Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Pumpkin Ginger Bread

I found this festive recipe on Pinterest (of course). I was craving something sweet for breakfast and this was the perfect thing. It made my apartment smell amazing and the bread went great with a hot cup of coffee this morning!
Here's what you need:
1-1/2 C sugar
1/2 C vegetable oil
2 eggs
1/3 C water
1/2 15 oz can pumpkin puree
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder

Here's what you do:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan. I used a smaller pan and had to make a few muffins with the excess batter. 
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine sugar, oil and eggs. Beat until smooth. Add water and beat until well blended. Stir in pumpkin, ginger, allspice, cinnamon, and clove.
3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, soda, salt, and baking powder. Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture and blend until all the ingredients are mixed. 
4. Bake in preheated oven until toothpick comes out clean, about 1 hour.

My roommate even described this as the best thing I've ever made!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Pumpkin Granola

HAPPY OCTOBER!! I love October. From the leaves turning colors to the pumpkin spice lattes, plus with the weather is finally cooling off... there's so much to love. If you're looking for some quick festive treats check out these goodies from Williams & Sonoma. The muffins and pumpkin butter are divine.

A good friend of mine made some pumpkin granola the other day. She sent me home with a bag and I finished it on the drive home from her house! Whoops. I had her send me the recipe so I could share it with all of you! It would be good on some yogurt, with some fruit, or even in a bowl with some milk poured on top.

Here's what you need:
1/4 C uncooked quinoa, rinsed well and pat dry with a paper towel
1.5 C rolled oats
1/4 C ground flaxseeds
1/4 C pepitas
1/4 C chopped pecans
1/2 C dried cranberries
1/4 C real maple syrup (or honey)
1/4 C pumpkin puree
1 tsp oil (coconut or canola)
1 tsp pumpkin spice (or more to taste)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Pinch kosher salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Here's what you do:
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
2. Spread oats and quinoa out on a parchment lined baking pan. Toast in the oven for 10 minutes and stir once.
3. Remove the oats from the oven, pour the toasted oats into the medium bowl and add the ground flaxseeds, pepitas, pecans, and dried fruit.
4. Reduce the oven to 300 degrees F.
5. In a second bowl, combine maple syrup, pumpkin puree, oil, pumpkin spice, cinnamon, salt and vanilla.
6. Pour over oats and stir together with a spatula.
7. Spread back onto baking sheet and bake an additional 20 minutes, or until golden.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Peanut Butter and Butterscotch Balls

I like keeping a batch of these treats in the fridge as much as possible. They're perfect before a morning run or on the way to class. They stay good for about a week, taste delicious, and you won't regret grabbing a second one. 

Here's what you need:
1/2 C whole wheat flour
1 1/4 C oatmeal
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 C peanut butter
1/3 C light maple syrup
1/4 C no-sugar-added applesauce
1 TBSP vanilla extract
1/4 C butterscotch chips

Here's what you do:
1. Combine the flour, oats, cinnamon, and salt. 
2. Mix the peanut butter, maple syrup, applesauce, and vanilla extract until well combined.
3. Combine the two mixtures and the butterscotch. 
4. Scoop into balls. Refrigerate or freeze. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Mixed Berry Smoothie

I have been begging for a blender and I FINALLY GOT ONE!!! Thanks dad. I immediately went to target, bought a huge bag of frozen mixed berries, and got to work. This smoothie recipe only requires 3 ingredients, doesn't need any added sugar, and keeps you full from breakfast to lunch (you can thank the Greek yogurt for that)!

Here's what you need:
1/2 C frozen berries
1/2 C orange juice
1 large spoonful of strawberry Greek yogurt

Here's what you do:
1. Combine all the ingredients in a blender.
2. Blend.

Pretty easy, right? My smoothies are more thick than ones I've gotten at a Smoothie King or a Tropical Smoothie. If you prefer them more slushy-like then just add more orange juice and subtract some yogurt. I have also used vanilla Greek yogurt and it tasted just as good! This recipe is easy to play around with and pretty difficult to mess up. It's perfect after a run or on the way to an early morning class.


Sunday, August 25, 2013

Smothered Bacon Chicken

Now that school has started, I have to start making my own dinner again (ugh where's my mom when I need her). This year I'm going to try, yet again, to cook more than I go out. It's going to be tough, but I've started out strong.

Tonight I used this super awesome website called Recipe Matcher. What is cool about Recipe Matcher is that you enter in which ingredients you have in your kitchen and it brings up a list of recipes you can make with them!! I decided on bacon wrapped chicken. I cooked it in a sour cream and cream of chicken and mushroom sauce.

Here's what you need:
1 can condensed cream of chicken and mushroom soup
4 oz sour cream
Chicken breasts

Serves 4

Here's what you do:
1. I cut my chicken breasts in half and wrapped 1 piece of bacon around each half. I then placed them into a 9x13 inch baking dish.

2. Mix the sour cream and soup. Spread the cream over the chicken.

3. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

I ate mine with rice and green beans and used the sauce from the chicken as a gravy. YUM! I made two different ones, one for more and one for my roommate. My roommate's used cream of mushroom and that was tasty too!
Make it healthier: I opted for reduced sodium bacon, light sour cream, and light cream of mushroom and chicken. You could also use brown rice instead of white rice.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Eating Disorder Myths

I know, this is not something I usually talk about BUT this month I am doing my "Professionally Supervised Independent Study" at an eating disorder facility. As a nutrition major, we have to complete an independent study and I am doing it at Shoreline Center for Eating Disorder Treatment. I have been here for two weeks and will continue learning for three more. So far, I am having a blast and am learning SO much!!! I am shadowing the dietitian at Shoreline, Tina, and she is teaching me more than I expected. She is beyond amazing.
My first assignment was to prepare a presentation on eating disorder myths. I figured since I haven't written in a while, this could be a nice way to keep up with the things I'm doing here.

I chose 5 myths:

Myth #1: Eating disorders are a lifestyle choice; someone can choose to stop having an eating disorder.
Reality: An eating disorder is an illness. To heal, one needs treatment and support. Healing comes with learning and practicing a healthier lifestyle. Eating disorder don't develop over night, they won't go away over night.

Myth #2: Purging = weight loss.
Reality: Purging does NOT rid the body of ingested food. It can actually lead to weight gain due to a slowed metabolism. Vomiting typically leaves 1/2 of what is consumed in the stomach and laxatives only create the illusion of weight loss. This illusion comes from the fluid that is lost. Dehydration is a major danger with purging and can be life-threatening.

Myth #3: You can't exercise too much.
Reality: Without enough calories consumed, excessive exercise can hurt the body. It can lead to dehydration, fatigue, shin splints, cartilage damage, stress fractures, osteoporosis, amenorrhea, heart problems, and arthritis. Your body can only be pushed so far. Without proper fuel you cannot safely exercise. Also, your body needs rest and time to recover before exercising again.
Myth #4: A low calorie diet + a strong commitment = a thin and beautiful body.
Reality: Food deprivation leads to a slower metabolism. This is the body trying to conserve the little energy being put into it. Your healthy weight and shape is inherited from your parents. Being at a healthy level requires a balance of food and exercise. Not everybody is meant to be a a tall bony model, we are all different and have different needs.

Myth #5: Achieving a normal weight means the eating disorder is cured.
Reality: Recovery is achieved when one can live a life free from the eating disorder. Reaching a healthy weight can happen quickly, mental recovery takes more time.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Tomato Dumplings

I came upon this recipe as I was reading the book "A Stolen Life" by Jaycee Dugard. It was too tempting not to try myself. With only 3 ingredients, and taking less than 30 minutes to make, I was very impressed. I will definitely be making this again soon!

What You Need:
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can tomato soup
biscuits (I used Pillsbury Grand Homestyle biscuits)

What You Do:
1. Combine the diced tomatoes and tomato soup and bring to a boil.

2. Pinch the biscuits into smaller pieces.

3. Drop the biscuit pieces into the soup until the puff up (once the mixture is boiling). I tasted one before I decided they were ready. They will still be gooey, but they won't taste so raw.

4. Pour yourself and bowl and enjoy!!
Side Note: If you're looking for a good summer read and haven't read the Jaycee Dugard story, I highly recommend it.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Nutella Rice Krispie Treats

BEWARE: these are particularly addicting. One of my favorite new things lately, Nutella Rice Krispie treats. I made these for a few friends and we could not eat enough (we didn't even have left overs for the next day).

As if I didn't put Nutella on enough things...

Here's what you need:
6 C Rice Krispies
3 TBSP butter
1 bag marshmallows
3/4 C Nutella

Here's what you do:
1. Melt the butter and marshmallows in a saucepan over medium heat.
2. Stir/melt in the Nutella.
3. Add the Rice Krispies and stir until completely combined (you may have to use your hands).
4. Let cool. The Nutella will make it even more sticky than regular Rice Krispie Treats so it will definitely need this cooling time.
5. Enjoy!
Confession: I made this exact recipe two days in a row. I'm tempted to try with half peanut butter and half Nutella, yum!

Friday, April 26, 2013

[Greek] Cookie Dough Frozen Yogurt

As the weather is getting warmer, I am craving ice cream more and more. I am trying SO hard to resist, but sometimes you just have to have something cold and sweet. I stumbled upon this recipe and it looked simple, quick, and looked to me like a healthy alternative to my cravings! It took less than 15 minutes and I already had all the ingredients needed. It was fate.

Here's what you need:
1/2 C unsalted butter [softened]
1/2 C packed dark brown sugar
1/4 C granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 C flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 C dark chocolate chips (I used Ghirardelli)
1 C Greek vanilla yogurt (I used Chobani)

Here's what you do:
1. Mix the butter and sugars until soft and fluffy.

2. Add in the vanilla extract.
3. Mix the baking soda, salt, and flour in a separate/smaller bowl. Pour in the chocolate chips.

4. Mix the dry ingredients with the butter/sugar mixture. Mix in the yogurt.

5. Pour into a separate container and freeze overnight.

Makes about 2 cups! Enjoy!!
Original recipe:

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Oreo Truffles

Here's a simple yummy truffle recipe! It is definitely not the healthiest thing ever made, but it is sure to be great at a party. It only has 3 ingredients and takes barely any time at all.

Here's what you need:
1 package of Oreos
1 small container of cream cheese
1 package of semi-sweet baking chocolate squares

Here's what you do:
1. Mash up the Oreos (minus 6-7 Oreos to prevent the truffle from being to dry) until fine.
2. Mix in the entire container 8 oz container of cream cheese.
3. Roll into small balls and chill until firm.
4. Roll in melted chocolate and chill again.
5. Enjoy!
Note: the extra Oreos can be used as garnish to make these truffles a little more fancy!
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