happy christmas eve + gluten free pumpkin bread

Ok folks, I wrote this post yesterday — hence the ‘happy christmas eve’ in the title — but had some technical difficulties so I’m only able to post this today.  With that said, I hope y’all are having a lovely day with your families.  I’m off to sit in the sunshine out back with a cup of coffee and watch the kids ride bikes:)  MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

 

 

 

Happy Christmas Eve! We have had a beautiful morning here in the South. The weather is perfect. We decided to take a little trip to one of our favorite spots — Bluffton, SC. We hadn’t been in awhile and thought, why not? This holiday season has definitely been a mellow one for us and this Christmas will be our FIRST EVER on our own. With that said, I’m trying to appreciate the slow, simple pace and not take it for granted. I am so grateful for Niall and the kids and really, wherever they are is home:)

 

 

 

Bluffton, South Carolina is just the cutest town full of art galleries and shops and I enjoyed a little stroll before meeting up with the rest of the gang at the park. When you’re a mom, a solo stroll sort of feels like a mini vacation;)

 

 

 

 

 

Ok, onto the pumpkin bread! It’s been awhile since I posted a recipe.  I thought I’d sneak this one in before Christmas because pumpkin bread in January just doesn’t seem quite as appropriate:)

 

 

Note — I did not come up with this yummy pumpkin bread myself.  I made only one tweak to the spices and I leave out the cashew frosting — I think it tastes lovely without it!  I discovered the recipe from this blog post.  I’ve also made this recipe and this one from her blog and they both turned out great — good ones to bring to a Christmas dinner or party:)

 

 

GLUTEN FREE PUMPKIN BREAD

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/3 cup tapioca flour
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt

 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking pan with parchment paper — I use 5” x 9”.  Note– do not skip the parchment paper part!  It makes it so easy to lift the bread out of the pan when it’s finished.

 

Mix the wet and dry ingredients together in separate bowls, then add the dry to the wet and stir until combined.  Pour the batter into the lined pan and smooth with the top of a spatula.  The batter will be quite thick.

 

 

 

I usually bake my bread for about an hour, but check after 45 minutes and see how yours is going!  Optional — the last couple of times, I have topped mine with coconut sugar and some chopped pecans.  So good with a cup of coffee:)  Enjoy!

 

dairy free pumpkin spice smoothie

 

Come on, fall!!  Summer has been great.  It really has.  But I’m ready for cooler days, non-humid air, changing colors and all the autumnal feels.  The ever trendy pumpkin-spice-everything season is upon us — but honestly, it still feels like the middle of summer here in Georgia.  All the spices were half off while I was grocery shopping a couple of weeks ago though and I couldn’t resist the ‘pumpkin pie’ spice!  I have been enjoying this smoothie every morning for the past week — it sort of makes me feel like I’m still celebrating the upcoming pumpkin season — with a little summer twist:)

 

A few quick tips before you start … I usually buy two big bunches of bananas at once and end up peeling, breaking into pieces and freezing a few once they are perfectly ripe.  Frozen banana works well for smoothies and keeps it nice and cold.  Also, I cooked and blended two sweet potatoes the morning I first made this smoothie.  I stored the leftovers in a glass bowl so that I could just have it ready for the next few days.

 

Anyway, moving on!  Eamon is a huge fan of this one — this recipe makes one BIG glass, so if you have someone constantly stealing sips like I do, there should still be enough:)  Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

DAIRY FREE PUMPKIN SPICE SMOOTHIE

1 banana
1 cup spinach
1/3 cup cooked sweet potato, mashed
1 tablespoon almond butter
1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin spice
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional -- I like a little extra cinnamon flavor)
1 cup almond milk, unsweetened
handful of ice cubes

Directions:  Blend all ingredients until smooth.  If your smoothie is too thick, add a dash of water.  Enjoy a bit of fall flavor in your glass:)