Popular posts + recipes

Every so often I look at my newsletter, blog and Instagram statistics. I don't let this dictate my business, but I do find the results interesting and I take into account which topics or recipe types are performing well when planning out future content.

I left my job in corporate accounting 4.5 years ago because I wanted to do something I was passionate about. I also wanted to feel like I was making a difference and helping people. So deciding what to share here is an interesting balance - I of course consider what you all are interested in hearing or learning about, but what I write is also heavily influenced by what I WANT to write.

And when those two things sync up, when the posts my soul tells me to write get a lot of traffic and engagement, well, I consider that success.

This week I started drafting my editorial calendar for the rest of the summer and fall. I'm working to build more structures into my business (instead of just waiting until the inspiration hits me) and so creating and following an editorial calendar is one thing I'm doing towards that goal.

During this planning process I reviewed my stats (in addition to your feedback from my community survey earlier this year - so helpful!), looking back at almost 9 months of newsletters, blogs and Instagram posts.

Below I've shared the most popular posts in each category for 2019.

It was fun for me to re-read these posts - they're great recipes and reminders - so I hope they'll be useful for you too, especially if you're new here and didn't catch the original posts.

It was also super interesting to see the themes across this popular content. You all love paleo recipes, vulnerable shares about life and entrepreneurship and gut health. Seems about right based on who I am and what I'm currently into ;)

Here are my most popular newsletters, recipes and Instagram posts of 2019:

Most popular posts (based on email open rate):

Most popular recipes (based on page views):

Most popular Instagram posts (based on engagement):

Whether you're interested in the biz behind the scenes or not, I hope you'll enjoy looking back on these shares as much as I did!

Tahini Banana Bread

I’ve made this banana bread every single week (okay, sometimes 2x per week) since I started my SIBO healing protocol. It’s free of all the things: gluten, grains, sugar, dairy and even nuts. But it’s delicious!

I knew this recipe was good enough to share when I found my mom sneaking a piece while I was visiting last weekend. My mom is always supportive of my healthified recipes but she 100% prefers the “real thing” (and is someone who’s great about enjoying in moderation! go Mom!). So her stamp of approval on this banana bread convinced me that it wasn’t just good enough for me during my gut healing protocol, but a yummy breakfast recipe for all!

This one’s for you Mama! I expect a loaf waiting next time I visit ;)

Tahini Banana Bread - Emily Nachazel.JPG

Tahini Banana Bread

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup ripe banana (about 3 medium bananas)

  • 4 eggs

  • 3/4 cup tahini

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

  • 1 tsp cinnamon

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • Pinch sea salt

  • 1 tsp baking powder

  • Splash apple cider vinegar

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a bread loaf pan with parchment paper.

  2. Add bananas, eggs, tahini, coconut oil, cinnamon, vanilla and sea salt to your blender or food processor and blend until combined.

  3. Add baking powder and apple cider vinegar, and again blend until combined.

  4. Pour batter into greased loaf pan.

  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the middle of the bread comes out clean.

Note: the bread will puff up in the oven and look beautiful, but will likely fall as it cools. The photo above was taken after it cooled.. not the most BEAUTIFUL LOAF but hey there’s no flour, nuts, grains, sugar, etc etc. Trust me… it will still taste delicious.

You’ll also love…

These recipes have saved me

First, thank you for all the sweet responses to last week's blog post on my gut health history - it's incredible how many of you have experienced similar symptoms and/or are going through similar healing protocols.

Next week I'll be diving into the strategies (food, supplements and lifestyle changes) I've tried in the past to help relieve my IBS (and then SIBO) symptoms. If you have specific questions, feel free to leave them as comments on the first blog post and I'll do my best to address them in this series!

But for this week I wanted to share a few delicious recipes that have been LIFE SAVERS for me the last couple of weeks as I've been deep in my own healing protocol. Below I've linked some of the recipes I've created to fit within my current SIBO-healing diet, as well as some external gut-healing recipes that I've found along the way.

If you're going through a similar healing protocol, hopefully these recipes will fit within your plan! And if you're not on any specific protocol, these recipes are wonderful, gut friendly options to work into your regular cooking (and baking) routine.

These recipes in particular have been on repeat for me:

Tahini Matcha Latte - When I heard I could have tahini (and matcha) on my protocol, I let out an audible sigh of relief. I blend up this energizing drink most mornings - the tahini gives it a distinct flavor that I actually prefer to my tried-and-true Superpowers Coconut Matcha Latte.

Chestnut Flour Banana Muffins - Chestnut flour is a new ingredient for me and OMG I LOVE IT! It's nutty and sweet, but doesn't feel as dense as an almond or other nut flour. Even my family approved of these muffins - they're that good! I'll be making them (and experimenting more with chestnut flour) even after this protocol is over.

Strawberry Rhubarb Gummies - In addition to Tahini Fudge (recipe coming soon!), these gummies have been my after meal "treats." Sweet, chewy and busting with strawberry flavor, they're perfect for these warmer summer months. The gummies are gut friendly thanks to gelatin, which helps heal the lining of your gut, fight inflammation and support healthy hair, nails and skin. You can easily swap in any berry for the strawberry rhubarb mixture - I've made these with blueberries, raspberries and cherries too!

And here are a few more gut-healing recipe ideas:

Like I've mentioned before, I'm focusing on what I CAN have during this restricted diet, instead of all the things I can't (or shouldn't) eat. And it's been fun trying new recipes and getting creative in the kitchen!

Whether you're on a specific protocol or not, I'd love to hear about your favorite gut-friendly recipe!

Leave a comment below and let us all know (and please include a link if the recipe can be found online!!)

Strawberry Rhubarb Gummies

Sweet, chewy and bursting with strawberry flavor, these gummies are a perfect treat for the warmer months. Unlike traditional gummy candies, which are mostly filled with sugar or high fructose corn syrup, food dyes and “natural flavors” (which, are usually not so natural), these gummies are actually gut healing thanks to the ingredient that helps them set: gelatin.

Maybe you’ve heard of collagen - it’s trending right now in the health world. Gelatin is similar to collagen - it’s actually made from it (and in case you didn’t know, both are made from animal parts including skin, bones and tissue, so if you’re vegan or vegetarian, these superfoods may not be for you).

The gelatinous quality of gelatin that makes it useful for gummies, desserts and more is also what makes it beneficial when we consume it. Gelatin is slower to digest, meaning it moves through the GI tract further and coats the small intestine, which helps heal the gut. It also contains protein and amino acids like glycine that strengthen the gut lining and therefore lower inflammation in the body.

Additionally, the sticky, glue-like quality of gelatin can support the formation of strong cartilage or connective tissues, which is why it and collagen are touted as beauty and youth superfoods (think younger, more supple skin and joints).

Especially if you’re dealing with gut issues like me, gelatin is an awesome food to work into your diet to support your healing efforts. And if you don’t have gut issues? Well I suggest trying out these gummies anyways because they’re mega delicious and FUN!

Strawberry Rhubarb Gummies - Emily Nachazel.JPG

Strawberry Rhubarb Gummies

Ingredients:

  • 1 pint strawberries, stems removed and sliced

  • 3 stalks rhubarb, chopped

  • 2 tbsp full fat coconut milk (ideally one with no guar gum, like the one I’ve linked)

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

  • 1/4 cup gelatin (important to use a quality source of gelatin, I’ve linked the brand I mostly use!)

  • 2-3 tsp honey (optional, omit if you’re on any specific protocol like low FODMAP, SCD, etc)

Directions:

  1. Add strawberries and rhubarb to a small saucepan over medium heat. Let cook until everything has broken down (about 10-15 minutes). Let mix cool for a few minutes.

  2. Pour the fruit mixture into your high speed blender or food processor. Add in the coconut milk, vanilla and honey (if using) and blend until smooth.

  3. Let mixture cool for a few minutes, then add the gelatin to the blender and blend again until smooth. Immediately pour into a 9 x 9 inch baking dish and refrigerate until the mixture is set (30 - 45 minutes). Slice into squares or other fun shapes and enjoy immediately. Store any leftovers in the fridge for up to 7 days.

Have you USED gelatin before?

If so, what did you make? If not, are you open to trying this gut-healing superfood? Leave a comment below and let me know!

Tahini Matcha Latte

When I heard I could have tahini on my SIBO healing protocol, I let out an audible sign of relief.

I won’t go into the details of the protocol here but let’s just say it’s VERY specific. My list of “no” foods is much longer than my list of “yes” foods, and that no list includes some of my favorite healthy items like chocolate, sweet potatoes and nut butter.

But TAHINI is a yes so you better believe I’ve been getting creative with this sesame spread, starting with my morning matcha.

I think I actually prefer this version of matcha to my tried and true matcha latte (made creamy with coconut milk or coconut butter). The tahini adds a distinct flavor that I love!

Side note: The flavor and texture of tahini, like many nut and seed butters, differs greatly across brands. Here are a few of my favorites: Soom Foods, Trader Joe’s, 365 Brand and Seed + Mill.

Tahini Matcha Latte - Emily Nachazel.JPG

Tahini Matcha Latte

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp tahini

  • 1 tsp coconut oil

  • 1 tsp matcha (my favorite brand is Matchaful)

  • 1 scoop collagen peptides

  • Sprinkle of cinnamon

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

  • Pinch sea salt

  • Optional: 1 pitted date or honey for sweetness (omit if you’re on a SIBO or low FODMAP plan)

Directions:

  1. Blend all ingredients with 1 1/2 - 2 cups hot (not boiled) water in your high speed blender until frothy! Enjoy!