The Best & Easiest Pantry (Almost) Vegan Banana Bread

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If you like my best, moist banana bread recipe, than you’ll love this new version! I’ve updated that recipe and mixed up the ingredients so that this is almost vegan - with the exception of the butter. But if you are vegan, you can substitute the butter for a vegan alternative and it will work just the same.

This recipe is super simple and “pantry-friendly” meaning you can make it with everyday ingredients that are commonly found in household pantries.

Sunday was a gloomy day so I decided to mess around with the rest of my bananas and try a new banana recipe. This mostly stemmed from me not wanting to go the grocery and trying to make do with what I had available and it actually worked!

I’m torn between which recipe I like more now…you be the judge! Let me know which one is your favorite in the comments below if you have a chance to try them both out.

Enjoy!

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INGREDIENTS
• 2 very ripe bananas (the riper, the sweeter)
• 1 cup of sugar
• 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
• 2 teaspoons of almond extract
• 1 1/2 cups of flour
• 2 teaspoon of baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon of salt
• 1 cup of vanilla almond milk (you can use plain or unsweetened if you prefer)
• 1 stick of butter, melted

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 350F and grease 9-inch loaf pan

2. In a large bowl whisk together the melted butter, and sugar. Mix together apple cider vinegar and 2 teaspoons of baking soda (it will fizz) and then blend into the butter/sugar.

3. With a hand mixer or spatula, mix in the almond extract and flour and stir until smooth.

4. Again with a hand mixer, or fork, mash the bananas until almost smooth, then fold them into the larger mixture. Add in the cup of almond milk and blend again until smooth.

Note: At this point, the mixture may seem too dry, but don’t worry it will be plenty moist! I’ve tested this several times and when I add too much banana or milk it’s too sticky.

4. Bake for 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool until warm before serving.

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Meal Prep: Week 2 & The Best Steak Marinade

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I know this is late, BUT I wanted to share what I made for the second week of our meal prep. I try to prep twice a week because we go through meals really quick and I only have 12 containers right now - need to buy more ASAP!

PROTEIN

Marinated Flank Steak
Using the marinade above, let the steak marinate for at least 24 hours (48 is best) and then cook over medium-low heat with the lid until cooked through. You don't want to dry it out since flank steak is so thin so definitely keep the lid on and the heat low.

 

GRAINS/LEGUMES

We went with black beans and refried black beans this week - Chance's favorite! 

 

VEGGIES

Riced Cauliflower & Carrots
Using one head of cauliflower, I chopped it in the food processor in small batches. I repeated this for the carrots as well. Then, as I did with the riced broccoli last week, I sauteed over medium-low heat with some water in small batches until cooked to my liking.

 

Hope you enjoy this week's meal prep! Let me know what your favorite meal prep meals are in the comments below or if you have any questions/feedback! Thanks!

Easy, Fast Breakfast Roll Ups

Breakfast Roll Ups via Chaos With Coffee

Happy Monday y'all! Several of you asked for this recipe from a picture I posted to my Instagram so here it is, my EASY & FAST Breakfast Roll Ups! You can prepare these the night before, leave them in the refrigerator and bake them when you're ready for breakfast. Follow the steps below for this warm, crispy recipe! 

Breakfast Roll Ups via Chaos With Coffee
Breakfast Roll Ups via Chaos With Coffee
Breakfast Roll Ups via Chaos With Coffee
Breakfast Roll Ups via Chaos With Coffee
Breakfast Roll Ups via Chaos With Coffee
Breakfast Roll Ups via Chaos With Coffee

INGREDIENTS:
• 3 eggs
• 1/2 cup ham
• 1/3 cup cheese
• 1/3 cup corn
• 1/4 cup onion
• 1/3 cup mushroom slices
• wonton wrappers

 

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees

2. Cook your eggs enough so that they are mostly cooked, but still moist (they will continue to cook slightly in the oven)

3. Slice your onion and cheese so that they are in thin slivers. You don't need to chop up the mushroom and corn unless you want to. Slice or cube your ham and arrange the ingredients in each wonton wrapper and roll up

4. Place the wontons on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Once the first side is crisp enough, flip the wonton roll-ups over and cook on the opposite side for 10 minutes or until golden brown

5. Let cool and serve with mustard

 

Easy & Quick Baked Sriracha Honey Lime Salmon

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My parents were in town this past weekend so Chance and I had stocked up on groceries, but we ended up eating out for most of our meals so we could show them around the town and now we are stuck with an overly stocked fridge! Not a bad problem to have though, especially when we are expecting ANOTHER snow storm.

Needless to say, the first thing I knew I needed to cook was the giant salmon I had purchased from Sam's Club. We keep a well-stocked kitchen so I decided to bake a sriracha honey lime salmon and avoid the grocery store chaos at all costs. I haven't been pleased with some of my latest dishes, but this salmon totally made up for my recent fails. It was EPIC and I highly suggest trying this recipe out. Scroll down for details!

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INGREDIENTS
• 1 large salmon
• 2 tablespoons of butter
• ⅓ cup of honey
• ⅓ cup of sriracha sauce
• 3 limes (2 for slicing and 1 juiced)
• 1 teaspoon of minced garlic
• salt & pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with foil, grease lightly with butter or cooking spray, and lay salmon on top. Lightly season the salmon with salt and pepper (sometimes I omit this all together because the sauce is SO good). Thinly slice two limes and lay under the edges of the salmon.

2. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and stir in the honey, sriracha sauce, lime juice, and garlic. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a low heat and simmer for 1-2 minutes.

3. Pour ⅔ of the sauce over the salmon covering it entirely. Fold the edges of the foil up around the salmon so the sauce doesn't spill out everywhere. You don't need to cover the salmon, this just helps keep the sauce and moisture in.

4. Bake for 15 minutes, then switch to broil and cook another 4-5 minutes until the top and very edges of the salmon begin to char slightly.

5. Pour the remaining sauce over the salmon and serve! 

 

 

 

 

 

Gluten-Free Chocolate Protein Powder Muffins

Gluten-Free Chocolate Protein Powder Muffins

So, I spent the last 24 hours in San Diego for work a trip and had to take a red-eye back home because of Winter Storm Quinn - needless to say I was exhausted I got home and slept until 4pm.  When I finally woke up, there was already a foot of snow on the ground and then the power flickered on and off for a few minutes, which terrified me since I didn't have time to fully prepare, thus I began to bake food so we don't starve and decided protein muffins could get us through Quinn!

As some of you may know (or have noticed) we don't eat a ton of baked goods, I am allergic to gluten and we generally just like to eat healthily, but every now and then you will see me whip something up for us to enjoy. I absolutely LOVE to bake and was heartbroken when I found out I couldn't eat gluten, but that didn't stop me from baking - I still make tons of baked goods for Chance's work crew, including the banana bread I made a few weeks ago :)

Tonight, I threw together some quick protein muffins that are also gluten-free!! Scroll down to find the full recipe below and let me know what you think.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Protein Powder Muffins
Gluten-Free Chocolate Protein Powder Muffins
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Gluten-Free Chocolate Protein Powder Muffins

INGREDIENTS
• 2 cups dry oatmeal
• 2 scoops Chocolate Pure Protein Powder
• 2 bananas
• 1/4 cup of whole milk or 1/2 & 1/2 (optional)
• 2 whole eggs
• 2 egg whites
• 1 tsp baking soda
• 1 tbsp vanilla extract
• 1 tsp cinnamon

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Mix all ingredients together in your stand mixer, adding milk or creamer if the mixture is too dry

2. Divide mixture into muffin pan (I found my pink pan in gold, it is THE BEST non-stick bakeware ever) (making 12 muffins) and bake for 12-15 minutes. Let cool, then serve and enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

The BEST Moist Banana Bread Recipe

The Best Banana Bread Recipe via Chaos With Coffee

WOW, have we been busy or what? We have been knocking things out so fast on our home improvement list and I am absolutely exhausted, but that doesn't mean I have completely stopped cooking and baking - although I have slowed down. My go-to meal when I am super busy is a banana smoothie loaded with PB2 so as soon as we got moved in I stocked up on bananas, but apparently, I can't get through them fast enough! Last week I was left with a ton of ripe bananas so I decided to make a few loaves of banana bread for Chance's co-workers and his parents since they came to visit.

Banana bread is SUPER easy to make and this recipe is great because it keeps the bread moist - the key to great banana bread in my opinion. You can keep this bread for up to a week at least if you refrigerate the loaf so it doesn't get moldy.

Scroll down to find the full recipe and enjoy :)

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INGREDIENTS
• 2 - 3 very ripe bananas (the riper, the sweeter)
• 1 cup of sugar
• 2 eggs
• 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
• 1 1/2 cups of flour
• 1 teaspoon of baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon of salt
• 1/2 cup of buttermilk
• 1 stick of butter, melted

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 350F and grease 9-inch loaf pan

2. In a large bowl whisk together the melted butter, and sugars. Add the eggs and vanilla and whisk until smooth, then stir in the flour, baking soda, and salt.

3. Use a hand mixer to blend the bananas until smooth, then fold into the mixture along with the buttermilk.

4. Bake for 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool until warm before serving.

 

 

 

 

Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas

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Last Friday we FINALLY closed on our house and moved in, hence why I have been so M.I.A. the past week. I went back to Virginia to see my parents and gather up some essentials to prepare for the big day so that we could start living in our house the moment we got the keys. Just when I thought I had taken care of everything to ensure we could comfortably live in the house, the oil tank ran out our first night and the gas got shut off 4 days later. The oil was less our fault, but the gas being shut off was totally on me - apparently, I don't know how homes work and I assumed that the oil tank powered our stove since it powers the heat and hot water.

Needless to say, we finally got it straightened out this past Thursday so I was able to cook my FIRST real meal in over 2 months - Chicken Fajitas in my brand new Cuisinart Dutch Oven! I have been DYING to use the dutch oven ever since I found it at a ridiculous price at our local HomeGoods. I always try to prepared large quantities when I cook because Chance basically eats for 4 people so every recipe has to be AT LEAST doubled. You can easily half this recipe and serve 8 people, but the leftovers really allow the flavor to soak into the chicken and it tastes great days later. Enjoy the full recipe below!

Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas vis Chaos With Coffee
Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas vis Chaos With Coffee

INGREDIENTS
• 6 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
• 6 tablespoons of taco seasoning (or two packets)
• 2 jars of salsa
• juice of 3-4 limes

 

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees if using a dutch oven

2. Place chicken breasts in the bottom of your dutch oven or crockpot. Add taco seasoning and then cover with salsa and lime juice. Cover with lid and place in the oven for 3 - 4 for hours

3. Remove chicken and shred with two forks (the chicken should just fall apart easily)

4. Serve in bowls with avocado slices and add some Tapatio if you like a little extra spice :)

 

 

 

 

 

Easy Cold Brew Coffee Recipe

Cold Brew Coffee Recipe via Chaos With Coffee

Need a boost? This homemade cold-brewed coffee will definitely wake you up and keep you up. If you're a coffee (or caffeine) addict like Chance and me, then you will really appreciate this easy brew. I started making cold brewed coffee about 5 years ago while I was in college. Back then, I was always hurrying from class to class and didn't have time to make a fresh pot every few hours or the money to constantly be buying a cup at Starbucks. This recipe saved time and kept me focused, plus you can make it ahead and it's really simple - YOU ONLY 3 INGREDIENTS!

WHAT YOU NEED
• French press
• Coffee
• Water

 

Cold Brew Coffee Recipe via Chaos With Coffee
Cold Brew Coffee Recipe via Chaos With Coffee
Cold Brew Coffee Recipe via Chaos With Coffee
Cold Brew Coffee Recipe via Chaos With Coffee
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I use a Bodum French Press to make my cold brew, linked below! I suggest using really good coffee for your cold brew to get the best results, but any coffee will ultimately work. I get my coffee back in Virginia from Rostov's, a local shop that roasts their own coffee in Richmond. If you're ever in the area I highly suggest you stop in there! Not only do they have the best coffee, but their staff is extremely helpful and friendly. They always make you feel like family. You can order online too!

DIRECTIONS
1. Fill your french press up with 4 cups of water and add 2 cups of coffee grounds.

2. Let the mixture sit for 12 hours or overnight at room temperature.

3. Serve immediately on ice or let it sit in the fridge.

**NOTE** BEFORE YOU SERVE, this mixture is highly concentrated. You will need to add an additional 4 cups of water once it's finished brewing, or half water and half coffee each time you make a cup.

 
 
 

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Alright you guys, here is another recipe I dug up from my archives that I thought would be great to share this winter. We're still living in our hotel, so I'm oven-less for a few more weeks unfortunately and limited on what I can create. It's been super cold up in Orange County, NY, but we've survived thus far and I've been dreaming of all the comfort food I used to enjoy since we've mostly been snowed in. So, today's recipe is Baked Macaroni and Cheese in the skillet! If you don't already have a skillet, definitely get one because they are awesome and a kitchen essential - you can buy my favorite Lodge Cast Iron here, I know it's a bit of investment, but it's 100% worth it.

We're also going to use our own homemade pasta recipe for this dish, however it's totally optional and you can substitute boxed pasta if you don't have all of the tools. Contrary to popular belief though, making pasta is actually quite simple, especially when you have a KitchenAid Stand Mixer with the Gourmet Pasta Press attachment by your side.

That said, keep scrolling to find the recipe and enjoy this delicious southern comfort food!

Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Homemade Pasta
Homemade Pasta
Homemade Pasta
Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Baked Macaroni and Cheese

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Baked Macaroni and Cheese

HOMEMADE SKILLET BAKED MAC 'N CHEESE

INGREDIENTS:
For the Pasta
• 5-6 cups of flour
• 6 eggs
• 3 tablespoons olive oil (optional)

For the Mac and Cheese
• 8 strips of bacon
• 4 tablespoons of butter
• 4 tablespoons of flour
• 3 cups of whole milk
• 2 1/2 bags of cheddar cheese (2 bags of sharp cheddar + 1 bag of mild cheddar)
• 1/4 cup of bread crumbs (optional to get the top crispier)
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• pinch of pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:
For the Pasta
Mix 6 cups of flour, 6 eggs and 3 tablespoons of olive oil in your stand mixer on speed 2 using the mix hook. Once the dough is mixed, form it into a ball and lay it out on wax paper sprinkled with flour. Attach the Gourmet Pasta Press attachment to the KitchenAid Stand Mixer with the macaroni press and set your mixer to speed 6 while slowly feeding it walnut sized portions of dough. I always make sure my hands are dusted with a layer of flour so the pasta doesn't stick to me. Once you have made all of your pasta, boil a pot of water and cook the pasta about 3 minutes or until it floats and set aside.

For the Mac and Cheese
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Chop your bacon into small cubes and cook in the skillet over medium heat until crispy and set aside. In a separate pot, melt 4 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Once melted, add 4 tablespoons of while whisking the mixture constantly. Slowly add the 3 cups of milk (1/2 cup at a time) and continue to whisk the mixture constantly. Once the mixture has thickened up a bit, you can begin to add your cheese. I recommend add this about 1-2 cups at a time so that the cheese melts thoroughly. Remember to continue to whisk the mixture while adding the cheese. 

In a large bowl or pot combine the macaroni, cheese and bacon and mix thoroughly. Add the mixture to the skillet and top with bread crumbs if you'd like. Place the skillet in the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes or until the top is golden brown and crisp. Once it has cooled off, serve it up and enjoy! 

***You can also enjoy this recipe without baking it if you want a creamier version.

 
 

Wonton Mozzarella Sticks

Wonton Mozzarella Sticks

Extended weekends bring lots of great things, like more free time, good friends and good food, including these delicious homemade wonton mozzarella sticks. This is an old recipe I created a few years back that I decided to resurface for you guys because it's really easy to make and great for kids! I don't typically like fried mozzarella sticks, so this is an alternative to the classic snack using wonton wrappers. Scroll down for the full recipe and enjoy!

Wonton Mozzarella Sticks
Wonton Mozzarella Sticks
Wonton Mozzarella Sticks

WONTON MOZZARELLA STICKS

INGREDIENTS
• 6 wonton wrappers
• 6 string cheese sticks
• 1 jar marinara sauce
• 1 eggs
• 3 cups canola oil (optional)

DIRECTIONS
Preheat oven to 400F. Beat egg in a small dish for egg wash. Place one string cheese stick as close to the edge of the wonton wrapper as you can and brush with egg wash. Fold the sides in, and roll up as tightly as possible finishing with a brush of egg wash (see gif above). Repeat until you made each wonton mozzarella stick and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 5 minutes to get the cheese melted.

Heat the canola oil in a skillet at about 325F. Add each mozzarella stick to the skillet and cook until golden brown and crispy (about 30-60 seconds on each side). Serve immediately with marinara sauce!