Breakfast Quinoa
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Quinoa is a delicious whole grain that has been around since pretty much forever, but has become more popular over the past several years. It is gluten free, high in protein, high in fiber, and readily available at the grocery store. I actually prefer it to brown rice for quick weeknight meals because it cooks faster. But until recently I didn’t think that “breakfast quinoa” was a thing.

 

Over the past few days I had been craving a warm bowl of oatmeal for breakfast, but unfortunately oatmeal does not agree with me…Even gluten free oatmeal makes me feel like a giant ball of trapped gas. And I was out of buckwheat cereal. So I thought why not make quinoa for breakfast? I could use fruit and warm breakfasty spices to make it similar to oatmeal! So I went to work and made a batch adding whatever ingredients I could find. I was able to rustle up some gala apples and dried cranberries which went together perfectly with the quinoa and spices. It turned out great and I even had leftovers for the next morning! It kinda reminded me of the McDonald’s Oatmeal but with much less sugar.

Breakfast Quinoa

Because of the higher protein content than oatmeal, quinoa may even help you feel fuller for longer! I definitely will be making quinoa for breakfast again. I think I will play with the flavors and try different types of fruits/spices/milk in this recipe. You should too! Let me know in the comments what different flavors you tried…I want to know! I think next time I might try it with pears, pecans and almond milk. Or maybe a tropical fruit with coconut milk when the weather gets warmer…

 

Breakfast Quinoa with Apples and Cranberries

 

Ingredients

1 1/2 Cups Water

1/2 Cup Uncooked Quinoa

1/2 Teaspoon Allspice

1/2 Teaspoon Cinnamon

1 Medium Apple – Washed, Cored and Diced

2 Tablespoons Dried Cranberries

1 Teaspoon Brown Sugar

Milk of Choice (Optional for topping)

 

Directions

Bring water to a boil in a medium pot. Add quinoa, allspice and cinnamon to boiling water. Stir, cover, and reduce heat to simmer for 10 minutes. Add apples, cranberries and brown sugar. Stir, recover and all to simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from heat and serve. Top with milk (skim, almond, rice, soy…) if desired.

 

Breakfast Quinoa

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Banana Bread
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I hate wasting food and 3 bananas have been sitting in my fruit basket, getting browner and browner every day…. Instead of throwing them out, I decided to make some banana bread. When looking for a good recipe I noticed that a lot of them contained white refined flour, lots of sugar and butter or oil. So I made some simple substitutions to make a healthier banana bread that I could enjoy without too much guilt.

First, I used a gluten free all purpose flour to replace the white flour. But….just because a product is gluten free it does not mean it is healthy! There are a lot of gluten free flours made with mostly refined white rice flour which lacks nutrients, just like regular all purpose flour, so you have to be careful which kind you select. I like Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Baking Flour because its main ingredient is garbanzo bean flour. This adds some fiber goodness and other nutrients to the flour mix. Another easy substitution I used was applesauce for oil or melted butter. This decreases calories and fat and adds natural sugar so I am able to decrease the amount of added sugar I use without compromising the taste of the banana bread.

Overall, I was pleased with how well my healthy substitutions worked out and how easy this recipe was to make. I hope you enjoy it!

Gluten Free Banana Bread

Ingredients
Cooking spray
2-3 Over Ripe Bananas – about 1 heaping cup mashed
1/2 Cup Applesauce
1 Egg
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 1/2 Cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Baking Flour

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 9×5 inch loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside. Mash the bananas in a large mixing bowl with a fork until fairly smooth. Stir in applesauce and then add and mix in remaining ingredients, adding flour last.  Pour batter into loaf pan and cook in oven for 60 min. Allow to cool and serve.

Gluten Free Banana Bread
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Healthy, filling, and full of veggies
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Sweet potatoes are a great fall favorite. Delicious and full of Vitamin A they can be used in many different ways. Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin, meaning it is stored in fat in your body. Adding a little good fat (not too much, or you can end up adding a lot of extra calories) such as olive oil to your sweet potatoes will help your body to better absorb the Vitamin A. Sweet potatoes also have a lot of potassium which can be helpful with controlling blood pressure.

I have been wanting to try and make a frittata since this summer when I first attempted to make one. It was a zucchini and yellow squash frittata that got overcooked and I ended up having to scrape off the bottom layer because it was all burnt. Apparently it was still decent though because my husband managed to eat it…. Although he may have just eaten it so I wouldn’t feel bad that I ruined dinner. This time I wanted to try using fall flavors so I got sweet potatoes, a bunch of kale, onions and goat cheese to give it a more hearty autumn feel. I was more careful with the cooking time and it turned out perfectly cooked.

A Healthy and Delicious Fritatta

Sweet Potato and Kale Frittata

Ingredients
4 Large Eggs
1/4 Cup Skim Milk
1/4 Cup Crumbled Goat Cheese
Pinch of Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Rosemary
1 Teaspoon Olive Oil
1/4 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/3 Cup Diced Raw Red Onion
1 Cup Cooked and Diced Sweet Potatoes*
3 Cups Raw Kale

Directions
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix eggs, milk and cheese together in a medium mixing bowl. Stir in rosemary and salt, set aside. Add olive oil to an 8 inch skillet on medium heat.  Add garlic and onions and sauté until almost translucent. Turn down to med low. Add kale and stir to ensure kale cooks down evenly. After kale shrinks and becomes wilted, add in sweet potatoes and distribute evenly. Pour egg mixture into pan with veggies and stir until uniform. Remove pan from heat and bake in oven on 400 degrees for 20 min or until edges appear slightly browned and frittata is firm.

*I just popped a sweet potato in the microwave for a few min after poking some holes in it and then chopped it up after it cooled down

 

Sweet Potato and Kale Frittata

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