Thursday, January 16, 2014

Cinnamon Raisin Peanut Butter Cake

If you have been following my blog or know me even a little bit, you know I have certain flavor combinations with which I am obsessed.  I cannot get enough of these flavors!  For example, my all time favorite flavor combination is any mix of chocolate, peanut butter and banana.  Delicious, right?  My second favorite flavor combination is cinnamon and raisin.  This is a new favorite for me, since I was introduced to Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel bread and Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Peanut Butter and Co. peanut butter.  So I updated my previous cake recipe, which can be seen here, to appeal to this second favorite flavor combo!

1 c. oats
2 scoops vanilla whey protein powder
1/2 c. Stevia or other natural sweetener
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. sea salt
1 t. ground cinnamon
1 c. pure pumpkin puree
9 T. liquid egg whites
1/2 c. unsweetened almond milk
4 T. Peanut Butter and Co. Cinnamon Raisin Swirl
1/4 c. raisins

Preheat the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  In a food processor like a Ninja, process the cup of oats until it is to a flour consistency.  Then, add the rest of the dry ingredients: protein powder, Stevia, baking soda, sea salt, and cinnamon.  Process the dry ingredients until they are well mixed.  Next, add in the wet ingredients: pure pumpkin, liquid egg whites, and unsweetened almond milk.  Process this.  Be sure to have a spatula handy to scrape the edges of the bowl to make sure everything gets mixed.

Melt the 4 T. of peanut butter in a microwave safe bowl.  I microwaved my peanut butter for about 30 seconds.  Add the melted peanut butter to the batter and process.

Pour the peanut buttery batter into a greased 9 x 9 dish.
Now for my favorite part, take the 1/4 cup of raisins (you can add more if you'd like) and sprinkle them all over the top.
Take the spatula from earlier and swirl it around in the batter to mix the raisins throughout, so they aren't all on top.
Bake the cake for roughly 25-30 minutes.  Mine took about 30 minutes to bake fully.  It is a very moist cake and a little spongy when it is done.  Just be sure that when you stick a toothpick in the center it comes out clean.

Macros per 1/16 of the cake:
74 calories
1.9 grams of fat
8.9 grams of carbs
1.3 grams of dietary fiber
3.4 grams of sugar
6.4 grams of protein

This recipe has now officially been dad approved!  Try it out and substitute your favorite flavor combinations.  You could add in chocolate chips instead of raisins and a plain or white chocolate peanut butter as well.  I may be trying that one next!
Happy eating!!!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Seven Day Raw Food Cleanse

It has been awhile since I have had the opportunity to post due to my current retail position and the busy holiday season, but I am back!  With January in full swing, many of you out there have probably made the New Year's Resolution to lose weight.  I know I have!  This seven day raw food cleanse that I'm about to share with you is a great way to start a new diet and cleanse your system of any toxins that all of that sugary, fatty holiday food may have left behind!

I have done this cleanse twice and have had great results both times.  It has given me greater amounts of energy, and I lost between three and five pounds each time.  Courtney Prather, fitness model and trainer, is the originator of this cleanse.  You can read more about her on her website at or on Facebook.  She has been a big motivator for me throughout my journey, and I am currently using her five day workout from, which I will probably share in another posts.  Cut and Jacked is a great website to look at for new workouts if you're looking for a change.  You can check out example workouts from various fitness models and bodybuilders.

In looking at exercise, while following this cleanse, it is important to remember that it is very low in calories as many cleanses are, so you should only do it for seven days at the most and not work out heavily during those days.  Yoga, Pilates, light weight lifting, and walking are good forms of exercise from which to choose.

Follow this meal plan as closely as possible to get the best results:

  • Upon rising, drink two cups of room temperature water with a squeeze of lemon juice.  (I prepared this the night before and put it on my night stand, so I had easy access when I awoke the next morning.)

  • Meal 1: Lean Green Juice- 1/2 cucumber (peeled), 2 stalks of asparagus, 2 cups of romaine lettuce, 1 leaf of kale, 1 pear (take out stem and seeds), 1 stalk of celery, 1 inch of ginger root (can omit), and some parsley (also can be omitted)

-When I did this cleanse the first time, I borrowed a really nice Jack LaLanne juicer from a friend in order to make this juice.  When I started the second time, I bought my own Bella juicer, which is cheaper and works just as well.  I would suggest borrowing one for the first try, because drinking vegetables does take some getting used to!

  • Meal 2: Fruit Smoothie- 1 cup of coconut water, 1 cup frozen raspberries, 1 cup fresh mixed berries, 1 tablespoon coconut oil, 1 scoop of vegan vanilla protein powder, and 1 tablespoon of Sun Warrior Ormus Green

-This smoothie is made in a blender.  I used my Ninja with the single serve smoothie cup.  The vegan protein powder and Sun Warrior Ormus Green can be found at a natural foods store.  The first time I tried this cleanse I got soy protein powder and omitted the Ormus Green, because I couldn't find it.  The second time I just used regular whey protein powder, but I did not achieve as good of results as the first time.

  • Meal 3: Large salad- 6 cups of greens with homemade ginger lime dressing (2 T extra virgin olive oil, 1 t minced ginger, 2-3 T lime juice, and agave nectar to taste).  Any additional veggies will do as well.

-I used spinach and cucumber.  Courtney says that she uses spring mix lettuce with carrots, cucumbers, sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower and chick peas.  If you need the variety, I would suggest following Courtney's lead rather than mine.

  • Meal 4: Snack- 2 cups fresh veggies with 1/4 cup of hummus or 1/4 of an avocado

-This was my favorite meal of the day, because I love hummus and carrots/cucumbers/celery.  Red pepper hummus is my favorite, but again if you like variety, try a bunch of different flavors!  Be sure to check the ingredients list and find a fresh hummus rather than one with preservatives and nasty chemicals.  The less items in the ingredients list, the better!

  • Meal 5: Another large salad like meal 3
  • Meal 6: Lean Green juice again, like meal 1.  Also, on the side, drink 1 scoop of the vegan protein powder you add into the smoothie with coconut water for added protein.

-I tried to do this right before bed, so I went to bed with something in my stomach.

If you are a meat eater like me, this cleanse will be difficult, but you'll get into the habit after a couple of days.  It is also a GREAT jump-start to any weight loss diet!  Start your New Year's resolutions off right with this cleanse.  I wish everyone good luck in keeping those resolutions throughout the year!