Christmas Cut out Sugar Cookies (Paleo, AIP, GF)

These cut out sugar cookies are perfect for Christmas! They’re paleo, AIP, gluten-free, and made without refined white sugar.

It’s not Christmas without sugar cookies. Seriously, I do not let my husband leave the house on Christmas Eve until we make Christmas cookies together and decorate them together. Not only is it a delicious dessert to eat a Christmas dinner, but it’s just so much fun! It’s easy to get pre-made cookie dough at the store, but making it at home without grains, eggs, sugar or dairy is a bit of a different story.

These cookies are totally paleo, gluten-free, AIP and super cute and customizable! These particular cookies are made to look like Christmas trees, but you can get creative and with the decorations and shapes.

The Ingredients You’ll Need

Tigernut flour & Tapioca starch

I haven’t tried any other flour mixtures for these specific cookies, but you can likely swap arrowroot starch for tapioca.

Gelatin powder

I use Vital Proteins gelatin (the green packaging) to help bind the cookies and help them rise a bit more. You don’t have to make a full-on gelatin egg for this recipe… just use the gelatin dry!

Palm shortening

Palm shortening is used in the base of the cookie and the frosting. It gives a really great cakey texture in the cookie!

Maple syrup

Rather than white sugar, this recipe uses maple syrup. You can also use honey.

Matcha & turmeric

You don’t have to color and frost your cookies, but if want to, matcha makes a great green frosting and turmeric makes a great yellow! I used the matcha for a green Christmas tree and the turmeric for a yellow star. You can also use something like beet powder to make red for ornaments or red mittens!

The Optional Tools

Cookie cutters

If you don’t want to mess with cutting the cookies, you can just make regular round cookies. However, these are cut out cookies, so cookie cutters can be used for sure! I used one Christmas tree cookie cutter, but you can easily get a variety pack of cookie cutters with shapes like snowflakes, mittens, etc.

Frosting piping bags and tips

For these cookies, I only used the piping bag and tip for the star on top of the tree.

If you like this recipe, you may also like…

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Christmas Cut out Sugar Cookies (Paleo, AIP, GF)


  • Author: Michelle

Ingredients

For the cookies

  • 3/4 cup tapioca starch
  • 1/2 cup tigernut flour
  • 1 tbsp vital proteins gelatin
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup palm shortening
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

For the green frosting

  • 1/3 cup palm shortening
  • 2 tbsp light-colored honey
  • 1 tbsp arrowroot starch
  • 1/2 tsp matcha powder

For the yellow frosting

  • 2-3 tbsp palm shortening
  • 1 tbsp light-colored honey
  • 2 tsp arrowroot starch
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder

Instructions

For the cookies

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Very grease with coconut oil or other. Set aside.
  2. Using a large mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
  3. In a separate bowl, cream together the palm shortening and maple syrup. Add the mixture into the flour mixture and stir in the vanilla extract until the ingredients are combined and a dough is formed.
  4. Transfer the dough to a pastry board or parchment paper. Take about 1/2 cup of dough at a time and flatten to about 1/4 inch thick (you just don’t want them to be super thin!). Use a Christmas Tree (or other) cookie cutter to cut the dough into the desired shape, and pull away from the excess dough around the cookie cutter with your fingers. Transfer the formed cookie dough onto the baking sheet. Repeat the process with the remainder of the dough. You should have about 6-7 cookies.
  5. Evenly space the cookies on the baking sheet and bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes or until the cookies are lightly golden brown.
  6. Transfer to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely before decorating.

For the frosting & decorating

  1. Using separate bowls, combine the frosting ingredients. Add more or less matcha/ turmeric to reach your desired color. Add more honey to balance flavor if needed.
  2. To decorate the Christmas Tree cookies, layer the green icing onto the cookies and evenly spread. Use a piping bag and frosting tip to pipe on a yellow star with the yellow icing. Add more decor like shredded coconut if desired!

 

 

DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Power Shots

This recipe contains affiliate links.

These DIY apple cider vinegar power shots are a nutrient powerhouse! They make perfect DIY gifts and are a must-have to store in your fridge. They’re sugar-free and are easy to make at home!

DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Power Shots

Health enthusiasts love apple cider vinegar. And what’s not to love? Taking shots of apple cider vinegar has been popular for quite some time and is only continuing to grow in popularity as it picks up on social media. So why not make it a fun DIY gift, and add some extra flavor with these DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Power Shots?!

These apple cider vinegar power shots make the perfect little gift for that health enthusiast in your life. Maybe your sister is new to a healthy diet, maybe your work bestie is a runner, or maybe you want to give a little gift to your yoga teacher? Whoever it is, they’ll love these cute and customizable little shots!

But these shots can be so much more than just a one time gift. They’re an all-around great recipe to make for yourself any time of year to experience the myriad of benefits of apple cider vinegar! So, what are they?

ACV Power Shots

 

Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar

It’s a fermented food rich with probiotics!

ACV is fermented, thus is has probiotic benefits that help feed your good gut bacteria.

It supports digestion.

Taking one of these shots in water before a meal can help boost your gastric juices which allows you to better absorb nutrients from your food.

It has many topical benefits.

This particular recipe is for consumption, but ACV has tons of topical uses as well. It works great as a toner for your skin, and I use it to remove product build up from my hair with this ACV hair wash!

 

Very Important… You Must Dilute These Shots in Water!

This is a very important note about these shots, and every ACV shot… YOU MUST DILUTE IT. You cannot take ACV straight or it will burn your esophagus and cause inflammation.

These shots are a bit more diluted as they’re flavored with other juices and not just straight ACV, however, they still need to be diluted. You can make it nice and fancy with sparkling water, or keep it simple with still water.

Now that that’s out of the way… let’s talk about the flavors of these shots!

 

The Flavors of These Shots…

These DIY ACV shots are not just straight ACV! They’re flavored with other fruits and spices to add more flavor and nutrients!  While fruit juice in excess isn’t necessarily a health food, these shots only feature a few tablespoons of fresh juice and no added sugar.

ACV power shots

From left to right in the photo above…

  • Orange Cranberry. A classic flavor combination for this time of year!
  • Orange Turmeric Ginger. Turmeric and ginger are anti-inflammatory powerhouses that pair perfectly with the benefits of ACV.
  • Pomegranate Lemon. Pomegranate juice is super nutrient dense and antioxidant rich. The lemon flavor pairs well with the pomegranate and ACV.
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DIY Gift Apple Cider Vinger Shots


  • Author: Michelle
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Total Time: 5
  • Yield: 1 shot
  • Category: Drink
  • Cuisine: Global

Description

These DIY apple cider vinegar power shots are a nutrient powerhouse! They make perfect DIY gifts and are a must-have to store in your fridge. They’re sugar-free and are easy to make at home!


Ingredients

For the orange turmeric ginger

  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 4 tbsp orange juice
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp ginger powder
  • Pinch of black pepper (omit for AIP)

For the orange cranberry

  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp orange juice
  • 2 tbsp cranberry juice

For the pomegranate lemon

  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp pomegranate juice

To serve

  • 6-8 oz water

Instructions

  1. Combine the ingredients in a small glass jar with a lid (like this). Scale the recipe up to fill multiple jars.
  2. Store in the fridge and save for yourself or gift to friends.
  3. Important – you must dilute each shot in 6-8 oz of regular water or sparkling water!

Keywords: apple cider vinegar shot, acv shot

DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Power Shots

DIY Collagen Hot Cocoa Mix & Peppermint Marshmallow Gift Jars (Paleo & AIP)

Thank you Vital Proteins for sponsoring this post! All opinions are my own.

This DIY collagen hot cocoa mix with peppermint marshmallows is the perfect gift to give to friends and coworkers, or keep for yourself! It’s paleo, AIP, and simple to make at home.

It’s not the holidays without a big mug of hot cocoa, am I right? Hot cocoa just strikes a chord with everyone this time of year. It’s fun, comforting, warming, and just straight up delicious. Hot cocoa packs are perfect gifts to grab at a drug store and pass out to friends for easy holiday gifts, but what if you want something that’s a bit more personalized, and allergen-friendly?

This DIY collagen hot cocoa mix with peppermint marshmallows is the perfect gift for both your friends who are healthy food lovers and even those who aren’t as into healthy food and just love a yummy treat. It’s packed with superfoods but is fun and tasty enough for everyone to love.

What You’ll Need For the DIY Hot Cocoa Mix & Peppermint Marshmallows

Cocoa powder (or carob for AIP)

Use a high-quality cocoa powder of your choice, or use carob powder if you’re following AIP.

Coconut sugar

Since this is a dry mix that is stored in a jar, we’re using a dry sweetener rather than one like maple syrup or honey. You can also use maple sugar in place of coconut sugar.

Vital Proteins Collagen

This isn’t just any hot cocoa mix… it’s a collagen boosted hot cocoa with Vital Proteins Collagen! I’m never without this collagen, and I love how easily it dissolves in hot liquid, like this hot cocoa. It’s the perfect superfood to just slip into a hot cocoa mix 😉

I use Vital Proteins in recipes like hot drinks, warm soups, and even baked goods. It ups the protein content of any dish and it comes with the added benefit of supporting your hair, skin, nail, and gut health.

Honey, water, Vital Proteins Gelatin, and peppermint extract

These are the ingredients to make the marshmallows! Marshmallows are easily made with minimal ingredients, including Vital Proteins Gelatin (which is different than collagen) and honey. To make marshmallows, you need a full cup of honey. You can’t scale back the amount in the recipe, but you can moderate your sugar intake by choosing to use fewer marshmallows.

Though gelatin and collagen are made from the same source and have similar benefits, they cannot be swapped for each other. Collagen will dissolve in liquid, thus why it’s in the hot cocoa mix and gelatin will make recipes gelatinous like gummies and marshmallows! They each have a very unique result and both are needed.

Dairy-free chocolate chips (or AIP swap)

You can use dairy and soy free chocolate chips, or you can use my recipe for Hannukah Gelt and just use a different mold and chop it into carob chunks!

Glass jars

I used larger, 11 oz jars for this recipe, but you can easily use any sized jar you like and just adjust the amounts you add!

Ribbon and other decorations for the jars

You can make this as fancy or as simple as you’d like! I just went to a local craft store and bought some red ribbon and other decorations to make the jars look cute.

 

Video Tutorial

 

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DIY Collagen Hot Cocoa & Peppermint Marshmallow Gift Jars (Paleo & AIP)


  • Author: Michelle

Ingredients

For the hot cocoa mix 

For the peppermint marshmallows

  • 1 cup water (divided)
  • 3 tbsp Vital Proteins Gelatin
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
  • 2-3 tbsp arrowroot starch

For assembling the jars

  • 4-8 tbsp dairy free chocolate chips (sub this recipe and use a rectangular glass mold to chop into chunks for AIP)
  • 4 eleven oz glass jars (or 8 five-six oz jars)

Instructions

For the hot cocoa mix

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Mix well until there are no clumps of coconut sugar or cocoa powder. Set aside.

For the peppermint marshmallows

  1. Prepare an 8×8″ (or slightly larger) baking pan by lining with parchment paper and coat with arrowroot starch.
  2. Pour 1/2 cup of water into a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over top. Stir gently to ensure the gelatin is combined. Set aside.
  3. Using a medium-sized pot slowly heat the honey combined with the other 1/2 cup of water. Slowly bring the temperature to 235-240 F degrees on low heat. Remove from heat immediately once the mixture comes to temperature.
  4. Slowly add in the honey mixture into gelatin mixture as you whisking with either with an electric hand mixer or in a stand mixer. Continue whisking for 10-12 minutes. Add the peppermint extract towards the very end. The marshmallow mixture should be lukewarm, thick, and marshmallow peaks should start to form.
  5. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and place in the fridge to harden for at least 4 hours.
  6. After the marshmallow solidifies, carefully remove from the pan and place on a cutting board. Use a sharp knife to slice into small squares. Add more arrowroot starch as needed while slicing.
  7. Store the marshmallows in the fridge.

To assemble the jars

  1. Divide the hot cocoa mix among the jars and layer in the chocolate chips and marshmallows. Decorate as desired and store in the fridge before gifting.

To make the hot cocoa

  1. Combine 2 tbsp of the hot cocoa mix with 8 oz of non-dairy milk. Top with chocolate chips and marshmallows.

10 Comforting Soups to Make This December (Paleo, AIP & Whole30)

These nourishing and comforting soups are perfect for warming you up on those cold winter evenings! They’re paleo, AIP, and whole30.

There’s nothing like a big warm bowl of soup this time of year. Not only is it warming, but they can be incredibly nutrient dense, easy to make, and easy to digest. But if you’re anything like me, you’ve struggled once or twice with just wanting to reach for the stuff in the can rather than make a soup homemade. Not with these recipes!

These 10 recipes are a thousand times better than what you’d get from a can while still being easy to put together. Not to mention they’re all paleo, AIP, and even whole30 compliant!

1.Bacon “Cheese”burger Soup

This bacon cheeseburger soup actually has zero cheese!

2. Egg Roll Soup

Love the flavors of egg rolls? Get all of the flavors of egg roll without the wrapper and in comforting soup form with this egg roll soup! 

Paleo Egg Roll Soup

3. Anti-inflammatory Turmeric Chicken Soup

Feeling under the weather? This soup is a powerhouse of nourishing ingredients! This anti-inflammatory turmeric chicken soup features turmeric, naturally detoxifying golden beets, tons of veggies, and more.

4. Butternut squash soup

Easy, creamy, and nourishing. Who doesn’t love a butternut squash soup?

5. Paleo & AIP Pumpkin Chili

Pumpkin can be savory too! This paleo & AIP pumpkin chili is nightshade free.

6. Paleo Minestrone

Can you really make a paleo minestrone? Yes, you can! This one is even nightshade free.

Paleo Minestrone Soup (AIP & Whole 30)

7. Hot & Sour Soup

This Hot & Sour Soup is a healthy version of the classic and features shitake mushrooms, cabbage, and more!

8. Paleo & AIP Zuppa Toscana (in the Instant Pot!)

Move over Olive Garden. This Zuppa Toscana is paleo, AIP, whole30, and it’s even made in the instant pot!

9. Greek Lemon Chicken Soup

This Greek Lemon Chicken Soup is my all-time favorite soup. It’s been on repeat in our house ever since I adapted it to be paleo & AIP!

10. Instant Pot AIP Chili

This recipe for AIP instant pot chili is one of my favorites that I contributed to the AIP Instant Pot cookbook!

 

I hope this list gave you some fresh ideas!! What are some of your favorite soups to eat this time of year?

Kitchen Must-Haves Holiday Gift Guide

This blog post contains affiliate links.

This kitchen must-haves holiday gift guide is full of gift ideas that are perfect for the home cook, food lover, or someone starting a new health journey!

Have a foodie in your family? What about an avid home cook? Or someone who is embarking on a new health journey and is looking to get into more home cooking? Or what if you just want some new kitchen gadgets, appliances, and toys for yourself? I get ya.

I have entirely too many kitchen tools, but really… they make your life so much easier! Some of these tools make it much easier to get dinner on the table in a timely manner, and others make food storage much more economical and environmentally friendly. There’s something for everyone on this kitchen gift guide lists, so let’s dive right in…

1.Instant Pot

Guys… if you don’t have an Instant pot already, now is the time. The instant pot does everything. It has a slow cooker function, it makes hard-boiled eggs, it makes soups crazy fast, and just about everything else.

2. Stasher bags

Plastic baggies may be convenient, but they’re really not healthy or environmentally friendly. The last thing that we need is more plastic leeching into our food, or being thrown out. Stasher bags are silicone baggies that are the perfect substitute for plastic baggies! They come in different colors and sizes, and they’re perfect for storing snacks and storing food in the freezer!

3. Separated Tupperware

I used this divided Tupperware in my back to school lunch post and I got so many questions about where I got it from! They really make packing lunches easy.

 

4. Cast iron pots and pans & dutch ovens

I love cooking with cast iron. I use enamel cast iron pans for photography as well as some cooking for my blog, and regular cast iron for cooking as well. Cast iron is much safer than non-stick pans and can add iron to your diet!

Though you won’t get as much iron from coated cast iron as you would from non-coated, enamel cast iron is a bit easier to maintain and it’s much prettier!

This is my favorite cast iron skillet (pictured here) and my favorite cast iron pot. If you’d prefer a non-enamel cast iron, this is a great pan as well.

5. Herb scissors

I love adding fresh herbs to meals! They add tons of flavor and added nutrients. Some purists will say that these aren’t efficient for cutting herbs, but honestly… I hate cutting herbs with a knife. These herb scissors really speed up the process.

 

6. Herb Saver

After you cut up all those herbs, ya gotta find a good way to store them! Herbs are hard to keep fresh, so this herb saver really helps. I have it on my list this year!

 

7. Mandoline Slicer

I used to think that mandoline slicers were excessive… why can’t you just use a knife? But seriously, I love my OXO mandoline slicer! It’s perfect for getting thin, uniform slices for hard to slice foods like plantains and turning them into perfect plantain chips. I also use it for sweet potatoes, zucchini for chips, and even onions.

8. Kale razor

Kale isn’t just a trend, it’s an actual nutrient dense food! This kale razor really cuts down the time for prepping kale

10. Onion Goggles

The nerdiest thing on this list, I know… but I actually have this on my Christmas list. No joke! I’m a big time onion cryer. Like… excessively. Both myself and Stinky (if you’re new here, that’s my cat) hate the smell of onions, and we both get teary-eyed from it. We’re basically ET and Elliot. I wish these onion goggles came in cat size too.

11. Immersion blender

I got an immersion blender when Daniel and I got married, and I’m still obsessed with it. It’s perfect for making soups and sauces and it takes up very little room.

12. Spiralizer

Wondering if a spiralizer is worth the money? IT IS. I use a spiralizer to make veggie noodles, and it’s so much cheaper than buying them premade!

13. This Spice Rack and Label set

My husband got this spice rack with this label set for us earlier this year, and I love it! The label set makes it so easy to find what I’m looking for, and it has so many options. My husband mounted ours to the wall, but it’s great for just setting on your countertop as well.

14. Handheld milk frother

This handheld milk frother is something I use several times a week. Yes, it’s great if you’re making tea lattes but what I really use it for is making gelatin eggs! Seriously, you will never have trouble with gelatin eggs ever again after you get one of these.

 

15. Garlic Press

I love fresh garlic, but I do not love cutting it… at all. A garlic press is on my holiday wishlist this year for sure!

 

I hope this list helped to give you some ideas! What are some of your favorite kitchen gadgets?