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.

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Ingredients:
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

Directions:

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.

— Knead to Cook

Green Ginger Smoothie.

This is truly one of the best smoothies I’ve ever had – and I’ve had a lot of smoothies!  Sunday night my husband wanted to finally try out our new Vitamix machine and we had a late lunch so, the smoothie sounded light and delicious.  It was and I recreated it today for my girls and again, the lovefest continued!


Ingredients:

1 cup of orange juice
1 green apple, skin on yet cored
1 large handful of organic baby spinach (about 1 heaping cup of the leaves)
1/2 of a pineapple, peeled but not cored if using a Vitamix (if using a blender then core it)
1-2 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
1 scoop of protein powder (vanilla)
1/4 cup of vanilla Chobani yogurt
8 ice cubes

Directions:

Place all of the ingredients into your Vitamix or blender and blend on the smoothie setting.  Pour into glasses and enjoy!  The ginger puts this one over the top!  Fresh and ginger is so good for your stomach.  Vitamin and protein packed.  And, I swear, your kids won’t even suspect that there’s spinach in there!

— Knead to Cook

Cookie Butter Energy Balls. No-bake.

 

These are a take-off of my original energy balls.  I wanted to mix these goodies up and try some cookie butter (from Trader Joe’s) in there to see how they turned out.  They are fabulous!  A bit of a different flavor but oh-so-good!  You can tweak these however you prefer.  I omit chocolate chips and add butterscotch for my husband who is allergic to chocolate.  White chocolate chips would also be perfect!

These will make a great snack or a fast breakfast!  Pack them in your kids lunch for a yummy surprise!

1 c of old-fashioned oats
1 c of toasted coconut flakes
1/2 c of chocolate chips (I used dark chocolate)
1/2 c of Cookie Butter (Speculoos) (regular peanut butter or nut butter can also be used)
1/2 c of wheat bran
1 tbl of chia seeds
1/3 c + 1 /4 tsp of honey (I used raw)
1 tsp of vanilla extract
1 pinch of salt

Mix it all together in a bowl and then refrigerate for 45 minutes.  Remove and make into balls.  I used a small scooper (1-1.5 inch) to press it in and then eject it.  Rolled it with my hands to get a ball shape all around and then place in a airtight container to refrigerate.  Will last 5-7 days but most likely they will be long gone before that!

— Knead to Cook

Smoked Gorgonzola Rosemary Cheese Balls.

The holidays will be here before we know it & I always need a few good staple appetizer recipes that I can prepare easily and ahead of time.  I had leftover smoked gorgonzola from yesterday’s dinner and I thought I would use it.  You can use regular gorgonzola if you couldn’t find smoked.  Blue cheese would also work perfectly.


Ingredients:

4 ounces of smoked or regular gorgonzola (room temperature)
4 ounces of light or low fat cream cheese (room temperature)
1 tablespoon of fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon of white wine
Salt and Pepper
1 cup of slivered and toasted almonds, ground into smaller pieces (walnut pieces would also work well)
20 rosemary sprigs (about 2 inches)

Directions:

Place all of the ingredients into your food processor (except the almonds) and blend until creamy.  Place the mixture on a piece of plastic wrap and cover.  Refrigerate for at least an hour.  Then remove and using a mini scooper, scoop out and roll into bite-sized balls.  Refrigerate for another 30 minutes.

Place your almonds into a bowl.  Roll the cheese balls into the almond or nut mixture and coat to cover.   Place the rosemary sprig into each ball to garnish and refrigerate until needed.

— Knead to Cook

Pineapple Orange Chobani Smoothies.

Another Monday, another smoothie flavor for my sweet girls after-school snacking.  Today I went with a pineapple orange blend with some added Cho for protein!  These were gone in less than a minute flat!  Guess that’s a success in their books.

Ingredients:

2 cups of fresh pineapple
2 oranges, peeled
1/3 cup of Chobani vanilla yogurt
1 scoop Whey protein powder
1 banana
8 ice cubes
1 cup of vanilla almond milk

Directions:

Place all of the ingredients into your Vitamix or blender and blend on the smoothie setting.  Pour into glasses and enjoy.

 

— Knead to Cook

Chobani Spinach Kiwi Apple Smoothie.

There is a sea of healthy green smoothies out there.  I do quite a few and love them all so much.  This one I just whipped up, attempting to clean out my vegetable bin before my weekly trip to the farmer’s market tomorrow.  This smoothie is so good and so necessary.  I’m fighting a losing battle against my allergies and needed a good vitamin c punch.  This was perfect for lunch.  Plus protein-packed, thanks to Chobani, so my muscles are thankful post workout.

Ingredients:

1 cup of vanilla almond milk
1/4 cup of vanilla Chobani
2 kiwis, peeled
10 green grapes
1 giant handful of baby spinach leaves
1 cored green apple, skin on
1 teaspoon chia seeds (optional)
1 banana
10 ice cubes

Directions:

Place everything in your blender or Vitamix and blend until creamy.  Pour into glasses (makes 3-4 glasses) and top with a slice of fresh kiwi.

— Knead to Cook

Sweet Pumpkin Hummus.

Hummus doesn’t always have to be savory.  I whipped this little dish up last fall, of course, pumpkin inspired, and I had to make it again.  I just love it!  My kids love it too with sliced apples.  In fact, I have it all ready for them when they get home from school.  Great snack and so healthy!  You have to give this one a whirl.

Ingredients:

1 -15oz can of chickpeas, drained and washed
1 heaping cup of pumpkin puree
1/4c nut butter (peanut, almond, cashew)
2 tbl coconut oil
2 tbl maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp honey
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp of freshly grated ginger
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt

Blend it all in your food processor until hummus consistency. Serve with apples, crackers, graham crackers, gingersnaps etc.

— Knead to Cook

Fresh tomato & pepper pasta salad with lime jalapeño vinaigrette.

I’m starting to think vegetarianism in the summer is really my thing.  I have no stomach for heavier meals and with the thermostat creeping close to 100 degrees ~ this dinner was perfection!

Ingredients:

1/4 cup of freshly squeezed lime juice
3 tablespoon of olive oil
2 tsp of ground cumin
Pinch of salt and pepper
1/4 cup of cilantro leaves
1 half jalapeño, chopped
1-2 cups of chopped cherry tomatoes
2 large green, yellow, orange or red peppers – chopped
3 corn on the cob corn kernels, cut from the cob
10 ounces or so of pasta, cooked

Directions:

Combine the first six ingredients and combine in a blender or with your hand immersion blender.   Adjust the flavors according to your taste.  Season and set aside.

Add your cooked, cooled pasta to a large bowl and add your tomatoes, chopped peppers and corn kernels.  Add the dressing and toss.  Serve at room temperature or chilled.

— Knead to Cook

Bill’s homemade cereal.

My husband, Bill, has been making this cereal for about 10 years.  Within that timeframe, he has pursued a very focused healthy lifestyle.  Working out 6 days a week, lifting, running and eating very clean.  He slimmed down, losing about 15 lbs and dropped his cholesterol.  Now I could never insinuate or claim that this cereal will lower your cholesterol because I cannot substantiate the claim with medical studies or trials but in our house… we have all lowered our levels and have seen the benefits.  Now, with all of the fiber you need to be well aware… this is also quite good for your colon health.

Ingredients:

3 cups of wheat bran
2 cups of rolled oats
1 cup of oat bran
3/4 cup of wheat germ
3/4 cup of flax seed meal
1/2 cup of sliced or slivered almonds
1/2 cup of chopped pecans or almonds
1 cup of dried tart cherries (or raisins)
1/2 cup of apricots, chopped
1 cup of dried blueberries
1 scoop of protein powder or Arbonne essentials Vanilla Protein Shake Mix (3 packages of 1.48 ozs)

Directions:

Mix all ingredients in a bowl and then store in a gallon ziploc baggie or tupperware container.  You can keep in your pantry or in your refrigerator (although not necessary).  Serve with milk or atop of your yogurt.

— Knead to Cook

Frozen chocolate banana bites.

Who’s up for a frozen chocolatey treat?  I am!!!  Chocolate + banana + coconut + chocolate chips + sea salt = Ohhhhh MY GoOdNesS!

Super easy & equally fabulous tasting.  A must-do recipe this summer.

Ingredients:

2 bananas, cut into 2 inch chunks
8 ounces of dark 60% chocolate chips
1 tsp of canola oil
Sea salt
Toasted coconut
Mini dark chocolate chips

Directions:

Line a cookie sheet with parchment or wax paper.  Set aside.  In your microwave, melt the chocolate chips and oil.  If your microwave has a melt setting, use that.  If not, melt and check on every 30 seconds.  Avoid overheating or the chocolate will burn.  Stir until just melted.  Dip your banana bites into the chocolate and coat.  Place onto your lined cookie sheet.  Top with your favorite toppings.  Freeze for at least 30 minutes.  Then… EnJoY!!!!

— Knead to Cook