Author Archives: sweetlaurel

Cranberry Swirl Cheesecake // Sweet Laurel

Cranberry Swirl Cheesecake

I saw that Martha Stewart created a Cranberry Swirl Cheesecake very similar to this one, and I just had to make the clean eating alternative! This recipe is not just vegan, but raw as well. One of my favorite things about this cheesecake is the tart cranberry sauce. I’m super into cranberry sauce, and I like it pretty tart, so make sure you add more sweetener if that’s more your style. Note: This recipe is best enjoyed and made one day ahead. 

Yield: 1 Cheesecake (8-9 inch)

Bake Time: No baking! Just a 4-6 hour fridge set



1 1/2 cup almond flour

2 tablespoons cacao 

1/4 teaspoon pink salt

1 tablespoon coconut oil (melted)

1/4 cup 100% maple syrup


3 cups cashews (soaked for at least 6-8 hours)

2/3 cups lemon juice

2/3 cup coconut oil (melted)

1 1/4 cup coconut cream

1 cup 100% maple syrup

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon pink salt

Cranberry Swirl:

1 cup frozen cranberries 

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup 100% maple syrup 


Drain soaked cashews and place in high speed blender. Add lemon juice, coconut oil, coconut cream maple syrup, vanilla extract and salt. Blend until velvety texture is reached. 

Pour mixture into pan with crust. Place tiny dollops of cranberry mixture (directions below) all over top of cheesecake filling. Using a toothpick, gently swirl tiny spoonfuls of cranberry into cheesecake filling. You will not use all of the cranberry sauce most likely.

Cover the cheesecake with plastic wrap and freeze for about 4-6 hours, then keep in fridge until ready to serve!

For your Cranberry Swirl: Place frozen cranberries and water in a saucepan. Heat over medium heat for about 2-3 minutes, then add maple syrup. Continue to cook and gently smash with fork or potato smasher until cranberry compote type consistency is reached.

Harvest Bowls // Sweet Laurel

Harvest Bowls

I literally make this delicious dish once a week. When the fall weather sets in, it’s the perfect savory addition. In my opinion, this meal is the definition of comfort food. You can easily make a vegan version by subbing the turkey with more veggies!

Yield: 4 servings

Bake Time: 1 hour


2 acorn squashes, cut in half and seeds removed

2 tablespoons avocado oil

2 cups cabbage, shredded

1 onion

4 -5 carrots, sliced

4 ribs of celery, sliced

2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 pound ground turkey 

1 tablespoon cumin

2 teaspoons pink salt

2 teaspoons garlic

2 teaspoons corinader

1 teaspoon paprika

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper


Preheat oven to 400.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place cut acorn squash, cut side down on parchment. Bake for about 35 minutes then remove from oven and allow to cool.

While acorn squash bakes, prep filling:

Heat avocado oil in a heavy duty pot over medium high heat. Add cabbage, onion, carrots and celery and gently saute until the veggies start to golden, about 10-15 minutes. Once golden, de-glaze with apple cider vinegar and continue to cook stirring constantly every 2 minutes. Add ½ cup of water and place the lid on pot and cook for about 5-10 minutes, until veggies are soft. Once soft, remove the veggies from pan and immediately start cooking the turkey. Cook until well done, and then add the veggies back to the pot and stir. Add cumin, salt, garlic, coriander, paprika and cayenne pepper. Stir and allow spices, veggies and turkey to cook on low heat for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly.

Spoon mixture into cooked acorn squash halves. Evenly distribute the filling betweent the four halves. If desired, you can sprinkle a bit of shredded pecorino cheese on the tops of the filling. Return the squashes back to oven and cook about 10 minutes, until cheese is melted.

Serve immediately and enjoy!

Favorite Maternity Looks // Sweet Laurel

I love Hatch! I discovered it a bit late in my first pregnancy, and by the time my second pregnancy rolled around, it was my first maternity wear purchase. It’s no wonder why. Hatch creates clothing for the chic momma to be, with everything from everyday essentials to workwear classics. Hatch has clothing for all stages of pregnancy, and nearly all the styles can be worn pregnant, or not! I shot with Hatch around 20 weeks, so my belly was pretty small, but you can see how these styles would work wonderfully around the pregnancy and motherhood clock!

Styles I love:

Athena Top Talk about chic. This top is not only my favorite (and most worn!) color, but it has that elegance factor with a bow at the neck of the back. I just love it! 

The Taylor Jumpsuit I literally don’t think there was anything more convenient created in fashion then a jumpsuit. You just put it on and go! No matching top or bottom needed. Especially now that I’m a mom, with much less time to get ready in the morning, I’ve found myself reaching for a good jumpsuit more than once a week. This jumpsuit is a classic, and like most Hatch pieces, can be worn pregnant or not pregnant.

The Nearly Skinny Maternity Jean Maternity Jeans used to be the worst until this super comfy pair came around. I love the low waist, it is so much better then the over the belly alternative. A good pair of white denim goes along way, and that’s why I love this pair. 

Let me know what your favorite Hatch pieces are!

Apple Butter on Turmeric Bread // Sweet Laurel

Apple Butter on Turmeric Bread

This Apple Butter makes the house smell like a fall haven! I used my VitaClay to make this apple butter, but you can also use a standard slow cooker. The VitaClay is a clay pot that cooks food much faster than a slow cooker, and the clay is completely non toxic! I use it in many recipes for stew and soup as well. The apple butter is so delicious on our Turmeric Bread, and welcomes the fall like no other!

Yield: 6 oz.


4 lbs apples

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

1/4 teaspoon cloves

1 tablespoon lemon

1/2 cup water


Place water in the base of a slow cooker. Chop apples into slices and place in the slow cooker as well. Stir in lemon juice and spices. Cook on high for about 6 hours in slow cooker, or 2 hours in a VitaClay (my favorite purchase of all time! See head note).

When complete, allow to cool and blend in a high speed blender. Return back to pot and allow to cook longer into a thick compote. In a standard slow cooker, this will take about 6 hours. In a Vita Clay, an additional 45 minutes.

When your apple butter is nice and thick, allow it to cool, then store in a jar in your fridge for up to a week and a half.


Simple Fall Soup \\ Sweet Laurel

Simple Fall Soup

The simple, yet delicious nature of this soup is seriously soothing for the soul. I love the combination of the sauteed veggies and pumpkin, with the slight kick from the cayenne. It is perfect for a cool fall evening, and even more perfect for those with busy days, when you just want to reheat a nourishing soup for dinner and call it a night. This is a great make ahead meal!

Yield 4 servings


2 tablespoons avocado or coconut oil

1 onion, chopped

2 ribs on celery, chopped

3 carrots, chopped

3 cups green cabbage, shredded 

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

16 oz pumpkin pureee

1 tablespoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (or chili flakes for less of a kick!)

1 teaspoon pink salt

2 cups coconut cream (about 1 13 ounce can, I like Lets Do Organic Coconut Cream)


In a large, heavy duty saucepan, heat avocado oil and sauté onion, celery, carrots and cabbage. Cook, stir constantly for about 12-15 minutes until veggies start to soften. When onions start to turn light golden brown, deglaze the vegetables with the apple cider vinegar and continue to cook. When carrots can easily be pierced with a fork, the vegetables are finished. Once veggies finish cooking, remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

Place cooked veggies, pumpkin, spices and coconut cream in blender and blend for about 2 minutes, until vegetables are completely smooth. Reheat the soup and serve immediately, or make ahead and store in an airtight container for about 2-3 days, and reheat before serving.