That’s Lettuce?! – A Different, Kinder Veggie Tale

Earlier this week, I stopped into a make-your-own burrito place for lunch. The lunch rush was building, the line was growing longer, but the space was small enough that you could interact with (and hear) those around you.

Even with a slew of burrito lovers, I could clearly hear the orders for the couple of those a few places after me in line.

It’s probably a good time to fess up at this point and tell you I’m a people watcher. I LOVE how we interact with each other, how we experience seemingly inconsequential moments and make sense of our world. (Because of this, I think I may be more attuned to what goes on around me. Although most days I wish I didn’t hear the conversations of others in restaurants when the conditions were like these, that day, I was humbled and happy that I did.)

Two women – perhaps colleagues, or maybe just friends meeting for lunch – followed me in line.

Their camaraderie and a sense of ease in the friendship was clear by how they engaged with one another. The first – let’s call her Ana – had never been to a lunch spot like this before, and the second – let’s call her Becky – was coaching her through the phases of building a burrito bowl.

With confidence, Ana selected her protein, rice and beans – the first phase of building a burrito; she was confident at the beginning of phase two, selecting pico de gallo (salsa fresca) and corn salsa, but then she was caught VERY off-guard.

“That’s LETTUCE?” she exclaimed. She could hardly believe it!

Romaine lettuce, which you or I may consider as a staple, was completely unfamiliar to her!

I could not believe it. In truth, my immediate internal reaction without any pause or conscious policing was totally judgmental, “this woman doesn’t know what lettuce is…”

But then, I checked myself, paused, and thought, wow. I live in a country where people aren’t familiar with easily accessible vegetables. There are people in our offices, communities, or friend groups who wouldn’t recognize romaine lettuce. (Not to mention people who don’t have easy access to lettuce at all!)

Becky, aka woman #2, did not judge, nor give her a hard time; neither did the employee. The women moved through the line without further ado and then sat down, proceeding to take pictures of their food and enjoy their time together.

What an unexpected gift Becky gave to Ana, most likely without either of them realizing it.

In my head, here’s how it went: The ladies decided to do lunch. Becky offered up the burrito place; Ana had not been before and agreed to try something new.

A commonplace, almost boring scenario, right?

Here’s the Aha!

As a result, Ana stepped outside of her comfort zone, got exposed to healthier options, was able to speak up about not knowing and was still treated lovingly.

And all of this happened over lunch!?

My take-away was that it really is the simplest of actions and moments that build our friendships and our health, and in every relationship – or interaction – we have an opportunity to cultivate curiosity and turn away from judgment.

In any given moment, we could be either Ana or Becky in this scenario.

We could be the friend opening up another’s eyes to something different, encouraging another to explore, and, in the process, sparking a healthier lifestyle for her.

Or we could be the friend who is outside her comfort zone, hoping no one judges, feeling unsure and as though we may not belong, then surprised to find we’re surrounded by loving kindness.

Whether you’re Ana or Becky, you can show people what you like, who you are, and what you value while also holding space to explore their view is where true change can start.

It may only take one small step to spark a larger change in our health, our homes, our hearts and our communities. Ana and Becky offered it to each other, and those around them are better for it.

What small change can you make today and who can you share that with?

If you can relate to this post, share your thoughts below, and, if you have any friends who might find this article helpful, please be sure to forward along!





Eat Out A Lot? Always on the Go? Five Easy Tips to Still Eat Healthy

Entertaining, eating out in restaurants and grabbing grub on the go can derail even the best laid plans for maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle.

I can totally relate to the effort and time it takes to stay on-track!

I travel A LOT.

I eat A LOT… and I eat in certain ways because of preference and necessity.

When I’m running around or on the road (as anyone who knows me, road tripped with me or follows me on Instagram can attest), I try to prep ahead of time and bring meals and snacks. A LOT of snacks.

Sometimes, though, it’s not enough! I may have an impromptu session or a lunch meeting with a Client or colleague, during which I want to eat with them as part of that time together.

In those instances, I rely on tried and true tricks to make the most of the menu! Many restaurants have expanded their menus to include healthy options making it easier, too!

Your Five Easy Menu Modifications (+ a few extra hints!)

✔Put your dressing on the side & dip your fork instead of ordering dressing on the salad. Similarly, forgo cheese, mayo, sour cream and aioli or get it on the side for better portion control.

✔Skip the croutons, too, and the bread or tortilla in favor of whole grains, like rice, or lettuce wraps.

✔ Opt for chicken or fish over beef.

✔Go for grilled over fried.

✔Ask for steamed vegetables without any butter instead of French fries; if you opt for the fries, add veggies to the meal however you can, like an extra side salad or lettuce on the sandwich. SKIP THE GUILT!

✔ Always let your waiter know if you have food allergies, too. They’ll be much more mindful about your order and even guide you towards healthier options that fit your needs!

✔Keep learning how to make simple easy substitutions that work for you and you’ll achieve & maintain your health or weight goals for life!

Do you make the menu work for you and your health? Let us know, and if you have a friend or two who could use a few tips to revive their resolutions, share this post!

To your greatest health & happiness!




Savor the Super Bowl Party with Smarter Snacking

Who’s ready for some Football?! And beer! And cocktails! And snacks! (and the inevitable hangover… no?)

Parties are one of the biggest potholes on the road to sticking to healthy habits, especially Super Bowl parties.

The rich noshes, flowing booze, and partying late into the evening often brings a blurry, foggy, sluggish Monday morning. (We’d love to say it’s because we danced so hard during the half-time show, but let’s be real. It was the salt, snacks, scotch and sleeplessness. The bloated, thick-tongued, puffy-eyed version in the mirror probably agrees it wasn’t your breaking it down to Justin Timberlake that left you in this condition 😉 )

Without giving up any street cred or socializing time, use our favorite healthy tricks to indulge and enjoy and still feel good on Monday morning!

Healthy Tricks for Super Bowl Soirees

Our favorite spread – all the colors of the rainbow, filling and delicious!

1. Eat before you go. Curb your appetite for fried foods and rich dips with greens, protein and healthy carbs. Try a salad with protein, loaded sweet potatoes, or hummus with veggies and a hardboiled egg.

2. Bring the snacks you want to eat. Lighter fare and lighter mixers (see #5) offer you options that suit your needs and helps others have alternatives, too. Have you heard a hostess turn down more food that s/he doesn’t have to prepare?

3. Choose dishes with the fewest boxed or bagged ingredients and go easy on breaded or battered hors d’oeuvres in favor of baked, steamed, raw, etc.

4. Have smaller portions of richer menu items and heavier cocktails and beers.

5. Go easy on sugar and sweets, including desserts and cocktail mixers. Try water or club soda instead of regular soda, juices, etc.

6. Alternate a glass of water with each cocktail and know your limit. Call an Uber or a friend to drive you home, if you’re over served.

7. Stop eating at half-time. Give your body a break from food before bedtime to allow for better quality sleep, which staves off a hangover and also prevents sluggishness (and cravings for sugar, caffeine and snacks) tomorrow.

8. Set your intention and expectation to get back into the healthier swing of things.  Give yourself a break on Monday, eat as clean as you can, drink plenty of water (non-sugary coffee drinks if you need a boost) and go to bed early. You’ll be back slaying workouts and the world’s problems by Tuesday, no doubt!

We’d love to hear your go-to Super Bowl party tricks in the comments below, and share these Super Bowl (and anytime) party tips with like-minded friends who could use them by forwarding this link!

Cheers to your indulgence, health & happiness!

Gluten Free Chocolate Cherry Oatmeal Bars

Chocolate. Cherry. Gluten Free AND Healthy. Almost too good to be true!

Many brilliant recipes arise out of sheer necessity, and these Gluten Free Chocolate Cherry Oatmeal Bars (“CCO Bars”) are no exception!

Over the past few weeks, my morning routine has included many more early-morning Client calls, workouts and workshops, which forced my all-time-favorite protein pancakes to fall out of rotation. (I’ll choose sleep over pancakes, thank you very much!)

I had to find other options to fuel myself to fuel and energize others.

To quote Top Gun, I had a need for speed… speedy breakfast options, that is, and I was tired of relying solely on hardboiled eggs, pre-made bars or to-go cups of homemade protein drinks that I shook like a martini on my way out the door.

CCO Bars were the perfect solve and complemented the on-the-go, early morning hardboiled eggs or leftover salmon!

Low sugar, high fiber, packed with antioxidants and straight-up delish, these are now a staple in my breakfast routine!

In fact, these CCO Bars received the “ravest” of reviews among my go-to baked goods by a very discerning group of taste testers 🙂

Gluten Free Chocolate Cherry Oatmeal Bars

Yields 8 two-inch bars


  • 1/2 c. gluten free flour of your choice (My fave is Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour)
  • 1/2 c. old-fashioned oats
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar OR 1/2 c. monk fruit sweetener OR heaping 1/2 c. date sugar
  • 1/4 c. olive oil OR half-stick of butter OR 1/4 c. ghee
  • 1/4 c. milk (cow’s, nut, pea, etc.)
  • 1/4 c. dried dark cherries (unsweetened or otherwise without added sugar)
  • 2 Tbl. cacao powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • Optional: 1/3 c. chocolate chips, couple of handfuls walnuts, a tablespoon of chia seeds


  1. Preheat oven to 325F degrees.
  2. Blend all ingredients except for GF Flour and cherries.
  3. Once blended, stir in flour and cherries. DO NOT OVERMIX.
  4. Pour into greased 8 x 8 pan.
  5. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until almost fully baked (you want the fork to come out with a little bit of batter still on. GF baked goods are easy to overbake, then they become dry or dense).
  6. Remove from heat, let cool, cut into 2-inch bars and enjoy!

If you have a go-to healthy breakfast, I’d love to hear about it, and if you have a friend who would enjoy this healthy take on chocolate and cherries, share this article!




The Beauty of “UNSUBSCRIBE” in Email and in Life

It has come to my attention that I get too. much. email.

Not the onslaught of work-related messages – those require a whole other coping strategy to be covered in a separate blog post for some of you.

Let’s talk about the barrage of promotional or informational emails I willingly subscribed to over the years that are (I believe) multiplying amongst themselves the longer I leave them unopened.

Too. Much.

My intentions were good, thinking, “I will give you my email address, and you shall give me a grand promotion and delightful inspirations with your beautiful informative or motivational emails!”

Sounds like a win-win. Until I did the same with an inordinate amount of individuals and institutions.

Eek! I did what any rational human would do in those conditions, I either stopped reading personal emails (sorry, friends!) or I mass deleted. I didn’t actually want to take the time to fix the problem by unsubscribing.


Until I had a few minutes of clarity and calm last week when it occurred to me that I could unsubscribe to just a few here and there and eventually cull my inbox down to a manageable amount of email that I wanted to read AND I decided I would be more selective about giving out the keys to my electronic mail kingdom. Let’s not repeat this nonsense in another five years, right?

And then, as I tend to do, I got to thinking.

Consider this tale of reaching email overload and the unsubscribe. Could it be a metaphor? You betcha!

How many times have we signed up or opted in for a conversation, friendship or even a relationship that we thought was mutually beneficial – it was so alluring at the get-go – to realize later that the fit just wasn’t right after a time.

Maybe you bought-in because you felt you belonged, or it provided validation, fun or connection.

Whatever your intention, it was real, and it is valid.

You felt you needed whatever you signed up for because you believed it would help you feel better, inspired, loved. Not a bad motivation, right?

We get stuck when the message is no longer suiting where we are, yet we continue to subscribe.

Perhaps the conversation is stale, or the values fueling the friendship no longer resonate with us. Perhaps that Facebook group doesn’t leave you feeling inspired, but deflated or tired.

We all grow and evolve at different rates. We change. Others change. When those rates of change aren’t the same, we’re no longer in sync. The benefit isn’t the same, or just isn’t there.

That’s OK.

Once you realize there might be a dynamic off-kilter, it’s time to do something about it. You’re worth it.

If you have a sense you may want to unsubscribe to a few outdated conversations or groups, here are a few tips to get you started.

  1. Practice awareness and mindfulness.

    This means to simply take stock of how you feel when you’re a part of conversations, spending time with individuals and groups and engaging online. Do you feel uplifted, energized at your core? Inspired and at peace? Part of something that makes your soul come alive or at least helps you breathe easier?

  2. Take note of how you feel.

    Make it a point to spend time with those who lift you up into a higher, more fulfilling place. Those who don’t, well, see #3.

  3. Unsubscribe.

    If you feel slimed, depressed or angry, pause. Realize how you’re feeling, accept that this environment or individual may not be a good fit. Then, minimize exposure to those conversations, groups or people. You can even mentally unsubscribe while in the middle of the conversation as you figure out a graceful, respectful exit.

You alone control how you spend your energy. Even if you have a full-time job, are retired or a student living at home, you still have the ability to control your thoughts, beliefs, attitudes and actions.

Your mental and emotional energy is within your scope of influence and you can choose where to invest. I give you the permission to take control of how you devote your unique skills, talents and mental and emotional energy to making you feel healthy, happy and fulfilled.

Within you is where the magic happens. Where change occurs. If you want to see change in your life, your body, your job, your family, start with you. Thoughts. Beliefs. Attitudes. Actions.

Unsubscribe is a beautiful technique! I encourage you to unsubscribe to outdated ideas, conversations or friendships! The beauty, too, is you can always opt back in if the message or material becomes relevant again.

Share this message with any friend who might need help “Unsubscribing.” If you’re looking for help “Unsubscribing” in your life and not sure where to start, send us a message at Have it figured out? Share your tips with our community below! We grow stronger together!

Wishing you love, health and peace, my friends!





Gluten Free Snappy Apple Crisp is a Healthier Take on Apple Pie!

Gluten Free Apple Betty, Gluten Free Recipe, Apple Crisp

I have been craving the flavors of the season! Cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and heavier dishes + desserts have been speaking to my soul and tummy! (You guys have been feeling the same, as we’ve learned from recent convos with you!)

The major drawback? Richer dishes usually mean decadent ingredients that add to weight gain and food comas, making it a heckuva lot harder to rally for a work-out or rise and shine for an early-morning sweat sesh, am I right?

Not with this recipe! Made with all the ingredients below, the S&R Gluten Free Snappy Apple Crisp, gives you all the feels of the season without feeling a tightness in your waistline! Try it as a dessert or breakfast, share with friends or bring to the office potluck! It’s a cinch to make, fits within a shoestring budget and leaves guests asking for the recipe!

Gluten Free Snappy Apple Crisp

Yields 6-8 servings


  • 6 medium-sized apples, peeled, cored and cut into chunks
  • ½ c brown sugar, date sugar, or monk fruit extract
  • ½ c old fashioned oats
  • ¼ c butter + 2 Tbl butter
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp sea salt, if unsalted butter


  • 1 ½ Tbl lemon juice
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • Raisins


  1. Preheat oven to 350F and place skillet into oven as it heats.
  2. After 5-10 minutes, remove skillet and melt 1 Tbl of butter, spreading it around the sides and bottom.
  3. In a bowl with clean hands, pinch the sugar, oats, butter, cinnamon and sea salt together until it resembles crumbles.
  4. Place apples into skillet, spreading oat mixture onto the top.
  5. Bake for 40 minutes or until apples are tender and oats are browned slightly.
  6. Enjoy as dessert, breakfast or as a pancake topping!

Sneak in this healthier take on Apple Pie and share your secret with friends and family!

Cheers to your Health and Holidays!





Winter Skin Care Tips for Beautiful Skin this Season

As the weather changes, changes in the texture and appearance of your skin are inevitable, signaling you to change up your skincare tools and techniques – no matter the season! With winter coming – and in some cases, here already! – your skin may have already presented different needs, and you may not know where to start!

In today’s post, we offer not only skin care, but also DIY and diet tips that you can use to reveal your inner radiance with an outer glow this season!

As we mentioned in this springtime post, what happens on your skin, happens within, so let’s start with diet.

Eating + Drinking for Sensational Skin

Winter means drier conditions. Walk outside, and you immediately feel moisture evaporate from your skin; re-enter the home and office, and you’ll likely sense drier interiors from the increased use of heat.

Get plenty of water and non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated, non-sugary sources of hydration to naturally hydrate you from within. For every hot toddy or cup of joe, drink a glass of water to replenish from the effects of those delicious, but dehydrating, bevvies!

Omega-3’s and Vitamin E nourish and moisturize from within, so don’t skimp on healthy fats this season! Nuts, seeds, avocado, olive oil and coconut oil offer plenty of health benefits and yummy flavors to your day (with the added benefit of keeping you fuller longer, stoking metabolic fire and fueling your brain, too!).

Eat whole foods and shy away from processed boxes, bagged and bottled noms to nourish your body far more than the quick snacks and meals. The extra anti-inflammatory, pH-balancing and blood-sugar stabilizing benefits of a diet free from these items also reduce redness, acne, and degradation of cells for longer-lasting health benefits overall.

Skin Care Products + Practices

Although nourishing your skin from within is a must-do, better products and practices offer quicker results and relief. Added bonus? You don’t have to break the bank with these!

First, let’s talk skin dryness. Winter brings redness, flakiness, dullness and even cracking to the point of bleeding on hands, legs, lips and even the face, itself. When I was a kid, my mom would slather Crisco on me immediately after a bath because it was the only thing that would treat the itching, cracking and dryness! (Skin issues often accompany auto-immune issues, like asthma, so my mom had her work cut out for her, but that’s another blog post. #thanksMom 🙂 )

As a result of encountering this myriad of skin woes over the years, I’ve experimented with, created and reviewed numerous products and rituals. Here are my favorite products, tips and tricks!


Gentle cleansers are always my favorite, even in the summer, but definitely in the winter! In fact, regardless of the season, I only cleanse underarms and “nooks and crannies,” and I only wash my face at night to remove make-up and anything else that may have settled while I was out and about during the day. In the morning, I may rinse again, using only water, particularly on my face.

Science has shown that the natural oils of our skin moisturize and condition as nature intended and excessive scrubbing or washing disrupts the balance, so why overdo! “Less is More” and “Keep It Simple, Sweetie” are my mottos; besides, overwashing and overscrubbing not only zaps the moisture from the skin, but can also create breakouts. Eek!

Products to consider: Cerave Hydrating Cleanser, Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, any others provided by your dermatologist 🙂

Another step of the cleansing phase that I enjoy like a kid in new snow is making my own face masque! It’s like a smoothie for your face!

A Delightful DIY Masque for Brightening & Toning

  • 1 tsp kaolin clay
  • 1 tsp cacao powder
  • 1 tsp matcha powder
  • ½ tsp maca powder
  • 1 tsp rose water
  • Combine and apply for 5-10 minutes after cleansing; rinse. Proceed with regular skin care rituals.


Exfoliating helps remove dead skin cells that create a barrier to absorption of your skin care products. However, many products in this category can be painful and excessive, even if effective.

Because of the controversial nature of the barrage of info on exfoliants, let me start by saying, if you’re already using a doctor-prescribed product, keep with it, noticing if your skin responds differently this time of year. If you have an inkling that it might be too strong or not the right fit for you, stop using it or use it less frequently.

No treatment should leave you uncomfortable for a prolonged period of time, and you are the expert in your health and what is right for YOU, including skin care. So many of my clients have wanted to try out trending products, even under a doctor’s care, and have suffered through it. Listen to what your skin is telling you and adjust as needed!

If you’re looking for a gentle way to exfoliate, mix a tsp or so of baking soda into your cleanser and gently scrub, avoiding the eye area and the delicate skin in that area. There are also topical products that will remove dead skin, such as Koh Gen Do Soft Gommage Spa Gel, which take a few minutes to apply and remove and can be done as part of a DIY facial!


During winter months, Nivea and Cetaphil are my go-to’s for full-body moisturizing. They’re fast-absorbing, very rich and leave skin radiant. If your skin type doesn’t need a heavy cream to retain oil and feel supple, go for what works for you! Lotions are just as decadent as the rich creams if your skin tells you so!

CAVEAT: Nivea & Cetaphil are do contain some chemicals, but with my allergies and skin care needs, these products are preferable for me during serious dryness. Sometimes, it’s a trade-off. If you’re into only all-natural, use a blend of coconut oil mixed with essential oils. It’s fun and fulfilling to create signature scents while getting the benefits of an all-natural, no-unprounceable-ingredients product!

For both body and face, oils are very effective, too! Many clients use coconut oil directly on the face. For me, Sea Buckthorn Oil (like this) has become a staple. I have a bar I use to cleanse a few days a week, and my daily routine includes Sea Buckthorn in the am and pm. I layer it on top of other products and underneath my sunscreen – another daily must-have, even in winter! EltaMD has a great product line that offers lasting sun protection without toxic additives. Their Clear Broad-Spectrum is a non-negotiable in my morning routine.

The Biggest Bang for Your Buck: Moisturize within 30-60 seconds of drying off to maximize the moisture retained in the skin and effectiveness of whatever product you choose.

Products to Avoid or Use Less Frequently

This time of year, go easier on scrubs (use exfoliants as needed, but pay attention to how your skin handles it and adjust the frequency). Retinols can still be used, but try to apply every other day or every couple of days if you are concerned about increased dryness, flakiness and peeling in the winter, and remember your sunscreen!

If your skin hurts, stings, burns or reacts severely with any product – whether discussed here or prescribed – discontinue use and follow-up with a dermatologist, if needed.

The Bottom Line

Even if the weather calls for gray days or dry flakes, your skin doesn’t have to follow suit! Try out these tips and let us know what works for you!

As always, we love hearing your feedback and seeing your generous shares of these posts! If you or a friend want some help adjusting diet and lifestyle for better skin health – or better health in any way – drop us a line below!

Cheers to your health!

How To Enjoy Health & Holiday Spirit This Season

Ah, the holidays! Trimming trees, decking the halls, shopping ’til you drop and traveling home for Christmas. With social engagements and soirees galore, time flies during the holiday season – a mere four to six weeks depending on how you slice it – and there’s never enough time to get it all done, let alone take care of yourself, so you can be your merriest! Sleep, exercise and eating healthy take a backseat like your narcoleptic uncle at the kids’ Holiday nativity play.

What if you could stay on-track this holiday, enjoy without going off the rails, and skip the crash dieting come January 1st?

Try a few of these hacks to keep your health and your holiday spirit intact this season!

Holiday Health Hacks

Eat before you go out.

Think about what happens when you arrive in front of food when you’re famished.

You eat everything.

You naturally gravitate towards the most satisfying. It’s biology; your brain seeks out the fastest energy, which likely equates to the most calorie-dense, least nutritious options. Pies, cookies and casseroles are way too enticing to pass up at that point. Now consider that it takes your brain about 20 minutes to recognize you’re full (even longer if you’re at all sleep deficient). By that time, you’ve had a second plate and are feeling pangs of guilt and acid reflux!

To prevent overindulging, have a snack or light meal before you show up. Keep snacks at work or in your car to ensure you have options available.

Bring your own healthy snacks, sides, desserts and cocktails with you when you can. 

Arriving with gluten free goods, colorful steamed veggies, a bottle of champagne or your favorite salad in tow ensures a few healthy options that you’ll enjoy are among those available at the party.

What host or hostess ever turned down contributions to the tablescape?

Eat your last meal three hours before bedtime. 

Giving your body time to digest and burn through that last meal aids in sleep, cellular repair and weight management. If your body’s resources are devoted to digesting your food, you miss out on the other important functions that take place during this critical time, like removal of waste in the brain, storing of memories and information and detoxification.

Get enough sleep!

During the holidays (or any peak season), you’re managing more responsibilities, expectations, demands on your time and energy, let alone traveling. You’re going to be stretched more thinly and more depleted.

Be sure to get enough sleep! Listen to your body for signs you need more Zzzz’s, like sugar cravings, lower tolerances for annoyances and stress, munchies, reduced control of your emotions (quicker to yell or cry than normal).

Take care of yourself! If you have any questions on how to navigate healthy habits this Holiday, drop us a line below, and feel free to share this article with your friends and family who need helpful hints, too!

Cheers to your health and happiness this Holiday and all year!

Gluten Free Chocolate Caramel Cookies

Gluten Free Chocolate Caramel Cookies, Holiday Recipe, Cookies, Easy Recipe for Cookies

Rich and decadent without the dose of guilt, these Gluten Free Chocolate Carmel Cookies are the perfect cookie for any occasion, including a holiday cookie swap! Less than thirty minutes from start to mouthwatering deliciousness make them an even-sweeter holiday favorite!

Gluten Free Chocolate Caramel Cookies

Yields 12 cookies


  • 3 oz dark chocolate caramel bar, broken or chopped (our favorite are these)
  • 2  1/2  tablespoons butter (include 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt if butter is unsalted)
  • 3/4  cups all purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1/2  cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2  cup monk fruit extract, date sugar or other sugar substitute
  • 1/4  cup light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1  1/2  teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2  teaspoon baking soda
  • 2  teaspoons lukewarm water
  • 2  teaspoons cacao nibs or semi-sweet chocolate chips


  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. Grease a cookie sheet or line with parchment paper.
  3. Soften the butter by heating on the stove at low temp or in the microwave at 60% for 15-second intervals until soft.
  4. Blend the oats, butter, sugars, cacao, baking soda, egg and vanilla extract.
  5. Add the gluten-free flour and chocolate pieces until combined into the dough mixture.
  6. Add the water gradually until the dough is chunky, but not crumbly.
  7. Drop two teaspoons of dough for each cookie, placing 1 1/2 inches apart on the cookie sheet.
  8. Bake for 10 minutes or until cookies are set in the center.
  9. Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack for 10 minutes.
  10. Serve, indulge and enjoy!

What are your favorite cookies for the Holidays? Do you make any substitutions to skip the guilt? Share them with us below!

Three Healthy Holiday Tips You Can Start Doing Today

Healthy Holiday tips and tricks, healthier habits, health, lifestyle healthy lifestyle

We are now embarking on Holiday Season! Thanksgiving is next week! It feels like this year has flown by, doesn’t it?

From family gatherings to office parties to shorter days and cold weather comfort foods, temptation abounds, and we can easily lose sight of our healthy intentions amidst all the excitement and expectation of the season!

Not to worry! We’ve got a few tips to help you stay on top of your health this holiday, starting today!

Tip #1: Set Your Intentions with Healthy Holiday Goals

As you go through your day, take note of how you want to feel this holiday season. How do you want to describe the last few months of 2017 when you look back on it next year or years after? Is it saying no to foods you don’t really enjoy so that you can prevent weight gain? Is it spending more time with close family and friends? Or taking more pictures to document the memories? Whatever your heart’s desire for this holiday, set the intention today.

Why this works?

You get clear and convicted before the hubbub distracts you and pulls away mental resources. The act of simply setting a goal makes you more likely to achieve it, and writing it down increases your likelihood of success by 42%!

Consider your intention like a compass for how you can stay healthy this holiday season.

Tip #2: Eat Cleaner Now

Any of the intentions you set above will be more successful if you’re feeling well, have energy and are clear headed. Your food choices make a huge difference in mental clarity and physical energy.

Why this works?

The brain gets wired by food additives, emotional eating patterns and biology to crave certain foods. The best way to crave something tomorrow is by eating it today.

Begin reprogramming your brain and your biology before you hit a time of heightened stress. When you are in those more stressful scenarios, your brain doesn’t have the capacity to be as effective in forming different habits. Laying the groundwork before you hit holiday peak time sets you up for success!

Tip #3: Establish Exercise Routine Today

Much like food and drinks play a part in keeping your stress managed, your brain firing on all cylinders and your body fueled for fun and frivolity, so does exercise! Find a few pockets of twenty minutes throughout the week when you can be more active.

Why this works?

Twenty minutes a few times a week catalyzes weight management, overall physical health, stress management and mental well-being. Start today! Whether before work, during a daily conference call or after dinner, seize the opportunity to be more active. Walking counts! So does holiday shopping, washing the car or even vacuuming.

Do the best you can to make the most of the time you have and start now by making small shifts that lead to long-lasting benefits!

Up next…

We’ll share healthy holiday tips for the kitchen, holiday parties and even managing family dynamics and social pressures! As always, we love to hear from you – what are your favorite tips and tricks to stay healthy and happy during the holidays?