Hey everyone! I hope you’re all having an amazing week! It’s finals week for me, which means it has been busy, busy, busy. But despite all the busyness it’s always good to take time to relax and enjoy. One of the ways I relaxed last week was by baking some cookies!
Through FitFluential I was given the opportunity to connect with Smart Balance and try some of their products. I’ve always heard great things about the brand (I love that they have absolutely zero trans fats!) and was even more intrigued when I heard how many of their products have additional Omega 3′s and plant sterols added to them. As a vegetarian Omega 3′s are super important and plant sterols are what block bad cholesterol in the digestive tract and prevent it from entering the vascular system. That definitely sounds like good ingredients to me!
Josh and I have been doing a lot of baking and cooking recently and we’re trying to be mindful of what we put into recipes and watching the nutrition count. Smart Balance is such a great choice for cooking and baking because it has 40% less saturated fat than regular butter and has a 1 for 1 substitution ratio. Their Blended Butter Sticks are so easy to use for baking, they have the measurements on them just like traditional butter sticks do so that you can cut up exactly as much as you need. And their Spreadable Butter and Canola Oil Blend is great to use on pancakes and toast (which is what I’ve been doing this week with an upset tummy). I also received their Rich Roast Creamy Peanut Butter. I baked a lot with it but I’ve also been using it pretty frequently as I rush to make a peanut butter and banana sandwich to take to class. The flavor is amazing, it has quickly become my favorite peanut butter!
This holiday season Smart Balance launched a holiday campaign on Facebook and Twitter designed to inspire people to #helpsanta and bake healthier for all your upcoming special occasions. They have hundreds of yummy and healthier versions of traditional holiday recipe favorites on their website.
When I think of the holidays I think of Diane’s Christmas cookies. She introduced me to peanut butter kiss cookies and they have since become a symbol of Christmastime to me. They’re also the first baked good I ever sent to Josh when we had just started dating. I thought it would be cute to send kiss cookies in the mail. So for all these reasons they hold a very special place in my heart.
Diane’s Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies
- 1/3 cup Smart Balance Rich Roast Creamy Peanut Butter
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup Smart Balance Blended Butter Sticks
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 3/4 cup flour
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 package of chocolate kisses
Pre-heat the oven to 375.
Cream the peanut butter, sugar, butter sticks, and brown sugar.
Mix in the egg and vanilla extract.
In a separate bowl sift the flour, baking soda and salt.
Combine both bowls and mix until you have one cohesive batter.
Shape dough into balls.
Roll balls in a plate of white sugar.
Place on a greased baking sheet and bake for 8 minutes.
Take cookies out of the oven and press a kiss into the middle of each.
Return to bake for 2-5 minutes (until light golden brown).
Take out of oven, let cool, and try not to eat them all before you share with others! ;p
I was in a very sharing mood. And my puppies were very happy. They absolutely love peanut butter.
On Sweetest Day Josh surprised me with Nutella thumbprint cookies. They were SO good and I knew I wanted to make them myself at some point. Because everything tastes better with peanut butter I decided to modify his recipe a little bit to include some. It is definitely worthy trying, they’re so simple to make and are little bite sized pieces of goodness!
Peanut Butter and Nutella Thumbprint Cookies
- 1/2 cup Smart Balance Rich Roast Creamy Peanut Butter
- 1/2 cup Nutella
- 1 cup flour
- 1 egg
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all the ingredients until you have a thick dough.
Form into small balls.
Place on a greased cookie sheet.
Press down on the center of the ball with your thumb to flatten the ball.
Bake for about 7-8 minutes.
Remove from the oven, let cool, and enjoy!
I love this time of year and all the good food it brings. It’s nice to know that even during a season of indulgences you can make some little substitutions that really add up and are good for your heart. I loved cooking with Smart Balance, they are definitely a brand I will be using again in the future.
Question of the Day: What are some of your favorite holiday recipes? Do you health-ify them at all?
FitFluential LLC compensated me for this Campaign. All opinions are my own.