Sunday, December 29, 2013

5 Years Down and Ready For 2014!!

eNourishent turns five this week! I can't believe that FIVE whole years have passed and what an awesome journey it has been so far! Over the years I have enjoyed developing recipes, cooking away, learning how to snap decent food shots, networking with other bloggers/food companies/nutrition/ news organizations and most of all watching my blog readership and following grow. I want to thank all of you who read and support my blog, I soooo appreciate you all and hope you stay with me for many more years to come!! Always feel free to reach out to me with questions/comments at any time.

2013 has been a fun one… I featured guest recipes from the California Dried Plum Board, created a Copy Cat Recipe segment, linked up with Udi's to feature some gluten-free products and recipes, continued to participate in the monthly Recipe ReDux challenge, and created a bunch more yummy and healthy recipes that I hope you all enjoyed. Here is a look at some of my favorite recipes from this past year. Cheers to a happy and healthy 2014 :)

Cauliflower Faux-sotto

Mint Chocolate Chip Protein Bars

Mini Oatmeal Raisin Bar Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwiches

Quadruple Berry Spinach Salad

Fiesta Turkey Burgers

Maple Brown Sugar Protein Bars

Eggplant Grilled Cheese

Fall Brussels Sprouts Salad

Cinnamon Crunch Protein Bars


Saturday, December 21, 2013

Recipe ReDux Post # 18 Super Easy Three Bean Salad With Black Eyed Peas and Tomatoes

The holidays are in full swing and December is flying by!! Recipe ReDux for this month is even looking further ahead toward January with a theme of “Good Luck Foods”.  We were asked to share a festive and healthy dish that can be served on New Year’s Day to bring good luck. I typically serve black eyed peas on New Years as they are historically thought to bring great fortune! (Check the interesting background info on this HERE. One of my favorite dishes that I have created with black eyed peas is a Jambalaya, but this time I wanted to use them in a salad.  My family likes to have ham on New Years day with a few simple side dishes and I thought a three bean salad incorporating black eyed peas would be delish….and it was! Adding the black eyed peas to the traditional three bean salad worked nicely, as did the tomato garnish.  This dish is super easy to whip up. It can be made ahead of time as well, making it a great choice to make at the end of the holiday season when you may be pretty tired of involved and intense cooking.  Plus it has got plenty of fiber, vitamins, minerals and protein too!  So make a batch to enjoy this New Years (or anytime) and check out all the other “good luck recipes” created by the talented Recipe ReDux bloggers!!


1 can kidney beans
1 can garbanzo beans
1 can black eyed peas
2 cups cut green beans, fresh or frozen thawed
1.5 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup reduced fat Italian or balsamic vinaigrette dressing (*use a gluten-free brand such as Marzetti® if you are on a gluten-free diet, I used Trader Joes Fat Free Balsamic Vinaigrette)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup halved grape tomatoes (optional)


Rinse the canned kidney and garbanzo beans and black eyed peas well and place in a large bowl. Wash and chop the green beans into 1 inch long pieces and cook by either boiling them in a pot of water or steaming in a pyrex dish in an half inch of water until tender still slightly firm (about 3-4 minutes) Run the green beans under cold water in a strainer to cool, drain and put in the bowl with the rest of the beans. In a small bowl whisk the dressing, oregano and olive oil together and pour over the beans.  Mix well until evenly coated. Add salt and pepper to taste and place in the fridge to chill and marinate at least 30-60 minutes before serving.  Garnish with the chopped tomatoes


If you’re watching sodium use low sodium canned beans.

Makes 6 cups, 12 servings

Serving size: 1/2 cup Calories 130 Protein 5 g Carb 22 g Fiber 6 g Sugars 5 g Fat 2.5 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium  290 mg
* nutritional analysis will vary depending on type of dressing used and if salt is added


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Single Serve Pumpkin Apple Baked Oats

A nice warm and comforting treat for breakfast! If you want to make a similar recipe that yields more servings, you can also try my Crockpot Pumpkin Apple Oats!
1/3 cup rolled oats (if you are on a gluten-free diet use a gluten-free brand such as Bob’s Red Mill or Trader Joes GF)
1 egg white (2 Tablespoons liquid egg whites)
2 tablespoons pumpkin puree
¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
a dash of cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl.  Spoon into a small ramiken or small oven safe baking dish coated with cooking spray and bake for about 30 minutes, until top is firm and inside is slightly soft.
Makes one serving
Serving size 1 baked oat dish  Calories 200 Protein 7g Carb 42g Fiber 4g Sugars 21 g Fat 2 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium 55 mg  


Monday, November 25, 2013

Fall Brussels Sprouts Salad

Here is an easy and delicious salad that's perfect for a holiday side.



5 cups Brussels sprouts, stems trims and quartered
1 cup chopped apple (Gala, Pink Lady work well)
¼ cup slivered or chopped almonds
¼ cup golden raisins
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
cooking spray


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Rinse and trim stems of Brussels sprouts and cut into halves. Place on baking sheet coated with cooking spray and roast for 20-30 minutes, (turn/toss them half way through) until lightly browned and tender but firm when pierced with a fork. Let Brussels sprouts cool and set aside. In a medium bowl whisk together the olive oil, vinegar and lemon juice. Chop up the cooled Brussels sprouts and add them along with the apples, raisins and almonds to the bowl and mix well until evenly coated with dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste. Chill in the fridge if not serving immediately.

Makes 6 cups 6 servings

Serving size: 1 cup Calories 160 Protein 4 g Carb 20 g Fiber 5 g Sugars 11 g Fat 9 g Saturated fat 1 g Sodium 120 mg


Monday, November 11, 2013

In The News: Eating Chocolate May Lower Body Fat??

More possible good news for chocolate lovers…a new study indicates that higher chocolate consumption may be associated with lower levels of body fat!?  The research was actually conducted in Europe focusing only on the adolescent population, with over 1400 participants ages 12.5-17.5.  The study revealed that higher consumption of chocolate was associated with lower levels of total fat (all throughout the body) and central fat (in the abdomen), independently of whether or not the individual participates in regular physical activity and of diet, among other factors. 

Chocolate is rich in a type of flavonoid called catechins, which are very protective against heart disease "due to their antioxidant, antithrombotic, anti-inflammatory and antihypertensive effects" note the researchers   It is possible that catechins may also have an effect on both cortisol production and insulin sensitivity that could help regulate weight and obesity potential.  

I think it is too early to tell and the authors of the study did still point out that it is important to consume chocolate in moderation.  In addition, the authors also noted that they did not have info on the type of chocolate consumed.  Not all chocolate is created equal either, pure dark chocolate is likely to be more beneficial than consuming milk chocolate and that found in mixed products such as junky candies in my opinion and from what I have seen in previous scientific literature. Still this research is promising and it will be interesting to see what additional studies tell us.  I'm sure many of you are rooting for chocolate for sure!!

A great review of the study can be found here and here is the link to the original study abstract that was published recently in the journal Nutrition

And enjoy a little chocolate by breaking of a small square from a high quality dark chocolate bar or in my Chocolate Walnut Coconut Bites and Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Protein Bar recipes!


Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sweet and Spicy Yogurt

A Fall inspired recipe, so simple - but clean, delicious and great for breakfast, a snack or even a healthy dessert!
One 6 ounce container of plain non-fat yogurt
1-2 teaspoons (packed) of brown sugar
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Mix all of the above and eat! (you can even do this right in the yogurt container itself).  Chill if not serving immediately
Makes one serving
Serving size one container of yogurt Calories 120 Protein 9 g Carb 20 g Fiber 0 g Sugars 20 g Fat 0 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium 140 mg


Monday, October 21, 2013

Recipe ReDux Post # 16 Crockpot Pumpkin Apple Oats

The October Recipe ReDux theme is “No-Casserole Crock Pot,” meaning we were encouraged to “craft a healthy new recipe” in a crock pot that is somewhat non-traditional. So....I have absolutely NO experience with crock pots- I do not own one and have never used one so this challenge was completely new territory for me to explore. However I decided to borrow a crock pot from a good friend and neighbor and go for it!  After all I have been wanting to try a fall inspired oatmeal recipe and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I threw in some healthy and seemingly delicious ingredients to the pot, turned it on and after only two tries it was done!( I had to add a bit more spice and sweetness to get it right from the first trial.) These oats are creamy, spicy, lightly sweet and are reminiscent of pumpkin and apple pie! You can also personalize them with fun toppings like walnuts, more fruit, butter or a drizzle of maple syrup. I really enjoyed using the crock pot and am considering getting one of my own so you all may be seeing some more crock pot recipes on my blog.  But for now try these yummy and easy oats and check out the other creative crock pot goodies from the Recipe Redux group.
1 cup rolled oats (if you are on a gluten-free diet use a gluten-free brand such as Bob’s Red Mill or Trader Joes GF)
1.5 cups water
2 cups unsweetened almond milk (or skim milk)
½ cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
1 cup peeled, chopped apples
3-4 packed tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
a dash of salt (optional)
Combine all the ingredients in a small to medium crock pot (I used a 3 quart size) and heat on low for 3-5 hours depending on desired consistency and that’s it!
Makes 4 cups, 4 servings
Serving size 1 cup  Calories 200 Protein 3 g Carb 36 g Fiber 5 g Sugars 18 g Fat 3 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium 55 mg 


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Eggplant Grill Cheese

A creative and lower carb take on the grill cheese..
1 large eggplant, sliced into ¼-1/2 inch thick rounds (about 8)
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 one ounce slices of cheese (A white cheese works great like gouda, white cheddar, mozzarella, jack, Havarti, I used Trader Joes Yogurt Cheese)
Optional add ins: (chopped olives, sliced tomatoes, fresh basil, tomato sauce)
Wash, dry and cut the eggplant into rounds and place on a clean plate or cutting board. Add one tablespoon of olive oil to a small dish and brush the slices lightly with the oil on each side. Coat a large pan with the other tablespoon of olive oil and put on medium high heat. Add the slices, cover and heat for 4-5 minutes until lightly browned, flip over and heat for another 4-5 minutes.  Remove four of the rounds and set aside. Put one slice of cheese on each of the four rounds (I break the slices up to layer the on the slice of eggplant to cheese does not hang off the sides.) Sprinkle on some of the additional add-ins if desired. Then, top them with the other four rounds, cover and heat for about 1 -2 minutes until the cheese is melted. You will likely have to eat these babies with a fork and a knife J
Makes 4 “sandwiches”, four servings
Serving size 1 “sandwich-2 slices of eggplant plus 1 slice cheese) Calories 160 Protein 7 g Carb 8 g Fiber 4 g Sugars  3 g Fat 12 g Saturated fat 6 g Sodium 140 mg
*results will vary based on cheese used. You can lower the fat and calorie content further by using low fat cheese and no oil/ cooking spray


Thursday, October 10, 2013

Healthy and Easy French Toast

A basic yummy low fat French toast recipe!
2 slices bread (if you are on a gluten-free diet use gluten-free bread, I used Canyon Bakehouse)
2 tablespoons egg whites
2 tablespoons milk (I used unsweetened Vanilla almond milk)
1/8 teaspoon vanilla
a dash or two of cinnamon
cooking spray
Mix the egg whites, milk, vanilla and cinnamon in a small to medium shallow bowl. Dip each slice of bread in the mixture twice, coating each side.  Coat a medium sixed pan with cooking spray on medium-high heat and place the coated bread slices on there.  Heat about 1-2 minutes each side, until lightly browned.  Serve with your favorite toppings- maple syrup, fruit and yogurt etc.
Makes 1 serving
Serving size: 2 slices (not including choice of toppings)Calories 160 Protein 9 g Carb 25 g Fiber  3 g Sugars 3 g Fat 2.5 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium  330 mg *
* Nutrition facts will vary based on type of bread used


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

In The News: Eating More Vegetable Fats and Protein From Nuts, Legumes and Soy (Starting At A Young Age) May Decrease Benign Breast Disease Risk Later In Life

It's no secret that plant based fats and proteins like nuts and beans are good for one's health and a recent study has added more weight to the already mounting pile of positive scientific evidence. Researchers in Boston and St. Louis have just released a study of over 9000 females (as part of the Growing Up Today Study) that revealed those with higher intake of vegetable fat from nuts (namely peanut butter) and vegetable protein from beans, lentils and soybeans had significantly lower risks of developing benign breast disease later in life.  A serving daily was inversely associated with risk and thus the scientists concluded "Girls with a family history of breast cancer had significantly lower risk if they consumed these foods or vegetable fat. In conclusion, consumption of vegetable protein, fat, peanut butter, or nuts by older girls may help reduce their risk of BBD as young women". You can check out the abstract from the study HERE. So grab a handful of nuts for a snack, or spread PB on whole grain bread, crackers or fruit. Enjoy nut butter in my Protein Bar recipes. Try more beans in soups, stews or salads.  My Lentil Taco FillingVegetarian Chili and Edamame Succotash recipes are delicious ways to add lentils, beans and soy to your day!


Friday, September 13, 2013

In The News: Fruits, Especially Berries, Hot Topics Of Research This Month!

Studies focusing on fruit intake, namely berries, have been plentiful in the news lately- linking fruit consumption to promoting brain health and protecting against diabetes as well as heart attacks.  This is not surprising because there has been years of great data on fruits and veggies and their positive effects on the body.  Eating a variety of fruits (and vegetables) daily supplies plenty of vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytochemicals and it seems like everyday more exciting research comes to light about their amazing powers!

Check out THIS RECENT REVIEW ARTICLE, that summarizes how eating berry fruits is great for the brain and may help prevent age-related memory loss and other changes.  Berries are quite the superfood, also evidenced by a STUDY released early this year noting that eating three or more servings of blueberries and strawberries per week may help women reduce their risk of a heart attack by as much as one-third!

Eating more fruit is also linked to a lowering ones risk of Type 2 Diabetes, according to a NEW STUDY led by Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers.  People who ate at least two servings each week of whole fruits — namely blueberries, grapes, and apples — reduced their risk for type 2 diabetes by as much as 23%! The key here is eating whole fruits NOT juices because the researchers found quite the opposite with higher juice intake.....those who consumed one or more servings of fruit juice per day actually increased their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by as much as 21%.  In fact, replacing three servings of juice per week for whole fruits would result in a 7% reduction in diabetes risk!

So grab a piece of fruit and enjoy!  And try some of my fruity recipes like Quadruple Spinach Berry Salad, Raspberry Yogurt Pops, Winter Fruit Salad or Oat Pancakes!


Friday, September 6, 2013

Non- Instant Oats....In An Instant!

Tired of those instant oatmeal packets?? If you prefer the hearty texture and filling nature of old fashioned rolled oats to instant but lack the time to prepare them I have an answer for you- SOAKING!  Soaking rolled oats 12-24 hours (or at least overnight) hydrates and fluffs them up quite nicely, so part of the “cooking” is done for you.

Here’s what you do:

1.)    Soaking process

Add 1 cup oats to a bowl/container, cover with 2 cups warm filtered water.  (If you want to soak more than 1 cup, then just add 2 cups of water to every additional cup of dry oats you want to soak. 

Cover with a towel or lid and soak 12-24 hours on the counter top.

2.)    Preparation.  Rinse and drain the oats in a strainer/colander and then you can cook them in a pot or microwave. 1 cup dry rolled oats yield about 1.5 cups after soaking. Add the desired amount of liquid (like milk or water, which is generally not much since the oats are already hydrated) and cook on the stove top on medium heat for 2-3 minutes.  Even faster, put the oats in a microwave dish and heat in high for about 1 minute per ½ cup of soaked oats.  You can add a splash of liquid before heating if you like them moist/more soupy.  If you microwave them without liquid they have a more separated/flaky texture like brown rice. 

3.)    Add your favorite toppings if desired and serve!!  That’s it. Soaking reminds me of the crockpot theory, leaving them to soak is doing a lot of the work for you.

Another thing to note: There is some research that suggests that fermenting oats improves there digestibility and makes them more nutritious. If you are interested in this and/or find oats difficult to digest you can take things a step further, and ferment the oats, which involves adding an acid, like lemon juice, whey, kefir or vinegar and a little bit of flour before soaking.  There is more information on this process HERE and I may possibly write a post on it in the future as well. 
Nutrition Info:

One cup dry oats Calories 300  Protein  g Carb  g Fiber 8  g Sugars 0 g Fat  g Saturated fat g Sodium  0 mg


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Recipe ReDux Post # 16: "Carrot Cake” Yogurt

The Recipe ReDux theme for August was “food in a jar”.  I was excited to develop a recipe incorporating this super fun concept, in fact it was the perfect opportunity to finalize one that I have been working on lately.  My daughter loves to eat yogurt and I am always attempting come up with creative ways to serve it.  One night after she had finished dinner and asked for her yogurt, I spied some leftover grated carrots in the fridge that I had used to make muffins with. I threw some in with the vanilla yogurt, along with some raisins and she loved it.  The next time I added walnuts to the mix along with some spices and “Carrot Cake Yogurt” has now become one of her favorite yogurt treats. I enjoy it as well and happy to serve it often since it is chocked full of antioxidants, fiber, omega 3 fats, protein and calcium!  It’s super easy to make too!  So stir some up and check out the other cool jar recipes created by the awesome Recipe Redux group.
6 ounces vanilla flavored nonfat yogurt (Greek or regular)
¼ cup finely grated carrot
1 tablespoon raisins, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped walnuts
1 dash each of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger (optional)
(you can also add a dash of sweetener if desired)
Mix all the above in a small bowl and enjoy! Store in the fridge if not eating immediately.
Makes 1 serving
Serving size: the entire recipe Calories 250 Protein 14 g Carb 38 g Fiber 2 g Sugars 29 g Fat 5 g Saturated fat 0.5 g Sodium 25 mg*
*results will vary based on yogurt used 


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Nutrition 411- Super Snacks!

Being a registered dietitian and a mom, I am constantly being asked about ideas for healthy, easy and yummy snacks to bring to school. work, while traveling etc.  I have been meaning to highlight some recipes and product ideas on this topic and I got just the motivational nudge I needed the other day...  The kind folks at Udi's offered to send me some of their new and current gluten-free snack foods to blog about as well as post some of my own recipes- a perfect win-win!! I really enjoyed trying some of their breads/rolls in my June BBQ post so I was seriously stoked to check out some of their snack foods as well!!

When I received their care package I was excited to get some of their simple but delicious Vanilla Granola plus another yummy flavor that I had not tried before- Blueberry Cashew Clusters, which has 10% of the Daily Value for Iron and 25% Daily Value for Zinc- 2 key minerals that can fall short in gluten-free diets.

A couple of new awesome snack products they sent me (which are quite tasty) were their Ancient Grains Crisps and Chewy Granola Bars. The Ancient Grains Crisps- (Aged Cheddar or Simply Sea Salt flavored) are a great chip alternative and are very reasonably low in calories, sodium and fat for a snack food. Their Granola Bars are chewy and not overly sweet, plus they have a decent 3 grams of fiber and 140 calories.

Some ridiculously amazing indulgences they sent me were some muffins and new cookie flavors that were really good and nice to have on hand for when I want an occasional sweet treat and don't want to bake it myself.

In general, the basic snacks that I tell my patients/friends/family to go with are fruit, nuts, low fat string cheese, air popped popcorn, PB+celery, carrots and hummus... For those not on gluten-free diets- whole wheat pretzels, 1/2 pita with veggies and hummus or light laughing cow cheese spread inside are other favorites.

For recipes check out my SNACKS section and learn about my favs like home made protein bars, smoothies and other yummy treats. I also wrote a snack article you can check out HERE.

Happy snacking and thanks Udi's!!

(Note: I was provided with products by Udi's to review but all of the views and opinions stated in this post are my own.)


Saturday, August 10, 2013

In The News: Get More Sleep AND Eat A Big Breakfast!

Two interesting pieces of research were in the news this week that I wanted to share.... First off,  "sleep deprivation is linked to junk food cravings"!  Researchers at UC Berkeley (where I got my nutrition degree-yay!) just released their study which showed that participants were more inclined to choose unhealthy snack and junk food when they were sleep deprived. Less healthy foods were more desirable after a lack of sleep. In addition to observing these eating behavior changes, participants also underwent  functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) first after a normal night’s sleep and next, after a sleepless night. Researchers found " impaired activity in the sleep-deprived brain’s frontal lobe, which governs complex decision-making, but increased activity in deeper brain centers that respond to rewards." So they were actually able to see changes in the brain to explain the poor food choices!You can read a summary of the study HERE and an abstract of the study itself is located HERE.

Another study released in the Journal of Obesity has shown that waking up and eating a larger breakfast (even as much as 700 calories), a modest lunch a smaller dinner promotes weight loss and may even reduce risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Two groups of women were each assigned to eat a 1400 calorie diet- the big breakfast group ate 700 calories at breakfast, 500 at lunch and 200 at dinner while the big dinner group ate 200 calories at breakfast, 500 at lunch and 700 at dinner. The result? The women from the big breakfast group lost more weight and had larger decreases in insulin, glucose and triglyceride levels than the women from the big dinner group. Check out a summary of the research HERE and the study's journal abstract HERE.

An for some healthy morning ideas to start the day out right, check out my Breakfast section!


Friday, August 2, 2013

Raspberry Yogurt Pops

A healthy, delicious and easy to make frozen treat!
Two 8 ounce containers of nonfat or lowfat raspberry yogurt (I used Trader Joes Organic low fat raspberry variety)
Generous ½ cup of fresh raspberries, washed and halved
Sweetener to taste, if desired, (I added 1 teaspoon of maple sugar)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (also optional)
Six 3 ounce popsicle holders with sticks
Mix all of the above ingredients in a small bowl. Carefully spoon all of the mixture into the popsicle holders, add sticks and freeze for 3-4 hours, until set.
Makes 6 popsicles

Serving size: 1 popsicle of recipe  Calories 70 Protein  3 g Carb  12 g Fiber 0 g Sugars 9 g Fat  1g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium 35 mg *
*Results will vary depending on type of yogurt used, above analysis done with low fat yogurt


Saturday, July 27, 2013

Lemon “Poppy Seed” Pancakes

I enjoyed the lemon + chia seed combo in the protein bar recipe tat I posted last month so I decided to try it in pancakes as well!


1 cup oat flour (if you are on a gluten free diet use a brand such as Bob’s Red Mill or you can make your own to by grinding gluten free oats in food processor)
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
¼ cup egg whites
1 cup nonfat milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-3 teaspoons lemon zest (peel grated from fresh lemon)
2 teaspoon chia seeds


In a small bowl combine the baking powder, flour and brown sugar together. To a larger bowl add the egg whites, vanilla, lemon zest, chia seeds and milk and whisk together. Then slowly whisk in the flour mixture until a smooth, thin batter is formed. Let stand for a few minutes. Add ¼ cup (for 1 pancake) to a non stick skillet, or one coated with cooking spray and heat on high heat for 1-2 minutes each side. Repeat with ¼ cup mixture 5 more times for a total of six small pancakes. Makes 6 pancakes.

Serving size: 1 pancake Calories 90 Protein 3 g Carb 13 g Fiber 2 g Sugars 6 g Fat 1.5 g Saturated fat 0 g Sodium 140 mg


Sunday, July 21, 2013

Recipe ReDux Post # 15 Almond Coconut Rolled Dates

The Recipe ReDux theme for July is travel snacks and we were encouraged to post our favorite creations of treats/mini meals for on the go.  Fruit, turkey jerky, baby carrots and home made protein bars are standards in our household but another portable recipe I developed recently is centered around dates (literally!).  I buy and enjoy medjool dates from Trader Joes and use them in salads, smoothies, in my Date Walnut Protein Bar recipe and even as a snack by themselves.  In the past I  have also noshed on store bought coconut rolled dates as naturally sweet dessert and those were the inspiration for this recipe.  But I took it one step further by dipping them in almond butter (which has been jazzed up with some vanilla and brown sugar) BEFORE rolling them in coconut and the result was insanely delicious :) I generally keep these on the fridge for the long term, but they will travel well if you put them in little muffin liners and then into a baggie or container to take with for a few hours journey.  Hope you enjoy these at home or on the road and check out the rest of the tasty travel fare created by the talented Recipe ReDux group!
12 pitted whole medjool dates
¼ cup creamy almond butter
¼ cup finely shredded unsweetened coconut
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
parchment or wax paper
12 whole almonds (optional, I used honey roasted)
Mix the almond butter, vanilla and brown sugar in a small bowl. Spread the coconut out on a piece of parchment/wax paper (or clean plate) and set aside another empty piece of parchment/wax paper (or second clean plate) to set the finished dates on.  Dip each date in the almond butter mixture to coat, roll in coconut, place one almond firmly in the center for decoration and set on paper/plate. Repeat this step 11 more times for a total of 12 rolled dates. (note: one rolled date will need about 1 teaspoon almond butter and 1 teaspoon coconut to be completely coated). Chill in the fridge if not serving immediately.
Makes 12 servings
Serving size: 1 rolled date  Calories 110 Protein 2 g Carb17 g Fiber 2 g Sugars 14g Fat 5 g Saturated fat 1.5 g Sodium 25 mg


Friday, July 5, 2013

Arugula Apricot and Almond Salad

A refreshing and easy Summer salad for one


1-1.5 packed cups of arugula
1 large apricot
7  almonds, chopped (I used honey roasted)
1 Tablespoon crumbled goat cheese
dressing of choice (my recipes for Maple Mustard, Strawberry Vinaigrette and the Easy Version taste great in this salad, as well as good ol’ Trader Joes Fat Free Vinaigrette!)


Wash and dry the arugula and apricot and chop.  Add them all to a medium sized bowl. Top with the goat cheese and almonds, toss with dressing and serve. Chill if not serving immediately.

Makes 1 servings

Serving size: 1/4th of recipe cup (not including dressing) Calories 100  Protein 4  g Carb 7 g Fiber 2 g Sugars 1 g Fat 7  g Saturated fat 2 g Sodium   110 mg


Saturday, June 29, 2013

Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies

This was my first attempt using almond meal in a recipe and I was a bit skeptical, but these cookies came out great.  They have a light airy, chewy texture and the slight richness of the almond mixed with the dark chocolate pairs nicely.  And, they are grain-free, gluten free, lower sugar and lower carb too!
1.75 cup almond meal
1/2 teaspoon baking powder (if you want very thin flat cookies use baking soda)
1 egg
1/3 cup margarine, slightly softened (preferably an all natural brand such as Earth Balance)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup chocolate chips (*use a gluten-free oats such as Nestle if you are on a gluten-free diet)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix almond meal and baking powder/soda in a small to medium bowl. In a larger bowl, mix the brown sugar, egg and margarine. Slowly start adding the almond meal mixture to the larger bowl with the egg/sugar mixture until a soft thick dough is formed. Stir in the chips.
Refrigerate the dough overnight or at least a few hours for best results.
Drop the cookie dough in rounded spoonfuls (or use a small ice cream scooper) onto a baking sheet to make 24 cookies. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until lightly browned.
Makes about 20 cookies
Serving size: 1 cookie Calories 130 Protein 3 g Carb 10 g Fiber 1 g Sugars 8 g Fat 9 g Saturated fat 1.5 g Sodium 70 mg


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