Healthy Creamy Slow Cooker Sweet Potato and Cauliflower Soup

1

Alright, guys!  I have a new slow cooker favorite!!!  Wow!  This stuff is so incredibly good, and with it being a slow cooker recipe, it is SO easy to make!  On top of all that, it’s REALLY healthy!

I got the idea for this soup from the following pin.

5

This looked so tasty, and I had some sweet potatoes on hand, so I decided to see what I could come up with!  The recipe that the pin links to isn’t a slow cooker recipe, I changed pretty much all of the ingredients and spices to use ones I had on hand, and I didn’t put the end result into a food processor, but it still was my inspiration to come up with this soup, and for that I’m super thankful!  Like I said, this is my new favorite!!!  Let’s get to the recipe!

HEALTHY CREAMY SLOW COOKER SWEET POTATO AND CAULIFLOWER SOUP

Ingredients

  • 1 large head of cauliflower, roughly chopped
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 large red onion chopped
  • 4-5 green onion stalks, chopped
  • 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 tsp. garlic granules
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 3 ounces soft goat cheese

Directions

1.) Prepare all your veggies.  Put the cauliflower, sweet potatoes, red onion, green onion, broth, garlic granules, thyme, paprika, and sea salt in the slow cooker.  Cook on high for 4 1/2 hours.

2

2.) After the veggies are all cooked and tender, turn off the slow cooker and add the almond milk and goat cheese to the slow cooker.  Stir to combine completely.

3

3.) Use a ladle to transfer to bowls to serve.

4

You will seriously love me for introducing you to this soup if you try it!  Enjoy! 🙂

Homemade Maple Cinnamon Vanilla Walnut Butter

1

So, today, I whipped up a batch of my Loaded Carrot and Apple Muffins this morning for breakfast, and after I finished them up, I realized that I didn’t have any almond butter, or any nut butter for that matter, to top them with like I usually do!  I decided to get creative with the leftover walnuts and a food processor, and the result is this absolutely delicious maple cinnamon vanilla walnut butter…oh, and it went PERFECTLY with the muffins!

Not only is this walnut butter super tasty, it is really good of you!  Walnuts have tons of health benefits, and when made into a nut butter like this, it’s even easier for your body to digest and absorb the nutrients in the walnuts!

55536cacb8eb66d39683b97499bac3c7

Look at all those health benefits!  I am super excited about this walnut butter, and even though I created it only because I didn’t have any nut butters on hand, I can pretty much guarantee that this will be a regular staple in our household from now on!

This stuff is super easy to make, and it goes so well with so many different things – muffins, biscuits, sandwiches…even by itself, it’s amazing!  Let’s get to the recipe!

HOMEMADE MAPLE CINNAMON VANILLA WALNUT BUTTER

Ingredients (makes about 3/4 -1 cup of walnut butter):

  • 8 ounces chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla

Directions:

1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and spread the walnuts out on the baking sheet.  Place in the oven and bake for 12 minutes total, removing it from the oven and stirring the nuts every 4 minutes (so you’ll stir the nuts a total of two times at 4 minutes and at 8 minutes, then at 12 minutes, remove from the oven).  Allow the nuts to cool completely (you can place them in the fridge for about 10 minutes to speed up the cooling if desired).

2.jpg

2.) Once the walnuts are cooled, place them in the bed of a food processor and add in the rest of the ingredients.  Process on high, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed, until it takes on a nut butter type consistency.  This may take a while, so just keep at it until it gets to the desired consistency.

3

3.) Transfer to a bowl to serve immediately, or place in an air-tight container and store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

4

Spread onto a muffin, biscuit, bread.  Use as a dip for fruit or veggies.  Eat a spoonful all by itself.  Use it in any recipe that calls for a nut butter of some kind. The possibilities for this stuff are endless!

5

DELICIOUS!  Enjoy! 🙂

Brussels Sprouts and Cranberry Side Salad

1

This lil’ side salad just screams fall!  It makes for a perfect side to baked chicken breast or turkey, or you could just chop up some chicken or turkey and add it right in to make it a meal salad instead of a side salad.  However you choose to enjoy it, enjoy it you will!!!

Brussels sprouts are one of the healthiest foods you can put in your body.  They are loaded with nutrition and provide many many health benefits, some of which are listed in the following pin.

4

If you are looking for a way to include more of these little guys in your diet, this salad makes for the perfect way to do so!

BRUSSELS SPROUT AND CRANBERRY SIDE SALAD

Ingredients (makes two servings)

  • 1 lb. brussels sprouts, washed and quartered
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic granules
  • pinch of stevia
  • 2-3 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • sea salt
  • 2 oz. soft goat cheese
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries (apple juice sweetened)

Directions

1.) Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large frying pan.  Add the onion and brussels sprouts.  Cook for 2-3 minutes.  Add the garlic granules, stevia, apple cider vinegar, and sprinkle with sea salt.  Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2

2.) Transfer to a plate or bowl.  Top with crumbled goat cheese and the dried cranberries.  Season with more sea salt, if desired.

3

SO good and SOOOOO good for you!  Enjoy! 🙂

Butternut Squash and Eggs Breakfast

1

Ah, butternut squash – you are one of my favorites, and I’m not afraid to say it…I love you.  Though traditionally thought of as a vegetable, this nutrition packed goody is technically a fruit.  I’ll tell ya what though, veggie or fruit, this thing is packed with healthy nutrients and benefits!

f5c0d1cc626062f29a40e4bf911e99c3

See?  I told ya so!  Anyway, this fruit veggie really lends itself to this breakfast skillet that I made this morning for breakfast!  Delicious and nutritious, this dish makes for a PERFECT start to your day!  Not only does the butternut squash provide some awesome nutrition, the eggs provide gobs more!

eggben

So. Much. Nutrition.  Oh, and don’t worry, it tastes amazing!

BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND EGG BREAKFAST

Ingredients: Makes 1 serving

  • 2-3 cups butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed
  • 1/4 – 1/2 medium red onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. garlic granules
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. dried rosemary
  • 1-2 eggs
  • sea salt and pepper for seasoning

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 380 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place the butternut squash on the baking sheet, drizzle with 1/2 Tbsp. Olive oil and sprinkle with the garlic granules and dried rosemary.  Toss to coat.  Bake in the oven for 35 minutes at 380 degrees.

2.jpg

2.) Heat the remaining 1/2 Tbsp. of olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat.  Add the onion and cook until softening, about 5 minutes.  Add the butternut squash, season with sea salt and pepper and stir to combine.  Transfer to a plate and set aside.

3.jpg

3.) In the same pan that you cooked the onions in, crack two eggs into the pan.  Cook on one side for about 2-3 minutes until you can get a spatula underneath to flip it without breaking it.  Flip the eggs and cook for another 2-3 minutes.

4.jpg

4.) Place the eggs on top of the butternut squash and onion mixture.  Season with sea salt and pepper, to taste.

5.jpg

Super tasty and super good for you! Enjoy! 🙂

Spaghetti Squash and Chicken Casserole

1

Spaghetti squash is one of my FAVORITES!  SO yummy, and I love how filling it is!  Of course, if you’ve ever even laid eyes on my blog before, you know I am going to now share the health benefits of this awesome squash with you in the following pin!

9

Now, do you see why I love this stuff?!?  This casserole has plenty of spaghetti squash as well as other healthy ingredients like onion and chicken breast.

I made this for dinner, but after eating it I think it would make a great breakfast casserole as well.  Really any time of the day, this stuff is GREAT!

SPAGHETTI SQUASH AND CHICKEN CASSEROLE

Ingredients

  • 2 medium spaghetti squash, cut into rings and seeded
  • 1 large red onion, chopped into thin slices
  • 1.25 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup light canned coconut milk
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic granules
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 oz soft goat cheese
  • sea salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the spaghetti squash rings on the sheet.  Drizzle with a bit of olive oil, and bake in the oven for 40  minutes.

2

2.) Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Add the chicken and cook for 30 minutes.  Remove the chicken and cut into bite size pieces.  Set aside.

3

3.) Heat the 2 Tbsp. of olive oil over medium heat in a large frying pan.  Add the onions and cook, stirring often, until tender.  Add the chicken and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is very lightly browned.

5

4.) While everything is cooking, create a sauce in a medium bowl by combining the coconut milk, eggs, cheese and garlic granules.  Stir until smooth and well combined.

4

5.) Once the spaghetti squash is done baking, take out of the oven and remove the skins.  Use a fork to break the squash into strings.  Spray a 8 by 11 baking dish with olive oil.  Place the squash in the bowl followed by the onions and chicken.  Stir to combine.  Pour the sauce over top and stir to disperse evenly.

6

6.) Place the casserole in the oven and bake for 50 minutes until the top is lightly browned.

7

7.) Allow to set for 5-10 minutes, then use a knife and spatula to cut into pieces to serve.  Season with sea salt and pepper.

8

AWESOME!  Enjoy! 🙂

Roasted Chicken and Autumn Veggies

1

Are you ready for the best Autumn dinner ever?  Well, I’ve got the recipe for you right here!  I got the idea from the following pin that links to a recipe for roasted chicken and veggies.

7

I used different veggies and different seasoning to create a perfectly autumn-esque dinner!  As usual, this dish is REALLY good for you.  With the sweet potato, brussels sprouts, onion, and apple, this dish packs some serious nutrition! Some of those health benefits are as follows.

  • Full of antioxidants
  • Cancer prevention
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Cardiovascular support
  • Immune boosting
  • High in Fiber

That just reaches the surface of how good this dish is for you.  So, that’s all great, but what I really like best about this dish is the cozy feeling I get while eating it.  It’s warm and satisfying, and the flavor is SO amazing!

Okay, let’s get to the recipe!

ROASTED CHICKEN AND AUTUMN VEGGIES

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 4 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
  • 2 Tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, divided
  • 1/2 tsp. rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme
  • 1/4 tsp. sage
  • 1 very large sweet potato, peeled and chopped into 3/4 inch cubes
  • 1 large Honeycrisp apple, cored and chopped into cubes
  • 1 lb. Brussels sprouts, washed and quartered
  • 1/2 large red onion, cut into 1 inch square pieces
  • sea salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.  In a small container or 1 quart plastic sealable bag, add the chicken breasts, 2 Tbsp. olive oil, the apple cider vinegar, 1/4 tsp. garlic powder, the rosemary, thyme, and the sage.  Move chicken breast around to coat with the oil and herbs.  Set aside while you prepare your veggies (at least 10 minutes).

2

2.) Prepare all your veggies and apple as described in the ingredient list.  Spray a large baking sheet with olive oil.  Spread the veggies and apple out on the baking sheet.  Drizzle the other 2 Tbsp. olive oil over the veggies and sprinkle with the other 1/4 tsp. garlic powder.  Stir on the pan to coat.

3

3.) Place the chicken breasts on top of the veggies, and drizzle the leftover juice in the bag or container over the chicken and veggies.  Place in the oven and bake at 450 degrees for 35-40 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.

4

4.) When done, transfer to a plate and season with sea salt and pepper.

5

Now get ready to have your sock knocked off, because this is DELISH!!!  Enjoy! 🙂

Pressure Cooker Chicken and Veggies

1

Would you believe me if I told you that I cooked dinner in 3.5 minutes tonight?  Guys, it’s true!!!  I recently bought a stovetop pressure cooker, and tonight was my first experience at giving it a try.  I’m not going to lie…it was a bit terrifying, and once I put it on the heat to create the pressure, I may have went and hid behind a living room chair in fear that the pot would somehow explode, but we made it through injury-free, and the result was a delicious and QUICK dinner! I think that this is the start of a lifelong friendship between me and my pressure cooker!

Pressure cooking can be a bit intimidating at first, but once you do it once, you’ll see that it’s actually quite easy!  I found the following pin on Pinterest that links to a site that has a very thorough list of cooking times for various types of food.

7

Before I got started, I had so many questions…can I cook the meat and veggies together?  Do I have to do one type of food, then clean the cooker and do another type of food?  Is the noise of the steam releasing going to hurt my ears? Will the food taste good?  Will all the water evaporate and the pot explode? Is Harvard going to call me offering me an honorary PhD when I figure out how to use this thing? Are people all over the world going to want to be me?…you know, normal questions that people have about pressure cookers before they’ve used them. 😉

Anyway, the answers are yes, no, no, YES, no, doubtful, and definitely no…in that order.

I started with something basic – chicken and veggies, and wow you guys – this chicken came out so tender and juicy, and the veggies were cooked to perfection! I just used brussels sprouts, carrots, and onion.  Again, the cooking time was only 3.5 minutes, and I probably would have done better with just 2.5 – 3 minutes because my veggies and chicken were chopped, but I was scared that the chicken wouldn’t be cooked through if I went with the recommended time.

Okay, enough touting the pressure cooker – let’s get to the recipe and instructions.  I should quickly mention that my pressure cooker is a stovetop model, not an electric model, so keep that in mind while going over the recipe!

PRESSURE COOKER CHICKEN AND VEGGIES

Ingredients: 2 servings

  • 1/2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 3/4 lb. brussels sprouts, quartered
  • 20 baby carrots, sliced in halves
  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 cup water
  • sea salt, for seasoning

Directions:

1.) Heat the olive oil in the bed of the pressure cooker over medium heat.  Add the onion, and cook for about 2 minutes.  Add the rest of the ingredients, except the sea salt.

2

2.) Place the pressure cooker lid on the pressure cooker and lock into place.  Increase the stove heat to high.  Allow the pressure regulator to begin to gently rock back and forth/rattle.  When it begins to do this, set the timer for 3 minutes, and let the food cook for these 3 minutes. At the end of the 3 minutes, carefully place the pressure cooker under running cold water until the pressure indicator drops and there is no pressure left in the cooker.

3

3.) Once you are sure there is no pressure left in the cooker, carefully remove the pressure cooker top, and observe the miracle of your food being cooked in a flash! Use a slotted spoon to transfer the chicken and veggies to a bowl or plate. Season with sea salt, and serve.

4

You can discard the leftover liquid, but even better, save it and use it as a soup broth, or even just drink it at another time – lots of good minerals in that water! I’m going to use mine in a soup I am making tomorrow night.

5

Seriously can’t believe how easy this was!  So delicious!  Enjoy! 🙂