Five Minute Blender Enchilada Sauce

5 Minute Blender Enchilada Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

I have a passion for spicy foods.  Anybody who’s read my blog regularly, or who knows me even a little, knows I like it hot!  I also enjoy many different ethnic cuisines such as Mexican, Indian, Thai, and Chinese – just to name a few!  If given a choice I almost always choose an ethnic restaurant when going out to eat, and I typically order one of the hotter and spicier items on the menu!  I am getting braver when it comes to turning out more ethnically diverse dishes from my own kitchen, but I’ve never been shy about trying Mexican recipes like enchiladas.  I know that much of what we prepare here in the U.S. is not authentic Mexican food, but that doesn’t mean it’s not just as tasty – it’s just an Americanized version!  And as an American…I’m okay with that!

5 Minute Blender Enchilada Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

One of my family’s favorite meals is Chicken Enchiladas.  But since adopting the CEBH Lifestyle we’ve not had them – partly because I’m avoiding dairy as much as possible (and nobody – I repeat NOBODY wants cheese-less enchiladas), but mostly because I refuse to eat processed foods such as canned enchilada sauce.  That stuff is loaded with additives and preservatives, and other ingredients that I’m trying to avoid as much as possible!  

5 Minute Blender Enchilada Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

The other day I was in the kitchen, eyeballing a package of chicken breasts I had thawing, and wondering what the heck I was going to make for dinner!  I really wanted enchiladas, yet didn’t want to compromise my eating plan.  However,  once I began thinking about what makes enchilada sauce so yummy I knew I could make a homemade version that would put the store-bought sauce to shame!  Obviously it has a tomato base and seasonings…so I looked in the pantry and found a can of organic fire roasted tomatoes and a can of tomato sauce…this seemed like a great place to start!  I knew some chili powder was needed, onions and roasted garlic would also be key components of my version of enchilada sauce, as well as a generous portion of smoky cumin!  I used roasted garlic I had tucked away in the fridge for just such an occasion – I always make several bulbs at a time when I make roasted garlic, then refrigerator the unused cloves to use in other recipes.  You can also purchase roasted garlic at the store, but to see how I make it, click here.  As I was blending it all together I realized I needed a little liquid to get just the perfect saucy consistency so I added chicken stock for a little more flavor, but you could certainly substitute water for a vegan version of enchilada sauce!  

5 Minute Blender Enchilada Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

In the end, I absolutely could not have been happier with this incredible enchilada sauce!  It tastes better – fresher and more authentic than any sauce I’ve ever had from a can!  I did eventually make those Chicken Enchiladas for dinner…but that’s another post…keep an eye out for that recipe coming up soon on CEBH!!!

5 Minute Blender Enchilada Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

If you’ve got 5 minutes and a few simple pantry items, then you’ve got a homemade enchilada sauce that will knock your stocks off!  Try this once and you’ll never go back to the canned version…I promise!

Five Minute Blender Enchilada Sauce
Serves 12
If you've got 5 minutes and a few basic pantry items then you can make this fresh and flavorful no-cook enchilada sauce!
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Prep Time
5 min
Total Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Total Time
5 min
23 calories
4 g
1 g
0 g
1 g
0 g
69 g
181 g
2 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
69g
Servings
12
Amount Per Serving
Calories 23
Calories from Fat 4
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 0g
1%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 1mg
0%
Sodium 181mg
8%
Total Carbohydrates 4g
1%
Dietary Fiber 1g
4%
Sugars 2g
Protein 1g
Vitamin A
10%
Vitamin C
6%
Calcium
2%
Iron
4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 14.5 ounce can fire roasted tomatoes
  2. 1 8 ounce can tomato sauce
  3. 1/2 of a large onion, cut into chunks
  4. 1 entire bulb of roasted garlic, or about 1 tbsp store-bought
  5. 1 tbsp ground cumin
  6. 2 tbsp chili powder
  7. 1/2 tsp salt
  8. 1 cup chicken stock or water
Instructions
  1. Place all the ingredients in a blender, secure the lid, and blend on low until everything is well combined.
  2. Gradually increase speed, blending 3-5 minutes until sauce is well blended and smooth.
  3. If desired, add more liquid for a thinner sauce.
  4. Taste for seasoning and adjust as desired.
Notes
  1. This sauce makes enough for a huge pan of enchiladas with some sauce leftover.
  2. Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for several days, or transferred to the freezer for use at a later date.
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calories
23
fat
0g
protein
1g
carbs
4g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/

Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce

Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Thanksgiving Dinner must-haves for me include the usual suspects…turkey, potatoes, stuffing, Apple Wheat Berry Salad, Green Bean Casserole CEBH Style, some kind of bread, a delicious dessert like the one coming up in my next post, and cranberry sauce.  Unfortunately, in my immediate family I’m the only cranberry sauce aficionado…but that has never stopped me from making it just for myself!  So today I’m sharing my recipe for a simple Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce that you can make days ahead and check at least one item off your to-do meal preparation list!

Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

When I was growing up my mom made what she called cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving.  In reality what she made was actually a cranberry relish since it wasn’t cooked.  I remember her clamping the old fashioned grinder onto the end of the counter, then cranking the handle like crazy to grind a bag of frozen cranberries and a couple oranges into the bowl which I was tasked with holding.  It was a big responsibility for me to make sure I held that bowl still and didn’t let any of the juices dribble onto the floor!  Then she added sugar – what seemed like mounds of sugar – to sweeten that tart relish.  After that, she’d pop it into the fridge to chill and macerate for a day or two before our Thanksgiving feast.  

Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

This recipe borrows the basics ~ cranberries and oranges ~ from mom’s cranberry relish, but omits the sugar, and instead, sweetens the sauce with maple syrup and honey.  Then I spiced things up just a little bit with cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg.  And finally to add a little depth of flavor I splash in some vanilla.  The ingredients simmer in a crockpot over low heat for just a couple hours, until the berries are softened.  About 90 minutes into the cooking process I mash the berries with the back of a spoon until they’re somewhat crushed, but still have plenty of texture.  I let it continue to cook about 30 minutes more, transfer the sauce to a storage container, and pop it in the fridge until ready to serve.  The sauce will thicken as it cools and be the perfect texture to accompany your expertly roasted turkey, to top a luscious dessert (subscribe so you don’t miss the next post for just such a dessert), or as a condiment on your leftover turkey sandwiches!

Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Whats your favorite food related Thanksgiving memory?  Tell me about it in the comments…I really do love to read them all!!! 

Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce
Serves 24
Here's the easiest, most delicious, make-ahead Cranberry Sauce recipe you've been looking for to round out your Thanksgiving menu!
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
2 hr
Total Time
2 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
2 hr
Total Time
2 hr 15 min
60 calories
15 g
0 g
0 g
0 g
0 g
61 g
2 g
12 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
61g
Servings
24
Amount Per Serving
Calories 60
Calories from Fat 1
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 0g
0%
Saturated Fat 0g
0%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 2mg
0%
Total Carbohydrates 15g
5%
Dietary Fiber 2g
8%
Sugars 12g
Protein 0g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
20%
Calcium
2%
Iron
1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 8 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, rinsed and drained
  2. 2-3 oranges, zested and juiced for about 1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  3. 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  4. Scant 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  5. Scant 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  6. 2 tsp vanilla extract
  7. 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
  8. 1/4 cup honey
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in crockpot, stir to combine and replace lid.
  2. Set heat to low and simmer for a total of about 2 hours.
  3. After 90 minutes cooking time has elapsed, stir sauce.
  4. Using the back of large stirring spoon, mash the berries until there's a good mixture of textures - including a few whole berries as well.
  5. Replace lid and cook another 30 minutes, then stir again.
  6. Mash the berries more if desired.
  7. Transfer to a covered dish and store in refrigerator for up to 10 days.
Notes
  1. The sauce thickens and the flavors meld as it chills in the fridge. This is one more reason to make it a couple days in advance.
  2. Use as an accompaniment to turkey, as a sandwich condiment, or in desserts as desired
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calories
60
fat
0g
protein
0g
carbs
15g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

As I write this the weather is starting to feel a bit more fall-like.  And by the time it publishes it will officially be fall.  That means most people will be in full pumpkin spice mode…lattes, cookies, muffins, ice cream, cheesecake, candles, room freshener, potpourri…it’s pumpkin spice overkill if you ask me!  I’m much more likely to usher in fall with a trip to an apple orchard than a pumpkin patch, or with a new recipe for something healthy and delicious featuring my fall favorite….butternut squash!

Butternut Squash | cookeatbehealthy.comI’d like to take a minute to appreciate this perfect little squash…and to the woman at the grocery store who does not share my affinity for perfect produce…I apologize if I freaked you out with my enthusiasm for this little cutie!  😉

So…back to business.  Today I’m sharing a recipe that continues our Cashew Cream Recipe Series, but also one that is perfect for fall because of the flavors and ingredients featured in these Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream!  Butternut squash is one of my favorite foods because of it’s flavor, obviously, but also because of it’s versatility!  It’s equally delicious as an ingredient in a savory dish as it is a sweet one.  So while many people are celebrating the arrival of fall with a PSL from Starbucks, I’m celebrating by creating these simple and tasty fritters with another fall favorite – butternut squash!

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

 

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

These fritters are so easy to make because you don’t even have to pre-cook the squash!  The ingredients for the fritters are cooked quinoa, raw shredded butternut squash, eggs, garlic, shallots, salt & pepper, panko, and fresh sage, with a little coconut oil for frying.  The cashew cream sauce includes cashews, prepared horseradish, fresh sage, and salt & pepper. All in all it’s a pretty humble list of ingredients that yields fantastic fritters!

Sage is one of those herbs that I don’t use a lot, but whenever I do, I wonder why I don’t use it more! Sage has a very earthy and peppery flavor and it pairs perfectly with the butternut in these fritters. Plus the health benefits of sage are quite impressive. It helps keep skin healthy, improves digestion, it’s rich in antioxidants, helps in growth and development of bones, boosts cognitive development and the immune system, and helps to reduce inflammation and overall health! As for the horseradish – I think it’s a love it or hate it thing, and I happen to LOVE it! It’s got several health benefits as well including that it can aid in weight loss, help prevent cancer, and boost the immune system – just to name a few. So the combination of sage and horseradish is not only delicious, but incredibly healthful as well! I love learning about the health benefits of different foods and herbs that I use…it makes me feel even better about living the CEBH Lifestyle!

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

And if you think the sage and horseradish are packed with health benefits…just wait til I tell you about the rest of the ingredients!  Butternut squash helps prevent high blood pressure, promotes regularity, improves eyesight, keeps bones strong, boosts the immune system and reduces inflammation, and aids in weight loss!  Quinoa is one of the most protein dense foods we can eat, it’s high in fiber, rich in iron, lysine, magnesium, riboflavin, and manganese.  Coconut oil can help you burn fat, helps prevent infections, reduces hunger, improves cholesterol levels, acts as a natural sunscreen, and boosts brain function.  WOW!!!  Everybody to the kitchen…STAT….it’s time to make some Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream!

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Tip: Peeling the squash is easily accomplished with a regular vegetable peeler.  If you find it’s difficult to hold onto, rest the bottom of the squash in the sink drain while you’re peeling!  After the squash is peeled, cut it in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, and then shred it.  I used my food processor, but you could certainly get the job done with a box grater as well…and you’d get an arm workout at the same time! 😉

Bonus Tip: This recipe calls for 2 cups cooked quinoa which is easily made by combining 1 cup uncooked quinoa with about two cups water, bringing it to a boil, then covering the pan, reducing the heat to low, and simmering approximately 15 minutes – or until all the water is absorbed.  Remove from heat and fluff with a fork.  For this recipe I make the quinoa earlier in the day and refrigerate it until I’m ready to make the fritters.

Making these little gems is super simple!  Once the butternut is shredded and the quinoa cooked, all the fritter ingredients are mixed together and the fritters are pan-fried in just a smidgen of refined coconut oil until they’re golden and crispy, then set on a paper towel to drain any excess oil!  The horseradish & sage cashew cream can be made while the quinoa is cooking, or, preferably it can be made a day ahead and stored in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve the fritters.

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters | cookeatbehealthy.com

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters | cookeatbehealthy.com

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream
Serves 10
Freshly shredded butternut squash and quinoa lend a real taste of autumn to these light and tasty fritters served with horseradish and sage cashew cream.
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
246 calories
33 g
74 g
8 g
10 g
2 g
77 g
194 g
1 g
0 g
5 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
77g
Servings
10
Amount Per Serving
Calories 246
Calories from Fat 73
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 8g
13%
Saturated Fat 2g
10%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 74mg
25%
Sodium 194mg
8%
Total Carbohydrates 33g
11%
Dietary Fiber 4g
14%
Sugars 1g
Protein 10g
Vitamin A
3%
Vitamin C
2%
Calcium
7%
Iron
17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the fritters
  1. 1 small butternut squash, peeled and shredded
  2. 2 cups cooked quinoa
  3. 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  4. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 1 medium shallot, minced
  6. 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  7. Salt and pepper to taste
  8. Chiffonade of 5-6 fresh sage leaves
  9. 3-4 tbsp refined coconut oil for frying
For the cashew cream
  1. 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked in water for at least 2-3 hours, then drained
  2. 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh sage leaves
  3. 2 tbsp prepared horseradish (more or less to taste)
  4. 1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
  5. Filtered water as needed to reach desired sauce consistency
For the fritters
  1. Combine everything except the coconut oil and mix well.
  2. In a non-stick pan, melt 1 tbsp coconut oil over medium heat. When oil is hot and shimmering pack a portion of fritter mixture into an ice cream scoop, gently release into hot oil, and flatten slightly.
  3. Fry fitters in batches, being careful not to crowd the pan. I cooked 4 at a time.
  4. After 3-5 minutes, when the bottom side is golden brown, turn carefully and continue cooking the flip side another 3-5 minutes until it's golden brown.
  5. Remove from pan and drain on clean paper towel.
  6. Continue cooking in this manner, adding small amounts of coconut oil to your pan as needed, until all the fritters are completed.
  7. Serve immediately with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream Sauce.
For the cashew cream
  1. In a blender or food processor combine drained cashews, sage, salt and pepper, and 1 tbsp horseradish. Blend on medium speed, adding water a tablespoon at a time until the sauce smooths and is almost the desired consistency.
  2. Stop the blender and taste the sauce. Add more horseradish if desired, and water if needed, then continue blending until smooth and creamy. (I really like horseradish so I used about 4 tbsp total)
  3. Store sauce in refrigerator until ready to serve fritters.
Notes
  1. I found a regular sized ice cream scoop was exactly the right portion size for these fritters.
  2. You might consider making the horseradish and sage cashew cream a day in advance as it keeps well in the refrigerator, and the flavors develop over the course of 24 hours.
  3. Leftover quinoa would be perfect for this recipe - plan ahead and that's one less ingredient to prepare the day you make the fritters!
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calories
246
fat
8g
protein
10g
carbs
33g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Just today my friend and I were fantasizing about winning the lottery and paying off houses, cars, and college tuition bills so we could retire, travel, and live the “good life”.  But she was right when she prefaced all that with good health – because without that, we couldn’t enjoy all the riches our lives have to offer!  So here’s to Cooking, Eating, and Being Healthy, while enjoying every single morsel of food we put in our mouths, in order to live as rich a life as possible!

Vodka Sauce ~ Vegan

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Welcome to the second installment of our Cook Eat Be Healthy recipe series featuring cashew cream!  Today we’re talking Vodka Sauce!  A rich, creamy, tomatoey sauce, perfectly and simply seasoned to enhance the flavors of whatever dish in which you choose to use it.   And on top of all that goodness – it’s vegan as well!

But first let’s address the elephant in the room!  What about that bottle of Vodka?!?  I feel like I need to explain why it’s so humongous!

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Last October I had my second rotator cuff surgery in a 13 month period, and I wasn’t able to drive for several weeks.  So I decided to try ordering from our local grocery store via their new on-line shopping service.  It was super convenient, I was able to pick exactly what I wanted, and then either my husband could pick them up, or I could have them delivered!  I figured it was a way to let Mr.CEBH off the shopping hook, and considering it was just me, the 2 cats, and Netflix for 10 hours a day, the on-line shopping experience was a welcome distraction.  I planned our meals according to what I could prepare with just one arm, then I’d make my list and submit my order.  It made me feel at least a little bit productive, when otherwise I was pretty much useless when it came to doing my normal activities around the house.

Anyway….I could lie and say I wanted the bottle solely for culinary pursuits……but I’m no liar!  I could fib and say I would never drink alcohol while still taking an occasional pain pill….but I’m no fibber!  In truth what I wanted was an itty bitty bottle of vodka and a big bottle of orange juice.  You know – for medicinal purposes only!  But here’s the thing…the bottles don’t look very big on the screen when doing on-line ordering.  And being as how I’m used to measurements in ounces, not milliliters, I feel like this was an honest mistake.  Anyway that’s my story and I’m sticking to it! 😉  I can only imagine what the person pulling my groceries thought when they got my order.  Lots of fruits and vegetables, eggs, milk, cereal for my husband, orange juice, and the world’s most ginormous bottle of vodka!  I bet they wondered what was going on here!!!

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Now in keeping with my theme of full disclosure, I did indeed enjoy an occasional nip from that bottle of vodka, but for the most part, it’s been hanging out in the freezer just waiting for me to come up with the perfect recipe in which to use it!  I’d had vodka sauce before in a dish at an Italian restaurant we visited in North Carolina, and I loved it.  But for some reason I guess I thought it was too difficult to make at home.  I mean, if I paid big bucks for it at a restaurant, it seemed like it must be a pretty involved recipe!  But guess what?!?  I was wrong – and happily so!  I did some research and discovered that Vodka Sauce is delicious in it’s simplicity!  Somehow the vodka contributes to a depth of flavor that transcends the sauce’s simplicity, and elevates it to a level that really should not be attainable considering the few ingredients in the sauce.

Vodka Sauce | Cookearbehealthy.com

So to review the ingredients….vodka….duh!  Canned crushed tomatoes, onion, garlic, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, and a dash of red pepper flakes.  I’m not sure if vodka sauce traditionally contains red pepper flakes, but I’m not really a traditional kind of cook…..so……add it or leave it out.  It’s completely up to you!  If you’ve read my posts before you know that I like love spicy foods, so I’m always adding extra heat to most my dishes!  It’s just who I am!

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbebehealthy.com

What is it about vodka sauce that makes it seem like cooking it should be a complicated and time consuming process?  Or is it just me?  Maybe I think anything with booze in it is fancy?!?  Hmmmm….not sure how I feel about that!  The good news is that the alcohol completely cooks away and there’s absolutely no residual vodka flavor to the sauce, so it’s 100% kid friendly!

Anyway – down to cooking – dice up 1 small onion fairly small.  Into a large saucepan add the EVOO, onion, and garlic, and cook, stirring frequently for about 2 or 3 minutes – just until the onion starts to soften and become translucent.  Then pour in the vodka and continue simmering over medium heat for about 5 more minutes.

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

After simmering the onions, garlic, and vodka, pour in the can of tomatoes.  I use crushed tomatoes with no added sugar.  Some recipes call for puréed tomatoes and that would work just as well, I just happen to prefer a teensy bit of texture in my vodka sauce.  I think it’s more of a rustic sauce with the crushed vs. puréed tomatoes. After adding the tomatoes (and red pepper flakes if desired), continue simmering another 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is slightly reduced.  Finally it’s time to add the cashew cream, and to check it for seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Vodka Sauce | coolest healthy.com

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Adding the cashew cream is my favorite part…I love swirling it together!  It’s just so pretty!

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

In a few weeks I’ll be sharing at least one recipe using the vodka sauce we’re making today, but for now, I’ll let you decide how to use it. Some ideas would be to serve it very simply over pasta with a generous sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.  Or maybe you’ll choose to use it in homemade lasagna.  How about instead of traditional pizza sauce?  Or served over some zucchini noodles with a chiffonade of basil…oh my gosh….that would be divine!  Anyway – for now it’s up to you.  But for heaven’s sake just make it – and eat it – you’ll be glad you did!!!

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Vodka Sauce ~ Vegan
Serves 10
A rich and creamy vodka tomato sauce made without butter or cream, yet even more delicious than the traditional recipe!
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
160 calories
6 g
0 g
9 g
2 g
2 g
58 g
35 g
1 g
0 g
7 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
58g
Servings
10
Amount Per Serving
Calories 160
Calories from Fat 77
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 9g
14%
Saturated Fat 2g
8%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 35mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 6g
2%
Dietary Fiber 1g
3%
Sugars 1g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
3%
Calcium
1%
Iron
5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 can crushed tomatoes, 28 ounces, sugar free
  2. 1 cup vodka
  3. 1 cup cashew cream (see recipe at cookeatbehealthy.com)
  4. 1 small onion, diced
  5. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  6. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  7. 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  8. Salt & Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Drizzle a large saucepan with EVOO and heat to medium.
  2. Add diced onion and minced garlic, cooking 2-3 minutes until onions just begin to soften and turn translucent, stirring frequently.
  3. Pour in vodka, stir, and simmer 5 minutes.
  4. Add crushed tomatoes, and red pepper flakes if desired, stirring well.
  5. Continue to simmer over medium-low heat 10-15 minutes, until onions are soft and sauce is slightly reduced.
  6. Stir in cashew cream.
  7. Check for seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Continue simmering another 5 minutes, adjusting seasoning one more time as needed.
  9. Serve immediately or store in a covered dish in the refrigerator for up to one week.
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calories
160
fat
9g
protein
2g
carbs
6g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/

Cashew Cream ~ Dairy Free

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

I am very excited to announce a new recipe series here at Cook Eat Be Healthy featuring Cashew Cream!  

It may seem like a weird and obscure ingredient to many of you, but let me tell you I was THRILLED when I discovered there was even such a thing as cashew cream!  I’m sure those of you who are vegan have been using cashew cream for a very long time, and maybe I’m late to the party, but I don’t think I’m the last one to arrive!  I’m hoping that there’s a whole lot of you out there who are trying to eat healthier, or who have dietary restrictions that could benefit from the addition of this recipe to your culinary catalog!  😀

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Cashew cream is a fantastic dairy free option for those recipes that call for cream.  It’s especially good in sauces and casseroles….think of all those recipes that call for “cream of something ” soup.  Won’t it be nice to have a healthier alternative?!?

And for me, the real beauty of cashew cream is that it’s a perfectly blank canvas upon which to build flavors.  Add salt, pepper, and garlic, and you’ve got the base for a savory dish.  Omit the seasoning and add maple syrup or honey, and perhaps a little vanilla, and you’ve got the start of some thing wonderful for a dessert.

So stick with me for the next 4 to 6 weeks and we’ll discover all sorts of wonderful uses for cashew cream!  

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

The ingredient list for cashew cream may be the shortest list ever…..cashews and water…..that’s it!  It could not be any easier!!!  Now usually I do add a little salt and pepper to the cream, and sometimes some garlic depending on what I’m planning to use it for, but at the very heart of the recipe it’s very simply cashews and water!  The hardest part is being patient while the nuts soak for at least 2-3 hours before blending them with water.  I suggest soaking them overnight, or perhaps during the day while you’re at work or otherwise occupied.  Because watching cashews soak is probably even  more boring than watching paint dry!

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

To soak the cashews, cover them in warm water and set them aside for at least 2 hours, or up to 8-10 hours.  Drain the water they’ve been soaking in and put the nuts in a blender pitcher.  Add fresh water and blend on medium-high speed until the cashews are completely smooth and you have what resembles cream.  If making a savory dish this is the time to add just a little salt and pepper to taste.  The cream can be used immediately or stored in a covered dish in the refrigerator for several days.

Cashew Cream ~ Dairy Free
Yields 3
A simple and creamy vegan sauce perfect to use in a variety of recipes!
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524 calories
30 g
0 g
42 g
14 g
8 g
210 g
66 g
5 g
0 g
32 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
210g
Yields
3
Amount Per Serving
Calories 524
Calories from Fat 354
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 42g
65%
Saturated Fat 8g
42%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 7g
Monounsaturated Fat 25g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 66mg
3%
Total Carbohydrates 30g
10%
Dietary Fiber 3g
11%
Sugars 5g
Protein 14g
Vitamin A
0%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
4%
Iron
30%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups raw cashews
  2. 1 1/2 cups filtered water
  3. Salt & Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Place cashews in a bowl and cover with water.
  2. Soak at least 2-3, or up to 8-10 hours.
  3. After cashews have soaked, drain water and place nuts in blender pitcher.
  4. Add 1 1/2 cups filtered water and blend on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy - about 3-5 minutes.
  5. If using in a savory recipe, add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Use immediately, or store in covered dish in refrigerator for up to 7-10 days.
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calories
524
fat
42g
protein
14g
carbs
30g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Next up in the series…Vodka Sauce!  A vegan version of the creamiest, dreamiest vodka sauce you’ve ever tasted!

Avocado Pesto on Grilled Chicken & Vegetables

Avocado Pesto Grilled Chicken Vegetables | cookeatbehealthy.com

This was the first meal we cooked on our brand new grill.  The grill in which my husband literally invested blood, sweat and tears.  Well – no tears per se….but blood, sweat, a few swear words, and 5 stitches from the doctor at convenient care!  Poor guy!  He’d gotten the base all together and when I went out to help him lift the actual grill portion onto the base, he grabbed what was obviously a very sharp metal edge and sliced his finger open!  😟  

image

It looks like he’s saying University of Iowa is #1….and the fact that he’s wearing an Iowa shirt only perpetuates that idea, but truly he’s not!  Our daughter goes to Iowa State…arch rivals to U of Iowa.  He just insists on wearing that shirt even though Anna has bought him dozens of ISU shirts!  I thought for sure the shirt would get bloody and ruined, but somehow it remained unscathed….it’s the shirt that will not die!!!  LOL!!!

So 45 minutes later we were back home and I was helping him finish the assembly process!  Thankfully we got it together and moved into location with no further incidents, and I was able to prepare our delicious dinner of grilled chicken and vegetables with avocado pesto.  Seriously this is sooooooo good!  I told Mr. CEBH that I could eat this meal everyday for the rest of my life and never tire of it!  

New grills are so pretty and clean!  This is probably the one and only time you’ll see the inside of mine!!!  😉

Grilled Chicken And Vegetables | cookeatbehealthy.com

Avocado Pesto Grilled Chicken Vegetables | cookeatbehealthy.com

I wanted to use some basil a friend had given me, and I had some very ripe avocados so the idea of making avocado pesto seemed perfect!  And truthfully when I say I’d eat it this meal everyday – I mean it!  My favorite fair weather meal is grilled chicken and vegetables!  It’s simple, I don’t have to heat up the house cooking dinner, it’s 100% flexible depending on which vegetables I have on hand, and varies depending on which seasonings and spices I use on the chicken and vegetables!

Avocado Pesto Basil | cookeatbehealthy.com

For this recipe I used basil and lemon on the chicken because those flavors are perfectly complemented by the avocado pesto which is jam packed with basil, and brightened with lemon juice and zest.  The chicken marinated for about 3 hours in a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice and zest, a little salt, pepper, and garlic, some red pepper flakes, and of course….fresh basil!

Prior to grilling, the vegetables were seasoned very simply with EVOO, salt and pepper, garlic, and a few red pepper flakes.  I like to keep the vegetables pretty simple so their flavors can shine through, and in this dish, so that nothing else competes with the avocado pesto flavors!

Avocado Pesto Grilled Chicken Vegetables | cookeatbehealthy.com

The pesto is made from avocado, basil, garlic, olive oil, red pepper flakes, salt, and walnuts.  I prefer to use walnuts over pine nuts because number 1 – I don’t like pine nuts, and number 2 – I love walnuts!  Pretty good reasons, eh?!?  Really though, if you find pine nuts a little too “earthy” tasting, as I do, then use walnuts instead!  They are mild enough that they add very little to the flavor profile of the pesto, they’re waaaaaay cheaper than pine nuts, and they are full of omega-3 fatty acids so they’re super healthful as well!

Avocado Pesto | cookeatbehealthy.com

Isnt it pretty?!?  I just love the vibrant green color!  It doesn’t get much better than avocado pesto…2 of my favorite foods/flavors in 1 lovely recipe….YUMMMMMMMM!   

For the veggies I chose zucchini, mushrooms, tomatoes, onions, and bell pepper.  I cut almost everything into approximately the same bite sized pieces, but because zucchini practically screams “SPIRALIZE ME“, that’s exactly what I did!  And besides – I love using my Kitchenaid mixer with the spiralizer attachment.  I feel like such a pro-fesh-shun-ul when I use it!  Either that or a spy, because the box it comes in kind of looks like a spy kit to me!  😉  I used the ribbon spiralizer blade and out of 1 large zucchini I got what seemed like miles of zucchini ribbon!  Check out the mini video of me spiralizing the heck out of a zucchini….I find it mesmerizing!  Click the link to see it!

IMG_2528

Spiralized Zucchini Ribbons | cookeatbehealthy.com

Grilled Vegetables | cookeatbehealthy.com

Avocado Pesto on Grilled Chicken & Vegetables
Serves 4
Delicious avocado pesto made with bunches of fresh basil pairs perfectly with grilled chicken breasts and vegetables in this healthy summertime dish!
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Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
534 calories
27 g
37 g
41 g
22 g
6 g
514 g
660 g
11 g
0 g
33 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
514g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 534
Calories from Fat 353
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 41g
63%
Saturated Fat 6g
28%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 10g
Monounsaturated Fat 23g
Cholesterol 37mg
12%
Sodium 660mg
28%
Total Carbohydrates 27g
9%
Dietary Fiber 10g
41%
Sugars 11g
Protein 22g
Vitamin A
60%
Vitamin C
278%
Calcium
17%
Iron
33%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the Avocado Pesto
  1. 1 ripe avocado
  2. 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  3. 1/2 cup walnuts
  4. 3 cloves, or 3 tsp chopped garlic
  5. 1/4 cup extra light tasting olive oil
  6. Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  7. 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  8. 1/4 salt - more to taste
For the Chicken
  1. 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  2. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  3. Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  4. 1/2 tsp salt
  5. 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  6. 1 tsp ground black pepper
  7. 1 clove, or 1 tsp chopped garlic
  8. 8-10 large basil leaves, chopped
For the Vegetables
  1. 1 very large zucchini, spiralized, or cut into bite sized pieces
  2. 1 pint grape tomatoes
  3. 2 cups quartered mushrooms
  4. 1 bell pepper, cut into bite sized pieces - I used an orange pepper
  5. 1 large Vidalia onion, cut into bite sized pieces
  6. 2 tsp EVOO
  7. 1 clove or 1 tsp chopped garlic
  8. 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper
  9. 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
For the Avocado Pesto
  1. Combine all ingredients in the bowl of an 8-10 cup food processor.
  2. Process on low until well combined.
  3. Place in covered dish and refrigerate until ready to serve with grilled chicken and vegetables.
For the Chicken
  1. Combine all marinade ingredients in a gallon size resealable bag, then add chicken, coating both sides with marinade, and refrigerate at least 2-3 hours, turning occasionally, until ready to grill.
For the Vegetables
  1. Combine all ingredients in a resealable bag and toss to coat vegetables in oil and seasonings.
For Grilling the Chicken and Vegetables
  1. Heat grill to medium.
  2. Place chicken breasts on grill and cook, turning once, for a total of about 20 minutes.
  3. Check for doneness of chicken by inserting meat thermometer in thickest part of breast, the chicken is done when juices run clear, and internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.
  4. Remove from grill and rest 5 minutes before slicing.
  5. Place the vegetables in a grill pan, or on a grill mat, and grill over medium heat along with the chicken.
  6. Stir vegetables a time or two to ensure even cooking.
  7. Remove from heat when the vegetables are slightly charred and fork tender - about 15 to 20 minutes.
To Serve
  1. Plate a serving of vegetables, top with 1/2 sliced chicken breast, then top with a generous scoop of avocado pesto.
Notes
  1. Before refrigerating pesto, place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface to help slow the browning of the avocado.
beta
calories
534
fat
41g
protein
22g
carbs
27g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
The fat and calorie count assumes you’ll be using the entire recipe of pesto – so don’t panic!  You’ll only use about 1/4 the recipe for 4 servings!  I think this is a very good thing, because then I have leftover pesto to use on fish, a panini sandwich, mixed into olive oil and vinegar for a delicious salad dressing, as a dip for fresh veggies, etc. etc. etc……you get the idea!  

Grilling is the best!  I wish we could gril year round, but Iowa winters get pretty brutal to do that!  There’s a few hearty souls who manage, but we’re just too wimpy I guess!!!  What’s your favorite grilled meal?  Share in the comments!!!

Purple Basil & Garlic Hummus

Purple Basil Hummus | Cookeatbehealthy.com

This is one of those posts that I hadn’t planned on doing, but when the basil gods (in the form of a friend with a bumper basil crop) shine on a food blogger, I believe it’s a sign!  A sign that says **Hey…blogger lady…take this beautiful basil you’ve been gifted and turn it into something tasty for your blog!**  So, thanks to my BFF, Karen, I came directly home and whipped up a quick batch of Purple Basil & Garlic Hummus!

Purple Basil Garlic Hummus |Cookeatbehealthy.com

Purple Basil Garlic Hummus |Cookeatbehealthy.com

Hummus is a favorite in our household.  I love it for so many reasons…flavor, adaptability, ease of preparation, and healthfulness!  Hummus contains chickpeas which are high in fiber and protein, iron, folate, phosphorus, and B vitamins. The lemon juice in hummus is high in vitamin C and antioxidants.  Basil contains essential oils that have anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties.  And the garlic…it’s a powerhouse of health benefits!  Garlic helps fight colds, help lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and it contains antioxidants that can help prevent dementia!  Garlic can help you live longer, help detox your body of heavy metals, and it tastes delicious!  And finally the tahini in hummus is high in protein, rich in vitamins and minerals, easy to digest because of it’s high alkaline mineral content, and high in unsaturated (good) fat!  And finally, the olive oil in this recipe helps balance the cholesterol levels in your body.

Purple Basil Hummus | cookeatbehealthy.com

Then because I was hurrying 😟 (the faster I go, the behinder I get)…here’s a photo of the lemon and red pepper flakes.

Purple Basil Garlic Hummus | cookeatbehealthy.com

When it comes to making hummus it just couldn’t be easier.  Everything except the olive oil goes in the food processor.  Process on high until mostly blended, then begin streaming in the olive oil while still processing on high speed.  You may have to stop to scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally, continuing to process until it’s smooth and well blended!

Purple Basil Garlic Hummus | cookeatbehealthy.com

When it comes to serving your delicious homemade hummus the sky’s the limit!  Of course it’s a fantastic dip with a bowl of chips or fresh vegetables.  I love it spread on a sandwich or a wrap.  I have also made a fantastic hummus-slathered baked chicken dish that is to die for!  You could thin it out with a little vinegar and make a salad dressing or how about spreading it on a piece of toast with a little avocado and topping it all with a soft poached egg? I’m thinking stuffed mushrooms would be fabulous, or maybe as a sauce for roasted vegetables!  I could probably go on and on, and I’m sure you can think of many more applications!  Let’s just say it’s yummy and versatile and healthy – and we all should eat more hummus!  It doesn’t always work out that something so healthful is also so delicious, but when it does it’s a beautiful thing!

Purple Basil Garlic Hummus | cookware healthy.com

Tip:  By switching out the basil, garlic, and red pepper flakes for other seasonings, herbs, and spices, you can customize the basic hummus recipe to suit your tastes, or to take advantage of readily available fresh produce, as I did in this recipe by utilizing fresh purple basil.

Serves 16

Purple Basil & Garlic Hummus

10 minTotal Time

Save Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled, or about 3 tsp chopped
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 1/2 tsp each salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 cup extra light tasting olive oil
  • 1 cup packed purple basil (or substitute green basil)

Instructions

  1. Place all the ingredients except olive oil in bowl of food processor and process on high until somewhat blended.
  2. While continuing to process on high, slowly stream in the olive oil, stopping as needed to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  3. Continue processing until all the ingredients are well blended.
  4. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  5. Place in covered container and store in refrigerator for up to 7 to 10 days.

Notes

Red pepper flakes are optional, and the amount can be adjusted according to how much heat you prefer. If unable to find purple basil, green basil is a perfect substitution.

6.8
http://cookeatbehealthy.com/purple-basil-garlic-hummus/
Calories
25 cal
Fat
1 g
Carbs
2 g
Protein
1 g


Click Here For Full Nutrition, Exchanges, and My Plate Info

Homemade Mayonnaise

Homemade Mayonnaise | cookeatbehealthy.com

🎤 It’s just another Mayonnaise Monday!  🎤  C’mon….admit it….you sang that to the tune of The Bangles’ hit, “Manic Monday”!  I’ve had that song stuck in my head since I decided to sneak in this little bonus post about homemade mayonnaise.  I get songs stuck in my head all the time, and I always wake up with one in my head every morning.  Please tell me that happens to other people too! 🙃

Anyway….it seems to me that summertime is mayo time.  I think summer BBQ and picnic foods just require mayonnaise as a base for so many dressings and sauces that I tend to use more in the nicer months of the year.  I’ve had a few posts that call for mayo, and I have a few upcoming recipes that call for mayonnaise too, so I thought I’d just give you all the 4-1-1 on my version of homemade mayo.

Here’s the thing about making mayonnaise from scratch – in theory it should be one of the simplest things to accomplish.  In practice, however, it’s sometimes a completely different story.  Mayonnaise can be a tricky little bugger, and while I’ve been successful the majority of the time, there have been plenty of mayo-mishaps from my kitchen as well!  So today’s recipe for homemade mayonnaise is a sort of the culmination of many different attempts – some quite wonderful, some quite awful – but all part of the learning curve and worth it in the end to get me to this recipe.  I’m happy to report a 100% success rate with this mayo – and I’m confident you’ll be 100% successful as well!

Homemade Mayonnaise | cookeatbehealthy.com

One of the things I really like about this recipe is that it uses the whole egg.  I’ll be the first to admit that I probably waste more food than I should, but for some reason using only the yolk or the white of an egg kinda grinds my gears.  So the fact that I get to use the entire egg makes me happy!  The other ingredients are pretty simple too – some dry mustard AND prepared mustard (I find the prepared mustard helps the eggs to emulsify better), a little salt, white wine vinegar, and extra light tasting olive oil round up the short ingredient list.

Tip: I find room temperature eggs to work better whenever I make mayo.  Leave them on the counter for at least a few hours or as long as over night.  Speaking of eggs….I use pasteurized eggs because I don’t have a reliable source for fresh eggs.  This is totally a judgement call on my part.  I think the risk of getting salmonella is pretty slim, but I also think I hate being sick, so…..  If I had my own chickens or had a way to get eggs that I knew were from free range chickens I’d absolutely use those.  In the end,  you need to make the best decision for your family’s needs – those with small children and the elderly obviously need to use more caution when deciding which eggs to use.

The actual process is super simple and takes only about 10 minutes!  In a food processor bowl I combine the eggs, mustards, salt, and vinegar and whizz it on low for about 30-60 seconds.  Then, with the processor still on low, I very slowly drizzle in the olive oil.  You’ll be able to hear the change once the mayonnaise starts to come together.  Just keep on drizzling in the oil until it’s all added, and the mayo is completely emulsified.  That’s it!  You’re done!  Put your mayonnaise in a jar or covered dish and refrigerate for up to two weeks.  See….super simple!  

Bonus Tip:  When I say slowly drizzle in the olive oil, I mean S…L…O…W…L…Y drizzle in the olive oil! This is an absolutely crucial detail – and one that I learned the hard way.  😐 

Homemade Mayonnaise | cookeatbehealthy.com Homemade Mayonnaise | cookeatbehealthy.com

Now that you’ve made the homemade mayo you’ve got a base with which to make a variety of different sauces and dressings.  And you’ve got the world’s best sandwich enhancer.  And maybe, just maybe, you’ll discover that homemade mayonnaise makes a good carrot dip (just trust me on this one)!  But any way you choose to use it, you can proudly say “I made that scrumpdilicious mayonnaise all by myself!  Isn’t it just the BEST?!?”! 

image

Homemade Mayonnaise
Serves 36
A fool-proof homemade mayo that you'll be proud to say you made yourself, and that you can feel good about feeding your family!
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Total Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
110 calories
0 g
10 g
12 g
0 g
2 g
16 g
39 g
0 g
0 g
10 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
16g
Servings
36
Amount Per Serving
Calories 110
Calories from Fat 109
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 12g
19%
Saturated Fat 2g
9%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 9g
Cholesterol 10mg
3%
Sodium 39mg
2%
Total Carbohydrates 0g
0%
Dietary Fiber 0g
0%
Sugars 0g
Protein 0g
Vitamin A
0%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
0%
Iron
1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 eggs, room temperature
  2. 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  3. 1 1/2 tsp prepared yellow mustard
  4. 1/2 tsp dry mustard
  5. 1/2 tsp salt
  6. 2 cups extra light tasting olive oil
Instructions
  1. Combine eggs, vinegar, mustards, and salt in the bowl of an 8-10 cup food processor, and process on low for about 30-60 seconds until very well blended.
  2. While still set to low, SLOWLY drizzle in the olive oil until all the oil is added, and the mayo is completely emulsified.
  3. Transfer to a jar or bowl, cover, and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
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calories
110
fat
12g
protein
0g
carbs
0g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/

Fruit Salsa with Creamy Lemon Poppyseed Vinaigrette

Fruit Salsa with Creamy Lemon Poppyseed Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.com

I had a really hard time deciding if this recipe was actually a salsa or a salad, so I looked up the definition of salsa and this is what I found….A spicy sauce of chopped, usually uncooked vegetables or fruit, especially tomatoes, onions, and chili peppers, used as a condiment.  So ok…..no tomatoes, but I’ve got fruit and other vegetables including onions and peppers covered.  Then I looked up the definition of a salad and this is what I found….A cold dish of chopped vegetables, fruit, meat, fish, eggs, or other food, usually prepared with a dressing, such as mayonnaise.  So ok….I’ve got cold fruit and vegetables covered once again, along with a dressing which actually does have a little mayo in it.  So I think what I have here is what would happen if salsa and fruit salad were to have a baby!  👶  So I could name this baby Fruity Poppyseed  Salsalad, or maybe Lemony Fruit Saladsa, but then you’d all think I was totally nuts, so in the end I settled on Fruit Salsa with Creamy Lemon Poppyseed Vinaigrette!  

Fruit Salsa with Creamy Lemon Poppyseed Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.com

The fresh factor of this salsa is amped up from the addition of mango and strawberry , which both work fabulously with the red bell pepper, avocado, red onion, and jalapeño!  For the vinaigrette I combined some homemade mayonnaise (find my favorite mayo recipe here), extra light tasting olive oil, white wine vinegar, lemon juice, finely zested lemon, a little chile infused honey, and a sprinkle of  poppyseeds.  I put the creamy vinaigrette ingredients in a mason jar and shook it until it was well combined, then poured it over the fruit and vegetables that I had tossed together in a large bowl.  Then I simply stirred it all together until every bit was coated in vinaigrette!  Of course, then I tasted it to make sure it was good. Then I tasted it again to make sure it was really good!  And then I tasted it again and did a happy dance ’cause it was so darn good!!!

Fruit Salsa with Creamy Lemon Poppyseed Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.com

Fruit Salsa with Lemon Poppyseed Vinaigrette
Serves 8
A luscious combination of sweet fruit, flavorful vegetables, tangy lemon dressing, and a little kick of spicy heat!
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Total Time
30 min
Total Time
30 min
207 calories
24 g
3 g
13 g
2 g
2 g
193 g
123 g
19 g
0 g
10 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
193g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 207
Calories from Fat 112
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
20%
Saturated Fat 2g
10%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 3mg
1%
Sodium 123mg
5%
Total Carbohydrates 24g
8%
Dietary Fiber 4g
17%
Sugars 19g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
25%
Vitamin C
126%
Calcium
3%
Iron
3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the Salsa
  1. 2 ripe mangoes, chopped
  2. 2 cups strawberries, hulled and quartered
  3. 1 avocado, diced
  4. 1 jalapeño, finely diced
  5. 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped small
  6. 1/4 cup red onion, diced
For the Dressing
  1. 1/4 cup homemade mayonnaise
  2. Zest of 1 lemon
  3. 4 tbsp. lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  4. 2 tbsp extra light tasting olive oil
  5. 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  6. 1/4 tsp salt
  7. 1 tsp poppy seeds
  8. 2 tbsp chile infused, or regular, honey
For the Dressing
  1. Place all dressing ingredients in a mason jar with lid and shake until well combined, or place ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well combined.
For the Salsa
  1. Place chopped fruit and vegetables in large mixing bowl and toss until combined.
  2. Pour Lemon Poppyseed Dressing over tossed salsa ingredients and stir until completely covered.
  3. serve immediately, or refrigerate and serve later.
Notes
  1. This actually gets better as it sits in the fridge for a couple hours to let the flavors meld!
  2. Refrigerate leftovers in covered container for up to 1 week.
beta
calories
207
fat
13g
protein
2g
carbs
24g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
My imagination is running wild with all the possible ways to use this salsalad saladsa salsa!  What about with some cinnamon tortilla chips?  How about on a piece of toast with cream cheese?  Maybe stirred into some plain yogurt!  I have one fab idea up my sleeve, but I’m not telling what it is – until my next blog post, that is!  😉  

Triple ‘B’ Burgers

Triple 'B' Burgers | Cookeatbehealthy.com

Last week I was talking turkey……burgers that is!  😉  But today is all about Bison Burgers.  When I changed my lifestyle from a diet to a live-it, I chose to stop eating red meat….with one exception….BISON!!!   Have you ever tried bison meat?  We are fortunate to have a local rancher who raises a herd of grass fed, free roaming, antibiotic and hormone free bison, and makes the meat available at a few places around the area. I always get mine at our local farmers market!  Bison meat is unlike other red meat in that it is extremely lean, and actually even healthier than salmon is in almost every regard!  And of course, it delicious!

Bison is lower in fat, calories, and cholesterol than beef, chicken, pork, and salmon.  I find that pretty impressive!  Because of the leanness of bison, you’ll find it will cook faster than beef and you’ll want to only cook ground bison to medium, or 155-160 degrees.  Any higher temp and you run the risk of drying out the meat.  The flavor is similar to beef, but richer, with a hint of sweetness.  I like the flavor so much that I don’t do much to the burgers before I cook them.  I just add a few finely minced onions or shallots, some mushrooms, finely diced, a dash of worchesteshire sauce, a sprinkle of garlic powder, salt & pepper, and a splash of bourbon!  Then onto a medium heat grill they go, and in just a few minutes…your tastebuds will be doing a happy dance!  

Tip:  Just like with the turkey burgers, the finely diced mushrooms do little to change the flavor profile, but they do help prevent the burgers from becoming dried out.  As for the bourbon….the alcohol will cook out during grilling, and you’ll just be left with that certain little something that’ll keep your guests guessing what your secret ingredient is!

Triple 'B' Burgers | cookeatbehealthy.com

 

But don’t forget…I’m calling these Triple B Burgers, so if Bison is the first “B”, we’ve still got 2 more to talk about!  The second “B” is for bourbon sauce!  I really hope you’re as excited about this as I am!  I’m not a fan of beer or wine, but I do love me a good bourbon!  For the sauce I combined my favorite bourbon from Cedar Ridge Distillery  (also right here in Eastern Iowa), worchesteshire sauce, beef stock, garlic, salt & pepper, and chile spiced honey.  I combined all the ingredients in a small sauce pan and simmered it on low heat until it was reduced by about 75%.  The result is rich and unbelievably delicious, and oh so good drizzled on a grilled bison burger the last couple minutes before it comes off the grill!  (It also happens to be pretty darn good on grilled chicken too).

Spicy Bourbon Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

The final “B” is for blue cheese…some tangy creamy blue cheese crumbles are just what’s needed to top off this burger in style!  Blue cheese is a classic paired with beef burgers, so I just knew these bison burgers NEEDED blue cheese as a contrast to the rich meat and bourbon sauce!

And just because I’m not very good at stopping when enough is enough, I’m also slathering the bun for this killer burger with homemade horseradish mayonnaise!  A little mayo goes a long way, so not to worry about the fat content here!  Plus when you make it from scratch, you are in total control of the ingredients, and for me, that’s as much a component of healthy living as the actual nutritional values of a food.  Besides – it’s not like you’re going to eat it everyday, or by the spoonfuls when you do, so relax!  If  you take the time to make it yourself and you know exactly what’s in it, then go ahead – live a little!

Homemade Horseradish Mayonnaise | cookeatbehealthy.com

Are you getting the picture?  This is not your ordinary burger!  The bison is so much better for you than beef, the bourbon sauce is decadent and rich, the blue cheese is tangy and creamy, and the horseradish mayo ties it all together!  And by now you’re probably asking how can this possibly meet the Cook Eat Be Healthy standard?!?  The real rock star here is the bison!  Otherwise using only small amounts of the other ingredients are what works to make it a healthy option!  Of course you could opt to add any of your favorite burger topping as well.  Personally I’m thinking a little thinly sliced red onion wouldn’t hurt my feelings any!  😉  And if you’re like me and you skip the bun (or use a Sandwich Thin), you’ll save lots of calories and carbs that way!  

Triple 'B' Burgers | cookeatbehealthy.com

Triple 'B' Burgers
Serves 4
A satisfying and decadently delicious grilled Bison burger....perfect for Father's Day, or any day you're craving a healthier grilled burger!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
378 calories
23 g
87 g
14 g
35 g
6 g
191 g
469 g
4 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
191g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 378
Calories from Fat 124
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 14g
21%
Saturated Fat 6g
30%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 87mg
29%
Sodium 469mg
20%
Total Carbohydrates 23g
8%
Dietary Fiber 1g
6%
Sugars 4g
Protein 35g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
4%
Calcium
14%
Iron
29%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. I pound ground Bison
  2. 1/4 cup finely diced fresh mushrooms
  3. 1 small shallot, finely minced
  4. 1 tbsp worchesteshire sauce
  5. 1 tbsp bourbon
  6. Salt and pepper to taste
  7. 4 tsp Bourbon Sauce ~ recipe to follow
For the building of your burger
  1. 4 Triple 'B' Burgers
  2. 4 buns of choice
  3. 4 tsp Horseradish Mayo ~ recipe to follow
  4. 1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles
  5. 1/2 small red onion, very thinly sliced
For the burgers
  1. Heat gas grill to medium, or prepare charcol grill for grilling burgers.
  2. Place all burger ingredients in a large bowl and combine until everything is just incorporated. You may find your hands are the best tools for this job.
  3. Separate mixture into 4 equal portions and form into thick patties.
  4. Place patties on pre-heated grill and cook 8-10 on the first side, then flip the burgers and continue grilling until the temperature, measured by a meat thermometer poked into the center of a pattie, measures 155-160.
  5. During the last couple minutes of grilling drizzle each burger with a teaspoon of Bourbon Sauce.
To assemble burgers
  1. Slather each bun bottom with horseradish mayo.
  2. Top with burger, blue cheese crumbles, and red onion.
  3. Place other half of bun on top, cut in half, and dig in!
Notes
  1. Do not overcook these burgers. If you cook them to the well done stage like hamburgers, you'll be disappointed by how dry they become.
  2. Because of the leaness of the Bison meat these burgers will cook faster than hamburgers, so keep an eye on them and adjust cooking time accordingly, taking into account varying grilling temperatures.
beta
calories
378
fat
14g
protein
35g
carbs
23g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Bourbon Sauce
Serves 8
A rich and flavorful sauce perfect for grilled burgers, chicken, and other meats!
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
46 calories
5 g
0 g
0 g
0 g
0 g
32 g
50 g
4 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
32g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 46
Calories from Fat 1
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 0g
0%
Saturated Fat 0g
0%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 50mg
2%
Total Carbohydrates 5g
2%
Dietary Fiber 0g
1%
Sugars 4g
Protein 0g
Vitamin A
0%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
1%
Iron
1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp Bourbon
  2. 1/2 cup beef stock
  3. 1 tbsp worchesteshire sauce
  4. 1 tsp, or 1 clove, minced garlic
  5. 1/4 tsp onion powder
  6. 2 tbsp chile infused honey
  7. Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a small sauce pan over medium high heat and bring to almost boiling.
  2. Reduce heat to low and continue to simmer 20-30 minutes until sauce is thickened and reduced by about 75%.
  3. Remove from heat and store in covered container in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Notes
  1. If you can't find chile infused honey substitute 2 tbsp regular honey and add 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes.
beta
calories
46
fat
0g
protein
0g
carbs
5g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Homemade Mayo
Serves 16
This is a basic mayo recipe that can be used as a springboard for many other flavored mayos!
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Total Time
15 min
Total Time
15 min
154 calories
0 g
12 g
17 g
0 g
2 g
21 g
79 g
0 g
0 g
14 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
21g
Servings
16
Amount Per Serving
Calories 154
Calories from Fat 152
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 17g
26%
Saturated Fat 2g
12%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 12g
Cholesterol 12mg
4%
Sodium 79mg
3%
Total Carbohydrates 0g
0%
Dietary Fiber 0g
0%
Sugars 0g
Protein 0g
Vitamin A
0%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
0%
Iron
1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the mayo
  1. 1 room temperature egg
  2. 1/2 tsp salt
  3. 1/2 tsp dry mustard
  4. 1 1/4 cups extra light tasting olive oil, divided
  5. 1-2 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
Optional add-ins
  1. Horseradish
  2. Adobo Sauce
  3. Garlic
  4. Pickle relish
  5. Herbs
  6. Stone Ground Mustard
Instructions
  1. In bowl of 8-10 cup food processor combine egg, salt, dry mustard, and 1/4 cup olive oil. Process a few second until well blended.
  2. SLOWLY drizzle in remaining 1 cup olive oil until it's all incorporated and mayo is emulsified.
  3. Blend in lemon juice and any other optional add-ins as desired.
Notes
  1. All mayo ingredients must be at room temperature. Remember to remove your egg from the refrigerator at least 6 hours prior to using. You can leave it on the counter overnight as well.
  2. Drizzling the final 1 cup olive oil must be done VERY SLOWLY! Failing to do so will result in a gloppy mess, so patience is a virtue when making homemade mayo!
  3. Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
beta
calories
154
fat
17g
protein
0g
carbs
0g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
So there you have it!  This is the answer to the dilemma of what to make Dad for Father’s Day dinner this year!  A burger so satisfying and decadently delicious that only you will know how much better it is for your family than the usual barbecue burger fare!