Carob Coconut Cups

I know that many of you are already fans of Amy, the blogger behind the wildly popular Simply Sugar and Gluten Free (which recently got a facelift–check out the new look!).  A few months ago, Amy published her first cookbook, Simply Sugar and Gluten Free, and her publisher kindly sent me a copy for review

For someone like me (on an anti-candida diet), the combination of sugar-free and gluten-free was incrediby enticing.  Unlike many other gluten-free cookbooks, this one already fit my “no-sugar” requirement! I couldn’t wait to see the book.

The cookbook is filled with recipes and lots of useful information written in Amy’s clean, approachable style.  She begins with a personal story explaining why she eats sugar- and gluten-free.  The book wraps up with a comprehensive chapter called “The Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free Kitchen Guide,” in which she offers tips on flour blends, kitchen essentials (all the products you’ll need to reproduce the recipes), and even a list of her favorite kitchen tools.  The chapter is also peppered with tip boxes containing info on how to succeed at GF baking, conversions, kitchen organization, and more. The book is capped off with a list of resources, including books, blogs, and where to purchase products.

The book’s full title is Simply Sugar and Gluten Free; 180 Easy and Delicious Recipes You Can Make in 20 Minutes or Less, and given how time-strapped so many of us are these days, this is a very appealing promise. I decided to dig in.

Before I talk about what I cooked up, however, I should mention that the book is not a vegan cookbook–though it does contain some vegan recipes or options.  Obviously, I didn’t try out any of the dishes with meat, chicken, fish, eggs, dairy, etc.  Having said that, though, I was pleasantly surprised at how many of the recipes I could easily adapt.  Occasionally, Amy offers vegan variations, and even when she didn’t, I had no trouble finding many recipes to try. And so, on to those I sampled!

First up, I made some very quick and simple Carob Nut Cups.  Resembling peanut butter cups without the peanut butter filling (or the chocolate!), these snacks were dense, caroby treats that provided a great afternoon pick-me-up. Made with unsweetened carob chips, they were just sweet enough; I added a bit of stevia for a slightly sweeter version.  I really enjoyed these (since I am, as you know, a fan of carob), as did the HH (who is not always a fan of carob).

Next, I turned to the Apple Carrot Breakfast Cake, which I baked up as muffins. For several years now, I’ve been sending the HH off to work in the morning with a homemade muffin (since, when I don’t, he opts for the far less healthy–and more hydrogenated–Tim Horton’s variety).  These were quick and easy to put together, moist and sweet without any added oil or sweetener at all.  And I had no problem substituting flax “eggs” for the original recipe’s eggs.  The original recipe called for a whipped topping, but I found these didn’t even need it. And the HH enjoyed many days of healthy breakfasts courtesy of Amy!

Another dessert I couldn’t resist were the Carob Chip Cookies.  Believe it or not, the finished product was actually a bit too sweet for my current ACD-accustomed taste buds (they contain a cup of coconut sugar); this was also another recipe very easily adapted to a vegan version, and  the HH raved about them.  “These taste just like real cookies!” he enthused as he grabbed a second (and later, a third) cookie.  (I chose not to ask what that compliment would imply about my cookies).  As Amy tells us in the preamble to the recipe, “No one ever mentions that they don’t taste the chocolate, and the plate is always empty in no time” when she serves these to friends. I can believe it.

Finally, I couldn’t resist making the Black Bean Soup (a simple switch from chicken to vegetable stock rendered the recipe 100% vegan).  The final product wasn’t exactly photogenic (it looked kind of like those kids’ watercolor paintings in which they mix all the colors together. . . swampy and mudlike), but boy-oh-boy, did it taste fantastic!  The HH raved over this one, too.  And the soup was incredibly simple to make (though I should point out that it’s one of the few recipes in the book that’s not actually ready “in 20 minutes or less”–you have to soak the beans overnight, then simmer for 1-1/2 hours; you could, however, cut the prep time by using canned beans).  We cleaned up the entire pot in two days–it was that good. 🙂

If you’re looking for a general-purpose cookbook that covers a variety of courses from appetizer to dessert, all in easy-to-follow recipes that work as promised, this book would make a perfect addition to your kitchen. From the basics like Herbed White Bean Dip and Simple Sautéd Swiss Chard to more exotic combinations like Olive Oil-Zucchini Muffins, Blueberry Quinoa Crumble Bars or Chocolate Teff Cake, you’re sure to find something that suits your fancy.

Amy’s publisher has granted permission for me to reprint a recipe–I hope you’ll enjoy these quick and easy Carob Nut Cups!

Never miss a recipe–or a comment from The Girls! Click here to subscribe to via email. You’ll get recipes as soon as they’re posted, plus cookbook updates and news about upcoming events! (“We love subscribers, Mum. . . almost as much as we love treats!”)



I’m delighted to report that the kind folks at Ulysses Press have offered to provide a copy of the book for one of you!

To enter the giveaway, simply leave a comment on this post telling me why you’d like the book.

As always, you may acquire additional entries by doing any (or all) of the following:

  • Subscribe to Amy’s blog, “like” her on Facebook, or follow her on twitter (then come back and leave a separate comment for each one);
  • Subscribe to this blog, “like” the DDD page on Facebook, or follow me on twitter (then come back and leave a separate comment for each);
  • Go to the Ulysses Press cookbook page and browse through their other cookbooks (then come back and mention one you found interesting).

The contest will remain open for a week (until midnight on Sunday, June 26th), at which time I’ll randomly choose a winner. The giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents (with apologies to my international readers!).

Good luck, everyone! 😀


[Disclaimer: this post may contain affiliate links. If you buy using these links, at no cost to you, I will earn a small commission from the sale.]



  1. CaryAnn Hancock says

    I adore Amy’s blog

  2. CaryAnn Hancock says

    I’ve liked Amy on FB

  3. CaryAnn Hancock says

    I have subscribed to your blog

  4. CaryAnn Hancock says

    I have already liked you on FB, how do you think I heard of this give away! 😉

  5. CaryAnn Hancock says

    I really like Kelly’s book: sugar free gluten free baking and desserts.

  6. Am just discovering the magic of a gluten-free lifestyle, and need a little help with a desire to go sugar-free. 20-minute recipes: what could be better???

  7. Christy Belisle says

    I have been trying to do eliminate sugar and gluten from my diet as well as the rest of my family; I would love to win this cookbook!

  8. Christy Belisle says

    I liked Amy’s blog on FB.

  9. We could always use some extra inspiration in this household. I’ve been (mostly…) gluten and sugar free for about a month now and I would love to drool over this book.

  10. Already subscribed to you! So excited…I’ve heard such good things about this cookbook!!

  11. Subscribed to Amy’s blog 🙂

  12. The 100 Best Gluten-Free Recipes for Your Vegan Kitchen sounds great!

  13. I’m *so* glad the recipe you chose to show us was the carob one! You made it sound like a must-must-must-must make 🙂

  14. I’m a newbie in the world of gluten, dairy, and ACD. Heck, I’m a newbie to cooking, and both Amy’s blog and DD&D have been lifesavers! I would love to win a copy of the book.

  15. I already subscribe to your blog.

  16. I’m a facebook fan, too!

  17. And…..of course I subscribe to Amy’s blog as well.

  18. Brandi B. says

    Wow–I just checked out Ulysses Press’s cookbook page and they actually have one called “I love Trader Joes”–that might be next on my list!

  19. Brandi B. says

    I have been following Amy for awhile now–I’d love to get her cookbook:)

  20. I’d love to win this cookbook for my mother. She’s just recently gotten into gluten-free baking and this would give her a great collection of recipes to work with.

  21. I subscribe to your blog via email.

  22. I subscribe to Amy’s blog via email.

  23. The Macarons recipe book on the Ulysses Press site looks amazing!

  24. I follow Amy on Twitter.

  25. I follow you on Twitter.

  26. …because I like sweets :p

  27. We’re new to the GF/SF world and I’d love some additional recipes to help us on this healthy path!

  28. I am subscribed to your blog.

  29. I am subscribed to Amy’s blog.

  30. The cookbook that I like is Macarons
    Authentic French Cookie Recipes from the Macaron Cafe
    Cecile Cannone because macarons are gluten-free!

  31. I love Amy Green’s website! the cookbook would be awesome!

  32. Great giveaway! I’ve made the apple cake before, but never thought of making it into muffins.

  33. This sounds like a wonderful cookbook – I like how diverse it sounds – and who needs sugar and gluten, anyways? 🙂

  34. I went to Trader Joe’s twice while in NYC and found it awesome, so I think the “The I Love Trader Joe’s Around the World Cookbook” sounds so enticing!

  35. I already subscribe to DDD through google reader

  36. I already like DDD on facebook 🙂

  37. I find it so hard to find tasty sugar free recipies! I’d love to try out some of the recipes in this book.

  38. Really nice book review, Ricki. Although I don’t often acquire non-vegan cookbooks, you’ve made this one sound like a great book to own. Black bean soup rarely looks photogenic, but your description makes it sound fantastic! As for the cookies, I imagine a whole cup of coconut sugar is what them taste so “Real.” 😀

    • Yes, the HH agreed with you! While he likes my “regular” (ie, ACD) baking, he does think I sometimes make things that aren’t quite sweet enough for his tastes. And coconut sugar tastes divine!

  39. I follow you on Twitter!

  40. I already follow amy on facebook and subscribe to her blog. The same goes with you but I did subscribe to google reader as well for you ;o)

  41. I love Amy’s cookbook but I also find Sugar-Free Gluten-Free Baking and Desserts very interesting ;o)

  42. JessBubbles says

    I would like her cook book because I really like her website. I visit it sometimes for recipes. I also really like her story.

  43. JessBubbles says

    I subscribed to her blog through My Yahoo account.

  44. JessBubbles says

    I browsed the cook books, and I like “Who You Callin’ Cupcake?” I am not sure I would be up to the task of making fancy cupcakes, but I sure would enjoy the photos!

  45. This cookbook would be perfect!!! I am a “no-sugar” girl myself….but I still need some chocolate in my life!

  46. “Have Your Cake and Vegan Too” looks inspiring. I’m on the hunt for a vegan (and hopefully low sugar) 30th birthday cake.

    • Megan, did you see my Strawberries & Cream cake? You could make just the cake (bake as 2 layers) and frost for a b-day cake. If you’re not gluten free, use light spelt instead of the gluten free all purpose. 🙂

  47. Nicole F says

    I would love to have this book! Gluten free and sugar free is my life now, ever since I did the ACD two years ago. Even though my body is healed now, I still choose to avoid sugar and gluten. I guess my taste buds just got used to eating this way.

  48. Sarah Williams says

    I would love to have a copoy of Amy’s book. I am always looking for gluten-free and sugar-free recipes. Thanks for the opportunity!

  49. Sarah Williams says

    I subscribe to Amy’s blog–it’s one of my favorites.

  50. Sarah Williams says

    I subscribe to your blog–and of course it’s one of my favorites too!

  51. Sarah Williams says

    I had seen Kelly Keough’s “Sugar-Free Gluten-Free Baking and Desserts” book, but was not familiar with “The 100 Best Gluten-Free Recipes for Your Vegan Kitchen”. I am looking forward to seeing that one. Thanks for providing the link.

  52. KellyBelly says

    I have looked up recipes on Amy’s site, I’ll have to go back and subscribe to her blog. Her cookbook cover looks amazing!

  53. Kara Climer says

    I recently started the candida diet and learned I’m gluten intolerant, this website and Amy’s have gotten me excited that there are desserts I can eat! Can’t wait to try some of them out.

  54. I’m new to gluten free and need to stock up on cookbooks!!

  55. Have “liked” you on FB.

  56. I liked Gluten Free, Sugar Free on FaceBook!

  57. I liked DDD on FaceBook!

  58. I think that both The 100 Best Gluten-Free Recipes for Your Vegan Kitchen and Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free both look interesting! I love to read cookbooks! Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free would be the most helpful as I continue to change my diet, currently I am gluten free but am trying to cut out sugar and increase raw food!

  59. Those photos look amazing! I’d want to try them even if I could eat gluten!

  60. I’m following you on twitter.

  61. Following Amy too.

  62. I love her blog!

  63. I am subscribed to your blog, it’s my favourite!

  64. I jsut saw the TJ college cookbook, that looks so interesting! I am a uni student trying to budget better, after all.

  65. Meredith says

    I’m currently addicted to carob, so Amy’s recipes you reviewed sound SO delicious!

  66. I am in the process of cutting out sugars and gluten from my diet and a recipe book would help inspire me. And non vegan recipes would keep the hubby happy too.

  67. I ffollow you on twitter (as @hockeycrew)

  68. I subscribe to this blog

  69. I just recently developed gluten intolerance and feel like I’ve been living online trying to find recipes that allow me to eat without getting sick – it would be wonderful to have a gluten free cookbook instead!

  70. I also subscribed to Amy’s blog.

  71. Heather Heather says

    I am now subscribed to Amy’s blog with google reader. I desperately want to make her crockpot pumpkin pie pudding.

  72. Heather Heather says

    I don’t know if it counts since they aren’t new but… I am, of course, subscribed to DDD. 🙂

  73. Heather Heather says

    I follow you on twitter. 😀 (hmxheather)

  74. Heather Heather says

    aaand I like you on Facebook.

  75. Heather Heather says

    Ok all of these cookbooks look awesome! I know I can’t eat it, but I’d love to the check out the “Ramen to the Rescue” cookbook. I am also intrigued by the Trader Joe’s cookbooks. I like cookbooks that take ingredients that are easily accessible and turn them into something more exciting.

  76. I follow you both on twitter!

  77. I’m thinking that Dining Out at Home book is looking quite interesting. I have often gone to a restaurant and wished I could replicate the dish at home!

  78. I ‘Like’ Amy’s facebook page

  79. I also ‘Like’ DDD

  80. Hi Ricki,
    I think I’ve asked before, I’ve never seen vegan chips without gluten. I can find ones without gluten, but then they have dairy. or sugar.
    suggestions?? I’d love to make these babies!

    • Cheryl, I’ve looked at the ingredients on mine and it’s just carob, palm oil and soy lecithin. I don’t even know an actual brand because I buy them in bulk from a wholesaler–I will ask them next time I place an order and let you know! (But I think the ones from amazon at right might contain the same ingredients?).

  81. Christianne says

    I personally own one of Amys books already and I love it- i even test baked for her. Now my beautiful GodChild who is totally revising her eating and cooking regime keeps fondling my book everytime she comes over, Nanan, she says” did you make this from that new cookbook? Where can i find it?
    I would love to be able to share these healthy delicious recipies with her. Thank you for the give away!

  82. I just “liked” DDD on FB

  83. I already “like” Amy on FB.

  84. I just found your site after searching around, and am I glad I did! In January, I put one of my dogs on an anti-candida (almost vegan) diet, which started me looking into it for myself. It’s been hard to find great vegan sources for it! I just started following you and look forward to reading past & future posts. 🙂

  85. Out of all of the cookbooks on Ulysses, Amy’s stands out the most to me. Then probably the Mini Pies, I’m always thinking of new ways to make pies, especially with seasonal fruit.

  86. I’m definitely going to have to check out Amy’s blog! I love that you were able to veganize many of the recipes; that’s a big time saver for me and takes away the guess-work for me 😉

  87. I borrowed Amy’s book from the Library and fell in love with this cookbook especially the chocolate brownie recipe which is wonderful. I can finally have a brownie that is sugar free and gluten free that tastes like a real brownie actually even better! I’d love to have a copy of Amy’s cookbook so I can continue to try other recipes.

  88. The cookbook looks wonderful!

  89. I follow amys blog!

  90. I like you on facebook!

  91. 100 best gluten free and vegan- that is right up my alley!

  92. Michelle B says

    I have been wanting this cookbook. I read Amy’s blog and yours several times a week. Thanks.

  93. I like Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free on Facebook

  94. I just found out in August that I was gluten and sugar intolerant. I’m still adjusting to it and this book would be most helpful!!

  95. I follow Amy on Twitter.

  96. I now subscribe to Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free, it looks right up my alley.

  97. I subscribe to Amy’s blog. And just subscribed to yours – not sure how I missed it in my search.

  98. I follow Amy on FB too.

  99. Of the other books at Ulysses Sugar-Free Gluten-Free Baking and Desserts seems yummy.

  100. I have liked you on Facebook.

  101. Just checked out the Ulysses Press cookbook page. Ice Cream Happy Hour – a whole book dedicated to ice cream – YUMMY!

  102. Wow, these all sound amazing and incredibly healthy! I’m sure her cookbook has even more great recipes to look at and try!

  103. Hi there. After getting the diagnosis of having gluten sensitivity and yeast overgrowth in the gut, I have had to cut out all gluten and sugar. This has been such a challenge with my very large sweet tooth. I’d love to be able to still enjoy a few sweet treats and this cookbook could help me do this.

    Thanks so much for doing this giveaway. Fingers crossed!!

  104. this book would ne amazing for help in making things like granola mix and guide me a bit…have lost weight and really want to keep it off

  105. I’d love this cookbook! I’ve been following Amy for a while and her recipes are always wonderful!

  106. I follow you on twitter.

  107. I follow Amy on twitter.

  108. Anne Marie says

    I have been on a quest to lose weight and have done so using HCG (50 lbs so far!) I noticed that as soon as I started to add flour, gluten, and sugar back into my diet I returned to my normal extreme cravings and diegestive problems I’ve had all my life. I found Amy’s SS&GF website and read about how she became SS&GF and I could really relate to her story. I believe I have the same problem she had, and probably many people have, but just don’t know it….flour and sugar cause cravings. I also feel so much better eating sugar and gluten free that I want to make it a life long journey for my family as well so hopefully they don’t suffer as I have suffered! I would LOVE to win a free copy of Amy’s book! If I don’t I plan to run out and buy it soon—I really feel like it could give me the start I need in changing over to sugar and gluten free! Thank you!

  109. I need to cut sugar out of my diet, and it has not been easy to do!

  110. Oh, and also I want The 100 Best Gluten-Free Recipes for Your Vegan Kitchen cookbook from the Ulysses Press page, too! thanks for pointing me there!

  111. I’d love this book. I’ve been experimenting with converting recipes into sugar free, they don’t always turn out! It would be nice to have recipes to follow that have been tried already 🙂

  112. I subscribe to Amy’s blog

  113. I follow @Amys_SSGF

  114. I subscribe to your blog

  115. I follow @rickiheller

  116. I “like” DDD on Facebook
    Cathy V

  117. I get Amy’s emails every day and I am in awe of the things she does to help the gluten free community. I would LOVE to have her book!! Fran

  118. I follow Amy on Twitter

  119. I subscribe to Amy’s blog

  120. I “like” Amy on Facebook

  121. Liked you on FB

  122. I “like” the DDD page on Facebook

  123. Follow you and Amy on Twitter

  124. I subscribe to your blog!

  125. Subscribed to both your and Amy’s blogs

  126. I follow you on twitter

  127. The Ulysses cookbook I’d love to get is Sugar-Free Gluten-Free Baking and Desserts, or’s Dining Out at Home Cookbook

  128. Kate Linde says

    I found Amy’s blog after my daughter was found to be gluten intolerant. The GF diet also is a great change for my son. Thanks for being another great GF resource! I would love to have Amy’s cookbook as my first GF cookbook.

  129. I’ve been trying to eat less sugar since I notice I crave it and then am always VERY sleepy afterwards – like a sugar high/major-low. I definitely feel better and energized when no-carb, but would like to find a happy medium. Maybe just no sugar, and less gluten items. Thanks for ideas!

  130. Checked out the publishers webpage, and any cookbook with Trader Joe’s recipes look great. I live in CO where there is no TJs, so whenever I visit home (close to Santa Fe, NM), I make sure to stop there and pick up some healthy goodies.

  131. I subscribed to your e-mails…

    Love Simply Sugar and GF!!!



  132. I would love to make healthier options of the sweets my family eats.

  133. I’ve been following Amy’s blog for over a year now and always find wonderful information about health, life, well-being as well as food. I’ve tried a number of her recipes (I even tested one for her cookbook) and they all have come out tasty. It’s surprizing to alot of people how vast the number of foods and dishes you can enjoy that do not include gluten or sugar (and are very healthy and tasty). I very much would love a copy of her book (then I can clean up my cookbook of all the printed copies of her recipes!).

  134. Hi, love the facebook page!! I was diagnost with celiac about2 1/2 years, I still find it hard sometimes to avoid fresh bread, donuts , crossiants and the list goes on. But I have tried your recipes and love them. I am so thankful for all the info you have and the links!!

  135. I’ve just recently switched to a sugar and gluten free diet. I’m a cookbook lover but sadly most of the library cookbooks are full of foods I can’t and don’t want to eat.

  136. while i’m lucky and i don’t need to eat gluten and sugar free i would still like to win the cookbook as i’m interested in experimenting with recipes along that line.

  137. already a subscriber

  138. I LOVE new cookbooks and would love to win this one! My family has just recently been experimenting with Gluten Free and are recognizing this experiment as extremely successful in our overall health. We really try to eat vegetarian and dairy free as much as possible as well as keeping our sugar intake low. My kids LOVE sweets though and I am finding it challenging to make yummy treats on the healthier side. I am not afraid to try new recipes and would love to try some of Amy’s. Thank you for this opportunity!

  139. Would love a copy of this book, trying to keep as sugar and gluten free as possible and this looks like it would be a wonderful inspiration and always appreciated new ideas.

  140. I’m a big fan of both your blog and Amy’s – and would love to get her book!

  141. I’ve subscribed to Amy’s emails for awhile now and have tried many of her recipes, it would be great to win the cookbook and have all the recipes in one place.

  142. After five years of suffering with severe symptoms including extreme weight loss, constant fatigue, sinus problems, IBS, joint pain, ect that I have been hospitalized for numerous times, I finally realized that I definitely seem to have candida. I also have cerebral palsy, which makes tasks like baking very difficult for me. Having Amy’s book would really help me (at least) struggle less with further meal ideas as I begin the ACD diet.

  143. I “liked” SS&GF on Facebook.

  144. Subscribed to you!:)

  145. Liked Amy’s page!

  146. Like the 100 best vegan baking recipes book on ulysses !
    have a fantastic weekend!

  147. I would love to own this book! Yum! Making me hungry.
    I have recently adopted the vegan diet and need all the help I can get!
    The recipes look amazing!

  148. I Follow on twitter. __tinabambina__

  149. I love Amy’s blog and follow it religiously (like yours 🙂

  150. I follow you on my blogger dashboard!

  151. Follow you on FB already 🙂

  152. Hmmm, while the 100 best gluten-free recipes is really tempting, it is a tossup between that and mini pies…which is not vegan, but small things and pies are both weaknesses of mine!

  153. Anne Killian says

    I went to Ulysses Press and my favorite book would be Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free. Maybe this year I can have a GF cake for my birthday, I sure hope she has one in her book!

  154. I just subscribed to your blog. Can’t wait to try some of your recipes. I am finally waking up from the “years of the living dead” and find my creativity and love of cooking returning. Problem is no Gluten Free dessert cookbooks. Amy’s Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free would certainly fit the bill. I am salivation already!!!

  155. I’ve been following you awhile on FB and Twitter. Would love the opportunity to try out your GF recipes.

  156. Let’s see… I’d like to win the book b/c I love her blog and would like to have a hard copy of these useable realistic recipes.

  157. I’m already following Amy on Twitter.

  158. Followed you on Twitter.

  159. I follow Amy on Twitter

  160. I like Amy on Facebook

  161. I am subscribed to Amy’s blog.

  162. I follow you on Twitter

  163. I like you on Facebook

  164. I was interested in the Creativity WorkOut under the Personal Growth section. Thanks for the chance Ricki.

  165. Ooo everything looks so good, especially the apple carrot breakfast cake!

  166. Do you think I can use carob powder? I cannot seem to find unsweetened carob chips.


    • Unfortunately, I don’t think so. The chips have a certain amount of fat in them that allows them to melt. You’d have to calculate how much coconut oil to use instead. .. I will play with this one and see if I can update it!


  1. […] for Amy (Simply Sugar and Gluten Free) new’s cook book Simply Sugar & Gluten Free. Click here to go sign up for […]

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.