Better for You Banana Bread. (Wheat Free!)

In the immortal words of Scooby Doo, “Ruh-roh, Raggy.”

Last week, I got a little over-zealous with my banana purchase. Sunday, it was do or die. Should I throw the overripe fruit away? Heck no! Let’s make a Scooby Snack.

Rewind for a second. A few years ago, my friend Isabelle surrendered the banana bread she had worked hard to perfect while her husband was serving our country overseas. And perfect it she did. Good gracious, that stuff is addictive.

But it also has a whole stick of butter and a good bit of added sugar. Perfect for dessert. Maybe not as perfect for breakfast. That’s where my tinkering came in.

If you want the original recipe, you’re going to have to ask Isabelle. That doesn’t mean I won’t gladly give you the remix she inspired. These muffins won’t disappoint.

Better for You Banana Bread

1/4 cup softened butter

1/4 cup flax meal

1/4 cup loosely packed brown sugar

1/4 cup raw agave nectar

1/4 cup stevia in the raw

1 large egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup Greek yogurt

4 small overripe bananas mashed (for 1 cup)

1 cup brown rice flour

1 cup rolled oats, ground into flour (for 1 scant cup)

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

Optional chopped almonds to stir in or sprinkle on top

*In a small bowl, mix the rice flour, oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.

*In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, agave and stevia. Add in the egg and incorporate thoroughly. Now blend in the vanilla and Greek yogurt. Finally, add the banana and blend.

*Add in the flour mixture in three batches, blending thoroughly each time.

*Pour batter into a greased 12-muffin tray, filling each cup about 3/4 full.

*Bake at 350 for 21-25 minutes.


Say “Hey” to the Croquette

Some might consider me a Cooking Light fan girl. 

In my stash of go-to recipes, you’ll find no small number of Cooking Light creations. When my monthly issue arrives, I read it cover to cover, dog-ear, then experiment. Here’s the story of one such adventure: Potato, Mushroom and Leek Croquettes. 

Getting started: The fresh line up

The croquette holds a special place in my heart. As a child, my grandparents would often take me to a meat-and-three called The Pioneer. It had a waterfall, a playful waiter who pulled my ponytail and a delicacy we called the “squash puff.” I was in love.

The squash puff was really a croquette, but “puff” rolls off the tongue much easier for a 5-year-old. These were crunchy fried goodness–heavenly–and kind of terrible for you.

Given my love for the puff/croquette as a genre, you can imagine how excited I was to see a healthier version in Cooking Light’s Super Fast section. Yukon golds and mushrooms? Bring it on.

Inspiration struck to make these beauties on a Saturday afternoon. I got the patties ready to rock and roll, then stored them in the fridge until I was ready to pan fry them for our Sunday lunch. A little pre-planning took “super-fast” to the next level.

I followed the recipe closely, save these small substitutions:

  • I used portobello mushrooms in place of the cremini/button combo.
  • Pre-shredded Swiss/Gruyere blend made prep work a breeze.
  • Brown rice flour took the place of all purpose.

The results where divine! A crunchy layer on the outside gives way to a creamy middle.This experiment was declared a success.


Our plates were balanced with black beans + beet greens (left over from Farro Salad) and carrots. Vore had a pork chop for good measure.