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Salsa Chicken Tacos

Serving size: Makes 6 servings

  • 2 lbs chicken breast
  • 32oz salsa of your choice
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Taco toppings of choice
  1. Place chicken and salsa in crockpot and set on high for 3-4 hours.
  2. Shred with forks, and make tacos the way you like them!

KP’s Tip: If you run out of shells, just use the toppings and lettuce to make a bowl out of it. It makes a great lunch!

Crockpot Meatballs & Ravioli

Serving size: Makes 6 servings

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4c whole wheat panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp italian seasoning
  • 1 bag fresh or frozen ravioli
  • 26oz (1 jar) sauce of choice
  1. In large bowl, mix all ingredients except for ravioli and sauce. Form mixture into meatballs.
  2. Line crockpot with non-stick spray or liner.
  3. Spread 1 cup of sauce on the bottom of the crockpot and add meatballs, keeping in a single layer.
  4. Add the remaining sauce, cover and cook for 3 hours on high.
  5. The last 15 minutes before meatballs are done, add ravioli and mix.
  6. After 15 mins, serve immediately.

KP’s Tip: To keep variety in this recipe, try using different sauces. You could use red, white, rose or pesto sauce to really change the flavor.

Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash & Meat Sauce

Serving size: Makes 6 servings

  • ​1 spaghetti squash
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Italian seasoning
  • Red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 2lbs hot italian sausage (or sausage of choice)
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 jar diced tomatoes
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Stab the squash with a fork or knife all around to poke holes in the flesh. 
  3. Microwave for about 5 minutes..it will be hot, use oven mitts to remove it.
  4. Slice the stem off the squash, then slice in the half lengthwise.
  5. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon.
  6. Brush with 2 tbsp olive oil and sprinkle with your favorite seasonings (I used s&p, garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes, Italian seasoning).
  7. Place squash side down on a lined cookie sheet and bake for 1 hour.
  8. While that’s cooking, set your pressure cooker on the sauté setting. 
  9. Add 1/2 onion chopped and drizzle 1 tbsp olive oil to sauté.
  10. Add 1lb ground beef (I used wagyu), and 2lbs ground sausage (I used hot Italian) mix to combine until cooked through and cancel the sauté function.
  11. Add 1 cup (1/2 jar) of tomato sauce and 1 can diced tomatoes.
  12. Cover and cook for 35 minutes. Once everything is done, plate it up and devour! 

KP’s Tip: For a crockpot version, make the squash as directed. Sauté the onion and meat in a pan, throw in the crockpot. Add the tomato sauce and diced tomatoes and cook on high for 3 hours. 

Edible No-Bake Cookie Dough

Serving size: 1 piece; Makes about 15 pieces

  • ​1 cup oat flour (process oats in food processer until ground to a powder)
  • 1 cup protein powder of choice (I used chocolate plant-based powder)
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (and 1-2 tbsp for topping)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Mix oat flour, protein powder, peanut butter, honey, coconut oil, and vanilla in a large bowl.
  2. Add chocolate chips and stir to mix.
  3. Dump cookie dough in 9×13 pan lined with parchment paper and sprinkle with remaining chocolate chips.
  4. Press down to flatten and put in fridge for about 30 minutes.
  5. Take out of the fridge, chop into bite-sized pieces and store in air-tight container. Throw back in the fridge to keep them fresh or store in the freezer for up to 6 months.
  6. Enjoy bites of cookie dough for that afternoon pick-me-up or an on-the-go snack!

KP’s Tip: Adding protein powder is a great way to boost protein. Use whatever flavor you have. You could also use 2c oat flour if you don’t want to use a protein powder. Get creative and use different toppings as you see fit!

Recipe adapted from: https://www.mealswithmaggie.com/no-bake-cookie-dough-bars/#tasty-recipes-3743

Original & Maple Brown Sugar Pumpkin Seeds

Serves 4-6 from each flavor

  • ​Pumpkin Seeds (extracted from 3 pumpkins)
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp maple extract
  1. Separate pumpkin seeds from what I call “pumpkin guts” and rinse well in cool water in a colander. Make sure most of the pumpkin is off the seeds. 
  2. Preheat oven to 300⁰ and line cookie sheet with parchment paper, separated in the middle for both flavors. 
  3. Lay out a dish drying mat and lay pumpkin seeds in a single layer on mat. 
  4. Pat dry with paper towels and try to get as much moisture out of the seeds as possible. 
  5. In a bowl, combine olive oil, salt, pepper, half the amount of seeds, and mix. 
  6. In a separate bowl, combine brown sugar, maple extract, and the other half of the seeds and mix. 
  7. Lay out pumpkin seeds on cookie sheet, in a single layer. 
  8. Roast in oven for 45 minutes or until crispy. 
  9. Take out of oven and serve immediately!

KP’s Tip: Pumpkin seeds are a great snack since they offer up a great deal of protein fiber, and healthy fats. Sure, you can buy store-bought pumpkin seeds, but the sodium content in them is extremely high. Making them yourself allows you to control the sodium content.

Banana Sushi

Serves 1

  • 1 whole wheat wrap
  • 1 banana
  • 2 tbsp natural peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp chocolate chips
  1. Place wrap on a cutting board and spread wrap with peanut butter, spreading on only the left or right side of the wrap. Use a small dab of peanut butter on the opposite side of the wrap to help it stay closed once you roll it up.
  2. Top peanut butter with chocolate chips, banana, roll it up and cut up into bite-sized pieces for a perfect, kid-friendly snack!

KP’s Tip: Use other fun toppings like rice krispies cereal, berries, or chia seeds to add a crunch and different flavor to your sushi.

Bento Box

Serves 1, Serving size 1 box

  • 2 eggs, hard boiled
  • 1/4 cup hummus (flavor of your choosing)
  • 3/4 cup raw vegetables (carrots, celery, cucumber)
  • 1 cheesestick (mozzarella, cheddar)
  • 1/2 cup berries
  1. Place 2 hard boiled eggs in lunch container. Add in hummus cup, raw veggies, cheesestick and fruit.
  2. Repeat with as many containers as needed for lunches or dinner for the week.
  3. Refrigerate and enjoy!

Calories 402. Fat 21g, Protein 26g, Carbs 29g

KP’s Tip: Feel free to switch up the fruit, veggies and cheesestick you use to give yourself variety and change up the flavors.

Hot ‘N’ Honey Turkey Meatball Skewers

Serves 4, Serving size 2 skewers

  • 1lb ground turkey
  • 1 egg
  • ½ c Italian seasoned whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 can pineapple chunks
  • 4-5 large jalapenos, cut into chunk and deveined and deseeded
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 20-25 skewers
  • Skewer Glaze:
  • 1/4c honey
  • 1/4c Dijon mustard
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper
  1. Line large plate with wax paper. Mix first four ingredients together in bowl.
  2. Form bite-size meatballs and place on lined plate. This should make about 20 meatballs. If you have more than one layer, be sure to separate the layers between wax paper. 
  3. Place plate in freezer and leave for about 15-20 minutes or until the meatballs are firm. 
  4. While the meatballs are in the freezer, chop up and prep all your veggies. Make sure the jalapenos are free from seeds and veins; otherwise they’ll be too hot! 
  5. After the veggie prep, combine all three glaze ingredients and mix well until blended. 
  6. Take meatballs out of the freezer when done and assemble skewers in the following order: meatball, jalapeno, 1 tomato and 2 pineapple chunks. Repeat until all skewers are completed. 
  7. Preheat grill to about 375⁰ and spray with nonstick grill spray. 
  8. Coat one side of the skewers with the glaze while still on the plate, and place glaze-side down on grill. Coat the other side with the glaze and let cook, about 10 minutes. Flip over and cook another 10 minutes. 
  9. Continue to rotate until skewers are completely cooked through. 
  10. Take off grill and enjoy!!

Calories 321. Fat 11g, Protein 23g, Carbs 33g

KP’s Tip: Pair with a side of brown rice or quinoa to complete the meal!

Grillin & Chillin for a Finger-Lickin’ BBQ

That first smell of a grill sparking up and searing meats or vegetables is one of the most inviting smells of summer. Not only is your grill an awesome outdoor cooking method, but it’s also a great party-friendly way to cook a ton of delicious food! Since we’re mid-grill season, I wanted to share some great tips and tricks to make the most of your grilling experience. 

So why can grilling your food be a better option than other cooking methods? Flavor, time, and efficiency are three of the most obvious reasons. Take grilled chicken versus baked chicken; the grilled chicken is going to have a more charred and smoky flavor without adding more calories or sauces to it than a baked chicken in the oven. This is the case with pretty much every meat; steak, sausages, hot dogs, burgers, etc. Not only is the flavor deliciously enhanced in a grill, but the time you need to cook the food lowers as well. Again, baking any meat can take anywhere from 25-40 mins, but cooking a burger or dog on a grill takes a mere 10 minutes! Not to mention, who wants to heat up the house in the middle of summer with an oven when you can grill outside. 

In addition to efficiency, the amount of food you can grill at one time increases as well. Grills typically have more surface area to cook food than an oven will. Of course it depends on what you’re making, but you’re typically going to cook more at one time on the grill than in the oven. We love to save time, so why not use the grill to help you? 

Are there any foods that you’ve always wanted to grill, but never knew if it could happen? I have personally been experimenting with different foods to see what works and what doesn’t. Wings, pizza, vegetables, onion, pineapple, and watermelon are a few of the foods I’ve tried lately and let me tell you, they’ve all come out delicious. 

Some other foods you can grill that you may not have realized include eggs (cooked in a cast iron skillet), bacon, meatloaf, lasagna, avocados, peaches, and bananas. I don’t know about you, but this makes me want to get creative! Anywhere from savory to sweet can work on your grill, it’s all about using the right tools and trying something new. 

Who doesn’t love a good hack when they see one? Some grilling hacks that I hope can make your grilling experience easier are below. 

  • Using grill mats to keep foods cleaner and falling through grates.
  • Brushing ½ an onion on your grill grate to prevent sticking.
  • Grilling corn on the cob in the husk for maximum flavor and steaming, cutting off and squeezing out the corn while it’s still warm. It’ll keep the silk from sticking too!
  • Always soak your skewers in water for 10-20 minutes before using to prevent burning. 
  • When grilling fish, leave the skin on for more flavor and nutrient value (vitamin E, D, Iodine, Selenium, and healthy fats). 
  • Using tin foil to make “packs” and combo dishes. 
    • Cheesy vegetable packets
    • Mixed chicken and vegetable packets 
    • Loaded “smashed” potato packets 
    • Banana, chocolate and marshmallow packets
    • Smore’s packets

These are just a very few examples of recipes and foods you can make on the grill. If you’re not a big grill person, I hope this helps give you ideas and new ways to start utilizing it. I myself was always timid of the flames and heat, but it’s such a great way to kick off summer, and even use it all throughout the year! Check out my personal recipe for delicious turkey meatball skewers to make for your family, or for your next party. Have a wonderful summer! 

Grilled Street Corn Salad

Serves 6-8, Serving size 1/2 cup

  • 5 ears of corn in-husk
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 1-2 avocados
  • 1 lime
  • 1 cup feta cheese 
  • ½ tsp Cilantro
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. Preheat grill to high heat. Once heated, place ears of corn in the husk on the grill. Cook for 10 minutes, rotate to the other side and cook another 10 minutes. If the husk gets burned, not to worry. It will only give your corn more flavor on the inside. 
  2. After corn is done, place on a heat-safe plate and let cool. 
  3. While corn is cooling, slice the cherry tomatoes in half lengthwise, and then into thirds. 
  4. Slice the avocados into bite-sized pieces and combine with the cherry tomatoes in a large mixing bowl.
  5. Once corn is cool enough, cut the thick end of the corn off where the husk is (making sure to cut into the cob itself). You will then be able to squeeze the corn out, holding the top (hairy end) of the corn and slowly pushing the ear of corn out. 
  6. Once you have done that with all of your corn, slice the corn right off the cob and place into the mixing bowl.
  7. Slice your lime in half and squeeze the juice into your bowl. Add feta and cilantro.
  8. Mix well to combine and eat up! 
  9. Slice your lime in half and squeeze the juice into your mixing bowl. Add feta and cilantro.

Calories 145. Fat 7g, Protein 5g, Carbs 18g

KP’s Tip: This is a great starchy side to have with dinner. It works great with kabobs, since the grill will already be used for the corn!