Triple Chocolate Raspberry Cake

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Trying to find a dessert that is gluten/dairy free that everyone in the family likes and that is good, is no easy feat.  In fact, most gluten free cakes that I have tried, aren’t that great.  Actually, they’ve been kind of gross.  This is the exception.  Oh my goodness, this was good.  Decadent would be a good word to describe this cake.  I will definitely be making this one again and again!  I found this recipe on the Enjoy Life website, they are the company that makes the dairy free chocolate that we like.  It’s gluten free, dairy free, vegan and nut free!  A completely allergy friendly recipe!

Ingredients:

1.5 cups gluten free flour (I used King Arthur’s)

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup Cocoa plus 1-2 Tablespoons to prepare pan

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp xanthan gum (omit if you are using a flour blend that already has it)

1/4 cup vegetable oil, plus 2 Tablespoons

1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup water  (room temperature)

1/2 cup prepared coffee (room temperature)

1/2 cup plus 1 1/2 cups Enjoy Life Foods Mini Semi-Sweet Baking Chips

1/2 cup coconut milk

6 ounce carton of raspberries

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 9 inch round cake pan.  Spoon 1 Tablespoon of cocoa into the pan and rotate the pan, covering all of the greased surfaces.  Tap over a sink to remove any excess cocoa.

Sift the flour, sugar, baking soda, cocoa, salt and xanthan gum.  I stirred this mixture into a bowl and then put into the prepared baking pan.

Make 3 wells into the flour mixture, one large and two small.  Add the oil to the largest well.  The vanilla in one of the small wells and the apple cider vinegar in the other small well.  Pour the water and coffee over the entire mixture and mix together with a fork.  Stir in a 1/2 cup of the chocolate chips and bake for 30-40 minutes until the cake is done.  Mine took about 35 minutes.  The sides will pull away from a pan a bit and a toothpick inserted should come out clean.

Allow to cool in the pan on a rack to cool for 15 minutes.  Turn out on the rack to finish cooling completely.

While the cake is cooling you can start making the ganache.  I used a double boiler to do this but if you don’t have one you can put a metal bowl over a pot of boiling water.  Combine 1 1/2 cups of the chocolate chips with the 1/2 cup coconut milk.  Stir until melted and combined.  Then whisk for a few minutes to fully combine.  Remove from heat and place into a larger bowl with ice in it and put into the refrigerator for 15 minutes.  Whisk the ganache together before pouring on the cooled cake.

Once the cake is cooled, which should be by the time your ganache has been in the refrigerator for 15 minutes, place the baking rack on top of a cookie sheet.  Pour the ganache on top of the cake, letting it pour and coat the sides.  I took a spatula and spread the ganache all over the top of the cake and sides as mine didn’t cover it completely by pouring.  Any access can drip onto the baking sheet.

Place the raspberries on top of the ganache.  Leave at room temperature until you are ready to serve.

Enjoy!

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Peanut Butter Frosting

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Now that I can’t make buttercream frosting (yum!!) I normally just buy the stuff in the can.  Pillsbury has a vanilla frosting that is dairy free, so that’s my go to.  I know it’s nasty and loaded with chemicals, but we can eat it.

Now, I love peanut butter.  I also love chocolate.  Why not put them together in a form of a cupcake?  I found this frosting recipe on Joy Food Sunshine and didn’t make any changes except the type of peanut butter used.  Now, I ruined the first batch of this frosting.  I whipped it on high in my stand up mixer, like you would making buttercream frosting.  Don’t do that!!  It was fluffy looking then separated and I couldn’t fix it.  So make sure to keep the mixer on low.  My frosting also did not turn out as thick as hers so I didn’t add the almond milk to mine.  After decorating my cupcakes, I needed to put it in the fridge to get the icing to set up.

Ingredients:

3/4 cup peanut butter

1/2 cup coconut oil

1/2 tsp vanilla

2 cups powdered sugar

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 cup almond milk

Instructions:

Melt coconut oil and peanut butter together, stirring until completely combined.  Let mixture cool completely.

Pour the cooled mixture into the bowl of a stand alone mixer.  Add vanilla, powdered sugar and salt.  Beat (with the shield in place, otherwise you’ll have powdered sugar flying everywhere!) until well combined, scraping the sides.

Again, I didn’t add the almond milk because my icing was too runny.  I brought these to a party so my daughter and I could have a gluten and dairy free dessert to eat.  I sort of hid them and when I went to get my daughter’s dinner, I noticed 5 were missing already!  Guests were scarfing them down and they had no idea they were dairy/gluten free.  Definitely a keeper!

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

My family gave me a gluten free cook book for Christmas and my girls were really wanting to try a recipe from it.  We found a chocolate chip cookie recipe and decided to give it a go.  I made a few changes, one being using a gluten free baking flour mix.  My favorite that I have found so far is from Pillsbury.  If you use a gluten free flour that is not a mix you will need to add 1 tsp xanthan gum.

So the girls loved these.  I thought it was a good base recipe but needed work.  They were very sugary – almost like a sugar cookie with chocolate chips.  The girls thought that because they were gluten free that they were healthy.  No, with all that sugar, definitely not healthy but cookies that mommy can eat!

Ingredients:

1 cup vegetable shortening (next time I will try bacon grease)

1 cup granulated sugar (Would cut back to 1/2 cup next time)

1/2 brown sugar

2 eggs

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

2 cups plus 2 Tablespoons flour mixture

1/2 tsp salt

12 oz chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Lightly grease cookie sheet or use a silpat baking mat.

Beat shortening and sugars with an electric mixer.  Add eggs and vanilla and beat until combined.

Add dry ingredients, mix until combined.  Add chocolate chips and stir.

Drop heaping spoonfuls of dough onto cookie sheet.  Bake for 8-10 minutes until light golden brown.  I had to cook for 10 minutes in my oven.  Cool cookies on tray for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Healthy Cookie Dough

So, this might sound weird, but you make these to intentionally have raw cookie dough on hand.  Crazy, right?  But they are soooo good and actually healthy!  No eggs.  No flour.  No sugar.

A friend on Facebook posted this recipe a while back and at first it intrigued me but seemed odd, so I didn’t make them.  My kids always ask for dessert if they’ve eaten a good dinner and I really don’t like them eating so much junk every night.  I started looking for desserts that they would like eating AND that I knew were healthy and wouldn’t mind giving them.  Hello, healthy cookie dough!!

At first both of my kids turned their noses up at these.  But the second day they were gobbling them down.  They do look a little weird and the texture is different.  If your kids balk at these at first, try again another day.  My whole family loves being able to just pop one or two of these babies out of the fridge for a treat!

Ingredients:
1 cup almond butter (got mine at Trader Joe’s)
1 cup peanut butter (all natural from Trader Joe’s)
1 cup honey
4 cups rolled oats (make sure to get a gluten free brand)
1/2 cup flax seed (may help fight everything from heart disease and diabetes to breast cancer. Eat flax seed!)
1/2 bag mini chips
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Directions:
Mix all ingredients into a large bowl. Put in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to chill. Roll into balls and keep refrigerated until you are ready to eat them.  I just pop a few out at time to give to my girls or to eat myself.  Don’t think these are just for kids, they are great with coffee in the morning!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

Having a restricted diet can be challenging and sometimes quite depressing.  Especially with social media and all the yummy videos of food that I can never have!  🙂  I saw this video about a month ago and it looked so good, I had to experiment and see if I could make it dairy/gluten free.

Here is the link to the original recipe that a friend posted on Facebook.

 

I love chocolate and I love peanut butter so I had to find a way to make this work!

Here’s what I did.

Ingredients:

1.5 cups confectioners suger, sifted

1.5 cups gluten/dairy free graham cracker crumbs (I used Kinnikinnick brand)

1 cup creamy peanut butter (I used some crunchy as I ran out of creamy)

8 tablespoons Earth Balance vegan “butter”

1 cup coconut cream

8 ounces dairy free chocolate chips (I use enjoy life)

1 tsp flaky sea salt (I wouldn’t add this next time)


Directions:

Coat the bottom and sides of an 8×8 baking dish with nonstick spray, I use coconut oil.  In a large bowl, stir to combine the sugar, graham cracker crumbs and peanut butter and melted butter.  Press mixture into the baking dish and set aside.

Place chocolate and cream in a small saucepan.  Stir over medium heat until the chocolate has melted and is smooth.  Pour the melted chocolate over the peanut butter mixture and refrigerate until the chocolate is cooled and set, at least 45 minutes.  Sprinkle evenly with flaky sea salt.  Cut into squares and serve.

I felt the original recipe was too salty.  This version removes some of the salt.  I would taste a square with the flaky salt first before adding to all of them.

So happy with how this turned out!  Such a yummy and rich treat that I didn’t have to turn the oven on for.  It kept well for over a week in the fridge.  Will definitely be making this one again soon!

Enjoy!

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

People hear the words “gluten free” and instantly think, gross.  So I have stopped telling them it’s gluten free until after they’ve eaten.  And raved about how good it is.  Gluten free, baby.  😉

This recipe is no exception.  In fact, these are to die for.  No grains whatsoever.
The key to not being able to eat what the majority of the population eats, is to have things on hand that you can have.  These will become a regular sweet in our house!

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips, divided {I use these so they are dairy free}
3 large egg whites
2 cups powdered sugar, divided
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1/4 tsp salt

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray 2 large baking sheets with nonstick spray, or use a silpat liner.  Melt 1 cup chocolate chips in microwave, stirring twice, about two minutes.  Cool.

Using electric mixer, beat whites in a large bowl to soft peaks.  Gradually beat in 1/2 cup powdered sugar.  Continue beating until mixture resembles soft marshmallow creme.

Wisk 1 cup powdered sugar, cocoa, cornstarch and salt in medium bowl to blend.  On low speed, beat dry ingredients into meringue.

Stir in lukewarm chocolate and 1/2 cup chocolate chips.  Refrigerate until dough is stiff.  Place 1/2 cup powdered sugar in a bowl.  Roll 1 rounded tablespoon into a ball; roll in sugar, coating thickly.  Place on prepared baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining dough; spacing 2 inches apart.  Bake until puffed and tops crack, about 10 minutes.  Cool before removing.

Try not to eat the whole sheet.  But I won’t judge you if you do.  🙂

Fresh Berry Cups

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My friend Becca brought these delicious desserts to my house a few months ago.  They are beautiful to look at and after one bite, I was hooked.  I knew this was going to be a recipe I wanted to make again and again!

They are chocolate cups filled with coconut cream topped with fresh raspberries and blueberries.  The only thing you need is silicone baking cups.  I bought these ones from amazon.

Ingredients:

1 bag enjoy life chocolate chips (if you want to keep this dairy free)

2 cans full fat coconut milk

1 tsp vanilla

pinches of sugar to taste

fresh raspberries and blueberries

Directions:

Place cans of coconut milk in the refrigerator overnight.  This will help the coconut milk thicken and separate from the water.

Melt the chocolate chips in a saucepan or double boiler until you have a smooth consistency.

Coat the bottom and sides of your candy cup with about 1 spoonful of melted chocolate.  Place candy cups in the freezer.

Remove chocolate cups from the freezer once firm and carefully pop the chocolate cups out of the silicone mold.  I did have a few of my edges break, but that’s okay.  Doesn’t effect the taste! I put my cups back in the freezer before filling as the chocolate was starting to get soft.

Remove the coconut milk from the refrigerator and scoop out the solid coconut cream at the top of the can and place in a large bowl.  Do not use the water at the bottom for this recipe.  I made quite a mess with this as coconut cream was flying everywhere when I was whipping it.  Maybe a stand mixer with a shield would be nice next time!

Add the vanilla and sugar to taste and start whipping your coconut cream until light and fluffy.  I had some very stubborn hard pieces in mine that didn’t want to whip.  Keep whipping if that happens to you.  I also thought it was a little runny but it fluffed up nicely in the refrigerator.

Once your cups are hard again, scoop some of your coconut filling into the chocolate cups.  Top each cup with a few raspberries and blueberries.  Refrigerate until you are ready to eat.

This made 24 cups but I only had enough coconut cream for 18.  With the extra cups, we just put a scoop of dairy free ice cream in there!  Yum!

Enjoy!