Friday, June 29, 2012

Dehydrated Strawberries

I do not own a food dehydrator.  I am afraid of what might happen if I ever had one.  I would probably try to dry everything.  Yesterday I made some apple chips in the oven and today I tossed some strawberries in there.  I halved or quartered some strawberries, depending on their size, and placed them on a cooling rack on top of a cookie sheet and put it in the oven for 2 and a half hours at 250 degrees and turned the convection on.  If you don't have a convection oven, you can just make these without it, but it will take a little longer.  They have such a yummy concentrated flavor.  I added some to a trail mix snack.  It was so good and so good for you.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Cinnamon Apple Chips

Holy Moly were these good.  I wasn't sure how good these would be so I just sliced up 1 cored apple as thinly as I could and put them on a cooling rack on top of a cookie sheet.  Then I sprinkled some cinnamon on them and put them in a 210 degree oven for 90 minutes.  I used convection but if you do not have that feature with your oven, never fear.  It will just take a little longer for yours to finish.  They are well worth the wait.  Needless to say, my apple never made it past that cookie sheet.  I finished all of it while I was straightening up the kitchen.  Try it!  It is a delicious snack anytime and so good for you!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Cream Cheese Stuffed Strawberries

I saw these here and got out from behind my computer and made them immediately.  I just got 5 strawberries and cored them.  I put a laughing cow cream cheese wedge in a plastic baggie and snipped the corner of the bag so I could pipe the cream cheese into the strawberries.  Then I smashed half of a graham cracker sheet of 4 crackers with the back of a spoon and dipped the cream cheese end of the strawberry into the graham cracker.  It's a delicious snack for less than 100 calories.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Lemon Quinoa Cilantro Chick Pea Salad

I prepare my breakfast and lunch every Sunday for the week ahead, so there is never a question about what I am eating.  For my lunch, I usually make a new salad I can stuff in a wrap.  This week I made a Lemon Quinoa Cilantro Chick Pea Salad that I adapted from here.  It is so summery and fresh!

1/2 cup uncooked quinoa (cook it using package directions)
1 can of chick peas
1 pint of quartered tomatoes
2 diced avocados
2 garlic cloves
1/4 onion
1 bunch of cilantro
2 cups of spinach leaves

juice of 2 lemons
zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp. dijon mustard

In a food processor, zap the garlic, onion, cilantro and spinach until chopped finely.

Combine in a large bowl the cooled quinoa, chick peas, tomatoes and avocados.

Whisk the lemon juice and mustard in a small bowl.

Combine the mixture in the food processor to the ingredients in the large bowl and then pour the dressing over the top.  Combine all the ingredients together gently.  Eat on its own as a salad or put in a wrap!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Grilled Garlic Dijon Herb Salmon

I am always trying to find a new recipe for fish to serve to my husband who isn't a big fan of fish.  I came across this recipe and thought it would be perfect for him.

4 garlic cloves
1 tsp dried Herbs de Provence
1 tsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp olive oil
2 T dijon mustard
cooking spray
4 -6 oz salmon fillets, about 1 inch thick
salt and pepper to taste
lemon wedges for serving

Zap the first 5 ingredients in a food processor to form a paste.  You can make this on the grill or in a grill pan on the stove.  Spray the cooking surface well before placing the salmon on it.  Cook at medium low heat for about 5 minutes.  Do not move it.

Flip the salmon over and spoon half the paste on it.  Cook for 3-4 minutes more.  Flip it one last time for 1 minute and spoon the remaining Garlic Dijon Herb mixture on them.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Turkey Cucumber Wrap

This is a yummy summery wrap.  I got the idea from here.

1 Low Carb wrap
1 Laughing Cow Cream Cheese (45 calories-I used Garden Vegetable)
a handful of spinach leaves
6 or 7 slices of cucumber
Turkey lunch meat

Spread the cream cheese on the wrap then place the spinach, turkey and cucumbers.  Roll it up, slice and enjoy!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Behold, the Skinnier Snickerdoodle

This recipe is an adaptation of an adaptation of an adaptation.  Lol!  I love a good snickerdoodle.  I have always been a fan of an afternoon coffee with a cookie.  Actually, I used to eat cookies with my breakfast too, but that was at a different time in my life where I ate everything and anything all at once. HA!

I am not a huge fan of dessert recipes that are filled with substitutions for every single ingredient in the original full fat/full sugar versions.  It ends up not tasting anything close to what it is supposed to and I end up eating it disappointed, wondering why I am even eating it in the first place.  Here is a snickerdoodle recipe that I can live with and LOVE!

1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 cup of sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 Tablespoon Agave
1 tsp. vanilla
1 large egg + 1 egg white

To roll the cookies in:
1 T. cinnamon
3 T. Sugar

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar.  Set aside.

In a large bowl, add the butter and sugar and mix with a hand mixer.  Add eggs, agave and vanilla.  Then slowly mix the dry ingredients in with the wet ingredients.  I then rolled the cookies into 1 1/2 inch balls and rolled them in the cinnamon and sugar mixture.   I then placed them on a silpat (spray a cookie sheet if you don't have a silpat) 2 inches apart.   I put them in the oven for about 8-9 minutes and allowed them to cool on a baking rack.  Make a cup of coffee at about 3pm and join me for a cup of coffee and a delicious cookie.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Ham and Cheese Quinoa Frittatas

These are seriously the cutest little things I have ever made and boy are they delicious!  It is the PERFECT recipe for my 100th BLOG POST!!!  I found the recipe here.  The nutritional info is also on the link.  Each adorable little cup is ONLY 47 calories and has 3 grams of protein!  They are almost too cute to eat...almost.  I felt kind of bad that the hubs wasn't here to have some when they came out of the oven.  I did taunt him at work with text pictures of these delicious little goodies though.  I know, I am mean.

2 cups of cooked quinoa (about 3/4 c. dry)
2 whole eggs
2 egg whites
1 cup of shredded zucchini
1 cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 cup of ham diced
1/4 cup chopped parsley
2 Tablespoons shredded parmesan
2 green onions chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all of the ingredients together and spoon it into a liberally sprayed mini muffin tin.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes until the edges begin to brown.  Makes between 26-28.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Every bit counts...

Don't have time for a full workout?  Check out these exercises you can do throughout your day.  I must admit, I do some exercises while waiting for things to be done in the kitchen and while getting ready in the morning.  Obsessive or efficient?  :)

Do you want to burn a quick 100 calories?  Just do...
jumping jacks for 1 minute
run in place for 1 minute
jumping squats for 1 minute
march in place for 1 minute
walking lunges for 1 minute
front kick to back kick right leg for 1 minute
front kick to back kick left leg for 1 minute
sit ups for 1 minute
crunch to one side for 1 minute
crunch to the other side for 1 minute

I work out first thing in the morning, then I work and then i normally hop on my treadmill and run for 1-2 miles depending on how much time I have.  That takes me between 10-20 minutes.

Another easy way to fit in some working out is to do it while watching your favorite shows on TV.  Try to stay in plank position during a commercial break or stay in a wall squat.

Do you have any exercises that you do while doing every day activities?  Please share!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Cranberry Walnut Salad

I love having fruit in my salads.  It is a nice change from my normal vegetable dinner salad and this is so easy to make!

1 serving of bagged salad (I used Fresh Express Fancy Greens because I am fancy.  HA!)
2 Tablespoons of chopped walnuts
2 Tablespoons of dried unsweetened cranberries
2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
the juice of half a lemon

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Rosemary, lemon chicken salad

Here is an easy recipe for Chicken salad that I LOVE!

1 Rotisserie chicken from your grocery store deli, skin removed and chopped
1 Tablespoon of chopped fresh rosemary
the zest of 1 lemon
1 Tablespoon of Dijon Mustard
1/4-1/2 cup of Greek yogurt (depending on how creamy you want it)
salt and pepper to taste

Add it to some leafy greens or put it in a wrap.  It is so yummy!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Banana Oat Pancakes (gluten free)

So, today I am taking the kiddos to the zoo, so I figured I would treat myself.

3 small bananas, mashed (9.5 oz)
2 Tablespoons coconut oil or butter, melted
1 Tablespoon Lemon juice
1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup
2 eggs
1 cup oat flour (rolled oats zapped in the food   processor until ground up)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

I mixed all of the ingredients together and let it sit for 10 minutes before scooping out 1/4 cup scoops and adding it to a hot pan coated with cooking spray.  For more thorough instructions you can look here.  The recipe makes 9 pancakes.  They taste FANTASTIC without adding syrup, but of course, i did anyways.  They are truly delicious.  I love bananas and oats.  So very yummy.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Roasted Tomatoes with Herbs and Cheese

I grow A LOT of tomatoes and herbs in my garden every summer.  I am always looking for different things to do with them.  I came across this recipe and knew I had to try it....but I changed it up a bit.

1 large tomato
1 1/2 tsp chopped fresh oregano
1 1/2 tsp chopped fresh basil
3 Tablespoons of grated parmesan
salt and pepper to taste
cooking spray

Slice the tomato in half and put it cut side up on an oven safe pan.  Top with the herbs, cheese, salt and pepper.  Spray the tops of the tomatoes with the cooking spray to help it get golden and bubbly.  Bake in a 450 degree oven for about 15 minutes.  Enjoy!  The whole tomato is less than 150 calories.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Summer Chopped Salad with Garbanzo Beans and Quinoa

I do love a summer salad with beans and/or quinoa.  I eat them for lunch all week.  I eat them as a salad or I put them in a wrap on top of some fresh spinach.  I adapted this salad from this original recipe.

1-14 oz can of garbanzo beans
1/2 cup of uncooked quinoa
3 Roma tomatoes, seeded, cored and diced
1 English cucumber, diced
3 green onions, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
4 oz feta cheese
20-30 fresh basil leaves chopped
juice of 1 lemon
2 Tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the quinoa as the box suggests.  Then combine with all of the above ingredients once cooled.

Monday, June 11, 2012

(Mostly) Sugar Free Chocolate Chip Pie

Today I made this decadent dessert.  I found it from here.  My husband and my neighbors LOVED it!  I liked it.  I think it is a great dessert when you have cut out desserts from your life, but I am a girl who still occasionally eats full sugar/butter/flour desserts.  So, for being mostly sugar free (I used regular chocolate chips, not sugar free) it was really good.  Give it a try and tell me what you think.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Southwestern Quinoa Salad

I missed having a Quinoa salad to put in my wrap at lunch, so I made this one.  I am a huge fan of cilantro...and avocado....and wraps  :)

serves 6

1 can black beans
1 avocado diced
1 cup cooked quinoa
about a pint of quartered cherry tomatoes
4 scallions minced
juice of 2 limes
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 jalapeno minced
salt and pepper to taste

For my wrap, I put the salad on a bed of baby spinach as I always do.

Nutritional Info (salad only):  Saturated fat .2 grams, dietary fiber 4.8 grams, sugar 1.5 grams, protein 6.5 grams.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Egg sandwich?

I am writing this on grocery day.  Today is the day I normally go to the grocery store, so this means that it is kind of slim pickins in the fridge.  So, today for lunch I had a piece of ezekiel toast with spinach, avocado, a poached egg and a cup of blackberries on the side.  Talk about a delicious lunch!  Now I am off to replenish the house with food with a happy belly.  Aren't you surprised I didn't have a wrap?  What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch??  

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Healthy Popcorn

Ever wonder what is actually in the microwave popcorn that you make?  It isn't really butter that makes it bright yellow/orange.  Here is a healthier way to make popcorn and YOU control what goes in it.  All you need is some bulk popcorn and a paper bag.

A paper lunch bag will work or a grocery bag.  For the grocery bag, I trimmed the top third of the bag off to make it a little easier to fit in the microwave.  I then tossed in 1/2 cup popcorn kernels in the bag and folded the bag over twice.  I then put it in the microwave for 4 minutes.  You will not need 4 minutes, but I like to listen and just turn it off when the popping slows down.  My bag actually took 3 minutes fifteen seconds today.  Plus, when you pop your popcorn, it is already in a ready to use bag you can eat out of and you won't have to worry about your hand turning orange from touching the inside of the bag.

Once you are finished you can flavor it however you want.  You can use REAL butter if you choose, or parmesan cheese and garlic powder, or chili powder for a zing, or my plain ole' sea salt.  It is all up to you.

One cup of plain popcorn popped is only 30 calories.  Snack until your heart's content!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Baked Spaghetti Squash

yummy sausage
We really love spaghetti squash and today I changed up the recipe a bit.  I did every thing I did with the previous recipe, but I added chicken sausage and cheese and baked it back in the squash.

The sausage I used was so good!  It was my first time I'd had it.  I highly recommend it.  There are several varieties that al fresco makes.  I can't wait to try a different one.

Once the sauce was finished, I added the sliced chicken sausage and the parmesan cheese to the pan.  I then added the scraped spaghetti squash into the same pan and mixed everything up and added it back into the squash shell.  Then I topped each half with 1/4 cup reduced fat shredded mozzarella cheese and put it under the broiler until it was all melted.  Yummy cheesy goodness.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Spring Vegetable Farro Salad

This is my first time ever making farro and boy am I going to find ways to eat it all the time.  It is so good and good for you.  I adapted the recipe from here.

2 cups farro, uncooked
10 asparagus spears
1 medium zucchini
1 medium yellow squash
1 red onion
1 can of artichoke hearts
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
8 minced garlic cloves
30 fresh basil leaves, chopped
juice of 2 lemons
1/4 cup balsamic
4 oz grated parmesan
4 scallions chopped (light green and dark green parts only)

Put the farro in a pot with about 4 cups of water and simmer with the lid on for 20-25 minutes.  Drain water if any remains and allow to cool.

Cut up the asparagus, zucchini, squash, onion, artichokes, peppers into bite sized pieces. Add to a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with cooking oil.  Add the minced garlic as well.  Make sure the veggies aren't too crowded on the sheet.  Cook at 425 degrees for about 25 minutes or so.  You want your veggies to be tender, not mushy.  When done, allow to cool.

Once everything is cool, mix the farro and the veggies together as well as the basil, lemon juice, balsamic, cheese and scallions.  Put in the fridge until you are ready to serve.

This makes A LOT!  I made it and had it for lunch for the week.  Mine made 10 cups of salad.  I have also put it in a wrap for lunch (surprise, surprise).

Monday, June 4, 2012

Apples and Cinnamon Overnight Oatmeal

Making the frozen yogurt bananas prompted me to make an overnight oatmeal with cinnamon and apples.  I loved the combo of the cinnamon and yogurt.  Oh my!  So goooooood!  I diced up about 1/2 of an apple, sprinkled it with cinnamon and put it in the microwave for about 60 seconds.  After that, I added the apples to 1/4 cup rolled oats, 1/4 cup greek yogurt, 1/3 cup almond milk, and 1 1/2 tsp. of chia seeds.  Then I put it all in the jar and allowed it to sit overnight in the refrigerator .  It totally reminded me of the apples and brown sugar oatmeal I used to eat as a kid in the winter.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Frozen Bananas

Since you all know my love of frozen fruit because of yesterday's post, I saw this and instantly ran to make them.  I found the recipe for these here.  All I did was add a little cinnamon to my Fage 0% and covered my banana with it and then sprinkled some chopped almonds on top.   Then I put them in the freezer for a couple of hours  Truth be told, my almonds were not chopped.  I did the good ole' put-a-handful-in-a-bag-and-pound-with-a-meat-tenderizer method.    It worked like a charm.  :)

Friday, June 1, 2012

Tasty Yogurt Blueberries

It is getting hot outside and the blueberries are plentiful and cheap around here, so I am eating blueberries like crazy.  I normally eat frozen blueberries and frozen grapes all the time in the warmer months.

I ran across this yummy treat while looking through Pinterest.  It is so easy to make and very yummy.  I am a huge fan of Fage 0% and use it all the time as a replacement for sour cream or yogurt as well as topped with berries for an afternoon snack.

I just put a dozen or so blueberries on a skewer and rolled it around some greek yogurt that I spread out on a plate.  I popped it in the freezer and waited an hour or so.  Instant frozen treat!  So yummy and so very low in calories.