White Bean Chicken Chili

Super easy! Super delicious! You can swap out any type of bean you like. You can also use chicken breast
vs. thighs.

 

SERVES 6 -1 CUP PORTIONS

  • 1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • 1 Sweet Onion (medium, chopped)

  • 1 Jalapeno Pepper (seeded and chopped)

  • 1 Red Bell Pepper (chopped)

  • 2 Garlic (cloves, minced)

  • 1 1/2 tsps Cumin

  • 1 tbsp Chili Powder

  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt

  • 3 cups Organic Chicken Broth (divided)

  • 3 cups White Navy Beans (cooked and divided)-may use canned

  • 1 lb Chicken Thighs (boneless, skinless)

  • 1/2 cup Frozen Corn

  • 1/2 cup Fresh Cilantro (chopped)

  • 1 Lime (sliced into wedges)

Optional for the less health conscious guests:
Corn chips, sour cream and/or shredded cheese.
Notes:
Keep in the fridge for up to 3 days or freeze it for later.
May omit the chicken and use extra beans.

 

PUTTING IT TOGETHER:

 

Heat oil in a large pot with a lid over medium-high heat.

Add onion, jalapeno and bell pepper and cook for about 5 minutes or until onion is soft.

Add garlic, cumin, chili powder and salt and cook for another minute until
fragrant.

While vegetables are cooking, add a third of the stock and half of the beans
to a food processor or blender and blend to puree the beans.

Add the remaining stock and pureed beans to the pot and stir to combine.

Place the chicken in the pot, cover with lid and reduce heat to medium-low.

Cook at a slow gentle boil for 20 minutes and the chicken is cooked though.

Remove the cooked chicken thighs from the pot and carefully shred the
chicken with two forks.

Return the chicken and any juices back to the pot with the remaining beans, frozen corn kernels and cilantro. Stir to combine
and season with additional sea salt if needed.  Allow soup to cook for an
additional 5 to 10 minutes.

Divide the chili into bowls and serve with a lime wedge. Enjoy!

 

Basic Chia Pudding

 

Chia pudding is an easy make ahead choice for breakfast.  The texture is like tapioca pudding. Chia seeds are packed with antioxidants, which support healthy skin. Ounce to ounce, they contain more omega-3’s than salmon. These fatty acids help the body absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, and studies have shown them to be heart protective by lowering blood pressure and inflammation. Adding variety to your pudding is easy.  Use what you have, play with your spices. Swap the cinnamon and ginger for cacao (not cocoa) powder or vanilla.  You can also add a little Great Lake’s Collagen powder to up the nutritional benefits.

Ingredients to make 4 servings

 

3/4 cup chia seeds

4 cups homemade almond or plant milk

2 tablespoons pure and organic maple syrup

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 cup dried fruit (optional)

1/2 cup raw unsalted nuts (optional)

1 tbsp. mini chocolate chips (optional)

Sliced banana, kiwi, strawberries, or any fruit of choice for serving

**Single Servings:

3 tablespoons chia seeds

1 cup almond milk

1-2 teaspoons maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Pinch of ground ginger

 

Putting it all together:

  1. In a large bowl, whisk the chia seeds, almond milk, maple syrup, cinnamon, and ginger. Add dried fruit and nuts, if you choose. The mixture starts out runny.
  2. Carefully Pour into four (12 ounce) airtight glass mason jars (I always have to wipe down the sides) Put into the fridge for a few hours if you can’t wait, or overnight to allow pudding to thicken. Top with fresh fruit or more nuts and serve cold.

 

Note: Keep refrigerated for about 4 days, but I wouldn’t store it much longer than that, since we made our own almond milk, which will spoil faster without all the chemical preservatives.

 

Magic Green Everything Dip

 

 

 

Ingredients:

 

1 ripe avocado

½ cup pistachios, raw & unsalted

½ cup fresh organic parsley, packed

1 cup fresh organic cilantro, packed

2 cloves garlic, or to taste

¼ cup chopped onion

1 fresh jalapeno, seeds removed

  • Not as good with pickled jalapenos (I tried in a pinch)

1 large fresh lime, juiced

½ cup water

½ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tsp. sea salt (I use pink Himalayan)

Fresh cracked black pepper to taste

Options:  Kick up the heat and add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes.

Find your inner Italian and add some fresh oregano.

 

Instructions:

Place all ingredients except the nuts into a high-speed food processor, like a Vitamix.  Mix until blended.  Add the pistachios and pulse until you have the consistency you want.  Dips will be thicker, marinades require more water.

Notes:      

Play with your flavors and your spices.  Use your nose, and if it smells good together, it will taste good together. This recipe is easy to “hide” booster foods in, like a bit of turmeric, nutritional yeast, or sea veggies in place of sea salt.

If you cannot find raw shelled pistachios (worth the extra $, I promise) go ahead with the roasted and/or salted, BUT omit the sea salt until you taste it.  You can always add in, but you cannot take it back out! 😊

This can be used as a dip, a sauce, a marinade, salad dressing or a spread.  Just add more or less water to the consistency and use you desire.

I have been obsessed with this as a dip for roasted brussel sprouts, and grilled shrimp!!

 

 

 

Brownies! Sweet Potato Style!

original recipe from Joy McCarthy

Ingredients:

1 cup + 2 Tbsp. (as close as I can get) mashed, cooked sweet potato

¾ cup almond butter

½ cup + 1 Tbsp pure maple syrup

2 single servings organic unsweetened applesauce- or short of 1 cup

2 eggs

1 ½ cups raw cacao powder

2 tsp. baking soda

¾ tsp. sea salt

¼ cup dark, semi-sweet mini chocolate chips- I like Thrive and Enjoy life brands

 

Instructions :

Preheat oven to 350 and bake a large sweet potato until fork tender- about 40 min.

Remove from oven and let cool, set aside.

Reduce oven temp to 325.  Line a 9X9 baking dish with parchment paper.    (I used an 8X8, they did not spill over, but rose to the rim)

Take the cooled sweet potato and slide the skin off and mash the flesh.  Measure out 1 heaping cupful.

In a large bowl add the sweet potato, almond butter, maple syrup, applesauce and eggs.  Mix until there are no lumps of almond butter.  Pour all of the dry ingredients on top.   Do not overmix,  or the baking soda will activate too early and the brownies won’t rise.  Mix just enough to remove the bumps and lumps.

Pour into the pan over the parchment paper and smooth into the corners.  Sprinkle lightly with the chocolate chips.

Bake for about 40 minutes, but check them at 25.  Mine took 45 minutes at 8432 feet.  A toothpick inserted in the middle will come out clean.  Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.  Cut into 16 squares.  Keep and serve chilled.  You can individually wrap in plastic and freeze any extra.  These will last in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Nutritional Highlights:

Sweet potatoes are a powerhouse of antioxidants.  They are high in Vitamin C and carotenes.  Although it is a starchy veggie, studies have shown that they help in blood sugar stabilization by improving the bodies response to insulin.  They are high in fiber too.

Cacao – aka pure chocolate, contains flavonoids and proanthocyanidins which are the same compounds that provide the health benefits in many fruits and medicinal plants.

Almond butter lends a good healthy fat, protein and a little more fiber to the mix.

 

My Manhattan Styled Meatballs

 

So, these are not my normal super clean and healthy variety recipe, BUT they are better than most health-wise.  We use organic meats, gluten free bread crumbs and free-range eggs.  I prefer to use fresh pineapple when it is in season, but a BPA free canned version is fine.  The BBQ sauce and preserves you choose should be the cleanest version you can find.  Watch for the sugar content and ingredients you can’t pronounce.  Do the best you can.  My latest batch included Apricot BBQ sauce and Robert Rothschild’s Hot Pepper Peach preserves and I sprinkled in some red pepper flakes too!

INGREDIENTS:

2 lbs. of ground elk, grass fed beef, or turkey

3 eggs

½ cup minced onion

¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped

2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)

1 garlic clove, minced

2 tsp. sea salt

2 tsp. black pepper

1 13 oz.  jar of BBQ sauce.

1 12 oz. jar of pineapple preserves.

½ cup crushed and or blended pineapple

 

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350F.

In a medium bowl, mix the BBQ sauce, preserves and pineapple together and set aside.

In a large bowl, add the meat, eggs, bread crumbs, onion, garlic, salt, pepper and parsley and combine well.  (I find it easier to use my hands, just make sure they are clean!)  Once it is mixed well, add ½ cup of the BBQ sauce mixture and mix well.  You want it to be very moist, but where it still holds together in a ball.

Take a large baking sheet and lightly coat with olive oil, form the mixture into 1-2-inch balls and arrange in a single layer.

Option 1:  pour the remaining sauce over the meatballs and bake for 30-40 minutes, until the meat is cooked, but not overdone!

Option 2:  Bake the meatballs for 30-35 minutes, until just done.  In a serving crock pot, place some of the sauce into the pot, add the meatballs and then pour the remaining sauce over the top.  This method works great for larger parties.

Sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley and serve with toothpicks!

Coconut Curry Shrimp

Serves 4

Total time about 1 hr.

 

I’ve been craving the sweet heat of this meal for days!!  I tend to forget my favorites until the weather changes.  Not only is this dish a personal favorite, but it packs in anti-inflammatory ingredients like turmeric, ginger and garlic.  Cilantro is a powerful detoxifying herb.  Good quality fats like the coconut oil keep you satiated.  Feel free to play around with the veggies you use.  I’ve even made this with  chopped kale (added toward the end).  You can serve with ¼ cup cooked whole grain brown rice or even quinoa if you like.  It is delicious topped with a slice or two of avocado!

 

Ingredients:

 

2 tsp coconut oil

2 small carrots, chopped (fairly small pieces)

1 medium zucchini, rough chopped

½ yellow or white onion, rough chopped

½ large red bell pepper, rough chopped, reserve a few pieces to garnish

½ tsp. sea salt (divided)

3 Tbsp. unsalted tomato sauce

1 can light coconut milk (If you have access to good quality and fresh full fat canned coconut milk – choose that)

1 lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1/8 cup fresh cilantro, chopped to garnish (and detox)

2 scallions, cut at angle (optional to garnish

1/8 avocado sliced (optional)

 

Chile Ginger paste:

1 serrano chili, (keep seeds if you like it hot),

1 tsp. red pepper flakes or more to taste

2 inches of fresh ginger peeled and rough chopped

2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar

5 garlic cloves

3-4 tsp. curry (or 2 tsp of cumin seed, 1 tsp yellow mustard seeds, 1 tsp ground turmeric)

 

How to put it together:

Prepare the Chile/ginger paste first.  In a food processor, add all ingredients and process until everything is finely chopped, scrape down sides a few times to make sure all ingredients are incorporated.  Set aside.

 

In a large pot on medium high heat, heat the coconut oil.  Add in the carrots, zucchini, onions and bell pepper.  Using a pinch of the sea salt, stir and cook until soft- about 5 minutes.

 

Add the Chile-ginger paste and cook.  Stir for a couple of minutes, and reduce the heat (things will start to stick if you don’t)

 

Push veggies off to the sides of the pan, add the tomato sauce, and heat, gradually mixing into the veggies.  Add about ¾ cup water, stirring up the bits that will brown on the bottom of the pan.

Add the coconut milk and remaining sea salt.  Bring to a boil, reduce to medium and add the shrimp.  Cook until pink and tender (don’t over do it) 3-4 minutes will do it.

 

Divide into 4 bowls, top with cilantro and serve with rice or quinoa.

 

 

 

Kid friendly Kale Chips

 

What you need:

2 cups Kale, I prefer Dinosaur Kale for the chips, but any variety will work.

1-2 Tbsp. of either Extra Virgin Olive oil, Avocado oil OR for a little sweeter chip, try coconut oil

1/4 tsp Himalayan sea salt

1 Tbsp nutritional yeast

Options:  you can really alter your spices to fit your taste.  If I use olive oil, I often add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes or Spike seasoning.  I don’t know if it would work with coconut oil, but maybe I’ll try that soon!

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350

Remove the large veins leaving the leaves as big as you can.

Wash and dry them, make sure they are DRY.

Pour the olive (or coconut) oil over the leaves and massage them in your hands.

Add the sea salt and give another quick rub down to distribute the spices evenly

Place the leaves on a cookie sheet in a single layer and leave an inch of space in between.  If the leaves over lap or are too close they can end up steaming themselves and we want some crunch for our chips!

Bake for about 10-15 minutes.  Check at 10 minutes as times can vary with different ovens as well as at altitude.

This dark leafy green wonder contains vitamins A, C, E, and K.  It provides a healthy dose of fiber, has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.  YEAH KALE!

 

 

Kale and Eggs Power Breakfast

Kale and Eggs Power Breakfast

 

From the trial and error kitchen of Lisa Turan

 Ingredients:

2 cups Kale, remove large veins, tear into 2 inch pieces and massage (squeeze and rub in your hands)

1 Tbsp. extra virgin coconut oil

1 -2 eggs

1 tomato, sliced

pinch sea salt

1 tsp. Nutritional yeast

 

Instructions:

In a small skillet, melt the coconut oil.  Add the kale and lightly Sautee, until slightly wilted.  Push kale to one side of the pan and add the egg.  Cook to desired doneness.  Serve the egg over the kale and sliced tomato.  Sprinkle with sea salt and nutritional yeast.

Loaded Avocado Rice Cake

This breakfast can certainly be modified in many ways using ingredients you have on hand.  We just can’t ever use up a loaf of bread (gluten free and packed with nutrients of course!) before it goes bad.  Breads can be frozen, but I have a very finicky hubby.  The best and easiest swap for me is to use wild rice cakes.  My favorite brand is Lundsberg and I find the organic wild rice holds together better than the brown rice variety.  Remember every nutritious meal consists of a good clean protein, a healthy fat and some fiber.  This packs them all into a lovely little meal that is great as a post workout snack too!

Here is my current version of my favorite easy to take or make at work breakfast!

  • Organic rice cake
  • Avocado
  • Applegate nitrate free turkey
  • Sprouts (i’m currently using radish sprouts for a little kick)
  • Sliced tomato

Simply spread the avocado over the rice cake (about a 1/3 of an avocado usually does it).  Top with a slice or 2 of turkey, a handful of sprouts, and sliced tomato.

Fun Fact:

Avocados are full of fiber (surprised?), rich in potassium, as well as a good source of magnesium, manganese, iron, and many of the B vitamins.  Did you know they also have about 4-5 grams of protein?

 

 

 

 

The Best, no Peanuts allowed, Brittle

Makes about 25 2 in pieces.  1 piece per serving please!  Even though it’s clean, it is a treat!

 

You will need:

A candy thermometer unless you are skilled in the soft/hard ball water method (I am not😊)

½ cup raw unsalted almonds, roughly chopped

¼ cup raw unsalted pumpkin seeds

¼ cup raw unsalted sunflower seeds

1 Tbsp. Chia or Flaxseeds

2 Tbsp. raw organic sesame seeds

¾ cup raw organic honey (local if you can)

¼ cup organic coconut palm sugar (I use the blonde)

2 Tbsp. Ghee or organic butter

¼ cup water

1 tsp pure vanilla

¼ tsp sea salt

 

How to make it:

 

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the nut and seeds mixture evenly and bake for about 10 minutes.  You want a light toast, but be careful not to burn them.  Set aside and allow to cool, removing the parchment paper.

 

In a large sauce pan stir together the honey, blonde coconut palm sugar, and water.  Bring to a simmer at medium heat.  Stirring consistently until mixture reaches 275 on candy thermometer.  (if using the water method, drop syrup into ice water and it will form rigid threads when it’s at 275)

Remove from heat and stir in the butter, vanilla and pinch of salt until melted and well combined.  Return to heat and simmer, stirring consistently until the temp reaches 300 (water method, dropping into cold water will yield hard and brittle threads).  Make sure you get to temp or your brittle will be hard, but a bit chewy.   Remove from heat.

 

Immediately pour the mixture over the top of toasted nuts and seeds forming an even slab.  No need to mix or stir.  Allow to cool completely and then break into pieces to serve.

 

If they last long enough you can store in an airtight glass container for 1 week.

 

Be creative with your brittle.  If you love pecans, add some.  Any raw unsalted nut would be great.  Just watch the portions so you have a good ratio of mixture to nuts and seeds.

I avoid peanuts.  Technically they are a lugume anyway.  But they are allergenic to many and tend to harbor molds, so best to avoid in my book.