If you’ve never known two things about me, you’re going to find them out now.
1. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Mexican food. Did I mention I love Mexican food? [insert non-existent, but desperately needed taco emoji here]
2. As a mom (and a self-taught, maybe aspiring, home cook), I always try to make healthier versions of meals my family loves.
So, whenever an opportunity comes to combine the above two points, I jump at it!
This is where the Mexi-cauli Bowl comes in. Since my hip injury and restrictive physical limits, I’ve been leaning towards gluten-free meals to help me keep my nutrition in check as well work on some digestive and allergen issues that are trying to creep up with the little one.
Doesn’t this dish look amazing?!?!
Here’s what you need to get and do to make this awesome dish!
1 head cauliflower (or about 1 lb. cauliflower florets)
1 lb. fresh spinach, washed
1/2 onion, diced
1 lb. ground turkey
1 ear fresh sweet corn
1 – 8 oz. can of tomato sauce
Taco seasoning mix, 21 Day Fix Taco Seasoning, or the following spices: garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, salt
1-2 Roma tomatoes, diced
Oil (I use either coconut or EVOO)
Snip off florets from cauliflower head. Place in a food processor, and pulse gently until the cauliflower resembles rice.
Warm a skillet on low heat. Place 1-2 tbsp. of oil in skillet to coat the bottom. Transfer the cauliflower from the food processor into the skillet, and turn the heat to medium. Add 2-3 tbsp. of water, and let the cauliflower simmer while stirring frequently. Once the water is absorbed, add the can of tomato sauce, then the heat back to low, and simmer. You can cover if you like, but stir occasionally. (Now you can either wait on the “rice” to cook, or grab another skillet to cook the remainder of the meal while the cauliflower cooks. I abhor doing dishes, so I stick to the one-skillet method.)
Once the tomato sauce is thickened and coating the cauliflower, transfer to a bowl and keep warm. Re-coat the skillet with another 1-2 tbsp. of oil. Add in diced onions and saute until translucent. Add ground turkey and crumble while mixing in the onions.
Season with 2-3 tbsp of taco seasoning or if using separate seasonings use the following approximate measurements:
Garlic powder, 2 tsp
Cumin, 1 tbsp
Chili powder, 1-2 tsp (or to taste)
Salt, a pinch or two to taste
Add 2 tbsp of water or more to soak up seasonings a bit and allow turkey mixture to simmer in the seasonings. While it starts to simmer, take your ear of sweet corn and cut off the kernels. Toss into the seasoned turkey mixture. Continue to simmer until thickened while stirring occasionally.
While everything is finishing, prep your toppings. Dice your Roma tomatoes and avocado.
When the turkey mixture has thickened, add in the “rice”. Stir together until fully mixed.
Place a handful of spinach leaves in the bottom of a bowl. (If you are on the 21 Day or Portion Fix plans, use one full green container of spinach.) Spoon a 1/2 cup of the turkey and rice mixture onto the spinach (1/2 a green container). Top with tomatoes and avocado. ENJOY!
Optional topping ideas:
GF tortilla strips
I really hope you enjoy this. My boys LOVED this meal and there were NO leftovers for once. They didn’t even have a clue about the cauliflower “rice” either. I should get this in the meal plan again soon. I’m now hungry for it again! This is also a great prep ahead, eat later meal as well!
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I love stir fry. Seriously, it’s simple, quick, and versatile. This is one I whipped up last week.
Pepper Steak Stir Fry
1 – medium-sized skirt or flank steak
Ginger (ground or fresh, I used fresh)
Coarse ground black pepper
Garlic (1 clove fresh or garlic powder, I used fresh garlic)
Olive oil or coconut oil (I used olive oil, about 1 tbsp.)
2 tablespoons water
Low-sodium soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
2 bags frozen stir fry vegetables
I like to marinade my meat before I start the stir fry to let the flavor really soak in.
1 hour before cook time; place steak into airtight container, season with minced garlic clove, grated ginger, and black pepper. Pour 2-4 tablespoons teriyaki sauce over seasoned steak, and seal with lid. Place in refrigerator for about an hour.
At cook time: remove steak from refrigerator, place in a warm skillet pour marinade mixture over steak, and sear on each side for about 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and place on cutting board to rest.
Drizzle olive oil in pan. (One circle around the pan should do it.) Pour vegetables into skillet, add water, and let steam for 2 minutes.
Add soy sauce, teriyaki sauce and more ginger. (I swirled the soy sauce bottle around the pan once as well as the teriyaki sauce.)
Stir vegetables to coat with seasonings.
While the vegetables are steaming for about 3 more minutes, slice the steak into thin strips. The meat should be at a medium-rare to medium. Cross cut the steak strips to make “cubes”. Toss into pan with vegetables.
Stir steak and vegetables together until steak is browned on all sides.
Options: Serve over brown rice (as shown in picture), over rice noodles, quinoa pasta or over mashed sweet potatoes. It’s pretty awesome by itself too!
Please let me know if you try this quick and easy meal, what you think of it, and if you made any changes to it.
If you have kids and your family loves chicken, you will love this meal. I found the base recipe at 5dollardinners.com, and in my kitchen fashion, I modified, even a pretty healthy recipe, to make it even healthier. Here’s the link to the original recipe if you’d like to check it out. ($5 Dinners: Ranch Chicken Dippers)
Chicken Ranch Tenders
Preparation Time – 10 minutes
Cooking Time – 20-25 minutes
1 package skinless, boneless chicken tenders (I made about 12 tenders)
2 jumbo eggs
1/2 cup milk of choice
1 cup bread crumbs (I used homemade, whole wheat bread crumbs
1 – 1 oz. packet Original Hidden Valley mix for dipping (I used Hidden Valley for this test run, but I will probably try to make my own ranch mix and/or look for a Tastefully Simple gluten-free mix)
Marinara sauce for dipping (I used an all natural marinara jarred sauce because of time constraints, but if you have some homemade, even better.)
Served with steamed broccoli
Preheat oven to 350. Grease a cookie sheet with non-stick spray, or line a cookie sheet withnon-stick baking mat.
Whisk the 2 eggs and milk in a small bowl. Mix together the bread crumbs and ranch mix in another bowl.
Dip each chicken piece into the egg, then coat in the ranch-bread crumb mixture. Place on the cookie sheet, and repeat until all chicken pieces are coated.
Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until all chicken pieces are cooked through and have turned slightly golden. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before serving.
Serve tenders with marinara sauce and other side dishes.
This meal is way easy to prep, way easy to cook, and it’s a HUGE hit with the kiddos. Fantastic substitute for chicken nuggets or any breaded chicken dish. This is definitely going in my regular rotation. Enjoy!
One of the biggest questions I get about food is “How can I make my family favorites more healthy?” I love these questions because it gives me the opportunity to share healthy substitutions and show how easy it is to swap and add foods to fit your nutrition goals.
One of our family favorites is spaghetti, and we eat it at least once every 10 days, if not more frequently.
Turkey Spaghetti … a healthier version
Here are ways to make spaghetti healthy and still keep the family happy:
Substitute whole grain wheat noodles instead of the regular “enriched” noodles, or if you’re gluten-free, rice or quinoa noodles work great as well.
Use ground turkey or chicken instead of hamburger. The fat content goes down, and with seasonings, tastes just the same.
Add finely diced/chopped veggies to the sauce: red onion, mushrooms, spinach, zucchini, bell peppers, squash are just a few ideas.
Make your own sauce (make it ahead of time and freeze for those of you short on time in the evenings). A fresh batch of tomatoes, roasted and simmered with onion, garlic, parsley, basil, and oregano makes a great sauce.
Don’t want to make your own sauce? Go for all-natural brands such as Newman’s Own or Marinelli’s. Your local grocery store may also have a good organic brand. I know Kroger has the Simple Truth Organic line, which is all organic and all clean, including the oil, which is EVOO and not soybean.
Let me know what you think of the healthier spaghetti and how your family likes it. Do you have any other recipes you would like to see a healthier version? Comment on this post or email me at email@example.com
Pam and I have been online running friends for a while now. Her fitness journey has been been one of determination! Her change both inside and out has been pretty awesome to watch! I’m really proud to have her as one of my coaches and on my team as well.
1. Why did you decide to lose weight/change your lifestyle? (Any and all reasons)
I decided to change my lifestyle because I wanted to make sure that I was healthy enough to play with my grandchildren as I do with my children. That was the main reason, the secondary reason was because I was hitting 30 and the weight wasn’t staying off…. I knew that it was time to change what I was doing.
2. What exercise did you do? (List everything)
I started with walking and elliptical, and then went to running. I currently still run, but have added different cross training workout programs, like Turbo Fire, Hip Hop Abs, and Brazil Butt Lift Master Series.
3. How did you change your eating?
With my eating, I have become way more conscious of portion control, and I am trying to eat less processed foods.
4. Did you use any nutritional supplements?
The only nutritional supplements I use is B12, and I drink Shakeology everyday.
5. Did you have support? (Group, friend, online community, etc.)
I have some awesome support with my coaches, and my online challenge groups. I also have a wonderful running partner that does every race with me.
6. What do you feel is the top thing you’ve gotten out of your journey?
The top thing that I have gotten out of my journey is my change of mindset. I am now more confident and I feel so much better!! I know that I can do what I want to and I will succeed.
7. What is your next goal?
My next goal is to run another marathon within my goal time of 5 hours. I also want to continue to tone and become more healthy.
Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been looking at alkalizing the body. I’ve been feeling a little “off” lately. I thought it was my crazy-working-mom-of-two-school-boys schedule, but now that it’s back to normal, I still don’t feel like me. Trying to keep my limits on caffeine and sugar, I started researching some other things I can do.
Basically, alkalizing your body brings it back to it’s natural state by removing acids or toxins that have been put in your body through the environment, processed foods, certain meats, grains, and starches. A couple of tips I’ve come across to start the alkalize process are:
More GREEN Veggies. Yes, a great reason to promote more veggies, but celery, spinach, kale, and other green veggies bring your body closer to a neutral pH level.
Lemon in water. Lemon and grapefruit actually become alkalized in your body once it’s ingested. Add lemon juice to your water. It helps detox and boost your system.
I do plan to do an Ultimate Reset in late February/early March after my planned marathon. Three weeks of detoxing and restoring my body. Basically pushing a big fat redo button. I think I’ll need it by then. Haha. If you’re curious what the Reset is, please feel free to comment below or email me firstname.lastname@example.org
To read more on alkalizing your body, here’s an article from Set Higher Standards. It’s one of the several places I have found information from while researching.