Friday, March 30, 2012

Fit and Fabulous Fridays #25

It's time for another weekend round-up of amazing healthy recipes!  By sharing your recipes, you could be my Fit Feature of the Week!!  The winner will be electronically selected by inlinkz and featured  in a "Fit Inspiration" post for the week.  *I will be sharing your recipe, along with your photo and link back to your blog.  Don't miss out on the fun!   I welcome all blogging friends to link up and share. This is a place for you to showcase your amazing creations!  I welcome all healthy lifestyle recipes (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, paleo diet, etc.). A friendly reminder, PLEASE make sure you are submitting a HEALTHY recipe. Save that death by chocolate torte for the sugar coma linky. Just sayin'....;) *I reserve the right to remove any content that is not appropriate.  The link will be open until Sunday evening.  Have a fabulous weekend!!!! 




Here's the skinny....
  • Please link up to the URL of your post, not the URL of your main blog. When it asks for "Name", type in the name of your recipe.
  • Please leave a link back to this post in your post and/or grab my button for your blog(please paste the button on your sidebar or under a link party tab)
  • Share your delicious and fit recipes from this week (you can share more than one).
  • Leave me a comment telling me that you've linked up.
  • Please visit at least two others and comment on their wonderful additions to this party.
  • "Like" my facebook page for updates and link party reminders and share this linky with your friends!
Thank you for being a part of my link party! I love sharing recipes and look forward to trying yours! Have a wonderful weekend!!




Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Roasted Vegetables with Apples

This recipe comes from Mandy in Nashville, TN.  Mandy follows my blog and sent me a really nice email last week.  I love getting emails and feedback from readers!!  She told me how much she enjoyed browsing my recipes and shared one of her family favorites for roasted vegetables.   She is a mom of 4 and has a child with dietary restrictions, so healthy eating is a priority for her family.   This recipe is simple, healthy and unique because she tosses apple in the mix.  I, personally, have never roasted apples with my vegetables this way, so I was anxious to try it out.  We all loved it!  The kids even commented on how much they liked the apple in there.  Thank you Mandy for sharing this great recipe with us!!   


Roasted Vegetables with Apples














Ingredients:
Broccoli crowns (about 2 cups)
Cauliflower crowns (about 2 cups)
1 sweet onion, chopped into chunks
2 firm apples, chopped into chunks (I used organic fuji, but any firm and crisp apple would do)
grapeseed oil (enough to coat-I use about 3 tbsp for about 6 cups of chopped vegetables)
sea salt
*I added a little Mrs. Dash table blend seasoning


Toss all ingredients in a bowl.




Spread onto a roasting sheet.




Roast at 450 degrees for 20-25 minutes, depending on the size of your vegetables.  Enjoy!


Shared at:
Recipes for my boys: Thursday's Treasures
Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons: Crafty Friday

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Best Ever Grilled Chicken Marinade

The weather has warmed up, the spring flowers are blooming and I am craving grilled foods!   I love using my grill when it's nice outside and it's a big plus to keep my kitchen clean while I cook. ;)  This marinade is so flavorful and it makes the meat very moist.  I recommend marinating the meat overnight in the refrigerator.   It is also a delicious way to prepare flank steak!  Enjoy~


Best Ever Grilled Chicken Marinade













Ingredients:
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup soy sauce (can use coconut aminos or Bragg aminos as a sub)
freshly squeezed juice of two limes (about 1/3-1/2 cup)
3 cloves of garlic, pressed
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp fresh black pepper
1/2-1 tsp Tabasco sauce
2-3 tbsp natural brown sugar (or coconut sugar)
1 tsp Mrs. Dash table blend seasoning

Whisk all ingredients together and add your meat.  Cover and soak overnight.  I use this for boneless and bone-in chicken breasts, flank steak and london broil.  

Featured at:
The Newlyweds Blog
Miz Helen's Country Cottage
Successful Saturdays
Kitchen Fun With My 3 Sons
Six Sister's Stuff
Around My Family Table
Family Fresh Meals

Monday, March 26, 2012

Fit and Fabulous Fridays Featured Recipe

Our featured recipe of the week is A Hot & Cheesy Seafood Spinach Dip from Ann over at Sumptuous Spoonfuls!!  This dip looks so amazing, so be sure and stop by her blog for the recipe and more heavenly dishes.  This would be a great addition to your next party!


Doesn't this look so amazing.....
Hot & Cheesy Seafood Spinach Dip
*photo by Sumptuous Spoonfuls

If you are new to Fit and Fabulous Fridays, it is a healthy link party that I host every weekend .  Stop by and share a great recipe, or browse recipes from great bloggers around the web.  You could be my next featured recipe of the week!


Thank you, Ann, this one's a winner!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Fit and Fabulous Fridays #24

It's time for another weekend round-up of amazing healthy recipes!  This week I am starting a Fit Feature of the Week!!  The winner will be electronically selected by a random number generator and featured  in a "Fit Inspiration" post for the week.  *I will be sharing your recipe, along with your photo and link back to your blog.  Don't miss out on the fun!   I welcome all blogging friends to link up and share. This is a place for you to showcase your amazing creations!  I welcome all healthy lifestyle recipes (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, paleo diet, etc.). A friendly reminder, PLEASE make sure you are submitting a HEALTHY recipe. Save that death by chocolate torte for the sugar coma linky. Just sayin'....;) *I reserve the right to remove any content that is not appropriate.  The link will be open until Sunday evening.  Have a fabulous weekend!!!! 


Here's the skinny....
  • Please link up to the URL of your post, not the URL of your main blog. When it asks for "Name", type in the name of your recipe.
  • Please leave a link back to this post in your post and grab my button for your blog(please pass the word to your blog friends for more fabulous recipes!)
  • Share your delicious and fit recipes from this week (you can share more than one).
  • Leave me a comment telling me that you've linked up.
  • Please visit at least two others and comment on their wonderful additions to this party.
  • "Like" my facebook page for updates and link party reminders
Thank you for being a part of my link party! I love sharing recipes and look forward to trying yours! Have a wonderful weekend!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Banana Oat Bread....Wheat-Free & Dairy-Free

I was jumping for joy after creating this recipe yesterday!!!  There is no wheat flour or dairy in this bread and it is so delicious!  It's like enjoying your breakfast oatmeal in a moist and tasty banana bread and you get the fiber benefits from the oat flour and oat bran.  I made this bread into 4 small mini loaves, but you can do 3 larger mini loaves or 18 muffins.  I prefer baking the smaller loaves so I can freeze a few for later.  To freeze bread (and it freezes beautifully) just wrap the loaves in aluminum foil and place into a sealed container or in a freezer ziploc bag.  Then you can pop one into your refrigerator overnight to thaw.  Coconut oil is a wonderful replacement for butter or other cooking oils in your baked goods.  It makes breads and muffins incredibly moist and unrefined, organic coconut oil is very good for you.  Here is a great article to support adding coconut oil to your diet.  Enjoy~


Banana Oat Bread


Ingredients:
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted and cooled down to room temperature
3 large or 4 small very ripe bananas (make sure that they are very ripe for more sweetness)
1/2 cup sucanat (this is a natural form of cane sugar)
1/2 cup natural brown sugar
1 egg, room temperature
1 tsp good quality vanilla extract 
1 1/2 cups oat flour
1/4 cup oat bran
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2-2/3 cup unsalted chopped nuts (I prefer walnuts)


Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Allow your egg to sit out for a bit to come to room temperature.  When working with coconut oil, you need all of your ingredients to be room temperature, so the oil doesn't start to solidify in your mixture.  Spray 4 mini loaf pans with cooking spray (or 18 muffin tins).  Set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer combine bananas, coconut oil, sucanat, brown sugar, egg and vanilla.  Mix on medium speed until smooth and well blended (about a minute or so).  Add all dry ingredients (except nuts) in a large bowl and blend with a whisk until well blended (you can also sift together).  Slowly add dry mixture to wet mixture while blending on low until all ingredients are incorporated.  Stir in nuts.  Pour evenly into loaf pans and bake for 35 minutes (loaves) and 20 minutes (muffins).  


*This recipe was shared at Real Food Wednesdays, Jam Hands.The Lady Behind the Curtain.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Peach Almond Crisp...Vegan, Wheat-Free, Dairy-Free

I have really been testing my food chemistry skills this week.  I took two of my favorite recipes, fruit crisp and banana bread and came up with healthier alternatives that are wheat and dairy free.  The results have been great and I am so excited to share them with you!  You'll see my Banana Oat Bread post tomorrow, so stay tuned....
I hope you love this Peach Almond Crisp as much as we do.  This dessert is very simple to throw together.  I replaced the butter with organic unrefined coconut oil.  It gives baked goods a wonderful flavor, without having an overpowering coconut taste.  It's very subtle and makes recipes very moist.  I also replaced the regular flour with oat flour.  There is a wonderful resource on using non-wheat flours that I am sharing with you here from The Cook's Thesaurus.  You can find your favorite substitutions and play around with your favorite recipes. Enjoy~


Peach Almond Crisp

For the topping:
1/2 cup whole oats
1/2 cup quick oats
1/3 cup oat flour (or a multi-purpose GF flour blend, like King Arthur brand)
2 tbsp ground golden flaxseed
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup unsalted slivered almonds
1/2 cup unrefined organic coconut oil (can also use unsalted, grassfed butter, but then it's not vegan ;)
1/2 cup natural brown sugar


For the Fruit Mixture:
2 (24oz) jars of sliced peaches, drained 
1 tbsp lemon juice
cinnamon (I sprinkle generously on top of peaches without measuring)


Directions:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, add all topping ingredients and mix on medium speed until it forms a crumbly texture.






Set topping aside and prepare your peaches.  Place your drained peaches into a 7 x 11" glass baking dish sprayed with cooking spray (you can use fresh, ripe peaches but you may need to add a little stevia or brown sugar for sweetness).  I love these peaches in a jar from Costco.


Sprinkle with lemon juice, stir and then generously sprinkle cinnamon on top.  Add your topping over the peaches in an even layer and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.   


Featured at:
I Should Be Mopping the Floor
Jennifer Cooks
Mandy's Recipe Box
Make ahead Meals for Busy Moms
Crazy For Crust

Friday, March 16, 2012

Fresh Fruit Kabobs

Here's a healthy snack for St. Patrick's Day.  They are green, festive and good for you!!  You can switch up the fruit to suit the holiday/occasion.  Healthy and delicious!


Fresh Fruit Kabobs


So simple!  

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Fit and Fabulous Fridays #23

It's time for another weekend round-up of amazing healthy recipes! Fit and Fabulous Fridays is a place where amazing foodies share their lightened-up recipes!! I welcome all blogging friends to link up and join the fun. This is a place for you to showcase your amazing creations and encourage a healthy lifestyle for my readers. I really appreciate the great recipes that you share. I welcome all healthy lifestyle recipes (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, paleo diet, etc.). A friendly reminder, PLEASE make sure you are submitting a HEALTHY recipe. Save that death by chocolate torte for the sugar coma linky. Just sayin'....;) Have a fabulous weekend!!!!


 



Here's the skinny....
  • Please link up to the URL of your post, not the URL of your main blog. When it asks for "Name", type in the name of your recipe.
  • Please leave a link back to this post in your post and grab my button for your blog(please pass the word to your blog friends for more fabulous recipes!)
  • Share your delicious and fit recipes from this week (you can share more than one).
  • Leave me a comment telling me that you've linked up.
  • Please visit at least two others and comment on their wonderful additions to this party.
  • "Like" my facebook page for updates and link party reminders
Thank you for being a part of my link party! I love sharing recipes and look forward to trying yours! Have a wonderful weekend!!





Angry Irishman Cupcakes....Key Lime Cupcakes with Key Lime Buttercream

What screams "Happy St. Patty's Day" better than these little angry men??  Well, maybe a keg of Guinness, but for the little people these cupcakes are a lot of fun.  My husband says "how dare you do such stereotyping."  However, I can get away with this because I married one.  He then told me that I should make drunk, angry Irishmen but I reminded him that they are for kids, too.  I  love my Irishman who is definitely spirited and feisty.  Life would be so dull without him.  This idea was a big hit with the kids, too.  Now that they are older, it's taking a little more creativity to impress them. 
These tasty little guys will be a fun addition to your green party and bring smiles to your guests.  Erin Go Bragh! 



Angry Irishman Key Lime Cupcakes



How to make them:
1 box yellow cake mix (butter flavor, your favorite brand) prepared according to package directions or a homemade mix divided into 24 cupcakes.
1 small can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup key lime juice (make sure it's key lime and not regular lime juice, you want the tartness of the key limes)
1 double batch buttercream frosting, separated (recipe follows)
1 bag sweet and sour green liquorice strips (for hats)
black icing (for hat-I used the sparkle icing)
Chocolate dessert sprinkles (for eyebrows)
confetti sequins candies (you need the yellow for the hats)
small candy eyes
orange gel food coloring
Red jelly beans (for nose)
green cupcake liners

Directions:

Cut the liquorice strips into the shape of hats.  Using the black icing, pipe a line for the hat ribbon and place a yellow confetti candy sequin in the middle for the hat buckle.  Set aside and allow them to dry for 24 hours. 
Bake your cupcakes according to the package directions, or you can make them homemade (a butter cake recipe would be best).  Set aside to cool. 
Mix the can of sweetened condensed milk with 1/2 cup key lime juice and stir with a whisk.  You can also add a tsp of fresh lime zest to this mixture.  Place mixture inside a piping bag with a Wilton #230 filling tip attached. 


Holding the cupcake in your hand, insert the tip in the middle of the cupcake.  Slowly pull tip up and out as you feel the cupcake start to expand.  Repeat procedure with all cupcakes.  


Prepare your frosting:
*I double this recipe

8tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
3 3/4 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla extract, clear (it won't darken your frosting color)
3-4 tbsp key lime juice
pinch of sea salt

Whip butter in a mixing bowl until fluffy.  Add sugar, salt, lime juice and vanilla.  Blend slowly until incorporated and then gradually increase speed until frosting is smooth and creamy. 

Spread a thin "crumb" layer of frosting on your cupcakes and then refrigerate for an hour or so to allow it to firm up.  Then frost your cupcakes with a flat spatula to achieve a smooth surface.  Now you are ready to assemble your men.

Separate about 1/3 of the frosting in a bowl and add your orange food color gel.  Blend until uniform and place into a decorating bag with a star tip attached. 

Place hat on top of the cupcake and then add the eyes and the chocolate sprinkles for each eyebrow.  Add the jellybean nose and then pipe on the furry beard.

Now your guys are ready to eat!  Happy St. Patrick's Day!!










Chocolate Dipped Marshmallows...St. Patrick's Style

Here is an easy treat idea for kids for St. Patrick's Day.  They are also super easy for kids to make!  I used white chocolate and Shamrock and white sprinkles.  You can change these up with white or dark chocolate for different occasions.  Easy breeze and fun for the little ones.  Enjoy!


Ingredients:

1 bag large marshmallows
white melting chocolate
sprinkles of your choice
cake pop sticks (available at craft stores)

Melt white chocolate in a double boiler or use the Chocolate Pro (by Wilton..I LOVE this gadget).  Put sprinkles into a small bowl.  Stick marshmallow onto pop stick and dip each into chocolate, allowing the excess to drip off.   Then dip the tip into the bowl of sprinkles to coat the top.  Set aside to harden.  You can stick them into a Styrofoam block to dry or poke holes in an old upside down shoebox.  You just want them standing up.  When completely dry, package them into small bags (also found at craft stores) and tie them with a color coordinating ribbon. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Guiltless Chocolate Bliss Cupcakes

This cupcake is very quick to prepare and a delicious guilt-free dessert option.  The cake is adapted from a Weight Watcher's recipe and the frosting is adapted from Dashing Dish.   I could eat a bowl of this frosting by itself (kind of tastes like rich chocolate mousse......so good!!!)  Enjoy~




Ingredients for cupcakes:
1 box chocolate cake mix (I prefer the organic mixes like Arrowhead mills)
1 15oz can organic pumpkin
1/4 cup egg whites
1/4 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips


Mix all ingredients together.  Batter will be thick.  Pour into paper lined cupcake tins sprayed with cooking spray.  Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.  *Makes 12 large cupcakes.


For frosting:
1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
1/4 cup cocoa powder
8 packets stevia in the raw or truvia (or a little more to taste)
2 tbsp instant chocolate pudding mix
1 small tub light cool whip (or truwhip for a healthier option)


Put cottage cheese, stevia and cocoa powder into a food processor or Vitamix.  Blend until smooth and creamy for 2-3 minutes (you must do it this long to achieve a smooth and creamy texture).  Stir in pudding mix until blended and fold in cool whip.  Pipe or spread onto cooled cupcakes and serve.  Store in the refrigerator.   So delicious!!


Shared at:
Weekend Potluck

Friday, March 9, 2012

Fit and Fabulous Fridays #22

It's time for another weekend round-up of amazing healthy recipes! Fit and Fabulous Fridays is a place where amazing foodies share their lightened-up recipes!! I welcome all blogging friends to link up and join the fun. This is a place for you to showcase your amazing creations, encourage a healthy lifestyle for my readers and add to my fit recipe collection. I really appreciate the great recipes that you share. I welcome all healthy lifestyle recipes (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, paleo diet, etc.). A friendly reminder, PLEASE make sure you are submitting a HEALTHY recipe. Save that death by chocolate torte for the sugar coma linky. Just sayin'....;) Have a fabulous weekend!!!!




Here's how it works:
  • Please link up to the URL of your post, not the URL of your main blog. When it asks for "Name", type in the name of your recipe.
  • Please leave a link back to this post in your post and grab my button for your blog(please pass the word to your blog friends for more fabulous recipes!)
  • Share your delicious and fit recipes from this week (you can share more than one).
  • Leave me a comment telling me that you've linked up.
  • Please visit at least two others and comment on their wonderful additions to this party.
  • "Like" my facebook page for updates and link party reminders
Thank you for being a part of my link party! I love sharing recipes and look forward to trying yours! Have a wonderful weekend!!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Fit Inspiration

I have a couple of recipes from SugarFreeMom that I want to share with you.  Her Chicken Spinach Alfredo Whole Wheat Calzone is to die for!!!!  Not only does it look impressive, but it's healthy too.  She makes the bread from scratch and it's only 5 WW points!  

 *photo by Sugar Free Mom


Another recipe of hers that caught my eye was a Homemade Jello Recipe with no sugar and no artificial sweeteners.  This is a simple, all natural recipe that involves only three ingredients: fruit juice, gelatin and water.  That's it!!  No artificial colors, sugar or additives for your kid's favorite jiggly treat.  I love it!!  

 *photo by Sugar Free Mom

FitSugar has a great article on how much sugar, fat and salt we should be eating in a day and tips on how to  tips on how to tweak those bad habits.  Great info!  Read the article here


I found a really awesome product at Target a few weeks ago.  It's Yellow Lentil Hummus.  I have never tried making hummus with lentils before, but after tasting it I definitely will attempt to re-create this divine spread.  It was delicious and I loved this sweet and spicy flavor combination with sunflower seeds and apricots.






That concludes my round-up this week.  Fit and Fabulous Fridays will be up all weekend, so stop by and browse amazing healthy dishes from talented bloggers around the web.  Have a fabulous weekend and stay inspired!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Favorite Green Beans

I make these beans all the time because they are quick and full of flavor.  I always use frozen organic green beans for this recipe because they don't require as long of a cooking time.  Southerners, traditionally, like their green beans softened, not steamed to a crisp texture.  I enjoy them both ways, but this method is definitely my favorite.  Let the beans thaw in the pan for an hour or so before cooking and drain the excess liquid.  They get a little caramelized with the sauteing and it really brings out the great flavor.  Enjoy~


Favorite Green Beans




Ingredients:
5 cups frozen organic whole green beans, thawed
1 clove garlic, minced
1 packet concentrated liquid chicken stock dissolved into 1/4 cup water (or 1/4 cup regular chicken stock)
2 tbsp smart balance butter olive oil blend (sticks)
1 tsp fresh dill, chopped fine
1/4 cup slivered almonds
sea salt and pepper to taste


Cook green beans in the chicken stock in a large saute pan over medium-high heat.  Cook until  liquid has evaporated and beans have softened.  Add butter, garlic, almonds and dill and stir well coating the beans.  Saute until beans begin to carmelize and serve immediately.  



Sunday, March 4, 2012

Kiwi Mint Mojitos....It's happy hour, baby!

I'm going to continue on my kiwi kick for the week with this amazing cocktail recipe.  You can be fit and fabulous and still enjoy your happy hour.  Moderation, my friends!  I found this great recipe in Rachael Ray's Everyday magazine.  I made only one slight change and added a splash of club soda to the mix.  I love the use of agave nectar instead of simple syrup here.  If it could come with a hammock and a beach, I'd be all set! 
Enjoy~


Kiwi Mojitos



Ingredients:
2 kiwis, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 tbsp agave nectar
4 mint leaves, muddled (and more for garnish)
2 oz light rum
ice
splash club soda

Rinse and pat mint leaves dry (I love a salad spinner for this).  Muddle the mint leaves to release the oils using a mortar and pestle or you can do it directly in the cocktail shaker with the back of a wooden spoon.  Just gently press down on the leaves (you don't want mint mush).  





In a mini food processor, puree kiwi and agave nectar.  Place kiwi mixture, 2 oz light rum, ice and a splash or two of club soda in a cocktail shaker.  Shake vigorously and pour into an ice filled glass.  Garnish with kiwi and mint leaves.  
Serves 2.



Friday, March 2, 2012

Fit and Fabulous Fridays #21

It's time for another weekend round-up of amazing healthy recipes! Fit and Fabulous Fridays is a place where amazing foodies share their lightened-up recipes!! I welcome all blogging friends to link up and join the fun. This is a place for you to showcase your amazing creations, encourage a healthy lifestyle for my readers and add to my fit recipe collection. I really appreciate the great recipes that you share. I welcome all healthy lifestyle recipes (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, paleo diet, etc.). A friendly reminder, PLEASE make sure you are submitting a HEALTHY recipe. Save that death by chocolate torte for the sugar coma linky. Just sayin'....;) Have a fabulous weekend!!!!





Here's how it works:
  • Please link up to the URL of your post, not the URL of your main blog. When it asks for "Name", type in the name of your recipe.
  • Please leave a link back to this post in your post and grab my button for your blog(please pass the word to your blog friends for more fabulous recipes!)
  • Share your delicious and fit recipes from this week (you can share more than one).
  • Leave me a comment telling me that you've linked up.
  • Please visit at least two others and comment on their wonderful additions to this party.
  • "Like" my facebook page for updates and link party reminders
Thank you for being a part of my link party! I love sharing recipes and look forward to trying yours! Have a wonderful weekend!!





Thursday, March 1, 2012

Banana Kiwi Smoothie

I seem to be on a beverage kick this week.  The weather has warmed up a bit and I am craving smoothies and protein shakes.  I picked up a big container of kiwi fruit at Costco for smoothies and fruit salad, so I thought I would share this favorite.  The addition of chia seeds to this drink, gives you added fiber and nutrients.  This is a meal in a glass and really tasty, too!  Enjoy~


Banana Kiwi Smoothie




Ingredients:
3/4 cup non-fat plain greek yogurt
1 large frozen banana
3/4 cup pineapple juice (no sugar added)
1 large kiwi fruit, peeled and sliced
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 tbsp agave nectar (or 1 packet stevia)


Place all ingredients into a blender or Vitamix and blend until smooth.



 

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