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Recipe Blog

Filtering by Category: dairy free

Sliced Apple Snacks

laura lomax

apples 1.jpg

Apples, nut butters, and lets be honest chocolate chips are a staple in our house making this recipe easy to prepare at a moments notice. Apples are a great source of antioxidants, dietary fiber, and are a perfect canvas for a variety of toppings. The apple slices provide a gluten free option that works great for snack or as part of meal. While this recipe uses a few options for toppings feel free to be creative and use your favorite nuts, dried fruits, seeds, and spices of your choice. 


4 large apples, sliced

1/4 cup natural peanut butter 

1/4 cup almond butter 

1/4 cup plain or vanilla Greek yogurt 

2 tbsp. dark chocolate chips

2 tbsp. raisins

2 tbsp. sunflower seeds

2 tbsp. chia seeds

2 tbsp. granola (pictured is Bear Naked)

2 tbsp. walnuts  

2 tbsp. raspberries



1. Wash and dry the apples. Slice the apples in on two sides discarding the ends. 

2. Top the apples with spread of your choice. 

Several of my favorite toppings for apple slices include natural peanut butter, almond butter, and Greek yogurt.

Several of my favorite toppings for apple slices include natural peanut butter, almond butter, and Greek yogurt.

3. Sprinkle toppings of your choice on the spread. Combinations used in this recipe.

  • Almond butter + Raisin

  • Almond butter + sunflower seed + dark chocolate chips

  • Almond butter + granola

  • Yogurt + granola

  • Yogurt + sunflower seed

  • Yogurt + raspberry + chia seed

  • Peanut butter + walnut

  • Peanut butter + dark chocolate

  • Peanut butter + raspberry + crushed walnut

Additional Combos:

  • Cottage cheese

  • Plain or strawberry cream cheese

  • Sunflower butter

Additional toppings

  • Pistachios

  • Hemp seeds

  • Dried fruits

  • Fresh fruit slices

Popular Combos

  • Cottage cheese + peaches

  • Strawberry cream cheese + pistachio

  • Sunflower butter + blackberries +sprinkle of cinnamon

4. Enjoy! 

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  • When slicing the apples you will have additional pieces left.These can be topped and used for smaller apple snacks. If you prefer to only use the large apple slices then chop the apples and they work great added to salads, pancake toppings, added to oatmeal, or to snack on alone.

  • Another option when slicing the apples is to use an apple corer. Core the apples then slice top to bottom.




laura lomax

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Potato Leek Soup

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

3 Leeks, cleaned and chopped                                                4 cups vegetable stock

1 White Onion, chopped                                                             1 cup of water

3 Cloves of garlic, chopped                                                       Salt & pepper to taste

6 Potatoes, peeled and sliced                                                                   

3 Tbsp.olive oil

2% Sharp Cheddar Cheese sprinkled as garnish (optional garnish)


Clean and chop onion, garlic, and leeks. Place butter in large cooking pot then add onion, garlic, and leeks. Saute for ~ 5 minutes. While sauteing peel potatoes (I usually cut my potatoes into quarters to help cook faster). Add broth, water, and bring to a boil. Once boiling add potatoes. Cover and cook until potatoes are soft. Remove from heat. Puree to desired consistency with immersion blender. I sometimes get carried away with my immersion blender and puree a bit too thin, if this happens I toss in 1 Tbsp. of flour which thickens the soup up nicely). Garnish with cheese ( optional).

*This recipe can also easily be turned vegan by ditching the cheese garnish *

This recipe is great to freeze in single serve freezer bags or glass storage bowls.


A delicious vegetarian dish that works well as starter or main dish.

Blueberry Walnut Spinach Salad

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Blueberry Walnut Salad

Prep time: 10 minutes

Serving per recipe: 8



2 Bags or bundles of spinach, washed 

1.5 cups blueberries

2/3 cup walnuts

4 Roma tomatoes, chopped


1 cup olive oil

1/4 cup. Red wine vinegar

1 tbsp. Perfect Pinch Salt free seasoning

Salt and Pepper

Place mason jar in middle of salad bowl to form wreath shape. Add spinach to the bowl, then top with washed blueberries, tomatoes, and walnuts. For dressing combine all dressing ingredients in a measuring cup or bowl then pour into the mason jar. Pour dressing over salad when ready to eat.   


To round out as a full meal top with protein of your choice. Grilled chicken, tofu, sauteed shrimp, baked salmon, lean beef, beans, edamame, or tuna are all great option.

Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad

laura lomax

Brussel salad .jpg

If you are in need a quick side to bring to your next family gathering, picnic, or just looking a fresh new recipe to incorporate into your meal rotation this shaved Brussels sprout salad is the perfect fit. Pre cut vegetables such as the shaved Brussels sprouts are a great way to save time in the kitchen making it simple to incorporate more vegetables into your diet. 

Serving Size: 8 (1/2 cup servings)

Recipe time: 15 minutes 



2- 10 oz bags shaved Brussels Sprouts 

1 Pint Fresh Strawberries

2 large Avocados, cubed 


1/2 cup olive oil 

1 tbsp. Balsamic vinegar 

2 tsp. All purpose salt free seasoning 

Juice of 1 lemon 

Optional salt and pepper to taste 


First prepare the salad dressing. Combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, juice of lemon, and all purpose salt free seasoning. Whisk to combine. 

Just add the dressing and this simple side dish is ready to serve. 

Just add the dressing and this simple side dish is ready to serve. 

In a large bowl add shaved Brussels sprouts. Rinse and slice strawberries. Cut avocado into cubes.  Add strawberries and avocado to the Brussels Sprouts. Pour dressing over salad and mix well. Add salt and pepper if desired. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve. 

* Tips: After pouring the Brussels sprouts in the salad bowl I typically run my hands through and grab any large pieces and chop to match the rest of the salad*



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Serving size: 2 energy bites

Servings per recipe: 10 


20 Dates, pitted 

2 Tbsp. quick oats 

2 tsp. cocoa powder 

2 tsp. peanut butter 


Place dates in a small bowl and fill with warm water to soak. While dates are soaking add oats and cocoa powder and pulse to combine then place in a bowl. After dates soak for ~10 minutes drain and place in the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Remove dates from food processor and place in a bowl. Add peanut butter to dates and combine. Then slowly add oat cocoa mixture (depending on size of dates you might not need to use all the cocoa oat mixture) until the ingredients stick well together but are not getting stuck to your fingers. Roll into small bite sized balls. Store in tightly sealed container in the refrigerator. Enjoy.


No sugar added Peanut Butter Date Bars

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These no added sugar, no bake peanut butter date bars are packed with flavor and nutrients. The dates add a perfect boost of sweetness while adding fiber, potassium, calcium, and phosphorus. 

These no added sugar, no bake peanut butter date bars are packed with flavor and nutrients. The dates add a perfect boost of sweetness while adding fiber, potassium, calcium, and phosphorus. 

Servings Size: 1 bar 

Servings per recipe: 6 bars 

Prep time: 20 minutes 


1 cup Oats (gluten free per preference)

18 dates, pitted 

1/3 cup smooth natural peanut butter 

1 tsp. ground flaxseed

1/2 tsp cinnamon 

1/2 tsp salt


Add pitted dates to a medium bowl and cover with water. Allow to soak for 10 minutes to soften. While dates are soaking combine all dry ingredients in a medium to large bowl. After dates have soaked removed from water and chop. Add chopped dates and peanut butter to the dry ingredients and combine well. Place on wax paper and flatten with your hands or a rolling pin. Using a knife slice into 6 even pieces. Enjoy or store in the refrigerator. 


Dairy free Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge Bites

laura lomax


These gluten free, diary free chocolate peanut butter fudge bites are the perfect dessert for any party!

Serving size: 1 bite 

Servings per recipe: 24  

Total Prep and Cook Time: 10 minutes + 60 minutes in freezer time


1 1/2  cups Diary free chocolate chips (can also be prepared with traditional chocolate chips)

1 1/4 cup smooth natural peanut butter

1 tsp. vanilla extract


Line a loaf pan (something you would use for baking bread such as a 9x3 inch pan) with foil. Add peanut butter and chocolate chips to a microwave safe bowl. Place the peanut butter and chocolate chip mixture in the microwave and heat for 20 seconds then stir. Repeat this process of heating for 20 seconds followed by stirring until peanut butter and chocolate are melted and well combined. Once removed from microwave stir in vanilla extract and combine well. Pour into  the foil lined loaf pan and gently shake to even out the top. Cover with foil then place in freezer for ~ 60 minutes to hardened. Remove from freezer and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve. 

* For long term storage wrap in foil and place in freezer plastic bag for up to 2 months*


These gluten free, diary free peanut butter chocolate bites are the perfect last minute gift for anyone on your list!

These gluten free, diary free peanut butter chocolate bites are the perfect last minute gift for anyone on your list!

Pumpkin Date Bites

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Serving size: 1 Square 

Servings per recipe: 25 squares 

Prep time: 15 minutes + 1 hour refrigeration before serving


18 pitted dates 

3/4 cup pumpkin seeds 


Place the dates in a small bowl and cover with warm water to soften the dates. Allow to soak for ~ 10-15 minutes. Drain the dates and dry gently with towel or paper towel. While the date is soaking measure out the pumpkin seeds and place in food processor and process until finely chopped. Place in a bowl. Once the dates are soften place them in the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add the dates to the bowl of pumpkin seeds and press together with your fingers. Transfer the combined dates and pumpkin seeds to a sheet of parchment or wax paper and flatten to an evenly textured square. Refrigerate for 30-60 minutes. Remove and cut into 5 rows with 5 columns or other desired size. Tightly wrap squares individually with plastic wrap. Store squares in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.


Good Morning Almond butter Chocolate Cherry Oats

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Start your morning right with these Overnight oats! This gluten free, diary free breakfast is filled with chocolate almond milk, almond butter, and fresh cherries!

Start your morning right with these Overnight oats! This gluten free, diary free breakfast is filled with chocolate almond milk, almond butter, and fresh cherries!

Serving size: 1 

Active prep time: 5 minutes 

Inactive Prep time: 6 hours 


1 Nearly empty Almond Butter Jar ( or to enjoy this recipe anytime just add ~ 1 tbsp. Almond butter to the recipe and prepare in a mason jar or glass bowl)

2/3 cup quick oats 

1 cup Chocolate unsweetened almond milk

 1/4 cup sliced cherries 

Drizzled honey, optional 


Combine all ingredients and allow to sit overnight (or at least 6 hours) in the refrigerator. Enjoy cold or warm ( heat in microwave for 1-2 minutes). 

Strawberry Cherry Granita

laura lomax

This strawberry cherry frozen granita is the perfect fancy dessert to cool you off this summer.

This strawberry cherry frozen granita is the perfect fancy dessert to cool you off this summer.

Servings: 6  servings

Prep time: 30 minutes

Total time: 4 hours 30 minutes (with freezing)


2 cups strawberries, halved and stems removed

2/3 cup cherries, seed removed 

1/3 cup 100% Pomegranate juice 

1 cup water 

1/3 cup sugar 

Juice of 1 lemon


In a small pot add water and heat over medium heat. Next add the sugar to the water. Stir occasionally until sugar is completely dissolved (we will call it our version of a simple syrup). Remove from heat and allow to cool. While cooling add strawberries and cherries to blender and puree. Once the simple syrup is cooled add it along with the lemon juice and pomegranate juice to the strawberries and cherries. Blend together then pour mixture into a 13 x9 inch pan and place in freezer. Ever 30 minutes mix the puree as it begins freezing. Once completely frozen (~ 3-4 hours) you are ready to prepare to serve. Using a fork scrap off clusters for a delicious dessert or snack! 

* To save time while simple syrup is cooling remove stems from strawberries and seeds from cherries*

This frozen treat is the perfect way to combat the summer heat. Love to use seasonal fruit in recipe and summer seasonal fruits are some of my favorites. This recipe is packed strawberries, cherries, and pomegranate juice to pack an antioxidant punch while enjoying a treat that will cool you off!  



Tropical Mango Banana Ice Cream

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Tropical Mango Banana "Nice cream"  

Tropical Mango Banana "Nice cream"  

Prep and prepare time: 5 minutes

Serving size: 1


1 cup frozen ripe banana slices

1/2 Mango cubed (~1/4 cup)

2-3 tbsp. milk (coconut milk, cows milk, almond or soy milk all taste great).  

1 tsp. vanilla extract


Place banana slices, mango, vanilla, and 2 tbsp. milk into blend until reaches the consistency of ice cream. If needed add the additional tablespoon of milk. 



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This recipe is rich in omega 3 fatty acids, minimizes mess by cooking with foil, and allows you to cook the whole meal at once by including all sides in the foil pouch.  Multiple studies have support the benefits of omega 3 fatty acids in reducing triglyceride levels.  

Prep time: 15 minutes 

Cook Time: 15 minutes 

Total time: 30 minutes 

Serves: 4 


4-4 oz Salmon fillets 

1 Bag Spinach 

8 Black potatoes, sliced (or any small potato such as red potatoes)

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped 

1 lime, quartered 

Extra virgin Olive oil



Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut 4 large pieces of foil and place on the counter top. Place a generous amount (1/4 the bag) of spinach in each piece of foil. Lay the salmon on top of the bed of spinach. Surround the salmon with the potatoes. Place chopped cilantro on the salmon. Sprinkle the garlic in each foil packet. Lightly salt the salmon then drizzle salmon, spinach, and potatoes with olive oil. Last squeeze the lime juice over each salmon fillet. Seal each packet and place on a cookie sheet. Cook for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and carefully open the foil pouches, allowing steam to escape. Serve and enjoy!  



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Total cook time: 20 minutes

Prep time: 5 minutes. Cook time: 15 minutes.

Serves: 4 


1 pound Boneless skinless chicken cutlets, trimmed

2 tbsp. olive oil

4 cloves garlic, chopped

¼ cup low sodium chicken broth

Salt and Pepper

1 Box Zoodles (Zucchini Noodles)

1 Bag Shredded Carrots


1.       Sprinkle chicken cutlets with salt and pepper on both sides.

2.       In a deep skillet add 2 tbsp. olive oil then add garlic. Sauté garlic for ~3 minutes on low to medium heat or until fragrant.

3.       Add chicken to skillet and increase heat to medium. Cook chicken on each side for ~ 2 minutes to brown, then add chicken broth and cover to continue cooking.   

4.       The cutlets will take a total of ~ 10 minutes to cook. After cooking covered for ~2 minutes add the carrots followed by the zucchini noodles.

5.       Chicken is done once it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees.

This yummy zoodle recipe was part of a recent cooking demo done for the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation Kick off party in Austin. The Veggie Noodle Company based in Austin was so kind to donate all the zoodles for the demo and the Zoodles were truly the star of the show! I love this recipe for so many reasons! To start it fits into many IBD modifications being both gluten free and diary free. As a mom of two youngsters minimal mess is a must and one pot to me is the definition of minimal mess!  Also the recipe is very versatile. Feel free to swap out veggies, protein source (great with shrimp, tofu, etc), and even seasonings per your families preference or tolerance. ENJOY! 

* To see the demo check out the Take Steps Central Facebook page*


Foil Baked Fish and Veggies

laura lomax

Dairy free, Gluten free

Prep time: 10 minutes          Cook time: 20 minutes

Total time: 30 minutes 

Serves 4


4 (4 oz) fish fillets (snapper, flounder, or cod)

1 cup broccoli, chopped 

1 cup carrots, chopped 

4 cloves garlic, sliced

3 tbsp. olive oil

Salt and Pepper


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut two large pieces of heavy duty foil and place on a large baking sheet. Cut or place precut broccoli and carrots in foil packets. Season lightly with 1 tbsp. olive oil and salt and pepper. Place fish fillets (2 in each foil packet) and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Top with half the sliced garlic. Repeat in second foil packet. Wrap and seal each foil pouch. Bake for ~ 20 minutes or until fish is cooked through. Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes before carefully opening the pouches.  

* Tim Saver tips*

 *For a 30 minute full meal use a minute microwavable brown rice or steamfresh freezer microwavable rice*

* Purchase broccoli and carrots precut*


Dairy Free Chocolate Delight

laura lomax

Prep time: 15 minutes



12 oz tofu, drained

1 cup dairy free semi sweet chocolate chips

1/4 cup almond milk

1 tbsp. pure maple syrup

1/4 tsp. vanilla extract


Place chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and microwave in 10-15 seconds then stir, repeat until chocolate is melted. Pour melted chocolate into magic bullet or other blender, then add remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth, then pour into desired serving dish. Cover and either place in freezer or fridge depending on desired use. Taste great as a frozen dessert or as a mousse.  

 *Recipe adapted from minimalist baker Vegan Chocolate silk Pie.


3 Ingredient Roasted Chicken

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3 Ingredient Roasted Chicken: Served 3 ways: Chicken breast with broccoli and blueberries, Brown rice Fiesta Bowl, and Colorful Spinach & Sugar Snap Pea Salad.

3 Ingredient Roasted Chicken: Served 3 ways: Chicken breast with broccoli and blueberries, Brown rice Fiesta Bowl, and Colorful Spinach & Sugar Snap Pea Salad.

3 Ingredient Roasted Chicken (diary free, FODMAP friendly)


 4-5 pound whole chicken

2 tbsp. olive oil

Salt and Pepper


Heat oven to 425. Pat chicken dry. Drizzle olive oil over the skin coating the entire chicken.  Season with salt and pepper. Place in roasting pan and cook uncovered for 20 minutes at 425. Reduce heat to 375 and continue cooking until juices are clear and thermometer reads 165 degrees inserted in the thickest part of the thigh (not touching the bone). Chicken will take approximately 20 minutes per pound to cook. Remove chicken from the oven and let rest for 15 minutes.



Turmeric Rice with Chicken

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Total cook time: 40 -60 minutes 

Serving per recipe: 4


1 cup white or brown rice 

2 cups low sodium chicken broth

2 tsp. turmeric

1/4 tsp. cumin

1 package boneless, skinless chicken thighs

2 cups frozen broccoli

2 tbsp. Olive oil

Salt and pepper


For a one pot meal, choose a skillet deep enough to cook the rice such as a 3.5 quart casserole pan or sauté pan with lid. For the chicken, pat the chicken thighs dry and season with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tbsp. of oil in the cook pan and add the chicken thighs. Allow the thighs to cook ~ 7-10 minutes per side or until cooked completely.  Removed cooked chicken and set aside. Remove the grease from cooking the chicken in the pan and begin cooking the rice. For the rice combine the rice, chicken broth, turmeric, cumin, 1/2 tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper. Bring broth to a boil then reduce heat and cover to cook the rice. Cook rice for ~ 20-40 minutes (variation w/ brown vs white rice) or until all water is absorbed. While the rice is cooking defrost the broccoli and season with 1 tbsp. olive oil, salt, and pepper. Add broccoli to rice and serve with chicken thighs.  

This recipe is gluten free, diary free.

Turmeric not only gives this rice its beautiful yellow color, but it contains curcumin a powerhouse antioxidant that can decrease inflammation in the body. Eating a diet rich in antioxidants can help combat the oxidative stress caused by chronic inflammation.