Holiday Nutrition Tips and Decadent Chocolate Cookie Recipe
What do you mean that I can’t talk about nutrition tips and then give you a recipe for the world’s best chocolate chip cookie? Sure I can! Everything in moderation – even moderation.
There is no question that the holiday season is upon us. There is an abundance of sweets and treats everywhere you look, and you probably can’t walk more than 10 feet in your office without festive little candies calling your name from every desk or cubicle.
I’m going to help you get out of this beautifully festive season without being relegated to carving yet another holiday-induced hole into your belt.
Grab a calendar, girlfriend, because we are going to map out our indulgences over the next couple of weeks! Typically, I’m not a huge fan of always planning when to veer off plan – because seriously, life happens – but the holidays are an exception. With a festive bash every weekend, we have to have a game plan, otherwise “a little here and a little there” turns into a whole lot collectively.
I advise my nutrition clients to take a look at their social calendar and pick a few occasions that they want to indulge at over the next 4 weeks. Maybe it’s your office party, Christmas Day, and New Years Eve. Or whatever. You pick. Once you’ve decided, write it down and sign it. Make a commitment to the most important person (yourself) that you will stick to this plan. In the interim, if fat loss is your goal, you need to keep things extra tight until then. Cut out the extras (Hello, nut butter!), train hard, and find peace in the fact that
A) you have some delicious food coming your way guilt-free, and
B) you will continue to progress towards your goals.
We’ve planned out exactly when we are going to treat ourselves over the month, but what about the get-togethers that we are going to where we plan to stay on plan? Don’t worry – I’ve gotcha covered! This is where you are going to have to get a bit creative and take some things with you. Excellent things that you can take that everybody will love and won’t derail your progress are:
- Sparkling water – make it fancy and pour it over ice and add cherries, sliced limes or oranges, or even sprigs of mint!
- Shrimp cocktail. This healthy treat is packed full of protein and always a party fave.
- Stuffed olives
- Bacon wrapped filet or chicken bites (You use pastured bacon, right? Right!)
- Finger veggies with guacamole
I’m a firm believer that you need to eat before you go to a party. I know that this is old advice, however I still stand behind it. The last thing that you want to do is fast all day and arrive to a party that has a mile long all-you-can-eat buffet table. Anybody that consistently follows an Intermittent Fasting protocol can attest that it’s all too easy to throw down an insane amount of food at the end of a 16+ hour fast. Eat before you go. Fill up on protein and plenty of vegetables. “Saving room” for the party food is the biggest mistake you can make if you are trying to shed a few LBs. After all, treats are about relishing in the moment and flavor – not eating until your pants pop.
Enjoying Grandma’s homemade apple pie or your dad’s famous meatballs should be a happy time. Following the above advice will not only keep you on the path to your goals, but it will also allow you to enjoy yourself guilt-free! Slow down, savor the moment, and enjoy every second during this precious time of year. I know I will be!
Decadent Chocolate Cookies
These are, hands down, the best cookies that have ever graced my taste buds. These are inspired by PaleOMG’s Magical Brownies, which are also out of this world.
Oh, and friends? They are grain/dairy/sugar/nut-free! So if you or somebody in your family has some type of food allergy, this is the perfect indulgent treat for them!
18 Medjool dates, pitted
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 egg yolks
3 Tablespoons coconut flour
pinch of salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
**Optional, and highly recommended: copious amounts of dark chocolate chips. If you are dairy or nut intolerant, use Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray or smear with coconut oil.
Squish the dates together thoroughly until smooth, either using your hands or a food processor.
Mix in the melted coconut oil and the unsweetened cocoa powder.
Mix in the eggs, baking soda, baking powder, coconut flour and salt.
Mix in the chocolate chips if you choose to do so. (Do it. Trust me.)
Drop the dough into 12 rounded spoonfuls onto your greased cookie sheet and throw that bad boy in the oven.
Set your timer for 10 – 12 minutes and try to contain your excitement while you wait for them to bake.
** Tip: They should still be quite soft when you remove them from the oven. Don’t worry – they’ll set up.
Remove from oven and let them cool a bit.
Eat, share, and be merry.