Chicken and Vegetable Pot Pie

It is finally cold outside and really feeling like fall, AKA, comfort food season! This pot pie, is savory, hearty, and delicious. Perfect for warming you up on a cold day. This recipe is also a better-for-you version of the classic. Chicken pot pie isn’t one of those dishes that is notoriously bad for us, but there are many ways to make it, so it’s good to have a healthier option. Some chicken pot pie recipes call for heavy cream and potatoes which can significantly up the fat and carb content. By adding more veggies and subbing in almond milk for heavy cream, we cut down on calories and keep this dish relatively good for us.

 

What you need:

  • 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded
  • 2 cups frozen peas and carrots
  • 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 cup cremini mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup celery, diced
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 prepared, uncooked pie crust (found in the refrigerated section)
  • 1 egg, beaten with water to make egg wash

 

What you do:

  1. Saute mushrooms in oil until they start to brown, about 7 minutes.
  2. Add onions, celery, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook until celery softens, about 3 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle in flour and cook 2 minutes.
  4. Slowly stir in almond milk and bring to a low boil.
  5. Let bubble until thickened, stirring well.
  6. Stir in chicken, peas, carrots, and thyme.
  7. Spoon mixture into a greased pie dish.
  8. Roll out pie crust and cover dish. Pinch edges and brush with egg wash.
  9. Bake at 425 degrees until crust is golden brown, about 25 minutes.
  10. Let rest 10 minutes, then serve!

Pumpkin Hummus

This pumpkin hummus is a great spin on the traditional dip and perfect for fall! Traditional hummus has become very popular because it is a hearty snack that isn’t bad for us (and we all know those aren’t easy to find). It pairs well with many foods and is low in saturated fat, sodium, and calories. This pumpkin hummus is no different! And that’s not all. Pumpkins are really good for us! Pumpkins are great sources of vitamin A, beta-carotene, and potassium. They are also a good source of vitamin C. So, make a batch of this amazing hummus and get snacking!

 

What you need:

  • 1 15-oz. can pumpkin
  • 4 tbsp tahini
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste

 

What you do:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
  2. Serve with raw veggies and pita chips!

Can also be used as a spread on sandwiches or a topping on salad!

Chocolate Avocado Cookies

I think everyone who has tried to diet or eat healthier has experienced at least one downfall. You know, that food you love that isn’t the best for you, but you crave all the time. Especially when you feel like you can’t have it! Well, if a rich, chocolatey cookie is your usual downfall food, you’re in luck! These chocolate avocado cookies are guilt free and SO good. Coconut flour is used instead of wheat to lower the carb count and add flavor. There is no added sugar, but cinnamon gives a natural sweetness and compliments the dark chocolate really well. And, avocado not only adds a creaminess factor, but also adds healthy fats and other nutrients that keep you fuller longer!

 

What you need:

– 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

– 2 eggs

– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

– 1/4 cup mashed avocado

– 1/4 cup coconut flour

– 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

– 1 teaspoon cinnamon

– 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

– 1/8 cup dark chocolate chips

– 1/8 cup peanut butter chips

 

What you do:

  1. In a large bowl, combine milk, eggs, and vanilla.
  2. Add avocado. Mix in with a fork.
  3. In another bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and baking powder.
  4. Combine dry ingredients with the wet.
  5. Fold in chocolate and peanut butter chips.
  6. Scoop cookie dough onto baking sheet covered in parchment paper. (Use about a tablespoon of dough for each cookie.)
  7. Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes.
  8. Enjoy!

 

Black Bean and Spinach Enchiladas

We’ve been hearing more and more lately that consuming animal products like meat and dairy isn’t great for our health. While there isn’t conclusive evidence on how much animal protein, if any, we should be eating, we all know plants and vegetables are good and nutritious for us and that we should be eating more. Many health professionals have touted a plant-based diet for its benefits and suggest decreasing the intake of eggs, dairy, and meat. However, it’s not always easy to radically change our diets. Switching out the meat a couple times a week with other types of protein is a great way to get the benefits of a plant-based diet without a complete overhaul. This recipe is vegan and contains no animal products at all. BUT, it is packed with protein, fiber, and other nutrients and it is delicious!

 

What you need:

  • 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 1 poblano pepper, chopped
  • 2 jalapenos, chopped finely
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cans black beans
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1 pack of tortillas (I used Trader Joe’s Habanero Lime tortillas!)
  • 1 28 oz. can of red enchilada sauce
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro
  • Salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper

What you do:

  1. Saute onion in oil for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add peppers and saute 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add garlic, black beans, spinach, and spices (severally good shakes of salt and pepper and a dash of cayenne should be good) and cook, stirring frequently, until spinach is wilted.
  4. Coat the bottom of a large glass baking dish with a thin layer of enchilada sauce.
  5. Fill tortillas with bean mixture, fold, and put in the baking dish.
  6. Pour remaining sauce over tortillas.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes
  8. Top with cilantro.
  9. Serve with a side salad and enjoy!

enchilada-plate

Homemade Honey Nut Granola Bars

Who doesn’t love granola bars? They are perfect to eat on the go and work for breakfast or an afternoon snack. They are usually low-cal which helps us feel good about eating them, but many off the shelf granola bars have a lot of extra ingredients in them that we don’t need. The big one? Sugar. Many bars sneak in a good bit of added, refined sugar. Not to mention all of the preservatives and “natural flavors” that we don’t even know are there! These homemade granola bars use simple, natural ingredients. Oats provide protein and fiber to help keep you full, while almonds, cashews, and coconut provide protein, healthy fats, and tons of other vitamins and minerals that we need. They also add a lot of flavor! Cinnamon and a little honey will satisfy your sweet tooth without you getting a sugar overload. Make a batch before a long trip or before your work week, so you can just grab and go!

homemade-almond-coconut-granola-bars

 

What you need:

2 cups oats, pulsed briefly in food processor

1 cup raw almonds, chopped

1 cup coconut, shredded

½ cup raw cashews, chopped

1 cup nut butter, almond or peanut

½ cup honey

1 teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

What you do:

  1. Toast almonds and cashews in a skillet over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Transfer to mixing bowl.
  2. Add oats, coconut, cinnamon, and salt. Stir well until blended.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine nut butter and honey until smooth.
  4. Add nut butter/honey mixture to dry ingredients and stir until evenly combined.
  5. Put mixture into a baking dish lined with parchment paper. (Make sure the edges of the parchment paper are sticking out of the sides, so you can easily remove it later.) Use a spoon or bowl to pack the mixture into the pan.
  6. Cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours or overnight.
  7. Using sides of parchment paper, lift mixture out of the pan.
  8. Cut into rectangles or squares and enjoy!

Tip: Keep refrigerated for freshness and to keep the bars firm. They can also be frozen for later use!

 

 

Celebrate With Healthy, Patriotic Treats

It’s Memorial Day weekend! That means a lot of us might be going to BBQs and parties. And THAT means we are going to be tempted by a lot of food! Stay on track this weekend by making one of these healthy, patriotic treats!

 

fruit-stick

Fruit Skewers

Use raspberries, bananas, and blueberries to make the red, white, and blue fruit skewers! This is great in place of dessert. You can satisfy your sweet tooth, but the added fiber and nutrients make this a way better option than cake and cookies!

 

fruit-and-cheese-tray

Fruit and Cheese Flag Tray

Line up strawberries, white cheddar cubes, and raspberries to make the stripes. Add a bowl of blueberries in the corner to finish the flag! Snack on this instead of reaching for chips. We know how good berries are for us and cheese in small amounts has its benefits, too!

 

usa-pops

Fruit and Yogurt Popsicles

This one takes a little more work, but is totally worth it! Great alternative to traditional popsicles and ice cream!

What you need:

  • blueberries
  • raspberries
  • plain, lowfat yogurt

What you do:

  1. Puree blueberries and raspberries separately.
  2. Put all ingredients into separate measuring cups with spouts (this will make pouring easier).
  3. Add a little water to each of the ingredients to dilute a little and make them more pourable.
  4. Layer ingredients into a popsicle mold. First, the blueberries, then alternate the yogurt and raspberries to make stripes.
  5. Put in the freezer overnight or until frozen.
  6. Enjoy!

 

Do you have any other healthy, holiday treats? Comment below and let us know!

Avocado Chicken Salad

Chicken salad is a great summer food! It’s cold, but hearty and can be put on a sandwich for a quick meal on the go. This guilt-free variation omits the mayo and adds in nutritious avocado! Fresh celery, onion, and cilantro also bump up the nutritional content. And chicken, of course, gives you plenty of protein!

 

What you need:

  • 2 cups cooked chicken, chopped
  • 1 ripe avocado, chopped
  • 1/4 cup celery, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup plain, nonfat yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped (parsley is also really good!)
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste

What you do:

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl and enjoy!

 

For a non-dairy option, omit the yogurt and drizzle in some olive oil instead.

Easy Mexican Quinoa

One thing I hear from people all the time is that eating healthy is too expensive or takes too much time. This mexican quinoa recipe is here to bust those myths! It is incredibly easy to make (you only need ONE pan!), the ingredients are inexpensive, and it is packed with nutrient rich food! Quinoa is one of the world’s known superfoods which means that it has a ton of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are good for us. It is high in protein and fiber, too, which keep us feeling full and satisfied. Black beans are also a good source of fiber and protein. The other veggies have great nutritional qualities and avocado is another superfood that has amazing health benefits!

What’s more? This is an excellent recipe for meal prep! Make a bunch and portion out for meals every day. Or keep some on hand for a side dish or topping on salad!

 

What you need:

1 TBSP olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1-2 jalapenos, minced

1 cup quinoa

1 cup vegetable broth

1 can black beans

1 can fire-roasted diced tomatoes

½ cup of corn kernels

1 ½ tsp chili powder

½ tsp cumin

Salt and pepper to taste

1 avocado, seeded, peeled, and diced

1 lime

Fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

 

What you do:

  1. In a large skillet, sauté garlic and jalapeno in oil for about 1 minute
  2. Stir in quinoa, vegetable broth, beans, tomatoes, corn, chili powder, cumin, and salt and pepper.
  3. Bring to a boil.
  4. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for about 20 minutes or until quinoa is cooked through.
  5. Add in avocado, lime juice, and cilantro.
  6. Enjoy!

Soba Noodle Salad

This Asian-inspired noodle salad is very healthy and so easy to make! The cabbage, carrots, and broccoli offer a ton of vitamins and minerals and the mukimame are a great source of protein! It is also low in calories and fat. This can be used as complete meal or as a side dish and is also great for meal prepping. This recipe makes a lot, so pack some up for your lunches this week!

 

What you need:

2 cups red cabbage, shredded

2 cups broccoli slaw (with carrots)

6 oz. Soba Noodles

1 cup cooked Mukimame (shelled soybeans)

4 tablespoons Goddess dressing (we used Annie’s)

2 tablespoons Soy sauce

 

What you do:

  1. Prepare noodles and mukimame according to package instructions, then rinse with cold water and/or place in the refrigerator until both are cold
  2. Whisk together dressing and soy sauce
  3. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl
  4. Enjoy immediately or save for future meals!

Tip: If you are saving this for future meals, store the dressing mixture separate from the other ingredients and add it immediately before serving to keep everything fresh!

Veggie Egg Muffins

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day! That’s what we’ve been told at least. And while there is an ongoing debate on the importance of breakfast, we think starting your day with a healthy meal is a good idea. It gives you energy to begin your day, gets your metabolism going, and can keep you from crashing mid-morning. WHAT we are eating for breakfast makes all of the difference, though. It is important to get a good amount of protein and healthy fats in the morning. This will help keep you full until lunch and even helps regulate your blood sugar throughout the day.

These veggie egg muffins are an excellent way to get a lot of protein in the morning and even a serving of vegetables! They are easy to make and can be reheated in the microwave for a quick breakfast on busy mornings. You can also make them using whatever veggies you have on hand!

 

What you need:

– 5 whole eggs

– 5 egg whites

– 1 red bell pepper, chopped

– 1 yellow onion, chopped

– 2 cups fresh spinach, chopped

– 2 cloves garlic, minced

– 1 tablespoon olive, coconut, or avocado oil

– salt and pepper to taste

 

What you do:

  1. Whisk eggs together in a large bowl or measuring cup (the spout on a measuring cup will make pouring easier).
  2. Sauté bell pepper and onion in oil until tender (about 5 minutes).
  3. Add spinach and sauté 2 minutes.
  4. Add garlic and sauté an additional minute.
  5. Add veggies to eggs and combine.
  6. Pour mixture, evenly, into a greased, 12 cup muffin tin.
  7. Bake at 350° for 15 to 20 minutes.
  8. Serve immediately or refrigerate and enjoy later!