Healthy Oat Cookies

I used to make bars, like Lara Bars, a lot for myself; the basic date-cashew bar. I’ve really been craving cookies lately and instead of letting the craving win, I thought I’d try a cookie version of my old bars. They actually turned out pretty good and were almost crispy, which I love! No refined sugar, no oil, no salt, so they really are actually healthy.

Next time I’ll try adding in some other goodies like cinnamon and raisins. I’ll post an update when I do!


1/2 c rolled oats
1/2 c cashews
10 dates

1 T cashew or almond milk
1 t vanilla extract


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F).
2. Pit dates and add to your food processor.
3. Add the oats and cashews, as well.
3. Process for 1 minute, then add the milk and vanilla.
4. Process for a couple more minutes, until the mixture is crumbly and starting to stick together.
5. Use a small (1 T) ice cream scoop to portion the dough onto a baking sheet.
6. Flatten the cookies with a spatula. (My cookies stuck to a fork when I tried that.)
7. Bake for 10 minutes, flip the cookies, then bake for another 5 minutes.
8. Let cool for at least 4-5 minutes. Enjoy!

Be well and do good,

Healthy Tahini Date Cookies

I love cookies — a lot — but, I also love my health! It’s tricky. Don’t get me wrong. I do indulge in treats for special occasions, but when it’s a regular weekend, I hit the kitchen to try and invent something dessert-like, tasty, and healthy. This weekend, I discovered these super soft, tahini date cookies! 

These are not your typical cookies, but I think they really hit the spot!


1 c + 2 T almond flour (TJs has a great one that is relatively inexpensive!)
2 T ground flax
2 T tapioca flour
1/4 t baking soda
1 1/4 t baking powder
1/4 t salt
8 dates, chopped small

1 c cashew/almond milk (less 1 t) + 1 t lemon juice
3 T tahini
1 T cashew butter
1/2 c applesauce (scant 1/2 cup because I use the preportioned ones and they’re just under 1/2 c)


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F).
2. Chop the dates and set aside.
3. Add the lemon juice to the milk and set aside.
4. Mix all the dry ingredients except the dates.
5. Mix all the wet ingredients with an immersion blender. [This helps emulsify the tahini and cashew butter. You could use a regular blender, too.]
6. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, mix well, and then add the dates. Mix well.
7. Use a small ice cream scoop* to scoop the batter (it’s more 
batter-y than dough-y) onto a cookie sheet + parchment paper. Keep at least 1 inch between cookies.
8. Bake at 350 degrees (F) for 20-24 minutes.
9. Let the cookies cool on the pan for a few minutes, then place them (still on the parchment paper) on a cooling rack and allow to cool for at least 15 minutes. They’ll be soft, so lift gently when you’re ready to eat! I love to enjoy these with a hot cup of Persian black tea.

* My ice-cream scoop is tiny. It only holds about 2 T worth of batter!

Be well and do good,

Cornmeal Pancakes

I love pancakes. There is no denying it.  I would eat them every day if I could! While most pancakes are made with nutrient-stripped white flour and tons of butter, I have been working to make different variations that are healthier.

Here is my version of French Meadow’s vegan corn pancakes! (French Meadow was my favorite restaurant when living in MSP.) I use mostly really fine corn flour and add a tiny bit of medium-grind cornmeal to the mix to give it a little more of an earthy feel.


1 c “flour” mixture (1/2 c + 2 T masa harina, 2 T medium-grind cornmeal,  1/4 c Bob’s Red Mill gluten free all purpose baking flour)
1/4 t salt
2 t baking powder

1 c almond milk
1 T apple butter (could likely sub with applesauce, apple butter is just a little sweeter)
1 T maple syrup
1 Ener-G egg
1 t vanilla


1. Preheat griddle to 350 degrees (F). (I have not made these on the stove, but I imagine a medium heat would suffice.)
2. Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl.
3. Make the Ener-G egg, then add the other wet ingredients in another bowl.
4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until the wet and dry are thoroughly mixed.
5. Use a 1/4 cup measure or ice-cream scooper (my favorite!) to scoop out the batter onto the griddle. Flatten the pancakes just a bit with the back of the scooper.
6. Let them cook for about 4 minutes. You might not see bubbles the way you normally do on pancakes; that is okay! Then flip and let them cook for another 3 minutes. After, put the pancakes on a cooling rack and then allow them to cool for at least 2-3 minutes.

I like to top with frozen blueberries and a drizzle of maple syrup!


Be well and do good,

My Antioxidant Smoothie

The foods that makes me feel best are raw fruits and vegetables, particularly in smoothie form.

Here is my basic smoothie that can be changed a hundred different ways to make the smoothie that you like best. I like mixing  frozen fruits into the mix to get a colder and slightly thicker texture; I also add chia and flax seeds for extra nutrition. (The flax seed link goes to Dr. Greger’s website which has loads of information on food and nutrition and is my go-to for accurate, scientific information.) Feel free to sub a small scoop of almond or peanut butter instead of the flax and chia seeds if you prefer!

1/2 cup fresh raspberries
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1 small banana
1/2 small apple, chopped
1 small cucumber, peeled (I used Persian cucumbers; or use  1/4 of a larger cucumber)
1 cup cashew milk (or other non-dairy milk)
1 t chia seeds
1 t ground flax seeds
Dash of cinnamon

1. Add all ingredients to a blender.
2. Blend for 60 seconds. Add more milk if you prefer a thinner smoothie.
3. Enjoy!

Be well and do good,

The Beginning: Of This Blog and My Mornings

Hello friends!

My name is Beets and I am excited to share my plant-based life with you.

I’ll be sharing all types of food here on The Mindful Muffin — breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, and of course dessert. I generally eat a whole food, plant based diet (always vegan), but do like to spring for some comfort food from time to time, especially things that include chocolate.

My posts will be short; my goal is to share recipes and tips for living a healthy, sustainable, peaceful life, not write a thesis ( I already did that).

The first recipe I’d like to share is a recipe that is the foundation of my day — oatmeal. Oatmeal isn’t always the most exciting. It’s what I have to get if I’m at a breakfast place that isn’t vegan-friendly… and it’s usually just oats and hot water. Nothing fancy and usually mushy. But, I love good oatmeal because it is so filling, delicious, and nutritious. This version of oatmeal is pretty exciting and is inspired by my mother who one day, very nonchalantly, told me she poured her coffee into her oatmeal to make mornings a little easier.

Recipe (Single Serving)
1/4 cup steel cut oats
1/2 cup unsweetened cashew milk (or other non-dairy milk) + an additional 2-4 T (optional)
1 t cocoa powder
1 T maple syrup
2-3 T of already prepared coffee (or 1 shot of espresso, if you like a deeper flavor)
1 banana
1/4 cup walnuts
2 T cacao nibs (optional)

Note: a lowercase “t” is for teaspoon and uppercase “T” is for tablespoon.

1. Put oats, cashew milk, cocoa powder, and maple syrup in a small pan. Cook on high for 2-3 minutes, then on low-medium heat for 15-20 minutes. *
2. While the oats are cooking, place walnuts on a toaster oven pan and toast at 200º F for 10 minutes. (You could also toast them on the stove; use low heat for about 6-8 minutes and keep them moving so they do not burn.)
2. Put the oats in a bowl, (optional) add the extra 2-4 T of milk. (I like my oats to be immersed in milk.)
3. Pour the espresso or coffee over the oatmeal.
4. Top with sliced banana, walnuts, and cacao nibs.
6. Enjoy!

* You can cut down cooking time by soaking the oats in the milk overnight. I do that, then cook the oats for 7-8 minutes.

Be well and do good,