KITCHEN DIVA: Here’s to discovering new healthy additions | Community Living

One of the best things about writing a food and recipes column is an opportunity to introduce something new to my family, friends, and readers. I also like to experiment with new ingredients and products.

Recently I discovered a wonderful line of naturally sweetened, calorie free beverages called Zevia. It is one of the first beverage brands to focus on healthy versions of sodas (14 different types), energy drinks (grapefruit, mango-ginger, raspberry, lime, and cola), mineral water (lime, blackberry, tangerine, and cucumber-lemon) as a range of Mixers, organic teas and Zevia Kidz. So what is Zevia Kidz? It has the bubbly soda and tangy sweet taste of juice, but somehow it isn’t either. It holds all the good stuff and leaves out all the bad with zero sugar and nothing artificial.

Zevia formulas are also certified as GMO-free, vegan, kosher, color-free, gluten-free, keto- and paleo-friendly. I’ve served the Zevia Kidz kids ages 3 to 10 and they loved the taste and the colorful Disney characters on the cans. Zevia is the brainchild of founder and CEO Paddy Spence, a key figure in the health food industry for more than 25 years. Paddy and his wife quit sugar 18 years ago and have since done numerous triathlons and marathons. Zevia is the official soda of the CrossFit Games, an event that banned larger brands with high sugar content. You can find Zevia in thousands of grocery stores.

While Zevia is a healthy and delicious drink, it’s also great as a nutritious, calorie-free ingredient in drink recipes, snacks, main dishes, and desserts. Use it to create a light, crispy batter for the Zevia Orange Cauliflower Poppers, as a salad dressing base for the quinoa salad and to give the batter for the Strawberry Almond Cobbler a wonderful strawberry flavor and sweetness. This is the perfect way to save calories and create a new you in the new year!


1 liter of oil

1 head of cauliflower

1⅓ cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon of chopped parsley

1 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon thyme

1/4 teaspoon of rosemary

3/4 cup Zevia Orange Soda

1/4 cup Zevia Tonic

2 egg yolks, beaten

1.Heat 1 liter of oil in a deep fryer or saucepan to 375 F.

2. Cut the cauliflower into bite-sized pieces.

3. Mix the flour, parsley, sea salt, garlic powder, thyme, rosemary and cayenne pepper in a bowl and mix.

4. Whisk the orange soda and tonic water with the egg yolk. 5.

Dip the cauliflower in the egg mixture, then dip in dry ingredients until coated.

6. Fry batches of cauliflower until golden brown for 3-5 minutes.

7. Pat dry on paper towels. Make a batch.



1/2 cup Zevia Orange Soda

1/4 cup lime juice

1/2 cup of olive oil

1 cup of fresh coriander

1/2 avocado

1 teaspoon of garlic

Quinoa salad

1 cup of quinoa

1 orange, cut into pieces

1 grapefruit, cut into pieces

1 lime, juiced

1/2 avocado, diced

1/4 cup feta

1/4 cup diced red onion

1. Mix all the ingredients for the salad dressing in a food processor and pulse until the consistency is smooth.

2. Boil the quinoa and let it cool.

3. After cooling, place in a bowl with the remaining salad ingredients and top with Zevia Orange coriander dressing. Makes 4 servings.


1/2 cup unsalted butter

4 cups of peeled strawberries

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

3/4 cup Zevia strawberry soda

1 teaspoon of almond extract

1-2 teaspoons of liquid stevia to taste (if desired)

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon of baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup of milk of your choice

1. Preheat oven to 375 F.

2. Melt butter in a 9 by 13 inch pan in the oven while it is heated.

3. In a saucepan, bring the strawberries, cinnamon, 1/4 cup strawberry soda, and almond extract to a boil. Stir and let reduce for 5 minutes, add stevia if desired.

4. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. Slowly stir in the milk and remaining half cup of strawberry soda until completely mixed into a batter.

5. Pour the batter into the pan with the melted butter without stirring.

6. Pour the strawberry mixture onto the dough without stirring.

7. Bake for 35-45 minutes until golden brown. Serve warm and enjoy! Makes 8 servings.

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