and let it cook foe 3-5 minutes. Add the tamari and make sure to coat the broccoli evenly. Once desire doneness, remove from heat and serve hot. Mmmm YUM!

Spicy Vietnamese Beef Stew

Hello LOVElies! Who loves Vietnamese food? I do I do. Growing up with vietnamese food all around me, I’m always craving authentic vietnamese dishes.

The best thing that hit the asian market is a bottle of Red Boat Fish Sauce. All natural and paleo friendly. What’s on the table for tonight? Paleo Bo Kho “Spicy Vietnamese Beef Stew” Mmmm YUM! Recipe from Nom nom paleo. 

 

Hello LOVEies!  It’s #parfaitTuesday with my sweetie pie Kia @nikiadyson. “No rules, no challenge, just create, post, tag and eat”

Here’s my simple and quick Paleo strawberry-banana pomegranate parfait.  Thanks again Bryan@paleobakehouse for my yummilicious goodies….

Here’s the recipe:

  • 1/2 cup sliced strawberry
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 2 paleo power brownies by @paleobakehouse
  • 1 banana
  • Homemade almond milk

What to do:

Place homemade almond milk and banana in a blender; blend until smooth. Start with a layer of fresh pomegranate seeds, then a scoop of the banana blend, paleo brownies, strawberries, banana blends, more paleo brownies and then pomegranate seeds. Top it off with the DROOL worthy banana blend…Mmm YUM!!!

Enjoy!  See you on my next post!  

 

Hello LOVElies!!! Guess what’s for dinner? What you see here: marinated grass fed beef cubes, organic bell peppers, and on the side (not shown) Organic Romaine Lettuce  Mmm YUM!

One more day until FreshMarket opens up for business… YAY!!! I can’t wait!!! Oh yeah, walking distance to FreshMarket

For this and other delicious ideas and recipes, subscribe to my newsletter at www.kayleasopenbook.com to receive exclusive recipes from me to you. Also, visit, “like” and LOVE www.facebook.com/kayleasopenbook 

Muahz!  See you on my next post…