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don't miss dairy

Emily Stokes
I'm a lady who loves cheese, sour cream, & ice cream, but I recently became lactose intolerant. My key focus in recreating dairy recipes is taste, but I try to be as health conscious as possible. Some of my recipes are low lactose rather than dairy free. I'm also a writer, teacher, nanny, dog mom, housewife, native Yinzer, current Californian, and social organizer extraordinaire.

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Creamy Candy Cane Cocktail

Creamy Dairy-Free Candy Cane Cocktail from dontmissdairy.com

The holidays are the best time to try those creamy cocktail recipes. I haven’t been able to find a dairy-free creamy liquor, so I concocted my own.

With a crushed candy cane rim, vanilla soy milk, vodka, and schnapps, this pepperminty cocktail is a sweet and satisfying after dinner treat.

Creamy Dairy-Free Candy Cane Cocktail from dontmissdairy.com

I hope you enjoy it this holiday, maybe with some vegan whipped cream and a candy cane dipped in your glass.

This Christmas we are staying in California, rather than joining the travel craze and venturing to the cold east coast. Though I’m not going to lie, I miss the winter season around the holidays. There is something about Christmas and cold weather and snow that goes so well together. 

I’ll miss the cozy fires my dad makes and the excitement of opening presents with my family. It will be sad not to be able to see their faces when they unwrap my gifts.

But Eric and I have created our own little traditions out here in sunny California over the years. We still put up a live tree (although I wouldn’t exactly call our current tree alive), hang up stockings decorated with puff paints, and wrap presents for each other to have surprises on Christmas morning.

Christmas Tree

We wrap little bones and treats for Mia, who loves opening gifts, especially if there’s something chicken flavored inside.

The best part of the day is the time to relax, to enjoy the time together without the stress of work and daily demands. Christmas is a time for giving and spending time with the people we love. And I love my little family.

Merry Christmas!

Creamy Dairy-Free Candy Cane Cocktail from dontmissdairy.com

Creamy Dairy-Free Candy Cane Cocktail
Serves 1
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Ingredients
  1. 1 candy cane, crushed
  2. 3 oz sweetened vanilla soy milk
  3. 1 oz peppermint schnapps
  4. 1 oz vanilla vodka
  5. 1 tablespoon vanilla syrup
  6. ice cubes
Instructions
  1. Unwrap candy cane and place in a ziploc bag. Crush with a mallet or rolling pin and pour candy cane bits onto a small plate. On a second small plate, pour a little bit of vanilla vodka. Dip rim of martini glass in the vodka and then in the crushed candy canes to line.
  2. In a martini shaker, add soy milk, schnapps, vodka, vanilla syrup, and a few ice cubes. Shake for 30 seconds and strain into martini glass.
Notes
  1. I used Silk Very Vanilla Soymilk and Torani Vanilla Syrup.
don't miss dairy http://dontmissdairy.com/
Creamy Dairy-Free Candy Cane Cocktail from dontmissdairy.com

Creamy Dairy-Free Candy Cane Cocktail from dontmissdairy.com

Creamy Dairy-Free Candy Cane Cocktail from dontmissdairy.com

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Morning Boost Smoothie

Morning Boost Smoothie from dontmissdairy.com

 I am loving smoothies this year.  

So many friends and family members have been on big smoothie kicks, and thanks to my mom, I am now the proud owner of a Nutribullet Pro. It makes incredibly smoothe smoothies.

I prefer my smoothie concoctions to be as simple as possible, so I’ve been using frozen fruit–that way I don’t need to go to the grocery store twice a week. My favorites are organic wild blueberries, pineapple, bananas, and whole frozen strawberries. 

I love experimenting with different dairy-free milks like almond milk and rice milk and add-ins like whole grains and nuts, raw cacao powder, and almond butter.

But the best part about this smoothie is the chia seeds: 

Morning Boost Smoothie from dontmissdairy.com 
I get an extra large bag of them at Costco and they go surprisingly fast. Did you know how many ways you can use chia seeds?

These teeny tiny seeds are a great source of omega 3s and contain protein, which makes them the perfect add-in for smoothies and protein shakes.

Besides that, I always sprinkle a tablespoon of chia seeds over my salads. They can be gelatinized and used in place of eggs or added to baked goods. You can also mix them with coconut milk and cocoa powder and make a yummy dairy-free pudding.

Morning Boost Smoothie from dontmissdairy.com

This is an easy, high-fiber, high-protein, filling recipe to replace your morning juice and jumpstart your metabolism. I’ll have this before a morning workout or to hold me over until brunch.  

It’s dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan, and low-FODMAP.

Notes about this smoothie:

Use fresh or frozen fruit. I add fresh bananas to my smoothies usually, but when they start to get too ripe, I peel them, quarter them, and put them in a Ziploc bag in the freezer. You can use frozen bananas for more than just smoothies, like banana bread and banana ice cream.

I used Blue Diamond sweetened almond milk and Growing Naturals brown rice protein powder. 

Keep in mind when making this smoothie, a 1/4 scoop of rice protein powder is not a lot of protein, but rice protein powder tends to be chalky and can overwhelm the flavor of smoothies. If I want protein after a work out, I would rather drink a plain protein shake than ruin the taste of my fruit smoothie, but if you’d like to add more of your favorite protein powder, this is a good recipe to do so. There are about 10 grams of protein in this smoothie.

Follow me on Instagram for more dairy-free smoothie recipes!

Morning Boost Smoothie from dontmissdairy.com

Morning Boost Smoothie
Serves 1
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 banana
  2. 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  3. 1/4 cup oats (gluten free)
  4. 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  5. 1/4 scoop brown rice protein powder
  6. 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil (optional)
  7. Almond milk
Instructions
  1. In a blender, combine fruit, oats, chia seeds, protein powder, and coconut oil. Pour almond milk over ingredients until just covered. Blend on high until smooth. Add more almond milk to thin if necessary.
don't miss dairy http://dontmissdairy.com/
Morning Boost Smoothie from dontmissdairy.com

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Cranberry, Walnut, and Chia Seed Spinach Salad with Lemon Balsamic

Cranberry, Walnut, and Chia Seed Spinach Salad from dontmissdairy.com

Happy New Year!!!

I’ve taken a month hiatus from blogging for the first time in years, and I’m ready to get back into the swing of things with some healthy, simple, and delicious dairy-free recipes.

The month long break wasn’t intentional; December came at me like a charging bull, and it was keep up or get trampled. I think I might have gotten stepped on a few times.

During November, I finally finished the first part of one of the biggest goals of my life: to write a novel. I did it with the encouragement and motivation of NaNoWriMo, and I successfully completed 50,000 more words, adding to my start of 26,000. I now have a full-length fiction novel under my belt, with a great plot, ending, fully developed characters and everything.

After that, the onslaught of everything else in my life I postponed came at me, plus a series of other things. I put the novel on hold for a bit so I could catch my breath. I intend to start the rewrite now that I can breathe, but the whole catching my breath part lasted much longer than I expected.

The holidays are always busy, but the biggest time consumer this month was our move to a new apartment and the horrible cold I caught that resulted…from the stress of moving…before a strict time deadline…on the coldest day of the year.

On top of all that, I had to unpack and set up the whole apartment–you can guess how long that took! I just remember the painful task of searching in box after box for tea, honey, and a mug. My husband was amazing and took care of me so nicely, bringing me medicine, orange juice, and flowers. Thankfully, he didn’t even get sick.

Now I finally have my new kitchen set up the way I want it, my refrigerator full, and I’ve even started cooking.

I got some awesome new photography equipment for Christmas, so as soon as I learn how to use it properly, my pictures will get better and better! For this particular recipe, I used my brand new tripod, reflector, and remote for the first time. 

Cranberry, Walnut, and Chia Seed Spinach Salad from dontmissdairy.com

I’m starting this year off with one of my favorite salad combinations. I’ve never posted a salad before, but I’m trying to stay healthy by eating fresh, raw, colorful veggies. Soup and salad is the way to go right now.

This simple spinach salad is packed full of omega 3s and antioxidants. There’s nothing quite better than the light tasting yet flavorful combination of lemon olive oil with fruit-infused balsamic vinegar. I used fig-infused balsamic to be exact.

Cranberry, Walnut, and Chia Seed Spinach Salad from dontmissdairy.com

Store-bought salad dressings are a thing of the past for me! This salad has no added salt and makes you wonder how you could ever have eaten that iceberg lettuce and cheese combination with ranch. Would you like some lettuce with your fat?

Just kidding, if I could eat dairy I totally would. But this spinach salad is seriously delicious. It’s crisp, refreshing, and super healthy. Pair with a steaming bowl of soup.

Cranberry, Walnut, and Chia Seed Spinach Salad from dontmissdairy.com

Cranberry, Walnut, and Chia Seed Spinach Salad with Lemon Balsamic Dressing
Serves 1
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cups raw spinach, washed and drained
  2. 1/4 cup raw walnut pieces
  3. 1/4 cub dried, sweetened cranberries
  4. 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  5. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  6. 1/2 teaspoon nutritional yeast
  7. 1 tablespoon lemon infused olive oil
  8. 1 tablespoon fruit infused balsamic vinegar
Instructions
  1. In a medium size bowl with a lid, add spinach, walnuts, cranberries, chia seeds, pepper, and nutritional yeast. Close the lid tightly and shake until the ingredients are mixed.
  2. Transfer onto a large salad plate and drizzle on lemon olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Add more to taste, along with salt and pepper if you desire. Don't you feel so healthy?
don't miss dairy http://dontmissdairy.com/

Cranberry, Walnut, and Chia Seed Spinach Salad from dontmissdairy.com

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