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green smoothie

Breakfast in a rush: Green Smoothie

In last week’s post, I shared with you why breakfast is so important, so this week, I want to give you a few breakfast ideas to get your morning going at top notch energy. Today, a smoothie that will fill you up and fuel you up for a productive start to the day.

green smoothie ingredients

This green drink may seem odd, but it is chock full of vitamins and minerals, and if you are looking for nutrient density, this is a good choice, plus, it’s pretty tasty! I have made smoothies for breakfast for several years now and they have evolved as I’ve learned more and more about nutrition and the way our bodies work. Though not as sweet as a fruit filled smoothie, cutting out the fruit keeps the smoothie from pumping up your blood sugar level and is more evenly dispersed in your blood system to keep you feeling full longer.

Measure 1/2 cup of coconut water and 1/2 cup of coconut milk, almond milk or water into a high powered blender. To this add 1/2 tbs. ground flax seed, 2 large handfuls of baby spinach or a combination of spinach and kale, with the hard center stem removed from the kale. Grate a medium to large carrot and throw this in for a little bit of sweetness. Add a 1/2 – 1 tsp of grated fresh ginger and the juice of a small to medium lemon to really punch up the flavors. Spinach needs just a bit of fat to help it unlock all its nutrients, so add 1/4 of a small avocado or 1/2 tsp of coconut oil. Toss in a peeled cucumber. I use the Persian cucumbers, as they are smallish in size. If using a regular cucumber, 1/2 is probably enough. Throw in some micro greens if available. Blend and enjoy.

LOVE with veggies

If you want to boost your smoothie staying power and nutrient density, I add to my smoothies, 2 scoops of Purium L.O.V.E. This is a vegetable protein powder that is all real food ingredients, no supplements or whey of any kind. This helps boost my smoothie to the next level of staying power and nutrient density. You can check out all Purium products here. I also use Purium Joint Flex for my osteo arthritis and love how well it works, much better than other products I have tried.

grated ginger

Never grated fresh ginger before? Peel the hard woody covering off a piece about an inch or two long. Grate on a small holed grater.

green smoothie

Breakfast is a must for keeping your weight in check and your blood sugar level. Let me know if you have questions about this smoothie. I’ll share some additional recipes Thursday and in the Friday Foodie!

 

Friday-Foodie

FAST Friday Foodie: Skillet Granola

I love granola, but store bought varieties are full of fat and sugar. Recently, I had a real crave though, and decided to give a go at making my own. I decided to try  just a small batch and the skillet seemed like the easiest way to throw this together. I pulled a few nuts and sunflower seeds from my freezer, added some oats, spices, coconut oil and honey and made a delicious toasty granola. If you want to make this in larger quantities, you might want to throw it on a cookie sheet instead and toast in the oven at 350 degrees for maybe ten to fifteen minutes, stirring at least once and checking to be sure it doesn’t get too brown. Once finished and cool, add 2 Tbs of unsweetened coconut flakes. Serve 2 Tbs on a bowl of fresh fruit or oatmeal.

Also great as a small snack. So here’s the recipe:

FAST Friday Foodie: Skillet Granola
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast or Snack
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
This granola is made with coconut oil, a healthy fat, and has minimal sugar coming from raw honey.
Ingredients
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • ¼ cup old fashioned oats
  • 2 Tbs raw sunflower seeds
  • 2 Tbs raw walnut pieces
  • 2 Tbs raw pecan pieces
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp raw honey
  • 2 Tbs unsweetened coconut flakes
Instructions
  1. Heat skillet on medium-high heat
  2. Add coconut oil
  3. When melted, add seeds and nuts
  4. Stir until all are coated with oil
  5. Add spices and continue stirring or shake pan
  6. Continue for 3 to 5 minutes, until nuts smell fragrant and look toasted
  7. Stir in honey until all nuts are coated
  8. Stir for one more minute to allow honey to crystalize to nuts
  9. Pour onto a flat surface and allow to cool
  10. Once cool, stir in 2 Tbs unsweetened coconut flakes
  11. Store in covered container
  12. Serve 2 Tbs on a bowl of fruit or oatmeal
  13. OR eat 2 Tbs as a snack

 

Acorn squash stuffed with wild rice, pecans and cherries

Friday Foodie: Acorn Squash stuffed with wild rice, cherries and pecans

Acorn Squash

Winter squash of all kinds abound this time of year, but Acorn is one of my favs! It’s small, so it cooks  a little faster, and half is the perfect serving size, especially when stuffed with something yummy! First things first though, start by preparing the rice and while the rice is cooking prepare and bake the squash. The rice makes enough to stuff at least four halves.

cherries chopped

To make the rice stuffing, prepare a 12 ounce package of wild rice of your choice. I did mine with 1/2 cup of plain wild rice and 1 cup of brown basmati rice. I added 1/2 tsp of dried sage, a minced clove of garlic, and a diced shallot to the mix and prepared the rice in my rice cooker using vegetable broth instead of water. This takes 45 mins to an hour in my rice cooker, but I don’t mind the extra time as the rice is so nicely steamed and absorbs all the flavors. When the rice was finished, and the cooker went into warm mode, I added 1/2 cup of chopped cherries.

pecans chopped

Right before stuffing the squash, stir in the chopped pecans. While the rice is cooking follow the steps below for preparing the squash.

Split Acorn squash

Cut squash in half using a sturdy knife. I use my Global for all the tough jobs. Scoop the seeds and strings out and discard.

Acorn squash ready for oven

Place halves, cut side down on prepared baking sheet. I cover mine with foil and spread on a thin layer of coconut oil. This adds a nice taste to the squash, but any oil will do. Bake in 450 degree oven for about 40 mins. or until skin is easily pierced with the tip of a knife.

Acorn squash baked

The coconut oil crisps up the tops just how I like them.

Acorn squash stuffed with wild rice, pecans and cherries

Stuff with rice mixture. And voila! Enjoy this incredible mix of deliciousness!

Friday Foodie: Acorn Squash stuffed with wild rice, cherries and pecans
Author: 
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Acorn squash is a gem, with it's compact size, it cooks up nice and half is the perfect size for a serving.
Ingredients
  • 2 Acorn Squash
  • 12 ounce package of wild rice mix
  • vegetable broth to replace water called for in rice mix
  • ½ tsp dried sage
  • 1 chopped shallot
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ c chopped cherries
  • ½ c chopped pecans
Instructions
  1. Set oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Prepare rice, adding sage, garlic, salt, and shallot to rice cooker.
  3. Use vegetable broth in place of water.
  4. If preparing on stove, sauté shallot and garlic before adding to rice.
  5. While rice is cooking prepare squash.
  6. Line baking sheet with foil and if desired, rub coconut oil over area designated for squash halves.
  7. Cut each squash in half.
  8. Scoop out seeds and strings; discard.
  9. Place cut side down on baking sheet.
  10. Bake for 40 mins. or until shell is easily pierced with tip of knife.
  11. When rice is done, add cherries and allow to steam for a few minutes.
  12. When squash is done, add pecans to rice, and then scoop large spoonful into each half.
  13. Serve and enjoy!