Baked Pickle Chips

Baked Pickle Chips

Baked Pickle ChipsOne of my favorite things about food is the way it has the ability to bring up so many memories an emotions. Kraft Mac & Cheese will always remind me of living with my friend Heather in college. The gross greasy food at Denny’s that I loved as a teenager still reminds me of my best friends.

Baked Pickle Chips

The first time I ever ate fried pickles was at the peak of marathon training with Nicole. It was the best night. We had an amazing run that morning (wahhhhh, want to run 21 miles again), and we celebrated by eating more food than I usually eat in a week. It was awesome, and I even called the pickle chips “life changing”. I think I liked them even better than the beer, which is saying a lot. ;)

bakedpicklechips-11

Today, I’m guest posting my recreation of them–at home, baked, way healthier–over at Around My Family Table, so click over to get the full recipe!

Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfreeSometimes I just really don’t want to make what I planned for dinner. Steve and I have been pretty good about meal planning. It gets me excited to cook dinner, keeps me from eating Chipotle for dinner every night of the week, and it’s a great opportunity to work through my recipe to do list, but sometimes I just really, really don’t want to make what I’m supposed to.

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

I usually use this as an excuse to go out to dinner. Steve is realllllly good about letting me. It goes something like this:

Me: Uggghhhh, I don’t want to cook. Can we just get sandwiches from Whole Foods? Or Chipotle? Again?

Steve: Sure. Put the dogs outside.

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

He is so agreeable that one. Sometimes I wish he’d be more of a jerk, and say something like “No B. Get in the kitchen and make my dinner!” Okay, actually I don’t wish he would say that. I wouldn’t mind being held a liiiiiittle more accountable though.

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

So this particular night, I was supposed to make lettuce wraps. It sounded good when I wrote it on the list. I took chicken out of the freezer to thaw for it, but the night came, and I was tired, and I just didn’t feel like going to the trouble of chopping things. I really wanted to go out instead, but I gave myself a little pep talk, and before I knew what I was actually making, I was butterflying some chicken and throwing things inside.

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

Excluding salt and pepper (which I don’t count as ingredients, because I think that’s silly), this recipe has a total of 3 ingredients, and an equal amount of steps to prepare it. I know a lot of people struggle with making healthy eating, especially weeknight dinners, easy and accessible.

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

In fact, my friend Meryl even asked me to create a space for simpler recipes on the blog where they’d be easier to find (I plan to).

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

I wasn’t sure how this chicken would turn out since, as I said, I didn’t actually plan any of it out. I happened to have some leftover chipotle peppers in adobo sauce from this recipe, and in my house, goat cheese goes makes everything better, so I stuck them inside the chicken and crossed my fingers.

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

If you want to make your life easier, browning the chicken is not mandatory, but I would highly recommend it. By giving the meat a quick sear to get it browned then transferring to the oven to cook all the way through, you get the best of both worlds–perfectly browned outside with the softest, juiciest, most tender chicken breast you will ever taste underneath.

3 Ingredient Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken #glutenfree

The biggest complaints people have about chicken breast are that it’s boring and dry. This meal is neither of those things! The chipotle peppers give it a bold, spiciness, while the goat cheese adds a comforting creaminess, and the sear-then-bake method makes for anything but dry chicken!

 

Chipotle Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken

yield 2 servings

  • 2 medium chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper (a good pinch of each)
  • 2-4 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped (I used 4, and it was SPICY. Use less for a more mild taste.)
  • 1 oz goat cheese, crumbled**

**If you’re looking for a dairy free option, try using half an avocado instead!

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400. Spray a baking dish with nonstick spray. Set aside. Season both sides of chicken with a hefty pinch each of salt and pepper. Butterfly each chicken breast and top with peppers and goat cheese. Fold chicken back over on top of fillings.
  2. Heat a large pan over medium-high heat and coat with nonstick spray (or olive oil if you prefer). Once pan is hot, carefully add chicken and sear until browned, about 5 minutes. Carefully flip chicken to brown the other side, about an other 5 minutes.
  3. Transfer chicken to prepared baking dish. Use a couple of toothpicks to secure the opening and keep the fillings inside. Bake in preheated oven until cooked throughout and juices run clear, about 15-20 minutes. Drizzle with extra adobo sauce if desired, and serve immediately.

Drink & Dish: Lemon Almond Meal Scones {with video}

Lemon Almond Meal Scones #vegan #glutenfree

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Lemon Almond Meal Scones #vegan #glutenfree

So, today is the first day of Passover (it started last night, because we’re weird, and have to start holidays at sundown), and I should be here with a recipe for matzo ball soup, or macaroons, but instead I’m bringing you totally leavened Easter brunch scones. I’m sorry mom and dad.

Lemon Almond Meal Scones #vegan #glutenfree

To be fair, I did  eat my fair share of those things last night, and agreed to go over the story of Passover by watching the Rugrats Passover. I much prefer it to the 8 hours Seders we used to have where we never got to eat dinner until, like, 10 p,m. You know me, I get grumpy if you hold out on the food. ;)

Lemon Almond Meal Scones #vegan #glutenfree

Anyway, I’ve been reallllly wanting to make scones, and I’ve had almond meal scones on my recipe ideas list for quite a while now (I keep a running list in the note app on my iPhone–it’s awesome!), and when Nicole and I were deciding what to make for our Easter brunch Drink & Dish, I knew scones were the way to go.

Lemon Almond Meal Scones #vegan #glutenfree

Okay, that’s a lie. I wanted to make bagels from scratch with flavored cream cheese. I was so sure this would be brilliant. Then Nicole reminded me that perhaps trying to cram the entire bagel making process into a 5 minute video was not the best idea. This is why I’m glad I don’t do this alone. Oh, and the drinks. The drinks also make me glad to have the world’s most perfect partner in crime.

Lemon Almond Meal Scones #vegan #glutenfree

PS, did you see that Drink & Dish has its own YouTube channel now? Nicole and I figured rather than both of us sharing it on our channels, it would be easiest if you could get everything in one place, so if you haven’t yet, please take a second and head over to subscribe.

Lemon Almond Meal Scones #vegan #glutenfree

I absolutely LOVED making these scones! In fact, I made them a few times. The first time they came out far too thin and crunchy to be considered a scone. However, my friends loved those crunchy ones! The texture is easy to play with here–they don’t rise very much, so if you want closer to a cookie/biscotti, them leave them thin and let them get nice and browned. However, for scones, I wanted thick and fluffy. Well, the second time was the charm–all I had to do was keep the dough nice and thick, and they baked up perfectly soft, tender and thick. These perfectly tender scones are topped with my favorite part–the sweet, drippy, lemony frosting with tons of vanilla bean specs. They are so pretty!

Lemon Almond Meal Scones #vegan #glutenfree

These scones only require 1 mixing bowl, and they are done start to finish in about 20 minutes. Perfect for a hectic morning brunch! You can make them the night before, or whip them up quickly in the morning. They work for almost all food allergies, and are a nice healthy treat to balance out all of those chocolate eggs.

Don’t forget to watch the video for step-by-step instructions, and some friendly banter. :)


Check out Nicole’s delicious sangria recipe!

And for an added bonus, we uploaded one of our sound checks. We always sing when we work together, and have started singing a lot of our sound checks because…ummm I don’t know. We’re weird. But we found this one especially humorous, so we thought we’d share it for your enjoyment.


Lemond Almond Meal Scones

adapted from Elena’s Pantry

yield 8 servings

For the scones:

  • 2 cups almond meal
  • dash salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 tbsp honey or agave (or liquid sweetener of your choice)

For the glaze:

  • Heaping 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
  • 2-3 tbsp fresh lemon juice (about 1/2 medium lemon)

Directions:

  1. To make the scones, preheat oven to 350. Line a medium baking sheet with Silpat or parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together almond meal, salt, baking soda, corn starch, and lemon zest. Add almond milk and liquid sweetened. Mix until combined.
  3. Roll dough into a large ball and press down into a 1-1 1/2″ thick disk. Cut into 8 equal pieces. Do not separate. Bake as if for 9-11 minutes until golden and set. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
  4. To make the glaze, place powdered sugar in a medium mixing bowl. Add vanilla bean paste. Slowly squeeze in lemon juice mixing constantly until you have reached your desired consistency. Again, make sure to only add a small amount of juice at a time–a little bit goes a long way.
  5. Use a pastry brush to evenly brush glaze over cooled scones. Serve immediately, or store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips

2 Ingredient Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips #vegan #glutenfree

2 Ingredient Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips #vegan #glutenfree

Hello. I am a healthy food blogger cliche. I made chips out of vegetables, and I’m going to swear to you that they are OMG SO GOOD (they really are), and you’re gonna look at me like “Girl, you roasted a vegetable and you’re calling it not only a chip, but a recipe.”

2 Ingredient Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips #vegan #glutenfree

What can I say? I’ve legit never seen anyone make these before, and I have to wonder…WHY NOT?? When I roast my brussels sprouts, inevitably, some of the leaves fall off, and they cook more quickly, and get browned and crunchy in the oven. I eat those first.

2 Ingredient Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips #vegan #glutenfree

I dig around the pan of roasted brussels sprouts search for the crispy leaves. Is that weird? It can’t be. You people eat kale chips! You’re reading this (mostly) healthy food blog. I know you eat kale chips. I do too….like, every day. Well, that was until I made these, and now I have no desire to eat any other type of vegetable ever again.

2 Ingredient Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips #vegan #glutenfree

There is something you need to know about me. Up until February–like last month February…of this year–I claimed not to like brussels sprouts. I always said I didn’t get it. You know, what all the fuss is about? So many people can’t get enough. Well, then I ordered a dish that came with them, took a bite, and it was cooked perfectly.

2 Ingredient Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips #vegan #glutenfree

Sliced in half, browned in the center, tender, but not mushy. I about died. I picked through my whole plate searching for every last one, and now I am o-b-s-e-s-s-e-d. So one of the 11 times that week that I tried out different ways to create perfectly cooked brussels sprouts at home, this idea dawned on me.

2 Ingredient Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips #vegan #glutenfree

Since my healthier go-away-injury-weight way of eating has been a little boring (No, you don’t want to see a recipe for the 7 lbs of veggies with 1 fried egg and crumbled goat cheese on top that I ate for breakfast this morning. It is neither photogenic, nor a recipe.), I have been on the look out for creative things to share, and these 2 ingredient “chips” are one of those happy life things–so healthy, so simple, and so downright tasty.

Okay, does anyone else feel weird using the word tasty? I thought I’d try it out. Not sure if I like it. I know you’re not “supposed” to use the word delicious. I think I may just go back to adjectives like “good”, or express myself 100% in emoticons….Not that that would be too far of a stretch from how I write anyway. ;) :O :)

2 Ingredient Truffle Brussels (Sprouts) Chips #vegan #glutenfree

Okay, so these chips. First of all, you need to make them. Second of all, no you don’t have  to use truffle oil. It’s expensive, and it can be hard to find. Olive oil or coconut oil (yum) is fine. They just won’t taste quiiiite as fancy (yes, fancy does in fact have a taste). C (or third of all if you like to be consistent), you must be verrrrrry careful. You don’t want to walk away from the oven and have a cocktail while these are cooking. They go from just right to burnt in about 10 seconds. The recipe is so quick, just bring your drink over to the oven, and take a li’l sit right where you can see. Browned is one thing, but no one likes a burnt-to-dust brussels sprout. Not even Winston and Clementine.

 

Truffle Brussels Chips

  • 1 lb brussels sprouts
  • 1 scant tbsp truffle oil
  • generous pinch salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Slice brussels sprouts length wise. Remove the leaves and toss into a medium bowl. (Don’t throw out the centers–just roast them up separately.) Add truffle oil and a generous pinch each of salt and pepper. Toss lightly to coat. Transfer to a large baking sheet and spread out in a single layer.
  2. Broil until just browned and crispy, about 5-7 minutes. Watch closely–they can burn quickly. Serve immediately.

S’mores Blondies

S'mores Blondies

S'mores Blondies

I have a confession. I’ve been trying to hide this little secret, but it is coming to the point where you will figure it out, so I’m going to spill the beans…

S'mores Blondies

Raise your hand if you guessed I was pregnant? You know like everyone else I know in life and stalk in fake internet life? That’s always the first thing people assume when I say I have a secret. You see, I’m an old married lady now who posts obnoxious pictures of her 4 legged kids all over the internet, so everyone seems to think it’s the “next step”. Sorry to disappoint (I’m not pregnant). In fact, my secret is pretty lame.

S'mores Blondies

I haven’t been eating dessert. That’s the whole secret. (See? Tolda ya I was lame.) You see, this whole going on 2+ months of no running has been doing me no favors, and I’ve gotten to a, um, less than ideal place with my weight. Nothing crazy, but nothing I wish to continue. So I’m trying to be pretty diligent about my eating, and kick my sugar addiction to the curb. This means I only got one tiny bite of these soft, gooey, sweet and drool-worthy blondies. Life is hard sometimes, friends.

S'mores Blondies

I had to take just the tiiiiiniest bite to make sure they were good, and so I could tell you all about them, and holy cow, they are beyoonnnnd good. I used my favorite graham cracker crust, topped it with smooth and creamy white chocolate blondie, then topped the whole thing with browned marshmallows for my favorite white chocolate and marshmallow lover.

S'mores Blondies

So things might get a little dinner and savory heavy over here until I am back to double digit long runs that burn off all the cookies, but I promise to test a few more sweet bites like this one, so that you guys can still get your health(ier) dessert fill. :)

S'mores Blondies

 

S’mores Blondies

yield 16

For the crust:

  • 8 oz old fashioned graham crackers
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil, melted

For the blondies:

  • 5.5 oz white chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup nonfat vanilla yogurt
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs + 1 egg white
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows for topping

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9″ square pan with nonstick spray. Set aside.
  2. To make the crust, place graham crackers in your food processor and pulse until fine crumbs. While food processor is running, stream in coconut oil and continue to process until combined. Press crust mixture into the bottom of your pan and bake until lightly browned and set, about 12 minutes.
  3. To make the blondies, in a large bowl mix together white chocolate and yogurt. Beat in brown sugar until combined. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating until combined. Add vanilla. Add flour and mix until just combined.
  4. Transfer blondie batter to prepared crust and bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs, about 30 minutes.
  5. Remove blondies from the oven and turn to broil. Evenly spread mini marshmallows on top, and return to oven to broil for about 5 minutes until the marshmallows have browned. Cool completely before serving. Blondies are best the same day, but can be kept in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

 

Vonny Bags Giveaway

vonny image

Have we ever talked about my love for free things? It runs deep. So I thought you guys might have the same love! So here’s a little opportunity from me to you. ;)

vonny image

I’m teaming up with Around My Family Table and some other great bloggers to bring you this fabulous
giveaway from Vonny Bags.

Vonny launched her line of carriers and totes in 2009. Her line includes beautiful pie carriers, egg
carriers, casserole carriers, and several tote bags. All are made with a durable (and washable) laminate
canvas that is easy to clean!

We are giving away a matching set today…the egg carrier and casserole tote, both in the sweet tea print
(a $112 value). The deviled egg carrier has a non- slip surface, holds 11 eggs (22 halves), and comes with
the egg tray. The casserole tote fits a standard 9×13 inch casserole pan and has a pocket for holding
serving utensils.

You can find her products online in her shop, a small selection on Amazon, and in stores around the
country.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!!

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken #glutenfree

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken #glutenfree

I thought I hated Chinese food. Like, the other night we had to go out for Chinese food for my brother’s birthday, and I was all bent out of shape about it. I told Steve that I hate Chinese food, and I was going to eat at home first. I’m a really pleasant human sometimes.

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken #glutenfree

I guess it’s kinda like how I thought I hated Thai food. And vegetables. And tomatoes. I just decide I have an opinion about something, and I get all kinds of grumpy about it. In fact, sometimes I get worried that I am well on my way to becoming one of those grumpy old people.

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken #glutenfree

As if aging isn’t bad enough, does grumpiness, and that whole being set in your ways business really have to come with it??? And while we’re on the subject, does anyone else absolutely freak out over the fact that the older we get, the closer we are to our lives ending without having the chance to do all the cool things we want to do?????

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken #glutenfree

I’m sorry. I don’t know what’s come over me. Too much real world. I need to go back to vacation. Sigh… Anyway, let’s stop talking about  things that are depressing, and instead focus on my favorite subject. No, not me. Okay, my second  favorite. ;)

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken #glutenfree

I knew I was going somewhere with the whole Chinese food business. Turns out it’s delicious. I mean, orange chicken is about as Americanized as you get. It’s almost like calling Domino’s pizza Italian, but whatever. It’s delicious. And usually deep fried, and overly sticky sweet. I don’t like that kind of orange chicken. The kind you get at Panda Express? Ew, gross. I used to, but not the grease and stickiness make my mouth feel funny.

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken #glutenfree

This orange chicken is sweetened with real orange juice and honey for a true orange flavor. It’s coated in flour, then browned on the stove top so that it can hold on to all of the delicious juice, then transfered to the crockpot where it cooks the rest of the way while you go about your day.

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken #glutenfree

The flavors are bold and satisfying. It’s what you would imagine orange chicken to taste like if you had never tried the sticky fried version. So if you’re a lover of the Panda Express kind, it won’t be an exact match, but I promise you will still love it!

 

Healthy Crockpot Orange Chicken

adapted from Team T Adventures via Six Sisters Stuff

yield approx 6 servings

  • 1-2 tsp coconut oil
  •  3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • 3 tbsp whole grain flour of choice (whole wheat, brown rice, etc.)
  • 4 large oranges
  • 1 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tbsp low sugar ketchup
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tsp sriracha (optional, but recommended)
  • brown rice and steamed broccoli for serving (optional)

Directions:

  1.  Heat coconut oil in a large pan over medium heat. Place flour in a large shallow bowl. Dredge cubed chicken in flour to coat then transfer to cooking pan. Brown chicken, then remove from heat. Don’t worry about fully cooking chicken–it will finish in the crock post. You want it just browned.
  2. In a medium bowl, zest 2 oranges, then juice all 4. Add vinegar, ketchup, honey, and sriracha. Whisk together to combine.
  3. Transfer cooked chicken and sauce to crockpot, and cook on low for 4:30-5 hours.
  4. To serve, place cooked chicken on top of brown rice (or just on your plate), then spoon over an extra 1/4 cup or so of sauce–trust me, you’ll want extra! Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Skinnified Sunday: Banana Bread Tres Leches Cake

Skinnified Banana Bread Tres Leches Cake

Skinnified Banana Bread Tres Leches Cake

I don’t like to make things I’ve already made. I mean, I make the same thing for breakfast every single day, and I order the same thing every time at my favorite restaurants, but I don’t like to bake things more than once, even if it’s a different recipe. Well, unless it’s cookies. Cookies are my favorite. I will make them over and over and over for no reason at all. Cake on the other hand? Meh, I can take it or leave it. I will always eat a dessert, but cookies and fro yo are my true loves.

Skinnified Banana Bread Tres Leches Cake

Well, that is the case with most cakes anyway, but every once in a while, I come across one I really love. ;)

Skinnified Banana Bread Tres Leches Cake

I’ve already made a regular tres leches cake, and a vegan tres leches cake. I had no desire to make an other one, but when people make birthday requests, I can’t say no.

Skinnified Banana Bread Tres Leches Cake

I wanted to try something new and different, and I immediately remembered this recipe that caught my eye a few weeks ago. I’m pretty sure I’ve said about 5 billion times that Jessica’s blog is my very very favorite. She is my blogspiration–her writing, her recipes, her gorgeeeooouuusss photography….everything is just soooo good. If you haven’t you must go check it out rightthissecond.

Skinnified Banana Bread Tres Leches CakeAnd as usual, she doesn’t disappoint! Soft, gooey, milk soaked banana cake? Sign me up. I may even like it better than cookies.

My swaps:

  • White whole wheat flour for all purpose (+fiber, +protein)
  • Applesauce for butter (-fat, -calories, -cholesterol)
  • Less sugar (-sugar…obviously)
  • Unsweetened almond milk for light coconut milk (-calories)
  • Sweetened condensed coconut milk for regular condensed milk (-calories)
  • Regular sliced bananas for caramelized bananas (-fat, -calories, -sugar, -cholesterol)

Skinnified Banana Bread Tres Leches Cake

 

Skinnified Banana Bread Tres Leches Cake

adapted from How Sweet It Is

  • 2 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch cinnamon
  • pinch salt
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs, yolks and whites separated
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 medium bananas, mashed
  • 2/3 cup + 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk, divided
  • 1/2 cup sweetened condensed coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup fat-free evaporated milk
  • 1 1/2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
  • 1-2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 2-3 bananas for topping

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9×13 baking dish with nonstick spray. 
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  3. In an other small bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl or stand mixer, beat together egg yolks, applesauce and sugars until creamy. Add vanilla and mashed bananas and beat until well combined. Add half of the flour mixture, followed by 2/3 cup almond milk, then the remaining flour mixture. Mix until just combined. Fold in egg whites.
  5. Transfer batter to prepared baking dish, and bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs, about 25 minutes. Cool completely
  6. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup almond milk, sweetened condensed coconut milk and evaporated milk. Pour the milk mixture over the cake in 3 small batches, brushing with a pastry brush in between each time. Cover and let cake sit in refrigerator for at least 1 hour (overnight is preferable).
  7. To make the whipped cream topping, in a large bowl, beat whipping cream on high until stiff peaks form. Add powdered sugar slowly to reach desired sweetness mixing on medium speed. Spread evenly over cake.
  8. Top with freshly sliced banana just before serving.

 

Chipotle Black Bean Burgers {vegan + gluten-free}

Black Bean Burgers #vegan #glutenfree

 

 

These healthy, vegan and gluten-free chipotle black bean burgers are so full of flavor they will knock the socks off any meat burger! 

Black Bean Burgers #vegan #glutenfree

Do you guys have those foods that you ALWAYS order if they are on the menu? I sit down at a restaurant, scan the menu for goat cheese and sweet potatoes, and then if it’s a burger type place, I always look for a black bean burger.

Black Bean Burgers #vegan #glutenfree

I also spend lots of money on those frozen black bean burgers. I eat them as a burger, I crumble them up and put them on a salad. They are versatile, and delicious, but I much prefer to create my own food, and not spend tons of money of frozen goods.

Black Bean Burgers #vegan #glutenfree

I’ve been wanting to create my own black bean burgers for, well, ever. In fact, I honestly can’t believe I didn’t make them sooner. They were super simple, and the whole process only took about 30 minutes. Not to mention the batch makes several, so I was able to have them in salads and in my scrambled eggs (it was delicious) for almost a week.

Black Bean Burgers #vegan #glutenfree

The only tricky part is the flipping. Black bean burgers are very delicate, and if you flip too soon, or aren’t careful, you will end up with a big mess on your hands. I also had a lot of black bean mush left over. It took me a few times to get it right. I’m not the most patient person, and I didn’t even think to handle them with extra care. Once I did, they came out perfectly!

Black Bean Burgers #vegan #glutenfree

The secret ingredient (or not so secret since it’s in the title…) in these babies are the chipotles in adobo sauce. Would you believe I’ve never bought them/eaten them before? I see them in all sorts of recipes, and people are always raving about them, but for some reason, I had never used them. They added so much spice and flavor! I can’t wait to use them in 5 billion more recipes!

Black Bean Burgers #vegan #glutenfree

I topped mine with roasted red pepper (check out those char marks!! mmmmm) and fresh avocado slices. I love them with goat cheese too, but of course that makes it no longer vegan. The pan frying provides the perfect crispy outside, and soft, but not mushy inside. They are spicy and bold, and will easily become one of your go-to meals!

Black Bean Burgers #vegan #glutenfree 

Chipotle Black Bean Burgers {vegan + gluten-free}

Yield: 6-8 burgers

Serving Size: 1 burger

Chipotle Black Bean Burgers {vegan + gluten-free}

These healthy, vegan and gluten-free chipotle black bean burgers are so full of flavor they will knock the socks off any meat burger!

Ingredients

  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • pinch salt
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • handful fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats (use gluten-free if that's important to you)
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil

Instructions

  1. Place half the black beans, onion and garlic in your food processor. Blend for 20-30 seconds until combined. Add chipotle, cumin, salt, cornstarch, cilantro, and sriracha. Blend for an other 10-20 seconds. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Stir in oats and remaining black beans.
  2. Heat olive oil on a large skillet over medium heat. Form mixture into patties and carefully transfer to the skillet. Cook for about 5-7 minutes until the bottom is browned and set. Very carefully flip and cook for an additional 4-6 minutes until the opposite side is browned and set as well. Serve immediately, or store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
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Cranberry Almond Granola

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree.jpg

While you’re reading this, I am currently living it up in New Orleans!

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

I can’t tell you what the heck I’m doing, because Steve and I left with absolutely no plan.

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

Okay, that’s a little bit of a lie. I had 2 plans. Bourbon and beignets. Have I ever mentioned my life revolves around food? In fact, I’ve spent the last week being suuuuuper food conscious just so I could live it up a little on this vacation. I was pretty cranky for most of the week because I reallllllly hate anything resembling a diet, but I’m pretty sure it was worth it. ;)

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

Okay, enough about my trip–let’s talk about granola! One day I had the brilliant idea that I was done buying things at the store that I can make myself. I made my own Larabar replacement, and granola was the next thing. I literally eat it every single day, and it is not cheap!

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

So then, in true Ari fashion, I tried to bake like 7 things in a 2 hour time period, declared that making things from scratch was a big waste of time, and I would immediately be going back to buying granola, and granola bars for that matter, at the store.

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

But after one bite of this stuff, I was sold. As I was taking pictures, I kept sneaking little nibbles. I must have eaten at least an entire serving just during my photo session!

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

The robust, nutty flavor is more full and bold than any granola I’ve ever bought at the store. It baked up perfectly crunchy with next to no oil in the entire batch, and the soft, sweet cranberries are the perfect touch to balance out the flavors and textures.

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

Then I realized that this made enough granola to last me at least a month! 12 cups of deliciousness for about 1 hour of time? Totally worth it!

Cranberry Almond Granola #vegan #glutenfree

**Note: I wanted to add dehydrated apple chips to this, but I couldn’t find any. If you have them–they would be delicious!

 

Cranberry Almond Granola

yield approx 12 cups

adapted from David Lebovitz

  • 5 cups rolled oats (use gluten-free if that’s important to you)
  • 3 cups almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/3 cup finely shredded unsweetened reduced fat coconut
  • 1/3 cup milled flax seed
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • pinch cloves
  • heavy pinch sea salt
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup honey or agave
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 cups dried cranberries

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 300. Line two large baking sheets with silpat or parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a very large bowl, mix together the oats, almonds, seeds, coconut, brown sugar and seasonings.
  3. In a small saucepan, warm the applesauce, maple syrup, honey/agave, and coconut oil until well combined, whisking constantly.
  4. Add the applesauce mixture into the dry ingredients and toss to combine. Divide mixture evenly between your 2 prepared baking sheets.
  5. Bake until browned and crispy, about 1 hour. Lightly toss granola every 10-20 minutes while cooking. The more often you toss it, the less clusters you will have.
  6. Cool completely, then add cranberries. Store in an airtight container at room temperature. The granola will stay fresh for at least one month. I’ve never made a batch last any longer than that, but it’s still great a month in!

Crispy Ranch Chicken Strips

Crispy Ranch Chicken #glutenfree

Crispy Ranch Chicken #glutenfree

I’m so excited to share this with you today. You see, I’ve been making this chicken for almost 4 years. It was one of the first healthy recipes I ever cooked!

Crispy Ranch Chicken #glutenfree

I started making this chicken when no one else in my life was quite used to my new healthier habits. I had gone away to college weighing 23o lbs, eating fast food for every meal, and calling a pint of ice cream one night’s dessert. Of course everyone was happy for me, but it also takes some getting used to when someone comes back with such drastically altered priorities.

Crispy Ranch Chicken #glutenfree

I made this recipe for Steve and some of our best friends before I even knew how to cook, but it was so easy and fool-proof that everyone loved it!

Crispy Ranch Chicken #glutenfree

Ever since, it’s been Steve’s #1 favorite dish. He always requests it, and I continue to surprise him with it on special occasions. It’s always the simplest things that people seem to love the most. I love to over complicate things, but when it comes down to it, 90% of the time, simple ends up being the way to go.

Crispy Ranch Chicken #glutenfree

I love this dish because anyone can make it. It doesn’t require a lot of prep work, or a long list of ingredients. It’s approachable, and it tastes like indulgent comfort food–crispy baked chicken, zesty ranch seasonings browned to perfection. It is one of those healthy meals that makes you love eating healthy, and shows just how easy it can be. If you can boil spaghetti, you can make this chicken. ;)

 

Crispy Ranch Chicken Strips

barely adapted from Spark People

yield 6 servings

  • 1 and 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into strips
  • 2 egg whites, beaten
  • 1 oz ranch seasoning (store bought or homemade)
  • 2 cups crispy brown rice cereal
  • 1/4 cup reduced fat parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Place a cooling rack inside of a large baking sheet. Line with tinfoil and spray with nonstick spray. Set aside.
  2. Place beaten egg whites in a shallow bowl. In a large separate shallow bowl, combine ranch seasoning, cereal and cheese.
  3. Dip each chicken strip in egg whites, then fully coat in cereal mixture. Place on the lined cooling rack. Repeat with remaining chicken slices.
  4. Bake until golden brown and chicken is cooked throughout, about 30 minutes (depending on how thick you slice the chicken). Serve immediately. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Drink & Dish: Vegan Shepherd’s Pie {with video!}

Shepherd's Pie #vegan #glutenfree

Shepherd's Pie #vegan #glutenfree.jpg

Do you guys celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? I’ve never really done much, but green is my favorite color, so I do enjoy an entire holiday dedicated to it. ;) I really like to get holiday themed pedicures (my bank account doesn’t, but that’s an other story…), and I always get really excited to get something green in March!

Shepherd's Pie #vegan #glutenfree.jpg

To be honest, I had no idea what the heck people even eat for St. Patty’s Day. After some brain storming, Nicole suggested shepherd’s pie, but I didn’t even really know what went inside the thing. I knew it was meat and potatoes, but that was about it.

Shepherd's Pie #vegan #glutenfree

I did some research, swapper the meat for lentils, swapped the mashed potato topping for a sweet potato puree, and all of the sudden I had a delicious, hearty, and filling vegan shepherd’s pie.

Shepherd's Pie #vegan #glutenfree

Can we talk about how shepherd’s pie is the hardest thing ever to photograph? I felt like every single photo I took just looked like vegetable mush. In fact, it took me 2 takes (one during testing, and one during filming) to get even a handful of photos that I liked between the two.

Shepherd's Pie #vegan #glutenfree

I should also mention that this makes a LOT of food. Like, I hope you have a big family, and are looking forward to healthy left overs because it will last you forever, and only gets better the next day! I tested this recipe out on a Tuesday, ate the leftovers all week long, and then made it TWICE for filming. I’ve pretty much been eating nothing but shepherd’s pie for the last week and a half.

Shepherd's Pie #vegan #glutenfree

In fact, I can’t believe I’ve gone this long not eating this regularly–savory, rich veggies topped with creamy, sweet potatoes? It just screams the makings of a perfect dinner!

Shepherd's Pie #vegan #glutenfree

Oh, and it’s especially delicious with Nicole’s Irish maiden cocktail (AKA my new favorite drink ever). Make sure to check out her recipe as well! And here’s our latest episode of Drink & Dish!


Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

yield 10-12 servings

  • 3 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 cup low sodium vegetable broth, divided use
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 large carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 large squash (zucchini or yellow), sliced
  • 1 lb cooked lentils
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • sea salt, freshly ground pepper, and thyme for seasoning
  • cashew cream for topping (optional)

Directions:

  1. To make the sweet potato puree, roast sweet potatoes at 400 degrees for 1 hour. Cool slightly, then remove skins and transfer to a blender. Season with salt and pepper and blend until smooth.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup vegetable broth with corn starch. Set aside.
  3. Heat olive oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add  onion, garlic, carrots and squash. Season with salt, pepper and thyme (I used a heavy pinch of each), and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
  4. Add lentils, peas and vegetable broth/corn starch mixture. Add an extra 1/2 cup  vegetable broth. Cook until all ingredients are heated throughout stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a large casserole dish (or individual serving dishes). Evenly spread sweet potato puree on top.
  6. Broil for 20 minutes. Top with cashew cream if desired. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.