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It appears that winter is upon us. I am not a fan of being cold, so prepare for lots of recipes that will warm up both you and your home! Also, if you like checking out all the recipes but just can’t quite get yourself to put them into a meal plan, you are in luck. Check back here on Friday for the start of a 5 week series of meal plans complete with shopping lists!

sometimes you  just want warm food the second you walk in from the bitter cold and I can’t think of many things better than slow cooker chicken fajitas to have ready and waiting for you

healthier (but still delicious) oat + pistachio crumble topped sweet potatoes for your thanksgiving menu

shepherd’s pie, but easier

this maple bourbon pumpkin butter would make a fun holiday gift! or you could add it to these pumpkin spice overnight oats.

roasted broccoli is a staple in my house. it is such a quick, easy, flavorful way to make sure you have veggies on the table. plus, broccoli is usually only 99 cents/lb this time of year!

simple roasted carrots with salt + pepper are also a favorite of mine, but here is a slightly fancier version if you need a little more flavor. or you could always make some carrot fries

I guarantee that this homemade pineapple chicken is much healthier than anything you’ll find on the chinese buffet

if you haven’t tried homemade applesauce, I highly recommend it. you barely even need a recipe. my most recent batch was: 3 lb bag of jonathan apples (peeled + cored) in the slow cooker with 1/4 to 1/2 cup water or apple cider, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp cinnamon, and a dash of ground nutmeg. set on low and it was done within 5-6 hours. it’s good by itself, on pancakes, on yogurt, on oatmeal….on ice cream? you should make some.

this one isn’t a recipe, but if you like looking in people’s refrigerators, you will probably also find this photo gallery incredibly interesting

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Sometimes after the abundance of summer produce disappears, I feel like there are no vegetables left to be had over the colder months. But that’s not true! There are lots of ways we can eat veggies in the fall/winter! [am I the only one that sometimes needs reminders that there are foods besides cookies and bread from October – February??] This week’s collection of recipes have certainly helped inspire me to seek out more cold weather veggies [even if in the form of dessert]. I hope they do the same for you!

this harvest veggie bowl is a good start

you could also eat raw veggies with roasted pumpkin seed hummus. or add it to a wrap with leftover roasted veggies.

snack on homemade bbq sweet potato chips

you can never have too many recipes for southwest quinoa salad

I LOVE barbeque chicken pizza. barbeque chicken french breads are even faster! and you could totally sneak in extra veggies. pretty much everything is better with a little barbeque sauce and cheese.

maybe the easiest way to fit more veggies into your diet is to toss them in a grilled cheese

creamy roasted red pepper soup!

shredded kale salad with fried chicken. talk about balance! also, I just bought her cookbook, seriously delish, and I can’t wait to make pretty much every single recipe

butternut squash + apple + pear crisp. I mean, we put pumpkin in just about everything this time of year, so why not butternut squash?

speaking of pumpkin and dessert – the texture of these soft pumpkin chocolate chip bars looks like perfection

mix some zuchinni noodles into your pad thai

these sesame peanut noodles are loaded with veggies and only take one pot…and less than 30 minutes!

granola bars are a great snack in theory, but most of the ones on the shelves today are just glorified candy bars. making your own is easy and a much healthier and better tasting option – like these chewy peanut butter apple granola bars. there may not be any veggies in there but real fruit is a major step up from the stuff in packaged granola bars

 

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LOTS of recipes this week! There are summer recipes, fall recipes, snack recipes, weeknight meal recipes….all of the recipes! Enjoy 🙂

it’s soup season for sure. this week, I made this summer minestrone I shared awhile back. it’s like the perfect combo of fall + summer for those of us who aren’t quite ready to let go of warm weather. this weeknight indian chicken soup might be next.

maybe there are people in your house that have an aversion to “healthy” foods. you could probably deceive them with some baked chicken wings. it’s a win-win for everyone involved.

popcorn is a whole great and a great snack, especially when air popped at home…and of the sour cream and onion variety

homemade ramen is much healthier than 20 cent packages of ramen

although fall means winter is next, it is the season for brussels sprouts which I LOVE. don’t be afraid of them. they really are amazing if you cook them right..like these tart cherry-glazed brussels

grilled eggplant + pesto sandwich!

apples are starting to get really good. if any survive being eaten raw, you should probably make some hazelnut streusel apple muffins

why eat a plain side of corn when you could eat thai glazed skillet corn?

strawberry + almond oat crumble would be a more filling/healthy way to take care of that after dinner sweet tooth (I have a major after dinner sweet tooth….anyone else??)

sometimes you just need a little inspiration to get you out of a lunch rut (I also have and LOVE this book for good lunch ideas)

if you are a fan of arugula, you might be a fan of this salad

homemade snack mix is so easy

lentil chickpea salad + roasted garlic dressing!

risotto is comfort food. especially with sausage, brussels sprouts, and sun-dried tomatoes!!

stir-fried beef + sesame noodles. it only takes 30 minutes!

if peach butter is as amazing as apple butter, then I am all. over. it.

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Well, I’m not really sure where last week went! It flew by and I somehow never got around to hitting publish on the posts I had ready. Anyway, I’m back and I’ve found some great recipes lately. There are lots (to make up for last week!), so I hope you find a great one to get into the kitchen and try out this week!

I wish I had a grill so I could make these grilled steak + avocado flatbreads

have  fun, delicious breakfast this weekend: raspberry crumble pancakes

toasted oat + coconut muesli is a quick breakfast that’s packed with good stuff

making indian food at home can seem kind of intimidating. this chicken chickpea curry looks pretty doable!

burrito bowls are a great way to get a healthy, delicious, homemade meal on the table fast.

serve your burrito bowl over slaw or salad for a lower calorie version packed with good-for-you veggies!

need an after school snack? homemade pudding >>>> pudding from a box.

who says you can’t have pizza for breakfast?

use your abundance of late summer tomatoes for this pesto pasta!

saute summer veggies + sausage for a quick dinner that has a little something for everyone

I don’t know if I’m ready to accept that it’s pumpkin season again quite yet, but these single serving pumpkin muffins look amazing

banana yogurt muffins with streusel topping are also good if you need muffins but also can’t accept pumpkin season just yet

20 minute thai basil beef rice bowls? what’s not to love?

make a salad into a meal with the addition of protein (like chicken, beans, hummus, steak, or tofu) and healthy fats (like avocado or olive oil). this fajita veggie burger salad would make a great meal that actually fills you up!

these no-bake dark chocolate almond butter cheerio bars would make a great snack or dessert!

sometimes I want to make pesto, but I almost never have all the ingredients. this oil-free//dairy-free version might be the answer! and the caprese rice salad doesn’t look like a bad way to enjoy that pesto.

here’s the thing. sometimes you just don’t have a dinner plan and you need something fast. I sometimes like to keep some Annie’s brand mac + cheese (because it’s delicious and has recognizable ingredients) in my kitchen for just that very situation. I love these 10 ways to enhance Annie’s mac + cheese that help make it into a more legitimate meal. shells with white cheddar is my favorite!!

 

 

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Here are some great recipes from the last week – a lot of red, white, and blue…and grilling! Stay tuned in the next couple days for a post covering just about everything you want to know about protein and another on figuring out food labels. Is there another nutrition-related topic you’d like cleared up? Let me know in the comments!

strawberry cream popsicles. I know….more popsicles…but it IS popsicle season!

summer fruit pecan crisp, as if you need another excuse to eat all of the delicious summer fruits

eggplant + chickpea coconut curry, because you can’t go wrong with curry

tomato, peach, + avocado bruschetta is a summer twist on a classic

have a backyard bbq side dish and a perfect lunch the following day with the leftovers of mediterranean lentil salad

how about red, white, + blueberry caprese salad for your 4th of july celebration?!

….or American flag jello?!

cornbread + homemade hot dog buns all rolled into one….does it get any better??

greek salad is always a winner

grilled bbq chicken pizza – my favorite homemade crust only takes 45 minutes (totally worth the wait) or if you’re really in a rush, make a quick flatbread crust by blending 1.5 cups flour, 1/2 cup water, and a pinch of salt in a food processor or by hand. No rising required – just roll it out and add your toppings! Make half of the flour whole wheat when making your crust for added fiber and nutrients!

grilled tofu is a great meatless option for summer cookouts

this summer chopped salad literally combines everything wonderful about summer food into one bowl

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LOTS of recipes this week! Anyone making anything new for 4th of July next week? If you still need ideas, I think you’ll find a few below – enjoy!

stir fry is a great summer meal – quick, easy, loads of veggies….this honey ginger pineapple stir fry even has caramelized cashews!

if you love polenta as much as I do, then these easy polenta chips need to happen ASAP.

how cute are these little chickpea sliders??

this grilled vietnamese steak and vermicelli bowl is a nice change from the typical steak dinner

millet is one of my very favorite grains, but I haven’t tried it for breakfast yet!

raspberry lemon yogurt popsicles would also make a completely suitable summer breakfast addition

I’m not a huge fan of kale salads so far, but I have a feeling that a grilled kale ceasar might change that

grilled fruit is amazing and this grilled pineapple relish would be killer on some grilled chicken or pork!

mini blueberry pancakes!!

samosas are flaky little dough pockets packed with flavorful ingredients…like veggies and goat cheese! they’re often fried, but these are baked. healthy bonus!

I fully intend on making this simple summer chickpea salad for a cookout next week…and trying not to eat it all before I get there. no promises on that last part though.

can’t forget dessert…and another reason to buy the strawberries and raspberries that are insanely delicious right now

to finish up this week, these are my exact thoughts on why “cheat days” aren’t such a great idea. moderation is always the best way to go for weight loss or health in general.

 

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I can certainly tell that the first day of summer is just around the corner – it has really started to heat up the past few days!! Not to mention the ever-present humidity. Some cool summer recipes are definitely in order this week.

how about a swirled tropical fruit smoothie to cool things off? it’s so pretty!

tzatziki chicken salad would be great on a sandwich or salad for a healthy, filling lunch

pork souvlaki with pineapple + cucumber salsa makes a great new summer grill meal

can’t go wrong with grilled salmon…especially when topped with avocado! talk about some delicious healthy fats!

get your meat fanatic to consume a few veggies by….wrapping them in steak

this breakfast sandwich looks incredible. you could totally make your own sun-dried tomatoes if you have a food dehydrator (which I have been meaning to do…)

you know what else makes a great summer breakfast? overnight oatmeal. just combine 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 cup milk, and 1/2 cup yogurt in an airtight container and refrigerate overnight. all you have to do in the morning is add toppings (fruit, peanut butter, etc.) and eat!

feta + herb chickpea quinoa sliders would make a fun appetizer or light dinner

can’t wait for peach season to roll around – these peaches roasted in amaretto (or sub almond extract) look outrageous. with ice cream?! YUM. I think you could totally do these on a pan over the grill too.

What are your favorite summer foods or recipes you can’t wait to make?