Late Night Munchies

Saturday night Anthony and I returned home around midnight after a long day at Redlands Relay For Life. We had stopped for dinner and I had a glass of wine. Returning home still with a slight buzz I craved chips, crackers…anything snacky crunchy! I work pretty hard all week to keep my diet clean and lean….so don’t I deserve a binge? Or is it that I work so hard all week and really should not destroy it in one night just to satisfy my taste buds? Do I really want the tummy ache in the AM?

A light in my fuzzy brain finally went off …. my fav yummy filling snack … the Almond Butter Apple Butter Rice Cake!

Why I love this?

  • Easy peasy
  • Slightly sweet
  • Creamy and fulfilling
  • Feels like a cheat but isn’t!

Serves: 1

Takes about: 5 min

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp all natural unsweetened almond butter
  • 1 tbsp no sugar added Fuji Apple Butter (I love Ha’s from my local Farmer’s Market!) you can also use jam or jelly
  • 1 white or brown rice cake

Directions:

  1. Spread it any way you like and take a huge bite!! Told you it was easy!

 

Ghetto Fab Crumble Granola!

My all time favorite breakfast, snack, and even dessert is granola! However the store-bought stuff can be loaded with sugar or cost ‘an arm and a leg’ so I usually make my own. However with our current lack of a large oven my granola cravings have not been fulfilled :(.

Last night after a long night of training I decided to figure out a way to make RAW SUNKISSED GRANOLA! And its even good without the sun for those impatient ones (ME ;0)!

Why I love this recipe:

  • Super duper healthy!
  • Full of fiber
  • Full of flavor
  • Can be used as a snack, a topping, or a cereal!
  • And the prep fits into my crazy hectic schedule!

Time: 15 minutes to prep, 30 minutes to fridge soak, 3 or more hours of refrigeration (I recommend over night), and optional 1-2 hours in the glorious sun!

Serves: 4 people

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 c coarsely chopped almonds
  • 1/4 c chopped prunes
  • 1/2 c chopped dates
  • 1/4 c chopped walnuts
  • 3/4 c gluten-free rolled oats
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp grapeseed oil

Directions:

  1. Place the chopped almonds, prunes and dates in individual dishes. Place 1 tsp vanilla in with the almonds. Fill each dish with water so that the items are covered. Refrigerate for 3 minutes.
  2. In a mixing bowl combing rolled oats, walnuts, ginger, and cinnamon. Mix throughly.
  3. Drain the almonds, prunes, and dates. Add into mixing bowl.
  4. Add the vanilla, honey, and grapseed oil to the mixture. Stir throughly.
  5. Place mixture in a Pyrex dish (if you are sophisticated) or in a Tupperware (my ghetto fab way). Pat the mixture down so that it is flat and even.
  6. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, my way: overnight it!
  7. Enjoy now or for some extra crispness dumb the refrigerated granola onto a plate and bake in the sun for 1-2 hours. WATCH FOR BIRDS AND BUGS THIS STUFF GIVES OFF SOME YUMMY SCENTS!
  8. Enjoy the amazingness of fresh raw ingredients!

 

The One Hot Plate Pasta Dilemma

I have often run into this issue…only one burner but multiple needed for the fancy creation in my head. The trick?  Always cook the starch first and then the saucey veggies. Once cooking is complete place edibles into a Tupperware and into the micro for insulation.

This gluten free vegan pasta creation is one of our new favorites for our Sunday Italian nights! This recipe does take some time due to the single burner. So we like to crack a bottle of vino and set out this delish goat cheese blueberry appetizer (goat chevre topped with blueberry preserves served with some savory rice crackers).

Why I love this dish:

  • Tastes like comfort food!
  • Low in calories and fat
  • High in vitamins and minerals
  • Great for lunch the next day…I love dishes that make enough and tastes amazing enough to have the next day…saves on time
  • Wonderful for family gatherings….the best part…they won’t even know it’s good for them!
  • The multi-colors are visually stimulating!

Cooking Time: 45mins-1 Hour

Serves: 4 (Great for lunch leftovers)

Ingredients:

  • ½ bag of white or brown rice pasta (my fav Tinkyada)
  • 2 c sliced zucchini squash
  • 2 c sliced yellow squash
  • 1 c chopped mushrooms
  • 2 c spinach leaves
  • 1 chopped shallot
  • 2 c cherry tomatoes (cut in half)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp basil
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Fresh crushed black pepper

Directions:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and start your pasta. Prep all other ingredients while pasta cooks.
  2. Once pasta is complete strain. (HINT: for white rice pasta rinse in cold water to prevent sticking). Set to the side.
  3. In a fry pan heat olive oil, garlic, basil, and shallots to medium. Simmer for 3-5 minutes.
  4. Add yellow squash and zucchini to the yummy sauce mixture! Stir thoroughly. Cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add mushrooms. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  6. Stir the mixture and add the final ingredients: tomatoes, spinach, lemon juice, and black pepper. Cover and let simmer 5-10 minutes until spinach has wilted.
  7. Plate the pasta and top with the sauce. Finish with a bit of crushed red pepper. Enjoy!

My New Fav Way to End a Great Wknd!

Sunday night can meet some of us with sadness as we leave the weekend and progress into the hectic work week. So why not end a great weekend in a very delectable way?? This is probably my new fav tasty treat….move over DD Rees!

Why I love this??

  • Tastes sinful
  • Gluten Free
  • Dairy Free
  • Mini size makes me not feel so guilty
  • Easy!! and Fast!
  • Great for get togethers! Each guest can put their choice of ice cream in the middle

Serves: makes 3-4 sandwiches

How to?

  1. Follow the Gluten Free Dairy Free cookie recipe found in Rainy Day Treat for the delicious cookies.
  2. Once the cookies have cooled select your favorite cream…mine? Coconut Bliss Naked Almond Fudge! Place 2 tbsp of cream on one cookie, shaping with your hands to fit the size of the cookie. Place another cookie on top!
  3. Enjoy!!

 

The Toaster Oven, the Rice Cooker, and the Fancy Salmon

My absolute favorite way to make salmon is in the oven. Salmon is a delicate fish that needs some oven bakin’ TLC…not like most white fish or tuna which can just be seared.

Why I love this dish?

  • Super duper healthy
  • Easy
  • Takes about 25 minutes from fridge to plate

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • Fresh fillet Atlantic Salmon
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp capers
  • 1 tsp dill
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • A good handful of cleaned green beans
  • 1 c Trader Joe’s 15 minute brown rice
  • 1 tsp grapeseed oil
  • 1 tsp basil
  • Juice ½ lemon
  • Fresh black pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat toaster oven to 350 degrees. Rinse salmon and pat dry. Place on foil lined baking sheet. Season salmon with olive oil, garlic, dill, and top with capers.
  2. In the rice cooker/steamer place rice along with two cups of water and green beans in the steamer basket. Cook for 15 minutes.
  3. Place seasoned fish in toaster oven, cook 12-18 minutes depending on thickness of fish.
  4. Once rice is complete remove from steamer and mix in grapeseed oil and basil.
  5. Once fully cooked remove salmon from the oven top with fresh lemon juice.
  6. Serve salmon, rice, and green beans.

 

Baked Brussels!!

As a child I absolutely hated brussel sprouts…the smell, the taste, even the look of the strange things! This year I finally grew up and gave them a second try. The trick…marinating the mini-brussels of lettuce and then baking them. I mean who doesn’t like something crunchy and full of flavor??

Serves: 2

Makes a great side dish or snack!

Time: 40 mins

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 c quartered brussel sprouts
  • 1 tsp spicy brown mustard
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • crush black pepper
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar

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Directions:

  1. Preheat oven 400 degrees.
  2. Mix the spicy brown mustard, garlic, olive oil, and crushed black pepper.
  3. Pour onto the quartered sprouts and allow marinate 5-10 mins.
  4. Place brussel sprouts on a foil lined baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 18-20 mins
  6. Remove from oven drizzle with balsamic vinegar. Put back in the oven for 5 mins
  7. Enjoy.

Black Bean Quinoa Goodness

I love Mexican food but hate the bloat I’m left with after. This weekend with the help of my picky taste buds I created this Black Bean Quinoa Goodness; high in fiber, protein and packed with an amazing nutritional punch!

Servers: 4 GREAT FOR LUNCH NEXT DAY!

Time: 30-40mins

Ingredients:

  • 1 c cooked quinoa
  • 1 can low sodium black beans
  • 1 chopped red bell pepper
  • 2 c chopped broccoli
  • 1 c sliced mushrooms
  • 2 c raw spinach leaves
  • 1 diced shallot
  • 1 tbsp goat feta
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp dried chives
  • 1 jar salsa

Directions:

  1. In a rice cooker start the quinoa (1/2 c quinoa to 1 c water).
  2. Heat the fry pan to medium, add olive oil, shallots and broccoli. Cook for five minutes stirring occasionally.
  3. Add bell pepper, mushrooms, chives and chili powder cook down for another five minutes.
  4. Quinoa should be complete. Check and see if all water is evaporated; if so unplug rice cooker and uncover.
  5. Add spinach, quinoa and black beans to the fry pan. Stir until evenly mixed. Cover and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 5-10 minutes until spinach has wilted.
  6. Serve the delish mix with salsa, feta cheese, and avocado…yum yum delish!

 

A Rainy Day Treat

California has finally been hit with some cold weather! What’s my favorite thing to do on a rainy day? Bake! Now we moved I thought I was not going to be able to have my yummy sweet treats unless we were at my parents house. Plus I would miss the smell of a house after a good baking session. So I have decided to give it a shot…cookies in the toaster oven! I found a great base mix from Whole Foods that is gluten and dairy free (another reason why I couldn’t just go to a bakery to pick up some cookies). 1, 2, 3 Gluten Free is an awesome base mix that is free of most nuts, dairy, gluten and wheat! Plus I love having a base mix…this way I can make a cookie that I am in the mood for!

And they turned out incredible even Anthony loved them! Scratch that he actually devoured them in 5 mins…haha.

Now the box makes 100 small cookies so I cut everything to 25%. My general health rule is to keep sweet treats for the weekend and elminate them during the week. Fewer cookies means I enjoy the ones I have and don’t go on a cookie binge.

Time: 10 mins to mix. 1 hr to refrigerate. 11 minutes to bake.

Serves: 2-3

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 c 1,2,3 Gluten Free
  • 1/4 Smart or Earth Balance
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 c Trader Joe’s vegan chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c walnuts
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Directions:

  1. In a mixing bowl combin mix, eggs, vanilla and softened Smart Balance.
  2. Add in chips and nuts.
  3. Roll dough in plastic wrap.
  4. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  5. Preheat toaster oven to 375 degrees.
  6. Oil baking pan with Smart Balance.
  7. Space out evenly sized spoonfuls of the refrigerated dough, 6 cookies per sheet.
  8. Bake for about 10-11 minutes. This amount of batter will make about 10-11 cookies.

Enjoy the goodness on this chilly rainy day…and to top it off add some rich hot cocco!

Load Up On Your Greens

This salad is sooo yummy, easy and stocked full of fiber, vitamins and healthy fats! Food should taste good and should also be loaded with the healthy stuff…check out the breakdown at the bottom of this post and see why this salad is a nutritionally dense beast! Pack your lunch today!

Serves: 1

Time: 10 mins

Ingredients:

  • 1 c spinach leaves
  • 1 c arugula
  • 1 chopped green onion
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/4 c walnuts
  • 1 tbsp goat cheese
  • 1/2 c sliced cucumber
  • 2 tbsp of your favorite all natural salad dressing
  • 1 tsp crushed black pepper

Directions:

  1. Fill a large salad bowl with spinach and argula…top with green onion, cucumber, avocado, walnuts and goat cheese. Finish it off with a bit of crushed black pepper and your favorite healthy salad dressing.

Nutrition Breakdown….

  • Spinach- vitamins A, C, E, K, B6, Niacin, Zinc, Folate, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium Phosphorus, Potassium, Copper, and Manganese
  • Arugula- vitamins B6, A, C, K, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Pantothenic acid, Zinc, Copper, Folate, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, and Manganese
  • Cucumber- vitamins B6, C, K, Thiamin, Folate, Pantothenic Acid, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Copper, and Manganese
  • Goat Cheese- Protein, Riboflavin, Calcium, and Phosphorus.
  • Avocado- Protein, Vitamin C, K, Fiber, and Folate

http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1844/2