It's week two of Healthy Ways Wednesdays, and I'm here with a recipe for the best danged pumpkin pie I've ever eaten. Seriously!
Oh, and more great news... it's low in carbs and calories!! Put this one onto your Thanksgiving table and you just might put Grandma's pie to shame
Before I share the recipe, I thought you'd like to know what a week of ups and downs it's been. Keeping in my positive frame of mind, I'll start with the GREAT news:
I'm now 25% to goal on my #FitBy50 program. I stood on the scale and watched the numbers dip into a new range this week. I was SO flipping excited to see that my body is still burning fat, despite not being able to exercise the three times per week that I typically do! I've got 35 pounds left to lose before I hit my goal!
The reason WHY I haven't been to the gym lately is my no-so-great news. If you've been following along on my Facebook page or Instagram feed, you likely saw the ugly photos of my leg and face last week. Within 24 hours of one another, I suffered two ugly incidents. First, a blood vessel burst in my left eye. Typically, that wouldn't be any cause for concern, but a few hours later, two varicose veins in my right leg ruptured (thrombosis). Seemingly, everyone but ME thought I should be taken the ER to be checked out. I was reminded that thrombosis of a vein can lead to an embolism (blood clot) in my lung, heart, or even my brain, so Brian rushed me over to the hospital. Because I have a horrible needle phobia and anxiety, I SHOULD have taken my anti-anxiety medication before we left the house, but I didn't. So when we got to the ER waiting room and saw what a huge wait there was going to be, I convinced Brian to take me home. The next evening, everything looked 100% worse and I was starting to lose vision in my left eye (which already has extremely poor vision), so back to the ER we went. After some tests were run, the doctor determined that my clotting factors are fine. He was concerned about my vision loss, though, so I went to see an eye surgeon the following day. Long story short, I'll be fine in about 2 weeks. In the mean time, I'm not allowed to do any activity that will put strain on my blood vessels... ie, no workouts at the gym
It's okay, though... I'm watching my nutrition closely and staying encouraged with the help of my friends in the Weight Loss Wednesdays group and the great group of people I've met through Sarah Jenks' "Live More, Weigh Less" challenge. They're all helping me to focus on the great progress I've made and to be proud of what I've accomplished so far. This is just a temporary set back!
So, in celebration, I decided to create some low-carb pumpkin pie bars. I did some research on Pinterest to find out how to create a low-carb crust and learned that almond flour was the choice for many people. Since I didn't have any in the house, I chose to use my favorite low-carb baking mix from Bob's Red Mill. Good gravy, I love that product! It's an amazing, healthy substitute for traditional flour, even if you're not on a low-carb eating plan. I get mine from Amazon in a 4-pack to keep the cost down, but you can also find it in the healthy/natural section of some stores, or you can it straight from the Bob's Red Mill website.
I knew that I wanted a chocolate crust, so I added a couple of tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa to the crust mixture. Because I used Greek yogurt for the pie filling, it's higher in protein than a normal pie would be, and it's deliciously creamy. It's got all of the wonderful warm flavors that a good pumpkin pie should have, too...cinnamon, cloves, and ginger. YUMMI!
Bear in mind, however, that low-carb doesn't mean low fat! I used real butter in the crust, but WOWZA did it taste good! It was rich enough that one small piece was all I needed to feel like I was indulging in a naughty treat! All things in moderation is the key to my weight loss success. If you give this pie a try (and I hope that you will!), please come back and leave me a comment to let me know if you loved it as much as I do!
Oh, and please check out the great Weight Loss Wednesday posts from my WLW girlyfriends!
- 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill Low-Carb Baking Mix
- 6 packets (1g each) NuStevia White Stevia Powder
- 4 oz (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
- 2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 Tablespoon maple syrup
- 2 cups 100% Pure Pumpkin Puree
- 8 oz (1 cup) Dannon Light & Fit Greek Vanilla Yogurt
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 8 packets (1g each) NuStevia White Stevia Powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 sea salt
- Pinch of ground cloves
- Pinch of ground ginger
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F (325 if using convection oven)
- In a small bowl, combine baking mix, 6 packets Stevia, melted butter, cocoa powder, and maple syrup. Stir with spoon or spatula until it forms a cohesive dough. Use fingers to press mixture evenly into bottom of a 9” x 9” baking pan.
- Bake for 12 minutes. Remove pan from oven and allow it to cool on wire rack while you prepare the filling.
- FOR FILLING
- In a large bowl, combine pumpkin puree, yogurt, egg, 8 packets Stevia, vanilla extract, salt, and all spices. Use a whisk or hand mixer to combine until smooth.
- Use a silicone spatula to spread batter evenly over the crust. Return pan to oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until edges are just starting to crack and the top is set. Remove pan from oven and cool on wire rack for 10 minutes. Place pan into refrigerator and chill for at least 2 hours before slicing and serving.