DIY Spa and Beauty Recipes

After walking 10 miles a day in Spain this summer, I realized that my skin needed a little TLC. I love making my own beauty products with essential oils because  (1) it saves money, (2) they are chemical-free, and (3) they smell great! I always seem to make a Lemon Body Scrub or a Coconut Lime Scrub, but I wanted to switch it up a bit. These DIY spa and skin care recipes are perfect for your summer beauty regime!

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Towel and beach slippers on wood..

  1. Summer dries out my lips! Citizens of Beauty created this DIY Lemon Drop Lip Scrub that is sure to keep your lips moisturized, soft, and smooth for summer. DIY-lemon-drop-lip-scrub.jpg
  2. Cambria Estate Vineyard & Winery posted this thick luscious Homemade Lavender Whipped Body Butter recipe. Why not have a glass of their wine and relax with a little Young Living Lavender on a nice summer night?! Homemade-Lavender-Whipped-Body-Butter_Hero
  3. Mom Foodie makes these fancy Big Orange Crush Bath Bombs. They are a perfect way to relax in the tub with orange essential oil at night after a long day!Orange-Crush-Bath-Bombs.jpg
  4. Feel like you are constantly slathering sunscreen on your face all summer and clogging your pores? The Frugal Farm Wife created a Baking Soda Face Wash recipe that features Young Living Frankincense Essential Oil; this wash is a gentle way to exfoliate your face. IMG_4340-700x467
  5. Does your skin need an invigorating boost? Check out this gorgeous Whipped Grapefruit Mint Sugar Scrub by The Kitchen McCabe. Not only does it smell fresh, but also makes your skin feel renewed and refreshed!whipped-Grapefruit-Peppermint-Body-Scrub-2-602x894.jpg

IF YOU WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT ESSENTIAL OILS, THEN I INVITE YOU TO …

  1. Read Young Living’s Seed To Seal
  2. Join Young Living as a Customer or Distributor
  3. Email me any questions you may have.
  4. Join my private FaceBook Support Group (customers only).

P.S. You can really email me, and I will respond 🙂

susanellenlogoweb

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Fennel and Pear Tofu Scramble (Vegan & Gluten Free)

This is my fourth dish in my tofu scramble series. I like pushing flavor combinations; throwing things together that I would never think would work, but then they taste great! I had fennel in my fridge, and needed to use it up. The fennel adds a light bright taste, and balances well with the sweet pear and the warm allspice. This is a great dish when you want something healthy and quick to eat in the morning.

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Fennel Pear Scramble

Fennel and Pear Tofu Scramble (Vegan & Gluten Free)

  • Servings: 2-3
  • Time: 10
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

This vegan and gluten-free tofu scramble features flavors of fennel, pear, shallots, allspice and maple syrup.


Credit: My Real Dish

Tips: (1) Drain the tofu before using it. (2) Extra firm tofu works best if you want chunks like a stir-fry, but the softer tofu, creates more of a soft scrambled egg consistency. However, the softer tofu has a tendency to stick to the pan, requires more oil, and is more wet.

Ingredients

  • 1 fennel bulb
  • 1 small pear
  • 1 large shallot
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 10 oz tofu (I used House Foods Organic Super Firm)


Directions

  1. Wash fennel and pear (I used Thieves Fruit & Veggie Spray).
  2. Chop fennel bulb, shallot, and pear.
  3. Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium high heat.
  4. Sauté fennel and shallot until slightly tender (~5 minutes).
  5. Drain tofu, slice it in the container with a knife, and add it to the pan.
  6. Continue to sauté until the fennel and shallot are tender, but not mushy (~ 2 – 3 minutes).
  7. Turn on heat.
  8. Add chopped pear, almonds, allspice, maple syrup and stir until pear is warm.
  9. Salt and pepper to taste.
  10. Serve and enjoy!


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Check out the first tofu scramble recipe here: Asparagus and Artichoke Tofu Scramble, the second here: Mediterranean Tofu Scramble (Vegan & Gluten Free),  and the third here: Blackberry Fig Tofu Scramble.

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Zucchini & Summer Squash Pasta Salad

This summer we’ve been grilling with friends a lot. Since I haven’t been eating meat, I’ve been experimenting with veggie dishes to bring to parties. I’ve been loving tons of fresh zucchini, summer squash, and tomatoes. Look how pretty it looks!

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This vegan gluten-free dish is sure to be a hit with any group! It also is a great way to use fresh veggies from your garden or a local farmer’s market!

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Zuchinni Pasta Salad

Zucchini & Summer Squash Pasta Salad

  • Servings: 15
  • Time: 25
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

This gluten-free and vegan pasta dish is easy, quick, and loaded with veggies and chickpeas for protein.

Tips: (1) Feel free to substitute fresh, dried, or even young living essential oils in the recipe. I’ve provided the options. I talk about my dish with essential oils here in this veggie pasta sauce post. I’m available to help you use them in and out of the kitchen. You can order them here(2) Never overcook gluten-free noodles because it makes them mushy. Add a little olive oil to the water with gluten-free noodles (this keeps them from sticking), stir them, and boil them for the minimum time recommended. With this recipe strain them, and rinse them with cold water.

Ingredients

  • 1 zucchini 
  • 1 summer squash
  • 1 large sweet yellow onion
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • parsley (1 tablespoon dried or 3 tablespoons fresh)
  • basil (1 tablespoon dried, or 3 tablespoons fresh, or 6 tiny drops of Basil Young Living Essential Oil)
  • oregano (2 tablespoons dried, 6 tablespoons fresh, 12 tiny drops of Oregano Young Living Essential Oil)
  • 1 can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
  • 8 oz chopped mushrooms
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes (I used cherry heirloom tomatoes)
  • 1 bell pepper (I used orange to add color)
  • 1 teaspoon real salt
  • 5 grinds on pepper grinder
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil + 3 tablespoons
  • 1 bag gluten-free noodles (I used a spiral quinoa noodle because they are more firm)

Directions

  1. Start a pot of water to boil on the stove with a little salt for your noodles. Be prepared to start the noodles when the water is ready.
  2. Wash vegetables (I used Thieves Fruit and Veggie Spray).
  3. Slice zucchini, summer squash, tomatoes, and mushrooms. Chop bell pepper and fresh herbs (if desired). Mince garlic and onion.
  4. Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan.
  5. Sauté bell pepper, zucchini, summer squash, garlic, and onion for ~3 minutes.
  6. Drain and rinse your chickpeas
  7. Add mushrooms and herbs, salt, and pepper. Continue to sauté for ~3 more minutes until veggies are almost tender.
  8. Add chickpeas and tomatoes to the pot, along with 1/2 cup olive oil, and red wine vinegar. Sauté for 1 minute more.
  9. Stir in the cooked gluten-free noodles.
  10. Serve cold.

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I brought it to a BBQ.IMG_8135.JPG

susanellenlogoweb

S’mores Cake (Gluten-free & Vegan)

A couple of weeks ago, I made Graham Crackers that were not only delicious, but vegan, oat-free, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free. We ate them up! Then, my kids asked for S’mores, and we had to make more. So we decided to make a gluten-free and vegan S’mores Cake; really the “cake” is just baked s’mores. I purchased Dandies at Fresh Thyme; they are vegan with no corn syrup or gelatin. They do have cane sugar though, so I minimized the sugar in the rest of recipe. I believe in a 90% healthy philosophy! I try to be as healthy as possible, and then I can indulge in desserts.IMG_0196.jpg

I used Lily’s Premium Baking Bars that are sweetened with stevia. It was the perfect balance with the sweet DandiesIMG_0198.jpg

Layer the Graham Crackers in a 9 X 13 baking pan.

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Put 1 1/2 bags of Dandies on their side.IMG_0201

Layer with the Lily’s Premium Baking BarsIMG_0202.jpg

Top with a layer of Graham Crackers.

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Slice Dandies in half.

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Place them on top of the Graham Crackers.

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Smash a bar of Lily’s Premium Baking Bar.

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Sprinkle the pieces on top of the DandiesIMG_0213.jpg

Bake.

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s'mores cake

S'mores Cake (Gluten-free & Vegan)

  • Servings: 12
  • Time: 30
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

This gluten-free, oat-free, and vegan s'mores cake is a pan of yummy baked s'mores. It's an easy way to enjoy gooey chocolate s'mores without a bonfire.

Tips: This s’mores cake may be made with any graham crackers, chocolate bars, or marshmallows. Personally, I use the (1) Lily’s Baking Bars to reduce sugar, (2) the Dandies because they are vegan and healthier, and (3) my graham cracker recipe because of my daughter’s oat and wheat intolerance. Also, leftovers are best warmed for 30 seconds in a microwave before serving.

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Layer the Graham Crackers in a 9 X 13 baking pan. Break when necessary to fit the plan.
  3. Evenly place marshmallows (~1 1/2 bags) of Dandies on their side.
  4. Layer the top with Lily’s Premium Baking Bars.
  5. Top with a layer of Graham Crackers.
  6. Slice Dandies in half.
  7. Place them on top of the Graham Crackers.
  8. Smash a bar of Lily’s Premium Baking Bar to pieces.
  9. Sprinkle evenly the pieces on top of the Dandies.
  10. Bake at 350 degrees for ~9 – 11 minutes. The tops of the Dandies should be slightly brown.
  11. Serve and enjoy!

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susanellenlogoweb

Red, White, & Blue Cake (Vegan & Gluten-free)

This cake is vegan, gluten-free, refined-sugar free, beautiful, and is a crowd pleaser at a 4th of July party with its patriotic theme. No one else at the party was vegan or gluten-free, and everyone enjoyed it. This is not a light and fluffly cake, but a dense fruit one. The fruit gives it sweetness. Keep it refrigerated after icing in order to keep the texture and whipped-topping firm.

I was a little disappointed with the lack of color that came from the cake when I cooked it. I was hoping for red and blue cakes! I used Watkins Food Coloing (100% natural vegetable juices and spices). I guess you have to use good old-fashion food-dyes to get the color you want, not the healthier vegetable based ones and fruit.

So here’s my take on it – the cake is a little labor intensive with washing the containers to make the red and blue cake, but healthy and yummy. That said, I have recreated it easily with my Perfect Paleo Brownies in a snap; equally beautiful and so much less time-consuming. The brownies make it a little sweeter, and personally I’m a huge chocolate lover. However, both are great – it’s just a matter of how much time you have!

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4th of July Pinterest

Red, White, & Blue Cake (Vegan & Gluten-free)

  • Servings: 12
  • Time: 2hr 30mins
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

A patriotic inspired cake with coconut whipped topping, blueberries, and strawberries. It is gluten-free, refined sugar-free, and vegan.

Credit: myrealdish.com

Ingredients

Whipped Topping

Cake

  • 2 cups coconut sugar
  • 2 sticks of vegan butter (I used Earth Balance Soy Free)
  • Egg replacer for 2 eggs (3 teaspoons Ener-G + 4 tablespoons warm water)
  • 2 tablespoons (1 mini-bottle) of gluten-free blue food coloring (vegetable based)
  • 2 tablespoons (1 mini-bottle) of gluten-free red food coloring (vegetable based)
  • 2 1/2 cups Namaste Gluten Free Perfect Flour Blend 
  • 1 teaspoon salt (I used Redmond Real Salt)
  • 1 cup almond milk (I used Unsweetened Original Almond Breeze)
  • 1 teaspoon gluten-free vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 ¼ cup blueberries
  • 3/4 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 cup frozen cherries

Decoration

  • 1 pint blueberries
  • 1 pint strawberries

Directions

  1. Heat water in a tea kettle for egg replacer
  2. Purée with a Vitamix or high-powered blender blueberries (I used fresh), and set aside in a bowl. Rinse out the Vitamix or blender.
  3. Purée frozen cherries and set aside.
  4. Heat oven to 350 degrees
  5. Prepare egg replacer (combine 3 teaspoons Ener-G and 4 tablespoons warm water)
  6. Cream coconut sugar and vegan butter in a mixer. Slowly add the egg replacer continuously until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  7. Combine Namaste Gluten Free Perfect Flour Blend and Redmond Real Salt together in a separate bowl.
  8. Add dry mixture to the coconut sugar and vegan butter mixture alternating with the Unsweetened Original Almond Breeze.
  9. Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
  10. Grease two 8-inch cake pans. Line bottom of cake pans with fitted parchment paper rounds and grease top of parchment paper.
  11. Pour half of the batter to a separate bowl and set aside.
  12. In a smaller bowl mix 3/4 tablespoon cocoa powder and blue food coloring together (mine didn’t mix throughly) add to the mixer bowl of cake batter. Add puréed blueberries and mix with mixer.
  13. Combine 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda and 1/2 tablespoon vinegar in a smaller bowl, then add to the blue cake mixture. Scrape the sides of the bowl and mix one last time.
  14. Add blue cake mixture to one 8-inch cake pan.
  15. Begin the second half of the cake with cherries and red food coloring. Add the container of red food coloring to the mixer bowl of cake batter along with puréed cherries and mix with mixer.
  16. Combine 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda and 1/2 tablespoon vinegar in a smaller bowl, then add to the blue cake mixture. Scrape the sides of the bowl and mix one last time.
  17. Pour the red cake batter into the 2nd 8-inch cake pan.
  18. Bake for 30 – 40 minutes (My red cherry cake took 30 minutes and the blueberry one took 40 minutes. Check often that the toothpick comes clean in the middle).
  19. Set cakes on the wire rack to cool completely ~45 minutes.
  20. Wash and dry strawberries and blueberries (I use Thieves Fruit and Veggie Soak because it cleans well, it’s natural and chemical-free; buy it here).
  21. Slice strawberries. It’s best to select berries of similar sizes to make them fit in the design.
  22. After cake cools, prepare coconut cream topping. Keep coconut milk cans in the fridge until you are ready to make the topping. Prepare it immediately before “icing” the cake.
  23. Scoop out the thick cream from the coconut cream or milk. Leaving the remaining water below.
  24. Add the guar gum, vanilla, and Powdered Xylitol. Mix on high-speed. Slowly add coconut water from the can, 1 tablespoon at a time, to the cream as it whips until it is light and fluffy.
  25. Carefully remove one cake from the cake pan, and place it on a cake stand or large serving platter.
  26. Spread coconut cream with a rubber scraper on the top of the cake.
  27. Remove the other cake from the cake pan, placing it on top of the coconut whipped cream.
  28. Spread the coconut whipped topping on the top and sides of the cake until it is fully covered and appears to be “iced”.
  29. Decorate the top of your cake with blueberries and strawberries. I easily created the blueberry design by connecting these two lines to a point with blueberries and symmetrically filling them in.
  30. Slice and serve.

I served mine by the pool!

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Happy 4th of July!

susanellenlogoweb

Graham Crackers (Vegan, Oat-Free & Gluten-Free)

My daughter has a sensitivity to oats. When she was little she had reflux and would explode with eczema whenever she was exposed to them, but I didn’t know what was causing it until we had her blood tested. Before I was desperate enough to give her a blood test, I was slathering her with Aveno Baby Lotion and giving her oatmeal baths to sooth her eczema, only to make it worse. Recently, I tried to test the sensitivity with a couple servings of gluten-free oats, and she seemed to do okay. However, when she thought she was over the intolerance, she ate a bowl of oatmeal and a granola bar in one day; then, she got a huge tummy ache. I’m remaining positive. At least we are progressing beyond the eczema.

This oat intolerance, along with her sensitivity to wheat, makes it very difficult to find graham crackers at the store. Schar makes a wheat-free and oat-free graham cracker, but it has honey – so it’s not vegan. I’ve searched for vegan and gluten-free graham crackers, and I haven’t found any, so I decided to make my own. My daughter says that mine taste as good as the Schar ones! That’s a huge gluten-free vegan win, because mine are also refined sugar-free! Healthy and tasty!

Here’s what you do. Combine the dry ingredients…

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Slice the vegan butter into little chunks...IMG_0232.jpg

Cut-in vegan butter...IMG_0233.jpg

Stir in the wet ingredients until it begins to clump...IMG_0234.jpg

Form dough into a ball...IMG_0235.jpg

Roll dough over parchment paper, score it, and decorate it with a fork…IMG_0236.jpg

Bake, divide, and devour.IMG_0243.jpg

Make sure to save some graham crackers for s'mores or a pie crust. I'll post the recipe soon for this s'mores cake that I made with vegan marshmallows and dark chocolate (see below). It was delicious and easy!

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  • Servings: 20
  • Time: 40
  • Print

Easy gluten-free, oat-free, refined sugar-free, and vegan homemade graham crackers.

Tips: Make sure your gluten-free flour blend has xanthan gum, if not you will need to add 1/4 teaspoon. I really like the Namaste Gluten Free Perfect Flour Blend, because I never have to add anything extra to the flour and it rises very well. It contains sweet brown rice flour, tapioca starch, brown rice flour, arrowroot powder, sorghum flour, and xanthan gum.

Ingredients

  • 2 1/4  gluten-free flour (I used Namaste Gluten Free Perfect Flour Blend)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (I used Redmond Real Salt)
  • 8 tablespoons vegan butter (I used Earth Balance Soy Free)
  • 3 tablespoons cold water
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon gluten-free pure vanilla extract


Directions

  1. Combine gluten-free flour, coconut sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and Redmond Real Salt in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Slice vegan butter into tablespoons (you can do even smaller pieces if you prefer).
  3. Using a pastry cutter or two knives, cut-in vegan butter one tablespoon at a time into the bowl until it resembles the texture of cornmeal. You also could do this easily with a food processor.
  4. Add cold water, maple syrup, and vanilla; continue to stir until dough starts to form large clumps. If dough is too dry, add more cold water one tablespoon at a time.
  5. Heat oven to 325.
  6. Lay out parchment paper.
  7. Spray lightly with non-stick cooking spray.
  8. Gather dough into a large ball and divide in half.
  9. Lightly flour the rolling-pin  (I used Namaste Gluten Free Perfect Flour Blend because it was out already).
  10. Roll half of the dough into a rectangle to ~1/8″ thick.
  11. Score dough with a pizza cutter, knife, or multi-purpose scraper and chopper (I used this OXO Multi-purpose Scraper & Chopper) into desired shapes. I chose 2” x 2” squares, and used the OXO Multi-purpose Scraper & Chopper to measure easily with the measurements on the blade.
  12. Prick dough all over with a fork or toothpick.
  13. Repeat with the other half.
  14. Transfer the two parchment paper sheets to cookie sheets, and bake for 20 – 23 minutes or until golden brown.
  15. Let graham crackers cool for 5 minutes.
  16. Separate and eat.


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susanellenlogoweb

Blackberry Fig Tofu Scramble (Vegan & Gluten Free)

This Blackberry & Fig Tofu Scramble is the third tofu scramble in my series and is loaded in vitamins and minerals. Blackberries are a good source of vitamins A and C, iron, calcium, and dietary fiber. Figs are high in fiber and are a good source of magnesium, manganese, calcium, copper, potassium, vitamin K and vitamins B6. Not only is this scramble good for you, but it’s also easy, and delicious with earthy, deep, and sweet flavors. It’s great when you want something sweet to eat, but still want to be healthy.

blackberry & fig Scramble

Blackberry and Fig Tofu Scramble (Vegan & Gluten Free)

  • Servings: 2-3
  • Time: 10
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

This vegan and gluten-free tofu scramble is healthy, sweet, and has a rich savory taste.


Credit: My Real Dish

Tips: (1) Drain the tofu before using it. (2) Extra firm tofu works best if you want chunks like a stir-fry, but the softer tofu, creates more of a soft scrambled egg consistency. However, the softer tofu has a tendency to stick to the pan, requires more oil, and is more wet.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup figs (sliced in half)
  • 1 cup blackberries
  • 10 oz of extra firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 shallot (chopped)
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)


Directions

  1. Chop the shallot, mince the garlic, and slice the figs in half
  2. Drain juice from tofu, and slice it into cubes while it’s still in the container
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil to medium high heat
  4. Sauté the shallots and garlic for one minute until slightly translucent
  5. Add the tofu, and continue to sauté for another minute
  6. Add the figs and balsamic vinegar, and continue to sauté for 2 minutes
  7. Add the blackberries, and sauté the dish until the blackberries are just slightly warm
  8. Plate and serve


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Check out my first recipe here: Asparagus and Artichoke Tofu Scramble, and the second here: Mediterranean Tofu Scramble (Vegan & Gluten Free).

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