Kristine's Kitchen http://kristineskitchenblog.com healthy bites and sweet treats Mon, 27 Apr 2015 19:32:19 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.4 Orange Chia Granola http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/27/orange-chia-granola/ http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/27/orange-chia-granola/#comments Mon, 27 Apr 2015 13:52:15 +0000 http://kristineskitchenblog.com/?p=7936 You’ll love the hint of orange zest in this Orange Chia Granola, loaded with healthy oats, chia seeds, and nuts! What is your favorite meal of the day? Mine is most definitely breakfast. Maybe that’s partly due to the cup of coffee that I get to drink at breakfast time. But it’s also the breakfast […]

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You’ll love the hint of orange zest in this Orange Chia Granola, loaded with healthy oats, chia seeds, and nuts!

You'll love the hint of orange in this Orange Chia Seed Granola!

What is your favorite meal of the day? Mine is most definitely breakfast. Maybe that’s partly due to the cup of coffee that I get to drink at breakfast time. But it’s also the breakfast foods. Waffles, pancakes, oatmeal, eggs, and toast… I love them all.

You'll love the hint of orange in this Orange Chia Seed Granola!

My favorite go-to easy everyday breakfast, though, is homemade granola. I love making (and eating) granola so much that last year I devoted a whole week to sharing granola recipes here. I’ve written about the 5 reasons why you should make homemade granola. Basically, I’m a granola addict.

I never get tired of dreaming up new granola flavors, and this Orange Chia Granola is my latest obsession. I’ve mentioned that we’ve been getting the most delicious, juicy oranges in our farm box. Well, I pretty much can’t eat one of those oranges without first zesting it to make a batch of this granola!

You'll love the hint of orange in this Orange Chia Seed Granola!

I mix the zest into a little bit of granulated sugar, which releases the flavor and oils from the zest and flavors the sugar. This method allows the orange flavor to be evenly distributed throughout the granola. When you mix the orange-sugar into the oat mixture, be sure to break up any clumps of orange with your spoon so that everything is well combined.

You'll love the hint of orange in this Orange Chia Seed Granola!

I make homemade granola just about every week, so that we’ll have it on hand for quick weekday breakfasts. I always make a (...)
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Orange and Shallot Roasted Asparagus http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/24/orange-and-shallot-roasted-asparagus/ http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/24/orange-and-shallot-roasted-asparagus/#comments Fri, 24 Apr 2015 11:09:28 +0000 http://kristineskitchenblog.com/?p=7921 This Orange and Shallot Roasted Asparagus is a simple side dish that’s full of fresh flavors. I want to eat all of the oranges. We’ve been getting the most delicious oranges in our farm box and I cannot stop eating them. Or cooking with them. Or baking with them. Their zest lends amazing flavor to […]

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This Orange and Shallot Roasted Asparagus is a simple side dish that’s full of fresh flavors.

Orange and Shallot Roasted Asparagus - a simple side dish with bright fresh flavors!

I want to eat all of the oranges. We’ve been getting the most delicious oranges in our farm box and I cannot stop eating them. Or cooking with them. Or baking with them. Their zest lends amazing flavor to everything from cookies to fruit salad to savory dishes, and their insides are juicy, sweet, and just plain delicious.

Orange and Shallot Roasted Asparagus - a simple side dish with bright fresh flavors!

When I shared this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake earlier in the week, I mentioned that we’ve been getting a fruit and veggie box delivered once a week. I plan to share more about that soon, but for now I’ll just say that it is turning out to be a great source of inspiration for me in the kitchen.

Orange and Shallot Roasted Asparagus - a simple side dish with bright fresh flavors!

Last week we received oranges, asparagus, and shallots (plus much more) in our box. Asparagus is one of my favorite springtime vegetables, and my favorite way to prepare it is to roast it. Usually I’ll toss the asparagus in a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic and roast away. This time I decided to replace the garlic with chopped shallots, and mix in a little orange zest to brighten the flavors. Best (...)
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Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/21/grapefruit-ricotta-cake-with-cream-cheese-frosting/ http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/21/grapefruit-ricotta-cake-with-cream-cheese-frosting/#comments Tue, 21 Apr 2015 10:54:56 +0000 http://kristineskitchenblog.com/?p=7896 Ricotta cheese makes this grapefruit pound cake extra moist, and the sweet grapefruit cream cheese frosting is the perfect balance to the tart cake.  You will love the bright citrus flavor in this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting! This past weekend I celebrated my birthday. It was a great weekend, filled with a […]

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Ricotta cheese makes this grapefruit pound cake extra moist, and the sweet grapefruit cream cheese frosting is the perfect balance to the tart cake.  You will love the bright citrus flavor in this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting!

Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting - SO moist, sweet, and tart!

This past weekend I celebrated my birthday. It was a great weekend, filled with a nice balance of family time, me time, and birthday fun!

Saturday morning we took the kids to a birthday party for one of their friends. Then I spent three hours Saturday afternoon cooking and photographing two new recipes. I’ll give you a hint: they both include orange, both turned out fabulously, and I’ll be sharing them with you very soon! Oh, and you know you’re a food blogger when dinner is leftover homemade pizza along with reheated asparagus that you cooked and photographed in the afternoon. :)

On Sunday, I set my alarm for 5:30a.m. so that I could have some quiet time/blogging time before the kids woke up. I got started on writing my posts for this week, while enjoying my cup of coffee. The rest of the day was spent hanging out with the kids, and then in the evening we went to my parents’ house for dinner. I even did a little baking in the afternoon.  Shocker, right?

Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting - SO moist, sweet, and tart!

Did I forget to mention there was cake? Lots of cake actually. Kid birthday party cupcakes, birthday cake after dinner on Sunday, and a few slices of this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting here and there as well. Yes, there was cake, and it was wonderful.

Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting - SO moist, sweet, and tart!

I am not a huge grapefruit eater. I enjoy half a grapefruit with breakfast maybe a couple of times a year. We have recently started getting a Farm Fresh to You delivery of fresh fruits and vegetables each week, and our box has included the juiciest, most delicious grapefruits. I think I might be getting hooked on grapefruit!  It was only a matter of time before I tried baking with these tart citrus fruits. (If you live in the delivery area and want to sign up for Farm Fresh, be sure to enter my referral code, KRIS8174.  We will both get a discount! ;) )

Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting - SO moist, sweet, and tart!

To make this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, I adapted one of my all-time favorite recipes, my Lemon Ricotta Cake with Almond Glaze. I swapped out (...)
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Light and Fluffy Blueberry Banana Muffins http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/18/light-and-fluffy-blueberry-banana-muffins/ http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/18/light-and-fluffy-blueberry-banana-muffins/#comments Sat, 18 Apr 2015 11:34:40 +0000 http://kristineskitchenblog.com/?p=7881 These Light and Fluffy Blueberry Banana Muffins are easy to make, whole-wheat, and free of refined sugars! They are perfect for make-ahead breakfasts or snacks! I think I could write a whole blog dedicated to muffin recipes. I make a batch of muffins pretty much every week. They are quick and easy to make, and […]

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These Light and Fluffy Blueberry Banana Muffins are easy to make, whole-wheat, and free of refined sugars! They are perfect for make-ahead breakfasts or snacks!

Light and Fluffy Blueberry Banana Muffins {Whole Wheat, Refined Sugar Free!} | Kristine's Kitchen

I think I could write a whole blog dedicated to muffin recipes. I make a batch of muffins pretty much every week. They are quick and easy to make, and perfect for storing in your freezer for a fast breakfast. I like to make them on the healthier side so I can snack on a muffin and still keep to my healthy eating goals. Sometimes I make my tried and true favorite muffin recipes, and sometimes I like to experiment with a new recipe like this one.

Light and Fluffy Blueberry Banana Muffins {Whole Wheat, Refined Sugar Free!} | Kristine's Kitchen

I developed this recipe at my sister’s request. She was looking for a healthy blueberry banana muffin that’s easy to make and doesn’t require any crazy ingredients. I was so happy when my first batch turned out pretty close to perfect, and after testing it a few times (and having my sister and mom test it, too), I’m excited to share it with you!

Light and Fluffy Blueberry Banana Muffins {Whole Wheat, Refined Sugar Free!} | Kristine's Kitchen

My kids and I both love this recipe. The kids just gobble them up! Sometimes I’ll give them a muffin and they pick it apart, eating some and leaving big crumbles of muffin behind on their plates. Not with these Light and Fluffy Blueberry Banana Muffins. Every. Crumb. Gone.(...)
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Perfect Potato Soup with Garlic Herb Croutons http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/13/perfect-potato-soup-with-garlic-herb-croutons/ http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/13/perfect-potato-soup-with-garlic-herb-croutons/#comments Mon, 13 Apr 2015 11:06:49 +0000 http://kristineskitchenblog.com/?p=7868 Leek, onion, and garlic bring delicious flavor to this easy potato soup. I think you’ll love this Perfect Potato Soup with Garlic Herb Croutons, and it’s quick enough for a weeknight! Last week was spring break week here, so of course the weather turned cooler and we got some rain. Though not enough rain to […]

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Leek, onion, and garlic bring delicious flavor to this easy potato soup. I think you’ll love this Perfect Potato Soup with Garlic Herb Croutons, and it’s quick enough for a weeknight!

Perfect Potato Soup with Garlic Herb Croutons - easy enough for a weeknight!

Last week was spring break week here, so of course the weather turned cooler and we got some rain. Though not enough rain to help with our California drought. We were stuck inside with colds as it was, so I would have welcomed more rain.

Here’s a funny side story. Brad was telling the kids that there is a drought so we need to save water. When I was helping William, who’s almost three now, brush his teeth, he informed me that we need to turn off the water because there is a drought in the sink. I wonder what the picture of a drought looks like in his mind. :)

The cooler weather made me crave a warm bowl of soup, and this Perfect Potato Soup with Garlic Herb Croutons was just the way to satisfy it. This potato soup is so easy to make, and it’s quick enough for a weeknight.

Perfect Potato Soup with Garlic Herb Croutons - easy enough for a weeknight!

This Perfect Potato Soup has (...)
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Raspberry-Filled Chocolate Lemon Cupcakes http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/09/raspberry-filled-chocolate-lemon-cupcakes/ http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/09/raspberry-filled-chocolate-lemon-cupcakes/#comments Thu, 09 Apr 2015 11:03:34 +0000 http://kristineskitchenblog.com/?p=7846 A bright lemon cupcake is filled with a sweet raspberry puree and topped with rich, fudgy Greek yogurt chocolate frosting. These Raspberry-Filled Chocolate Lemon Cupcakes are perfect for celebrating! Five years ago today, I published my first post on Kristine’s Kitchen. I shared this Strawberry Chicken Salad with Warm Citrus Dressing if you’re curious. A […]

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A bright lemon cupcake is filled with a sweet raspberry puree and topped with rich, fudgy Greek yogurt chocolate frosting. These Raspberry-Filled Chocolate Lemon Cupcakes are perfect for celebrating!

Raspberry-Filled Chocolate Lemon Cupcakes! With fudgy Greek yogurt frosting!

Five years ago today, I published my first post on Kristine’s Kitchen. I shared this Strawberry Chicken Salad with Warm Citrus Dressing if you’re curious. :)

A lot of life has happened since then. When I started Kristine’s Kitchen, Julia was just over a year old. I had gotten through the crazy first year of a first baby, and finally felt like I had more time to do something for myself. I immediately fell in love with blogging, and it became the thing I turned to at naptime when I needed to recharge.

A few months after I began blogging, I found out that I had colon cancer. I was only 31 years old. If you read my blog at that point, you never would have known because I’ve never talked about it here. But although I didn’t share what was going on in my real life, this blog gave me something else to focus on and was a positive outlet for my energy.

The next few months could be described as the scariest of my life, ever. I am so, so, so incredibly lucky that the cancer hadn’t spread beyond my colon and I only had to endure surgery as treatment. Most days the cancer worry still slips into my mind, but I try to push it away and replace it with gratitude for all that I have. Life really is amazing and precious.  (And I make sure that I always get my health screenings on time. Please, please make sure you do this too. It could save your life.)

Since then, (...)
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6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/01/6-simple-tricks-for-healthy-snacking/ http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/04/01/6-simple-tricks-for-healthy-snacking/#comments Wed, 01 Apr 2015 10:29:07 +0000 http://kristineskitchenblog.com/?p=7825 I am all about the healthy snacks. Click the snack category in my recipe index and you’ll find plenty of evidence. Snacks give me the energy I need to take care of my kids, work, and home, and I find myself hungry and wanting a snack multiple times each day. Without plenty of healthy snack […]

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6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!I am all about the healthy snacks. Click the snack category in my recipe index and you’ll find plenty of evidence. Snacks give me the energy I need to take care of my kids, work, and home, and I find myself hungry and wanting a snack multiple times each day. Without plenty of healthy snack options, and some planning ahead, I’d be reaching for the cookies and cereal all day long.

I have a few tricks up my sleeve that help me keep my healthy eating goals and snack for energy. I hope these simple tricks for healthy snacking will help you stay on track with your nutrition goals, too. Life is busy, and these tips are things that you can easily incorporate into your packed schedule.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

1. Fool yourself full with in-shell pistachios.

Let’s play a little trick on our appetites, ok? It is April Fools’ Day after all! In-shell pistachios make it easy to fool yourself full. You know how when you eat in-shell pistachios it takes extra work to get the nuts out of their shells? This is actually a really good thing when it comes to snacking. The time you spend shelling those pistachios ensures that you slow down and give yourself time to feel full.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

Plus, the empty pistachio shells that are left behind are a visual cue for how much you’ve eaten. We’ve all had those moments of looking at an empty bag of chips and wondering where they went, right? With pistachios, it’s easy to eat a one-ounce serving and feel completely satisfied.

Pistachios are one of the lowest-calorie nuts, so you can eat more while still watching your calorie intake. A 160-calorie serving of pistachios is about 49 nuts, and if you want a 100-calorie snack you can still enjoy 30 pistachios! Those 30 pistachios are much more filling than one of those 100-calorie snack packs you can buy at the grocery store.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

The best healthy snacks have a balance of protein, fiber, and carbohydrates for energy and satiety. I’ve been loving snacking on pistachios lately! Their flavor can’t be beat, and the salty crunch is super satisfying. I like to pair my in-shell pistachios with some dried fruit to get the ideal mix of protein, fiber, and carbs. My favorite choices are dried apricots and dried cranberries. I’m always sure to measure out the correct portion size of the dried fruit and pistachios before I start munching. With in-shell pistachios, I’m never left hungry for more. For more healthy eating tips and information about pistachios, be sure to visit the Pistachio Health Institute website.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

2. Have snacks prepped and ready in your refrigerator.

When hunger strikes, I’m much more likely to reach for something healthy if I don’t have to put any effort into preparing it. If I need to peel and chop carrots, for example, I’ll probably pass on the vegetables and reach for something else instead. The trick is to do the prep work ahead of time.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

Once or twice a week, I’ll chop fresh vegetables like carrots, bell peppers, and cucumbers and store them in my refrigerator. I also like to prep fruits like pineapple and melon and make a fruit salad that I can snack on during the week. I only add those fruits that will hold up for a few days – blueberries and grapes are other delicious additions to fruit salad. Hard boiled eggs and cheese sticks are easy to grab and provide great protein.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

3. Keep a stocked fruit bowl on your counter, where you’ll see it.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

When we get hungry, we are likely to reach for what we see first. If you have a jar of cookies on your counter, you are going to be eating cookies all day long. (Or, if you have amazing self control, you’ll just be craving cookies all day!) Keep a bowl of beautiful fresh fruit on your counter, and you’ll be craving the fruit.

4. Plan out your snacks ahead of time.

I try to decide what I’ll be snacking on before I get hungry. I don’t know about you, but I never make the best choices when I’m starving! Make a plan in the morning, or even the night before, and make sure you have everything ready for those snacks. For example, I might plan to have some cottage cheese with fresh fruit salad mid-morning, chopped vegetables and hummus in the afternoon, and a small handful of pistachios and dried cranberries as a bedtime snack.

It can also be helpful to keep a list of your favorite snacks next to your grocery list. When you plan for your grocery shopping trip, decide what healthy snacks you’ll want to have on hand for the week and make sure you buy any ingredients you will need. Planning ahead is the secret to healthy snacking!

5. Keep healthy “treats” on hand.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

In the afternoons, I often find myself craving something sweet. A brownie would certainly satisfy my craving, but it would also leave me feeling sluggish. There are plenty of healthy options that can satisfy a craving for sweets (and carbs – my other weakness!). Homemade granola bars, a healthy muffin, or a granola, fruit, and Greek yogurt parfait are all delicious, healthy options.

6. Remember to drink water.

It’s easy to confuse thirst with hunger, so I always keep a glass of water nearby to sip on throughout the day. I feel so much better when I stay hydrated, and it also keeps me from reaching for other beverages that are full of empty calories. To make water more flavorful and fun to drink, sometimes I’ll infuse it with fresh berries, cucumber, and lime.

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

Do you have any healthy snacking tricks? Please share in the comments! I love hearing new ideas for making healthy eating fun and easy.

Be sure to head over to the Pistachio Health Institute’s Facebook page for your chance to win a year’s supply of pistachios. I know a year’s worth of pistachios would certainly help with my healthy snacking goals!

6 Simple Tricks for Healthy Snacking - start doing these today!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


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Creamy, Lemony Pasta with Chicken and Asparagus http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/03/30/creamy-lemony-pasta-with-chicken-and-asparagus/ http://kristineskitchenblog.com/2015/03/30/creamy-lemony-pasta-with-chicken-and-asparagus/#comments Mon, 30 Mar 2015 10:58:24 +0000 http://kristineskitchenblog.com/?p=7807 This Creamy, Lemony Pasta with Chicken and Asparagus is an easy, one-pot meal with light and bright flavors for Spring. Are you tired of hearing about the one-pot meal yet? Never, you say? I thought so. The quick and easy meal will never go out of style, in my house at least! I’ll never get […]

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This Creamy, Lemony Pasta with Chicken and Asparagus is an easy, one-pot meal with light and bright flavors for Spring.

Creamy Lemony Pasta with Chicken and Asparagus - an easy one-pot skillet meal.

Are you tired of hearing about the one-pot meal yet? Never, you say? I thought so. The quick and easy meal will never go out of style, in my house at least! I’ll never get tired of meals that dirty less pots and pans either. I love to cook, but washing dishes? Not so much.

Creamy Lemony Pasta with Chicken and Asparagus - an easy one-pot skillet meal.

Another perk to one-pot cooking is that, since everything cooks together in one pot, the flavors have plenty of time to meld together. Take this Creamy, Lemony Pasta with Chicken and Asparagus, for example. The pasta cooks in the same skillet where you browned the chicken. And the chicken continues to cook with the pasta, garlic, and sun-dried tomatoes in a mixture of chicken broth and water. What does this all mean? TONS of flavor mixin’ is happening in this dish. Oh yeah.

Creamy Lemony Pasta with Chicken and Asparagus - an easy one-pot skillet meal.

Once it’s all cooked through, you’ll finish the dish off with some freshly grated Parmesan, lemon zest, and a touch of cream. Give it all a good stir and everything sort of melts together and absorbs the creamy sauce. The bright lemon (...)
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