Organic and Thrifty

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How Long Does Pine Pollen Last?

Being a single mother has taught me to always look out for natural supplements that work both for myself and my 3-year-old son, Brandon. I have stumbled upon many supplements, but pine pollen, with its tag of ‘fountain of youth’, made a lasting impression on me. This fine dust apparently has many benefits, whether we are talking about my Brandon or the 75-year-old a few blocks down the road.

The Longevity of Pine Pollen

Raw pine pollen endures for as long as the season lasts. I will have to note here that I do not use the powder raw; I buy it off the local store as a packaged supplement. I have been told that the dust can last for years as long as it is stored right. I use clay or glass jars sealed tight and stowed away in cabinets. I have not been able to let my stash sit around for years but I’m told that it can stay fresh in these jars for as long as 36 months.

Taking Pine Pollen

There are people who take this dust raw. Others make a good old tincture out of it and sip away as you would a smoothie. I like opening up the powder capsule and pouring the pollen into my food or drink. As for the kid, I take very small amounts and incorporate it in his food such that there is hardly a change in flavor.

Benefits Observed

I hear that car owners absolutely hate the sight of pollen on their cars, and that the car washers are the main beneficiaries of this spring surge. Well, I love it because I know that pine pollen is to be loved. For me, it breathes a new life to my core after a long day of work. As for Brandon, he grows taller and healthier every day, courtesy of the avalanche of vitamins, enzymes and minerals present in this gold dust.

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Liver-Healing Foods

Liver-Healing Foods

In my practice, I talk to my clients quite a lot about the liver.   Pretty much all of our problems ends and begins with the liver.  It’s no surprise, as this organ performs over 300 metabolic processes to keep us alive each day! The word “liver” comes from the ancient English word for “life”, and it’s no wonder because the liver seems to be the key to life.  It is even able to regenerate itself given the right nutrients and circumstances!  But did you know it can take up to 2 years to fully rebuild your liver?  By sticking to the right diet and detoxification protocols, you will provide your liver the best possible circumstances in which to regenerate and renew.  And we all know the affects that stress, exogenous hormone use, poor diets, and nutrient depletion do for our livers (if you don’t, I’ll bring you up to speed in future posts!).

This article is for you to look back at when you need a reason to continue eating healthy, even if you’re not seeing the health results you hope for. It’s for when you are wondering “why am I bothering?”  So how does the Nutritional Balancing diet I customly design through NW Holistic Nutrition address the concerns of your liver?  Not only is your targeted supplement plan providing you with vital nutrients to rebuild the liver and support its detoxification processes, but the foods we recommend most (lightly cooked veggies!) contain numerous compounds that nourish the liver.

According to Dr. Ann-Louise Gittleman, “One of your liver’s most important functions, and the one most crucial to your weight loss, is breaking down everything that enters your body, from the healthiest bite of organic food to the poisonous pesticides that linger on your salad….it is your liver’s job to distinguish between the nutrients you need to absorb and the toxins that must be filtered out of your bloodstream.”  She goes on to mention that any kind of medication produces extra stress on the liver.

What are some signs of liver stress? 

*elevated liver enzymes
*depression, particularly unassociated with life events
*tendency to wake up between 1 am and 3 am
*loss of appetite
*pain under the right shoulder blade
*excessive, unexplained, or sudden bursts of anger, irritability, or rage
*hemorrhoids or varicose veins
*acne, blemishes, or itchy rashes

The list goes on, but that is a short list of the various signs of liver stress. If you have been on a what you consider a healthy diet for a while and still continue to experience these symptoms, please consider how closely you are following the recommended diet (including eating organic as much as possible)?, taking prescription drugs?, consuming caffeine and/or alcohol? Taking measures to reduce stress (including environmental toxins such as cosmetics, etc.)?   Those are the first things to self-assess.

It’s also important to keep in mind that it can take a long time for full liver regeneration to occur, and that being patient with yourself and loving to your liver is very important!

Thankfully, diet is one of the things we usually can control the easiest.  The first thing to do is to get the junk out!  Throw away the indiscretions and realize that they are hindering your body’s ability to detoxify. It’s not that I want to deprive you of your coffee or your banana, it’s that these things inhibit the body’s ability to detoxify.  Other detox “detractors” include:

  • excess fat such as hydrogenated oils, margerines, etc.
  • sugar and all of its relatives including honey, maple syrup, agave nectar, fructose, dextrose, etc.
  • artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, sucralose, and sugar alcohols
  • refined carbohydrates including white rice and products made with white flour
  • gluten
  • soy protein isolates
  • alcohol, OTC drugs, caffeine, and chocolate
  • mold as found on ripe tropical fruits such as mangos, bananas, and melons.

All of the above foods either lower enzyme activity during phase 1 and phase 2 detox (thus interrupting the liver’s ability to transform toxins into nontoxic metabolites) or they contribute to decreased absorption of the nutrients your liver needs in order to do its job.

So what are the best foods for loving your liver?

Group 1: The Crucifers: Strive to eat at least one large cooked serving of these foods each day:

Cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, or broccoli sprouts

Group 2: Leafy Greens: Strive to eat at least one large cooked serving of these very nutritious foods per day:

Kale, watercress, chard, beet greens, collards, escarole, dandelion, or mustard greens

Group 3: Sulfur-Rich Foods:  Strive for at least one serving of each per day:

garlic (at least 1 clove), onions (1/2 cup cooked), eggs (2 per day), daikon radish (1/4 cup sliced)

Group 4: The Liver Healers:  Strive to include at least 1 serving of these foods per day:

Artichoke (1 small or 4 hearts, cooked), asparagus (1/2 cup cooked), beets (1/2 cup cooked), celery (2 medium stalks), dandelion root tea (1-2 cups), a good-quality whey (I can only recommend one commercial brand, and that is the Fat Flush whey because it is 100% grass-fed and low-temperature dried), and Lewis Labs nutritional yeast powder (1-2 teaspoons).

Group 5: Foods Super-Rich In Nutrients: Strive to include it at least every second day:

Chia seeds (15-20 g per day). Now, chia seeds have a great deal of benefits and is easy to include in your diet, why everyone should try to do so, spinach (a bowl a day), wheatgrass (1 ounce every second day)

Slowfoodnation writes about chia seeds and has a review of this aztec superfood. Other fabulous foods for the liver include flesh protein from sardines (skin and bones and all are the absolute best, and canned is fine), grass-fed beef, lamb, vension, chicken, or turkey, and organic, raw, grass-fed dairy.

Keeping a food journal to track which liver-loving foods you are eating can be very helpful as well.  Your weekly shopping list can even be broken up into the groups of foods mentioned above!If you would like some help in creating a personalized meal plans that include the therapeutic, liver-healing foods listed above that are also kid-friendly, I offer personalized meal planning services that fit your life!  Please inquire by writing to me at carriethienes  com.

We all have times when we stray away from motivation to keep our diets “clean”, particularly around holidays when temptations abound.  The good news is that your body is always ready to continue its work when you are!  So if you are feeling a bit “sluggish”, it might be a sign that your liver needs a little more attention and intention!   Besides, what could be more organic and thrifty than taking care of the most important organ in your body?  I see it every day in my practice: healthy livers, healthy bodies!

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What To Feed Your Baby Besides Breastmilk

What To Feed Your Baby Besides Breastmilk

What to Feed Your Baby (Besides Breastmilk!)

You want to feed your baby the best.  We all do.  As they grow older and begin to eat solids, how can we give them the best start possible with whole foods?   If we take a look at what babies around the world, in traditional cultures are fed, we find that nutrient density is key.  If we take a look at what is for sale on the “baby food” aisle of the grocery store, we see that sugar, white flour, and cheap processed foods abound.  This is conventional wisdom, but is this the best start for babies?

In my experience as a nutritional therapist (and in my own experience as a mother) I have seen overwhelming clinical evidence to support the hypothesis that the diets we begin with set the stage for our health for the rest of our lives.  There is one common thread among all of my most chronically ill clients.  They were all fed formula as children, and started on first foods that were nutrient depleted, which set the stage for all kinds of metabolism problems throughout the childhood and teen years.

Now, I will be the first to tell you that just because you cannot breastfeed, it doesn’t mean you can’t undo the damage caused by formula.  First of all, you can switch your baby from commercial formula to a homemade raw goat’s milk formula that is highly nutritious, easier to digest, and full of live probiotics and enzymes that the body needs (of which commercial formula is devoid).  You can read about my son’s amazing story with raw goat’s milk formula.  I plan to blog more about the goat’s milk formula and FAQs related to that very soon, as I get several e-mails a week related to that!

If circumstances prevent you from making your own formula, that’s okay too.  My daughter (who is older than Jonathan) was on commercial formula for a year and unfortunately I didn’t know any other alternative at the time.  While we did have to really do a lot of work to reverse the effects on her digestive system, (thank you LORD for the GAPS diet and Nutritional Balancing), after 5 years we are finally seeing some really great results and improvements.   So there is ALWAYS hope, and kids can turn around fast.  But I believe that the window of time is critical because once puberty and adolescence hits, the nutritional deficiencies can really begin to manifest.

So, what can one do right now to begin to nourish the body and get off to a great start, regardless of whether you were able to give your child commercial formula, homemade, or breastmilk?

First of all, it’s vitally important to understand that all children are born fast oxidizers.  The oxidation rate explains the metabolism, and since babies are growing so fast, they demand lots of fats in the diet.  Breastmilk (ideally, although not all breastmilk is the same quality) has the ideal proportion of fats, carbohydrates, and protein.  In an ideal world, if we could breastfeed, we would keep kids on breastmilk for as long as possible (up to 3 years or more) since it is the perfect food, and it changes and adjusts to perfectly suit the child.  If you can do this, that is GREAT.  Do whatever you can to nurse as long as possible.

Unfortunately, for many of you who find your way to my blog, you were unable to breastfeed for very long if at all, and so this is simply not an option.  And I totally understand and grieve with you about this.  But God was able to turn my grief of not being able to fully breastfeed my kids into a passion.  He lead me down a path that showed me that yes, you CAN nourish your children, NO MATTER WHAT!!!  But the reality is, we need to be serious about working against a nutritional deficit because, let’s face it, breastmilk is best.  But I’m here to tell you that you CAN have vibrantly healthy children who have not been able to be fully breastfeed!  My kids are living proof!  (And obviously, there is more to nourishment than food.  Your love, your intention, and the low-stress environment you can create for your children goes a LONG way towards their healing and nourishment!)

Before we go further, I want to demystify the “Nourishing My Kids is Too Expensive” excuse.  I want to encourage you to be creative and to be a good steward of your finances, and stewardship means first and formost, providing your children and family with nourishing foods.  Sacrifices do need to be made for this to happen.  Americans pay the smallest percentage of their income on food.  Around the world, many people live to eat.  If you think about it, the earliest Nomads and Native peoples of every culture built their lives around nourishment.  That doesn’t mean you “worship your stomach” or make an “idol out of food”.  God is the giver of all good things.  Food is one of those things.  Sacrificing–whatever that means for you, whether it’s growing more of your own food, or spending more money on organic produce or raw milk and living with a smaller house or less of a wardrobe– is a gift of love for your family. That is what life is all about.  Sacrifical love.  We offer these things on the alter of our lives.

Obviously we can take this too far and we can be tempted to make an idol out of food.  But nourishing our children and families doesn’t have to be expensive.

{Forgive me as I switch gears again.}

Understanding your babies metabolism will help you be guided towards the right choices.

Obviously babies are growing and developing at a rapid rate and need food throughout the day.  AGAIN, I will state clearly that breastmilk is best and ideally all that is needed for the first 2 years of life, IDEALLY.  So my recommendations here are to augment a diet that consists mainly of breastmilk OR a quality homemade formula or simply raw milk.

{Ok, I need to digress again real quick:}

Why do I emphasize raw milk so much?  Pastuerized milk is basically not even a food, in my opinion.  Here are the top 3 reasons why not to even bother with it:

1) Pasteurization denatures the proteins making them unrecognizable to the body and therefore potentially allergy-producing.

2) Homogenization and pasteurization oxidizes the fats making them very unhealthy.

3) Pasteurization kills the live probiotics and enzymes (such as lactase) that allows the body to self-digest the proteins and sugars in the milk, causing more stress on the body.

There are other reasons, of course, like the Vitamin A Palmitate and Vitmin D2 that is added to the milk.  The problems with pasteurization are beyond the scope of this article. But you can read all about the TRUTH about raw milk on the Real Milk website.

Bottom line? If you want to feed your children milk, look into finding a good raw source.  Most all raw dairy farms are small scale operations, and they take utmost care because they know their customers (who all buy farm-direct) will trace any problems directly back to them.  Farmers know they have an obligation to use the cleanest practices for their customers.  All the farmers that I know (and I do know a few!) drink the milk themselves.  Never buy from a farmer who won’t drink his own milk raw!  Our family has been drinking raw milk for over 3 years now and there has never been a single problem in terms of “food poisoning”.  I even purchased my own milking goats last spring because I realized that it would be more economical for me (and a friend who I partnered with) to just milk our own, and it’s not that difficult to keep it clean and sanitary.  So I don’t merely say this as a customer. I say this as a dairy goat “farmer” myself!!!!

{OK, step off soapbox}

So with breastmilk or a good raw milk formula as a foundation, how do we augment an older baby/toddler’s diet?

When to start solid foods really varies based on the individual baby.  A good rule of thumb is that when you sense your older baby (6 months +) just needs something “more” shortly after a feeding, then it might be time to introduce solid foods, if well tolerated.

1. First of all, with FAT.  Here are some great finger foods you can provide for your child:

*Chunks of grass-fed butter cut into little bit sized pieces. (Kerrygold is grassfed, and is cheapest at Trader Joe’s…you can follow that link to see what I love and hate about TJ’s!)

*Mashed ripe avocado.

*Full-fat, plain, whole milk yogurt.  Trader Joe’s organic European style yogurt is great.

*Full-fat, plain kefir (you can read all about this on my Kefir for Kids post!)

*Sardines (this are full of great omega-3 fats.  If you get them introduced to these early, they will love them!) You can mash them and mix them with a good quality sour cream and make it more of a puree.

*Steamed and pureed veggies (green beans, peas, squash, sweet potatoes) mixed with a little cream or butter.

*Pureed liver pate (BUT ONLY ONLY ONLY if you can get really good, organic livers from a trusted source).

*Fish eggs (roe or caviar).  Good luck finding these; online mail order is your best bet.  Fish roe is nutrient density at its core, and you can fine affordable caviar, believe it or not.  These are full of brain-building nutrients and were prized by traditional cultures for growing children and pregnant and nursing mothers.  You can purchased Dried Tuna Roe and use it as a condiment to sprinkle on dishes in place of salt.  Or you can serve fresh salmon roe (an affordable choice from Marky’s Caviar online)  Remember that nutrient density is the key. It’s quality, not quantity. So you don’t need a lot of it!

*Egg yolks from pastured, free-range hens.  The yolks should be soft-cooked so as to enhance digestion.

*Meats: Dark meats are best, as they contain the most fats, vitamins, and minerals.  And the good news is that thighs and drumsticks are the cheapest usually!  A nice, tender pot roast or lamb roast is also great.  I do not recommend pork products, as they can harbor parisites even when cooked.

But what about cereals, crackers, and juices? 

I do not believe that these have a place in a young babies diet.  First of all, babies do not produce salivary amylase (the enzyme responsible for digesting starches) until they have their 2 year molars.  Crackers and cereals (even Cheerios) are mostly full of refined flour, and are “enriched” with vitamins that are not the most bioavailable.  They are an unbalanced food and are not suitable for fast oxidizers at all. They don’t really nourish and are certainly not nutrient-dense. It’s like heating the house with paper instead of logs. It works, sort of, but eventually it gets very inefficient, and over time can really unbalance the body nutritionally.

Juices are way too sugary and really serve no purpose in the diet either. If necessary, you can add a little to “flavor” plain water if your child has already been introduced to juice.  Fresh vegetable juice like carrot juice, on the other hand, is a great choice for little ones; about 3-4 oz. per day.  Unfortunately, babies lack the ability to really convert much of the beta-carotene in carrots into a usable form, but carrot juice is a good source of bioavailable calcium.

What about fruit?

Yes, this is the most difficult one to give up.  I believe that fruit is God’s candy, and we should view it as candy.  Feed it to your baby as much as you would feed your baby candy.  If you would not feed your baby candy, then don’t feed fruit.  Yes, fruit is way more nutritious than candy in terms of minerals, but most modern fruit is full of sugar and should still be consumed in moderation.  Unfortunately, fruits do not contain body-building nutrients and therefore, for optimal health, should be given as a dessert and in moderation.  Fruits obviously are amazing gifts from God, full of enzymes and nutrients. Please don’t misunderstand.  But I believe fruit should be eaten in season and in moderation as a treat after all of the more nutrient-dense foods have been consumed.

Obviously, I take a pretty firm stand in a lot of ways on childhood nutrition.  If what I’m saying totally doesn’t work for you, then that’s totally fine. I don’t judge you. I am simply sharing what I have observed from both personal and clinical experience, as will as through my nutritional studies.  For some additional information that goes much deeper into the Foundation of My Children’s Nutrition Philosophy, you may visit the Weston A Price Foundation Website’s Feeding Babies and Children section and also the website of Dr. Larry Wilson, MD, who has worked with many children and families over the past 30 years developing scientific nutritional programs based on the above dietary principles:  Dr. Wilson’s Article on Feeding Children and Babies.

If you would like to begin to make changes but need some more personalized guidance in this journey, I offer an extremely discounted package for babies. I have such a heart for helping babies (especially those of the dear mamas who tried hard to breastfeed, but couldn’t) get on the right start nutritionally, and I use hair analysis to put together a specific nutritional program to balance your child’s physiology and offer support with meal suggestions and general moral support.  Please inquire by e-mailing carriethienes com with the Subject Heading “Baby Nutrition”.

Smile! YOU CAN DO THIS.  You are not alone, and you will find help in this journey, and the answers will come when we seek them out of love for our children.  This has been my experience, and may you be blessed in your journey to nourish your family in an organic and thrifty way!

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My Letter Senator Merkley

My Letter Senator Merkley

Food Safety Bill: My Letter Senator Merkley

As you may or may not be aware, there is a Food Safety Bill that’s been going through Congress for the past year or so.  The Bill’s objective is to create tighter regulations for food safety in the US, which is an excellent idea given the almost weekly new “outbreaks” of contaminated food ranging from peanut butter to spinach.  Oddly enough, when you trace the food from table back to farm, you find that most of the food we buy from the supermarket changes hands often, resulting in many potential avenues for contamination.  It comes as no big surprise that these regulations will be stiff and costly, and only the “big Agribusiness” conglomerates will be able to afford them.  While many organic food companies and farms such as Cascadian and Stoneyfield are owned by large Agri-Corporations, (and thus will be able to absorb the costs of the regulations), the small farmers that operate through direct-marketing and CSAs will likely not be able to conform to the regulartions.

Here is an update from the Weston A. Price foundation, an amazing “watchdog” and protector of small farms who are producing food the “right” way (organic, biodynamic, pasture-raised, etc.):


Agribusiness shows its true colors!

Last week, the Senate voted 74-25 to move to consideration of S.510, the Food Safety Modernization Act.  After thirty hours of debate and behind-the-scenes negotiations, the Senators released a final Managers Amendment that includes a compromise version of the Tester-Hagan amendment.  Thank you to all our members who have called and written over the last several months to help protect local foods!

But even though an agreement was reached on the Tester-Hagan amendment last week, the issue is still not over.  The final vote on the bill has been delayed until Monday, November 29, due to disagreements over amendments relating to the health care bill and a ban on earmarks.  And, in the meantime, Agribusiness has shown its true colors.

For over a year, the big Agribusiness trade organizations have supported passage of S.510.  From Agribusinesss perspective, the bill was a win-win: they could absorb the costs of the regulations because of their size; theyd gain good PR for supposedly improving food safety practices; and the competition created by local food producers, which is rapidly growing, would be crushed by the regulatory burdens.

This was only speculation until now.  But when the Senators agreed to include the Tester-Hagan amendment in the bill, to exempt small-scale direct-marketing producers from some of the most burdensome provisions, twenty Agribusiness trade organizations fired off a letter stating that they would now oppose the bill.

The letter from the Agribusiness groups states: y incorporating the Tester amendment in the bill, consumers will be left vulnerable to the gaping holes and uneven application of the law created by these exemptions. In addition, it sets an unfortunate precedent for future action on food safety policy by Congress that science and risk-based standards can be ignored.

What science and risk?  No one has produced any data or evidence of any widespread problems caused by local producers and marketed directly to consumers.  All of the major foodborne illness outbreaks have been caused by products that went through the long supply chains of Agribusiness.

Agribusinesss real concern about the Tester-Hagan amendment isnt food safety, but the precedent set by having Congress recognize that small, direct-marketing producers are different, and should be regulated differently than large Agribusinesses.

Agribusiness is trying to convince the Senators to pull the Tester-Hagan amendment back out.  While the amendment is currently part of the Managers Package  the amended version of the bill agreed to by six bipartisan sponsors  nothing is certain until the actual vote.


This Thanksgiving week, please take a moment to call or email your Senators to tell them to hold firm on KEEPING the Tester-Hagan amendment part of the bill. 


So here is my letter to Senator Merkley, urging him to retain the amendment. I urge you to take 5 minutes (copy, paste, and modify mine if you wish) to contact your Senators as well:

Dear Senators:

It has been very refreshing to see that you have voted to add the Tester-Hagen amaendment to the Food Safety Bill.  As a Nutritionist in Oregon and also an urban dairy goat farmer and avid gardener, it is important to me to be able to source fresh food from farm-to-table without compromise.  The small farms in Oregon have saved my family’s life, in that we are indebted to the fact that Oregon has allowed these farmers to grow their foods freely without immense and costly regulations.  I urge you, despite what the Agribusiness conglomerates want you to belive, to hold firm on KEEPING the Tester-Hagan amendment part of the bill.

Thank you so much for your commitment to food safety.  It is important for the large suppliers to be subject to these regulations.  Spinach, hamburgers, peanut butter, and all the recent e.coli outbreaks have not come from small, local organic farms.  They have all been a result of the careless practices of agribusiness.  However, the small family farms that for generations have taken great pride in their product should NOT be subject to regulations that could potentially put them out of business.  Standards for food safety? Of course.  But when the consumer can trace their product back to a specific farm, that is motivation enough for the farm to enact high standards of quality control.  A family-owned, direct-marketing farm would not stay in business very long at all if its customers were constantly sick from contaminated food.

Meanwhile, the corrupt and under-regulated meat-packing, dairy, and large-scale conventional farm industries get away with gross abuses of their employees, their animals, and their land.  I think it’s clear where the real problem lies, and I thank you in advance for your committment to protecting the constitutional rights of every American to chose from whom they purchase their foods.

Mrs. Carrie Thienes, BS, MA, NTP

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Coffee Alternatives

Coffee Alternatives

Coffee Alternatives

Have you seen the new “eco-cup”? It’s awesome!  I was able to bargain for one for free at Office Depot (it’s a long story) not too long ago and I love it!  Now that autumn is becoming a reality, it’s time to think back on the hot beverages that sustain us through the winter.  Although I know I’m in the minority, it seems like we Americans have got to get a grip on our collective coffee additction. Fortunately the stuff makes me feel awful, so I naturally avoid it, but for so many others (and I know you’re out there) it’s a habit, a fix—an addiction?

So today’s post is a simple solution that I think most coffee addicts will appreciate. A brief “commercial” (and my first attempt at videocasting!) on how to make a delicious coffee alternative.  Note: I get no money from any of the companies that produce any of these products. Unless you click on the Amazon link and order something….

Products Used in Video:

Teecino Coffee-Alternative Beverage (I used 2 T per 4 cups of water in my coffee maker)
Raw Goat’s Milk
NuStevia Liquid Vanilla Stevia
EcoCup- ceramic reusable coffee cup

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Sugar Free Creme Brulee

Sugar Free Creme Brulee

Sugar Free Creme Brulee!

Who doesn’t love Creme Brulee?  It’s an expensive, fancy dish that is usually only available at fancy restaurants, but if made properly, this is a very nutritious, low-carb and sugar free dessert!

I had never even attempted to make Creme Brulee before I came across a great recipe for it in a Crockpot cookbook of all places!  Yes, I’ve adapted this from the wonderful Make it Fast, Cook it Slowcookbook by Stephanie O’Dea of  365 Days of SlowCooking.

I adapted the recipe (and doubled it) to be free of sugar and low-carb.  Oh, and I didn’t do anything involving a kitchen blow-torch on the top of it, so I guess this is not truly “creme brulee”.

I used Truvia (a stevia-erythritol blend) instead of sugar.  By the way, I’m not 100% confident that Truvia is the best thing in the world, the jury is still out. I do trust it far more than any artificial sweetner, but if you’re concerned you can simply stick to your favorite form of stevia and add it to taste. There are lots of different Stevias out there, so go with what you prefer. In this household, right now we’re hooked on Truvia. But I don’t always trust things that are made by Cargill and white.

Creme Brulee

2 cups of heavy cream (preferably grass-fed, like Strauss)
5 egg yolks (Coscto now has 18-ct Organic, Cage Free Eggs for a little over $4! Not bad!)
1 Tbs vanilla extract
3-4 packets of Truvia (or your preferred form of Stevia, to taste)

1. Blend all ingredients together.

2. Place in individual ramekins or a large casserole dish.

3. Place in crockpot. Fill crock with water to come up halfway around the dishes (like a hot water bath).

4. Cover and cook on high for about 3 hours.  Remove and let cool completely.

5. Transfer and chill in the fridge overnight. It will be a little “jiggly” before you chill it. Don’t worry.

6. Serve topped with sliced strawberries (preferably organic) and enjoy!

Check out some other sugar-free recipes at Naturally Knocked Up. Not all are gluten-free or even grain-free, but they are all at least free of refined sugar and look great!

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It’s so nice to have you here in my little patch of the blogosphere!  I hope that you find this website’s resources warm, inviting, helpful and based in reality!  In the spirit of full disclosure, I am a busy homeschooling mom who is struggling with time management and blogging doesn’t always make the top ten list.  But there’s a lot here to look through and read about, so please feel free to browse around in the event that there’s nothing recent posted (scroll down, though, to check for the newest post).  You are always welcome to subscribe, drop me a line, or check out my Nutritional Therapy consultation services I am now offering via the web!  Thank you for visiting!