Failure Makes You Successful

March 24, 2017

03 / 24 / 2017

Recipe development 101 – why a bad recipe is a good teacher!

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” ~ Thomas A. Edison

I love Eating Clean® and the creative joy that I get from combining ingredients to delight and nourish you.  A recent recipe fail, however, highlighted the fact that you, the person who ends up eating these foods, may like to know my process.  Failure is an effective learning tool for you and me!

Virtually anyone who has experienced any success in life has been willing to learn from their mistakes.  Failing at something means you have learned what didn’t work and how to correct it.  Failing is simply part of the growth curve and to be successful we must accept some failure.

“Every great cause is born from repeated failures and from imperfect achievements.” ~ Maria Montessori

I don’t set out to create failed recipes.  When I am seized with inspiration to create a new recipe, I eagerly gather the ingredients, think about the end result and work towards creating it.  The goal is to create a dish that will delight you, using the cleanest ingredients.  That dish must look so divine you can’t resist eating it.  It also must satisfy your taste buds.

Recently I was inspired by two ingredients, carrots and apples, and a desire to create a yummy muffin recipe to bring to our family Sunday Brunch.  I had made puréed pears in my VitaMix,  for my grand daughter and that gave me the idea to similarly purée the apples in my VitaMix.  They came out beautifully, silky smooth and delicious.

Then I thought about the huge bag of carrots and thought I would make an applesauce carrot muffin of some kind.  Using ingredients like sunflower and quinoa flour, vanilla, range free eggs and walnuts, I put the recipe together, tasting and testing as I went.  The batter looked fine, a little heavy, but not bad.

Into the oven the muffins went and out they came 20 minutes later.

They looked reasonable but the result was awful. Bitter and gluey, this creation of mine was a fail. I hate wasting anything, so they didn’t go in the garbage but the only way to get them down was with a generous slather of nut butter.  I’m still working on them.

What I learned from this is that those two particular flours are far too strong in flavour profiles to use together.  Both have distinct flavours that slightly bitter and intensely strong.  I also learned that at least one of my flours was off.  It had sat around long enough to go rancid and I had overlooked that fact.

When cooking, there are so many factors.  Food is an ever moving, ever changing element that requires a bit of know how to make things work well enough to then place in any of my books and programs.

Know that I do the hard work, with a heart full of love, to deliver only the best for you. I’m continually perfecting my art.  Now you know.

Much love and wellness,


PS. Please share your stories of kitchen fails in the COMMENTS section below. It will be interesting to hear from you.

PSS.  I won’t post that failed recipe, but here’s a delicious version that does work.  Please join up for my Membership program where I post more new and delicious recipes, like the one below, every week.  Don’t miss out!

Applesauce Carrot Muffins

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Bake Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 12


  • 1.5 flax eggs or 2 whole eggs
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/3 cup date paste
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp unrefined sea salt
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup plain almond milk, unsweetened
  • 1 heaping cup (packed) grated carrot
  • 2/3 cup gluten free rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1 cup + 2 Tbsp spelt flour
  • 1/4 cup unsalted raw walnuts, chopped


  • Prepare flax eggs in a large mixing bowl.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Prepare muffin tin by lining with parchment paper liners.
  • Combine flax eggs or eggs if using, date paste, maple syrup, applesauce, coconut oil and vanilla and whisk.
  • Next add salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and whisk to combine.
  • Add almond milk and stir.
  • Add grated carrot and stir.
  • Add oats, almond meal, flour and stir.
  • Fill muffins 3/4 full and top each with chopped walnuts.
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden on top.
  • Remove from oven and let cool for 15 minutes.

Tosca Reno

Author, columnist, motivational speaker, reality TV star, radio personality, consultant, mother and wife, Tosca Reno has been inspiring millions with the Eat Clean™️ Diet series and sharing the success she's had with weight loss and Clean Eating.


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