Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Shredded Chicken Crisps

"Portable Protein" Post #2

I had gotten a rotisserie chicken the other week and hadn't finished all of the meat because I was just never home to heat it up and have it as a meal. So I thought about it, decided to change it up, and figured other people have this same problem...it's just not convenient to just carry around pieces of chicken in your pocket when you need protein. So this was the inspiration behind the portable protein series, and I am sure that you will see just how convenient this is...so try this idea!! It's like jerky, but stringier and shredded and more like a chip and less like leather.

Shredded Chicken Crisps


Shredded Chicken Jerky Crisps

Ingredients
  • Baked Chicken Breast (a great way to use leftovers!)
  • Olive oil 
  • Salt and Pepper and/or other spices
Shredded Chicken Crisps

Directions
  1. Preheat oven to about 275 degrees
  2. Spray a baking sheet with olive oil.
  3. Take your chicken breast, and piece by piece, "string" it along the fibers that make up the chicken breast length-wise, and place them on the baking sheet, without layering or letting them overlap much.
    Shredded Chicken Crisps
  4. Optional: spray the top of the meat with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper if desired (depending on if the chicken has already been marinated or not)
  5. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the chicken shreds have dried out and start to darken in color.
  6. Let cool and enjoy! They are great by themselves or even with hummus, salsa, or guacamole. Store sealed in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to a week. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

Cherry Vanilla Cheesecake Protein Bars

"Portable Protein" Series Post #1


So now that I have reached the 1,000 like mark on Facebook, it's time to look ahead to a new milestone. I want to keep making changes to my blog as well as start some new projects that include making an e-book, and interacting with more companies and other blogs. What do you think? Would you like to see a collection of Healtheasy recipes all in one place? I am in the process of brainstorming, and would love your input on where to grow from here!

This is also the start of an installment of posts called "portable protein" that will go on for the next couple of weeks, featuring ideas on how to make snacks that are a good source of protein while on the go.

I am also in the process of running my first giveaway, which I am really excited about! Four of you guys will win a stevia prize pack thanks to NuNaturals! In fact, the recipe below calls for some Cherry Vanilla liquid stevia sweetener, which as always you can substitute...but you could also win it here ;)

a Rafflecopter giveaway Aaaanyways...enjoy the recipe and PLEASE, as always, let me know how it turned out for you!

Cherry Vanilla Cheesecake Protein Bars

Cherry Vanilla Cheesecake Protein Bars 

Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup ricotta cheese 
  • 2 eggs (or 1/3 cup egg whites)
  • 1/2 cup almond flour (or other nut flour)
  • 1/4 cup vanilla whey protein powder (or protein powder of choice)
  • 1/3 cup dried cherries and/or other mix-ins
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 15 drops cherry vanilla liquid stevia sweetener (or sub with regular stevia or 1 tbsp. honey)

Cherry Vanilla Cheesecake Protein Bars




Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine protein powder with almond flour.
  3. Add eggs, ricotta, and coconut oil (preferably heated) and whisk all ingredients together well. 
  4. Mix in dried cherries and any other desired add-ins.
  5. Pour batter into a well greased meat loaf pan or another small baking sheet. (I like to use olive oil in a spray)
  6. Bake for about 13-15 minutes or until firm and the edges start to bronze.
  7. Makes about 8 squares...enjoy!! (And at least try not to eat all of them in one sitting)
Please support!!
 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Milestone Giveaway with NuNaturals

BIG NEWS...I reached 1,000 followers on my Facebook Page today! Please continue to help me spread the word by sharing with family and friends!
BIGGER NEWS...to show my appreciation of your support so far, I am launching a giveaway of all natural, MSG free, Gluten free, zero calorie stevia sweeteners from NuNaturals! These sweeteners are great in baked goods and liquids such as coffee for example, and to be honest I had never really gotten on the stevia bandwagon until trying these out and they are a definite game changer! These sweeteners don't have any aftertaste that is sometimes associated with stevia, and are such a quick way to add flavor, which is why I am so excited to share with you!!

4 of you awesome readers will win the following:
  • 1 bottle lemon flavored liquid sweetener
  • 1 bottle of cherry vanilla flavor
  • 1 bottle peppermint flavor
  • PLUS a 50 pkt. box of our NuStevia White Stevia Powder packets!


Use the widget below to enter, and please share the love and spread the news to your friends! Also, look out for a new recipe using one of these flavors in the coming days! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
If you would like to embed this giveaway on your own site to gain an additional entry, click here for the code!

Also check them out the NuNaturals website to receive a 15% discount on all orders using the code BLG0614! Discount is effective until June 30th, 2014.

Please also remember to like and share as always and THANKS AGAIN for being here :)

 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Balsamic Infused Crockpot Cabbage

Today was a snow day so naturally I had to spend some time in the kitchen! What's the weather like where you live??  I will seriously never complain about warm weather again...

I made a batch of these Banana Beet Brownies that have been so popular lately, and I experimented with some spaghetti squash, so hopefully I will have a couple of fun ideas for you with it soon! Just kidding...I definitely will have some ideas for you, so make sure you keep checking my Facebook page for updates :)

In the meantime, I want to share something I made on a whim yesterday. It turned out really great, and a lot of people have asked me for the recipe, so here goes! It is actually so easy...(and healthy, see what I did there?)

Balsamic Infused Crockpot Cabbage


Balsamic Infused Cabbage

Ingredients 
  • 1 head of cabbage
  • 2/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3 cups of water (if using a small crockpot)
  • 1/2 tbsp salt (optional)
Directions
  1. Wash cabbage and peel off the first layers of leaves that are covering it.
  2. With a knife, poke about 10-15 incisions that cut through the whole cabbage.
  3. Pour the 3 cups of water into your crockpot. If your crockpot is larger than 4 quarts, you may need to increase the amount of vinegar and water.
  4. Place the cabbage in the crockpot, and slowly pour half of the balsamic vinegar over the cabbage, then turn and pour the rest of the balsamic vinegar over the other half of the cabbage so that the vinegar goes into the cuts as much as possible.
  5. Cook in the crock pot on high for about 2 to 3 hours or until soft, turning the cabbage occasionally so that the vinegar-water soaks in from all sides. 
  6. Cut however you want (I divided it into 4ths) and enjoy as a side to your favorite meat or other dish, or just by itself! (guilty....) You can pour the rest of the balsamic-water over the cabbage as a sauce.
Have a great rest of the week and stay warm everyone!

                                                Check me out on these other social media websites ;)
  

Monday, February 10, 2014

Cabbage Roll Goulash

One good thing about this cold weather is that soups and stews always sound so good! Somehow they are just not as relevant or appealing during the summer when it's 90 degrees out...I had some ground meat around and some tomatoes to get rid of, so this is what inspired this really easy stew. I absolutely love cabbage rolls and there's an awesome Ukranian restaurant in the city that makes amazing ones, so I thought of this as kind of a deconstructed version, with all the good stuff in one pot. I called it a goulash because of the sweet paprika in it, and because I like the sound of it, but it can really be whatever.

If you have a website or a blog, I would love for you to share and link to my recipes! It really helps me spread the word to as many people as possible. Recently, my recipe for these Banana Beet Brownies was featured on Chris Freitag's blog and it was very exciting! Please let me know if you would like to collaborate on a post or recipe as well, and I have outlined a couple of ideas as far as this in my new Services tab! As always, I welcome any suggestions or feedback, since I am still fairly new to all of this. Thank you and enjoy :)

Cabbage Roll Goulash

Cabbage Roll Stew

Ingredients
  • Approx. 1 1/2 lbs. of ground turkey or beef
  • 1/2 large head of cabbage
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 6 oz. can if tomato paste
  • 1 28 oz. can of whole tomatoes with juice (or about 7 chopped roma tomatoes)
  • 1 tbsp. salt (plus more to taste)
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. basil
  • 1 tsp. caraway seeds
  • 2 tbsp. sweet paprika (plus more to taste)
  • 1 tbsp. honey (optional)
Directions
  1. Place onions and olive oil in a big pot, cover, and let simmer over low heat until they start to become translucent. Stir occasionally if needed.
  2. Add ground meat to the pot, add salt, and pepper, and cook over medium heat, covering and stirring until meat is thoroughly cooked.
  3. Add cabbage, tomatoes, and tomato paste, cover and let cook until the stew comes to a boil. Reduce heat and add water if the stew becomes too thick.
  4. Once the tomatoes and cabbage have softened (you may need to use your spatula to help the tomatoes fall apart if you are using canned ones), add oregano, basil, caraway seeds, garlic powder, honey, and paprika. Cover again and let cook over low to medium heat for another 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Taste and add additional salt/paprika as desired.
  6. Remove from heat and serve, or store in the refrigerator for up to a week after it cools!
Please share the love :)
                                               

Friday, February 7, 2014

Roasted Sweet Potato and Onion Dip

I had to get up super early today as per usual, and have a sore throat and a cold, but thankfully came back after our morning workout and could take a nap. And now I'm done feeling sorry for myself...It's probably not the best, but sometimes I feel like being sick is not an excuse to miss out on life. Which is why I will try to power through (with Ibuprofen in hand). On that note, once I got out of my weird daze, I realized I should do something productive before celebrating this beautiful Friday...and by productive I mean posting this awesome recipe from last weekend for you to try!!

It's actually ridiculously easy and awesome, and your friends and family will thank you if you make it for them or bring it to your next potluck.

Roasted Sweet Potato Onion Dip

Roasted Sweet Potato and Onion Dip


Ingredients
  • 3 sweet potatoes
  • 2 onions
  • 1/2 cup sour cream or greek yogurt (You can also try subbing with 1/4 cup almond milk, but I can't vouch for that yet!)
  • Pepper, optional
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. For faster roasting, cut sweet potatoes into thicker slices, and onions into approximately eighths.
  3. Place on a greased baking sheet, and lightly sprinkle with pepper, if desired. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for about 40 minutes, or until soft.
  4. Uncover to let roast for another 5 to 10 minutes.
  5. While warm, place sweet potatoes and onions in a mixing bowl and blend with a hand blender, or pulse in a blender or magic bullet. I left the skins on the potatoes and did not blend until smooth, but it is up to you. 
  6. Stir in sour cream or greek yogurt, and mix well.
  7. Let cool and serve with your favorite veggies as a dip, or even spread on crackers.
Enjoy, and let me know how you liked it please!! :)

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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Cumin Parsnip Chips

Happy Wednesday! I know the weather has been kind of a downer around here, and the middle of the week can be rough in general...it has definitely taken a toll on me and I am EXHAUSTED but can say that I have still managed to be productive. I updated the layout of the blog (what do you think??), am reaching 900 Facebook likes, and am planning my first giveaway! Exciting right? I am trying to keep focused so that I can really enjoy the weekend...how are you doing with your goals for the week??

Just in case you need some midweek inspiration for a healthy snack or are just really craving some Mexican flavor without resorting to buying a taco, I have this easy parsnip chip recipe to share with you!

Cumin Parsnip Chips


Cumin Parsnip Chips

Ingredients
  • Parsnips
  • Ground cumin
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Oil (I used olive)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees
  2. Wash and peel parsnips, and with a sharp knife thinly slice into circles.
  3. In a bowl, toss parsnip slices with about 1 tsp oil for every parsnip, and sprinkle with salt and pepper as desired. Add about 1 tsp cumin for each parnip used, and toss until thoroughly mixed. In my opinion, the more cumin the better ;)
  4. Place on a baking sheet, and let roast for about 30 minutes, or until dried out and "crispy!"
Enjoy! You could definitely also try this with other vegetables too, such as turnips or sweet potatoes :)

Please share the love!
                                                    

Monday, February 3, 2014

Chocolate Sweet Potato Truffles

I can't say that I'm a huge fan of professional football, but I do like hanging out and I definitely love food, so yesterday was a great day! A couple of friends had people over and everyone brought a dish to share, which resulted in the best assortment of food from guac to ham to chili to pizza...I wanted to come up with a treat that was sweet but still "healtheasy," so I thought what better way to do that than with sweet potatoes? These truffles are naturally sweet, and you definitely wouldn't be able to tell that there is a vegetables in them!

I ended up discovering that the state of my bag of sweet potatoes was not as good as I had hoped, so I brainstormed another dish and brought that along as well...so look out for a sweet potato dip recipe in the coming days :)

Please make and enjoy these balls, and please keep the feedback coming! I love it when you share your results with me!

Chocolate Sweet Potato Truffles

Chocolate Sweet Potato Truffles

Ingredients (makes about 25-30 truffles)

  • 3 small sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup almond flour (or other nut flour)
  • 3/4 cup cacao powder (unsweetened), plus more for dusting 
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup chocolate whey protein powder (optional, may need to increase almond flour/cacao amount if using)
Directions
  1. Steam or microwave sweet potatoes until they are very soft. Remove skins. (and eat them, if you're like me)
  2. Transfer to a mixing bowl and while still warm, add coconut oil and honey, and mash well with a fork or spatula.
  3. Let cool and add almond flour, cacao powder, and protein powder (if desired) and mix well until all ingredients combine into almost a play-doh like consistency. Since sizes of sweet potatoes vary, you may need to add almond flour/cacao powder until you achieve the right ratio. Dough should hold shape well, and should not be too sticky, but the next step can also help reduce stickiness.
  4. Spread about 1/4 cup cacao powder on a plate, and as you shape the dough into approximately 3/4 inch balls, roll in powder and set finished truffles on a baking sheet or different plate. 
  5. Place finished balls in the refrigerator for about 1/2 an hour to allow them to firm up.
  6. Enjoy the sweet (potato) goodness :)
Please connect with me!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Warm Kale Salad with Sour Cream Roasted Eggplant

I need to start making sure I get more sleep on the weekends...so far that is not happening and I am really starting to feel the effects of it. On the plus side, the weather is warmer and I no longer feel like I'm getting sick, so I can't complain! I have a goal of being more productive during my days off as well, so that when  I do have a busy schedule I am not stressing out more than I need to. It's a work in progress, and I welcome any tips that you have to help me improve! I know I don't have to be perfect, but I'd like to start aiming for more organization and efficiency in the things I do...

On another note, we threw together a nice random little potluck dinner last night! I had some eggplants I was trying to use up, some kale I had just gotten, and some sour cream that I bought for the first time ever that day, so I figured  I would try experimenting...and you should too! ;)

Warm Kale Salad with Sour Cream Roasted Eggplant

 Warm Kale Salad with Sour Cream Roasted Eggplant


Ingredients
  • 1 medium eggplant
  • 4-5 packed cups kale, torn
  • 1/2 cup sour cream 
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp honey (as dressing, can omit)
  • 2 tsp olive oil (as dressing, can omit)
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp lemon pepper
  • salt, plus more to taste
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cut eggplant into approx 1 inch cubes, salt generously, and let sit for about 10 to 15 minutes until it starts to "sweat." Rinse and place in a mixing bowl.
  3. Add sour cream, lemon juice, garlic powder, and pepper, and toss until thoroughly mixed. 
  4. Place marinated eggplant on a greased or lined baking sheet and place in the oven.
  5. Bake for about 40 minutes or until soft, covering if necessary. Uncover to let bronze for the last 10 to 15 minutes.
  6. Once the eggplant is almost done, gently steam kale until it softens slightly. You can do this on the stove using a colander or by covering and putting in the microwave for about a minute.
  7. Place kale in a bowl, and toss with the grilled eggplant, cranberries, honey, olive oil, and even chicken if you'd like to make a complete meal out of it!
I am pretty proud to say this was a success, but you will not know for sure just how good it was until you try :)
Please check me out and share!
 
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