Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites {The Recipe ReDux}

Rich & fudgy Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites are super easy to make with just a handful of wholesome ingredients. They are paleo, gluten-free, vegan and delicious enough to please any crowd!

Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites: Healthy paleo, gluten-free & vegan dessert or snack bites

I have a pet peeve. I seriously hate when people call things “brownies” or “cookie dough” when it literally tastes like a protein bar. I’m glad you like it, and I’m sure it really is “OMG so delicious”, but let’s be real for a second: a protein bar does not taste like a brownie. It might taste like a chocolate protein bar that is so good you could enjoy it for dessert, but that does not a brownie make. Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites: Healthy paleo, gluten-free & vegan dessert or snack bites

So, that being said, I almost called these brownie bites. They are so ridiculously rich and fudgy that you could probably call them brownie bites and no one would call you on  it. But, at the end of the day, they do not have the flakey top, and they are more the consistency of cookie dough, so we’ll stick with Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites. Because I am incapable of coming up with a title less than 40 characters long. Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites: Healthy paleo, gluten-free & vegan dessert or snack bites

Okay so while they may not technically be “brownies” that doesn’t stop these little guys from feeling like a totally indulgent treat. In fact, they are like a totally indulgent treat that works like a snack! The ingredients are kind of all rock stars in the way they fill you up and give you energy. I found myself kind of addicted. Every time I wanted something sweet, I kept reaching in the fridge to grab an other one.

Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites: Healthy paleo, gluten-free & vegan dessert or snack bites

I had to bring them into work because I couldn’t stop, and Steve was so upset that he only got 2. I strongly  suggest you let them sit in the fridge for a few hours. I tried one right after I made them and liked it enough, but the texture is much better cold, and the flavors are even more delicious after they’ve had some time to meld together.

Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites: Healthy paleo, gluten-free & vegan dessert or snack bites

They are the perfect after school or pre/post workout snack, or you can even grab a couple for breakfast as you’re walking out the door, and they are without a doubt delicious enough to be eaten for dessert too!

Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Yield: approx 16 bites

Serving Size: 1 bite

Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites

Rich & fudgy Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Mocha Bites are super easy to make with just a handful of wholesome ingredients. They are paleo, gluten-free, vegan and delicious enough to please any crowd!

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup almond butter (or any nut butter of your choice)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, softened but not melted
  • 3 tablespoons honey or pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups almond meal*
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder (I used Hershey's Special Dark)
  • 2 teaspoons espresso powder
  • small pinch sea salt
  • 2/3 cup mini dark chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, stir together almond butter, coconut oil, honey/maple syrup and vanilla until mostly combined. Add almond meal, cocoa powder, espresso powder and sea salt. Use your hands to mix ingredients together. Once dough is mostly formed add chocolate chips and incorporate.
  2. Roll dough into 1-1 1/2" balls (or however large you'd like them). Refrigerate for 1-2 hours before serving. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

*If you use maple syrup (or even a store bought honey), it will not be as thick and you may need to increase almond meal. If the mixture is still sticking to your hands/the bowl, increase almond meal by 1 tablespoon until you reach the desired texture.

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Spicy Bacon Guacamole Dogs

Spicy grilled hot dogs smothered in roasted jalapeno and garlic bacon guacamole and topped with cotija cheese. These hot dogs take typical grilling to the next level with their spicy, bold flavors and perfectly contrasting textures.

Spicy Bacon Guacamole Dogs: Spicy grilled hot dogs smothered with roasted jalapeno & garlic bacon guacamole + cotija cheese

It’s not like you need a reason to make fancy, delicious, to-die-for guacamole. In fact hunger is reason enough for me, and a fork is a totally acceptable vehicle. However, a spicy sausage may be an even more delicious vehicle.

Spicy Bacon Guacamole Dogs: Spicy grilled hot dogs smothered with roasted jalapeno & garlic bacon guacamole + cotija cheese

For a while I was on the fence about hot dogs. Somewhere along the line they became one of those gross foods in my mind that you don’t eat past the age of 7. Ummm, that was a big mistake because for years I missed out on the amazingness that is hot dogs and sausages.

Spicy Bacon Guacamole Dogs: Spicy grilled hot dogs smothered with roasted jalapeno & garlic bacon guacamole + cotija cheese

I also believe that all things are better with guacamole. Even the most delicious things can become instantly more delicious when you add guacamole. Juicy burger? Add guac! Simple grilled chicken? Totally different when smothered with avocado-y goodness. A spoon the size of your face? I think you know the answer. ;)

Spicy Bacon Guacamole Dogs: Spicy grilled hot dogs smothered with roasted jalapeno & garlic bacon guacamole + cotija cheese

My friends from Fork in the Road happened to send me some of their products to try, and after absolutely loving them at BTP, I knew I was in for a treat! I ended up using the hot links which are perfect for this flavor combination, but you can  use any hot dog or sausage you like!

Spicy Bacon Guacamole Dogs

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 6 servings

Serving Size: 1 hotdog/sausage

Spicy Bacon Guacamole Dogs

Spicy grilled hot dogs smothered in roasted jalapeno and garlic bacon guacamole and topped with cotija cheese. These hot dogs take typical grilling to the next level with their spicy, bold flavors and perfectly contrasting textures.

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Grill hotdogs/sausages to desired doneness, about 5 minutes. Toast buns if desired. Place hotdogs/sausages in buns or on a plate, smother with guacamole, and top with a generous pinch of cheese. Serve immediately.

Notes

Buns are totally optional. They look prettier, but I ate these bunless and they were absolutely delicious!

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Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. I was supplied with free sausages from Fork in the Road, but was not in any other way compensated for this post. Recipe and opinions are my own.

Snickers Ice Cream

Ultra soft and creamy sweet cream ice cream loaded with chopped Snickers bars. The perfect summer treat that you will want to repeat all year round!

Psssst…Stick around for a super awesome giveaway at the end of this post!

Snickers Ice Cream

Can we talk about homemade ice cream? It took me so long to get it right, which is silly because it is stupid easy. I’m just lazy and I never read the instructions on my ice cream maker. Sometimes I’m surprised I can even boil water.

Snickers Ice Cream

I kept not chilling my ingredients well enough, and then after, like, 10 minutes I would give up on the churning because it had been soooooo loooong and nothing was happening. So I’d throw it in the freezer where it would then become hard as a rock and proceed to eat it anyway because ice cream is freaking delicious. Frozen solid or not.

Snickers Ice Cream

So this perfectly made ice cream is a recent development and I cant stop, won’t stop. I am obsessed, and I don’t care that I have probably gained like 17 pounds from my summer ice cream obsession. Totally worth it. Plus, running makes up for all calories, right? Shhhh, don’t rain on my parade.

Snickers Ice Cream

This is without a doubt, the richest, creamiest ice cream I have ever tasted. I have to admit, after this one, I lowered my fat content a bit on future ice cream recipes, but sometimes you just need the full fatty goodness, and I’m not going to keep that from you. You absolutely can play with the amounts of whole milk / heavy cream depending on what you’re in the mood for. This ice cream is half milk / half cream, and let me tell ya, the texture is so soft and creamy that I would dare to call it perfection.

Snickers Ice Cream

I loaded up this baby with about 100 Snickers bars (yeahhh, we’ve already established that it’s not healthy, and I’m not even sorry), but you could also use Reese’s or Butterfinger, or really whatever you want. I personally love it with Snickers. The way the caramel and chocolate freeze and get extra chewy. It’s totally dreamy.

Snickers Ice Cream

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 8 hours

Yield: about 1 quart

Serving Size: 1/2 cup

Ultra soft and creamy sweet cream ice cream loaded with chopped Snickers bars. The perfect summer treat that you will want to repeat all year round!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped Snickers bars

Instructions

  1. In a medium pot, combine whole milk and sugar over medium to medium-low heat. Stir constantly until sugar is fully dissolved and incorporated. Remove from heat. Let cool to room temperature then add heavy cream and vanilla. Whisk to combine. Cover and chill for 4 hours or up to overnight.
  2. Freeze according to ice cream maker instructions, then fold in chopped Snickers. Transfer to freezer safe container to finish freezing completely.
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And nooowwww for a very exciting giveaway! I, along with some of my friends, am giving away a $125 Target gift card, a $125 Amazon gift card and a $50 Starbucks gift card. Pretty much all of my favorite things. ;) Giveaway opens July 9th at 12am EST and will remain open until July 23rd at 11:59pm EST. Open to US residents only. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

As I said, this giveaway is sponsored by some of my favorite people. Check them out and see what they’re up to. :)

Julie from White Lights on Wednesday | Aubrey from Real Housemoms | Nancy from The Bitter Side of Sweet | Becca from It’s Yummi! | Brianne from Cupcakes and Kale Chips | Alyssa from What’s Cooking, Love? | Raquel from Organized Island | Deb from Cooking on the Front Burner | Jenn from Endlessly Inspired | Melissa from Persnickety Plates | Megan from The Pink Flour | Heather from French Press | Nicole from The Marvelous Misadventures of a Foodie | Kelley from Miss Information | Paula from Call Me PMc

Roasted Jalapeno & Garlic Bacon Guacamole

Rich, creamy guacamole with roasted jalapenos and roasted garlic loaded with crispy bacon. This guacamole is a total crowd pleaser and will take the traditional dip to a whole new level!

Roasted Jalapeno & Garlic Bacon Guacamole: Smooth, creamy and loaded with crispy bacon!

One of my favorite local restaurants is The Taco Guild, a super cute taco shop type restaurant built in an old church. They have amazing, creative tacos that you can order a la carte so you can mix and match, and they also have ridiculously good guacamole. In fact, my brother refers to it as “the place with the guacamole”.

Roasted Jalapeno & Garlic Bacon Guacamole: Smooth, creamy and loaded with crispy bacon!

Now don’t get me wrong, guacamole is one of those things that is fantastic on it’s own without any crazy add ins, but I do believe that with the right customization, traditional guac can get even better! And when is bacon ever the wrong customization? Ummm…never.

Roasted Jalapeno & Garlic Bacon Guacamole: Smooth, creamy and loaded with crispy bacon!

This actually isn’t that different than my normal guac. I used my normal recipe, but I roasted the jalapeno and garlic to bring out their flavor. I am of the opinion that almost all things are better roasted, especially garlic. I could eat cloves of roasted garlic all on their own, but I don’t think that’s quite normal. I just freakin’ love it.

Roasted Jalapeno & Garlic Bacon Guacamole: Smooth, creamy and loaded with crispy bacon!

Now let’s chat for a second about the bacon. Bacon gets a super bad rap. In fact, for a long time, I avoided it like the plague and used words like “heart-attack-inducing”. While it may not be the leanest meat on the planet, if you choose the right kind, I really don’t see it as “diet-busting”. In fact, as far as calories, fat and protein go, 2 slices of center cut bacon are about equal to a whole egg. If you love bacon and haven’t tried center cut yet, you are missing out! It is exactly what it sounds like–the center cut of the meat. It cuts out a lot of the extra fat without sacrificing any taster and texture the way turkey bacon does. I mean, turkey bacon  is okay and you can totally use it, but if you love the prefer the real stuff, center cut is the way to go.

Roasted Jalapeno & Garlic Bacon Guacamole: Smooth, creamy and loaded with crispy bacon!

With the spicy jalapeno and heavy hand of garlic mixed with the creamy avocado and crunchy bacon, this guacamole is insanely addicting with a flavor you won’t be able to stop thinking about! I like mine ultra smooth, so I use an immersion blender, but if you prefer a chunkier bacon, feel free to mash with a fork. Either way, you will want to make this stuff over and over again!

Roasted Jalapeno & Garlic Bacon Guacamole

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 8-10 servings

Roasted Jalapeno & Garlic Bacon Guacamole

Rich, creamy guacamole with roasted jalapenos and roasted garlic loaded with crispy bacon. This guacamole is a total crowd pleaser and will take the traditional dip to a whole new level!

Ingredients

  • 4 large cloves garlic, roasted*
  • 1 medium jalapeno, roasted, seeds removed*
  • 3 small avocados, pitted and peeled
  • 1 small lime, zest and juice
  • small handful cilantro
  • 1 heaping teaspoon ground cumin
  • generous pinch each salt and pepper
  • 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 4 slices center cut bacon, cooked and chopped

Instructions

  1. Place roasted garlic, roasted jalapeno, avocados, lime zest, lime juice, cilantro, cumin, salt and pepper in a large bowl. For smooth guacamole, blend with an immersion blender. For chunkier guacamole, finely chop garlic, jalapeno and cilantro before mixing, then mash all ingredients together with a fork. Stir in onion and bacon. Serve immediately. Leftovers may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days. For best results, store with avocado pit in leftovers. This will help prevent browning.

Notes

*To roasted garlic, drizzle with a little bit of olive oil and wrap in tin foil. Bake at 400 until softened, about 30 minutes. *To roast jalapeno, drizzle with olive oil and wrap in tin foil. Bake at 400 until softened, then open tin foil and turn oven to broil. Broil just until jalapeno gets a little char on the outside. Watch very carefully! They can burn very quickly.

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Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins

Ultra soft, fluffy and tall bakery style lemon blueberry buttermilk muffins. These muffins are screaming bright, summer flavor, and with their ultra soft and tender crumb, you’d never guess they were healthy and gluten-free! Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins.: A perfect summer breakfast. Light, healthy & gluten-free.

Okay, so who else is ridiculously excited about season 2 of Orange is the New Black? I feel like I haven’t left the house in two days because all I want to do is stay home and watch it. Plus, I wanted to re-watch the entire first season to refresh and get myself ready for season 2! Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins.: A perfect summer breakfast. Light, healthy & gluten-free.

I actually juuuussstt finished season 1, and I’m only a couple of episodes into season 2. “I think I’ll Pinterest. I hear that’s a thing.” <—–my favorite part so far. Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins.: A perfect summer breakfast. Light, healthy & gluten-free. Ummm….yeah. So that’s what’s happening in my life. Also lots of swimming and a whole 13×9 pan of watermelon and tequila in my freezer because these are making a comeback. What can I say? It’s summer. Margaritas and all things citrus must be had. ;) Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins.: A perfect summer breakfast. Light, healthy & gluten-free.

Something about lemons just scream summer to me. Summer is when I do a lot of my recipe testing/photography because I have some extra time to devote to the blog. Last year the first thing I did when summer vay cay started was buy a crap ton of lemons and make lemon blondies and lemon crinkle cookies. They are still two of my favorite desserts. Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins.: A perfect summer breakfast. Light, healthy & gluten-free.

The bright, citrusy flavor seems to instantly make desserts more summery. Like I’m cooling off by the pool with a glass of lemonade, while simultaneously eating my weight in big, fluffy muffins. The best of both worlds if you ask me. Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins.: A perfect summer breakfast. Light, healthy & gluten-free.

I also feel like lemons and blueberries are kindred spirits. Like pb & j, chocolate & hazelnut, goat cheese & my mouth. These muffins are so soft and filled to the brim with blueberries. The lemon glaze is totally optional. There is plenty of lemon flavor already there, but if you want a little extra sweetness, it’s definitely a fantastic addition. Either way, you won’t be able to get enough of these babies!

Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Lemon Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins

Ultra soft, fluffy and tall bakery style lemon blueberry buttermilk muffins. These muffins are screaming bright, summer flavor, and with their ultra soft and tender crumb, you'd never guess they were healthy and gluten-free!

Ingredients

  • 3 cups gluten-free baking blend orwhite whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 small lemon, zest and juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup reduced fat buttermilk
  • 1 and 1/4 cup fresh blueberries (preferably organic)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425. Spray muffin tin with nonstick spray, or line with paper liners. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together baking blend, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, applesauce, lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla until combined. Stir in half the dry ingredients, then buttermilk, then remaining dry ingredients until just combined. Do not overmix. Gently fold in blueberries.
  4. Evenly divide batter between 12 standard muffin tins. Bake for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 and continue to bake for an other 17-20 minutes, until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean (with just a few crumbs).
  5. Let stand for 10 minutes, then serve or transfer to a wire rack. Drizzle with this lemon glaze if desired. Store leftovers in an airtight container for 3-5 days. For best results do not add glaze until ready to serve.

Notes

The muffins will get quite brown and you will think you have overcooked them. The almond meal and whole grain flours yield a darker muffin. As long as you bake for suggested time and do not over mix, your muffins should come out perfectly baked, soft and tender!

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