Carrot Cake Muffins

Since I’m heading into week 2, I’m adding another to the list of tried and true 80 Day Obsession recipes. This Carrot Cake Muffin recipe is good as a pre-workout meal if you’re a Plan A like me. 4 muffins will serve as your 1 green, 1 red, 1 yellow and 1 tsp. It’s perfect for a super quick meal, especially if you’re doing your workouts early. No need to wake up SUPER early if you prep these during the weekend. 

And just to add a little oomfph! – I’m also adding a .5 tsp of peanut butter on-top of mine, just because I love peanut butter.

 

Carrot Cake Muffins
Yields 24
A healthy alternative to a favorite.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 6 cups shredded carrots
  2. 1½ cups old-fashioned oats
  3. 12 eggs, beaten
  4. 4½ tsp baking powder
  5. 3 tsp vanilla extract
  6. 6 tsp ground cinnamon
  7. 1 tsp ground nutmeg
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Well grease a cupcake pan or line with parchment cupcake liners. Set aside.
  2. Using a large bowl, add all ingredients. Mix well using a wooden spoon.
  3. Add all ingredients to a blender, pulsing until mixture appears smooth. Remove from blender and carefully fill each cupcake liner.
  4. Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick stuck in the middle of a cupcake comes out clean.
  5. Allow to cool off for 5-10 minutes before storing or enjoy immediately.
fitgirlnic http://fitgirlnic.com/

#80DayObsession Flourless Zucchini Bread

It’s the first week of 80 Day Obsession for me and as a newcomer to food and workout blocks, I was searching high and low for some unique recipes to try out. I specifically choose this particular recipe via Brownell Bootcamp for an in-between snack prior to my workout. You can’t really go wrong with zucchinis as they’re delicious no matter how you cook or bake them. I remember having a couple squash plants out back a few years ago that produced some of the most gigantic zucchinis I had ever seen! You could easily make 2-3 loaves out of bread out of just one. 

This recipe isn’t like most bread recipes simply for the fact that you’re not using any flour, sugar or butter. It’s about as clean as clean eating can get, which is exactly what my week 1 meal-plan calls for.

 

 

Flourless Zucchini Bread
Yields 6
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
35 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
35 min
Total Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. 6 cups zucchini, peeled and grated (about 6-7 zucchinis)
  2. 1½ cup old-fashioned oats
  3. 12 eggs, beaten
  4. 3tsp vanilla extract
  5. 6tsp ground cinnamon
  6. 1tsp ground nutmeg
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Well-grease a 9x9 baking dish and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients; making sure to mix well.
  4. Add mixture to baking dish, baking for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clear.
  5. Set aside to cool for a minimum of 10 minutes before cutting. Tastes great with a teaspoon of butter.
Notes
  1. This recipe is perfect for 21DayFix or 80 Day Obsession. One serving equals up to 1 green, 1 red, 1 yellow and 1 tsp.
fitgirlnic http://fitgirlnic.com/

Quick and Simple Sloppy Joes

Ground turkey and I are quickly becoming friends. No longer in sight are the days when I longed for ground beef on my tacos and hamburger buns. Instead I openly embrace any recipe that calls for ground turkey and if it doesn’t, I make the switch anyway. Afterall, it is so much more healthy for you.

It’s the 3rd and final week of the 21DayFix and I’m starting it off with this simple recipe for Sloppy Joes for dinner. This doesn’t call for many ingredients, in-fact you probably already have most of them on hand. Those are the best kind of recipes! After meal-prepping all Sunday, I want something quick and easy to make for dinner the following day. 


This recipe serves 8 and is 21DayFix approved, obviously. You’ll only use 1 red and .5 purple, without the bun. Pairs great with some homemade sweet potato chips or grilled corn on the cobb. And last but not least, it tastes a little on the ‘sweet side,” so it’s kid-friendly; even for the pickiest of eaters! Enjoy.

 

Quick and Easy Sloppy Joes
Serves 8
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
20 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
20 min
Ingredients
  1. 1lb 93% lean ground turkey
  2. Medium red bell pepper, deseeded and diced
  3. Medium green pepper, deseeded and diced
  4. 15-ounce can tomato sauce (low sugar)
  5. ½ cup ketchup
  6. 1tsp garlic powder
  7. 1tsp onion powder
  8. 8 whole wheat hamburger buns, optional
Instructions
  1. Add 1/2tsp olive oil to a large skillet, set on medium heat and add ground turkey. Cook throughly or until turkey is a light brown.
  2. Add peppers, tomato sauce, ketchup, garlic powder and onion powder. Lower heat to simmer and cover. Stir occasionally, allowing mixture to thicken. Remove from heat and serve on fresh buns or without.
Notes
  1. 21DayFix: Each serving is 1 red and .5 purple without bun.
fitgirlnic http://fitgirlnic.com/

21DayFix – Week 1, Plan-A Menu

With summer only 50 something days away, I thought no perfect time than now to clean up my diet and tone my body. I am pretty good at finding clean-eating meals to cook throughout the week but I wasn’t very experienced in portion control. Luckily for me, my husband had purchased the 80 Day Obsession Challenge Pack! So in preparation for the next 80DO challenge to start at the end of this month, I thought I’d use those cute little color containers and start the 21DayFix since I had 21 (well, 23 to be exact) days to practice my diet.

My BB coach directed me to Fixate Cooking, a program on BeachBody On Demand which offers up a large variety of recipes that center around portion control. This was a tremendous help in understanding what I can and cannot eat throughout the day for my specific meal plan. Plus, new recipes are always exciting to try out! Planning out to get the right amount of containers can be a little time consuming, but what meal-planning isn’t? 

The meals below are what I had for my first week. I’m on Plan A, and each recipe was delicious! I would highly recommend them if you’re a Plan A as well and are looking to try something new. Each recipe aside from PBJ Shakelogy can be found on Fixate Cooking, written out in the “Program Materials” link. If you try any, let me know how you liked them!

M1 – Breakfast: PBJ Shakeology
When I first started 21DayFix, I was most excited about Shakeology. I have done a few beachbody programs in the past and have tried a couple of the shakeology flavors and strawberry was hands down my favorite. I had originally mostly made it as a Strawberry Banana shake but I wanted to experiment a little and see what else I could throw together that tasted delicious as well as was healthy for me. Of course I turned to Pinterest for this, like most of us do for anything. That’s where I found a recipe for this PBJ shake. Now if you love a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, it’s highly likely you’ll like this shake. Throw in some banana and the flavor is even more delicious.

Ingredients:
1 Strawberry Shakelogy Packet
1 banana
1T peanut butter or almond butter
8oz water
3-4 ice cubes
(1 red, 1 purple, 1 blue)


M2 – Snack 1: Carrots and Celery.
(1 green)


M3 – Lunch: Overstuffed Turkey Sandwich 
(1 green, 1 red, 1 yellow)


M4 – Snack 2: 1 clementine
(.5 purple)



M5 –  Dinner: Meat Taco Meat (Day 1 and 2)
(.5 green, 1 red, 1 oil)

M5 – Dinner: (Day 3) Low-Carb Japanese Noodle Bowl
(1 green, 1 red, .5 yellow, 2 oil)


M5 – Dinner: (Day 4) Pineapple Fried Rice
(.5 green, .5 purple, .5 red, 1 yellow, .5 orange, 2 oil)


M5 – Dinner: (Day 5 and 6) Steak Fajitas
(1 green, 1 red, 1 yellow, 1 oil)



M5
– Dinner (Day 7) Oven Fried Chicken with Mixed Vegetables – Not Pictured
This is one of those meals where I scarfed it down before I could take a picture. Hey, it happens. 
(1 red, 1 yellow, 1 oil, 1 green)


Interested in joining a Beachbody Program? Send me an email or visit my coaching website to see what challenges and products are the perfect fit for you and your lifestyle!

Crustless Caprese Quiche

A quiche is perfect for a holiday breakfast, brunch or a few days of meals prepared ahead of time. I’ve done plenty of quiches that centered around meat and wanted to try one that was meatless, yet didn’t lack in the flavor department. Anything caprese is pretty much fool-proof, especially with baked tomatoes; those have enough flavor on their own!

This is a great recipe to make during the mid-summer when there’s an abundance of tomatoes and fresh basil. Luckily for me, my indoor basil plant is still alive and tomatoes were on sale at the grocery this week. A double win.

Note: If eating this over the course of a few days, be sure to place it in a tightly sealed container. It will last up to 4 days.

 

Crustless Caprese Quiche
Serves 8
A caprese version of a meatless, crustless quiche.
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Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
50 min
Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. ¼ cup yellow onion, diced
  2. 2 garlic cloves, minced
  3. 2 large Roma tomatoes, one diced into small pieces and the other thickly sliced
  4. ¼ cup fresh basil, chopped
  5. 4-ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
  6. 4 large eggs
  7. 2 large egg whites
  8. ¾ cup whole milk
  9. ½ teaspoon salt
  10. ¼ teaspoon black pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 8' quiche or pie pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Grease a large skillet with cooking spray and set on med-high heat. Add onions and garlic cloves; sauteing for about 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat, adding to a small bowl and set aside while allowing to cool down for a few minutes.
  3. Add diced tomato and chopped basil to onion-garlic mix, stirring to combine well. Add onto the bottom of the quiche or pie pan, spreading throughout as evenly as you can. Add mozzarella cheese on top, spreading it evenly.
  4. In a medium size bowl add eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Whisk well until all ingredients are combined. Pour egg mixture overtop cheese and onion-tomato in quiche or pie pan. Place tomato slices ontop.
  5. Bake in oven for 50 minutes. Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.
fitgirlnic http://fitgirlnic.com/

FitGirlsGuide 28DayJumpstart Program: Week 1

I’m sure you’ve noticed a slow-down as far as posts go. I have a good reason! You see I’m currently doing the 28 Day Jumpstart program by FitGirlsGuide. That means for the next few weeks, I will not be posting recipes unless they are ones I’ve cooked up for my family. And if I do post something that centers around me individually, it will mostly consist of notes regarding my health journey and the food experiences I’ve encountered while participating in this challenge.

If you like anything you see, by all means go check FitGirlsGuide out for yourself! Not only do they put together a wonderful meal-plan for you with daily exercises, but there’s a community of supportive individuals who are doing the same challenges as your with similar goals – and best of all, they’re SUPER encouraging. Sometimes that’s what we need most.

I’m only mid-week but since I’ve already experienced each meal that is scheduled for the entire week, I’m going to do a little recap on each entree today. Usually it helps to hear others experiences with food before you know for sure if you want to try something out for yourself. 

Cherry Pie Fridge Oats:
I always look forward to breakfast during week 1 of this challenge because I love Cherry Pie Fridge Oats. They’re delicious, extremely healthy and easy-as-pie to assemble the night before; perfect for those who are on the go super early! I eat mine cold and with a hot cup of coffee after finishing a session on the elliptical. 

                                             Roasted Veggie Power Bowl:
For lunch, you’re given the freedom to pick and choose your vegetables. I like to sample a variety of ways of preparing the Roasted Veggie Power Bowl and in the past have came up with dishes similar to a burrito bowl at Chipotle or chicken fried rice (above)…or I will green it out and pack on the vegetables (also above). However, if you like to just follow the ingredients and instructions to ensure you’re doing the challenge just as it’s been laid out for you; the main recipe is still fantastic! 

Little suggestion – make your own homemade hummus. While store bought hummus is the quick way to go, there’s nothing like the taste of freshly grounded chickpeas and tahini sauce. 

Sweet Potato Street Tacos:

I remember the first time I scanned the Week 1 Menu, I was hesitant at first on if I was going to like the Sweet Potato Street Tacos. Before FitGirlsGuide, I didn’t really eat sweet potatoes. I guess you could say I was a regular stuck up Russet potato kinda-gal. There is truth that you don’t know what you’re missing out on if you don’t actually “get out there” – and the same goes for food tasting. These tacos are delicious! 

So I guess that means sweet potatoes are pretty special; you can’t throw just any ingredient in a corn tortilla and pass it off as a “taco.” 

Pita Pizza:

Truth be told, I’ve never met a person who doesn’t like pizza. So I have a hard time believing that someone is going to read “Pita Pizza” and think “Ew, there is no way I am going to like that.” Think of them as individual pizzas on a flat piece of round pita bread that you get to add healthy ingredients to and then cook in the oven for a few minutes. Sound good? No. It sounds GREAT.

Zucchini Bread

With fall approaching, I’m getting the bug to bake more. I’m not sure why I’ve always associated baking breads with fall time. Maybe because of the recipes for all things pumpkins. Maybe because the thought of a warm piece of banana bread with a cup of coffee on a cold morning sounds incredibly appealing.

My SIL gave us two huge zucchinis from her garden: one I plan on using for dinner tonight and the other I baked two zucchini breads out of. Thankfully zucchini bread is favored in this household, even by the pickiest eater on the planet. And since I can’t get everyone on board with the whole white wheat or almond flour, I can make one “family friendly” and one healthy so that everyone happily enjoy a piece guilt free. Just alternate the flour listed in the recipe below to one that suits you best.

Zucchini Bread
Yields 2
This recipe is for two loaves of delicious zucchini bread.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups zucchini, peeled and grated
  2. 3 eggs
  3. 1 cup oil
  4. 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  5. 3 cups all-purpose flour
  6. ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  7. 1 teaspoon soda
  8. 3 teaspoon cinnamon
  9. 1 teaspoon salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two loaf pans and set aside.
  2. Using a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients, whisking well. Divide among loaf pans and bake for 1 hour, or until top is browned and fully cooked through.
fitgirlnic http://fitgirlnic.com/

Ham and Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole

Happy 2017! I decided to start up the new year with a more strict diet and exercise plan due to adding a few pounds on over the last year that I’m not too happy about, just like pretty much everyone else in the world. With bikini season a few months away, I know that winter time would be the best time to start focusing on tightening up my healthy lifestyle a bit, starting with what I eat.

While putting together my meal plan for the week, I decided to include a breakfast casserole that would not only taste good reheated, but hold me over until my morning snack. This previous week I enjoyed an overnight oats breakfast and while that was delicious, I was craving something more “solid.” With a breakfast casserole, not only would I be getting a good source of protein from the eggs, but I’d also be getting a good source of calcium from the dairy; something we all could use. Plus I’d feel more full after eating my portion!

A breakfast casserole can vary in ingredients but usually consist of a basic build; eggs, milk and cheese. To add taste and a better base to mine, I decided to add southern hashbrowns and ham as well. The hashbrowns would give a nice golden crust feel to the casserole while the bacon and ham would just be a bonus addition for the tastebuds. It also helps that I already had all of these things on hand.

As for my dairy; I love to purchase products that are locally made whenever opportunity arises and Reiter Dairy has over 20 dairy farms here in the state of Ohio. Our nearby grocery carries Reiter’s milk product DairyPure and after doing a little research on the brand, I decided I wanted to give it a try. 

What I love most about DairyPure is their 5-Point Purity Promise. When you purchase DairyPure milk you’re giving your family not only a product that comes from cows that are fed a healthy-diet, but also has no artificial growth hormones, has been tested for antibiotics, is continuously quality tested to ensure purity and is cold-shipped from their dairy. Hearing that, I knew that this would be a product that I can feel confident feeding to my family. 

Be sure to check out Reiter Dairy to see which of your local groceries carries their products. 

 

Ham and Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole
Serves 8
In need of a quick and delicious breakfast for brunch, "Breakfast for Dinner," or something you can reheat in the morning throughout the week? This breakfast casserole is perfect for just that and can be thrown together in just 5-10 minutes.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. 16 oz diced ham, package should state that it's already fully cooked
  2. 8 oz shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  3. 8 cups frozen southern hashbrowns
  4. 4 pieces of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  5. 12 large eggs
  6. 1 cup DairyPure milk
  7. 1 teaspoon salt
  8. a pinch of ground pepper, for taste
Instructions
  1. Well grease two quiche pans or a 9x13 size casserole dish with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Using a large mixing bowl, combine ham, cheese, hashbrowns and bacon well. Add to combination to casserole dish, spreading evenly.
  4. Wash out large mixing bowl and next add eggs, DairyPure milk, salt and pepper (optional) whisking well. Pour overtop ham and hashbrowns, making sure that it is evenly spread.
  5. Cook for one hour.
Notes
  1. If you'd prefer to just make a smaller serving - cut ingredients in half and use just one quiche pan.
fitgirlnic http://fitgirlnic.com/

This is a sponsored post. All thoughts, and opinions I have expressed here are that of my own.

Lentils and Potato Tacos

IMG_3534

What is it with the beginning of the school year and illnesses? Both kids have been sick and now I seem to have caught it, so as I type this up I am “enjoying” a cup of hot alka seltzer and praying that my throat won’t feel as awful as it does now in the morning. Talk about not much of a productive past 7 days.

Anyhow – my husband is out of town, and while I had originally planned on slow-cooking some barbacoa for this Taco Tuesday, I felt it would be a waste if I had a 3lb chuck roast all to myself. Instead of spending more money at the grocery and dragging said sick child #2 out, I worked with what I got and I have to say; I was extremely pleased with the results!

IMG_3540

I was introduced to lentils via FitGirlsGuide a couple years back. I haven’t met a bean I didn’t like and I’ve used potatoes in place of meat before, so paired with pico de gallo, I can totally see why this combination can work great if you’re trying to do without meat or you’re a vegetarian. Just make sure you don’t go light on the lentils! They’re high in lean protein and a great source of potassium.

Lentils and Potato Tacos
Serves 2
Skip the meat! A delicious take on tacos using lentils and potatoes.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
40 min
Ingredients
  1. 4 6-inch corn tortillas
  2. 1 cup lentils, boiled
  3. 2 medium potatoes, diced small and cooked
  4. 3-4 tablespoons pico de gallo
  5. ½ cup shredded monterey jack cheese
  6. ¼ teaspoon fresh cilantro, thinly chopped
  7. sour cream, optional
  8. salsa, optional
Instructions
  1. Using a small pot, bring 1 cup of lentils and 4 cups of hot water to a slight boil over medium heat. Allow to cook 25-30 minutes, or until lentils seem tender. Drain and set aside.
  2. At the same time, using a large skillet - add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and set heat to medium. Add diced potatoes, making sure to stir with a spatula to prevent burning. Cook until potatoes seem crispy. Set aside.
  3. When both lentils and potatoes are ready, assemble your corn tortilla - beginning with potatoes and followed by lentils, 1 tablespoon of pico de gallo, cheese and cilantro. Top with sour cream or salsa, if desired. Repeat step with each tortilla.
fitgirlnic http://fitgirlnic.com/

Ranch-Style Cobb Salad

 

IMG_3509

If you’re like me, you’ve gone through your Pinterest feed for what feels like a gazillion times looking for some sort of “different” kind of lunch to prepare for the week. I often like to base my mid-day meals around salads or something close to, as lunch is when I like to get the majority of my greens and vegetables intake. 

With today being Labor Day, the kids being home from school and a local Arts Festival going on; I wanted to get my grocery shopping done early yesterday so that I could successfully complete all my Sunday chores today and not having some spill over into the first of the week and delay any fun or relaxation for today. I started my meal-plan planning extra early because so. (Remember… fail to plan, plan to fail!) – and while things didn’t go as planned (one child is sick), my food was still ready today so I didn’t have to worry about screwing up on my new dietary!

IMG_3513

I don’t feel like I get my share of enough egg-protein, or at least I don’t feel like I have lately. So when I opened my laptop this morning I made sure to search for a recipe that would require at least one egg or more. I can always make the staple recipe for egg salad; I could prepare it blind-folded, but I wanted something that had a little more taste to it. One where by Tuesday afternoon, I’m already sure that come Wednesday’s lunch time I will be wanting anything BUT what I’ve already got prepared. And so I ran across this recipe for a Cobb Egg Salad from Lemon Tree Dwelling that had one key ingredient that won me over – dry ranch dressing mix. I like to use my dry ranch with yogurt for a healthier take on ranch dressing for dipping some veggie sticks in. If you love ranch, you can’t really go wrong with this dressing mix.

Another great thing about egg salad is how quickly you can prep it. Sure, if you’re not much of an hard-boiled egg peeler it can take *some* time, but I promise with practice and correct technique you’ll get the knack of doing it. Afterall, it took me months but I finally got it and I can proudly say that today I peeled 6 eggs in under 10 minutes. That’s an accomplishment! The rest of the ingredients though – super easy to assemble and throw into a bowl. Almost too easy. 

IMG_3496

Ranch-Style Cobb Salad
Serves 3
If egg salad and cobb salad were to meet in an alley, and egg happened to have brought ranch with him and cobb, arugula lettuce - this would be the outcome. Enjoy this recipe with rye crackers, as a salad or on a sandwich. Perfect for both parties and for meal-prepped lunches for the week.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
22 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
22 min
Ingredients
  1. 6 large eggs, hard boiled and peeled
  2. 4 pieces cooked turkey bacon, crumbled into small pieces
  3. 4 tablespoons lite mayonnaise
  4. ½ dry ranch dressing mix
  5. ¼ cup grape tomatoes, diced
  6. ¼ cup celery, diced small
  7. ¼ teaspoon green onions, sliced thin
  8. ¼ cup chopped arugula lettuce
  9. ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
Instructions
  1. Hard-boil your eggs; bringing your pot of water and eggs to a raging boil over medium-high heat. When this has happened, turn off heat and cover pot with a lid allowing to sit for 12 minutes. Run cold water over eggs before attempting to peel. After eggs have been peeled, chop into small pieces.
  2. Using a large mixing bowl add eggs, bacon, tomatoes, arugula and cheese. Next add mayonnaise and dry ranch dressing mix, stirring gently but combining well. Serve or store in a tight-closed container for later.
Notes
  1. Original recipe can be found at Lemon Tree Dwelling (www.lemontreedwelling.com) - I added a few extra vegetables, etc of my own to their own delicious recipe.
fitgirlnic http://fitgirlnic.com/