Honey Roasted Turmeric Pepitas

turmeric pepitas cover pageThese honey roasted turmeric pepitas are the perfect combination of sweet and spicy and are loaded with the essential nutrients every endurance athlete needs but never gets enough of. Enjoy them on top of salads, soups, or by the handful when you’re on the go! 

Nuts and seeds are an excellent snack to nosh on thanks to their high contents of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins. Omega-3 is an “essential” fatty acid, meaning your body requires it for good health but isn’t capable of producing it on its own. Our only choice is to ingest it- by consuming lots of foods with Omega 3’s like these honey roasted turmeric pepitas!

In addition to being “essential” for your health, consuming plenty of omega 3 (also known as polyunsaturated fatty acid) is essential to the performance of endurance athletes. Here’s why:

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For starters, the body has a limited ability to store carbs. The average person can deplete their body’s carb reserves within two hours of moderate exercise. If you’re training for an Ironman, two hours is nothing! Luckily,  your body has a much greater capacity to store fats. These fat stores, which are often stored in your muscles and liver, can contain over 50 times more energy compared carbohydrates.

Fat tends to be the predominant choice of fuel during lower intensity workouts. When you ramp up the intensity, carbohydrates become, and remain, you body’s main fuel source until you finish your workout. Of course, the level of intensity and heart rate in which this switch happens is different for everyone. The best way to determine this is to complete a lactate threshold or VO2 max test. If you’re wondering why your coach spends SO much time telling you to stick to your nutrition plan and keep your heart rate low the first half of your race, this is precisely why. 

The moral of the story, make sure you’re eating healthy fats to fuel your 3 hour long bike ride this weekend and make this recipe! 

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The main ingredient in this snack mix, pepitas (AKA pumpkin seeds), are guaranteed to pull you out of any nut-rut you may find yourself stuck in.

Before you get to cooking, there are two things you need to know:

1. You need more pepitas in your life.

Pepitas are the richest natural source of magnesium. Why does this matter? Well, magnesium is a critical but often overlooked electrolyte. If your calves never fail cramp a few miles in or the bottom of your foot ALWAYS cramps while swimming, despite the gallons of electrolytes you’re consuming, chances are you’re not getting enough magnesium.

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Magnesium imbalances are caused by drinking too much caffeine, alcohol, and surprisingly enough, too much water. That’s right- it is possible to drink so much water (especially the day before a big race) that you flush out all of your electrolytes! (This is why you should always alternate between H2O and an electrolyte drink.)  Because sweat loss, as well as high intensity and endurance exercises also deplete magnesium levels, its important to incorporate magnesium into your everyday diet. What better way to start than with these honey roasted turmeric pepitas! 

2. You can never have too much turmeric.

Well, I’m sure its possible to consume too much turmeric (disclosure: I’m not a doctor) but as far as I’m concerned you can never cook with too much turmeric! I love adding this inflammation fighting powerhouse to just about everything I cook. Its benefits include helping the body to fight inflammation and acting as an antioxidant. As an endurance athlete I’ll take all of the help fighting fatigue and sickness I can get!

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I know you’re dying to make these, so I’ll keep the remaining commentary brief.

Please note that the recipe calls for a “heaping teaspoon” of both turmeric and curry powder. If you’re not sure what a “heaping teaspoon” is, look at the picture above. This is my way of saying a rounded teaspoon with lots of spices- don’t measure exactly. Add a little extra. I believe this is a trait I inherited from my Granny! 

I personally love making a big batch of these on Sunday night to enjoy throughout the week… assuming they last that long! I’m a Trader Joe’s die hard and have found that one bag of their raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds will get me through about two batches of these bad boys. If you haven’t checked out Trader Joe’s bulk nut aisle, stop what you’re doing and do it now! You’ll never buy bulk nuts and sees anywhere else ever again.

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I hope you enjoy these as much as I do! Comment below and let me know!

Honey Roasted Turmeric Pepitas
Yields 3
These honey roasted turmeric pepitas are the perfect combination of sweet and spicy and are loaded with the essential nutrients every endurance athlete needs but never gets enough of. Enjoy them on top of salads, soups, or by the handful when you're on the go! 
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. • 1 TBS coconut oil
  2. • 1 heaping tsp turmeric
  3. • 1 heaping tsp curry powder
  4. • 2 TBS raw honey
  5. • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  6. • 2 cups raw, unsalted, shelled pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  7. • 1 cup raw, unsalted walnut halves and pieces
Instructions
  1. • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F and line large baking sheet with parchment paper
  2. • Heat the coconut oil in the microwave (I use a large glass measuring bowl) until coconut oil begins to boil. Remove from microwave, quickly add turmeric and curry powder and stir until fragrant (reheat contents for 15 - 20 seconds in microwave if needed). Stir in honey and salt until contents are well combined.
  3. • Place pepitas and walnuts in a large bowl. Pour coconut oil mixture over nuts and fold mixture until nuts are fully coated.
  4. • In a thin layer, spread coated pepitas and walnuts on parchment lined baking sheet. Roast in the center of the oven for 10 minutes, stirring after 5 minutes.
  5. Remove nuts from oven and set aside to cool completely in a single layer (at least 15 minutes.) When cooled, break apart any clusters and transfer to a glass jar to store and enjoy!
Notes
  1. • For best results, use parchment paper to line your cookie sheet.
  2. • Coat your tablespoon measuring cup with coconut oil before measuring honey. This will allow the honey to slide right out and make cleanup easier.
  3. • Make sure nuts are spread in a thin layer across your cookie sheet before putting it in the oven. Some overlap is okay, but try to spread out and avoid thick clumps.
  4. • Pepitas and walnuts will look moist right out of the oven but will crisp when cooled.
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/

Recipes for endurance athletes

Sweet Potato Pad Thai


Sweet Potato Pad Thai title page

Sweet potatoes are one of my favorite super foods to cook. If you don’t believe me, ask my husband. In our 2+ years of marriage, there have only been a handful of times when sweet potatoes have not been included on our Sunday grocery list. Greg and I both love Pad Thai but don’t love the high levels of sodium and unhealthy ingredients used at restaurants. To make sure we could still get our Pad Thai fix, I concocted Sweet Potato Pad Thai; a healthier version of Pad Thai made with sweet potato noodles, colorful veggies doused in a creamy peanut sauce, topped with chicken for Greg and Tofu for me.

Sweet potatoes are one of my go-to’s because they provide a healthy dose of complex carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates take longer to digest, allowing them to supply the body with energy over a longer period of time. This slow process breaks complex carbs into glycogen and stored in your body’s liver and muscles to be used as fuel for exercise, which is key to fuel an endurance athlete’s body during long workouts or on race day. Sweet potatoes are also high in Vitamin A, which plays a vital role in bone growth, immune system health, and helps the skin and mucus membranes repel bacteria and viruses. If you remember one thing from this post, make sure to load up on sweet potatoes during flu season! 

Spiralized Sweet Potatoes

Other performance enhancing benefits of sweet potatoes are their anti-inflammatory and blood sugar regulating properties. Stress, too much exercise, injury, and poor food choices create inflammation within the body, which will wreck havoc on your heath and performance if not addressed properly. The best way to control inflammation is by keeping your blood sugar levels low and stable. To do this, aim to eat a full serving of sweet potatoes post work out when your glycogen levels are low.

Make a plate of Sweet Potato Pad Thai to restore depleted glycogen levels and help refuel your recovery needs so that your body is prepared to train hard for your next workout. By opting for foods like sweet potatoes instead of processed foods, white breads and avoiding anything with high fructose corn syrup, not only will you feel better, you’ll likely perform better too. 

spiralized sweet potatoes

Now that you know why you need to eat more sweet potatoes, lets talk about how to transform them into Pad Thai. If you don’t have a spiralizer, I highly recommend you invest $30 and buy one. There are so many things you can make with a spiralizer, the options are endless… but I’ll save that for another post. If you don’t have a spiralizer you can buy pre-spiralized sweet potatoes at Central Market, Target, and Tom Thumb to name a few.

Before spiralizing your sweet potato, peel it and cut the ends off. If you’re working with a giant sweet potato, I suggest cutting it in half. You’ll need a nice flat surface so the sweet potato can stick (and remain stuck to) the teeth of the spiralizer on both ends (see picture above). Otherwise you’re likely to experience a situation where your sweet potato falls off the spiralizer forcing you to chase the rolling vegetable around the counter top. If you can catch it before it rolls off and onto the floor its your lucky day! Otherwise, you may need to make an emergency grocery trip… trust me, I know from experience. That said, you won’t need to worry about this as long as you cut your sweet potato so that it has nice, flat ends and make sure it is tightly attached to your spiralizer. 

Sweet Potato Pad Thai chicken

 As mentioned above, you have the option to make this dish with chicken or tofu. Before you begin spiralizing, chopping, or preparing the peanut sauce, I recommend cutting your chicken breast and/or tofu and letting it soak in the marinade. If you’re making a chicken version AND a tofu version make sure you cut and marinade each option separately to avoid cross-contamination from the raw chicken. I recommend cooking these in separate pans, but if you insist on using only one to limit the number of dishes to clean (we often do this in my household) make sure you cook the tofu first! 

Sweet Potato Pad Thai Plate Overview

Sweet Potato Pad Thai
Serves 4
Enjoy a healthier version of Pad Thai! This dish is made with sweet potato noodles and paired with colorful veggies doused in a creamy homemade peanut sauce with your choice of chicken or tofu for added protein.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Noodles and veggies
  1. • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and spiralized
  2. • 1 cup of sliced baby carrots (shredded carrots will also work)
  3. • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  4. • 1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced
  5. • 1/4 cup low or no sodium veggie broth
  6. • 1/4 cup raw, unsalted peanuts
  7. • 1 cup cooked, unsalted edamame
  8. • 2 TBS cilantro, finely chopped
  9. • Salt and pepper to taste
Pad Thai Sauce
  1. • 2 TBS creamy peanut butter
  2. • 2 TBS sriracha
  3. • 2 TBS skim milk or unflavored almond milk
  4. • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  5. • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  6. • 1/2 TBS maple syrup
  7. • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  8. • 1/2 tsp ginger
  9. • 1/2 tsp saffron seasoning (optional)
Chicken + Marinade
  1. • 1 large chicken breast (uncooked), cut into bite size pieces
  2. • 1 TBS fish sauce
  3. • 1 TBS maple syrup
  4. • Dollop of peanut butter
  5. • I TBS sriracha drizzled on top
  6. • 1 tsp curry powder
  7. • 1 tsp ginger
Tofu + Marinade
  1. • 1 container of extra firm tofu, cut into cubes
  2. • 1 TBS fish sauce
  3. • 1 TBS maple syrup
  4. • Dollop of peanut butter
  5. • I TBS sriracha drizzled on top
  6. • 1 tsp curry powder
  7. • 1 tsp ginger
Instructions
  1. • Cut chicken breast, tofu (or both) into small, bite size pieces. Place proteins in their respective bowls, stir in marinade until completely covered and set aside. I suggest allowing protein(s) to sit in marinade 20 - 30 minutes while you prepare and cook veggies.
  2. • Peel, spiralize, and prepare veggies as needed and set aside.
  3. • In a large sauce pan, combine spiralized sweet potatoes with sliced or shredded carrots, pour in veggie broth and toss well. Cook on medium heat for 3 -4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. • Place sliced bell pepper and sliced sweet onion in sauce pan. Stir in salt and pepper and cook 5 - 7 minutes on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until veggies are tinder. (texture of sweet potato noodles should feel similar to the texture of cooked pasta.)
  5. • If cooking chicken, tofu, or both cook now. Place all contents including marinade into sauce pan and sauté until cooked (5 - 10 minutes). Set aside when done. (note: if cooking both, cook chicken and tofu separately to avoid cross contamination)
  6. • While veggies are cooking make peanut sauce by combining all ingredients into bowl and stir until creamy.
  7. • Once veggies are fork tender, stir in peanuts and edamame and cook for 1 minute.
  8. • Reduce veggies to low heat. Stir in peanut sauce and mix until veggies are completely covered and garnish with cilantro and raw peanuts.
  9. • To serve, place veggies in a bowl, stir in chicken/tofu and enjoy!
Notes
  1. • Marinade chicken and/or tofu first to maximize flavor
  2. • If cooking chicken and tofu, marinade separately and cook tofu first (if using same pan) to avoid cross contamination
  3. • Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/

 

 What’s your favorite way to cook sweet potatoes? Comment below- I’d love to hear from you! Recipes for endurance athletes

 

Homemade Basil Pesto

Homemade Basil Pesto

This homemade basil pesto is packed with wholesome and fresh ingredients and can be made in less than 5 minutes! Oh, did I mention it only contains FIVE ingredients?! Don’t believe me? See for yourself! 

Homemade Basil Pesto ingredients

Fresh basil. Shredded parmesan. Garlic cloves. Raw pine nuts. Extra Virgin Olive Oli (EVOO).  5 ingredients + 5 minutes = this delicious pesto… yes, please! 

5 ingredients + 5 minutes = this delicious pesto… yes, please! 

Simply add all ingredients to a food processor or blender, add sea salt and cracked black pepper to taste, and combine. When adding salt and pepper to taste, I suggest using a 1:2 salt to pepper ratio; use twice as much pepper as salt. 

There are limitless options for what you can pair this pesto with! A few of my favorites are to mix it into cooked quinoa, mix into noodles (regular noodles, zoodles, sweet potato noodles, etc.), spread on sandwiches, put a dollop inside a stuffed sweet potato, toss it with mixed veggies, smear on top of salmon before baking, stuff it in chicken breasts, mix in with mashed potatoes, sprinkle on salad… the list goes on and on! 

Homemade Basil Pesto

I’d love to hear how you put this recipe to use! Comment below to let me know! 

Homemade Basil Pesto
Yields 1
This homemade basil pesto is packed with wholesome and fresh ingredients and can be made in less than 5 minutes!
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Prep Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Ingredients
  1. • 4 oz. fresh basil
  2. • 4 garlic cloves
  3. • 1/4 cup shredded parmesan
  4. • 3 TBS raw pine nuts
  5. • 1/4 cup + 1 TBS EVOO
  6. • Sea Salt and Cracked Black Pepper to taste (1:2 ratio)
Instructions
  1. • Pull basil leaves off the stems and add into a food processor or blender and add garlic cloves, shredded parmesan, pine nuts, and EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
  2. • Sprinkle with sea salt and cracked black pepper using a 1:2 ratio with salt and pepper; use twice as much pepper as salt
  3. • Blend contents together in food processor or blender until well blended. Use a spatula to scrape the sides down to ensure all ingredients are completely combined.
  4. • Serve and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 2 weeks. EVOO may separate in fridge- this is completely normal! Simply stir contents before reusing to bring your pesto back to life!
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/

Fabulous recipes by Mandi at godsavethequinoa.com

Avocado Tuna Salad

Avocado Tuna Salad

Step up your salad game by making this quick and easy Avocado Tuna Salad. Those who are lucky enough to enjoy this gem of a recipe will never know the mayonnaise has been replaced with an avocado! Subbing an avocado for mayonnaise is a healthier choice not only because it contributes to your healthy omega-3 fatty acid servings for the day, it also adds flavor and a creamy mayonnaise-like texture. The celery, apple, and pecan pieces provide a nice crunch. The Spicy Roasted Chickpeas and Dijon Mustard give it a little extra kick. While the fresh pomegranate seeds provide a refreshing fruitful taste. Mix them all together and you’ve got yourself one heck of a meal! 

Just look at all of those delicious ingredients! YUM!

Avocado Tuna Salad Ingredients

You can add normal chickpeas if you want, but I prefer to roast my chickpeas with spicy seasonings to add some extra kick when making this recipe.  I suggest following my Spicy Roasted Chickpea recipe. It’s one of my favorites and only takes 15 minutes. When I make this recipe I season my chickpeas, throw them in the oven on broil for 15 minutes, and chop all of the veggies while they’re cooking. The timing really does work out nicely! 

Avocado Tuna Salad

Once your chickpeas are done roasting (you can even roast them a few hours or a day before you’re ready to use them if you want to speed things up) the rest of this recipe is a piece of cake! All you have to do is combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix well. Seriously… it’s that easy! 

One tip: make sure you use a very ripe avocado. Reach for a softer avocado because it will be easier to mix in. The softer the avocado the creamier your tuna salad will taste. Just make sure your avocado isn’t so soft that it has become rotten. When picking your avocado look for a dark greenish brown fruit. Once you’ve found one remove the stem from the top. If the color beneath the stem is bright green you’re good to go. If you see a white-ish green or brown color put it back and try again. 

Avocado Tuna Salad (12 of 18)

Growing up, my mom always served tuna salad on bread or with crackers. Now that I am older and a little more health conscious, I prefer to enjoy my Avocado Tuna Salad with endive leaves. I love endives because they provide the same crunch like you would get from a chip and are packed full of nutrients, such as vitamins A and K, folate, and fiber. Forewarning, they are a tad bitter at first bite and might take a little getting used to. Just be sure to wash them before eating- this should help eliminate some of the bitterness. 

Avocado Tuna Salad- Endive Leaves

If you elect to use endives, one or two endive stems should do the trick for this recipe. I usually buy mine at Trader Joe’s. They have a great 3-pack of “Red and White Belgian Endives” Stems, which are perfect for leftovers. They are usually located in the sam refrigerated area with all of the lettuce. If you’re not a loyal Trader Joe’s shopper like myself, you should be able to find these at your local grocery store in the same vicinity as the lettuce. You should store your endives in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use them. 

Before cutting your endives rinse them with lukewarm water, stem side down (the water will help the leafy tops spread apart) and pat dry with a paper towel. Place endive stems on a cutting board and slice through the thick end of the stem, as pictured below. Next, simply peel the leaves apart and voila! your endives are ready to be eaten! 

Simply scoop, eat, and enjoy! 

Avocado Tuna Salad with endive scoop

Avocado Tuna Salad
Serves 4
Enjoy this creamy tuna salad made with avocado, spicy roasted chickpeas, crunchy celery, apple pieces, pecans, and juicy pomegranate seeds over endive leaves.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Ingredients
  1. • 1 (15 oz) can Albacore Tuna in water no salt, drained
  2. • 1 pink lady apple, chopped
  3. • 3 celery sticks, chopped
  4. • 1/4 cup of raw pecans, chopped
  5. • 1/2 cup fresh pomegranate seeds
  6. • 1/4 cup spicy Dijon Mustard
  7. • 1 can chickpeas, spicy roasted
  8. • 1 ripe avocado, cubed.
  9. • Endive leaves for serving (optional)
Instructions
  1. • Roast your chickpeas if you have not done so already. (I suggest using my Spicy Roasted Chickpea recipe- it only takes 15 minutes!)
  2. • While chickpeas are roasting chop apple, celery sticks, and pecans and set aside.
  3. • De-seed pomegranate and set seeds aside.
  4. • Open canned tuna, drain water, and scoop tuna into a large mixing bowl
  5. • Add chopped apples, celery, pecans and pomegranate seeds in mixing bowl with tuna and combine. Mix in spicy roasted chickpeas when done cooking.
  6. • Pour spicy Dijon Mustard over contents and mix until all ingredients well combined.
  7. • Cut avocado into small cubes. Add cubed avocado into tuna and mix until avocado cubes are squished and all ingredients are well combined.
  8. • Wash and cut endive leaves. Scoop Avocado Tuna Salad with endive leaves, eat, and enjoy!
Notes
  1. • If using Endive Leaves buy at least 2 Endive Stems. Store Endives in refrigerator until ready to use. Store left over endive leaves in an airtight container or zip lock baggie in the refridgerator.
  2. • Store left over Avocado Tuna Salad in refrigerator in an airtight container for up to three days. Stir Avocado Tuna Salad with a spoon before re-serving.
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/
Fabulous recipes by Mandi at godsavethequinoa.com

 

 

Skinny Pumpkin Spice Granola

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This skinny pumpkin spice granola tastes like fall and is a perfect addition to any dish! I promise this recipe will quickly become one of your go-to “pumpkin spice” favorites. I love adding this to greek yogurt, ice cream, cereal, or eating it alone as a snack. The options are endless! 

I prefer making homemade granola as opposed to buying the store bought stuff. Not only do you get alot more bang for your buck but you can also control the ingredients (especially the sugars) you’re putting into it.

skinny pumpkin spice granola

If you’ve ever read the ingredients list on the package of your favorite store bought granola you’ll likely see a list of various items such as cane syrup, brown rice syrup, corn syrup, cane sugar, canola oil, vegetable oil, fructose, natural and articfical flavoring, and soy lecithin to name a few. To translate… sugar, sugar, and more sugar! Ingredients on food labels are listed by quantity from highest to lowest. Anytime you see sugary ingredients like the ones listed above ahead of “real” ingredients you should think twice before buying!  Store bought granola may taste delicious but you are much better off making your own. 

Don’t believe me? I bet you’ll have a different opinion after making this Skinny Pumpkin Spice Granola. 

skinny pumpkin spice granola

I love this recipe because its packed full of healthy grains, heart healthy fats, and natural sugars. Not to mention its delicious and super easy to make! You’ll be out of the kitchen, start to finish, in about 35 minutes with only a few dishes to wash! 

skinny pumpkin spice granola ingredientsYou’ll start by toasting your old fashioned rolled oats and uncooked quinoa. To do this simply spread the oats and quinoa across a parchment lined baking sheet and place in the oven at 325 degrees F for 10 minutes. Note: There is no need to spray the baking sheet or parchment paper with cooking spray.  

Skinny pumpkin spice granola ingredients

After 10 minutes remove toasted quinoa and old fashioned rolled oats from oven and pour into a large bowl along with the rest of your dry ingredients which include flaxseed meal, chia seeds, slivered almonds, walnut pieces, and pumpkin seeds. If you’re not a fan of almonds, walnuts, or pumpkin seeds you can swap them out for a nut or seed that better suits your preferance. I’ve personally made this recipe using various combinations of sunflower seeds, pecans, cashews, and whole almonds and the result is delicious every time! Just make sure you stay true to the measurements in the recipe.

skinny pumpkin spice granolaStir all of your dry ingredients together and reduce the oven to 300 degrees F. 

In a microwave safe bowl combine your wet ingredients: maple syrup, honey, pumpkin puree, coconut oil, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, cinnamon, a dash of salt, and vanilla extract. Mix well and microwave for one minute. Your wet ingredient mixture should be thick and gooey. Warning- it will smell delicious! Since there are no raw eggs its okay to sneak a taste or two! 

Give your wet ingredients one more stir and pour over dry ingredients. Use a spatula to scrape the sides of the wet ingredients bowl to make sure you’re able to transfer as much as possible to your dry ingredients.

skinny pumpkin spice granola ingredients

Now its time to combine your wet and dry ingredients. Its important to make sure that all dry ingredients are evenly coated. I find best results come from applying a folding technique using a spatula to combine. 

Next, use your spatula to transfer all ingredients to a parchment lined baking sheet. Again, do not spray parchment paper or baking sheet with cooking spray. 

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Make sure ingredients are tighly packed and evenly spread across the baking sheet. Place the goods in a 300 degree F oven for 20 – 22 minutes. Toss ingredients about 10 minutes in and sprinkle dried cranberries over the top. Bake for 10 – 12 more minutes until granola is golden brown. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle dark chocolate chips (optional) across cooked granola. Its important to do this as soon as you remove the granola from the oven to enable the dark choclate chips to melt and spread across granola before it cools. 

skinny pumpkin spice granola

I know this will take alot of willpower, but let granola cool completely before digging in. Once granola has competely cooled you’re free to break granola into smaller chunks as desired and remove from the parchment paper lined baking sheet. 

skinny pumpkin spice granolaThere are a couple of options for how to store your granola. You can store this yummy treat in an airtight container (mason jar, tupperware, etc.) on your countertop or pantry or in the freezer. Granola will keep for at least one month if stored on your countertop and at least three months in your freezer. I’ve stored ganola for up to six months in the freezer. If storing granola in the freezer make sure you’re using a sturdy, well sealed container to avoid freezer burn. 

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Skinny Pumpkin Spice Granola
Yields 4
This recipe will become one of your go-to "pumpkin spice" favorites. This skinny pumpkin spice granola tastes like fall and is a perfect addition to any dish!
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. • 1/4 cup uncooked quinoa
  2. • 1.5 cups of old fashioned rolled oats
  3. • 1/4 cup flaxseed meal
  4. • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  5. • 1/4 cup raw, unsalted slivered almonds
  6. • 1/2 cup raw, unsalted walnuts halves & pieces
  7. • 1/4 cup raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds
  8. • 1/4 cup + 1 tsp real maple syrup
  9. • 2 tsp honey
  10. • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree
  11. • 2 tsp coconut oil
  12. • 1 TBS pumpkin pie spice
  13. • 1 TBS nutmeg
  14. • 1 TBS cinnamon
  15. • Dash of salt
  16. • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  17. • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  18. • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips (optional)
Instructions
  1. • Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F
  2. • Spread uncooked quinoa and old fashioned rolled oats on a baking sheet with parchment paper & place in the oven to toast for 10 minutes (do NOT spray any cooking spray on the parchment paper)
  3. • Remove quinoa and old fashioned rolled oats from oven and pour into a large bowl along with flaxseed meal, chia seeds, slivered almonds, walnut pieces, and pumpkin seeds. Stir to combine. These are your dry ingredients.
  4. • Reduce oven heat to 300 degrees F
  5. • In a microwave safe bowl combine maple syrup, honey, pumpkin puree, coconut oil, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla extract. These are your wet ingredients.
  6. • Mix wet ingredients well and heat in microwave for 1 minute.
  7. • Stir wet ingredients one more time and pour over dry ingredients using a spatula to combine until dry ingredients are completely coated.
  8. • Spread combined ingredients on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (again, do NOT spray any cooking spray on parchment paper). Pack ingredients tightly by pressing down on them with a spatula to form a thin, evenly dispersed layer.
  9. • Place baking sheet in 300 degree F oven for 20 - 22 minutes. Toss ingredients with a spatula about halfway through and sprinkle dried cranberries on top.
  10. When golden, remove from oven and sprinkle dark chocolate chips (optional) on top. Let ingredients cool completely and break larger chunks into smaller pieces as desired and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Store in an air-tight container on counter-top or freezer. Granola will keep for at least one month when stored on counter and at least three months when stored in freezer.
  2. Use any combination of nuts and seeds (cashews, sunflower seeds, whole almonds, pecans, etc.) as preferred. For best results keep measurements listed above true.
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/
Let me know what you think! 

Fabulous recipes by Mandi at godsavethequinoa.com

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties with Basil Avocado Spread

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties with Basil Avocado SpreadIf you don’t have dinner plans for tonight I’ve got you covered! My sweet potato quinoa patty recipe is always a big hit. I mean who doesn’t love good hearty veggie burger made with sweet potatoes and quinoa, smothered in a creamy basil avocado spread, topped with fresh pomegranate seeds and served over a fresh bed of lettuce? I know not everyone agrees with the fact that veggie burgers > hamburgers (just ask my husband). One thing you will agree with is how much you love these sweet potato quinoa patties! 

This recipe makes quite a few patties and (depending on how hungry you are or how big your family is) you’re pretty much guaranteed to have leftovers! Okay….this post is officially making me hungry! 

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties

In all seriousness, my favorite food combination right now is….wait for it…. sweet potatoes, avocados, and pomegranate seeds. I know… its kind of random and sounds totally gross, but trust me on this one. You will not regret making this dish or any others that have to do with sweet potatoes, avocado, and pomegranate seeds for that matter! I can’t wait to post all of my delicious creations for you to try! 

Basil Avocado Spread

When you look at the recipe for the first time, these might seem daunting to make. Truth be told, they’re actually pretty simple. Aside from containing yourself from eating them before they’re served, the most difficult task is cooking the quinoa, the sweet potatoes, and sauteeing the onions. 

If you break this recipe into three parts you’ll see what I mean: 

Step 1: Prepare ingredients for quinoa patties. Ingredients include cooked quinoa, cooked sweet potatoes, and sauteed onions.

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties ingredientsYou’ll need 2 cups of cooked quinoa. (That’s 1 cup of dry quinoa mixed with two cups of water). If you need to brush up on how to make quinoa check out my post on how to cook the perfect quinoa. When quinoa is cooked, scoop into a bowl and set aside.

Cook your sweet potatoes by rinsing then with water, brushing them with EVOO, and piercing the with a fork. (Note: I cooked my sweet potatoes in the microwave to speed things up). Wrap each sweet potato in a paper towel. Heat potatoes in microwave on high for 5 minutes. Flip potatoes to other side and heat for 3 more minutes or until they’re soft to the touch. They should be very soft and very hot so be careful! 

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties (2 of 17)

Scoop out sweet potato insides into the bowl with the quinoa. Lastly, you’ll need to saute your onion. Heat EVOO in a sauté pan and stir in some minced garlic. Add your diced onions, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and thyme and sauté until onions become translucent.  then place onions in bowl with quinoa and sweet potatoes.

Lastly, you’ll need to saute your onion. Heat EVOO in a sauté pan and stir in some minced garlic. Add your diced onions, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and thyme and sauté until onions become translucent.  then place onions in bowl with quinoa and sweet potatoes.

Add sauteed onions to the bowl with quinoa and sweet potatoes. Throw in some fresh basil, mix together and baby, you’re in business! 

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties

Step 2: Shape and bake your quinoa patties. Use your hands to shape patty mixture into balls. Aim for a size slightly larger than golf ball size. IMPORTANT!!! Make sure they are very tightly packed so they don’t fall apart in the skillet! 

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties (5 of 17)

Use coconut oil to cook your patties in a cast iron skillet. Make sure your skillet is nice and hot before you put your patties in. Place 3 – 4 patty balls in a skillet at one time and listen to them sizzle! Use a spatula to VERY VERY GENTLY press the top of each patty. Do NOT attempt to flatten the patties. If you press too hard the patties will fall into pieces and you will end up eating sweet potato quinoa scramble instead of these delicious sweet potato quinoa patties. This has happened to me and I can attest that the sweet potato quinoa stir-fry is also delicious. 🙂 You shouldn’t be afraid of messing these up because either way, the outcome will taste fantastic! 

Cook patties for about 3 minutes on each side. Add another 1 – 2 tablespoons of coconut oil to cast iron skillet between batches for best results. 

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties (7 of 17)

Step 3: Make the Basil Avocado Spread. Basil? Check! Avocado? Check! Greek Yogurt? Check! Now that the gang’s all here, throw them in the food processor. Sprinkle salt, pepper, and paprika over the contents and grind away! In about 30 – 45 seconds your delicious creamy basil avocado spread will be your for the tasting! (Add salt and pepper until your taste buds are satisfied!) 

Basil Avocado Spread 2

DINNER IS SERVED! 

Arrange your sweet potato quinoa patties over a bed of leafy green lettuce (my favorite is the baby spinach and kale mix) drizzle with basil avocado spread, top with fresh pomegranate seeds and goat cheese then dig in! 

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties (17 of 17)

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties (6 of 17)

Wondering how to use those leftovers? These sweet potato quinoa patties are delicious in a pita or severed in a whole wheat hamburger bun. Have an idea of your own? Leave a comment and let me know! I’d love to hear from you! 

Sweet Potato Quinoa Patties with Basil Avocado Spread
Yields 10
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Prep Time
25 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
25 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  2. • Insides of 2 cooked sweet potatoes
  3. • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  4. • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  5. • 1 TBS fresh thyme, finely chopped
  6. • 1 TBS EVOO
  7. • Salt and pepper
  8. • Coconut oil for cooking patties
  9. • 1/4 cup + 1 cup fresh basil leaves, divided
  10. • 1 large avocado
  11. • 2 TBS Greek Yogurt
  12. • 1 TBS paprika
  13. • Leafy green lettuce (I prefer kale and spinach mixture)
  14. • Feta cheese
  15. • Pomegranate seeds
Instructions
  1. • Prepare 2 cups of cooked quinoa (1 cup dry quinoa and 2 cups of water). Scoop cooked quinoa into a bowl and set aside.
  2. • Rinse sweet potatoes with water. Brush sweet potatoes with EVOO, pierce with a fork, and wrap each sweet potato in a paper towel. Heat in microwave on high for 5 minutes. Flip potatoes to other side and heat for 3 more minutes or until sweet potatoes are soft to the touch.
  3. • Cut sweet potatoes in half, scoop insides out and place in bowl with cooked quinoa.
  4. • Heat EVOO in a sauté pan. Stir in minced garlic cloves. When fragrant, stir in diced onions salt, pepper, and thyme. Sauté until onions become translucent then place onions in bowl with quinoa and sweet potatoes.
  5. • While contents in bowl cool, finely chop 1/4 cup basil leaves and stir in to mixture. Use hands to completely combine all ingredients.
  6. • When combined, pack mixture together in balls (slightly larger than golf ball size). Make sure ingredients are well packed. This will help ensure your patties stay in one piece.
  7. • Heat 1-2 TBS of coconut oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
  8. • Place 3 - 4 sweet potato quinoa balls in skillet. Using a spatula, very gently press down on the top of each ball to flatten. (NOTE: Do not attempt to completely flatten the patty).
  9. • Cook patties for about 3 minutes on each side until a crispy brown crust begins to form and set aside. (Add 1-2 TBS coconut oil to cast iron skillet each time you start a new "batch" of patties.)
  10. • While patties cool, prepare Basil Avocado spread by peeling and placing 1 ripe avocado, 1 cup of fresh basil leaves, and 2 TBS of Greek yogurt in a food processor. Add 1 TBS paprika and salt and pepper to taste. Combine until reaching desired consistency.
  11. • Serve patties over a bed of leafy green lettuce. Place a dollop of basil avocado spread on each patty. Top with pomegranate seeds and feta, serve and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Make sure to pack patties very tightly before cooking.
  2. Add an additional 1 -2 TBS of coconut oil to cast iron skillet after each round of patties. Let coconut oil heat up before placing patties in cast iron skillet. For best results cook 3 - 4 patties at same time. Depending on size of balls, patties might take longer to cook. Do not cook patties for more than 6 minutes on each side.
  3. Store leftover patties and basil avocado spread in separate airtight containers. Contents should keep for up to 5 days. Stir basil avocado spread before re-serving to bring back color.
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/
Fabulous recipes by Mandi at godsavethequinoa.com

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

These no-effort, spicy roasted chickpeas are one snack you will never feel guilty about munching on! This spicy roasted chickpea recipe has quickly become one of my new go-to’s. I can’t remember the last grocery list I made that didn’t have at least two cans of  “chickpeas” on it. One of the reasons I love them so much is because they go with just about anything! Seriously, you can enjoy these delicious little nuggets a la carte, on top of a salad, over soups, in pastas, combined with trail mix… the options are truly limitless!  

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

Start by lining a cookie sheet with foil and turning your oven on broil. Next, open your canned chickpeas and drain. Try and get all of the liquid out- the drier your chickpeas are, the better! Pat them dry with a paper towel or dish cloth if needed and place in a large bowl. Personally, I like to use a bowl with a lid that seals so I can shake everything together. I have some really awesome kitchenaid prep bowls that are PERFECT for this recipe! If you don’t have a bowl with a lid, don’t worry! You can always rely on a trusty tupperware container! Just make sure there’s enough room for everything to shake around! 

Pour one tablespoon of olive oil over your chickpeas followed by lemon juice and laundry list of spices: cumin, smoked paprika, chili powder OR use chipotle peppers for some extra heat, garlic powder, lemon pepper, and cardamom. Put the lid on your bowl and shake away! You’ll want to shake until chickpeas are completely coated in olive oil, lemon juice, and spices. (Bet you didn’t think you’d get a workout in when making these!) 

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

Once chickpeas are completely coated, transfer all of the contents in your bowl onto a baking sheet. You’ll probably need to use a spatula to scrape the excess spices and oil off the sides of your bowl and onto your chickpeas. Once your bowl has been emptied use your spatula to evenly spread your chickpeas. You do not want them to overlap each other! 

Sprinkle chickpeas with a dash or two (or three if you’re feeling super spicy) and place in the oven. Let your new favorite snack broil for 10 minutes. I recommend you place your cookie sheet in the center of the middle rack for best results! 

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

After 10 minutes open your oven to remove your cookie sheet and toss your chickpeas. I usually flip and rotate them around, mainly to prevent them from sticking to the foil and having one side be more crispy than the other. Once you’ve successfully tossed the chickpeas, put them back in the oven. I know… it’s a lot to ask, but you’ll have to wait for 5 more minutes until these bad boys are binge worthy!

Once the timer goes off remove them from the oven and prepare your taste buds for your new favorite snack! Make sure you let them cool so you don’t burn yourself! 

I hope you enjoy these as much as I do! 🙂 

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas
Serves 2
These no-effort, spicy roasted chickpeas are one snack you will never feel guilty about munching on! Simply toss in olive oil, lemon juice, and assortment of spices, pop in the oven and enjoy!
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Prep Time
3 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
3 min
Cook Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. • 1 (15 oz) can of Chickpeas, drained
  2. • 1 TBS EVOO
  3. • 1 TBS lemon juice
  4. • 1 TBS Smoked Paprika
  5. • 2 TBS Chili Powder OR if you want your chickpeas to be REALLY spicy use 1 TBS of Chipotle Peppers
  6. • 2 TBS Cumin
  7. • 1 TBS Garlic Powder
  8. • 1 TBS Lemon Pepper
  9. • 1 tsp Cardamom
  10. • Dash of Cayenne for extra spice
Instructions
  1. • Line a small cookie sheet with foil and place oven on broil
  2. • Drain chickpeas and place in a bowl or bag
  3. • Add Olive Oil, Lemon Juice, and all Spices to your drained chickpeas and mix well so that chickpeas are fully coated.
  4. • Use a spatula to spread spiced chickpeas across foil lined baking sheet (scrape sides of bowl to transfer excess spices as needed).
  5. • Sprinkle cayenne on top of chickpeas for some added spice and place baking sheet on the middle rack of oven. Broil for 10 minutes.
  6. • After 10 minutes, use your spatula to toss and rotate chickpeas and let broil for 5 more minutes
  7. • When chickpeas are crispy, remove from oven to let cool and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Enjoy these spicy roasted chickpeas as a snack or mixed in with your favorite salad!
  2. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/
 Fabulous recipes by Mandi at godsavethequinoa.com

Eggplant Meatballs

Eggplant Meatball Recipe

Add a healthy spin on your favorite Italian dish by using hearty eggplant in lieu of meat to make these delicious, flavorful “meatballs”. If you are not regularly eating eggplants, you should consider doing so. This is one vegetable that has no shortage of health benefits and this eggplant meatball recipe is the perfect place to start!

 

Eggplant Meatballs

Eggplants contain many different vitamins such as Vitamin C, Folate, B Vitamins, and Vitamin A, to name a few. These vitamins are important because they help improve your body’s overall health, boost your immune system, and can even help improve resistance to various diseases. You’ll also find Phosphorous, Calcium, Magnesium, and Potassium in eggplants. These minerals are known to help prevent arthritis, osteoporosis, and heart disease. Last but not least, eggplants are an excellent source of Dietary Fiber. Consuming foods with Dietary Fibers are good for you because they help you feel full after a meal, keep your digestive system working properly and protect against colon cancer. At 35 calories per cup, eggplants are one veggie you can’t help but love! 

 

Eggplant Meatballs

True story- when I first made these my husband walking into the kitchen and asked, “why are you making meatballs”. For those of you who are not aware, I do not eat meat. That being said, I do eat fish (there’s no way I could stay away from sushi) and I do cook meat, but only for others to enjoy.

When I told him what I was making, eggplant meatballs over my favorite zucchini noodle recipehe seemed a little confused. He was taken aback by the fact that I was using eggplants to make “meatballs” and remained skeptical, wondering how a veggie-on-veggie dish was going to fill him up.  

Eggplant Meatballs

I have to be honest, it did take a little bit of convincing him that  “no, these will not taste like rubber”, “yes, you will like them”, and “no, I’m not making you eat tofu”. Whether he believed me or not, I guess I will never know. He was a trooper and helped me roll the steamy eggplant concoction sitting in my food processor into the delicious “meatballs” pictured below. 

Eggplant Meatballs

Once your “meatballs” are arranged on a cookie sheet, pop them in the oven for 20 – 30 minutes. As these cook, they should change color and turn a darker shade of brown and the outer shell should become firm, but not burned. If you can stick a fork through them while they’re still in the oven, let them cook a little bit longer. You should expect the very bottom of your meatballs to be darker and crispier than the tops. Don’t worry- this is perfectly normal! The non-stick cooking spray you sprayed on your foil lined cookie sheet is the culprit. 

Eggplant Meatballs

Personally, I love serving these over zucchini noodles. My Favorite Zucchini Noodle Recipe is perfectly timed with how long it will take these “meatballs” to cook in the oven. Start cooking your zoodles immediately after you put your “meatballs” in the oven to avoid waiting around or snacking before dinner. This recipe is posted on my blog.

If you want to mix it up a little and incorporate these “meatballs” into other dishes throughout the week, I also enjoy eating these with whole wheat pasta (any kind) or over a dark leafy green salad with fresh tomatoes and quinoa. I’d love to hear what types of dishes you paired your eggplant meatballs with!

Eggplant Meatballs
Yields 25
Add a healthy spin on your favorite Italian dish by using hearty eggplant in lieu of meat to make these delicious and flavorful "meatballs".
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. • 1 TBSP EVOO, divided
  2. • 1/4 cup water
  3. • 1 (1 pound) eggplant, unpeeled cut into 1 inch cubes
  4. • 1 tsp salt
  5. • 1 tsp black pepper
  6. • 1 TBS paprika
  7. • 1 medium red onion, diced
  8. • 2 cloves of minced garlic
  9. • 1 can of cannellini beans, drained
  10. • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  11. • 1 cup of panko bread crumbs
  12. • 1 tsp red chili flakes
Instructions
  1. • Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a cookie sheet with foil, spray with non-cook spray and set aside.
  2. • Cut eggplant into one inch cubes, pressing out excess water with a paper towel.
  3. • Heat 1/2 TBS EVOO in a non-stick skillet on medium heat. When heated, add eggplant cubes and 1/4 cup of water. Immediately season eggplant cubes with salt, pepper, and paprika. Stir ingredients occasionally for 10 - 15 minutes, until eggplant is tender. (You should be able to cut an eggplant cube in half with your spatula) When ready, transfer cooked eggplant cubes to a food processor.
  4. • Add the remaining 1/2 TBS EVOO to the skillet followed by diced onions and minced garlic. Cook until onions are translucent, about 3-5 minutes, then combine with cooked eggplant cubes in food processor.
  5. • Add drained cannellini beans and chopped parsley to food processor and pulse until contents are well combined and chopped. Stir contents with a spatula between pulses as needed. Ingredients should be chopped, not pureed.
  6. • Transfer ingredients from the food processor into a bowl. Stir in panko breadcrumbs and red chili flakes until well combined. Add salt for taste.
  7. • Roll into golf-ball sized meatballs and distribute evenly on foil lined cookie sheet.
  8. • Bake for 20 - 30 minutes until meatballs are browned and firm when poking with a fork.
  9. • Remove from oven, serve, and enjoy!
Notes
  1. • Serve with whole wheat pasta or zucchini noodles.
  2. • Drizzle fresh marinara or basil pesto on top for delicious results.
  3. • Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/
Fabulous recipes by Mandi at godsavethequinoa.com

My Favorite Zucchini Noodle Recipe

My Favorite Zucchini Noodle Recipe

Everyone has their favorite “go-to” recipes when they’re not quite sure what to make. Today I’m going to share one of mine. My Favorite Zucchini Noodle Recipe can be made in less than 20 minutes and served with any kind of fish or meat. 

I feel like I say this a lot, but this recipe is SUPER easy to make. If you’re just starting to learn how to cook, this is the recipe for you! After making this a couple of times, you won’t even need to look at the recipe, I promise! 

If you don’t have a spiralizer, go and get one… NOW! A Spiralizer is an excellent tool to have in your kitchen… and an inexpensive one as well! If you do a little searching (gotta love Amazon Prime) you should be able to find a great spiralizer for about $40 or less. I absolutely LOVE using my spiralizer and can’t wait to share all of my spiraled creations with you! For those of you who were wondering, these Zucchini Noodles, or “zoodles”, were the first thing I made when I got mine! 

My Favorite Zucchini Noodle Recipe

I always keep the “key” ingredients of sun dried tomatoes, basil pesto, lemon juice, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper fully stocked so I can whip this up when I’m not quite sure “what to make to go with XYZ”. These Zucchini Noodles are the perfect base for any type of fish, chicken, meatball, veggie meatball, etc. The options are endless, and this is why its one of my favorites! 

Simply spiralize your unpeeled zucchinis. NOTE: I like to bad the excess water out of mu zoodles by wrapping them in a paper towel before cooking. This will prevent excess water/juices from collecting in your skillet.  

Heat EVOO in a skillet and add in your zoodles. Season zoodles with salt, pepper, paprika, and lemon juice and cook for about 5-7 minutes on medium low heat. When zoodles begin to become soft and translucent add in your sun dried tomatoes and basil pesto. Stir on low heat for a few minutes until everything (especially basil pesto) is well combined. 

When ready, remove from heat, top with fish, meat, or veggie meatball of your choice and voila, dinner is served! Now sit back, relax, and enjoy! 

My Favorite Zucchini Noodle Recipe

 

My Favorite Zucchini Noodle Recipe
Serves 2
My Favorite Zucchini Noodle Recipe isn't only easy. This simple recipe can be made in less than 20 minutes and served with any kind of fish or meat.
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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. • 3 medium zucchinis, spirlalized
  2. • 1/2 TBS EVOO
  3. • 1.5 TBS Fresh lemon juice
  4. • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  5. • Salt and pepper to taste
  6. • 1/4 cup sundried tomatoes
  7. • 2 TBS homemade basil pesto
Instructions
  1. • In a large non-stick skillet heat EVOO over medium heat. Add spiralized zucchinis to skillet, stirring so that zoodles are evenly coated with EVOO.
  2. • Season zoodles with fresh lemon juice, red pepper flakes, salt and peper and let simmer on
  3. medium-low heat for about 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. • When zoodles become translucent reduce to low heat and stir in sundried tomatoes and basil pesto. Continue to stir until basil pesto is well combined then remove from heat, top with your favorite meat or fish and enjoy!
Notes
  1. After spiralizing zoodles, wrap them in a paper towel to absorb excess water before cooking.
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/

Fabulous recipes by Mandi at godsavethequinoa.com

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins

Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins Title Page_GSQ

Hello! I hope you’re excited about this Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffin Recipe! I sure am!

I know it’s been FOREVER since I last posted! You see, I’ve been a little busy lately. Since my last post in April I’ve finished two half marathons, two triathlons, planned a wedding, bought a house, started a new job at work, went on my bachelorette party in Mexico, moved into the house we bought, GOT MARRIED, went on my honeymoon to Costa Rica, traveled all over Texas to celebrate our first holiday season as newly weds with friends and family, and finished moving into the house we bought. It feels good to FINALLY have free time again!

Don’t worry, during all of the madness I continued to cook and come up with new recipes. Let’s be honest, there was no way to keep me from using my big new kitchen! My recipe book is full of new creations and I cannot wait to share them with you! Before I share this delicious and very healthy Greek Yogurt Banana Muffin Recipe without, I would be remiss if I didn’t share some of my favorite wedding photos! THANK YOU to the wonderful Beth McElhannon Photography for capturing all of these perfect moments! 

Such fun memories!

Ok, I’ll stop fantasizing about the best day ever and share this recipe with you! 

First of all, this recipe is SUPER easy to make. In fact, you probably have most of the ingredients laying around your house! I love this recipe because all of the ingredients are natural and wholesome. Because there is no oil, flour, or butter in these muffins you actually feel good after eating one of these bad boys! 

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins- ingredients

The batter is made from oats, greek yogurt, and “old” bananas. Just because a banana looks black, bruised, and feels extra soft does NOT mean you should throw it out! In fact, you should wait until your bananas show these characteristics before making this recipe. In my opinion, the older the banana, the better. While this isn’t 100% necessary, I highly recommend it (as long as your banana is not rotten). On a side note, you should not use green or unripened bananas to make this recipe. The batter just won’t be the same. 

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins- Oats and Bananas

VERY IMPORTANT! If you don’t read anything else in this post, please read this paragraph. The lack of oil in these muffins WILL cause them to stick to paper muffin liners. I learned this the hard way after my first attempt making these. I basically had to perform surgery to remove the paper liners from the sides of the muffins before eating them. YOU MUST USE FOIL MUFFIN LINERS!!! I use the Reynolds Foil Baking Cups. YES- you should remove the paper liners! These are only used to prevent the liners from sticking together in their package. You should also grease the muffin pan, as well as the insides of the liners with non-stick cooking spray.

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins Batter

These muffins take a mere 10 minutes to prep. Simply pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees. Spray your muffin pan and the insides of your cupcake liners with non-stick cooking spray. In a large mixing bowl or kitchen aid combine oats, bananas, greek yogurt, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and eggs. Mix until well combined then stir in in dark chocolate chips, pecan pieces, and honey. Mix on medium-high for a few seconds until well combined. Fun fact, my sweet grandmother picked and shelled these pecans herself! They are so tasty and I love having them around the house to use in my recipes!

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins Batter

Use a large spoon (or my personal favorite, an ice cram scoop) to fill each foil lined muffin pan about 3/4 full. Top with a few dark chocolate chips (optional) and pop them in the oven. My best results came from baking these for 15-20 minutes on the middle rack. You should remove these delicious bites from the oven once a tooth-pick comes out clean and muffins are a dreamy golden brown.

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins

I know you will be DYING to dig in, but let them cool for about 10 minutes before taking that first bite. Let the countdown begin.

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins

Congratulations! After the longest 10 minutes of your life has passed, you’re free to eat up!

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins

You can eat these for dessert, a snack, or a quick on-the-go breakfast. My {new} husband, Greg, loves to eat these before long triathlon training sessions. Sometimes he spreads peanut butter across the top, which is delicious if I do say so myself.

If you’re not a fan of dark chocolate or pecans, you can certainly use milk chocolate chips, walnuts, almond slivers, or cashews! The sky is the limit!

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins

Skinny Greek Yogurt Banana Muffins
Yields 12
You won't find any oil, four, or butter in these muffins. Instead, enjoy all of the fresh, natural flavors of clean eating. We won't tell anyone your secret!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. • 2 ripe bananas
  2. • 1 cup + 1 TBS plain non-fat Greek Yogurt
  3. • 2 eggs
  4. • 2 cups of rolled oats (old fashioned or quick oats will work)
  5. • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  6. • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  7. • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  8. • 1 cup of dark chocolate chips
  9. • 3/4 cup raw pecan pieces
  10. • 1-2 TBS all natural honey
Instructions
  1. • Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F
  2. • Spray a muffin pan with non stick spray. Line cupcake tins with FOIL cupcake liners (be sure to remove the paper from inside the foil liners). Spray the inside of the foil liners with cooking spray. This is VERY IMPORTANT because the lack of oil in these muffins can cause them to stick to the paper liners.
  3. • Combine peeled bananas, Greek yogurt, eggs, rolled oats, light brown sugar, baking power and baking soda in a large bowl and mix on high speed until all ingredients are combines and batter is smooth.
  4. • Stir in dark chocolate chips, raw pecans, and honey, mixing on low speed if needed until chocolate chips and pecan pieces are evenly dispersed.
  5. • Spoon batter into greased, lined muffin pans, filling each about 3/4 full. If you wish, sprinkle 2-3 dark chocolate chips on top of each muffin.
  6. • Bake on middle rack of oven for 15 - 20 minutes, until tops are golden brown and toothpick comes out clean.
  7. • Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before serving and enjoy!
Notes
  1. • You should only use FOIL cupcake papers. If the foil papers are lined with thin paper you should remove it! The lack of oil in these muffins will cause them to stick to the papers.
  2. • Muffins will stay good for about a week when stored in an airtight container
  3. • Enjoy these for dessert, a delicious snack, or for breakfast on the go!
God Save the Quinoa http://www.godsavethequinoa.com/

 Fabulous recipes by Mandi at godsavethequinoa.com

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