Vegan Salted Peanut Butter Crunch Torte + 10 Years!

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on October 30, 2018

10 YEARS!!! Can someone please tell me how it’s been a decade since I wrote my very first blog post? We’re celebrating today with this incredible vegan dessert and a weeklong OSG Recipe App sale for charity (deets below).

When I started my blog on October 31, 2008, Eric and I were newly married and living in Toronto while I was working full-time as a researcher and wrapping up my Master’s degree. Life was pretty chaotic, and completing my degree was starting to wear me down (at one point I thought I was just going to cut my losses, throw in the towel, and move on!). This blog was the most amazing creative outlet during a time when my life was lacking the kind of creativity that I absolutely craved. It allowed me to explore a side of myself that I hadn’t since I was a kid (like my love for photography, baking, creative writing/journaling, and just being a goof). My blog’s first tagline was “Food. Fitness. Fashion. Fun.” Pretty epic, right? Lol. I’m grateful to Eric for encouraging me to “find a hobby” after years of exhausting myself with school and work. He still jokes that my “hobby” turned into my career, so I need to find a new hobby now. (Fine, I’ll start my own animal farm! YOU WIN!)

I find writing therapeutic in soooo many ways. In the early days, I didn’t have more than a handful of readers, and I found it quite easy to talk about my struggles online. I was like no one is going to read this anyway! It was an online journal of sorts, and I wrote about my history with disordered eating and how I was finally getting myself on a path to recovery. I shared the challenges I faced finding a career that I was truly passionate about (and, eventually, how I relinquished my need to people-please by completely changing my career path). I had the most supportive response from those first early blog readers (as well as my friends and family), so I kept writing with my heart on my sleeve.  

After coming in the top 3 of the food blogging challenge Project Food Blog, an editor from a major publishing house emailed me saying she loved my work and was wondering if I’d like to write a cookbook. Pretty sure I fainted! It was the email that changed everything and solidified the fact that I was on the right path after doubting myself and my decision to change careers for so long.

So here we are 1 blog, 3 moves, 2 cookbooks, 2 kids, and 1 recipe app later…including countless late nights, self-doubt, and (ongoing) indecision for good measure! It sure has been a wild ride! I’m still learning and dreaming of new goals every day (all while not having the slightest clue how to get there!). Above all, I’m really proud of the fact that I’ve stayed true to myself and the values I have for this hobby-turned-business. The best part is that I’ve been lucky to meet so many of you amazing people online and in person, and I still can’t quite believe how freakin’ genuine, cool, and supportive everyone has been! It’s so crazy to think that some of my best friendships have been made through this blog. Forever grateful. Thank you from the bottom of my veggie-lovin’ heart for making this such a fun journey. And cheers to the next 10 years! Any guesses as to what adventures they’ll bring for you or me?

To celebrate OSG’s 10-year anniversary, we’re having a big OSG Recipe App sale this week with 100% of the proceeds being donated to Mothers Against Drunk Driving Canada. Right now our app is just 99 cents, so if you’ve been thinking about downloading it, this week is a great time to do so while supporting a fantastic cause that’s near and dear to my heart! You can find our recipe app on both the iTunes and Google Play stores. Thank you so much for all of your amazing support and for helping us give back to our community.

I had so much fun celebrating Canada’s food writers at the Taste Canada Awards Gala last night! We were nominated in the Food Blogs Health and Special Diet category, and I was so honoured to take home Gold! All I could think about was how grateful I am to have this recognition, especially so close to OSG’s 10-year milestone. Plus, Adriana and Arlo have been calling all of my food “YUCKY” lately, so now I can show them the award and explain that they’ve been outvoted, lol.

Last but not least, we’re having a little party to celebrate 10 years and this new dessert is on the menu. I hope you’ll enjoy every bite as much as we have! With Halloween tomorrow, I can’t think of a better time to indulge in some creamy, dreamy, chocolaty PB goodness.

  

 

 

5 from 3 reviews
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Salted Peanut Butter Crunch Torte

Vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free

By

While dreaming up a recipe to celebrate Oh She Glows’ 10-year anniversary, I immediately thought of one of my all-time favourite flavour combos: salted peanut butter and chocolate! Hubba hubba. This salted peanut butter torte (of pure sweet heaven) is easy to throw together and only takes a couple hours to freeze. Its creative presentation will impress the heck out of your guests, and that irresistible sweet-salty flavour and creamy, crunchy texture will blow your taste buds away! I’ve also tested this torte with 3 different fillings: peanut butter, almond butter, and a nut-free sunflower seed butter version! And guess what? They’re all so delicious we couldn’t pick a favourite! See my Tips for how to make the sunflower seed and almond butter versions.

Yield
12 small or 9 medium servings
Prep time
Cook time
Chill time
2 hours

Ingredients:

For the crust:
  • 1/2 cup (78 g) almonds
  • 1 cup (100 g) gluten-free rolled oats
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) coconut oil, melted
  • 3 tablespoons (45 mL) pure maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) smooth natural peanut butter
For the filling:
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup (80 mL) coconut cream*
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) pure maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup (185 g) smooth natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For topping (optional, but recommended):
  • Coconut Whipped Cream**
  • 1/2 cup (95 g) non-dairy chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) coconut oil, melted***
  • 1/2 cup (80 g) chopped toasted walnuts and large-flake coconut****

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Lightly grease an 8x8-inch square pan with coconut oil (including up the sides, too). Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit the width of the pan with a bit of overhang so it’s easy to lift out.
  2. For the crust: Add the almonds, oats, and salt to a food processor and process until the mixture resembles a coarse flour, about 30 seconds.
  3. Melt the 1/4 cup coconut oil in a medium pot (you’ll be using the same medium pot for the filling) over low heat. Add the melted oil, maple syrup, and peanut butter to the processor and process until the mixture comes together in a heavy dough, 10 to 15 seconds. The dough should look like a wet cookie dough. If you find it a bit dry, add a teaspoon or two of water and process again until a wet dough forms.
  4. Spoon the dough into the prepared pan and crumble it evenly all over the base. Lightly wet your fingers and press the dough into the base firmly and evenly. Level the edges with your fingertips. Poke the base with a fork about 12 times to allow air to escape while baking.
  5. Bake the crust for 9 to 11 minutes, until it looks pale and a bit puffy. The crust might look underbaked when you remove it, but this is what we want to avoid drying it out.
  6. Meanwhile, make the filling: In the same medium pot (no need to clean it!), melt the coconut oil and coconut cream over low heat. Now add the maple syrup, peanut butter, salt, and vanilla and whisk until smooth.
  7. Spoon the filling onto the crust (there’s no need to cool the crust first) and carefully transfer the dish to a level surface in your freezer. Chill until solid, about 2 hours. If I’m not serving the torte right away, I’ll cover the pan with tinfoil after a couple hours of freezing. While it chills, prepare the Coconut Whipped Cream and gather the toppings so they’re ready to go.
  8. Once frozen, remove from the freezer and let it sit on the counter for 10 minutes. Slide a knife around the edges to loosen the slab. Using the parchment paper, lift the slab out and place it on a serving platter. Slice into slices of your desired width. Now add the toppings: I add a large dollop of Coconut Whipped Cream on each and then top it with lots of drizzled melted chocolate, walnuts, and large-flake coconut. A pinch of coarse sea salt is nice too. If you have leftover melted chocolate, serve it on the side in a small dish so you can spoon some more chocolate over top while eating (trust me on this one!). Serve immediately—the combo of cold filling and warm melted chocolate is just dreamy! But the chilled leftovers (with hardened chocolate) are totally irresistible too.
  9. Storage tips: The filling softens a great deal at room temperature, so it's best not to leave leftovers on the counter for longer than half an hour. Return it to the fridge or freezer for best results. Cover leftover slices and store in the fridge for up to 1 week, or you can freeze the slices for 4 to 6 weeks. I like to wrap frozen slices in tinfoil and then place them all into a freezer-safe zip bag.

Nutrition Information

Serving Size 1 of 12 small squares | Calories 370 calories | Total Fat 29 grams
Saturated Fat 16 grams | Sodium 85 milligrams | Total Carbohydrates 22 grams
Fiber 3 grams | Sugar 12 grams | Protein 7 grams

Nutritional info does not include optional toppings.
* Nutrition data is approximate and is for informational purposes only.

Tips:

* Chill your can of full-fat coconut milk for at least 12 hours before you begin this recipe so that the cream on top is solid. After making the torte, you’ll have some leftover coconut cream in the can which can be used to make Coconut Whipped Cream for the topping!

 

** Feel free to use store-bought coconut whipped cream instead. I like “So Delicious Dairy Free CocoWhip!”

 

*** To a small pot over low heat, add the chocolate and oil. Stir until smooth and combined.

 

**** Of course you can use roasted peanuts instead. I’m not a big fan of them so I prefer to use walnuts.

 

Make it nut-free: In the crust, swap the almonds for sunflower seeds and in the filling swap the peanut butter for roasted sunflower seed butter. I like to add an extra tablespoon of maple syrup and a pinch of salt to this version—the filling tastes like salted caramel!

 

Almond butter version: Swap the peanut butter for roasted almond butter.

 

Don’t have an 8x8-inch square pan? You can make this in an 8x4-inch loaf pan or standard-size muffin tin (both greased with coconut oil).

One Bowl Pumpkin Chocolate Muffins (Vegan + Gluten-free)

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on October 17, 2018

One thing that’s been especially hard during my recent health struggles is that I’ve had some negative feelings resurface surrounding food and restriction. Those of you who’ve been reading for years may know that one of the reasons I started blogging back in 2008 was to share my journey to health. I spoke a lot about my journey to recovery from disordered eating, something I had struggled with for over a decade.

When I taught myself how to cook and fell in love with making plant-based recipes, I started to make positive associations with food again. And slowly, as I learned to eat intuitively (and embraced therapy!), I built a solid, positive foundation channeling that energy into something that made me feel really good. I don’t know where I’d be now if I didn’t have your support and community along the way. Knowing that my readers were eager to try out the recipes I was sharing kept me immensely motivated to keep going! It still does to this day.

The various symptoms I’ve been dealing with this past year (as well as committing to the dreaded allergy elimination diet) have challenged my relationship with food a great deal. If you’ve dealt with food allergies or sensitivities, you know how much it can drive you crazy in frustration as you try to figure out what’s going on. Every single food becomes suspect. I had incorrectly thought that it was a single food causing my troubles, when in fact it was much more complex than I had realized, with many hormonal imbalances and other systems at play.

Over the past year I found myself starting to question everything I was putting into my body, to the point where for a while I was only consuming a handful of specific foods. I didn’t know what I could eat because everything seemed to be causing reactions. It really messed with my head for a while there! This isn’t my first test by any means, and I know that these challenges and setbacks are a normal part of the journey—there’s no shame in struggling with things you may have thought you’d beaten. I can already tell that this experience has had many silver linings, one of them being a deeper appreciation for my health. And as I’ve seen my health improve over the past couple months, I’ve been so relieved to be getting back to a friendly place with food again by celebrating what it can do for me rather than fearing it!

And what better way to celebrate food this time of year than with the irresistible combo of chocolate and pumpkin? These rich and chocolaty gluten-free and vegan muffins have been enjoyed by everyone lucky enough to get their hands on a trial batch…minus a couple chocolate-hating toddlers roaming around our kitchen. *shrugs* Needless to say, Eric and I have had our fair share throughout the testing process…no complaints over here. Pair the muffins with my popular Pumpkin Spice Latte and you’ll have yourself a delicious and festive autumn snack!

 

 

   

5 from 23 reviews
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One Bowl Pumpkin Chocolate Muffins

Vegan, gluten-free, nut-free, refined sugar-free

By

These moist, dense, gooey pumpkin chocolate muffins are similar to that feeling you get walking through a pumpkin patch, sipping dark hot chocolate, and crunching colourful autumn leaves beneath your feet! Picture a delicious pumpkin chocolate cake or brownie—but in muffin form. What could be better? How about that they take just one bowl to make! This recipe is adapted from Beaming Baker and my Pumpkin Gingerbread Muffins.

Yield
12 muffins
Prep time
Cook time

Ingredients:

For the chia egg:
  • 2 teaspoons (4 g) ground chia seed*
  • 3 tablespoons (45 mL) water
For the wet ingredients:
  • 1 cup (250 mL) unsweetened pumpkin purée
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) grapeseed oil or melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup (80 g) coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) pure vanilla extract
For the dry ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cups (150 g) gluten-free rolled oats, blended into a fine flour**
  • 1/2 cup (40 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice***
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2/3 cup (120 g) non-dairy chocolate chips or chopped chocolate, divided**** (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and line a muffin tin with 12 paper liners.
  2. Add the rolled oats to a high-speed blender and blend on high until a fine flour forms. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the ground chia seed and water until combined. Set aside for a few minutes to thicken.
  4. To the same bowl, add the rest of the wet ingredients (pumpkin, oil, sugar, maple syrup, and vanilla) and stir until smooth.
  5. Add the dry ingredients (oat flour, cocoa powder, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt) to the bowl with the wet ingredients. Whisk until smooth (I love using my big whisk for this task!).
  6. Set aside 1/4 cup (45 g) of chocolate chips (if using) for the topping and stir the remaining chips into the batter.
  7. Spoon the batter into the paper liners, filling each two-thirds full. Press the remaining chocolate chips into the tops of each muffin.
  8. Bake the muffins for 20 to 25 minutes (I bake for 22), until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  9. Place the muffin tin on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Carefully remove each muffin and place it directly onto the cooling rack until fully cooled. Leftover muffins can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container for several days or frozen for up to 1 month.

Nutrition Information

Serving Size 1 of 12 muffins | Calories 170 calories | Total Fat 6 grams
Saturated Fat 1 grams | Sodium 150 milligrams | Total Carbohydrates 29 grams
Fiber 4 grams | Sugar 16 grams | Protein 2 grams

Nutritional info does not include the optional chocolate chips.
* Nutrition data is approximate and is for informational purposes only.

Tips:

* If desired, you can use 1 tablespoon ground flax in place of the ground chia seed. Proceed with mixing in the 3 tablespoons (45 mL) water as directed.

** You can use 150 grams oat flour rather than grinding your own (this is equal to 1 cup and 7 tablespoons oat flour measured using the scoop-and-shake-until-level method). Alternatively, 1 1/2 cups (233 g) whole-grain spelt flour will also work as a swap for the oat flour. If using whole-grain spelt flour, you will likely need to bake the muffins for a couple extra minutes (until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean). Please keep in mind that spelt flour is not gluten-free.

*** If you're a big pumpkin spice fan, you can use up to 1 tablespoon of spice mix in this recipe.

**** Try chopped walnuts or pecans for a crunchy, healthy twist!

You can make these muffins into a loaf instead. Simply pour the batter into a 9x5-inch loaf pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes (I bake for 46) at 350°F (180°C) until a toothpick comes out clean.

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