Holiday Goodness

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I was so excited to find these yummy treats at my local Whole Foods! For those of us that avoid dairy, this is a tasty option to get into the holiday spirit. This morning, I made myself a Mint Chocolate latte: I steamed the Mint Chocolate flavor and added it to my espresso. Instead of getting a calorie loaded holiday beverage at Starbucks, this tasty beverage saved me money and calories: 50 calories, 2.5 g of fat, and only 6 grams of sugar! For a healthy holiday breakfast, try this recipe from my brilliant friend and Law of Attraction Coach, Tanna Marshall:photo (1)

1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder*

1/4 cup Nog Coconut Milk

3/4 cup Regular Coconut milk or Almond Milk (or more depending on how much liquid you use)

Nutmeg

Ice

 

* I personally use a plant-based, Non-GMO powder from Juice Plus, called Complete 

Now I want to hear from you! What’s your favorite holiday find?

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My New “Not So Guilty Pleasure”

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I’m already starting to fantasize about all of the yummy sites, smells and tastes! And because I’ve been eating clean and getting myself in shape, I plan to indulge and enjoy myself. 

My favorite dessert is Pumpkin Cheesecake. I always make sure I save room for this. Well imagine my delight when a friend at work presented me with Oikos’ Seasonal Pumpkin Pie flavor greek yogurt! I was in heaven. I thought it was the best thing ever, until I looked and saw it had 19 grams of mainly refined sugar. To me, that’s still considered a treat vs. an everyday, healthy snack. 

Dannon-PumpkinPieSingle-seasonal-slideshowBut then an idea hit me… what if I made my own? It seemed simple enough, so I played around in my kitchen and voila! For your enjoyment, here is my recipe for what I like to call Pumpkin Cheesecake Greek Yogurt:

 

1 cup non-fat plain greek yogurt (I personally like Fage)

2 – 3 tablespoons plain pumpkin puree* (the amounts are flexible…. it depends on how much pumpkin flavor you like.)

1/4 teaspoon Pumpkin Spice (or more depending on how much spice you like. I personally love it, so I get pretty heavy handed with it!)

For a low sugar version, add 2 – 4 drops Sweet Leaf Stevia Drops (Hazelnut)

For a little higher sugar version, 1/2 tsp raw honey

*Make sure you use pumpkin puree vs pumpkin pie mix. I use the organic canned version from Trader Joe’s

Mix together in a bowl and enjoy! You can use this when sugar cravings come on or as an after dinner treat. All the flavor without the guilt!

It’s not too late to sign up for my “Look Good, Feel Good Through the Holidays” Guide. It’s something I won’t be posting on my blog, but sending out to my email subscribers. And if you want more fun recipes and tips delivered directly to your inbox, sign up for my email newsletter! Let’s be friends.

Sweet and Salty Pumpkin Seeds

Photo from AllRecipes.com

Photo from AllRecipes.com

It’s almost Halloween! A time of candy, costumes and pumpkin carving. I remember when I was little, scooping out all of the seeds and “pumpkin guts.” I just wanted it out so I could get to the carving. Little did I know, I was throwing away a healthy, tasty snack! Did you know pumpkin seeds are loaded with nutrients? They contain Magnesium, which is good for hearth health and most people are actually deficient. They also contain Zinc, which keeps your immune system strong, helps with sleep, mood, and skin and eye health. Finally, they are a plant-based source of Omega 3 Fatty acids, which has been shown to help with depression and provides anti-inflammatory benefits.

So while your kids are ferociously scooping out their pumpkins, stand behind them with a cookie sheet, ready to collect those little nutrition gems. (Just make sure you rinse all of the “pumpkin guts” off of them first and dry them.)

Here’s a simple, yummy recipe to try. (You can also find a ton on Allrecipes.com!):

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Spray a non-stick cookie sheet with coconut oil (I found a great spray Coconut Oil at Trader Joe’s). Arrange the seeds in one layer on the cookie sheet, and then coat them with another layer of coconut oil, so they are nice and covered. Sprinkle the seeds with a little salt, Pumpkin Pie spice, and sugar. Bake for about 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are nice and brown.

Enjoy!

Now over to you… did you like this little tidbit? Then please, share it with your friends! Do you have a favorite pumpkin seed recipe? I would love to see it in the comments below!

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I Love Fall!

I lovPumpkin Piee fall! The leaves, the crispness in the air, the excitement around the holidays coming up, and pumpkin everything!!! Did you know that pumpkin is actually quite healthy for you? It’s high in fiber and vitamin A. Hopefully by now, you know I’m a smoothie fan. It’s a quick and easy meal that gives me tons of nutrition packed into a tasty treat. In honor of fall and all things pumpkin, here is my recipe for a Pumpkin Pie Smoothie:

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

1/2 Can Pumpkin (I buy organic when possible)

1/2 tsp Pumpkin Pie seasoning (Or more depending on how spicy you want it. I personally can’t get enough of this stuff)

1/2 cup – 1 cup ice (depending on how thick you want it)

8 ounces Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk (Can also use Rice or Coconut Milk)

Vanilla Sweet Leaf Stevia Drops (I only use 2 because I don’t like it super sweet, My husband uses 5!)

Vanilla Protein Powder (I use Juice Plus Complete)

I put all of the ingredients in my Vitamix, and voila! 

Enjoy! 

Now over to you! What’s your favorite pumpkin recipe?

 

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Frappucino’s of the World Beware!

My husband is a coffee junkie, which normally wouldn’t upset me, however he’s not a black coffee junkie, or even a coffee with a little cream and a dash of sugar kind of a junkie… he’s a flavored coffee junkie. His usual is either an iced vanilla latte or some form of blended coffee sweetness. An average vanilla latte has about 250 calories and 35 grams of sugar. An average Frappucino has about 400 – 500 calories and over 50 grams of sugar!!! I’m all about a treat every once in awhile, but this daily habit is not an option for a dietitian’s husband! photo (2)I got creative and came up with a workable solution. We have smoothies every morning in some way, shape or form. I try to vary the flavors with different fruits and vegetables. We always add a whole food powder for added protein and nutrition. I use Juice Plus Complete because it’s whole food based, non-GMO, and gluten free. I came up with a healthier, yet tasty alternative to my husband’s usual morning beverage.   1 handful greens (lettuce, kale, spinach, swiss chard) – I add greens to every smoothie I make. You can’t taste them and I like to get more bang for my buck! 1 cup ice (more if you like it really thick) 1 cup Vanilla Coconut Milk (You can use Almond Milk or Rice Milk) 4 ounces coffee or 1 -2 shots of espresso (If you make the coffee the night before, you can chill it in the fridge. I actually have a Frappe Maker that brews the coffee right into the blender and then blends it up) 1 scoop Chocolate or Vanilla Protein Powder  Sweet Leaf Vanilla Stevia drops to taste (I don’t particularly like my drinks really sweet, but for my hubbie, the sweater the better, so I add these after.) Enjoy! Now over to you. What ways do you modify your favorite morning cup of Joe? I’d love to read your comments below. Want more fun tips like this? Sign up! Let’s be friends.