Cajun Chicken Veggie Bowls
IMG_0434.jpg

Cajun Chicken Veggie Bowls

Food Prep made easy!

My goal is to help people make better choices when it comes to food. The best advice I can give is to plan and prep your meals! Bad choices happen most often because you are in a hurry, hungry and don’t have time to make anything healthy. Taking 4 hrs on a Sunday to prep your meals is the best thing you can do to keep yourself on the right track. This is a bowl that can be mixed and matched with whatever veggies make you happy :)


 

Servings- 4

Ingredients -

1 lb Chicken

1 Head of Cauliflower

1 Head of Broccoli

2 Sweet Potatoes

3 C Arugula

1 TB Cajun Seasoning

Pickled Veggies recipe here

Green Goddess Dressing recipe here

 

Directions-

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees

  • Cut chicken into cubes

  • Cut potatoes into cubes, can leave skin on

  • Cut broccoli and cauliflower into chunks

  • Place chicken in bowl and drizzle with olive oil and cajun seasoning, toss to evenly coat. Place on sheet pan.

  • On seperate pan- Place broccoli and cauliflower on sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil salt and pepper and toss

  • If you have a third pan and have room in your oven do a third pan for potatoes. If not, cook cauliflower and broccoli remove and then do potatoes

  • Bake chicken and veggies for 20 minutes, rotate vegetables half way

Assembly

Place arugula at bottom of tupperware container, layer in the rest of veggies and chicken. Place in the fridge for when you are ready! Add pickled veggies and green goddess dressing when you are ready to eat!



Pickled Veggies
IMG_0427.jpg

Pickled Veggies

Great way to add extra flavor to any dish and good for digestion

Pickled veggies are easy to make can last up to a month and add tons of yummy flavor! You can do all kinds of veggies. I generally stick with carrots, beets, and red onions. But don’t be afraid to experiment!

I use this amazing little gadget to create spirals from veggies like beets, carrots, or zuchinni in seconds! You can find link in resources and products.


 

IMG_0426.jpg

Serving- 1 Large Mason Jar

Ingredients -

1 Large Red Onion or 1 Cup sliced Carrots or Sliced Beets

1/2 c apple cider or white vinegar

1 c water

2 TB Sugar

1 tsp Salt

 

Directions-

Slice onion into 1/4” slices

Add all ingredients to sauce pan and bring to a boil for 1 minute

Place onions in jar and pour vinegar over

Let cool, seal and throw in fridge for up to 1 month! EASY PEASY :)

Veggie Steak Skillet
IMG_0422.jpg

Veggie Steak Skillet

Best of both worlds- meat and yummy veggie

This one skillet meal is easy and makes great leftovers! Simple but lots of flavor.

 

Servings – 4

1 lb Flat iron steak, 1/2” cubed

1 Red pepper, 1/2” chopped

1 Yellow pepper, 1/2” chopped

1 Green pepper, 1/2” chopped OR Yellow Onion

2 Large sweet potato, 1/2” chopped, peel on

3 Cloves garlic finely chopped

4 Green Onions, chopped

1/4 c Cilantro

2 TB Olive oil

Salt & Pepper

Optional- cayenne or cajun seasoning

Directions-

After chopping up potatoes, place in microwave safe bowl and microwave for 4 minutes. Take out and stir, repeat another 3 minutes. This helps soften so they cook faster in skillet. You want them aldente. Too soft and they get mushy.

Place 1 TB olive in large skillet on medium heat. Add steak chunks and dash of salt and pepper. Saute for 5 or so minutes. Until steak is browned all the way around.. I like my steak to still be pink on inside. Once cooked, remove with slotted spoon. Leave grease in pan.

Add potatoes, garlic, and additional TB of olive oil. Let saute for 5 minutes, stirring regularly. Add peppers. Saute for 5 minutes.

Stir in steak and saute for addtional 5 minutes. Option to sprinkle with Cajun seasoning or cayenne pepper in you want a little kick.

Sprinkle on your green onions and cilantro.

I love to add a dollop of the Greek Goddess Dressing for fresh flavor

Apple Mandarin Ginger Smuice
IMG_0410.jpg

Apple Mandarin Ginger Smuice

Drinks like a juice but has all the good fiber of a fruit smoothie!

I have a lot of people ask me about juices or juice cleanses. “Are the healthy?” “Can they help me lose weight?” My general response is NO. Fruit juice even straight from the juicer although tasty is basically pure sugar. When you juice fruit you lose all the fiber and that helps your body process the sugars and helps you stay full longer. I’m not saying never drink juice, it can be a tasty treat from time to time but never believe that drinking it all the time is going to make you a “healthier” person. That’s why I created this tasty “Smuice” It’s basically a watered down smoothie that drinks more like a juice but maintains the fiber a smoothie would have! It’s full of flavor and nutrients. Perfect if you are looking for a little refreshing something after a meal or just mid day.


 

Servings – 1 Liter

Ingredients -

2 apples, core removed

8 mandarins, peeled

1.5” square piece of ginger, peeled

1.5 C water

 **option to add fresh mint**

Directions-

Place all ingredients in blender and let ‘er go! The more water you add the more juice like it becomes. WARNING- If you hate pulp you may have an issue with this as it does contain whole mandarin which will result in some pulp.

How to Do a Proper Push Up

Form is always the most important thing to focus on in a workout. It protects you from injury and gives you better results faster! As a fitness instructor I often see many struggle to get form correct. Most likely because they learned it wrong in the first place and no one bothered to correct them. They say it takes 1,000 reps to learn something correctly and 3,000 reps to correct! Might as well focus on getting it right the first time :) 

Basic Push Ups-

1. Hands just outside shoulders

2. Press out of your shoulders to protect your shoulder joints!

3. Keep chin tucked to protect neck

4. Pelvis should be tucked to help activate core and protect lower back. You are better off having your hips a little higher than below shoulders.

5. Play with range of motion as you begin. If new, don't go as deep or take it to your knees. I will be doing a post shortly on great modifications you can take!

How to Do a Proper Squat

Form is always the most important thing to focus on in a workout. It protects you from injury and gives you better results faster! As a fitness instructor I often see many struggle to get form correct. Most likely because they learned it wrong in the first place and no one bothered to correct them. They say it takes 1,000 reps to learn something correctly and 3,000 reps to correct! Might as well focus on getting it right the first time :) 

Squats-

1. Make sure your weight is in heels, you should be able to wiggle your toes as a test

2. Knees should track BEHIND toes, push your butt back like you are looking for a chair

3. Relax shoulders away from ears

4. You don't have to get to 90 degrees if you have knee issues or are new to fitness. Start with a smaller range of motion and work your way up to a deeper squat!

Roasted Veggies with Green Goddess Dressing
IMG-1860.JPG

Roasted Veggies with Green Goddess Dressing

I'm always looking for new ways to get more veggies into my diet. I like the idea of playing with roasting veggies and complimenting it with a refreshing herb packed dressing. These are veggies I just had on hand but honestly you could use just about anything! Peppers, onions, cabbage, or sweet potatoes are all great options. I used egg plant and cauliflower because they are a hearty veg that fills me up. 

 

Servings – 2

1 head of cabbage cut into pieces

1 Eggplant cut into 1" chunks

1 bunch Asparagus

Head of Romaine (any lettuce would work)

1/4 cup feta cheese

Pumpkin Seeds

Olive Oil

Salt & Pepper


Green Goddess Dressing Ingredients -

1 bunch green onions

1 bunch cilantro

1/2 bunch mint

1/2 bunch parsley

1 c Spinach

1/4 c Plain Greek Yogurt

1 Avocado

1/2 C Olive Oil

Lemon Juice from 1/2 Lemon

Salt & Pepper

 

Directions-

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F or 185 degrees C. 

Wash veggies and chop as directed above.

Place Cauliflower on baking sheet and drizzle with olive, salt and pepper. Use hands to toss and distribute.

Place in oven to brown for 15 minutes. Take out and turn.

While cauliflower is roasting, place all ingredients of goddess dressing in blender or food processor and blend. Continue to add as much olive oil as you like to create the consistency you want. More oil, more liquid, less more creamy dip. 

Add eggplant, drizzle with oil, salt l& pepper, and place back in oven for 10 minutes.

Remove and take cauliflower off sheet. Add asparagus and drizzle with oil, salt & pepper. 

Place back in oven for addtional 10 minutes. 

Take out and assemble veggies. Drizzle with dressing, sprinkle with pumpkin seeds and feta cheese. Squeeze with additional lemon juice and Enjoy!

 

 

Green Goddess Dressing
IMG-1858.JPG

Green Goddess Dressing

This delicious dressing can serve as a dressing or a dip. It's packed full of fresh herbs that give it a crazy amount of flavor. Avocado and Greek Yogurt give you a creamy texture while giving you ample healthy fat. It kind of has a guacamole flavor but keeps longer. Feel free to experiment with different fresh herbs. I am sure that basil would be tasty or even lemon grass?! 


 

Servings – 1.5 cups

Green Goddess Dressing Ingredients -

1 bunch green onions

1 bunch cilantro

1/2 bunch mint

1/2 bunch parsley

1 c Spinach

1/4 c Plain Greek Yogurt

1 Avocado

1/2 C Olive Oil

Lemon Juice from 1/2 Lemon

Salt & Pepper

 

Directions-

Place all ingredients of goddess dressing in blender or food processor and blend. Continue to add as much olive oil as you like to create the consistency you want. More oil, more liquid, less more creamy dip. 

I used this dressing for my roasted veggie salad that you can find in mains of recipes. But would be delicious as a dip for fresh veggies or even with hot wings!

American Shrimp Boil
IMG_1836.jpg

American Style Shrimp Boil

An amazing meal that brings people together with minimal clean up!

I love a good shrimp boil! It tends to be a southern American summer feast. I love to make it when we have guests as it's delicious, easy, and perfect for sharing. Traditional shrimp boils are meant to be thrown across a picnic table over a bunch of newspapers. Everyone just grabs what they want and eats with their hands! This may gross some people out but I personally love it. This is not for the clean freaks. I think a messy meal like ribs, hot wings, or a good shrimp boil makes true friends out of people! 

This meal takes about 30 minutes to make with 10 minutes of prep. Not to mention you aren't messing with stuff as you have guests. It's a one pot wonder meal! Old Bay seasoning is what offers all the delicious flavor. For your Brit's you will likely need to purchase off of Amazon. This is the one I got.

 

Servings – 4

1.5 lb Shell on Shrimp or Prawns

1 lb Keilbasa Sausage (can be found at polish markets)

1 Large Yellow Onion, quartered

4-6 Cobs of corn cut into quarters

1 12 oz Can of Beer

4 Large Red Potatoes cut into quarters

1/4 Cup Old Bay Seasoning + more for sprinkling before serving

1 Tsp Salt

8 Cups Water

Directions-

Add water, beer, Old Bay seasoning, and salt to large pot and bring to a boil. 

Toss in potatoes and onion and boil for 6 min.

Add sausage for another 4 min

Add corn for 5 min.

Add Shrimp for another 5 min. (once shrimp is pink and starting to curl, it's done) Don't over cook!

Remove from heat and drain liquid. 

Throw onto a baking pan or cover table with paper and sprinkle shrimp boil across paper. Sprinkle with addtional Old Bay seasoning and have everyone grab what they want and go to town! Serve with cornbread (see additonal recipe).

 

 

Spelt Risotto
untitled-8.jpg

Spelt Asparagus Risotto

Ancient grain chalk full of benefits!

This tasty recipe came with inspiration from visiting Daylesford Farm for a wellness retreat. It included yoga, healthy cooking class, and a spa treatment. It was absolutely AMAZING! The space itself is just gorgeous and I love everything they do there. They are all about organic sustainable farming. They have a shop onsite that features all of their locally grown products as well as cheeses, wines, beer, meat, etc. It’s a real cook’s dream!  

Daylesford-Organice-Farm-20.jpg
daylesford-organic-farmshop.jpg

We made several different recipes during our cooking class. They included- grilled cabbage, chicken bone broth, almond milk pannacotta and SPELT RISOTTO. Which brings me to my latest recipe that was inspired by the tasty meal we had that day.

For those of you unaware spelt is an ancient grain that has been around since 5000 B.C. It’s a good source of protein & fiber and great for a healthy gut.

This recipe can be a meal on it’s own or as a side to a delicious piece of protein.

 

Servings – 2 (on own) or 4 as side

1.5 cups Pearled Spelt

½ leek

3 cloves garlic finely chopped

Splash of white wine (make it wine you would drink)

4 cups Chicken or Veg Stock (try to make or buy fresh, avoid stock cubes)

1 bunch asparagus

4 green onion

¼ cup Goats cheese

¼ cup parmesan

Rapeseed oil

Directions-

Soak spelt in cold water for 10 minutes.

Heat oil in pan over medium. Add leeks, garlic and pinch of salt. Soften but don’t brown

Once cooked, add splash of wine and drained spelt.

Pour in 1/3 of stock, bring to boil and reduce to simmer.

Continue to add in rest of stock as it cooks down. Stir regularly for 15 minutes.

When spelt is cooked but not mushy add in asparagus and onion. Cook for 3 minutes.

Sprinkle in Parmesan. Taste and season as necessary.

Drizzle with good olive oil and serve with spoon of goats cheese and balsamic glaze and enjoy!

My Love for Dry Brushing
dry brush.jpg

I discovered dry brushing 3 months back and I have no interest in stopping! It is my new go to beauty regimen. It’s cheap, affective, and has so many benefits! Have I sold you yet??  

So what is dry brushing? Glad you asked- It’s pretty much what it sounds like- brushing your dry skin with a special brush. There are a few general rules to follow-

Technique-

Create circular motions clockwise, starting at your feet and make your way up towards your heart. You literally do your entire body. I’m talking feet, legs, arms, tummy, booty, boobs (avoid nips), arms, hands, the whole lot! Everything! Don’t brush too hard. It should exfoliate but not hurt or leave scratches. My skin turns barely pink for about 2 minutes after. The whole process generally takes 3-4 minutes. Finish with a natural oil. I choose to use Argan Oil because it absorbs easily into skin and doesn’t leave me feeling greasy.

Time of Day-

Because of it’s stimulating benefits I recommend doing it in the morning before you shower. The shower will wash off any dead skin. Also, I recommend standing in your shower when you dry brush so any dead skin washes down drain 😊

Benefits-

Exfoliation- unbelievably soft skin!! And I feel like I have to shave less often as my skin stays smooth much longer.

Lymphatic Support- Proponents of dry brushing claim that brushing the skin regularly helps stimulate the normal lymph flow within the body and helps the body detoxify itself naturally.

Improves Complexion- Because it offers stimulation to lymph flow it often helps with complexion. I personally saw a big difference within a week. More radiant and minimum/no blemishes.

Reduces Cellulite- The motion of dry brushing creates stimulation to skin and increased blood flow which helps combat the look of cellulite (remember, there is no cure but there are things you can do to help). I personally have noticed a difference!

Energy Boosting- the increased circulation is a natural energy booster. This is why I don’t recommend dry brushing before bed.

How to Choose your Dry Brush-

It is important to choose a brush with natural bristles. Depending on your skin sensitivity you may want one that advertises “softer” brushes. I use this one  from Amazon. It also has rubber nubs which I find helps with circulation.

I have used my dry brush for both my face and body without problems but you may want a gentler one for your face.  

Who Should Avoid Dry Brushing??

If you have overly sensitive skin or eczema I would stay away from dry brushing as it may irritate your skin. If you have any rashes do not dry brush during this time. I found that if I used an old razor after dry brushing I would have more bumps on my legs. So try to use a new blade as much as possible to avoid bacteria.

Dry Brushing Maintenance-

I try to wash my brush out every couple of weeks to get rid of dead skin. I plan on replacing mine every 6 months or so. But at under $10 for a brush it is totally worth it!!


Let me know if you have tried dry brushing and what your results have been in comments below! Looking forward to hearing from you.

NEW RECIPE!! Cocoa Coconut Fat Balls! :)
untitled-9.jpg

There is a lot of confusion out there about good fats and bad fats. Some people still think all fats are bad. Some people still worry more about calories than nutritional value. This in my opinion is the wrong approach. Get ready to be EDUCATED :)

I don't want to oversimplify because of course there is always more information to be had but I am all about giving the most important info in the shortest explaination. Here's a simple rule to follow-

Trans Fats, aka BAD FATS  are a type of fat that is produced by hydrogenation (= when vegetable oil is made intosolid fat) and is used in margarinefried foods, etc. In other words this type of fat is processed. So avoid these things if you are trying to live a healthier life as they can lead to heart disease. Now, I would be lying if I said I never helped myself to some fish and chips or some delicious sweet potato fries, but it's all about balance!

GOOD FATS- Good fats generally fall into the categories of monounsaturated fats (olive oil, coconut oil, avocados, etc)  or polysaturated fats (walnuts, seeds, fish). These fats help fight off heart disease as well as the following benefits-

- Helps reduce body fat and maintain healthy weight

- Decrease in possibility of cancer

- Increase in reproductivity

- Stabilizes mood and fight depression

- Better skin and eye health

 With all these amazing benefits you best stock up on nuts, fish, and avocado! 

If you are on the run and need a healthy snack that is tasty and helps give you that healthy fat you are looking for these fat balls are for you! They are quick to make and can be saved in fridge for up to 2 weeks and in freezer for up to a month so WHY NOT make em? 

**Just remember that these tasty treats, while having huge nutritional benefits are high in calories (150 cals)  so should only be consumed 1-2X max a day. Don't fall into that trap of thinking that something is labeled "healthy" so you can eat as many as you want. BALANCE AND MODERATION WITH ALL :) 


Recipe  Makes 10 Balls

Ingredients-

  • 1 1/2 cups walnuts or nut of choice
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup coconut butter  (not coconut oil)
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter or nut butter of choice, UNSWEETENED
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 2 tablespoons flax meal
  • 1 pitted date
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons cacao nibs

Directions-

Place all ingredients in blender or strong food processer. If using vitamix, turn setting up to 10 right away or the motor can overheat. Figured this out 2x the hard way... If for some reason your Vitamix does stall on you. Allow it to cool down for 30 minutes and it should be good to go. Blend until the mixture starts to meld together. Add cacao nibs last minute or so so that it still maintains nib form. 

Roll into 1.5" balls. Place in frige for up to 2 weeks or freezer up to month! Should be eaten within 1 hr being out of fridge as it will begin to get smushy.. and no one like smushy balls :p