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Slow cooker Blade Roast

I’m still learning about all the different cuts of meat. I’m much better than I was a few years ago but sometimes it’s still a bit overwhelming or confusing when you get the grocery store and see all these different cuts.  I found blade roast on sale a few weeks ago and decided to give it a go in my slow cooker. It turned out amazing and is super easy to make!

Ingredients

  • 1-2 lb blade roast
  • 1 tbsp avocado or olive oil
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp garlic powder

Directions

In a skillet heat oil on high. While it’s heating season meat with garlic powder. Place meat in the skillet and brown on both sides, approximately 2-3 minutes, or until it’s nicely browned. This will help lock in the juices. Add beef broth, minced garlic, and seared blade roast to your crockpot. Cook on low for 7-8 hours.

Pictured with butternut squash fries, recipe coming soon!

 

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15 minute Healthy Bun less Big Mac Bowl

Healthy and Big Mac in the same sentence is hard to imagine right? Well let me tell you, it is possible! This will kick any Big Mac craving you’re having in the butt, keep your carbs low and help you stay on track with your goals.

There is a fun optional ingredient that some of you might think, “What the heck is that?” For that reason, I’m going to drop this awesome link so you can read all about one of my favorite healthy ingredient swaps… nutritional yeast aka nooch!

This recipe can be put on top of any of your favorite vegetables. I’ve tried it with spinach, spaghetti squash, and zoodles, but feel free to use anything you feel would compliment the beef or taste great in a Big Mac.

Ingredients

  • 1lb extra lean ground beef
  • 1 tbsp. avocado (or olive) oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • ¼ cup low-fat low-calorie Thousand Island dressing
  • 3 tbsp. ketchup (or I liked to replace it with 3 tbsp. tomato sauce +2 tsp. coconut sugar)
  • 2-3 tbsp. yellow mustard
  • 2-4 tbsp. nutritional yeast (optional)*
  • Tomatoes, diced (fresh, not canned)
  • Pickles, sliced and halved

Directions

Heat oil in a large frying pan, add diced onions. Sautee onions until their translucent, approximately 3 to 5 minutes. Add ground beef, cook through and strain. Combine Thousand Island dressing, ketchup (or tomato sauce & coconut sugar) and yellow mustard. Add sauce and nutritional yeast to beef. If it’s not saucy enough for you, add extra dressing, tomato sauce/Ketchup, and mustard, 1tbsp at a time. Add diced tomato and pickles and stir. Serve with your favorite vegetable. Top with ketchup and mustard, also optional. If you’re on the 21day fix then follow the directions below for assembly.

For my fellow fixers: 1 red 1-2 green (customizable), .5-1 orange (depending on how many extra tablespoons you add to the recipe).

When you’re assembling the bowl, measure out your vegetable of choice, then the meat mixture, then the diced tomato & pickles.

*4 tbsp. of nutritional yeast = 1 protein. I personally use it to get that boost of B12 and feel that 4 tbsp. throughout the whole recipe doesn’t affect the protein count much in one portion, so I chose not to change my count.

 

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Hemp Heart Tzatziki

What’s the first thing you think of when you hear the word superfood?

It’s great for you, right? Right, but also wrong. Many “Superfoods” that get spoken about are amazing for you, however, because they are so nutrient-dense this also means they are most of the time very calorie dense.

I’m always trying to get as much of that good stuff in as possible without breaking the calories. Hemp hearts are an amazing example of this. Just 3 tablespoons are 170 calories, 13 grams of fat, 3 grams of carbs, 3 grams of fiber, and 10 grams of protein! They’re also packed with vitamins and minerals. They can be added to your shakes, yogurt or recipes.

I found a lot of recipes online for Hemp heart tzatziki, however when calculating out how many calories per serving I almost hit the roof. In an attempt to lighten up this recipe up…

Ingredients

  • ½ cup hemp hearts
  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 Tbsp tahini
  • 1 Tbsp dill
  • 1 Tbsp mint
  • ½ English cucumber, julienned
  • Water (only if you need to adjust the thickness, 1 tbsp at a time)

Directions

Add the first 5 ingredients to your food processor or blender. I used my Blendtec twister jar since it’s a small recipe. Once everything is blended add fresh herbs and diced cucumber, sprinkle with a bit more spices as garnish and serve!

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Healthy Tarka Daal

At the beginning of this year, I told myself I was going to make more vegetarian recipes. That lasted a whole month… haha. I woke up yesterday really craving some Indian food so I suggested to Tyler that we do healthy Indian food for lunches this week. Plus it gave me a chance to test out some new recipes.

One thing I love about Indian food is the fullness of flavors & the fact that there are so many varieties of Vegetarian dishes.  I had made butter chickpeas a few months back and they were delicious. Only negative about Vegetarian meals is the high amount of carbs when you’re macro counting.

I decided this time I was going to make actual butter chicken (with light coconut milk, of course) & Tarka Daal.

If you try this out don’t forget to leave a comment to let me know how it turned out!

Ingredients

  • 5 cups Chana Daal or yellow split peas
  • 6 cups water
  • 2 medium or 3 small tomatoes (diced)
  • 5-6 cloves garlic
  • Thumb size piece of ginger sliced into small matchsticks
  • 1 ½ tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder (or more to taste)
  • 1 tsp. salt

For Garnish

  • Handful of fresh cilantro
  • 1 onion, sautéed

Directions

Mix all the spices, fresh garlic, fresh ginger, and tomatoes in a bowl and placed it on the side. Rinse your chana daal or split peas several times then add to your pot along with the 6 cups of water. Make sure you use a pot that has extra room above it once you add the peas and water cause you will need the space to let it have a rolling boil. Add the small bowl of spices to the water & pea mixture and bring to a boil and stir once. Once it’s at a rolling boil start your timer for 20 minutes. At 20 minutes try the liquid for taste. At this time if you think your mixture is missing something you can add it here. (Extra chili powder, salt, cumin etc.) Let it boil for another 20-25 minutes or until at the texture you like. During the last few minute of the cook, sauté some onions with a bit of avocado oil or olive oil. Top with sautéed onions and cilantro. Serve with rice or alone.

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Corn Flake Crusted Chicken Strips

My idea of cooking for myself as a teenager was always microwaved KD or chicken strips from a box. I can defiantly say that my cooking & eating habits have changed, but one thing that hasn’t is my love for those classics. It takes me a bit longer to make them since nothing in my house comes from a box anymore, which just makes everything taste that much better!

I’ve made this recipe a few times and it’s always a hit to whoever I get the opportunity to feed it to. These are good without dip but can be served with honey, honey mustard or really anything you would dip chicken strips in!

Here’s a spin on healthy crispy chicken strips made with corn flakes.

Ingredients

  • 4-5 chicken breasts
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ cup whole wheat flour
  • 4-6 cups of corn flakes

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Working in batches. Slice chicken breasts into strips and dip into whole wheat flour, set aside on a plate. I had quite a bit of remaining flour at the end, but having more helped make sure I was getting a complete coat easily. In another bowl lightly beat 1 egg and crush 2 cups of corn flakes in another bowl. I only use one egg and 2 cups of corn flakes because I don’t want to use more than I have to, so I’ll add to the bowls as I need more. Make sure to crush the corn flakes well because they will stick better to the chicken. Once your bowls are ready, dip flour coated chicken into the egg and then into the cornflakes to coat them. You may have to wash your hands in between, so make sure you’re not too far from the sink! Place on baking sheet and repeat until you’ve filled the sheet. Bake for 15-18 minutes.

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Burrito Bowl

Every time my boyfriend and I go to the states we always seek out Chipotle on our route. We put in our US sim card and start the search for the nearest one. It’s seriously my favorite restaurant, if only they had one in Montreal. It’s fast, healthy, filling… and did I mention? Delicious! They have opened other “similar” restaurants in our area like Quesada and Mucho Burrito, but so far nothing quite lives up to my love for Chipotle.

Obviously, I think to myself I could totally make this myself! While Tyler was in Poland in October I played around with the recipe and found what I felt was pretty close to our favorite pit stop. I recently experimented and made it with quinoa, which is normally a favorite, but not in this recipe! The rice really adds a better less mushy texture to the bowl.

Ingredients

  • 4 large chicken breasts, cut into 1″ cubes (or 8 small)
  • ¼ tsp. cumin
  • ¼ tsp. coriander
  • ¼ tsp. oregano
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp. chipotle powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 2 cups brown rice, cooked
  • 1 cup black beans, soaked and cooked
  • 2 cans corn niblets
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 3 cups romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 recipe easy guacamole

Directions

Two-Three hours before you cook this recipe soak black beans, you can also use canned if that’s easier for you. Cube chicken breasts, evenly seasoning them with spices. Cook on stove top until cooked through, place aside. While you’re cooking the chicken you can start the rice and cook beans. Once all your components are ready you can assemble your burrito bowl!

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Quinoa Crusted Chicken Parmesan

This week I decided to turn a classic healthy, made some quinoa crusted chicken Parmesan! Since the chicken is crusted in carbs I also thought it would be a good idea to double up on the vegetables with a side of steamed broccoli & Brussels sprouts.

Confession. I still haven’t tasted the dish yet cause I only prepared exactly what I needed, but there is no way this isn’t amazing. It looks amazing and smells amazing!

The chicken breasts I had were quite large so I cut them into 3-4oz pieces before I “battered” them with quinoa. As important as it is to eat good food it’s equally as important to portion your food correctly. Portioning them off before you cook them is a good way to control how much food you end up packing in your lunch or put on your plate at dinnertime.

This recipe is quite large. I was able to make 10 portions, and I had a bit extra quinoa left over.

Ingredients

Quinoa Crust

  • 1-cup quinoa, cooked
  • ¼ tsp. parsley
  • ¼ tsp. basil
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp. onion powder
  • ¼ tsp. oregano
  • ¼ tsp. thyme
  • ¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper

Chicken

  • 5 large chicken breasts (10 small)
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 ½ cups mushroom meat sauce (or any tomato sauce)
  • ½ cup shredded cheese

Directions

Cook quinoa as directed on package. * Mix all spices together in a small mixing bowl. Once quinoa is slightly cooled add the spices and mix.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Set out lightly greased baking sheet. Add eggs, flour, and a bit of the quinoa mixture into 3 small mixing bowls. (One in each bowl. Don’t add all the quinoa in at once cause you wouldn’t want to keep left over if it’s touched the egg.) Working in batches dip all the chicken breasts in the flour, egg and then quinoa mixture. I kept a clean plate next to me, dipped my chicken breasts into the flour washed my hands and then continued onto the egg step, once covered with quinoa place on baking sheet. Don’t be surprised if you have leftover ingredients in this step. Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Remove from oven, top with Parmesan cheese, mushroom meat sauce and sprinkle with cheese. Bake for 5 more minutes. Serve immediately or let cool & refrigerate for lunches!

*General rule I use when cooking quinoa is 1 part quinoa to two parts water.

Quinoa chicken Paresan

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Spaghetti Squash Veggie Bake

Do you ever look in your fridge and realize you have way too many veggies? I’m sure it’s happened to the best of us, I know I’ve been there one too many times. Thanks to my new meal-planning app this doesn’t happen to me as often as it used to!

I made this recipe for the first time about 3-4 years ago when I was living with a bunch of roommates. We had all these extra zucchini, peppers, broccoli and spaghetti squash. So I cooked everything, put a jarred pasta sauce on it put cheese on top and threw it in the oven! It was actually really good.

I figured I could make it better if I put some more planning into it the next time I made it. Here’s what I came up with, hope you enjoy!

Remember this recipe is highly customizable to use whatever ingredients you have on hand and if you don’t want to go through the trouble of making your own sauce from scratch you can use your favorite jarred pasta sauce!

Ingredients

  • 1 large spaghetti squash, cooked
  • 3 bell peppers, diced
  • 1 head broccoli, diced and lightly steamed
  • ½ recipe “Mushroom meat sauce”
  • ½ cups Tex Mex cheese, shredded

Directions

Start by cooking your spaghetti squash, either in the oven or in the microwave. Make the mushroom meat sauce recipe, set aside to simmer. Once your spaghetti squash is cooked remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes, then shred it with a fork. Place it in a glass baking dish, spreading across the bottom, then add bell peppers and lightly steamed broccoli. Add the sauce, then cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Set oven on broil until the cheese is how you like it. (I like mine a bit crispy, I find it adds a lot of extra flavors!)

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Mushroom Meat Sauce

I’ve been waiting for the day that I found a meat sauce recipe that Tyler really loves. His normal response when I ask him how the sauce is, “You should ask my mom for her recipe.” I get that some things are just never quite as good as your mom’s, I feel that way about some things too. Sometimes even with the recipe it still doesn’t taste like your mom made it.

I don’t give up on trying, though. I originally made this recipe a week or so ago and I canned 2 large jars of it. Some got eaten just like that and we also used it on zucchini noodles. It turned out so good! I’m sure if you’ve been following my Instagram you can see my newfound love for zucchini noodles.

So this time when I asked him what he thought of my tomato sauce, he didn’t answer right away. He actually went for seconds first and then told me it was really good! Yay!

Serves: 8-10

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp. avocado oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1lb lean ground meat (chicken, turkey, or beef)
  • 1 package mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 5-10 fresh basil leaves, chopped

 

Directions

In a large pot, heat avocado oil, add the diced onions. Sautee the onions until they are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add meat and cook through. Once the meat is the cook, drain any fat in the pot, and then add mushrooms. Once mushrooms are cooked add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer until desired thickness.

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Slow Cooker Butter Chickpeas

One of my goals this year is to include more meatless meals into our diets. We eat A LOT of chicken & shrimp! I feel it’s important not to eat the same things at every meal as I tend to get bored of food I eat too often.

I also love the simplicity of my slow cooker. It gives me the ability to put something on and leave it for a few hours while I’m making other meals for our week. I usually make about 3-4 meals a week. 2 meals on Sunday (one double recipe for our weekday lunches and one regular 4-6 serving recipe for Sunday, Monday and Wednesday evening), one on Tuesday & Thursday after work. Since I finish work earlier on those days it’s actually possible to come home and have a meal ready by 6:30. If I don’t pre-make our Monday and Wednesday night meal we end up eating at 8:30-9 and that just feels way too late to eat.

Tyler took me for my first Indian food experience for our 4 year anniversary back in May. He kept talking about his favorite Indian restaurant; Maison India. I was finally brave enough to ask him to go try it out. I absolutely loved the food, the service was amazing and the restaurant had a beautiful ambiance. My favorite was their butter chicken, so sweet and delicious, and their saag paneer. A friend of mine posted a similar recipe recently and it sparked my curiosity. I did some digging around Pinterest and found what I was looking for – the slow cooker version. It’s practical all the same ingredients just cooked over a longer period of time to let the sauce seep into the chickpeas.

As you all know I always tend to modify my recipes. I felt there was a lot of sauce for the only one can of chickpeas so I used 1 x 28 oz. can and 2 x 19 oz. can. I also normally always soak my chickpeas and make them fresh cause canned has so much sodium, but this week I forgot to soak them the night before so I had to use canned this time around. The original recipe also called for tofu but we’re not really tofu eaters so I excluded that from my recipe.

 

Ingredients

  • 2 28 oz. can garbanzo beans, well rinsed and drained
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can coconut milk (I used light but you could use regularly)
  • 1 cup tomato puree (I used diced tomatoes and put it through the magic bullet to puree it)
  • 1 tbsp. garam masala
  • 1 tbsp. curry powder
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • ⅛ cup cilantro, finely chopped for garnish
  • 1/8 cup Greek yogurt, for garnish

Directions

In a saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the onion. Sauté until onion is translucent about 5-7 minutes. Add in the garlic and stir. Whisk in the coconut milk, tomato puree, garam masala, curry powder, chili powder, ground ginger and a pinch salt/pepper. Cook until slightly thickened, about 5-8 minutes. You can cook the sauce longer if needed. Place chickpeas in the base of slow cooker. Pour the sauce on top. Cook on low for 4-5 hours until thickened. Before serving, garnish with cilantro & a touch of Greek yogurt. Can be served with rice and naan.

Note: If you’re cooking soaking your own chickpeas you will need to precook them in a pot for about 45 minutes or increase the cook time in the slow cooker by an hour or until chickpeas are tender.

Please see original link for tofu instructions!

Original Link: http://delishknowledge.com/slow-cooker-butter-chickpeas/