Summertime Watermelon & Kale Salad

Summertime Watermelon & Kale Salad

FullSizeRender

I love, love, love fresh seasonal fruit in a salad. This salad takes just 5 minutes to put together and is loaded with antioxidants.  Not to mention it tastes delicious!

Ingredients:

  •  1 head of organic kale, rinsed and chopped (may also use pre-chopped bin )
  •  2 cups cubed watermelon
  • 1 large cucumber, sliced in quarters
  • 1/4 block of goat cheese, chopped
  • 1/4 cup raw, unsalted, peeled sunflower seeds  (I use Trader Joe’s brand)
  • Optional (add fresh mint leaves)

Dressing

  • 1/4 cup Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp.  Balsamic vinegar

Directions:

  • Combine all ingredients and toss with dressing.

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Fish Tacos With Mango Salsa

taco1

Easy weeknight fish tacos!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb. wild-caught cod or other white fish
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 mango, diced
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 2 limes
  • 1/4 small red onion, finely chopped
  • Olive oil
  • Natural taco seasoning     e.g. Simply Organic, Trader Joe’s
  • Grain-free tortillas *

*May substitute with corn tortillas

Directions:

1. Marinate fish in taco seasoning and lime juice for approximately 20 minutes.

2. Combine chopped mango chunks, tomato, and red onion to make the salsa. Squeeze in fresh lime juice and combine in salsa.

3. Sauté or grill fish until white and flakey. (Cook on each side approximately 3-5 minutes)

4. Lightly spray tortillas with olive oil spray and warm in pan over low heat. (1 minute) Assemble tacos while tortillas are still warm. Top with sliced avocado and enjoy!

 

taco2

 

Zesty Zoodles

 

Zoodles are an easy, low-carb,  and nutritious alternative to regular refined pasta  that’s  frequently consumed as part of the Standard American Diet (SAD). When making the transition  to a whole food based diet, pasta is often missed by carb lovers everywhere.  Zoodles however, allow you to still enjoy your favorite pasta based dishes without having to sacrifice taste and ease of cooking! All you need is a Spiralizer and the possibilities are endless!

 

zoodles

Shrimp “Bolonasge” Topped with Almond Cheese

shrimp

Spaghetti with ‘Paleo’ Homemade Turkey Meatballs

turkey-meatballs

zoodles

Pumpkin Spice Donut Holes

pumpkin

Hurray for Fall and Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice! These easy Pumpkin Donut Holes are a nice treat  to enjoy with hot coffee or tea on these cool fall mornings.

Processed with Snapseed.
Processed with Snapseed.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup organic pumpkin puree
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup Pure Maple Syrup
  • 7 Tbsp. butter or coconut oil; melted
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 3 tsp. pumpkin spice
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a muffin tin with 12 cupcake liners or a mini tin  (for munchkin size) with 24 liners.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the DRY ingredients.
  4. In a separate mixing bowl, combine all of the wet ingredients listed. Mix well.
  5. Now add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and combine until evenly mixed.
  6. Pour batter evenly into lined muffin tin.
  7. Bake for  approximately 10-14 minutes (depending on your oven). Toothpick inserted into centers should come out clean.
  8. Allow to cool for at least 1 hour.
  9. When ready to serve, combine extra ground cinnamon and coconut sugar in a small bowl. Peel donuts from cupcake holders and roll into the cinnamon mixture until covered. (You may also just leave the cupcake liners on)
  10. Eat & enjoy!

*Note, these are best kept for up to 2 days. Try storing in a container with a paper towel to help absorb excess moisture. “Redust” with cinnamon coating if needed before reserving.

 

image1

 

Spinach and Feta Turkey Burgers

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb free-range ground turkey
  • 2 cups rinsed, fresh chopped spinach
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • dash of sea salt

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl with hands. Form 1/2 inch thick patties (about 5-6). Place patties in a large, non-stick pan, then turn heat on medium. Cook patties  for about 4-5 minutes on each side. Serve with fresh in season fruit and vegetables!

 

IMG_7309IMG_7308IMG_7317

7 Health Benefits of Avocado

7 Health Benefits of Avocados 

Avocados have grown in popularity in past decade and with good reason. These green, creamy, delicious fruits make a great addition to almost any food or dish. Not only are avocados incredibly versatile, but they are loaded with an array of nutrients to help support your health!

avocados-3

1. Good Source Fiber. Avocados are about 7% fiber by weight. Most people don’t come near meeting the recommended daily intake for fiber.  Avocados contain both soluble and insoluble fiber to support digestion and health. Eating 1/2 of a medium sized avocado provides 5 grams of fiber!

2. Rich in Monounsaturated Fat. Monounsaturated fatty acids offer valuable health benefits including  lowering “bad” cholesterol and reducing risk of heart disease and metabolic syndrome. Just a single 1 oz serving of an avocado provides about 3 grams of this healthy fat while a whole avocado has nearly 15 grams!

3. Great Source of Potassium. Potassium is a critical mineral that the body needs to function normally. It’s especially important to help the heart, kidneys and other organs work. Did you know an avocado provides more potassium than a banana? Just one half of an avocado provides approximately 345 mg of potassium.

4. Fight Inflammation. Avocados contain various antioxidants including carotenoids, Vitamin E and Vitamin C as well as anti-inflammatory compounds such as catechins and procyanidins. Catechines can increase plasma antioxidant activity and also help prevent oxidation. 

5. Support Eye Health. Avocados are a good source of the two carotenoidslutein and zeaxanthin which are important carotenoids found in the eye. Eating fruits and vegetables rich in these two compounds can help reduce risk of developing mascular degeneration. One half of an avocado contains about 185 mcg of lutein and zeaxanthin

6. Support Healthy Blood Pressure and Cholesterol. In addition to being a good source of potassium which supports healthy blood pressure in the body, magnesium and antioxidants in avocados can help dilate blood vessels. Furthermore, those who consume avocados regularly have higher HDL cholesterol (the good stuff) and lower LDL and triglyceride levels. 

7. Increases Absorption of Carotenoid-Rich Foods. Carotenoid-rich foods such as carrots and spinach are better absorbed with some healthy fat. Because avocados naturally contain healthy fat, not only is the absorption of beta-carotene increased, the conversion to it’s active form, Vitamin A, is also increased. Try adding avocado to your salad to increase the bioavailability of the nutrients found in the dark leafy greens and other vegetables!

avocado-

7 Ways to Incorporate Avocado Into Your Diet

  1.  Slice and top on a salad (the healthy fat will help absorb all of these good nutrients in the veggies)
  2.  Use as a spread on a sandwich in place of mayonnaise.
  3. Add ripe avocado to a breakfast smoothie. 
  4. Slice and drizzle with olive oil, and a small dash of salt and pepper
  5. Blend with olive oil and herbs to create a creamy pasta sauce.
  6. Combine with a ripe banana and cocoa powder to create a creamy chocolate pudding.
  7. Make a refreshing avocado sorbet

tuxpi.com.1438003948

Benefits of Fermented Foods

image1 (1)

Fermented foods are becoming more popular and more available in grocery stores nation wide. Although fermented foods have been around for many centuries, they have somehow escaped our diet. Their recent growing popularity comes with good reason! Fermented foods provide beneficial live bacteria to the GI tract. When foods become fermented, it allows the nutrients in those foods to become more easily absorbed. About 70% of our immune system is found in our gut which is why the importance of maintaining a healthy gut should make sense right? Yet for many of us, our gut health is neglected. Stress, sugar and processed foods, alcohol, and toxins can all wreak havoc on our guts making us more susceptible to illness. Ever been prescribed an antibiotic? Your gut health just took a beating. While antibiotics wipe out those bad bacteria associated with infection and some illnesses, they are not selective and therefore wipe out all of the good beneficial bacteria as well! If taking an antibiotic regimen, I would recommend also taking a probiotic supplement or including probiotic rich foods in your diet to help compensate the effects of the medicine. This will help to replenish and maintain healthy gut flora.

If fermented foods are new to you, be sure to begin introducing them slowly, and gradually increase the intake of them into your diet. Yogurt is probably the most common fermented food that we eat. When choosing yogurt, remember to go for a plain yogurt and flavor it yourself to avoid the high amounts of sugar added to most commercial yogurts. (See previous post). There are many other fermented foods available as well, so why not give one of them a try!

Have you tried any of these fermented foods?

Kimichi -A traditional Korean dish made up of vegetables and spices, most often based on cabbage.

Kefir-A fermented milk drink similar to yogurt. It can come in flavors like strawberry and blueberry, just watch out for too much added sugar with these. For young kids, try adding it to their cereal or in a fun fruit smoothie.

Kombucha– A fizzy beverage made by fermenting tea, yeast and bacteria cultural that comes in variety of flavors.

Sauerkraut- Fermented cabbage most popular on hot dogs and stuffed in Reuben sandwiches in this country (Word of advice-skip the hot dog and try enjoying as a side dish).

image3 (1)