Spicy Quinoa and Beans

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spicy Quinoa and Beans is one of my favorite go-to dishes.  It’s the dish I make when I’m craving spicy Mexican flavors, it’s the dish I make when I don’t feel like cooking (yep that happens), but want to have something healthy and tasty to eat all week, and it’s that one meal I turn to when I’ve over indulged (yep that happens too) and I need to get my eating back on track!  

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

This recipe is a nutritional powerhouse full of protein, vegetables, and spices that are sure to satisfy and keep you satisfied for hours!  Occasionally I’ll  add shredded chicken to this recipe and that’s fantastic too!  One time I added extra chicken stock and shredded chicken to make a healthy chicken tortilla soup that was to die for!  Basically what I’m saying is – take the basics I share here and run with it!  Create your own version…adjust the spices to your preferences.  Maybe add some browned ground beef and cheese and turn it into a casserole.  Add more vegetables if you like – I’ve made it in the summer when I have zucchini and summer squash coming outta my ears and it’s super tasty with those added in!  In this recipe I used black beans and pinto beans, but those could be switched up too!  Or how about roast a spaghetti squash and serve the quinoa and beans over the top?  I like to serve it as pictured with fresh tomatoes and avocado, but it would be fantastic with salsa, sour cream, your favorite cheese, tortilla chips…you get the idea!  The possibilities are limitless!

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Start by sautéing the onion, peppers, celery, and garlic in olive oil or about 5 minutes – just until the vegetables start to soften.

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Then add the quinoa and sauté another 2 or 3 minutes.

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Next add the spices, then the beans and tomatoes, and then the chopped chipotle in adobo.  Finally the stock is added, bring it all to a boil, then reduce the heat and continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the quinoa is cooked and most the liquid is absorbed.

Spicy Quinoa and Beans | cookeatbehealthy.com

Here it is after its simmered for about 30 minutes – the corn is added about 10 minutes before removing from the heat.

Spicy Quinoa and Beans| cookeatbehealthy.com

This is just such a colorful and satisfying dish!  After eating it for a few days just exactly as I had prepared it, I addded some shredded chicken and homemade enchilada sauce and morphed it into Spicy Quinoa Suffed Peppers!  It was super tasty and my husband loved it too!

Spicy Quinoa and Beans
Serves 12
A spicy and satisfying protein-packed nutritional powerhouse recipe sure to curb even the biggest appetite!
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
1 hr
206 calories
36 g
0 g
3 g
9 g
0 g
235 g
649 g
3 g
0 g
2 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
235g
Servings
12
Amount Per Serving
Calories 206
Calories from Fat 30
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 3g
5%
Saturated Fat 0g
2%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 649mg
27%
Total Carbohydrates 36g
12%
Dietary Fiber 7g
27%
Sugars 3g
Protein 9g
Vitamin A
7%
Vitamin C
25%
Calcium
6%
Iron
15%
* 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 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
  2. 1 15 oz. can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  3. 1 15 oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes
  4. 1 10 oz. can diced tomatoes with habanero
  5. 2 cups quinoa
  6. 4 cups vegetable stock
  7. 1 green pepper, diced
  8. 1 can chipotles in adobo - 2 peppers finely chopped - reserve the remainder for another recipe
  9. 1 cup frozen corn
  10. 1/2 large onion, chopped
  11. 2 stalks celery, sliced
  12. 1 jalapeño, minced
  13. 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  14. 2 tsp cumin
  15. 1 tsp salt
  16. 1 tsp oregano
  17. 4 cloves garlic, minced
Instructions
  1. In a large stockpot, sauté onion, green pepper, jalapeño, celery, and garlic in olive oil for 5 minutes, until vegetables just begin to soften.
  2. Stir in quinoa and sauté another 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add cumin, salt, oregano, beans, tomatoes, and finely chopped chipotle peppers with a little of the adobo sauce. Stir well.
  4. Pour in vegetable stock, stir to combine, and bring to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, approximately 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Stir in frozen corn and continue simmering, stirring occasionally, for about 10 more minutes or until quinoa is done.
  7. Serve as desired.
Notes
  1. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.
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calories
206
fat
3g
protein
9g
carbs
36g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/

Slow-Cooker Bison Stew

Slowcooker Bison Stew | cookeatbehealthy.com

Baby it’s cold outside!  Cliche, I know, but still true!  The polar vortex is racing south from the North Pole and bringing single digit daytime high temperatures, double digit below-zero nighttime lows, and several inches of snow this weekend. Ugh…I really hate winter.  I’ve lived my whole life in the Midwest and still I’ve yet to learn to appreciate winter.  I fully acknowledge how beautiful it can be, but honestly, it has taken me 50 years to even get to the point where I could say that! 😉  I hate the cold, the wind, the cold, the atrocious driving conditions, the cold, the cancelled plans because of bad weather, the cold, the fact that it gets dark at 4:30 in the afternoon, and the cold!

Slowcooker Bison Stew | cookeatbehealthy.com

But – being of hearty Midwest stock, I’ve learned to cope with all the aforementioned hatefulness that is winter by avoiding going outside as much as possible, owning a car with heated seats (BEST INVENTION EVER) and a remote starter (2nd BEST INVENTION EVER) for when I do have to leave the house, and by cooking foods that warm us from the inside out.  Nothing can make me appreciate a blizzardy weekend more than a bowl of steaming hot stew!  

Slowcooker Bison Stew | cookeatbehealthy.com

Today I’m sharing a recipe for Slow-Cooker Bison Stew!  I love to use Bison whenever it’s available because health-wise it’s incredibly nutritious, and the flavor is similar to beef – only deeper and more intense!  However, Bison is not always easy to come by, so please substitute beef if you can’t get Bison! I promise you won’t be disappointed!  

Can we all take a minute to thank whoever invented the slow-cooker?!?  I feel like a slow cooker is a busy mom’s best friend in the kitchen!  I use a Ninja Cooking System which allows me to switch between slow cooking, stovetop, oven, and steaming.  I love it because it allows me to brown the meat for the stew using the stovetop setting, then switch it to slow-cooking once all the other ingredients are added to the pot!  Optionally, the meat can be browned on a conventional stovetop, then transferred to the slow cooker to continue cooking. The stew could also be slow baked in the oven in a Dutch oven after browning the meat on the stovetop.  And finally, if you prefer not to brown the meat…that works too!  Homemade stew is one of the easiest and most forgiving recipes there is!  

Slowcooker Bison Stew | cookeatbehealthy.com

For this pot of stew I used a Bison roast that I cubed into bite sized pieces.  I tossed the meat in flour, salt and pepper, and seared it in a little olive oil.  Truthfully, that’s the hardest part – and remember – you can totally skip that part if you’re short on time!  Once the meat is browned, simply throw everything else in the pot, cover it, turn the heat setting to low, and walk away!  8 – 10 hours later you will be rewarded with a thick, aromatic, flavorful, piping hot stew! And best of all, your family will love you for making it for them!  

Slowcooker Bison Stew | cookeatbehealthy.com

I tend to keep the vegetables simple – and cut into large pieces so they hold up to a full day of slow cooking. Potatoes, carrots, mushrooms, onions, and celery compliment the Bison perfectly.  Seasonings are simple as well…salt, pepper, worcestershire sauce, garlic, red pepper flakes, a bay leaf, and finally a bottle of beer!  The alcohol cooks away, but the stew is left with a little something special that’ll have everyone guessing what your secret to perfect stew is!  Bonus…the beer helps tenderize the meat if it’s a little tough!

Slowcooker Bison Stew | cookeatbehealthy.com

Finally – pair the finished stew with some crusty bread, a slice of cornbread, or a handful of crackers if you prefer.  I’m confident you’ll find this meal so hearty and satisfying that even serving it unaccompanied will have your family ooohing and aaahing and asking for seconds!  

Slowcooker Bison Stew | cookeatbehealthy.com

So the next time the polar vortex comes knocking on your door, chase the cold away and warm your family’s hearts and bellies with a big bowl full of this satisfying, stick-to-your-ribs, Bison Stew!  It’s not even officially winter yet, and I’m already counting down the days until spring – which happens to be 97 more days…ya know…just in case you’re counting too!!!

Slow-Cooker Bison Stew
Serves 8
This hearty stick-to-your-ribs Slow-Cooker Bison Stew is perfect for chasing away the polar vortex!
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Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
8 hr
Total Time
8 hr 40 min
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
8 hr
Total Time
8 hr 40 min
413 calories
31 g
126 g
10 g
47 g
3 g
581 g
667 g
8 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
581g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 413
Calories from Fat 93
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10g
16%
Saturated Fat 3g
16%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 126mg
42%
Sodium 667mg
28%
Total Carbohydrates 31g
10%
Dietary Fiber 5g
19%
Sugars 8g
Protein 47g
Vitamin A
195%
Vitamin C
23%
Calcium
7%
Iron
42%
* 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 lbs. Bison Roast, cut into bite sized pieces ~ or beef stew meat
  2. 4 tbsp all purpose flour
  3. 1 tsp each salt and pepper, plus more to taste
  4. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  5. 1 lb carrots, peeled and sliced into thick rounds
  6. 1 lb. potatoes, cut into large chunks
  7. 1 large onion, cut into large pieces
  8. 4 stalks celery, chopped into 1" pieces
  9. 2 lbs. baby bella mushrooms, thickly sliced
  10. 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
  11. 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  12. 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  13. 1 bay leaf
  14. 1 tbsp worchestershire sauce
  15. 4 cups beef stock
  16. 1 12 oz bottle beer
Instructions
  1. In a bowl or large zip-top storage bag, toss bison with flour and 1 tsp each salt and pepper.
  2. Heat olive oil to medium high, add flour coated meat and cook, stirring occasionally, until meat is browned on all sides.
  3. Transfer to slow-cooker.
  4. Set slow-cooker temperature to low, add vegetables, tomato sauce, and seasonings.
  5. Pour in beer and beef stock. Stir well.
  6. Cover and cook 8 to 10 hours. Stir and check for seasoning - adding more salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Serve piping hot.
Notes
  1. This recipe makes 8 very generous servings.
  2. Like many stews, the flavor intensifies as the leftovers chill in the refrigerator.
  3. When reheating add a little more stock or water to slightly thin the broth.
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calories
413
fat
10g
protein
47g
carbs
31g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/

Cashew Cream Recipe Wrap-Up

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

First things first…THANK YOU!!!!  I want every single one of you to know how much I appreciate you stopping by my little itty-bitty corner of the interweb to read my blog!  Whether you’ve read all the posts in the Cashew Cream Series, whether you’ve read just one or two, or whether this is your first read at CEBH….THANKS SO MUCH! 

Here’s  just a few of the fabulous dishes we made with cashew cream!

Cashew Cream Recipe Wrap-Up | cookeatbehealthy.com

Now that I’ve published the final recipe in the series, I thought it’d be a good idea to do a short recap of all the recipes.  Hopefully you’ll remember where it all started….Cashew Cream ~ Dairy Free…this is the base upon which most all the rest of the recipes are based!  By tweaking the cashew cream with different flavors and seasonings we’ve been able to create 14 different recipes from cashew cream!  And trust me when I say…we’ve just scratched the surface…I’m pretty sure that at some point in the future you can expect more recipes using the magical ingredient that is cashew cream!

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

The recipe that started it all…Cashew Cream ~ Dairy Free

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Next up was a recipe for Vodka Sauce ~ Vegan  that is truly one of the best vodka sauces I’ve ever eaten!  Simple, delicious, rich and creamy – give it a try on your next bowl of pasta!

Cashew Creamed Peas & Potatoes | cookeatbehealthy.com

The recipe for “Cashew” Creamed Peas & Potaotes was a recipe that took me right back to my childhood…it’s a comfort food that reminds me of my grandparents every time I make it!

Fruit Parfait Lemon Cashew Cream |cookeatbehealthy.com

Fruit Parfaits with Lemon Cashew Cream…sweet, tart, light, refreshing…perfect for a healthy dessert, breakfast, or as a snack!

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

The recipe for Spaghetti Squash with Creamy Mushroom & Garlic Sauce is perfect as a side dish, or a meatless main dish!  Spaghetti squash was one of the first vegetables I was able to get my son to eat when he was a toddler – needless to say, it’s a favorite of mine!

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

I love soup!  So much so that we eat it all year round, so it’s no surprise that three different soups made the cut when it came to this series.  The first soup recipe I shared was this one for Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch.  Everyone who grew up in the 60’s and 70’s probably fondly recalls tomato soup being served not only at the family dinner table, but also the school cafeteria!  Let’s just say this bisque is a grownup version of that odd-colored gloppy soup from a can that so many of us grew up eating!

Apple Crisp with Maple Cinnamon Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

The recipe for Apple Crisp with Maple Cinnamon Cashew Cream was a nod to the days when I was a single mom and my son and I used to visit apple orchards every fall.  He’s grown now, but Apple Crisp is a favorite dessert that never gets old no matter how many times I make it, or how many times I change it up!  The Maple Cinnamon Cream is exactly what this delicious sugar-free crisp needed to take it to the next level!

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

Looking for a unique way to use butternut squash?  How about these Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream?!?  I seriously love butternut squash so I’m always looking for new ways to incorporate it into our diet.  These fritters were a first for me – but it certainly won’t be the last time I make them!  They were crispy, light, flavorful, and so much fun to make!

3>1 Fruit Dips | cookeatbehealthy.com

Planning a brunch or shower?  Looking for a healthful alternative to the typical cream cheese based fruit dips?  Then I’ve got the perfect solution!  In the 3>1 Cashew Cream Fruit Dip post I shared 3 flavors of fruit dip – Key Lime Coconut, Lemon Poppyseed, and Chocolate Almond.  All 3 so seriously delicious I could not pick a favorite!

Slow Cooker Bison Roast with Bourbon Espresso Gravy | cookeatbehealthy.com

When I first adopted the CEBH Lifestyle I made the decision to cut red meat from my diet, and for the most part, it’s been pretty easy to adhere to my self-imposed ban.  But my poor husband – a real meat & potatoes, farm raised kinda guy…he was missing his big ‘ol hunks of beef! 😉  Thankfully we have a source for farm raised organic bison meat that brings their products to our local farmers market.  Bison meat is incredibly healthful – even better for you than salmon – and it’s exactly what I needed to make a delicious roast bison dinner for my husband!  I know it’s not the prettiest meal I’ve ever served – but do not judge a book by its cover!  I guarantee you that this Slowcooker Bison Roast with Bourbon Espresso “Gravy” is one of the most delicious meals I’ve ever made!

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

Next up I shared a dessert recipe for some yummy Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars.  Just look at how chewy, gooey, and chocolaty they look!  ‘Nuff said! 

Green Bean Casserole | cookeatbehealthy.com

Thanksgiving is is fast approaching and there are some traditional dishes that just need to be on the holiday table.  But sometimes the old standbys need a makeover – and that’s what I did with this recipe for Green Bean Casserole CEBH Style!  No canned soup, no dairy, no canned fried onions…all healthy and most importantly delicious!  In fact, I happen to think the flavor of this casserole is over and above the original!!!  But you will have to judge that for yourself when you make it!

Dairy Free Potato Leek Soup | cookeatbehealthy.com

The second soup recipe I shared is soooo good you guys!  By using almond milk, and of course, cashew cream I was able to make a potato soup that rivals – dare I say, surpasses – the traditional version that’s full of milk, cream, and butter!  My version of Dairy Free Potato Leek Soup is delicious, rich, satisfying and so good for you.  I hope you love it as much as I do!  For meat eaters – a little ham added in would be spectacular as well!

Roasted Butternut Chipotle Soup | cookeatbehealthy.com

My next to last recipe in this series as for another soup…this one featuring my favorite fall vegetable… butternut squash!  I’ve made this recipe for years and love it for its flavor profile that includes sweet, savory, and spicy.  And unlike many butternut soup recipes, this one has some ‘chew’ to it!  Read on to see what I mean about this Roasted Butternut Chipotle Soup!

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

And finally, last but certainly not least, is perhaps my favorite recipe of the entire Cashew Cream Recipe Series…Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte!  There aren’t enough “yum” words to describe how wonderful this is…that is if you love chocolate and coffee like I do!  The fact that a dessert like this can be made dairy, sugar, and gluten free thrills me!  I hope you serve it at your next dinner party, or perhaps take it to your family Thanksgiving celebration.  You’ll be the MVP of desserts with this winner!

Once again, thank you for reading!  Please remember to pin and bookmark the recipes that appeal to you, and if you would, direct your friends to my blog as well…sharing is caring! 😉

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner | cookeatbehealthy.com

It’s sure a good thing you all couldn’t  hear what was going on here when I was preparing this kielbasa skillet dinner!  A few weeks ago a storm blew BLEW through and ripped about a 4 foot strip of shingles off the roof of our house.  It was the craziest thing because there was water pouring in through a recessed light fixture in the kitchen, but there was no damage to the ceiling or cabinets, nor to the insulation in the attic.  But most impressive was the fact that the light fixture ended up being completely unaffected by the whole ordeal.  Obviously we shut off the breaker for the kitchen lights and had an electrician check them out, but they were fine!  It was a scary storm and even though we lost part of our roof, we were luckier than many who lost trees, vehicles, and small buildings!

Anyway….a month later the roofers were finally planning to be here to replace the roof.  We moved the cars out of the garage as instructed and left for work as usual thinking they’d be here to do the work while we were gone.  I guess they had other ideas though!  I arrived home mid-afternoon to find they’d just arrived as well.  Have you ever been inside a house being re-roofed?  It is very loud and a little disconcerting to have  6 or 8 guys traipsing around on your house!

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner | cookeatbehealthy.com

Anyway….seeing as how it was a Monday, and there was no way I could grill something for dinner without risking getting bonked in the head with a wayward shingle, I figured it was a good night to whip up this super simple, super quick, super hearty, super delicious, super filling, super satisfying Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner – sorry…I got super carried away there!  😜

This has been a family favorite in our household for many years now.  It’s easily adapted to satisfy even the pickiest of eaters, and most the time I already have everything on hand to make it.  Sometimes the simplest dinners are our favorites, and on busy weeknights it’s sure nice to have a go-to meal that you can have on the table in less than hour!  I consider it a bonus that I was able to get my picky eater to eat at least a few vegetables in this meal!  And double points to me for using turkey kielbasa because it’s got less fat, and fewer calories than regular kielbasa!  In this recipe that works out to be about 7 grams of fat and 135 calories in the turkey kielbasa versus about 24 grams of fat and 270 calories per serving of regular kielbasa!  One third the fat, and half the calories…sign me up!

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner | cookeatbehealthy.com

Obviously you’ll need a package of turkey polska kielbasa, potatoes, onions, corn, mushrooms, red bell pepper, some EVOO, garlic, and spices.  I use cumin and cayenne along with the usual salt and pepper.  Once your vegetables are cut into bite sized pieces, and your kielbasa is sliced, this dinner pretty much makes itself!  Well…that’s a little bit of an exaggeration, but it’s definitely simple enough to allow you to help the kids with their homework, or fold laundry, or pay bills while cooking dinner.  YAY for multi-tasking!

First I sweat the onions and peppers for a few minutes in a large skillet drizzled with EVOO.  Then after just a couple minutes I toss in the mushrooms and potatoes.

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner | cookeatbehealthy.com

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner | cookeatbehealthy.com

After another couple minutes I toss in the salt, pepper, cumin, and cayenne.  Its a good thing you can’t hear what’s happening on my roof, but I sure wish you could smell those spices when they hit the heat!  Ahhhhh…..cumin…..how I love you!

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner | cookeatbehealthy.com

Once the potatoes are just starting to get soft I add the kielbasa.  This gives it a chance to brown a little and, even though it’s already fully cooked,  assures that it will be completely heated through.

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner | cookeatbehealthy.com

Then it’s just a matter of letting the potatoes cook and the kielbasa heat through.  After about 20 minutes total cooking time the potatoes will be getting tender, and the kielbasa hot and sizzling.  At this point you’ll add the corn and garlic, cook for about 5 more minutes to heat the corn, and you’ll be good to go!

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner | cookeatbehealthy.com

So bring on Monday.  Bring on PTA meetings and piano lessons, bring on soccer and play practice.  Bring on picky eaters…bring it ALL on….you can handle anything Monday throws your way with this skillet dinner recipe in your arsenal!

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner |cookeatbehealthy.com

Serves 4

Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner

A super simple and super yummy skillet dinner chock full of family pleasing vegetables and lightened-up turkey kielbasa that comes together in about 30 minutes....a perfect solution for feeding your crew even on the most hectic of weeknights!

15 minPrep Time

30 minCook Time

45 minTotal Time

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Ingredients

  • 1 13 oz. package Hillshire Farms Turkey Polska Kielbasa
  • 4 medium Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 6 baby bella mushrooms
  • 2 cups frozen corn - I used fire roasted - set aside to thaw until added to skillet
  • 2 tbsp EVOO
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped

Instructions

  1. Chop potatoes, mushrooms, red pepper, and onion into bite sized pieces.
  2. Slice kielbasa into approximately 1/2" thick pieces - I slice diagonally to get more surface area for browning.
  3. Heat EVOO in a large skillet over medium heat, then add onions and peppers.
  4. Sweat the onions and peppers until the onions just barely begin turning translucent, stirring frequently.
  5. Add in the mushrooms and potatoes, stirring to coat in olive oil.
  6. Add the salt, pepper, cumin, and cayenne, stirring well to coat all the ingredients in spices...take a deep whiff....OMG - that smells so good!
  7. Continue cooking over medium heat approximately 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  8. Toss in the kielbasa, stir to combine, then continue to stir occasionally until kielbasa begins to brown and potatoes are nearly fork tender - approximately another 10 minutes.
  9. Add corn and garlic, continue cooking another 5 minutes until corn is heated through and potatoes are completely cooked.
  10. Serve immediately.
Recipe Type: Skillet Dinner

Notes

This recipe is easily customized to suit your family's tastes by switching out the vegetables and spices to please even the pickiest of eaters!

6.8
http://cookeatbehealthy.com/turkey-kielbasa-skillet-dinner/
Calories
303 cal
Fat
18 g
Carbs
21 g
Protein
21 g


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

I hope your family loves this as much as mine does!  If you customize it to meet your family’s taste leave me a message telling me what you used in your Turkey Kielbasa Skillet Dinner and I’ll try your version next time!

Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake

Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake | cookeatbehealthy.com

When I was a kid we lived directly across the street from the Lutheran church we attended.   This had some advantages, and disadvantages, as well.  I’m pretty sure we got to sleep later on Sunday mornings than all our friends because it took us like 30 seconds to get across the street to church!  On the flip-side, however, we never got to skip church because of bad weather.  I remember a few times when the only people in attendance were my family and the minister!

Now one thing you might not know about Lutherans is that they’re very serious about food!  Everything from potlucks to banquets, funeral luncheons to breakfasts, and coffee & donut hour, are major opportunities not only for food, but for fellowship as well.  When I was a kid one of the main fundraisers for our youth program was a breakfast served on Easter morning after Sunrise Service.  This meal typically consisted of rubbery pancakes, greasy sausage, and greenish tinted (yuk) scrambled eggs that had sat in the roasting pans far too long!  When my daughter was involved with the youth at our church the Easter breakfast had improved to point where the kids served donated egg bakes, baked goods, hot & fresh-off-the-griddle pancakes, and greasy sausage.

One year I baked 4 egg casseroles for Easter breakfast!  That means I was up at 4am putting egg bakes in the oven to get them to church by 5:45!!  And in an effort to maintain full transparency, I’ll admit that they were delicious, and I liked them…a lot….but they sure were not healthy!  Basically, for those of you who might not know, an egg bake is bread, cheese, more bread and cheese, some ham, bacon, or sausage, and a sprinkle of  vegetables in the form of a few onions or peppers. Once combined it sits in the fridge overnight so the bread can soak up all the egg and then it gets baked to golden brown and served piping hot out of the oven.  See why I liked it?!?

So as delicious as the traditional egg bakes are, and as much as liked them, they no longer fit into my Cook Eat Be Healthy lifestyle.  Now that doesn’t mean I want to give up the deliciousness that is an egg bake.  All it means is that I was determined to find an alternative that was just as (or even more) delicious, but about 100 times more healthful!  And my family had to approve of it as well!

Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake | cookeatbehealthy.com

First thing to go was the bread, but I needed an alternative that could work as the framework for my egg casserole like the bread used to.  That’s when I thought of spaghetti squash….it works perfectly in this recipe!  It allows the egg to fill in all around it and gives the casserole real substance and body.  Then since I was going to eliminate the meat all together, I knew I had to add vegetables to compensate.  This is where it gets really fun, and where you can let your imagination run away with you a little bit!  I chose to roast asparagus, Roma tomatoes, red pepper, and baby bella mushrooms to put in my egg bake.  I like roasting the vegetables beforehand so they’re not still too raw when the egg bake comes out of the oven.

Tip:  I find the easiest way to cook spaghetti squash is to cut it in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds and squash guts, then place the halves, cut side down, in a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with about 1/2″ of water in the bottom.  Roast until a sharp knife or fork is easily inserted into the squash.  Remove from the oven and place the squash on a cutting board, cut side up, until cool enough to handle, then shred the flesh with a fork.

I start by roasting the spaghetti squash in the oven for about 45 minutes, then setting it aside until it’s cool enough to handle.  If you’ve never cooked spaghetti squash before you’re in for a real treat!  It’s absolutely one of my favorite vegetables as it’s rather a chameleon….it tends to take on the flavors of whatever its combined with.  It has great texture, taste, and color!  Once you’re able to handle the squash without burning yourself, you’ll take a fork and scrape the flesh out of the skin, and this is where it’s kind of like magic.  It’s also where your kids will be so amazed by how “cool” it is, that they’ll be 100% excited to try it!

Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake | cookeatbehealthy.com

Once the squash was in the oven I prepared the rest of my vegetables by cutting each of the tomatoes into 8 bite sized pieces, then cutting the mushrooms into approximately the same size pieces.  I cut the red pepper into strips, and the asparagus into about 2″ pieces.  Those all got tossed with EVOO and a little salt and pepper, then poured onto a baking sheet and popped into the oven alongside the squash.

Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake | cookeatbehealthy.com

Once the squash and vegetables are roasted it’s a simple matter of whisking up your eggs, adding the seasonings, stirring in the squash and roasted vegetables, then pouring the whole bowl of goodness into a greased 9 x 13 inch casserole dish.  Then I topped it with just a hint of Parmesan cheese and baked it until it was golden and the eggs were set – about 40-45 minutes.

Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake | cookeatbehealthy.com Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake | cookeatbehealthy.com Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake | cookeatbehealthy.com

Once the egg bake is removed from the oven I let it rest about 5 minutes then cut it into 8 generous servings.  For this meal I served it as a dinner main dish with some Einkorn flour scones flavored with chives and a little more Parmesan. The recipe for the scones, which by the way were delicious, will be featured in my next post, so check back for that recipe on Tuesday!  I’ve also served it as a brunch or breakfast dish along with fruit and muffins.  And just so you know…the leftovers are fabulous too!  Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake | cookeatbehealthy.com

Yields 8 generous servings

Spaghetti Squash Egg Bake

A healthier and tastier version of an Egg Bake made with spaghetti squash instead of bread, and roasted veggies instead of meat!

1 hrPrep Time

45 minCook Time

1 hr, 45 Total Time

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Ingredients

  • 1 spaghetti squash, about 3 pounds
  • 10 eggs
  • 6 Roma tomatoes, each cut into 8 bite sized pieces
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 6-8 baby bella mushrooms, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 pound of asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2" pieces
  • 6 large basil leaves, cut into thin ribbons
  • 2 tbsp EVOO
  • 1 tsp salt, divided
  • 1 tsp pepper, divided
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp chopped garlic, or about 1 small clove
  • 1/4 tsp dry mustard
  • 1/2 cup real Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Prepare spaghetti squash for roasting by cutting in half lengthwise, scooping out seeds and center membranes, then placing cut side down in a baking dish with about 1/2" of water.
  3. Roast squash for about 45 minutes until it pierces easily with a fork or sharp knife. Remove from oven and set aside until cool enough to handle.
  4. While squash is roasting, prepare vegetables by tossing them with EVOO and 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper.
  5. Place vegetables on baking sheet and roast alongside squash until tender and caramelized, about 35 minutes.
  6. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees.
  7. In a large bowl, whisk eggs until combined, then add basil, cayenne, mustard, and other half of salt and pepper, and stir until mixed well.
  8. Shred spaghetti squash with a fork.
  9. Combine squash and vegetables with egg mixture until well combined.
  10. Pour into greased 9 x 13" casserole dish, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, and bake at 375 degrees for 40-45 minutes, or until golden browned and eggs are set.
  11. Remove from oven and let sit for 5 minutes.
  12. Cut into 8 servings and enjoy as desired.
Recipe Type: Main Dish, Eggs, Vegetables

Notes

This is just as delicious enjoyed as leftovers!

6.8
http://cookeatbehealthy.com/spaghetti-squash-egg-bake/
Calories
104 cal
Fat
1 g
Carbs
11 g
Protein
15 g


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

Grilled Zucchini & Vidalia Onion Soup

Grilled Zucchini & Vidalia Onion Soup | cookeatbehealthy.com

Raise your hand if you’ve ever enjoyed a bounty of fresh zucchini from your garden!  Now how about if you’ve enjoyed the zucchini bounty that your friends, family, and neighbors gleefully share with you!  And now….raise your hand if you’ve just plain run out of new and different ways to use that amazingly versatile and delicious little green squash!  Pretty much everybody got’s their hand up, right?!?  One of the most beautiful things about zucchini is that because of its mild flavor, it’s adaptability factor is rock star!  Zucchini can become zoodles, you can add shredded zucchini to cakes, breads, and muffins to add nutritional value, color, and moistness, without really changing the flavor of the finished product.  Zucchini can be eaten raw as well as cooked, so it adds a crispy snap and bold green flavor to summer salads too.   The many ways to enjoy zucchini are limited only by your imagination!  And speaking of nutritional value….this little garden goddess is a winner!  It’s low in calories, and high in vitamin C and fiber.  It also contains significant amounts of potassium, folate, and vitamin A.  

Now zucchini season is just around the corner here in Iowa, and I thought this might be the perfect time to get out those old zucchini recipes, dust them off, and breath some new life into my old tried and true standbys.  So today I reworked my Zucchini Soup recipe, which, don’t get me wrong….I really like my original recipe!  But I said to myself, “Lisa, you need to jazz this up a little bit!  What if people find it too dull?”  And you know what?  Zucchini soup can be a little bland.  It relies almost 100% on the seasonings added to it for flavor, because like we talked about before, zucchini leans a little heavily toward the bland end of the flavor spectrum.  So for this soup I decided to grill not only the squash, but also the vidalias and the garlic, and then brighten the flavor with lots of fresh thyme and, because I’m the way I am, add a teensy little kick of heat with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes!

Grilled Zucchini & Vidalia Onion Soup | Cookeatbehealthy.com

Now maybe you’ve never tried grilling vegetables, and if not, I’m sorry!  Your world is about to get turned upside down!  The flavors of the vegetables are enhanced beyond measure when they’re grilled.  The natural sugars in the zucchini and onions caramelize to create a golden crispy char on the vegetables, and the hint of smoky flavor is sublime!  As for the garlic…pure heaven!

Tip: To grill garlic, cut off the top of the head of garlic, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, and double wrap in aluminum foil.  Place on grill over medium-high heat for 30-40 minutes until garlic yields to gentle pressure when squeezed with tongs or an oven mitt.  Let cool until it can be handled, and then you should be able to just squeeze the grilled cloves right out and use them in whatever dish you’re making.

Grilled Garlic | Cookeatbehealthy.com

Making this soup is a ‘souper’ simple process of quartering the zucchini and slicing the onions, coating them in a little EVOO, sprinkling with salt and pepper, and grilling over medium heat until thoroughly cooked and slightly charred.  The char on your vegetables is what’s going to give your soup an amazing depth of flavor.  Don’t forget to place your garlic, prepped as above on the grill as well.  Then just enjoy the fresh air while you grill your veggies, as well as the fact that you’re not heating up your entire house to roast the garlic!

Once the vegetables are done grilling place them in a stock pot, along with the garlic and about 8 cups of chicken stock (this is my favorite).  This recipe could easily be made vegan by using vegetable stock instead of chicken, but I prefer the richness of a good chicken stock.  Toss in about 3 tablespoons of fresh thyme and a little more S & P to taste.  I used a total of about 1 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp pepper, including what I used to season the vegetables before grilling.  For heat I added just a 1/4 tsp of red pepper flakes, but this is totally optional.  Bring the ingredients to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer about 15 minutes to meld the flavors.  Finally blend it all up, serve it warm or cold, with whatever soup toppings appeal to you.  I like diced avocado and tomatoes on mine, but think how delicious a little swirl of sour cream would be!  Or if you’re the sort who loves bacon, (and truthfully who isn’t?) why not crumble some crispy bacon over the top?  You could even go so far as to add in some fresh chopped raw zucchini or zoodles….kind of inception zucchini soup! 😉

Tip: The easiest way to blend the soup is with an immersion blender, and if you don’t have one, it’s well worth the investment to purchase one.  If you don’t have one, however, you can blend the soup in small batches in a blender.  Just be extremely cautious as the soup will be quite hot.  Blending in small batches will lessen the likelihood of injury from splattering yourself with hot soup.

Grilled Zucchini & Vidalia Onion Soup
Serves 10
An updated version of the typical zucchini soup! Delicious served hot or chilled.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr
306 calories
12 g
100 g
13 g
35 g
3 g
354 g
587 g
8 g
0 g
8 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
354g
Servings
10
Amount Per Serving
Calories 306
Calories from Fat 115
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
20%
Saturated Fat 3g
15%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 100mg
33%
Sodium 587mg
24%
Total Carbohydrates 12g
4%
Dietary Fiber 2g
10%
Sugars 8g
Protein 35g
Vitamin A
8%
Vitamin C
51%
Calcium
6%
Iron
13%
* 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. 3 lbs. fresh zucchini (about 4 medium)
  2. 3 large vidalia onions
  3. 2 small bulbs of garlic
  4. 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  5. 3 tbsp EVOO, divided
  6. 2 tsp salt, divided
  7. 2 tsp ground black pepper, divided
  8. 3 tbsp fresh thyme
  9. 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat gas grill to medium heat
  2. Wash and trim zucchini, cut into quarters lengthwise, and place in resealable gallon size bag. Drizzle with 1/3 of the olive oil, sprinkle with 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper, shake to coat.
  3. Trim and cut the onions into about 1/4" to 1/2" thick slices, place in resealable gallon size bag, and season as with the zucchini.
  4. Trim the top off the heads of garlic, drizzle with remaining 1 tbsp olive oil. Double wrap them in aluminum foil.
  5. Place zucchini, onions, and foil wrapped garlic on the grill and cook until the vegetables are soft and lightly charred, about 20-25 minutes.
  6. The garlic is done when it yields to gentle pressure when squeezing it with an oven mit or tongs. The garlic may take up to 40 minutes to roast.
  7. Place grilled vegetables in stock pot, add chicken (or vegetable) stock, the rest of the S & P to taste, the thyme, and red pepper flakes.
  8. Bring to boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes to allow flavors to meld.
  9. Meanwhile, remove the garlic from the grill, unwrap the foil, and as soon as it's cool enough to handle, squeeze the cloves of grill-roasted garlic into the stockpot with the rest of the simmering ingredients.
  10. After simmering, blend until smooth using an immersion blender, or in batches in a conventional blender.
  11. Ladle soup into bowls, top with desired toppings, and serve piping hot. Or, chill the soup and then serve as desired.
Notes
  1. You may find it helpful to use a grill mat or pan for grilling the onions. They tend to fall apart as they grill and using a mat or pan helps prevent losing too many to the fire below!
  2. Refrigerate leftovers.
  3. This soup freezes well. I like to freeze it in individual serving size bowls and reheat it for a light but satisfying weekday lunch!
beta
calories
306
fat
13g
protein
35g
carbs
12g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
So there’s this old joke here in Iowa that if you leave your car doors unlocked in the summertime, you may not risk somebody stealing your car or your belongings, you may however, risk coming back to your vehicle and finding the backseat loaded up with bags of zucchini!  😂  So this summer….I’m leaving my car doors unlocked….I’ll be happy to take the extra bounty of zucchini!

 

 

 

Raspberry Chipotle Grilled Chicken Garden Greens Salad

Raspberry Chipotle Grilled Chicken Garden Greens Salad | cookeatbehealthy.com

TBT….all the way to last Tuesday!  😉  Remember the Raspberry Vinaigrette we made for our Veggie Bagel Sandwich?  And remember how I said I’d be using it frequently?  Well….it just so happens that today’s recipe for a Raspberry Chipotle Grilled Chicken Garden Greens Salad is begging for a Raspberry Vinaigrette dressing to top it off and tie all the favors together.

I’m a huge fan of grilled chicken, but let’s be honest….sometimes  it can be pretty boring!  And as someone who’s trying to live a healthy lifestyle and lose weight as well, boring food can be a real stumbling block to success!  I need my food to be full of unique flavor profiles that frequently include spicy & hot, and fresh & sweet at the same time.  As long as my food contains exciting flavors then I’m golden and never feel the urge to stray off the healthy path I’m walking!  I have a growing repertoire of flavorful marinades I like to use for my grilled chicken, but today’s is something extra special!  It’s a perfect blend of those flavors profiles I just talked about.  The spicy hot and smoky chipotles in adobo sauce are perfectly complemented by the sweet fresh raspberries and the freshness of the lime zest and juice bring all the flavors to life!

Tip:  The ‘perfect’ marinade should include acidic, fat, and seasoning components.  The combination of these three things tenderizes and flavors your meat to perfection!

Bonus Tip:  When marinating your meat, always use a non-reactive container such as glass, plastic, or for ease of clean up, I always use a gallon size resealable food storage bag so I can throw it away when I’m done.  Always marinade your meat in the refrigerator, and (because I’m super paranoid of contamination from uncooked meat), I dispose of any leftover marinade.  I’ve read that boiling it for 3 minutes makes it safe to eat, but if I want to use it as a sauce, for example, I just reserve a small amount before placing it over my raw meat.  That way there’s no need to worry!

Raspberry Chipotle Grilled Chicken Marinade | cookeatbehealthy.com

Raspberry Chipotle Marinated Grilled Chicken
Serves 4
A flavor sensation for grilled chicken!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
22 min
Total Time
2 hr 32 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
22 min
Total Time
2 hr 32 min
198 calories
7 g
37 g
13 g
14 g
2 g
110 g
1100 g
2 g
0 g
11 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
110g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 198
Calories from Fat 114
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
20%
Saturated Fat 2g
10%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 9g
Cholesterol 37mg
12%
Sodium 1100mg
46%
Total Carbohydrates 7g
2%
Dietary Fiber 3g
10%
Sugars 2g
Protein 14g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
22%
Calcium
3%
Iron
6%
* 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 skinless boneless chicken breasts
  2. 1 cup fresh raspberries
  3. 1-2 chilies in adobo sauce
  4. 1 tbsp adobo sauce
  5. 1 clove or 1 tsp chopped garlic
  6. 1/2 tsp salt
  7. 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  8. 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  9. 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  10. 1 lime
Instructions
  1. Zest and juice the lime.
  2. Place all ingredients except chicken breasts in bowl of 8-10 cup food processor and pulse until all ingredients are blended and no large chunks of chiles remain.
  3. Place the chicken breasts in a gallon size resealable food storage bag, pour in marinade, seal and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, turning once or twice to be sure chicken is well coated.
  4. After marinating, remove chicken from bag and place chicken breasts on pre-heated gas grill set to medium/medium-high heat and grill until thickest part of chicken reaches 165 degrees, or about 22 minutes.
  5. Remove from grill, let sit 3-5 minutes, then slice thinly and use as desired on salads, sandwiches, etc.
Notes
  1. 2 chilies make a very spicy marinade!
  2. Discard remaining marinade.
beta
calories
198
fat
13g
protein
14g
carbs
7g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Now some people might think that making a salad is no big deal.  They might think you just throw some vegetables onto a pile of lettuce, maybe add some meat, and a bunch of store bought salad dressing and you’ve made a salad.  But much to the contrary, there’s an art to salad preparation!  A delicious and satisfying salad that your family and friends will rave about is only accomplished by incorporating many layers and nuances of flavors and textures!  

Obviously the base of the salad, or the garden greens, is of prime importance, but it’s also an easy way to change up the flavor profile of your salad.  Some are quite mild tasting, while others are more robustly flavored.  For our Raspberry Chipotle Grilled Chicken Garden Greens Salad I’ve chosen to use baby romaine.  It’s mild, somewhat sturdy, and such pretty colors to complement the grilled chicken and other ingredients.  For this particular salad I’ve selected my favorite salad vegetables such as cucumber, radish, avocado, yellow cherry tomatoes, and scallions.  I’ve also opted to use fresh, juicy, and gorgeous raspberries as a nod to the raspberry chipotle marinade and raspberry vinaigrette salad dressing.  I’m also sprinkling the salad with toasted pecans and crumbled feta cheese.  The cucumbers, radishes, and scallions add a little snap; the avocado and feta add a touch of creaminess;  the pecans add a delightful crunch; and the  grilled chicken contributes a delectable level of flavor and texture.  The raspberry vinaigrette adds the final flourish!   And can we talk about the colors in this salad?!?  It’s truly a feast for the eyes as well as the tastebuds!

Tip:  Toasting pecans is a simple matter of tossing them in a dry skillet and toasting over medium heat until lightly golden.  Just be sure to keep a close eye on them, stirring occasionally, so they don’t burn!

Raspberry Chipotle Grilled Chicken Garden Greens Salad | cookeatbehealthy.com

Raspberry Chipotle Grilled Chicken Garden Greens Salad | cookeatbehealthy.com image

Raspberry Chipotle Grilled Chicken Garden Greens Salad
Serves 4
A sweet, spicy, savory, satisfying salad!
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Total Time
20 min
Total Time
20 min
417 calories
23 g
48 g
30 g
20 g
6 g
452 g
493 g
10 g
0 g
21 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
452g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 417
Calories from Fat 254
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 30g
46%
Saturated Fat 6g
28%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 8g
Monounsaturated Fat 13g
Cholesterol 48mg
16%
Sodium 493mg
21%
Total Carbohydrates 23g
8%
Dietary Fiber 11g
43%
Sugars 10g
Protein 20g
Vitamin A
259%
Vitamin C
49%
Calcium
16%
Iron
18%
* 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. 12 cups loosely packed baby romaine lettuce
  2. 2 raspberry chipotle grilled chicken breasts, sliced
  3. 1 cup raspberries
  4. 1/2 cup pecans, toasted
  5. 1 small cucumber, sliced
  6. 8 radishes,thinly sliced
  7. 1 cup yellow cherry tomatoes
  8. 1 scallion, sliced thin
  9. 1 ripe avocado, sliced
  10. 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
  11. 8 tbsp raspberry vinaigrette dressing
Instructions
  1. Divide lettuce onto 4 plates, top each plate with 1/4 of remaining ingredients and serve immediately.
  2. Enjoy!!!
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calories
417
fat
30g
protein
20g
carbs
23g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Don’t let the haters tell you salad is boring!  Next time you have a gathering with family and friends, feed them this salad and they’ll be forever in your debt for enlightening them on the glories of salads!  😉

Veggie Bagel Sandwich with Raspberry Vinaigrette

Veggie Bagel Sandwich with Raspberry Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.com

A couple weeks ago we took a trip to my brother’s vacation home in Highlands, North Carolina.  It’s one of my favorite places, nestled into the Nantahala National Forest in the Blue Ridge Mountains…..it’s where we go to unplug.   And while I like to relax, I tend to recharge my batteries more from exploring new places and visiting favorite cities.  Our first day trip from Highlands is always to Asheville, North Carolina.   It is becoming one of my all time favorite cities!  Downtown Asheville is such a delight; the shops and restaurants are diverse, engaging, and interesting.  The street artists and vendors have really unique wares and are all so friendly and anxious to discuss their art.  Then of course comes the best part of visiting downtown Asheville…..lunch!!!!  This last time we ate at a place called Carmel’s Kitchen & Bar where I had a most delicious veggie sandwich which was the inspiration for today’s post.  I knew from my very first bite that I needed to come up with a version of this sandwich so, my Veggie Bagel Sandwich with Raspberry Vinaigrette came to be!

Veggie Bagel Sandwich with Raspberry Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.com

But first things first….lets talk Raspberry Vinaigrette!  I’ve always had a love for all things raspberry and it was so fun to develop this recipe.  And when I say I could drink it through a straw I’m not even exaggerating!  It’s sweet, tangy, and spicy, and a perfect complement to the veggie bagel sandwich.  I used fresh raspberries, white wine vinegar, extra light tasting EVOO, a little salt, chile-infused honey from the Asheville Bee Charmer store (a visit to this store alone makes the 2,000 mile round-trip drive all worth it 😉), red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, and poppy seeds.  Place everything except the olive oil in your food processor and pulse just a few times until the berries and spices are blended.  Then drizzle in the olive oil while processing on low speed.  Once it’s all emulsified, be sure to taste it to make sure it’s seasoned to your preference.  This is a dressing that I plan to use over and over again in many of my recipes!

Tip:  Feel free to substitute plain honey and add more red pepper flakes if you like it spicy.  I add more spice to the already spiced honey…what can I say…I like it hot!

 

Raspberry Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.comRaspberry Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.com

Raspberry Vinaigrette
Serves 8
A sweet, tangy, and spicy vinaigrette for sandwiches and salads
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Total Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
121 calories
7 g
0 g
10 g
0 g
1 g
45 g
148 g
5 g
0 g
8 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
45g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 121
Calories from Fat 92
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10g
16%
Saturated Fat 1g
7%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 148mg
6%
Total Carbohydrates 7g
2%
Dietary Fiber 2g
7%
Sugars 5g
Protein 0g
Vitamin A
2%
Vitamin C
10%
Calcium
1%
Iron
2%
* 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 1/2 cups fresh raspberries
  2. 6 tbsp extra light tasting EVOO
  3. 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
  4. 2 tbsp chile-infused honey
  5. 2 cloves or 2 tsp chopped fresh garlic
  6. 1/2 tsp salt
  7. 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  8. 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  9. 1 tsp poppy seeds
Instructions
  1. Place raspberries, vinegar, honey, garlic, salt, red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, and poppy seeds in bowl of food processor. Pulse until berries and spices are blended.
  2. Slowly drizzle in EVOO while processing on low until all the ingredients are emulsified.
  3. Taste and adjust seasoning to your preference.
  4. Refrigerate in air tight covered container or jar.
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calories
121
fat
10g
protein
0g
carbs
7g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/

The veggie sandwich itself couldn’t be easier and it’s perfect for those hot and humid dog days of summer which we know will be here soon.  Once the vegetables are prepped, it’s a simple matter of assembling the sandwich and enjoying a light refreshing lunch or even a busy weeknight dinner.  For my sandwich I used a toasted Sprouted Wheat Onion & Poppyseed Bagel from  Alvarado St. Bakery.  They are made from all organic ingredients and I find them in the freezer case of my local grocer’s Health Market section of the store.  For the vegetables, I chose to use avocado, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, carrots, scallions, radishes, and baby spinach.  Before I pile on the veggies I smear a healthy amount of hummus on one half of my toasted bagel.  Now I could make my own hummus, sure….but there is a hummus I’m able to buy from a local restaurant, Oasis Falafel , that is so delicious and beyond better than any I could make myself, I’d be a fool not to use it!  I recommend that you use your absolutely favorite hummus – whether it be store bought or homemade – this sandwich deserves the best!

Tip: Try slicing your radishes and cucumbers with a mandolin.  You’ll get perfectly uniform slices thinner that you probably could with a knife, which just makes for a prettier sandwich!

Veggie Bagel Sandwich with Raspberry Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.comVeggie Bagel Sandwich with Raspberry Vinaigrette | cookeatbehealthy.com

Veggie Bagel Sandwich with Raspberry Vinaigrette
Serves 2
The perfect light sandwich for hot summer days!
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Total Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
525 calories
83 g
0 g
16 g
17 g
2 g
664 g
809 g
14 g
0 g
11 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
664g
Servings
2
Amount Per Serving
Calories 525
Calories from Fat 133
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 16g
24%
Saturated Fat 2g
12%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 809mg
34%
Total Carbohydrates 83g
28%
Dietary Fiber 12g
49%
Sugars 14g
Protein 17g
Vitamin A
119%
Vitamin C
104%
Calcium
10%
Iron
20%
* 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 bagels, sliced and toasted
  2. 2 tbsp hummus
  3. 2 tbsp raspberry vinaigrette (Find the recipe on cookeatbehealthy.com)
  4. 1/2 ripe avocado, thinly sliced
  5. 1/2 small cucumber, thinly sliced
  6. 4 radishes, sliced thin
  7. 1 scallion, sliced thin
  8. 6 cherry tomatoes, thinly sliced
  9. 1/4 cup shredded carrots
  10. 1/4 cup loosely packed Baby spinach leaves
Instructions
  1. On one half of each toasted bagel spread 1 tbsp hummus.
  2. Top the hummus spread bagel half with shredded carrots, sliced cucumber, radish, and scallions, and then with sliced avocado, cherry tomatoes, and baby spinach leaves.
  3. Drizzle each layered bagel half with Raspberry Vinaigrette and assemble sandwiches with remaining bagel tops.
  4. Slice in half and enjoy!
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calories
525
fat
16g
protein
17g
carbs
83g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Have you ever known from the first bite of a restaurant meal that you just had to re-create it?  I feel like I totally accomplished what I set out to do with this sandwich…..I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Fast Family-Friendly Chicken Fajitas

Fajita Vegetables | cookeatbehealthy.com

I feel like now that we’ve covered salsa and guacamole it’s time to really get down to business and talk about fajitas!  There are so many wonderful things to love about this recipe but first let’s talk about how quick and easy it is to make.  Truthfully most of your prep time involves slicing onions, peppers, and chicken.  Cook time is less than 20 minutes so that means this is a fast & easy go-to meal for me when time is short and tummies are rumbling!

Of course without the proper seasoning fajitas are boring and fall flat, but when I took a look at the ingredient label from the seasoning mix I had in my pantry, I knew I could do better!  Added sugar?  NO thank you!  Monosodium Glutamate? Umm…NO!  So I came up with a spice blend that’s fast to concoct, makes enough to have on hand for several Fajita Fiestas, and you probably already have all the ingredients in your cupboard!

A little chili powder, garlic and onion powder, oregano, cumin, paprika, salt, and of course, cayenne pepper – because after all, I like it hot – mix or shake it all up and you’ve got about 1/2 cup of seasoning mix, which is a little more than you need for 3 fast fajita dinners!  Way to make things easy for ourselves, right?!?

Fajita Seasoning Mix | cookeatbehealthy.com

The fajitas themselves are very straight forward.  Peppers, onions, and chicken.  It just doesn’t get much easier than that friends!  Start by slicing your peppers and onions into approximately 1/4 thick strips.  Then once I’ve sliced my vegetables I slice the chicken.  I know all our ingredients will be cooked, but I’ve made it a habit to always cut meat last to avoid any possibility of cross contamination.  Just the thought of food poisoning makes me uncomfortable.  My brother is a food microbiologist and he always says when you have the flu you may FEEL like you’re dying, but when you have food poisoning you WISH you would die.  I digress.  Sorry!  But really – just get in the habit of cutting meat last and you’ll be much less likely to get a food-borne illness.

Tip:  Don’t worry about getting perfectly even slices of vegetables.  This is one of those times where close enough really is good enough.  Also – cut your onion in half crosswise and place the flat side on your cutting board to simplify the cutting process and lessen the chances of cutting yourself while chasing a slippery onion!

Bonus Tip:  If using from frozen chicken, slice it while it’s still slightly frozen.  This allows you to get super thin slices that cook up evenly and quickly….a real time saver when you’ve forgotten to get something out for dinner and you’re looking for that fast and delicious meal!

Fajita Vegetables | cookeatbehealthy.com

Cooking Fajitas | cookeatbehealthy.comFajita | cookeatbehealthy.comLettuce Wrap Fajita | cookeatbehealthy.com

The best thing (other than the obvious deliciousness) of this recipe is how easy it is to adapt it for the specific tastes of everyone in your family.  My daughter likes hers pretty traditional on a flour tortilla with salsa, sour cream, guacamole, and shredded cheese.  My husband likes them much the same, but would never dream of letting guacamole or sour cream “contaminate” his fajita.  I like mine on a Boston Butter Bibb lettuce leaf with only salsa and guacamole as I find dairy delicious, but sadly, disagreeable.

Fajita Seasoning
Homemade seasoning mix for fajitas
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Total Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
172 calories
35 g
0 g
6 g
8 g
1 g
103 g
2895 g
3 g
0 g
4 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
103g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 172
Calories from Fat 49
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6g
9%
Saturated Fat 1g
6%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 2895mg
121%
Total Carbohydrates 35g
12%
Dietary Fiber 19g
74%
Sugars 3g
Protein 8g
Vitamin A
245%
Vitamin C
3%
Calcium
26%
Iron
55%
* 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 chili powder
  2. 2 tbsp cumin
  3. 4 tsp ground black pepper
  4. 3 tsp dried oregano
  5. 2 tsp garlic powder
  6. 2 tsp smoked paprika
  7. 1 tsp onion powder
  8. 1 tsp salt
  9. 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (more or less to taste)
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in bowl and mix well, or in a jar and shake well.
Notes
  1. Store in a cool dry place.
beta
calories
172
fat
6g
protein
8g
carbs
35g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Fast Family-Friendly Chicken Fajitas
Serves 6
A fast and healthy recipe for chicken fajitas
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Print
Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
45 min
Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
45 min
135 calories
9 g
24 g
7 g
10 g
1 g
151 g
84 g
6 g
0 g
5 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
151g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 135
Calories from Fat 60
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7g
10%
Saturated Fat 1g
5%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 24mg
8%
Sodium 84mg
3%
Total Carbohydrates 9g
3%
Dietary Fiber 1g
5%
Sugars 6g
Protein 10g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
12%
Calcium
3%
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. 2 skinless boneless chicken breasts
  2. 2 Vidalia onions
  3. 1 each red, yellow, green and orange bell pepper, or any color combination for a total of 4
  4. 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  5. 3 tbsp fajita seasoning mix, divided
  6. 1/2 lime
Instructions
  1. Cut onions and peppers into approximately 1/4 inch slices and set aside.
  2. Slice chicken into thin slices no more than 1/4 inch thick.
  3. Heat EVOO in large skillet over medium to medium high heat. Add chicken, sprinkle with 1 tbsp fajita seasoning and continue to cook, stirring frequently, for approximately 5-7 minutes, until the chicken is mostly cooked through with very little pink still showing.
  4. Add in onions and peppers, sprinkle with remaining 2 tbsp fajita seasoning and continue to cook, stirring frequently until the vegetables are tender, approximately 12-15 minutes.
  5. Just before removing from heat squeeze in the juice of 1/2 lime.
  6. Remove from heat and serve as desired.
Notes
  1. Serve on flour tortillas or in lettuce leaves along with salsa, guacamole, sour cream, and cheese.
  2. Store leftovers in the refrigerator.
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calories
135
fat
7g
protein
10g
carbs
9g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/