Gluten Free Sunday Waffles & Enjoyment.

Happy January everyone. I am sure most of you might be expecting a raw foods, cleanse-esque recipe about now? With all this talk about resolutions? Sorry to disappoint, but I thought you might enjoy a waffle recipe instead. As some of you know now, I am all about feeling great, eating wholesome foods, AND enjoying them. Adding enjoyment in as many places in your life as possible is just as important as eating healthfully. Actually, it is a part of it. And adding more joy to my day to day life is one of my New Years resolutions.

When you enjoy food, you are more likely to relish each bite, have a smile on your face, and take time out of your day to slow the heck down. This improves digestion, lowers anxiety, and adds to your overall well-being.  I know that I tend to stop and enjoy a lot more when I am eating a favorite cookie or one of my favorite dinner recipes. January is a hard time to start the restrictive cleanses that have become so popular to kickstart the new year with. (If it works for you... more power to ya) But, for many of us, it doesn't. While it is still cold out and you might still be craving comforting, warming foods.... even after all of the indulgence over the holidays. We might wonder why we just can't  get motivated to stick with these meal plans that everyone seems to swear by. Don't get down on yourself or swear off raw foods altogether now.  Find a balance that works for you. I am a huge proponent of raw foods. They offer your body so many vitamins, minerals, and enzymes that are really important for you to function at your prime. However, you don't have to go all one way or the other. Again, find your balance and get in touch with what that means. For me, I may have a delicious green juice or smoothie for breakfast on Saturday and enjoy these amazing waffles on a lazy, slow Sunday morning. I enjoy a plethura of different foods, sticking to wholesome foods most of the time, but always trying my best to enjoy.

One of the keys to feeling better in the new year is to create healthier spin-offs of your favorite recipes. Because, I do believe that for the majority of the time, we function best with whole foods and minimal amounts of their processed counterparts. Finding delicious recipe alternatives to our comforting favorites can be difficult, as sometimes they lack evoking some of the same feelings, tastes, and textures we love to experience. But this recipe? This recipe is dare I say hits all the right marks.

With ground oats and hazelnuts acting as the flour, these whole foods actually lend additional flavor (and nutritional value) to the mix, rather than take away. My family and I enjoyed these waffles on a slow Sunday morning around the table topped with fresh whipped cream (sweetened with maple syrup), bananas, maple syrup and chiaseeds. And now I can tell you they are kid tested and approved. 

My hope for you is to make these waffles, feel comforted, feel better than usual after eating waffles, spend time with your family (or get in some alone time), slow down, and most importantly add a little more joy into your life.  (Note: I sent out this recipe on a Saturday, in order to give you a day to make sure you have all of the ingredients handy to make them on Sunday) Happy New Year everybody!

Gluten Free Sunday Waffles
by Stephanie Horning
Serves 4
Delicious, slightly sweet waffles made with rolled oats and hazelnuts. A truly tasty, and easy, version of the Sunday favorite.
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

1 1/2 cup oats (gluten free if desired)
1/4 cup roasted, unsalted hazelnuts
2 teaspoons flax seeds
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup milk of choice (cow, almond, rice, etc)
5 tablespoons butter or coconut oil, melted & cooled
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup chocolate chips, optional

Directions

Place the oats, hazelnuts, flax seeds, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a high speed blender or food processor. Blend or process until the mixture resembles flour. Shake the dry mixture into a medium bowl and add the butter (or coconut oil), eggs, maple syrup, and vanilla. Beat together all of the ingredients until smooth. Let sit for 10-20 minutes. We stirred in some chocolate chips into half the batter for the kids, which was also delicious. Heat up your waffle iron and use based on the manufacturer's instructions. Serve with fresh whipped cream, slice bananas, chiaseeds, fresh berries, and/or jam. And of course, enjoy.

Notes

I have not tried to substitute the hazelnuts with different nuts as of yet, but my guess would be that you could and obtain similar results.