Wild Blueberry Power Smoothie

Wild blueberries are different than regular cultivated berries. They have a much more intense flavor that is tart and sweet. These flavors are perfect for a sweet smoothie! Wild blueberries have twice the antioxidant capacity than cultivated berries. Plus they are packed with manganese and fiber and have less sugar than cultivated berries. Frozen wild blueberries are incredibly easy to use and are great in many baking recipes or used to top yogurt, pancakes, waffles, etc. Look for wild blueberries at your favorite grocery store there are many brands including store brand wild blueberries.

*Sponsored post


Wild Blueberry Power Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup frozen wild blueberries
  • 1/4 cup frozen mango
  • Handful frozen spinach or kale
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 scoop unsweetened protein powder
  • 1 cup coconut milk

Directions

Add all ingredients to a blender (I like to add the milk last) and blend until smooth!

Number of servings: 2 | Serving size: 1 cup smoothie
Calories: 132, total fat: 4 g, total carbohydrates: 14 g, dietary fiber: 6 g, sugars: 8 g, protein: 10 g

What is you favorite way to enjoy wild blueberries? Tell me below!

Raquel

By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by Wild Blueberries and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.

Energizing Green Morning Smoothie

Green smoothies can be packed with sugar or be a refreshing healthy treat. I love freezing leftover kale and spinach to use in smoothies. This smoothie packs in the vitamin C perfect for fighting off those winter colds. If you know Sincerely Nourished then you know I love my Perfect Fit protein, but I decided to go with Natural Citizen for this smoothie! It’s a plant-based organic protein powder made with hemp protein, brown rice protein, pea protein and sacha inchi protein. I’m currently obsessed with their Organic Energy blend. This is not a sponsored post – I just love the stuff!


Energizing Green Morning Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups frozen kale
  • 1 1/2 cup frozen spinach
  • 1/2 orange, peeled
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 scoop Natural Citizen Organic Protein
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tsp agave
  • Handful of ice

Directions

Add all ingredients to a blender (I like to add the milk last) and blend until smooth!

Number of servings: 1 | Serving size: 1 smoothie
Calories: 231, total fat: 5 g, total carbohydrates: 39 g, dietary fiber: 6 g, sugars: 8 g, protein: 28 g

What is your favorite morning smoothie? Tell me below!

Raquel

Winter Kale Salad

Pomegranates are called the jewel of winter. The tiny pink arils burst in your mouth with a sweet and tart juice. They are packed with antioxidants that produce an anti-inflammatory effect. They also contain fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate and potassium.

I love eating the arils by the spoonful. You can also add them to a spinach or kale salad, your morning yogurt or oatmeal, or cook the arils down to make a sauce or vinaigrette. Don’t forget you can extract the juice and add it to a cocktail for the weekend. It takes a little bit of work to get to the arils, but it’s worth it and there are plenty of YouTube tutorials to help you do it! Make this salad during your meal prep and store in a mason jar for the week.


Winter Kale Salad

Ingredients

  • 2 cups kale, chopped
  • 1/4 cup Brussels sprouts, shredded
  • 1 small roasted beet, diced
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate arils
  • 1/4 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 tsp hemp seeds
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
  • Vinaigrette: Juice 1/2 lemon, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper

Directions

Combine ingredients for vinaigrette in a small bowl and set aside.  Massage the kale before placing it in you salad bowl – this helps to break down the fibers and make it more pleasant to eat. Add Brussels sprouts, beet, pomegranate arils, quinoa, hemp seeds and walnuts. Toss to combine. Top with homemade dressing.

Number of servings: 1 | Serving size: 1 salad
Calories: 597, total fat: 39 g (healthy fats!), total carbohydrates: 53 g, dietary fiber: 10 g, sugars: 11 g, protein: 16 g

What is your favorite way to eat pomegranate? Tell me below!

Raquel

Butternut Squash Power Bowl

I am absolutely obsessed with this recipe! The fall flavor combination and beautiful colors make me want it again and again. This bowl filled with complex carbs and tons of fiber to keep you feeling full. This a perfect healthy lunch that will make your coworkers jealous. You could even replace the butternut squash with any winter squash you have on hand. Winter squash includes butternut squash, acorn squash, kabocha squash and delicata squash. All types of winter squash are packed with vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B6, manganese and folate.


Butternut Squash Power Bowl

Ingredientsplant-bowl-5

  • 1/2 cup uncooked farro
  • 1 cup butternut squash, cubed
  • Pinch salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup chickpeas, toasted
  • Handful kale
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 apple, cubed
  • 2 tbsp dried cranberries
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • Juice 1/2 lemon

Directions

Cook farro according to package directions. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Roast butternut squash with olive oil, salt and pepper for 30 minutes until crispy outside and soft inside. Saute kale in olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Combine all ingredient in a bowl and squeeze some lemon on top. Enjoy all the beautiful colors and flavors!

Number of servings: 2 | Serving size: 1/2 power bowl
Calories: 363, total fat: 8 g, total carbohydrates: 67 g, dietary fiber: 11 g, sugars: 13 g, protein: 16 g

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What is your favorite winter squash recipe? Tell me below!

Raquel

Pita Pockets with Quinoa Cakes

sabra-spreadsI am absolutely loving this new product from Sabra! Sabra Spreads come in three delicious flavors. It was so hard to decide which flavor to use for a recipe. I’ve been using the Honey Mustard flavor on traditional sandwiches nonstop. The Garlic & Herb flavor was perfect for these easy quinoa cakes. The peppery bite of the arugula pairs so well with the garlic-y quinoa cakes.

Lunch can get boring so change it up with this nontraditional sandwich. You will love this new product from Sabra! Pick up this weekend.

*Sponsored post


Pita Pockets with Quinoa Cakes

Ingredientsquinoa-cakes-1

  • 1/2 cup quinoa, cooked
  • 1 tbsp onion, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup kale, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp ground flaxseed
  • 1 tbsp oat flour
  • 3 tbsp Garlic & Herb Sabra Spreads
  • Sqeeze lemon juice
  • Pita bread
  • 1/2 cup arugula

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Mix quinoa, onion, kale, flaxseed, oat flour, Garlic & Herb Sabra Spread and lemon juice together in a small bowl. Form mixture into two patties. Place in oven on a foiled lined baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, flip patties and bake for another 10 minutes. Let cool. Place one quinoa cake in a pita pocket with arugula and top with extra Garlic & Herb Sabra Spreads if desired!

Number of servings: 2 | Servings size: 1 quinoa cake and 1/2 pita
Calories: 334, total fat: 8 g, total carbohydrates: 56 g, dietary fiber: 8 g, sugars: 1 g, protein: 12 g

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Which flavor of Sabra Spreads would you like to try? Tell me below!

Raquel

I received free samples of Sabra Spreads mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by Sabra and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.

Brussels Sprouts Gratin

Leafy greens are nutrition powerhouses. They have plenty of vitamins A, C, and K to go around, not to mention they’re also high in fiber. Green leafy vegetables include kale, collard greens, Swiss chard, spinach, broccoli, cabbage, other greens, and Brussels sprouts. I love my greens roasted, steamed, baked, and sauteed, but adding a little cheese never hurts! Cheese can be high in sodium and saturated fat. When used in moderation and for special recipes it’s a treat! Some of my other favorite ways to add greens to your day include adding them to smoothies, wraps, sandwiches, omelets, stir-fried, or in a salad. Try to get in at least 1.5 cups of green leafy vegetables each week.

Note: The high vitamin K content in these foods may interfere with effects of blood thinners like warfarin. Talk to your doctor or dietitian if you are on these medications.


Brussels Sprouts Gratin

IngredientsDSC_0886

  • 1 lb Brussels sprouts, cut in half
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup shallots, chopped
  • 2 tsp oat flour
  • 3/4 cup skim milk
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan
  • 2 oz grated Gruyere
  • Pinch salt and pepper

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray. Add Brussels sprouts to dish and drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat. Bake for 20 minutes, tossing the Brussels sprouts around halfway through cooking. While the Brussels sprouts are baking heat a medium pan over medium heat. Melt butter in the pan and cook the shallots until soft. Sprinkle oat flour (or flour of your choice) over the butter and shallots, whisking until smooth. Add milk and whisk until smooth. Cook over medium-low heat for about 5 minutes until thickened. Add thyme, Parmesan, and half the Gruyere cheese. Once cheese has melted pour the mixture over the cooked Brussels sprouts and top with the remaining Gruyere cheese. Bake for an additional 5-10 minutes until the top is browned.

Number of servings: 6 | Serving size: 1/2 cup
Calories: 120, total fat: 7 g, total carbohydrates: 9 g, dietary fiber: 3 g, sugars: 1 g, protein: 7 g

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My favorite leafy green is a tie between Brussels sprouts and kale. What is your favorite? Tell me below!

Raquel

Spring Vegetable Pasta

Whole wheat pasta may not be the prettiest, but it sure does have some great qualities! It has more fiber and protein than your average pasta. One cup of whole wheat pasta has 4 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein. Plus, it has B vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and vitamin B6. This is one of the easiest swaps you can make for a healthier dish. I always use whole wheat instead of regular in any recipe that calls for pasta. It does have a slightly nuttier flavor, but it’s nothing you can’t get used to.

Add a protein to this dish like chicken or shrimp and you’ve got the perfect dinner. Or add some mushrooms to keep it vegetarian. Spring and summer produce some of my favorite vegetables so take advantage of all of them with dishes like this!


Spring Vegetable Pasta

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole wheat pasta, cookedDSC_0838
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1 cup kale, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 head of broccoli, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • Juice 2 lemons
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Shaved Parmesan cheese

Directions

Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water. While pasta is cooking heat olive oil in a medium pan. Add all chopped veggies and basil to the pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and saute for 8-10 minutes until soft. Squeeze lemon juice over the top. Add reserved pasta water and shave Parmesan cheese over top. Combine with cooked pasta and serve.

Serves: 4 | Serving size: 1/2 cup pasta, 1/2 cup veggies
Calories: 215, total fat: 9 g, total carbohydrates: 28 g, dietary fiber: 3 g, sugars: 3 g, protein: 8g

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What is your favorite transitional dish from winter to spring? Tell me below!

Raquel

Get Glowing

The sun is starting to shine brighter and it’s time to start showing some skin and healthy hair is always in season. Vitamin E and biotin are both keys to get glowing. Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin that acts as an antioxidant. It protects cells against damage caused by free radicals and boosts our immune system against viruses and bacteria, as well as plays a role in red blood cell formation. Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin that is essential for growth and also assists with metabolism. Biotin is found in foods that are good sources of B vitamins. While you can get both of these as supplements I prefer to get my vitamins and minerals from real food! Check out how you can get plenty of both below.

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Vitamin E Sources

  • Almonds – the perfect snack or salad and oatmeal topper
  • Avocados – a creamy addition to salads, sandwiches, and sides
  • Spinach, kale, broccoli aka green leafy vegetables – take your pick as a side or salad
  • Sunflower seeds – sprinkle on salads or as a snack
  • Vegetable oils, such as sunflower, safflower, corn, and soybean oils – cook with these on occasion

My favorite vitamin E-rich snack: half an avocado drizzled with one teaspoon of honey and topped with one tablespoon of sunflower seeds.

Biotin Sources

  • Avocados – rich in vitamin E and biotin so the perfect excuse for guacamole
  • Chocolate – a one ounce snack with some added antioxidants
  • Eggs – breakfast (duh) or hardboiled for a snack
  • Legumes – beans and lentils as a side or on a salad
  • Milk – drink 8 ounces with breakfast or use in a smoothie
  • Nuts – a handful is always a perfect snack
  • Nutritional yeast – sprinkle on oats, granola, yogurt, salads, or in a smoothie
  • Pork and salmon – both can be the star of your dinner

Raquel

Kale, Shrimp, and Sweet Potato Skillet

Kale is a dark, green leafy vegetable. It is a cruciferous vegetable most closely related to cabbage. If you haven’t added this vegetable to your diet then I suggest you do. Per one cup kale has 33 calories, less than 1 gram of fat, and about 3 grams of protein. Not only is kale low in calories, but it is also high in tons of vitamins and minerals!

Kale is high in vitamin K, vitamin A, and vitamin C. Kale is also high in iron and calcium. It has more iron per calorie than beef and more calcium per calorie than milk. Iron is essential for the formation of hemoglobin and enzymes, transporting oxygen to parts of the body, and cell growth. Calcium helps form and maintain healthy teeth and bones, plays a role in muscle contraction, and aids in releasing hormones. In addition to all that, kale is filled with antioxidants and can help lower cholesterol levels.


Kale, Shrimp, and Sweet Potato Skillet

Ingredients

  • 1/2 lb peeled, deveined shrimpDSC_0547
  • 2 cups kale, stems removed, chopped
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Cut sweet potatoes into bite sized pieces. Toss pieces in a little bit of olive oil. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until pieces are fully cooked. Heat olive oil in a medium skillet. Cook garlic and onion about five minutes or until the onions become translucent. Add chopped kale to skillet. Add white wine to pan and let it steam the kale until softened but still green. Add cooked sweet potato to pan and move ingredients to the side of the skillet. In the center, add shrimp. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook until pink on one side and flip shrimp to cook on the other side. When shrimp are cooked stir together components and serve hot.

Serves: 2 | Serving size: 1 cup
Calories: 313, total fat: 9 g, total carbohydrates: 35 g, dietary fiber: 7 g, sugars: 13 g, protein: 21 g

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Cook the sweet potatoes ahead of time and you’ve got an easy weeknight meal. What’s your favorite weeknight dish? Tell me below!

Raquel

Three Things

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1. The report The State of Obesity 2015 is out. It’s not entirely surprising to find out that the South and Midwest have the highest adult obesity rates. The highest obesity rate was found in Arkansas (35.9%). Colorado had the lowest rate (21.3%). No state had an obesity rate less than 21% compared to reports that in 1991 no states had an obesity rate more than 20%. Almost 78 million people in the United States are at increased risk for a obesity-related health problems, such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. This is preventable! Check out the report to see where your state falls. {Trust for America’s Health}

2. Pope weekend is finally upon us in Philadelphia. Here are all the Pope-inspired specials being offered across the city. I would love to try some of these things… if I could only get there! Looks like the “Papal Pleasure” Belgian amber ale from Manayunk Brewing Company is the only one I’ll be able to try, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing! {Visit Philly}

3. I love tacos. They remind me of summer (especially a fresh grilled fish taco), but these tacos are perfect for fall. Yes! Kale, eggplant, and lentils are a few of the ingredients that make me excited for fall flavors. {Food & Wine}

Raquel