Iced Watermelon Cubes

Iced Watermelon Cubes – A Healthy Ice Cream Alternative

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If you’re living through a heat wave at the moment what you probably want most in the world is something sweet, cold, and refreshing to eat.

Here is the simplest of desserts to keep on hand for a hot day. These little cubes of frozen watermelon are delicious and perfect for popping into your mouth (straight from the freezer) to cool you down.

Refined sugar free, dairy free, paleo, and all that jazz… but what’s really important is that they taste so good!

Iced Watermelon Cubes

Makes lots and lots of servings

Ingredients

1 sweet seedless watermelon (pick the sweetest one you can find)

That’s it! ๐Ÿ˜€

 

Instructions

1. Cut the watermelon into 3/4 inch cubes (this is a perfect size as they can be eaten straight from the freezer and they thaw quickly too).

2. Freeze the cubes flat in ziptop bags.

To serve, scoop about 1 – 1.5 cups (or however much you want) of the frozen watermelon cubes into a bowl and eat with a spoon.

Ta-Da! I hope that these little cubes of watermelon joy make your summer days a little more awesome. ๐Ÿ™‚

Mango Lemon Sorbet (No Churn) – Quick and Easy, Vegan, Paleo

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Sometimes the best kinds of foods are the ones that remind you of what you ate when you were growing up.

When I was a kid, we would often get takeout pasta and pizza from a local family owned Italian restaurant. The food was always good, but for me the highlight was getting to eat Italian ices anytime we ordered from that restaurant. This Mango Lemon Sorbet reminds me eating those Italian ices out of paper cups on hot summer days.

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Mango Lemon Sorbet is incredibly simple to make, and you don’t even need an ice cream maker! The mango gives the sorbet a joyful tropical flavor, and the lemon zest gives it a brightness and zing. Each bite just tastes incredible.

This recipe would also work well if you have a number of ripe mangoes that you don’t quite know what to do with before they become overripe.

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You can cut them into 1 inch chunks, freeze them, and make this mango sorbet anytime you like! It’s a delicious and satisfying way to cut down on food waste.

Mango Lemon Sorbet

Makes 1 generous serving (about 3 scoops)

Ingredients

2 cups frozen mango (1 inch chunks)

2 tbsp maple syrup*

1/2 tsp lemon zest (lime zest also works well)**

4 tbsp avocado oil (or any neutral flavored oil)***

1/4 cup water

Notes –

* The store bought frozen mango that I used wasn’t very sweet, so if your frozen mango is naturally very sweet, you can probably add less maple syrup. Just add a little at a time until you’re happy with the sweetness of the sorbet.

You can also omit the maple syrup entirely, and replace the water with 1/4 cup of apple juice instead if you’re trying avoid added sweeteners. The sorbet won’t be quite as sweet as it would be with the maple syrup, but will still taste really good.

**I actually used the frozen lemon rinds from this post for the lemon zest I used in this recipe.

** There is a part of the brain that lights up in the presence of a fat and sugar, so adding that little bit of fat makes the sorbet taste better, and helps to increase the absorption of the vitamin A from the frozen mango.

Instructions

1. Lay your mango pieces onto a plate in a single layer, giving a little space between each piece of frozen mango if possible. Allow the mango to defrost for 15-20 minutes until you can pierce the cubes of mango with a fork with little resistance.

2. Transfer the mango to a food processor and add in the water, avocado oil, lemon zest and maple syrup to taste.

Blend until smooth, stopping to occasionally scrape down the sides of the food processor with a spatula.

3. Serve immediately, or you can make a big batch of this and freeze it it for later in an airtight container. Allow to defrost for a bit before scooping and serving.

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So good… and so simple to make! I’ll definitely be making this more often come summertime.

Happy Eating!

mint ice cream

Mint Chocolate Ice Cream – Dairy Free, Paleo, Vegan, Refined Sugar Free

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When I first realized that St. Patrick’s Day was coming up, I was at a bit of a loss as to what to make to celebrate.

So I googled “Traditional Irish Food” and pictures of things like shepherd’s pie, Irish stew, and colcannon popped up, along with literally a picture of a potato. That’s right, a plain ol’ uncooked potato.

After I finished laughing for a good solid minute (that lone potato really cracked me up), I decided to go check out what was in the fridge and see if I could come up with a recipe from the ingredients that I already had. After a quick glance at the bananas on the counter, I opened the fridge to find that I still had a big box of baby spinach. After a little tinkering, I came up with a recipe for this gorgeous ice cream.

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Ireland is the Emerald Isle after all, and this recipe borrows just a bit of that lush green color just in time for St. Patrick’s Day.

This amazing mint chocolate ice cream is rich and creamy, and you can’t taste the baby spinach at all, but it gives the ice cream it’s lovely bright green color without any food coloring. Little flecks of dark green dance across every beautiful spoonful, making every bite a little more festive, a little more special.

Sprinkle over a little cocoa powder before just serving and every delicious bite will taste just like a Thin Mint cookie, but in ice cream form (which is even better).

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That little bit of cocoa gives a little bit of bitterness which goes incredibly well with the brightness of the mint and allows the flavor of the ice cream to really sing.

This recipe is also a great way to use up extra baby spinach and overripe bananas. The avocado oil seems like a funny addition, but it adds a real creaminess and makes it taste more like traditional mint ice cream.

Mint Chocolate Ice Cream

Makes a generous serving for 1 (about 3 scoops)

Ingredients

2 bananas

1/2 cup packed baby spinach leaves

5 1/2 tsp – 6 1/4 tsp maple syrup

5 tsp avocado oil (or any neutral flavored oil)

1/8 cup water

1/8 tsp peppermint extract (or more to taste)

the tiniest sprinkle of sea salt imaginable (optional)

A little cocoa powder to sprinkle over the ice cream before serving

Instructions

1. Peel and slice the bananas into 1/2 inch slices. Put a piece of plastic wrap over a plate and arrange the banana slices in a single layer over the plastic wrapped plate. Cover with another layer of plastic wrap and freeze until solid.

2. Allow the bananas to defrost for 5-8 minutes until just thawed. Add the bananas, baby spinach, maple syrup, avocado oil, water, and peppermint extract to a food processor.

Blend until smooth. Taste and add in the tiniest sprinkle of sea salt if desired, and at this point you can add more mint flavoring if you like (add a drop at a time as this stuff is strong).

3. Once you’re happy with the flavor of the ice cream, scoop the ice cream into a dish and sprinkle with cocoa powder. Serve.

Notes – The bananas that I used were medium sized and they were ripe but were only lightly speckled brown, so if the bananas that you use are very brown and sweet, then you can probably decrease the amount of maple syrup.

The measurements that I ended up using in my own batch were 6 1/4 tsp maple syrup, and 1/8 tsp + 3 drops of peppermint extract (as I like a strong minty flavor in this ice cream).

You can also make the ice cream ahead of time and put it into something like a plastic snapware container and stash it in the freezer. This works especially well if you want to be able to scoop it into pretty scoops of ice cream for a nice presentation.

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So much minty chocolate goodness in one bite…

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Chocolate Banana Soft Serve Ice Cream – Refined Sugar Free, Dairy Free, Vegan, Paleo

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When I think of chocolate desserts, I want something really decadent and rich, with a deep chocolatey flavor.

This Chocolate Banana Soft Serve Ice Cream definitely fits the bill. It’s super easy to make, and takes almost no time or effort. It’s so creamy and delicious, and it’s pretty incredible that blended up frozen bananas can turn into such an amazing treat!

When I was working on this recipe, I thought about the rich and creamy chocolate ice cream that would occasionally eat before I went dairy and refined sugar free.

I really tried to get a similar flavor with this recipe, so it does have more cocoa powder and vanilla extract than you would expect it to have, which gives the banana ice cream a similar flavor to the store bought chocolate ice creams of my younger days.

Banana ice cream also cuts down on food waste because it’s the perfect thing to make when you have overripe bananas that you don’t know what to do with. No need to throw them away! Just peel them, and freeze them, and you can have ice cream whenever you want. How cool is that?

You can also adjust the flavor of the ice cream to your liking really easily. If you want it a little sweeter (or if your bananas could have used a little more ripening before you froze them) you can add a little more maple syrup, or more cocoa if you want a deeper chocolate flavor.

However you make it, I hope that this ice cream brings a little more joy to your day.


Chocolate Banana Soft Serve Ice Cream

Makes 1 serving (about 3/4 cup)

Ingredients

1 thawed frozen banana

3 1/2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder *

2 1/2 tbsp + 1 tsp maple syrup

2 tbsp + 2 tsp water

1 tsp vanilla extract

tiny tiny pinch of salt

 

*I didn’t use a heaped tbsp, just sort of slightly higher than a level tbsp. The cocoa powder that I used was the Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa powder.

Instructions

1. Cut the thawed banana into half inch slices with a paring knife. If the banana is too hard to cut, then let it thaw for another 5 minutes or so before trying to cut it again.

2. Add all the ingredients into a food processor and process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally.

If you want a firmer texture, you can spoon the mixture into a bowl and put it into a freezer for another 15-20 minutes.

For garnish, I just used a paring knife to shave pieces off a slightly thawed frozen strawberry. It gives it a nice color and a bit of little flair, and the strawberry flavor goes well with the banana and chocolate flavors of the ice cream.

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Happy Eating!