Friday, February 2, 2018

Jam Drops (free from Gluten, Dairy, Nuts and Refined Sugar)

raspberry and coconut jam drop cookies - free from gluten, nuts, dairy and refined sugar - from

Do you have a picky eater?

I feel your pain.

My picky eater has recently gone from picky to downright ridiculous and we are left with very few foods that he finds acceptable.

He's started rejecting a few favourite recipes that I have healthified so for these, I kept it really simple.

A 'white' dough with homemade raspberry jam (that I blitzed the chia seeds for by the way so they wouldn't get spotted and rejected). The things we do!

These freeze beautifully and being nut-free they are perfect for school lunches or a quick after-school treat.

I hope your kids enjoy them as much as mine!

raspberry and coconut jam drop cookies - free from gluten, nuts, dairy and refined sugar - from

Jam Drops
Free from gluten, dairy, nuts and refined sugar

2 cups gluten-free flour (I used Orgran brand)
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
1 ts gluten-free baking powder
pinch salt
1/3 cup rice malt syrup
1/3 cup + 1 tbs coconut oil
1 ts vanilla paste
1 egg

Jam to top (I adapted my strawberry chia jam recipe found here - note that I blitzed 1/2 cup chia seeds in the Thermomix first to make a powder and used some of that to make the jam)

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper and set aside.

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, coconut, baking powder and salt. Add all remaining ingredients (except jam) and mix until well combined. You should have a stiff dough that can be easily rolled into balls.

Roll spoonfuls of mixture into balls and place on the prepared tray (I got 20 from this batch). Use your thumb or the end of a wooden spoon to make an indent for the jam.

Place a small amount of jam on each biscuit, 1/2 ts or so.

Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown. I rotated the trays halfway through.

All to cool on the tray for 5 minutes before placing on a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes approx 20

Jam drops are such a nostalgic treat for me. And these ones even more so because they remind of an Iced Vovo which I loved as a child! What's your favourite childhood bikkie? xx

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Nut-free Bliss Balls

nut free bliss balls - school friendly -

So I was feeling really organised - I'd chosen a handful of favourite recipes to prep and freeze for school lunches and was all set to start. Then I remembered that my youngest is starting kindy and all the food we provide has to be nut-free. *face palm*

At least I remembered now and not on the first day!

So back to square one with the recipes.

I whipped up these nut-free bliss balls to go in the freezer and will add 1 to his lunchbox every day. I got 16 out of this batch so they should last us about 6 weeks as long as sneaky fingers don't sneak them out of the freezer!

If your child will notice and freak out about the visible green from the pepitas, by all means, roll the bliss balls in coconut to cover them up. Mine don't care luckily as I had run out of desiccated coconut!

With the dates, these are definitely not a low-sugar option but they tick lots of other boxes and will be a great high energy snack for my very active 4-year-old.


Nut-free Bliss Balls

1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup pepitas
1 cup dried dates (soaked in boiling water for 5 mins and drained)
1 heaped tbs raw cacao
1 ts vanilla extract
pinch salt
5 drops Wild Orange essential oil (optional - I only use and recommend doTERRA)
2/3 cup desiccated coconut (optional - extra to roll the balls in)

Place the dates in a small heat-proof bowl, cover with boiling water and leave to soften for 5 minutes. Drain and place into your food processor or Thermomix bowl.

Add all remaining ingredients and process until the mixture is sticky and clumps together (TMX SP 5 / 30 secs).

Roll mixture into balls and if desired, into desiccated coconut.

Store in fridge or freezer.

Makes approx 16

What are your favourite nut-free school snacks? Please share some recipes below as I need a refresher!

Susan xx

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Raspberry Jelly Ice Blocks

Summer has well and truly arrived here in Brisbane. It's steamy and sticky, the kind of weather where you're still sweating when you step out of a cold shower!

All that really means though is it's DEFINITELY ice block weather.

I've been making batch after batch of ice blocks and icy poles for the kids these holidays, nothing particularly fancy. Often just whatever fruit we haved whizzed up or even just fruit juice with coconut water.

We have a gorgeous set of stainless steel ice block moulds and a couple of sets of silicone icy pole moulds. These are much better options than plastic, even if they say BPA free.

These jelly ice blocks were an experiment, hoping they would fill the kids up a little with the addition of protein-rich gelatin plus, being jelly, they don't drip so much! A big plus when they start melting the instant they come out of the freezer.

I love the combo of raspberry and orange but you could use whatever fruit and juice you have. I added a couple of drops of Wild Orange essential oil to pump up the flavour, but that's totally optional (delicious though!).

The first batch I made I didn't bother straining the mixture but the kids definitely preferred it strained and seed-free.

If you make them let me know what you think!

Raspberry Jelly Ice Blocks

1 cup fresh orange juice
2 cups frozen raspberries, thawed
1-2 tbs sweetener of choice (I use rice malt syrup)
2 ts good quality gelatin (I use Changing Habits or Great Lakes)
2-3 drops Wild Orange essential oil

Place the juice, raspberries and sweetener into your food processor or Thermomix and blitz for about 10 seconds until well combined.

Pour into a saucepan and set over low heat. Once just warm (not hot), sprinkle over the gelatin and leave for 1 minute. Using a whisk, whisk the jelly mixture until smooth.

Strain into a pouring jug, then pour into your ice block moulds.

Place into the freezer to set.


Susan xx

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Christmas Menu 2017

I promised myself a stress-free Christmas and somehow it has worked out!

We have a very small family and aren’t hosting this year so I haven’t got to do much at all which is wonderful!

I had 2 traditional Christmas cakes soaked, baked and sent off to family by the middle of December.

There will be just 8 of us at my aunt’s place on Christmas Eve and I am bringing a frozen Christmas pudding with raspberry sauce for dessert.

Then there will be just 6 of us for Christmas Day at my mother in law’s place. I am taking a gorgeous peach and raspberry trifle and making the mayonnaise and sauces. Too easy!

Christmas Eve

Cold meats and salads
Frozen Christmas Pudding (dairy-free)

Christmas Breakfast

Grain-free pancakes with blueberry sauce (Quirky Cooking)
Scrambled eggs

Christmas Lunch

Roast potatoes
Waldorf salad
Peach, nectarine and quinoa salad

Trifle (gluten and dairy free sponge, coconut milk custard, homemade raspberry and orange jelly, sliced fresh peaches with blueberries and raspberries)

I wish you and your family a wonderful and relaxing Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year!

Susan xx

Friday, December 22, 2017

Easy Apricot Ice Cream (Dairy Free)

We were lucky enough to score a big box of apricots for just $4 during the week! Now I love apricots but it did have me scratching my head wondering what on earth we would do with we would do with them.

I made a big batch of apricot chia jam (delicious!) and then decided to make some ice cream.

Rather than fuss around making a custard, I decided to start with the easiest ever ice cream, which is essentially just frozen fruit, coconut cream and a little sweetener.

It is soft-serve consistency straight away but you can also freeze until firm so you can scoop it.

So easy, so tasty and perfectly refreshing in this stinking hot weather at the moment.

I added a few essential oils to boost the apricot flavour but that's totally optional. A drop of cinnamon would be too much in this recipe, so just grab a toothpick and swirl it through your ice cream before giving it a final blitz to incorporate.

Feel free to use a different sweetener depending what you have on hand, and also to adjust the amount depending on how ripe and sweet your apricots are.

Remember you need to start this ice cream the day before you want to eat it. Enjoy!

Easiest Ever Apricot Ice Cream

500g ripe sweet apricots (weighed with stones removed)
1 x tin Ayam coconut cream (chilled overnight)
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 drops wild orange essential oil (optional)
1 toothpick of cinnamon essential oil, swirled through (optional)

Slice the apricots into quarters and freeze overnight in a single layer on a baking tray. Place your coconut cream into the fridge to chill at the same time.

When you are ready to prepare your icecream, place all ingredients into your food processor or Thermomix and process until as smooth as you like. I left a few chunks of apricot for texture.

While this apricot ice cream was completely delicious I have to say my all-time favourite ice cream flavour is choc mint and you can find my recipe here!

What's your favourite ice cream? xx

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Crunchy Spiced Nuts

Crunchy Spiced Nuts - Sugar Free - essential oils -

Christmas time is the season for nibbles. While I manage to get through most of the time without snacking at all, at Christmas time it becomes a bit of a free-for-all with all those tasty morsels on offer!

These are my take on the traditional sugar-coated baked nuts which are oh-so moreish but really fuel my sugar cravings. I've replaced the sugar with xylitol and used some beautifully festive essential oils for flavour.

This first batch disappeared in record time which is a sure sign of a winning recipe!

Crunchy Spiced Nuts

250g mixed nuts (I just used almonds and cashews)
1 egg white
30g xylitol
1/2 ts salt
2 drops cardamom essential oil
2 drops ginger essential oil
1 drop cinnamon essential oil

Preheat oven to 160 degrees.

In a mixing bowl whip the egg white until foamy and thickened (Thermomix 1 min / Sp 4 / butterfly).

Add all remaining ingredients and mix until well coated (10 secs / Sp 2 / reverse).

Spread on a baking tray in a single layer and bake for approximately 15 minutes, turning halfway through, until golden brown and toasty.

Remove and allow to cool completely. They will get extra crunchy as they cool.

Store in an airtight container. Perfect to package up as gifts or to serve as a snack on Christmas Day.

What's your favourite snack at Christmas time? xx

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Christmas Bliss Balls with Essential Oils

Christmas Bliss Balls with essential oils -

My boys have finished school and daycare, I've stopped setting my alarm and I'm making the time to get back into the kitchen - yep it's the Christmas holidays!

I love this time of year!

Leading up to the big day I will be sharing my favourite festive recipes flavoured with pure essential oils. Have you used oils in your food yet? The pure flavour is incredible and can take a very simple recipe to new heights of deliciousness. You generally need only a drop or 2 of each oil so it's also really cost-effective.

So which oils are suitable to use in your food? You will get a clue in the name eg. if it's a herb, spice or fruit it will be food-grade. I only use and recommend doTERRA essential oils and you can find more info about the oils and how to purchase here.

doTERRA essential oils for use in food:

- Wild Orange
- Lemon
- Lime
- Grapefruit
- Basil
- Rosemary
- Thyme
- Oregano
- Cinnamon
- Cassia
- Cardamon
- Clove
- Black pepper
- Cilantro
- Coriander
- Fennel
- Ginger
- Lemongrass
- Peppermint


I made these festive bliss balls for an oils class last weekend and they were a big hit! Packed with flavour, they are perfect for when you are asked to bring a plate and I guarantee you will have trouble stopping at one!

Christmas Bliss Balls (with essential oils)

140g raw almonds
100g dried dates
80 g dried cranberries
pinch salt
1 drop cinnamon essential oil
2 drop ginger essential oil
3 drops wild orange essential oil

Place all ingredients into the Thermomix and blitz for 30 seconds / SP 9.
Roll mixture into balls. Makes approximately 14.

What's your favourite Christmas recipe? xx

Friday, December 1, 2017

Raw Chocolate with Chai and Cashews

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

At our place the 1st of December is all about Christmas - the tree goes up, the Christmas music goes on and we start our nightly tradition of reading a different Christmas book each night with the kids. Love it!

On Facebook, I'm starting a 12 days of DIY Christmas gifts series today with a selection of recipes using our beautiful essential oils. Hop on over and like My Wholefood Family Essentials to get inspired and play along! 

One of my favourite ways to use my oils is to flavour my food, especially anything chocolate.

So given my chai obsession at the moment I've adapted my basic raw chocolate recipe and made this amazing chai chocolate with cashews!

If you like the warm, sweet spiciness of chai you will LOVE this chocolate. These spice oils are warming for our bodies, can aid digestion and are packed with antioxidants. And of course it tastes AMAZING!

Raw Chocolate with Chai and Cashews

1/2 cup extra virgin coconut oil
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup raw cashews
pinch salt
2 drops Ginger essential oil
2 drops Cardamom essential oil
2 drops Wild Orange essential oil
1 drop Cinnamon essential oil
1 drop Black Pepper essential oil

Place the coconut oil, cacao powder, salt and maple syrup in a small pan over low heat and stir until smooth and well combined. Remove from the heat and add the cashews and essential oils. Mix well and pour the mixture into a lined 20cm baking pan or a silicone cake pan and place in the freezer to set. Once firm (it doesn't take long at all), break into pieces and store in an airtight container in the freezer.

As this chocolate contains coconut oil it will melt if left at room temperature. You can see in the photo that it was already starting to melt! 

I only use and trust doTERRA essential oils to use at home and in our food. To get your hands on some please leave me a comment below or read this post on how to get started with essential oils

Susan xx

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

gluten free - dairy free - sugar free - chocolate peanut butter cookies -

Hello dear reader!

I'm back and with a delightfully simple and seriously delicious recipe to share.

As we approach the end of the term, the kids have been really running out of energy. Tempers are short and patience even shorter.

I've learnt that the best way to guarantee a peaceful time after school is to feed them well the INSTANT they walk in the door.

Such a cliche but a few of these cookies and a glass of milk (1 x cows milk, 1 x rice milk, 1 x coconut milk) and there were 3 happy little campers.

I made these yesterday and saved a couple for myself to have today, and I'm so glad I did because they were even better today! More flavour and better texture. When they're fresh they are verrrry soft and likely to fall apart. Next day, they have a good bite to them and are absolutely perfect with a cup of tea.

I've been doing a bit of experimentation with xylitol as a sweetener lately and so far I'm really impressed. Most peanut butter cookies call for equal amounts of peanut butter and sugar, which would be WAY too sweet for us. Even the 1/2 cup of xylitol was a little much and I would cut it back to 1/3 or even 1/4 cup next time.

Xylitol is a sugar alcohol made from birch with a low GI. As with all sweeteners, I use it sparingly and rotate between different types so we are not having the same thing all the time.

If you have dogs, I would suggest using an alternative sweetener as it is DEADLY for them and you wouldn't want to risk your fur-babies eating the crumbs of these cookies.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup natural peanut butter
1/2 cup xylitol
1 heaped tbs raw cacao
1 egg
1/2 ts salt
3/4 ts bicarb soda

Mix together until well combined. Roll teaspoons of mixture into balls and place on a baking tray.

Flatten the tops with a fork and bake for 10 minutes, rotating the trays halfway.

Makes 24

Have you tried xylitol? What's your favourite non-refined sugar sweetener? xx

Saturday, October 7, 2017


Hey there! You may have noticed things have been a little quiet around here lately.

The first reason is that my father had a stroke and car accident at the end of July. He spent 2 weeks in intensive care and now 2 months later is still in hospital. I try to get to the hospital most days which uses up what little ‘spare’ this me I have with 3 children and a business.

The second reason is that my computer died! I was very attached to my MacBook and definitely lost some photos and files in the process. Back up your work people!!!

The third reason is that I’m now running everything from my iPad and cannot for the life of me work out how to upload photos from my iPad into blogger. It just doesn’t work! And a food blog without photos is no food blog at all.

BUT I am still sharing recipes and lots of other good stuff too over on Facebook, so make sure you like my page to stay in touch.

Join me on Facebook

I also have a twice-monthly newsletter which you can subscribe on the top right of this page.

Hopefully back to normal soon, I have so many half written posts waiting for the photos!

Susan xx

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Coconut Pannacotta Gummies

Are you a fan of gummies?

We've been making LOADS of them over winter with orange juice, coconut water and immune supporting essential oils like lemon, orange and On Guard. Get the recipe for my citrus gummies here.

The gelatin is just so good for gut health plus the kids love them and have no idea they're eating something so healthy!

I wanted to switch things up a little this time and make more of a dessert.

Pannacotta is one of my all time favourite desserts and it was easily converted into gummies.

While gummies are usually quite firm, I wanted to recreate the wobble that is so characteristic of a Pannacotta so I used just 1 tablespoon of gelatin. With this amount of liquid you could use up to 1/4 cup of gelatin.

I used rice malt syrup as the sweetener here to keep them fructose free, but you could use honey or maple syrup instead.  You might just need less though as they are much sweeter than the rice malt syrup!

Coconut Pannacotta Gummies

1 tin Ayam coconut milk
1 tin Ayam coconut cream
1/3 cup rice malt syrup (or preferred sweetener)
2 ts vanilla extract
1 tbs gelatin (I use Great Lakes)

Place the coconut milk, cream, syrup and vanilla into a small saucepan and mix until just combined.

Sprinkle over the gelatin and leave to bloom for 5 minutes.

Place the pan over low heat and stir together until melted and smooth.

Pour into a glass dish and place in the fridge to set.

Slice into squares and serve.

What's your favourite gummies recipe? x

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