Healthy No-bake PB Banana Pie

Oh. My. Wordy.

Thanks to Katie at Chocolate Covered Katie, we have a new, fun HEALTHY(ish) dessert! A no-bake peanut butter banana pie that even Elvis would approve of. Have 10 minutes? Let’s make it!

No-bake Peanut Butter Banana Pie
This pie is easy, pretty healthy and is a kid-pleaser, too. You can substitute the marshmallows for dehydrated fruit or a natural, sugar-free alternative. Enjoy crustless or with the flavor combination of sweet from the bananas, nutty from the peanut butter and salty crunch from the pretzels.
Adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie 

STEP 1: In a blender, combine these ingredients:
1 1/4 cup peanut butter (you can use creamy, chunky, or a combo of both)
4 medium bananas (ripe is good)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons brown sugar or sweetener (optional)

STEP 2: Coat a pie pan with nonstick cooking spray/butter. Transfer the peanut butter mixture to a large mixing bowl. Fold these into the peanut butter mixture:
1 cup mini marshmallows

STEP 3: Using small pretzels, spread one layer into the bottom of the pie pan:
1 to 1 1/4 cups “waffle-style” pretzels (regular 2-inch pretzels from the chips aisle work, too)

STEP 4: Carefully pour the peanut butter mixture into the pie pan. Note: the pretzels will shift and move as the heavy peanut butter filling is poured in. Don’t worry about it. Put the pie pan in the freezer and let chill for 3+ hours. Slice and serve.

I have to work today, but this is a fun treat to look forward to after a long day! Hope you can enjoy this one, too!

Happy Saturday!
Laurel

~Laurel~

Bananaberry Cookies

Monday! Need a cookie!

So far, today has been fabulous. After a weekend with Matt (the first Friday and Saturday in a row that we’ve both had together…and not working…in a LONG time…maybe ever), I am off today and living it up. Workout with a friend, wandering around a mall, very relaxing. I’ve noticed (and Matt has, too) that having a job {at a church} that I love, living in a lovely neighborhood, and feeling sunshine most every day has really livened my spirits. Life is too short to be unhappy or just be content, and I’m very thankful that this is a season in my life where things are pretty darn awesome. You know what I mean? Life has ups and down, of course, so I’m trying to relish in the moments when there’s a lot to smile about. I hope that for you, too.  

Here are a couple of fun photos:

Waldport, OR

Our front yard

See Mt Hood in the middle?

Front yard again

Rose Garden in Portland…no roses yet, but these cuties are blooming!

Our side yard…granted, we live on a church campus, so we take NO CREDIT for the gorgeous flowers!

Now on to butter, strawberries and bananas. To be honest, cooking/baking bananas is a pretty weird concept to me, but usually tastes good. These cookies are pretty tasty. For those who aren’t obsessed with chocolate, these are a nice alternative–quick and easy, too. This is my cousin Cindy’s cookie dough base recipe, and I’ve tweaked it a little to allow for the strawberry and banana.

Bananaberry Cookies!
Makes 15-18 medium-sized cookies
 
1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup white sugar

1 stick butter or margarine, softened

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup chopped strawberries (about 4 large)

1/3-ish cup chopped banana (1 small banana)

step one: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix first four {the dry} ingredients together in a medium bowl. In a second bowl, combine butter through vanilla.
step two: Pour dry ingredients into wet ingredients and combine until lumps are out, but don’t stir forever. Fold in strawberries and banana.
step three: On a nonstick baking pan, scoop 1 tablespoon worth of dough and space apart by an inch or two (they spread a little). Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until non-jiggly and a little brown on top. Let cool for 2 minutes or so before transferring to a cooling rack or before devouring. Enjoy! 

Happy eating!
Laurel

~Laurel~

Tropical Popsicles

I’m dreaming of a summer vacation…

 Just like the one I had before…

 Where the sea foam glistened…

 And palm trees listened…

 To fireworks booming on the shore, the shore…

Okay, so that trip to Hawaii wasn’t exactly a White Christmas, but it was like a summer vacation right smack at the end of December. And I miss that gorgeous place.

But a gorgeous budget to visit Hawaii for a few weeks isn’t even on the radar…

So we’ll make tropical popsicles instead!

Tropical Popsicles
Transform yourself to your favorite summer spot, under a palm tree, while indulging in these little frozen gems. These popsicles are a sweet treat, using fruit to sweeten rather than sugar. Taste the banana-coconut-pineapple trio of flavors in each bite.

Makes 2 cups (8 1/4-cup popsicles), but you can adjust (double) to fill your pop holders

You’ll need:

One

  • Popsicle mold
  • Food processor or blender
  • 1/4 cup measuring cup
  • 1/3 cup pineapple (4 rings)
  • 2 bananas, peeled
  • 1/3 cup light coconut milk
  • Two
  • 1/3 cup shredded, toasted coconut flakes

step one: Combine pineapple, bananas, coconut milk, and 2 TB of coconut flakes into a food processor or blender until combined (a few small chunks of banana are okay).

step two: In the popsicle molds, sprinkle 1 teaspoon of toasted coconut into the bottom of each one. Pour 1/4 or more of the banana mixture into each mold, then top with an additional 1 teaspoon of toasted coconut. Insert the handles/sticks. Freeze for 2 hours, or until firm. (Use hot water to loosen popsicles or use fancy silicone molds that release easily.)

Three!

Enjoy your little vacation…at home!

Happy eating!
Laurel

~Laurel~

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