spotlight

Fall foods and veggies dominate this week’s recipes. The pumpkin recipes are unavoidable at this point too. I did a lot of cooking last week (peanut butter cream pie, homemade cinnamon rolls, chocolate chip cookie cake…..). It was so refreshing to be back in the kitchen & I hope to keep it going! Hope you’re able to do the same with some of these recipes. Enjoy!

trick those taste buds during the upcoming eating holiday season with this cobbler turned juice or maybe these pumpkin cheesecake bites

how to make oatmeal ahead of time. there are really no excuses for skipping the most important meal of the day!

everyone will find something to love in this white bean tortellini soup

this tuscan vegetable stew looks a.m.a.z.i.n.g

don’t let the title of this creamy vegan herb salad dressing scare you. homemade dressing is way healthier than store-bought. and I think I could totally get on the tofu train if it were blended up into a salad dressing.

I have a feeling even veggie haters will be able to get on board with these roasted vegetable stuffed shells

make your halloween dinner fun with these halloween stuffed peppers

italian provolone pull-apart bread would make a perfect snack for watching football (or baseball! GO ROYALS!)

make your lunch time carrot sticks festive with spicy pumpkin chipotle hummus

pecan spiced buttermilk pancakes make for a perfect fall morning

instead of butter, you can spray this pumpkin spice popcorn with a little cooking spray to help the spices stick and you’ve got a healthy, whole grain fall snack!

 

fast food friday

I am all about fast food. No, I’m not talking about what you might find at your local Burger King. I’m talking healthy, real food that I can make at home….fast.

When I get hungry, I need food right.this.very.second….or else things go downhill quickly (just ask my family). Planning ahead is 100% necessary because I can go from being totally fine/not hungry at all to absolutely ravenous in approximately 30 seconds.

Because of this, it helps to have a rough plan for what I’m going to make for dinner each night so I don’t eat my entire kitchen while trying to make up my mind (which is even harder at this point because everything sounds good when you’re hungry!).

Maybe you have the same experience at dinner time? If so, I thought it might be fun to share some of the quick meals I make during the week. Some honestly take as little as 10 minutes, start to finish. Doing some prep on the weekends (washing/chopping vegetables, etc.) has saved me even more time with both cooking and clean-up during the week, but it doesn’t add on a ton of time if I haven’t done those things in advance.

For this week’s quick meal, I’m sharing this salad I made last night:

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My rough plan for dinner was Mexican. This usually means rice/homemade tortillas/chips/sweet potato + beans, corn, avocado, salsa, etc. Varying the “base” makes it feel/taste like a different meal, even though it may be the same ingredients.

For this salad, I turned the oven on broil when I walked in the door (so it would heat faster…it works – try it!). I chopped a sweet potato and tossed it with a little oil, chili powder, cumin, onion powder, smoked paprika, and salt. This went on a foil-lined baking sheet (less clean-up) and into the oven, which I then turned down to 425 degrees.

The sweet potato takes 15-20 minutes, but I spent that time getting out the other ingredients and cleaning up the kitchen. You could also roast the sweet potato in advance & store in the fridge for even quicker prep. To put it all together, I tossed some mixed greens with salsa and topped with leftover chicken (cooked in the slow cooker over the weekend), avocado, and sweet potato.

Easy, filling, healthy, delicious. That’s what fast food should be, right?

spotlight

I hope everyone is having a smooth transition back into the routine of the school year! Enjoy some of the recipes below to help you pack school lunches, get a quick dinner on the table, or enjoy the last bit of summer.

here are 5 great tips to packing a healthy lunch that can be used at any age!

a thai chopped salad with tofu is a nice change

yogurt marinated grilled chicken skewers! make extra for easy lunches!

quinoa can be breakfast too – like this coconut quinoa with dried fruit and nuts

I wish I had a spiralizer so I could make these incredible greek cucumber noodles. genius!

soba noodles with shrimp – can’t go wrong with a recipe that only requires one pan

whole wheat apple zucchini muffins make a quick breakfast or snack you can feel good about

homemade sesame chicken is MUCH better than fast food sesame chicken. less grease. fewer sketchy ingredients. just better.

and if you prefer beef, you can make that at home too.

let’s be honest…it’s kinda chilly this week (compared to what it has been). if you feel like you need some soup, I think this spicy sausage and kale soup would be perfect

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This week’s spotlight includes both recipes and some great articles I’ve come across this week. Enjoy!

I made this sun-dried tomato hummus last week and it was spectacular. Now that I’ve invested in tahini, you can bet this cilantro hummus will be happening very soon.

the cilantro hummus would also be great on this copycat version of my favorite Panera cilantro lime hummus chicken power salad

can’t say no to peanut butter & jelly snack cookies

you get two meals in one with this roasted eggplant and farro salad, which uses the extra farro for another favorite meal – falafel!

Now, for some articles!

did you know that some honey is not actually 100% honey?

another registered dietitian busts 6 very common nutrition-related myths

a good summary on the new “clean eating” craze, which is really just a new way to emphasize eating minimally processed foods like fruits and vegetables

everyone is on a diet (simply defined as the foods you eat) but several special diets are advertised in the media – here are 9 ways to tell if the diet you’re eating is right for you (hint: you should NOT feel deprived or miserable!)

speaking of diets, here is an article on some interesting research regarding making foods “off limits”

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I’m still working on part 3 of the “cost of healthy eating” series, which will compare the health and monetary costs of a vareity of homeade vs. store bought items. In the meantime, here’s a collection of some of the recipes I’ve come across this week!

hummus, avocado, and egg toasts make a quick lunch or snack –  you could use hard boiled eggs for a more portable version!

baked quinoa crusted chicken strips are much healthier than a fried version of this kid favorite!

coconut banana oats would make a great make-ahead breakfast for those rushed weekday mornings

you don’t have to be vegan to enjoy this vegan parmesan cheese on popcorn, sandwiches, vegetables, and more

this feta, tomato, and bell pepper quiche could be made on the weekend and enjoyed on the run all week

my go-to bread recipe is this wheat bread, but this buttermilk honey bread is another great choice, especially for those who prefer white bread

this garlic lemon butter shrimp makes me think I need to start buying shrimp!

Have you tried any new recipes lately?