Creamy, Spicy Thai Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup (say that 3x fast)

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My little helper ❤

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FALL is SOUP season. This Thai Butternut squash soup is so freaking yummy. I am sharing the vegetarian version, but you can easily add shrimp or chicken to this if you want! Sofia gets so excited to cook and bake with mommy, I always find a job for her to do in every recipe- it’s such a joy to share this with her. She’s also the best taste tester! What I love about this recipe is that it can be made as spicy as you’d like depending on the amount of curry paste you add- the flavors balance so nicely and it warms your whole body from the inside. The flavors also marinate well overnight so you can enjoy the next day or freeze (OMG YES) and save for later!!

What you will need:

  • 1 Can of Organic Coconut Milk (save a little for topping soup after!)
  • 4 cups of cubed butternut squash
  • 2 Cups of Organic Veggie Stock
  • 1/2 large yellow onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger (this seriously makes the dish imo!)
  • 1 tablespoon red curry chili paste (or more if you’re up for it!)
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut oil
  • Pink Salt, Pepper
  • Cilantro
  • Sriracha (for topping if you’d like it spicy)
  • A blender

Directions:

  1. Prepare the butternut squash (I LOVE to buy the one that’s already chopped up but in case you want to start from scratch).
    • Cut off each end of the squash
    • Peel the squash (Thank you Kiril for doing this part, it wasn’t that easy!!)
    • Cut and Cube, done! woo.
    • I found this video from The Kitchn here for additional help!
  2. Mince garlic, grate ginger, dice onion.
  3. Put tablespoon of coconut oil in large soup pot over medium heat.
  4. Place garlic and onion in pot, stirring frequently for about 3 minutes until onion is translucent and the smell is very fragrant! Season with pink salt and pepper.
  5. Add ginger and red curry paste (careful here, you can always add more later on after you taste test!)
  6. After another 3 minutes of continuous stirring add the cubes of butternut squash.
  7. Pour veggie stock directly over (it’s okay if it doesn’t cover all of the squash)
  8. Keep an eye on it until it starts to boil.
  9. Then cover and reduce heat to simmer for 20 minutes, until squash is very tender.
  10. The tricky part here is to take the mixture in 2 batches, and blend in a blender. The consistency will be more like a puree.
  11. I like to pour the first blended batch into a bowl and then blend the second batch and pour both directly back into the soup pot.
  12. Once the contents are back in the pot, pour most of coconut milk in and mix together. Reserve the rest of the coconut milk for plating.
  13. Taste test and season with salt and pepper accordingly!
  14. Plate and top with Sriracha, coconut milk and cilantro!

This pairs really well with naan bread or coconut rice. Enjoy!!

Here’s to a healthy and happy you! xo

 

 

Gluten Free PB Banana Cupcakes!

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Happy FRIDAYYYY! My friend had a birthday yesterday so I decided to whip up these babies in the kitchen. I found a recipe online from GlutenFree with LB (Check it out here) and worked off of that to create my own! I typically try to stay away from Cane Sugar, but a birthday calls for something you don’t typically have on the regular 😉

Sofia was my little helper- she loves mixing things and taste testing. This Peanut Butter Cream Cheese frosting was seriously out of this world. Hope you guys enjoy the recipe.

What you will need:

For the Cupcake:

  • ½ c. organic butter, softened, unsalted
  • 1 ½ c. organic granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ c. milk
  • 1 t. baking soda
  • 1 ¼ c. white rice flour – (I used gluten free all purpose flour)
  • ¾ c. tapioca starch
  • 1 t. xanthan gum (I had no clue what this was, a lot of GF mixes have it in already!)
  • (Or 2 c. all purpose flour for the non-GF)
  • 3 large ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 1 t. of pink himalayan salt
  • 1/2 c of mini chocolate chips
  • Cupcake Liners (I found an unbleached, eco friendly brand called “If you care”)

For the icing:

  • 4 T. cream cheese, softened, (I used half a block of organic cream cheese)
  • 4 T. organic butter, softened
  • ¼ c. organic peanut butter (I used a CUP!)
  • 6 c. powdered sugar (I used half this amount)
  • 2-3 T. milk
  • 1 t. vanilla

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes (I used my Kitchenaid but a handheld mixer will work, too!)
  3. Add eggs and bananas. Mix until combined.
  4. Combine soda, flour, starch and gum in a separate bowl. Alternatively add flour mix and milk to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour.
  5. Add chocolate Chips to mixture and the teaspoon of salt.
  6. Line cupcake tray with liners and spritz each one with Coconut Oil non-stick spray. Fill liners with batter to ¾ full.
  7. Bake for 24-28 minutes, or until tops are golden brown.
  8. While cupcakes are baking, prepare peanut butter frosting, I started with the butter and cream cheese, then added sugar and peanut butter and the rest of the ingredients. Let cupcakes cool completely before frosting– I put the frosting into a ziploc bag and cut off one of the bottom ends to filter the frosting out so it turned out pretty 🙂
  9. Enjoy!

 

Here’s to a healthy and happy you! xo

Gluten-Free Almond Joy Granola (Bars)

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These granola (bars) are bomb. I accidentally just ate half- woops! These are a much healthier version of the “chewy bar” or the stuff you find at the grocery store. I wish I could call them BARS but they kind of crumble together and become yummy granola pieces. Apparently, this is because I adapted a recipe online that had brown sugar and butter and opted for coconut oil and maple syrup- so I will be experimenting in the future and coming back with another recipe. But in the meantime, here you go!

What you will need:

  • 2 1/2 cups of Gluten free old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup of slivered almonds
  • 1/4 cup of Agave or Honey
  • 1/4 cup of Coconut Oil
  • 1/3 cup of maple syrup – I actually think it was too sweet, next time I will add less!
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon pink himalayan salt
  • 1/2 cup of shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup (or more, who is counting anyways) of chocolate chips
  • Parchment paper or aluminum foil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit
  2. Place almonds and oats on a rimmed baking sheet
  3. Place in oven for 9 minutes (give or take) to gently toast
  4. In the meantime, in a small saucepan add the coconut oil, maple syrup and agave or honey
  5. When it has fully combined and started to bubble, remove from heat and add salt and vanilla extract
  6. Take the oat mix out of the oven and pour the mixture in sauce pan over the oats and almonds, coating generously…add the coconut and combine evenly. Allow to cool 10-15 minutes before adding the chocolate chips!
  7. Use a spatula and make sure all oats/and additions are coated in the syrupy sauce
  8. Take a 9×9 pan and place aluminum or parchment paper, spray with non stick spray (I love the coconut oil one!)
  9. Place chocolate chips on the bottom of the pan
  10. Take mixture from pan and place in pan, pressing firmly with the spatula
  11. Top with coconut and chocolate chips
  12. Refrigerate for AT LEAST 2 hours… I took mine out a little early because I was craving a taste
  13. These hold up well in the fridge or freezer. You can store at room temperature but there are no preservatives so eat within a few days

Let me know what you guys think! Sofia loved to steal all the chocolate chips as pictured above.

Here’s to a healthy and happy you! xo

 

Time to throw out your table salt.

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Salt is an amazing thing – it’s one of the most important elements in almost all living things. Not just for cooking and seasoning foods it can be used as a muscle soak, body scrub and more…

***BUT*** your everyday normal white table salt could be killing you. According to Dr. Edward Group in his article “The Health Dangers of Table Salt,” ‘Table Salt’ is a manufactured form of sodium called sodium chloride. While similar, this version of ‘salt’ is meant to taste a lot like its natural form by boiling/cooking sodium at 1200 degrees Fahrenheit! Natural Salt is alkaline (great for anti-inflammation) has over 80 naturally good for you elements that help with adrenal glands, boosting your immune system and thyroid balancing. When you cook the sodium this high you get rid of all of the good for you stuff, and THEN in MOST cases, synthetic material is added to this mixture.

According to Group’s Article:

These chemicals include everything from manufactured forms of sodium solo-co-aluminate, iodide, sodium bicarbonate, fluoride, anti-caking agents, toxic amounts of potassium iodide and aluminium derivatives. It may come as a shock, but most table salt is not only unhealthy, but can sometimes be toxic.

The natural forms of important iodine is lost when we manufacture salt. Without this natural iodine, the thyroid is severely harmed, leading to growth and metabolism issues. Because of this, the chemical-based salt industry began to add synthetic forms of iodine to their products.

Other salts add things such as processed white sugar and toxic MSG (mono-sodium-glutamate). And what about the color of table salt? Salt found in the natural world is not usually white. Table salt has been colored white with bleach. And where does this salt come from? Much of it is the actual flaky residue from oil digging. That is correct. Crude oil extract is one way we produce table salt.

 

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Get rid of your white table salt!!!
  2. Try not to use the table salt at restaurants (remember most of you food out has this salt in it already so try to reduce eating out as much as possible!)
  3. Try a good for you salt such as the Pink Himalayan Salt above.
    • Himalayan Salt is dried in the sun and therefore, maintains its alkalinity and the good for you elements.
    • It tastes better.
  4. TIP: Homegoods/TJ Maxx has some great finds– I love getting our pink salt from there.

 

Let me know what you guys think!

 

Here’s to a healthy and happy you xo

Lime & Tequila Infused Veggie Tacos, gluten free!

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Last night I was craving Mexican so I decided to play around with some flavors and it turned out pretty delicious! This would pair really well with a margarita 😉 Hope you enjoy!

What you will need:

  • Corn Tortillas (or flour if you prefer non-gluten free)
  • Organic Black Beans
  • Coconut Oil for pan frying
  • Organic Salsa
  • Organic Sour Cream
  • Guacamole
  • Cilantro
  • Organic Mexican Shredded Cheese
  • 2 Green Peppers
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • Fresh Cilantro
  • 1 Lime
  • 1 Shot of Tequila
  • Spices: Pink Salt, I used a smoky steak seasoning, cayenne, chili powder, cumin
  • Zester for the lime

Directions:

  1. Wash the produce and cut into julienne strips, chop up cilantro to top at end
  2. Open and Rinse one can of black beans
  3. Place 1 tbsp of coconut oil in the pan over medium high heat, add veggies
  4. Season with above spices to your desire, I add extra smoky seasoning for that nice flavor
  5. Pour 1 shot of tequila, reduce heat to med-low and cover
  6. Pour beans into small pot and take 2 tbsp of fresh salsa, cumin and smoky steak spice, cook on med-low
  7. Place 3-4 tablespoons of organic sour cream in a bowl
  8. Zest 1 lime, place half zest in sour cream, the second half over veggies
  9. Take the juice from half a lime and put in sour cream, the other half in the veggies
  10. Mix the sour cream with a spoon until everything is combined
  11. Heat oven to 200 degrees, wrap tortillas in foil and bake for 5 minutes
  12. Uncover the veggies and allow the sauce to thicken and reduce (see photo above)
  13. Once tortillas are ready, add veggies, beans, guac, cheese, salsa, cilantro, lime crema (the sour cream mix) and lime juice from a fresh lime wedge
  14. Top with hot sauce if you’d like–eat up!

Let me know what you guys think of this recipe. We used the leftovers and made breakfast burritos this morning and they were THE BOMB.

Here’s to a healthy and happy you! xo

Cauliflower Pizza – Toddler/Family Approved!

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We are PIZZA people. I mean do you know anyone who doesn’t like pizza? Comeeee on! But regular pizza is essentially fast food despite my many years of trying to equate it to something a little healthier. The reality is with the fat to carbohydrate ratio, combined with the sugar hidden in the crust, the sauce and the toppings– pizza is not so good for you. Cue sad emoji.

BUT- Cauliflower pizza is a great substitute. Now, now….I had my reservations, too. It’s not a New York slice by any means, but it is truly delicious. In fact, I can successfully state that the one I made tonight is in our belly’s with not a crumb to spare.

Here’s what you need:

  • Pizza Stone (You can order one here or checkout your local TJ Maxx or Homegoods)
  • Food Processor (ours is DeLonghi, but you can use whichever one is best for you!)
  • A clean dish towel
  • 1 Head of Organic Cauliflower
  • 1 Cup of Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/2 Cup or so of Pizza Sauce or Tomato Sauce
  • 1 Clove of Fresh Minced Garlic
  • 1 Organic Egg
  • 1/2 TSP Italian Seasoning (I used parsley, oregano, garlic, pepper and salt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon himalayan pink salt
  • Basil for topping and crust, chopped finely
  • 1.5 cups or so of shredded organic mozzarella cheese
  • Parchment paper
  • Optional: meat or veggie toppings of your choice!
  • Large Cookie Sheet
  • Olive Oil

Instructions:

  1. Pour yourself a glass of wine to start. Oh maybe that was just me…
  2. Put pizza stone in oven while it is at room temperature and then pre-heat oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Wash cauliflower and chop up, place in food processor and pulse until it is the consistency of rice or cous cous.
  4. Open a clean dish towel and pour contents of food processor onto towel.
  5. Fold contents up in towel and squeeze trying to remove as much water from the cauliflower as possible.
  6. In a large bowl, add the cauliflower, parmesan, Italian seasoning or my version above, some basil, minced garlic, some black pepper and pink salt, egg. Mix until the mixture flattens and sticks together.
  7. Take a baking sheet and flip it upside down so the bottom is facing up. Place parchment paper on top of it and drizzle olive oil over it. Sprinkle pink salt over oil.
  8. Place mixture on top of olive oil and then flatten into a thin crust.
  9. Dab with paper towels to remove any more moisture from cauliflower.
  10. Place just the parchment paper with uncooked crust directly on pizza stone and cook for 15 minutes.
  11. Take parchment paper out but leave stone in oven.
  12. Put sauce and cheese (or additional toppings) on pizza crust and cook for additional 4 minutes.
  13. Take entire pizza stone out and let cool, top with fresh basil and seasoning/toppings of your choice (we drizzled balsamic glaze over it- it was delicious!)

Here’s to a healthy and happy you! xo

 

KBS (Kale, Banana, Strawberry) Smoothie- anti-inflammatory!

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Who doesn’t love a classic Strawberry and Banana Smoothie? As with most foods I do my best to put an anti-inflammatory twist on it. Also, we had some Kale from another recipe (Anti-Inflammatory One pot rice cooker meal) so we incorporated it to get our added Greens…

Also as a mama, Smoothies are my all time favorite way to get greens in her little body. She isn’t super picky with food but she is a Smoothie-holic…can you see it on her face? I also let her put all the ingredients in the blender and turn it on for an added bonus.

What you will need:

  • Frozen Organic Strawberries and Bananas
  • Organic Kale (fresh)
  • Unsweetened Vanilla Organic Almond Milk
  • Almond Butter (1tbsp) (can substitute cashew or peanut, your preference)
  • 1 tsp of Turmeric, cinnamon for topping!
  • Protein Powder of your choice, I have Vega so I used it here, sun warrior is my favorite brand though!
  • I didn’t add any sweetener here but you can add some organic local honey or a little maple syrup if you’d like

How to:

  1. Add all ingredients into blender.
  2. Hire a toddler to help you!
  3. Turn on blender, if not mixing well add more almond milk.
  4. Pour into cups and top with cinnamon.
  5. Enjoy!

Here’s to a healthy and happy you!

Anti-Inflammatory One-Pot Rice Cooker Meal!

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I LOVE MEALS THAT BASICALLY MAKE THEMSELVES. Who doesn’t love that? I found this recipe on everydayayurveda.org and changed a few things around. Please check out the original recipe here.

Here is what you need:

  • Rice Cooker or large pot
  • 1 1/3 cups of Basmati Rice
  • 4 Cups of Water
  • Can of Coconut Milk
  • 1 Sweet Potato
  • 1/2 Bunch of Organic Kale
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • 1 Clove of Garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon of Turmeric powder
  • 1 Teaspoon of Whole Coriander Seeds (find it in the aisle with spices)
  • 1 Teaspoon of Whole Cumin Seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Pink Himalayan Salt
  • Basil for garnish
  • Sriracha (optional)
  • Ghee (optional)

Directions:

  1. Wash Kale, De-stem, and chop up the leaves
  2. Chop up onion
  3. Cube Sweet Potato
  4. Finely Chop Garlic
  5. Pour Rice into rice cooker
  6. Pour Water into rice cooker
  7. Add kale, onion, garlic, sweet potato and all spices
  8. Turn on rice cooker, go relax.
  9. When rice cooker beeps that it is finished, take out mixture and put in a large mixing bowl (fyi the turmeric might turn your bowl yellow! It will come out)
  10. Pour can of coconut milk over mixture and mix evenly
  11. Serve in bowl and add fresh basil, salt and pepper.
  12. Optional, as seen above add Sriracha! or top with a Tsp of Ghee!

This recipe is so quick and easy, the only not so fun part is chopping and clean up! Let me know if you try it. It was pretty yummy. Kiril served his with Chicken but shrimp would be another good animal protein to add if you’d like. Or tofu for us veg people! Happy eating!

Here’s to a healthy and happy you!

xo

Goodbye summer, hello pumpkin everything.

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Happy first day of fall! This is my all time favorite season in Virginia. Growing up in Florida, I never really got to experience “sweater season” in fact, the go-to Florida “it’s-chilly-out-outfit” is a sweatshirt and flip flops. So, it might still be almost 90 degrees out today (global warming…) but autumn is here and you know what that means? PUMPKIN EVERYTHING. Hopefully the weather begins to cool down soon…

To celebrate the first day of fall I made these yummy pumpkin muffins – yes, they are from a BOX! Everyone can use a helping hand every now and then. I am all for making things from scratch but Simple Mills is a great company that uses quality ingredients. I care way less about calories and way more about INGREDIENTS. I added chocolate chips and shredded coconut to these.

They do not contain any preservatives so make sure to store extra in the fridge! For those of you who asked, I shared the coconut oil non-stick spray I use above. I found this brand of simple mills muffins at Homegoods at a much cheaper price than they are typically so I encourage to check out your local TJ maxx/homegoods for some good deals on quality products. Otherwise, I order in bulk from Amazon because both Sofia and Kiril love them!

Happy eating and happy fall!

Here’s to a healthy and happy you, xo.

Take and Go, Egg Muffins!

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Last night I taught yoga and Kiril usually says that’s the night he and Sofia “scavenge” for food…ha. But instead of scavenging he decided to make these egg muffins. I wish I could take credit because they are so yummy – but he did use my recipe 😉

Go Kiril!

What I love about this recipe is that you can refrigerate or even freeze these muffins, pop them in the microwave and you have a healthy snack or small meal ready to go.

Take and Go Egg Muffins Recipe

What you need:

  • 6 Eggs, preferably free range organic eggs
  • 1 tbsp of organic half and half
  • Veggies (we used broccoli, sun dried tomatoes and onion)
  • Coconut oil for pan frying
  • Muffin Tin
  • Coconut oil non-stick spray for muffin tin
  • Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • Pink Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Turmeric for anti-inflammation if desired

Directions:

  1. Pre-Heat oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit
  2. Whisk eggs, half and half, salt and pepper, turmeric
  3. Rinse and chop up veggies
  4. Heat medium sized pan with some coconut oil
  5. Add veggies to pan and stir fry until the onion is translucent and the broccoli is bright green, season with salt and pepper
  6. Spray muffin tin with non-stick coconut oil spray
  7. Add veggies to each muffin slot
  8. Pour egg mixture over each opening, fill about 3/4 of the way up
  9. Place in oven, for 15 minutes, add shredded cheddar cheese and then cook for additional 10 minutes (25 minutes total)
  10. Enjoy!

As you can see, Sofia loves these egg muffins, too. Toddler approved! #winning… They are so simple yet so scrumptious and filled with nutrient rich veggies.

Here’s to a healthy and happy you!

xo