Holiday Bliss Balls | SCD* Paleo

*This recipe was originally featured in Babiekins Magazine 2018 Holiday Gift Guide

Now that the holidays are here that means our homes will be filled with plenty of sweets and treats. As a healthy alternative, we love to keep bliss balls on hand! These healthy treats are a great snack that can be prepared in advance and stored in the freezer, making them the perfect grab-and-go holiday dessert. They are packed with fiber, minerals and vitamins and are an excellent source to incorporating nuts, seeds and healthy fats into your family’s diet.

Yield: 24 balls

1 cup almonds, cashews or macadamia nuts
1/2 cup shredded coconut
20 medjool dates, pitted
1 tsp vanilla
pinch of sea salt
2 Tbs coconut oil
¼ cup cocoa powder*
optional toppings: pistachios, almond slivers, dried rose petals, sea salt, dark chocolate*, cacao powder*, coconut flakes, dragon fruit powder

1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Add all the ingredients to a food a processor and pulse until fully combined. The mixture should be slightly sticky and hold together when pinched between your fingers.
3. Roll into one inch size balls and roll in your desired toppings or dip in melted chocolate and then sprinkle your toppings on top.
4. Place bliss balls in the frig or freezer to set.
5. Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to one month.

**Omit these items to make SCD compliant


A Holiday Gift Guide With Petit Collage

Now that the holidays are here, I strive to stay focused on the true meaning of the season. But I fully admit, I absolutely enjoy shopping for others, yet I often catch myself purchasing items just to buy something for someone. I have decided that I don't want to fall into that trap this year. I want to center myself around meaningful purchases that are not only unique and special, but ethical and sustainable. By choosing environmentally-friendly materials, we are focusing on high quality, eco-friendly products.

Petit Collage founder, collage artist Lorena Siminovich, created an earth-friendly company that focuses on materials crafted from recycled cardboard to FSC-certified wood and soy-based inks. Petit Collage avoids plastic and their products are designed with the health of children, and the planet, in mind. They have so many beautifully crafted products to choose from, and below are just a few of my favorite!

And, use code: Elizabethmjacob to save an exclusive 15% off at petitcollage.com.

1. Pop-out and Build Pirate Ship Playset
2. My Crafty Toy Camera Kit
3. Forest 5pc Bamboo Mealtime Set
4. Outer Space Puzzle
5. Carnival Play Set
6. Wooden Xylophone Musical Toy
7. Little Miss Mermaid Growth Chart
8. You Know What I Love? Picture Book
9. Mighty Dinosaurs Stickers
10. Pop-Out and Build Paris
11. Bunny Organic Chime Ball
12. Superheroes Magnetic Builder

Petit Collage | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram
*This post is created in partnership with Petit Collage


A Day In Chicago | Eating SCD + Paleo

Last year, Jonas had the opportunity to play with a national premier soccer team. It was an exciting adventure that he fully embraced, even though it came with several challenges. Our home field was about 45 minutes from our house, but we often practiced at various locations in Cleveland, which was easily an hour plus drive. But the good thing about driving to a city is that I could hit up Trader Joe's and Whole Foods, which I did often. Probably too often. Another one of the perks of this elite team was the travel, although at the end of the season I certainly was not calling it a perk. We traveled to Minneapolis, St. Louis, Chicago, Cincinnati, Indianapolis and even as far as Dallas for a showcase. But for some reason, it seemed like we visited Chicago the most.

One of our final games of the season happened to fall on the last week of school, and you guessed right, it was in Chicago! We decided to pack up the car on a Thursday night, take my mom with us, and head for the Windy City. While the drive is very doable in one day (about seven hours) we stayed in South Bend so we could wake up early and drive straight to the city. One thing I learned from this year of intense travel was how to pack efficiently for an athlete who follows strict dietary guidelines. We ate breakfast at the hotel and lunch on the road, the cooler was packed and we were loaded up with tons of snacks, all of which met the requirements for SCD (Specific Carbohydrate Diet.)

2 hard-boiled eggs
1 almond flour pancake topped with butter and honey
Strawberries, blackberries, bananas
*This was prepared at home before we left.
Here is my recipe for waffles, which could easily be made into pancakes, although I have yet to try.

Turkey & cheese sandwiches made with Liberated Specialty Foods bread, lettuce and Primal mayo
Carrots and sliced cucumbers
Homemade trail mix
Frozen grapes

Fruit Strips
Freedom Bars
Homemade Bliss Balls

We headed straight for the Field Museum and spent about three hours touring there. Since we had a hearty lunch in the car, we knew we could squeeze in another activity so we decided to visit the Shedd Aquarium. Doing two museums back-to-back makes for a long day, but it was worth it! Make sure to check with your local museums about a discount at affiliate locations. With our membership to the McKinley Museum, we receive entrance into the Field Museum for free!

After a long day, we knew we needed some healthy fuel for the drive to the hotel. We embraced our Spanish heritage and sought out a tapas restaurant. Tapas Valencia was a short distance from the museums and offered creative Spanish tapas, unique cocktails and a lively atmosphere with walls adorned in multi-colored mosaic artwork reminiscent of the art of the great Spanish artists Joan Miro and Antoni Gaudí! I spoke with our server and went over the details of our lifestyle of eating and they were extremely accommodating to our needs! Everything Jonas ordered was cooked special to avoid any non SCD ingredients.

Eating out with strict dietary restrictions is very doable! I have been working on a post for some time and hope to share it here soon, but if you have any questions about eating out while on the SCD, Paleo or other clean-eating lifestyle diet please ask away! I will make sure to include a Q & A in my post.


Pumpkin Pie Smoothie | SCD, PALEO, AIP

SCD PALEO Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
SCD PALEO Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
SCD PALEO Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
SCD PALEO Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

Move over apple season, it's now pumpkin season! This Pumpkin Pie Smoothie makes the perfect after-school-treat because it is loaded with healthy fats and nutrients and only takes five minutes to prepare. We all love the rich scents of autumn and, of course, the spices that accompany this season. But do you know all the great benefits of pumpkin?

Health Benefits of Pumpkin
+ It is extremely high in vitamin A, which is key for good vision, a healthy immune system, and cell growth.
+ Pumpkins contain antioxidants, which can neutralize free radicals, stopping them from damaging your cells and may protect against certain cancers.
+ Pumpkin is a good source of potassium and vitamin C, which have been linked to heart health benefits.
+ They are a good source of fiber, which helps keep you feeling full and promotes healthy digestion.
+ The phenolic phytochemicals in this superfruit have been shown to control blood sugar levels, and in turn, lower the risk for diabetes.

*More on phytonutrients here.

SCD, Paleo, AIP, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free
yield: 2 servings

2 bananas
1/2 cup pumpkin
1 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp nutmeg*
1 tsp vanilla
1 can coconut milk
1 cup ice
2 scoops collagen, optional
2 Tsp. MCT oil, optional

1. Combine all ingredients in a blender or vitamix and blend until smooth and creamy.
2. Divide among two glasses and sprinkle with cinnamon.
3. Serve and enjoy!

*Omit the nutmeg to make AIP compliant. Cinnamon, ginger, and cloves are all on the AIP Diet, but nutmeg is a seed.


Rustic French Apple Tart | SCD, Paleo

"Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall."
F. Scott Fitzgerald

The days are cooler, the evenings darker. The small hints of warmth and summer that have lingered are now officially gone. Just weeks ago, we were sweating under a blazing sun while roaming through the apple orchard filling our baskets far too full. Our freshly picked apple supply is just about gone and we have replaced the blazing sun with the glow of our fireplace.

Over the past couple weeks I have made several batches of applesauce, roasted apples with a butter, caramel sauce, I've made made apple chicken salad, apples baked with brie and, on the simpler side, sliced apples with raw honey.

But what I really wanted to bake was a rustic French apple tart. The perfect dessert for these crisp, autumn days.

The French "tarte Tatin", or tart, was accidentally created at the Hotel Tatin in Lamotte-Beuvron, France, about 100 miles south of Paris. This apple pastry was born in the early 1900s by two sisters, Caroline and Stephanie, and soon became a signature dish served at the hotel. While there are some inconsistencies in the history of the tarte tatin, one thing is certain; this upside-down pastry is now a popular dessert served all over the world.

I baked this tarte using Melrose apples, which are a cross between the Jonathan and the Red Delicious.

SCD, Paleo, Gluten-Free, Refined Sugar-Free

1 egg yolk
2 cups almond flour
8 Tbs unsalted butter (1 stick) cut into small pieces
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla
2 Tbs honey
coconut oil to grease the pan

6 large apples
2 Tbs butter or ghee
3 Tbs honey
pinch of salt
1 tsp cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Using coconut oil, grease a 9 inch tart pan with a removable bottom. I used a 14 x 4 inch tart pan.
2. In a food processor, combine the almond flour and salt and pulse to combine. Add the honey and cubed butter and process until it resembles coarse crumbs.
3. Add the egg yolk and pulse to combine, but be careful not to over process the dough.
4. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
5. Pat the dough evenly over the bottom and sides of your prepared pan or roll the dough between two sheets of parchment and flip into the pan.
6. Par bake crust for 7-10 min, I suggest using pie weights, although it is not necessary. The dough will rise a bit, gently press back down with the back of a spoon.
7. While the crust par bakes, prepare the filling. Using 5 of the apples, peel and cut into pieces. Add 2 tablespoons of butter of ghee to a pan over medium heat and cook the apples down. Add the salt, vanilla and honey and continue to cook until they are soft.
8. Strain the apples. You can save the access liquid for a syrup or baking.
9. Add the cooked apples, which will resemble a chunky applesauce, to the tart. Top with the remaining apple, making sure it is evenly sliced and peeled, and sprinkle with cinnamon.
10. Bake for another 10-12 minutes. If you notice the sides are browning you can wrap them in aluminum foil.
11. Store in an airtight container or wrap in plastic wrap (Bees wrap is even better- for the earth at least!). It will last for up to a few days in the refrigerator, although ours never made it that long!