When I started learning about 'Clean Eating' earlier this year I quickly realized that the phrase can be interpreted many different ways. For some people it means no gluten, for others it means no sugar and for others it means all organic foods. The definition that made the most sense for me and my family is the one that Lisa Leake used during her 100 Days of Real Food pledge. Here is a quick summary of the 'rules' she followed:
Now, these are the rules the Leakes used during their pledge and though I'd LOVE to live this way 100% of the time, I realize that it's not realistic for me. However, I do try to eat by these rules most of the time. Rather than commit to 100 days of real food like the Leakes did, they offer a different challenge to their readers - A 10 Day Pledge! For as much as I've learned about and talked about Clean Eating over the past 8 months I've yet to take this pledge myself. That's all about to change! I'm excited to announce that I am going to take the 10 Day Pledge beginning August 12, 2014! ( We have this little event coming up known as my daughter's 9th birthday...so I thought I should wait til after that!) I invite YOU to join me and sign up for the pledge yourself so we can do it together!
So, now that we've defined what Clean Eating means to me, I'd like to share a recipe with you. I thought that a great way to start off the blog would be with dessert, of course! Brownies! I first tried these brownies a few months ago when my friend made them for her diabetic daughter. Only after my non-diabetic kids devoured these brownies she told me that they were gluten free AND sugar free! Since my older daughter has a major sweet tooth and has never met a carb she didn't love, I thought these would be a fantastic addition to her lunchbox in a few weeks.
These are made with a high quality almond flour (I find mine at Costco) and honey which my kids love! The original recipe calls for chocolate chunks and orange zest. Though I really enjoyed the orange zest, it got mixed reviews in my house so I omitted it. Also, in an effort to make these completely sugar free I omitted the chocolate chunks as well. If I were making these for a special occasion I would totally use them, but for an everyday lunchbox treat I think they are just fine without them. Also, to add a little extra depth to them, I topped them with a little fleur de sal when they were done baking.
Fudgy Brownies (Gluten Free and Sugar Free)
1/2 cup blanched almond flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon fleur de sel (or other flaky sea salt)
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup coconut oil
Pinch of fleur de sel (for garnish)
Preheat oven to 350° F. Line an 8x8 inch square baking pan with parchment paper. Butter the parchment or spray with extra virgin olive oil.
Place almond flour in the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth and any chunks have broken down. Pulse in cocoa powder and fleur de sel until mixture is well blended, about 10 seconds.
Add eggs, one at a time, and process until mixture is smooth. Add honey and coconut oil and continue blending until the mixture is smooth and all ingredients are fully incorporated.
Pour mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool about 15 minutes before removing from the pan using the parchment to lift it out. When brownies are completely cooled, sprinkle with additional fleur de sel and cut into 16 squares.
Welcome to the new and improved Butter Blog! I've taken a long absence from blogging but I've recently decided to start again! For those of you who are used to seeing cupcakes, cakes and other unhealthy recipes, you'll notice a shift in the types of food I showcase on here. I've decided to use Butter is Better as my way of sharing my new food philosophy - a focus on whole, real, unprocessed food - also known as 'Clean Eating'. I've switched over 90% of my cooking and baking to be 'clean' so I'll still have plenty of recipes to share with you! I'm also hoping to share my daily challenges and successes with you as well as share information I've learned in the past year about our food sources and Western diet.
What prompted this change?
In late 2013 I really started to take notice to the way our food is processed, where it comes from and the effects it has on our health and our bodies over the long term. In January 2014 I found the blog, 100 Days of Real Food and read Michael Pollan's book, In Defense of Food. Only then did I realize just how many chemicals and preservatives we were putting into our bodies every single day with every single meal. I was truly shocked! My food philosophy was forever changed. After that, my kitchen pantry received a major update! I wanted to revive this blog to reflect on my new way of eating in the hopes of sharing some information you all may find valuable.
What will you find on this blog?
My goal in reviving Butter is Better is to share with you all of the information I've learned during my real food journey. I have been reading, reading, reading and I want to share my findings with you! I also want to share with you delicious recipes, menu planning tips, budgeting ideas, school lunch inspiration and more!
Please keep in mind that I am NOT a dietitian, nutritionist or doctor. I am formally educated in business with a background in purchasing but I've always had a passion for cooking (and eating!) I'm just a girl trying to eat as healthy as I can and raise my two daughters on the highest quality food I can possibly provide. I'm not perfect and I don't eat clean 100% of the time. Sometimes the best laid plans go awry and we end up with a take-out pizza for dinner. It happens. We eat it and feel gross and vow to try harder the next day!
I have a whole slew of topics and recipes to talk about over the next few months, but to get you started I wanted to share with you a few of my old blog recipes that are already clean! These are two of my summer staples that I'm enjoying right now as I type :)
Stop Back Often!
Please stop by often! I plan on updating this blog several times a week so please stop by and let me know what you think of the new direction I've taken. Also, if you have any specific topics you are wondering about, please ask! I may have an answer for you and if I don't, I'd be happy to find one for you and learn along with you!
Enjoy the new and improved clean version of Butter is Better!
Pittsburgh area mom striving to provide clean, healthy, REAL food for her family!