Healthy Holiday Recipe Round up

I had originally intended to do this blog post as a round up of Christmas cookies/treats made healthy, but then I decided to change it up a bit and do one appetizer, one side dish, and one dessert; balance it out a bit! 

As someone who is allergic to a few foods, I understand how difficult it can be sometimes during the holidays having to attend different get togethers or social events and not knowing if there is anything there that you can eat! So, instead of focusing on just desserts, I wanted to have three different options in which you could make, potentially making all three to enjoy, bring, or cook for your own guests AND all are gluten free, dairy free and paleo! 

Also, for each of these recipes, I added in collagen, from my favorite brand of choice Vital Proteins! Last week I wrote a blog post all about ways to stay healthy during the winter months, my go to products from Vital Proteins and why as well as how to incorporate them all into your routine! Click here to read about it! I also shared many of the recipes on my blog, such as smoothies, banana breads, protein bars, and even a no bake brownie recipe. 

For this round up of recipes I decided to make:

1. A Winter Vegetable Melody with a Collagen Balsamic Mustard Glaze (side dish)
2. Homemade Rosemary Almond Flour Crackers with a Lemon Rosemary Collagen Hummus (app)
3. Collagen Sugar Cookies

I wanted to incorporate Marine Collagen into each one of the recipes because of the health benefits that it has to offer and the significant improvements that it has made on my own health! Not only does it add in extra protein, without changing the taste to any of the dishes but these are some of the other benefits: 

  1. Support gut health (helped improve my leaky gut symptoms, SIBO, improve digestion)
  2. Stronger nails
  3. Brighter skin (made my skin even toned and clear)
  4. Support hair growth / stronger hair

Since adding Marine Collagen into my routine every day whether it is in my smoothies, energy bites, coffee, and really just about anywhere; my gut health has improved so much! I now feel that I am able to tolerate more foods than I could before since heaving leaky gut and SIBO and my hair grows so much faster! The biggest one for me has been and always will be gut health since that always controlled my life, but since taking the Marine Collagen, I feel that now I am the one in control. It is really simple to add it in any recipe or your routine and you won't even taste it! If there is one thing that I can't live without as part of my routine, this would be it!

The first recipe, the winter vegetable melody are all of my favorite vegetables; sweet potatoes, beets, butternut squash, fennel, and parsnips roasted with nutmeg, cinnamon and sea salt until crispy and then I poured a sweet and tangy collagen mustard balsamic glaze over them as soon as they came out of the oven! It makes a really easy and simple side dish; all you have to do is cut up the vegetables, roast them and the glaze takes only takes about 5 minutes to mix up! Plus, it makes a great salad dressing too! 

RECIPE 1: Winter Vegetable Melody w/ a Balsamic Glaze

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What you need:
1 medium sweet potato
2 small beets
2 cups butternut squash
2 parsnips
1 fennel (a bulb) 
few dashes of EACH: cinnamon AND nutmeg
pinch of sea salt
olive oil 

Collegen Balsamic Mustard Glaze:
Makes about 1 cup


1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 balsamic vinaigrette
half of a lemon (juice)
3 tbsp. mustard (I used dijon)
1 tbsp. honey
pinch of sea salt
1 scoop Vital Proteins Marine Collagen

What you need to do:

For the vegetable melody:

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. 

2. Cut all of the vegetables into cubes, somewhat evenly. 

3. Add to a large mixing bowl with cinnamon, nutmeg, sea salt, and about 1-2 tbsp of olive oil or enough to lightly coat the vegetables. (If you use too much they will come out soggy)

4. Spread out evenly on the baking sheet and roast in the oven for about 45 minutes or until the vegetables are cooked all the way through. 

While the vegetables are roasting, make the glaze. 

1. In a bowl, mix all of the ingredients above! Taste test and adjust! 

Once the vegetables are finished, pour the glaze over the vegetables while they are still warm. Serve immediately. 

*If you have leftover glaze, store in the fridge for up to a week (can use as a salad dressing etc)

For the second recipe, I love making my own crackers and dip! This recipe is simple too and just requires a few ingredients and it is really healthy! Sometimes I fill up so much on the appetizers that I don't even really like and then I can barely eat the main meal, but this appetizer is packed with protein not only from the chickpeas but the collagen too! It makes the perfect snack! I make these crackers a lot during the week and dip them in just about anything and the hummus also can be great with veggies, on toast, etc! 

                                                                  RECIPE TWO:
HOMEMADE ROSEMARY "CHEESY" ALMOND FLOUR CRACKERS W/ A LEMON ROSEMARY COLLAGEN DIP

What you need: 
Makes about 15 crackers
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes (including the dip) 

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For the Rosemary "Cheesy" Almond Flour Crackers
1 cup almond flour
2 tbsp. nutritional yeast
3 tbsp. water
1 tbsp. ground flaxseed
pinch of sea salt
1 tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped

What you need to do: 

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.

2. In a medium sized bowl, add all of the above ingredients and mix well until a dough is formed. 

3. Flatten out on the parchment paper. You may need to add a little olive oil on your hands to prevent the dough from sticking to you. 

4. Using a sharp knife cut length wise and width wise, somewhat evenly! Sprinkle with more nutritional yeast and fresh rosemary! 

5. Bake in the oven at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. About half way through, around the 12 minute mark, gently flip the crackers. 

Store in fridge for up to 1 week in a sealed bag or container. 

For the LEMON ROSEMARY COLLAGEN HUMMUS:

What you need: 

1 15 oz can of chickpeas, drained & rinsed
2 tbsp. tahini
juice of a lemon
2 tbsp. rosemary, finely chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
2 scoops Vital Proteins Marine Collagen
2 tbsp. nutritional yeast
sea salt & pepper to taste

What you need to do: 

1. Add all of the above ingredients into your food processor and combine together until desired consistency is reached

Taste test and adjust to preference. 

Store in fridge for up to 2 weeks. 

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For the last recipe, I decided to make Collagen Sugar Cookies! Sugar cookies always remind me of the holidays, so I decided to go for these instead of a basic chocolate chip one! They are really soft and chewy in the center with slight crunchy outside edges. They aren't typical in the sense that they are extremely flat and crunchy, but I love them! They taste really light, airy, and like little clouds! I added the Marine Collagen into the mix so you can reap all the benefits while eating these cookies, they just have a few ingredients and take less than 30 minutes to make from start to finish! I also threw in two bonus recipes at the bottom that I've made previously with the collagen too, if sugar cookies aren't your thing, but these are really good!! 

I based these cookies off a few recipes while browsing through some of my favorite blogs because I always think that it is so hard to find a really really good sugar cookie recipe! I adapted this recipe from Ambitious Kitchen

RECIPE 3: COLLAGEN SUGAR COOKIES

What you need: 
Makes about 12 cookies
Prep time: 15 minutes
Bake time 10 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes 

1.5 cups almond flour
1 scoop Vital Proteins Marine Collagen
4 tbsp. coconut flour
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
2 tbsp. vanilla extract
3 tbsp. honey
1 egg or flax egg
pinch of sea salt
2 pinches of nutmeg
1/4 tsp. baking soda
Coconut sugar, for dusting when finished! 

What you need to do: 

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. 

2. In a small mixing bowl, mix together the coconut oil (after it has been melted & cooled), the egg, coconut sugar, vanilla, and honey. 

3. In a separate bowl, combine the almond flour, coconut flour, sea salt, and baking soda. 

4. Combine the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients. Mix until incorporated.

5. Roll into balls and line up evenly on the baking sheet. Flatten gently. 

6. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. 

7. Once they are finished, sprinkle with coconut sugar. 

Store in fridge for up to two weeks or freezer for longer! 

Note, the Marine Collagen is optional for the recipe, you do not have to use it, but it just adds in extra health benefits! 

Here are also two bonus healthy dessert recipes that use the Marine Collagen as well: 

No Bake Spicy Cinnamon Brownies

Dark Chocolate Avocado Pudding