Gluten Free Granola

I used to eat chicken sausage and veggies every day for breakfast as I do not eat eggs. After doing a diet analysis project for my Nutrition class, I decided that I needed to give up the daily chicken sausage and opt for gluten free granola with almond milk. I went shopping for bagged granola and was so upset seeing all of the additives that really should not be consumed. I decided to make my own instead and the outcome was great! It is a very easy recipe and you can get everything in the bulk section without spending an enormous amount of money.

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What You’ll Need:

3 cups of gluten free rolled oats

1/2 cup sliced almonds

1/2 cup pecan pieces

1/4 cup sunflower seeds

1/4 cup chia seeds

1/2 cup flax seed meal

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/3 cup pure honey

3 tbsp coconut oil

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

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What  To Do:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper

Combine all dry ingredients into a medium sized bowl

In a small saucepan, combine honey and coconut oil over low heat

Once honey/coconut is combined remove from heat and add vanilla

Pour onto dry mixture and mix well

Pour onto baking sheet and spread evenly

Cook for 5 minutes. Remove, flip mixture over, and cook for another 5 minutes

Once granola is lightly browned remove from oven and let cool

Break granola into pieces, store in airtight container

Enjoy in yogurt or almond milk, or even eat plain.

Crock-pot Paleo Minestrone Soup

The days are getting shorter and cooler which calls for hot soups, leggings and slipper boots.Three of my favorite things about fall. There are plenty of others but these are the top 3!

I am a huge fan of minestrone soup but have a hard eating pasta so I love this verision of minestrone soup. It’s hearty and warms ya to the bones. Best part- it goes in the crock-pot.

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What You’ll Need:

1 Sweet Potato – diced (I left the skin on but you can peel)

1 Cup Carrots- diced

1 Medium Onion – diced

1 Zucchini – diced

1 Yellow Squash – diced

 2 Cloves of Garlic – minced

32oz Vegetable Broth

2- 14 oz cans of diced tomatoes

1/2 cup Frozen Spinach

2 Bay Leaves

2 tsp Oregano

1 tsp Basil

1 tsp Parsley

1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper

1/4 tsp Sea Salt

1/4 tsp Black Pepper

1 pound Grass Fed Beef

What To Do:

Chop up your veggies and place in your crock-pot

Pour vegetable broth on top

Add diced tomatoes

Add frozen spinach and spices

Stir everything together and place bay leaves on top

Cook on low for 8 hours

At 7 hours cook ground beef and add to the crock-pot

Remove bay leaves before serving

Eat and enjoy

Like pasta? Simply add a small pasta like Acini Di Pepe or Ditalini to crock-pot 30 minutes prior to serving!

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Sarah’s Saturday Snippets: Weekly Meal Planning Sheets

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Working full time, owning a business, starting and trying to grow a blog, heading back to school at night, and trying to have a social life, my life is far from boring. I am a planner of everything. I find that my life is less chaotic when I have everything planned out, lists made, schedules created, and even for the every day tasks and chores.

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Meal planning has always been one of my favorite things to create and keep organized. I have notebooks upon notebooks filled with past weekly menus so I decided to create a sheet that you all could do the same thing. This sheet is great for those busy families. Now that school is back in session, those nights are now going to be filled with football games, girl scouts, dance classes, etc. Use my weekly menu sheets to plan out your meals the week before. I always do my planning on Saturday morning and then either shop the same day or Sunday morning. I then prep/cook all of my meals during the day on Sunday. This is great for me as a young single professional. I can just grab and go.

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My meal planning sheets also include a water intake tracker. I hate drinking water but I am slowly forcing myself to down those glasses. This sheet will help keep me accountable for those glasses. I can immediately tell when I am dehydrated. So having this sheet will keep my on track.

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I am so excited to be able to provide my meal planning sheets to you . Click on the PDF below for your own copy. Print off as many as you’d like and let me know what you think.

Weekly Meal Planning

Tasty Tuesday: Avocado Hummus

  

In today’s addition of Tasty Tuesday, I tackle Avocado Hummus. I am attending a girls cocktail party tonight for the grand unveiling of a friends new condo and was in charge of bringing an appetizer. It’s a toasty day here in Rochester so I definitely did not want to turn on the oven.

I absolutely love avocados. I will eat them on burgers, in turkey roll-ups, plain with a little olive oil and salt/pepper, in guacamole, etc. I typically buy 4 a week just for myself. It is a great way to get your fats in. I also love hummus but thought bringing plain hummus was a little boring. Plus one of the girls cannot have garlic so this recipe is perfect for her.

Oh and I also love that this recipe does not contain tahini. I personally hate spending $10 on a bottle which I will hardly use.

What You’ll Need:

1 Can of Cannelloni Beans, drained and rinsed (I buy organic)

1 Avocado, cubed

Juice of half a lime (roughly 1 tablespoon if using juice from a bottle)

1 tablespoon olive oil

Pinch of sea salt

1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper

What To Do:

Place everything in a food processor and blend until smooth.

Taste test to make sure the flavors are to your liking. You can always add more lime juice, salt or cayenne pepper if needed. Better to do less in the beginning then overdoing it.

Place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes prior to serving. I love when my hummus is ice cold. Way more refreshing.

Note: Keep the avocado pit in the hummus. This will help keep it from turning brown.

Serve with pretzels chips, pita chips, or fresh veggies. I think this would be really good on top of a burger or to dip grilled chicken in as well!!

Mango Pineapple Smoothie

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It was a scorching day here in NY today and after running errands, a yoga class and cooking for the week; all I wanted was something sweet and refreshing but still borderline healthy.

I always loved those Mango Pineapple smoothies from McDonald’s but over the last few years I have refused to buy another item from that chain. I stay away from pretty much all fast food chains besides Chipotle and Panera. Anyways, this recipe was refreshing and totally hit the smoothie craving I had been looking for all with staying borderline Paleo.

What You’ll Need:

1 Frozen Banana

1/2 cup Frozen Mango Chunks

1/2 cup Fresh Pineapple

1 Coconut Milk Yogurt Cup

1 Cup Orange Juice

1/2 Cup Water

4 Ice Cubes

What To Do:

Put all ingredients into a blender or Ninja. Combine until smoothie like. If you like it more “liquidy” you can add more water or OJ. If you like it thicker, add more ice.

Drink, enjoy, and pretend your on a tropical island!

Chicken and Veggies over Cauliflower Rice

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Last week I finished the 21 Day Fix and managed to lose 6 pounds. The last week I was pretty laid back so I am continuing this week but also am limiting carbs and sugars. So basically 21 Day Fix meets 21 Day Sugar Detox. My birthday is on the 30th so I probably will only do 2 weeks and then continue afterwards.

My mom found a recipe similar to this on Pinterest and we both doctored our up differently but it is still compliant with both challenges.

I buy my cauliflower rice from Trader Joe’s. It is easy to make it yourself tho. Cut up your head of cauliflower. Place in food processor and pulse until cauliflower looks like rice. Heat a large pan with a table spoon of oil (coconut or olive), add riced cauliflower. Cook approximately 5 minutes.

 What You’ll Need:

4 Chicken Breast, cubed

1 bunch of Asparagus, ends trimmed

1 zucchini, cubed

Frozen spinach (I used a half package of the birds eye) – you can use fresh if you prefer. I just had that on hand

1 package of sliced mushrooms, diced

2 tablespoons olive oil (or coconut oil)

1 cup organic chicken broth

2 cloves of garlic, minced

Sea Salt to taste

Fresh Pepper to taste

1 tablespoon Italian seasoning

What To Do:

Cut your chicken into cubes.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in large pan. Add chicken, salt, pepper and cook until brown. Remove from heat

In a large sauce pot, add 1 tablespoon of oil. Add all of your veggies and garlic and cook over medium heat.

Once veggies are cooked, re-add your chicken, broth and spices.

Reduce the heat and let simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Serve hot over pasta, rice, or cauliflower rice. Top with grated parm if you desire.

Guacamole

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My all time favorite snack is chips, salsa and guacamole. I usually just buy the wholy guacamole packs but they are expensive and a little plain. I thought it was time to mix it up a little bit. This recipe is really easy to make and tastes delish!

What You’ll Need

3 avocados

1 lime

1/2 a red onion, diced

1 jalapeno, seeded and minced

3 tomatoes on the vine

1 tbsp cilantro, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

What To Do:

Toss scooped avocado pulp in a large bowl with lime juice

Use a potato masher, combine the avocado pulp with salt, cumin, and cayenne pepper

Fold in onions, jalapeno, tomatoes, cilantro, and garlic

Let sit for 45 minutes at room temperature

Serve with veggies or my favorite blue corn chips