Sunday, December 9, 2012

Oven Roasted Veggies

Going completely against locavore philosophy, I roasted some sweet potatoes with zucchini (as well as garlic, onion, and fresh oregano). Zucchini are not in season, yet my local grocery still offers them. I decided to buy some and roast them with my sweet potatoes.

Roasted Vegetables
2 sweet potatoes, cut into half moons
1 zucchini squash,sliced into rounds
Garlic cloves (as many as you prefer...I like a lot because they become soft and have an amazing flavor when roasted)
1/4 cup fresh oregano
1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
Bragg's Organic Sprinkle
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Farenheit. Cut vegetables into desired shape. Place veggies along with peeled garlic cloves into a baking dish (I used a glass one). Pour melted coconut oil over the veggies and garlic and mix thoroughly to coat. Sprinkle seasoning and oregano on veggies and mix again. Place in oven for about 25 minutes or until sweet potatoes are tender.

Today I did a super quick 10 minute workout. I have finals for my dietetics program right now so that is all I had time for! I did body weight exercises and some cardio. I'm working towards building muscle and not being skinny fat anymore so weight exercises are very important.

What is your favorite quick exercise?

Do you do exercises with weights? Do you prefer body weight exercises or free weights? 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Pumpkin Chili

I LOVE Game of Thrones.
I also love pumpkin.
Not really pumpkin flavored things because I avoid chemicals, additives, and refined sugar...but I do love pumpkin.
So for all you pumpkin lovers out there, here is a savory pumpkin recipe to change it up from all those pumpkin spice lattes you're drinking from Starbucks =]
Pumpkin Chili
Vegan, Gluten Free
4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
2 cups water
1 can pureed pumpkin (organic if possible, NOT pie filling)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed (can substitute chickpeas. I have before and it was great)
1 bell pepper, diced (or for convenience use 1 cup of frozen bell pepper onion mix)
1/2 onion, diced
1 cup fresh or frozen organic corn  
4 red skinned potatoes, chopped
1 tbsp oil of choice (I use coconut)
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp Bragg's Organic Sprinkle
2 tsp ground chili or cayenne pepper

Place onions or frozen bell pepper mix if using into a large pot over medium heat with 2 tbsp of the vegetable broth. Saute until onions are translucent. Add corn and saute for 2 minutes. Add the rest of the vegetable broth, water, and potatoes as well as the seasonings. Turn heat up and cover until potatoes are tender. Add pumpkin puree and beans and cook another 5 minutes over medium heat.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Another Smoothie Recipe!

I have been drinking smoothies daily still and it seems to have improved my energy and digestion. I try to start my day with a smoothie, and for the past 2 weeks a smoothie with Shakeology in it, but yesterday I was back home from traveling and I was tired. I chose to eat in the morning instead of making a smoothie but then I wasn't very hungry at dinner. I decided to have my smoothie then.

Tropical Mango Green Smoothie
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (from the carton, not canned)
1 cup water
1/2 frozen banana
1/2 cup frozen mango
1/2 cup frozen strawberries
1 cup baby spinach
1 packet/serving vegan Tropical Shakeology or 1 scoop plant protein powder (optional)
Blend and enjoy!!!

I would like to add that I am wanting to only drop a couple pounds but I am working to build muscle. I have never been able to build a lot but I am determined now. I have Brazil Butt Lift Master Series and TurboFire from Beachbody as well as I work out with weights and do cardio on my own at home and occasionally at the gym. I think I will start logging workouts as well as my progress here. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Shakeology: Testing out a new nutritional supplement

Hello all! I have recently added something to my green smoothies...Shakeology from Beachbody.

Full disclosure: I did recently become an Independent Beachbody Coach. This means I'm working as an independent contractor for them.However, I am not paid to write anything about them or the supplements. I am writing this because I use the Shaekology and really like it. So rest assured that this is my honest opinion!

At first, I was worried that it would be your standard nutrition supplement powder or protein powder, full of chemicals and fructose. But I found that it was a WHOLE FOOD nutritional supplement. In order to equal what you get in one serving of Shakeology you would have to spend over $41.00 in groceries and eat more food than most of us are capable of. They even came out with a vegan version (hooray for me!) that uses plant protein instead of whey. They use quality plant proteins instead of soy protein which made me happy as well.
I can't vouch for the flavor of the non-vegan versions of Shakeology (I'm a vegan and allergic to dairy anyway), but I can say that they are made from the same whole food ingredients with the only difference being the protein source. 
People who have replaced one meal a day with Shakeology have lost weight, with some people even losing 65 pounds or more. Shakeology contains prebiotics, probiotics, digestive enzymes (which have really helped me already), greens, and fiber.
And if you aren't looking to lose weight but want to tone up or get in better shape, Shakeology is still for you! I'm using it as one of my snacks every day because I am working to get fit and gain muscle.
Follow this link to get more information:

I have been using the Shakeology daily for the past week and a half and I am really loving it. I feel energized after my smoothies and I was struggling with fatigue. I have tried the Tropical and the Chocolate (the two vegan flavors, hopefully they make more soon!). I like them both.

Here's a recipe to use with the Tropical flavor:
Tropical Shakeology Smoothie
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 cup water
1 scoop/packet Tropical Shakeology
1/2 frozen banana
1 cup frozen strawberries
1 cup spinach
Blend and enjoy!!!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Some Sauteed Greens

After my chocolate treat, my body told me it HAD TO HAVE some greens. I listen to my body and it usually tells me what it needs. So I sauteed fresh garlic, bell peppers, onion, kale. spinach, and lentils and made a batch of quinoa to go with it. I seasoned the greens and lentils with a little cayenne, Bragg's seasoning, and fresh pepper. It really hit the spot and grounded me after the chocolate buzz. Sorry for the cruddy pic, I only have a camera phone to work with right now =[

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Sometimes you just HAVE to have some chocolate

At least that's the case for me...and many other women =]

I worked out this morning (just some cardio/aerobics and dancing) and I was starving when I finished. And I had a huge craving for chocolate.  I have been trying to strictly limit my chocolate consumption. I seem to be sensitive to it. It exacerbates my acne and heightens my anxiety. So I try to avoid it but I don't like to deny myself when I'm having a persistent craving. I also do not drink soy milk very often at all. A couple times a year is how often. But we had some chocolate soy milk so I used it as the base for my smoothie. I think soy milk is okay to drink sometimes but the chocolate kind has a lot of sugar so it should be used even more sparingly! Just a disclaimer and explanation of my normal eating habits.

So I made this smoothie:
1/2 cup chocolate soymilk, almond milk, coconut milk, etc
 1 cup unsweetened almond milk or whatever milk you prefer
1/2 frozen banana
1 cup frozen strawberries, raspberries, or combo (that's what I used)
1/2 tbsp chia seeds
1 tbsp plant based protein powder
1/2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
Optional- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (I used a cocoa powder with the cayenne already mixed in)

Place the chocolate & almond milks in your blender with the chia seeds. Let chia seeds soak for at least 15 minutes. Add the other ingredients and blend. YUM!!! 

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Oh glorious green smoothies!

I have been keeping up pretty well with starting my day out with liquids and not having solids until lunch. Most days this has been one or two green smoothies (YUM) and then salad and soup for lunch.
Yesterday I made a Pumpkin Pie Smoothie that I will post the recipe for. I then had some Organic Tomato Soup, low sodium as a snack before lunch. We've all been under the weather. Poor Little Owlet has had the worst of it. He has a cold and an ear infection. He has been coughing so bad that it made him choke and spit up. I feel so bad because he can't tell me exactly where it hurts and how to comfort him. So there has been a lot of cuddle time these past few days!

Something that is VERY important when a baby/infant/toddler is sick with a cold or flu is to keep them extra warm. This can be achieved by using warming oils, such as sesame, massaged on the body. I have been massaging Owlet with sesame oil and he loves it. He was falling asleep on the diaper changing table as I was doing it yesterday. After rubbing the oil on your baby it is obviously important to wrap them up in warm clothes. If you must take them outside, it is imperative that you put a hat on that little head! Some sources say that up to 65% of the baby's heat can be lost through their head (although I imagine that estimation is a little high). Either way, it is important to have a warm hat on their head especially during these winter months. We live in Cincinnati and our temperatures went from 75 degrees to 40 degrees in one week. It has stayed cold since then.
Another important thing to remember is that baths cause babies to lose some of their body heat so bathing them every day during a cold should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.

I made Owlet a grilled "cheese" yesterday because he seemed to be wanting solid food. I made it with organic whole wheat bread because I have recently decided to try limited gluten in his diet to see if he can handle it. I also used vegan rice cheddar cheese slices and coconut butter. He devoured it with some of the organic tomato soup I was enjoying. He is one of the odd kids out because he actually enjoys the crust on bread and eats it first =]

And for that Pumpkin Pie Smoothie recipe (I know this post was titled glorious GREEN smoothies but I wanted to share this recipe and just talk about how much I've been enjoying my smoothies, green and otherwise):
1/3 cup pureed pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie mix, organic if possible)
1/3 cup coconut greek yogurt (plain or vanilla)
1 cup almond milk, soy milk, rice milk, etc.
1 tbsp chia seeds, soaked in the almond milk
1/2 scoop plain or vanilla plant protein powder 
Cinnamon and nutmeg, to taste. I like a lot!
Soak chia seeds in almond milk and yogurt for at least 5 minutes. Add other ingredients and blend!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Quinoa Tabbouleh (gluten free)

I used to LOVE tabbouleh. I would always go to a local greek market when I lived in West Virginia to get their in-house made hummus, baba ghanoush, tabbouleh, and dolmas (vegetarian stuffed grape leaves). It was all fantastic. I also usually purchased some pitas they had there that were great...then came the gluten intolerance. It ruined hummus pita sandwiches with a side of tabbouleh for me. I still crave the chilled salad with hints of mint and lemon juice. So I make this gluten free version with some personal tweaks and additions.

Quinoa Tabbouleh
2 cups of quinoa
1 zucchini, diced
10 roma tomatoes halved or 2 small on the vine tomatoes diced 
Small bunch parsley leaves, chopped
2 tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped (or more if you like it)
1/3 cup fresh basil, finely chopped 
1 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Black pepper to taste
Sea salt to taste 
Cook quinoa according to package directions. Let cool when it is done cooking and then add all ingredients to the quinoa and mix thoroughly. It is best served chilled.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Peach Ginger Green Smoothie

I have been craving smoothies recently. I think it's because my body really needs cleansing and to not eat heavy meals right now. This morning I made a delicious and healthy-although boring- Mixed Berry Smoothie.

For lunch, I made an amazing Peach Ginger Green Smoothie. If you are just starting with green smoothies, this is a great one to try because it uses spinach. Spinach is the chameleon of the greens because it blends well into almost all fruit smoothies and does not alter the taste. It simply turns the smoothie a great shade of green! It also is outstanding nutritionally, but I won't get into that now =]
I doubled the following recipe and served the other portion to my 18 month old son, the little owlet. He chugged it down as fast as he could so I know it's a hit.

Peach Ginger Green Smoothie
1 cup milk (I prefer homemade almond but storebought works well if you buy unsweetened. Coconut milk would also be divine in this smoothie)
1 banana
1 cup/handful organic spinach or baby spinach
1 cup frozen organic peaches
1 tbsp hemp seeds
1 tbsp plant protein powder (or more if you would like more protein packed in)
1 cube of fresh peeled ginger
Optional: Stevia for added sweetness (I did a half packet of pure Stevia leaf)
Optional: 1 tsp matcha powder
Place all ingredients in blender and blend! I prefer to put the almond milk in, any powders I'm using, then any seeds, greens, and fruit on top. Just personal preference.
Serves 1

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


I had some recipes and pictures to go along with them that I took while cooking but my phone broke which lost all of my pictures. Well, technically I broke it. It fell in the toilet which is just my luck. I'm waiting on my new phone to arrive and once it does I suppose I will start all over again!

Monday, August 13, 2012

The beginning & chia pudding

I have tried my hand at blogging before but was unable to stick with it because I didn't have direction. I have made this website because I want to share recipes and tips with others. I also want to share my experiences with veganism, food allergies, and raising a vegan child. With that said, why not start off with one of my favorite recipes?
This recipe is good for breakfast or dessert. I used to make this with raw cacao powder. It was amazing. I found out I was reacting to chocolate and had to give up my raw cacao and replaced it with carob instead. Feel free to use cocoa or raw cacao powder. I recommend it highly if you can tolerate chocolate because it has many health benefits, in moderation.

Carob Chia Pudding
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 cup non-dairy milk, divided (I prefer unsweetened coconut milk in this because of the texture, but almond milk is delicious as well)
1 tbsp carob/cocoa/cacao powder (or more! if you like it stronger, like me)
2 tsp almond butter
1 tbsp protein powder (I use the Vega One vanilla chai flavor). Alternatively, you can use coconut flour instead of the protein powder for added fiber and texture.
8 drops liquid stevia, 1 stevia packet, 1 tbsp coconut crystals or 2 tsp agave
Place the chia seeds in a bowl. Add 1/2 cup non-dairy milk and let soak for at least 15 minutes. Place protein powder (or coconut flour), carob powder, almond butter, the other 1/2 cup of milk, sweetener of choice, and soaked chia seeds with their soaking milk in a blender. Blend until smooth. I love to serve this over fresh berries :) Nutrition information calculated using Chatfield's carob powder, So Delicious unsweetened coconut milk, and stevia as the sweetener. Adjust stevia to preferred sweetness.
Serves 1; 237 cals, 14g fat, 5g sat fat, 65 mg sodium, 24g carbs, 9g fiber, 5g sugar, 10g protein