Brownies! (w/ apples, bananas, zucchini)

“Healthy” Brownies… can it be done?  Ehh, not really, because this still has a cup and a half of sugar in it, but it’s all relative, right?  I mean, if I eat a medium-healthy thing instead of some ultra-unhealthy crazy confectionery from a store, then I’m still doing better health-wise; that has to count for something, right?

Anyway, this is a recipe for a “very moist, low-fat chocolate brownie alternative” … so I’m a bit suspicious, to be honest, but the ingredients sound like it’s worth a shot.  I already like zucchini as a vegetable, so I doubt I’m going to notice the flavor, and having applesauce and bananas contribute some of the sweetness is good, while still having enough sugar that I won’t mentally dismiss it as ‘health food pretending to be tasty food’ – so we’ll see what happens. 🙂

  • 1/2 c. applesauce
  • 2 small-medium bananas, mashed
  • 1.5 c. sugar (1 + 1/2 c.)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c. cocoa powder
  • 1.5 tsp baking soda (1 + 1/2 tsp)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 c. finely shredded zucchini
  • 2 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. nut pieces (walnut is recommended, but I’ll probably substitute pecans)

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Grease and flour a 9×13″ baking pan.

In large bowl, combine applesauce, mashed bananas, and sugar.

Add vanilla and cocoa; mix well.

Add baking soda and salt; mix well.

Add zucchini; mix well.

Add flour and walnuts; mix well.

Spread evenly into prepared pan.

Bake 25 minutes, or until brownies spring back when gently touched.

Source:  http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=474935  Normally, I recommend going to the source website for pictures and stuff, but not this website; it’s full of pop-ups and it re-loads unexpectedly (and the re-loading of the page re-triggers the pop-ups) and there’s only one picture, so really, I can’t think of any reason to encourage you to check out that site. :/

Almond Butter Banana Cookies

  • 3 medjool dates, pits removed
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1/2 c. almond butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp lemon (or vanilla) extract
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 c. crushed pecans

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

Blend dates in food processor.

Add bananas, almond butter, egg, and lemon/vanilla extract; blend until (mostly) smooth.

Add nutmeg, cloves, baking soda, and pecans.  Blend one final time.

Scoop batter onto parchment paper.  Leave room to spread!

Bake 10-12 minutes or until golden brown on bottom (how do you check for that??).

Remove from oven and let cool.

Source: http://civilizedcavemancooking.com/grain-free-goodies/almond-butter-banana-cookies/

Double Chocolate Banana Bread

This is the second banana & chocolate bread recipe from King Arthur Flour.  I can’t see any real reason these aren’t muffins… why aren’t these muffins?  I think I’m going to make this recipe into muffins…. mmmmmmmm muffins……

Yields one 9″x5″ loaf, or two mini loaves, or ?? muffins

  • 1 c. flour (unbleached all-purpose)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbs cocoa (Dutch-process)
  • 1/2 c. (8 Tbs) soft unsalted butter (seriously, who ever buys salted butter?  What’s the point?  I’ve never seen any recipe demand salted butter…)
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp+ vanilla extract
  • 1 c. mashed banana
  • 1/2 c. cold sour cream
  • 1 c. semisweet chocolate chips (mini size preferred)

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Lightly grease baking container (two 3-and-a-quarter-inch by 5-and-three-quarters-inch mini loaf pans, or one 9×5″ pan, or MUFFIN PAN).

In large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt, and cocoa.

In stand mixer bowl, cream together the butter and sugar.  Then beat in the egg, vanilla, banana, and sour cream.

Gently mix in the dry ingredients.  When well-incorporated, add chocolate chips.

Pour the batter into the container(s) and bake

  • 60 minutes for one large loaf
  • 45 minutes for 2 mini loaves
  • ?? for muffins (will edit recipe after I try it and find out)

Remove from oven, and allow to rest in pan(s) for 10 minutes (maybe less for the muffins??).  Turn out onto a wire rack and allow to cool completely.  (Ha!  Eating it while it’s still warm is, like, 70% of the fun.)

Source: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/double-chocolate-banana-bread-recipe

Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins

Here come two AMAZING-SOUNDING banana & chocolate recipes from King Arthur Flour…

  • 1/2 c. butter
  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 1 c. mashed banana
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 c. milk
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 c. flour (unbleached all-purpose)
  • 1 c. whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 c. chocolate chips
  • (optional) 1 c. chopped walnuts, pre-toasted in a 350 F oven for 8 minutes
  • (optional) 1/8 – 1/4 tsp coconut or butter rum flavor

Preheat oven to 350 F (and toast walnuts if desired).  Lightly grease 12-14 standard muffin cups.

In stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together.

Beat in the mashed banana, then the egg, milk, and optional flavorings.

Add baking powder, baking soda, salt, and flours, stirring until smooth.  Increase speed if necessary to remove lumps.

Stir in chocolate chips and walnuts, if using.  Do not use high speed for this part, moron, or you’ll just pulverize the chocolate and nutty bits.

Heap batter into prepared muffin cups, mounding them quite full.  If desired, sprinkle the tops with coarse white sugar.

Bake 20-23 minutes, until it passes a toothpick test.

Remove the muffins from the oven, and tilt them in the pan to cool a bit in order to prevent the bottoms from becoming soggy.  As soon as they are a handle-able temperature, transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

Source: I already told you, King Arthur’s Flour 😛
http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/banana-chocolate-chip-muffins-recipe

I should probably note that they include directions for adding cinnamon bits, also, but I didn’t include that in my re-typing.  And they say the chocolate chips are optional.  HAH!

“Chunky Monkey” Pancakes

This is the other pancake recipe from caramelpotatoes.com that I want to try.  While the mint one will probably be good, this one will definitely be good! 😀

  • 1 c. flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt

 

  • 3/4 c. milk
  • 3 Tbs butter, melted
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbs sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 large banana, diced (plus more for garnish)
  • 1/3 c. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c. chopped pecans (optional)

Combine dry ingredients (first section) in bowl of stand mixer.

In separate bowl, whisk milk, butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla.

Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients.  Be careful not to over-mix the batter.

Gently fold in banana, chocolate chips, and nuts.

Heat large skillet / flat foreman grill / griddle over medium heat and coat with cooking spray or butter.

Pour 1/3 c. batter per pancake, cook until edges are brown and surface is bubbly.  Flip with spatula, cook until browned on the other side.  Repeat.

Source: http://www.caramelpotatoes.com/2013/06/03/chunky-monkey-pancakes/

I marked this as fructose-free, but bananas are not okay sometimes, so maybe don’t risk it…?   :/

Loopy Laura’s Luscious Bowl of Crazy

  • 1 large container PLAIN yogurt, not vanilla
  • 1 bag mini marshmallows
  • 1 large can crushed pineapple, drained (retain juice for something else)
  • FRUIT – whatever’s in season
    • cherries, pitted and halved
    • grapes, halved
    • strawberries, cut into bits
    • blueberries, whole
    • bananas, sliced
    • apples are okay, but not too much
  • NUTS (optional) – chopped pecans or cashew pieces

Mix everything in gargantuan bowl with giant spoon and maniacal laugh.  Allow to sit in refrigerator so the marshmallows start to dissolve into the yogurt, like sanity dissolves in the face of a road trip with … um … I’d rather not say her name too often in case it catches her attention and summons her to me.  Just in case.

Also, if you use Greek yogurt instead of regular yogurt, you can delude yourself into thinking that the Greek yogurt and fruit make this a totally healthy meal replacement! La la la la la….

Source:  … take a guess from the title

Banana Split Cake

~for crust~

  • 2 c. graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 4 Tbs sugar

~for filling~

  • 2 8-oz. packages cream cheese, softened
  • 16 oz. powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla (plus a splash)
  • 4-5 bananas, sliced
  • 1 large can crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1 large carton Cool Whip
  • 1 c. pecans, finely chopped
  • 1 small jar maraschino cherries, drained and halved

In medium bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter.  Press into 13×9″ pan, pressing slightly up the sides.  Chill 45 minutes or bake at 375 F for 6-8 minutes, then chill completely.

In bowl of stand mixer, combine soft cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla.  Beat until smooth.  Spread over chilled crust.  Arrange bananas over cheese mixture.  Spread pineapple over bananas.  Spread Cool Whip over pineapple, then sprinkle with pecans and cherries.

Chill 2-3 hours before serving.

Source: ??  I think this may have come from the Spjust Cookbook I bought at the Old Czech Bakery in West, TX, but I’m not 100% positive…

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