Well it’s official, summer is in full swing. I love these lazy days when the pace of real life slows down for us a bit. We find ourselves less scheduled, less rushed and most of the time, pool side. Summer means barbecues, picnics and family parties. Our time is spent traveling, going on day trips and spending more time outdoors. All these experiences add up to the reasons why I love summer so very much.
But this activity shift means we need to take extra precautions and keep summer safety in mind. Usually that means we buy up all the sunscreen we can get our hands on. Even in winter, I am religious about sunscreen application because I want to prevent skin cancer as well as slow the effects of aging on my sking. But once summer comes I become even more meticulous about it but most importantly, I want to protect my family. I can say my girls have never experienced a sunburn and I’d like to keep it that way.
For me, staying healthy during the summer also means being very cautious outside. I’m deathly allergic to anything that stings. I lead a very active lifestyle and with summer here, that means I’m out hiking, running and playing with the kids in the yard daily. So keeping myself healthy means keeping my eyes peeled for those little stinging suckers. Don’t mind me if you see me freak out and run away in the middle of a party. Just means I’m fleeing for my life.
If only it were that easy for Maddy to flee from something that might kill her. As I’ve talked about countless times here, Maddy has a severe peanut allergy. This makes eating out or eating at other people’s homes a slippery slope for us. Sure, you would think as long as there are no peanuts in a dish it’s safe for her to eat. I wish it were that easy. Since discovering her allergy we’ve come to realize that there are huge risks of cross contamination everywhere from someone’s home kitchen to bakeries to products that are processed in facilities where there are peanuts or on shared equipment. The world feels like a big scary place to me when it comes to her allergy.
Now that Maddy is getting older she understands that she has an allergy and that she cannot have peanuts, as much as a 3 1/2 year old can possibly understand something like that. As she gets older I’ll continue how to educate her on how to keep herself safe. We educate family and friends on what they need to be aware of and about reading labels but in our house, we are 100% peanut-free. So right about now you may be asking, “What is up with these peanut butter cookies?”
Well, when you love peanut butter as much as Mike and I do, you need to have something to take the edge off. A peanut butter replacement is key. Nutella and Biscoff spread do it for me. But when you really want something that actually tastes like peanut butter, it’s gotta be WOWButter which is actually toasted soy and somehow they have made this soy butter taste exactly like peanut butter!
A few months ago, I remember seeing these amazing, guilt-free, Healthy Peanut Butter Banana Cookies. Imagine my disappointment at the prospect of not being able to enjoy these soft, moist cookies. Then it was like a light bulb went off. WOWButter! How have I never tried baking with it before? It’s good enough for sandwiches, toast, or truth be told… eaten right off a spoon. Now I needed to see how it baked up.
These cookies have a nice banana bread-esque taste and texture scattered with chocolate chips, walnuts and the flavor of peanut butter that no one would know isn’t the real deal. Of course, you can always use peanut butter but WOWButter is a fantastic alternative for parties or family gatherings where you may need to consider allergens. Thanks to the fruit, whole wheat flour and Greek yogurt, these are a healthy snack I feel great about eating and giving my girls. With Maddy starting preschool next month, I know I’ll be tucking one or two of these into her lunch box as a little sweet treat. Visit HERE for more tips on raising healthy kids.
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of iVillage
. The opinions and text are all mine.
Soft, moist peanut butter banana bread cookies with chocolate chips and walnuts for a healthy, sweet treat.
- 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 ripe banana
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup peanut butter or WOWButter
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/4 cup banana Greek yogurt
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk together whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, mash banana until smooth. Add the brown sugar and stir until combined. Stir in peanut butter or WOWButter, egg yolk, Greek yogurt, and vanilla until smooth.
- Add the flour mixture and stir just until incorporated. Fold in mini chocolate chips and walnuts.
- Scoop 1-inch balls of cookie dough onto the baking sheets, making sure the cookies are 3 inches apart. Bake for 11 minutes.
- Remove from oven and cool on pans for 3 minutes. Move cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Adapted from The Messy Baker Blog