Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing Recipe

Back in 2012 when our family adopted an organic lifestyle, one of the hardest things to give up was store-bought Ranch dressing.  Ranch dressing made it very easy for us to feed our kiddos fresh veggies and salads.  We tried some of the organic Ranch dressings on the market, but none of them tasted anything like what we remembered, and most of them were full of sugar and other things we were trying to avoid.

Conventional dressings contain health-harming ingredients like nano-particles, GMO high fructose corn syrup, trans fats, brain destroying MSG and the list goes on.  No matter how yummy Ranch is, we couldn’t do that to our bodies anymore and especially NOT our kiddos’ bodies.

I resolved to make Ranch dressing myself, and after much experimentation this is what I landed on.  It is kid and Ranch-loving-husband approved, and it’s been a family favorite for 5 years now.  I hope you guys love it too!

Print Recipe
Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing Recipe
This recipe is flavorful and doesn't have any of the harmful chemicals of store bought Ranch. It is creamy and delicious over salads or veggies.
Servings
2 Tbsp servings
Ingredients
Servings
2 Tbsp servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a large glass measuring cup, combine milk and lemon juice, stir and let sit for 5-10 minutes.
  2. Add sour cream and whisk well til the mixture is smooth and creamy.
  3. Add all of the herbs and seasonings and whisk til thoroughly combined.
  4. Pour into a glass mason jar and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks! Be sure to shake before each use.
Recipe Notes

Note: this Ranch dressing has a thinner consistency to be pourable over salads. If you want a thicker consistency to be used as a Ranch dip, simply add more sour cream until you reach your desired thickness, and double up on the seasonings!

Share this Recipe

As I said, this dressing will last up to 3 weeks in the refrigerator, however it never survives that long in our house because we eat it up so quickly!

Bonus tip: I am a total mason jar junkie and I love storing food in glass to avoid the toxins in plastics. I keep painter’s tape and a Sharpie marker in my kitchen junk drawer to label my food jars with contents and dates. Painter’s tape is easy to remove and doesn’t leave a sticky residue behind!

Thanks so much for stopping by the blog today.  Let me know what you think of the dressing when you try it!


Easy Pumpkin Chili Recipe With Ground Beef and Black Beans

 

This chili is one of my go to recipes when I need to get dinner on the table fast, or if I don’t want to dirty more than one pot, or if I want comfort food, or if I am going to a potluck.  So many reasons, because it’s great. I actually brought this to our friends’ Super Bowl party because it was requested, and it was a real crowd pleaser. Even the kiddos love it, and the best part of all is that it is SO easy to make, and requires no MSG-laden chili seasoning packets from the store. We especially love topping it with fixins like shredded cheese, sour cream and green onions, sometimes even avocado,but it’s good all on its own. I hope you enjoy it as much as our family does!

Print Recipe
Easy Pumpkin Chili Recipe With Ground Beef and Black Beans
This chili is thick, hearty and oh-so-satisfying on a cold day. Even the kiddos love it!
Course Main Dish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
cups
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
cups
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Brown the ground beef in a heavy bottomed pot, then add chopped onions.
  2. Dump in the black beans, pumpkin and crushed tomatoes and stir well to combine.
  3. Add all of the spices, stir, reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 20 minutes.
  4. Enjoy!
Recipe Notes

Tip: This chili tastes even better the next day so if you're making it for a pot luck, make it the day before and it in a crock pot.

Share this Recipe

 

 

 

Einkorn Honey Pancakes Recipe

I’m generally a savory breakfast kind of person; I will almost always choose a big veggie omelet or breakfast sandwich over pancakes or waffles.  I just don’t have much of a sweet tooth in the mornings.  My kids on the other hand would eat pancakes every day if I let them, so while I would much rather fill them with protein and veggies every morning I do compromise on the weekends and I make them pancakes on Saturday mornings.  It’s something they look forward to every week, especially because they usually get to put their aprons on and help!

While we don’t have any gluten allergies in our house, we do notice a difference in our bodies when we avoid gluten versus eating modern wheat—even organic modern wheat.  Then we learned about einkorn flour and found that we didn’t get puffy or bloated or lethargic when we ate it.  It’s because it’s not a hybridized grain; it’s in its original, ancient form, just as God intended.  Its genetic structure is totally different from that of modern day wheat (organic or not); referred to as the original “staff of life” grain of biblical times, it has only 14 chromosomes.  Compare that to modern wheat’s 42 chromosomes.  So what does that mean?  It means its gluten structure is completely different from typical wheat making it MUCH easier for the human body to digest.

This means I can make my family a pancake breakfast and we don’t feel heavy or lazy after.  I have experimented with einkorn flour a lot over the past year or so.  (We buy Gary’s True Grit Einkorn flour from Young Living because I have visited one of the farms where it is grown and I love and trust the company and its integrity.)  I have found that the biggest difference when cooking and baking with einkorn versus conventional flour is that it requires less liquid, maybe about 20% less.  We also like the taste, although it doesn’t taste exactly the same as traditional flour.  We’re ok with that, and it is Jeffrey and Chloe approved.

When I’m trying to be good and avoid the organic cane sugar we love, I make pancakes with honey instead.  This is my tried and true recipe.  I hope you love it!

Print Recipe
Crystal's Einkorn Honey Pancakes
This pancakes use einkorn flour and are a bit healthier than their conventional flour counterparts, but they are kid approved!
Course Breakfast
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
pancakes
Ingredients
Course Breakfast
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
pancakes
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a large mixing bowl beat the egg with a wire whisk and thoroughly mix in the oil and honey. Then add the milk and stir til well incorporated.
  2. Add the einkorn flour, salt and baking powder to the wet mixture and stir well with the whisk until all of the dry ingredients are well incorporated. The batter will be somewhat thick. This batter is a bit like gluten free batters in that it falls apart easily in the pan, so I like to make smaller pancakes with them using 1/8 c. scoops.
  3. Preheat a cast iron skillet and coat it well with butter over medium heat. Using a 1/8 cup measuring cup, scoop the batter on to the hot skillet and keep a watchful eye on them. Unlike a thinner batter, these won't bubble up in the middle when they're ready to flip, so you'll know you can flip them when they begin to look a little bit set. You can use a spatula to take a peek on the bottom of one and flip when it's nicely golden. Flip them and cook just a couple minutes more.
  4. Serve with butter and real maple syrup (or fruit or whatever you like) and enjoy!
Share this Recipe

Thanks for reading, and if you like it please let me know or share it with your friends!

 

Gluten Free, Grain Free, Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies (that taste REALLY good!)

It’s Christmas Eve and I’ve been baking up a storm today.  For the past few years we’ve been leaving Santa our favorite gluten free, grain free chocolate chip cookies.  Sometimes we make them vegan, and sometimes not depending on the chocolate chips we grab, but either way they’re REALLY good!

These are also my go to cookies for school functions because it seems that a good chunk of the families at are Waldorf school are gluten free, grain free and/or dairy free.  But honestly, these are a crowd pleaser even with gluten lovers!

They’re made with blanched almond flour (fine almond flour made from skinless almonds! Make sure to grab the blanched kind!)  I love almond flour because it tastes awesome and has lots of protein and fiber, and it’s easy to work with.  These cookies come together SO quickly and easily!

I hope you give these a try, even if you’re not a gluten/grain free person.  I haven’t met a person yet who hasn’t loved them!

Print Recipe
Gluten Free Grain Free Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
These cookies taste ah-mazing, even to gluten lovers! If you prefer milk chocolate chips, you can substitute those. They just won't be vegan or dairy free anymore. 🙂
Course Dessert
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings
cookies
Ingredients
Course Dessert
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings
cookies
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together all of the dry ingredients, making sure to stir thoroughly so it's well combined.
  3. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the melted coconut oil, maple syrup and vanilla extract.
  4. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry and mix. I like to use a large fork. The dough will feel very wet. This is normal!
  5. Scoop the dough into 1/2 Tbsp balls on to a parchment lined cookie sheet and flatten *very* slightly.
  6. Bake for 7-10 minutes or until lightly brown.
  7. I like to scrape them from the cookie sheet while they're still somewhat malleable, because sometimes when I wait until they've cooled and are crisp they're more breakable.
  8. Enjoy! 🙂
Share this Recipe

Fresh Strawberry Pie Recipe

fresh-strawberry-pie-recipe

Every year, on the last day of school before Thanksgiving break, our kids’ Waldorf school celebrates Pie Day.  All of the graders gather in the courtyard with their classmates and family members and each class shares their class meal blessing.  It usually ends with a message of heartfelt gratitude and song and then each class returns to their classroom where homemade pies await them.

Last year I baked a fresh strawberry pie with all organic ingredients and it was a big hit, so I made it again this year.  (I baked this pretty late the night before, so try not to judge my ugly pie crust, haha!)  I know strawberry pie doesn’t exactly scream Thanksgiving, or autumn for that matter, but this pie is delicious year round!  If you don’t have access to fresh strawberries, no worries, you can totally substitute frozen ones.  Now, without further ado, here is the recipe!

Print Recipe
Fresh Strawberry Pie
This pie is amazing with fresh, homemade whipped cream, but it's totally optional!
Course Dessert
Cook Time 25 minutes
Passive Time 2 hours
Servings
slices
Ingredients
Course Dessert
Cook Time 25 minutes
Passive Time 2 hours
Servings
slices
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Wash and hull the strawberries, removing the green tops and cores. Take half of the strawberries and slice them in half, then set them aside. Chop the remaining berries into very small pieces, or simply pulse them in a food processor.
  2. Cook the chopped up berries on medium heat in a saucepan. In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar and cornstarch, then add this mixture to saucepan. Add the lemon juice, reduce heat and simmer on low for 10 minutes, or until the mixture thickens. Then remove from the heat
  3. Add the uncooked, halved strawberries you reserved from step 1 to the cooked mixture.
  4. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees, or if you're using a store bought crust, follow the directions on the package. It's OK to use store-bought, we won't tell. 😉 If you're using homemade pie dough, roll out the dough and add to a 10" pie plate. Flute the edges, prick holes allover using a fork, and bake for about 14 minutes. Tip: You can line your pie crust with foil and fill with pie weights or beans to help your crust hold its shape. If you do this, bake for 10 minutes with the foil and weights, remove from the oven and then bake for 5 more minutes to lightly brown the edges of the pie.
  5. Remove your baked pie crust from the oven and spoon your strawberry filling into it. Allow to cool, then chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or until the pie is set. I prefer to make this ahead and chill it overnight.
  6. Boom. Done. Serve it with freshly whipped cream and prepare to be amazed. Enjoy!
Share this Recipe

love-crystal