Gluten Free, Low Sugar Banana Bread

Banana bread makes me think of fall, of childhood, of my mom
and healthier desserts (that I actually eat for breakfast!)

Ingredients for 1 loaf

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup oil (or an additional mashed banana)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 lightly mashed, ripe bananas – I like when they are super mushy!
  • 1/2 cup light sour cream or plain, fat free Greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 3/4 cup gluten free flour mix
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • chocolate chips to taste
  • cinnamon to taste


  • Heat oven to 350 degrees
  • Grease and flour bottom of a loaf pan (or use a silicone loaf pan without greasing)
  • In large bowl, beat together sugar and oil (or additional banana)
  • Add eggs, lightly mashed bananas, sour cream/yogurt and vanilla; stir well to blend
  • Lightly spoon flour into measuring cup; level off
  • Add flours (I do 1/3 at a time gradually), baking soda and salt 
  • Stir just until dry ingredients are just moistened. Be sure there is no dry flour on the bottom of the bowl
  • Add chocolate chips and stir a bit more. I used about 1/4c Lily’s semi-sweet chocolate chips and saved about 12 to sprinkle right on top. (My son uses half a bag. You can control your sugar level by adding fewer or more chocolate chips. We hated Enjoy Life’s Dark Chocolate Morsels and thought they tasted like wax.)
  • Pour into prepared pan
  • Sprinkle the top with cinnamon (I like a LOT)
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes
  • Turn off oven and leave bread inside 8 more minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes clean
  • Cool 5 more minutes if you can hold back from eating the whole thing while hot
  • Remove from pan and cool completely
  • Store whatever remains in refrigerator

Makes 1 loaf. Keeps for about 4 days when refrigerated.

Easy Spanish Rice with Ground Turkey

Finding that balance between healthy and comfort food
with this great tasting dish!


  • 1 TB extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 TB garlic
  • 1 medium green pepper, diced small
  • 1 cup chicken broth + 1 cup water, or 2 cups water
  • 8 oz tomato sauce
  • 1 cup uncooked long grain rice
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 4-6 saffron threads
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
  • Black pepper to taste


  • In a skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add the chopped onion and begin to brown.
  • When onion is translucent, add the ground turkey, garlic and green pepper. Cook until meat is brown and vegetables are tender.
  • Add all of the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat to simmer, cover. Cook until rice is tender, about 25 minutes. Check after 20 minutes to be sure rice is not stuck to bottom of pan/more water is needed.

Shout! The Mod Musical is at the Straz in Tampa

Think about your favorite parts of flipping through a magazine meant for young women. The quizzes, the advice columns, the ads for new makeup – and their tips… this is what the five characters in Shout! are using to bond over while singing their way through the ’60s in England.

At the Straz Center this month, enjoy a local production of the 2006 production that is full of hit songs. At the same time, get a glimpse of how life has advanced (or not…) for women since the mid ’60s and early ’70s. I was able to attend thanks to two complimentary tickets I received from Tampa Bay Bloggers.

The show is running now through March 22, 2020, and stars mainly local favorites. You may recognize Chelsea Hooker’s Orange Girl from Jobsite’s “Othello,” or Julia Rifino’s Red Girl from American Stage in the Park’s production of “Mamma Mia!”

Kick back in the Staz Center’s Jaeb Theater, where there are four chairs to each small table on the lower level and the small balcony above – there’s not a seat in the house that’s far from the stage. Bring your bar drinks and snacks with you for the 90-minute, uninterrupted production.

I guarantee you will be bopping along to songs like “Downtown,” “Son of a Preacher Man,” “Wishin’ and Hopin’” “These Boots were made for Walking,” and many, many more! Roughly 30 songs make up the soundtrack. At points the stars bust out a show-stopping number, and you suddenly remember you’re in the audience at the Straz and not just hanging out in a friend’s living room.

TICKETS START AT $24.50. Get yours here.

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