Erin Stanczyk | eat.move.rest.

drinks

May The Froth Be With You: My Dairy-Free, Frothy Hot Cocoa Recipe

Eat, Food + Nutrition, RecipesErin StanczykComment

May The Froth Be With You

So I've been hearing a lot of buzz lately about the new Star Wars movie, and my mom and I were laughing about how long it would take to do a full marathon of all of the previous movies before going to see the latest installment. Well, with the short, cold days, it might not be a half-bad idea!

When it's cold outside and winter starts to drag, nothing is better than a good movie while sipping a cup of something warm by the fire--especially when it's super frothy! I've got just the recipe for you! 

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | MY DAIRY-FREE, FROTHY HOT COCOA RECIPE

Nuts About Nut Milk

When I made the transition to a totally plant-based lifestyle, one of my favorite wintertime treats was off the table--hot chocolate! Not so fast, my friends! Who says you need milk and whipped cream to make a frothy, smooth, rich cup of cocoa?! If you're feel extra ambitious, check out my Homemade Almond Milk recipe; otherwise, there are tons of delicious dairy milk alternatives out there, like almond, cashew, coconut, hemp, and rice milk. Many of them are also fortified with essential nutrients like vitamin D. My personal favorite is almond milk--I typically get the organic unsweetened original flavor because it tastes great just as it is, and if I want sweetener or added flavoring I can simply add my own. 

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | MY DAIRY-FREE, FROTHY HOT COCOA RECIPE

Cacao: The Superfood Of Chocolate

When upgrading your hot chocolate, opt for raw cacao powder instead of cocoa powder—same rich, chocolatey flavor, more antioxidants!  Cacao and cocoa come from the same plant, the same bean, but cacao powder is made by cold-pressing unroasted cocoa beans, keeping the living enzymes intact. Cocoa powder is simply raw cacao that has been roasted at high temperatures. We’ve been slightly misled to believe that dark chocolate is super good for us due to the high levels of antioxidants such as resveratrol, but if you really want to reap the benefits of this superfood, use cacao, not cocoa! Many times cocoa powder also contains added sugar, whereas cacao does not! Read up on cacao on my Top 10 Superfoods blog post!

To make this hot chocolate even healthier, yet still tasty, you can eliminate the use of refined sugar by adding in dates--whole, unprocessed sugar, direct from nature's source!

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | MY DAIRY-FREE, FROTHY HOT COCOA RECIPE

Scary Dairy

For many people, eliminating dairy can resolve a plethora of health issues, from acne to hormonal imbalances. 

My go-to, most-trusted resource for explanations to any health and wellness related concerns (backed by sound research) is NutritionFacts.org. My husband, Dusty, and I had the pleasure of meeting the founder, Dr. Michael Greger, at the International Plant-Based Nutrition Healthcare conference this last October, and he is phenomenal! I highly recommend investing in his recent book, as well: How Not To Die.

Below are three super quick videos on milk and dairy and the reason we're probably better off without them:

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | MY DAIRY-FREE, FROTHY HOT COCOA RECIPE

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest.

Dairy-Free, FROTHY HOT COCOA

dairy-free, refined-sugar-free, antioxidant-packed

serves:1 // time: 5min

This incredibly smooth, antioxidant-packed, superfood version of a wintertime classic will appeal to anyone, plant-based/dairy-free or not! The froth alone is enough to win over the heart of any warm beverage connoisseur, and your body will thank you for this chocolatey, not-so-guilty pleasure! 

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | MY DAIRY-FREE, FROTHY HOT COCOA RECIPE

ingredients:

method:

  1. Put cacao powder in blender, followed by almond milk and blend.

  2. Remove pits from dates and add to blender and blend until smooth.

  3. Pour contents into small sauce pan and heat on stove on low heat until desired temperature is reached.

  4. Fill up your favorite mug, pop in a movie, cozy up, sip, and enjoy!

options:

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest.

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | MY DAIRY-FREE, FROTHY HOT COCOA RECIPE

Some Reading To Go With Your New Beverage

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Designed For Your Lifestyle,

Erin 

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest.

Homemade Almond Milk From A Certified Health Nut

Eat, Food + Nutrition, RecipesErin StanczykComment
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT

Nuts About Nuts

Walnuts, cashews, hazelnuts, brazil nuts, pistachios, and last but not least, almonds! On a plant-based diet, getting your healthy fat fix is a cinch! Omega-3 fatty acids are extremely important to incorporate into your diet, and smelly fish oil is definitely not the only way to get enough of the good stuff. Nuts and seeds are an abundant source of healthy fats that help promote brain and heart health, as well as glowing hair, skin, and nails. On top of all that, they're so versatile—there's so much more you can do besides add them to your trail mix or spread them on your toast! Nut milk is a great way to upgrade your diet, and kick dairy to the curb!


Scary Dairy

Dairy products like milk and cheese have been linked to hormone disruption, acne, and a plethora of digestive issues. The human body simply wasn't designed to consume animal milk. A mother's breast milk is full of nutrients and hormones that aid an infant in developing a healthy gut, immune system, and receiving all necessary nutrients in the early stages of life. Now why would we want to continue consuming this after infancy…let alone another species' milk?! Not to mention, the amount of antibiotics, antidepressants, and other unwanted chemicals that are pumped into cows that ultimately wind up in our bodies! I could go on, but, really, we don't need animal milk, or any animal products, in order to survive, and they can certainly make it more difficult for us to thrive! Enter: nut milk—the healthy beverage upgrade!

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT

Soaking Your Nuts + Seeds

Nuts and seeds are nutrient powerhouses, but in order to reap the maximum benefit, soaking and sprouting is necessary. I'm new to soaking and sprouting, so I can't say that I've experienced a difference in digestion or anything, but the science behind it totally makes sense! Nuts and seeds contain natural toxins and anti-nutrients that protect them, but can harm us. These elements help to protect nuts and seeds from external factors like weather and predators until conditions are optimal for germination and sprouting. Long story short, soaking helps aid in digestion and allows for maximal nutrient absorption so that the body can receive the most benefit.

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT

Beverage Upgrade: Homemade Almond Milk Is Worth The Squeeze!

Making your own almond milk can be more cost-effective than store-bought if you a) buy your almonds in bulk and b) spread them thin (use more water). Obviously buying a carton of almond milk is going to be quicker and easier, but if you're feeling extra ambitious, nothing beats a glass of homemade almond milk! An added bonus to making it yourself is that you know there won't be any unnecessary ingredients used to prolong shelf-life! Making things from scratch is so rewarding, and the satisfaction alone will do wonders for your well-being! ;)

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT

Homemade Vanilla Almond Milk

vegan, raw, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, refined-sugar-free

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT

 

Ingredients:

1 cup raw almonds (soaked)

2-3.5 cups filtered water

vanilla bean (or 1/2-1 teaspoon vanilla extract)

pinch of sea salt

Optional: 

3-6 pitted dates (soaked)

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

 

Directions:

  1. Completely cover almonds in filtered water and soak overnight (8-12 hours), or for at least two hours if you're in a pinch—but the longer the better. If going the sweetened almond milk route, soak dates for at least 30 minutes in a separate bowl.
  2. Drain water, rinse almonds a couple of times, and pour into a high-speed blender with fresh, filtered water. If you want your milk to be thicker and creamier, try 2 cups, or for a lighter consistency, about 3.5 cups. If using dates, drain water, remove pits, and add in. Blend on high for 1 minute.
  3. Open vanilla bean by slicing lengthwise, scrape out the insides, and add to the blender, (or simply add vanilla extract). Throw in a pinch of sea salt to round out the flavor and blend on high for another 30 seconds.
  4. Pour through a cheesecloth or nut milk bag over a large bowl. Some of the nut milk will strain through quite effortlessly—for the rest, squeeze as much excess liquid as possible into bowl.
  5. I like to pour the nut milk from the bowl back into the blender to easily transfer it into a glass bottle or jar without spilling. Tightly sealed, this should keep for up to 3-5 days in the refrigerator.
  • On a side note, there are tons of recipes out there for baked goods, oatmeal, granola, smoothies, etc. if you'd like to reserve the almond pulp leftover from straining and freeze it for later. I have yet to try this, but I will be sure to post a recipe when I do!
Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT

As Seen On YouTuBe

Be sure to check out this delicious and nutritious dairy-free beverage on the EatMoveRest YouTube channel! Subscribe, Like, Comment, and Share!


Blueberry Banana Almond Milk Smoothie

vegan, raw, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, refined-sugar-free

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT

Ingredients:

1-2 frozen bananas

1 cup frozen blueberries

2 handfulls spinach

1 teaspoon hemp, chia, and/or flax

3/4 cup homemade almond milk

1/2 scoop Garden of Life Raw Vanilla Protein (optional)

 


Directions:

Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend away! If you are using fresh bananas and blueberries instead of frozen, consider adding a cup of ice to thicken up your smoothie.

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest. | HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK FROM A CERTIFIED HEALTH NUT

Enjoy your fresh, smooth, upgraded milk by itself, in smoothies like the one above, cereals, and anywhere else you would use dairy milk! As always, I'm open to suggestions for future posts on anything ranging from health and nutrition, to fitness and exercise, to rest and relaxation, so please leave comments, let me know how your recipe turns out, and drop me a message if you're interested in healthy lifestyle coaching! Cheers!

Designed For Your LIfestyle,

Erin 

Erin Stanczyk | Lifestyle Design | eat.move.rest.