Warm Quinoa, Spinach, Tomato And Feta Salad…

In this blog, I wanted to share my recipe for some warm quinoa, spinach, tomato and feta salad. It is easy to make and a favorite of mine. This recipe includes some healthy vegetables and spices, which promote vitality and contain some anti-inflammatory properties. It also includes avocados, which have feel good-fats your body needs to move and function properly. In addition, it includes the ancient grain, quinoa, which is considered a super-food. Quinoa not only has a number of healthful vitamins, but includes a healthy dose of fiber and is rich in protein, which helps sustain energy. If you are looking to plan a meal, you might want to give this recipe a try. It is easy to prepare, wholesome and delicious.

Warm Quinoa, Spinach, Tomato & Feta Salad

Warm quinoa spinach tomato and feta salad

  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 or 2  large handfuls fresh spinach
  • 1 small red onion chopped
  • 6-8 cherry tomatoes halved
  • 1 clove garlic crushed
  • 1 handful feta cheese crumbles (1/8 cup feta cheese, approximately)
  • 1/2 avocado cut in to pieces
  • cajun seasoning
  • tumeric
  • soy sauce or coconut aminos

Coat the bottom of a large frying pan with olive oil.

olive oil

Add the spinach, onion, and garlic. Stir on medium heat, until the onion begins to brown and the spinach is slightly wilted. Sprinkle the top with the turmeric and Cajun seasoning. Stir in the quinoa with the warm with the vegetables. Add the tomatoes and stir, until they are just warm. Spoon the salad on a plate. Add the feta cheese and avocado pieces on the top of the salad. Sprinkle with a little coconut aminos or soy sauce, if desired and serve warm.

Note: You may also add black beans, chick peas, or another vegetable to the mix to make it your own.

Enjoy!

Barb

P.S. You can find this recipe, as well as other healthy recipes in my new book, Wholey Cow A Simple Guide To Eating And Living, which is available on Amazon.

Easy Chocolate Zucchini Bread

In this blog, I wanted to share a recipe for some Easy Chocolate Zucchini Bread that I made over the weekend. I had a few zucchini’s in my refrigerator that a friend gave me from her garden I needed to use. I decided to make a recipe from another friend who made me some Chocolate Zucchini Bread last year for my birthday. I like traditional zucchini bread, but I am a chocolate lover and I have to admit, this chocolate version is delicious. I did substitute honey for some of the sugar the original recipe called for, as well as put in some other substitutions you can use.

This recipe is easy to make and contains some healthful ingredients including fiber, vitamin C and magnesium from the zucchini, plus some good fat from the chocolate, (especially if you use a high cacao version of the chocolate chips). Give it a try if you are craving some chocolate or having a seasonal craving for zucchini.

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

chocolate zucchini bread
chocolate zucchini bread

2-1 oz. squares chocolate
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
(You can also use coconut palm sugar for a lower glycemic load.)
1/2 cup honey
(You can substitute 1 cup of honey and omit the sugar.)
1 cup oil
(I used olive oil)
2 cups grated zucchini
3 cups flour
(You can substitute rice flour, if you are looking for a gluten free option.)
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
(I used one with a higher cacao content)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease two loaf pans. Using a double-boiler, or similar, melt the chocolate squares. Stir until smooth and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, mix the eggs, sugar, honey, oil, zucchini, vanilla. Add the melted chocolate and mix until smooth. Add the baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Fold in the flour. Add the chocolate chips. Pour the batter in the two loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 60 minutes, or until a toothpick in center come out clean.

Enjoy!

Barb

P.S. If you are looking for more good recipes to try and ways to live a healthy life-style, you might want to check out my new book, Wholey Cow A Simple Guide To Eating And Living. You can grab a FREE chapter here to preview.

Recipe: Easy Sausage Spinach Vegetable Lasagna

In this blog, I wanted to share a recipe for some easy sausage spinach vegetable lasagna that I made over the weekend. This recipe is a favorite of my family and I make it quite a bit, especially in the fall and winter months, when your body craves more comfort foods. It combines a healthy dose of vegetables including spinach, mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, onions and olives that not only are good for you, but provide a host of vitamins and nutrients your body needs. I also put in some options if you have a gluten sensitivity, or prefer a vegetarian version. Give it a try if you are looking for a new recipe to try for dinner.

Easy Sausage Spinach Vegetable Lasagna

spinach lasagna

  • 1 small box lasagna noodles (1/2 lb or approximately 9 noodles).
    You can use a gluten-free variety if you have issues with gluten.
  • 1 24 oz. jar spaghetti sauce
    I used a local brand called Anna Lisa Spicy Pasta Sauce I got at Whole Foods that had no sugar or preservatives added. I really like this brand, but you can use any variety you like.
  • 1 container cottage cheese
    You can also use ricotta cheese
  • 2-3 cups shredded mozzarella or cheddar cheese
    I usually shred my own to avoid the added cellulose in cheese and other pre-packaged foods used to prevent caking. It is derived from wood pulp. Yes-wood pulp.
  • 1 pound Italian sausage
    You can also leave this out if you prefer to make a meatless version of lasagna
  • 1/2 bag of fresh spinach
    You can also you kale
  • 1 small red onion diced
  • 1 small green pepper chopped
  • 1 small package fresh mushrooms
  • 1 small can black olives
  • 1/2 jar green olives
  • 1-2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 medium size tomatoes diced
  • Salt and pepper
  • Cajun seasoning

Fill a large pot with boiling water and add the lasagna noodles. Turn down heat a bit and boil the noodles for 10 minutes and then strain off the water and set aside.

In a large skillet, brown the Italian sausage. Add the garlic, onion, green pepper and mushrooms. Stir the mixture until the vegetables are slightly browned. Add in the olives and the salt, pepper and cajun seasoning to taste and stir. Add the spaghetti sauce to the meat and vegetable mix and stir to combine all of the ingredients. Add the tomatoes to the top and stir, just so they become warn and then remove from the heat.

Grease a 13″ x 9″ cake pan with olive oil. Place 3 noodles on the bottom of the pan. Then spoon about 1/3 of the meat and vegetable sauce over the noodles. Grab a handful or so of the spinach and place it on top of the sauce. Next scoop about 1/3 of the cottage cheese on top of the spinach and then add a layer of the mozzarella or cheddar cheese.

lasagna layers

Repeat these steps 2 more times to create 3 layers total.

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Place the prepared pan of lasagna in the oven and bake for 30-40, or until slightly crisp on the top. Remove from the oven and let set and cool for another 30-45 minutes. Serve warm with a fresh garden salad.

Enjoy!

Barb

P.S. If you are looking for more good recipes to try and ways to live a healthy life-style, you might want to check out my new book, Wholey Cow A Simple Guide To Eating And Living. You can grab a FREE chapter here to preview.

Recipe: Ginger Chicken Broccoli Stir Fry Delight

In this blog, I wanted to share a recipe for some Ginger Chicken Broccoli Stir Fry Delight, I recently made. I had some chicken, broccoli and mushrooms and a few other fresh vegetables on hand and decided to turn them into a delicious, delightful meal. All it takes is a little meal planning, some healthy ingredients and a little time. It is not hard to eat healthy. Cooking can also be fun, if you give it a chance and play around a bit. I found this recipe on Pinterest, but changed it up a bit, by adding some additional vegetables, including some fresh cherry tomatoes and zucchini slices for some added vitamin C, iron and fiber. I also gave some options to if you wanted to make a few of the ingredients a little healthier. Give it a try if you like.

Ginger Chicken Broccoli Stir Fry Delight

ginger chicken broccoli stir fry delight
ginger chicken broccoli stir fry delight
  • 2 chicken breast, cut into pieces
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2-3 cups (12 -14 oz) fresh broccoli, florets
  • 1 small onion, cubed or sliced
  • 8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
  • handful of cherry tomatoes sliced
  • 1 small zucchini sliced
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce or coconut aminos
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar or coconut palm sugar
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons grated ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

Combine the chicken broth, water, soy sauce or coconut aminos, sugar, grated ginger, garlic, red pepper flakes, black pepper, sesame oil, and cornstarch in a medium size glass bowl. Mix together until the cornstarch dissolves and then set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium high heat. Add the chicken and cook for several minutes, until crisp. When fully browned, remove the chicken from the pan and place on a plate and set aside.

Add the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil to the frying pan and add the broccoli, mushrooms, onions and zucchini. Saute the vegetable mix until the broccoli turns bright green and the mushrooms are tender. This will take several minutes. Add the prepared sauce to the vegetables. Top with sliced tomatoes. Stir to coat the vegetables and warm tomatoes. Add the chicken back into the frying pan and stir to coat everything. Serve warm alone or with rice, or use quinoa.

Enjoy!

Barb

P.S. If you are looking for ways to live a healthy life-style and also want to find more good recipes, you might want to check out my new book, Wholey Cow A Simple Guide To Eating And Living. You can grab a FREE chapter here to preview.

Tomato Avocado And Cucumber Salad

In this blog, I wanted to share a recipe for some summertime Tomato Avocado And Cucumber Salad I made over the weekend.

tomato-avocado-cucmber-salad
tomato-avocado-cucumber-salad

I had some garden fresh vegetables on hand including tomatoes, onions and cucumbers, so I thought I would add an avocado to the mix and make a healthy summertime salad. The mix proved not only be tasty, but included some healthful vitamins, including vitamin C and K, as well as some other healthful nutrients. It also included some good fat from the avocados, which our body needs.

garden fresh vegetables
garden fresh vegetables

If you have some vegetables available from your garden, or have some on hand from your local farmers market, you might want to give this recipe a try.

Tomato Avocado And Cucumber Salad

1-2 medium avocados, diced
3 medium tomatoes, diced
2 medium cucumbers, peeled and diced
1 small red onion, diced
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
2 teaspoons fresh garlic, minced
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/4 cup sunflower seed oil
salt to taste
fresh black pepper to taste

In a large bowl, combine the chopped vegetables.

tomato-avocado-cucumber-chopped vegetables
tomato-avocado-cucumber-chopped vegetables

Add the sunflower oil and salt & pepper to taste. Serve alone, or as a side salad with other items.

Enjoy!

P.S. You can find other healthy recipes in my new book, Wholey Cow A Simple Guide To Eating And Living. Grab a FREE chapter here.

Recipe: Chocolate Zucchini Cake

In this post, I wanted to share a recipe for some Chocolate Zucchini Cake I made over the weekend.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake
Chocolate Zucchini Cake

I had some home grown, garden fresh zucchini from a neighbor and another one from my daughter’s garden, so I figured I needed to do a little cooking and baking to enjoy their goodness. If you caught my last post, you may remember I spotlighted the health benefits of the zucchini. Zucchini’s are rich in vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, calcium, fiber and more. They also contain other vital nutrients your body needs and craves, which help prevent disease and boost your immune system. I always look forward to the zucchini season, as they not only are good for you, they are great for grilling, frying and baking.

garden fresh zucchini
garden fresh zucchini

Last week, I enjoyed some sauteed zucchini, as well as made some zucchini bread. Over the weekend, I remembered I had a good recipe for chocolate zucchini cake, so I decided to get a little more baking on. I don’t bake as much as I used to, but I do like sweets from time to time. Remember—there is nothing wrong with eating sweets now and then. Michael Pollan, in his book Food Rules an Eater’s Manual, tells us “Eat all of the junk food you want, as long as you cook it yourself.”¹ Chances are you won’t eat it every day then. Anyway—his recipe is easy to make, contains some healthful ingredients and gets an “A” for satisfying those chocolate cravings. Give it a try if you like.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup oil
1-3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla
2 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup high quality cocoa
1/2 tsp. Baking powder
1 tsp. Baking soda
1 tsp. Salt
2-1/2 cups flour (You can use rice flour if you want it gluten free)
2 cups grated zucchini
3/4 cup chopped walnuts (You can also use pecans or almonds)
12 oz. bag good quality chocolate chips (I used one with one with a high cacao content for its good fat content)

In a mixer, mix the first 6 ingredients together. Add the dry ingredients, then add the zucchini. Mix well. Spread the mixture in a greased & floured, 13” x 9”. Top with nuts and chocolate chips. Bake at 325 degrees for 50 minutes. Cool and frost with chocolate frosting if desired. Serve warm, or cold.

Optional Frosting Glaze

1 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
2 tbsp coconut oil

Melt the chocolate chips and coconut oil in double boiler or similar, stirring until the chips are melted and a smooth texture. Remove from heat and allow to cool a bit.

Pour and spread over the cake. Allow to set for at a bit and serve.

Enjoy!

Barb

P.S. You can find other healthy recipes in my new book, Wholey Cow A Simple Guide To Eating And Living, available on Amazon.

Source:

¹Pollan, Michael. Food Rules and Eaters Manual.

Recipe: Grilled Shrimp & Vegetable Medley

In this blog, I wanted to share a recipe for a Grilled Shrimp & Vegetable Medley. It is a recipe for summer, as it is easy to make on the grill and has some healthy ingredients that are good for you. It is also one of the recipes I included in my new book, Wholey Cow A Simple Guide To Eating And Living, which is available on Amazon. Give it a try for one of your summer barbecues if you would like. It is delicious!

Grilled Shrimp & Vegetable Medley

Grilled Shrimp & vegetable medley
Grilled Shrimp & vegetable medley
  • 1 medium sized red onion sliced into pieces
  • 1 container large fresh mushrooms (cut into halves, or thirds)
  • 1 yellow pepper, or another variety cut in slices
  • 2 medium vine-on tomatoes (sliced into pieces)
  • 1 large handful Power Green Mix
  • Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • Soy Sauce or use coconut amino’s
  • Louisiana Hot Sauce to taste
  • 1 medium size bag large frozen shrimp
  • 1 cup cooked Basamati or Jasmine rice

Directions:

Add the onion, mushrooms, and pepper slices to a grill pan. Cook on medium heat, until the vegetables begin to get soft. Feel free to add any other vegetables you like to the mix, such as kale, or snap peas to provide some other vital nutrients to your diet and make it a healthier.

sliced pepper
sliced pepper

Baste the vegetables with some of the balsamic vinaigrette, soy sauce, and a little Louisiana Hot Sauce (add this to taste) and stir the vegetable medley. I just sprinkled some of each on the top of the vegetables and tossed the mix. When the vegetables are tender, add in the shrimp and cook until the shrimp becomes pinkish, about 10 minutes, or so.

Grilled-Shrimp-Medley
Grilled-Shrimp-Medley

Continue to baste the mix and sprinkle with the the balsamic vinaigrette, soy sauce, and some Louisiana Hot Sauce. When the shrimp is done, add the tomatoes and Power Greens to warm.

sliced tomatos
Sliced Tomato’s

Baste again.

Grilled Shrimp Medley 4

Serve warm over rice, or alone if you prefer.

Enjoy!

Barb

Healthy Chicken Parmesan Kale Pasta

After our big Fourth of July gathering at the lake, I was left with a lot of extra food, including a big bag of kale that I wanted to use before it spoiled. Since Pinterest is a great resource for recipes, I decided to look there for a healthy kale recipe to try. Of course, I like to change things up and added some chicken and a few other vegetables to make the recipe healthier and came up with my own recipe for some Healthy Chicken Parmesan Kale Pasta instead. It was easy to make, contains some healthy nutrients and was pretty tasty. Give it a try if you like.

Healthy Chicken Parmesan Kale Pasta

chicken parmesan kale pasta_close up
Chicken Parmesan Kale Pasta
  • 2 medium size chicken breasts (grilled and sliced)
  • 1 bunch (about ½ lb.) kale
  • ½ lb. angel hair pasta (You can also use a gluten free option)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 package mushrooms sliced (about 4 oz.)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • Cherry tomatoes (handful or 2 sliced in half)
  • Salt & pepper
  • Red pepper flakes

Season the chicken with salt and pepper and other favorite seasoning. Place the chicken on a heated grill and cook until done, flipping the meat as needed. When the chicken is done, remove from heat and let cool slightly. Slice the chicken in thin strips and set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Break the pasta in half, add it to the boiling water, and cook until soft (about 10 minutes). Drain the pasta in a colander.

While the pasta is cooking, add the olive oil, butter, minced garlic and sliced mushrooms in a large skillet pan. Cook over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, or until the garlic is soft and mushrooms slightly browned. Add the washed kale and continue to sauté until the kale has slightly wilted. Add the sliced chicken.

Add the drained pasta to the kale mix. Toss the pasta and kale together. Season the pasta and kale with salt and pepper to taste and then add the red pepper flakes. Add the sliced cherry tomatoes and stir to warm. Top with the grated Parmesan cheese.

chicken parmesan kale pasta
Chicken Parmesan Kale Pasta

Serve warm with another vegetable side or slice of garlic bread.

chicken parmesan kale pasta
Chicken Parmesan Kale Pasta

Enjoy!

Barb

Healthy Breakfast—Spinach, Tomato & Sausage Frittata

Did you know that breakfast is thought to be the most important meal of the day, according to some nutrition experts? That’s why it is important to eat a healthy breakfast. After a long night’s sleep, your body needs nutrients to give you energy to get you going, whether you are heading out the door to work, to the gym, on a walk, or something else. In my new book, Wholey Cow A Simple Guide To Eating And Living, I talk a little bit about how you can take charge of how you eat and make conscious choices about what you eat and when you eat. Eating a good, healthy breakfast is a simple way to get started.

In this blog, I wanted to share a healthy breakfast recipe I made over the weekend. I had some friends up at the lake and we decided to try something new. This particular recipe was great and easy to prepare. It included some wholesome, healthy ingredients too, including spinach, tomatoes and fresh chives, which I got out of my garden. It is always good to get a dose of morning greens and a few veggies to kick-start your day! If you are looking for something tasty and easy to prepare for breakfast, you might want to give this recipe a try.

Healthy Breakfast—Spinach, Tomato & Sausage Frittata

Spinach Tomato & Sausage Frittata
Spinach Tomato & Sausage Frittata

10 large eggs
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup milk
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 package Italian sausage or turkey sausage
4 cups spinach (You can also use kale, or arugula)
Handful cherry tomatoes (sliced in half)
2 Tbsp. fresh chives, or 1 small red onion

Directions:
In a large bowl, lightly whisk together the eggs, cheese, milk salt and pepper. Set the mixture aside.

In a frying pan, brown the the Italian sausage over medium heat. Stir to break up the meat and cook until slightly crisp. Add the spinach and chives and stir until the spinach is slightly wilted. Remove from heat. Drain off any excess fat from the meat mixture. Set the pan aside.

Spray the bottom of a 9″ pie plate with cooking spray. I used an olive oil spray. Pour the meat mixture in the pie plate. Pour the egg mixture over the top of the meat. Top with the cut cherry tomatoes. Place the pie plate in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool for about 5 minutes or so and then run a paring knife around the inside edges to release the frittata. Cut into wedges and serve warm. You can serve it alone, or with some avocado slices or fresh fruit.

Spinach Tomato & Sausage Frittata
Spinach Tomato & Sausage Frittata

Enjoy!

Barb

Healthy Mediterranean Chicken & Vegetable Salad

In this blog, I wanted to share a recipe for some healthy Mediterranean Chicken & Vegetable Salad that I made over the weekend. It is easy to make and includes some greens, nutrient dense vegetables and protein that your body needs and craves. It is also quite tasty. Give it a try if you like.

Recipe: Healthy Mediterranean Chicken And Vegetable Salad

Healthy Mediterranean chicken and vegetable salad_2
Healthy Mediterranean chicken and vegetable salad
  • 2 chicken breasts, cut in small pieces
  • Cajun seasoning
  • 1/2 package bagged spinach
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 small cucumber, diced
  • 1 small red pepper, diced
  • 1/2 small red onion, diced
  • 3/4 cup chopped black olives
  • 3/4 cup feta crumbles or Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
  • Pita bread, wrap, or corn chips for serving

Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

Coat the bottom of a  frying pan with olive oil. Add the cut up chicken. Season with Cajun seasoning, or another favorite seasoning to taste. Saute the chicken breast in the oil, until browned and slightly crisp. Remove from heat and set aside.

In a medium sized bowl, combine all of the vegetable and dill. Mix together and then add in the chicken. In separate smaller bowl, combine the olive oil, red wine vinegar, Italian seasoning, salt and black pepper. Stir until well blended and then pour over the vegetable and chicken mix, stirring until the vegetables are coated.

Healthy Mediterranean chicken and vegetable salad
Healthy Mediterranean chicken and vegetable salad

Serve alone, or in a wrap, pita bread, or with Tostito chips. Top with the feta, or Parmesan cheese.

Healthy Mediterranean chicken and vegetable salad
Healthy Mediterranean chicken and vegetable salad

Enjoy!

Barb

P.S. If you are interested in other healthy recipes, as well as finding out more about living a healthy life-style, you might want to check out my new book, Wholey Cow a Simple Guide To Eating And Living,” which is available on Amazon.