Spinach Salad with Guacamole

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This is easily my favorite lunch to take to work with me. It is super healthy and Whole 30 compliant but it will also keep you full and fueled for the entire afternoon.

Ingredients (1 serving):
1 small tomato, diced
a handful of baby carrots, cut in half
1/4 of an English Cucumber, deseeded and sliced
1/4 of a green onion (green part), chopped
1 large handful of baby spinach
Approx. 10-15 dry roasted almonds
1/4 of a lime
2 tbsp. guacamole, homemade or Wholly Guacamole Minis are perfect for work lunches

Put the first 6 ingredients in a bowl and then when you are ready to eat, squeeze the lime juice all over it and put the guacamole on top of the salad. Toss the ingredients to coat everything in lime and guacamole (they are your dressing) and enjoy!

Variations: Add Grilled Chicken, Salmon, or Burger Patties to add more protein to the meal.

Roasted Vegetables

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I eat this side dish at LEAST 3 times a week. I always change out the veggies, the recipe is pretty much identical for asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, whole green beans, mushrooms, and any combination of those that you desire. Most of my pictures seem to be of broccoli but I would say that I actually eat asparagus the most often.

Ingredients:
Veggie of choice – enough for 2 people
1-2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
sea salt
cracked pepper

Preheat oven to 425F. Wash and chop veggies to desired size:
Asparagus – trim the ends off but leave each one in one long piece
Broccoli – florets ( I prefer pretty small ones)
Cauliflower – florets ( I prefer pretty small ones)
Green Beans – trim the ends but leave whole
Mushrooms – whole or halved

Toss veggies in a bowl with olive oil, salt and pepper. (You can also do a sprinkle of garlic salt if desired.)

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Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet and cook for 12-15 minutes until starting to get crispy and a little brown in some spots and serve immediately with your entree, they will get cool really quickly. Enjoy!

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Roasted Potatoes

This is one of most go-to side dishes, especially when we aren’t eating grains and my husband needs a little more substance to a meal than just veggies. You can use Russet, Gold, Red, Purple, Fingerling, whatever kind of potatoes you like and have on hand. My personal favorites are Purple, Fingerling, and Russet.

Ingredients (makes 2 servings):
1 large potato or 2 small ones
1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
pinch each of:
garlic salt
onion powder
parsley
salt
pepper

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Preheat the oven to 400F and slice the potato into 1/4 to 1/2 inch slices or cubes, whichever you prefer. (The picture above is of a small cutting board, not the largest potato known to man!)

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In a bowl, toss sliced or cubed potatoes and all other ingredients. Make sure each and every slice is coated in olive oil or it will stick to the pan.

Spread the potatoes out in a single layer on a baking sheet and put into the oven for 12 minutes.

After 12 minutes, flip each slice over or, for cubes, toss to stir and make sure nothing is sticking. Put the potatoes back in the oven for another 10-12 minutes until they are just turning golden brown. For a taste a little more like homemade chips, cook thin sliced ones until they just start to get crispy.

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Serve with your favorite main dish and enjoy!

Pork Hash

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This tasty, hearty breakfast is a meal I came up with for our adventure doing the Whole 30 Program. You can read more about my meal plan for Week 1 here. This recipe makes 4 servings and I typically serve it right after I make it on Day 1 and pack it in tupperware so that we can take it to work with us on Day 2, it still tastes great heated up the next day.

Ingredients:
1 lb. organic, grass-fed ground pork
1/2 red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large potato, cubed
1 tbsp. ghee or clarified butter
1/2 tbsp. fresh sage, chopped
1/2 tbsp. oregano
1/2 tbsp. chili powder
salt & pepper to taste
2 eggs (optional)

In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat and add the onions. Sauté for about 10 minutes until soft and slightly browned.

In a separate sauce pan, bring water to a boil and then boil the cubed potatoes for about 7 minutes. Strain and set aside when cooked.

After 10 minutes, add the pork and all of the dried seasonings (everything except sage and garlic) to the skillet with the onions. Break up the meat as you cook it. After the meat is mostly cooked (about 5 minutes) add the garlic and sage and cook for about 3 minutes more.

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Create space in the middle of the skillet by pushing the meat and onions to the sides and add the potatoes in the center of the skillet. Try to get them in a single layer as much as possible, and put everything from the sides of the pan on top of the potatoes and don’t stir at all for a few minutes. This gives the potatoes a chance to get a little bit of a crisp on them.

Mix all ingredients in the skillet together, cook a few more minutes and then serve.  If you don’t eat eggs, you’re done! Enjoy!

Additional options:

Serve with 2 scrambled eggs on top of the hash.

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Or, for what my husband says is the tastiest version of this dish:
Take the portions of the hash that you plan to save for following days and put into separate containers. Pour 2 raw scrambled eggs into the hash and stir and cook until the eggs are cooked through. Serve immediately.

 

Naked Chicken Chile Rellenos

I’m a Texas girl and when I found out about my allergies, one of the very hardest things to give up was Tex Mex.  No corn, no flour, no cheese, no eggs…at first that all seemed to add up to no Tex Mex and I’m not going to lie, I was pretty upset about it.  Last summer at the farmer’s market I saw some beautiful poblano peppers and decided to fix this gaping hole in my life.  I started experimenting with chile relleno adaptations and this probably took more effort than any other recipe I have come up with, but it was worth it.  This is a work intensive recipe but it isn’t difficult and it freezes really well so make a big batch and save some for another night when dinner will be wonderfully easy to make up for the work you put in on the first round!

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4 poblano peppers
1 chicken breast
1 quart low sodium chicken stock
manchego cheese (sheep’s milk)
1 packet gluten free taco seasoning
olive oil

Set your oven to broil and rub a very light coating of olive oil all over the poblanos.  Place them in a baking dish and broil them for 12-20 minutes, turning every 5 minutes or so, until the skin has charred and bubbled.

While the peppers are in the oven, bring the chicken stock and 1/2 of the taco seasoning to a boil.  Add the chicken breast in the stock and boil for 10 minutes then cover and simmer for 20 more.

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When the skin on the peppers has bubbled and the peppers look like the picture above, peel the waxy skin from the peppers then slit them lengthwise – one side only, leave the pepper intact as much as possible – and scrape the seeds out as well.  Turn the oven to 350 and set the peppers aside on the counter for now.

After 20 minutes of simmering, pull the chicken breast out of the stock and shred it using 2 forks.  Add the shredded chicken back to the stock to soak up the flavor.

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Place the seeded, skinless peppers back in the baking dish and place slices of manchego cheese inside the peppers.  Scoop chicken, with just a little of the stock into each pepper and then add one more small slice of cheese on top of the chicken and pull the sides of the pepper back together.  (Note: If you are going to freeze some, freeze them at this point in the recipe.)

Bake the rellenos at 350 for 20 minutes then enjoy the fruits of your labor!!

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I pulled the seam apart a little in the final picture so you can see inside them a bit.

Spinach Salad with Hummus

I work from home several days each week so I’m always experimenting with quick, easy, healthy lunches.  This is one of my favorites, it’s basically a salad I created using the items I always have on hand and it literally takes about 5 minutes to put together.

ImageFresh Baby Spinach
Tomato, diced
Goat Cheese Crumbles
Roasted Almonds
Hummus
Cindy’s Kitchen Fresh Avocado 
Vinaigrette

A few notes:

The salad dressing is from Whole Foods and it’s a little pricy, but I just use a little so it lasts awhile (it has a little spice to it so you don’t need much) and it completely makes the salad.  Absolutely worth the cost.

I use whatever flavor of hummus I have on hand, artichoke & garlic or black bean & lime are my 2 favorite hummus flavors in this salad.

The ingredients listed here are the staples but for variety I toss in whatever other fruits and veggies I have lying around, depending on what sounds good that day, carrots, cucumber, avocado, even cranberries.

For a little extra protein, this salad is great with tuna or grilled chicken as well.

Just combine everything on a plate and enjoy!

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New recipes (from my new kitchen) coming soon!

It has been a really busy, really fun summer!!  Between buying my first house, lots of visits from family, awesome trips, exciting stuff going on at work, and life in general, I haven’t had as much time for cooking (and posting) as I would like.  I have come up with some new recipes lately though and I’m excited to post the new recipes (along with a lot of others I have been meaning to post) the next time I make them to take pictures, which should be really soon!

In the meantime, here is my current inspiration for coming up with new recipes, the only room actually completely set up in my new home, my new kitchen!

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