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Monday, February 25, 2013

Quinoa Egg & Veggie Casserole

During the work week, my go to breakfast is generally scrambled eggs with spinach and a side of oatmeal.  On the weekends, I like to switch things up a bit (always keeping it clean of course) because I have a little more time to prepare something scrumptious.  So, I decided to make a healthy breakfast casserole.  This recipe is wonderful because it makes 8 hearty servings that can feed the whole family, or, you can have leftovers to grab and go throughout the work week!  Packed with superfoods such as eggs, garlic, spinach, and my new favorite, quinoa; this casserole is super simple to make and is sure to keep you full, fueled, and focused.

Quinoa Egg & Veggie Casserole
Serves 8

- 1/2 cup Organic Quinoa (uncooked)
- 4 Whole Eggs
- 1.5 cup Liquid Egg Whites
- 1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
- 1 tbsp Mrs. Dash Garlic & Herb Seasoning
- 2 cups Organic Baby Spinach, chopped
- Red, Orange, Yellow, and Green Bell Peppers, diced
- Shredded Cheese (optional)

- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray an 8x11 inch glass baking dish with non-stick cooking spray; set aside.
- Put quinoa into a fine mesh strainer and rinse under cold running water until water runs clear; drain well.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together quinoa, eggs, egg whites, almond milk, and Mrs. Dash.
- Stir in spinach and diced peppers then pour mixture into dish.
- Cover dish with foil and jiggle gently so that quinoa settles on the bottom in an even layer.
- Bake until just set, about 50 minutes.

If it fits your macros...
- Remove foil and evenly sprinkle cheese on top. (I did half with cheese for my boyfriend).
- Return to oven and bake, uncovered, 10-15 minutes more, until golden brown and crisp.
- Set aside to let cool briefly, then slice and serve.

Additional Ingredient Suggestions:
- Kale
- Mushrooms
- Onions
- Tomatoes
- Zucchini
- Squash
- Sweet Potato
- Green Beans
- Broccoli
- Whatever your heart desires (or in my case, fits you meal plan)

Facts about Quinoa!
 Pronounced “KEEN-wah”
  • It’s extremely high in protein (18%) and is a source of “complete protein,” which means that it includes all nine essential amino acids.
  • It contains about twice the protein of regular cereal grains and fewer carbohydrates.
  • It’s low in cholesterol and sodium.
  • It’s higher in lysine — which is essential for tissue growth and repair — than wheat.
  • It’s a great source of manganese, magnesium, iron and phosphorus.
  • It cooks faster than rice.
  • It’s gluten-free, which makes it suitable for those with celiac disease.
  • It’s non-dairy and a good source of calcium, great if you're vegan or lactose-intolerant.

Nutritional Information:
Per Serving
109 calories, 3g fat, 167.5mg sodium, 211.5mg potassium,
10g carbohydrates (2g fiber, 1g sugar), 11g protein


Sunday, February 17, 2013

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Truth be told I wanted to make this for Valentine's Day. Lol! <3 Satisfy your sweet tooth without sabotaging all your hard work with this deliciously easy 
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups recipe.

- 4 squares 90% Dark Chocolate
- 2 tbsp PB2 Chocolate Powdered Peanut Butter
- 1/8 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk

- Melt 2 squares of dark chocolate and spread over bottom and sides of 3 tin cupcake liners to cover.
- Place in freezer for 15 minutes to harden.
- While waiting, mix together chocolate PB2 and vanilla almond milk (you could just use water if you don't have almond milk).
- Once chocolate has hardened, remove from freezer and evenly distribute filling into the molds.
- Melt 2 remaining dark chocolate squares and pour over tops to cover.
- Place the treats back in the freezer for another 15 minutes to allow chocolate to harden.
- After the chocolate has set, remove Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups from freezer and ENJOY!  I made enough so that myself, my boyfriend, and his best friend could each have one :)

No baking required!
How easy and awesome is that?!

*Studies show that eating a small amount of dark chocolate two or three times a week can help lower your blood pressure.  In addition, dark chocolate is loaded with antioxidants and has a low glycemic index, meaning it won't cause huge spikes in blood sugar levels.*

Nutritional Information Per Serving:
Serving Size - 1 Chocolate  Peanut Butter Cup
96.7 calories, 7.8g fat, 34.2mg sodium, 7.5mg potassium,
5.8g carbohydrates (2g fiber, 2g sugar) 2.7g protein

Monday, February 11, 2013

Southwest Chipotle Chicken Salad

This is is super easy salad you can make for lunch or dinner.  It's only 155 calories, very high in protein (27g), and has virtually no carbs.  It's perfect if you're preparing for a competition or just trying to shed some unwanted fat and lean down!

Southwest Chipotle Chicken Salad

- 1 4oz Organic Chicken Breast
- Mrs. Dash Southwest Chipotle Salt Free Seasoning
- 2 cups Organic Baby Spinach
- 2 cups American Salad Blend
- 1/2 cup Coleslaw Cabbage Mix
- 1 Tomato Slice (diced)
- 1 tbsp Almond Slices
- 1 tbsp Walden Farms Ranch Dressing

- Season chicken breast with Mrs. Dash Southwest Chipotle seasoning and cook in steamer for 20 minutes.  If you do not have a steamer (which I suggest you go out and buy one right now!) then you can bake the breast in the oven at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes, or, you can grill at medium heat for about 7 minutes on each side.
*Note*  Chicken should be cooked to a temperature of 165 degrees F.
- While the chicken breast is cooking, assemble your salad my mixing the spinach, lettuce, and cabbage together.
- Add the diced tomato slice and sprinkle almond slices on top.
- Drizzle ranch dressing over salad.
- When chicken breast is fully cooked and has rested, slice and place atop salad.


Nutritional Information:
Serves 1
155 calories, 3g fat, 210mg sodium, 294g potassium, 
8g carbohydrates (4g fiber, 4g sugar), 27g protein.


Sunday, February 3, 2013

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Protein Pancakes

Maybe I should change my blog to Protein Pancake Paradise! Lol!  I know I post a lot of protein pancake recipes but I just can't help that I adore pancakes :) Any who, I woke up this morning with a huge hankering for something sweet!  Alone, my usual egg whites and oatmeal just wasn't going to satisfy my sweet tooth, but together with a couple added ingredients... they can make magic!  My goal was to meet my macros; I needed to get at least 25g of protein and 20g of carbohydrates in my system for my morning meal.  This recipe packs 31g of protein and 20g of carbohydrates.  Mission accomplished!

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Protein Pancakes
Serves 1

1) 1 scoop VPX SRO Zero Carb Chocolate Whey Protein
2) 15g Organic Oat Flour (I used Arrowhead Mills)
3) 1/4 cup Egg Whites
4) 1/8 cup Applesauce
5) 1/4 tsp Ground Cinnamon
6) 1 tbsp Peanut Butter & Co. - Cinnamon Raisin Swirl

- Mix the first 5 ingredients together until it is of pancake batter consistency. (The great thing about this recipe is that you don't even need a blender, you can just mix with a spoon!)
- Coat pan with non-stick cooking spray.
- Pour 1/2 of the batter onto pan and cook on Medium-Low heat until golden brown (this should take about 2 minutes on each side).
*Tip* When the pancake begins to bubble that is a good indicator that you should flip!
- Spread 1/2 tbsp of Cinnamon Raisin Swirl peanut butter onto each pancake.


This recipe makes 2 medium sized protein pancakes, nutritional information below includes all ingredients!

Nutritional Information:
258 calories, 7g fat, 198mg sodium, 296mg potassium, 20g carbohydrates (3g fiber, 6g sugar), 31g protein.