Cashew Quinoa Bowl

Hello all,

I have been searching for a low maintenance, low cost recipe with quinoa and kale since I’ve been buying both in bulk lately. Unable to find the perfect one, I went to Whole Foods and walking around asking myself ‘What would go good with Kale?’ I decided to buy mushrooms first because I love the texture they add. Then I thought I’d get a Pad Thai sauce or something similar, when I walked pass a mini pack of cashew butter. This combo was a long shot, yet I was getting hungry and anxious to begin cooking.

So I have created “Cashew Quinoa Bowl”

-1/2 cup of uncooked quinoa

-1 Handful of Kale leaves, cup into 1 inch pieces

-6 small mushrooms sliced

-Olive Oil

-Tablespoon of Cashew butter

First, make your quinoa, which I will not explain for you since its on the back of the bag of quinoa that you are holding.

Second, put the sliced mushrooms and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet and heat until soft and slightly browned.

Next, steam the kale by placing it in a covered sauce pan with 3 tablespoons of water on medium high for a few minutes.

photo 3-15

Once the quinoa is done, move the portion you want to eat into a bowl and mix in 1 tablespoon of cashew butter, or more if necessary.

Throw in the still hot mushrooms and soft kale and then enjoy.

This combo turned out to be amazing! Trust me I wouldn’t bother posting a total fail. And its as easy as quinoa pie!

photo 1-17 photo 2-17

Chicken Avocado Salad

The goal of all the recipes I post is efficiency. I want to make meals that don’t take a long time or require a lot of extra ingredients. A huge pet peeve of mine is when “simple” recipes require the tiniest bit of a really expensive spice or 4 T of lime juice, like how many limes do I buy for that. I am in college people! The word simple has a whole new standard for me. So, I have posted a simplified recipe that I keep seeing on Pinterest.

 

4 large strips of chicken

1 lime’s worth of lime juice

10 sliced green onion

Hand-full of finely chopped cilantro (if you love cilantro it should be about ½ cup chopped)

3 T plain Greek yogurt

2 avocados

Cook the chicken, let it cool, then chop and shred it.ImageChop of both avocadoes in the cubes.

Image

Squeeze the lime juice out. Chop the green onion and cilantro. Basically put them all together.

Image

Don’t be afraid to mash the ingredients together. The avocadoes aren’t meant to stay in perfect cubes.

This recipe is great for meal prepped lunches, especially when put in a lettuce wrap. This lasted me for 3 lunches. YUM!

Image

ENJOY!

Oven Dried Strawberries

Just tried these, and wow! They really do taste like candy 🙂

A Hint of Sparkle

82b7720142a0f02eb0da99169cbd0390

This recipe is from my most favourite time-waster, Pinterest.  I’m sure some of you Pinterest junkies have already found and tried this, so I’m going to share my take on it after some “experience”.

Use as many strawberries as you like, but keep in mind they shrink and seem a whole lot less substantial after they’re dried (I could probably eat 2 quarts easily).  Make sure they aren’t touching on the tray, but if you don’t leave too much space it isn’t a big deal.

IMG_2293

Here’s what mine looked like on the tray.

Now some sites say to add salt and pepper.  To me, this is weird.  I didn’t put anything on because they are sweet enough when the sugars condense into the shrunken berries.  Definitely don’t use oil because they won’t stick at all.

I quartered my strawberries (as most sites with this oven-drying technique told me to do)…

View original post 126 more words

I Prefer

            Being somewhat of a pushover myself, I am adopting a new way of stating my opinion. It’s called “I Prefer” and it is as simple as that. Always, always state your preference. Even on the little things, like which store you hit first at the mall or which movie you pop in on Sunday night. I’ve noticed that my friends are more likely to agree with me when I use the word prefer, especially my highly assertive friends. Stating your preference allows your opinion to be factored in, rather than forced onto others. Preferences are neither aggressive nor passive. People respect others who are able to strike such a balance when voicing their opinion.

For fellow pushovers, feeling heard is just as rewarding as getting to shop at Nordstrom’s before Macy’s or watching Safe Haven for the second Sunday in a row. For those assertive folk, stating a preference may make those around you more likely to go with your opinion. The word prefer tends to make others want to agree with you, instead of oppose your assertive “suggestion.”

This is beneficial in social and professional settings. I have already gained a more involved role in the department I am interning for. Women are up against a specific challenge in the workplace because “no one likes a bossy lady,” as I have heard many people say at work and around campus. But the quiet coworker in the corner never gets the promotion. Always stating a preference allows your voice to be heard, yet it isn’t too assertive. Of course, always having a strong argument to backup you preference is key.

Use “I prefer” to balance your social and professional life. Now, I know that sounds overdramatic. But I dare you to give it a wholehearted try. I believe that the act of being mindful about how to voice yourself can greatly affect the people around you in a positive way. It might make you realize some bad habits, like finishing peoples sentences (I do that a lot) or cutting people off. I am happy to say that I prefer this way of speaking my mind. 

Kale & Quinoa Patties

I found this recipe on Pinterest and couldn’t wait to try it as I love quinoa and kale but had never tried them together in a recipe. I made these for dinner the other night and all I have to…

Get Selfish with your Happiness

            This is something that all of us 20-some year old girls need to do. Get selfish. Now, this is not to encourage you to be a self-involved, uncaring, ungenerous person. Rather, it is to encourage you to seize the day, be honest to yourself, and to experience all the feelings, events, and roles you want to. Carpe Diem, people! I love being 20 (almost 21!) because, even though I have a ton of major life decisions to make, college stress, relationship drama, hardly any money and a never-ending To-Do list, I am responsible for no one but myself. We are surrounded by our girl friends, partying hard on the weekends, jersey chasing, dating, learning who we are, making mistakes and memories that we will always hold on to. Without prioritizing your wants and needs you could miss out on the experiences that will truly shape your college or young adult life.

            If that thought doesn’t give you some anxiety then congrats on your emotional stability. For me, it scares me into the motivation I need to get selfish with my happiness. Even your closes friends can’t make your happiness for you. It’s all in your hands. *sigh of relieve* Allow yourself to feel empowered. Let go of the guilt you have for going out on Thursdays (or Wednesdays, no judgment), for being a flirt for an extra free drink, for prioritizing schoolwork and your future first, for dipping into your savings for spring break, for staying in on girls’ movie night, etcetera, etcetera! Do whatever makes you happy; just know that the choices are in your hands. I love the word selfish because it reminds me that it’s up to me to put myself first. I keep seeing quotes on Pinterest that say, “forget about you age and just blah blah blah.” I’d rather try to make this year the best year of your life so far because I’ll never be this age again.

            And I’ll finish by lamely quoting Taylor Swift’s 22 song.

“We’re happy, free, confused, and lonely at the same time. It’s miserable and magical.”

Own this dynamic time of being in your 20s and make it yours with a little bit of self-prioritization.  

TAGALONG COOKIES- Vegan, Grain-Free, Peanut-Free, Refined Sugar-Free & Oil-Free

More Paleo girl scout cookie recipes!

Sift, Stir & Savour

Tagalong cookies?

What the heck are those?

Yup, that was my first reaction when I first spied this type of cookie on Pinterest. It didn’t take long before I realized that Tagalong cookies were a dream come true! Crispy shortbread base topped with gooey peanut butter icing and covered in chocolate. How did I not hear about these before? Why when I thought of Girl Scout cookies did I think of the vanilla or chocolate sandwich cookies and not something more like these:

Tagalong Cookies

After I stopped with all the questions, I drooled over some more pictures and then started thinking about my love affair with anything peanut butter and chocolate. And that’s when it hit me: peanut allergies. So many people are not able to experience this delicious combination that immediately makes me so happy. And that, that made me sad.

With determination I hit the kitchen and these PEANUT-FREE beauties were…

View original post 551 more words

Raw Girl Scout Cookie

Definitely trying these Raw Girl Scout Cookies! YUM!

Betty Rawker

 

Vegan/Paleo Samoa Girl Scout Cookies! www.bettyrawker.com

I used to wear my little Brownie uniform and sash full of badges with so much pride (pictured below)! I remember slinging those not so good for you cookies with my troop in front of supermarkets too. I also remember learning how to make raw style “no-bake” cookies, but oh, looking back, they had the worst ingredients! I recall crunchy peanut butter, non fat milk powder, refined sugar…ick!

brownie-outfit_thumb.jpg

So with Girl Scout Cookie Season in full swing right now, and a suggestion from a friend, today I made a simple “no bake” grain free Samoa Cookie, to honor Gluten Free, Dairy Free Girl Scouts Everywhere!!

Base Cookie:

Blend dried coconut in food processor alone for 60 seconds. Add in walnuts, sea salt, blend into a fine meal…

View original post 385 more words

Why I love the Paleo Diet

The Paleo diet is not a fab diet by any means. In fact, this way of eating has been the norm for the majority of human existence. Unlike most diets, Paleo is not promoted as a temporary weight loss plan, but rather a permanent way of eating, which coincides a health lifestyle. Paleo is sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, and mainly dairy-free. It is easy to see why this diet would be beneficial for people who are trying to lose weight. Diets should create eat habits that help keep the weight off or the muscle-tone up. This diet prepares people for long-term success.

Paleo loves vegetables. Kale, zucchini, broccoli, carrots, squash, onions, and peppers are all great options. Some people who use the Paleo diet cutout potatoes, I believe that these are a good source of complex carbohydrates, which are necessary for runners and athletes. Veggies provide essential vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients. Fruits, of course, are consumed on this diet. Fruits are full of antioxidants and phytochemicals. If you love fruits like I do, eating them every day will help you stick to a sugar-free diet. Both vegetables and fruit will provide all the fiber that you need.

Fit is the new skinny! Protein is key to your diet. Paleo emphasizes lean meats, fish and shellfish (wild, not farmed). If you’re like me and don’t like fish or shellfish, I’d suggest taking a Fish Oil supplement. Being a big meat eater, I try to eat a variety of lean meats, including chicken, turkey, pork, and lean beef. I indulge with lamb at nice restaurants and venison after friends or family go hunting. Try to avoid all processed meats. The majority of human existence did not survive on Spam! I feel healthier when I eat free-range chickens, grass-feed beef, and organic veggies and fruits. Eggs are another great source of protein. “Paleoians” have created amazing recipes that use eggs for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.   

It is important to add a limited amount of nuts, seeds, and healthy oils into your diet. If you are trying to lose a significant amount of weight, limit these to no more than an ounce a day because high amounts of omega-6 fats can cause inflammation. When consumed in moderation, it will not affect your health or weight loss goal. One of the hardest things about the Paleo diet is that it doesn’t include peanuts. I have found that almond butter is the best substitute to peanut butter. For cooking, always use olive oil, coconut oil (my favorite), palm oil, or cocoa butter.

When implementing a new diet, especially a long-term plan, you must use common sense. Most diets fail because they leave an unrealistically small or no room for indulgence. Without satisfying some salty or sweet cravings I know I would end up breaking my diet on something very unhealthy. Instead I incorporate foods that are healthy but feel like a splurge. Dark chocolate and salted popcorn always do the trick (especially when eaten together)! Always opt for the air-popped popcorn and avoid microwaveable brands. Whey Protein powder is a great item to add to your diet, and is crucial if you are doing muscle-building workouts. This diet may sound restricting, but the amount of healthy substitutes for white flour (almond or coconut flour, Whey Powder, flax) and sugar (stevia, honey, agave nectar) allows for amazing Paleo recipes! I’ll have you eating Paleo chocolate chip cookies, Paleo ice cream, and Paleo muffins. 🙂