Berry Delicious Smoothie

On this hot afternoon we decided to mix up a refreshing cold snack which turned out to be one BERRY DELICIOUS SMOOTHIE!  This smoothie is all natural, sweet, tasty and of course, KID FRIENDLY.  Enjoy.

Ingredients
1 cup fresh pineapple chunks
1 ripe banana peeled
1 cup frozen organic strawberries
1/2 cup frozen organic blueberries
1/2 cup water

BLEND!

Yield: 3 cups

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Red Pepper, Potato and Spinach Quiche

I did it! I made my first vegetarian quiche.  This quiche is a bit unique as it does not have a pastry/pie crust, and is almost all vegetable based.  This vegetable quiche packs great nutrients, flavor and is very filling.  Kid friendly!

Ingredients
1 jar roasted red pepper (chopped) *You can also roast your own two peppers
1 small red onion, chopped
1tsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups baby spinach chopped
3 medium potatoes (peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch-think rounds)
1 cup shredded, reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese (4oz)
1 cup fat-free egg substitute
1/2 cup evaporated 2% milk
1/2 tsp each dried thyme and salt
1/4 tsp black pepper

Directions
Saute 1tsp olive oil, garlic, onion, roasted red peppers, & spinach on medium for 5-7 minutes

Steam or boil potatoes for 10-12 minutes, or until tender

To assemble quiche, spray an 6.5-8-inch round quiche pan or cake pan with non-stick spray.  Layer 1/2 potatoes over bottom.  Top with 1/2 pepper mixture, followed by 1/2 cheese.  Repeat layering.

In an medium bowl, whisk together egg substitute, milk, thyme, salt and pepper.  Pour over vegetables.  Bake at 375 , uncovered, for 35 to 40 minutes, until quiche is firm to touch and cheese is golden brown.  Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.

Yield 6 servings

Pumpkin Muffins

Did you know that PUMPKIN offers many health benefits?  Pumpkin is low calorie, antioxidant & flavonoid rich, just to name a few.  Most people associate pumpkin with the fall and Thanksgiving, but we enjoy pumpkin year round!  Pumpkin muffins are a favorite in our household, especially with the kids, so I am excited to share this recipe.  I send these to school often for snack.

Ingredients
1 2/3 cups flour (I use unbleached whole wheat flour)
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup butter (melted)
1 generous cup canned pumpkin (I used 1 whole can of Organic Pumpkin)

Directions
Mix all dry ingredients
Add in eggs, water, butter & canned pumpkin
Mix well

Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown (usually around 20 minutes)

Yield
24 mini muffins + 5 fun shaped muffins
or
12 regular sized muffins

Pear Oat Smoothie

Yum!  Today I decided to try this protein packed Pear Oat smoothie.  I received this recipe from a close friend and can now second that this is a great combination and nice change from a complete vegetable or fruit smoothie.  Enjoy.

Ingredients

1 pear sliced
1/3 cup rolled oats or steel cut oats (I used steel cut oats)
1 tsp raw maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp almond or Peanut Butter (I used all natural Peanut Butter)
A sprinkle of cinnamon (optional)
Cover with unsweet vanilla almond milk, hemp milk, or rice milk
Handful of Ice

Blend! Enjoy!

Yield: 1 to 2 servings

Avocado Round

Today I decided to mix up a new lunchtime creation, as I am constantly in search of fresh, quick and easy options.  Avocado is one food I want to eat more of b/c it provides nearly 20 essential nutrients, including fiber, potassium, Vitamin E, B-vitamins and folic acid.  I also try to have spinach at least once to twice a day.  Spinach is one of the most powerful antioxidants.  I was craving a little bit of spicy flavor, so I chose Pepper Jack cheese & onion for the kick.  Feel free to substitute with another cheese or no cheese at all.  It was delicious. If you would like to make this sandwich Vegan, simply remove the cheese!

Ingredients
Bread of your choice (I use Arnold Flax & Fiber Sandwich Thins-Harris Teeter)
baby spinach
reduced fat pepper jack cheese (1.5 slices)
1 small roma tomato (small slices)
1/2 a fresh avocado
red onion (optional..I used just a few slices)

Directions
I toasted this sandwich to melt the cheese, so preheat your toaster oven
Place spinach leaves on one side of sandwich round/bread
Place pepper jack cheese not top of spinach
Place tomato on top on cheese
Place avocado on top of tomato
Place onion on tomato
Place a couple of small pieces of pepper jack cheese to finish topping sandwich (optional)

Pineapple Strawberry Orange Smoothie

Okay, so thanks to this beautiful warm weather the kids and I decided to mix up a new smoothie for our afternoon snack.  It was so refreshing.  Enjoy.

Ingredients
1 whole orange (peeled & halved)
1/2 a whole pineapple chopped into chunks (trimmed)
1 cup fresh organic strawberries (stems removed & strawberries washed)
*add water to create smoother texture
*add ice to make smoothie cool/thicker

Directions
Blend per the directions on your blender.  I use the Vitamix!

 

Penne with artichoke, spinach, and tomato

Last night I decided to take on yet another new recipe and it was DELICIOUS!  This Penne dish is a quick fix and requires little time for preparation.  This recipe was actually inspired from a recent “pin” I discovered on Pinterest.  I hope you enjoy this dish as much as we did!

Ingredients
1 lb. whole wheat penne
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
8 artichoke hearts, quartered
2 cans organic diced tomatoes (you can use fresh if you prefer)
1 cup chopped fresh spinach
*1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Directions
In a skillet over medium-high heat, sauté the onion and the garlic in the olive oil. Add the artichoke hearts. Cook to a pale gold color over high heat, then add the spinach, and tomatoes. Simmer 15-20 minutes over medium heat.

Cook the whole wheat penne according to package directions in boiling water. Drain and add to the artichoke sauce. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan. Enjoy!

Yield
6

Broccoli Braid

I am so excited to share this recipe that has been in my family for years, thanks to my Mom.  It was traditionally cooked with chicken, but the recipe I am sharing today, is without.  Omnivores, you can add 2 cups chopped cooked chicken to this recipe!  I cooked this meat free version last night for my family and they LOVED it…ate the whole thing. Enjoy.

Ingredients
1 cup broccoli florets, chopped (fresh or you can buy 10oz frozen chopped broccoli & thaw)
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper (this was about 1 whole red bell pepper)
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 garlic clove, pressed
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon dried dill weed
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 packages (8 ounces each) refrigerated crescent rolls
1 egg white, lightly beaten
*2 tablespoons silvered almonds (optional)
*2 cups cooked chicken chopped (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Combine broccoli, bell pepper, cheese, mayonnaise, dill mix, pressed garlic and salt in bowl; mix well.
  2. Unroll one package of the crescent dough; do not separate. Arrange longest sides of dough across width of a rectangle baking stone. Repeat with remaining package of dough. Using a rolling pin, roll dough to seal perforations. On longest sides of baking stone, cut dough into strips 1 1/2 in. apart, 3 in. deep. (There will be 6 in. in the center for the filling.) (see pictures below)
  3. Spread filling evenly over center of dough. To braid, lift dough strips across filling to meet in center, twisting each strip one turn. Continue alternating strips to form a braid. Tuck ends up to seal at end of braid. Brush egg white over dough. Sprinkle with almonds. Bake 25-28 minutes or until deep golden brown

Mango Delight Smoothie

This all natural Mango Delight Smoothie is healthy, delicious and easy to prepare.  This smoothie is a favorite with the kids and perfect for an afternoon snack! Enjoy.

Ingredients
1 medium orange, peeled, halved
1 banana, peeled
1 mango, peeled, pitted
1 medium apple (remove core)
1 cup ice cubes

Directions
Blend per directions on your blender.  For those of you new to my blog, I use the Vitamix.  I also have read that the Ninja blender gets good reviews and is a lower cost option.

Yield: 4 cups

Asparagus Sauté

Asparagus Sauté is a healthy, quick, & easy recipe.  I cooked this and served it over Quinoa.  Quinoa is a grain and is a great replacement to rice.  It is protein packed and rich in antioxidants.

Ingredients
Asparagus
Crimini mushrooms
Red Onion
Shiitake mushrooms
2 tbsp balsalmic vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup
1tbsp olive oil.
1 cup cooked Quinoa

Directions
Heat 1 tbsp olive oil, 2 tbsp balsalmic vinegar, 1 tbsp maple syrup in a 12-inch skillet over medium high heat.  And in vegetables.
Cover and cook until asparagus is bright green and still crisp (3-5 mins)
Uncover and increase heat.  Cook until spears are tender and slightly browned (5-7 minutes).