My favorite thing to do on weekends is watch Food Network's The Kitchen (seriously my favorite show EVER, check it out if you haven't yet) and bake delicious goodies.

My weekly meals consist of mostly plant-based foods with the occasional boiled egg or roasted fish so when Sunday comes around it's my mission to try out a new good-for-you cookie, muffin, or other sweet treat recipe. Being gluten-free used to limit my breakfast and dessert intake immensely - there were little to no options available at restaurants, coffee shops, even grocery stores. That was 8 years ago and now the world has finally caught up which for me is a blessing and a curse. Hear me out here. I am so happy that the Celiac and GF population can now enjoy foods that they used to miss out on. Our previous avoidance of certain restaurants has gone down, and so has the envious stare-into-your-friends-mouth-as-she-takes-a-bite-of-stuffed-french-toast-from-your-favorite-breakfast-spot move. Not very classy.

Honey Oat Banana Muffins (Gluten Free) Recipe on www.natashawellness.com

But, have you noticed that all the gluten-free replacements are like 10 times more unhealthy than the gluten-full versions? Gluten-free pizza typically has 90 more calories, 4 grams less protein and 8 more grams of fat than regular pizza. GF sweet treats typically have more sugar and/or butter to maintain the gooey dense texture we've come to expect in a cookie or muffin. And I thought being gluten-free was more healthy. Not fair.

Honey Oat Banana Muffins (Gluten Free) Recipe on www.natashawellness.com

That's why I decided to try my hand at creating homemade treats. I know what's going into the batter, and into my belly. It's a win-win! Oh, and another positive is that each batch typically contains about 12 servings. Since I'm only feeding myself and my partner, the rest of the treats will either last us for a few days, get shared amongst visiting friends, or get frozen for later. My love of dessert is mostly a textural thing rather than a sugar-bomb craving so I can create a muffin that uses a small amount of sweetener and be happy. All I really care about is TEXTURE. And these muffins sure have a decadent gluten-y texture. 

My sweet recipes use honey, maple syrup, maple sugar, coconut sugar or mashed bananas for sweetness and coconut flour, almond flour, oats and chickpea flour for texture. Each sweetener and flour has it's own place and is just as satisfying as using the "regular" version. I also like to enhance my foods with nutrient dense superfoods like prunes, chia/flax/hemp seeds and nuts. Nutritious and delicious!

This weekend I made dense and delicious Honey Oat Banana Muffins. Packed with healthy fats, dietary fiber, Vitamin C, protein and anti-inflammatory nuts these babies will melt your all muffin-guilt away. Take a bite knowing you are feeding yourself real, wholesome food.

Try this recipe on your own and let me know what you think!

Honey Oat Banana Muffins (Gluten Free)

Honey Oat Banana Muffins (Gluten Free) Recipe on www.natashawellness.com


Do you ever wake up and realize you indulged a little too much at dinner last night, and are not excited to stuff your face with a huge breakfast? Welp, this happened to me last night. We had a big dinner followed by a HUGE peanutbutter cup oatmeal cookie. As full as I was, I am not one to skip dessert especially if there's chocolate involved. So today I woke up drank a tall glass of warm water with lemon to flush out my system and once I got hungry decided it was most definitely a smoothie kind of day. I wasn't always a huge smoothie fan, I strayed away from the popular cold beverage since summertime because, hello! this is Boston and it's freezing out! That's when I learned that not all smoothies have to be cold. Huge lightbulb moment. If you use fresh fruit instead of frozen, or a mixture of the two, you get a pleasantly delicious drink that doesn't chill you to the core. Pro tip: make sure you take the extra few minutes to let your chia seeds soak. This makes them puff up and form a gel-like outer layer which makes them more bio-available to your body. Hydrated chia take longer to digest leaving you fuller longer, preventing blood sugar spikes and decreasing cholesterol. You can even soak them overnight - you can never soak chia for too long!

Morning Green Smoothie Recipe from www.natashawellness.com


Morning Green Smoothie Recipe for Two 

Total prep time: 7 minutes

2 handfuls of spinach and/or kale
1/2 cup of blueberries
1 kiwi
1/2 apple (save the rest for a snack, your dog, or tomorrows smoothie)
1-2 tbsp chia seeds
1/2 cup water, coconut water, juice (I used Trader Joes Green Juice)
Top with a sprinkle of hemp seeds, granola, and/or blueberries


1. Combine chia seeds and your choice of liquid in blender. Let chia seeds soak for 2-3 minutes while you gather the other ingredients.

2. Throw the rest of your fruits & greens in the blender and blend on high for 3-5 minutes. Kale and spinach are pretty fibrous so make sure you blend, blend, blend so you're not chewing your smoothie!

Morning Green Smoothie Recipe from www.natashawellness.com
Morning Green Smoothie Recipe from www.natashawellness.com


I recently saw a recipe online that takes veggie scraps and turns them into veggie broth. And I'm over here buying boxed veggie stock from Trader Joe's? No way, I thought to myself, this is too easy. The recipe calls for saved and frozen veggie scraps from a week or months past (depending on how often you cook) which is great to know for the future but didn't help my grumbling belly at that moment. 

Simple Vegetable Stock Recipe by www.natashawellness.com

I had a lot of leftovers from our NYE party grocery haul and thought, what better way to use up all those baby carrots than with a soup? I love dipping these babies in hummus in the summer months but raw vegetables don't digest well for me in the winter, nor do I crave them. I also had some ready-to-be-eaten celery, onions, cilantro, mushrooms, sage and rosemary. 

Here is my version of a "clean out the fridge"/"everything but the kitchen sink" stock I made a few days ago. Sooo sustainable. 

Simple Vegetable Stock