Category: Recipe Box

Homemade Skinny Margs for Cinco de Drinko

Hola! In the spirit of “Cinco de Drinko,” it’s inevitable we’re going to indulge in a marg or two today. So today I’m sharing my fave recipe for my homemade skinny margarita. I love to use fresh ingredients whenever possible, and with this recipe there’s no need to even bother with sweet n sour. Keep it FRESH.Honey-Grapefruit-Margarita

BUT! What’s a margarita without a little salt? To me, salt on the rim of the glass MAKES the margarita. If you do add salt, just rim ½ the glass. It adds just enough to compliment the bite of the tequila.

  • 1.5 oz Tequila
  • 1 oz Cointreau
  • 1 oz fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1 oz grapefruit perrier
  • 1 squeeze of fresh lime
  • 1 squeeze of fresh lemon
  • Margarita salt
  • ice

++Add grapefruit juice, lime, lemon, perrier, cointreau and tequila (in that order) into a shaker. Add ice. Shake, shake, shake. Use a lime to rim the glass and dip in salt. Add ice to the glass and pour over ice. Garnish with a lime wedge.

What’s on YOUR Cinco de Mayo menu for tonight? We’re having Fajitas with grilled chicken and shrimp, lots of fajita veggies, fresh salsa, and black beans. It’s a FIESTA!

Summer Watermelon Salad

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Nothing says summer like a sweet watermelon salad. After being introduced to this salad at a friends summer BBQ a few years back, I can’t get enough. The combo sounds a little strange, but trust. It is to die for. It’s colorful and festive, and makes a great addition at any summer cookout. Enjoy!

What you’ll need:

  • 2 cups watermelon in bite-sized chunks, seeds removed
  • 2 small ripe tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 ounces fresh goat cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons prepared balsamic vinaigrette dressing
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

What you’ll do:

In a bowl, combine watermelon, tomatoes and goat cheese. Drizzle with vinaigrette and top with basil.

Mix it up: Try it with feta and mint instead of goat cheese and basil, if you like.

Serves 4

Nutrition Facts: (per serving)
100 calories, 6g fat, 3g saturated fat, 5mg cholesterol, 140mg sodium, 10g carbohydrates, 1g fiber, 7g sugar, 3g protein

Skinny Chicken Lettuce Wraps

lThis is a recipe from my Mom and as with all her recipes, it is delicious! So, of course, I had to share. (Thanks Mom!!)

These chicken lettuce wraps are perfect for an appetizer or a light lunch or dinner.

Each lettuce wrap has only 62 calories and 2 grams of fat. Oh, so skinny.

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

What you’ll need:
(for the wraps)

  • 1 pound ground chicken or ground turkey
  • 8 scallions, white and green parts chopped
  • 1 (8oz) can water chestnuts, drained, rinsed and chopped fine
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped fine
  • ¼ cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2½ tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon ginger
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 large head butter lettuce, wash, dried and leaves separated

(for the sauce)

  • ¼ cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ tablespoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon garlic

What you’ll do:

  1. In a large pan, brown the ground chicken over medium-high heat, breaking up the pieces. Pour into a colander, in the sink and drain fat. Return chicken to pan. When cool enough to handle, break up the chicken pieces until minced.
  2. Add the scallions, water chestnuts, red pepper, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, ginger, water and sesame oil. Cook for a few minutes until the scallions and red pepper are soft. Keep warm.
  3. In a small bowl, add all the dipping sauce ingredients and mix well.
  4. To assemble each chicken wrap, spoon about ⅓ cup of chicken filling onto one lettuce leaf and roll it up. Serve with dipping sauce on the side.

Makes about 16 lettuce wraps

Skinny Margs for Cinco de Drinko

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Happy Cinco de Mayo, friends!

I don’t know about you but I’ve been craving a margarita all day. It’s not Cinco de Mayo without one, right?

But to be honest, the older I get, the more my body hates me when I indulge in those pre-mixed, sugar loaded concoctions. Holy hangover!

Natural, high quality ingredients are always better. Enjoy this refreshing, skinny margarita without the guilt. You will thank me tomorrow.

What you’ll need:

  • 3 limes
  • 2 oz tequila
  • splash of agave
  • sea salt
  • ice

What you’ll do:

Squeeze the juice from two of the limes, and slice the third lime into wedges. Add the lime juice, tequila, agave and ice to a shaker or blender and mix it up. Serve in a festive margarita glass.

Optional: rim your margarita glass by rubbing a lime wedge along the edge of your glass, then dip the rim in a plate of sea salt. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Cheers!

Lemon Chia Seed Dressing

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I am a huge advocate for creating foods/sauces/dressings/just about anything from scratch. It’s the only real way to know what you’re eating. And a good salad dressing without a bunch of nasty-ass preservatives and artificial ingredients is REALLY hard to come by. 

So over the past 6+ months, I’ve experimented with creating my own. Some are super tasty, but some could still use a little work. 😉

This simple, lemon chia seed dressing is perfect for your summer salads.

I love it over the Sweet Kale Salad Kit from Costco, which is one of my weekly staples. It’s basically superfood heaven: shredded broccoli, Brussels sprouts, green cabbage, kale, chicory, pumpkin seeds and cranberries. I ditch the pre-packaged dressing that comes in the bag since its filled with a bunch of ingredients I can’t even pronounce, and use this one instead. 

Ingredients:

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
juice of one lemon
1/2 tsp chia seeds
1 tbsp agave syrup (or stevia/your choice of natural sweetener)

Directions:

Whisk together all of the ingredients and enjoy over your favorite salad.  

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The Perfect Hard Boiled Egg

It’s no secret that I love eggs (see thisthis and this). And with Easter right around the corner, I thought I’d share my technique for the perfect hard boiled egg.

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To be honest, hard boiled eggs can be a little tricky to get just right. Don’t you agree?

I think one reason is that if you google/youtube how to make a hard boiled egg you get 1,000+ techniques.

Some adding vinegar. Some with baking soda.

So many different methods! How is that possible?

I need simplicity. And I need a technique that works. 

Well, I’ve finally discovered just that.

My method is SUPER SIMPLE. Nothing but eggs and water. It never fails. I’ve never dealt with the dreaded grey yolk. I’ve never had a soft, under cooked egg nor an overcooked white.

Perfect eggs, every time.

Hard Boiled Eggs:

  1. Place eggs in a saucepan and cover with at least ½ inch of water. 
  2. As soon as the water reaches a rolling boil, remove from heat and cover with a lid for 15 minutes. 
  3. Drain hot water from the saucepan. Add enough ice cubes and cold water to cover the eggs, allowing eggs to cool for 10 minutes.
  4. Remove from ice water and peel or store in the refrigerator.

**To peel the eggs, gently tap on hard surface, then roll between palm of hand and surface. The shell will quickly appear to be shattered on the egg.  Begin to peel the shell – most of it should stick together as it easily comes off of the egg.

Homemade Açaí Bowl

acai-bowl-Saturday morning I had the most delicious açaí bowl for Breakfast from our hotel in Newport Beach. This “Bonzai Bowl” was made with açaí yogurt, fresh assorted tropical fruit – strawberries, pineapple, mango, kiwi, banana – and topped with toasted coconut, pistachios, and granola.

It was absolutely heavenly!

acaiAçaí is the king of the superfruit jungle is this tiny purple palm fruit called açaí. A staple food for the local Amazonians, açaí is rich in antioxidants (specifically anthocyanins like those found in red wine) and healthy fats similar to olive oil, plus it has no sugar. This combo makes açaí a powerhouse of satisfying nutrition.”

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I loved it so much that I’ve been craving another açaí bowl ever since. So, of course I had to learn to make them at home.

And now you can too!

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++ Homemade Açaí Bowl ++

Ingredients:

Optional Toppings:

  • Fresh, sliced fruit: strawberries, bananas, kiwi, mango, pineapple
  • Granola
  • Coconut
  • Chia Seeds
  • Ground Flax Seeds
  • Honey

Blend açaí packs, spinach, frozen berries, banana and milk until smooth. The mixture should be thick enough to eat with a spoon. Transfer into a bowl and add your favorite toppings. Enjoy!

Mason Jar Salads

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I am all about salads right now. They are seriously the perfect lunch: tons of veggies, leafy greens, some protein, and a little healthy fat. Prepare them right and you have yourself a very well balanced meal all in one little container.

Thanks to the mason jar.

Layer your salad ingredients in this cute little jar, and when you’re ready for lunch just give it a shake. Easy, right?

You can also make them ahead of time to enjoy throughout the week. Hellooooo meal prep!

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A few rules to master the mason jar salad:

  1. Always add your dressing first. There’s nothing worse than a soggy salad.
  2. Next, add your heartier toppings like cucumber, carrots, chickens, radishes, bell pepper, etc.
  3. Then, add your lighter bits like quinoa, flax, tomatoes, fruit, corn, beans, cheese, and seeds.
  4. Finally add your leafy greens. Firmer greens like kale, spinach, and cabbage should go in before lighter greens like spring mix and arugula.
  5. Be sure to leave a little room at the top, otherwise it can be tough to mix the ingredients.
  6. When you’re ready to eat, just shake, shake, shake. You can either transfer it to a bowl or eat it right from the jar.

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{Why use a Mason Jar?}

Dishwasher safe

BPA free and environmentally friendly

Easy for school or work lunches

Excellent Portion Control

Super cute and so trendy right now. duh!

Green Shamrock Smoothie + Smoothie Tips

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!

Today I’m sharing my favorite GREEN Smoothie Recipe for St. Patties Day!

This little Green Shamrock Smoothie is full of iron, potassium, vitamins, nutrients and tastes like a tropical treat from the fresh island fruit.

But first – a few tips when making your smoothies, courtesy of Simple Green Smoothies:

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 5 Smoothie Tips to Live By:

  1. Follow the formula. Aim to use least 60% leafy greens to 40% fruits. Reduce fruit if weight loss is your goal.
  2. Blend in stages. Add leafy greens to your liquid base first, then add your frozen fruit and blend again to avoid leafy chunks.
  3. Use frozen produce. Freeze unpeeled ripe bananas, pineapple, berries and your leafy greens in freezer-safe bags. This is a great way to not waste ripe produce and your won’t need to add ice!
  4. Use natural sweeteners. Add naturally sweet fruits like bananas, mango, apples, or pears to your green smoothie to kick the flavor up a bit. Avoid artificial sweeteners by all means.
  5. Make them ahead. Green smoothies are the one of the best breakfast options, especially when you’re on the go. Did you know you can blend your smoothie the night before and store it in the fridge for up to 2 days? Just use an airtight container to keep it as fresh as possible. And shake it up when you’re ready to drink it.

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Green Shamrock Smoothie:

What you’ll need:

  • 2 cups fresh spinach
  • 1 cups water
  • ½ cup pineapple
  • ½ cup mango
  • ½ banana
  • 1 T chia seeds

What you’ll do:

Blend spinach and water until smooth. Add the remaining fruits and blend again. Serve immediately or refrigerate in an air tight container until ready to drink.

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Skinny Protein Waffles

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My dad tells this one story of “2 year old Jenn,” so often, I feel like I actually remember it. I wake up in the wee hours of the night, crying sobbing for no apparent reason (probably a nightmare but the world may never know).

After several HOURS, I’m finally able to let out a sentence in between the sobs, tears, and gasps for air.

And I announce “I want a waffle.”

There ya have it folks. Emotional eating from a 2 year old.

As a 27 year old self-proclaimed nutrition nut, I am almost ashamed to admit I still die over waffles. Except now I know those frozen Eggos are definitely not the best for my body.

Can’t a girl just eat a damn waffle anymore??

Well thankfully I’ve found a solution so I can avoid another midnight meltdown.

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These Skinny Protein Waffles provide a full serving of fruit and protein which keeps me feeling nice and satisfied. I love them for breakfast, an afternoon snack, and especially when those waffle cravings kick in.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 serving vanilla protein powder
  • ½ banana
  • ½ Tablespoon almond milk
  • 2 egg whites (¼ cup liquid egg whites)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

What you’ll do:

  1. In a small bowl, mash the banana with the almond milk.
  2. Gradually stir in the other ingredients to make a batter.
  3. Spray your waffle iron with non-stick cooking spray and heat on medium low.
  4. Slowly pour the batter into the waffle iron and cook 3-5 minutes until golden brown.
  5. Remove from heat and top with additional fruit, real maple syrup, honey or agave.

Makes 1 waffle. 

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