Happy Monday my beautiful friends, I hope you all had a wonderful weekend, so I am SUPER excited because the wonderful soul behind Baked Greens is here chatting with us virtually on Tea Time.!
Hey Chelsea, thank you so much for joining us today on Tea Time. What are you drinking this morning, matcha or one of you wonderful lattes? I have to say that I love watching your Instagram Stories, all the yummy concoction. Tells us a little about yourself.
Hi Andrea! Thanks so much for having me. I’m the blogger, recipe tester, and food photographer behind Baked Greens, a blog dedicated to healthy food made with minimal ingredients and simple techniques. My goal is to make healthy eating easy and accessible to everyone and to change the notion that ‘healthy’ and ‘delicious’ are on two opposite ends of the flavor spectrum. When I’m not in my kitchen I’m probably out hiking, at the farmer’s market, or watching the sunset.
OKAY. Love what you just said. It is so true, a lot of people have this misconception that healthy and delicious cannot go hand in hand.
This morning I’m sipping on an iced matcha- now that spring is here, I’m all about cold drinks in the morning! My current favorite is Kenko Tea’s Organic Ceremonial Grade Matcha mixed with water, a drizzle of raw honey, and something extra thick and creamy like canned coconut milk or grass-fed heavy cream.
That sounds absolutely lovely, I love the idea of coconut milk, I normally add coconut butter to mine and blend it up.
You love baking, a lot of your baked goods are constantly calling me, I really want to try trying a gluten-free version of those new blondies on the blog. If you could eat one thing for the rest of your life what would it be?
Thank you!! I am fortunate to not have a single food allergy (or any allergies, for that matter), so I tend to make a wide variety of recipes for my blog, including some that are gluten-free, paleo, and vegan-friendly. While I personally opt not to eat meat, I otherwise eat a wide variety of every other food group, which you’ll see reflected on my blog.
I think you’ll LOVE the Coconut Oil Blondies, and they’re totally adaptable to be gluten-free. A GF flour blend would be an easy choice, but even something like oat flour or almond flour should work in that recipe!
I’m not sure if I could possibly pick just ONE food to eat for the rest of my life, but I’m positive that it would include seasonal fruit (I seriously LIVE for picking strawberries in June, blueberries, and raspberries in July, blackberries, and peaches in August, and apples in September). Others that top the list would be peanut butter, dark chocolate, sweet potatoes and butternut squash. Have I mentioned I like food? 😂
Hahaha. SOUL SISTERS for sure. I am so excited to do the same this year, pick fruit and be able to enjoy it throughout the year.
Did you always love to bake and cook or did going vegetarian make an impact on more inspiration in the kitchen?
I have loved baking and cooking for as long as I can remember. I come from a big family, and I’ve been helping in the kitchen since I was old enough to walk…seriously! I stopped eating meat in high school when I started to learn the impact factory-farms had on global warming in a biology class and wanted to help make a difference. A lifelong love for sustainability was born, and I think that’s really what has driven all of my food choices since. I’ve always been creative in the kitchen, but I think going vegetarian definitely helped me become more creative, and forced me to think of new, fun ways to make meals that were satisfying.
Tell us about a day in the life of Chelsea.
Oh man, this can vary so widely. Up until this year, I was a full-time Middle School teacher as well as a blogger, so my days were jam-packed. We moved to the Boston area last year, and I am currently focusing on blogging full time and only working with kids part-time in the afternoons. So, at any given moment I might be testing and photographing recipes in my kitchen, out for a hike or lifting weights at the gym, walking at the beach with my husband, helping an autistic child learn to tie his shoes or explaining the importance of homework- again- or connecting with brands and fellow bloggers.
BTW I think it is incredible that you are helping kids. It really is such a beautiful experience. I totally get what you are saying with blogging full time and working part-time, every day is a new adventure.
Your best “weird but good” food combo, it can be in either baking or cooking.
A few years ago I discovered the weird-yet-so-good combination of peanut butter, basil, avocado, salt, and honey. I even have a sandwich recipe on my blog using those ingredients. It’s a strange, creamy, salty-sweet, herbal, absolutely delicious combination.
Okay. I need to give a try. I don’t know why I didn’t think of this combo sooner.
Your fav must-read blogs.
I’ve been reading food blogs for my entire adult life, long before I started one. I always come back to these, in no particular order: Smitten Kitchen; Minimalist Baker; Half Baked Harvest; Oh, Ladycakes; The First Mess; Pinch of Yum; This Rawsome Vegan Life; HowSweet Eats. There are dozens more, for sure, but those are the ones I’m checking on the daily.
It is so funny, that even though I am no longer plant-based, I still read a lot of the blogs mentioned above and I ADORE Ashlae, she is such an incredible person and honestly makes me laugh SO much.
If you could share dinner with one person, living or dead, who would it be and what are you eating?
I’ve always struggled to answer this question, partly because I have a degree in History and feel like I know TOO MANY historical people to be able to choose. So, to keep it true to my heart, I’m choosing my grandparents. They’re both in their 90s, and I’m eating lunch with them tomorrow. I can’t get enough time with them. They’re willing to try just about anything, but my Grandpa always loves salad, so I know we’ll have that, for sure.
You really made me tear up. So adorable.
Quote to live by.
“What we think, we become”- Buddha
What are your thoughts on wellness and balance?
I think health and wellness are so much more than a number on a scale or what your body looks like. Health is mental, physical, and emotional. It’s spiritual. It’s about doing things in life that satisfy you and leave you feeling whole and happy- it’s not following a diet plan or burning a certain number of calories. It’s not low-anything or something free. It’s about just doing the best you can, and being gentle with yourself.
I think balance is critical in the wellness world- it’s not about being the most extreme, it’s about doing what works for your body. It’s also important to remember that health isn’t about one meal, or one day, or even one week. It’s about a culmination of factors and building lifelong habits. There’ no wrong way to ‘do’ healthy.
And, I think it’s critical to mention that health is not one-size fits all, and being healthy doesn’t look the same for everyone; it’s also not possible for everyone to be healthy at all times. It’s important to remember that disability, socioeconomic status, chronic illness, and genetic factors are all at play here, and just because someone is not well does not mean they are somehow less worthy. I firmly believe that every single person is valuable and worthy of love and respect, every day, regardless of how ‘healthy’ they are. Conversely, just because a person doesn’t look like society’s narrow image of ‘healthy’ doesn’t mean that person is unwell. We can’t look at a person and know their struggles, or assume to understand the complexities of their mental, physical, and emotional health.
THANK YOU SO much for this, I wholeheartedly agree.
Chelsea, thank you so much for joining us virtually for some tea, it was so much fun getting to know you a bit more! Babes, if you wanna stalk Chelsea on Instagram like I do (haha) you can follow along here. If you wanna check out some of her awesome recipes or all of them check out her blog Baked Greens.! She has incredible vegan/ gluten free/ and vegetarian recipes.