Carrot Cake Overnight Oats

ccoats

Oh, what a glorious morning! Today is the first day of Spring that I could put on a spring dress and walk out the door without putting on a jacket. Sun, warmth, happiness. Elle could not wait to go play outside! Shaun took her outside without shoes on and every time that he would try to put her feet on the ground she would lift them up, squeel and hold on tight to him! She loves being outside, but has not yet conquered her fear of the grass on her feet. Once she got her shoes, though, there was no stopping her! That girl is fast! We ended up going on a walk and wound up at the playground where we let her wear some of her energy off. We knew it was time to head home when she started nodding off as I was swinging with her on my lap.

How did I fuel my baby girl for outdoor play time? With some delicious Carrot Cake Overnight Oats, of course. Usually Elle doesn’t eat that much at breakfast time, but today she ate her oats, followed by some giant strawberries, toast with black currant preserves, and yogurt. I think she might be going through a growth spurt. Just maybe.

If you, too, would like to fuel yourself for the day, or are just in the mood for a quick and tastey breakfast, here is what you will need:

Ingredients:

-1 cup of steel cut oats
-1/2 to 3/4 cups of unsweetened almond milk (You could use coconut milk or dairy milk, if you’d like. Also, depending on your desired consistancy, I would reccomend starting with only 1/2 cup and going from there.)
-1/2 cup apple sauce (I used Mott’s Fruitsations unsweetened cherry-berry-carrot.)
-1/2 grated carrots
-1 tablespoon craisins or raisins (I used a little of both)
-2 tablespoons maple syrup
-1 teaspoon cinnamon
-1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

 

Mix all ingredients together. Store oatmeal in a sealed container like a mason jar, or an empty peanut butter jar. Refrigerate over night so that the oats soak up all the moisture and flavour. When you are ready to eat, you can heat it up in the microwave for a minute, which really unleashes the sents and flavour of the spices! It is also good just cold, as it is. I topped mine off with some shredded coconut and extra raisins, and a little drizzle of maple syrup. SO. GOOD.

Nutritional Information Per 1 Serving (2 Servings for the total recipe)

Calories: 285

Carbohydrates: 54g

Fat: 4g

Protein: 7g

Sugar: 20g

I hope everyone enjoys their weekend!

-Rianna

Back Bean & Mango Quinoa Salad

IMG_3653

Could it be…SPRING? The sun has been shining and giving me hope that soon I can pack up my witer coats for good! I still have them out because I do not want to take a chance and jinx it. Elle’s favourite new word is “side” (outside). She is constantly bringing me her shoes and asking to go “side, side!” I really don’t know how I am going to get her to come inside at all once summer comes along. I can’t say I blame her, though. It sure is nice not to be stuck indoors anymore. I love how fresh everything feels during spring. Fresh flowers, fresh growth, fresh beginnings. In keeping with the this fresh sensation, I decided that I needed to make something bright, light and fresh to eat. Presenting: Black Bean & Mango Quinoa Salad. The great thing about this salad is that you can really add as many things as you want to it. This is what I put in mine:

Ingredients:
2 1/4 cups cooked quinoa (This just happened to be the amount I had cooked already)
1 can (15.25 oz.) black beans
1 Kiett mango, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
3 green onions, thinly sliced (greens and whites)
1 medium sized lime
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons honey

Step 1)
Rinse and drain the beans to get all the bean goop off.

Step 2)
Once everything is sliced and diced, mix all vegetables with the quinoa in a large bowl.

Step 3)
Squeeze the entire lime onto the quinoa and veggies. Then drizzle the vinegar and honey over the whole mixture. Mix it all up!
And there you have it. Eat the rainbow with this tangy salad. I served mine over long leaves of lettuce. It also goes really well as a side with grilled chicken breast. I love the tropical vibe I get from this salad…so summery!

Nutritional Information Per serving
1 serving = 1 cup salad, for a total of 8 servings
Calories: 299
Carbohydrates: 59g
Fat: 3g
Protein: 11g
Sugar: 11g

Hope you all enjoy this salad and enjoy the sunshine this weekend!
-Rianna

 

Low-Cal Cabbage Soup

IMG_3594

Happy Hump Day!

I have a question for you: It’s Spring, right? There are supposed to be flowers blooming and birds chirping? Not in Windsor, it seems! I woke up yesterday to this:

IMG_3584

Yes, that is snow. No, I do not like it! It is that kind of weather that makes me want to curl up in bed all day with my little snuggle bear and have a Dora the Explorer Marathon. It is also the kind of chilly day that calls for a nice steaming bowl of soup to warm you up!

Today’s recipe is low-cal cabbage soup. My aunt used to make cabbage soup for me all the time when I was younger (I think I was the only person who liked it!), so I decided to try my hand at it.

These are the vegetables that I used, but feel free to add whatever veggies you like.

Ingredients:
1/2 Green cabbage, chopped (about 4-5 cups)
1 large carrot, chopped into rounds
1 medium sized white onion, diced
2 stalks of celery, chopped
1/4 cup lentils
2 cloves minced garlic
2 tablespoons tomato paste
5 cups vegetable stock
1 (generous) tablespoon dried oregano
1 (generous) tablespoon dreid basil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder

IMG_3581

Just toss all these ingredients into a slow cooker and cook on high for three hours. Or, you can cook on low for 4-5 hours.  You could also cook this in a large pot on the stove top on meduim/low heat. if you don’t have a slow cooker. Let me tell you, this just hit the spot!

Nutritional Information: (This is per serving, which is 2 cups of soup)
Calories: 92
Carbohydrates: 16g
Fat: 2g
Protein: 1g

IMG_3593

Grab a spoon, a cuddle buddy and keep warm!
-Rianna

Oatmeal Banana Waffles

oatmeal banana waffles

“We need to remember what’s important in life: friends, waffles, work. Or waffles, friends, work. Doesn’t matter, but work is third.”

-Leslie Knope

Such wise words to live by. Sometimes you just need to take a break from work, school (thank goodness midterms are done!), and the crazy schedules that we all have, and put waffles first. During the week I usually am awake pretty early, try to squeeze in a run if I have had enough sleep (a few months ago I would have thought this was a crazy idea, but Elle has been sleeping through the night much better lately), and folllow up with a bowl of oatmeal. This is pretty standard. There are soooooooo many different oatmeal concoctions that I can’t wait to try. I think next I will try carrot cake oatmeal. Because cake. For breakfast. Yes. Anyway, this weekend, I needed waffles. I just did. So I thought, why not combine my love of oatmeal and waffles? The result: healthy and delicious oatmeal banana waffles!

So simple. I love simple. Here is what you’ll need:

-2 packages of regular instant oatmeal (you could experiment and use any flavour )
-one banana (ripe)
-3/4 cups almond milk (I use Silk Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk, but I imagine regular milk would work just fine, too)
-1 egg
-1 tsp baking soda
-2 tsp cinnamon (can ommit, or add more)
-1 tablespoon coconut oil (melted)

Just put all ingredients into a blender (I used a magic bullet) and blend, baby, blend! When you’ve achieved a nice smooth mixture, your waffle batter is ready. Just use the same amount of batter in a waffle iron as you would for normal waffles. The only thing I would do differently is cook them about 1-2 minutes longer than normal waffles because of their kind of “gooey” consistency. I’d say they taste like banana bread in waffle formation…does it get better than that?!? While the waffles were still hot, I spread a bit of Nutella on them, added some sliced bananas, sliced almonds, and a sprinkling of flax seeds. Perfection.

There is so much you could do with these. Peanut butter or almond butter on top would be amazing! Or…have you ever mixed vanilla Greek yougurt with honey and cinnamon? Get some pecans mixed in there, too, and BAM! Of course, you can always go with classic maple syrup. I like to cut back on the sugar, though, and use E.D. Smith’s No Sugar Added Syrup made from grape juice. Once you go Smith, you’ll always eat breakfast with! (Yes, I made that up.) Scrumptious combinations are endless. You can even make an extra batch and freeze them for later.

Nutritional Information per waffle (my waffle maker made 5 waffles with this recipe)

Calories: 109
Carbohydrates: 15g (THAT”S AMAZING!)
Fat: 5g
Protein: 14g
Sugar: 3g

Hope you enjoy!

-Rianna

Ginger Sesame Chicken Salad

IMG_3430

Hi everyone! I hope that you’ve all had a fun-filled weekend. Today I am sharing with you a recipe that I decided to try during the week. Since we had one day of 50 degree weather (Hey, this is warm when a few days ago we were hit with more snow!), I was thinking of making something light and spring-y. The recipe? Ginger Sesame Chicken Salad, adapted from the recipe that Curtis Stone shared in Redbook.  I loved it and so did Elle! Well, she liked the chicken and the carrots, but wasn’t such a fan of the cabbage (she is just getting her molars now, so she still has trouble with grinding foods that are hard to chew). Here’s what you’ll need to get started cooking:

Dressing:

¼  cup soy sauce

3 Tbsp finely chopped (and peeled) fresh ginger

3 Tbsp canola or vegetable oil

2 Tbsp hoisin sauce

1 Tbsp sesame oil

1-2 tsp sriracha (I used 2…i like the kick it gives!)

1 tsp sea salt

¼ cup white vinegar

Salad

2 cooked chicken breasts, marinated in Hoisin sauce, and cut into bite-sized chunks

1 lb napa cabbage (I only used half of my cabbage), cut into thin slices

1 large carrot, shredded

3 scallions (white and green parts), thinly sliced

½ cup slivered almonds, toasted

1 tsp black sesame seeds

STEP 1.

Get that chicken cooked! I used 2 chicken breasts with the bone in. Once marinated, I popped it in the oven at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes. Once it had cooled, I cut it into (bite-able) pieces. You could also grill your chicken, or try cutting it into pieces before you cook it and then pan fry it.

IMG_3428

Step 2.

As your chicken is cooking, you can work on the next steps. It is also a good time to put your toddler in her highchair for snack time while she helps you measure ingredients. Now is the time to mix together all the ingredients for the dressing, and set aside.
IMG_3420

IMG_3422

Step 3.

Chop up that cabbage! Slice those scallions! Shred that carrot!
IMG_3418

Step 4.

Toast your almonds. I dry toasted mine on a small frying pan on medium heat. They were very thin sliced almonds and only took about 4 minute to get nice and toasted. We ended up having to make more than 1/2 a cup because Elle and I ended up incorporating  them into snack time!
IMG_3425

Step 5.

Mix together all the salad ingredients, including the chicken, into a large bowl. (Those cabbages are quite compact and seem to really expand when chopped up!) Drizzle your sauce over the salad and mix together until all ingredients are coated. Grab a fork and dig in!
IMG_3434

Hope you all enjoy! I know I did…I may have had it for lunch 3 days in a row.  You might even be lucky enough to have some little hands help clean the dishes when you’re done!
IMG_3433

Nutritional Information:

(I divided this into six servings, so that turned out to be about 1-1/4 cups per serving)

205 calories
10g carbohydrates
15g fat
10g protein

I’d love to know if you have any comments, questions, or suggestions!
-Rianna