Sunday, December 29, 2013

Bison Shoulder Roast

Well ladies and gentlemen, we're almost through the holiday season. You may need a little "cleanse" or just a break from overly sweet, decadent treats. This recipe is not only easy but really healthy. Bison is a very lean source of protein. You can add any vegetables to change up the flavor but I chose classic "roast" veggies. To give the meal a little extra antioxidant/veggie power, I served mine over a bed of kale. It was delicious and very satisfying! 
Bison Shoulder Roast

-2 lb. bison shoulder
-2 small bags of mini potatoes (~4 cups)
-1/2 large bag of baby carrots
-1/2 large yellow onion, diced
-2 sprigs rosemary
-salt/pepper to taste
-1 T parsley
-1 T garlic
-1 T ground pepper flakes
-1 box (4 cups) low sodium beef broth

1. Trim any fat off meat. Sprinkle salt/pepper over bison shoulder.
2. Pour EVOO into bottom of crock pot
3. Add all ingredients into crock pot and pour beef broth over.
4. Cook on low for ~8 hours or until veggies are fork tender and meat is cooked through. You should be able to shred the meat easily with a fork.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Coconut Pineapple Shredded Chicken

Today I got a little creative in the kitchen. I've been trying to think of a great way to marinate chicken to help it stay moist and flavorful without greek yogurt. I always used to marinate my chicken in plain greek yogurt but this may be my new favorite! The recipe turned out better than expected. I honestly wasn't sure what to expect, I just threw some things together and hoped for the best. My recipes always seem to start off that way.

Coconut Pineapple Shredded Chicken

-1 can light coconut milk
-1.5 C. fresh pineapple salsa (from whole foods or you can make your own)
-1 T. ground ginger
-1 T ground cumin
-1/2 T cayenne pepper (more if you'd like it spicier)
-salt/pepper to taste
-6 chicken breasts

1. Place coconut milk, salsa, and spices in a large tupperware and mix together until well combined. Marinate all 6 chicken breasts overnight. 

2. Place mixture into crock pot and cook on low for 8+ hours

3. Shred with fork, it should fall apart easily

I served this on top of a bed of kale and smashed plantains, topped with avocado and a little extra hot sauce (pictured at top of the page). This recipe would also be great for a jerk style pizza, stuffed poblano peppers, or just by itself topped with a little avocado and fresh cilantro.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Louisiana Spiced Chicken Soup

This recipe could easily be done with leftover turkey or even ham cubes if you'd like. It's a simple weeknight meal but makes for a great prep ahead dinner as well. Hope you enjoy!

Louisiana Spiced Chicken Soup

-4 chicken breasts (boiled until cooked through, then shredded)
-2 cups chicken stock
-3 bell peppers (red, yellow, orange)
-1 medium yellow onion, diced
-2 c. diced tomatoes (fresh but you can use canned)
-1/2 T EVOO
-salt/pepper to taste
-1.5 T Louisiana spices (that's the name)

-I boiled the chicken breasts first, then shredded them.
-Add evoo to pot and let heat on medium high
-Add onions first, lightly saute until translucent
-Add all other vegetables and spices
-Add chicken back to pot and chicken stock
-Bring to a boil, then reduce to slow simmer.

You can put this in a crockpot and let it cook all day. You can also used rotisserie chicken for a quick weeknight meal!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Roasted Sweet Potato and Cranberries

Roasted Sweet Potato and Cranberries

-1 bag fresh cranberries
-2 large sweet potatoes, diced
-2 oranges (squeezed)
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1 tsp vanilla
-1/2 tsp ginger
-1 T coconut oil
-pinch of sea salt

-Preheat oven to 400F
-Toss all ingredients into pyrex dish and mix well.
-Bake for 45 minutes or until potatoes are browned and cooked through.

Note: This is NOT sweet, the cranberries make it tart. If you like sweeter flavors add coconut sugar or honey, start with 2 T and go from there. You can even add almond butter at the end to serve. I served mine with a sprinkle of shredded coconut and walnut pieces.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Watermelon Radish Salad

I just had to share this recipe because it is so fun to look at!  It all started this weekend, at the  Riverfront Farmer's Market in downtown Wilmington.  Sonny and I stopped to pick up some rutabaga (which we roasted and enjoyed with some fresh trout Sonny caught).  Sonny and I had never tried watermelon radishes before, so the friendly farmer at Red Beard Farms gave us some samples to try! 

I've had plenty of radishes, but never a watermelon radish- when you slice it open, it looks just like miniature watermelon slices. 

Since the veggie looks like summertime, I thought I would make a summer-inspired salad.  While much of the country is getting snow, Wilmington experienced another 70 degree day today!

I had some cucumber in the fridge (these gave a nice cool contrast to the spicy radishes) and some canned hearts of palm in the pantry.  Simply chop the vegetables to equal-sized bites...

...then finish with a tangy homemade dressing!  I like to use mason jars to make dressings in because you can just cap it and shake, and you already have a container to store the leftovers.  My dressing was a simple mix of whole grain mustard, honey, white balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, and fresh-squeezed orange juice. 

Toss the desired amount of dressing on your salad, add fresh ground pepper and salt to taste, and enjoy!

Watermelon Radish Salad
2 watermelon radish, quartered and thinly sliced
2 small Persian cucumber, sliced in 1/4 inch slices
1 can hearts of palm, chopped
1 Tb whole grain mustard
1 Tb honey
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup orange juice (preferably fresh-squeezed)
Freshly ground pepper
pinch of salt

1. Combine radish, cucumber and hearts of palm in a bowl. 
2. Combine mustard, honey, olive oil, vinegar, and orange juice in a small container with a lid.  Shake well.  Pour desired amount over salad and toss to combine.  Store any remaining dressing in a sealed container in the refrigerator. 

Roasted Brussel Sprouts and Cremini Mushrooms

It's been pretty crazy over here lately. Work has been exhausting and blogging has kind of been on the back burner. I finally had a chance to do some meal prep last night after work. I whipped up a few new recipes so I'll have some quick and healthy eats for the week. This recipe would make a great addition to your holiday feast!

I plan on pairing this with chicken sausage or eggs but it would also go great with any protein (pork tenderloin, turkey, ham). The great thing about roasting vegetables is you can eat them cold on a salad afterwards or warm them up and pair them with another side dish and main.

Roasted Brussel Sprouts and Cremini Mushrooms

-1 bag of brussel sprouts, cut in half
-1 box mushrooms, diced in 1/4s
-1-2T EVOO
-1 T parsley
-1/2 T thyme
-Salt/pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 400F
2. Toss all ingredients together until well combined
3. Place in pyrex dish and bake for ~30 minutes or until brussel sprouts are browned and tender.


Friday, December 6, 2013

Coconut Shrimp Soup

Finally remembered to snap a pic, last minute, last bite…

You may all be sick of Turkey right about now and ready for a change of flavor. This recipe is perfect for a cold day. It's got a bright flavor and it's really easy to make. It's been pretty hectic over here with work and I needed a quick and easy meal that would feed me for a few nights. I threw together some pre-cut vegetables (a huge time saver) and already cooked and deveined wild caught frozen shrimp with a can of coconut milk and a few spices.

This recipe was inspired my a stew a client and friend of mine suggested. It's ready to eat in under 30 minutes and took minimal prep time. I'd recommend it for a quick weeknight meal or a prep soup to carry you through a few nights.

Coconut Shrimp Soup

-1 box pre cut stir fry vegetables (can use frozen)
-1 can light coconut milk
-1/2 cup water
-1 large bag frozen shrimp (1 lb)
-1 box sliced mushrooms
-dash coconut aminos
-1 tbsp ground ginger
-1 tbsp cracked pepper
-dash pepper
-dash salt
-juice of 1 lime
-1 tsp coconut oil

1. Use 1 tsp coconut oil to heat a saucepan. Add all veggies and saute until tender.
2. Add 1 can coconut milk + 1/2 cup water, bring to a boil
3. Add frozen shrimp and let cook throughouly
4. Add all spices and mix
5. Add juice of 1 lime at the end

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Crockpot Salsa Chicken

Need an easy weeknight meal? Looking for a great recipe for a crowd? Try this salsa chicken stew recipe. It's super easy to make and great reheated. You can serve it plain or over tortilla chips with cheese. You can even serve it over rice or stuff it into peppers and bake.

My apologies AGAIN for not snapping a pic. Morgan is a LOT better at that. My days just get away from me and I forget to snap pics before I actually eat. Usually I only have a 15-20 minute break to eat lunch so taking a picture is the last thing on my mind.

Salsa Chicken

-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (whole)
-2 small cans of jalapeno, cilantro diced tomatoes
-1 jar of Frontera salsa (i love the cilantro jalapeno flavor)
-3 bell peppers, diced
-1/4 small yellow onion (it's all I had, ideally use 1 small onion)
-1 tsp of cayenne pepper
-1 1/2 tsp cumin
-salt to taste

1. Chop up all your ingredients and throw them in the crockpot together. It's that easy! Set it on low and let it cook away!
2. Once the chicken is cooked through use your fork to shred the chicken before eating.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Gingered Cranberry Relish


Cranberries are a natural part of the quintessential Thanksgiving spread.  However, the gelatinous substance that comes out of the can (while still holding the shape of the can) has much to be desired.  This recipe (adapted from is going to provide the perfect homemade touch.  The ginger provides a spicy flavor that cleanses the palate between bites of steamy gravy-doused turkey and creamy mashed potatoes.  There is also far less sugar used than many other cranberry recipes, leaving you with a tart finish and guilt-free conscious!

While homemade cranberry sauce is fabulous, this just leaves another item that requires room on the stove top amidst the simmering gravy and boiling potatoes.  So the best thing about this recipe is that there is no cooking required.  That means it's as easy as well... opening a can of cranberry sauce!  And did I mention, there are only four ingredients?!  There is no excuse not to make this!
Cranberries contain several phytonutrients that aid in gum health and decrease risk of urinary tract infections!  You may also be reducing your risk of breast, colon, lung and prostate cancers when you include cranberries on your plate.  Choose whole and fresh cranberries to avoid added sugars found in cranberry juice and cocktails. 
First, you will start with your bag of fresh cranberries.  Wash the berries and drain.

Pulse your cranberries in a food processor until coarsely ground, but so they still have a shape and aren't just mush.

Remove your cranberries from the processor and stir in minced crystallized ginger and sugar.

Next you will gently stir in your bag of frozen raspberries (no need to defrost beforehand).  Let sit for at least 3 hours, even better if left overnight, before serving. 

 Have a healthy and happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Gingered Cranberry Relish
1 12oz bag fresh cranberries, washed and drained
1/2 cup minced crystallized ginger
1/4 cup sugar
1 bag frozen raspberries (do not defrost before hand)

1- Pulse your cranberries in a food processor until coarsely ground, but so they still have a shape and aren't just mush.
2- Stir in crystallized ginger and sugar.  Gently fold in raspberries.
3- Let sit at least 3 hours before serving.  Can be made a day or two ahead of time.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Paleo French Toast

There's just something about a leisurely breakfast at home. Most mornings are pretty go-go-go for me. I eat breakfast while walking out the door or letting Emma out and drink my coffee while working with clients. I can't wait for the weekend when I can sit down drinking a cup of coffee (in a mug) and eating breakfast off a plate with a fork. Yes ladies and gentlemen, it's the little things that make me happy!

This morning was one of those cherished weekend mornings! I made french toast and had a hot cup of coffee in a mug. French toast doesn't have to be an unhealthy, sugar and butter laden weekend treat. This recipe has no added sugar and plenty of healthy fats and fiber! I used my paleo carrot cake bread that I made earlier this week but you can use any bread you'd like.

Paleo French Toast

-1 slice paleo carrot cake bread
-1 egg (whisked)
-splash vanilla extract
-dash cinnamon
-cashew butter

1. Whisk egg with vanilla and cinnamon in a bowl.
2.Use a small non stick skillet and spray with coconut oil spray or add 1-2 tsp of fat (coconut oil or grass fed butter)
3.Place slice of bread in egg mixture and coat on both sides
4.Cook for about 1-2 minutes on each side on medium high heat (or until brown and crispy)
5.Add cashew butter on top. It will melt and taste delicious!

-honey or agave
-fresh fruit

Friday, November 22, 2013

Paleo Bison Chili

It looks like Morgan and I think alike. Just before I read her last post I made Bison Chili to blog about. Whoops! This actually happens a lot. Great Minds! :)

This one will be for all those meat eaters out there. Don't worry, there are still plenty of antioxidants and fiber in this chili. It's also lower in fat than your average chili. I've used ground bison, which is a lot leaner than ground beef.  I also used turkey bacon vs. regular bacon for a smoky flavor. Alternatively you could use canadian bacon or even regular center cut bacon. Make sure to get Nitrite/Nitrate free bacon. You could make this vegetarian by swapping out the bison for beans or even lentils and using vegetable broth vs. beef broth.

I forgot to get a picture again! WHOOPS!!!!!

Bison Chili

-1 lb ground bison
-3 bell peppers (any color) diced
-5 slices turkey bacon
-1 medium onion diced
-3 cloves garlic, diced
-1 large can diced fire roasted tomatoes (no salt added)
-1 T tomato paste
-1/2 c. beef broth
-1 heaping tsp. ground cumin
-1 tsp. cayenne (you can use less if you like it more mild)
-salt to taste

First dice your onion, garlic, peppers and bacon. Next add EVOO to your saucepan and heat over medium high. Once hot, add onions and garlic. Saute until translucent.

Add your bacon and ground bison to the mixture. Break up the ground bison and make sure the meat browns.

Next add in your tomato paste and spices. Make sure to mix it well.

Add all veggies next (canned tomatoes included) and broth. Bring to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, bring to medium low and let it simmer away until veggies are tender.

You could put this all in the crockpot and let it cook while you're at work or going about your day.


-jalapeno slices
-hot sauce

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Cauliflower Curry & Meatballs

This is a super speedy recipe!  By using a jarred curry sauce, you can save a lot of time during dinner prep.  We will balance out sodium in the pre-made sauce by only adding minimal additional sodium to our meatballs and by adding lots of vegetables rich in potassium.  Feel free to substitute any vegetables you have on hand.  You may also used cubed chicken, instead of the meatballs, to cut back on total and saturated fat.

To start, lightly coat baking sheet with non-stick spray.  Spread cauliflower evenly on pan and roast in preheated 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes, stirring once. 

While cauliflower is roasting, heat a medium sauté pan over medium heat and start your meatballs. 

Mix together your meat, wheat germ, flaxseed, parsley, pepper and salt.  Roll the mixture into evenly-sized meatballs.

Brown your meatballs over medium heat, rotating until browned on all sides.  As hard as I try, I can never get my meatballs perfectly round...

After meatballs are browned, set them aside.  Wipe out extra grease from pan.  Put your meatballs back in the pan and add curry sauce. I used Tikka Masala curry, but you can choose whichever kind you prefer.  Add about 1/2 jar-full of water and simmer about 5 minutes.

Add your cauliflower to the pan and stir to combine. 

Serve over brown rice with a dollop of fat-free Greek yogurt. 

Cauliflower Curry & Meatballs
Makes 4 servings

1 head cauliflower, chopped
1lb grass-fed beef
1/4 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup flaxseed
2 tsp dried parsley
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/8 tsp salt
1 jar curry sauce (I used Tikka masala curry, but use your preference)

1. Roast cauliflower at 400 for 20 minutes.
2. Mix together beef, wheat germ, flaxseed, parsley, pepper and salt.  Form into meatballs.  Cook over medium heat, turning until all sides are browned, about 10 minutes. 
3. Drain meatballs, and wipe out extra grease from pan.  Put your meatballs back in the pan and add curry sauce. Fill about 1/2 the empty curry jar with water and add to pan.  Simmer with meatballs for about 5 minutes.  Add cauliflower, stirring to combine.  Serve with rice and yogurt, if desired.

Nutrition information per serving- 420 calories, 25gm fat, 8gm saturated fat, 74mg cholesterol, 510mg sodium, 21gm carbohydrates, 8gm fiber, 7gm sugar, 30gm protein

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Beef and Plantain Stew

By 10 am this past Saturday I had already baked a loaf of banana bread, made a batch of raw coffee brownies, and have stew in the crock-pot. Sounds like a lot of work but it wasn't. I used 2 kitchen appliances, well, 3 if you count the oven. Total prep time for all foods, maybe 20 minutes. So as I wait for my slice of bread to digest and finish my coffee I figured I'd blog about the stew I just made.

Crock-pots are wonderful. They make life so much easier. You can pretty much throw anything into a crock-pot and it will come out tasting wonderful. This recipe has only 5 main ingredients and a few spices to get it all going. You'll be seeing a lot more crock-pot friendly meals on the blog in the next few months as the weather gets colder and colder here in NC.

Sorry I forgot to snap a photo here!

Beef and Plantain Stew

-1 lb of lean grass fed beef cubes
-2 green plantains, sliced
-1/2 medium to large yellow onion, diced
-3-4 c. kale
-2 c. low sodium beef stock
-2 c. water
-1/2 tsp. ground ginger
-1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
-1/2 tsp. ground garlic or 2 garlic cloves
-salt to taste

Throw it all into the crock-pot at once and let it cook. I put mine on high then set it to low later in the afternoon. You can certainly brown your beef before putting into the crock-pot but I was only half awake this morning when I threw this together so that did not happen.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Pumpkin & Black Bean Chili

If you showed this recipe to a Texan, he or she would scoff and call it a goulash, insisting this can not be called a chili.  If there is one thing I learned from my time spent in the Lone Star state, it's that there is no place for beans in chili!  However, beans are the perfect little vessel of vegetarian protein, a boatload of fiber, and a plethora of vitamins and minerals including folate and iron.  Therefore, this Texan-born gal will continue to include this magical food in her chili. 

The great thing about chili, is that there is a lot of room for you to make it your own!  Don't want beans?  Then leave them out!  Want to cut fat with turkey instead of beef?  Go for it!  Want to add a ton of veggies and varieties of beans for a vegetarian version?  You got it!

In this case, I wanted to celebrate the flavor of the season- pumpkin!  And of course you know there is a nutrition bonus... pumpkin, along with other winter squash, is a fantastic source of vitamin A and carotenoids.  This means you are gaining powerful antioxidant benefits from this beautiful orange fall treat. 

And as if that wasn't enough!  But you are also getting a healthy dose of fiber, and low calorie count per serving.  My clients have all heard me push fiber-rich foods like fruits, vegetables and whole grains.  For someone looking to keep off the pounds over the holidays, high-fiber foods, like pumpkin and beans, can help keep us full for longer. 

But let's get down to the good stuff now... Pumpkin & Black Bean Chili, a great one-pot meal for a chilly fall evening.

Start by browning your beef.  I used NC grown, grass-fed beef.  This is a more sustainable choice, but does not mean the beef is lower in fat.  So brown your beef and then drain the meat in a colander under hot-running water.  This removes the extra saturated ("bad") fats.

Set your meat aside.  In a large skillet, heat 1 Tb oil (coconut, olive, canola) over medium heat.  Add your chopped bell pepper, onion and garlic and sauté until tender and onions are somewhat translucent, about 5-8 minutes. 
While the vegetables are tenderizing you can start adding your seasoning.  Stir in chili powder, cumin, chipotle, oregano, pepper. 
When your vegetables are nice and tender, you will stir in your pumpkin, fire-roasted diced tomatoes, and drained black beans.  Simmer for 30 minutes.  You may add water as needed if chili becomes too thick. 
Scoop your chili into bowls and top with guacamole.  I also served mine with Trader Joe's Sweet Potato Tortilla chips.  These are awesome... just make sure you scoop your serving onto the plate instead of eating strait out of the bag.  This will help you from over-eating!

Pumpkin & Black Bean Chili
1lb grass-fed ground beef
1 onion, diced
1 Tb coconut oil (may use oil of choice)
1 red bell pepper, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tb chili powder
1 Tb cumin
1 Tb dried oregano
1 tsp chipotle powder
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1 can fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can pure pumpkin
1. Brown beef over medium heat until no longer pink, about 5-8 minutes.  Drain and rinse under hot water.
2. Heat oil over medium heat.  Add bell pepper, onion, garlic and cook until veggies start to tenderized, about 5 minutes. 
3. Stir cumin, chili powder, oregano, chipotle and salt and pepper into veggies.  Stir and cook 1-2 minutes longer. 
4. Add diced tomatoes, rinsed black beans and pumpkin.  Bring to boil, then turn heat down and simmer for on low for 30 minutes.  Add more water as needed to reach desired consistency.  Serve with guacamole and tortilla chips.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Spaghetti Squash Breakfast Frittata

We've all heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. That's a fairly true statement. I don't like to say one meal is more important than another but breakfast is a big one. However, what you eat for breakfast is more important. The ideal breakfast should be high in protein versus carbohydrates. Eating highly refined carbohydrates for breakfast will bring your blood sugars right up and promptly back down. This will cause you to have a sugar crash and leave you hungry within an hour or two after you ate. Try to give your breakfast a little protein punch without having to wake up earlier to scramble eggs or blend a smoothie.

*sorry there isn't a picture for this. I hate it all before remembering to snap one. I hate cameras to this taking pictures thing is difficult for me to remember!

Spaghetti Squash Breakfast Frittata

-1 small spaghetti squash
-1/2 bag of frozen broccoli
-4 slices of turkey bacon
-1 carton of eggs (only 5 whole eggs)
-1 tsp dried parsley
-1 tsp garlic
-salt/pepper to taste

-Preheat the oven to 350F. Slice your spaghetti squash in half and remove the seeds. Roast for about 30-45 minutes or until fork tender. Remove from oven and let cool. Once cooled use your fork to make little spaghetti noodles by raking the flesh.

-Microwave the frozen broccoli to thaw and squeeze extra water out with a paper towel. Set aside.

-Cook turkey bacon. I put the entire package on a baking sheet and cook it in the oven. I then use the other strips for different recipes in the week. (batch cooking perk!)

-Whisk together spices and eggs.

-Now that you've got all the components made you'll need a pie dish or brownie pan. Press the spaghetti squash noodles into the base of the pan (I used a le creuset dish and did not grease it). Then add broccoli layer followed by torn up turkey bacon. Pour the egg mixture on top and place back into the oven (already preheated to 350F). Bake for ~45 minute or until browned on top and fork/knife comes out clean.

-Once cooled cut into squares and you've got a high protein, healthy breakfast on the go all week or a great brunch!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Butternut Squash Soup

It's definitely feeling like fall in NC. There was actually frost on my windshield this morning when I woke up to head to the gym. Warming up to a bowl of soup was just what I needed.

Soups,stews, and chilis are great one pot meals that can feed a family easily. Not only are they easy to make and "wing" with random ingredients in your fridge/pantry but they freeze well. Try making an extra batch to freeze for a quick meal on a hectic week.

Butternut Squash Soup

-1 1/2 T. garlic
-3/4 of a medium yellow onion diced
-2 1 lb. bags of frozen butternut squash
-1 tsp ground ginger
-salt to taste
-2 c. low sodium chicken broth

-Saute garlic and onion with olive oil. Add spices to the mixture. Once translucent and browning add butternut squash. Saute for 1-2 minutes.
-Add 2 cups chicken broth and bring to a boil.
-Once fork tender use immersion blender to make a creamy soup.
-Top with diced turkey bacon. You can also add diced chicken sausage to the mixture or a sprinkle of cheese. I'd recommend grueyer or parmesan.
Step 2
Step 1

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Green Chili Turkey Burgers with Cabbage Avocado Slaw

This recipe came together in no time! It'd be a great weeknight meal. I prepped all the burgers over the weekend and cooked them on Sunday. I made a half batch of slaw at a time and ate the leftovers the next day. The slaw kept well for a day or two but I recommend you try not to prep that more than 2 days ahead.

Hope you enjoy!
Cabbage Slaw

-1 bag of shredded cabbage or slaw mix
-1 1/2 avocado (mashed in)
-juice of 1 lime
-juice of 1 lemon
-1 tsp cumin
-1/8 tsp cayenne
-sea salt to taste

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix up. Mash the avocado with a fork into the slaw.

Turkey Burgers

-1 tsp minced garlic
-1/4 medium yellow onion (diced)
-1 lb. ground turkey breast
-1 tsp cumin
-dash cayenne
-squeeze of lemon

-Mix all ingredients into a bowl until well combined.
-Evenly distribute mixture for 4 patties
-Heat non stick skillet to medium high heat
-Add all burgers
-Brown for 4-5 minutes on each side
-Continue to cook until meat is well done (10-15 minutes total cook time)

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Chicken, Sweet Potato & Kale Stew

If only there were more hours in the day...

Time and time and time again, my clients tell me that the biggest challenge to eating well is busy schedules and lack of extra time.  Meal planning, grocery shopping and food prep often fall by the wayside in lieu of getting ahead at work, soccer practice, homework and squeezing in some "me time." 

And time and time and time again, I encourage my clients to plan a few meals using easy ingredients at the beginning of the week.  Prep your ingredients on Sunday if needed.  You may even double a recipe to make in bulk, and freeze half for another busy night down the road. 

This is one such recipe.  There are many time saving adjustments you can take to make this easier than it already is.  Now, there is no excuse for enjoying a healthy meal on any night of the week!

For this slow cooker recipe, I recommend prepping some of the ingredients ahead of time- cube your sweet potatoes, trim your kale, chop your onions and mince your garlic the night before. 

Time saving tip- you may substitute the following to get this delicious dish on the table even faster!

* pre-washed and trimmed kale
* pre-cubed sweet potatoes
* frozen chopped onions
* jarred minced garlic

With all your ingredients prepped the night before, all you will need to do is wake up in the morning and throw your ingredients into the crockpot!  Start by placing the chicken breasts in the bottom of the slow cooker.  Pour your sweet potatoes on top of the chicken, then layer on your kale, onions, garlic and diced tomatoes.  Whisk your tomato paste with 1 cup water and the sage, parsley,  cayenne and black pepper.  Pour mixture over your vegetables along with remaining water and chicken broth.

Place your lid on the slow cooker, and cook on low for about 8 hours.  Pull the chicken breast out of the crockpot and shred with a fork.  Stir chicken back into stew.  And there you have it- easy, full of disease preventing nutrients, chock full of protein, and super comforting for a chilly day!  This recipe freezes well and makes for good leftovers to bring to work for a healthy lunch.  Enjoy :)

Chicken, Sweet Potato & Kale Stew

4 chicken breasts
4 medium sweet potatoes, cubed
1 bunch fresh kale, washed and torn into bite-sized pieces
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
1 can low sodium diced tomatoes
2 Tb tomato paste
2 cups water
2 cups low sodium chicken broth
2 tsp dried sage
2 tsp dried parsley
1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1. Place the chicken breasts in the bottom of the slow cooker
2. Pour your sweet potatoes on top of the chicken, then layer on your kale, onions, garlic and diced tomatoes. 
3. Whisk your tomato paste with 1 cup water and the sage, parsley,  cayenne and black pepper.  Pour mixture over your vegetables along with remaining water and chicken broth.
4. Place your lid on the slow cooker, and cook on low for about 8 hours.
5. Pull the chicken breast out of the crockpot and shred with a fork.  Stir chicken back into stew.  Serve hot!

Nutrition Analysis per serving (makes 6 servings)

327 calories
5gm fat, 1gm saturated fat
101mg cholesterol
330mg sodium
31gm carbohydrate
6gm fiber
8gm sugar
39gm protein

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Coffee Brownies (Raw/Paleo)

Sometimes you just need a chocolate fix. I happen to like the sweet/salty flavor combo. These brownies satisfy that craving without all the extra refined sugars and overly processed ingredients. These brownies taste a lot like the Jocalat Larabars. You can customize theses bars by swapping the coffee grounds and cutting the vanilla extract in half and adding a different extract (orange, coconut, peppermint, etc.). Go ahead, give it a try!

recipe adapted from 

Coffee Brownie

-1 cup almonds
-1 cup walnuts
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-20 medjool dates (small)
-1 c. cocoa powder (unsweetened)
-1/2 tsp coffee grounds
-dash of sea salt

-Combine almonds, vanilla, 1/2 of cocoa powder, salt, and coffee grounds in food processor. Pulse until well combined and crumbly. Then add in dates and walnuts. Pulse until it looks like dirt (literally). When you mash the mixture between your finger tips it should stick together.

-Line a brownie pan with parchment paper and pour mixture inside pan. Pat down firmly and place in the freezer until firm (a few hours). Then remove, cut into squares and enjoy! I store mine in the freezer for a nice old treat, I also prefer the texture when they are frozen.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Beet Hummus

Dear Mom,

If you're reading this, as I'm sure you are, I'm sorry. You may want to stop reading now. I'm pretty sure this recipe is considered betrayal to my arab roots.

Love you,


No self respecting arab tries to tamper with a good thing, except me. Funny story, this one time I asked for baked falafel, turns out, that's gross. The falafel turned into hockey puck like saucers that my family then threw around the dinning room table. I don't think they'll ever let me live that one down.

Chickpeas aren't paleo and I miss them. So I decided to try to recreate a food I grew up on. I read a few blogs talking about beet hummus but they added silly things like cumin to their hummus. Why? I don't know. The first time I made this I used red beets, magenta hummus? I think not. Second time around I used golden beets, at least the color is closer.

I DO think this tastes great. It's a fun dip for raw veggie or to mix into chicken salad or tuna salad recipes. It's no traditional hummus though. I'm convinced nothing will ever compare. I can't ever stop eating hummus forever. It just feels wrong. Having said all that. Go ahead and try it. This is a great way to get in an extra vegetable, healthy fats, and fiber. Also, beets are great pre workout fuel! They are vasodilators, which enhances blood flow and means more oxygen travels into your muscles. YEY!

It should look like this when you're all done

Beet Hummus

-6 small to medium yellow beets (boiled and skinned)
-2 Tbs. Tahini
-1/2 + 2 extra squeezes of fresh lemon juice
-1/2 Tbs. minced garlic (you can use garlic powder too)
-1/4 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
-dash of salt

1. You'll want to boil your beets until they are fork tender. Then let them cool and peel the skin with your hands. It's the easiest way to cook up beets (in my opinion).
2. Toss all your ingredients in the food processor and pulse until smooth (I let it run about 3-5 minutes)

Enjoy with baby carrots, diced cucumbers, peppers, sliced mushrooms or anything!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Paleo Chicken Meatballs and Eggplant Bake

This was one of those recipes that I came up with on the fly. I opened my fridge and pantry, took a quick inventory and decided I had a lot of produce to use up. The eggplant bake is a little like ratatouille.  It pairs well with pretty much any protein (fish, chicken, beef, etc.) and take very little prep.

You could also make the chicken meatballs into larger patties and puree the eggplant bake (to form a sauce). Think of it as an open faced burger with a nice veggie sauce. Add a little feta cheese (if you'd like) and you've got another great meal! Throwing veggies in the blender to make a puree is a great way to sneak extra veggies into a picky eaters' diet!

For the Meatballs…

Chicken Meatballs:

-1 lb ground chicken breast
-1/8 c. egg whites
-1/4 c. coconut flour
-3/4 tsp minced garlic (or more if you like it garlicky)
-1 tsp. dried parsley
-1 tsp dried thyme
-1/2 tsp pepper flakes

Step 1

Mix until well combined. This will be kind of sticky but you can slightly dampen your hands with water to prevent them from sticking when you roll.

Step 2

I rolled them into golfball sized balls and put them into a lightly oiled non sticky skillet on medium high. Let brown on each side (5-8 minutes).

Step 3
Then flip over and let brown again. You can continue to bake here but since I'm adding them to my eggplant bake I pulled them off the stovetop to finish cooking in the oven.

Eggplant Bake:

-1 whole eggplant (small-medium) diced
before baking
-1  orange pepper diced
-1 yellow pepper diced
-1/2 large yellow onion diced
-5 strips turkey bacon diced
-1 carton crushed tomato sauce
-1 T. minced garlic
-1 T dried thyme
-1 T dried parsley
-Salt/pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 Degree.

Throw all ingredients into a ceramic baking dish. Add meatballs from above (or not if you are making this solo). Mix together and bake for 30-45 minutes (until eggplant fork tender and meatballs fully cooked). You can enjoy this plain or on top of spaghetti squash.