Apple Blondies with Brown Sugar Frosting

I highly recommend against marking this post as read.  Do you guys do that to my posts?  I am SO guilty of doing that to so many blogs in my Google Reader.  Typically if I find myself “marking as read” over and over, I will try to remove that blog from my Reader list to keep it manageable.

But I know you guys don’t do that to me.  And for all you readers with a sweet tooth, you’re welcome for this one.

I didn’t even try to make a healthy version of these.  And I’m not really sorry about it because there are just some times where a healthier version just won’t do.

Apple Blondies with Brown Sugar Frosting

Recipe inspired from my Bars & Squares cookbook

Ingredients

For the Blondie…

  • 2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup chopped and peeled apples
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

For the Brown Sugar Frosting…

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 cups confectionery sugar
  • Dash apple pie spice

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Beat applesauce, brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla (all from blondie ingredients) in a large bowl until thick and smooth.
  3. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt.  Add to the above mixture on low-speed, mixing until blended.
  4. Stir in apples and nuts, mixing well.  Spread evenly in a 13×9 greased pan.
  5. Bake in preheated oven until set and golden, about 25-30 minutes.
  6. While blondies are baking, melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat.
  7. Stir in the brown sugar and milk.  Bring mixture just to a boil then remove from heat and let cool to lukewarm.
  8. Stir in confectioner’s sugar and apple pie spice, mixing until smooth.
  9. Spread evenly over bars, making sure to wait until bars cool before frosting.
  10. Cut into bars or squares, and enjoy the sugar high!

I think it’s safe to say that Sunday was a cheat day, food wise.  I did get my workout in though (thanks, Emily!).

#cheat day   #sundayfunday   #friendsgiving

Let’s just say I felt like I had to unbutton my pants all night.  And they didn’t even have buttons.

If you are looking for a dessert to make for your Thanksgiving plans this year, this would be a great choice!  Something different, a crowd pleaser, and these blondies were pretty easy to make too.

When’s the last time you had a cheat day?  Are you baking for Thanksgiving this year?

Back on track today!  As I always say, living a healthy lifestyle means being mindful of when you will have a “splurge” day.  Not feeling guilty about it is so important, especially for your mental health.  I fully embrace the 80/20 rule (the recommendation to focus 80% of your food choices coming from wholesome and nutritious foods, with 20% from the things you enjoy that might not be the absolute best for your body).  I know when I have cheat days, I’m usually back to embracing that balance the next day.

That being said, it was greens for lunch today, and I plan on getting in a fab cardio sesh of my own in before subbing for Monique’s Dynamax class tonight.  Heading to the gym now… can’t wait!

Weekend Things + Weekly Workouts

Good morning, friends.  Can you believe that it’s Thanksgiving week already?  Seriously, where has November even gone? 

A couple of things from my weekend:

Friday night Katrina and Geoff came over for dinner.  Tim and I put together a little pizza party at the last-minute, since it was a last-minute decision to get together.

One pizza was this chicken burrito pizza, and the other was a random veggie assortment (mushrooms, red pepp, artichoke).  They were both good, but the chicken burrito takes the cake.  Hands down.

Saturday morning Tim & I headed to the gym for a little sweat sesh.  I did 25 minutes on the elliptical that first consisted of a 5 minute warmup at resistance 6.  Then I did five rounds forward of 30 seconds fast at resistance 8, 30 seconds sprinting at resistance 10, and a 30 second recovery back at resistance 6.  Then I repeated the same five rounds, but going backward.  Finished up with a little cooldown, and I kept the incline at 10 the whole time.  After my cardio, I busted out some strength stuff that I adapted from Best Body Bootcamp.

Did each strength move as a ladder format (5 reps, 6 reps, 7 reps, 8 reps, 9 reps, 10 reps) and threw in 10 burpees between each strength move.  I finished up with three rounds of an ab circuit (flutter kicks, Russian twists, scissors) and called it a day.

The rest of my Saturday was spent doing errands and cleaning, and then Saturday night was dinner with my family at Redbones in Somerville to celebrate my sister’s birthday.  Not a huge BBQ fan, but I tried to keep it as healthy as possible.  Ordered wood grilled chicken with a side salad.  It came with mashed potatoes, but I only ate a few bites.  Bad blogger = no pictures.

Finally, Sunday Tim and I hosted again!  This time it was a little “Friendsgiving.”

Unfortunately not all the friends we wanted to be there could make it, but we had a great time with Slesh & Will and Mastro & Steve.  More on Friendsgiving later.

For now, Weekly Workouts!

Weekly Workouts

Last Week’s Workouts

  • Sunday:  Horizontal Conditioning at Boston Mania
  • Monday:  Off to rest my body after the fitness convention all weekend
  • Tuesday:  Two A Day!  Liz’s Kickboxing, then taught the isometric hold workout from Best Body Bootcamp in my Circuit class
  • Wednesday:  Off
  • Thursday:  Taught a ladder workout from BBB  in Circuit class
  • Friday:  Short home workout
  • Saturday:  See above!  Elliptical, strength, core

This Week’s Workouts

  • Sunday:   Cardio & Core with Emily (finally made it to this Sunday class, yay!)
  • Monday:  Something TBD on my own, then teaching Dynamax
  • Tuesday:  Two A Day!  Liz’s Kickboxing, then teaching my Circuit
  • Wednesday:  Subbing Spin in the morning.  6 AM folks, come ride!
  • Thursday: Teaching “Turkey Trim & Tone” before Thanksgiving Feast
  • Friday:  Off or TBD
  • Saturday:  Off or TBD

I purposely agreed to teach so many classes this week because I know motivation can wane during holiday season.  I would love to see some familiar faces in class this week.  I am also planning to make an “Idols” playlist for Thanksgiving morning.  MJ, Madonna, Whitney, Janet, etc.  Does anybody have any suggestions for any rockin’ songs to use?

How do holidays affect your workouts?  What’s your workout plan for Thanksgiving week? 

Hope everyone’s Monday is off to a great start.