One of my biggest pet peeves with baking is when I want to try a new recipe and I realize I am missing ingredients... especially when I'm baking something because I'm craving it and the missing ingredient means that I can't make it. The worst.
I've noticed lately that this is happening less and less. When I find a clean eating recipe that I want to bake I can usually pull together the ingredients needed without much fuss. I'm usually reaching for the same ingredients over and over. After taking a look at my favourite recipes and at my baking cupboard, I decided to put together a list of the Top 10 Clean Eating Ingredients I use while Baking.
1) Coconut Oil: Is there anything coconut oil can't do?
2) A Nut Butter: I have a tree nut allergy so I always use natural peanut butter. I've used sunflower seed butter before as well but since peanut butter is a staple in my diet anyways it's just easier to use it in my baking as well.
3) Unsweetened Coconut: I love coconut in general so the more coconut the better.
4) Vanilla: I have both artificial vanilla and vanilla bean on hand.
5) Cacao and/or Cocoa Powder: I always keep both in my baking cupboard. You can read about the differences between Cacao and Cocoa Powder here.
6) Cinnamon: Let's be honest, you should probably have a variety of spices in your cupboard if you're someone who enjoys baking (nutmeg is another popular one) but cinnamon is found in so many recipes that it's my top contender.
7) Dried Fruit: I like dried cranberries and raisins but I've used dried blueberries as well. Just be aware of the specific dried fruit you are buying and if there is any added sugar. I am going to include dates in my dried fruit section because they are a great way to add natural sweetness to recipes as well.
8) Maple Syrup (or a natural sweetener of your choice): Agave is another favourite of mine but I tend to use maple syrup more often.
9) Chia seeds: I love keeping these on hand to add to smoothies as well.
10) Oats: Last but certainly not least. I use a lot of oats in my baking which lately has been extra beneficial as they are supposed to help with milk production. I also love making overnight oats so I always have a lot of oats on hand.
Those are my personal top 10 but I have a few honourable mentions. Ground flax, brown rice syrup, sea salt, pumpkin seeds and spelt flour are commonly used in my baking as well. I use sea salt in pretty much every recipe but since it's not just isolated to baking recipes, I decided it didn't deserve to take up a spot on my baking ingredient list haha. I also keep overripe bananas in my freezer.
These ingredients won't make every recipe on their own I find but some of my favourite recipes including the no bake chocolate fudge cookies that I shared recently use only these ingredients. So if they are the only ingredients I have I know I can whip up something delicious.
There are some great resources for easy substitutions if you're baking and want to make the recipe a little healthier. If you're going to try to make substitutions I do recommend looking into them first because not all of them will be 1:1. For example, coconut flour is very absorbent so if a recipe calls for 1 cup flour you can't just use 1 cup coconut flour. It would dry your recipe out. You can find some substitution guides here, here and here.
I'd love to hear your favourite clean eating recipes. I'm always looking for new recipes to try.
*I am not a dietician. I am just a gal who enjoys finding healthier ways to indulge in her favourite baked goods.