Saturday, October 29, 2011

{clean} Carrot Cake

My husband's favorite cake is Carrot Cake. So when a friend of mine raved about a Carrot Cake recipe that she uses all the time, I had to take a look.  She wanted to see if I could {clean} it up. Who says you can't have your cake and eat it too(without the guilt)?  Surely by now you know I love a good challenge.  I took that recipe and made it fit into my clean lifestyle.  It turned out delicious! 

As with any baking recipe I {clean} up, I don't try to go too far the first time around by removing all the fat, cholesterol, and sugar.  However, I managed to cut the sugar by more than half and the fat and cholesterol in this recipe had a major overhaul. Over the past year of {clean eating} I have learned that you can make things taste great and be great for you as well.  And not carry such guilt when you are asked "would you like a slice of cake?"!

 This cake turned out sweet, moist, and carrot-tastic! 

{clean} Carrot Cake

Reciped adapted from


  • 2 {cage free/organic} eggs
  • 4 {cage free/organic} egg whites or 1/3 cup egg white liquid
  • 1 cup {organic} pure sugar cane (fine)
  • 1 tsp {organic} stevia powder
  • 2 tsp {pure} vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup Barlean's coconut oil or 1/4 cup applesauce (I use chia seeds instead, see notes)
  • 1 cup {all natural, no sugar added} applesauce
  • 2 cup {organic} whole wheat pastry flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea or kosher salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 cups grated carrots
  • 8 oz 1/3 fat cream cheese (room temp)
  • 1 cup {organic} powdered sugar (I get mine at TJ)
  • 1 tsp {pure} vanilla extract
  • 1 cup pecans (optional)
1). Preheat over to 350 degrees. Spray Canola Oil cooking spray over the inside of 9 x 13 pan.
2). In a large bowl beat together eggs, oil, applesauce, sugar, stevia, and vanilla until combined.
3). In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt,  and cinnamon.
4) Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet and blend with mixer until combined. Pour into pan.
5). Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Let cool completely before icing.
6) For frosting, combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until smooth and creamy.
7) After cake has completely cooled you can add the icing.

NOTE: I prefer my carrot cake to chill in the fridge before serving so the cream cheese is nice and cool. I also sprinkled the cake with all naturally colored orange sugar ( and cinnamon. 

If you want to give Chia Seeds a try, you can add 1 Tbps to 1/4 cup of water, stir for a few minutes and let sit for 15 minutes until they become a gel and then add them to the wet. 


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Mini {cleaned up} Cheesecakes

I do love cheesecakes (they are one of my all time favorites!), but I rarely eat them because they are full of fat and leave my stomach in pain from the dairy. However, sometimes it's worth the pain.

We were having my husband's family over to celebrate my mother-in-law's birthday and cheesecake is her favorite dessert. I thought this would be a great opportunity challenge to make a {cleaned} up version of cheesecake. Making them individually, like I did for this recipe, will helps keep portion controls in check.  

This recipe is not low fat but just ONE of these little cheesecakes was very rich and rewarding. It was so rich even that I will try to make it with less fat next time and post the results. This recipe is free of artificial colors, preservatives, and white table sugar. 

Mini {cleaned up} Cheesecakes

This recipe was adapted from
  • 1 cup {all natural} graham crackers crumbs (I used Mi-Del)
  • 1 Tbps {all natural} cane sugar or coconut sugar
  • 3 Tbps {organic} unsalted butter
  • 2-3 Tbps {all natural} apple juice
  • 1 package(8 oz) 1/3 less fat cream cheese (room temp)
  • 1 package(8 oz) full fat cream cheese (room temp)
  • 2/3 cup {all natural} cane sugar (I use super fine)
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 2 large {cage free/organic} eggs (room temp)
  • 1 tsp {pure} vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup {low fat} sour cream (room temp)

1)  Preheat oven to 300 degrees and place oven rack in the center of the oven. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.

2)  In a small bowl combine the graham cracker crumbs, cane sugar, melted butter, and apple juice. Press a heaping tablespoon of crumbs onto the bottoms of the 12 muffin cups. Cover and refrigerate while you make the filling.

3)  In a bowl, beat the cream cheese on low speed with blender until creamy and smooth. Add the cane sugar and salt and beat until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until incorporated. Add the vanilla extract, lemon zest, and sour cream and beat until incorporated. Remove the crusts from the refrigerator and evenly divide the filling among the 12 muffin cups. 

4)  Bake for about 18 -22 minutes or until firm but the centers of the cheesecakes still wobble a little. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack. Let cool and then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate (a few hours or even overnight).

NOTE:  To serve, gently peel off the paper liners and place on your serving plate. Serve with {all natural} strawberry sauce, fresh berries, or drizzle with melted dark chocolate. These cheesecakes can be covered and stored in the refrigerator for several days. (I drizzled ours with dark chocolate and returned them to the fridge before serving)

Makes 12 individual cheesecakes. 


Monday, October 24, 2011

{cleaned} up Birthday Party

I always tell people I try to live life 85% {clean}. I'm not sure where that percentage comes from, but it's a goal. I take that percentage into all aspects of life, even a birthday party.

For my daughters birthday party, it was a Spa theme and the kids started out with a fresh Berry Plate.

Then for lunch they got to select their own lunch items.  Multigrain bread, {all natural} peanut butter  and {all natural} strawberry jam made the PB&Js. Or they could choose Boar's Head Turkey and cheese. Their side choices were {all natural} applesauce, carrots, grapes, or banana. They had a great time selecting and feeling in charge of their lunch. (we served Berry Berry Good Lemonade by Honest and water) 

For dessert we had Zogurt's {all natural} Frozen Yogurt. It's delicious and nutritious. You can read more about it at their website:  or stop in and visit them! You won't be disappointed.

And cake pops, lots of cake pops!

Strawberry(box mix) with {all natural} white chocolate and {all natural} pink sprinkles
{all natural} Chocolate with Dark chocolate with pearls
{all natural} pumpkin with cream cheese
{all natural} vanilla with milk chocolate

 I did fine some {all natural} dinner mints that were quite tasty for the party. And one of her {unclean} favorites: Skittles was served during Foot spa time!

This is one happy 7 year old!

{clean} Chocolate Cake Pops

I apologize for not blogging much lately but my attention has been on preparing for my daughter's 7th birthday party. Party planning is one of my passions and I throw {almost} my whole self into each birthday party.  I made four different flavors of cake pops for the party and this was a crowd pleaser for sure.

{clean} Chocolate Cake Pops

Recipe adapted from Babycakes Manual
  • 3/4 cup {organic} whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 cup {organic} cane sugar ( i use super fine)
  • 3 Tbps cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea or kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk *
  • 3 Tbps Organic Virgin Coconut oil (liquid measurement)
  • 1 egg (i use cage free/organic)
  • 1 tsp {pure} vanilla
  • 1/4 cup freshly brewed coffee
1).  Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl.  Add buttermilk, oil, egg, and vanilla. Using a mixer, blend until smooth.
2).  Add coffee and continue mixing until coffee is evenly incorporated into mixture.

This is where the recipe will stop for now. I used the Babycakes machine and cooked twelve balls at a time for 4 minutes.  I suggest making mini or regular muffins and keeping an eye on them until a toothpick pulls out clean (probably baking at 350 degrees). I will repost once I have done this. 

Also, I plan to add more nutritional value to this recipe if it's going to making it's way to our table often. Stay tuned for that recipe!

NOTE: I dipped each pop in {organic} 73% dark chocolate. And no, the pearls are not {clean}! 
*Instead of buttermillk I poured 3/4 tsp lemon juice(or vinegar) into a glass measuring cup and then added enough milk to reach a 1/4 cup. Allow to stand for 5 minutes, then use in place of buttermilk in the recipe.