Ice “Cream”

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream…Non-Dairy!

The non-dairy ice cream you can purchase at the grocery is delicious, however, sometimes when you need a quick ice cream without going to the store, these should work for you, especially if you keep frozen bananas in the freezer!!

(Pictures to be posted at a later date)

Strawberry-Raspberry (Sorbet-like)

4 bananas, frozen in chunks

3 small containers of raspberries, rinsed & well-drained

2 containers of strawberries, rinsed, well-drained with stems removed & diced

honey (or other sweetener), approximately 1-3 tablespoons

salt – pinch


Rinse fruit; chop strawberries.  Layer strawberry chunks and raspberries over parchment paper on a cookie sheet & freeze until solid.

Layer one container of raspberries & half of one container of strawberries on parchment paper, cover with another piece & freeze until just about frozen through (1-2 hours).

Blend one container of raspberries until smooth; push through a mesh strainer removing the seeds; repeat with one container of strawberries; set strained puree aside in refrigerator if not using right away.

Put banana chunks in high power blender & blend until just about smooth; add in puree & blend until smooth.

Add honey & salt & blend again until smooth; pour into bowl & fold in frozen berries.

Cover & return to freezer until frozen through (overnight).


S’mores (soft-serve like)

1-2 frozen bananas

1 jar marshmallow creme

2 waffle cones, crushed into large pieces or 1 1/2 – 2 cups golden grams

1/2 – 1 cups mini chocolate chips (I like Good Life)


Blend bananas in blender until just about smooth.

Add in marshmallow creme & blend again until smooth.

Fold in Golden Graham’s and chocolate chips; pour into bowl and freeze until hardened.




Caramel Butter Rum

2 frozen bananas, blended until smooth

3/4 c white granulated sugar

2 tablespoons honey (or choice of sweetener)

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon imitation butter extract (I used Watkins – I find it at Wal-Mart)

1 teaspoon imitation caramel extract

1/2 teaspoon imitation rum extract


Over medium low heat cook sugar in saucepan; watch carefully, this will burn very quickly once sugar has started to turn.  Once all the sugar has been dissolved & is browned, stir & quickly add to the banana mixture.

While sugar is cooking, combine blended bananas, honey & extracts and blend until smooth.

Once sugar is ready, add to bananas.  Once the sugar hits the cold banana mixture, it will harden up solid; just whirl in blender until broke up into small chunks & blended well into banana mixture.  Place in bowls & freeze until hardened.



I hope you enjoy these flavors as much I enjoyed creating them.

What flavors do you think you’d like to try; comment & let me know.

Peanut Butter Cups (and I made it one year!!)

If you didn’t see last weeks post, I told the story of my non-dairy journey (see it here) & in that article I noted that this week is a celebration week ~ I have made it one year without an allergy attack.  In celebration I am sharing this recipe.

Like most of my other recipes I created it because I couldn’t have the “regular” version.  I love peanut butter cups and they were some of the first foods I craved just after I had to go non-dairy…so, I searched out several recipes and read up on the process of how others make their homemade peanut butter cups & came up with this recipe ~ so yummy!!

I dare you to eat just one….


Peanut Butter Cups

Makes approximately 30 cups (1.25 inch dia. cups)

2 cups of non-dairy chocolate chips (I have used both Chocolate Dream & The Good Life brand; both work great)

2 tablespoons butter flavored Crisco

Pinch (or a grind or two) of salt

1/4 cup Earth Balance (half of a stick)

1/2 cup peanut butter (I use Adams Natural Creamy)

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 – 1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup peanuts, ground up (I use a coffee grinder; stop just before you have peanut butter)


In the bottom of a double boiler, bring water to a rolling boil; reduce heat to low.


To the top portion of the double boiler, add chocolate chips & Crisco and stir until smooth; add in salt.  (If your stove runs too hot, offset the double boiler a bit to keep the chocolate from burning).



add in salt
add in salt


Offset to keep from burning
Offset to keep from burning

Using mini baking cups (1.25 inch dia.) place about a teaspoon of melted chocolate in the bottom of a cup.  Using the back of a spoon, smooth the chocolate up the sides of the cup, thoroughly coating the sides; make sure the bottom is also covered with chocolate; set aside & repeat with the remaining cups. (Note:  A mini muffin pan works best for this part).  Put chocolate cups in refrigerator until completely hardened, about 30 minutes.  Keep double boiler simmering to keep remaining chocolate smooth (make sure heat is on the lowest setting so chocolate doesn’t burn).



For the peanut butter middle, combine Earth Balance and peanut butter; cook over medium heat 4-6 minutes, stirring occasionally (until EB is completely melted & mixed in).  Stir in powdered sugar (use about 1/2 cup less for not so sweet, use about 1/2 cup more for a sweeter cup); stirring constantly.  Set aside and cool; once cooled, stir in ground peanuts & place in refrigerator & cool completely – about 30 minutes (this is important so that the peanut butter mixture it doesn’t melt the hardened chocolate cups).



Once the cups & peanut butter mixture are both cold, place 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of peanut butter mixture into each cup (using small cookie scoop or two spoons ~ both work great).  Once cups are filled with the peanut butter, top with about 1/2 teaspoon of chocolate & smooth to edges of cup; repeat with remaining cups.  Cool again in refrigerator about 30 minutes until completely hardened.  Store in refrigerator.







  • substitute out your favorite nut butter & ground nuts

Did you notice that there are two different stoves & the counter tops are different?  If so, you are very observant…I made this recipe twice – once at my home (white stove; multi colored counters; pb paper cups were white) & once at my mom’s house (black stove & green counters with purple pb paper cups) to make sure the recipe was perfect (or maybe I just wanted to eat PB cups!).

Did you try these?  Leave a comment & let me know how you liked the recipe.

Anniversary ~ 1 Year ~ August 23

One week from today, on August 23 it will be one year since my life changed overnight.  The first three weeks were the hardest; I felt like my world was off-balance, and it was to some degree.  I was terrified to eat anything; I didn’t know what I would react to.  Around the middle of September last year, I discovered non-dairy cheese and ice cream.  It was a little thing, and at the same time a huge discovery.  I again felt “normal”; by normal I mean that I didn’t feel like I was going to miss out on everything.  As the months went on, I began to experiment with non-dairy foods and cooking; I began to move past my fear of eating.

For the obvious reason, I still have to be very careful about what I eat.  In the area that I live in there are very few restaurants that I am able to eat at, but I have found a few favorites; one of which I really never wanted to try until I found that they actually had food I could eat.  Eating out was & is one of the scarier thinks about being non-dairy.  I can’t just “go out” without knowing where we are going & having a few days to find out if they offer dairy-free food choices.  Two of the restaurants are BJ’s & Black Bear Diner.  Both restaurants, in addition to having menu items that I can eat, have shown great service when I tell the servers that I am dairy free/allergic & care needs to be taken.  I highly recommend both of those restaurants!

Another aspect of being dairy-free is that it doesn’t only affect me.  My family, my friends & co-workers ~ it affects all of them too.  When I am somewhere, besides my home, planning has to go into everything that is fixed.  I just have to say that I am greatly blessed with my family & friends.  The first few months my mom made several desserts out of a World War II cookbook for me; at work for my birthday a couple of months ago, my co-workers, instead of cake (which is usual) served a fruit salad instead (it was so yummy & much better, in my opinion).  Thanksgiving last year was quite the challenge, not just because I am dairy-free but because in our huge family (a “small year” consists of around 35-50 people on average; a “large year” about twice that much…) we have multiple food issues ~ my sister-in-law & her mother are vegetarian & her mother and one of my cousins are gluten-free; my SIL’s dad is severely allergic to nuts and then there is my dairy free.

One solution that I have come up with is that when I go somewhere, I usually just take my own prepared food so it is not such a burden on my family & friends.  This weekend is another such time.  When this posts, I will be getting ready to come home from a camping trip on the coast (west coast, northern California…).  We are having our meals “potluck” due to all of the same food issues as Thanksgiving, I have planned just to make sure that I have some extra chicken & ground beef (for hamburgers), in addition to the food I’m taking to share (which is non-dairy) so that if nothing else is available, I will have food I can fix.

Throughout this journey so far I have tried to think about what I can still have and not what I “can’t” have anymore.  I’ve accepted it (didn’t have much of a choice) & have actually enjoyed experimenting a bit too (and sharing my experiments through this blog).  Even with “missing” cheese and milk, mostly the cheese, I did not expect to have an intense craving for cheese.  This last week has proven me wrong…I’ve been craving and missing cheese more than I though possible; at times, it has taken every bit of my strength not to just grab a handful & scarf it down.  Logically, I have to remember, not the fact that I can’t have it any more, but how much it hurts, both physically & financially with another trip to the hospital or worse.  I just keep reminding my self of that.  Physically, it takes me about 3-4 weeks for my body to adjust back from the shock it goes into; mentally, it takes about the same amount of time to move past the intense fear that comes with the attack.

My attack last August was my 2nd attack.  The first was Jan. 1, 2014.  I was at my mom & dad’s house when I started reacting, however, we still don’t know what caused that reaction ~ that one wasn’t dairy.  I have my theories of most likely a mold was the problem, but we’ll never know.  I had one other attack between.  I had made a cake for a co-workers birthday & sat down to look at a catalog that had come in the mail; I just started reacting ~ no idea what caused that as well; my best guess again is mold.  I think that one scared me just a bit more than the others. During the January attack, I didn’t have time to panic & my brother (who is severely allergic to latex) panicked enough for both of us.  Parts of that night are gone; my mom drove me to the hospital but I don’t remember anything thing except my aunt’s children were visiting her that day (I noticed their cars in her driveway) & that I didn’t think we’d make the 4 mile trip; I thought that we’d have to stop & call 911.  My mom told me later that we pretty much hit every stoplight red.

A year ago I panicked a bit more – I live about 30 minutes from my mom & dad & since my reaction was about midnight, it took me about 15 minutes to wake them up with calling to tell them I was having a reaction.  By the time I got a hold of them I knew there wasn’t time for them to get to me.  I had to call 911.  As the time went on I did panic a bit more – I had never been in an ambulance before (thankfully); my dog was reacting to my panic & she doesn’t like sirens or strangers & I had to lock her in my bedroom; something I had never done before.  The 911 dispatcher was great; he walked me through everything.  My fiercest moment of panic was when I had to use the EpiPen.  When he said to use it, my brain seemed to just shut down ~ I couldn’t remember what to do.  He helped me in reminding me to breathe & to just punch it in.  I did finally calm down enough to use it & he stayed on the line until I could hear the ambulance outside.  A funny thing ~ the ambulance/EMTs reached me before the fire truck/fighters did.  Kudos to the EMT that was in the back with me – he put an IV in, going down the road & after all was said and done, I barely had a bruise.  I was amazed.

The moment that I knew that I was going to be fine:

In the ambulance (remember, it was in the middle of the night) on the way to the hospital when they were driving on the freeway, I knew I was feeling better when I wanted to wave at the car behind us.  I knew they could see me because the light in the ambulance was on.   At that point, I knew everything was going to be okay.

This year has been one crazy ride with no end in sight.  I’m looking forward to continue to experiment & share with you.


Do you have any tips for living dairy-free?  Were you always dairy-free, did you choose to be dairy-free or were you like me ~ one day, without much warning, had a severe allergy to dairy? Leave me a comment & let me know.


Roasted Potatoes

Are you wondering what to do with the cream of mushroom soup I posted last week?  This recipe will do…

I created the original recipe one day when I needed something to eat, and my pantry & fridge were quite bare.  I originally infused cream with onion, garlic & chipotle in adobo sauce just until hot & then strained the chunks out; then I mixed the cream with a can of condensed cream of mushroom soup and mixed it all with the potatoes & roasted them.  It was an instant hit…  I knew this was a recipe that I needed to find a non-dairy version for going forward; this is it…


Potatoes, washed & cubed (about 2 1/2 pounds – I didn’t peel my potatoes)

Cream of mushroom soup; recipe here

Hot & Smokey spice mix (1/4 cup +)


Wash & cube potatoes.


Mix hot and smokey into soup & pour over potatoes.


Roast in 350* oven for 1.5 to 2 hours.  At 1 hour, remove from oven & stir potatoes; repeat again a half and hour later.  If potatoes are done & soup is thick you are done.  If the potatoes are still a little tough, stir & bake about a half an hour more.





Have you tried this recipe?  What did you think?  Did you change anything?  Comment & let me know.

Cream of Mushroom Soup

Before I had to go dairy-free, I used cream of soups in a good deal of my cooking; cream of mushroom was my go to cream of soup.  I knew that I would need to re-create a non-dairy version to use.  This is the end result and it is so delicious!!


1/4 cup “butter” (Earth Balance [EB], Melt, coconut oil – use your preferred choice, I used EB).

3-6 cloves garlic, minced (I used 6; I like a lot of garlic…)

1 1/2 pounds mushrooms, chopped (I used button mushrooms; I plan on trying a mixture next time)

1 onion, diced

salt & pepper, to taste

1 cup beef broth (I used @ 1.5 teaspoon bouillon dissolved in 8oz water)*

4 cups chicken broth (I used gelled pan juices from a roasted chicken [@ 1-2 tbsp] to 4 c hot water])*

1 cup cashew milk (or your preferred non-dairy milk)

1/2 teaspoon thyme

2 tablespoon corn starch


(Picture steps below)

Melt butter; add garlic & mushrooms.  Cook 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add salt and pepper and onion & cook 2-3 minutes.  Add beef broth & bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until reduced, about 5 minutes.  Remove 1 cup of mushrooms & set aside.  Add chicken broth & thyme.  Blend in blender until smooth (or use immersion blender), return to pan.  Whisk in milk; adjust salt and pepper, to taste.  Add cornstarch to 1/4 c water; add a bit of hot soup to temper & return to soup; stir until thickening – 1-2 minutes.  Add in mushrooms & heat through.  Serve hot or refrigerate for another use.


chop garlic

Chop mushrooms

Gelled Chicken Pan drippings

Gelled Chicken Pan drippings

dissolve gelled pan drippings in 4 cups hot water
dissolve gelled pan drippings in 4 cups hot water

melt Earth Balance (butter substitute)

Add garlic to melted butter

add chopped mushrooms to butter & garlic



(sorry, I missed getting a picture blending the soup)
(oops, I missed getting a picture blending the soup)


*for vegetarian/vegan – use all vegetable broth.


Are there any recipes you’d use this for?  What type of mushrooms would you use?  Comment & let me know.