It’s mid July, the mosquitoes are biting me to pieces, its hot as an oven outside, and I have lots to do before I move to Statesboro to start my Dietetic Internship in a few weeks (I can’t believe it!). BUT July also means…it’s my birthday month!!! I turn the big 2-4 (that’s not a thing…) on the 28th so I treated myself early to some brownie bites (thanks to Udi’s!) topped with my favorite healthy homemade treat….
Coconut Cake Batter Protein Icing
I’ve been obsessed with coconut lately. Like I HATEDDD coconut with a passion growing up and never would touch it. Why all of the love all of a sudden? Must be my maturing taste buds and new-found knowledge of its healthy nutritional profile (deliciously healthy fats!) that is making me give it another chance. Ever since I tried coconut butter, I haven’t turned back. Yes, coconut has a high amount of saturated fat, but it also has plenty of Medium Chain Fatty Acids….aka the fat is more bio available to use, so your body is less likely to store it as fat but rather use it for fuel (!!). Fat helps keep you satiated, so small amounts in your diet is actually very beneficial. And these types of “healthy” fats are less likely to cause you to GET fat like with other fats (donuts, cake, you know which fats I’m talkin’ bout) So please, bring on the coconut (in moderation 😉 )!
Medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil boost the body’s metabolic rate and promote weight loss. They are broken down immediately in the liver to produce energy and are not stored as fat,” states Dr. Bruce Fife, a US based naturopath.
- ¼ cup unsweetened coconut cream
- 1 TBSP coconut oil, melted
- ¼ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1-2 tsp stevia
- 2 scoops Cake Batter Protein Powder (SlapNutrition)
- In a food processor, blend all ingredients until smooth.
- If mixture is too thin, add more protein powder. If mixture is too thick, add a small amount of water until desired consistency is reached.
Word of caution: You may be tempted to eat it by the spoonful like I am....
On another note…these gluten free brownie bites?!? TO DIE FOR! They are actually soft and moist, unlike a lot of dry and flavorless gluten free products. They are the perfect small bite size so you don’t overdo it! Just pop a bite or two and your cravings are satisfied. They taste sooo delicious with the icing on top, I may have a hard time eating these brownie bites plain after this! Either way, these are some really delicious gluten-free brownie bites if you are lazy and time-crunched like me sometimes!
Okay can we finally talk about the secret ingredient that really makes this icing THE best icing on the planet? Hello, it’s the CAKE BATTER protein powder!! Slap Nutrition makes the flavor called “Slappy Birthday Cake Batter” and it is pure, clean whey protein isolate sweetened with only stevia.
The best part? No crap added. Just good ol’ clean protein. ↓
- Cold Processed, Ultra Micro-Filtered Whey Protein Isolate
- 25 grams of protein, 100 calories
- Zero sugar
- No artificial sweeteners
- Lactose, Gluten, Soy free
- No growth hormones, Non-GMO Baby
*contains milk, so should not be consumed by lactose-intolerant individuals.
Whey Protein Isolate is the best form of whey protein you can find on the market. It is more bioavailable and digestible than other forms of whey protein, and has low amounts of carbs and lactose. It is a popular source of protein due to its BCAA content (branched chain amino acids), which are integral for muscle synthesis and recovery, as well as some fuel for exercise. It tends to be more expensive than other forms of protein powder (like whey protein concentrate or whey protein hydrolysate), but you pay for the quality. Plus, the whole canister of protein powder? Definitely going to last a looong time (unless you’re crazy and drinking protein shakes all day every day).
According to this research article here, “Recent research shows that protein intake at levels above the RDA but within the AMDR may help achieve and maintain a healthful body weight by increasing satiety and thermogenesis (the energy required to digest, absorb, and dispose of the nutrients from food), and improving body composition, and it can play a role in the treatment and prevention of obesity, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and sarcopenia”.
AKA, getting not only enough protein, but a little extra (but not too much!) can have a big impact on weight control and disease prevention!
*Dietetics talk: AMDR= acceptable macronutrient distribution range. This is the range of intake for a particular energy source (protein, in this case) that is associated with reduced risk of chronic disease while also providing adequate intakes of essential nutrients. For adults, the AMDR for protein is 10-35% of total energy intake. (AKA if you ate 2,000 calories per day, a safe intake of protein would be anywhere from 200 calories from protein to 700 calories from protein)
The easiest way to know how much protein you need?
Each adult requires 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight.
AKA, divide your weight by 2.2 and multiply that number by 0.8. Viola! That’s how many grams of protein you should aim for on average in a single day.
Keep in mind, getting your nutrients from food first is ALWAYS the way to go. I only use protein powder as a way to get a little more protein in my diet and replace other foods I don’t eat often (like milk and cheese). Calories still count, so keep that in mind when adding protein powder into your diet if you’re trying to lose weight. Overall, it’s a great way to add an extra protein punch to your smoothies, oatmeal, baked goods, etc. Read more from Registered Dietitians on protein here.
Either way, this icing is a MUCH healthier alternative to the store-bought crap that is full of white sugar and unnecessary chemicals.
(psst: wanna know the ingredient list for Betty Crocker Butter Cream Frosting? You really don’t wanna know but here it is:)
Sugar (obviously), Partially Hydrogenated Soybean and Cottonseed Oil (pure fat and NOT the healthy kind…), Water, High Maltose Corn Syrup (aka sugar again…and more of it), Corn Starch, Contains 2% or Less of: Mono and Diglycerides (added fat…so unnecessary), Color (color added, yellows 5&6), Cellulose Gel (bleh), Salt (not even necessary? wth), Polysorbate 80, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate (who knows what that is), Cellulose Gum (to bind all the nastiness together), Natural And Artificial Flavor (could be anything!), Citric Acid. Freshness Preserved by Potassium Sorbate.<—–what the hell is all that crap?