A delicious way to eat your vegetables, this Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette makes a great healthy lunch. Or, enjoy it as a side dish with grilled chicken.
I am always trying to work more vegetables into my diet. I tend to eat plenty of fresh fruits, but I know that I can do better with the vegetables. Green salads and carrot sticks can get boring quickly, but roasted vegetables? I can eat roasted vegetables day after day and never tire of them.
In this roasted vegetable quinoa salad, I've taken a sweet onion, red bell peppers, and an eggplant and roasted them until they are soft and caramelized. I combined the vegetables with some quinoa and a sprinkling ... [Continue Reading]
This Hearty Vegetable Chowder is filled with leeks, carrots, celery, and potatoes. A scoop of tangy Greek yogurt and some Cajun spice give it plenty of flavor and a little kick to warm you up from the inside.
Our temperatures are dropping here in California, and yesterday we got some much-needed rain. While our cold temperatures are certainly nothing extreme, I was looking to warm up with a comforting bowl of soup once dinner time rolled around. This hearty vegetable chowder was perfect to fill our tummies and warm us up, especially since we gave it a little kick with an extra pinch of cayenne pepper!
There are two key steps that give this soup it's hearty, smooth broth. First, ... [Continue Reading]
A healthy vegetarian take on stuffed peppers, these Stuffed Red Bell Peppers with Couscous and Avocado Sauce are full of flavor and a great make-ahead dish.
Stuffed bell peppers... there are the traditional recipes with meat, rice, and sauce, and then there are the more unique flavor combinations to spice things up and offer variety. These couscous-stuffed peppers fall into the latter category. Anything but boring and usual, they are packed with flavor!
When I first saw this recipe while flipping through one of my cookbooks I bookmarked it and added it to our weekly menu plan. The night before I planned to make these, I read through the recipe to see what was involved in preparing ... [Continue Reading]
Sometimes (well, pretty much a great deal of the time), my kids surprise me. Take these stuffed peppers, for instance. Quinoa combined with tons of veggies doesn't necessarily make me think kid-friendly meal. I suppose I didn't give Julia and William enough credit, though, because both of them really enjoyed this. Even with a cold, Julia ate plenty of her stuffed pepper half. We're finally at a stage with her where she will at least try a bite of most anything that I cook, and she's starting (slowly) to enjoy a greater variety of foods, including a few more vegetables. And William? These days he's not much of an eater at dinner time, so the fact that he had multiple bites of his quinoa ... [Continue Reading]
I love cooking with butternut squash this time of year. One of our favorite fall meals is butternut squash soup, homemade rolls, and a green salad. Roasted butternut squash, though, is hard to resist, especially when it's combined with a bechamel sauce and three cheeses in a lasagna. This lasagna reminded me of one of my other favorite butternut squash meals- butternut squash ravioli. It has all of the flavors of the ravioli, but is much easier to put together. The roasted squash, cheese, sage, and pasta, it's all there.
The lasagna requires minimal prep time, especially since it takes advantage of no-boil lasagna noodles. Plus, I always enjoy adding new and flavorful vegetarian meals to ... [Continue Reading]
This summer flew by, probably because the kids and I were so busy. Between swimming lessons, My Gym classes, more swimming, and running errands, we had someplace to be pretty much every day. Sometimes when the kids and I are out and about, I like to treat us by going out to lunch or for a morning snack. Often we'll choose to eat at Panera, because it's kid-friendly and we love the menu of bagels, sandwiches, and salads. If it's lunchtime, Julia always orders the mac and cheese and (not always willingly) shares some with her little brother.
I was excited to find that Panera's mac and cheese recipe is available on their website, so that we can enjoy it at home as well. Julia loved the ... [Continue Reading]
As someone who spends a lot of time cooking, baking, photographing food, and writing about food, I constantly have food-related ideas bouncing around in my head. You know you're a food blogger when... as you're standing at the kitchen sink washing dishes from the raspberry scones you just made (which just happen to be the fifth new recipe you've tried over the past three days), you ask your husband questions like, “Do you think that zucchini pizza would be good with pine nuts on it?” His reply? “Yes, I think that would be really good.” So the next time I make this pizza, I will definitely be tossing some pine nuts on top. I think the added crunch would be awesome, and if you try it, let me ... [Continue Reading]
Hummus is a healthy snack, high in protein and a great dip for fresh veggies. Lately I've been making a batch of hummus to enjoy as an easy, healthy dinner too. I serve it with a variety of fresh cut vegetables and homemade whole-wheat pita wedges, and we have a casual, balanced meal that includes protein, veggies, and whole grains. The kids love both the hummus (they are partial to the roasted red pepper one) and the pita, and we round out their meal with some fresh fruit. (We're still working on getting them to enjoy veggies other than broccoli and the occasional slice of cucumber.)
I've read in a few different places about a secret to making perfectly smooth hummus: peeling the ... [Continue Reading]
My recent posts have been full of sweet treats, so I thought it was time to share something healthy to start the week off on the right foot. Healthy certainly doesn't mean that you won't be excited to dig in to this Southwest Quinoa Salad, though. It's full of good for you ingredients that are also full of flavor. I used red quinoa for the first time in this salad, and love the added color that it brings to the dish. Quinoa is a great base for the salad because it soaks up the flavors of the seasonings, and some red bell pepper balances out the textures by adding some crunch.
Be sure to mix up the easy guacamole to add to your bowl- it will only take a minute and is delicious with the ... [Continue Reading]
Why is it that around one year of age kids suddenly start to get picky about their food? There are those few months before the one year mark where little ones are open to trying (and usually liking) just about anything, and then all of a sudden that all changes. You put some broccoli or scrambled eggs on the high chair tray and are thanked with a face that says, “Really, this is what you expect me to eat?” If you're a parent, I'm pretty sure you know what face I'm talking about. William, as was Julia, is all about the bread, fruit, and dairy when it comes to eating, with a little meat thrown in for good measure.
Still, I make sure to offer him a variety of foods, and we all eat the same ... [Continue Reading]
These days I'm all about getting the most out of my cooking. I love it when I find a recipe that not only feeds us for two nights in a row, but also freezes well. Investing time in the kitchen is even more rewarding when there is a big payoff, and in my world a quick meal that just needs heating up on a busy weeknight is a pretty big payoff. This cheesy spinach stuffed shells recipe makes a lot, plus it's hard to go wrong with cheesy pasta. I don't make special “kid meals” for Julia and William- they either eat what we're eating as a family or they don't. But it is nice when dinner is something that they love and enjoy, and these were enjoyed by all.
If you love cheese, then these shells ... [Continue Reading]
There are so many delicious variations on the taco. Some of my favorites are fish tacos, chicken tacos, or tacos made with seasoned ground turkey. I also like to have a few vegetarian taco options to turn to, and these zucchini and black bean tacos are perfect for those times. They are filled with grilled red onions and zucchini, as well as black beans, tomatoes, and cheese. While I do enjoy a white flour tortilla every once in a while, most of the time I try to choose healthier whole-wheat tortillas, and that's what I did for this meal. Not only are these tacos tasty, they are good for you and easy to prepare as well. That's a triple win in my kitchen!
Zucchini and Black Bean ... [Continue Reading]