{Recipe}: Paleo hot cocoa

afitmess
January 8, 2017
A Fit Mess

Hey, friends! I hope everyone is staying warm and dry during this cold weekend. We got a few inches of snow here and in typical southern style the whole town shut down. To be fair, there is a ton of ice out there which can be dangerous and we just aren’t equipped to deal with it here. We’ve been cozied up at home for most of the weekend.

 

I have an easy and delicious recipe to share with you today! If you like hot chocolate, but don’t want all the extra additives and sugar found in store-bought brands, this hot cocoa is for you. I made it with my kids in mind, but our whole family has been sipping on it this weekend.

 

This cocoa is dairy-free and contains no processed ingredients. It’s a fool-proof recipe to follow, too. Toss everything in a saucepan and then top with coconut cream, So Delicious coco whip, or just frothed almond milk. Your kiddos will love it and you will, too! Enjoy.

 

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of homemade almond milk (or store-bought)
  • 2 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons of maple syrup (or more, depending on how sweet you want it)
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • pinch of sea salt

 

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients to a small saucepan.
  2. Heat on medium-low, whisking continuously to incorporate all ingredients.
  3. Pour into cups and top with coconut whipped cream or frothed almond milk and a dash of cinnamon.
  4. Makes two mugs or four small kiddie cups.

Sip while seated next to a fire snuggled up with your kids or pets. PJs and slippers are mandatory.

 

 

Recipe: chocolate almond milk

afitmess
May 24, 2016
A Fit Mess

Hey guys! I have a delicious recipe for you today. It’s a yummy variation of the homemade almond milk I shared a few months ago: chocolate almond milk. This drink is packed full of flavor and is a healthy alternative to store bought chocolate milk. It’s been kid tested over here and we got two (well, four) thumbs up!

 

Commercial almond milk often contains a lot of processed junk and very little nutritional value (some have less than 2% of almonds in them!). Plus, the flavored ones (like vanilla and chocolate) are loaded with added sugars to make them taste good. This recipe is simple to assemble and is made with only natural ingredients. I’ve been adding mine to overnight oats, chia pudding, and smoothies.

 

Homemade chocolate almond milk

Ingredients:

    • 3 – 3.5 cups of homemade almond milk
    • 1 vanilla bean
    • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
    • 3-5 dates (depending on how sweet you like it)

Directions:

      1. Prepare the almond milk following the original recipe.
      2. Pour almond milk into blender.
      3. Cut the vanilla bean down the center and scrape out the inside. Discard the bean pod.
      4. Add the vanilla, cocoa powder, and dates to the blender.
      5. Blend until everything is completely smooth.
      6. Store in an airtight container in the back of you fridge.
      7. Separation will happen to the milk. Just shake or stir vigorously before serving.

 

A Fit Mess

Notes:

      • You’ll need to soak the almonds overnight prior to making the milk.
      • If you don’t have a vanilla bean, you could sub vanilla extract.
      • You’ll need to adjust the ingredients depending on your taste preferences. Sometimes it takes a few tries to find your ideal combination. I used 3 dates in mine, but could have probably added another one.
      • Consume the milk within 3 – 4 days.

 

Please let me know if you try it! Have a great Tuesday!

You can find this recipe and more on my Pinterest page!

Easy homemade almond milk

afitmess
February 16, 2016

Hi friends. I recently made my very first batch of almond milk and holy cow! It’s delicious and super creamy!

 

I shied away from making my own almond milk for so long because I thought it would be way too much work, messy, and expensive. I was wrong on all three fronts. I only wish I had tried it sooner.

 

I used this recipe as my inspiration and enjoy the milk both unsweetened and sweetened (I used a real vanilla bean in mine, but you can use vanilla extract). There are lots of video tutorials out there if you need a visual refernce. I was really intimidated at first, but honestly the process took me under 10 minutes (apart from soaking the almonds) and it was very easy. I have made my own milk half a dozen times now and each time is better than the last.

 

If you want to try making your own almond milk, here are a few things I learned that you might find useful:

  • You need a nut milk bag. It’s basically a nylon/mesh bag. It’s not expensive and you can find it at a lot of health stores (Whole Foods) or online. I got this one because the reviews were good and it’s a winner. I’ve been very happy with it and plan to order it again.
  • Buy your almonds in bulk (they are less expensive) and make sure they are RAW (no salt or oils added).
  • Use a blender rather than a food processor, if possible. I used my food processor the first time and it was pretty messy trying to transition the milk from the processor to the bowl. A blender allows for less spills.

IMG_6731

  • Keep the almond milk in a container with a spout so that it’s easier to pour and keep it in the back of you fridge so it stays fresh longer.

IMG_6858

  • It spoils after 3-4 days so stick with smaller batches (a yield of 3-4 cups of milk)

Seriously, look how creamy this is! I used around 3 tablespoons. (That’s cinnamon in the cup if you are wondering.)

IMG_6723
OMG!

It seems likely that the same process could work for other nuts and my plan is to try it with cashews and hazelnuts. Or, brazil nuts since we somehow have a whole container in our pantry.

 

Simple (unsweetened) almond milk recipe:

1 cup of raw almonds
water
pinch of salt

 

  1. Soak almonds in water for at least 12 hours.
  2. Place soaked almonds in a strainer and rinse under clean water.
  3. Place almonds, a pinch of salt, and 3 cups of fresh, filtered water into blender.
  4. Blend for roughly 30-45 seconds (until the milk looks creamy and the almonds have been broken down; note: you will still see specs of almonds in there).
  5. Place the nut milk bag over a large bowl and pour the liquid from the blender into the bag.
  6. Squeeze the bag to get all the milk out leaving only the pulp in the bag. Discard pulp.
  7. Pour the milk into a container and place in the fridge.
  8. Enjoy within 3-4 days.

 

Take care and let me know if you have questions! Thank you for reading.