Chef Amber’s Wholicious™ – Episode 9 How To Have A Balanced Morning Routine

Hi y’all! Welcome to Wholicious and welcome to my spiritual corner. I’m Amber Caudle aka Chef Amber and I have been a professional Chef for over 25 years, a holistic lifestyle advocate and your host of the show Wholicious, I will help and coach you on how to lead a holistic lifestyle and how to have a healthy relationship with food and your body. Together, we’re going to dive deep into the topic of a bouncing morning routine.



Today, I will share the practice of journaling with you and how it can help set your day up for success. And then we will dive into the kitchen and have a sexy healthy brunch. Journaling is my ultimate mind clearer. It only has to take a couple of minutes and is a great way to get all the junk and gunk and excess noise out of your head so you can clear any energy that might feel stuck. 

I really recommend getting a beautiful book and a pen that is only for your journaling secrets. You can write freely, whatever comes to mind first. It doesn’t have to make sense and you know what I definitely do not pay any attention to what my spelling and grammar are. I just write and you can just let it all out right as your day has already happened. 


Gratitude Lists

For example, I like to envision my day on how I like to feel, how I feel in my body, how I am nourishing my body and how I’m open to opportunity and connection. I like to write gratitude lists about what I’m proud for and what I’m grateful for. And when is the last time that you’ve acknowledged yourself. 

Sometimes my intention for writing is to work through a situation that’s causing me stress or when I experience a creative block. I have had many beautiful menu changes and business ideas come from journaling. I’ve also had many moments of clarity and light come through. Another thing I love is how it really helps me tap into my intuition and helps me learn to lean in and trust myself. 



Sometimes I write for five minutes. And sometimes I’m working through something and I write for longer. And like I said before, write freely without any judgment. I’ve literally just let a stream of consciousness come out without any judgment and I write and it helps really clear my mind. Get all the gunk out of my head. And like I said before, when I’m working through something really big, I might write for 30 minutes to an hour. 



If you’re new to journaling, I highly recommend the book that got me started years ago, ‘The Artists Way’ by Julia Cameron, she’s brilliant. She goes into depth about the importance of morning pages daily. When you need it, you can grab your journal and add it to your own morning routine. 


Morning Routines Are Important

Morning routine is the most important part of my day. And for me, I pick and choose what I want my morning routine to be. I always meditate. I always journal. Sometimes I’ll add in visualization, daily affirmations. I’ve been sharing a lot about slapping, dry brushing, you know you can create your own morning routine. 

The most important thing is find a morning routine and it doesn’t have to take very long. Meditation could be a couple minutes, journaling could be a couple minutes. Most important find that routine. It’s a really great form of self love and care. My morning routine is great for my mind. Now let’s nourish our bodies with a fueling breakfast. 


Today’s Episode

Today in my Wholicious kitchen will be making brunch. The best protein pancakes topped with a creamy almond butter maple, raw raspberry Chia jam. Cinnamon coconut pecans as well as quick mini frittatas with leeks, basil, and sun dried tomatoes. Okay, let’s go make some brunch y’all. Okay, it’s brunch time. Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day. And honestly, I would eat breakfast for every meal. And who doesn’t love breakfast for dinner? It was one of my favorite childhood traditions. 

So we’re gonna start off today with a frittata. And then we’ll move into our pancakes with a couple different toppings. All right, and then I’m gonna make a huge buffet bar and show you some of my favorite different components that I like to serve for brunch. So these frittatas we’re going to actually mini frittatas instead of a big frittata today. And I love mini frittatas, especially if you’re hosting a brunch, everyone can serve themselves, it makes it a little bit more social. I love frittatas, because one, they’re a great source of protein. And second, they are a great snack. Like I will make many frittatas on meal prep Sunday and take them with me throw one in a little baggie in my purse. So they’re great for pre and post workout. So I have a leak here. 


Mini Frittata Recipe

Okay, and I’m going to do a nice little slice here for my leaks, just like this. You can also sub a half of a red onion, if you can’t find leaks, that’s completely fine. But I love the delicateness of the leak. Okay, perfect. So I’m going to put our leaks right in the bowl. This is a leak, sun dried tomato basil frittata. And the thing about frittatas is as you can switch out these ingredients. Okay, you can get really, really creative with frittatas. I like to use any leftover roasted vegetables from the night before or any vegetables that are kind of getting wilted or going bad. It’s a great way to use your leftover veggies. Okay, so I’ve got leeks. I’ve got a nice handful of chopped sun dried tomatoes. Okay. And then I’m going to do a little dice on my garlic. I’ve got about three cloves here. We’ll just do like a rough, rough dice here. Okay, so to make this creamy, I’m going to put a little bit of olive oil and we’re going to put like a fourth cup of olive oil. I started putting olive oil in my frittata years ago. Instead of like milks or coconut milks, it just makes it super, super fluffy. Okay, I’m going to do about a fourth a cup of olive oil. This is gonna make it really creamy and fluffy. Okay, that’s good. 

This is an eight egg omelet. So we’re gonna get about eight mini frittatas. And I’m going to put a little bit of salt and pepper in here. Yeah, so like I said, breakfast brunch is my favorite meal of the day. And I grew up eating breakfast for dinner. It made me so happy. We used to have pancakes for dinner, and scrambled eggs with cheese. So when we get to the pancakes, I can’t wait to show you because it’s going to be a much healthier version than what I grew up on. All right, now, let’s just give this a little whisk and then I’ll add the basil. I’m gonna do a nice handful of basil here. We’ll do like that feels good. And the basil, leaks, and dried tomato combo is a classic for me. And I love the sweetness of the tomato with the basil. And I actually have some almond ricotta that we’re going to actually top this with to add like the cheesy component to it. 

Okay, and if you eat cheese, y’all, you can definitely add cheese to this. You could add a little feta to this if you wanted. All my recipes are always dairy free because I don’t eat cheese. But I’m not a cheese hater. So if you want to add a little feta, I would add like a half a cup of feta to this and it would be delicious. So you can always do that. Alright, so it was super quick. So sometimes with my frittata batter, especially if I’m hosting or even if you’re cooking for your family, right and you want to make something quick in the morning, you can make this frittata batter the night before and then bake it. Okay, the day of. So I’m gonna use this muffin tin here and give it a little spray. I’m using my coconut oil, I always use coconut oil or avocado oil. Being careful with those vegetable oils, no canola oil. They wreak havoc on our systems. Yeah, I’ll be careful. Okay, though, that should be good. And I have a ladle here. And I’m going to just do some nice little ladles right in to the muffin tin, like this. And then we’re going to bake this I’m going to tell you about how we’re going to bake this. 


Frittata Technique

So a technique that I like to use for frittatas is I like to use a water bath. Let me explain what that is. So in the oven, I’ve got a sheet pan with about a fourth a cup of water. Literally, it’s a pan that this will sit right on top of and there’s about an inch of water in the pan right and it basically what it does is it makes the frittatas super fluffy and they don’t sink in the middle and they won’t dry out. I don’t know if you’ve ever made mini fritattas and you’ve noticed that the end that the center of the frittata sinks all the way down. It just needed a little bit more moisture. Honestly, the water bath creates like a little bit of a steam. And that was perfect. That was a perfect eight right there. Beautiful. Okay, so I’m gonna throw these in the oven for about 27 to 30 minutes and then we’re going to start on our pancake bar. Our frittatas are in the oven for about 27 to 30 minutes so it gives us perfect amount of timing to make our pancake bar. 


Pancake Bar

First we’ll start with our pancakes. Then we’re going to move on to our coconut cinnamon maple pecans. Next I’m going to do a raw chia seed jam. Then I’m going to make an almond butter maple syrup. And then I’ve got a surprise for you. One of my favorite mocktails made with our raw Chia jam. Okay, so let’s get into these pancakes. All right, so these pancakes are gluten free and they are vegan and they’re loaded with protein. Okay, so pancakes growing up, I ate the buttermilk pancake mix with the Aunt Jemima syrup, right the crazy fake maple which I grew up on that. And I love pancakes, pancakes for dinner, the whole thing but it definitely always made my stomach hurt. And one tradition in our family too is we always used to put peanut butter on our pancakes along with the maple. So that’s why we’re going to make the almond butter syrup today. So this is a healthier version by far. And I use this actually yes for breakfast. But I also use these pancakes as a snack also, because they fry up really easily. And because there’s not any egg, I can keep them in the frigerator and grab them on the go. 


Pancake Recipe

So let’s start. So in our bowl here, I’m going to actually add our dry so I’m using a Bob’s gluten free flour today it’s made out of potato and fava beans and pea. So we’re gonna have a lot of protein in there. Okay, we’re also going to add some baking soda, cinnamon, a little pinch of sea salt. Okay, and flaxmeal so the flax meal is going to bind this pancake and thicken it up, it’s going to act as our egg. 


Protein Powder

Okay, then, newzest protein powder, my favorite protein powder. Anytime I’m making anything, I always need extra protein. So this will give it a nice creamy vanilla flavor. So I’ve got about a fourth a cup of protein powder. Now if you don’t like the flavor of protein powder, you really can’t taste this in here. And you can actually use whatever protein powder of choice here. Just make sure your ingredients are clean. 

Okay, so I’m going to give this a little stir. All right. All right, perfect. So for our wet ingredients, we’re actually going to blend and make a creamy milk out of coconut milk and water. So I’ve got whole coconut milk and I also added a cup of water to that. To thicken our pancakes today, I’m going to use two bananas. So I’ve got two bananas here. This is going to basically make a banana coconut cream that we’re going to whisk in. Okay, for that fat, we’re going to use coconut oil, that’s going to be our fat for our pancake, and I’m going to do like a big teaspoon of this delicious Tahitian vanilla. That was a good one. That was a good teaspoon. Alright, I’m gonna give this a quick blend. Okay, so I’m gonna whisk our banana coconut milk, basically that’s what we just made right into our dry. Okay, beautiful. And get this a nice little whisk here. 

And I make this every time I go home. I’m from Atlanta. So anytime I go home to visit my family, one of our favorite things to do is make a pancake bar. I love making pancake bars and brunches. Okay, get it in here. I just want all the clumps to really get out. And this is a thicker batter. Okay, to make a nice fluffy pancake. If you’ve been following the episodes of Wholicious, I always cook gluten free and dairy free. And it’s something on my journey towards health. 


Gluten and Dairy Free

About nine years ago, I stopped eating gluten because I was healing my gut and healing my hormones and my adrenals and with the guidance of a naturopathic doctor, I was urged to cut out gluten and dairy and a couple other ingredients because I just was feeling really fatigued. So I’m not a gluten hater. But for me, it doesn’t work for my diet. So in my cookbook, ‘Sexy, Nourishing Food.’ That book is all gluten free and dairy free. And it just works for my body. Speaking of my cookbook, this actually pancake recipe is in there because it’s so popular. All right, and you have to find what works for you. 


Careful with Additives & Preservatives

Like I said, I’m not a gluten hater, you have to be careful with the quality of gluten in the United States unfortunately, because wheat can be sprayed with glycophyte, which is known to cause cancer. So that is why when people say oh my gosh, I can go to Europe and I can eat all the cheese and all the bread and drink all the wine. It’s because they don’t use I think we can use in the US 175 additives and preservatives that are basically banned and illegal in Europe. Isn’t that wild? So you just have to be careful. 


Cinnamon Coconut Pecan Recipe

Okay, here we go. All right, I’m going to let this sit because the flax is acting as our egg and it’s going to thicken it. Let’s get our pecans in the oven. So I’m gonna make basically a cinnamon coconut pecan crumble. So we’ve got pecans, a little bit of coconut oil here. Cinnamon. Can you tell that I use cinnamon everything. Okay, a little drizzle of maple. And then our coconut. Okay, now, I’m going to add a pinch of sea salt. And toss this together. 


Why Do You Use Cinnamon in Almost Everything? 

Because first of all, it’s really great for helping fight inflammation, but it makes everything so sweet. 


Gift Idea

Now, this is something I love to make for presents, especially during the holidays. You can make a huge batch of this. And put them into nice pretty little mason jars with a little bow and make the best gifts. This is going to be a topping that we’re going to put on our pancakes today. But these cinnamon coconut pecans y’all are delicious on smoothie bowls on yogurt. I mean, you can eat a handful of it for a little bit of a protein snack. So you can put it on your ice cream are nice cream. They’re delicious. It’s a fun little gift idea. All right. Yes. Okay, so we’re gonna toast this in the oven. Get this out of my way here. We’re gonna toast this for about 12 minutes in the oven, okay. And I’m going to put them in there right with those fritattas. Okay, perfect. Love it. 


Chia Jam Recipe

Alright, let’s get into that Chia jam. So this jam, I’m going to use soft raspberries. Now for this jam you can use any berry. Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, I love raspberries right now. And so we’re going to use these. These are actually a little soft. This jam is best made if your fruit isn’t super ripe, because you really want to be able to mash with your fork. So in here, I’m going to actually start to mash and I’m going to add just a teaspoon of maple into this. Like literally the smallest little amount of maple. Okay. And then to thicken our jam, I’m adding some chia seeds. So the chia seeds high in Omega, high and plant protein, but also when the chia seeds sits with the raspberries and the orange, I’m going to do a half of an orange. It’s going to thicken up and kind of make it a little bit like jello like and this is so fast. Look at how fast this jam that’s a raw jam. It’s going to take under five minutes. 



Okay. And then I’m going to show you a fun little mocktail to make with this. So one thing that I used to love to drink especially when I went to Italy is a bellini. Do you guys know what a bellini is? I love it. It’s made with Prosecco, and some sort of like fruit puree. But right now I’m not drinking so I’m making this bellini today. It’s going to be a biellini mocktail, and we’re going to use sparkling water, and it’s super fun to make for brunch, and you can sip on it while you’re making brunch and feel festive. And you can use any fruit purée. Okay, sometimes I like blend up puréed mango and pour it in with my sparkling water with a little bit of mint. 

Okay, so I just want to show you how fast and easy this is look at this. All you have to do is use the back of your fork and this is a little runny right now but when we let this sit for about five minutes, the chia seed, it’s going to really thicken this baby up. Okay. And how gorgeous is that? Okay, I’m going to put that to the side. All right. 


Almond Butter Syrup

Okay, now we’re going to make the almond butter syrup. So this was inspired because like I said, I used to love putting peanut butter and butter and maple syrup on my pancakes when I was little. I just prefer almond butter. You can definitely use peanut butter but this is delicious with almond butter. We’re going to loosen this up a little bit with a little bit of water. So it’s just a little bit of water. Then this also is going to get a little bit of maple and let me just get our almond butter in here. And this is delicious also drizzled on smoothie bowls, on granola, on yogurt, on cereal. So I love having multiple uses for my ingredients. So when you make stuff, you can have big batches in the fridge. This is also delicious drizzled on toast with banana. Okay, so I’m going to do a little whisk here.

Okay. Nice and creamy. We’re going to drizzle that on our pancakes. Let me just wipe this up for good presentation. This is going to be part of our pancake bar. Alright, so our frittata is almost ready. I’m gonna pull out the frittata. I’m going to start frying up the pancakes. Our cinnamon pecans are almost finished and I’ve got some backup for us also that are already cooled. And I think we’re ready to start frying up these pancakes. So let’s get our heat on. And I’m going to do medium, medium to high heat here. And I’m going to use a little bit of coconut oil. So we’ll do a little bit of coconut oil here. And I like that our batter has been sitting now for about five minutes. It’s nice and thick. See how thick it is. Okay. And like I said before, this batter is really great to fry them up, leave them in the fridge, you can grab them on the go, but also with this pancake batter, you can leave this batter in the fridge and fry it up whenever you want. It will get a little bit thick, but I like like a thick fluffy pancake. Okay, let me just put this in here. And that’s perfect. It’s about a fourth a cup. That’s great. Okay. All right, we’re gonna let that go. I’m going to actually grab our coconut pecans. So I’ve got the coconut pecans. They’re nice and toasted. I baked these a little bit ago for us so they would be cool. I’m going to put these in here so we can use this as our pancake bar. 

All right. I love these. Okay. All right, perfect. So while that’s going, I’m going to make the bellini really quick. Okay, I want to show you. Alright, so I’m going to take a big dollop of our raspberry jam here. Kind of just like put it down at the bottom. And then I’m going to top it with a little sparkling water. Now you can use Prosecco or champagne for this and it’s the delicious, okay. Okay. All right. I’m gonna make a couple pancakes. I’ll sit that right there. But look at how nice and thick and fluffy and airy it is. I think people sometimes say to me, oh, vegan pancakes are going to be so. You know, thin and flimsy. It’s like, No, this is like so thick. Okay, we’re smoking here. Let’s turn that down a little bit. Okay, so check out this bellini. It’s amazing. Isn’t it look like a cocktail. Okay, that’s perfect. All right, our pan is definitely hot. Ready for another pancake here. All right. Okay, we’re smoking. All right. Perfect. All right, I’m going to turn that down. And while this is cooking, I’m actually going to grab our frittatas out of the oven. Okay, look at these babies. And so what I love about cooking fritattas in a water bath to see how evenly they cooked. And like I said before, a lot of times egg dishes, everything can sink to the bottom and look at how perfect and fluffy they are. Okay. Also they’re fluffy because of that olive oil. I’m gonna set these to the side. Let’s flip this pancake.

Perfect. Okay, pancakes going. Okay, let’s make our brunch bar. Alright, I’m going to set these frittatas right on our platter here. I’m going to top it with a bunch of fresh herbs. I’m also going to make a green salad because I want to have greens with my brunch. And so this is a really great, full balanced meal. Okay, and I always need greens. Okay. All right, perfect. Let me grab this out of the way. Let me check on the pancake here. Okay, that looks nice. 


Add Your Greens

So green salad. I’m going to actually put a bunch of extra herbs in there. I’m a big fan of a very simple green salad. Seriously, all you need are herbs, greens, a little olive oil, a little pinch of salt. That’s it. So I’m gonna use some leftover basil, parsley, cilantro. Okay, give that a nice little toss. I’m going to do a little pinch of salt on there. And this pancake is definitely done. Perfect and we’re going to do a nice little drizzle of olive oil. Okay, gorgeous. And to make these babies nice and sexy, I’m going to put some greens couple little herb, cilantro leaves, parsley leaves, just like this. 

To top this off, we’re going to use the almond ricotta. So the almond ricotta I made in episode six. I stuffed some delicata squash with bison and top this. So you can go back and grab the recipe. But this is made with almond, lemon and a little sea salt and this is going to make this dish real really cheesy. So what I love is I’ll just put like a little dollop right on top. You can also sit the almond ricotta out on the bar for your brunch bar. And you know, it’s also amazing. It’s like fueling your family with nutritious healing food right? So when you’re preparing a beautiful meal like this, like it feels so good to know not only are you fueling your body with nutritious healing food, but you’re also responsible now for your family’s health. All right, so we’ve got our fritattas with almond ricotta, I’m going to set a little bit more out we’ve got our greens, let’s layer our pancakes. 

This is my favorite part. Okay, so I’m going to put a big drizzle of almond butter maple on this. Look at this. So good. Okay. Then, a nice big scoop of this raw berry jam. And then for the crunch because I always need texture. We’re going to do some cinnamon coconut pecans right on top. Oh my gosh. How gorgeous is that? So this is a beautiful brunch. We’ve got our protein pancakes with almond maple butter, cinnamon coconut pecans with a raw berry jam. Our leek basil, sun dried tomato fritattas with creamy almond ricotta, a nice green salad. And then your sparkling water mocktail bellini. Okay, thank you so much for joining me today for brunch. Take care of yourself, your mind your body, and your soul. And if you liked this episode, give it a thumbs up. If you have any questions comment below because I love staying connected with you. Subscribe to my YouTube channel so you can be an active part of my vision of a healthy world through food. I’ll see you on the next episode of Wholicious. And remember, healthy is the new sexy!

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