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Saturday Night + Dark Chocolate Avocado Cookies

My Saturday evening was a low-key night at home. Sometimes, when the weekend comes around I am ready to dress up and go out with friends. Other times I’m so ready to spend time at home in comfy clothes and messy hair. Last night was one of the latter. It was a perfect compilation of making a healthy veggie-filled dinner, sipping on Sprout’s coffee, listening to new music (Echosmith’s album obsession), watching the latest Grey’s Anatomy episode, reading some of 50 Shades of Grey (more on that further down) and spontaneously creating a vegan-ish, gluten-free, and (most importantly) super-chocolately dessert.

My Saturday Night In (Stronglikemycoffee.com)

Last weekend was full of craziness; next weekend I have all sorts of fun plans. So I really didn’t mind a casual Saturday night at home this weekend. It was so relaxing :)

My lowkey Saturday Night (stronglikemycoffee.com)

Before last night, I hadn’t watched any television shows (including the news or Sports Center *gasp*) in over two weeks. Too busy playing catch-up from missing a week of school due to my internship! But now that I’m getting back on schedule, I had the series finale of Parenthood and the return of Grey’s Anatomy waiting for me in my Hulu queue.

In between though, I was struck with inspiration to raid my kitchen cupboards and create something for dessert that was still semi-healthy. Also….Sprout’s had avocados on sale this week so I bought 5. Then all 5 proceeded to ripen at the same exact time. This is my alternative to guacamole:

Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Cookies made with avocado recipe and blog post (stronglikemycoffee.com)That adorable mug is from one of my best friends, Miss Chelsea! It is too perfect for me. (Chelsea and I are no strangers to baking with avocados, either!)

Chocolate Avocado Cookies:

Makes 20 soft cookies

Healthy Chocolate Avocado Cookie Recipe (stronglikemycoffee.com)

  • “meat” of 1 very ripe avocado
  • 1/4 cup stevia (or substitute regular sugar)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup Chobani Greek yogurt (0% fat, plain flavor)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tps. vanilla
  • 1 Tbs. instant coffee granules
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup oat flour (ground oats)
  • splash of almond milk (approx. 3 Tbs)
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Mix the avocado, stevia, and sugar with a mixer until smooth.

3. Add in the yogurt, egg, and vanilla.

4. In a small bowl, combine oat flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and coffee granules. Add this dry mixture to the wet mixture. Stir to combine.

5. Add in almond milk as needed to thin out the batter.

6. Use a spoon to place batter on baking sheets. **Note: this batter will not flatten out or expand, so the “shape” it goes on the pan is the shape it will come out in.

7. Top cookie dough with chocolate chips. Bake for 10 minutes, and allow to cool before enjoying with a steaming mug of delicious coffee or a cold glass of milk. Sharing is highly recommended.

Chocolate Avocado Cookies (stronglikemycoffee.com)The recipe really was just an experiment, and thank goodness it turned out. My roommate and I polished off that place seconds after this photo was captured ;)

Now on to my reading material…. I love to read. My book shelves at home are completely filled with novels I’ve read but can’t bare to get rid of, mostly fiction. When I received a book for Christmas that I had already read, I decided to exchange it for 50 Shades of Grey and finally see what all of the hype is about.

Saturday night readingGuys…… the writing style and the conversations between the characters are so weak, it ruins my interest in the plot! I know this book has millions of fans and maybe it improves? I wanted to finish reading the book before the movie comes out next week but honestly, I’d rather just read some blog posts instead :)

What’s your ideal Saturday night?

Clean Peanut Butter Banana Cups

What’s a girl to do when her clean cooking partner-in-crime is 200 miles away?

Skype, of course.

Chelsea & I love new healthy recipes. (**By the way, she launched her own blog! —–> seasunseasmiles.wordpress.com**) Being in different cities calls for creativity. We “baked” together via Skype and the result was these unbelievably-delicious-not-to-mention-super-clean cups.

Clean Peanut Butter and Banana Cups Recipes  Stronglikemycoffee.com

With our laptops in the kitchen, we threw together coconut oil, cacao powder, peanut/almond butter, bananas, honey and a little bit of salt. The recipe was inspired by The Whole Pantry app. If you use cupcake wrappers or mini candy wrappers, they come out looking like a perfect peanut butter cup with rippled edges and everything :)

Chelsea’s batch came out significantly better than mine because I decided to add Greek Yogurt, which seriously disturbed the texture. I threw the batch out and made another. 50x better.Skype and bake (stronglikemycoffee.com)Peanut butter and coconut oil are clean, yes, but also very calorie-dense.I decided to add a fat slice of banana to the middle to make each cup more substantial without adding another 100+ more calories.

The Recipe:

  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder or cacao powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbs honey or pure maple syrup
  • 1 Tbs Stevia
  • 2 Tbs peanut butter, almond butter, or any nut butter of your choice
  • banana, sliced
  • cupcake or candy wrappers

1.) Mix the coconut oil, cocoa, salt, honey and stevia together.

2.) Spoon 1/2 tablespoon of chocolate into each wrapper (makes 4) and freeze for 5 minutes.

3.) Spoon 1 tsp peanut butter onto the chocolate. Top with a slice of banana and add another spoonful of chocolate mixture.

4.) Allow to completely freeze, about 30 minutes.

There’s your clean dessert! A perfect serving-size indulgence free of any chemicals, preservatives, additives and processed sugars.

Clean peanut butter cups with banana and coconut oil  stronglikemycoffee.com

I’m eating one for dessert right now while I catch up on Grey’s Anatomy :) Sound like a low-key Friday night? Well that’s because I’M RACING A 5k TOMORROW MORNING!

My first “race” since the marathon. It’s just a local road race put on by my school’s ROTC but I’m excited do something competitive again and see what kind of shape I’m in. Plus I really want to see how many army boys I can outrun ;)

Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Protein Smoothie

We are combining chocolate and breakfast. Yes, it’s healthy. Just go with it.

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Protein Smoothie from stronglikemycoffee.com

After an especially-challenging workout, the body can use a little extra protein. I’m a huge fan of (homemade) smoothies and if you have a few extra minutes to blend up your post-workout breakfast, it will be totally worth it. For the past two mornings, I’ve made this dessert-y smoothie and it tastes too delicious to be healthy. But I promise it is!

  • 1/2 cup Vanilla Almond Milk
  • 6 oz. non-fat plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 heaping spoonful Whey Isolate Protein Powder (unflavored)
  • 1 heaping spoonful unsweetened cocoa powder
  • sprinkling of cinnamon

Chocolate and berry with all the nutritional benefits of low-fat, high protein for 180 calories. Stick the yogurt in the freezer for an hour to make the smoothie extra thick!

Why Whey?

I’m not too familiar with supplements or protein products. (I would eat my entire day’s value of protein from peanut butter if it weren’t so dang fattening ;) ) So when I was shopping at Sprout’s the other day and spotted “Whey Isolate Protein Powder” I thought I would try it out. The unflavored powder is only 35 calories per 2.5 Tablespoons, and can be easily added to oatmeal, smoothies, and protein pancakes.

Whey is a high-quality source of protein that comes from milk, and Isolates are processed to remove fat and lactose. Whey Isolate Protein Powder is virtually entirely protein, without fat, lactose or carbs. It’s generally the most expensive because of this. It’s fast-ingesting, supports a strong immune system by working as an antioxidant, and of course speeds up muscle recovery.

Chocolate Lovers:

According to this Runner’s World article, cocoa has a positive effect on endurance athletes. Enough said! ;) 1 tablespoon of cocoa a day adds nutritional value with antioxidants, fiber and magnesium. And also I believe it makes you happy!

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Protein Smoothie (stronglikemycoffee.com)

I’ve got plenty of protein powder left, so more fun smoothies to come!

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