I tend to have my favorite ideas during one of two very different parts of the day. They always seem to either hit while I’m walking my dog early in the morning or at 10pm when I should be getting ready for bed. As it turns out, I’m 2 for 2 in the last 24 hours. One grand idea: Clean Peanut Butter Blondies. The other: free stuff for YOU! ‘Tis the season for baking and giving gifts, right?
First and foremost: the blondies. This recipe might be my favorite creation to date.
I have about 30 different recipes floating around in my brain from the last week of what has felt like nonstop clean cooking (slow-cooker pork, roasted Brussels sprouts, and sweet potato chips to name just a few… Look for these next week!). I planned to post the sweet potato chips today, but when I make something on a whim that is amazing as these blondies are, sticking to my editorial calendar kind of goes out the window.
I caught the baking bug late last night. I’ve been wanting to test out using garbanzo beans instead of flour for LONG time, so I went for it and threw together these blondies. With cookie butter. And peanut butter. And chocolate chips. (Sweet tooth was in full gear, clearly.) Ryan was a happy camper.
Clean Peanut Butter Blondies
These are gluten-free, dairy-free, and delicious. If you have a holiday party/pot luck/cookie exchange coming up, bring these and brag about how healthy they are compared to everything else. :o)
Cook time: 25 minutes
- 1 can Garbanzo beans (AKA chickpeas), drained and rinsed
- 1/4 cup natural peanut butter
- 1/4 cup PB2
- 1/4 cup Speculoos Cookie Butter
- 1/2 cup granulated Stevia
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 scoop (50 g) Cellucor Vanilla Creme protein powder
- 2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
- 1/2 cup (100 g) dark chocolate chips (I used 63%)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray an 8×8 baking dish with cooking spray
- Rinse and drain beans in a colander
- Throw everything except chocolate chips into a food processor (or blender) and pulse until everything is combined into a batter-like consistency
- Fold in chocolate chips until evenly distributed
- Spread batter into your prepared baking dish
- Bake for 20-25 minutes
- Cut into 16 squares. We ate ours with marshmallow topping and/or fat free Cool Whip on top. HOLY YUM.
SUBSTITUTIONS (note: any substitution to your recipe will change the nutritional details listed above)
- If you don’t have vanilla protein powder, grind up 1/2 cup of rolled oats to make oat flour and add a little extra vanilla and Stevia to your batter
- If you don’t have cookie butter or don’t agree with all of the ingredients in it (it DOES contain more additives than natural nut butters), double up the natural PB in this recipe and leave out the cookie butter. Personally, I’m all about cookie butter. If you do substitute this, your batch probably won’t end up as delicious as mine. Just a (biased, opinionated) forewarning.
My second grand idea is more in the “giving” spirit of the holiday season. If you want to win a Polar FT4 heart rate monitor watch (silver) or a handy new digital food scale for your kitchen, keep on reading! If you already have your own Polar and/or food scale, you should participate anyway. Both items would make GREAT holiday gifts for a friend or family member. (Less Christmas shopping for you!)
I love spoiling others. To be honest, I enjoy buying gifts for friends and family more than I enjoy shopping for myself. But, Ryan and I decided to go with a more conservative budget on each others’ gifts this year. With the extra cash that I’m not spending on him, I’ve decided to get a couple of fit-minded gifts to give away to you wonderful people who read my blog. Why, you ask? I’ve only been doing this for a couple of months, but the fulfillment that I get from cooking and writing is something that I really value. On top of that, hearing that I’ve inspired a reader to improve their health or even simply motivated someone to cook at home with real food seriously makes my week, so I want to show you guys some love with free stuff. :o)
Grand prize: Polar FT4 Heart Rate Monitor (silver) — buy yours from my boot camp!
Runner up: Epica Accupro Digital Food Scale
Deadline: Thursday, December 12
How to participate:
- Subscribe to the blog (if you aren’t already following) using an email address that you actually check. I’ll need to get your contact information to ship prizes if you win.
- Leave a comment on this post and tell me any recipe you want to see me clean up! I like a challenge, and I’ve already conquered pizza and ice cream. Get creative. :o)
- I’ll pick the 2 winners with the best recipe ideas by Friday, December 13 and will announce them in a blog post that same day. Check back to see if you’ve won!
If I can make a good version based on your ideas, you’ll see a blog post with the recipe in January. I’m curious about what you people like to eat. I cook a lot of chicken, baked goods, sweet potatoes, and pancakes, but I know everyone doesn’t have the same taste as me. If you’ve got a meal in your head that you’d like to see “cleaned up” — post away! You might get some free toys for sharing your ideas. :o)