flourless peanut butter & banana muffins

Flour-less Peanut Butter & Banana Muffins

Hello Friends.  I hope your week is going great and those of you in New England are enjoying the chillier air!

Colder weather for me says, ‘Turn on the oven and get baking!’.  How about you?

Today’s recipe share is a Flourless Peanut Butter and Banana mini muffin.  This was a recipe inspiration from Pinterest found on the original site here! I modified the recipe a little. My muffins didn’t come out quite as cute as hers….but tasted yummy!flourless peanut butter & banana muffinsWithout flour, these little tasty treats are quite moist.  They were a hit with the family.  And the good news…no special ingredients necessary.  I made a small batch (8 mini muffins) but feel free to double the recipe. All of the ingredients go into the blender and then into the muffin tins. Easy peasy.

Oh…and Julie K is the winner of the Artisanal Gluten-Free Cupcake book! Congrats Julie and a BIG thanks for all of your responses about how you chill out and relax!  So many great ideas and reminders that it is so important to give yourself permission to do nothing!

Flour-less Peanut Butter and Banana Muffins


  • Makes 8 mini muffins {Can double recipe}
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (I used all natural Teddie brand)
  • 1 banana
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons semi sweet chocolate chips (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare mini muffin tin by spraying w/ oil or adding paper muffin tin liners
  2. Put all the ingredients (except the chocolate chips) into blender and blend until creamy about 1 minute.
  3. Pour mixture into muffin tins filling about 3/4 full.
  4. Top with about 4 chocolate chips per muffin, if using.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for about 10-12 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean.
  6. Enjoy!
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Take a well-being inventory today!

Today’s tip is not a FODMAP tip but rather a mental health tip!

It’s important every now again to take a personal pulse check.  Check in with yourself and ask, “How are you feeling today?”

Maybe you feel happy, relaxed and/or calm but maybe you find yourself feeling a bit frenzied, too busy and stressed? Or maybe you just feel something in-between.

UntitledLast week I presented a talk on FODMAPs at Massachusetts General Hospital.  Generally it takes me about 45 minutes to get to Boston from my home.  But traffic was awful and it took me over 2 hours to get into the city.  I was so worried I would be late for the talk.  It was soooooo stressful! :(

But  I made it to the talk on time, with time to spare, and my talk went perfectly fine.  Phew!  But…what I did learn….was that the stress can really made me feel tired and beat up.  What I really needed was a weekend of doing nothing.  So…that is exactly what I did….nothing! Honoring and listening to your body is so important especially when you are dealing with chronic health issues.

Instead of running around like a crazy person this weekend …I took it down a notch and relaxed.  I snuggled with my chocolate lab, Lucy and hung out with my family.  It was just what I needed.

Lucy…seriously…is THE cutest!Lucy exhausted

And guess what?  I started this week feeling relaxed, rested and ready to go.

So…check in with yourself every now and again.  And take a well needed time out when you need it! It’s all good….and you deserve it!

And to help you feel more happy…I have a cookbook give-a-way! Artisanal Gluten-Free Cupcakes!! A sweet little book with amazing gluten free cupcakes recipes from strawberry shortcake to lemon blueberry cupcakes.  Not all of the recipes are low FODMAP–but many can be adapted by subbing in lactose free milk and lactose free sour cream (Green Valley has a lactose free sour cream in the US).  So leave a comment about how you relax and chill out when you are tired and need a break if you interested in a chance of winning this cute little book!cupcake book

Coming soon….a new low FODMAP cookbook with amazing recipes! Low-FODMAP 28-Day Plan book give-a-way! …and of course… more FODMAP news and more give-a-ways too!

colorful dragon fruit

Beyond the Banana

In a fruit rut?

Do the same fruits wind up in your grocery cart every week?  Perhaps you might give dragon fruit a try.  Check out this gorgeous fruit!colorful dragon fruitFriedas.com contacted me to see if I would like some of their delicious dragon fruit and of course, I said, “YES!”  Friedas has a nutrition campaign called, “fear no fruit”, in an effort to help consumers try new and unusual produce! I love this concept.  Check out more here!

Russ and I purchase a big bowl of pre-cut fruit at Whole Foods just about every week.  I know I would save a few bucks if I did the dicing myself…but the reality is…I definitely eat more fruit when I leave that job to somebody else. :)  So for us, it’s worth the extra money. Fortunately, so many fruits are allowed on the low FODMAP diet…just don’t eat a fruit salad the size of your head! One serving per sitting!

whole food fruit bowl

I tend to be a creature of habit when it comes to buying fruit, how about you?   I do, however,  LOVE trying new produce when I find it… and dragon fruit is one of those fruits that lured me in!

Dragon fruit is a low FODMAP fruit option (yay!) and has a mild but tasty flavor.

Want to learn more about dragon fruit? Check out my colleague and fellow dietitian, Monica Lebre’s informative post here!

Whether it be fruit or even life…it’s easy to get in a rut.  Try to step outside your typical fruit bowl…and explore and enjoy new tastes, flavors and life experiences.


Always listen to your body!

Today is Tuesday! So… here’s your tip!

postit_tipThe low FODMAP diet is an evidenced based diet shown to help improve symptoms in 75% of those who suffer with IBS…but sometimes there are overlapping food triggers for people with IBS. Not every one is sensitive to a cup of coffee ….but some people with IBS can be particularly bothered by the stimulant effect of caffeine.  If that’s you, go slow on the joe!

Fat can stimulate movement in the intestine…which for the person with fast transit of the intestine…eating a particularly fatty meal can send you running for the loo.  And if you have an overlapping diagnosis of small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (many IBS patients do–in my estimation) then fat digestion can be impaired.  Gut bacteria get to your bile, a substance that is made in your liver and secreted from your gall bladder to aid fat digestion, before it can do it’s job!  In small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), the bacteria render the bile inactive.  Since bile helps make fat into digestible units—fat maldigestion can occur in SIBO.

Small amounts of acceptable low FODMAP alcoholic beverages seem to be well tolerated in my experience (a glass of dry white or red wine, for example) but OVERdoing alcohol is not recommended…of course, for general health BUT also alcohol can pull water into the intestine and lead to diarrhea. NO thanks!

We are all a little different…Always listen to your body.

Today’s post inspired by my intern, Amy Beliveau! Thanks Amy for the great Tuesday Tip!

shrimp taco w pineapple salsa

Grilled Shrimp Tortilla with Pineapple Salsa

Hello Everyone!

Today’s recipe was inspired from our August trip to Nantucket. Millie’s is a great restaurant we pass biking our way to Madaket Beach.  Millie’s makes some awesome quesadillas filled with fresh seafood.  I opted to make a lower FODMAP version at home..  a grilled corn tortilla topped with grilled shrimp and pineapple salsa! Can you say, freakin’ delicious?Best shrimp tacoI had never grilled a corn tortilla before…  Have you?  I simply sprayed the fresh corn tortilla with oil (you can use a Misto oil sprayer–or buy oil at the grocery store already in a spray bottle such as International Collection Spray Oils) and then threw (placed might be better choice of words) the tortilla on the grill to brown it up!  I loved the texture:  a bit chewy, crunchy and all around tasty.

I then placed some prepared raw shrimp on a skewer and popped that on the grill.

A bit earlier, I made a little pineapple salsa.  I topped the grilled tortilla with a few grilled shrimp, a smattering of shredded cheddar cheese, and a tablespoon of the  tasty pineapple salsa.  I was in heaven. A nice blend of savory and sweet!

The recipe below is for the pineapple salsa:  Simply cook up 2 tortillas, 5 medium shrimp and 1/4 cup grated cheddar per person.  The salsa will serve about 6 people.shrimp taco w pineapple salsa

Pineapple Salsa


  • Serves about 6; Top 1 tablespoon salsa on top of grilled fresh corn tortilla topped with 5 grilled shrimp, beef OR chicken strips and 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup fresh diced fresh pineapple
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, diced in quarters
  • 1/4 cup green bell pepper, deseeded, and diced
  • 1 medium jalapeño, deseeded and diced {optional}
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley or cilantro
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Mix ingredients together, add fresh herbs right before serving.
  2. Can be made up to a day in advance stored in refrigerator.
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Upcoming topics:  SIBO, GMOs in foods, Tips for eating around the globe (focusing primarily on UK), and the launch of a fun product I think and hope you will like !


Low FODMAP diet is NOT a FOREVER diet!

The low FODMAP diet has helped SO…many of my clients with IBS!  Teaching the low FODMAP diet and seeing so many patient’s lives turn around has been SO rewarding!

I love my job! 

But, it is important to know… the low FODMAP diet is a learning diet NOT a life long diet.


Although it is awesome to feel a sense of calm in your otherwise tumultuous belly…it really is important to undergo the challenge  (or re-introduction) phase of the low FODMAP diet and attempt to re-introduce FODMAPs to identify your personal triggers.  If you have tried to re-introduce foods without good success, consider the following:

  • Are you doing the re-introduction correctly? Choose challenge foods that only contain one FODMAP.  An apple would not be a suitable first line challenge food as it contains multiple FODMAPs.  Honey or mango are  good fructose challenge food choices as  they only contains excess fructose NOT other FODMAPs.
  • Do remember to stick with your low FODMAP diet while attempting your FODMAP challenges.  If you are dining out, drinking a few cocktails and attempting to add back FODMAPs…your results might be a bit skewed!
  • If you failed ALL challenges despite being guided by a FODMAP knowledgable dietitian, consider the possibility of an  overlapping issue such as: small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, dumping syndrome, food chemical intolerance (histamine, salicylate), or gluten sensitivity, to name a few.
  • Try ‘gentle’ food challenges! When challenging garlic (fructans), don’t  add several cloves of garlic to your meal to really identify if garlic puts your belly in a tail spin. Try adding small amounts such as a 1/2 of a clove at first and up to 1 clove per meal.

The low FODMAP diet has beens shown to reduce  beneficial gut bacteria {Study here}. Since our gut bacteria play an important role in health and disease, scientists don’t know the implication of following a low FODMAP diet long term.  As a dietitian, one of my goals for you is to enjoy what you are eating and to have as varied a diet as your tummy will allow.

So.. don’t forget to re-introduce some FODMAPs after the elimination phase of the diet.

Don’t be afraid to try to reintroduce foods. Tolerance to food will change overtime as your gut bacteria likely get back in balance.  Go slow.  Get help from a knowledgeable registered dietitian.  And…listen to your body!


Grilled melon

Grilled Cantaloupe & Prosciutto

Today I thought I would share an easy appetizer recipe with you…Grilled Cantaloupe and Prosciutto! Grilled melon

Simply wrap cantaloupe with thinly sliced prosciutto and secure with water-soaked toothpick.proscuitto and melon

Place on grill until lightly browned–turning to ensure evenly browned sides.

I would suggest subbing in pineapple chunks for the cantaloupe as another tasty combo.  A little drizzle of balsamic vinegar might add a nice touch too!  Get creative! :)

Remember:  Soak toothpicks in water to reduce the burned wood effect.  (I could have done that for a bit longer than 5 minutes–maybe 30 minutes prior to using!)

No recipe for this one. Just make as much as you want!  Of course, FODMAPers don’t go overboard with the portion! (1/2 -3/4 cup max..with the cantaloupe).

I hope your week is going well!  Hip Hip Hooray for the upcoming long weekend in the US!



PicMonkey Collage

Low FODMAP broth

Even though the weather is still gorgeous here in New England, the fall is sneaking up and around the corner.  Cooler weather translates to warm comfort foods–and soups certainly top the menu list.  Although most commercial broths contain onion and garlic, Savory Choice offers a  chicken, turkey and beef broth (both regular and reduced sodium), a liquid broth concentrate in a stick packet, that according to the manufacturer representative I spoke with are onion and garlic free!!  PicMonkey CollageJust mix each packet with 1 cup of hot water and you have your broth ready to go..  ready to whip up as part of your favorite soup starter.

Yay! Some of my client’s have tried these packets as part of their low FODMAP diet without a hitch.  Savory Choice chicken, turkey and beef broth are also gluten free and free of MSG.

Note: Savory Choice also offers a Pho broth option but I am not sure about the garlic or onion content. Also the vegetable broth has onions!

Of course, you can always make up some broth on your own which is so tasty and nourishing too… but this offers a quick and easy alternative.

Hope this Tuesday Tip makes easing into the cooler weather a bit simpler.

And last but not least, thank you for your many sweet and kind messages and your enthusiasm for the opportunity to win Dr. Susan Shepherd’s latest cookbook!!  I think 218 comments were left on my blog for this give-a-way! Wow!!

The winner has been randomly selected and is:  Amanda! Congrats Amanda!

The good news is I have another wonderful low FODMAP cookbook give-a-way coming your way fairly soon!

Disclaimer: Since most commercial food products have not been officially tested for FODMAP content–I can’t guarantee the items I allow on the low FODMAP diet are free of FODMAPs. Based on what I understand about the diet, I make recommendations as I would see fit for my clients I educate on the diet!


Sue Shepherd Cookbook

Low FODMAP Cookbook Give-A-Way!

Hello Friends.

Today, I have another wonderful cookbook give-a-way!  Sue Shepherd’s latest cookbook, The Low-FODMAP Diet Cookbook.Sue Shepherd Cookbook

Have I been giving lately or what? ;)  This book features 150 gluten free and low FODMAP recipes! How great is that!?  I had so much fun scanning through all the wonderful recipes selecting which ones I will try first.  My first recipe trial was the Chicken Drumsticks with Lemon and Cilantro.  Check these little drumsticks out!  They tasted quite delicious!!lemon and cilantro chicken I have so many sticky note page holders all over this cookbook!  The Chicken with Olives, Sun-dried Tomato and Basil with Mediterranean Vegetables looks super yummy too!  But I am most seriously excited to try out the Dark Chocolate Macadamia Nut Brownies… (Hello…serious yummmmmmmmmmm!)

Oh yeah..I need to tell you that the lucky winner of the Greek Yogurt Cookbook by Toby Amidor is Rachel H. Yay!  Hope you like it!! And a big thanks for all your amazing suggestions and tips on using Greek yogurt in recipes and in your diet.  I am inspired to trial some of your ideas and I know other blog followers will too!  It was amazing to see how many of you can tolerate Greek yogurt which is so great. NO need to be too strict w/ your diet if you don’t have too!!

As usual, I have been busy behind the scenes working on my FODMAP oriented projects in an attempt to help you guys all out.  As you know–it’s been my mission to make the diet easier to follow and help you feel your best.  So…stayed tuned as I have some more fun to share in the next month or so.

If you want  a chance to win Sue Shepherd’s latest cookbook–just leave a comment on this post!

Note: Sue Shepherd’s Cookbook was provided to me for review and as a give-a-way from the publisher.


milk truck

Low FODMAP diet is not dairy free!

milk truckThe low FODMAP diet is NOT a dairy free diet but rather low in lactose, the sugar found in cow, sheep and goat milk.

If you have been tested for lactose malabsorption or intolerance and have been found to digest lactose sufficiently than you do not need to modify lactose on the low FODMAP diet.  Many individuals have NOT been tested for lactose intolerance or are unsure if lactose is a trigger for them, in this case, minimize lactose while undergoing the elimination phase of the low FODMAP diet.

But even if lactose is a trigger for you…there are many dairy foods that are still allowed on the low FODMAP diet! Go ahead and enjoy yummy low lactose dairy foods such as aged or hard cheeses, think: Cheddar, Swiss, and Parmesan! Most semi-soft cheeses are suitable on the low FODMAP diet too, such as feta, goat cheese and Brie.  Avoid overly wet cheeses such as ricotta and cottage cheese which contain higher amounts of lactose.  Try lactose free cow’s milk or lactose free yogurt.  Even small amount of Greek yogurt can often be tolerated on the low FODMAP diet.  Greek yogurt tends to have less lactose than traditional style yogurt as more lactose is drained off when making the Greek style yogurt thick and creamy.   Of course, read ingredient labels for other added FODMAP ingredients such as fructose, inulin (chicory root), high fructose corn syrup etc.

When reading labels for cheeses–look at the Nutrition Facts label. If there is 0 grams of sugar in the cheese–then the cheese is lactose free or only contains a trace of lactose.  Remember lactose is a sugar. Unfortunately, this little trick is only useful when reading cheese labels; other dairy products such as yogurt often have other sugars added.

Butter only has a trace of lactose so is allowed on the low FODMAP diet.

Lactose containing ingredients hiding in products may include: milk, milk solids, curds, whey, yogurt, buttermilk, sour cream. Whey protein isolate is lactose free while whey protein concentrate may contain lactose.

There are some individuals that are intolerant to other components in dairy such as the protein casein.   If low lactose dairy still poses a problem for you by all means minimize it to your personal tolerance.  And of course, some people choose not to consume animal products.  In these cases, you might find alternative dairy free beverages such as rice or coconut milk your best bet on the low FODMAP diet.

My colleague, registered dietitian, Toby Amidor, wrote a wonderful cookbook featuring Greek yogurt called The Greek Yogurt Kitchen.  Check this beautiful cover out! amidor.greekyogurtkichen.tr

If you can tolerate Greek yogurt {like me}…then please leave a comment after this post on creative ways you use Greek yogurt in your diet and you’ll be entered to win a copy of this beautiful cookbook!  Of course, not all the recipes are low FODMAP–but I bet some are adaptable to the low FODMAP diet or can be new family favorites!!

Another cookbook give-a-way later this week…{Sue Shepherd’s latest cookbook!}

Stay tuned!