What could be more exciting than hosting a party for your favorite people to share all your favorite foods in one big delicious dish? I can't think of anything! In this month's blog, we are going to be talking about one of the biggest and most delicious trends that has hit social media, restaurants, and kitchens by storm, the Buddha Bowl!
Happy March everyone! My family and I have been loving the beautiful spring weather here in Charleston! We can't wait to spend more days at the beach and to just be outside together. There is nothing like fresh air and sunshine to keep a smile on your face. The beautiful green leaves and flowers popping up everywhere has inspired me to share one of my favorite meals with you, the ever-popular Buddha bowl! This dish is one of the most beautiful things to look at before digging into an amazing meal. Are you familiar with them? A Buddha bowl is a single serving meal for any diet that is delicious, extremely healthy, and can be a true piece of gastronomical art. Buddha bowls are most commonly served in one big bowl full of delicious items that hit every food group needed for a complete and delicious meal. From that description, I'm sure you've seen something like it filling your Instagram feeds, your Pinterest account, and favorite recipe websites!
But, where did the name come from? There are many different theories, but some think the dish was inspired by Buddha's big round belly. Other's come from a more classic approach. Buddha was known to walk through whatever village he would find himself in and carry a big empty bowl with him. Villagers would fill the bowl with what every food offerings they could give him, and he would eat what he was given.
One of the greatest things about a Buddha bowl is that there is no right or wrong way of creating one. There are no directions you have to follow or any specific guidelines you have to stay in. You can create and fill them with whatever ingredients you and your family prefer. You can even make a batch of delicious fillings and have a Buddha Bowl bar, and let your family build their own. It's a wonderful way to introduce so many delicious and healthy options to your children at a young age while allowing them to experiment with different flavors, texture combinations, and being bold in making their own choices in their diet.
Now, where do you start? The best way to begin is to think in terms of layers. Begin by filling the bottom of your bowl with either a grain, a leafy green vegetable, or broth. Secondly, add your veggies. These veggies can be either roasted, cooked to your preference, or raw. Be bold! Try mixing vegetables you might not have thought of mixing before! Next, add your protein. This can be a great meatless meal, and you can use tofu or chickpeas as your protein, but meat can also be used if you wish. Then, you can add all kinds of toppings. This is a great opportunity to use nuts, seeds, or sprouts. You finish your bowl off (if you like) with a small drizzle of sauce or dressing. Ta-dah! You have just made your first delicious Buddha bowl! If you need a little guidance or inspiration for your first Buddha Bowl, you can find them on all your favorite social media platforms. There are so many options out there waiting for you and don't be afraid to shake up a recipe that you find.
Buddha bowls are incredibly diverse, and you can create a bowl to fit any cuisine you like. It's a diverse way to enjoy your favorite foods in an extremely healthy way. They can be served with a mixture of hot or cold items, you have the freedom to make that choice. They are not only so good for you, but they're also beautiful to look at, create, and present to others. They can also be a wonderful inspiration for a party! How can you host the best Buddha Bowl Party? It's easy! Invite your guests over for a party inspired by sharing delicious and healthy foods. Have each guest bring a grain, a leafy green, veggie or protein to share with the party. Provide your guests with a bowl for them to fill with their favorite ingredients, and have everyone set up their contribution like a salad bar. I always love to start with greens. Top those delicious leafy greens with a grain like rice or quinoa, then add on as many veggies as your heart desires! Top those veggies with your favorite dressings, hummus, nuts, seeds, and a protein if you wish. You can even customize your party and give it a theme. Host a Thai, Mediterranean, or Mexican Buddha bowl party! Inspire your guests to customize, improvise, and find inspiration from one another. Challenge one another to try new things and new combinations. They will LOOK beautiful too. Make sure you take pictures, you will want to share your masterpieces!
I cannot wait to hear what you think about your own Buddha bowls. Please share pictures with me, and I would love to hear about your ingredients choices and what inspired you. They're wonderful for every age, so dive into this fun, delicious, and interactive meal with the whole family!
If you are looking for a natural and easy plant-based substitute for meat, then I have just the thing for you. Mushrooms!
Happy February! What an exciting year this has been! If you have been following my Social Media accounts (which if you don't yet, please do!), you've seen the excitement that 2020 has brought to my friends and family already, and I am so excited to see this journey continue through the rest of this year. One of my most recent posts was dedicated to removing meat out of your diet, and one of the more easy and natural ways to replace it. That is by using one of my favorite types of fungus, mushrooms!
Mushrooms have a great meaty texture, and their flavor, known as "umami" is very satisfying in your traditional meat-heavy dishes. It's easy to add mushrooms into your stews, pasta sauces, casseroles, chili, and other dishes that combine meats with other bases. If you are wanting to cut out large amounts of meat or cut meat out of your diet totally, mushrooms are a wonderful option as I have mentioned above! For dishes that contain a lot of meat, simply replace a quarter or half of the called for amount of meat with mushrooms to start the transition for your family. Or, if you want to be brave, replace the meat in any recipe completely with mushrooms! Mushrooms help keep your dishes healthy, rich and give them a wonderful texture. There are so many different types of mushrooms out there, that you can experiment and pick what kind of mushroom you enjoy the most! Mushrooms are very easy to mix in with a huge list of other ingredients. They can be utilized in so many dishes, it's simply amazing!
A very delicious option for the whole family is using a giant portabello cap and cook it like a classic hamburger or steak! They are so delicious on the grill with your classic burger toppings, or you can even stuff them with some of your favorite veggies and mix in your favorite dairy-free cheese. Pop the stuffed portabello caps into the oven at 350 for about 20 minutes, and you will have a delicious dinner ready to go in no time!
Next to being an incredible meat substitute and delicious addition to every diet, they are also so rich in nutrients and so good for you! Mushrooms are incredibly rich in vitamins and minerals, and you will find some pretty incredible things inside of them including:
Outside of their nutritional benefits and the incredible things they can give back to your body, they can do so much more for your body than you might think!
Who knew fungus could be such an incredible thing to add to your diet? Not only can you take meat out of your diet and replace it with something so delicious, but you can also help reach your optimum health goals by eating more of them! Try adding them into some of your favorite recipes, and let me know what you think! I can't wait to hear about them all, and how your family enjoyed them!
This is seriously the BEST Dairy-free cheesecake EVER! Those that are not dairy free will have NO IDEA! You could also add a different topping like Oreos, chocolate, caramel, or any mix-ins! Super easy and delicious!
We used MI-DEL Gluten Free Graham Style pre-made crust but you could absolutely make a home-made graham cracker crust!
White cheesecake filling ingredients:
3 cups cashews
3/4 cup lemon juice
3/4 cup agave or honey (don't go too heavy on the honey)
3/4 cup coconut oil
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
Fruit topping ingredients:
2 cups frozen strawberries
1/2 cup dates
1. Throw all cream-cheese filling ingredients into your high speed blender and blend! Add as little water as necessary to facilitate blending. Pour mixture on top of crust.
2. Place the above in freezer for an hour or so (so it will firm up).
3. For topping: throw strawberries and dates in your high speed blender. Blend until nice and smooth. Pour this mixture on top of the crust/creamcheese, which was just in the freezer for about an hour. Place the raw cheesecake recipe back in the freezer. Freeze until this raw cheesecake recipe reaches the desired consistency (5 hours or so).
4. Defrost this raw cheesecake recipe for about a half-hour before eating (or just slice from freezer and enjoy this delicious raw cheesecake).
Thank you Kathy Simons for this recipe! It is a family favorite!
These caramelly, delicious, 2- ingredient payday inspired bites are just the right size and natural sweetness for any late night craving or afterschool snack! Thank you @minimalistbaker.com for original recipe!
1 1/4 cup roasted salted nuts (we used 1/2 pistachios and 1/2 cashews)
2 cups packed, pitted medjool dates (sticky and fresh) (1 cups contains about 19 dates)
1 pinch sea salt
1. Add nuts to food processor and pulse several times to loosely chop. Set aside on a plate or in bowl.
2. Add to the food processor pitted dates and sea salt. Process until small bits remain or a ball forms. Scoop out. Form into even bites- about 16 and roll them into balls with your hands. They will be a little sticky. That's ok.
3. Begin rolling date bites into the nut mixture to coat, pressing down gently to encourage sticking. Continue until each date bite is thoroughly coated with nuts.
4. Enjoy or chill for 1 hour before eating. Store in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks or freeze! Great for lunchboxes, snacks, or dessert! Enjoy!
This month I will be sharing a perfect recipe for the Super Bowl and why garlic is so incredible for you. Who knew that you could cheer on your favorite team while keeping your body happy and healthy?
Happy New Year Friends! Here we are in 2020! Have you started the new year by jumping into your New Year's Resolutions? New eating habits? New workout classes that you've been meaning to try? It's always fun to start a new year and hit the ground running with your resolutions. Don't overwhelm yourself with these changes, take it slowly and purposely. Create the perfect infrastructure in January to build on top of so that come December of this year, you will have reached all of your goals and then some.
For this blog, I wanted to celebrate a few different things. Comfort food, Trader Joe's, The Superbowl, and Garlic. Not a list you would see together, right? Well, this year we are shaking it up. Even though this weather has been rather mild, there have been a few rainy and chilly days thrown in that call for delicious and warm comfort foods. This doesn't mean you reach for the processed foods filled with all kinds of unhealthy things for your body! Oh no, you can still find delicious and healthy things to not only warm you up but keep your body healthy and happy. Since the Superbowl is right around the corner, I thought a good old fashioned chili recipe would be perfect to share. This recipe was also inspired by Trader Joe's new organic chili seasoning blend, and I can't wait to share it with you!
What You Will Need:
Minced garlic was one of the many delicious and nutritious ingredients for our chili recipe. Do you know all the incredible things garlic can do for you? The list is staggering, and I love sharing it when I use garlic in my recipes.
Not only is this such a delicious recipe, but you'll also be giving your body some easy and important nutrients. It's the perfect recipe for every member of the family for a rainy afternoon or while cheering on your favorite team during the playoffs! Enjoy everyone, I look forward to sharing more with you next month!
This time of year, it is so easy to get stuck in unhealthy routines and fall back on some pretty high sugar and not so great choices for your foods! Take a moment to pause this week as the holidays get closer, and add something easy and delicious into your routine!
Happy December everyone! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your loved ones, and you aren't getting too overwhelmed with Christmas on its way! It's so easy to get stuck into unhealthy habits around the holidays. You're busy, family is visiting, and the holidays tend to make us crave some delicious yet not so healthy things. I get it! You've followed my health and wellness journey, and I have loved following yours. The holidays bring on some very interesting stress and pressure when it comes to your diet and what you're putting in and on your body.
This got me thinking about a few things. First, take a moment for yourself and your family. It's okay to pause and collect yourself. Sometimes you'll find some holiday spirit waiting for you there! Secondly, take inventory of how you're feeling. Stressed? Tired? Sluggish? Acknowledge this, and see if there are a few small ways you can focus yourself back on track. Thirdly, what have you been eating? Have you been taking the time to put as much goodness into your body as the amount of holiday spirit you're trying to spread outside of it? I know you're short on time right now - which is why I wanted to share a quick a delicious recipe that will help get you and your body back on track during this busy time of year!
If you're not already following me on Instagram and Facebook, pause reading this and go do that right now. If you have been a follower, thank you SO much! You might have seen my post about putting dates into my smoothies, and doesn't that sound delicious? This quick and yummy smoothie will take your version of fast food and flip it on its head!
You Will Need:
-1 Scoop of our JP Vanilla Complete
-1 Cup of Almond Milk
-A handful of ice cubes (about 3-7 cubes, depending on the size of your blender!)
-One tablespoon of flax seeds
-One shot of Espresso (common - it's the holidays!). This is also optional, only add if you'd like!
Place all ingredients into a blender, food processor, ninja, or bottle of choice and blend until smooth! Out comes delicious vanilla caramel goodness! It's a perfect flavor for the holidays, and one you don't have to think twice about. If you do end up adding that shot of Espresso - it turns into the best macchiato you've ever had! Enjoy! Also - if you're looking for a warmer option, skip the ice cubes and steam your almond milk! Make sure you still send your dates through the food processor before you add them in, and blend everything really well!
The Truth About Dates
Speaking of dates, did you know these delicious little treats are an AMAZING surprise full of nutrition? Not to mention they are an excellent natural sweetener to add to smoothies, yogurt, and other treats. They are also great for those who have a sweet tooth but want a much healthier option. Remember, as always, that just like anything you eat - you need to eat these delicious dates in moderation!
Dates are very rich in fiber, protein, potassium, magnesium, copper, manganese, iron, and vitamin B6. They are incredibly high in antioxidants like flavonoids, carotenoids, and phenolic acid. They are also very high in polyphenols which help protect from and help with inflammation.
Dates may help with stronger and faster brain functions. They also may help expecting mothers to ease long pregnancies and have smoother and easier natural births. Dates also help with bone health and controlling blood sugar!
Who knew that such a small little thing could have such a big impact on your life? Add a few into your meal routine and see what happens. There are so many delicious recipes out there with dates, that I don't think you could go wrong! I know the holidays can be hard, but know you're not alone. We are on this journey together! I hope you enjoy this holiday season, and from my family to yours - Happy Holidays!
Thanksgiving is such an easy time to overeat and hurt our bodies, and we let ourselves do so! Thanksgiving doesn't have to be painful to your stomach or your body. You can make a few changes and make this the best Thanksgiving yet!
Happy November Friends! I can't believe that we are just a few weeks away from Thanksgiving! Where is this year going?! As we all begin our preparations for the holiday, I wanted to share some very important tips to make this Thanksgiving not only the most delicious, but also one that you can walk away from feeling amazing! It is so easy to overeat and overeat so many foods that are so hard on our systems. They leave us feeling bloated, sick, and not how we want to feel. Holiday's should never be a reason to feel this way - and they never have to be again!
With all of those tips in mind - I wanted to take a classic recipe and change it up a little bit. We are going to be taking your classic bread stuffing, and making a farro and Vegetable stuffing that is SO delicious I can't wait for you to try it! Take this for a spin, and make your Turkey appreciate it too! farro is an ancient grain, just like flaxseed, and a wonderful ancient grain to have in your diet. It also can hold seasoning and flavor so well that it's very easy to add into dishes that you might usually use rice or other similar heavy carb items.
Who says Thanksgiving can't be delicious AND make you feel good? Make your own rules this Thanksgiving, and try something different!
Don't let one of the best seasons of the year be ruined by overly sugary snacks and treats, here are some delicious options that your family will love!
Happy October, everyone! I hope this fall has been a beautiful season for you and your family. Fall is such a fun season, don't you think? You get to get dressed up, decorate your home, visit pumpkin patches, carve jack-o-lanterns, explore corn mazes, go apple picking, and several other fun fall activities. But the one thing that can spoil it all is the huge amounts of sugary candies and treats that seem to overload this time of year. That can be scarier than any ghost story or haunted house! But don't worry! I have found some very delicious and fun alternatives for you and your family that won't ruin your fun fall activities or get in the way of eating the rainbow!
I did a little digging and found these very fun and delicious recipes for you and your family to try during this spooky season. I just know they're going to be a hit! I would love if you would try them out and let me know what you think. Enjoy!
Candy Corn Popsicles!
What You'll Need:
Surprise Pumpkin Cookies
What you'll need:
I hope you enjoy these fun and spooky treats, and I can't wait to hear how you decided to decorate your cookies! Until next time, enjoy this beautiful fall weather and don't let those sugary treats spoil your fun!
It's just a simple seed, right? One of the oldest grains in the world might be the key to your best health yet, and it is so simple to add to almost any recipe!
Hello Friends! How is it already September? I hope your little ones have enjoyed their first few weeks back at school, and you're enjoying the last (very warm) summer days! Did you enjoy my recipes last month? This month we are going to be talking about one of my favorite items to cook and bake with, Flax Seeds! Again, these little seeds haven't just been a trend in recent years. They are one of the oldest superfoods in the world and have a really interesting history.
These little seeds have been cultivated as early as 3000 BC in Babylon. They were cultivated in ancient Egypt and China and played a huge role in Asian medicines for thousands of years. Powerful leaders like Charles the Great and Charlemagne ordered their subjects and warriors to eat them for their incredible nutrients. They were once called "Linum Usitatissimum" meaning the most useful, and for good reason.
Today these seeds are categorized as a superfood and called one of the most powerful plant foods on the planet. Rightfully so!
What You Will Need:
How To Prepare
Who knew that adding such a simple ingredient to some of your favorite everyday snacks could take it up a notch?
Happy August everyone! Now that summer is coming to an end, you know what that means! Our little ones are heading back to school - and will be needing delicious, healthy, and yummy after school snacks. In the spirit of celebrating my love of eating healthy and clean, I wanted to share three different options to make for your little ones. Each of these after school snacks are easy to make and will be perfect for all of your kids and for your kids at heart. For this blog, we will be talking about one of my all-time favorite ingredients; nutritional yeast! For those of you who are new to nutritional yeast - get ready for a whole new landscape of flavors. It is going to change how you snack and what you snack on.
Nutritional yeast is a deactivated yeast, meaning that their cells have been killed and are inactive by the time it arrives on the shelves of the grocery store. It has a delicious nutty, cheesy, and savory flavor and is a common substitute for cheese. But with something so delicious and nutritious, it won't feel like a substitute for anything! It also has an excellent source of vitamins and minerals too.
So, I decided to take after school snacking to the next level. I found these delicious recipes, and I cannot wait for my family to try all of them this school year. I hope you try them with me and share what your family thought about them!
Recipe Number One: Cheeto Chickpeas
This delicious (and altogether very additive) snack takes you back to the original childhood snack. But now, ramping it up into a much healthier snack that you will be thrilled to serve to your family!
What you will need:
For our next snack, we will be taking a spin on another (healthier) snacking favorite: the Kale chip! But adding just a little bit of nutritional yeast will bring a whole new level of delicious to your next batch of Kale chips!!
What you will need:
This last snack recipe is one of my favorites. Movie theater popcorn smells SO delicious - but with all that butter on there, it'll stop you in your tracks. So why not try this delicious butter-free popcorn recipe instead?
What you will need:
I hope that your family enjoys these snacks as much as mine. If you're new to the world of nutritional yeast, welcome! I hope you love it as much as I do. There are so many ways to enjoy it in your meals and so many incredible was to use it. Explore these recipes and get creative - that's when some really delicious things happen in your kitchen!