Garden of Life
Blogger Recipe Challenge 2017
Recently I was picked to participate in Garden of Life’s Recipe Challenge for 2017. Garden of Life would send me an ingredient box full of healthy, organic, vegan, non-GMO ingredients and I would take those ingredients and create something awesome. Think Gordon Ramsey style challenge! What would I get? THAT was part of the challenge, because it was all a surprise (so no planning ahead possible).
The contents of my ingredient box were:
- All Organic
- All Non-GMO
- All Plant-Based
The purpose of my ingredient package was not only to celebrate Canadian Brands (Happy 150th Birthday Canada!), but to also share the powerful message that is Organic + Non-GMO Project Verification on the foods that Garden of Life supports. At Garden of Life, it is called Dual-Certification, and it is no easy task to achieve both stamps (but they believe it is totally worth it).
Inside my ingredient box I received:
Garden of Life Raw Fit Protein
Nature’s Path Granola
Deebee’s Organic Freezies
Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts
My challenge: To create a recipe that incorporates ALL the products I received.
The rules: To use the ingredients in the box to come up with an exciting recipe.
The prize: The winner receives a shipment of natural products PLUS a promoted recipe feature on the Garden of Life blog. *FINGERS CROSSED*
I carefully considered my options for about 2 weeks before heading to the kitchen, and I came up with a healthy breakfast cookie for my recipe submission. This cookie has fruit, nuts, no added sugar, no eggs, and no dairy. It is gluten-free and vegan! The rules did not specifically say the recipe had to be gluten-free or vegan, but since all the products I received were I thought I would stick to that theme. This was a particularly difficult challenge for me because:
- I am not gluten-free, nor is my household. We eat wheat, and I generally bake with regular all-purpose flour.
- I almost always bake with eggs, although have substituted with mashed banana on occasion (mostly because we wanted baked goods but I had no eggs in the house).
- I generally bake with milk as my preferred liquid (even when the recipe calls for water), and I also bake with butter. We are not a dairy free household by any means.
So what I came up with was a Breakfast Cookie. What I wanted was something that tasted like a bowl of oatmeal with nuts and fruit, but in a hand held form. These can be served both cold and warm, and will keep okay at room temperature since they do not include dairy or eggs (although my preferred method is to keep them in the fridge and warm them up for 20-30 seconds before eating).
Fruit & Granola Breakfast Cookies
Gluten-Free, Vegan, No-Sugar-Added
Makes 10-12 Breakfast Cookies
- 2 cups quick oats
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 bag minus 1 tbsp (about 1 1/2 cups) Manitoba Hemp Hearts (reserve 1 tbsp for smoothie recipe)
- 1 cup Nature’s Path Coconut & Cashew Butter Granola
- 1/2 cup Garden of Life Raw Organic Vanilla Protein Powder
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 1/4 cup cranberries
- 1 cup apple sauce (I used 2 single serving containers of Mott’s Fruitsations + Fibre Unsweetened Raspberry) *No sugar added and gluten-free* (This is what I had on hand, but any apple sauce will work)
- 1 ripe banana, mashed
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 tubes Deebee’s Superfruit Freezies (I used Strawberry), thawed
- Preheat oven to 375˚.
- In large bowl, mix all of the dry ingredients together. Use a wooden spoon (or similar spoon). Hand mixer or stand mixer is not necessary.
- Add apple sauce, mashed banana, and vanilla and mix to combine.
- Add 2 Deebee’s Superfruit Freezies, and mix well.
- Cookie dough should be moist and should stick together well.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Scoop into equal amounts and shape onto a baking sheet. I used a 1/3 cup measuring cup. They were about 2 cm thick each. Set them close together on the baking sheet, they will not spread.
Bake for 15 minutes until the bottom is lightly golden and they are set. Let cool.
Your cookie should be soft and moist!
Store in the fridge in an airtight container. You can eat cold, or pop them in the microwave to warm up. I have not tested how well these freeze (so freeze at your own risk).
I was also sent Garden of Life Raw Organic Fit Protein Powder in Chocolate flavour, so for kicks and giggles I decided to make a blended smoothie as well. The smoothie ended up tasting like chocolate covered strawberries and was delicious.
To make your Chocolate Covered Strawberry Smoothie: Take 1 cup frozen strawberries, just under 1 cup cold water, 2 frozen Tropical Deebee’s Organic Superfruit Freezies, 1 tbsp hemp hearts and one pouch (46 g) Garden of Life Chocolate protein powder. Using an immersion blender (or regular blender) blend until strawberries are smooth and smoothie is frothy.
Thank you to Garden of Life, Nature’s Path, Deebee’s Organic and Manitoba Harvest! This was a really fun challenge, and now I have a quick and easy (and delicious) breakfast already made for the busy days of summer!
Garden of Life
Andrea resides in Calgary, Alberta, and is the proud mom to five boys between the ages of 7-22. Running mainly on coffee and sarcasm, in her spare time she enjoys listening to Canadian Rock, watching Calgary Flames hockey, reading YA Dystopian novels, and binge watching 90s television on Netflix.
Disclosure: I received a box of yummy goodness to facilitate my recipe creation. By posting my recipe and tagging it correctly, and on time, I am entered into a contest to have my recipe featured on the Garden of Life blog (plus a shipment of natural products). The recipe contained in this blog post is an original recipe created by myself in my kitchen using the provided ingredients plus other ingredients I had on hand. No other payment was received.
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