Chipotle Apple Turkey Burgers.



I’m obsessed with all of my new cookbooks!  Ideas galore and I have to admit, everyone needs some inspiration here and there.  This recipe is inspired from The Sprouted Kitchen.  I didn’t make the aioli to top the burgers for several reasons, one – I’m not a fan of aioli sauces, two, I’m eating very VERY healthy lately and I didn’t want to add the calories.  And finally, these burgers were so flavorful that nothing needed to top them!  Honestly, it’s just crazy.  I made these as sliders (meatballs would also be fun) so they would be awesome to serve at your Super Bowl party or dinner.  Kids love them, adults love them and hey, we really don’t need to be consuming that much meat.  I filled our plates up with a mixed green salad with fresh strawberries and sweet potato strings that I baked.  Served the burgers on whole wheat potato buns and let the food fest begin!


1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
1 stalk of celery, finely chopped
3 green onions, finely diced
6 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Granny Smith apple, grated with the largest holes on a box grater
1.25 lb of ground lean (92%) organic turkey
1 teaspoon of Chipotle chile powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Fresh ground pepper
2 tablespoons of freshly minced parsley


Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat.  Add the celery, onions and garlic for about 6 minutes.  Then set aside to cool.  In your stand mixer, add the remaining ingredients.  Blend with the paddle attachment.  Then add the cooled ingredients.  Blend again.  The texture will be stickier than expected.  I believe it’s from the water in the apples.  Form into burgers or sliders (whichever you prefer) and let sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes.  On your grill or grill pan, get it nice and hot, add the burgers and cook until the temperature reaches 175.  If you wish to top with cheese, add that in the pan and cover for a few seconds until the cheese melts.  Serve with or without a bun.  Enjoy!!



Raspberry Apricot Oat Bars.



IMG_2077 IMG_2167


been very lucky to receive several new cookbooks for birthday and Christmas gifts. I love the inspiration and trying out new recipes, after all, who doesn’t?!  I found this recipe in Giada’s latest cookbook and made it healthier and protein-packed thanks to my go-to Chobani yogurt.

These bars are cooling right now and they smell sooooooo good!


Cooking spray
Parchment paper
13×9 glass or metal pan
13 ounce jar of jam (I used raspberry apricot but any will do)
8 dried apricots, chopped up
1 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour (I used King Arthur’s)
3/4 cup of brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 3/4 cup of rolled oats
1 cup of chopped walnuts
1 stick of butter or butter substitute, melted
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon of vanilla Chobani
1 egg, room temperature
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract


Place the rack in the center of your oven and preheat to 350.  Spray your pan with baking spray and then place a piece of parchment paper for lining the pan.  Spray the parchment paper as well.  Set aside.

In a small bowl, mix the preserve or jam and apricots.  Set aside.  In your stand mixer, whisk flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt and soda together.  Then add the oats and walnuts.  Then the butter, egg, Chobani and vanilla.  Blend into incorporated.  It will resemble a crust texture (little marbles).

Using a fork or small spatula, scoop out half of the mixture into your prepared pan and with clean hands or the fork, press it flat into the bottom of the pan.  Cover all of the areas with an even thickness of crust.  Then spread the jam mixture atop – not quite going to the ends.  Then crumble the remaining dough on top of the jam.  Bake for 35-40 minutes.  Let cool for at least 45 minutes.  Slice and serve.  Store in a tupperware container for up to 3-4 days, if it lasts that long.


Healthier Pumpkin Chobani Muffins.


I’ve always been healthy but lately I’ve become psychotic with my healthy mission.  My husband purchased a Jawbone UP bracelet for me (after I got him one for Christmas) and the information it has provided to me has enlightened me about how many calories I was taking in per day!  Wow snacking… NOT good!  My target/goal weight has always been 135 lbs. (who shares this, am I crazy?)  I’m very muscular, 5’6″ tall and work out 6 days a week.  I’m in good shape.  Well needless to say, after blogging for over a year and snacking here or there… my weight crept up into an area that I wasn’t happy with myself.  Hey, it happens to the best of us.  So now, I’m happily down 11 lbs and below my “goal or target” weight.  My next goal…. 126!  I’m on my way.

So yesterday I wanted to make muffins for my girls.  Today was kind of a special day for my youngest and I thought a healthy treat would be fitting (but it did include some dark chocolate).  I whipped up a batch and was lucky to save one to photograph!  So here it is… a bit healthier.  Protein-packed, courtesy of Chobani and quite tasty!


1/2 cup of butter, softened (I used a butter substitute)
1/3 cup of sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup of oat flour (if you don’t have it – grind up oats in your Vitamix or blender until powdery) Measure post blend :)
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 cup of pumpkin puree
1/2 cup of vanilla Chobani yogurt
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Chocolate chips


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  I made this recipe with a regular size muffin pan.  It made 11 filling 3/4 the way filled.  Whatever you use – spray with nonstick baking spray and set aside.

In your stand mixer, blend sugar and butter until fluffy.  Add the eggs and vanilla.  In a separate bowl whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together.   Add to the butter mixture.  Then add the pumpkin puree, Chobani, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Blend well and scrape the sides down and mix again.

Now here is where you decide if you want chocolate chips or not.  I did add about 1/4 cup of mini chips and then sprinkled some on the top so my husband would know not to eat them (he’s allergic to cocoa).

Bake for 22-26 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Let cool completely.


Almond honey butter.


Nothing quite like making your own nut butter.  It’s super easy and very tasty.  Grab your nuts and get ready to be impressed!


2 cups of raw almonds or toasted almonds
1 teaspoon of peanut oil
Sea Salt
3 tablespoons honey


In your Vitamix add the almonds.  Blend the nuts on 10 speed for 1-2 minute.  Then add the oil and salt and blend for about 12 minutes.  Stop and scrape the sides down.  The nuts will yield their oil and get creamier.  Then add the honey and additional salt as needed.  Blend until you achieve the texture you desire.


Pineapple Jalapeño Salsa.

This recipe is so versatile.  It can be served with tortilla chip at your next soiree or atop fish or chicken for a healthy option.  You can control the spice level with the amount of jalapeño you use or if you remove the inner seeds which contain all the heat.


1 bell pepper (I used red), diced
1/2 pineapple, chopped into bite sized pieces
1 cup of cilantro leaves, washed and roughly chopped
1 jalapeño, finely chopped.  If you want  more heat – leave the seed in, if not, remove before chopping
Drizzle of good olive oil


Combine all of the ingredients and place into a bowl.  Refrigerate for at least 2 hours to let the flavors enhance and combine to make their magic.


Peanut Butter Banana Chobani Mini Muffins. I’m channeling Elvis!


I’m all about peanut butter and bananas.  I think I channel Elvis on some weird level.  But hey, the combination in undeniably good.  Creamy or crunchy and the sweetness of the banana… I’m swooning.

Today, I wanted to make my family a protein-packed after-school snack with my favorite – CHOBANI!  Not junk food… just tasty food in compact form.  :)


1/2 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of butter or buttery substitute
2 eggs
1 cup of All Purpose Flour (King Arthur’s)
1 cup of Whole Wheat Flour (King Arthur’s)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 ripe bananas
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup of vanilla Chobani yogurt
1/4 cup of peanut butter


Preheat the oven to 350 and spray baking spray into your mini muffin pans.

Cream together in your stand mixer the butter and sugar.  Beat for 3 minutes.  Then add the eggs.  Scrape down the side of the bowl.  Then add the flours, salt and soda.  Then blend in the bananas, vanilla and Chobani.  Mix until incorporated.  Then add the peanut butter.  Blend until incorporated.

Scoop about 3/4 of the batter into each well.  Bake for 18 minutes or until golden.  Remove and let cool.



Pumpkin Maple Granola with Cranberries.


I recently received several great cookbook for my birthday and Christmas and I started to tear into them last night.  I discovered this recipe and tweaked it and made it my own to suit my family.  They loved it and I loved making it.  Super easy and extremely flavorful.

*Adapted from The Sprouted Kitchen


2.5 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
Sea Salt
1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
1/3 cup of maple syrup
1/3 cup of pumpkin puree
2 cups of old fashioned oats
1/2 cup of slivered, toasted almonds
1 tablespoon of flax seed meal
3 tablespoons of toasted sesame seeds
1/2 cup of dried cherries (raisins, cranberries etc. would work)


Preheat the oven to 325 and place a Silpat on your baking sheet and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, combine olive oil, 1/2 tsp of salt, pumpkin pie spice, syrup and puree and whisk together.  Then add the oats, almonds, flax, & sesame seeds until evenly coated.

Spread the mixture evenly out on your baking sheet (try not to overlap as you want the granola to get nice and crispy).  Bake for 40-45 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let cool for 3-4 minutes then sprinkle two pinches of salt and mix in your dried fruit of choice.  Store in a tupperware container.  Makes 3 cups.



Broiled lobster.


My husband prepared broiled lobsters for dinner tonight and with several requests… I promised to post the recipe.

First, line with foil your broiler pan.  Set aside.  Take your thawed lobster tails and cut the shell (with sharp scissors) and pull the lobster meat gently out and rest it on the shell as seen above in the photo.  Then you are going to butterfly cut a well or pocket into the meat (not going through the entire tail) and sprinkle with garlic salt, paprika and pour some melted butter in.  Broil, 3-4 inches away from the broiler flame, 1 minute per ounce.

Serve with clarified butter and enjoy!


Cherry & Pistachio (red & green) Christmas Biscotti.


I make these red and green biscotti every Christmas.  I just love the red and green combination of the tart cherries and the green pistachios.  Biscotti are super easy to make, although take a bit of time because of the double baking.  But the end result is so worth it.

My grandmother always used cornmeal in her biscotti recipe and it just adds a different texture that makes these cookies undeniably a favorite.  I hope you get a chance to whip these up before Christmas next week.  The batch does make a fair amount, depending on how thick or thin you slice them.  And they keep for several days.  Perfect for dunking in tea, coffee or hot chocolate this season.


2 cups of all purpose flour (I use King Arthur’s unbleached ap)
3/4 cup of stone ground corn meal
1.5 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
3 eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup of pistachios (shelled and roughly chopped) – you can use more or less
1/2 cup of dried tart cherries ( you can always use dried cranberries if you have them on hand)


Preheat your oven to 325 degrees and line your baking pan with a Silpat or parchment paper.  Set aside.

In a dry mixture bowl combine, the flour, cornmeal, powder and salt together with a whisk.

In your stand mixer, blend your sugar and eggs together for 2-3 minutes or until fluffy.  Then add in the dry mixture.  Blend for 1 minute then add the nuts/cherries.  Blend until combined.  The dough will be sticky.  Wet your hands prior to removing the dough from the mixer, this will help you to work better with it.  Divide the dough in half.  Place both halves on your cookie sheet and shape into a 12 inch by 2.5 inch log.  Press the dough down to a thickness of about an inch or so.

Bake the dough for 32-34 minutes or until it starts getting a golden brown edge.  Remove and let cool for 10 minutes.  Then with a serrated knife, slice diagonal about 1/2-3/4 of an inch thick.  You don’t want it too thick or too thin so eyeball it.  Take each slice and lay it cut side down on your baking sheet.  They can be butted up against one another.  You can fit all of the slices on one cookie sheet using your space wisely.  Bake again for 20-24 minutes.  The cookies should be toasted and as they cool, will get a bit crunchier.  Store in a ziploc baggie or tupperware.  Great for sending in a care package or as a gift for friends and neighbors.


Israeli Couscous Edamame Salad.


I purchased some Israeli couscous about a month ago and today, finally, decided to finally do something with it.  Do you ever do that?  I was bound and determined to make something fun with it.  After all, it is pasta and how bad could it be?


1 cup of Israeli couscous
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 cup of water
1 handful of fresh parsley
1 cup of cooked edamame (shelled)
1 teaspoon or more if you like of ground cumin
3 garlic cloves, finely minced
Drizzled good quality balsamic vinegar (about 1/4 tsp or a little less)
Olive oil (about 1/4 tsp or less)


In a skillet over medium heat add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 cup of the couscous.  Stir to coat and let it toast.  Keeping a watchful eye over it and stirring frequently.  Once it has a nice toasted brown color, add one cup of water, bring to a boil.  Then turn to low and cover.  Cook this for about 8 minutes or so, the liquid will be absorbed (similar to rice).  Add more time if you need it.  Then remove and add to a bowl.  Add the remaining ingredients and toss to coat.  Adjust the seasonings as you wish.  Refrigerate or serve at room temperature.