Pumpkin Protein Pancakes

Fall is here and what’s better than enjoying a nice stack of pancakes on a chilly morning? This morning I decided to try pumpkin protein pancakes and they came out delicious! These protein pancakes had just the right amount of pumpkin flavor.

This recipe yields 3 pancakes which will serve one so multiply the ingredients as needed. I enjoyed my pumpkin protein pancakes with a 90 calorie Pumpkin Spiced Latte that I found on Natalie Hodson’s blog.

The key to perfect protein pancakes is allowing the batter to set for 5 minutes before you pour batter into hot skillet. I always spray a large skillet with cooking spray after I blend my batter and allow the skillet to heat up on medium heat while I let my batter set for a few minutes. I flip my pancakes when I start to see bubbles form, this usually takes 2-3 minutes.

Pumpkin Protein Pancakes

Total time: 15 minutes

Yields: 3 pancakes (1 serving)

Ingredients:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup quick cooking oats
  • 1/4 cup 100% pumpkin pure
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients to a magic bullet or blender and blend until batter is smooth. Let batter set for 5 minutes.
  2. Spray a large skillet with non-stick spray and heat on medium.
  3. After the batter is set and your pan is hot, pour batter onto pan (makes 3 pancakes) and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side. Pancakes are ready to flip when bubbles appear.
  4. Top pancakes with maple syrup and enjoy!

Honey Balsamic Chicken

I eat chicken at least once a day and I make chicken for dinner 3-4 nights a week. I am always trying to look for ways to make it different to keep my taste buds excited for another chicken dinner. This recipe takes 15 minutes so it’s a perfect week night dinner.

The honey and balsamic vinegar mixed together creates a sweet and tangy sauce that is good on everything. Whenever I make this dish I usually end up dinner my sides in the sauce as well. I had this last night with roasted red potatoes and steamed carrots and the sauce complimented the whole meal.

Honey Balsamic Chicken

Total time: 15 minutes

Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb thinly sliced skinless chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1-2 tbsp thyme
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Directions:

  1. Add 1 tbsp olive oil to a large skillet and heat over medium heat.
  2. Season both sides of chicken with thyme.
  3. Cook chicken for 3-4 minutes each side or until no longer pink inside. I use thinly sliced chicken for this recipe because it cooks quickly. If you are using thick chicken breast the cooking time will vary.
  4. Remove chicken from skillet and keep warm.
  5. Combine honey and balsamic vinegar to the hot skillet and increase heat to medium high.
  6. Bring the sauce to a slight boil, stirring frequently until the sauce thickens.
  7. Pour the sauce over the cooked chicken and serve.

Clean Meatloaf Muffins with Garlic Mashed Potato Topping

There is nothing like home cooked meatloaf for dinner. I found myself craving meatloaf yesterday so I decided to combine two of my favorites in one dish, garlic mashed potatoes and meatloaf, it was a success! The end result was a delicious comfort meal that was still healthy and clean. It was simple and quick to prepare. Cooking the meatloaf in muffin tins speeds up the cooking process and also helps with portion control.

Clean Meatloaf Muffins with Garlic Mashed Potato Topping

Total time: 45 minutes

Yields: 6 servings (2 muffins each)

Ingredients:

Garlic Mashed Potatoes:

  • 4 medium organic red potatoes
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp Parmesan cheese
  • dash of salt

Meatloaf Muffins:

  • 1.25 lb lean ground beef (preferably grass fed)
  • 1/4 cup gluten free bread crumbs (I used Glutino)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • dash salt and pepper

Other ingredients:

  • reduced sugar ketchup
  • cooking spray

 

Directions:

Garlic Mashed Potatoes:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add a dash of salt to water. Clean and slice potatoes into cubes, leave skin on. Add potatoes to boiling water and boil for 20 or until soft.
  2. Strain cooked potatoes. Return potatoes to pot and add all remaining ingredients. Mash potatoes thoroughly and mix all ingredients in well.
  3. Set potatoes aside until needed.

Meatloaf Muffins:

  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Coat 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray.
  2. Combine ground beef with ingredients, mix well. Press 1/4 cup of mixture into each tin.
  3. Top meatloaf mixture with 1 tsp of reduced sugar ketchup and top with 1 – 2 tbsp of garlic mashed potatoes.
  4. Add muffins to preheated oven and cook for 15-20 minutes or until meat is cooked.
  5. Remove and let cool for 5 minutes. Serve with a side salad or vegetable of choice. Enjoy!

Peanut Butter & Banana Protein Pancakes

It took me a little bit before I came across a recipe for protein pancakes that worked and tasted good. I ended up with a lot of dry and burnt pancakes before I discovered how to make the batter properly.  These protein pancakes come out perfect every time and have a similar consistency and flavor to classic buttermilk pancakes.

The key to making tasty and appealing protein pancakes is letting the batter set for 5 minutes. While my batter is setting, I begin to pre-heat my skillet over medium heat and I make sure that the skillet is fully heated before I pour my pancake batter onto the pan. Follow these two steps and you will make delicious protein pancakes every time!

Peanut Butter & Banana Protein Pancakes

Total time: 15-20 minutes

Yields: 3-4 pancakes (1 serving)

Ingredients:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 1 large banana, cut in half (use 1/2 for batter, 1/2 for topping)
  • 1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/8 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1-2 tbsp all natural peanut butter

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients to a magic bullet or a blender and blend until batter is smooth. Let batter set for 5 minutes.
  2. Spray a large skillet with non-stick cooking spray and heat on medium.
  3. After the batter is set and your pan is pre heated, pour batter onto pan (makes 3-4 pancakes) and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side. Pancakes are ready to flip when bubbles appear.
  4. Top pancakes with peanut butter and remaining 1/2 banana. I like to drizzle natural maple syrup on top too. Enjoy! 🙂

Skirt Steak Burrito Bowl

During the week I try to keep my meals quick and simple. After a long work day and going to the gym the last thing I want to do is be in the kitchen cooking dinner for a while. I whipped up this tasty burrito bowl last night, it was the perfect week night dinner for my boyfriend and I .

This dish reminds me of Chipotle’s Burrito Bowls (one of my favorites), however, Chipotle’s menu items can have a lot of sodium and extra oils. If you’re looking for an easy and healthy dinner give a Skirt Steak Burrito Bowl a try!

 

Skirt Steak Burrito Bowl

Total time: 15-20 minutes

Yields: 3-4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb skirt steak, cubed
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 can of black beans, reduced sodium
  • 2 cups brown rice, cooked or boil in a bag
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp Mrs. Dash Southwestern Chipotle seasoning
  • 1 tsp fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 tbsp cilantro, chopped

 

Directions:

  1. Add olive oil to a large skillet and heat on medium. Season beans with garlic powder and onion  powder, begin to heat in a medium skillet. Begin cooking rice or heating cooked rice.
  2. Add chopped steak to hot skillet, season with Mrs. Dash and lime juice. Cook steak until desired doneness.
  3. Add chopped cilantro to cooked rice and stir well.
  4. Add rice, black beans, and steak to a bowl. Top with desired toppings; plain greek yogurt, cheese, avocado, hot sauce, salsa, etc.
  5. Eat up and enjoy!

Healthy Marinated Steak Kabobs

Marinating meats and vegetables is my favorite way to add flavor to a dish. A lot of store bought marinades are high in sodium so I prefer to make my own. Making a marinade is simple and cheap, all it takes is a few flavorful ingredients. This marinade took me a couple minutes to prepare and I promise this is one of the best marinades I have ever tried.

The combination of lime juice and cayenne pepper adds a unique smoked flavor to an already delicious meal. Did I mention how simple this healthy and tasty dinner was to prepare? I marinated the steak for 2 hours because that’s all the time I had but if you are able to plan ahead I highly recommend marinating the steak for 24 hours. This marinade would do well with other meats like chicken or fish. Give it a try… I promise you will not regret it!

Healthy Marinated Steak Kabobs

Total time: 2+ hours of marinating and 15 minutes of cooking

Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound filet of sirloin
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1/2 yellow onion
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Cut steak into 2 inch cubes. Combine lime juice, water, olive oil, garlic, soy sauce, sea salt, cayenne pepper, and black pepper in a large ziploc bag and mix well.
  2. Add steak to mixed marinade and put in fridge for at least 2 hours.
  3. Heat charcoal grill or gas grill to medium.
  4. Cut onion and peppers into 2 inch squares. String marinated steak, onions, and peppers onto skewers.
  5. Cook kabobs for 5-8 minutes on each side or until desired doneness.
  6. Combine kabobs with brown rice or whole wheat tortillas. Enjoy!

Spicy Orange & Maple Chicken

Eating chicken for most of my meals can get old. I like to try and change up my meals by adding different spices or pairing it with different sides. I found this recipe on Little B’s Healthy Habits. It has a sweet and spicy combination and pairs well with brown rice and a side salad. It seems like an odd mix but I promise it is delicious!

Spicy Orange & Maple Chicken

Total time: 20 minutes

Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken, cut in half length wise and then cut into strips
  • Juice from 2 oranges
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp adobo sauce (could sub with 1 tbsp of adobo powder)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2.5 tbsp sugar free maple syrup

Directions

  1. Heat a large skillet on medium heat and add olive oil.
  2. Sprinkle salt, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper on chicken and add to skillet.
  3. Remove cooked chicken from pan and keep warm.
  4. Add orange juice, syrup, and adobo sauce to pan and bring to a slight boil.
  5. Return chicken to pan and cook for 1 minute.
  6. Serve chicken over a bed of brown rice with sauce spooned on top.

Parmesan Crusted Asparagus

Asparagus is packed with nutrients and is beneficial when added to any type of diet. Asparagus is an excellent source of fiber and vitamins A, C, E and K. Asparagus helps rid the body of excess salts and is packed with antioxidants. Are you looking to relieve yourself from bloating and retained water weight? Add asparagus to your diet and you will see why this vegetable is a key ingredient to any healthy and balanced diet.

Let’s face it asparagus is not everyone’s go to vegetable. The good thing about asparagus is that there are so many ways to cook it and change it up. You can chop it up and throw it in a stir fry, bake it with your favorite seasonings, or add it to your favorite casserole. This recipe is my favorite way to prepare asparagus. Parmesan Crusted Asparagus compliments any dish. This healthy and nutrient packed side dish will keep you wanting more.

Parmesan Crusted Asparagus

Total time: 15 minutes

Yields: 4 servings (8-10 stalks per serving)

Ingredients:

  • 1 large bundle of asparagus
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1-2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. Wash and cut the hard ends off of asparagus.
  2. Spray a baking sheet with non stick cooking spray. Place washed and cut asparagus onto baking sheet.
  3. Drizzle 1 tbsp olive oil evenly over asparagus. Follow with 1-2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese.
  4. Add to oven and bake for 10-15 minutes or until desired doneness.

Spicy Sweet Potato Fries

Eating clean does not mean your meals have to be bland and boring. There are plenty of tasty and clean recipes out there… you just have to look! Eating clean introduced me to a lot of unique spices and flavors. I actually did not like spicy food of any kind before eating healthier meals. I guess using them so often to add flavor to my meals has increased my tolerance to spices.

I found these tasty little fries on Muffin Topless‘ blog. All of the different spices combined create a mildly spicy and smokey flavor. This recipe changes it up for your taste buds if you’re tired of eating sweet potatoes or if you’re not a fan of sweet potatoes. Give this a try next time you’re making burgers!

Spicy and Clean Sweet Potato Fries

Ingredients:

  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 1/4 cup liquid egg whites (or 2 egg whites)
  • tsp chili powder
  • tsp garlic powder
  • tsp oregano
  • tsp ground cumin
  • tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper

 

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Chop sweet potatoes into classic french fry shapes. Try to keep them an even thickness or they will not cook properly.
  3. Add uncooked sweet potatoes to a large bowl (preferably one with a lid, it makes it easier). Add egg whites and toss until the potatoes are coated.
  4. Combine all spices in a small bowl and mix. Add mixed spices on top of your potatoes in large bowl and toss until all fries are lightly coated with spices.
  5. Spray a cookie sheet with nonstick spray and spread the fries out evenly.
  6. Bake for 18-20 minutes. Flip the fries and bake for an additional 15 minutes or until desired consistency. Total cook time should be about 35 minutes.
  7. For extra crispy fries: Turn your oven to broil for a few minutes after the full 35 minutes cook time is up.

Serve warm and enjoy 🙂

Healthy Teriyaki Chicken Burgers

I wanted to change up my usual lean burgers last night and decided to try making healthy teriyaki chicken burgers. They came out so moist and full of flavor. The best part… it only took 15 minutes to prepare from start to finish! This is a great option for a busy week night meal because it has minimal ingredients and leaves little mess to clean up.

If you’re looking to change up dinner tonight while keeping things simple and healthy, give this recipe a try!

Healthy Teriyaki Chicken Burgers

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb lean ground chicken
  • 1/4 cup Mrs. Dash Sweet Teriyaki Marinade
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 cup quick cooking oats

 

Directions:

  1. Spray a large skillet with non-stick cooking spray and heat on medium.
  2. Combine ground chicken, Mrs. Dash, salt, pepper, and oats. Mix well and form into 4-5 patties.
  3. Add patties to heated skillet and cook for 5 minutes on each side or until no longer pink.
  4. Serve on whole wheat buns and enjoy 🙂