Heartmade Blog

Tropical Thai Lettuce Wraps



This recipe started where all do, on an empty stomach. I was starving. S-TAR-VING!!! (You might need to know this about me in case we’re ever stranded in an elevator together: I can’t think + reason or speak when angry hungry. I turn into the Hulk.) To makes matters worse, David had just returned from a 3 hour surf session, so he could eat a rhinoceros. DANGER DANGER!!!


This meal was a team effort. We put it together in less than 30 minutes. Tops. I can’t believable!!! God bless. Our marriage depended on it LOL.


These light + fresh Tropical Thai Lettuce Wraps made the most perfect lunch. We loved rolling our own thai “burritos”.  Prep was a snap.  We vacuumed them within seconds, not even a lettuce was left in the crime scene. Surprisingly, we didn’t feel stuffed or lazy afterwards. This one’s a keeper!


I imagine these sweet n’ savory rolls would be great for entertaining too. Easy to make ahead + have em’ waiting in the fridge until he party starts. KAPOW!


Scroll down to steal the recipe!




spiced chicken

  • 2 large chicken breasts, diced in small cubes
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon curry
  • 2 tablespoon coconut oil
  • Pinch of salt (I used Himalayan pink salt)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon water


First clean the chicken. In a tupperware add diced chicken + cumin + curry + coconut oil + salt. Close the lid + shake shake shake. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.


When ready to cook, in a large sauce pan, at high heat, add chicken. Cook, until they brown on the outside. Then turn the heat to low-medium + add soy sauce + water. Scrape the edges + stir until the liquid becomes a sauce. Close the lid + cook for about 10-15 minutes




almond sauce

  • 1/4 cup almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • Pinch of salt (I used Himalayan pink salt)


In a small sauce pan, at low heat, stir almond butter + maple syrup until it begins to smell + darken. About 1-2 minutes. Turn off flame. When the mixture is still hot, add almond milk + stir, until it blends + the mixture becomes smooth. Season with paprika + salt.



  • Mango, diced in thin slices
  • Carrot, shredded
  • Red pepper + onion, cut in thin slices + grilled with olive oil


Serve with big lettuce leaves.





table setting

This is a self-serve recipe, plated separately so every person can customize their wrap.




Who’s making Tropical Thai Lettuce Wraps this weekend? Raise your hand!


Would love to feature your recipe remix on my Instagram feed, so be sure to tag @mayicarles + include the hashtag #lifeismessykitchen so I can see it.



Mayi Carles


Photography Credit

Marcela Macias

World Domination Starts Here!




I was that kid who watched one too many episodes of Pinky and The Brain. Do you know the type of damage that does to you? The type where you rationalize, “If a little white rat can do it, so can I. So can we.”


Permanently on my to-do list:

  1. Wait for tonight.
  2. Try to take over the world.


They say it’s irreversible.


Today’s episode of Friday Video Time offers a starting blueprint to plot WORLD DOMINATION. In case you’re interested in empire building + saving the Universe from evil + that sorta’ thing. Hint: It doesn’t require a laser death ray masterplan.


Click play to watch!



let’s recap

World domination starts at home. Stop waiting for an unicorn to fix all your problems. Invest in your most precious asset, your family! Here’s a good place to begin:

  1. Create a family mission statement.
  2. Share your family history.
  3. Hold weekly family meetings.
  4. Eat together as a family.


your turn

I want you to set aside time. Tonight. This weekend. Jam the Netflix with a hammer if you need to so you can (1) create your family mission statements OR (2) tell a tale about your great great grandfather OR (3) hold a family board meeting OR (4) have a lovely dinner. Your pick.


I believe that happy families will change the world. I really do.


Share this post with your crazy fam. Start a conversation. Try it + tell me how it’s going!


If you’re totally, like, fan-crushing on this episode, be sure to use the cute social media buttons below to spread the love. You da best!



Mayi Carles



Healthified Banana Carrot Donuts

Donuts 5


I love it when I see a recipe + I realize I have everything I need to make it in my kitchen.


That’s what happened when my Instagram gal pal @espacioverde broadcasted these Muffins de Zanahoria y Banana. Half hour later, I had muffins. Just like that. And by the end of the day, they weren’t any muffins left. Just like that. Must be magic!


I begged Aixa, the genius behind @espacioverde to let me borrow her recipe + share it with y’all. She said yes. I did a happy dance.


Donuts 2


And here we are, creating stuff + doing work that matters + saving the world + pulling all-nighters + skipping lunch + calling Chinese takeout when nobody’s looking. In the meantime, our bodies are trying to keep us alive. Making sure we are breathing while we sleep. Stopping cuts from bleeding. Finding ways to beat gremlins that might make you sick. Your body literally loves you so much that its sole purpose in life is to keep you alive. I believe it’s time to start loving your body back. Who’s with me?


That’s why I’m seriously committed to bringing you the yummiest recipes, from my messy kitchen to yours. Recipes that are free of crap. Recipes suited for superhero work. Cuz world domination + self-love starts in the kitchen. And sometimes it’s shaped like a donut.


Say hello to Healthified Banana Carrot Donuts ladies!


Donuts Ingredients



  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 1/2 carrot, shredded
  • 1/4 old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • Dark chocolate, shaved (optional)



Step 1: Gather all your ingredients.


Donuts 7


Step 2: Mix wet ingredients in a bowl.


Donuts 6


Step 3: Mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl.


Step 4: Combine wet ingredients with wet ingredients until well incorporated.


Step 5: If using a conventional oven, bake at 350 degrees F for 12-20 minutes, or until golden brown + fully cooked in the middle using the toothpick test. If using a donut maker, follow the donut maker machine instructions.


Donuts 4


Step 6: Remove from heat + place in a rack to cool down.


Donuts 3


Optional: Hubby loves his donuts topped with shaved dark chocolate + devours them right off the rack as soon as the chocolate melts. YUM!




calling all recipe tasters

And Donut lovers. And Cookie Monsters. And foodies. And real people who with appetites who can’t be bothered with fad dieting or tasteless healthy food. Is that you? Sure hope so!


I want to start featuring your recipe recreations on my social media galleries. Because mi kitchen is su kitchen. Because mi community (we are over 13K messies now wohooo!) is su community. Because teaming up to spread our love for real food is a beautiful thing.


Just be sure to tag your photos with #lifeismessykitchen + @mayicarles so I can see them + regram em’!



Mayi Carles


Photography Credit

Marcela Macias

I Have A Dream…

I Have A Dream

There are two chocolate chip cookies left in the cookie jar that I’m trying to ignore. (Willpower Mayi. The force is strong with you.) So if today’s post feels a bit scattered…oh look a pony!


Moving on…


Where’s today’s Friday Video Time? I made you a video. About speed bumps + things. Yoo-hoo, where are you? Did my red inflatable T-Rex eat it? (T-Rex did you eat today’s episode? Then why are there crumbs all over your face + lil’ chubby hands? Open your mouth Mister. Baaaad boy T-Rex. BAD BOY!!!)


(I’m not gonna cry. I’m not gonna cry. I can fix this!!!)


Wait! I have a back up plan. And a dream. A couple actually.


I have a dream that everyone starts writing things by hand again. Letters to friends. Thank you cards. Memos. Digital communication is convenient. And easy. But ask anybody, there’s a huge difference between texting someone + getting snail mail. I would know because I got a pop-up card from a happy client this week + it felt like my birthday.


I have a dream that everyone starts cooking from scratch. Making pancakes that don’t come from a box for a change. Playing MasterChef. Testing a different lemonade recipe every week. Packing region inspired picnics. Celebrating life’s everythings, anythings, around food + multiple course dinners with loved ones for no particular reason other than just wanting to.


I have a dream that people start hosting themed parties. I call Frida Kahlo. You can be Salvador Dali. Or Coco Chanel.


I have a dream that people start reaching out into the back of their closets. For a dress that’s not part of their regular uniform repertoire. One that makes them feel amazing. And pretty. And take a few extra minutes to put on mascara + a bit of lipstick. And perfume. Oh la la.


I have a dream that everyone starts making friends based on caring. I see too much “I give you this if you give me that” friends these days. “I’ll be in your webinar if you tweet about my launch.” I’ll write a testimonial if you agree to guest post on my blog.” We can all tell what you’re doing. Real friendships cannot be bought or swapped for Scooby Snacks. Doesn’t work like that. What this world needs is a group hug.


I have a dream that everyone starts cleaning the house in rollerblade. (Wait you didn’t do that as a kid?) Barefoot works too. Or in panda slippers. Freshening up a room with something unexpected + fabulous from an antique market. Painting the walls. Decorating with fresh flowers from the farmer’s market. It’s therapeutic.


I have a dream that people stop taking themselves so seriously. Include on their to-do lists things like “High five a stranger” or “Come up with a secret handshake”.


I have a dream that everyone starts making vision boards. With Modpodge + glitter + magazine cut outs. With words + quotes that remind them who they want to be + how they want to feel. With their favorite testimonials that help them remember why they started this journey in the first place. Crazy messy is part of the creative process.


I have a dream that people start watching more Disney movies. And building blanket forts. And coloring. And wearing capes.


I have a dream that everyone starts using fluffy socks. For comfort. For warmth. And for sliding around the linoleum floor like ninjas.


I have a dream that everyone starts making playlists. For dancing in the shower. For sexy time with their man. For world domination. For when they’re sad. For creativity + radical silliness + teletransporting themselves to when they were kids. For every occasion imaginable.


I have a dream that everyone starts trading the weekend to-do list for a swing or a hammock. Start taking some unselfies from time to time. And sneak out early on Friday, to dangle their feet in an infinity swimming pool…


(To be continued…)


In the meantime, step into the mic. Proclaim your dream. “I have a dream __________________.” Fill in the blanks supernova.



Mayi Carles

Spaghetti and Meat(less)balls



The other day I saw these Crispy Eggplant Parmesan Subs on A Beautiful Mess + I instantly knew I had to try em’.


I’m cutting bread as much as possible during the week days because it makes me sluggish + sloooooow, something I simply can’t afford with brutal Life is Messy Kitchen deadlines every other day. So I made a few changes here + there to make the original recipe extra healthy.


These Spaghetti and Meat(less)balls are made with wholesome ingredients without sacrificing the comfort-feel that we all expect in this insignia dish.


Hope you love it!





  • 1 medium sized eggplant (about 1 1/2 cup diced)
  • 1 small onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 14-ounce can garbanzo beans, rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon chopped oregano (plus more for the topping)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1 organic egg


you will also need

  • Zucchini Pasta (instruction below)
  • Marinara Sauce (use your favorite recipe)
  • Mozzarella Cheese (optional)



Step 1: Blend eggplant + onion + garlic + garbanzo + oregano + salt in a food processor. Puree until the ingredients are combined in a spread-like mixture.




Step 2: With a spatula, stir in the egg + 1 cup of almond flour.




Step 3: Use your clean hands to divide the mixture into 18-20 small balls. Place these on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours.


Step 4: Preheat oven to 350 F.




Step 5: Once the balls have hardened from refrigerating, coat each ball in a thin coat of the remaining almond flour.


Step 6: Bake for 30 minutes. If you like yours a bit crispier, leave for 5-7 more minutes.





Step 7: Serve with marinara sauce over zucchini pasta.


how to make zucchini pasta

Spaghetti style zucchini noodles can be made using a vegetable peeler + julienne peeler + mandolin + spiral vegetable cutter.


Pass the vegetable peeler or julienne peeler down one lengthwise side of the zucchini. Only catch a thin portion of the zucchini, no thicker than 1/2 inch, for each pass in order to create thin spaghetti-like noodles. If using a julienne peeler, this thickness should already be preset, so no additional work will need to be done on your part.


If using a mandolin, make sure that the blade is set for a julienne style cut. Pass the zucchini over the blade lengthwise to create thin noodles.


When using a spiral vegetable cutter, press the zucchini against the blade of the spiral slicer + crank the handle of the simple machine. As you wind the handle + press on the zucchini, thin spirals should come out of the other end of the blade.


When you approach the seeds, turn the zucchini + begin slicing another side. The seeds will prevent the noodles from holding together, so you do not want to use the part with seeds in it.




i’m curious

I’m actively looking for ways to turn nostalgic food we all treasure into real meals worthy of superheros. What are some of your favorite recipes growing up? Do you have any special dishes that you would like me to test in my mad laboratory + turn into healthy that tastes like bad-for you? Cuz you know me… I can’t eat cardboard!



Mayi Carles


Photography Credit

Marcela Macias

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