Easy Peasy Baked Chicken.

Happy Tuesday! I have recently been contemplating starting a meal prepping business and trying this out for some friends of mine. With that in mind I do have a disclaimer: I have been vegetarian for almost 10 years. Let’s not forget that at one point in my life I did consume meat on a regular basis but I wasn’t quite as interested in cooking as I am now. Now it seems like I cook more than I go out mostly because I enjoy it and because I don’t like to consume food full of high fats and calories! Don’t get me wrong I love to go out, but I also prefer hosting and cooking a little bit more. 🙂 I had someone ask me to prepare some meals for them so this is the first of many. I baked some chicken- to my surprise it came out really good (yes I had a bite). Who knew after 10 years I can still cook chicken?! With this entire meal planning in mind it applies to my life as well. I have been working out a lot and sometimes not consuming enough calories throughout my day- so it will be beneficial to my food consumption as well. The name of the game is planning. Yes it involves time but so does anything that you can see results from.

IMG_6134IMG_6137

What you’ll need:

  • 6 TB Olive Oil
  • 2 lemons sliced and layed out on baking sheet
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • sea salt
  • finely ground black pepper
  • dried oregano
  • 2 small red potatoes, diced up in med pieces
  • cherry tomatoes
  • 1 Anaheim pepper, sliced (clean seeds out)
  • 2-4 boneless skinless chicken breast (organic)
  • baby carrots
  • 1 can chicken broth

Directions:

  1. Coat a large baking dish with 1 TB of the olive oil. On the bottom of your dish, arrange lemon slices in a single layer.
  2. Combine olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper In a large bowl. You will be coating all the ingredients with the olive oil mixture. Start with the chicken. Next, add the potatoes to the olive-oil mixture and toss to coat. Place the chicken on top of the lemon slices with the red potatoes. I add the tomatoes, peppers and carrots without coating (they will get flavor while cooking). Pour any remaining olive-oil mixture over the chicken. Add chicken broth (1 can).
  3. Cook at 350 for 1 hour – 1 hour and 15 minutes (or until potatoes and veggies look soft and chicken cooked through). Serve warm.

Veggie Stuffed Mushrooms.

IMG_2902IMG_2903IMG_2904IMG_2889FullSizeRender 4

You guys! I made these last night and they were so good….and EASY! You know I love easy cooking in the kitchen. There is nothing worse than having to slave away for hours. More often than not- less is more.  I was browsing Pinterest (per usual) on what to make for dinner and came across these. Usually when I think of stuffed mushrooms they are meat based, but I made them in a veggie version. The recipe called for portobello mushrooms but tonight I was feeling like button mushrooms. If you feel like using portobello by all means it will taste just as great! (Just don’t forget to clean the insides out). If you decide you want to add meat I suggest using Italian sausage. Annnddd….if you want a little spice pick up some cherry peppers (next to the peperoncini’s @ the grocery store). Chop them up- add them to your mixture and it will add the perfect kick providing you like a little bit of spice.

What you’ll need:

12 Button Mushrooms

  • 12 Button Mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp olive oil (you might need more depending on how much stuffing you have)
  • 1/2 med onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1 heaping cup of breadcrumbs (I like Progresso/Original flavor)
  • 1/3 chopped parsley
  • 1/3 cup chopped dill (can substitute mint if you prefer)
  • zucchini/yellow squash (chopped finely)
  • parmesan cheese (grated or powder kind is fine)
  • salt & pepper
  • lemon to garnish (optional)
  • balsamic glaze (you can buy this at the grocery store or make yourself)

Directions:

  1. Wash mushrooms and then remove the stems from the mushrooms and finely chop. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 350F and line baking sheet with olive oiled foil or parchment paper. I like to use these plastic liners – the cooked stuff comes right off (see picture above)
  3. Stuffing: sauce the onion in olive oil/coconut oil on med heat for about 4-5 minutes. Add the reserved chopped mushrooms, zucchini/squash, sauté for about 3 minutes then add garlic. Cook garlic for about a minute then turn heat off.
  4. In a separate bowl add breadcrumbs, sautéed onion/garlic mixture, parsley, dill, parmesan, salt, pepper and and more olive oil. (If you are adding meat I suggest using Italian sausage. Cook before adding to the mixture).
  5. Mix everything together- stuff the mushrooms and top them with the breadcrumb mixture.
  6. Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until mushrooms are tender and the breadcrumbs are golden brown. Plate and drizzle with the balsamic glaze. Serve with lemon wedges. (optional)

I found this recipe here.

Good luck and let me know if any of you make these!

xo Sarah

Lemon Orzo Soup.

img_0535

This last 3 weeks has kicked my butt! As soon as I got back from NYC for the New Year celebrations I ended up with the flu and then just when I thought I was better I am sick again! Sometimes when your tastebuds disappear the only thing that sounds good is lemon and salt (at least for me). You can only go so many days with food tasting like nothing. This soup is SO so easy and if you want a quick meal I suggest you give it a try!

What you’ll need:

  • 1 tsp Basil (dried)
  • Carrots (chopped)
  • 3 cloves Garlic
  • 1/2 lemon and zest + juice
  • Chicken or Veggie Broth
  • 1/2 cup orzo
  • salt + pepper
  • zucchini (optional)
  • chicken (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a large pot heat olive oil, carrots, celery and onion.
  2. Add garlic and saute for just a few minutes.
  3. Pour in broth – season with salt + pepper + dried basil.
  4. Squeeze in juice of half lemon and add lemon zest.
  5. If adding zucchini or chicken add now and let soup simmer. (I like to bring the soup to a boil firs and then let simmer).
  6. Lastly, cook orzo separate for about 8 minutes and add at the very last. I don’t like overcooked pasta so right before serving you can add in.

Let me know if you try it!

xo Sarah

 

3 Cheese Stuffed Shells

img_4184img_4185img_4186img_4187img_4189img_4193img_4200img_4204

Hi Friends! While this recipe is not exactly on the healthy spectrum of most people’s January goals, it is still delicious if you are in the mood for some pasta. I have made them about 3 times and the third time around was the best. It’s important to remember just because a recipe says A,B, C doesn’t meant you can’t add to the mix!

Here is what you need:

  • 1 garlic clove (minced)
  • Italian Parsley
  • 1 1/2 cup spinach (fresh)
  • 1 egg, large
  • 12 pasta shells
  • black pepper
  • sea salt
  • Italian seasoning
  • Mozzarella
  • 15 oz whole-milk ricotta
  • 1/2-3/4 cup cottage cheese

Pasta Sauce: (you can always use a jar but I like to make everything from scratch)

  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • minced garlic (2 cloves)
  • salt/pepper/ Italian parsley
  • olive oil
  • (SIDENOTE: You can always add meat to the sauce for more flavor)

To make:

  1. You need a pan w/ olive oil and garlic. Cook garlic until almost brown (low-med heat)
  2. Add can crushed tomatoes
  3. Season salt/pepper to taste
  4. Add Parsley
  5. You can always add more salt/pepper after it simmers for a bit- remember a little goes a long wayIMG_4182.JPG

For the shells:

  1. Cook the pasta shells according to instructions on the package. Drain, keep warm.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Spread pasta sauce on bottom of backing dish- set aside.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, mix together ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese and cottage cheese, egg, garlic, seasoning, salt, pepper and chopped spinach.
  5. Fill each pasta shell with cheese filling and arrange in the sauce.
  6. Sprinkle additional mozzarella cheese over each shell.
  7. Back for 20-25 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling on the edges.
  8. Let sit for 10 minutes in room temperature before serving.

This recipe is pretty easy and delicious.

 

 

Brown Butter Carrots…Yum!

img_4319img_4331

Produce

  • 1 lb Carrots (or however much you want there is no rule 🙂 )
  • 4 cloves Minced Garlic 
  • 1 tsp Thyme or parsley

Condiments

  • 1/2 tbsp Honey

Baking & Spices

  • 3 dashes Black pepper, ground
  • 1/4 tsp Salt

Dairy

  • 4 tbsp Butter, unsalted

This recipe is so easy!!!

Directions:

Warm the butter up in a pan with the garlic on med-high until butter starts to brown. Once brown mix carrots in with the butter, garlic, add parsley and honey +pinch salt and dash of pepper. Spread out on baking pan- Cook on 400 degrees for 15-20 min. (Every oven is different- mine cooked quickly and carrots were soft after 12 minutes so keep an eye!!

Enjoy and Tell me how you like them! 🙂

 

xo Sarah

Weekend Goals.

acai

Crazy for Acai…How good does this look!

yoga

Can’t forget to put in the work.

khloe

T.G.I.F. I think this is my favorite day of the week. Everyone is winding down usually from a hard week at work and looking forward to their weekend activities. My Weekend Goals?Eat, Sleep, Repeat. Who am I kidding? I am an on the go freak! Most people like to do nothing on the weekends while I on the other hand am an early riser and go- go – go type of person. It’s just who I am! Not a bad habit I might add. I have absolutely no plans this weekend but to workout Saturday (curcuit training) and Sunday (Soul Cycle) which means extra time in the kitchen to try a new recipe or two. This is so random but while I always search on Pinterest for recipes – sweet potatoes are not in my usual rotation of grocery finds but I am determined to get them to be an,” I more than like you kind of thing.” Speaking of plans this weekend, I have also been on and off reading Rising Strong by Brene Brown for some weeks now (One of my favorite authors) and I am determined to finish it this weekend. Do you guys have anything exciting going on?  I will be traveling to Miami for a good friends wedding in a few weeks so I will definitely enjoy a little R&R this weekend! I am wishing you all a great Friday and weekend ahead!

Cauliflower Fried Rice.

132

This recipe is always a go to favorite when you are craving rice but don’t want the extra calories. I think some people might be skeptical of this, but it’s actually pretty good. I have been on a cauliflower kick as of late (cauliflower mash, baked cauliflower w/ parmesan cheese) it’s easy, cheap but still a member of the cancer-fighting cruciferous family of vegetables. This is one vegetable that deserves a regular rotation in your diet, however, as it contains an impressive array of nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other phytochemicals.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 head of cauliflower (about 2 1/2 cups chopped in a food processor)
  • 2 tbs sesame oil
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas/carrots (I prefer fresh carrots over frozen)
  • 2-3 Tablespoons soy sauce (more or less to taste)
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 Tbsp chopped green onion (optional)
  • salt/pepper to taste (optional)

Directions:

  1. Rinse and chop the cauliflower into florets and put in the food processor. (If you don’t have a food processor you can easily chop up cauliflower into small pieces.) Pulse the cauliflower until it’s small and resembles rice.
  2. Preheat a large skillet or wok to medium heat. Pour some sesame oil in the bottom. Add white onion and peas/carrots and fry until tender.
  3. Slide the onion, peas, carrots to the side. Using a spatula, scramble the eggs. Once cooked mix the egg with the vegetable mix.
  4. Add the cauliflower to the veggie an egg mixture. Pour the soy sauce on top. Stir and fry the rice and veggie mixture until heated through and the cauliflower is tender. Add chopped green onion if desired.

*I have made this before but instead of peas I used grated zucchini and grated carrots. I prefer to add the zucchini because the texture absorbs the flavor of the soy sauce.

*This recipe would be great with some pieces of diced organic chicken or shrimp.

Good Luck!

I found this recipe at The Recipe Critic dot com.

Vegetarian Tortilla Soup.

IMG_0247IMG_0249untitledIMG_0255IMG_0252IMG_0254

IMG_0251.JPGIMG_0257

IMG_0262.JPG

It’s funny whenever I post a picture of something I make that’s vegetarian the usual comment is, “Where is the meat!” I have been vegetarian for well over 7 or 8 years now and yes, when switching over it was a bit of a challenge. The basic things like chicken & rice/steak & potatoes weren’t so basic anymore. It hit me that I might actually need to explore the produce section a little more and perhaps pick up a cook book to get motivated and learn how to cook something new! Don’t get me wrong there are times when meals like Chicken Tortilla Soup or Pozole get lost in this rotation because they are not vegetarian but guess what – I have found a solution! Thank God for Pinterest (obviously)! I know I mention all the time that I go on there to browse and get inspired for what I should make next… but really, it helps when your brain is too tired to think after work @ 5m. This soup was SO good (I am not just saying that) and you can always add some ORGANIC chicken if your little heart desires.

My only request other than Pinterest being amazing is for someone to invent all the right ingredients at ONE grocery store! Wouldn’t that be life changing?! I usually frequent two grocery stores and the farmers market for my weekly food. It might seem like a lot but when you find bargains you realize it is worth the trek.

What you’ll need:

[Produce]

  • 1 Avocado
  • 1 14-ounce can Black beans
  • 1 Chili pepper or 1 poblano pepper, dried smoked
  • 1 handful Cilantro, leaves
  • 1 14-ounce can Hominy (or you can substitute corn)
  • 1 Jalapenos, medium
  • 1 Lime
  • 2 Radishes
  • 1 White onion, medium

[Other]

  • 32 oz Vegetable stock
  • 1 14-ounce can Tomatoes or chunky tomato sauce
  • 1 Sea salt/pepper to taste
  • 1 Olive oil
  • 1 tsp Cumin, ground
  • 6 Corn tortillas (6-inch2 oz Queso fresco or feta cheese

 

[Instructions]

  1. Prep work: Preheat the oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit. Stack the tortillas and slice them into ½-inch-wide, 2-inch-long strips. Remove the seeds and membranes from the jalapeno (and poblano, if using) and chop the peppers. Wash your hands. Pit, peel, and medium dice the avocado, then squeeze some lime juice over the avocado to prevent browning.
  2. Bake the tortillas: Coat a baking sheet with a thin layer of oil. Toss the tortilla strips in the oil to coat and arrange the strips in a single layer. Bake 6 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown. While the strips are hot, season them with salt.
  3.  Toast the chili pepper: Place the dried chili pepper directly on the oven racks. Bake for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or just until the pepper is warmed through. When cool enough to handle, cut the pepper open and remove the seeds. (Wash your hands afterward and avoid touching your eyes!)
  4. Make the soup: In a medium pot or Dutch oven, heat some olive oil on medium until hot. Add the onion, garlic, jalapeno and poblano peppers (if using). Cook 4 to 5 minutes, or until softened, stirring occasionally. Stir in the cumin, then the canned tomatoes and vegetable stock. Simmer for about 3 minutes, then add the hominy, black beans and the seeded chili pepper. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Serve the soup: First, discard the dried chili pepper. Place some of the avocado, radishes, tortilla strips, and queso fresco (or feta) at the bottom of 2 to 4 bowls. Divide the soup between the bowls. Top the soup with the remaining avocado, radishes, tortilla strips, and queso fresco (or feta). Garnish with some cilantro and serve with lime wedges and hot sauce, if desired.

Thank you Cookie and Kate for this recipe!!

Zoodle Scampi.

zoodle1zoodle2zoodle3

Thank you Just a Taste for this recipe! I was browsing Pinterest yesterday and came across this recipe. If you have read my posts before you know I love Pinterest! Even if you don’t make exactly what is shown it is nice to have a platform to gather ideas from and make whatever it is that you like. I love zucchini and squash (and usually have it in my fridge all the time) so I went to Target last night after my workout and picked up this gadget to make the “Zoodles”! You guys, this was so easy. If you don’t like prawns, use chicken or just add extra veggies. Let me know if you have any questions and good luck on your Newtritionsavvy quest!

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into noodles (See Kelly’s Notes)
  • Chopped parsley, for garnish

Directions:

  1. Place a large sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add the olive oil and heat it for 1 minute. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper flakes and cook them for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
  2. Add the shrimp to the pan and cook them, stirring as needed, until they are cooked throughout and pink on all sides, about 3 minutes. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper and then using a slotted spoon, transfer them to a bowl, leaving any liquid in the pan.
  3. Increase the heat to medium. Add the white wine and lemon juice to the pan. Using a wooden spoon, scrape any brown bits from the bottom of the pan, cooking the wine and lemon juice for 2 minutes. Add the zucchini noodles and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Return the shrimp to the pan and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper, garish with parsley and serve immediately.

NOTE: I did add a little parmigiano reggiano when the white wine/olive oil was done reducing and veggies were added. *butter optional (don’t get crazy with it)

Thanksgiving Recap.

Thanks 4

Beet Salad

Thanks1

Cousins but really Sisters

Thaks5

Green Bean Casserole

Thanks4

Cauliflower

Thanks 8

Parmesan Crusted

Thanks 8

Slow cooker mushrooms

Thanks3

These were delish!

Thanks 7

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Thanks2

Sotelo Set Up

Here is peak at my Thanksgiving day! Being vegetarian usually leads to me cooking up a storm. This year I made a beet salad, green bean casserole, the parmesan crusted cauliflower that I posted about last wek and those slow cooker mushrooms. Lastly, I whipped out the kitchen aid for some chocolate chip cookies! Everything turned out to be a success. If you’re looking for a fast easy side dish that cauliflower was on point. Now to burn off all the calories consumed over the weekend! Happy Tuesday!