One of my favorite breakfasts is whole grain granola with yogurt and fruit. It’s something that I never get tired of, and granola is easy to take with me. It’s a great snack and perfect for a healthy breakfast when I’m traveling if I’m not sure whether or not the breakfast is something I can eat – you can almost always get yogurt. I like to add fresh fruit to it, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, bananas, peaches – whatever I happen to have on hand. In less than 5 minutes I’ve got a delicious breakfast that’s full of protein fiber and healthy fats. One of my favorite granolas is a gluten free one from Van’s foods. I love it because it’s soft and chewy, but it’s also expensive. This granola recipe is just as good, cheaper to make and something I can whip up in no time! I keep a very close eye on mine so that I don’t overcook it. It’s fine when it’s crunchy, but my preference is the soft and chewy granola, so I don’t cook mine for very long. If you prefer a little crunchier granola, just cook it a little longer. This is perfect for breakfast or a snack, it’s filled with essential fats and has 3 grams of fiber per serving!
I absolutely love chocolate, but I can’t drink that much milk – it makes me sick. So, I made this fabulous dark chocolate hot cocoa with almond milk. It’s rich and delicious, and my favorite hot cocoa. It’s made from things I always have on hand, so it’s easy to throw together for a cup of hot cocoa when I need a pick-me-up on a cold fall day. I love the nutty flavor of the almond milk, and I like to top mine with a dollop of whipped coconut milk or coconut ice cream. The dry mix you can have ready to go and then just add it to almond milk to heat and serve. One cup of almond milk needs about 4 1/2 tablespoons of cocoa and sugar mix. You can also just whisk the cocoa mixture into the cold almond milk, or remove some of the hot almond milk and mix the cocoa mixture into that. It works best if you start with a little bit of almond milk to make sure you’ve got all the lumps out before you add it in (just like cornstarch or flour in gravy). The next cool fall day that you’re craving some hot chocolate – give this simple and delicious dark chocolate hot cocoa a try.
Fall is a perfect time to enjoy rich and delicious soups and stews. This wild rice and chicken soup is hearty and creamy, it’s perfect to finish a cool fall day. I love creamy chicken and rice soups, they have such a rich and wholesome flavor. This one is no exception, the wild rice adds a wonderful color and texture to the soup that makes it’s a delightful meal. It’s an easy one to stick in the crockpot too. Just saute the veggies, thicken the broth and stick it all in the crockpot. Add the milk 20 to 30 minutes before serving. This warm soup is comforting, delicious, simple and beautiful. And the leftovers are perfect for lunch the next day. [Read more…]
While I am someone who typically loves meat, sometimes I like to do some vegetarian options. It’s a great way to expand my culinary horizons as well as being a great way to help the food budget. So, we try to do things like “Meatless Mondays”. Some meals are much easier to make a vegetarian option, and chili is one of those meals. Traditional tomato based chili is great, but sometimes, it’s nice to have a little variety in chili. This white chili is a variation on the common (and very tasty) white chicken chili, but without the chicken. Great northern beans make a great base for this delicious chili, and the corn adds flavor, texture and sweetness. The jalapeno pepper can be hot, but if you remove the seeds and membranes it’ll be much less spicy. Pablano peppers are mild chili peppers, so this chili is spicy, but not too hot. If it ends up being a little too hot for you, just add a little cheese or sour cream when you serve it. While the recipe is for cooking it on the stove, you can also saute the peppers, onions and garlic then stick everything in the crockpot. It’s easy to have for supper as these fall days get cool.
I love salads, but I like variety in my salads. As a result, I’m always looking for delicious new salad recipes. This one definitely fits the bill. Roasted beets, carrots, alfalfa sprouts and tuna fish – it’s a great combination, packed with nutrients and beautiful to eat as well. The dressing is simple and easy to make up. It’s one of the dressings that you can stick in a half pint jar to mix it (just screw on the lid and shake) and any leftover dressing, leave in the fridge for the next round. You’re welcome to use canned beets instead of roasting your own, just make sure you drain them well and pat them dry before slicing them. You can typically find alfalfa sprouts in the produce section of your grocery store, or you can get a kit to make your own sprouts. Sprouts are great in salads and sandwiches as well, so it’s not a bad thing to have on hand. Toss this salad together and enjoy it for lunch or dinner!
What’s better on a lazy weekend that brunch with some pancakes? These blueberry pancakes hit the spot. They’re simple and delicious with whole wheat flour and blueberries. You can use fresh or frozen blueberries in these pancakes – whichever you have on hand. I used frozen blueberries, so I poured each pancake onto the griddle and then dropped the blueberries into the batter. Making these pancakes with whole grain flour adds nutrients, including fiber to these pancakes. If you’re not so sure about using whole wheat flour, the trick is to make sure it’s finely ground. If the flour is finely ground, it won’t be grainy. Some whole wheat flours are also lighter than others, so if you have a picky eater, use a lighter whole wheat flour – they’ll never know! Give these delicious pancakes a try, they’ll be a family favorite after the first breakfast. They’re perfect with a little butter, syrup or just some plain yogurt on top.
Fresh fruit is one of the best things about summer. Peaches were particularly good this year, and I just had some that were really wonderful – juicy and ripe. I just had to try these peach crisp. Typically I make apple or rhubarb crisp and peach cobber, so I thought I’d change it up with this peach crisp. It’s just as delicious as apple crisp or peach cobbler. It is so simple to make that dessert is ready in no time. Depending on how sweet your peaches are depends on how much sugar you’ll add to the fruit. Since peaches are a zero points plus food, it make this a delicious dessert. It’s sweet and hits the spot without breaking the points bank. Also, if you’re new to peeling peaches, there’s an easy way to do it. Just dunk the peaches in boiling water for about 30-45 seconds then submerge in ice water. The skins should just slide right off. It helps make this a perfect recipe for a quick and easy dessert.
Scones are a wonderful breakfast food and snack. They are so simple to make and they can be made with just about any combination of flavors. One of my favorites is cranberry orange. But since I had some bananas, I thought I’d try this banana nut scone. It’s wonderful! I typically don’t like to cut in the butter. I take my butter out of the fridge and grate it with a cheese grater. Then all I have to do is just mix it in with a spatula. These scones are light, fluffy and moist. They’re a quick and easy breakfast or snack.
To anyone who lives a vegan lifestyle – you’re in for a treat today! I came across a recipe for a vegan bacon recipe at Veganosity, and was super excited to give it a try. The recipes uses portobello mushroom marinated in maple syrup and liquid smoke, giving it an absolutely delicious bacon-y flavor, sans the meat. As soon as I picked up some portobellos, I got to work putting this recipe to task. A few tweaks, and it was surprisingly easy to do, with an end result that was ridiculously delicious. The “bacon” was definitely a bit softer than regular bacon and it doesn’t have that crunch. But the flavor was fantastic. Put that together with the traditional BLT sandwich ingredients, and you’ve got a BLT that is not only tasty and vegan, but also very Weight Watchers friendly at just 5 Points + per sandwich.
I really enjoy Italian food. There is a wonderful flavor that comes from all of those fresh onions, tomatoes, herbs and garlic. One of the foods that’s always a little bittersweet for me is fettuccine alfredo. It’s wonderful – don’t get me wrong. But it’s so high in calories (not to mention the fat!) that it’s hard to really enjoy it. I searched for weight watchers alfredo, but the first one I found was one that had been altered to be healthier – and it was still 12 points +! That was never going to work, so I came up with this one instead. It’s still rich and delicious, but it’s got a little twist. Instead of noodles (which are so high in carbohydrates that everything else pretty much doesn’t count), I used a spiralizer to slice zucchini noodles. If you don’t have a spiralizer, just thinly slice zucchini into fettuccine sized pieces. I was pleasantly surprised that this alfredo makeover tasted really delicious.