Chicken Pad Thai with Peanut Sauce! (paleo, low fat, low carb)

We eat this all the time! It’s super easy, and such a crowd pleaser. Very few ingredients, and easy to build up based on what you have on hand! I’ve made this with Spaghetti Squash or Zucchini as the noodles. For Chris and Ella I usually make gluten free brown rice pad thai noodles.

 

Noodle Options- Both options serve 3-4 people.

  • 1 medium sized spaghetti squash

*Preheat oven to 375. Pierce squash a few times with fork. Wrap in foil. Roast 45-60min. Let cool in fridge for about 1hr, or let sit overnight in fridge if you want to prepare the night before. Slice thru midsection, not lengthwise, pull out seeds, then shred the “noodles” out with a fork. I like to rinse mine through a strainer, otherwise they shed too much liquid and can make the sauce too soupy. Set aside until Pad Thai sauce is ready!

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(as seen on @fitmamaq)

OR

  • 5-6 medium sized zucchini squash
  • 1 tbs coconut oil

*Using a vegetable spiralizer, make your “zoodles” to desired thickness. I prefer them thin for this recipe. Warm a large skillet with coconut oil (or use spray for lower fat). Stir fry on medium low heat, just til softened, not browned. Be sure not to overcook!

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(as seen on @fitmamaq)

Chicken and Pad Thai Peanut Sauce-

  • 3-4 organic chicken breasts chopped and cubed (coated in salt, pepper, and garlic powder for frying)
  • 3-5 green onions diced
  • 1/4 cup packed cilantro diced
  • 1 dime sized cube fresh ginger, diced
  • 1/2 cup Betty Lou’s Organic Just Great Stuff Powdered Peanuts (or 4tbs peanut butter)
  • 1 cup unsweetened or sweetened coconut milk (depends on preference)
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • salt and red pepper flakes to taste
  • optional- add in extra stir fry veggies to cook with your chicken! Broccoli, white onion, red peppers, green peppers, bok choy! Get creative!

In a large skillet, fry chicken until browned (about 8-10min). In a small saucepan combine all sauce ingredients and wisk together on low heat, until bubbling. Be careful not to burn. Add noodles of choice to chicken skillet, pour sauce mixture into skillet. Sauteed on medium/low heat until well combined! Serve with siracha, fresh lime juice and fresh cilantro!

 

 

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High Protein Dutch Baby Pancake! (paleo, grainfree)

I cook a lot with almond flour because I like the flavor and it’s the easiest nutritious grain free substitute for normal wheat flour. However, I LOVE coconut flour. When baked correctly, the flavor is even closer to normal flours, and the nutritional benefits are far greater than almond flour. It can be tricky to bake with though, since it’s a super absorbent fiber. If you’re baking with it be sure to always look up a recipe, or be aware that you’ll need about 1/3 less coconut flour than normal flours call for.

Fun Health Benefits of Coconut Flour-

High in lauric acid. Lauric acid is a healthy saturated fat which is essential for immune health. It is also known to help promote healthy skin and thyroid health.

High in manganese. Manganese is helpful in absorption of many different minerals including choline, biotin, vitamin C, and thiamine. It also helps promote a healthy immune system, thyroid health, and also helps to promote and stabilize healthy blood sugar levels.

High in fiber. Coconut flour is very rich in fiber. This means that not only is coconut flour healthy for digestion, but it will also help you feel fuller faster and stay fuller for longer. Because it is so dry and fibrous, however, it will absorb more liquid during mixing, and therefore requires more liquid to be added than regular wheat flour.

Coconut flour is unlike any other consisting of 14% coconut oil and 58% dietary fiber! The remaining 28% consists of water, protein, and carbohydrate. 

Dietary fiber acts like a broom, sweeping your intestinal contents along your digestive tract aiding in elimination, regularity and helping to promote digestive health. Since you cannot digest the dietary fiber in coconut flour, you derive no calories from it.

 

Studies have shown that an additional 14 grams of fiber daily (the amount in about ¼ cup of coconut flour) is associated with a 10% decrease in calorie intake and a resulting loss in body weight.

 

The only downfall with coconut flour is that it’s high fiber content requires excess liquid, which requires double the amount of eggs you would normally bake with. For vegans, this isn’t ideal! For those who love eggs and protein, coconut flour is for YOU.

Dutch Baby Pancakes are perfect for the whole family, because you get the luxury of a decadent breakfast, but all the nutrients needed for a high protein start to the day! This is also way less time consuming than making pancakes or waffles!

Serves 4

  • 6 eggs
  • 1/4 cup egg whites
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk or almond milk
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour (or arrowroot)
  • 1 tbs sweetener (honey, maple syrup, coconut sugar, agave)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tbs cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda (optional-this just gives it a bit more fluff since coconut flour is more dense than normal flour)
  • optional add-ins- 1/2 cup blueberries, chocolate chips, chopped bananas!
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil or butter (for preheating in the pan)

Preheat oven to 425, place baking dish in oven to preheat with oil or butter. If using butter, make sure to watch it so it doesn’t burn. Traditionally this is baked in a cast iron skillet, however you can use a glass baking dish or a non-stick baking dish as well. I used a 9×9 dutch baby skillet! But a 9×13 would work.

Using a high speed mixer, beat together wet ingredients first. Let the eggs get a little stiff for they rise fluffier. Add in dry ingredients still using high speed mixer.

Take out your preheated baking dish, slowly pour mixture into dish. Quickly return it to the oven. Bake 20-25min.

Top with sauteed apples in butter, coconut whip cream, maple syrup! Treat these like pancakes or waffles 🙂 You could even drizzle with melted chocolate and serve as dessert!

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How-To rock the Super Deep Side Part in 7min!

While the “middle part” is still on the runways, the “super deep side part” is taking the stage! I’m excited for this trend, as it looks way better on my face shape than a middle part does! This is versatile, you can wear it with one side slicked flat and tucked behind the ear, or wear it bouncy and full! I prefer the bouncy and full look, since it’s not as “trendy”. I love it for the “I woke up with my hair looking perfectly messy” type of style! Another plus is that it works great on short or long hair!

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I started with washing my hair the night before, putting in some oil and volumizing beauty balm (products used will be listed at bottom of post), and I slept with my hair damp in a high ponytail. The high pony tail gives great volume for the next day, even if my hair isn’t wet I always sleep in a high pony!

When I woke up, I parted my hair slightly off center, not down middle, but not completely down the side.

The key to this is styling your hair parted down the off-center part first! Don’t style it with the deep side part. You MUST curl your hair with the off-center part, to give the correct bounce and volume.

I then sprayed my hair with heat protection and curled just the top ring around my head leaving the ends completely free.
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While that looks good, I wanted the extra volume of the super deep side part 🙂

From there I took the deepest side piece, and flipped it over to the other side.

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I tousled my hair with shine spray and a tad bit of hair spray. Voila! The perfect super deep side part and it took me less than 7min (I used a timer!)

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Products used–

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Protein Shortbread Chocolate Chip Cookies

Most of my baking is done for my husband and kids, so whenever there is a recipe approved I hurry to write it down! Chris is a fan of chewy soft chocolate chip cookies. These are more the consistency of a soft shortbread cookie, and he absolutely loved them!! Don’t want the calories of chocolate chips? Take em out and you’ve got a delicious protein shortbread cookie! That’s what I did for myself 😉 This recipe is quick and easy, all mixed together in one bowl!

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(no chocolate chips)

Makes 12-14 cookies.

  • 2 cups almond flour
  • 1/4 cup vanilla protein powder (I used brown rice protein, choose a powder that tastes creamy and not too healthy. Use pea protein powder for Paleo)
  • 1 egg (or vegan 1tbs ground flax/ground chia + 3tbs warm water)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil softened
  • 3 tbs maple syrup (mine didn’t need much sweetener since my protein powder already is sweet)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)

 

Preheat oven to 350. Whisk together wet ingredients, except coconut oil. Slowly add in dry ingredients mashing together with a spoon. Once it’s well combined, add in your softened coconut oil. Should be slightly crumbly in texture.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, roll cookies into balls and then press to flatten onto sheet. Cookies will stay the same shape and density so shape them as desired. They will not expand, and only rise lightly.

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Bake 10-15min. You can make these a crunchy shortbread cookie if you bake 15min. 10min keeps them still soft, which is what we preferred. Enjoy!

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Wisdom isn’t competitive!

 

Do not be excessively righteous and do not be overly wise. Why should you ruin yourself?

-Ecclesiastes 7:16 NASB

In our world the pressure to “one-up” each other is constant, and the need to be better than others is in the back of our minds even if we won’t acknowledge it. Subconsciously, the competition is there. Have you ever walked into a conversation and realized that you can’t keep up with the intellectual status of those present? Immediately, we try to sound wise and act like we know everything in hopes of impressing those we’re talking to. Why? Because we want acceptance! We want to be recognized and praised. I encourage you today to check your motives, and accept when you don’t know something. Accept when someone is more knowledgable than you, instead of stepping up your competitive nature. The real proof of wisdom can be shown by taking the humble route, and instead encourage someone else in their knowledge. When you take the time to beef up someone else, you’re exercising true maturity and wisdom.

Who among you is wise and understanding? Let him show by his good behavior his deeds in the gentleness of wisdom.
-James 3:13 NASB

I don’t want to recognized for having a loud mouth and a know-it-all attitude! I want to learn, I want to receive, and I want to uplift those who speak wisdom that I don’t yet have! When I take the time to listen, I’m setting myself up to grow, and to receive new knowledge that I can apply into my own life.

He who restrains his words has knowledge,
And he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding. Even a fool, when he keeps silent, is considered wise;
When he closes his lips, he is considered intelligent.

-Proverbs 17:27-28

It’s immediately evident when someone doesn’t know what they’re talking about!! Proverbs says it’s better to be silent, so that you would be considered intelligent. That’s SO smart! What a great idea…keep your mouth shut, and you’ll appear to know more than if you started rambling about random things. Thanks for that tip…I’d like a “cool spirit” so I guess I’ll just stay silent when I don’t know the answer to something. Genius, really! When we think of a wise person, do we think of someone who talks a lot? Not me, I usually think of Pastor Bill Johnson when I think of wisdom. Actually, his picture should be in the dictionary next to the word “wise”. That man can say 2 words that are so deep and completely blow your mind!! Saying less is always more!

So when it comes down to it, let’s open our ears, shut our mouths, and receive wisdom when we need to hear it. You might actually learn something when you’re done babbling 😉

 

 

CauliSweet Mash! (paleo, vegan, low carb)

Creamy mashed potatoes are an American favorite, but let’s be honest, the fat and carbs are completely unhealthy sources of energy, so we normally eliminate this from our diets. While the typical Cauliflower Mash is a great alternative for those who are used to paleo or low carb diets, this is completely weird for die-hard potato lovers! Enter my husband here 🙂 He’s not a cauliflower fan, so the substitution just doesn’t work for him. So I came up with this simple solution, best of both worlds! It’s a serious dupe for real mashed potatoes!!

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Recipe serves 4

  • 3-4 white sweet potatoes
  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 3 tbs organic butter or coconut oil (optional)
  • salt to taste

Chop the sweet potatoes and cauliflower, place in pot with liquid and seasonings, everything except the butter or oil. Cover and steam about 30min medium heat. Cook til veggies are soft and liquid is almost gone.

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Mash with a fork, add in butter or oil. Serve next to my Citrus Orange Sirloin Roast!

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Citrus Garlic Sirloin Roast

Chris is a meat and potatoes lover, and I’m the exact opposite. Nothing about meat and potatoes appeals to me, but when he comes home from two 17day tours, the man gets whatever he wants!! This was his favorite roast 🙂 I really love making this because it’s a very simple marinade that I always have on hand!

 

The Roast 

  • 4lb top sirloin roast (bone off)

The Sauce

  • 10 pitted dates (soaked in warm water 15min)
  • 3 cups organic beef broth
  • 4-7 cloves fresh garlic
  • 2 tbs orange zest
  • 1 tbs black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt

The Marinade

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce (liquid aminos or coconut aminos)
  • 1 tbs black pepper
  • 2 tbs apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbs garlic powder

 

Set the Sirloin in a roasting pan with marinade mixture well coated and patted into  it. Let sit in refridgerator for 2 hours, or if in a hurry, 20min at room temperature.

Preheat oven to 450.

Coat the Sirloin in 1/2 cup coconut oil or organic extra virgin olive oil, being sure to press it into crevices, working the marinade mixture in with your hands. Meat should be well coated in thick mixture. Meat should FAT DOWN for roasting.

Place in oven on middle rack, roast for 15-17min.

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Start making sauce mixture. Blend all sauce ingredients in food processor or vitamix til slightly smooth. I prefer the marinade still a bit chunky.

Remove from oven, lower temperature to 350. Turn meat FAT UP. Pour sauce mixture slowly over the roast, being sure to spread the chunks of garlic over the top of the roast.

Bake 350 for 50-60min. 50min will be Medium Rare. Half way through bake, be sure to use to a spoon to baste the meat in more sauce. This helps keep it juicy. Remove from oven, let sit for 15min before slicing! Serve extra sauce on the side for dipping 🙂

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