Christmas Smoothie with Cranberries

cranberries for a smoothie

Throwing frozen cranberries into your smoothie this holiday season will help strengthen your immunity and help protect your body from free radicals. Our Christmas smoothie combines kale and cranberries which makes for a gorgeous, dark, pine color – perfect the holiday season!  It’s delicious!

Why cranberries?  Cranberries are higher in antioxidants than other fruits and berries.  Antioxidants help detoxify the body of harmful free-radicals.  Since free-radicals play a role in the aging process and the development of diseases like heart disease and cancer,  it’s a good idea to add antioxidants into your daily diet. Plus, cranberries are known to help with urinary tract infections.  According to our friend Mykelle, just five cranberries a day can help in preventing UTIs.

Since cranberries can be a little tart, I sweetened the smoothie with frozen strawberries and a ripe banana.  It’s a great balance of flavors with a little bit of sweetness, but not too much.

 

Christmas Smoothie:

Ingredients:

  • 1 handful frozen cranberries
  • 1 cup lacinato kale (other kale types or even spinach will work as well)
  • 3/4 cup frozen strawberries (organic preferred)
  • 1/2 ripe banana
  • 1 cup water

Directions:

Place water and kale in your Vitamix or blender of choice.  Make sure this is properly blended before adding any other ingredients so you get a nice smooth consistency.  Once this is blended well, add remaining ingredients and mix until blended.  Pour into a glass and enjoy 🙂

Christmas Smoothie with Cranberries

 

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Cranberry photo by Jessica Lewis from Pexels

 

Coconut Curry Chicken with Cauliflower

Try this healthy and easy dish for dinner.  It packs a lot of flavor too!

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 chicken breasts
  • 2 cups cauliflower – chopped
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup carrots – chopped or add bag of stringed carrots
  • 2 cups kale –  stems removed and chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Coconut Oil
  • 1 Can Coconut Cream (2 cans if you like a lot of liquid)
  • 2-3 Tbsp Red Curry Paste
  • Salt to taste

Topping options:

  • Crushed Peanuts
  • Sriracha

Directions: 

Cook your chicken breast in a crockpot or insta pot.  Once it is cooked through, let cook, shred, then set aside.

Sauté cauliflower, carrots and kale in coconut oil till tender.

Saute Cauliflower and Kale

Add a can or two of coconut cream in can (depending on how much liquid you like).

Add 2-3 tablespoons of red curry paste.

Add cooked shredded chicken to the pan and simmer all together.  Add salt to taste.

Shredded Chicken for Coconut Curry Chicken

See the video here: (Available at http://www.nearlyallthings.com)

Top it off with crushed peanuts and a little Sriracha if you like a little heat.  Easy and delicious!

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Pear Cobbler

Pear Cobbler

 

I received a bunch of beautiful organic pears from Perfectly Imperfect produce last week and decided to make this awesome Pear Cobbler!  Check out all the cool stuff our friend Ashley, owner of Perfectly Imperfect Produce does here.

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 pears
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 tablespoon almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 stick grass fed butter melted

Directions:

Remove the cores of the pears and throw them in an Instant Pot to steam.  No peeling required.  This will take approximately 10 minutes.

Organic Pears from Perfectly Imperfect Produce

While pears are steaming, mix together cinnamon, coconut sugar, almond flour, and vanilla.  When pears are done steaming – add them to the bowl of mixed ingredients.

For the topping, mix oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and the melted butter together.  Now assemble.  I used a smaller sized baking dish so it was denser.  Put the pear mixture on the bottom, layer topping mixture on top.  Bake for 45 minutes on 400F.

Cool a little, spoon out and add ice cream or whip cream.  So good!!

Pear Cobbler

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Instant Pot
Instant Pot – $79

Loaded Sweet Potato

These Loaded Sweet Potatoes are amazing and oh so good for you!  Did we mention they are low in calories too?

Sweet potatoes are perfect for this time of the year because they are packed with so many benefits. First they are 30% lower in calories than your average potato. They also provide half of your daily Vitamin C and over 4x your daily Vitamin A needs – two vitamins we need to boost our immune system during cold and flu season.

Sweet potatoes are also good for your skin.  They contain high levels of manganese which help with collagen production – need we say more?  Okay, maybe just one more thing – they are also great for weight loss because they are a fiber-like starch which makes you feel full faster and longer.  Holla!  Still not convinced on Sweet Potatoes?  Read even more about how great they are for you here.

Loaded Sweet Potato

Ingredients (2 servings):

  • 1 sweet potato
  • 1 grilled chicken breast
  • 2 slices turkey bacon
  • 1/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1-2 tablespoon sour cream (full fat)
  • 1-2 tablespoon Sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon chives – chopped

Directions: 

Cut sweet potato in half and place on a baking sheet.  Bake at 400 until sweet potato is baked through and soft (about 40 minutes).  In the meantime, cook your slices of turkey bacon.  Chop your grilled chicken and turkey bacon to bite size pieces.

Mix your sour cream and Sriracha based on your spice tolerance.

When sweet potatoes are done, sprinkle chicken, turkey bacon and cheese evenly between the two.  Drop a dollop of the Sriracha – sour cream mix and sprinkle with chives.  Enjoy!  I know I did 🙂

Sweet Potato Recipe Ideas

This recipe was inspired from @danalemonthyme on Instagram.  She used bacon (the real deal) but I decided to lighten it up a bit.  With as little as you use, you probably are fine either way.  I’m just on a bit of a turkey bacon kick these days.

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Keto Pumpkin Muffins

Keto Pumpkin Muffin

Here we go again with my lazy baking, but it needs to be easy or I will not do it.

So, I have been spending some time using almond and coconut flours because we are trying to reduce gluten in our house.

These came out pretty good if you like an extra moist muffin/bread. I’m also currently up for anything pumpkin.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can pumpkin
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 stick butter (I used Kerrygold)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup Swerve or sweeter of choice (I have tried many and I found Swerve to be the best)

You can add in chocolate chips if you want.  If you do, use 70% cacao ones.  This will keep your sugar and carbs low.

Directions:

Again, I keep this simple. Put all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix it up.  Pour into muffin tins or make into a bread. This time, I used muffin tins (12). This helps with portions. I find that I just keep cutting and eating the bread. These come out very moist, almost spongy, but I don’t hide that texture.  Just happy to have something that resembles a muffin.  If you want, you could also toast it up and spread cream cheese on it – super yummy and kid-friendly too. Enjoy with a nice frothy coffee, like I did!

Keto Pumpkin Muffin

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Simple Green Meals Cookbook

If you are looking for a cookbook that has fresh ideas on healthy, plant-based recipes and includes great pictures for each, then we’ve found it for you!  Simple Green Meals by Jen Hansard (author of Simple Green Smoothies) is a beautiful cookbook that will inspire you to cook healthy this fall with meals ranging from breakfast, snacks, soups, salads, entrees and desserts.

Each of the recipes I tried were easy-to-follow and delicious.  This is a cookbook I will enjoy for a long time. – Libby

To give you an honest review of the cookbook, we tried several different recipes including Cauliflower Buffalo Wings, Coconut Thai Soup, Almond Butter Crisps, and Sweet Potato Hash.

Sweet Potato Hash

Ashlee made the Thai Coconut Soup pictured below which she said was amazing.  She substituted cauliflower that she had on hand for the spiralized zucchini noodles which still worked well.

Thai Coconut Soup

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I wanted to go outside my comfort zone, so I tried the Almond Butter Crisps which were categorized as a snack, not a dessert.  These were really good and my kids all got their hands on one when they cooled all the way.  These are a rich combination of almond butter and cinnamon that will make your kitchen smell amazing!

Almond Butter Crisps
Almond Butter Crisps

 

 

 

 

 

 

I had a tough time finding brown rice syrup for these though, so I had to use corn syrup.  I’d recommend buying the brown rice syrup online to save yourself some time 🙂

These Cauliflower Buffalo Wings were so good I had to post the recipe!  It was my first go at cauliflower wings and these definitely do not disappoint.    In fact, I had to remind myself to stop eating them because eating a whole head of cauliflower would not be welcomed by my digestive system 🙂

Cauliflower Buffalo Wings
Cauliflower Buffalo Wings

Although these called for a Cashew Ranch Dipping Sauce I failed to soak the cashews 2 hours prior to making these wings.  So, I used a ranch that I had on hand with crumbled blue cheese.  This was a good combo, but I have all the ingredients and bound and determined to try the cashew ranch dipping sauce next time I make them (which will be soon!).

Recipe for Cauliflower Buffalo Wings:

  • 1/2 Cup Gluten-free all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup water (I had to use more – almost a full cup)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 head cauliflower, 1 tsp virgin coconut oil melted
  • 2/3 cup Frank’s RedHot sauce (I used this which was good, but I also tried them with WingThyme Garlic Parmesan wing sauce which was more flavorful as far as wing sauce goes and even spicier than Frank’s.)

Directions: 

1. Preheat over to 450F.  Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

2.  Mix the flour, water, garlic powder, and salt together in a large mixing bowl. Whisk until smooth and well combined. – I had to add more water to get a thinner consistency.  I also found that this only covered about half the head of cauliflower.  So, you may need to make more – but it’s really easy to do so. 

Dip the cauliflower pieces in the batter, making sure each piece is well coated and arrange on the prepared baking sheet.  Bake for 15 minutes, turning the pieces over halfway through the baking time.

3.  Stir buffalo sauce and oil in a large mixing bowl.  When the cauliflower is done, transfer the pieces to the bowl and toss well.  Place the coated cauliflower back on the baking sheet and bake for an additional 25 minutes or until crispy.  Let cool slightly and serve with dipping sauce.

Simple Green Meals by Jen Hansard can be purchased here.  Let us know what you try and comment on our blog or post your pics and comments to Facebook and Instagram.  We can’t wait to see what you try!

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Low Carb, No Sugar Coconut Zucchini Muffins

Here it is – a low carb, no sugar muffin you are going to love!  To make these Coconut Zucchini Muffins, I literally dumped all of these ingredients into one bowl (I’m not much of a follow-the-rules kind of girl), doubled the recipe, and added 1 cup of coconut.  Then, I baked it for approximately 30 minutes.

These came out amazing!  I love that I don’t have to feel guilty eating them since there’s no sugar and only about 2 net carbs per muffin or slice!  Plus, these are a great treat for all of you following a gluten-free diet.  I gave them to a couple of friends to try and they both agreed these were awesome.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup Swerve sweetener
  • 1/4 tsp maple extract
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 5 oz medium zucchini grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 cup almond milk
  • 6 large eggs or 8 small
  • 4 oz salted butter melted
  • 1/2 cup coconut shredded

It was so good I made it as a bread as well!

Try this and let us know if you love these muffins as much as we did.  We also want to know, which do you prefer – muffins or bread?  Just curious 😉

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