Chocolate Cherry Matcha Shake

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So you may remember how I mentioned that we are in the middle of a heat wave.

I have hardly left the house for the past couple of days, instead we have been cleaning.

You can only take so much cleaning.

We (meaning my mother and I) needed an afternoon pick me up -something cold and energizing…

My mom wanted matcha. I wanted chocolate (I’ve been in an Eat ALL the chocolate!!! mood lately)

But would chocolate and green tea be good together????

We debated for a good 5 minutes -chocolate matcha or peach matcha? Chocolate or peach? Peach or chocolate?

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We went with chocolate.

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Life is rough.

Chocolate Cherry Matcha Shake

serves 2

  • 1/2 cup Dark Chocolate almond milk, frozen (about 6 ice cubes)*
  • 1 C. frozen dark sweet cherries
  • 1-1 1/2 C. non dairy milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 T. dark cocoa powder (or 3 T. regular)
  • 1 1/2 T. Matcha green tea powder
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp stevia, or other sweetener (to taste)

Blend everything up!! Thats it:)

*We have taken to keeping a stash of almond milk in ice cube trays in the freezer for creamier smoothies and the like:), and just so happened to have a bit of chocolate almond milk in the freezer. If you don’t have the chocolate almond milk, just add a bit more cocoa powder and sweet 🙂

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This was perfect! Cool, creamy, and refreshing, the dark, rich chocolate balanced perfectly with the grassy freshness of the matcha, plus a hint of fruity sweetness from the cherries!

A little bit of heaven in a glass

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Now off to tackle the dusting…

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MIMM: Hot Hot Hot!!!

Happy Monday!!!First of all, I want to give a BIG HUGE CONGRATS to Katie, the lovely diva who hosts this marvelous party, and her beautiful baby boy, Rocco. What a wonderful gift to be given! I wish the whole family the best! 😀This past weekend has been a marvelous one!!With one exception…photo-2Heat. Wave. uuuuggghhhhh. It was all weird, cold and rainy exactly one week ago, and by Wednesday the temperatures were scorching again! This is day 4 of 105+  heat, and its funny because we can’t wait for 9pm, when it reaches a nice, cool 90 haha!photo-180Of course, warm evenings are made all the more enjoyable when outside, and we finally got lights up on our gazebo!! Its so nice to just relax and stare at the lights like a moth enjoy the pretty lights!!photo-177Luckily it doesn’t start heating up until about 9 am, so its finally gotten me back in the habit of early morning runs! Wake up, grab a nut butter stuffed date and off I go! There is no better time to run than first thing in the morning, the air is still (relatively) crisp, scented with dew and sprinklers, and the only sounds are the birds singing, and your feet hitting the pavement in tune with the earth’s heartbeat (like that? Can I be a poet like you now TGITO?? 😉 )photo-3Basically. Otherwise its too hot.photo-172And when I come back from the early morning runs, I have time (and motivation) to make fancier breakfasts!! This morning I made my mom and I blueberry cornmeal pancakes topped with fresh farmers market peaches! So good!Speaking of running, didn’t I ever tell you guys???photo-179I am officially signed up to run my first ever Half Marathon this October!! Whoo!! I’m sooo excited!! I’ve been wanting to run a half before I graduate basically since I discovered I actually liked running freshman year, and its finally happening! This is such a great testimonial to myself too, that I am finally in a place where I can run and be stronger, not weaker, from it. Its a symbol of the test I’ve had in high school, and that I can conquer anything I put my mind to. I am stronger than I gave myself credit for for so long, and I can tackle mountains (well, hills, but San Fransisco is crazy hilly so if you add them up, its a mountain. kapeesh?)photo-178Also Marvelous are Starbucks dates….with myself. But hey, if it motivates me to do my summer reading (I’d so much rather read books of my own choosing…). I heard from Amanda that if you order Starbucks cappuccinos dry, you get them perfectly foamy (my favorite part). She was right! Soy cappuccino, decaf and dry-I drank the coffee part and then added a dash of cinnamon to my cup of foam. Lets just say that I was that weirdo in the corner reading and eating foam with a coffee stirrer. #foamobsession #sorrynotsorry 😉photo-174Marvelous still are farmers market hauls -especially at the end of the day so everything is even cheaper! We got that gigantic bag of peaches for only $2, and they are super ripe-almost jam like. I have to cook with them before they go bad!! We also found a beautiful head of crisp romaine, chinese spinach (its so pretty! Purple and green!), a pomegranate balsamic grill sauce, and fresh, handmade vegan ravioli! I’ve never had fresh pasta so I’m excited.photo-173A marvelous, refreshing,  and simple salad for dinner (squash on the side) of Farmers Market romaine and tomatoes, plus cucumber, celery, red onion, avocado, tempeh, chickpeas, and a honey mustard dressing and lemon pepper (post photo). I’ve never had a crisper salad than one fresh from the farmers market that morning!photo-176And perhaps most marvelous of all? Its girls week! My stepdad is with his dad and cousin in Washington state this week, visiting museums and baseball parks, so my mom and I have had the house to ourself. Its officially Chocolate and Chickflicks week around here! Perfect for my newfound obsession with chocolate avocado mousse and Friends reruns. So with cool morning runs filled with deep thoughts, farmers market runs, and daily chocolate, life could not get any marvelous-er 😉Have you been caught in a heatwave this week?Whats your marvelous today?

WIAW!!

AAHHH! Its my 100th post!!! this is cool! I have a recipe coming for you soon 🙂

In other news happy Wednesday!!

 

Lets get to the eats!

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Vanilla cinnamon oats topped with strawberries and almonds

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Tropical smoothie (froz mango, bloobs, tropical VEGA, spinach) topped with granola

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Mixed banana berry smoothie topped with strawberry raspberry granola. These are my new favorite thing after eating an acai bowl almost every stinkin day in Southern California

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Of course, I could never let a perfectly good OIAJ opportunity go to waste! Peach, apple, blueberry oats with (homemade) almond butter

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My family had a spring roll bar for lunch the other day! Carrots, beets, cucumber and local 5 spice tofu. I had more than this, don’t worry 🙂 It was just a pretty picture! And delicious in peanut sauce.

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Uhh, duh. Kabocha…What were you expecting? 😉

 

 

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On Fathers day I made a picnic for my dad and step siblings! I brought the fixins for sun butter and jelly sandwiches, grapes, carrot sticks, and freshly made chocolate chip cookies using this recipe. They were just slightly under baked and perfect 🙂

 

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Please, please tell me you’ve tried dipping grapes in nut butter. Its delicious and tastes like straight up PB&J. Especially if its peanut butter and those really dark, sweet purple grapes. Heaven. Ignore the nasty napkin 😉

 

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We had a vegan BBQ/Pot luck the other day! An assortment of spanish rice, quinoa salad, pasta salad, fruit and fresh veganic veggies, and a veggie dog. I think I am officially past the whole “transition foods” stage of veganism, because I didn’t really like the veggie dog. Any of that fake stuff-fake meat, fake cheese, etc just doesn’t appeal to me. I’d rather eat real food, thats not trying to be something its not. Superficial vegan food 😉

 

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Soy ice cream on the other hand, thats perfectly fine with me 🙂 Especially with brownies and peanut butter cookie dough bites!

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Very rarely does a container of figs actually make it home. Everytime we buy them, my mom and I go through the whole display to find the most ripe ones, make our own little basket full, and eat them all on the car ride home. Its like a tradition 😉 Also this fig was huge. I had to show you guys.

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Have you ever heard of a Santa Clause Melon? Its like a cross between cantaloupe and honeydew, and it looks like a green football on the outside. Anyway, I found it at WF and its delicious. I had it on a salad with Braggs Braggberry dressing (blueberry, raspberry, acai, gogi, grape, and ACV. Totes recreating it)


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Our weather was super weird a few days ago, and it went from 90’s to 60’s and raining in 2 days. Now its in the 90’s again and will be 106 on Monday. Ouch. Anyway, I just so happened to be sick on the rainy day, so I spent all day on the couch reading and ate a mug of split pea soup for lunch. If only I hadn’t been sick I would have been so cozy!


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Later that afternoon I decided I didn’t like being sick. I now believe in the healing powers of rest and green smoothies. I made a huge smoothie with santa clause melon, lemon, ginger, celery, cucumber, parsley and power greens lettuce mix. I tell you what, this sick affected my whole family for 3-4 days, and I was only sick for one. All Hail the Smoothie!!!

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Movie snack! Apple, puffins and almonds with warm vanilla milk (almond milk, stevia, and vanilla extract. A slightly healthier version of the vanilla milk I grew up making (read cows milk and spoonful upon heaping spoonful of sugar. Like sickly sweet. I know, great for a 5 year old before bedtime) and like better than hot cocoa!) I had this while watching Warm Bodies, which I highly recommend!!


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Island Portabella burgers with grilled pineapple and baked sweet potato fries on the side. This was delicious 🙂
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And here we have baked japanese sweet potato topped with cheater baked beans and coconut bacon, plus a side salad. How to make cheater baked beans: We followed Happy Herbivore’s recipe but on stovetop, and using kidney beans plus corn. Since we weren’t actually going to bake them, we mashed the beans a bit and that thickened the whole dish up quite nicely! This was really really good!

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And last but not least, a bit of a sneak peak of that recipe I will be sharing shortly!! Doesn’t it look good???

Hehehe:)

Had any weird weather lately?

Whats your latest breakfast obsession?

College Road Trip: On our Way

The bags are packed

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The tours have been scheduled and the maps printed out

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The restaurants have been Happy Cow‘ed

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when you go to Southern California (Vegan hub of the golden state), you have to visit at least a few. #priorities

We’ve cleaned out the fridge…

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Well, sometimes you find yourself about to leave for a week with two GIANT zucchinis, a huge bunch of veganic* chard, and a large bag of baby potatoes…hence the veggie filled dinner…

*veganic is food grown organically (no pesticides) without animal fertilizers. So it’s vegan-organic. Get it? Theres a veganic farm at a near farm sanctuary. No risk of E.Coli or other diseases!!!

Frozen what we couldn’t consume

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Look at all of those bananas…so close to banana bread :(…

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And yes, that would be bananas, tortillas, and avocados. I also froze half of a breakfast cake. Deal.

And made ice cream with some leftovers…

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sometimes you turn fails (lemon tofu frosting with WAY too much xanthan gum…) into successes (lemon vanilla ginger apricot ice cream/sorbet) ice cream is kept in the freezer. I am justified.

My mom caught me cleaning out the vitamix

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and by cleaning I mean licking.

and by “my mom caught me” I mean I giggled about how funny it would be if she had, contemplated asking her to take a picture of what I was doing, and decided to take a selfie instead. #noshame. #iputhashtagsinmyblogeventhoughtheyarepointlesshere #dealwithit. 😉

And with that we are all set and ready to leave in the AM!!!

For the next 5 days I am going on a college tour to visit UC Santa Barbara, Pepperdine, UCLA, UC San Diego, and San Diego State University. I may or may not blog in the next few days, but I will take lots of pictures for you I promise!!!

Here I go!

Currently.

Soo…I’ve been seeing these ‘Currently’ posts up around blog land (I love that it’s called that.) and I thought I’d join in on the fun! Also, I want to post about something other than food today 😉

Current Book

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A Thousand Sisters by Lisa Shannon. This book is remarkable, its a true story chronicling 5 months that Shannon spent in Congo, listening to the stories that the women, children, and other victims of violence during the war in Congo had endured. It is very powerful.

Current Music

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Disney Pandora. All day, every day 😀 And yes, I sing along. My neighbors love me 😉

Current Guilty Pleasure

Okay, I was going to say something slightly cheesy like lazy summer mornings, but lets be real. Lately my guilty pleasure has been attention see (girl talk time), now I’m up to a weight that I am starting to have a figure other than that of an 11 year old, and my neighborhood has plenty of young teenage (and older teenage) boys. So I’ve gotten a couple of cat calls and “nice butt”s whilst running or walking my doggies. I always act disgusted and avoid eye contact, but secretly, I don’t mind. Man, I feel like a woman (ish) 😉

Current Nail Color

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Kiki from Zoya. I literally just painted my nails, hence the messiness. I paint my whole finger to make sure the nail part is perfect, the rest comes off later 😉 please tell me I’m not the only one!

Current Drink

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I defy summer and drink tea even at 2:00 in the afternoon! Its a new to me flavor, and I have a feeling I’ll like it better cold. Fruity tea tastes like watered down juice to me. Iced fruity tea on the other hand is delicious! Especially sun tea.

Current Food

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This is basically my latest obsessions. Yes, I still eat my oats and my greens, but lately I’ve been lovin on the sweet potatoes (have you tried topping them with almond butter? Divine!), summer fruit by the (cereal or larger) bowlfulls, chocolate almonds and Cinnamon Crunch (the organic, ‘healthy’ cinnamon toast crunch from Cascadian Farms.)

Fun Fact! Rarely do I eat a bowl of cereal (i.e. with milk for breakfast). However, as a topping and as a munchy movie snack, its my favorite.

Current Favorite TV Show

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I decided to watch So You Think You Can Dance this season and I must say, I do enjoy it! Its like a more interesting, less receptive American Idol, and some of the dancers are just breathtaking.

Fun Fact!! I danced at the same studio that Dominic “D-Trix” Sandoval (season 7) started at! He once helped ‘teach’ one of my ballet classes for the day, but mostly everyone was just cracking up. I also go to the same high school he went to 🙂

Current Wish list

All of the clothes!!! Every time I go to the mall, it’s like a reminder of what great fashion instinct I have, and how (comparatively and relatively) little I have to spend on those clothes. Either everything should be free, or I need to get a job. sigh…

Current Needs

More henna so I can re-dye my hair!! Its faaaadddiiinnggg!!!! I want my bright red haaiiiirrrrrr back!

Current Triumphs

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Check out that plank! Okay, so it wasn’t all a ‘normal’ plank, because I break it up by doing like, 1 or 2 minutes normal, then a minute per side and keep changing it up, but still. Thats awesome.

Current Bane of my Existence

Two blisters from my new running shoes. I love the shoes, but they aren’t broken in yet!!! Also, if you pop a blister, do it after you shower. Never has water been so painful. (sorry)

Current Celebrity Crush

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Need I say more??

Current Indulgence

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I baked a triple batch of brownies for a potluck today. Of course I licked the bowl! And maybe had a lot few chocolate chips on the side 😉 testing for poison, obvs. 

Current Blessing

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Beautiful Summer evenings and walks with my Sophie 🙂 Its been absolutely lovely lately. Only in the upper 80’s!!

Current Outfit

Sweat pant shorts and a production shirt for Bye Bye Birdie. No picture for this one, its my jammies haha!

Current Excitement

Can I have multiple??

I got new shooeeesss:D

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Also I am leaving in a few days for a COLLEGE ROADTRIP!!! Gonna go down to southern California to visit potential colleges! (and beaches, you know 😉 ). So excited!!

Current Mood

sleepy. This is the second time I’ve sat down to write this, and its 11:00 pm. I know, I know, I’m such a night owl 😉

Current Link

Hannah’s American snack food review.

Its just so hilarious, yet so true. Although I have to admit, sometimes I wonder what those things (cupcake pop tarts/goldfish) would taste like were I not vegan. And against food dye and chemicals. And the American Food industry. I’m too cynical. 😉

What are your ‘currentlys’? Answer any of the above!! 

And sometimes its WIAW

Happy WIAW!!

Looking over some of my recent eats, I’ve come to the conclusion that allthetime sometimes I have some very, well, interesting eats. And sometimes its best not to question them.

Sometimes….

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…you feel like making an actual meal (pasta and veggies with a dairy free cheese sauce, recipe up soon!!)

But sometimes…

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…Its just frozen pizza night (new gluten and dairy free vegan pizza on the shelves, with a few extra veggies for good measure)

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…but you’ll probably make a salad too. (spiralized carrots and candy cane beets with peach vinegar and honey mustard)

Sometimes…

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…you eat a reasonable amount of squash. But more than likely you’ll go back for more and never learn your lesson (cough cough bloated cough cough don’t care)

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…you might also eat large amounts of melon. I didn’t take pictures of the watermelon I had too…

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…or fresh summer fruit in general.

Sometimes…

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…You get a little creative in your breakfasts (nuts instead of nut butter omg.)

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….but often you will go back to your tried and true. (especially if it’s caramel macchiato almond butter)

Sometimes…

photo 1-70…You hate being out of lettuce and therefore out of your lunch salad routine, but instead of being creative you just use frozen spinach instead. and then get a tad annoyed that all of your sauces are on the potato and not the spinach. #thestruggle 😉

Sometimes…

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…you are cleaning up from lunch and have a ‘hmm what would happen if…’ moment resulting in a little BLT* action that is so good you make it again and document it. Aka leftover apple slice + cucumber + coconut bacon is delicious. Even when you are full. This would be a good sandwich. *BLT-Bites, licks and tastes

Sometimes…

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…you get excited because its like Raley’s knew it was your birthday. (I spy banana bread in the near future)

Sometimes…

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…it takes a few tries to make a birthday cake…

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…so you just decide on a DIY strawberry shortcake instead 🙂

Sometimes…

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…your desserts seem well put together (farmers market fresh strawberries with farmers market granola on top of a vanilla cream concoction)

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… and you eat chocolate pudding in an acceptable manner

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…And sometimes its best not to question what you were thinking. (for the record, chocolate, cinnamon cereal, and cantaloupe is actually pretty good. then again, its chocolate, cinnamon, and melon. when aren’t those delicious?)

Sometimes…

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…edible birthday presents are awesome

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….but its the non-edible ones that are the best. ( I named him Stefan 😉 and yes, Stefan is an oven mit. It makes taking cookies out of the oven intense.)

Whats the best birthday present you have ever gotten? 

Any strange concoctions you’ve come up with lately?

Birthday Cake Parfait

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Yesterday was exhausting.

It was hot. Record breaking for early June. Really really hot. I decided to bake anyway though.
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It flopped. You might be setting yourself up for failure if you attempt to make a vegan, gluten free angel food cake in the wrong pan and with expired cream of tartar and also if you have a strong feeling your oven temp is off…Just saying. It tasted like marshmallows, but the texture was…well…icky.

We went out for dinner, that was nice:) The restaurant gave us free house made grapefruit popsicles since they found out it was my ‘birthday’ and I was vegan. They were good! But they were very melty.

Did I mention yesterday was hot?

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This was almost 10 o clock pm. And its the same today. uuugghh…

So it stands to reason that I wanted something easy and cold for breakfast this morning. Let’s give it up for overnight oats!

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I made the oats and cream the night before, so in the (also hot) morning, all I had to do was assemble!!

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Sometimes my parfaits would prefer to be mixed and mingled, not all separate layers. And thats okay too 😉

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Birthday Cake Parfait

Overnight Oats layer

  • 1/3 C. old fashioned oats
  • 1 T. chia seeds
  • 3/4-1 C. nondairy milk of choice ( I used toasted coconut almond milk)
  • 1/2 T. cashew butter
  • 1/2 T. coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • touch of maple syrup plus additional sweetener to taste (optional)
  • optional: pinch (1/8 tsp) turmuric, for color

Vanilla Cream layer (this makes extra)

  • 1 package silken tofu
  • 1 1/2 T. vanilla extract
  • 1 T. cashew butter
  • 1 T. lemon juice (counters the ‘tofu’ flavor)
  • dash salt
  • sweetener of choice, to taste

Parfait

  • 1 batch Overnight oats
  • a few spoonfuls of Vanilla Cream
  • fruit (I used strawberries)
  • cereal (Nature’s Path Vanilla Sunrise)
  • SPRINKLES.

For Oats: Mix liquid ingredients well, then mix everything together in a tupperware container and put in fridge overnight

For Cream: Blend everything in a food processor until creamy, keep in fridge overnight.

For parfait: Layer oats, cream, cereal and strawberries as you please:) Top with sprinkles, take a spoon and enjoy!!

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Sometimes effort is the last thing you want to use in the morning.

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Especially if it’s hot.

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And especially on your birthday 🙂

There is only one more day of Birthday week!!!