Maple Granola

Quinoa Granola

 

Although Pumpkin Granola is the one we go through the fastest, here is another great one that doesn’t have migraine triggers.  We used to add Cranraisins to this recipe, but discovered that these are major migraine triggers for us; the granola is a great snack without them though.

Maple Granola

Quinoa Granola
3 cups old-fashioned oats
1/2 cup quinoa, uncooked
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 tsp. vanilla

  1. Optional step:  The quinoa can be rinsed and toasted in a skillet to give it a “nuttier” flavor.  However, this is time consuming and not necessary in my opinion.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and mix well.
  4. Place granola on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees in 10 minute increments until dry (approximately 30 minutes depending on your oven).  After each 10 minute increment, stir the granola to keep the edges from burning.  Once the granola is almost dry, turn the oven off, prop the door slightly open, and allow the warmth to complete the drying process.
  5. Although we have never added hemp hearts to this recipe, we are experimenting with them and plan to try this at some point.

Protein Bars

Protein Bars

I’m having a great reduction in the frequency of my migraines since my diet changes, and I’m starting to add some of the foods back in.  The first I’m trying is almonds (but no other nuts).  I actually have seen conflicting information regarding almonds.  Nuts are considered migraine triggers, but almonds are sometimes recommended to migraine sufferers because of the magnesium in them.  I’m not having trouble eating them in moderate amounts, so I’m exploring recipes.  Here is one of my favorites.

I am overjoyed to be able to make protein bars like these.  Our other migraineur is still not able to eat any nuts, but she is able to eat Sunbutter.  So, we still make these for her, but just do the replacement.  Adding small amounts of almond butter into my diet has opened up many recipe options.  For me, it is totally worth giving up so many other foods so that I am able to reintroduce this migraine trigger without pain:)

The original inspiration for this recipe didn’t include any other migraine triggers, but we did make some changes that suit our family better.  As noted earlier, too much chia just doesn’t work well with my “insides”.  The addition of hemp hearts boosts the nutritional value as outlined here.  So, we worked with hemp hearts, chia, and flax to get a better combination for us.  Finally, we included the option of using Sunbutter in the same amount as almond butter to suit individual needs.

Now, we have a great travel option that can be stored at room temperature for short time periods, frozen, or refrigerated:)

Protein Bars

Protein Bars1/2 cup dry quinoa
2 Tbsp. chia seeds
1/4 cup hemp hearts
1/4 cup milled flax seeds
1 cup rolled oats
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup raw almonds, coarsely chopped (about 50 almonds)
2 Tbsp. honey
1/4 cup brown rice syrup
1/2 cup almond butter (or Sunbutter)

  1. In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients.
  2. In a small, microwave-safe dish, combine honey, brown rice syrup, and almond butter (or Sunbutter).  Microwave for 20 seconds to soften.
  3. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir to thoroughly mix.
  4. Transfer to a parchment lined 8 x 8 baking dish.  Press into an even layer with fingers.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool.
  7. Cut into 8 or 16 bars as desired.
  8. Cut parchment used for baking into pieces to wrap around each bar and refrigerate or freeze.

 

 

 

Creamy Cauliflower Soup

Cauliflower Soup light

I used to only have 3 soup recipes.  This new adventure of figuring out what to eat on a migraine diet has opened my eyes to so many more options.  My sister-in-law sent the original idea for this soup to me, but I have made several changes to accommodate our dietary needs.  We love this served as a side dish with chicken recipes.

The garlic scape that I have used for garnish in the picture is a delightful replacement for onions or mushrooms.  The difficulty is finding scapes, which are the stalks for the flower buds of the garlic plant (see one of mine here).  They are usually removed from a garlic plant to allow the bulbs to grow larger.  However, I usually let a few scapes grow so that the flowering buds develop for planting the next year.  I used to compost the others, but have recently begun using them in dishes such as this one.  This year, my plan is to freeze them for use all year long.  If garlic growing is something you would like me to include in a future post, please comment below.

Note that this recipe fits nicely in a blender.  However, if you want to make a larger batch using the entire cauliflower head, you could use a stick blender right in the stockpot.

Creamy Cauliflower Soup

Cauliflower Soup light

1/2 of a large cauliflower head (or 1 very small head), chopped
1 medium white or yellow potato, peeled and diced
2 cups broth
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/16 tsp. cayenne pepper
dash cumin
diced and sauteed garlic scapes for garnish (optional)

  1. Place the cauliflower, potato, and broth in a small stockpot and simmer until the vegetables are soft.
  2. Place vegetables, broth, and spices (except garlic scapes) into a blender and blend until creamy.
  3. Serve warm as a side dish with sauteed garlic scapes for garnish as desired.

Chicken Nuggets

Chicken Nuggets 2

This recipe is great for a supper meal, but I have also found it to be particularly helpful at lunch.  If I don’t eat more than a salad at lunch, I start getting that “migraine coming on” feeling mid-afternoon.  I make a double batch for supper and freeze the leftovers to be warmed for lunches throughout the week.  The original inspiration for this recipe included several migraine triggers and a dipping sauce.  I’ve replaced the trigger ingredients and think these nuggets are great without a dipping sauce.  I frequently serve them with roasted cauliflower and steamed beets.

Chicken Nuggets

Chicken Nuggets 2

1/4 cup plus 1/3 cup rice flour
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 pound ground chicken
1 “egg” (1 1/2 tsp. Ener-G powder & 2 Tbsp. water)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
coconut oil

  1. In a small bowl, stir together 1/4 cup rice flour and 1/4 cup coconut.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine ground chicken, 1/3 cup rice flour, Ener-G egg, and spices.
  3. Form desired nugget-sized patties and roll in flour/coconut blend.
  4. Fry in coconut oil in a hot skillet.  I keep the amount of coconut oil to 1 or 2 tablespoons, but you could use more if desired.
  5. Optional step – When fully cooked, place on a parchment lined baking sheet, and bake at 350 degrees for a few minutes for a crispier crust.  Update on 8/15/17 – We have found that this step tends to dry out the nuggets.  We microwave instead if necessary.

Marinara Sauce with Spaghetti Squash and Sausage

DSCF5366

Spaghetti squash is such a blessing!  I still haven’t figured out a migraine-less option for pizza, but here is one for “spaghetti” without a tomato-based sauce.  I make marinara from pepper puree that I also use for other recipes.  So, I make large batches of the puree and freeze it in convenient portion sizes for our 2 migraineurs.  I don’t add spices until I thaw a portion for a particular recipe.  As I work out final versions of my other pepper puree recipes, I will post them as well.

It took some time to work out the spices for this marinara recipe since onions are not included.  Sometimes, I add more garlic or red pepper flakes, but the recipe below is where I start.  If I add sausage to the final dish as shown in the picture above, I use the marinara recipe as written.

Spaghetti Squash - Forking Out

A key to the spaghetti squash is the method of removing it from the peel.  As shown here, I use a fork to pull “spaghetti” strands from the sides.  Once the strands are removed, I use a spoon to scrape remaining squash from the peel.  Since most of the squash can be removed as strands, it ends up resembling spaghetti noodles.

 

Pepper Puree

  • Servings: 4 to 5 cups
  • Print

5 to 6 large red bell peppers

  1. Remove seeds and stems from peppers and cut into large chunks or slices.
  2. Place in a lightly greased 9 x 13 baking dish and cover with aluminum foil.
  3. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until soft.
  4. Blend peppers and juices in a food processor or blender until smooth.
  5. I freeze 1/2 cup and 1 1/2 cup portions for use in other recipes.

Marinara Sauce with Spaghetti Squash and Sausage

  • Servings: 2 based on sauce
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DSCF5366

1 spaghetti squash
1 1/2 cups pepper puree
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. basil
1 tsp. oregano
½ tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. white vinegar
1 tsp. white sugar
sausage (optional)

  1. Cut spaghetti squash into half lengthwise and remove seeds.
  2. Place squash halves peel side down in a baking dish with 1/4 inch of water.
  3. Bake squash for 1 hour at 350 degrees or until squash can easily be removed from the peel with a fork.
  4. Stir spices into pepper puree and serve warm on top of spaghetti squash and sausage.
  5. Non-migraineurs in our family eat the remaining squash with tomato-based sauce.

Sausage

Most online recipes come with enticing pictures, but I just couldn’t produce a picture of sausage that would represent how tasty it can be.  However, I knew that I wanted to get this post out since having a sausage option has opened up several dishes for our family.  Commercially produced sausage contains so many ingredients that can trigger migraines that we had stopped eating several meals that were easy “go to” meals for us.  I hope to post some of my recipes that use sausage in the future.

The original idea to make my own sausage came from a friend along with a list of potential spices.  The recipe below includes the spices that we like mixed with ground turkey instead of pork.  We usually make several batches and freeze 1/4 pound and 1/2 pound portions so that I can thaw the right amount for any recipe.  Please let me know your favorite way to use sausage.

Sausage

2 lbs. ground turkey
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 1/2 tsp. sage
1/2 tsp. thyme
3/4 tsp. basil
3/4 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

  1. Mix all spices together in a small bowl.
  2. In a large bowl, work ground turkey and spices together with hands until well blended.
  3. Refrigerate for 8 to 24 hours before cooking.
  4. I freeze uncooked sausage in 1/4 and 1/2 pound portions for easy use at a later time.

Stir-Fried Cauliflower Rice and Quinoa

DSCF5438

I had never heard of cauliflower rice until my daughter brought it to my attention.  I admit that I was a bit skeptical about the concept.  I figured that pulverized cauliflower would just end up being a mushy mess, and I didn’t want to waste the cauliflower.  How wrong I was!  This is definitely a time that thinking outside my box paid off.

Our family has loved this recipe from the first time I made it.  I have included quinoa as an ingredient to add a complete protein.  The hardest part was figuring out what to do for soy sauce due to the migraine triggers and allergens present in commercially available products.  However, this recipe provided inspiration.  Without the balsamic vinegar, it works wonderfully in this stir-fry, and I hope to try it in other recipes soon.

Note that any broth can be used, but I use this one, because the ingredient list doesn’t currently contain peanuts, cashews, or any chemical additives like MSG. Please note that it does contain onions, but our family has not noted headaches following use of it.  It currently meets our food allergy needs, but please contact the company to confirm for yourself that it will meet your food allergy needs.

Soy Sauce


1 cup broth
2 tsp. molasses
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. salt
dash black pepper

Stir all ingredients together and heat in a saucepan.

Stir-Fried Cauliflower Rice and Quinoa


DSCF54381/2 cup white quinoa, uncooked
1 cup water
1/2 head cauliflower
1 to 2 carrots, diced
2 cloves garlic, diced
1 cup corn
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 cup soy sauce

  1. Rinse quinoa in a fine mesh sieve and cook in water.  Set aside.
  2. Remove cauliflower florets from “trunks” and cut into 1 inch chunks.
  3. Process in a food processor until rice-sized.
  4. In a medium skillet, saute carrots and garlic in olive oil.
  5. Add corn and warm.
  6. Add cauliflower rice and and quinoa and cook covered for 5 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Add soy sauce and cook another 2 minutes.
  8. Serve warm.