Healthy Egg Salad Recipe with Avocado

Healthy Egg Salad Recipe

This healthy egg salad recipe with avocado has become my go-to lunch! It’s delicious in a pita, tastes great wrapped up in a lettuce leaf, and can be served “inside-out”.

What’s inside-out? Leave out the celery when making the egg salad. Then stuff the egg salad in the celery to serve. Yummy.

This recipe calls for grated red onion. I think it is the key to the salad. It imparts the flavor of the onion but you don’t end up biting into a piece of onion. Know what I mean?

Finally, when it comes to seasoning the salad with salt and pepper, this is my trick.

Healthy Egg Salad Recipe with Avocado

Ingredients

  • 6 hard boiled eggs
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons grated red onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, mash the hard boiled eggs.
  2. In a second small bowl, mash together the avocado, lemon juice, and red onion.
  3. Stir together the eggs, the avocado mixture, and the chopped celery. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
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How to Make Deviled Eggs

How to Make Deviled Eggs

Do you know how to make deviled eggs? They are such a quick and easy whole food snack. And this recipe is near impossible to mess up.

There are many variations of deviled egg recipes. This one is a classic. It calls for a combination of mayo, mustard and chives.

If you wish, you can substitute an equal amount of plain Greek yogurt for the mayo. I find I can eat so many of these, that lightening them up with Greek yogurt isn’t always a bad thing.

By the way, I’ve never been able to pipe the filling into the egg white. If you have that talent, it does make for a pretty presentation. However, I find a few shakes of paprika and a few chopped chives can cover up my lack of piping skills!

How to Make Deviled Eggs

Ingredients

  • 12 hard boiled eggs, peeled and sliced in half lengthwise
  • 1/2 cup mayo or may substitute Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chives, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon shallots, finely chopped
  • optional: paprika

Instructions

  1. Remove egg yolks from eggs.
  2. In a bowl, mash together egg yolks, mayo, salt, and mustard.
  3. Stir in chives and shallots.
  4. Place egg whites on a platter. Use a 1 teaspoon scoop to put yolk mixture into hollows of egg whites.
  5. Optional: Sprinkle eggs with paprika and additional chopped chives
  6. If you prefer a fancier presentation, use a piping bag and pipe filling into egg white hollows.
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Do you ever serve deviled eggs for a snack? They are excellent for an after school snack. Serve them on days when your kiddos have sports practice, and fill them up without weighing them down.

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How to Make Oatmeal Taste Good: 25 Healthy Topping Ideas

How to Make Oatmeal Taste Good

Have you tried to like oatmeal but can’t?

Come here little grasshopper. I’m going to teach you how to make oatmeal taste good.

First, we need to address the top two reasons people don’t like oatmeal: the texture and the taste.

Texture: Otherwise known as “mouth feel” if you’ve been watching any Food Network. (And apparently I have.)

If you find you just can’t get past the texture of oatmeal, I have a recipe you need to try: Trader Joe’s Quinoa and Steel Cut Oats Copycat recipe. The combination of quinoa and steel cut oats gives you a less slimy bowl of oatmeal. Not to mention the added bonus of the protein boost you get from quinoa.

Taste: Plain oatmeal has no taste. I think the word “gruel” is actually pretty accurate for the taste of plain oatmeal.

That’s where these healthy topping ideas are going to change your morning bowl of oatmeal!

Never added citrus zest to your oatmeal? I’m about to Rock. Your. World.

So fasten your seatbelts folks, I’ve come up with 25 quick and healthy toppings that will change oatmeal for you forever.

How to Make Oatmeal Taste Good:

Blueberry Bonanza: Stir some lemon zest, a dash of cinnamon and a dash of nutmeg into your oatmeal. Top with blueberries.

PB Booster: Stir 1 tablespoon peanut butter into oatmeal. Top with sliced bananas and chopped apples. Dust with cinnamon.

Tummy Tamer: Stir 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger and 1 teaspoon honey into oatmeal. Top with chopped fresh or dried apricots.

Banana Nut Bread: Top with chopped walnuts and banana slices.

Chocolate Peanut Butter: Stir 1 tablespoon peanut butter into oatmeal. Top with dark chocolate chips. Need a no sugar alternative to chocolate chips? Top with cacao nibs.

Berry Lemon Sensation: Stir 1 teaspoon lemon zest into oatmeal. Top with strawberries, raspberries and blueberries.

Wake-Up Your Bowl: Stir in 1 teaspoon orange zest. Top with a spoonful of vanilla yogurt. Sprinkle with nutmeg.

Thanksgiving Pie: Stir in a generous spoonful of pumpkin puree. Sprinkle homemade pumpkin pie spice on top. Drizzle with honey.

Pineapple Upside-Down Oatmeal: Stir a spoonful of sucanat into oatmeal. You don’t need much. Top with pineapple.

Bowl of Freedom: Top oatmeal with a spoonful of plain or vanilla yogurt. Sprinkle with strawberries and blueberries.

Cha-Cha Chai: Mix a spoonful of pumpkin puree into oatmeal. Pour a bit of chai latte concentrate over oatmeal. Make it over the top delicious by adding almond milk.

Key Lime: Stir lime zest into oatmeal. Top with vanilla or plain yogurt. If your diet allows, you could always throw in some white chocolate chips. Don’t go overboard – just enough to satisfy.

Carrot Cake: Stir fresh grated ginger into oatmeal. Top with shredded carrot and diced dried apricots. No apricots? Use raisins. Have walnuts? Throw some of them on too.

Island Breeze: Stir lime zest into oatmeal. Top with unsweetened coconut flakes and chopped macadamia nuts. If you have any coconut milk, you could stir some of that in too.

Bless Your Heart: Stir a spoonful of sweet potato puree into oatmeal. Top with chopped pecans and if your diet allows, some sucanat.

Almond Joy: Stir in a spoonful of almond butter. Top with unsweetened coconut flakes.

Nut ‘N Honey:  Top oatmeal with chopped nuts – any kind, any combination – and drizzle with honey.

Simply Sweet: Stir cinnamon into oatmeal. Top with chopped dates and raisins.

Cranberry Orange: Stir orange zest into oatmeal. Top with dried cranberries and a dusting of cinnamon.

Cherry Cocoa: Top oatmeal with cherries (I usually defrost some frozen ones) and dust with cocoa powder. Need a treat? Stir a teensy tiny bit of dark chocolate into hot oatmeal so it melts.

Crunchy Oatmeal: Throw a handful of granola into your oatmeal and stir it around. Top with milk of choice. Almond and vanilla soymilk are delightful additions.

Apple Pie: Top oatmeal with chopped apples, a dusting of apple pie spice, and top with vanilla yogurt.

Eggs-ellent Idea: Top oatmeal with a poached egg and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Savor the Idea: Add grated cheese. Parmesan is excellent, as is cheddar.

Sunday Paper Special: Stir orange zest into oatmeal. Top with sliced almonds and a drizzle of honey. And depending on how you roll, you could do a splash of Grand Marnier.

Your homework assignment: Try one, all, some. Report back on what you did or didn’t like!

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Trader Joe’s Quinoa and Steel Cut Oats Copycat Recipe

Trader Joes Copycat Quinoa and Steel Cut Oatmeal

I made my first trip to Trader Joe’s!

Oh. My. Word. You’d think I’d never been to a grocery store before.

Everything looked good. Everything went in my cart. Because Trader Joe’s. 

One of my favorite purchases was the frozen Trader Joe’s Quinoa and Steel Cut Oatmeal.

Most mornings I’m packing lunches for the girls. So if breakfast can be quick and healthy, I’m happy!

If you’ve ever cooked steel cut oats, you know there is nothing quick about them! Most brands take about 45 minutes to cook. On a weekday, ain’t nobody got time for that!

My friend also bought a box Trader Joe’s Quinoa and Steel Cut Oatmeal. When discussing our purchases, we both had the very same comment: we were expecting more than two bowls of oatmeal out of the box.

I don’t know why. The box isn’t very big.

What I do know is I liked it enough that I decided to try to duplicate the recipe at home – making sure there were more than 2 servings!

Frozen Quinoa and Steel Cut Oats

This Trader Joe’s Quinoa and Steel Cut Oats Copycat Recipe makes up a large batch which you then freeze into individual portions using a muffin tin. Once the oatmeal is frozen, let it sit on the counter for about 15 minutes then remove the oatmeal and freeze until ready to use.

To make one full serving, heat two of the frozen oatmeal “pucks” like in the picture above. I weighed the serving at home and it comes to about 6 ounces. The Trader Joe’s serving is 8 ounces, so mine is a slightly smaller portion.

A quick note about the sweetener. The Trader Joe’s version says it is sweetened with brown sugar and maple syrup. To keep this a whole foods recipe, I used only maple syrup.

The Trader Joe’s version is also very lightly sweetened. Use my recipe as a starting point. If you need more sweetener, you can add it after you’ve microwaved it.

Trader Joe’s Quinoa and Steel Cut Oats Copycat Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups steel cut oats
  • maple syrup

Instructions

  1. Cook the quinoa according to package directions.
  2. Cook the steel cut oats according to package directions.
  3. Once cooked, stir together.
  4. Spoon quinoa and steel cut oats into muffin tins, filling about 3/4 full.
  5. Add 1 teaspoon maple syrup to each muffin cup. Add 1 tablespoon water to each muffin cup.
  6. Cover and freeze.
  7. Once quinoa and oatmeal is frozen, set out on the counter for about 15 minutes so you can easily remove it from the muffin tin.
  8. Place in a freezer safe container.
  9. To reheat:
  10. Remove 2 frozen oatmeal "pucks" and place in a microwave safe dish.
  11. Microwave for 2 minutes. Break pucks up using a spoon and stir. Microwave an additional 1 1/2 minutes to 2 minutes until heated through. Allow to stand 30 seconds before stirring and serving.
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If you’ve had the Trader Joe’s Quinoa and Steel Cut Oatmeals, give this a try and let me know how you think it compares! This has become my go-to breakfast, and I’ve found I’m making up a batch most Sundays to carry me through the week.

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Raspberry Chocolate Chip Whole Grain Muffin Recipe

Raspberry Chocolate Chip Whole Grain Muffin Recipe

It is impossible to resist a warm muffin straight out of the oven.

Therein lies the beauty of this raspberry chocolate chip whole grain muffin recipe.

You can keep this batter in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Bake only the amount of muffins you will eat hot, fresh out of the oven. Then keep the rest of the batter for the next day. And once again enjoy hot, fresh muffins straight out of the oven.

Raspberry Chocolate Chip Whole Grain Muffin Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup frozen raspberries
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Grease a muffin tin.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the two flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a mixer, beat together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one a time, beating well after each addition.
  4. On slow, beat in sour cream and vanilla, scraping sides of bowl.
  5. Once sour cream is well incorporated, add the dry ingredients and beat on low until the batter is smooth.
  6. Mix the raspberries and chocolate chips in by hand.
  7. Refrigerate for at least one hour. At this point, may be refrigerated for up to 4 days.
  8. Preheat oven to 400.
  9. Fill muffin tins 3/4 full. Bake muffins for 22 to 26 minutes.
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Raspberries and chocolate chips are only one flavor combination you can use in this recipe. Try skipping the chocolate chips and using raspberries and blueberries. Or try all blueberries and add some lemon zest.

If you come up with a winning combination, let us know!

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Bacon, Butternut Squash, Kale Salad Recipe

Bacon Butternut Squash Kale Salad Recipe

Kale. Love it or hate it?

What if you combined it with the saltiness of bacon and the sweetness of butternut squash then tied it all together with a southwestern style dressing?

Bacon, Butternut Squash and Kale Salad is hearty enough to eat for lunch (I think) or it makes a really good whole food side dish to a roast pork tenderloin.

I bake my bacon in the oven at the same time the butternut squash is roasting. The bacon takes about 15 minutes at 425 degrees to bake to crispy perfection while the butternut squash will take about 30 minutes to get nicely caramelized.

If you’ve never baked bacon before, I’ve made a How to Bake Bacon video for you. You don’t need to make yours into bacon bundles, but the technique is the same.

After your bacon has baked for 15 minutes, pull your bacon out of the oven, stir the butternut squash a bit, tuck the squash back in for the next 15 minutes then lay your bacon out on paper towels to absorb the extra bacon grease. You’ll have at least 12 more minutes for the butternut squash to cook – the perfect amount of time to make your dressing and add your kale to your favorite salad bowl.

PRESTO! Side dish is ready to go in 30 minutes.

Bacon, Butternut Squash, Kale Salad Recipe

Ingredients

  • 4 cups baby kale
  • 2 cups peeled and diced butternut squash
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • pinch of salt
  • 6 strips of bacon
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 2 tablespoons diced red onion

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425.
  2. Add kale to a large salad bowl.
  3. Toss butternut squash with 1 tablespoon olive oil and pinch of salt. Spread in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet.
  4. Line a smaller baking sheet with tinfoil. Lay bacon on baking sheet.
  5. Put both bacon and butternut squash in 425 degree oven. Bake bacon for 15 minutes or until desired level of crispiness. Stir butternut squash when you take the the bacon out. Allow to bake for an additional 15 minutes or until it begins to brown and caramelize.
  6. Chop bacon once cooled and drained.
  7. Whisk together 3 tablespoons olive oil, orange juice, salt, cumin, and ginger. Stir in diced red onion.
  8. Toss kale with roasted butternut squash, chopped bacon, and dressing. Serve.
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If you try this recipe for Bacon, Butternut Squash and Kale Salad, please let me know how you like it!

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Healthy No-Bake Energy Balls Recipe

Energy Balls

These healthy no-bake energy balls are my go-to recipe for active weekends.

Weekends at our house are filled with athletic activities. If it isn’t an all-day volleyball tournament, we love to hike and ski, and I’ve even been persuaded to do a few mountain biking excursions.

These energy balls provide both quick energy from the carbs and sustaining energy from the protein.

Might I add –  they taste a heck of a lot better than anything you buy at the store!

Every weekend I whip up a new batch of these. They are so quick to make I can even tackle this recipe at 5:30 in the morning before heading to the slopes.

“What if I don’t like raisins?” you might ask. You could substitute any dried fruit of choice or go in a whole other direction and substitute coconut flakes.

Healthy No-Bake Energy Balls Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup dry oatmeal
  • 2/3 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup ground almonds
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, stir together the oatmeal, raisins, peanut butter, chocolate chips and honey.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the ground almonds and cinnamon.
  3. Roll peanut butter dough into 1 inch balls. Roll the balls in the almond and cinnamon mixture to coat.
  4. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
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To me, these no-bake energy balls taste just like classic trail mix. Only they are easier to eat. You just pop one in your mouth instead of grabbing it by the handful.

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