Caramel Cashew Swiss Meringue Buttercream {THM:S}

This Swiss Buttercream Frosting is the perfect combo of sweet, salty, caramely-ness!

By this point you all are probably wondering if I even cook, and probably imagine I spend all day every day baking and eating said baked goods. No, I promise I do love to cook just as much (or even more) as I love baking, but baking is definitely my first love. After all, I got started in the kitchen when I was about 4, baking biscuits!

I do intend to post savory recipes at some point, but I have more baking/sweets recipes than savory ready to go, so you’ll have to suffer through sweets recipes for a bit yet.

Savory recipes are much harder for me to write down, since I’m a add-a-pinch of-this, add-a-dash-of that, add-a-doonk-of-this, add-a-splash-of-the-other-thing type of cook, so it takes me a bit longer to get a savory recipe written out.

I’m very much looking forward to sharing those savory meals with you…but for now….here’s another frosting recipe, which is my personal favorite! I do have a few more flavor variations on the way, so stay tuned!

I first created this recipe a little over a year ago for one of my sisters birthday, whose taste buds run along same lines as mine, so it was a TREAT to create this one. (Pardon the picture size…when I made this a year ago, I didn’t have my camera with, so these are phone pictures. I hope to update them soon, but I haven’t had a chance to yet!)

It also the cake I chose for my first Trimmiversary, December 2018.

I created a layer cake with it by doing this:

I made the batter for the Magic Salted Caramel Cupcakes (Trim Healthy Table, page 379), but instead of turning it into cupcakes, I poured it into 3 greased, parchment lined, and floured (I used Oat Fiber) 6 inch cake pans. I then baked them for about 25 minutes. Let cool slightly and then run thin knife around edge of pan to make sure cake is completely separated from pan, and turn out onto a parchment covered cooling rack. Let cool completely. (I made this late in the evening so I didn’t have time to finish it, so once it cooled to room temperature, I stuck the layers in zip-lock bags and put them in the freezer until I was ready for them.

The drizzle and topping is the caramel sauce for the cupcakes.

Caramel Cashew Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Ingredients

  • cup swerve brown sugar (or other on plan brown sugar like this one from Gwen’s-Nest.) See notes for measuring Swerve brown sugar.
  • 3 large egg whites
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened and cut into 1-tablespoon pieces
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ t. caramel extract (Feel free to swap out for another flavoring!)
  • 1 cup cashew butter (You may use any nut butter in this. Peanut butter is DELICIOUS!)

Instructions

  • Combine sweetener, egg whites, and salt in bowl of stand mixer; place bowl over pan of simmering water. Whisking gently but constantly, heat mixture until slightly thickened, foamy, and registers 150 degrees on instant-read thermometer, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Place bowl in stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Beat mixture on medium speed until consistency of shaving cream and slightly cooled, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Add butter, 1 piece at a time, until smooth and creamy. (Frosting may look curdled after half of butter has been added; it will smooth with additional butter.) Once all butter is added, add vanilla and cashew butter; mix until combined. Increase speed to medium-high and beat until light, fluffy, and thoroughly combined, about 30 seconds, scraping beater and sides of bowl with rubber spatula as necessary.
  • If final frosting seems too thick, warm mixer bowl briefly over pan of simmering water. Place bowl back on mixer and beat on medium-high speed until creamy.

Notes

If you don’t have Swerve brown sugar, just use the equivalent of sweetener of your choice, and add a small amount (1/4-1/2 t. of blackstrap molasses).
When measuring the brown sugar, crumble it into your measuring cup and then lightly level it off. If you pack it in it will be VERY sweet!
This frosting can be made up to 24 hours in advance and refrigerated in an airtight container. When ready to frost, place frosting in a microwave-safe container and warm briefly on high power until just slightly softened, 5 to 10 seconds. Once warmed, stir until creamy.

Making THM my own, part 2 {THM:FP w/S options}

What better way to stay warm & cozy while the snow keeps falling than with a cup of this Fuel Pull Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate!

No recipe this time, just another edition of my tweaks to approved THM recipes! (Check out my first edition here!)

These are both Fuel Pulls, which star as way to either round off your meal or to have as a light snack.

#1 Instant Cookie Dough Protein Bars (FP), Trim Healthy Table, page 428 (follow recipe directions).

I multiply the recipe by 8. I figure if I already have the ingredients out, I may as well make it worth my while!

Here’s what I do to tweak it:

1. Replace the pressed peanut flour with an equal amount of powdered almond butter. (Find it here or at your local grocery/health food store.)

2. Replace the gentle sweet with an equal amount of Swerve confectioners style sweetener. This will make the bars smooth, with no graininess from the gentle sweet.

3. Use the amount of water called for in the recipe, replacing 2 teaspoons of it with 3/4 teaspoon caramel flavoring, 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1/2 teaspoon butter flavoring.

4. Replace 1/2 of the chocolate chips with an equal amount of finely chopped nuts of your choice.

5. If making the 8x recipe, increase the salt to 1/4 teaspoon TOTAL.

For dividing these up, I have used a silicone bar pan like this or else I press it evenly into a 8 or 9 inch square pan lined with parchment paper baking or plastic wrap. Pop it into the fridge to chill, then remove from pan and cut it into 8 pieces.

If you want to turn these into a S, simply increase the butter by 1/2, or double the chocolate chips or nuts!

#2 THM Chocolate Whey Protein (find it here, check at your local health food store, or use another on plan chocolate whey protein!)

I debated even sharing this, as it is SO extremely simple, it’s not even a recipe!

I’m not even sure if people need this, but considering this is one my favorite ways to get a little extra protein and my favorite bedtime snack, here goes!

Salted Caramel Protein Hot Chocolate -16 oz.

Fill your 16 oz. mug with 1/2 water and 1/2 cashew milk (or other nondairy milk of your choice).

Pour all but about 1/3 cup of it into small pan and heat to just below boiling. (It’s important it’s not boiling. Read why below!)

Add 1 scoop (1/4 cup) chocolate whey protein powder, 1/2 teaspoon caramel flavoring, & a pinch of salt to milk in mug and blend well until smooth, using a battery operated whisk (or pour cold milk into blender and add whey protein.. blend on low until smooth).

It’s very important to dissolve the whey protein powder in COLD liquid. If you add straight hot liquid to the whey, it’ll curdle & who wants to eat curds and whey unless you’re Little Miss Muffet?!?

Add hot milk to cold milk mixture and blend just until completely mixed and all protein powder is dissolved.

Enjoy!

If you’re wanting to turn the hot chocolate into an S instead of a FP, there are a few options:

1. Add a few Tablespoons of 1/2 & 1/2 to your milk/water mixture.

2. Top finished hot chocolate generously with homemade whipped cream.

3. Add a Tablespoon of butter, coconut oil, or ghee when blending in the last step. If you do this option, it’ll fit in the Deep S category which concentrates only on the most pure and healthiest fats.

Feel free to switch out the caramel flavor for other flavors/extracts. I haven’t tried many, but I’d imagine any berry flavorings would be delicious, as would be mint! Leave out the salt if you’re switching out for other flavors.

Aunt Mary Jo’s Sour Cream Cookies {THM:S}

The Sour Cream Cookie recipe this is based off of, is probably the first cookie I REALLY remember helping to make. My favorite part was running my finger under the cooling rack and picking up all the glaze that had landed on the newspaper underneath it. Ahhh……I probably didn’t even NEED to eat a cookie by the time I was done doing that! At least now I can do that without getting a major blood sugar spike-and-crash. 🙂

This recipe was inspired by a good old classic family favorite recipe, given to my mom by one of my aunts. The original was misplaced, and we made a few variations through the years, never finding the original, stained, & much-loved index card of the original recipe. I did finally come across one that was just as good as hers, so I’ve stuck with that one…until now!

I’ve trimmified this favorite family recipe and named it in honor of my aunt, because without her, I wouldn’t have this recipe to share with you all!

It really is a family favorite, because once upon a time several years ago, I made a triple batch, I believe of these cookie (white flour & sugar filled ones!) which yielded about 12 dozen LARGE cookies….they were GONE within 2 days.

Aunt Mary Jo’s Sour Cream Cookies

Course: Dessert
Keyword: cookies, family favorite
Servings: 60 cookies

Ingredients

DRY INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ cups THM baking blend
  • ½ cup Oat Fiber (the THM brand is the best one I’ve used.)
  • teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 12 grates whole nutmeg (grated using a microplane zester) or 1/2 t. ground nutmeg

WET INGREDIENTS & SWEETENER

  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup Gentle Sweet (or other approved on-plan sweetener)
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sour cream or greek yogurt

GLAZE, Optional

  • 1 ⅔ cups Swerve confectioners style sugar (or other approved on plan sweetener, powdered in blender or coffee grinder)
  • ½ cup water
  • ¾ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch salt

CINNAMON “SUGAR”, Optional

  • 2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • cup Gentle Sweet (or other approved, on plan sweetener)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Line cookie sheet with parchment paper or grease well using butter or grease of your choice.
  • Whisk together dry ingredients and set aside.
  • Melt butter. Add remaining ingredients.
  • Using stand mixer fitted with paddle, beat mixture on medium speed for 1 minute.
    Add dry ingredients and mix for 1 minute, scraping bowl down as needed.
  • Using a #30 cookie scoop (or a 1 Tablespoon measuring spoon), scoop dough onto parchment lined sheet pans, 15 to a sheet.
  • If using cinnamon “sugar”, sprinkle over tops of cookies before baking. If using glaze, proceed to the next step.
  • Bake for 11 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking time.
  • Remove from sheet pan to cooling rack and let cool.

If using Glaze option:

  • Whisk together glaze ingredients until smooth.
  • Once cookies are completely cool, dip top of cookies in glaze, and place back on cooling rack (with parchment paper or newspaper placed under rack to catch the drip of glaze), until glaze is dried.
  • Once dry, place in container and store covered.

If using Cinnamon “Sugar” option:

  • Whisk together ground cinnamon & gentle sweet. Sprinkle over tops of cookies BEFORE baking.

Notes

You may add food coloring to your glaze if you’re wanting a colored glaze. I use India Tree food coloring, it had no artificial coloring in it. I find it at my local health food store.
A hand mixer works well for this recipe too, just use it on high speed (5 on mine), for both mixing steps.
 

Raspberry Cheesecake {THM:S}

I somehow, over the last 10 years, have become the unoffical “offical” dessert maker in my family. Actually, not just family…Church. Work. Friends. And pretty much everything/everybody else!! The question always is: “SO what dessert are you making/did you bring?”  In all honesty, I don’t mind. I love making desserts for the simple joy of seeing people enjoy it!

And yes, my job consists of making desserts. All day. Every day! I’m guesstimating I’ve made somewhere in the neighborhood of 3000 cheesecakes in my life, so cheesecake kind of is my specialty. (Amongst other things such as cream pie, cupcakes,etc.!)

So, when I asked my mom what dessert she wanted for her birthday and “Cheesecake!” was her response, I inwardly thought ” Oh. man! I was hoping for a challenge!” But I”ll do anything to make my momma happy! 🙂

So now, I bring to you a tried and true recipe which I have Trimmified. It’s
perfectly creamy, sweet, & fruity. And 100% not complicated! 🙂

As far as crust options go..I’ve done it 2 ways.

Classic Graham Cracker Style: For this one, mix up a 1/2 batch of this graham cracker crumb recipe from THM Coach Becky at A Better Life. Just mix up a 1/2 batch of the recipe and press it FIRMLY into your pan and bake for 10 minutes at 350°. Cool completely before filling.

Shortbread-ish style: Use the crust recipe from my Lemon Cheesecake Crumb Bars, once again mixing up a 1/2 batch and pressing it FIRMLY into the bottom and partway up the sides of your cheesecake pan and bake for 8 minutes 350°.

Raspberry Cheesecake

Course: Dessert
Keyword: birthday dessert, cheesecake, Low carb, raspberry, sugar free, THM-S
Servings: 10

Ingredients

Cheesecake

  • 3 8 oz. pkgs. neufchâtel or cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup gentle sweet,
  • 2 doonks stevia (1/16 teaspoon)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup nonfat plain greek yogurt or sour cream
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 eggs

Raspberry Topping

  • 1 10 oz package frozen raspberries
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1 T. lemon juice
  • 3 T. gentle sweet,
  • 1/8 tsp. glucomannan

WHIPPED CREAM TOPPING, optional

  • 2 oz. neufchâtel or cream cheese, softened
  • 3 Tablespoons swerve confectioners style sweetener, or equivalent of other on plan powdered sweetener
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

Instructions

CRUST

  • Preheat oven to 350° Bake desired crust in a 8 or 9 in cheesecake or springform pan for 8 minutes.
    Remove from oven and let cool while mixing batter

CHEESECAKE

  • Blend neufchâtel cheese and gentle sweet together until smooth, using either a food processor or a stand mixer on low speed. Scrape down sides of bowl VERY well to ensure there are no lumps of neufchâtel cheese.
  • Add sour cream and vanilla. Mix until combined. Scrape down bowl again.
  • Add eggs slowly, mixing just until completely mixed in.
  • Scrape into prepared crust.

Place in oven and turn down to 250°. (Yes, 250° degrees is correct!)

  • Bake 1 hour or until thermometer inserted into center reads 160 degrees. If you don’t have a thermometer, if a quarter size in the center is still jiggly, it’s done.
  • Let cool for an hour on the counter and then refrigerate until cold, at least 3 hours or overnight.

RASPBERRY TOPPING

  • Combine raspberries, salt, gentle sweet, & lemon juice in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook until saucy and then bring to a boil.
  • Whisk in glucomannan and bring back to a boil, whisking constantly. Once it starts to thicken, remove from heat and refrigerate until needed.

WHIPPED CREAM TOPPING

  • Using either a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk, beat neufchâtel cheese, vanilla extract & sweetener together until smooth and completely lump free, scraping down bowl as needed.
  • Add heavy cream slowly, mixing constantly. Scrape down bowl and then whip on medium speed until medium peaks form.

ASSEMBLY

  • Remove cheesecake from pan. Spread raspberry filling evenly on top. If you’re using the whipped cream topping, leave a 1/2 -1 inch border. It not, just spread topping to the edges. Pipe a border of whipped cream around edges. Top with fresh raspberries if desired.
  • Keep refrigerated.

Notes

To remove cheesecake from pan: Warm pan up slightly by dipping in a bowl of hot water for about 20 seconds. Run thin knife between the cheesecake and the pan to loosen. 
You may also warm it up by placing on a LOW flame for 30 seconds or a warm hot plate. 
The VERY BEST stevia powder I’ve found is the THM brand. It’s the first stevia powder that I have ever liked. Find it in their online store here or check at your local health food store. (Sadly mine doesn’t carry it, so I do have to buy it online!)

P.B. Max Bars {THM:S}

What, you may ask does PB Max stand for? I asked the same question when I was young and the answer is got was “Peanut Butter [to the] Max!”

So yes, if you love peanut butter and chocolate, I’m 110% sure you will love these bars.

This recipe comes by way of a friend bringing them to a church potluck. They became an instant family favorite, so when THM became my lifestyle just over 2 years ago I KNEW this was one recipe that I HAD to Trimmify.

Whenever I ask the question “what should I make?”, my dads instant response 99% of the time is “ you know what sounds good to me …some of those peanut butter chocolate bars.” He likes them so much it’s what he got for a birthday dessert in lieu of birthday cake or cheesecake last year.

PB Max Bars

Course: Dessert
Keyword: chocolate, Low carb, peanut butter, sugar free, THM-S
Servings: 24 pieces

Ingredients

CRUST

  • cups THM Baking Blend
  • ½ cup oat fiber
  • ¼ cup pressed peanut flour
  • ½ cup THM Gentle Sweet
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened

FILLING

  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
  • ½ cup natural unsweetened peanut butter
  • ¾ cup pressed peanut flour
  • cup THM Gentle Sweet
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon blackstrap molasses

Topping

  • cups stevia sweetened chocolate chips (THM or Lily’s)
  • 3 Tablespoons butter

Garnish (optional)

  • chopped roasted & salted peanuts
  • chopped sugar free peanut butter cups
  • shaved or grated chocolate

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Line a 13 x 9 pan with parchment paper. (If you don’t have parchment paper, just grease pan well with butter.)

Crust

  • Whisk all dry ingredients together in a medium bowl.
  • Add butter and mix with either a wooden spoon or mixer until dough is formed and no dry ingredients remain in bottom of bowl.
  • Press evenly into bottom of prepared pan, using a tamper or bottom of a dry measuring cup to pack it down.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until just starting to brown. The crust may feel soft, but it will firm up once it’s cooled.
  • Set crust aside to cool.

Filling

  • Mix all filling ingredients in medium bowl until completely combined.
  • Spread filling mixture evenly over cooled crust.

Topping

  • Melt chocolate and butter together over low heat, stirring until smooth. A double boiler or microwave works well for this step too.
  • Spread evenly over peanut butter filing.

Garnish (if desired)

  • If using chopped peanuts or peanut cups sprinkle over chocolate while its still warm so they’ll set in place.
    If using chocolate shavings, wait until the topping is nearly set.
  • Refrigerate until set. Cut into 24 pieces and serve. If using parchment paper, you can lift the bars out of the pan to cut. Keep leftovers refrigerated.

Notes

Any other on plan sweetener works well in this recipe. Find a sweetener conversion chart here.
You may use creamy or crunchy peanut butter, depending on desired texture.
If you don’t have stevia sweetened chocolate chips, using 7 oz of 85% or darker chocolate in place of them is acceptable. Just chop the bar up into rough pieces.
Coconut oil may be used in place of butter in the topping.
My favorite tool for spreading is a small offset spatula like this one.
Molasses is an on plan food to be used in small amounts. 3/4 teaspoon is fine for this recipe since it’s spread throughout an entire batch.

Making THM my own.

I believe one of the best things about THM is the ability to MAKE IT YOUR OWN! Don’t like sweet peppers in your soup? Just swap it out for another FP veggie. Don’t like quinoa in your soup? Just substitute another approved E grain! Versatility, mamas!

I’m going to share a few things I’ve made my own, and I’d love to see yours! These are all recipe that I’ve tweaked to become my all time favorite flavor (and MAJOR weakness!), Salted Caramel.

Seriously, if I ever come across something that’s Salted Caramel I HAVE to try it. There’s just something about that perfectly sweet/salty/creamy combo!

#1 Sweet Dreams Cookie Bowl Oatmeal (FP), THM cookbook, page 249. I don’t have any pictures for this one.

Now, I LOVE the combo of PB and Chocolate, but sometimes…I just need a change of pace.

I follow the recipe directions but do these tweaks to make it my own:

1. Omit the cocoa powder & pressed peanut flour, replacing with an equal amount of powdered almond butter. (I use this one.)

2. Double the salt.

3. Add butter & caramel flavoring & vanilla extract to taste. (I haven’t measured, but I’m guessing 1/8 tsp. each, with a little more caramel than butter & vanilla.)

4. Use the lesser amount of sweetener, I do sometimes use even less, since without the cocoa powder you don’t have that extra bitterness.

I do enjoy my oatmeal better warm, so I make it ahead of time in glass storage containers, and just pop it into the oven to heat it up. By the time I’m ready for the day it’s at a perfect eating temperature.

#2 Mouthwatering Meringues (Ultra FP). THM cookbook, page 317 (follow mixing and baking instructions in recipe.)

1. Replace the banana flavoring with 1 1/2 teaspoon caramel flavor & 1/2 teaspoon butter flavor.

2. Add 1/4 t. salt along with the sweetener.

3. Increased the sweetener slightly since I have a sweet(er) tooth!

One recipe yielded 1 1/2 gallon jar. I used a large open star piping tip & a pastry bag top pipe these onto the parchment paper.

I love these because they’re an Ultra-FP, so they can be paired with ANYTHING!

#3 Ultimate E Bars, Trim Healthy Table, page 432 (follow recipe directions.)

1. Omit cocoa powder, replacing with an equal amount of powdered almond butter.

2. Replace pecan extract with an equal amount of butter flavoring

3. Decrease vanilla to 1/2 teaspoon.

4. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons caramel extract in place of the remaining vanilla.

5. Increase salt to 3/4 teaspoon, or to taste.

That concludes my first post of tweaks for making Trim Healthy Mama my own! I hope to do a few more posts like this in the coming months.

For the caramel & butter flavorings, the best I’ve come across are THM’s Natural Burst brand.

I buy the powdered almond butter & vanilla at my local health food store, but they can be found online.