Easy homemade salsa

Who doesn’t love chips and salsa?! It is one of my favorites! Again, store bought is full of preservatives that our bodies do not need… So I make it myself. Plus the amount of money you save is pretty unreal! It cost me less than $5 to make a huge bowl, probably 1/3 of it would fill a normal store bought jar of salsa which is about $3-$5 depending on the brand!

What you need:
6 Roma tomatoes
1 onion
8 cloves of garlic
1 bunch of cilantro
1 jalapeƱo
1 Anaheim chili
1 can diced tomatoes
1 pinch of salt

What to do:
Mix it all together! I used a chopper and chopped each item and then combined it all together in a large bowl.

20130309-120949.jpg

20130309-120956.jpg

Fresh spinach and three cheese pizza on whole wheat flat bread

I am not a huge pizza fan but this is yummy and so healthy! I use a whole wheat flat bread instead of a fattening, carb filled crust. No fun, right? This is the one I usually get, or the whole wheat with flaxseed.

20130307-175637.jpg

What you need:
2-3 Whole wheat flat bread pieces (I make 2-3 small pizzas)
About 2 cups of spinach
1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup of crumpled goat cheese
1/4 cup (if that) crumbled blue cheese, this can be strong so put as much as you desire
1 cup of spaghetti sauce (I used store bought tonight– shame on me!)

What to do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Lay the pieces of flat bread out on a cookie sheet, and place in oven to get crispy (this prevents the middle pieces from being soggy)
Layer: sauce, spinach and cheese
Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until it has reached your desired crispness!

20130307-181449.jpg

Apple and banana cupcakes with Greek yogurt frosting

This was from valentines day.. Little treats for her little party. My Lucy did approve, after all she is the taste tester!

20130306-211905.jpg

Frosting:
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup powder sugars
1 tsp vanilla

Cupcakes:
1 cup all purpose flour
Ā½ cup whole wheat flour
2 ripe bananas
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 eggs
Ā½ tsp baking soda
Pinch of salt

What to do:
Mix up frosting and put aside in the refrigerator to keep cool.
In a mixer blend all other ingredients.
Pour into lined muffin tins. (I used mini tins)
Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes or until done.
After cooling frost and top with fresh strawberries or blueberries!

20130306-213204.jpg

Cheesy potato soup

Perfect dinner for a snow day! This is what it looked like outside:

20130306-204326.jpg

So what better than soup!

What you need:
4-6 large russet potatoes
32 ounces of low sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 small onion diced
1 package shredded sharp cheddar cheese
4 pieces of cooked turkey bacon

What to do:
Peel and cut potatoes into chunks, place in a large cooking pot.
Cover potatoes with chicken broth, add garlic and onion.
Boil until potatoes are soft.
Mash potatoes in same pot, leaving some chunks. Add cheese and continue cooking.
Simmer until it reaches the consistency you desire. Top with bacon pieces.

20130306-204932.jpg

Spinach stuffed shells

Seriously one of my favorites! Lucy and I love Italian nights!

What you need:
1 package of stuffed shells
I jar (or of course homemade is better) red marinara sauce
I package of mozzarella cheese
1/2 block of fat free cream cheese (I try)
1/2 container cottage cheese, about 2 cups (much healthier than ricotta)
I egg
Fresh spinach

What to do:
Cook shells according to the directions.
In a medium sized mixing bowl mix together: cream cheese, spinach, 1/2 mozzarella, egg, and cottage cheese.
After the shells are cooked and cooled, stuff with mixture.

20130306-204007.jpg
Top with sauce and the remaining mozzarella cheese.
Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or until the sauce is boiling and it is heated all the way through.

20130306-204116.jpg

Enjoy!

Homemade refried beans

Beans. Beans. Who doesn’t love beans? We sure do at my house! You can buy a can of refried beans for a little over a $1 an it will get you through a meal and maybe lunch the next day. It is full of preservatives and high in sodium. So.. I made my own! You buy a bag of dried beans for $1.28, an onion and a jalapeƱo for under $3, and I always have garlic and salt. For less than $4 I made enough beans that would fill six cans! Plus all natural and low in sodium!
Super easy too. I have to credit 100 days of Real Food blog for the idea!

What you need:
I bag of dried pinto beans
I onion (diced)
1-3 diced jalapeƱo (depending on the level of heat you want)
A few pinches of salt
3 tablespoons minced garlic

What to do:
Rinse the beans
Place beans and other ingredients in crockpot and add water. Fill above the beans, almost to the top of the crock pot (about six cups).
Cool on low 8-10 hours.
Mash with a potato masher

20130306-202616.jpg

Enjoy!

Meatballs…buffalo style

Meatballs, chicken, buffalo. YES please!!! Did I mention there are hidden veggies in this?? So that means buffalo chicken can be HEALTHY!!

What you need:
1 pound ground chicken
1 carrot
1/2 yellow squash
1/2 zucchini (hand chop or use a food processor for all the veggies)
Blue cheese crumbles (I used about a cup, blue cheese can be strong use to your liking)
1/4 bread crumbs
1 egg
Buffalo hot sauce

What to do:
Mix everything together. Use some buffalo sauce in the chicken mixture (again to your liking- the more you put on the hotter it is!)
Roll the chicken mixture into balls and place on baking pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes or until fully cooked.
Drizzle buffalo sauce on top of the cooked meatballs.

20130306-200931.jpg

Enjoy!

Stuffed chicken and green beans

So good, get ready!

What you need::
1 lb chicken breast or boneless thighs
1 package of crumbled goat cheese
1 bunch of basil

For the green beans: (I have made these before!)
A few handfuls of fresh green beans– just measure based on how many you need to feed
4-6 pieces of bacon chopped
1/2 onion diced
Chicken broth
Salt/pepper

What to do:
Tenderize the chicken so it is about 1/4 inch thick or thinner
Lay flat on a baking pan
Add stuffing:: goat cheese and basil
Role the chicken and hold together with toothpicks

20130127-172256.jpg

Bake at 350, about 30 minutes or until cooked all the way.

For the green beans: (do this about an hour before you start the chicken)
Throw all into a large sauce pan and simmer for at least two hours, the longer the better!
*you just need enough chicken broth to cover the beans while they are simmering!

20130127-172606.jpg

20130127-174820.jpg