Coconut Mango Popsicle, Healthy, Recipe, Summer, Treat, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan, Simple, Easy, Frozen
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So I’ve been a little slow with the recipe creation recently, but I have a good excuse. For almost a month I didn’t really have full use of my kitchen. It is quite a long story but I will give you the semi-short version…

Basically, we were removing the laminate floors from our new house and discovered we had a pretty bad mold problem. So me, my husband and our 6 month old daughter had to stay with my husband’s parents for a week, while the mold was cut out of the walls and they cleaned the air. When we were finally able to come back, our downstairs was all concrete with missing wall and ceiling parts so we had to live upstairs while they were rebuilding the downstairs. Our kitchen cabinets were all covered with plastic during the rebuild so we really couldn’t get to anything…so plastic forks and paper plates were our dinnerware. I pretty much only had access to the refrigerator (except when they moved it to replace the floor) and the toaster. I honestly don’t even remember what we were eating during this time…it was all quite a blur of frustration.

 

Baby V didn't mind staying at her Grandparents house for a week :)
Baby V didn’t mind staying at her Grandparents house for a week :)

 

And of course this all happened when my 6 month old daughter was just starting to eat solid foods so it really was not the most ideal time. I had to feed her in her high chair in my bedroom, and of course food would get thrown everywhere, including all over my bed. Luckily it is all over and we have nice beautiful floors downstairs that I will never redo as long as we live here.

This is what the downstairs of my house looked like for a few weeks
This is what the downstairs of my house looked like for a few weeks… it looks like a creepy basement

 

Anyways, with sincerest apologies for my lack of adding new recipes, I give you a coconut mango popsicle recipe and a promise that another new recipe is on the way next week :)

 

So onto the recipe…

 

Coconut Mango Popsicles, Easy, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Recipe, Vegan

 

Making your own popsicles out of real fruit is a great way to enjoy a summer treat and also get some great nutrients in for both yourself and your little ones. You can use fresh fruit that is in season, especially ones in abundance, like the mangoes down here in south florida during the summer. I definitely wanted to use up some fresh mangoes before they went bad and making popsicles out of them sounded like a great idea. Instead of making popsicles out of just fruit and sugar, I like to add a little flavor depth with things like spices, tea, or vanilla and a little bit of a dairy or non-dairy fat source. I find that adding a little fat really helps with the consistency of the popsicle so it is not too icy.

 

Coconut Mango Popsicles, Easy, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan, Recipes

Coconut Mango Popsicles

 Makes 6 Popsicles

Ingredients
2 Fresh Mangos or 2 Cups Chopped
1/2 Cup So Delicious Dairy Free Coconut Milk Beverage
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon Agave Syrup

Directions
Add all ingredients to blender and mix until smooth. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze for about 4 hours or until frozen solid. When ready to eat, run warm water over popsicle mold until you are able to easily remove popsicle from mold. Enjoy!
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Mediterranean Quinoa Bake
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When I’m short on time or I’m running low on fresh vegetables, I like to combine fresh veggies with canned ones for a quick and easy meal that still helps me meet my nutritional needs. When buying canned ingredients, I compare different brands and choose the one that is lowest in sodium, preferably no salt added, if possible. I also drain and rinse my canned beans and veggies that do have salt added to help further decrease the sodium level. If you like to use a lot of canned ingredients I would suggest investing in a little mini colander so you can easily rinse off your canned beans and veggies without having to use your bigger one. That way you can save precious dishwasher space and you may be more likely to actually take the time to rinse them off :)

 

 

Mediterranean Quinoa Bake

 

 

This week was pretty busy so I wanted to make a really easy, healthy and delicious meal that would be able to feed both me and my husband for two nights. Throwing veggies, beans, and whole grains into a pan and baking it seemed like a really good way to accomplish my goal. I also wanted to do a vegetarian dish because 1) I love vegetarian dishes, 2) Adding meat seemed like an unnecessary extra step, and 3) My friend Stephanie is a vegetarian who loves casseroles/bakes and is always looking for healthy recipes…so this recipe was partly for her. I chose to use mediterranean flavors in this recipe because I love them… annnnd I also happened to have a can of artichokes in my pantry I wanted to use. So if you like easy healthy recipes, veggies, chickpeas, and quinoa, this recipe is just for you.

 

Mediterranean Quinoa Bake

Mediterranean Quinoa Bake

Ingredients 
1 Cup Uncooked Quinoa
1 Can (16 oz) Reduced Sodium Chickpeas- Drained and Rinsed
1 Can (14 oz) Quartered Artichoke Hearts- Drained and Rinsed
1 Can (12 oz) Roasted Red Peppers- Drained and Rinsed
3 Cups Raw Baby Spinach
4 Plum Tomatoes – Sliced
1 Cup Low Sodium Vegetable Broth
1 Teaspoon Minced Garlic
1 Teaspoon Dried Basil
1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
3/4 Cup Reduced Fat Crumbled Feta Cheese
2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar

Directions
Cook quinoa according to package directions and preheat oven to 350 degrees. While quinoa is cooking, add remaining ingredients except for feta cheese and balsamic vinegar to a large mixing bowl. Toss ingredients together mixing well. After quinoa is done cooking, spread quinoa evenly in a 9×13 inch glass baking pan. Top with veggie mixture. Cook in oven for 20 minutes or until veggies are warm and soft. Remove from oven, sprinkle feta cheese and drizzle balsamic vinegar over the top of casserole. Place back in oven for about 5 more minutes until cheese is warm and slightly soft. Remove from oven and serve. Enjoy!
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Spiralized Beets with Oranges and Blue Cheese
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Up until recently, I haven’t had beets for quite some time. Maybe the occasional beet on a salad at a restaurant or at a wedding, but I would never just make them myself. Then, a few things happened. First, my sister made spiralized beets when I went to visit in March and they were really good. I think we put balsamic and something else on them…maybe honey, and just roasted them in the oven. Then, I actually ordered roasted beets at a tapas style restaurant when my brother was here visiting, and they were amazing. It made start thinking about creating my own similar dish. Finally, I happened to find a container of pre-spiralized beets at my local publix…yes I am that lazy/busy person that likes to take an occasional shortcut. Anyways, there was now no excuse not to try my hand at a delicious beet recipe.
Spiralized Beets with Oranges and Blue Cheese
Before I give you the recipe I should probably tell you why you should eat beets. Other than the fact that they are delicious of course. The short story is that beets are a vegetable and vegetables are good for you, we all know that. But why beets specifically? One of the great things about these root veggies is their high dietary nitrate content. Nitrates are a compound made up of nitrogen and oxygen and are naturally found in our food supply. They are abundant in vegetables such as leafy greens and beets and have been shown to help lower blood pressure and enhance exercise performance. So beets are delicious and heart healthy…you definitely have to try them now!
Spiralized Beets with Oranges and Blue Cheese

Spiralized Beets with Oranges and Blue Cheese

Ingredients 
4 Cups Spiralized Beets
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar + Extra for Drizzling
1 Cup Mandarin Orange Slices
1/4 Cup Reduced Fat Blue Cheese Crumbles

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toss beets with olive oil and 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar in a medium roasting pan. Cook for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and toss in oranges. Mix together and cook for another 5-10 minutes or until oranges are warm and beets are to desired tenderness. Remove from oven, stir and place in serving dish. Top with blue cheese and drizzle with more balsamic vinegar if desired. Serve warm immediately or refrigerate and serve cold.
Spiralized Beets with Oranges and Blue Cheese
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