Friday, June 29, 2012

Stevia {all natural sweetener}

If you are switching out your {dirty} sweetener to Stevia you need to read labels. I know I preach it ALL.THE.TIME. but read the ingredients! I have Stevia in my garden which works well for homemade cold drinks, but that's not always the best form for coffee or baking needs.

Sugar in the RAW contains dextrose (chemically processed sugar) and maltodextrin (food additive).

Truvia contains rebiana (Cargill company) & erythritol (sugar alcohol, which causes me stomach issues).

PureVia (PEPSI Product) contains dextrose and cellulose powder.

Here's a blog entry someone else did on the subject : BeautifulAfterTheBelly

I use Sweet Leaf packets when I travel or on the go in a pinch.  I use Trader Joe's or Whole Foods containers that looks like this on a daily basis at home (that's 622 servings per container):

Saturday, June 23, 2012

{clean} Pumpkin Pie

My daughter loves pumpkin pie. She had asked me to make her one since we had leftover canned pumpkin from fall in the pantry (there is nothing worse than running out of canned pumpkin in October! HA)  For this recipe I used a whole wheat crust from Whole Foods that was ready to fill.

This recipe is cleaned up greatly from the traditional pumpkin pie that adds inches to the waistline each Thanksgiving season. It was a hit with the mini me so it's a keeper in my book! Now, the image below...well I could have done better. 

{clean} Pumpkin Pie

  • 1 can {all natural} pumpkin (15 oz is what I used)
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/8 tsp {all natural} stevia (or 1/4 c more of honey)
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp {all natural} vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk, coconut milk, or organic fat free milk. (I used coconut milk)
  • 1 {clean} pie crust 


1) Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2) Combine all ingredients in a bowl with a hand held mixer.
3) Pour into pie crust.
4) Bake for 15 minutes at 425.
5) Reduce heat to 350 and bake an additional 45 minutes.

NOTE: Next time I make this I plan to make my own crust. There just wasn't time this go around. Here's one I've made before:  Extra Easy Whole Grain Crust  
I plan to try an Almond crust next, but I don't like to recommend a recipe unless I have made it myself first.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

{clean} flavored water

I have people ask me all the time if what they are drinking is {clean}. I remember reading TONS of labels in the beginning and being overwhelmed.  I still believe it's best to make your own flavored waters, but every once in a while we need something and we need it NOW! Or when you commit to get off the soda, you MUST have options to run to if you start to panic.

Be aware of chemicals in bottled flavored water. It can actually make you gain weight. How you say??? Because your body wasn't built to process these chemicals and additives. Also, it can cause you to have cravings that you wouldn't have if you only drank water. Trust me it's true!

I recommend the following:

 True Lemon -It's great to have on hand in the car, your bag, etc.  I don't drink this but my kids will, from time to time, if we are out at a restaurant and they ask for lemonade. 

Vitamin ZERO Water -It now tastes SUPER sweet to me. I typically will drink half the bottle, fill it with water and save it for another day. Each bottle is 2 servings I believe anyway.

Ice Mountain Sparkling Flavored Water -My husband still craves the carbonated beverage so he drinks this often. 

Hint Water  -I have only tried one flavor of this brand, Hint. It was good but such a subtle flavor that it would taste just as good, or better, to make your own.

MetroMint -I have had this one before. I hated the chocolate flavor. If you do love mint it would be worth a try at some of the other flavors.

I found this awesome blog entry regarding making your own flavored water, check it out:

Best of luck to you if you are making that commitment to rid your life of HFCS and chemicals!  You will be glad you did months from now!