Mint Chocolate Macaroons (Paleo)

Well I’ve officially “moved” from the hills of western mass back to my home town near boston. My house is still on the market so my feet are still somewhat tied but on a weekly basis I’ve begun working my new jobs and living out east full time! It’s WONDERFUL to not have to drive back and forth across the state every other day and I believe most of the craziness has past but there is still so much that I need to organize and settle into. So far I am LOVING my new jobs as a coach at Crossfit Tri Countyย and a waitress/bartender at an awesome super busy restaurant in Dedham. I’m on track to enroll in the Nutritional Therapy Practitioner course through the NTAย starting in February which has been on my to-do-ASAP list for far too long, my new living situation and job flexibility will allow me to finally continue my education in the field I am most passionate about.

While all this news sounds so positive and “Merry”, if you asked me how I was doing just a few days ago I wouldn’t have been able to answer because I was overwhelmed with sad, negative, self-degrading emotions. The ups and downs of change and, in this case, huge life transitions can really mess with your brain and challenge your internal strength but ultimately there will always be good and bad days, happy and sad moments, comforting and fearful experiences. No matter what life throws your way its important to stay present and remember that you can only control you; how you react, how you behave, how you feel. Feeling emotions isn’t a bad thing, but letting them affect your life in a negative way is. If something is causing you pain and you can remove it from your life, you need to take charge and remove it. If some reoccuring thoughts are causing you to be unable to move forward, you need to confront them and forgive yourself so that you can move on. Life doesn’t always present you with rainbows and butterflies, or maybe it does but we just cant see them because we are too upset about the rain? Food for thought. ๐Ÿ™‚

Now, enough of that, back to the reason why you’re here: here’s a super easy and festive recipe you can whip up to bring to your next holiday cookie swap or party. Enjoy!


  • 3 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup cacao powder
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg white
  • dash of sea salt


-Preheat oven to 325 degrees (F)

-In a large mixing bowl combine all ingredients except egg white and salt

-In another bowl whisk egg white and salt with a hand mixer on high for 1-2 minutes until stiff peaks form

-Carefully fold egg white into the coconut mixture until well combined

-Scoop balls onto parchment lined backing sheet

-Bake for 30 minutes

-Remove from oven and let cool to room temperature

-(Optional) melt 1/2 cup dark chocolate in a small bowl and mix in 1/4 tsp peppermint extract (alcohol free). Dip the bottoms of each macaroon into chocolate and place back on parchment paper until chocolate has solidified


AB&J Bars (Paleo)

If you were to name some of your favorite snacks from when you were a kid (who knows, maybe you still eat the same?!) what would they be? I can imagine somewhere between mac & cheese and grandma’s homemade cookies, you thought of peanut butter and jelly. There’s just something about the combination of bread, creamy peanut butter and sweet and tangy jelly that is hard to resist. While the bread, peanuts and conventional jelly may not be paleo approved, here’s a great trade off that will surely satisfy all the PB&J cravings you’ve ever had. ๐Ÿ™‚


  • 2 bananas, overripe
  • 3/4 cup almond butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/3 tsp cream of tartar
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1/3 cup homemade jam
  • 1 tsp coconut oil


-Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F).

-Grease a 9×9″ baking sheet with coconut oil. I use a pre-divided pan which takes the hassle of cutting these right out! You can also use a muffin pan instead.

-In a large mixing bowl combine bananas, almond butter, honey, eggs, and vanilla. Mash and mix thoroughly until no chunks remain.

-Add coconut flour, cinnamon, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt to the banana mixture and stir to combine until smooth.

-Add half of the batter to the greased pan (which ever type you decide to use).

-Then add then jam (make sure it’s laid out evenly and somewhat flat) over the banana mixture.

-Add remaining batter over the top to cover the jam completely.

-Bake for 25-30mins or until these start to become golden brown. Let cool for 5 minutes before taking a butter knife (or toothpick) to ensure the edges are not stuck and remove from the pan.

-Cut into 12 bars and enjoy! *Be careful, these are addicting!*

Macros! If you are counting or keeping track, the macronutrient profile for 1 bar is: Calories (210) Protein (6g) Fat(11g) Carbohydrates (23g)



Pecan Pie Tarts (Paleo, Vegan)

Fall… aka #PieSeason! This is the time where I feel terribly for anyone with a pecan allergy, because pecan pie is literally one of the most delicious desserts ever created (in my opinion). These tartlet variations aren’t the most cut and dry of recipes, but one batch makes quite a few and I love being able to grab one here and there versus the looming pie-left-must-eat feeling you get when you try to slowly work your way through a full sized pie. It’s also pretty much guaranteed that these will be scooped up quick at any holiday party as well because they are so *cute* and no one wants to be the first person to cut into a perfectly untouched pie. In the recipe I use fancy little tartlet pans but you can also use a cupcake (or mini-cupcake) pan as well. Enjoy!


(Tart Shell)

  • 2 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 5 TB coconut oil, melted
  • 3 TB maple syrup
  • 1-2 TB almond milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  • 1/3 cup dates
  • 5 TB maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 TB almond milk
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup pecans, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup pecans, halved lengthwise


-Preheat oven to 350 degrees

-In a small bowl combine almond flour, salt and baking soda

-In another small bowl mix together melted coconut oil, maple syrup, almond milk and vanilla.

-Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined and no clumps are left.

-Grease mini tartlet pansย with coconut oil and add in one 1 inch diameter ball of dough to each, pressing them evenly into each crevasse of the mold

-Cut 2 inch squares of aluminum foil and then make one cut to the center of each square. Place a piece of foil into each tartlet pan pressing down gently.

-Fill each mold with a weighted object that wont cook in the oven- I use raw beans.


-Bake for 12-14 minutes or until a light golden brown appears on the crust.

-Remove from oven, carefully remove the foil with beans and let the shells cool for about 5 minutes.

-Using a toothpick gently reach into the edge of the crust and pan and start to loosen the tartlet on 2-4 sides.

*Sometimes these pop out pretty quickly and sometimes they take some patience and TLC. I’ve found that there seems to be an optimal time to remove these from the pans but have no fear you will learn quickly when they are ready and when they are not.

-While the tartlet crusts are coking you can start the filling.

-Soak dates in hot water for 10 minutes

-In a sauce pan over low heat combine maple syrup, coconut oil, almond milk and vanilla. Remove from heat when melted.

-Add soaked dates,maple syrup mixture and salt to a food processor and process until smooth.


-Move mixture back into cooled saucepan (or another bowl but I like to minimize my clean up time) and add in finely chopped pecans, stirring until well combined.


-Add one spoonful of filling to each cooled tartlet then carefully place halved pecans in a star shape.

Enjoy these warm or store in the fridge (14 days) or freezer (up to 3 months)!


Berry Cricket Recovery Bars (Paleo)

In my travels this year I ended up in Michigan with the intent to compete in the American Open weightlifting series. Unfortunately I was unable to compete due to an injury but since I had already booked my trip I grabbed one of my best friends and we went out there to see what Michigan had to offer! What we found was: a lot of wineries, breweries, tons of huge crystal clear lakes, and cherries! Most days were pretty rainy so we found ourselves on a variety of wine trails and discovered that a lot of the vineyards were previously cherry fields, which adds a unique note to their locally made wines. We also found that every town had a bakery filled with cherry baked goods… obviously most/almost none were gluten free so I was eager to make some tasty cherry treats when I got back home. I stumbled across this recipe in Steph Gaudreau’s Performance Paleo Cookbook and thought I would give it a try! I have also been reading more about cricket flour lately and its known for its high protein, nutrient and amino acid profile, therefore making this a great recovery workout snack.


  • 3/4 cup cashews, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cashew flour
  • 1/2 cup cricket flour
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 6 medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/2 cup dried blueberries
  • 3/4 cup dried cherries
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp coconut oil


-Line an 8x8inch baking pan with parchment paper

-Place cashews, cashew flour, cricket flour and sea salt in a food processor. Pulse until coarsely mixed, set aside

-Add dates, dried berries and vanilla extract to food processor and process until one large sticky clump forms

-Add date mixture to flour mixture and using coconut oil mix with hands until well combined, this takes a good amount of time and elbow grease!

-Freeze for 30 minutes then remove and place on cutting board and slice into 8 bars, these can easily be stored in the fridge or freezer for about 12 days. Enjoy!

Photos by Billy Wilbanks. DSMP marketing. Instagram @wbanks85.


Pumpkin Freezer Fudge (Paleo, Vegan)

Fall is my all-time favorite season. Apple picking, pumpkin carving, watching the leaves change colors, brisk mornings and evenings, what’s there not to love! Well- in my opinion- the sugary, artificial “pumpkin spice” everything is a bit overkill. Pumpkin is a squash and therefore it’s not inherently the sweetest ingredient for baked goods but it is easily complimented by natural sweeteners to make some delicious, nutrient dense treats. Pumpkin pie is probably the most common- but this freezer fudge is definitely a new favorite of mine. The recipe is quick and easy and it’s sure to please a wide array of audiences. Try it for yourself and let me know what you think!


  • 2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cups coconut butter
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 3/4 cup toasted walnuts, chopped


-Line an 8×8 pan with parchment paper.

-Add all ingredients except the walnuts into a food processor and process until smooth.

-Pour the mixture into the prepared pan, use spatula to smooth.

-Sprinkle walnuts evenly over the mixture and freeze for an hour or until firm.

-Remove from freezer and let sit out for 5 minutes before cutting into squares.


I typically cut and then individually wrap each square and place them back into the freezer to grab whenever I need a treat! These are best eaten within 2 weeks if stored in the fridge or freezer.





Rum Cake (Gluten Free, Mostly Paleo)

Is rum even Paleo? Technically if it’s made from raw sugar cane it should be mildy acceptable, right? Or you could just call this (already-treat) an exception, because you definitely don’t want to miss trying this one!

This year has brought a lot of new experiences and self discovery for me. I haven’t been posting much because I’ve been trying to.. we’ll say.. “figure things out”. I’ll save the long story for its own post but the inspiration for this recipe was a well-deserved vacation to Bermuda, which is apparently the land of Rum Cakes, but not so much gluten-free or paleo versions (insert meltdown).

A lot of rum cake recipes I looked up had things like instant pudding mix and dry milk… ingredients that I’ve never really baked with before and therefore swapping out some gluten free subs for these proved to be quite interesting. By some miracle my first attempt at this recipe yielded much positive feedback from a vast array of taste testers. With a few minor suggestions and my own creative tweaks, it only took two tries to get “spot on” from my most trusted and experienced Guinea pig, Alex Washut, head chef and co-owner of Jake’s.

Disclaimer: this recipe isn’t 100% Paleo, I used Gluten free flour mix and of course rum to make this cake.

Ingredients for the Cake:

  • 1 cup chopped toasted pecans (or walnuts)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 cup maple sugar
  • 1/8 cup toasted coconut flakes (shredded)
  • 1 1/8 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 3/4 cup gluten free flour (I used Bobs 1:1 GF flour mix, if you don’t use a GF flour mix with xanthum gum in it already, add 3/4 tsp xanthum gum to mix)
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 3 TB arrowroot
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 4 TB rum (I used coconut rum for this part)
  • 4 eggs (at room temp)
  • 2/3 cup coconut milk

Ingredients for the Glaze:

  • 6 TB grass-fed butter
  • 3 TB water
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 8 TB dark rum

Directions (Cake):

-Preheat oven to 300 degrees

-Chop and toast pecans(or walnuts) and shredded coconut on a large baking sheet for about 5 minutes. Check and stir frequently as these will go from golden to burnt very quickly. Once toasted, remove from oven and place in a small mixing bowl.

-Increase oven temp to 325 degrees

-In a small mixing bowl combine nuts, shredded coconut, maple sugar and vanilla extract. Add this mixture to the bottom of your bundt pan

-In a large mixing bowl combine the rest of the dry ingredients (coconut sugar, gluten free and almond flour, arrowroot, baking soda and cream of tartar.

-In another small mixing bowl whisk together the wet ingredients (melted coconut oil, rum, eggs and coconut milk).

-Mix wet ingredients into dry and stir until thoroughly combined. Add this mixture on top of the existing mixture in the bundt pan.

-Bake for 40 minutes if you’re using a dark pan, 45min if using a light colored pan.

Directions (Glaze):

-In a saucepan combine all ingredients except rum and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently.

-Once mixture bubbles, remove it from heat and add rum, mix thoroughly.

-Add the rum mixture back to medium heat and simmer, stirring occasionally until the mixture has reduced to 1/4 of original.

-Once the cake is out of the oven, let it cool for 10min and loosen the sides (I use a knife to gently pull away the sides and then shake the pan to make sure the bottom is lose as well)

-Poke some small holes in the cake (you can use a toothpick, or something as large as a butter knife) while still in the bundt pan and using a turkey baster inject the glaze into and on top of the cake.

-Let the glaze sit for a few minutes so it can absorb (It won’t all absorb, I take the excess back up with the baster and move in back into the sauce pan to then apply to the top once the cake is out of the pan)

-Carefully remove the cake from the pan and serve warm! If you can’t eat it all at once it will still definitely be delicious another day, store in the fridge for up tand let it warm back up to room temperature the next time you’re in need of a sweet treat!


Apple Pie Tarts (Paleo, Egg-Free)

This past weekend I had an Olympic Weightlifting competition up in Concord, NH. It was a pretty small meet and I’m lucky enough to train with most of the people that were there so it was even more fun to compete with a bunch of friends! Some of the highlights of the trip were getting to see my roommate, Chelsea, and good friend Ryan partake in their first ever Oly meet. They freaking killed it and I couldn’t be more proud of them! Flashback to when I had my first meet and I couldn’t feel my legs and hit only 1/6 lifts, HA! Another highlight was crushing some non-paleo (but still gluten-free) pizza afterwards. I think its a rule that after you almost kill yourself trying to cut weight you’re allowed to consume whatever you want that isn’t going to kill you further ๐Ÿ™‚ After this meet my coach and I decided it was time to move up a weight class anyways… sooo ALL the baked goods are coming your way!

Oh… and I wore a poop singlet for shits and giggles ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚!

Apple picking is one of my favorite things to do this time of year. But then of course there is the task of trying to eat all of those apples before they go bad! So here is a pretty easy and delicious apple pie tart recipe that I hope you all enjoy!



  • 2 1/2 cups almond flour
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 5 TB coconut oil, melted
  • 3 TB maple syrup
  • 2 TB almond milk
  • 1 1/2 TB vanilla extract


  • 2 TB grass-fed butter
  • 3 apples, peeled, cored and cubed
  • 1 TB apple cider
  • 1 TB honey
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In a large mixing bowl combine all crust ingredients and mix until fully incorporated
  • Grease a mini-cupcake pan (or if you want to get fancy use these tart tins) with coconut oil
  • Take 1-2 TB sized scoops of the crust mixture and press them into the tins to create a pocket for the filling, try to keep the thickness of the dough the same on the bottom and the sides
  • Once the dough is set, heat the butter for the filling in a large pan over medium heat
  • After the butter has melted add the apples and apple cider, cook down for 8-10 minutes or until the apples are soft
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add the honey, lemon, vanilla and cinnamon. Stir to combine
  • Add 1-2 TB scoops of the filling to each tart crust
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the crust is golden brown (I accidentally over cooked mine.. oops!)
  • Make sure to let the tarts cool for about 3-5 minutes before removing them from the pan, using a toothpick to loosen the edges and wedge them out is very helpful!

You can enjoy these as bite sized snacks or make them into a decadent desert by adding this simple whipped cream:

Add all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and whip using a hand (or stand) mixer.



Monkey Fuel Bars

Hey everyone! Long time no post, and a long explanation will be heading your way soon, but for now I wanted to pick up right where I left off with a recipe using one of my favorite substitute ingredients: Fuel For Fire.

If you haven’t heard of FFF before, you’re welcome! It’s simply a delicious packet of fruit and protein. I regularly use these packets as pre/inta/post-workout snacks but have come to find out that they are a great baking substitute as well! If you don’t believe me, here’s your chance to try it yourself ๐Ÿ™‚


  • 1 overripe banana
  • 1 Fuel For Fire Banana Cocoa
  • 1/2 cup almond butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 3 TB coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1-2oz dark chocolate, melted (topping)


    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
    • Add banana, fuel for fire, almond butter, eggs and coconut oil in a large bowl and mash/mix until fully incorporated
    • In a separate bowl mix almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda and sea salt
    • Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until no chunks remain
    • Pour batter into greased (use coconut oil) 8×8 baking dish (I made a 1/2 recipe and used this amazing baking pan to make the mine)

    • Bake for 17-18 mins, let cool for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack
    • Once cool, melt chocolate in a microwave safe bowl or double boiler

    • Drizzle chocolate over each square (I use wilton decorating bags to help with this) and pop them in the fridge for about 10 minutes until the chocolate has cooled and solidified again

      Then enjoy!! These make a great “real food” pre or post workout snack containing a pretty balanced amount of protein, fat and carbohydrates! I’ve used FFF for a substitute for bananas, apple sauce, mashed potato, pumpkin puree, mostly anything that is used as a binder. The bananas add a bit more texture but the results are equally delicious either way. I made this recipe without bananas because… I didn’t have any! It pays to think outside the box sometimes, especially when you regularly stock up on things like Fuel For Fire! Check them out!


      Strawberry Rhubarb Jam (Paleo)

      Well I have some exciting news to share with you all today! I am now officially the nutrition coach for the North East Grid League Springfield Musketeers! If you aren’t familiar with the Grid League, it’s basically crossfit taken to the next level. Teams are drafted and combined to showcase some of the best athletes and their respective strengths. Similar to football in many ways, it gives athletes to really capitalize on what they are good at in a competitive setting. It’s fast paced and uber fun to watch! If you don’t believe me check it out for yourself!

      More info to come on that topic, but for now, if you are in the Weatern Mass area come down to Crossfit Swarm on Saturday, June 13th and come chat with me and try some of my delicious treats! I will have a booth at their 80’s themed competition. Should be a great day! 

      In other news this will be the third week of my local farm share delivery from Forty Acres Farm in Granby, MA. I have thoroughly enjoyed experimenting with some new veggies and cuts of meat! I highly reccomend investing in a local farm share. There is no better way to support local farms and receive the freshest meat and produce possible! Not to mention you can trust that you are getting a high quality product. I suggest visiting the farm and getting to know the farmer. Patrick Benson is the owner and farmer at Forty Acres Farm and be only does he do everything pretty much himself but he is super knowledgable, kind, welcoming, and hardworking. He gave me the tour of of farm even before seeds were really sprouting but was able to express his passion for organic, sustainable farming practices as well as pasture raised meats. His animals are also halal raised and humanely slaughtered. He takes great pride in his products, as he should, they have been outstanding! 

      The first week we got a bunch of rhubarb, which I have surprisingly never used before! I  was eager to make various rhubarb treats but unfortunately most of them needed some tweaking to be at my standards. This jam, however, came out great! I’m thinking it will be perfect to use as a filling or spread on cupcakes, cakes, muffins or maybe even some paleo bread if you have some lying atound! ๐Ÿ˜œ


      • 1.5 cups local rhubarb, cut into 1 inch pieces
      • 1.5 cups organic strawberries, hulled and cut in half
      • 1/3 cup local raw honey 
      • Juice of 1 lemon


      -Combine all ingredients over medium heat in a large, thick bottomed pot


      -Simmer for 15-25 minutes, stirring occasionally and mashing fruit with fork until the jam starts to thicken to desired consistency

      -Let cool for 5 minutes and enjoy! 

      Jam can be kept in the refrigerator for about 2 weeks. It can also be frozen in an airtight container.