Brussels Sprouts and Cranberry Side Salad

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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.

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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.

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

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SO good and SOOOOO good for you!  Enjoy! 🙂

Mashed Rutabaga and Broccoli

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So, if someone were to ask me to think of two of the healthiest vegetables possible, it would be hard to narrow it down, but I can guarantee you that rutabaga and broccoli would be on the top of my list of possibilities!  Check out the following pins giving good reason as to why these two veggies are two of my favorites!

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See?  Told ya so! 🙂  Anyway, with this in mind, I wanted to find a side that included these two delightful veggies.  I’ve shared my recipe for mashed rutabaga before…after thinking about it, I figured, why not add in some broccoli and top it with a bit of shredded goat cheese and plain yogurt – best. decision. ever.

This stuff is REALLY yummy, and you just saw how packed with nutrients it is!  Best part is that it is super easy to make!  Let’s get to it!

MASHED RUTABAGA AND BROCCOLI

Ingredients

  • 1 rutabaga, washed, peeled, and chopped into cubes
  • 1 large bunch of broccoli, cut into florets
  • garlic granules
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt, plus more for topping
  • hard goat cheese for shredding
  • sea salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

1.) Cover the rutabaga with water in a saucepan.  Place over high heat and boil until very tender, about 10-15 minutes.  While doing this, steam the broccoli in a steamer until tender.

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2.) Place the cooked rutabaga and broccoli into a food processor.  Add garlic granules (to taste) and 1/2 cup of plain yogurt.  Process on high until it reaches your desired consistency.

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3.) Transfer to a bowl, and top with shredded goat cheese and a dollop of plain yogurt.

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Yum yum yum!  Makes for a perfect lunch, or as a side dish paired with a baked chicken breast for dinner.  Enjoy! 🙂

Brussels Sprouts Au Gratin

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So, I looked up the definition of “Au Gratin”, and it says that it means sprinkled with breadcrumbs, shredded cheese, or both.  Well, I don’t do bread crumbs, but um sprinkled in shredded cheese – yes…please…no really…please!  I decided to get a little creative for a dinner side dish.  I had some brussels sprouts, so I made my own rendition of Brussels Sprouts Au Gratin…however, I think this could easily be called brussels sprouts with homemade cheese sauce and cheese.  Au Gratin makes it sound so much more fancy though, don’t you think?

Of course, I used all goats milk cheeses and other healthy ingredients, so even though it tastes like cheese heaven, it’s actually quite good for you!  Especially since the main ingredient is brussels sprouts.  These guys are full of healthy benefits!

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That’s just 14 of the health benefits of this tiny little cabbage!  Anyway, a cheesy treat that has all these health benefits?  Like I said…um, yes…please.  Let’s get to the recipe!

BRUSSELS SPROUTS AU GRATIN

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. Brussels Sprouts, washed, ends chopped off, and halved
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil, divided, plus more for greasing a pan
  • 1/2 cup of finely chopped red onion
  • 2 tsp. brown rice flour
  • 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 tsp. fresh thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic granules
  • 2 oz. soft goat cheese
  • 1 cup shredded hard goat cheese, divided
  • Sea salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Lightly grease an 8 x 11 baking dish with olive oil.  Add the prepared brussels sprouts, top with 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil and garlic granules.  Toss to coat.  Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes at 400 degrees.  Remove from oven and stir/turn the sprouts.  Put back in the oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes.

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2.) While the brussels sprouts are baking, heat the remaining 1/2 Tbsp. of olive oil over medium heat in a saucepan.  Add the onion, and cook till onions are soft (about 4 minutes).  Add the flour and stir for 1 minute to coat the onions.  Add the almond milk and cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring often.  The sauce will begin to thicken slightly.

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3.) Add the 2 oz. of soft goat cheese and 1/2 cup of the shredded cheese to the sauce and stir until the cheese is completely incorporated in the sauce and it is smooth.  This will thicken the sauce even more.

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4.) Top the brussels sprouts with the cheese sauce, sprinkle with the fresh thyme and a bit of sea salt.  Top with the remaining 1/2 cup of shredded cheese.

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5.) Place the dish back in the oven and bake for 15 minutes until the cheese is melted and lightly browned.  When done, transfer to a plate, season with sea salt and pepper, and serve.

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Au Gratin!!!  Yum!  Enjoy! 🙂

Broccoli Spinach Soup

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This might be one of the healthiest soups ever!  Not to mention, it is so so yummy!!!  And let’s face it, that’s what we’re looking for!  I was trying to figure out what to make for lunch yesterday, so I looked in the refrigerator and found some onions, broccoli, and spinach.  Can you say super foods?!?  Check out these pins that contain some of the health benefits of each of these super-good-for-you  veggies!

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WOW!  That’s a TON of health benefits in just three simple vegetables!  Considering these are the three main ingredients of this soup, you can see how good it is for you!  I beefed it up a bit with some goat cheese, garlic, and sea salt to create a delicious and filling lunch!  It was perfect!

BROCCOLI AND SPINACH SOUP

Ingredients

  • 1/2 large red onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 5 cups broccoli florets
  • 3-4 cups baby spinach
  • 2-3 oz. soft goat cheese, plus some for garnish
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic granules
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt, plus more to taste
  • parsley for garnish

Directions

1.) Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large pot.  Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes.  Add the broccoli.  Stir, and then fill the pot with enough water to cover the broccoli.

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2.) Bring the pot to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until the broccoli is tender/soft (about 15 minutes.  Add the spinach and allow to wilt completely.

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3.) Remove from heat, and measure out 1 cup of the water you cooked the vegetables in.  Set aside.  Drain the vegetables using a strainer.

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4.) In a food processor, add the drained vegetables, goat cheese, garlic granules, sea salt, and the cup of water you set aside.  Process on high until completely smooth.

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5.) Transfer to bowls, and garnish with some parsley and crumbled goat cheese.

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Delicious and so so so nutritious!  Enjoy! 🙂

Healthy Butternut Squash Rosemary and Garlic Dip

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Okay, so I recently had to have a tooth pulled – not cool, guys!  I had to have a filling replaced, and I ended up getting irreversible pulpitis in the tooth (basically inflammation of the pulp) – can you say ouch???  Wow – talk about some of the worst pain you’ve ever felt in your life!!!  Anyway, the only treatment for irreversible pulpitis is either a root canal or having the tooth extracted.  I would NEVER get a root canal, and I would NEVER recommend anyone getting a root canal, so extraction it was!

You may be wondering why I am so against root canals.  Well, the truth of the matter is, I didn’t know how dangerous they really are.  I don’t have any, so I never really gave it any thought, but when this tooth started acting up, I spoke with a nutritional consultant that works for Dr. Lawrence Wilson, and she told me that Dr. Wilson NEVER EVER recommends root canals.  In fact, when someone goes on his nutritional balancing program, he actually recommends having any root canaled teeth removed, and his clients report feeling dramatically better after having done so.

It was explained to me that almost all root canals harbor extremely dangerous infections.  It is a known fact that 97% of terminal cancer patients have had this dental procedure.  It is also known that root canals can lead to many chronic diseases such as MS, arthritis, heart, kidney, bone, and brain disease.  After she told me all this, I did my own research – all the while considering yanking this tooth out myself because I was in so much pain!  I was shocked to find out how well known it is that this procedure is extremely dangerous, and yet it is still being practiced today!

The following pins ink to multiple sites that explain the dangers of a root canal and explain why this dental procedure is just not a risk that anyone should be willing to take.

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And this is only a few!  Do a google search on the dangers of root canals, and you will get thousands of results!

Needless to say, I quickly came to the conclusion that a root canal was not an option.  I’ve heard the saying “Save your teeth at all costs”, but at the cost of my health???  Sorry, that just doesn’t add up to me.  Moral of the story is – do your research, and make an informed decision if you are facing a root canal.  Also, if you have root canalled teeth, and you’re feeling ill, and are having a hard time finding a diagnosis – consider those teeth!  They could be the culprit…just something to consider.

Alright, now that I’ve given you something to think about, some good news!  My pain is your gain, because after getting the tooth extracted, I was on an all soft food diet while healing.  I would puree all my food in a food processor so that I wouldn’t have to chew it.  In full disclosure, I also may have overindulged in some organic vanilla bean ice cream as well – why?  Because I deserved it after dealing with that awful toothache and then getting it extracted!

Anyway, during this time, I stumbled upon an amazing recipe for a butternut squash dip!  I was pureeing some butternut squash and threw a few other ingredients in to make it extra tasty, and when it came out, I was like – oh my gosh, this would make an AMAZING dip for crackers, chips, veggies, bread, anything really – it is SO good!!!  I told my mom about it and she whipped up a batch for a get together she was having, and it was a HUGE hit!  Let’s get to the recipe, which is surprising simple for how delicious is tastes!

BUTTERNUT SQUASH ROSEMARY AND GARLIC DIP

Ingredients

  • 2-3 cups cubed butternut squash
  • olive oil
  • 1/4  – 1/2 tsp. garlic granules
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. dried rosemary
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 1/3 cup plain greek yogurt (you can increase this for a less “thick” dip)
  • 1-2 oz. soft goat cheese (If you don’t like goat cheese, you can substitute another cheese in here)

Directions

1.) Preheat the oven to 390 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place the butternut squash on the prepared baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with garlic granules, dried rosemary, and sea salt.  Toss to coat, and place in the oven.  Bake for 35-40 minutes at 390 degrees.

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2.) When the squash is done, place it in a food processor, and add the greek yogurt and goat cheese.  Process on high till smooth.  Scrape the sides down, if needed, take a taste and add more salt if needed.  Process on high again until completely smooth.

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3.) Transfer to a bowl, and serve as a dip for something yummy…unless you’ve just had a tooth pulled, then just enjoy it without dipping anything in it! 😉

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Ahhh, beauty from pain!  Delicious and nutritious!  Enjoy! 🙂

Healthy Cabbage Rolls

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Ohhhhh boy!  When I went grocery shopping yesterday, cabbage was on sale, so I got a head of green cabbage, and then decided to get some other ingredients to make some yummy stuffed cabbage rolls!  Cabbage is SO good for you!  It is best known for it’s detoxification properties, but it has so much more than just that!  Check out this pin listing some of the health benefits of cabbage!

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All these great benefits, and it lends itself to some great and delicious recipes!  As I said, I decided to make some cabbage rolls…after the fact, I think I would just opt for throwing all the ingredients in a casserole dish and make a cabbage roll casserole (soooo much easier), but I went ahead and put in the effort of rolling each of these little rolls into a cute little burrito of sorts.  The result was DELICIOUS, so let’s get to the recipe!

HEALTHY CABBAGE ROLLS

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of green cabbage
  • 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp. uncooked brown rice
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1.5 lbs. ground turkey
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 3 Tbsp. parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 2 oz. soft goat cheese
  • sea salt, to taste

Directions:

1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Turn off the heat, and place the head of cabbage in the water.  Let sit for 15 minutes.

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2.) While the cabbage is sitting, prepare the filling.  In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil.  Add the onion, and let cook for about 3-5 minutes.  Add the ground turkey, and cook till cooked through.  Turn off the heat, and add the garlic powder, parsley, egg, rice and some sea salt.

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3.) Take the cabbage out of the water, and carefully peel off 10 leaves.  With each leaf, remove the tough middle section.  Fill each half of the leaf with filling.  Carefully roll the leaf up to create a cabbage roll.

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4.) Place the rolls in a baking dish until the dish is full.

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5.) Poor the chicken broth over the rolls, drizzle with the honey, and top with the tomatoes.  Cover and bake for 80-90 minutes.  Remove from the oven, uncover, and sprinkle with the goat cheese and sea salt.

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6.) Transfer to a plate and serve.

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Like I said, after making this, I think next time, I will just chop up the cabbage leaves, and then throw everything in casserole dish, prepared as described, and make a casserole out of it – much less work, though not quite as pretty!  Regardless of how you decide to present this dish, the taste will not disappoint!  Enjoy! 🙂

Zucchini & Goat Cheese Cakes

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Okay, I know I say this all the time, but I think these are my new favorite!  Maybe I just have a new favorite every other day, but whatever the case, right now, these are it!  I got the idea for these from the following pin.

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I changed pretty much everything in the recipe because of what I had on hand and because I don’t eat some of the ingredients in these, but the one thing they do have in common is the zucchini, and that’s great because zucchini is woooonderful for you!

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You will love these zucchini cakes, and they’re pretty simple to make, so get on it!

ZUCCHINI & GOAT CHEESE CAKES

Ingredients

  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1/4 cup red onion, chopped into very small pieces
  • 1 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • 3/4 cups oatmeal
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil

Directions

1.)  Put your 3/4 cup oatmeal in a food processor or blender and pulse on high until the oats have a bread crumb like consistency.

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2.) Prepare your zucchini by shredding 2 cups worth, then place on a dish towel and cover with another dish towel.  Squeeze out as much moisture as you possibly can, then set aside.  Chop your onions and crumble your goat cheese.

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3.) In a medium mixing bowl, mix together the zucchini, goat cheese, oats, and onion.

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4.) Add your eggs and mix everything together well.

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5.) Heat your olive oil over medium heat in a large frying pan.  Form your mixture into eight balls.  Place them on  your frying pan, then gently press them down with a fork or spoon to form patties (you may have to do this in batches – I could only fit  four at a time on my frying pan).  Cook on one side for about 2-4 minutes.

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6.) Using a spatula, carefully flip each cake over.  Cook on the other side for 2-3 minutes till cooked through.

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7.) Place a paper towel over a plate and transfer the cakes to the plate.  Let sit for 5-10 minutes, then season with a bit of sea salt and serve.

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Try these!  You won’t regret it!  Enjoy! 🙂