recipes

Energy balls

20150301_115731

These are super easy high-energy snacks that you can grab on the go.

Ingredients:

  • 5 scoops chocolate protein
  • 5 Tbsp natural peanut butter
  • 2/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1/4 cup raisins or dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1/3 cup chia seeds

Method:

  1. Mix protein, peanut butter, oats, and water together in a medium bowl.
  2. Mix in the remaining ingredients (might need to use your hands because it gets sticky).
  3. Roll into balls and store in the fridge in a tupperware container.

Pan-Cooked Lentil Burger Recipe

This was one of the recipes I made last week.  It turned out really well and I am definitely going to make them again. They are great on buns with toppings like a regular burger but I also cut some up for salads. They would also be good for tacos and sandwiches. My toddler really liked them too which is always a good sign! Enjoy the recipe!

20150202_174737

Yield: 12 burgers

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw red lentils (soaked for 4 hours or overnight in water)
  • 1/2 cup cooked rice
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 cup cashews or peanut butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt

Method:

  1. Drain water from soaked lentils. Put lentils into a food processor and dice until smooth. Scoop into a medium bowl.
  2. Dice onion with oats, cashews, and rice in the food processor (If using peanut butter you can add it directly to the lentil burger mixture in the mixing bowl). Add to the bowl and stir together.
  3. Add remaining ingredients to the burger mixture and stir through.
  4. Heat olive oil (or coconut oil) in a pan on the stove on medium heat. Use spoon to scoop batter onto the pan and shape into burgers.  It is a little stickier than a hamburger but they cook up nicely and I didn’t have any trouble with them falling apart 🙂
  5. Cook 4-5 minutes/side or until cooked through.
  6. Enjoy however you want!

Nutrition Info for 1 burger (using USDA Nutrient Database):

Calories 132; Protein 4.8g; Carbs 12g; Fat 4.4g

Black Bean Banana Brownie Recipe

IMG_20150124_122511 (2)

Brownies are the perfect place to hide black beans. Lately I have been making these quite a lot because they are such an easy snack that my son and I both like. I like to have them as a pre-workout snack in the late afternoon.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups black beans (soaked and cooked or from a can)
  • 2 cups egg whites
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder

Mason Jar/Blender Method*:

  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees
  2. Place black beans and 1.5 cups of egg whites in a large mason jar.  Blend until smooth and then pour the mixture into a mixing bowl.
  3. Place bananas, honey, remaining egg whites and 2 eggs in the large mason jar.  Blend until smooth and then pour the mixture into the mixing bowl. Stir all of the liquid together.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine oats, flour, baking powder, cocoa until mixed.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the mixture. Stir until everything is evenly mixed.
  6. Pour into either a)silicon muffin pans or b) a greased baking dish
  7. Bake for 20-35min depending on what you put it in. Small muffin cups will take about 20 min while large muffin cups or large pan will take about 35min.  Test center with a butter knife or a toothpick – when it comes out clean (no goopy batter) then it is done.
  8. Cool 10 min before removing from pan. Enjoy!

*You can also use a food processor or a potato masher to mush up the beans and bananas together and then add the remaining wet ingredients together.

Beef, Ricotta & Spinach Stuffed Peppers

Image

Now that I’m entering the last few weeks of my pregnancy, I am again showing signs of slowing down and being extremely tired.  My blood work showed that I have low levels of B12 and iron so I started taking a few more supplements and trying to incorporate more spinach, clams, and red meat into my diet.  This stuffed pepper recipe is one of my new fave’s – it’s full of calcium, iron, and all kinds of goodies for your cells!  It’s also low carb and very delicious!

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 green peppers (try to get ones that are flat on the bottom and will stand up on their own)
  • 4 white mushrooms
  • 500g extra lean ground beef or ground sirloin
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1-2 medium tomatoes
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 250g of low fat ricotta cheese
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees C.
  2. Steam spinach. 
  3. Cook meat in a frying pan.
  4. Chop up onion, mushrooms, and tomatoes.  Place these in a medium-sized bowl.  Mix in ricotta cheese and spices.
  5. Cut the tops off the peppers and take out the seedy parts.
  6. Drain spinach and rinse with cool water.  Chop it up and add to mixture.
  7. Place paper towel in another bowl.  Place cooked beef on top.  Use more paper towel on top to sop up the extra grease.  Discard paper towel and add beef to filling.  Mix through.
  8. Now line a baking pan with tin foil.
  9. Fill your peppers with the mixture and replace the lid (top of the pepper).
  10. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes, until browned on top.

Let cool 10min and enjoy!

Optional: for cheese lovers, you can add a few tablespoons of grated mozzarella cheese on top of the mixture before replacing the top and sticking it in the oven. YUM~!

~Live Inspired~!

Emily

Eat Clean – 6 Recipe Sites you can’t Live Without!

Clean eating simply means that you don’t eat crap food.  For most people, it really doesn’t have to get more complicated than that (fitness competitors are on a whole different level).  Sometimes it’s hard to know how to make your basket of healthy items into something delicious but thankfully there are people who love to experiment in the kitchen and share their creations.   This saves you from many a kitchen disaster (trust me, I’ve had a few!) and can help keep your healthy meal plan interesting.

Here are the best sites for clean eating recipes – from entrees to desserts, there is something new and delicious waiting for you to try!

 

1. The Eat Clean Diet

Tosco Reno is a former school teacher from Ontario who discovered her passion for fitness in her forties.  Her best-selling  books provide practical information and recipes for those wanting to improve their health and fitness.  What I like most about her approach is that she includes healthy carbs such as quinoa, sweet potatoes, and brown rice in moderation, providing the fitness enthusiast with fuel for training and recovery.  Several delicious recipes are posted for free on the eat clean website and you can also find her books at the public library in many areas.

http://www.eatcleandiet.com/food_and_recipes/clean_recipe.aspx

 

2. The Oatmeal Project

Bored with your oatmeal?  The Oatmeal Project, created by The Gracious Pantry mastermind named Tiffany, provides you with TONS of ways to make this breakfast staple a little more exciting.   While I do recommend substituting skim milk with almond milk, I’ll leave that one up to you.

http://www.thegraciouspantry.com/oatmeal-recipes/

 

3. Clean Eating Magazine

Although I don’t often buy magazines, this one is actually packed full of great ideas and healthy recipes.  At times it can be heavy on the carbs and often features lighter versions of comfort foods and family favorites.  I recommend this site for clean eaters just getting started and those who aren’t ready to give up their mac and cheese quite yet.

http://www.cleaneatingmag.com/Recipes.aspx

 

4. The Dashing Dish

If you haven’t discovered this gem, head on over to http://dashingdish.com/.  Not only is Katie sweet and genuine, this gal comes up with one-of-a-kind tasty treats that can help curb your sweet tooth without busting your diet.  I especially like her protein shakes for post-workout recovery!

 

5. The Savvy Vegetarian

Although I am not a strict vegetarian (I really do love fish and a juicy steak here and there), I eat meat-free meals most of the time.  Eating less meat can be a very positive choice for your health, the environment, and your pocketbook.

If you’re looking for healthy meat-free meals, this might just be the only recipe website you need!   Whether you are looking for a glorious gluten-free dessert or a new way to enjoy your veggies, this site has it all.  The recipes are well-organized so it is super easy to find what you’re looking for.   There are also cookbook reviews, articles, and tips about enjoying a vegetarian lifestyle.

http://www.savvyvegetarian.com/vegetarian-recipes/index.php

 

6. The Food Network

The Food Network caters somewhat to a foodie audience (grilled steak with papaya anyone?) but their website also includes relatively simple recipes that don’t require 10 million expensive ingredients (half of which you’ve never heard of) and special kitchen gadgets.   This site also provides how-to videos and a special section on grilling, which is perfect for summer parties or family gatherings.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/healthy-eating/index.html

 

So there you have it.  Now that you’re inspired, make your weekly meal plan and hit the farmer’s market or the grocery store!   Your taste buds and your waist line will thank you!

 

~Live Inspired~!

Emily

Fitness Lovers’ Shepard’s Pie

This high protein vegetarian meal is sure to make you smile and keep your waistline trim.  Eating less meat saves you money and also reduces your impact on the planet – it takes a serious amount of food, land, and water to raise a cow.

Many vegetarian meals indiscriminately use carbs and fats, a combination that can leave you with extra inches around your waistline.  In this recipe, I substituted ground beef with veggie ground round and black beans, and potatoes with mashed cauliflower.  I also threw in some chopped kale for good measure.  The results?  Delicious!  This is totally my new favorite recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 large head cauliflower
  • 1 cup low fat cottage cheese
  • 2 cups cooked black beans (~1 can if you don’t rehydrate your own)
  • 2 cups chopped kale
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 1 cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 pkg Veggie Ground Round (you can also use TVP if you prefer)
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1-2 tsp chili powder (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp olive or coconut oil

Method:

  1. Wash and chop cauliflower.  Place in a pot with boiling water and cook until it is very soft (~20-30min)
  2. Meanwhile, heat a large frying pan on medium heat.  Add oil, onions, garlic, celery.  Saute 2-3 min.
  3. Add chopped kale and mushrooms. Cook another 2-3 min.
  4. Add beans and veggie ground round (break it up with a spatula).  Heat through and remove from heat. Set aside.
  5. Drain cauliflower.  Mash with a fork or masher until smooth.  Add cottage cheese and stir through.  (For a smoother texture, you can also blend these together with a hand blender; also, to save doing more dishes, I complete this step in the pot).
  6. Lightly oil a 9 x 9 pan (I used a spring-form pan because our 9 x 9 pan was full of protein bars setting in the fridge).
  7. Pour frying pan mixture into the pan.  Spread evenly.
  8. Pour cauliflower mixture on top. Spread evenly.
  9. Now bake at 350 degrees F for 30 min.
  10. Turn oven to broil and bake 2-3 min longer, keeping a watchful eye.  This will crisp up the top and turn it a golden brown colour (that’s when you know it’s ready!)
  11. Let cool 5-10min.  Cut and serve warm.

Hope you enjoy!

~Live Inspired~!

Emily

Chocolate Awesome Energy Bars

I love experimenting in the kitchen so today I made up a new recipe for some delicious chocolate peanut butter energy bars that are easy, nutritious, and very tasty.   They are made from natural ingredients and give you lots of important micronutrients including Vitamin B6, Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Niacin, Phosphorus, Selenium, Thiamin, and Zinc – awesome!

If you are eating low carb, you can replace the oats with ground flax meal and the wheat flour with coconut or almond flour.   You can also opt to use Stevia instead of honey.  As a post-workout snack, you may want to lower the fat content by using cooked pumpkin or applesauce instead of peanut butter and substituting another dried fruit instead of walnut pieces. 

Here’s the recipe if you’d like to try it out:

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 cups cooked black beans, mashed or blended in a food processor (not a regular blender, as it will just get stuck in there!)
  • 1/2 cup natural peanut butter (smooth)
  • 1/4 cup honey (or agave nectar if you prefer)
  • 1 small smooshy/ripe banana, mashed
  • 1/2 cup steel cut oats, uncooked
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour (or whole wheat)
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 (F)
  2. Put beans in a bowl and mash with a fork.  Or, blend in a food processor until smooth.
  3. Add in banana and mash into beans (or mash banana in a small bowl and then add it to the big bowl, depending on your cooking style)
  4. Stir in the honey until mixed through
  5. Now add the peanut butter, mix through
  6. Next add in the oats and mix it all together
  7. Time to add in the cocoa and the flour
  8. Finally add in your raisins & walnuts and mix until texture is uniform throughout.
  9. Spray a 9″ x 9″ baking dish with non-stick cooking spray or olive oil.
  10. Pour mixture into the baking dish and spread evenly along bottom of the pan
  11. Bake in the oven for 15-18 minutes (check with a knife or toothpick to see if it’s done)
  12. Let cool 10 min before cutting into pieces (I like to cut it into 9, like a tic-tac-toe board!)
  13. Wrap it up in foil or store in a reusable container.
  14. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts: 1 serving contains 270 calories, 12g healthy fats, 36g carbs, 10g protein, 6.5g fibre