Split Pea and Lentil Soup


I made this on a Sunday night at about 9pm because I decided I wanted some ready made lunches for the week. My father constantly makes soup like this, and I can totally see why. It’s so easy you can just throw whatever you have in your fridge/pantry into the pot and it turns out delicious every single time. Also it’s one of the most affordable recipes I’ve ever made. A bag of dried lentils is $1.29 which averages to roughly 10 cents per serving! It is so filling and delicious and it’s a great staple to have in your fridge. Not to mention it’s extremely healthy, it’s extremely high in protein and fiber, you really can’t beat that! Also a little side note, I was at Trader Joe’s yesterday and came across these adorable frozen basil and garlic cubes, here’s an article about them!

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup split peas
  • 1/2 cup lentils
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 large carrots, diced *I had some yellow carrots, you’ll notice them in the picture 🙂
  • 3 sticks celery, cut into 1/2 inch slices, with leaves on
  • 1 large leek, chopped
  • 2 garlic cubes or 2 cloves
  • 2 tbsp. minced garlic (*I love Garlic, but you can modify this if you would like less)
  • 3 basil cubes or 3 tsp.
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Dash of cayenne pepper if you like heat
  • Salt and pepper to taste (I like a lot of pepper!)
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. cumin

Steps:

  1. Rinse lentils and split peas well then add to boiling water add ALL of the remaining ingredients and let boil for about 5 minutes stirring occasionally.
  2. Cover and set on low, cook for 30-40 minutes or until lentils are tender!

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Turkey Breast


This had the same texture as a moist Thanksgiving turkey. It was so juicy and the flavor was incredible!

Ingredients:

  • 2 green onions- diced
  • 1/cup fresh squeeze orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 lemon juiced
  • 1/2 lemon zested
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 organic hormone-free turkey breast (mine was 1.3 lbs) photo 1-2

Steps:

  1. Add all of the ingredients in a glass casserole dish and cover. with foil. Marinate for AT LEAST one hour. The longer you marinate the better it will be, I marinated mine for almost 6 hours.
  2. Pop in the oven at 425 degrees for about 35 minutes or until internal temp reaches 165 degrees.
  3. After the turkey is in the oven for about 15-20 minutes, I took it out of the oven and poured out most of the juice/marinade just leaving a tiny bit at the bottom. photo 3-1

* I served with chopped fresh cauliflower and broccoli that I marinated with the same ingredients and popped that in the oven the last 15 minutes of cooking!

Crockpot BBQ Pork Tacos


I kind of cheated on this one because I bought a marinated pork tenderloin and used store bought organic bbq sauce, but it was so good I had to share it. They turned out so tender! I served them with red cabbage slaw…nom nom, hope you enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 1 marinated BBQ 1lb pork tenderloin
  • 1/2 cup organic bbq sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Pepper to taste
  • Whole wheat tortillas
  • Cheddar cheese is optional (I didn’t use it, but it would be good with it!)

Steps:

  1. Place all the ingredients in the crockpot and set on low. Cook for 6-7 hours (if you’re in a rush you can place it in on high and cook for 3-4 hours)
  2. When the pork is done take two forks and separate to make it into pulled pork.
  3. Serve with the red cabbage slaw on a whole wheat tortilla. I like to pop my tortilla in the oven under high broil for a couple of minutes to heat it up!

    Sorry- not the best photo quality!
    Sorry- not the best photo quality!

Vegan Kale Soup


I went to Trader Joe’s for the first time on Sunday and fell in love! For some reason I thought it would be more expensive than other grocery stores, but to my surprise it was significantly cheaper. I loved the market feel of it and was truly impressed with their product selection. This vegan soup took about 40 minutes to make and was bursting with flavor! My fiance and I ate this up in two days. Nom Nom, hope ya’ll enjoy 🙂

Ingredients:unnamed (1) unnamed (2)

  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 leek diced
  • 4 bay leaves
  • knob of coconut oil
  • sea salt
  • cracked black pepper
  • 1 49.5 oz can of veggie broth
  • 2 cans of organic canellini beans
  • 1 bag of fresh kale, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons pesto
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 3 large carrots peeled and chopped
  • 2 stalks celery finely diced
  • 4 small red potatoes peeled and quartered
  • 1 rosemary stalk-taken off the vine

Steps: 

  1. Start by taking the coconut oil into a medium to large skillet and turn heat on medium/high. Add the onions and let simmer down for about 3-5 minutes, then add the leeks, rosemary, paprika, chili powder, salt, bay leaves, pepper, pesto and garlic, turn the heat down to medium and cook for another 3-5 minutes.
  2. Add 2 cups of the vegetable broth into the skillet. Add the potatoes and carrots, reduce heat to medium low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes or so.unnamed
  3. In the meantime take a large pot and add a dollop of coconut oil, heat at medium/high. Add the diced celery and cook for about 5 minutes or until tender, then add the remaining broth and the beans (make sure to rinse thoroughly!)
  4. Take the skillet and pour the ingredients into the large pot. Add the kale, cover and simmer for 20 minutes and let all of the flavors blend together!photo

Chipotle Bean Burritos


This dish was seriously delicious, the beans made it so incredibly filling to the point we were stuffed (in a good way.) Also this dish can be vegan friendly if you just add two little modifications 1.) switch out the cheese and 2.) make sure the tortillas you use are vegan!

Ingredients:
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    • 4 garlic clove, minced
    • 1/2 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/3 cup water
    • 1 15-ouncecan organic black beans, drained
    • 1 13.5-ounce organic box re-fried pinto beans
    • 3 tablespoons refrigerated fresh salsa
    • 4 whole wheat-fat flour tortillas
    • 1 tablespoon canola oil
    • 1 cup (4 ounces) pre-shredded reduced-fat 4-cheese Mexican blend cheese (*Quick way to make this vegan is use daiya cheese!)
    • 1/2 avocado-chopped

1 cup thinly sliced green onions

  1. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add garlic to pan; cook 1 minute, stirring frequently, add the green onions cook for 5 min on low. Add the peppers and cook for 3 more min>
  2. Add 1/3 cup water and beans, stir in chile powder and salt,  water and beans; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes.
  3. Heat up the re-fried beans in the microwave according to the directions (or stove if you prefer.)
  4. Warm tortillas according to package directions. Spread the re-fried beans onto the tortilla with a spatula like you would a mayonnaise. Spoon about 1/3 cup bean mixture into center of each tortilla.
  5. Top each serving with cheese, salsa and avocado and roll up.
  6. Place in the oven under high broil for roughly 3-5 minutes, or until cheese has melted and tortillas have turned to a light brown.taco

Greek pork with fresh salad


This dinner was super easy to make and had a lot of flavor! I also had leftovers the next day of the tomato mixture so I put that into a whole wheat pita and it was such a delicious lunch.

Ingredients:unnamed

  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 (4-ounce) boneless center-cut loin pork chops or
  • 3/4 cup plain fat-free Greek-style yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill (I love dill so I used a lot, up to you!)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups diced plum tomatoes (about 2 medium)
  • 1 cup diced seeded cucumber
  • 1/3 cup diced red onion
  • Cooking spray

Steps:

  1. Combine 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar, oregano, 1 teaspoon olive oil, and garlic in a zip-top plastic bag. Add pork to bag, and seal. Marinate for 20 minutes at room temperature, turning after 10 minutes.
  2. Combine tomatoes, cucumber, and onion. Sprinkle tomato mixture with 1/8 teaspoon salt; toss to combine. Add remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar, remaining 1 teaspoon oil, yogurt, 1 tablespoon dill, and 1/8 teaspoon salt, stirring into the vegetables and set aside.
  3. Heat a medium sized pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Remove pork from bag, and discard marinade. Sprinkle both sides of pork evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Add pork to pan, and cook for 4 minutes on each side.  Remove pork from pan, and let stand for 2 minutes. Plate with tomato mixture!

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Slow Cooked Comfort Chicken


This has been such a snowy and windy winter. All I want to do is eat warm comfort food and drink red wine. This recipe was inspired from chicken pot pie, I just decided to serve it over couscous instead of using a pie. I put all of the ingredients into the slow cooker in the morning and put it on low and by the time I got home dinner was ready! LOVE THAT!

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium white onion- diced
  • 3 stalks celery- diced (add the leaves as well)
  • 8 oz. baby carrots
  • 4 fresh garlic cloves-minced
  • 26 oz box of organic cream of chicken soup
  • 8 baby red potatoes
  • 3 large organic chicken breast
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon fresh pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs
  • Brown rice OR couscous (as needed)
  • 1 cup frozen peasphoto 1

Steps:

1.) Place all of the ingredients (except peas and spinach ) in the slow cooker. Cook on low for 7 hours.

2.) Add the frozen peas, cook for 15-20 to let the peas soften

3.) Cook the brown rice or couscous according to package directions and serve the mixture over. chicken

Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving is only a few short days away! Yesterday we celebrated at my mom’s house with some friends. Shout out to my awesome sister for cooking this meal with me. On the menu was a roasted pear, fig, goat cheese and pomegranate saladunnamed

Turkey with rosemary, thyme,shallots, garlic, lemon, celery and carrots.unnamed

Roasted butternut squash with red onions, baby spinach and dried cranberries.unnamed

Mashed potatoes with Greek yogurt and parsley photo

and last but not least greens and beans with apple slices!!unnamedI will post these recipes throughout the week! I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday this year 🙂

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Fall Vegetable Curry


I decided to start trying out some side dishes for Thanksgiving last night. This recipe was so simple with very few ingredients and was bursting with flavor!

Ingredients: photo1

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 cup diced peeled sweet potato
  • 1/2 small onion finely diced
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 cup fresh cauliflower (chop into smaller pieces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon tumeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup organic low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 15 oz. can of organic garbanzo beans
  • 1 1/2 cup boxed or jarred chopped tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon cilantro paste or fresh cilantro to sprinkle
  • 2 cups fresh chopped spinach
  • Greek yogurt for topping
  • 1 pomegranate *Don’t mind my legwarmers, just came from Pure Barre 🙂

Steps:

  1. Start by peeling and dicing the sweet potatoes. Add the olive oil to a medium sized skillet and turn heat to medium high, add the sweet potatoes. Let cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  2. Decrease the heat to medium and add the onions, cauliflower, tumeric, cumin, cilantro paste (if using fresh just sprinkle it on top of your plate at the end) and curry powder, cook for 3 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Add the vegetable broth, tomatoes, salt and pepper and garbanzo beans.
  4. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to low and cook for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Take a pomegranate and cut in half, take the one half and squeeze and mix some fresh juice into the dish. Take the other half and get all of the seeds out and sprinkle on top of the dish at the very end.
  6. Add the spinach right before serving, simply fold it into the dish so that it absorbs and wilts down.
  7. Add a dollop of green yogurt, and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds and fresh cilantro (if using).photo

Gnocchi with Spinach and White Beans


Yesterday was a very exciting day, Pure Barre opened in Buffalo, NY! I just got back from training at their corporate location in Spartanburg, South Carolina. I am so thrilled to be a part of such an amazing team of girls and awesome company. After an amazing  and challenging class, to my disappointment I looked outside and witnessed the first snowfall of the season. I knew warm carbs aka comfort food for dinner was a must, so I whipped up this yummy dish. Hope you all enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 16-ounce package shelf-stable gnocchi
  • 1 medium yellow onion- diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 cups of spinach
  • *2 cups of boxed/jarred tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons Italian seasoning paste (if you can’t find this in the store, you can use fresh or dried Italian seasonings)
  • 1 15-ounce can white beans, rinsed
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

*I recently read an article about the harmful effect of canned tomatoes. It said that the liner of the cans have BPA, and since tomatoes are acidic the BPA goes directly into them, which can cause obesity, diabetes, heart disease and can cause issues with the reproductive system.

Steps

1. Start by taking a medium sized skillet and add the olive oil and onions over medium heat, cook for about 7-10 minutes stirring frequently. Add the garlic and Italian seasoning paste and let simmer for 3 minutes, add the beans (rinse them first), tomatoes, and pepper. Let simmer on low for about 10 minutes.

2. In the meantime, prepare the gnocchi according to the directions on the package (until they are floating) and drain.

3. Add the spinach, let it wilt, then add gnocchi.

4. Stir in the Parmesan and sprinkle a thin layer of  mozzarella cheese on top.

5. Place your pan into the oven on high broil for about 2 minutes (or until the cheese has melted), serve and sprinkle with crushed reds!photo (12)