Is the weather getting colder where you are? Are you inspired to curl up inside, perhaps in a “snuggle pile” with loved ones? I know our family is! Here where we are, when the cooler temperatures set in Cole loves to ask to get warm drink treats while we’re out-and-about. “Mom, can we go get peppermint hot chocolate – PLEASE?!” he’ll ask, mostly because I like to spoil the boys and often end up making allowances for treats when they’re well behaved and polite. But knowing how dairy and sugar affects the boys’ health and behavior, we have worked hard to recreate almost every food that they love in a more healthful way with nourishing ingredients. I was thrilled when I was able to recently respond with, “Actually, why don’t we make that at home ourselves? That recipe is in Real Life Paleo, remember? You can help me make it!” I loved his approving grin and knowing I’d avoided an evening with a sugar-crashing-banshee.
We’re planning on sipping some Peppermint Hot Chocolate while building a gingerbread house this weekend, in fact! If you want to join in, see recipes on our blog by Fed and Fit (2013’s grain-free Gingerbread House guest post is EPIC) and Beyond the Bite (2014’s nut-free, egg-free gingerbread men should work for a house, too!) and you, too, can put a house together!
And for those coming to this post just for those mugs of chocolatey goodness, Real Life Paleo is a guidebook for individuals and families who seek to adopt a paleo lifestyle but don’t find that the going-all-in-at-once (30 day challenge) approach doesn’t work for them. Real Life Paleo details the method that our family used to take back our health, including getting our children off medication, improving their behavior, and losing a collective 200 lbs between the adults. The 3 Phased Approach in Real Life Paleo has been used by thousands of families through the blog who have found great success using the methods, tips, and tricks outlined in Real Life Paleo. What makes it special?
- The unique 3-phased approach to going Paleo allows individuals and famillies to transition at their own pace, focusing first on Swapping out the worst offenders, then Removing the remaining items to adopt what would be considered a traditional Paleo diet, and finally focusing on adding nutrient-dense foods and lifestyle factors in the Heal phase.
- Each phase includes several tear-out guides (repeated at the end of the book).
- Our How-To section covers Paleo basics for those just starting their Paleo journey.
- Setting Your Paleo Table not only offers traditional meal plans for each phase, but also includes our favorite part of the book: meal ideas! These full table spreads offer readers something you’ve never seen in a Paleo cookbook before: what an entire meal can look like without the traditional bread and pasta you may used to. We have provided 21 meal ideas, ensuring plenty of ideas for each meal of the day in all phases.
- Each of the book’s 175 recipes is accompanied by a photograph. The recipes were intentionally crafted to create an 80/20 ratio of “treats” to healthier dishes; we also purposefully created recipes for people with food intolerences. Overall, there are 36 recipes in Phase 1, 83 in Phase 2, and 54 in Phase 3; 115 are egg-free, 109 are nut-free, and 143 are nightshade-free. Additionally, we created recipes Under 30 Minutes (80), with 5 Ingredients or Less (70), using only One Pot (82), good for Holidays (27), and perfect for On the Go (45).
Real Life Paleo offers several indexes, including an overall visual index, an allergen index, and chapter indexes which help readers find exactly what they’re looking for. For example, if you were looking for a drink that took under 30 minutes, had 5 ingredients or less, could be made in one pot and was ideal for celebrations, you’d be able to identify that our Peppermint Hot Chocolate would be a great choice!
That’s right, our Peppermint Hot Chocolate is not only amazingly delicious, it’s also simple! We strive to make all of our recipes in Real Life Paleo simple (save for a few special occasion dishes) because it’s a cookbook intended for people who live real, busy lives – like us!
- 2 cups almond milk or coconut milk
- ¼ cup cacao powder
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup (grade B preferred)
- ¾ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 2 to 4 marshmallows (optional)
- Pour the almond milk into a small saucepan. Place over medium heat and whisk in the cacao powder and maple syrup.
- Bring to a simmer, and then reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 to 10 minutes, until the cacao lumps have dissolved.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the peppermint extract.
- Pour into 2 mugs. Top each mug with one or two 1-inch marshmallows, if desired, and serve.
We like to serve our Peppermint Hot Chocolate with homemade collagen-rich Marshmallows. You can find our recipe in Real Life Paleo.
Want to see how it all comes together in Real Life Paleo?
Phases, allergens, and all the details are displayed clearly on the page!
We hope you love this recipe, and consider buying you or a loved one Real Life Paleo this holiday season! ♥