Easy, Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies

I can’t tell you how many times I have tried making a good tasting, healthy chocolate chip cookies. I needed them to be firm, thin, and still taste like a regular cookie.

My family is a huge fan of chocolate chip cookies, when I baked a lot of unhealthy things, still do sometimes. I would make these for family day, and we would go through dozens at a time. It was crazy!

But then my family started wanting to eat healthier. And I still wanted to bake. I’m sure you have heard me countless of times talking about Trim Healthy Mama. So that’s what we have been doing, of and on. I have been trying to make healthy cookies, but they always turn out too soft, or too thick. I looked at all the THM recipes we have online, and its not much.

So I got out my recipe of my favorite chocolate chip cookies, and started experimenting! And these cookies are what turned out!

When making these cookies I used Gentle sweet, and Super Sweet. Which you could replace with Xylitol, or Swerve, or any other natural sweetner.

The dough should be quite sticky, and moist. But still cookie dough like consistency.

When you take the cookies out of the oven, its going to seam like they are not done. It will be very soggy, and melty.

Let sit on the pan for a few minutes to harden up a bit. Then take of, and put on parchment paper, or on a wire rack to finish cooling completely. It will start to harden up, after about ten, twenty minutes it will be completely ready! I know its hard to wait, but trust me!

These cookies taste better the day after it cooked to me!

The Best Tasting, And Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookie

Yields: 40 cookies Prep Time: 10 Minutes Cook Time:10-11 Minutes

Ingredients

2 1/2 Cups of Almond Flour

1 Heaping Tsp. Of Baking Soda

1/2 Tsp. Salt

2 Cups of Natural Sweetner

3 Eggs

1 1/2 Tsp. of Vanilla Extract

1 stick of Melted Butter

1 1/2 cups of sugar free chocolate chips

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees, Line a Baking Sheet with Parchment Paper, or a silicone mat.
  • Mix all the dry ingredients in a Medium Sized Bowl.
  • In a Large Stand Mixer, or Large with with a hand Mixer, mix the sweetener, and butter together well.
  • Incorporate the vanilla, and eggs in the bowl, mix well.
  • Then add the dry ingredients to the bowl, mix until no dry ingredients are shown.
  • Add in the chocolate chips.
  • Use a 1 1/2 sized cookie scoop, and drop unto the sheets.
  • Bake for 10-11 minutes, until slightly crisp, but not burnt, you can’t really tell, but just trust the time. It will look like it is not not. But it is.
  • Once out of the oven, let sit on pan for a few mintues till it starts to firm a little.
  • Transfer to parchment paper, or a wire rack. Let cool for 10-20 minutes. continue to make the batches till batter is gone.
  • Then Enjoy!

If you have any questions, or comments please let me know!

Easy Healthy Peppermint Cake

This cake is a family favorite. Everybody in my family loves it. So, I am the baker in my family, I’m usually in charge of the treats for holidays, and birthdays. For the past six months we have had tons of birthdays, and holidays in my family, But we have all been eating healthy. (Most of us 🙂

At first I was struggling on what I could bake that was sugar free, and gluten free, but still taste like a regular cake. I’ve also always had this thought that healthy cake is never as good as regular cake. But then…I found this fantastic recipe.

This recipe is from Trim Healthy Mama. Now I’m sure you have heard me talk about Trim Healthy Mama in earlier posts. But thats because THM (trim healthy mama) is so incredible,

Since I found this cake it has been our favorite cake in our house. Everybody always requests it, and I’m happy to oblige. I realized that I can make recipes that are healthy, and yummy. So that has been my goal, so I will probably be posting more healthy recipes in the future. I have also started loving cake decorating. I recently got tons of cake decorating supplies for my birthday, and I am so excited to see what beauty I can create with cakes!

Lets talk ingredients for a second…

When I bake healthy, I believe to use quality ingredients. That’s why I think you should use organic/good eggs, and butter. Cause in my opinion…for what its worth, you can taste a difference if you use fresh ingredients.

In this recipe it calls for one can of pure pumpkin. Yes, Pumpkin. Now, that may seem weird, but you really can’t taste it!

Another thing is that the flour replacement in this recipe is Baking Blend. What is baking Blend? It’s a mix of oat fiber, blanched chopped almonds, coconut, and ground golden flax-seed. You can easily make your own baking Blend mix, or you can buy it with this link- trimhealthymama.com/product/gluten-free-baking-blend

If you wish to make it, here is a great recipe for it! https://www.wholesomerecipebox.com/thm-friendly-baking-blend-recipe/

In this recipe it also calls for a sweetener called gentle sweet. Gentle Sweet is a mix of Xylitol, and erythritol, and stevia. You can replace with just xylitol, or Swerve, or Truvia works too!

Note: I did adapt this recipe some, to make it what I believe is the best version of the cake.

Trimtastic Peppermint Cake

Ingredients

  • For the Peppermint Cream Chocolate Trimtastic Cake:
  • coconut oil cooking spray:
  • 1-15 oz can pure pumpkin puree
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup egg whites (carton or fresh)
  • 1 cup THM Baking Blend
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 Tbsp butter (1/2 stick)
  • 1 cup THM Gentle Sweet
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp aluminum-free baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp mineral salt
  • For the Peppermint Cream Frosting:
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 6 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup THM Gentle Sweet
  • 1 tsp peppermint extract (plus an optional drop or 2 of peppermint essential oil)
  • For the Optional Chocolate-Peppermint Topping:
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin coconut oil (melted; use flavorless kind if desired)
  • 2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 Tsp. Gentle Sweet
  • 1/4 tsp peppermint extract

Steps

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and grease two eight inch round pans, I also like to place parchment paper on the bottom of the pans to have it not stick.
  2. Mix the pumpkin, eggs, egg whites, vanilla, and melted butter in a large bowl with a hand mixer, or a stand mixer. Add in the rest of the ingredients and mix well, making sure to scrape the sides of the bowl.
  3. Evenly pour the batter into the two pans, and cook for 45 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
  4. Once partially cool take out of the pans carefully, and let finish cooling on parchment paper, or wax paper.
  5. To make the frosting mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl, till light, and fluffy.
  6. Once cake has finished cooling, frost the cake as desired.
  7. To make the optional drizzle mix all the ingredients in all small bowl, then drizzle on cake.
  8. Cake most be refrigerated, or put outside if cool.
  9. Enjoy!

This recipe was adapted my Trim Healthy Mama

If you have any questions, or comments please let me know! And I would be glad to help!

Check out my other healthy posts!

Healthy Hot Cocoa
https://cultivatingcozy.blog/2019/12/21/rehealthy-hot-cocoa/

Healthy Motess Cupcakes

https://cultivatingcozy.blog/2019/03/09/trimtastic-mostess-cupcakes/

The Best Tear Worthy Book: A Chat About, “This Side Of Heaven”

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I read a lot of books, all different kinds of books. But this is the very first btook that made me cry since the beginning. “This Side Of Heaven” by Karen Kingsbury is the best cry worthy book I’ve ever read. Its heartbreaking, beautiful. I couldn’t put this book down. I also couldn’t just do my regular book reviews because I have to much to say!

This book is categorized Adult Fiction. And Christian fiction. I love that this book is a clean read. There’s no graphic bad scenes in it. But……this book is very powerful, and emotional. So if you hand this book off to your kid, and then in hour later you see her bawling her eyes out. Don’t be concerned. My mom found me on the couch at midnight last night sobbing. She wasn’t concerned though, she just laughed. It’s pretty normal for me to be crying about books. But not as much as last nights tears.

“Annie Warren always wanted the best for her son, Josh. But years of failure and bad choices created a heartbreaking distance that has grown far worse since the day Josh was hit by a drunk driver. Now on medical disability, Josh has put his life on hold for years, waiting for the insurance company to send a settlement that never seems to come. Worse, he believes the story of a scheming woman who claims they have a seven-year-old daughter named Savannah.
Despite the unlikelihood and complete lack of evidence, Josh dreams of being a father and is determined to one day claim the child. His family doesn’t know the full story. They don’t know what happened the night of the accident that was worth the chronic pain Josh suffers every waking minute, or that he is turning his life around. They haven’t seen that Savannah’s eyes are his, and they don’t know how desperately the little girl needs her family.
When the settlement that rightly belongs to Josh is threatened, Annie sets out to defend her son. But she might find a treasure more valuable than money, one she never expected, one that is the greatest gift her son could ever give her.”

Does that not sound heartbreaking? And the plot twist was not what I expected. I’m going to start crying just by thinking about it. But the thing is, even though I cried the entire time I read this, I would still recommend this to people. I want other people to experience what I did.

Also, I’m not just hormonal. My sister was the one who borrowed this book to me yesterday, and she cried too. I was also looking at reviews and everybody is saying how much they cried. I stayed up till midnight last night just to finish this book, and I was a mess after.

Friendly Tip:When Reading maybe read alone. Otherwise people around you might think your a little crazy.

I really hope you read this, and let me know when you do! Remember to keep tissues handy!

Re:Healthy Hot Cocoa

Hello, Christmas is just around the corner. And I am so excited! The week of Christmas is always so busy for me. My birthday is the day before Christmas Eve. Then me, and my entire family celebrate Christmas, on christmas Eve. And then me, and my little brother, and my parents do our own christmas, christmas day. So it’s always a busy time for us.

I am re-posting this blog post I posted soon after I started my blog. (Whew, that was a lot of posting words.) This is still one of my absolute all favorite hot cocoa! I just want to share this, with all of you! It’s a perfect holiday treat!

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I love hot chocolate, it is so nice to have after you play in the snow, or when you come home from work, or even when you just want something chocolatey. Regular hot chocolate is so good, but it also has a lot of sugar.

If you don’t want all of that sugar in your body then try out this recipe. This recipe was from a healthy eating plan called “Trim Healthy Mama,” I’m sure that many of you have heard of it. The sweetener I’m using for this recipe is a sweetener from Trim Healthy Mama, called Gentle sweet. We usually buy this sweetener from their website, it costs about $10 for a sixteen ounce bag. If you don’t have this sweetener, or don’t want to buy it, then a good substitute would be xylitol, you would still put in the same amount.

I know some of you are thinking would this hot chocolate taste any good without sugar? It tastes just as good, if not better. My entire family loves this hot chocolate. Another thing is that there is only six ingredients in it!

Healthy Hot Chocolate

Yeilds:1 16 oz. Cup Prep Time: 2 min. Cook time: 3 min. Total Time: 5 Min.

3/4 Cup of Water

3/4 Cup of Nut Milk (your choice)

1 Tsp. of Heavy Cream

1 Heaping Tsp. of Cocoa Powder

3 Tsp. of Gentle Sweet ( or xylitol)

2 pinches of salt

put all the ingredients in in a sausepan and heat for about 3 minutes. Enjoy!

This Recipe is from Trim Healthy Mama

Here is the link if you are interested in buying the Gentle Sweet. https://store.trimhealthymama.com/product/gentle-sweet-xylitol-erythritol-stevia-ground-blend-16oz-bag/

Here is the link if you would like to check out Trim Healthy Mama. https://trimhealthymama.com/

The beautiful mug I used for this post is from a company called “Well Watered Woman,” check it out. https://shop.wellwateredwomen.com/products/bless-the-lord-mug



The Book Thief:Book Review

Image result for the book thief

When Death has a story to tell, you listen.

“It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.

Liesel Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement. 

In superbly crafted writing that burns with intensity, award-winning author Markus Zusak, author of I Am the Messenger, has given us one of the most enduring stories of our time.”\

My Review:

Okay guys, I am so excited for this review! It is one of my new favorite books! I found this book earlier this fall, and I have been meaning to do a review on it, but I haven’t had a chance. So here it finally is./

This book deals with a very sad, and serious matter. But Markus Zusak did an incredible job, making this book a little less sad. I love this book still. The first 10 chapters, are not very good. And they are confusing, but after that it is so amazing!

Is This Book Funny?

I mean not really. Its sweet, and enduring, and it for sure has those little silly parts. But not really a laugh out load book.

Did This Book Make Me Cry?

Yes! It made me cry so much!

Would I Read This Book Again?

Yes, for sure. I have actully started rereading it again!

Would I Recommend This Book To A Friend?

For sure! I’ve already Recommended it to so many!

My Overall Rating:

5 out of 5

Don’t forget to comment down below, if you have read this, or if you have a book you would like me to review.

Check out my other book Reviews!

https://cultivatingcozy.blog/2019/05/11/hattie-big-skybook-review/

https://cultivatingcozy.blog/2019/06/19/a-chat-about-the-keeper-of-the-lost-cities/

https://cultivatingcozy.blog/2019/04/27/roses-for-mama-book-review/

https://cultivatingcozy.blog/2019/02/17/the-vanderbeekers-book-review/

My Favorite Holiday Movies

Christmas is only a week in a half away! I cannot wait, I love Christmas! The food, the presents, the family, the lights, and most of all… The Birth of baby Jesus. I’m also excited, because this year, we have tons of snow in Minnesota!

Christmas movies are always the best! But you don’t know what are the good christmas movies? Well, have no fear, I’m here to help!

I put together a list of all my favorites, that I think, people of all ages will love! Enjoy, and let me know what your favorite christmas movie is in the comments!

(Note, all these movies are G, PG.)

Image result for elf

Elf

Elf is my family’s favorite movie ever! It is hilarious, and sweet. And a perfect movie for a family night.

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How The Grinch Stole Christmas

This movie is a classic. It is so fun to watch! We have been watching it every year as long as we can remember.

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The Grinch

If you want a cartoon for your little ones, I recommend this one! Its really funny, and good.

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The Star

Another Cartoon, but its such an incredible story. It is the best!

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The Christmas Chronicles

This movie is always fun! It’s a newer netflix film, and something everyone can enjoy!

Love At The Christmas Table

If your interested in a clean, romantic christmas movie, this one is one of my personal favorites.

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The Polar Express

Now, this is a true christmas movie. Its set on christmas eve, and ends on christmas day.

Thanks, for reading! Don’t forget to let me know your favorite christmas movie in the comments below!

My Experience At The Apple Orchard with My Family: In Photos

Hello, Happy fall ya’ll! Yesterday I was blessed to be able to go to the apple orchard with my family. Almost everybody got to come, exept my brother-in law. We had such a fun experience, and I want to share it with you guys in photos. I did this earlier this year when I was on vacation with my fam. I am hoping to be able to share with you all!

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My Little Niece Nora got to ride her first horse! She was so excited!
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Nora’s little sister Maisy go to ride a fake Rooster!
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My three favorite nieces on the entire planet! you guys are the best!
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Oh! Sweet Maisy, I can’t beileve you are one!
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Emmi got to ride a ponny as well! She kept saying i’m not scared anymore, I’m doing so good!
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The Youngests in the family!
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Inside warming up.
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Me, and Maisy
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This was such a sweet moment. With Emmi doing my har, and me reading. We were siting by the lake. It was so peaceful.
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Sisters, and mama!
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Mimi, and maisy!
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The little grandchildren.
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My favorite nephew Wesley, oh look at his little face.

I had such a fun experience with my crazy family! You guys are the best.

My Favorite Fall Diffuser Blends

It’s finally fall! I am so happy. I missed you fall. Pumpkin spice lattes, sweaters, apple orchards, pumpkins, leaves, and fall diffuser blends! Fall to me is all time cozy. You can snuggle up in a blanket now, and wear jeans, and go to the library. Okay, you can go to the library anytime of the year, but fall is my faovrite time to go! I think you guys get the point…I love fall!

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I do Not Own This Photo

I love candles. But I love smelling differnet fall smells. And buy ton of differnet candles just for fall. Plus, I’m always woried about candles. I know I don’t need to be, but I am. Anyhow, thats why I love diffusers. With natural oils you can blend, and mix all different kinds of smells. So on this post I put together some of my favorite fall diffuser blends. Enjoy!

Fall Leaves

6 Drops of Thieves

4 Drops of Citrus-Fresh

2 Drops of Stress Away

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Cinnamon Spice Is Nice

3 Drops of Clove

3 Drops of Cinnamon Bark

3 Drops of Orange

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Trick Or Treat

3 Drops of Orange

2 Drops of Frankincense

2 Drops of Cinnamon

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Apple Pie

2 Drops of Clove

2 Drops of Cinnamon

2 Drops of Ginger

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Every Thing Fall

1 Drop of Clove

1 Drop of Cinnamon

1 Drop of Thieves

1 Drop Of Lemon

1 Drop of Orange

1 Drop of Copaiba

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Autumn Hike

3 Drops of Theives

3 Drops of Lemon

The Most Easy, Simple, and Delicous Lemon Tart Recipe

lemon tart

Today, I have the the most simple, delicious lemon tart recipe that most anybody would love. The crust is just the right amount of firmness, and softness. The lemon curd is sweet, and smooth. It is seriously the best!

I actully did not make my own lemon curd for this recipe. My dear grandma gave me some lemon curd that she had just bought from the market. When she gave it to me this weekend, I had know idea what lemon curd was. So when I got home I started looking it up. I read at least ten blog posts about what to do with lemon curd, how to make lemon curd, and so on.

So that same day I took out my tart pan, (or actually borrowed it from my neighbor.) And my rolling pin. And got to work!

pie

The Crust was my favorite part to make. It was so much fun! I think I will be making it every week.

Helpful tips when making the crust!

  • Remember to use cold Butter, not room Temperature
  • If You do not have a food processor, then you use a Pastry Blender. That is what I used.
  • If You don’t want to use your dough right away, then you can refrigerate up to 3-4 days.
  • Remember to let the dough sit on the counter for a few minutes after you take it out of the fridge.
  • Make sure you freeze the dough in the pan for at least 30 minutes.
  • Remember to put some weight on top of the crust when baking.

Making the curd.

You are more then welcome to use store bought lemon curd, or pie filling.  Personally this time, I just used store bought. But I also have a great recipe for homemade curd as well. Its pretty simple, just remember to follow the directions.

The Most Easy, Simple, and Delicous Lemon Tart Recipe

For The Crust

Ingredients
  • 1¼ cups (180 g/6.3 oz) all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup (55 g/2 oz) powdered sugar (or ¼ cup granulated sugar)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (1 stick/115 g) cold butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, optional

For The Lemon Curd

  •  2 large eggs plus 2 egg yolks (or 3 whole eggs)
  •  3/4 cup (150 g/5.3 oz) granulated sugar
  •  1 tablespoon lemon zest
  •  1/2 cup (120 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice (2-3 lemons for both zest and juice)
  •  2 tablespoons heavy cream , optional
  •  1/2 cup (1 stick/115 g) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

Instructions for The Crust

  1. Process flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor for a few seconds until combined. If you don’t have a food processor, you can do this by using a pastry cutter. Add butter and pulse until mixture becomes crumbly and resembles coarse meal, about 15 pulses. Add egg and vanilla extract and keep pulsing until the dough is no longer dry and starts to clump together, about 10-15 seconds. Do not process to the point that a large ball of dough is formed; rather the dough should be quite crumbly with large clumps. Another way to check if it’s done is to take a piece of dough and press it between your thumbs – the dough should stick without feeling dry or crumbly.
  2. Turn dough to a lightly floured surface and form into a ball. It should come together easily without being sticky. Flatten ball slightly with your hands to form a thick disc. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  3. If you don’t want to use the dough right away, you can refrigerate it for up to 3 days, or freeze it for up to a month and then thaw overnight in the fridge.
  4. To roll out the dough: Take dough out of the fridge and let it sit on the counter for a few minutes to soften slightly for easy rolling. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out into an 11-inch circle, then place gently into a 9-inch tart pan (preferably with a removable bottom); you can do this by flouring a rolling pan and rolling the dough loosely around it, then unrolling it into the pan. Brush away any excess flour on the surface. With a sharp knife, trim the edges of the pastry to fit the tart pan. Cover pan with plastic wrap and place in the freezer until firm, about 30 minutes. Frozen dough is less prone to shrinking while baking.
  5. To bake the crust: Preheat oven to 375F/190C and place rack in the center.
  6. Press parchment paper or aluminum foil tightly against the crust, covering the edges to prevent them from burning. Fill with pie weights/dried beans/uncooked rice, making sure they’re fully distributed over the entire surface.
  7. Bake crust for 20 minutes, until foil no longer sticks to the dough. Transfer crust to a wire rack and remove weights and foil.
  8. To partially bake the crust: Bake for 5 minutes longer. You’ll now need to proceed with your tart recipe, add the filling, and finish baking. According to your recipe, the crust should be used either while warm or after it’s been left to cool on a wire rack.
  9. To fully bake the crust: Bake for about 10 minutes longer until golden brown and dry. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.

For The Curd

  1. To make the lemon curd: In a medium heatproof bowl, place eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and heavy cream and whisk to combine. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (bain-marie). Cook on moderate heat, whisking constantly, until mixture becomes thick (mine was ready in 10 minutes, but it can take up to 20). If you have a thermometer, it should register 170°F/75°C; otherwise, it should coat the back of a wooden spoon and leave a clear pass if you run your finger through it. The curd will thicken more once cooled.
  2. Remove from heat and immediately strain mixture through a sieve. Add butter, a few cubes at a time, and whisk until completely melted and incorporated, and mixture is smooth. Take your time with it—the whisking makes for an airy and light texture. Allow to cool to room temperature before filling the tart. (Lemon curd can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or can be frozen for up to 2 months. To thaw, place overnight in the fridge. Whisk the mixture to smoothen it before using.)

What to Do Then?

Fill the tart shell with lemon curd, then refrigerate for at least 4 hours until chilled. Serve with berries and whipped cream if you like. The tart is rich, so cut your servings small.

Adapted from Pretty. Simple. Sweet

I hope you try this recipe out! If you have any questions let me know in the comments.

Books I’ve Read In July So Far

Yikes, where do I begin? I have read a lot of books this month, and the months not even over! So I decided to share what books I’ve read so far, and then share later this month, other books I’ve read.

where courage calls

  1. “Where Courage Calls.” This is the beginning of a series called, “Return To The Canadian West.” One of my favorite authors, “Janette Oke” teamed up with her daughter to write this delightful series. This series is actually  a great companion to the Hallmark TV series called, “When Calls The Heart.”

where trust lies

  1. “Where Trust Lies.” This is the second book in the series, “Return To The Canadian West,”

where hope prefails

  1. “Where Hope Prevails.” This is the third, and last book in the series, “Return To The Candaian West.”

lodestar

  1. “Lodestar.” This is book five in the series,” Keeper of The Lost Cities.” I  have read this series twice, but I just wanted to reread some of my favorite books in the series. I love this series so much.

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5. “Flashback.” This is book seven in the series, “Keeper of the lost cities.” 

let the sky fall

6. “Let The Sky Fall.” This is the first book in the series, “Let The Sky Fall.” This series is actually written by the same person who wrote, “Keeper of the lost cities.” I really enjoyed this series.

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7. “Let The Storm Break.” Second book in,”Let The Sky Fall” Series.

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8. “Let The Wind Rise. Third, and last book in the series, “Let The Sky fall. This series is meant for YA.

What books have you read this month? Let me know in the comments below.

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