Category: Recipes

11 Nov 2019

Mexican Chili with Tomatillos

Chili season has rolled around once again and I wanted to put a little spin on this recipe.  I already had gound pork thawed in the refrigerator so I used that for my meat but you could also use beef or turkey.  I also had some tomatillos on hand so my mind went to Mexican!  If you are not familiar with tomatillos, they are basically little Mexican tomatoes, green in color and wrapped in a dry, leafy husk.  Give them a try!   

Just a few additional notes:  Instead of the red bell pepper, I used some roasted mini sweet peppers that I had leftover from dinner the night before.  This is not going to make or break your chili, but if you have the extra time to roast some, they add a nice flavor.  Lastly, I happen to like bigger chunks of tomato in my chili so I used stewed tomatoes in addition to the diced tomatoes.  If that’s not your thing, just use tomato sauce instead.  

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp approved oil
  • 1 lb organic ground pork, beef or turkey
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • red bell pepper, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 4 tomatillos, chopped
  • 1 – 14.5 oz can stewed tomatoes, roughly chopped with juice
  • 1 -14.5 oz can diced fire-roasted tomatoes with juice
  • ½-1 cup salsa
  • 1 – 4.5 oz can green chiles
  • 1 – 14.5 oz can black beans, drained (if tolerated) I only used ½ the can.
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 1½ Tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp oregano
  • ½-1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ ground pepper

 

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, mix all the spices and set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a large dutch oven or stock pot.  Add onions and cook until translucent (about 3-4 minutes).
  3. Add garlic, tomatillos, red pepper and spices.  Cook for 1-2 minutes.  If mixture is dry, add 1-2 Tbsp water.
  4. Add ground meat and break apart.  Continue to cook and stir until meat is no longer pink.
  5. Add stewed and diced tomatoes, salsa, green chiles and black beans (If using roasted sweet peppers, add these as well.).
  6. Allow to simmer for 20-30 minutes to enhance the flavors.  It will be even better the next day!!
05 Nov 2019

Tahini Ground Beef and Vegetable Skillet

I seem to have a fondness for skillet meals.  I’m not sure if it’s because they remind me of when I was growing up or whether it’s just the simplicity that appeals to me.  Either way, I like the idea of seeing a meal come together in one pan!

Speaking of one pan, I actually used two…LOL!!   No really, you can use one skillet by transferring the ground beef to a bowl and using that same skillet to sauté the vegetables.  Then just add the beef back in after the vegetables are done.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1-1½ lbs ground beef (organic grass-fed)
  • 1 Tbsp toasted sesame seed oil
  • 1/3 cup tahini + 2 Tbsp
  • 2-3 Tbsp coconut aminos
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp ginger (1 tsp for ground beef and 1 tsp for vegetables)
  • ½ tsp Himalayan salt
  • ¼ tsp ground pepper
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2-3 cups broccoli florets
  • 1½ cups pea pods, halved
  • 2 cups sliced Bella mushrooms
  • sesame seeds for garnish (optional)

 

Directions:

  1. In a small mixing bowl, combine tahini, coconut aminos, ginger and ½ of the water.  Whisk together.  If sauce is too thick, add small amounts of water at a time until the desired consistency (not runny).
  2. Heat the sesame oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add the ground beef and season with the salt and pepper.  Break the meat apart and continue to stir.  Add the chopped garlic prior to the meat being completely browned.  This will allow the garlic to cook for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Once the ground beef is fully cooked, stir in the tahini sauce and combine.  Set aside.
  4. Heat a sauce pan with 1-2 Tbsp of olive or avocado oil over medium-high heat.  Add broccoli, pea pods and mushrooms (I will usually wait a few minutes before tossing in the mushrooms because they do not take as long to cook.)  Season with other half of ground ginger and salt and pepper to taste.  If desired, add an additional 1-2 Tbsp coconut aminos.  Cook until vegetables just become tender.
  5. Add the ground beef into the pan with the sauteed vegetables and stir to combine.
10 Oct 2019

Crispy Brussel Sprouts with Onions and Apples

Crispy Brussel sprouts with a touch of sweetness!  Yum!  Of course, anything with Brussel sprouts and I’m all in.  It’s apple season…yah!  They’re everywhere and there are more varieties than ever before.  I used Pink Lady because that’s what I had on hand but that is certainly not a must.  However, I would recommend an apple variety that tends to be crisper.  

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 – 16 oz bags of Brussel sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 2 apples, diced or sliced (I used a Pink Lady variety)
  • 2-3 Tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Line a large sheet pan with aluminum foil and drizzle a small amount of oil over the foil.
  3. Add Brussel sprouts and red onion to sheet pan.  Drizzle with the remaining avocado oil and season with garlic powder and salt and pepper.
  4. Roast for 20 minutes.  Remove from the oven and toss vegetables with a large spoon.
  5. Add diced apples to sheet pan and return to the oven for an additional 8-10 minutes.
  6. To achieve that extra crispness, broil under high setting for 2-3 minutes.
02 Oct 2019

Low-Carb Banana Carrot Bread

Bananas, carrots and nuts are a perfect combination in my book.  This bread is so moist and yummy!  Perfect amount of sweetness but yet not over the top.  

Notes:  I used 2 small loaf pans because it is just my husband and I.  We indulge in one and I freeze the other for later.  If you have a bigger family and prefer one larger loaf pan, adjust the baking time accordingly.

 

Ingredients:

Dry ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp himalayan salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp pumpkin spice (optional)
  • ½ tsp cardamon (optional)

 

Wet ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • 2-3 ripe bananas (about 1 cup mashed)
  • ½ cup sugar substitute (I use Natvia but Swerve or Monk fruit would work as well)
  • ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Add-ins:

  • ¾ cup shredded carrots (I cut some of the bigger pieces up)
  • ¾-1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (reserving a handful or so to sprinkle on top)

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare the loaf pans with parchment paper or by greasing generously. I used 2 small loaf pans.
  3. In a medium sized bowl, add all of the dry ingredients and whisk to remove any excess lumps.  Set aside.
  4. In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs and banana with an electric mixer for a few minutes.
  5. Add the sugar, coconut oil, applesauce and vanilla.  Beat to combine,
  6. Add the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients and stir to combine.  I prefer to do this by hand instead of the electric mixer.
  7. Fold in the carrots and the nuts.
  8. Pour batter into the loaf pan and top with reserved nuts.
  9. Bake for about 40 minutes.  Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the middle.  If loaves appear to be getting too brown and are not cooked through, lay a piece of foil over the top.
  10. Allow loaves to cool completely on a wire rack.
24 Sep 2019

Kimchi Pancakes

If you are not a fan of kimchi or don’t even know what it is for that matter, then you will either ignore this post or read on out of curiosity!  Kimchi is a Korean fermented side dish made of fermented vegetables and spices.  There are a wide variety of combinations.  Most will include cabbage but after that you may find a combination of cucumbers, radishes, onions, carrots and even apples included.  Kimchi has many health benefits but the major one is its rich abundance of probiotics that contribute to a healthy microbiome.

I was first introduced to kimchi pancakes at our local city farmer’s market.  There is a Korean vendor that I always stop at to purchase my supply of kimchi.  They also serve several Korean style food items so I decided to try the kimchi pancake topped with spiced pork and fresh greens.  Well, I fell in love with these little guys!  Although this was definitely a healthier choice on my part, I’m not certain what kind of flour they use in the pancake batter or what type of oil they fry them in.  That’s the hazard of eating out, we’re never quite sure what the restaurants put in our food.  Sooooo needless to say, I decided to make them at home…my way!

Notes:  I like to serve mine incorporated into my meal.  Almost like a tortilla.  I’ll stack it with some protein, veggies and fresh greens (and maybe a sauce).  They are also delicious alone or with an asian dipping sauce on the side.  

If you don’t have a food processor, beat the eggs in a mixing bowl, add dry ingredients and mix well.  Lastly, add cut up kimchi and liquid.

Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp potato starch or tapioca flour
  • ¼ cup coconut flour
  • ½ tsp himalayan salt
  • 1 cup kimchi
  • 2-3 Tbsp of water or kimchi juice
  • 1-2 green onion (optional)
  • coconut or butter for frying (or in a spray form)

 

Directions:

  1. Add eggs, potato starch, flour and salt to a food processor.  Blend for about 1 minute.
  2. Add kimchi, green onion, and juice/water.  Pulse a few times until kimchi is broken up into smaller pieces.  Mixture will be somewhat watery.
  3. Coat the bottom of a skillet with a small amount of oil and heat over medium heat.
  4. Pour ¼ cup of kimchi mixture into the hot skillet.  If the egg starts to spread out, use a spatula to pull the edges back.  Also, use the spatula to evenly disperse the kimchi over the pancake.
  5. Cook for about 2-3 minutes or until lightly browned on the bottom.  Flip the pancake and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, checking often to ensure pancake doesn’t burn.  (They cook quickly!)
16 Sep 2019

Zucchini Fritters

Do you have a pile of zucchini staring at you that you’re not quite sure what to do with?  Whether it’s from your garden, the farmer’s market or the grocery store (because it was inexpensive and you had all these great intentions)?  Well here’s one solution…fritters! These are a perfect way to take advantage of the abundance of zucchini.  They are savory, easy and tasty.  Serve for dinner or leftovers for breakfast! 

Note:  Amp up the spices if you’d like or add your own variety.

 

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium sized zucchini (grated) – after zucchini is drained it will be around 2 cups
  • ½-1 tsp himalayan salt
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¼-½ cup almond flour
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp himalayan salt
  • ¼ tsp ground pepper
  • preferred oil for frying

Directions:

  1. Shred zucchini using a box shredder and place in a colander.  Sprinkle ½-1 tsp salt over the zucchini, gently toss and place the colander in the sink.  Allow to sit for 10-15 minutes so the zucchini can sweat and drain.
  2. Squeeze as much excess liquid out of the zucchini.  This can be done by using a cheesecloth or your hands.  I prefer to get in there with my hands.  Form 3 large balls and squeeze each one individually.  I do this several times and really squeeze hard!
  3. Place zucchini in a large bowl.  Add beaten eggs, almond flour (start with ¼ cup), garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, smoked paprika, salt and pepper.  Mix to combine.  If mixture still seems to watery, add the rest of the almond flour.
  4. Heat a skillet over medium heat and add preferred oil.
  5. When pan is hot, add ¼ cup portions of zucchini mixture to pan and flatten slightly.
  6. Cook the fritters for about 3-5 minutes or until golden or dark brown (depending on preference).  Flip the fritters when ready and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  7. Serve as is or with your favorite sauce.

 

11 Sep 2019

Egg Roll in a Bowl

If you’ve ever eaten at a Chinese restaurant, then most likely you’ve had an egg roll.  Those little appetizers deep fried in a pro-inflammatory, highly processed oil.  So tasty at the time, but not so good for a healthy diet.  This dish takes all those delicious asian flavors and transforms them into a tasty and healthy one skillet meal.  

Note:  Optional add-ins or swaps – Cole slaw mix instead of broccoli slaw, shredded carrots, sliced mushrooms.  Ground beef or turkey for your protein.  If you don’t have toasted sesame oil, you might want to get some.  It really does add that classic Asian flavor.   

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground pork (beef or turkey)
  • 12 oz package broccoli slaw
  • ½ yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 cup sliced bell peppers (any color)
  • 1 cup sugar snap peas, cut in half
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp ground pepper
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced

             

              Sauce:

  • ½ cup sunflower butter
  • 3 Tbsp coconut aminos
  • juice of ½ lime
  • 2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp sriracha (add less or omit if you don’t like the extra spice)
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tsp raw honey or coconut nectar (optional)

 

Directions:

  1. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together all the sauce ingredients and set aside.  If sauce appears too thick, add small amounts of water.
  2. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat.  Drizzle a small amount of approved oil to prevent sticking.  Add the ground pork.  Begin to break meat apart and then add onions, bell peppers, garlic powder, salt and pepper.  Stir continuously and cook until the meat is no longer pink.
  3. Add snap peas and broccoli slaw.  Continue to cook on medium heat for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Stir in the sauce mixture.  Combine and cook until vegetables are tender.  This does not take long so be careful not to overcook.
  5. Serve in a bowl or in individual lettuce wraps.  Garnish with green onion and sesame seeds.
26 Aug 2019

Spicy Baked Salmon

Mexican flavors are not usually synonymous with salmon but trust me, the combination of these spices will add something special to your salmon dinner.  Topped with guacamole or avocado slices and a squeeze of fresh lime juice…YUM!!

Note:  You may have extra seasoning based on personal spice preference and the amount of salmon used.  If so, save it for the next time you make tacos or any other Mexican recipe.  Also, if you use store bought guacamole, check your ingredient list to ensure there are no unwanted additives or sugar.   

 

Ingredients:

  • 1-1½ wild Alaskan salmon
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp paprika (I used smoked paprika)
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Mix spices in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Line a sheet pan with foil and spray liberally with coconut spray or use extra olive oil to spread on pan.
  4. Pat the salmon filets dry with some paper towel and place skin-side down on the sheet pan.
  5. Drizzle the olive oil over the filets and rub around evenly with fingers or a pastry brush.
  6. Rub the seasoning mixture onto the filets so they are completely covered.
  7. Bake for 12-15 minutes depending on the thickness of your filet.  Salomon should flake apart with a fork and have an opaque color.
  8. To serve, top with some fresh guacamole or avocado slices.  Enjoy with a salad and/or vegetables on the side.
20 Jul 2019

Shaved Brusssel Sprout Salad with Lemon Basil Vinaigrette

What says summer better than a light and fresh lemon vinaigrette salad?  One with blueberries it…YUM!!  The vinaigrette is easy to prepare ahead of time and keep in the refrigerator until you are ready to put your salad together.  Just pour over the top and toss.  This would also be delicious with dried cranberries in place of the blueberries but tis the season to use those fresh berries.  Also, the pecans could be swapped out for walnuts or almonds, if you’d prefer.

To make the vinaigrette, I used an immersion blender.  These are really handy gadgets for making dressings/vinaigrettes but I realize not everyone has one.  A blender or food processor will work just fine.

 

Ingredients:

Salad:

  • 1 – 10 oz package shaved Brussel sprouts
  • ½ small red onion, chopped
  • ¾-1 cup pecans, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup feta cheese (reserve a small amount for sprinkling on top)
  • ½-1 cup blueberries
  • ¼ cup hemp seeds (optional)

Lemon Basil Vinaigrette:

  • ¼ cup + 1 Tbsp EVOO
  • 1 Tbsp Primal mayo
  • 1 Tbsp spicy brown mustard
  • ½ lemon, juiced (2 Tbsp)
  • 1 tsp jarred minced garlic (or garlic powder)
  • 5 sprigs of fresh basil (more or less based on preference)
  • 1-2 tsp birch xylitol sweetener or honey (optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste

 

Directions:

  1. Combine all the vinaigrette ingredients in a small blender.  Pulse until basil is chopped and vinaigrette is smooth and creamy.
  2. Add all the salad ingredients to a large salad bowl.  Toss together.
  3. Pour the vinaigrette over the top and mix just until the ingredients are evenly coated.
  4. Top with the reserved feta cheese and a few extra blueberries for a pretty presentation.
12 Jul 2019

Chocolate Avocado Banana Pudding

This pudding is rich, creamy, delicious and so NUTRITIOUS!!  It’s full of fiber, protein, healthy fats and antioxidants.  Topped with fresh organic berries and you really have it going on!  I prefer to serve mine as a dessert but it is healthy enough to eat for breakfast!! This makes approximately 3-4 servings.  Cover and refrigerate.  I think it will keep a few days in the fridge but it doesn’t last that long in my house so I’m not completely sure on that!!     

 

Ingredients:  3-4 servings

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 small banana
  • 1 Tbsp virgin coconut oil
  • 2 Tbsp raw organic cacao powder
  • 1-1½ cup coconut, almond or pea protein milk (start with 1 cup and add more if needed)
  • 1 large scoop of whey or pea protein powder
  • xylitol or stevia to taste (or sweetener of choice)
  • pinch of Himalayan salt (optional)
  • 1-2 dashes of cinnamon
  • berries, unsweetened coconut flakes, hemp seeds or cacao nibs (for toppings)

 

Directions:

  1. Add all the ingredients to a food processor.  (You could also use a blender or hand mixer.)
  2. Mix until smooth and creamy.  Scrap sides of container halfway between blending.
  3.  Serve in individual ramekins and add your favorite toppings.