It’s that time again! This week I have for you, Davida from The Healthy Maven! Hands down, this is one of my favorite food blogs. If you are looking for something new to bake, this is the blog to turn to! In under one year Davida has built an amazing blog, with a never ending recipe list. Her personality definitely comes out in her posts making it very relatable and fun to read!
Today, not only do we have a great Q&A with Davida but it also includes one of her infamous recipes: Healthy Mexican Hot Chocolate.
So without further ado, Davida from the Healthy Maven:
1. Who is the mastermind behind The Healthy Maven? What is life outside the blog?
Life outside the blog is pure craziness that 90% of the time is self-induced. I like to be busy and my days to be full so you will often find me running from one place to another. I work full-time in brain-imaging research and also part-time for an amazing healthy snack company called Kewaza. When I have a spare second I like to bake, cook, workout and read. I also attempt to have a social life somewhere in there!
2. When did you get into blogging and what caused you to start?
I started blogging in February of this year. I initially started the blog so that I wouldn’t have to send out so many emails with recipes and workouts. It was just easier to refer everything to one place. But it ended up becoming so much more.
3. How has your blog transformed since you first started?
I dare you to check out my first post! The blog itself has improved in so many ways since then. Most recently I redesigned the blog and transferred it to Wordpress, but I’ve also been focusing more time on improving my food photography and making recipes that require fewer steps and less ingredients. I also think my mindset has changed since I started to the blog. I used to be pretty strict about my eating and workouts, but I’ve learned to relax a lot more with both of these.
4. If you had to describe your eating “style” what would it be? Cuisines you prefer? Anything that you definitely avoid?
I generally don’t have a label for the way I eat. I have no issues with labels I just don’t fit any particular category. I tend to eat healthy most of the time and find my stomach is happier when I avoid gluten and dairy, but I also don’t deny myself these things if I’m craving them. More often than not I crave vegetables and lean proteins (mostly chicken, turkey and seafood) and then when I want that piece of cake I dig in! And if sweets count as a cuisine then I am all about it.
5. Where do you look for inspiration for the foods you make?
This sounds kind of crazy, but recipes just pop into my head. I keep a list of recipe ideas on my phone that I add to when they come to me and am slowly making my way through them. I also am saturated by food blogs daily so I’m sure they have some subconscious influence on the foods I make.
6. Since you are a baking guru, what’s one of your baking secrets or tips?
Practice practice practice! I’ve been baking since I was really young. It was something I always loved to do. At first I would stick to recipes but eventually I started putting my own twist on them. Now I just build recipes from my own arsenal by making tweaks here and there. And don’t be afraid to fail!
7. If you had to pick 3 of your all time favorite recipies made what would they be?
I am a breakfast fanatic so I would have to go with my grain-free banana protein pancakes. My gluten-free pumpkin cornbread recipe is another favorite. And lately my apple pie bites have been a staple in my kitchen.
8. Let’s talk food photography, what tips have you learned along the way?
Just like baking, practice practice practice. And look at the food blogs you like and take notes about the angles they take their pictures at and the food props they use. Though not necessary, a DSLR can make a huge difference!
9. If we looked into your refrigerator right now what would we find?
Pickles, peanut butter and enough Turkey soup to feed a small village.
10. What does a typical day look like for you eating wise?
Pretty boring and very sporadic! Breakfast is the only meal that is consistent, usually oatmeal or toast with nut butter and banana. Lunch is usually soup or a salad and dinner is a combination of recipes on the blog that week. I used to meal prep a lot but now I’m all about winging it. It leads to waffles and pancakes for lunch and dinner on some days but it works for me.
11. What is your ultimate goal for your blog? Could you see yourself blogging 5 years from now?
I would love to be blogging 5 years from now! Blogging is my release. It helps me escape from the craziness that is my life and sort through my thoughts. I honestly don’t know what my goal is for the blog, but I would love to be able to inspire people to make healthier choices and help people making healthier choices to ease up and indulge every once and a while. We’ll see how it goes! A cookbook would be kind of awesome too.
Healthy Mexican Hot Chocolate (Yields: 8-10 cups)
For the healthy mexican hot chocolate mix:
1/2 cup cocoa powder
3 T organic cane sugar*
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves
pinch cayenne pepper
For the hot chocolate:
1 cup of unsweetened almond milk (or other unsweetened non-dairy milk)
1 T of healthy mexican hot chocolate mix
1. Heat up almond milk in microwave or on the stove (about 2 minutes in the microwave)
2. Stir in mix.
3. Drink up!
*Feel free to replace with another sweetener or omit and add honey, maple syrup or agave when making the hot chocolate.
Thanks again Davida! I love how simple this is, but still puts a twist on everyone’s favorite winter drink!
Also, I am guest posting over at The Healthy Maven today so go check out one of my secrets to avoiding the dreaded holiday weight gain!
What is your favorite recipe from The Healthy Maven?
Food photography tips?