Category Archives: Desserts

Paleo Gluten-Free Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Paleo Gluten-Free Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Paleo Gluten-Free Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

This post is dedicated to my mom who passed away on May 27, 2015, after a long struggle with Alzheimer’s disease.

My mom was an incredible person.  She had eleven children (I’m number 10) and made each one of us feel special and loved.  She made us homemade lunches, birthday cakes, and daily home cooked meals.

She loved the outdoors, especially being in and near lakes.  In the summer, when we were wee ones, she would stick us in playpens outside, and as we got older, she would load a bunch of us into our big old family station wagon and head for a lake.  Daily she shooed us outside to play and run around with the neighborhood kids, of which there were many to choose from.

She had a contagious laugh, which my sisters and I inherited, and she laughed often.  She taught us not to care what others thought, but to be ourselves.  She never held a grudge and forgave easily.  She often extended her love and generosity to the neighborhood kids, and when anyone brought home someone for Christmas last-minute, there were always gifts for them.

My mom was more than just a mom, she was a gardener, nurse, chef, housekeeper, comedian, interior designer, party planner, antiques collector, baker, teacher, shopper extraordinaire, psychic ( she could always make me call her no matter how far away I lived), communicator,  and friend.

One of my best memories was stepping off the school bus and opening the door to find fresh-baked cookies (by the dozens) sitting on the counter to cool.  A sweet tooth’s dream come true.  In our house you ate treats whenever you could get your grubby paws on them, because with 10 siblings they didn’t last (hmm maybe that’s were my food hoarding tendencies come from).

I like to imagine my mom swimming happy and free up in the spirit world in a big beautiful lake watching over her legacy…… us kids!

This is a tried and true recipe I found HERE.  I have altered it only slightly from the original by cutting back on the sweetener and coconut.  They are fast and easy and quite satisfying.  I guarantee they will go fast, whether you have 10 siblings to compete with or not.

Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies (adapted from

1 Cup Almond Butter

1 Egg

1 TBL Vanilla

2 TBL Honey (you can use more if you have a really sweet tooth)

1/2 Tsp Baking Soda

1/2 Tsp Salt

1/4 Tsp Baking Powder

1/2 Cup Shredded Unsweetened Coconut

1/2 Cup Chocolate Chips ( I prefer bittersweet or dark Chocolate chips)

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a mixing bowl, mix together almond butter, egg, vanilla, baking soda, salt,  and honey until well blended.  I like to do this by hand as I found the texture of the cookie gets cakey if you over mix the dough.
  3. Add in the coconut and chocolate chips and mix until they are incorporated
  4. Using a cookie scooper place cookies on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.  Using your flat palm, press the cookies down to flatten just a bit (no worries if you don’t have parchment paper)
  5. Bake for 6-8 minutes depending on your oven.  They are done when the edges get golden brown and the tops crack a bit.
  6. Let cool as they are fragile when hot and then enjoy!  Makes approximately 16 Cookies.

Gluten-Free Bacon Sprinkled Chocolate Birthday Cake or Eggs, Bacon, Cream and Chocolate Cake


Gluten-Free Bacon Sprinkled Chocolate Birthday Cake
Gluten-Free Bacon Sprinkled Chocolate Birthday Cake

Yesterday was my friend Pete’s 50th birthday celebration, and when I insisted on making him a cake.  He joked he would like a bacon flavored cake.  Well since I aim to please, this is what I came up with.  I am no stranger to dark chocolate or bacon for that matter, so this cake was not a stretch for me.  I toyed with the idea of adding bacon throughout, but feared not everyone would have the same fondness for a bacon and chocolate combo, so I decided a dusting on the top would suffice.

I used the Chocolate Birthday Cake recipe from Paleo Spirit and it is fabulous!  Made with coconut flour and in this case 18 eggs, (it was a 10 inch cake).  It has a great sponge cake consistency with a fine crumb, and just the right amount of rich chocolate taste.  Not to mention a lot of protein with all those organic eggs my own girls laid.   I torted the layers and filled them with my standard frosting of whipped cream and cream cheese.  Then I topped it off with some very fine dark chocolate ganache.  WARNING: if you are not a fan of chocolate don’t try this at home.

I was very pleased with the results, but alas I am a die-hard dark chocolate addict fan.  If you are like-minded,  give this cake a whirl for any special occasion with or without the bacon on top.  It will not disappoint, and for all its decadence and richness, it has relatively little sugar and no gluten, your flour eating friends will never guess it is gluten-free.


Gluten-Free Bacon Sprinkled Chocolate Birthday Cake

For the cakes: Follow the recipe  at Paleo Spirit

For the Filling between Layers:

  Cream Cheese Whipped Cream Frosting

2 Pints Organic Whipping Cream

1- 8 oz. Package Organic Cream Cheese, at room temp

2 tsp. Vanilla Extract

3-5 TBL. Real Maple Syrup or to taste (I prefer it on the less sweet side)

  1. In a large bowl whip the cream until there are firm peaks.
  2. In another bowl whip  the cream cheese until smooth ( it helps to let the cream cheese sit out hours before so it is room temp.)
  3. Add the vanilla and maple syrup to the cream cheese and blend in until fully incorporated.
  4. Add the cream cheese mixture to the whipped cream and mix again until all is fully incorporated and you have a firm creamy frosting.
  5. This will fill the layers of a torted 10 inch cake.  You can half the recipe for a 6 inch cake.  It will also frost the outside of a 9 inch cake if you opt out of a chocolate ganache frosting.
  6. This is a very easy frosting and the sweetness is of personal preference.

For the Frosting:

Chocolate Ganache

3 cups Organic whipping cream

24 Ounces Bittersweet chocolate ( I used Trader Joes 72% Chocolate)

  1. Heat the cream until just before a boil.
  2. Chop the chocolate up and add to a bowl.
  3. Add half the cream to the chocolate and let sit a minute before gently stirring, being careful not to let air get into the chocolate.
  4. Reheat the cream gently and add to the rest to the chocolate make sure all the chocolate is melted and the cream is fully mixed in.
  5. Let the ganache sit until it cools and reaches room temperature at this point you can use it to frost the outside of your cake. (If it seems to runny let it cool for a bit longer).  This will frost the outside of a 10 inch cake.  You can cut the recipe in half if you are making a smaller cake or to fill the layers of a cake too.
  6. Chop up some well cooked bacon and artistically sprinkle on top. (optional)

Banana Date Muffins (Paleo, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free)

Paleo, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, Banana Date Muffins
Paleo, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, Banana Date Muffins

Happy  May Day!!  Man, the year just starts to fly by after January!

We are enjoying some fabulous spring weather here in Montana, a little sunshine mixed with rain and snow.  The rainy days always have me in the kitchen whipping up a baked good (any excuse to bake, then of course eat it).

These muffins are a perfect way to use up the ripened bananas you have lying around.  They are also a great way to get some chocolate into the mix too.  The problem is you can’t eat just one!

This recipe is slightly adapted from Elana Amsterdam’s cookbook,  Gluten-Free Cupcakes.  I have featured another recipe from her book in the past, and this  is another great one to try.  Her cookbook is loaded with all versions of cupcakes with new and old twists.  You can check it out HERE.  She calls it a cupcake and adds frosting I call it a muffin as it requires no frosting in my opinion.  Give a try, and see what you think!

Banana Date Muffins

Adapted from Gluten-Free Cupcakes

1 Cup (2-3) Ripe Bananas

1/4 Cup Coconut Oil or Butter

3  Medjool Dates, pitted

3 Large Eggs

2 Tsp. Vanilla

1/4 Cup Coconut Flour

2 TBL.  Arrowroot Powder

1/4 Tsp. Sea Salt

1/2 Tsp. Baking Soda

1/2 Tsp. Baking Powder

2 Tsp. Cinnamon

1/2 Tsp. Cardamon

1/2 Cup Dark Chocolate Chips or Blueberries  (optional)

  1. Preheat the oven to *350 degrees.  Line a muffin tin with 9-10 muffin papers.
  2. Place the bananas, coconut oil or butter, dates and eggs in a high-speed blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until all is well incorporated.
  4. Stir in the chocolate chips or berries if using.
  5. Scoop 1/4 cup of batter into each muffin cup.
  6. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until the muffin springs back to your touch.
  7. Let cool on a rack and Enjoy!  Makes 9-10 muffins

Gluten-Free and Nut-Free Easter Macaroons


Gluten-Free Nut Free Easter Macaroons
Gluten-Free Nut-Free Easter Macaroons

Excuse my delay getting this Easter post to you.  I can assure you these macaroons are good for any occasion.

We have a tradition of doing an Easter Egg Hunt and Brunch every year on Easter Sunday.  Last year we happened to be out of town for Easter, but my oldest daughter would not stand to miss the brunch and hunt, so we had one in May.  We are strong on tradition here at Hillbilly haven.

This year we had a great group of friends join us in the snow, which didn’t slow the egg hunters down one bit.  We had an array of delicious food to share and these macaroons were a tasty treat to add to the mix.  They are especially delectable if you are partial to chocolate and coconut together, think Mounds candy bars.

I found this gem of a recipe in Mediterranean Paleo Cooking, check it out HERE.  This  book is chock full of gorgeous photos and tasty recipes.  The macaroons are simple and easy and just the right amount of sweetness to satisfy the tooth, the sweet tooth that is.


Chocolate Dipped  Coconut Macaroons

(adapted from Mediterranean Paleo Cooking)

4 Large Egg Whites, room temperature

1/4 tsp. Sea Salt

1 tsp. Vanilla

Scant 1/4 Cup Organic Sugar or Honey (I used sugar but I bet honey would make them chewier)

3 Cups Unsweetened Shredded Coconut ( I use Enjoy Life Brand)

1/2 Cup Dark Chocolate, chopped and melted

1. Preheat the oven to 325* F.  Line a baking sheet with some parchment paper.

2. Whip the egg whites until they form medium-firm peaks.

3. Whisk in the vanilla and salt. Slowly whisk in the sweetener a little at a time until it is all incorporated.

4. Fold the coconut into the egg white mixture, being careful not to stir too hard so as to lose  your volume.

5. Spoon the batter onto the cookie sheet in 2 tablespoon mounds.  (you may have to use your hands to consolidate the mounds,)

5. Bake the cookies for 15 minutes or until they are golden brown.  Let cool on a rack.

6. Dip each bottom into the melted chocolate and place back on the parchment.  Drizzle each top with chocolate using a spoon.  (If you are a huge chocolate fan you could dip the whole cookie and make a candy bar!)

7.  Let the chocolate set up and Serve!!  Makes 18-19 cookies

To Be Dairy Free or (Not)…. Paleo Vanilla Ice Cream



Paleo Vanilla Ice Cream
Paleo Vanilla Ice Cream

The first time I noticed I had an issue with dairy was through my consumption of ice cream.  Yes,  that much beloved creamy, delicious, frozen treat that almost all people in the world love.  I was in denial at first and kept right on consuming, but the same old reliable symptoms happened again and again, and I had to face the facts.  In fact it got to where I felt so terrible after consuming ice cream, that I gave it up all together.

Have you ever seen the episode of the Simpsons,  where for a science project Lisa is comparing Bart’s brain with that of a hamster?  She wires a cupcake with electricity so every time Bart reaches for it, he gets zapped.  It happens repeatedly and he just keeps saying ouch and reaches again and again.  You can liken that to my eating ice cream.

Fast forward to eating real whole foods and being on a paleo journey, and my discovery of coconut milk.  Have I mentioned I love all things coconut?  Coconut flakes, flour and milk, I love them all.  Coconut milk is a staple in my pantry,  it is so delicious,  full of good for you creamy fat, and makes a dang good ice cream to boot.  I found a great recipe for chocolate ice cream at the spunky coconut HERE.  I did purchase her cookbook  ‘Dairy Free Ice Cream’ , it is chock full of delicious recipes,  you can find it on Amazon.

We are part of a cow share, which means I can get my hands on some really good raw milk, which my daughter loves.  When I have some milk in the fridge, I sometimes make this ice cream with a combo of coconut milk and raw milk, (which I seem to tolerate better in small doses).  If you are good to go with dairy,  you could forgo the coconut milk and just use heavy cream, but I do prefer the straight coconut milk or the mixture personally.  Either way this is a delicious, easy, and fast ice cream with the added benefit of gelatin, and the very subtle sweetness provided by the dates.  Give it a try!


Paleo Vanilla Ice Cream (adapted from ‘Dairy Free Ice Cream’)

2 Cans (13 oz each) Full Fat coconut milk or cream  (I use Natural Value brand coconut milk or Trader Joes coconut cream)


1 Can Coconut milk  and 11/3 cups Heavy cream or full fat milk

1 TBL Vanilla

1 Vanilla bean (optional but nice if you have it)

8 Medjool Dates (soft if they are dried out soak them in warm water to soften)

1 TBL Gelatin (dissolve in 1/8 cup cold water then add 1/8 cup boiling water)

  1. Place all the ingredients in a high powered blender or food processor adding the gelatin last right before you mix.
  2. Mix until it is creamy (if it separates turn up the speed and keep mixing it will come together).
  3. Pour into your ice cream maker and proceed following your ice cream makers directions.
  4. Store the ice cream in the freezer or eat right away!

Good For You Gelatin Gummies


Gelatin Gummies
Gelatin Gummies

Today I am posting a recipe for gelatin gummies.  I don’t know about you, but real gummies I find to be very frustrating to chew.  They are so bouncy and resistant that I lose interest in chewing them after a while.  Like a piece of tough steak, I just want to move on already and digest the thing!  Not to mention they are not very good for the teeth or body.

These gummies are more like thick jello with really good flavor, health benefits, and just the right amount of bounce.

A good source of gelatin from grass fed pastured animals yields many health benefits for you.  I use this BRAND,  the red can is the kind that sets up and gels, the green can does not gel and is good to add to drinks or soups.

Grass Fed Gelatin
Grass Fed Gelatin

Read HERE and HERE about the benefits and uses of gelatin.  Good for skin (think collagen), joints, gut, weight loss, cellulite, hormones to name a few.  And it’s just plain fun.  Be sure to use a good brand of gelatin for maximum health benefits!


This recipe is a template that you can add different flavors to.  It is an adaptation from several recipes I found on the internet, it is by no means a KLee original.

Gelatin Gummies

1 1/2 cups of pure Fruit Juice (tart cherry, pomegranate, blueberry, whatever your fancy, just not pineapple it prevents the gelatin from setting up)


3/4 cup citrus juice and 3/4 cup fruit juice

4 TBL of Gelatin

1-3 TBL Raw Honey or Maple Syrup

  1. Sprinkle the gelatin on 3/4 cup of the cold juice.
  2. Heat 3/4 cup of the juice to boiling.
  3. Add the boiling hot juice to the gelatin and stir in the sweetener of your choice.  This is purely your preference.  Don’t go crazy on the sweet stuff!!
  4. The fun part is you can add all sorts of additional things.  One recipe I found HERE used elderberry syrup and raw honey for cold flu season.   Another HERE used turmeric and fresh grated ginger for additional health benefits.  Add fruit, spices or Herbs, get creative you can’t mess up !!!!
  5. Once it is well mixed pour into a baking dish or loaf pan or into molds.
  6. Let set up in the Refrigerator for 30 minutes or so. I poured some into a loaf pan and made blocks. I also poured some into a glass baking dish and cut them out with a small cookie cutter for the kiddies.
  7. Enjoy!

Primal Pumpkin Cheesecake Tart or Tartlets or Cupcakes

Primal Pumpkin Cheesecake Tart
Primal Pumpkin Cheesecake Tart or Tartlets or Cupcakes

So I have a bit of a problem,  when I experiment with these baked goods recipes, even if they turn out bad, I feel it is my duty to eat them because it is not in my DNA or my environmental programming to waste food.

Thinking back to the root of this problem, I remember as a young kid I would be sitting in front of a plate of food not wanting to eat it,  my mom would say, “Eat your food people are starving in China”.  So okay, I thought,  if I eat this food it will help those starving people, but how?  If I eat it and get fat and plump, how will that help the starving people??  Or if I eat it get fat and plump maybe the starving people can eat me??

Anyway I now know,  it was meant as,  be thankful you have food because other people (especially in China) don’t.  I do love food and am grateful everyday for the bounty that sits on my table and passes my lips. So with thankfulness and gratitude for all the blessings in my life (especially good food), I give you a pumpkin cheesecake tart.   And yes I have said some version of “Eat your food people are starving” to my kids, usually with a little more explanation, but I wonder if they get it!!  I have faith they will sooner or later.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Tart or Tartlets or Cupcakes

You can make this as a 9 inch tart, as small tartlets or as cupcakes.  This recipe was adopted from Elana’s Pantry Gluten-Free Cupcakes Cookbook check it out HERE


8-12 Medjool Dates pitted (depends on how sweet your tooth is !)

1/1/2 Cups Pecans

1&1/2 TBL Coconut Oil or butter

Place the ingredients in a food processor and blend until a fine crumb forms.  Press into a 9 inch tart pan or mini tart pans or cupcake liners in a muffin tin.  (For the 9 inch tart pre-bake the crust until it is slightly golden about 8 minutes at 350 degrees)


1 Cup Goat Cheese

1 Cup Pumpkin (preferably from one you roasted, canned works fine too)

1 TBL Vanilla

1/4 Cup Maple Syrup

3 Eggs

2 tsp. Pumpkin Pie Spice ( I use a blend I make up from this RECIPE tasty recipe too)

Put all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth.  Pour into the crust and bake at 350 degrees until the center is set.  Let cool and serve with whipped cream or coconut whipped cream. Enjoy!  These freeze very well too!!!

Paleo Primal Gluten-Free Nut Free Moroccan Brownies

Morocco Brownies (Gluten free and nut free)


Paleo Morocco Brownies

I was visiting a dear friend in a small remote village in Morocco this past spring. During my visit I had a craving for something chocolate, and hence using the ingredients we had on hand, Morocco brownies were born.

You know what they say necessity is the mother of all inventions, and yes chocolate is a necessity for this girl!!!

These babies are super easy to make, very fudgy, rich, AND taste even better the next day!  If there is a next day (hard to stop eating them once you start).

On a side note check out my friend’s project in Morocco HERE super cool!

Morocco Brownies

8 Medjool Dates ( pitted and pureed with a bit of water until smooth)

3 Eggs

1/3 cup Butter or coconut oil or a combo

1/2 cup High quality Cocao powder

1 Tbl. Vanilla

¼ tsp Salt

¼ tsp Baking Soda

½ cup Dark Chocolate chips or Chopped chocolate

Mix all the ingredients together until the batter is uniform. Pour batter into a greased 8×8 inch pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for around 8 minutes until the top springs back!  Do not over cook these.  Let cool completely before cutting and eating.  Feel free to add nuts, coconut, dried fruit or coconut.

Day 1 of My 47 Year Tribute or Paleo Chocolate Mousse

Chocolate Mousse
Chocolate Mousse

So today is the day I start my tribute to existing for almost 47 years on this glorious planet Earth (not officially until August).  My friend gave me the idea to do something for every year you are born in lieu of new years resolutions.  So I have decided for the next 47 days I will do yoga (at least 15 minutes or more), meditate and eat clean (no sugar, booze etc..) everyday.  When I looked at the calendar this morning I realized today is not only March 1st, but it is also a new moon which is a very auspicious time to start something new!

So here I go day 1 it is snowing, blowing and below zero outside and all I want to do is bake some cookies and eat them, instead I made some chocolate mousse to put an end to the craving.  No not just any chocolate mousse, but a recipe I found HERE , it satisfies the craving but is within my rules for clean eating.  Not too mention it is easy and delicious.    (Her picture is much more appetizing.)


Primal Gingerbread Men

Primal Gingerbread Men

Mr and Mrs Joy by Fiona

It starts with a leg then the arm then the other leg then the other arm can’t leave the head and the torso looks all wrong by itself next thing you know you’ve eaten the whole family and added some leftover frosting with each new bite.  These things are addicting good thing we bake them once a year.

KLee’s Primal Gingerbread Men, Women and Children

(recipe adapted from Epicurious: New England Molasses Gingerbread Cookies)

1/4 cup butter

2 TBL Palm oil shortening

1/2 Cup Blackstrap Molasses

1/3 Cup Coconut Sugar

1 small egg

2 TBL Buttermilk

zest of 1 Lemon

2 Cups Almond Flour

1/4 Cup Tapioca Flour

2 TBL coconut Flour

1/2 Tsp Baking Soda

1/4 Tsp Salt

1 Tsp Ginger powder

2 Tsp Cinnamon

1/2 tsp Cloves

Mix the butter, shortening, egg, buttermilk, and sugar in stand up mixer.  Mix flours and rest of the ingredients in a small bowl and add to the wet ingredients.  Let the dough set up in the fridge for 30 minutes or more.  Roll out the dough between 2 pieces of parchment paper it will be sticky you can use a bit of coconut flour or tapioca flour to dust the parchment.  Cut out your shapes.  Bake @ 350 for 8 minutes or until the dough is set up and brown around the edges.  Let cool and Frost (recipe below).

Frosting (barely Primal but if you tolerate Dairy very delicious)

1 8oz package organic cream cheese room temp.

1/4 organic whipping cream or coconut cream

1 TBL vanilla

1-2 TBL maple syrup or to taste

Whip the cream into firm peaks add the softened cream cheese and whip until smooth add the vanilla and maple syrup.  Frost your cookies.