Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownie Cake
I don't normally count calories. I count food groups, which for me is a lot easier. But since I use a 1200 calorie plan as my guideline, I thought it might be interesting to see how many calories I actually consume on any given day. I know I don't eat 1200 calories, because if I did, I would have already lost those annoying little five vanity pounds I'm trying to get off. I would guess I eat somewhere around 2000 calories a day, but I really have no idea.
So let's find out...
Breakfast was a delicious green smoothie with a Trader Joe's Gluten-Free Waffle. The smoothie had 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk, about a cup of spinach, 1 tablespoon of peanut butter (all-natural, no sugar or anything else added), and half of a banana.
Calorie count: 315. Not a bad start at all.
After breakfast, My boyfriend and I went to the gym. I had a good cardio workout. About 15 minutes on the elliptical and 15 on the stairmaster. I was a little lazy with the weights and sit-ups today though. What can I say? I was hungry...
For lunch I made a simple bean salad with 1 cup of chickpeas, 1 cup of grape tomatoes, 1 grated carrot, half of an avocado, and some red pepper flakes and dried basil.
And, a small bowl of TJ's Low-sodium Organic Creamy Tomato Soup.
Around 4pm, I started working on a chocolate cake I've been craving lately. This is actually the cake that started me on my gluten-free journey when I made it for a friend and realized how good it was. I found the original recipe on AllRecipes.com and just made a few changes this time around. I tried really hard not to eat any batter, but I got a few licks in. How could I resist?
Calories: ??? I have no idea how to count that.
Plus 10 peanuts.
When my cake was done, I'll admit I had a piece before dinner, plus a small handful of raspberries. It was delicious, almost more of a fudgy brownie than a cake.
Calories: 242 for the cake, 30 for the raspberries
By the time dinner came around, I was too tired to put much effort into it. So I chopped up a green bell pepper and some mushrooms, sauteed them, and scrambled in two eggs. Lots of ketchup and a serving of TJ's corn chips on the side completed the meal.
My boyfriend and I have opposite schedules, so we rarely eat dinner together, but when we do, we often make our own meals because our food preferences are so different. He had chicken fajitas, which I admit looked a lot better than my dinner...but his came out of a box in the freezer so I figure that doesn't really count.
After dinner, we went on a nice walk. I was still full when I got back, but I couldn't resist having another half of a slice of cake. This time I added some apricot preserves on top, which I think made it even better. Next time I might try to make an apricot glaze.
So, how many calories did I end up with? 1686, plus a lick of batter. Huh...actually a lot lower than I thought. So if I just cut out the cake, I'd be on target to lose weight. But I'll be honest. It was a really yummy cake and I think it was worth the calories.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownie Cake
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. baking powder
2 Tbsp. all-natural peanut butter
unsweetened cocoa for dusting
confectioner's sugar for dusting
* If you're making this gluten-free, make sure your chocolate chips and baking powder don't have gluten in them.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8-in. spring pan and dust with cocoa powder.
- Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave. Start with 1 minute on high power. Stir and continue to microwave in 20 second increments, stirring in between, until the chips are fully melted and creamy.
- In a food processor, blend the chickpeas and eggs until smooth. Add the sugar and baking powder and pulse. Pour in the chocolate and blend until completely mixed.
- Pour the batter into the spring pan. Stir in the peanut butter. (I tried to drip a thin layer of peanut butter on top, but it was too gloppy, so I ended up just stirring the peanut butter evenly into the cake at this point.)
- Bake in the oven for 40 minutes, until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Allow to cool for at least 15 minutes. Dust with confectioner's sugar before serving.
* The peanut butter flavor was very mild. Next time I might try adding more or heating the peanut butter up first so it would drip more evenly onto the batter. Also, I think this would be great with an apricot glaze, so I'll probably try that also.