Bison Pumpkin Chili

This is a hearty comfort food dish with the addition of pumpkin for a tasty, seasonal twist. It's really fast and easy to make and will be a crowd pleaser for the whole family. I personally find that the combo of animal protein and beans is not a glamorous one for me, but feel free to add kidney beans if you like and if your GI system can handle it :-).

Ingredients:

ChiliBowl.jpeg

Makes 4 Servings

  • 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 lb Ground Bison, grass-fed, pastured
  • 1 Yellow Onion (diced)
  • 3 Garlic (cloves, minced)
  • 2 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Cumin
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 1 cup Crushed Tomatoes
  • 1 cup Yellow or Orange Bell Peppers, diced
  • 1 cup Pureed Organic Pumpkin
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 1/2 tsp Maple Syrup
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt
  • 3 Green Onions/Scallions, thinly sliced 

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground bison, onion and garlic, and saute for about 5 to 7 minutes, or until the meat is cooked through. Drain off most of the fat.
  2. Add the chili powder, cumin and paprika. Stir about 1 minute, until fragrant. Add crushed tomatoes, bell peppers, pumpkin, water, maple syrup and salt. Let simmer about 10 minutes.
  3. Divide into bowls, add desired toppings and enjoy!

Variations:

  • Optional Toppings: Garnish with toasted organic tortillas, chopped green onion, avocado, or jalapeño slices. If you tolerate dairy, you can add organic, grass-fed sour cream or cheddar cheese.
  • More Veggies: Add more bell peppers, zucchini, or stir in spinach, kale or watercress just before serving.
  • No Bison: Use grass-fed beef, ground chicken, turkey, lamb or venison.
  • Vegan or Vegetarian: Use mixed beans and/or organic tofu instead of ground meat.
  • Leftovers: Refrigerate in an air-tight container for 3 to 5 days or freeze up to 2 months.

Grain-Free Pumpkin Breakfast Muffins

These delicious and satisfying muffins are a great breakfast option or sweets craving fix. Try making your own variation by adding nuts or using different spices.

PumpkinMuffin.jpg

Makes 12 muffins
Ingredients: 
1 cup organic pumpkin puree
1 cup almond butter, unsweetened
1-2 scoops vanilla protein powder (I like Genuine Health Vegan Proteins+ or Sun Warrior Blend)
2/3 cup coconut palm sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 ½ tsp baking powder, aluminum-free
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp organic vanilla extract
½ tsp almond extract
2 large eggs, pasture-raised, organic, soy-free

Preparation:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350° F
  2. Spray or coat 12 cupcake rounds with coconut oil.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, almond butter, eggs, vanilla & almond extracts, coconut palm sugar and mix well.
  4. In a smaller bowl, all dry ingredients and mix well.
  5. Using a stand mixer or hand mixer, add dry ingredients to wet and mix until smooth.
  6. Pour batter into greased cupcake rounds
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean (they take 20 minutes in my convection oven).
  8. Allow to cool for several minutes after removing from oven.
  9. Remove from muffin pan and cool completely on a cooling rack.

Variations: 

Add ½ cup chopped pecans & 2 Tbsp candied ginger, finely chopped
or
Add ½ cup chopped walnuts and 2 ripe, mashed bananas in place of the pumpkin


Guilt-Free Pumpkin Spice Latte

Here in Seattle people get a little melancholy when summer ends and the days get shorter and colder. Many Seattleites take solace in the fact that along with fall comes the return of the Starbucks PSL (Pumpkin Spice Latte), and they proceed to indulge in this iconic beverage on a nearly daily basis.

Unfortunately, this fall favorite (the ingredients of which Starbucks won't disclose) is a veritable sugar bomb containing no real pumpkin and a whopping 25 grams of sugar. That's as much as the average candy bar! Hellooo inflammation, weight gain and diabetes! No thank you.

I admit it. I too am a sucker for anything with the words "pumpkin spice" involved, so instead of suffering the inevitable post-PSL crash and regret, I decided to make a cleaned-up version of this classic Autumn drink. I hope you'll curl up in front of a fire with your fuzzy socks and enjoy it as much as I do!

Ingredients:

  • 8-12 oz unsweetened vanilla almond, coconut (full fat) or hemp milk 
  • 1-2 shots of organic espresso or 4-8 ounces freshly brewed organic coffee
  • 1 Tbsp (add more or less to taste) organic pumpkin pureé 
  • 1/2-1 tsp pumpkin pie spice (I like the organic Pumpkin Pie Spice blend from The Kitchen Imp)
  • 1/4 tsp organic vanilla extract
  • Liquid organic stevia to taste - start with only a drop or two and add more if needed OR 2 tsp raw, local honey if you're not avoiding sugar altogether

Directions:

  1. Brew your coffee or pull your espresso shots
  2. Over medium heat bring your non-dairy milk of choice to a simmer in a small saucepan, being careful not to scorch it.
  3. Turn off the heat and add coffee and all remaining ingredients
  4. Use a hand blender to blend the entire mixture or pour it into a blender or food processor
  5. Season to taste with organic stevia
  6. Enjoy in your favorite mug with a dollop of whipped coconut cream!

For an "adult" (and slightly less guilt-free) version of this coffee drink, add a shot of Bainbridge Organic Vanilla Vodka or organic Featherbone Bourbon Whiskey.

Rockin' Roasted Root Vegetables

makes about 4 servings

Ingredients:
1 sweet potato and or squash 
2 parsnips
2 carrots
2 turnips or 1 large rutabaga
1 daikon radish
2 small beets or 1 medium beet
4 garlic cloves, crushed and roughly chopped
2-3 tbsp olive oil (more if needed)
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp each fresh rosemary and thyme (1/2 tsp each if dried)
sea salt and pepper to taste

Directions: 

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 
  • Wash, peel and chop all vegetables into large bite-sized pieces. 
  • Place in a large roasting pan. 
  • Drizzle with olive oil & vinegar and add salt, pepper and herbs; mix well to coat each vegetable lightly. 
  • Bake uncovered for 25-35 minutes until vegetables are tender and golden brown, checking every 10 minutes to stir and make sure veggies are not sticking.

Note: Any combination of root vegetables will work. Roasting only one kind of vegetable also makes a nice side dish.

 

Orange You Delicious Butternut Squash Soup

makes 8 - 12 servings

Ingredients:

1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded and sliced into 2" pieces 
1 small sweet potato, peeled and cut into 2" slices
1 small onion 
½ head of cauliflower, chopped 
8 cups of vegetable stock 
1 Tbsp Olive oil 
Sea salt - a pinch/ or to taste 
Cinnamon - a pinch/ or to taste 
Maple syrup - just a "swirl" / or to taste

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 375ºF. 
  • Place butternut squash and sweet potato in baking dish with olive oil, salt, and cinnamon. 
  • Roast in oven for about 20-25 minutes, turn slices over and continue cooking for about 20 more minutes until soft. (makes a great veggie dish as is) 
  • In a medium saucepan, heat oil in on medium heat and sauté onions, cauliflower and sea salt until soft. 
  • Add chicken or vegetable stock and bring to a boil. 
  • Add cooked butternut squash and sweet potato. 
  • Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes, lower heat and continue to simmer for 10 more minutes. 
  • Puree soup with immersion (hand held stick) blender, or transfer to a food processor/blender and blend until smooth. 
  • Add sea salt and cinnamon to taste.
  • Swirl maple syrup into puree.
  • Mix again briefly with immersion blender. 
  • Serve and Enjoy!