Cooking Archives - Dawn Laflin

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November 17, 20200

by Dawn Laflin Wellness

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year….

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. Any purchases made through these links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you), but all opinions are my own.

….and I’m ALL IN for the spirit of Christmas! I LOVE searching for the perfect gift, wrapping it in beautiful paper, adding the gorgeous ribbon or bows and tying it off with a beautiful name tag. Then comes the fun of watching loved one’s reactions as they open their gift or hear the joy in their voice when we talk that day – it just LIGHTS ME UP!!

As a Health Coach, wife, mom, daughter, sister, Aunt and friend, I often get asked about product recommendations – which I’m honored and love to share! If I can share an ounce of what I’ve learned over the years and help someone make a positive change, then count me in!

Maybe you’re reading this going through your own health journey and need recommendations on things to add to your wish list. Maybe you have someone you know and love who’s trying to make change in their life and you want to give them the perfect gift that shows you care about their journey. Whether you’re a wellness warrior or love someone who is, this list is for you!

Many people with chronic illness find as they embark on their health journey that the products they’ve been using years may potentially be contributing to their health issues. There are hundreds of chemicals used to create products and packaging that have known or questionable impacts on health and yet they’re still widely used.  Its up to each of us to find healthier options. Luckily in recent years, more and more companies are hearing the call for cleaner products, leaving us with a vast selection of products to choose from today! See individual links for the favorites I use and trust down in the list below.

While I can’t personally wrap each gift for you (though if you were local I’d do it in a heartbeat!!), I hope this gift list is a helpful resource for you as you this holiday season.

Now, let the jingle bells ring and the twinkling lights sparkle!

For the Beauty Lover

  • Counter + Overnight Resurfacing Peel – $63 – Give the gift of aging backwards with this safer peel. Catch the Black Friday Sale, 15% off most items (excludes regimens, collections, Flawless in Five and Get the Look sets) going on now through the 29th.
  • Counter + All Bright C Serum – $79 – one of the most-loved Beautycounter products and for good reason:  glowing and even skin tone with a reduction of age-spots! Catch the Black Friday Sale, 15% off most items (excludes regimens, collections, Flawless in Five and Get the Look sets) going on now through the 29th.
  • Velvet Eyeshadow Palette – Classic  – $50 – 9 beautiful nude and neutral eyeshadows – the perfect gift for any skin tone! Catch the Black Friday Sale, 15% off most items (excludes regimens, collections, Flawless in Five and Get the Look sets) going on now through the 29th.
  • Rosewood Lip Sheer Genius Conditioning Lipstick – $32 – like a lip balm but better! Rosewood is one of my favorite time go-to’s! A warm neutral shade that’s perfect for most skin tones. Catch the Black Friday Sale, 15% off most items (excludes regimens, collections, Flawless in Five and Get the Look sets) going on now through the 29th.
  • Dazzle Dry –  this at-home manicure and pedicure system is the real deal! A safer nail system where each application dries completely within 5 minutes plus it lasts up to 2 weeks!
  • Dry Shampoo –  This dry shampoo is a rock star when it comes to extending your hair wash days! With Light and Dark Lock options, you’ll be set no matter what hair color you have! Use code DLWELLNESS for 10% off your first purchase!
  • Charcoal Deodorant –  Giving deodorant for a Christmas gift? YES, ma’am! Making the swap to safer deodorant can be a game changer for hormones, making anyone on a health journey so much happier!! This is a superstar in odor management without all the harsh chemicals that can disrupt your hormones. Use code DLWELLNESS for 10% off your first purchase!

For the Healthy Foodie

  • Instant Pot – $79 – A kitchen miracle! From sauteing veggies, cooking meats, soups, stews and beans, to making yogurt, this kitchen workhorse does it all!
  • Vitamix – $350-   From blending smoothies, making soups and pesto to shredding veggies, you’ll wonder how you ever got through a week without having one of these dream machines!
  • NutriBullet Pro – $86 –  An equally impressive workhorse in the kitchen. Perfect for smoothies whether at home or traveling (I have been know to travel with mine because when you’re working to lower inflammation, you’ll do what lever it takes!)
  • Juicer – $149 – Juicing is an important part of an anti-inflammatory lifestyle, with this juicer you can skip the juice shop and make you’re own daily green juice at home!
  • Glass storage containers – $28 – swapping all your plastic for glass storage containers can help reduce the inflammatory agents in your environment. This set is perfect for various leftover needs!
  • Lifefactory Glass Bottles – $23 – Know someone who prefers glass over any other drinking vessel? You’ll love how durable this 22 oz bottle is (I’ve tested the drop-ability factor a couple of times and still own the bottles!)

For the Exercise Enthusiast

  • Jade Yoga Mat – $79 – This grippy, quick-drying mat helps any yogi stay put throughout their flow.
  • Ultimate Stash Pocket 7/8 Tight – $89 – Movement is KEY in an anti-inflammatory lifestyle and these tights provide amazing support through your toughest workouts + provide a place for storing your phone!
  • Swell Stainless Steel Water Bottles – $35 – Ditch the need to grab a plastic bottle of water! These 17oz stainless steel bottles are GORGEOUS and perfect for those on the go, no matter if you’re traveling or running errands. They’ll keep the water cold and you’ll keep unwanted chemicals out of your water (many plastic products release estrogenic chemicals adding unwanted inflammation to your body!)

For the Self-Care and Zen Seeker

  • Essential Oils – $165 – From aromatherapy that aids in stress relief to topical applications that help reduce joint pain, muscle aches, headaches and so much more, essential oils can be a beneficial part of an anti-inflammatory lifestyle. This starter kit is the perfect way to help someone embark in the world of essential oils. It comes with a gorgeous diffuser and 12 of the most-loved essential oils (Peppermint, Lemon, Lavender, Valour, Panaway, Peace & Calming, Frankincense, Digize, Raven, Citrus Fresh, Thieves and Stress Away). Valued at over $300, as a Wholesale Member, you save nearly 50% for a cost of $165. Contact me here to place your order.
  • Dry Brushing – $16 – With benefits such as exfoliation, improved circulation and lymphatic drainage, not to mention improving the appearance of skin, a dry brush gift is the perfect gift for someone looking to up their self-care game! Use code DLWELLNESS for 10% off your first purchase!
  • Lemongrass Body Oil – $42 – the perfect accompaniment to the dry brush. With anti-inflammatory properties, this oil nourishes and hydrates the skin + smells amazing! Use code DLWELLNESS for 10% off your first purchase!

 

For the Spiritual Seeker

 

Stocking Stuffers

  • Peppermint Shave Bar – $4.95 – The perfect stocking stuff! Time to kick aerosol cans to the curb and give the gift of this luxurious shave minus the harsh chemicals found in mainstream shaving creams.
  • Jellies – Shimmers – $39 –  for a 5-pack ($7.80 per jelly!) – Buy one and break it up for multiple stockings!! Catch the Black Friday Sale, 15% off most items (excludes regimens, collections, Flawless in Five and Get the Look sets) going on now through the 29th.
  • Luminous Lid Cream Shadows – $ 39 – for a 4-pack ($9.75 for each shadow!) – Another gift perfect for splitting up and gifting many! Catch the Black Friday Sale, 15% off most items (excludes regimens, collections, Flawless in Five and Get the Look sets) going on now through the 29th.
  • Good Scents Hand Cream Trio – $34 – for a 3-pack. Winter hands be gone no matter if you’re on-the-go or at home! These luscious creams are perfect to slip in your purse or keep on your nightstand. At $11.33 each you can split and gift to a few of your BFFs! Catch the Black Friday Sale, 15% off most items (excludes regimens, collections, Flawless in Five and Get the Look sets) going on now through the 29th.
  • Lip Balm – $4 – A balm that soothes your lips and smells amazing (all while being free of harsh chemicals found in most mainstream lines!) is the perfect addition to any stocking! So many yummy scents to choose from (Peppermint is my favorite!!) Use code DLWELLNESS for 10% off your first purchase!
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I’m super excited to share this new series and collaboration with my friend and fellow health coach, Gabriela. We’re thrilled to have kicked off our first series all about BREAKFAST! For the next 4 weeks, we’ll be coming to you on Instagram LIVE on Saturdays at 12 PM (CT) to share tips, resources and recipes to help you get back into the kitchen! You can find us on Instagram @dawnlaflinhealth and @gabriela_wellnessbloom. Give us a follow so you don’t miss an episode! We’ll be sharing ingredients to our next series a few days beforehand so you can cook along with us. To truly lead a healthy, anti-inflammatory lifestyle, carving out time in the kitchen is a must. BUT that doesn’t mean it has to be boring or a chore!

Cooking can be so much fun! Take time to experiment. Don’t be put off or confined to the exact ingredients listed in a recipe. Missing some of the required ingredients? Are there alternatives that would work just as well? Would it greatly be missed if you omit the ingredient altogether? If it’s someone else’s recipe, check the comments. Many times people will share where they substituted an item. If it’s a recipe from my site directly, feel free to contact me. Sometimes the only way to know for sure is to experiment. Think outside the box; get creative.

The more you cook and give different recipes a try, the more confident you’ll become in the kitchen. Not only that, but you’ll start to truly discover what foods, flavors, textures and tastes you really enjoy.

Protein Packed, Sugar-Free Granola

You guys! Gabriela introduced this granola to us on the episode today and let me tell you…the aroma filled my kitchen even before I put it into the oven. It smells heavenly! But aside from that, it’s LOADED with protein, healthy fats, spices (that are packed with antioxidants…hello anti-inflammatory fightin’ goodness!!) and flavor.

PREP TIME:  15 Minutes

COOKING TIME:  25 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut or coconut flakes
  • 1 1/2 cup raw pecans, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup slivered almonds or raw almonds, chopped
  • 1 cup raw walnuts, chopped
  • 3/4 cup raw sunflower or pumpkin seeds (or a mix of both)
  • 1/4 chia seeds
  • 2 Tbsp flax seed meal
  • 3 Tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cardamom
  • 1 tsp all spice
  • 1/2 tsp of sea salt
  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • Optional – 1/4 – 1/2 cup dried fruits (dates, raising, blueberries, apricots)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a bowl, mix together all the ingredients except the vanilla and coconut oil. Once combined, add the vanilla and coconut oil; stir well to combine.
  3. Spread mixture evenly onto a baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes.
  4. Stir, then bake another 8-12 minutes until nice and golden, adding in any dried fruit right at the end of baking time.
  5. Store in an airtight container for up to a couple of weeks.

SERVINGS:

24 servings (1/4 cup/serving)

For extra sweetness: add a couple tablespoons of coconut sugar, maple syrup, date syrup, or agave in with the coconut oil.

AUTHOR:  Adapted from Minimalist Baker. Original recipe from Veganchickpea.com

Milk Alternatives

Now let’s talk non-dairy milk. With so many people not able to tolerate dairy or choosing to move away from it for other reasons, knowing how to make a super simple batch of nut milks is a must. You’ll not only save money, but you’ll also be saving your body from the preservatives, chemicals and added sugar that many of the nut milks include. Today I share a super simple way to make almond and cashew milk.

What I love about making my own at home is there’s no more almond milk going to waste in the refrigerator (because we couldn’t use it fast enough). AND I’m able to customize it to my liking as far as flavors and sugar content.

Almond Milk

Friends, making almond milk can be as simple as adding pure almond butter to water. Add your choice of flavor enhancers and natural sweetener and call. it. done! Yep, it’s that easy! Don’t have almond butter on hand, no worries, I got you! I’m also including how to make it with fresh almonds. This recipes makes 12 oz. of almond milk, adapt as necessary for your family.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 tablespoon almond butter (or 14 raw almonds)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • Optional add-ins:
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1-2 Dates, pitted (or other natural sugar such as raw honey or pure maple syrup)

DIRECTIONS:

Add all ingredients into a high-speed blender and blend. Use immediately or pour into glass storage jars. Seal tightly and store in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Enjoy with overnight oats, chia pudding or any of your favorite non-dairy ways!

Cinnamon Date Cashew Milk

The name alone makes me want a glass! This milk is another home-run as far as ease in making. It does take a little prep ahead of time, but comes together in minutes. Get creative and make this your own. Add flavors and natural sugar as you see fit for your family.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup of cashews (pre-soaked and rinsed)
  • 2 cups of water, divided
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1-2 Dates, pitted (or other favorite natural sugar such as raw honey or pure maple syrup)

DIRECTIONS:

Soak cashews for 4 hours. Rinse and drain. Add cashews and 1 cup of water to a high-speed blender and blend until cashews are fully broken down. Add remaining water, vanilla and dates (or natural sugar of your choice). Blend again and enjoy! Store any remaining milk in glass storage jars. Seal tightly and store in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

When it comes to ingredients and the pursuit of an anti-inflammatory diet, eating whole, real food will serve your body every time. By making these items from scratch, you’re avoiding the added chemicals, preservatives and excess sugar that comes with most store bought granolas and nut milks. Give it a whirl! I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to whip up a batch of nut milk to use for the next couple of days. And that granola we made today…it’ll easily last you a couple of weeks! We’ll work the 15 minutes it takes to throw it together!

Be sure to catch us LIVE next week as we continue to share ways to think outside the box when it comes to breakfast! We’ll see you LIVE on Instagram @dawnlaflinhealth at 12 PM (CT)

Key Takeaways

  • Living an anti-inflammatory lifestyle means getting back to the kitchen. Take control of the ingredients in your food so that you can feel your best
  • Skip the preservatives, chemicals and added-sugar of most store-bought granola and nut-milks
  • Enjoy a batch of high protein, sugar-free granola that helps add healthy fats, protein, texture and flavor to your dishes and snacks.
  • Making almond and cashew milk can’t be any easier than this
  • Join my Anti-Inflammatory Lifestyle Support Facebook Group, click HERE to join. Here you’ll stay in the know and ahead of curve for your inflammation game
  • Follow me on Instagram @dawnlaflinhealth
  • Make an appointment for a free discovery call with me (your anti-inflammatory lifestyle coach) to chat about your safer beauty swaps. Click HERE to schedule

About Gabriela and Dawn:

We’re PASSIONATE about helping people feel more confident in the kitchen! We know first-hand how challenging it can be to start this journey with food. Through our series, we’re hoping to empower others to try new foods, learn what ingredients to avoid (and why) all-the-while becoming more confident cooks when it comes to leading an anti-inflammatory lifestyle.