Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Cinnamon Oatmeal Green Smoothie

I have to admit, this recipe was completely experimental. It was a throw in some of this, a little bit of that, and a pinch more if this type of morning. It was a success though! Today I introduce you to the cinnamon oatmeal green smoothie. The only thing I will do differently next time is soaking the oats in the almond milk overnight to soften them. You will need:

1 cup of Silk original almond milk
1/2 cup of fat free greek yogurt
1/2 a frozen banana
1/2 cup of old fashion oats
2 tbs. of brown sugar
2 tsp. of cinnamon
1 tsp. of vanilla extract
1 tbs. of Splenda
1 cup of baby spinach 

 (Please excuse the garage picture, I was in a hurry this morning!)

If you like smooth, thin smoothies, this may not be for you. This was thick, and a little bit gritty, but I personally did not mind it. Like I said earlier, next time I will soak the oats in the almond milk overnight to soften them!
All in all, this came out to 18 grams of protein and 294 calories!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Veggie Stuffed Shells

Who doesn't love stuffed shells? No one I've ever met, that's for sure! The calories though, whew! That's always a deal breaker for me. Tonight though, not only did I manage to keep these under 650 calories per serving, but I got my husband to eat mushrooms and spinach. I repeat, HE ATE MUSHROOMS AND SPINACH. He also said it was "good", which is husband speak for "I'd eat this if you make it again". Can I get a hallelujah?! For this recipe you will need:

12 pieces of shell pasta
1/2 lbs. of lean ground hamburger meat (or ground turkey, which is even healthier)
1/2 cup of finely chopped onions
1/2 cup of finely chopped portobello mushrooms
1 cup of finely chopped baby spinach
2 tbs. of minced garlic
1 cup of spaghetti sauce
1/2 cup of fat free cottage cheese
1/2 cup of parmesan cheese

Don't you just love how pretty vegetables are? So colorful :)

Boil the shell pasta as directed. Set aside. 
Brown the hamburger meat. Add in the chopped onions, mushrooms, spinach, and garlic and continue to cook until spinach is wilted. Remove from heat. Mix in the cottage cheese, 2/3 of a cup of spaghetti sauce, and 1/4 of a cup of parmesan cheese. 

In a baking dish, add 2 tbs. of spaghetti sauce and coat bottom so the pasta doesn't stick. Lay shells in the pan, then spoon in the vegetable/meat/cheese mixture. Drizzle the remaining 1/4 cup of sauce on top of the stuffed shells and top with the remaining 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes.  

Now, before I let you see the finished product, I must warn you, my husband got his hands on this before I could take a picture. As you can see, the right side is his portion. Lucky him, he can eat all the cheese in the world and not gain an ounce. I hate love him. 

6 shells, which is half of the dish, came out to 646 calories.

Bon appetit!

Weight update and a few smoothie recipes from Skinny Mom

No new smoothie recipe this morning, just a repeat of my strawberry spinach Christmas in a cup from a few days ago. I did, however, stumble upon this while browsing Pinterest today. Lots of great smoothie ideas (and healthy food in general) over at Skinny Mom!

In other news, I weighed myself today. I'm down almost 2 lbs in a week! I am aiming for 1.5 lbs a week, which will have me down 31.5 lbs by my 2nd wedding anniversary on June 11. Maybe I'll do a Trash the Dress photoshoot as a little reward for myself if I lose the weight?

Monday, January 7, 2013

Protein Packed Peanut Butter Banana Green Smoothie

I have only been making green smoothies for a few days now, but this one is by far my favorite. Now, if I had added a tablespoon or two of cocoa powder, it could quiet possibly top the charts as my all time favorite, but I'll save that for a day when I need a good pick-me-up. Today's smoothie is packed with protein, 30 grams to be exact! The majority of it comes from the peanut butter, greek yogurt, and flax seed. To make this powerful concoction, you will need:

1 medium frozen banana
2 tbs of peanut butter
1/2 cup of non fat greek yogurt
1 cup of almond milk
4 cups of spinach
2 tbs of ground flax seed
1-2 tbs of splenda (to taste)

 Blend it all together now!
Tada! Like I said earlier, 30 grams of protein, 550 calories, and all of my vitamin A & C for the day.

***I MUST NOTE: I could NOT finish this thing! Holy moly. Half way through it I was full to the brim. So I guess you could say its 15 grams of protein and 225 calories per serving.

Bottoms up :)

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Chicken Pot Pie

I had a real hankering for chicken pot pie while grocery shopping tonight, and decided to make it for the first time. I'll admit, I had no clue what I was doing, but it turned out great, and healthy! This made enough for 2 people plus a leftover portion, or in my case, enough for just me plus lunch tomorrow and the next day because my husband hates pretty much every ingredient in here. You will need:

1 Birds Eye Mixed Vegetable Steam Bag (carrots, peas, green beans, corn)
1 mini can of Grands Biscuits
2 tbs of cornbread mix (or any kind of biscuit mix)
3-4 tbs of chicken broth
1 cup of shredded chicken

Steam the vegetables as directed and pour into a small casserole dish. Mix together the chicken broth and the cornbread mix with the vegetables. Meanwhile, boil and shred the chicken. 

(Did you know you can shred chicken perfectly in your Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer?)

Mix the shredded chicken with the veggie/cornbread/broth mixture in the casserole dish. Press and smooth with a fork. Peel 3 biscuits in half and place on top in the dish. 

Bake at 375 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until biscuits are slightly golden. I like mine softer so I didn't cook them as long.

1 serving, which was about 1/4 of the dish, came out to 508 calories.

Enjoy...I know I did!

Green Smoothie Challenge

Good morning y'all! Today's post is inspired by a challenge my friend Sara came up with. She challenged herself and others to drink a green smoothie as one meal a day, for the first month of the new year. So far I have done pretty good. I started on Jan. 2nd because I was out of town on the 1st. I'm going to try my hardest to document each new smoothie recipe, as well as share others that I come across.

So today, I introduce to you what I call Christmas in a cup. Not for the taste, but for the ingredients. Let me start by saying I woke up this morning pumped for a banana peanut butter smoothie. I mean PUMPED. My mouth was already watering just thinking about it as I laid in bed. I came to the oh so sad conclusion that my husband had eaten the last banana when I walked into the kitchen, so it was time for plan B. I need to go to the grocery store something fierce, so alas, all I had was strawberries.

Today's concoction has the following ingredients:

12 small-medium strawberries
4 cups of spinach (yes, 4!)
1.5 cups of almond milk
2 tbs of yogurt
2 tbs of ground flax seed
1 tbs of splenda

I know, I know, it looks gross. Most green smoothies do. If I learned anything in elementary school, it's that red and green make brown. So unless you make a banana yogurt spinach smoothie or something with no color, the chances of it having a brown hue are very likely. Let's just pretend there's chocolate in there :)

This made a 12 oz. smoothie. It has 341 calories, 16 grams of protein, my entire daily value in vitamins A and C, 92% of my daily calcium, and it tastes YUMMY! This is going to keep me feeling full well into the middle of the day. 

Do you make green smoothies? Care to join in on our challenge? I hope you will, its so easy and healthy! To see Sara's blog, along with her green smoothies, check out You and Me Are We. Happy blending :)

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Say hello to my little friends

I'm on a bit of a posting kick tonight. Hey, it's my first blog, bite me. :)

I thought before I go to bed, I'd make a post about my BKF's, aka my Best Kitchen Friends. These are appliances, foods, and phone apps that I use pretty much every day.

This is Marilyn. (Everybody says, "Hiiii Marilyn" in a monotone voice like an AA meeting)
The basic model Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer. This thing can shred chicken like Wolverine. Make dough like the dough boy himself. Whip up taters like a hurricane. I just love it! If it ever breaks, I will cry...then go buy a new one.

Next is my Ninja Pulse Blender (I think that's the right name for it)
Why do I love this so much? Well, the big cup is a food processor, but it also came with 4 travel size cups with lids, which is why I REALLY love it! This bad boy can whip up a mean, green, protein packed spinach smoothie in seconds. I use the every morning for make my spinach breakfast smoothie, and sometimes at night to make dessert milkshakes.

Then, we have the food scale.
This thing really helps put things into perspective. Do you REALLY know what 4 oz. of pasta looks like? or 6 oz. of chicken? I thought I did. LOL. I apparently suck at guesstimating, which is why I rely on this gem. Trust me, 4 oz. of spaghetti calories and wayyyyyy different than 6.37 oz. Imagine over estimating day after day. Month after month. And people wonder where this extra weight comes from??

Last but not least, the app that has it's own folder on my phone screen, because it's just that special, My Fitness Pal.

Sometimes I close my eyes and pretend I'm so rich and celebrity like, that I have my own personal butler who tracks what I eat all day. Then I wake up and realize I only have an iPhone and this awesome app. Its the same thing, right? Anyway, this thing is easy peezy to use. Eat the food. Track the calories. Jump in the air victoriously when you stay under your calorie limit (or cry and contemplate eating a whole box of oreos when you don't) and see your weight loss progress. If you don't have this app, get it. If you don't have a smart phone, they have a website, too!

I will be updating this post as I meet more BKF's, so stayed tuned!