Blackberry Yogurt Snack Cake {THM:S}

I’ve brought you 2 frosting recipes…now I present to you……CAKE!

This recipe is my little sisters ABSOLUTE FAVORITE cake. If you were to ask her if she could choose just ONE dessert to have for the rest of her life her response would be this cake!

I came across the recipe for this in a Bon Appetit magazine several years ago. I would make it several times a summer with fresh picked, sun-ripened wild blackberries. So delicious. So refreshing and terribly hard to beat in the dog days of summer. (Which coincidentally, is when my little sisters birthday is!) So yes, this is the birthday cake of her choice EVERY year!

This is the first cake recipe I trimmified, just a few months after I started THM. I shared the recipe and everything on the groups…a few months later, after I had learned more about trimmifying recipes, I was ABSOLUTELY horrified to discover that I had used the SAME AMOUNT of gentle sweet as the sugar the recipe called for! I immediately went and found the posts where I’d shared the recipe and PROMPTLY fixed it!! I sure hope nobody made that recipe and I also have no idea how I didn’t think it was horrifyingly sweet!

The faint hint of citrus from the orange zest & the tangy sweetness from the yogurt and blackberries makes this a PERFECT accompaniment to your afternoon coffee. (Or tea, I love both but tend to drink tea in the afternoon and keep my coffee for the morning!) What’s your preference? Any favorite way to have your afternoon tea/coffee?

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Blackberry Yogurt Snack Cake

Course: Dessert, Snack
Keyword: dessert
Servings: 18 pieces

Ingredients

  • 10 oz. fresh blackberries (2½ cups)
  • cup erythritol (This is essential. It makes for a crispy, crunchy fruit top!)
  • 1 ¼ cups THM Baking Blend
  • ½ cup oat fiber
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup butter, melted
  • ¾ cup Gentle Sweet (or equivalent of other approved on plan sweetener)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 12 drops orange essential oil (or 1 ½ teaspoons orange extract) see note below
  • teaspoons fresh orange zest (use the zest from 1 large orange. Peel orange and use for a nice E snack!)
  • 1 ⅓ cups nonfat plain greek yogurt

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350° Grease a 13×9 rectangular pan or a 10 inch round cake pan. Line with parchment paper, grease parchment paper and dust pan with oat fiber.
  • Arrange berries in single layer in bottom of pan. Sprinkle evenly with erythritol.
  • Whisk baking blend, oat fiber, baking powder, baking soda, & salt. Set aside.
  • Using a hand mixer on high, beat melted butter, gentle sweet, vanilla extract, and orange essential oil together until lightened in color, about 3 minutes.
  • Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition, scraping down as necessary.
  • Add half of dry ingredients and mix well. Add yogurt and orange zest. Mix well. Add remaining dry ingredients and mix together on high speed for 1 minute, scraping bowl down as necessary.
  • Spread batter evenly over prepared berries in pan, making sure to smooth out top.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes or until top is golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean or with a few crumbs attached.
  • Place cutting board or desired serving dish immediately over top of cake and flip over. Immediately remove parchment paper, so bottom of cake doesn’t get soggy.
  • Let cool, and then serve!

Notes

Note: I have researched and am comfortable with using essential oils in my baking and cooking. Please do your own research and do what you’re comfortable with.
For extra flair you may lightly sprinkle with an on plan powdered sweetener or serve with lightly sweetened whipped cream.

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.
 

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.

Lemon Cheesecake Crumb Bars {THM:S}

Perfectly lemony cheesecake bars to brighten up your gloomy winter doldrums!

With winter upon us here in the North-woods of Wisconsin, we sometimes need some cheering up and a boost of Vitamin C! What better way than to combine the answer to both needs in a deliciously lemony cheesecake bar!?

One day I had a TON of egg yolks I needed to use PRONTO, so I made lemon curd, which I then stuck in the freezer until I could think of ways to use it besides Lemon Meringue Pie.

Enter these bars…years ago at the bakery where I work we had a cheesecake crumb bar. It wasn’t extremely popular so it was discontinued. I’d completely forgotten about those bars until I was discussing with a coworker about items that we had made in the past and this memory floating to the front of my mind.

As soon as possible I got into my kitchen and made these. It’s one of the few recipes I’ve created that was perfect from the first shot….now if only I could get that to happen more often! 🙂

For zesting lemons, I highly recommend this zester. I use it pretty much on a daily basis between work and home. In fact, I own 2 or 3 of them myself! You need to garnish your pie, whipped cream topped hot cocoa, with beautiful chocolate shavings, etc? You need to pile the Parmesan cheese on your pizza? Your rice pudding needs a bit of fresh nutmeg? You need fresh lemon zest for this recipe? Then this is the right tool for you!! 🙂

Lemon Cheesecake Crumb Bars

Course: Dessert
Keyword: bars, cheesecake, dessert, lemon, Low carb, sugar free
Servings: 18

Ingredients

Crust & Crumb Topping

  • 1 ½ cups THM Baking Blend
  • ¾ cup oat fiber
  • 1 cup THM Gentle Sweet or desired alternative sweetener of your choice
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 fresh lemon, zested
  • 1 cup butter, melted

Filling

  • 1 – 8 oz. package Neufchâtel cheese, softened
  • 2 cups lemon curd (I recommend this one from Joy & Simplicity.)
  • ½ cup sour cream or nonfat greek yogurt
  • 1 egg

Glaze

  • 1 cup Swerve Confectioners Style sweetener, or other powdered sweetener of your choice
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 fresh lemon, juiced

Instructions

Crust:

  • Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease a 13×9 pan and line with parchment paper and then lightly grease parchment paper.
  • Whisk all crust ingredients in a medium bowl except for melted butter.
  • Add melted butter and mix using a hand mixer on low or a wooden spoon until butter is completely mixed in with no dry spots remaining.
  • Place ½ of crumb mixture in prepared pan and press down firmly. ( I like to use a measuring cup or a tamper to get it pressed down evenly.) Set remaining ½ of crumbs aside
  • Place in oven and bake for 8 minutes.

Filling:

  • Whisk Neufchâtel cheese until smooth.
  • Add lemon curd and sour cream and whisk until smooth and evenly mixed, scraping down bowl as needed.
  • Whisk in egg until smooth.
  • Spread Neufchâtel cheese mixture evenly over baked crust. (There’s no need to let the crust cool completely.)
  • Sprinkle remaining crumb mixture evenly over top of cheesecake batter and LIGHTLY pat down.
  • Place in oven and turn oven temperature down to 325°. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until lightly browned and instant read thermometer inserted in center of bars reads 160°.
  • Set aside to cool.

Glaze & finishing:

  • Whisk together glaze ingredients until smooth.
  • Once bars are cooled, drizzle glaze over top of bars.
  • Place in refrigerator until chilled.
  • You may cut and serve in pan as-is, or using excess parchment paper as handles, remove chilled bars from pan to cutting board and cut into desired size.
  • Store covered in refrigerator.

Notes

After zesting lemon, juice lemon and set the juice aside to use in the glaze.
If you don’t have parchment paper you can make these without it, it just greatly aids in removal of the bars without sticking and makes the pan MUCH easier to clean.
If you don’t have a fresh lemon available: omit zest from crust. Use 3-4 Tablespoons bottled lemon juice in the glaze. 
 

My very first recipe….(Vanilla Buttercream Frosting-{THM:S}

I’ve been half hearted in my attempts over the last 1 1/2 years to get this blog going, but a few weeks ago, I shared a photo on the 2 main THM Facebook groups of a cake with this frosting and got myself inundated with recipe requests…and so that was the final push to get this blog going.

SO, this recipe came about when my over-the-top-food-fanatic boss was telling me about something he’d read from a classic/well known person in the food world. (Don’t ask me who…I can’t remember!) This person would make a classic buttercream by whipping butter into Creme Anglaise sauce. The idea never left my head and stayed there until I had time to play with it.

I ended up having to omit the salt & increase the sweetener in my Creme Anglaise recipe to get it to taste right. I ended up with a frosting that is extremely similar to a true buttercream…perfectly rich, buttery, & creamy frosting that’s a dream to work with and holds up to piping VERY well.

I decided to use it to decorate a cake for my older sister, Nikki’s birthday. I used the chocolate cake recipe from the Peppermint Trimtastic cake recipe in Trim Healthy Table cookbook, page 390. I baked it on a half sheet pan & and cut 4 small squares out of it for this cake.

She loves mint, so I added several drops of peppermint essential oil to taste. (It was about 5 drops total.) If you want to experiment with flavors, feel free to do so. I’d leave the vanilla in and just add other flavors, tasting as you go.

Vanilla Buttercream (Creme Anglaise Based)

A creme anglaise based type of true buttercream. Very buttery and rich.
Course: Dessert
Keyword: buttercream, frosting, Low carb, sugar free, THM

Ingredients

  • 6 egg yolks
  • ½ cup gentle sweet
  • ¾ cup cashew milk
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6 doonks glucomannan
  • teaspoon cream of tartar
  • teaspoon molasses
  • 1⅓ cups butter softened & cut into 9 pieces

Instructions

  • Whisk egg yolks and gentle sweet together in small saucepan until thoroughly combined & lightened in color, about 2 minutes.
  • Add cashew milk and whisk well again.
  • Cook over low/medium heat stirring with wooden spoon constantly until mixture reaches temperature of 170°, about 5 minutes. It will coat back of spoon and it may appear to be curdled, but don’t worry..it’ll smooth out in the next step.
  • Remove from heat and place in blender.
  • Add vanilla, glucomannan, cream of tartar, & molasses. Blend on low for 1 minute, venting blender as needed.
  • Scrape into mixing bowl (or back into pan if using a hand mixer).
  • Let cool until mixture reaches about 100°. You may place in a sink of cold water to cool faster, if desired.
  • Add butter 1 piece at time, waiting until each piece of butter is COMPLETELY mixed in before adding another. Mix on high speed using whisk attachment until smooth. This may take several minutes. If mixture won’t come together or appears curdled after mixing for several minutes, it probable means your mixture and/or your butter was too cold. If this happens, warm mixture very gently over low heat or microwave for several seconds and whip for a few more minutes.

Notes

Any type of milk may be used, including 1/2 & 1/2. THM offers food freedom and no calorie counting, but also we need to be wise…..so I tried all variations and straight up cashew milk works just as well as 1/2 & 1/2, so I went with the lighter option.
6 doonks of gluccomannan is equivalent to 3/16 tsp.
 
 

Disclaimer: I’ve done my research and am ok with use of essential oils for flavoring. If you are not okay with it, please use the flavoring or extracts of your choice to substitute, starting with 1/4 teaspoon and tasting as you go to get the flavor desired.