Ricki’s Raves 5: Breakfast and More!

I’ve decided to start a little series called Ricki’s Raves, in which I share some of my favorite items (both food and non-food alike) that I truly love and use all the time. Today, I rave about the products I’ve been enjoying over the warm summer months. But you can use them all year-round!  

Ricki's Raves


The HH, The Girls and I all love to enjoy the warmer weather and ease of the season. In warmer months, I love that I can simply grab the Girls’ leashes and be ready for a walk within minutes (though of course, Ms. Elsie does take a bit longer to get moving these days. Then again, I hope to be as spry as she is if I make it to 96 human years!).

Cooking in general eases up as the weather improves, and that often means I want a breakfast that’s quick and easy so I can get outside and get going faster.

Here are some of the products I’ve been using that I just love–and that make life a lot easier (and sweeter, too).

ND Shake from Orange Naturals

Candida diet, sugar-free ND Shake products

[ND Shake in the center, along with a selection of some their products that work to fight candida.]

What it is

More than simply a protein powder, the ND Shake from Orange Naturals is a unique all-in-one mix that provides a full range of nutrients to truly nourish you. If you wish, you could have ND Shake all on its own and fufil yournutritional requirements at that meal.

Why You’d use it

Not only is the shake mix designed by naturopathic doctors to be fully balanced and nutritionally sound, it’s also developed in several types to accommodate different people and ages.

As the Orange Naturals site describes it, “It’s not for every body. Just your body.” In other words, these shakes are customized for different groups of people, unlike most protein powders that provide one identical serving for each of us. The ND Shakes, on the other hand, developed individual, unique formulas for different groups, including women, women’s sport, men, kids, and the original formula if you’re looking for a general shake that can boost your meals or protein intake.

What I love about it

candida diet, sugar-free, vegan ND Shake mix

When it comes to an anti-candida diet, I often mention that I’ve come to believe there are as many diets as there are people with candida. In others words, what works best is a customized approach meant to work with YOUR body. The ND Shake uses the same principle in its shake formulas, and I love that there are nutrients used here specific to women’s health.

For instance, in addition to a complete array of nutrients, the Women’s Shake offers a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals to nourish your body effectively, with 18 grams of protein, 7 grams of fiber, 4 grams of whole-foods based greens, antioxidants, plus 12 full grams of concentrated cranberry to support a healthy urinary tract and prevent UTIs in women (obviously, the men’s shake has other properties). The Women’s Shake also contains cinnamon for healthy blood sugar levels; and it’s completely gluten-free and vegan, too! For instance, the shake includes an array or superfoods and nutrients, plus cinnamon for blood sugar balance and cranberry for women-only UTI health. Brilliant!

Plus, the shakes taste fantastic. I’ve tried both flavors and am in love with the Vanilla, which has a very “French Vanilla” taste to my palate. They blend up easily and remain smooth, not gritty, even if used on their own as a drink (though I’m prone to adding the powder to other recipes, too–see below).


The shakes retail for $29.99 CDN on vitamart in Canada. The products are available across Canada right now, but may be available in the US through online retailers such as vitasave or well.ca. In the meantime, folks near the US-Canadian border (such as Detroit or Buffalo) an hop over for an exchange-rate discount when they buy Orange Naturals products here in Canada.

How I use it. . .

candida diet, sugar-free pancakes with ND Shake from orange naturals

[Yummy pancakes made with added ND Shake!]

Apart from adding the mix to smoothies, I love (love!) using it to replace some or all of the flour in pancakes and waffles.

The vanilla, in particular, adds a wonderfully rich and complex vanilla flavor that I adore. And, this way, there’s no need for added sweetener, as the shake adds all I need. All I need do is top with nut butter (see below) and I’m done until lunchtime!

NuNaturals NuNana Green Banana Flour

green banana flour on rickiheller.com

What it is

Nunaturals Nunana green banana flour is exactly what it sounds like–flour made from green (unripened) bananas. Green bananas are peeled, dehydrated, and then ground into a powder. That powder is used for baking, in smoothies and juices, or anywhere you’d use regular flour. It’s not only gluten-free, but grain-free, too.

Why You’d use it

One of the latest catchphrases in the world of holistic medicine is “resistant starch.” This is starch that exists widely in certain foods, such as grains, legumes, plantains, and. . . green bananas. It’s called “resistant” because it resists digestion. So why is this a good thing?

Resistant starch such as that in the green banana flour is considered a “prebiotic,” a compound that feeds the probiotics in our gut and allows them to flourish. And that’s a good thing, since we want a healthy microbiome filled with a good variety of probiotics in our digestive tracts.

The flour also contains impressive amounts of potassium (330 mg per serving) and 14% of your daily fiber needs in each 1/4 cup (60 ml) serving. It’s virtually fat-free, too (bonus!).

What I love about it

Nunana green banana flour on rickiheller.com

NuNana green banana flour is not only gluten-free, it’s also virtually flavorless when used in baked goods or desserts. I loved that it can be used to replace regular gluten-free flour (in a ratio of 2:3–that is, use 2 parts green banana flour where you’d use 3 parts regular flour, or 2/3 cup green banana flour per cup of regular flour). And because the benefits of resistant starch are best achieved with the raw flour, I tried it out in smoothies as well–with great results. It doesn’t change the original flavor of the food, and the texture is smooth, not gritty.

It’s also great in raw foods, like smoothies or chia pudding, and doesn’t change the flavor of the original food.


The one-pound (460 g) bag of flour costs $l3.99 USD on the NuNaturals site or $10.97 USD on amazon.com (not yet available in Canada).

How I use it. . .

nunana green banana flour waffles on rickiheller.com

[Super easy grain-free waffles with Nunana banana flour, coming to The Sweet Life next month!]

The first thing I made with my green banana flour was waffles. Nom nom! As the package promises, you don’t need as much of the banana flour as you do all-purpose flour (whether gluten-free or not). These were simple, crispy and delicious.  The flour works beautifully in all baked goods, from brownies to pancakes to cookies.

And, as I mentioned above, you can use it in uncooked foods, too, like smoothies, bowls, puddings, and so on.

Breville Smart Waffle Maker

Breville waffle maker for candida

What it is

This is one beautiful machine–and truly the next generation in waffle makers! The Breville Smart Waffle Maker has been billed as the “world’s first mess-free waffle maker” because of the large “moat” that runs around the waffle beds. That way, even if the batter overflows, it’s caught in the moat for easy cleanup. The machine has four extra-large, deep waffle molds that produce mega waffles (I’ve found that just one waffle takes the same amount of batter I’d normally use for two).

Why You’d use it

This waffle iron was clearly produced with both convenience and quality in mind.  With 12 customizable Browning Control settings, 5 different waffle styles (from “Belgian” and “Classic” to “Custom”–the last one ideal for unconventional waffle chefs like me!), the Smart Waffle maker allows you to achieve the preferred golden color–from light to dark–that is perfect for you. It’s easy to use and, so far, has produced perfectly browned waffles with easy cleanup. Finally, while it may not be a major reason day-to-day, right now (July), it’s a real boon to be able to cook and not to heat up the entire kitchen!

What I love about it

Breville SMart Waffle Maker on rickiheller.com

I’m one of those people who decides how dark I want my waffles to be even as they’re cooking. Some days, I think “just-cooked” is ideal; others, I want a well-browned waffle to really soak up my (sugar-free) maple syrup. So of course I just loved the “A Bit More” button on the machine that allows you to check your waffles when the timer goes off, and, if you want to cook just a wee bit more instead of an entire additional cycle, hit the button and you get a tad more browning time. Genius.

I also love that this nonstick cookware uses non-PFOA coatings. Yes, it’s still non-stick, and yes, you need to be careful about how high you set your temperature, and how long you cook. That said, this is one of the best non-stick surfaces I’ve ever encountered. We simply wipe the waffle maker clean and haven’t had to use any kind of spray or oiling of the grill surfaces yet. The Smart Waffle Maker really does make your life easier when you’re cooking up a big batch of waffles and want to keep ’em coming!


In the US, the cost on amazon.com is $249. 00 US .  In Canada, it retails for $259.99--a great deal considering the exchange rate.  

How I use it. . .

Candida diet, grain free waffles with strawberry cream

[Grain-free, egg-free, dairy-free, sugar-free waffles with strawberry cream].

Of course, the first thing I made was. . . waffles. But don’t feel bound by conventional recipes! You can also use your waffle maker for unusual treats like Apple Waffle Fritters, or Waffled Tofu!

Candida diet, sugar-free, grain-free waffle apple fritter recipe on rickiheller.com

So Delicious Dairy Free No Sugar Added Frozen Dessert

candida diet no sugar ice cream

What it is

As the name suggests, this is a sugar-free frozen dessert (that is actually candida diet-friendly!). Okay, it’s technically not “ice cream,” but that’s what we call it around these parts. . . “So Delicious Sugar-Free Ice Cream. . that’s candida-friendly.” Usually, I shorten the name, though, since I’m impatient to get it in my mouth!

Why You’d use it

As any regular readers of this site know, I love ice cream. And I like to make my own ice cream–which I do, about 95% of the time. That said, sometimes life is busy, or we don’t have the appropriate ingredients on hand, or we’re just feeling like we want something right now. . . and those are the times I love (love!) to rely on So Delicious for my ice cream fix.

What I love about it

While any prepared or packaged product is going to be more processed than something you make at home (duh), the So Delicious is minimally so, and the ingredient list is one I’m totally okay consuming for a treat once in a while:


Beware, this stuff is not inexpensive. That said, I do tend to buy it on sale when I can get it! The regular cost in the US is between $4.99 and $5.99 USD, and over here in Canuck land, it costs a whopping $6.99 CDN for 500 ml (about a pint).

How I use it. . .

candida diet, sugarfree, vegan ice cream on rickiheller.com

Just as-is, in a bowl. Or, when I’m feeling fancy, I use the ice cream between two cookies for a homemade ice cream sandwich. I really do love the idea of Alisa’s frozen cupcakes, though–I will have to create a sugar-free and candida-friendly version, I think!

so delicious dairy free cupcakes on rickiheller.com

I hope you’ve enjoyed this round of Ricki’s Raves! Now head out and enjoy more of the summer–and try out some of these awesome products!

Want to know what else I love? Find the entire collection of Ricki’s Raves posts here. 

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by some or all of the companies featured here. As always, my opinions are my own. I never (ever) recommend items or products on the site that I don’t already use and love. If some links are affliate links and you choose to purchase using those links, at no cost to you, I will receive a small percentage of the sale.

Subscribe for recipes and more about living well without sugar, gluten, eggs or dairy! Click here to subscribe to RickiHeller.com via email. You’ll receive emails sharing recipes and videos as soon as they’re posted, plus weekly updates and news about upcoming events. A healthy lifestyle CAN be sweet!




  1. oooh, I am interested in the Orange Shake, and I cannot get it?!? 😉

    I love banana flour, I’ve been using it a lot lately too.

    • Yes, you can get it–you just have to order online, I think, Kristina. It’s not available in the US just yet! Just to confirm, the shake isn’t orange flavored, though–that’s just the company name. 😉

  2. I wish the So Delicious didn’t use carageenan. 🙁

    • I read that they are removing it, Sabina. But I haven’t seen a timeline yet. It’s not optimal, but since candida diet-friendly, mass-produced products are so rare, I consider this a great, once-in-a-while special treat. 🙂

  3. Jacqueline Michaud says

    Is Ricki’s Raves a separate subscription Ricki? Just love learning about new products adaptable to special diets. I have tried the Yoso unsweetened coconut yogurt you recommended somewhere on your site and it is now one of my favorites. Love the fact that you suggest recipes to use them in! Kudos to you Ricki!

    • Thanks, Jacqueline! I’m not sure what you mean by separate subscription? If you subscribe to my newsletter (you can do so here) or if you simply read my blog regularly, you’ll have access to all the Ricki’s Raves. I started a page just for the past posts, too, over here. Does that answer your question? If not, let me know! (And so glad you like the Yoso! One of my faves when I don’t have time to make my own, for sure!!). 😀

  4. Banana flour is my LIFE <3 Makes the best pancakes (and banana breads!)
    And LOVE So Delicious no-sugar added ice creams! So good!

  5. I’m so curious about banana flour, glad to hear you like it. I must try some soon!

  6. I have not seen the sugar-free So Delicious ice cream… not sure it’s avaliable here in SoCal but will look, as I need to get back to a sugar-free life myself. I definitely will order the green banana flour, thanks!

  7. Does the waffle iron have removable plates to go into the dishwasher?

    • Unfortunately, it does not, Nutrimom. That said, I’ve used it over a dozen times already, and NOTHING have ever stuck to the iron! I just wipe with a damp cloth and it’s clean (and no greasing the iron, either)! 🙂

  8. Oh….I love that waffle iron. We make waffles all the time and I so need to invest in one!

    I’ve never heard of banana flour. It looks like something I should try.

    • It’s SUCH a great waffle maker, Wendy! I love the size and the settings. Took a bit of getting used to eating just ONE waffle instead of my typical 2 or 3 (since these are so big)–but you could cut them in half for the kids to share! 🙂

  9. Great reviews on the products!

  10. Banana flour?? I’ve never heard of that, but will definitely look for it. I could find a lot of uses for that!

  11. I had no idea that NuNaturals was making flours now – and I’ve definitely never come across banana flour before! And that Orange naturals is a new one to me. So much great stuff in this post!

    • I know, Alisa, those guys are always coming out with something new and awesome! The Orange Naturals stuff is, indeed, awesome–I love that it’s formulated by naturopaths, too. 🙂

  12. So Delicious sugar free ice creams live in my freezer 24-7. I also love the top shake! Cleansing AND urinary health? I love that combo

  13. I’ve never cooked with banana flour before–now I’m intrigued!

  14. This shake sounds amazing! I would love one this morning to get me started!

  15. I have some banana flour that has been sitting in my cupboard for ages, I need to make some waffles with it! I now know it’s a 2:3 ratio so thanks for the info!

  16. I’ve been meaning to try the green banana flour!


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