Zucchini Lasagna

I love lasagna and I love cheese. With that being said, I’m always looking for ways to make dishes a little healthier (even if they still have a lot of cheese). The other night I was craving lasagna like crazy but didn’t have any lasagna noodles. I’d heard about using squash before but was always a little hesitant.

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Luckily, I usually have fresh produce in my fridge and zucchini was the perfect experimental substitute for the job. The dish came out amazing and even my husband loved it. The first thing he said was “Wait! Where’s the pasta? There isn’t pasta in this?!” and then chowed down another bite.

I’m excited to try making this again soon and adding new things. The great thing about dishes like this is that there’s really no wrong way to make them and you can add as much (or as little) of anything in them as you want.

I forgot to take an after picture because we devoured it.

What you’ll need:

  • Fresh kale
  • Fresh spinach
  • 2-3 zucchini
  • 1 jar marinara/tomato sauce of choice
  • crumbled feta
  • mozzarella cheese
  • fresh Parmesan
  • olive oil
  • garlic
  • oregano
  • onion or onion powder
  • salt/pepper

Start off by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. I then took about 4-5 cups of spinach and another 3 or so cups of kale and added them to a pan over low-medium heat with 2 TBSP of olive oil. Stir and add in seasonings to taste: garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, onion.

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Next, start laying and building your lasagna. Make sure your pan is lightly greased with olive oil. Then pour marinara for the base, add thin slices of zucchini, spinach/kale mixture, and cheese as you like.

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I just did two full layers and then topped it off with more marinara and mozzarella over the entire thing.

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Bake for about 30-35 minutes until cheese is fully melted. Let sit for about 10-15 minutes to let it solidify. You’ll need to use a spoon to dish it up and will want to eat it out of a bowl. It was heavenly. One thing I’d recommend trying is using a cheese grater to make long, thin slices of the zucchini. I just sliced them with a knife and didn’t get them as thin as I wanted and risked cutting my fingers about eight times.

It’s even amazing the next day heated up in the microwave.

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Green Lime Smoothie

I recently liked the FoodBabe on Facebook and have loved getting all of her amazing, healthy, and toxic-free recipe in my news feed. The other day my husband told me about this smoothie using lime juice and cucumber – which I’ve never tried before. Let me put it this way – it’s outstanding and tasting how fresh it is and smelling all of the ingredients in the process instantly made my morning glow.

This recipe is from FoodBabe’s site under her Sunrise Green Smoothie. I altered it sightly by changing measurements and adding in chia seeds and ground flax meal.

I was worried that using cucumbers might make the smoothie consistency different – I’ll be honest, I’m worried anything will ruin my morning smoothie but it was quite the opposite. Using cucumber not only smells amazing and fresh but gave the smoothie a rounded taste that’s hard to describe.

cucumbers

 

I was also very intrigued to use fresh lime juice. I was also amazed at how much smaller organic limes are – about half the size – makes you wonder about all of those GMOs. The lime juice gives this smoothie a tangy kick that’s unique to anything else I’ve made before.

limes

 

Strawberries are one of my most favorite things, ever. They are beautiful, they taste like angel berries, and I can eat them every day if I want. They also make me feel super patriotic on the 4th of July 😉 Just one cup of strawberries has only 50 calories, 1g of protein (plants have protein, too!), Vitamin C, Vitamin A, folate, magnesium, and almost 4 grams of fiber!

strawberries

 

I’m big on making the every day things fun. It’s why I have cute ice cube trays like this one with stars. You can add a few ice cubes to this smoothie to add a little texture and to keep it cooler. Throw a few stars into your drink!

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And now for the recipe. I also added in 2 TBSP of chia seeds and 2 TBSP of ground flax meal for extra fiber.

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Tangy, sweet, refreshing, and vibrant – this smoothie will boost your day in more ways than one. Enjoy!

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Blueberry and Greens Smoothie

Something about making yourself a smoothie feels indulgent and satisfying all on its own. Knowing you hold something in your hand that’s blended together with whole ingredients that’s going to give you energy, make you feel refreshed, and will nourish your body is ultra satisfying. I keep experimenting with new smoothie recipes, trying to see just how many things will go well together and so far I haven’t been disappointed.

I will admit that using fresh spinach gives you a heavier consistency and that if you’re not careful you’ll end up with blueberries in your teeth like I did. But a smoothie in the morning gives me energy like nothing else!

For this one I blended:

  • 1 green apple
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 cup fresh spinach
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries

smoothie

Bean and Tomato Salad with Crumbled Gorgonzola

Every time I incorporate more whole foods into my meals, I instantly feel healthier, cleaner, more alert, and in such a better mood! I’ve been working on finding more ways to bring in healthier lunches to work. This is now one of my new favorites and at around 250 calories you’ll be surprised how filling and satisfying it is.

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Recipe:

  • 1/2 cup garbanzo beans, drained
  • 10-12 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • small handful fresh spinach
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons crumbled Gorgonzola cheese

Directions:

Add ingredients into a bowl or ready-to-go container for lunch. Pour olive oil over and stir well to coat all ingredients. You could also use crumbled goat or feta cheese instead. All of them taste amazing!

 

Green Smoothie

In an effort to eat more whole foods lately and eat less processed products, I made my first couple green smoothies this week. No one told me how FILLING these would be! It’s hard to get through half of one and it makes sense with all of the fiber, fruit, and greens in each one. First of all, this automatically looked like something I wouldn’t like. Why does it look like Oscar the Grouch just pooped in my nice Ikea glass…but it was surprisingly delicious! And it’s full of amazing nutrients and ingredients.

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So what’s in this thing?! I started with chopping up 1 green apple.

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Add the complete list of ingredients into your blender. I used my Ninja.

  • 1 chopped green apple
  • 2 cups fresh spinach
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup vanilla greek yogurt
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 sliced strawberry to top (optional)

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This recipe makes 2 servings each at about 250 calories. Great for breakfast or for an after work pick me up! Enjoy!

Turkey Sandwich with Raspberry and Cream Cheese

Sandwich possibilities are endless, it’s probably why they are some of the most versatile and well loved food items around. This afternoon I made an amazing sandwich with cream cheese I just had to share.

Meet the turkey breast sandwich with cream cheese, raspberry preserves, and baby arugula. Nom nom nom.

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What you’ll need:

  • 2 slices of your favorite whole wheat bread (I used Dave’s Killer Bread thin sliced)
  • 4 oz turkey breast
  • fresh baby arugula
  • 1 tsp raspberry preserves (or fresh cranberry sauce if you have it)
  • 1 tablespoon cream cheese

Boom. You have a sandwich you won’t want to share 😉

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Each sandwich: 293 calories

 

Healthy Salmon Dinner Under 450 Calories

I don’t know about you but sometimes I just need food pictures to inspire me to eat healthy and cook something amazing. It’s probably why restaurants put pictures on their menus, that LOOKS delicious, I’m going to order it.

The other night I was feeling ambitious and excited about food. So I decided to make a super easy dinner that turned into a meal event with me saying “oh my god” about a thousand times as I ate my dinner.

A lot of people hate brussel sprouts but let me tell you, they are my new favorite.

Here’s what went down:

Caprese salad

  • 1 tomato
  • 1 slice mozzarella
  • 2-3 fresh basil leaves
  • Light dab of olive oil

tomate

Brussel Sprouts

  • 1/2 pound Brussel sprouts (only about 100 calories)
  • Sea salt
  • Ground Pepper
  • Olive oil

Season Brussel sprouts to taste and lightly top with olive oil. Bake at 350 degrees until lightly browned and crispy.

Baked Salmon with Lemon and Dill

  • Salmon
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Lemon slices
  • Fresh dill
  • Pepper to taste

I took a full piece of frozen salmon (fresh is always preferred but do what you can do) and then seasoned it with EVOO, lemon slices (squeezing them a bit over the top as well), fresh dill, and ground pepper. Bake at 400 degrees until fully cooked, usually around 15-20 minutes.

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Best of all you can eat half of that salmon and EVERYTHING else and it’s only 440 calories. It was seriously one of the best meals I’ve ever had.

 

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