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Sweet Basil Guacamole

As you know, we’re crazy about avocados.  We love the creamy texture and the delicious, buttery taste.  The nearly 20 vitamins and minerals and good-for-you fats seals the deals– avocados are all-stars in our book!  So when our friend and colleague, Jessa Nowak, RD, shared her awesome Sweet Basil Guacamole with us, we were hooked!  Check out her fun, informative blog below and her delish recipe! She shares awesome tips for storing avocados as well as fun avocado facts!

 

And here’s some more info about Jessa– follow her great posts on social media! :)

Pinterest username: MrMoneyMrsRD –  & her exclusive board

Twitter: @MrMoneyMrsRD

Instagram: inwealthandhealth

FB page: https://m.facebook.com/MrMoneyMrsRD

avocado

Did you know that those who regularly eat avocados have lower body weight, have a skinnier waistline and have better cholesterol levels compared to people who don’t? (1) One half of an avocado contains 114 calories, 1 gram protein, 6 grams carbohydrate, 5 grams of fiber and less than a gram of sugar. (3) Most of us have the intentions of eating better, so it may be worth your efforts to begin by incorporating avocados!

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A Few Fun Facts About Avocados
• Yes, avocado is a fruit.
• Avocados were first grown in Mexico in 500 BC.
• The majority of avocados consumed in the world are the Hass variety.
• Growing season for Hass avocados is from Spring to Fall.
• Avocados are 80% water.
• Rich in monounsaturated fatty acids, they help to absorb carotenoids present in other foods. (Carotenoids are responsible for the antioxidant properties of rich colorful pigments in fruits and vegetables.)
• The avocado is the cleanest eating food you can buy, only 1% of samples showed any detectable pesticides.

 

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Choosing and Storing Avocados

Choosing the right avocado depends on when you plan to use it. A perfectly ripe Hass avocado will be a dark and tender to the touch when lightly squeezed. If it feels like a baseball, it needs to ripen up before eating. If it feels as if you are able to squish it easily, it’s overripe.

It’s best to store uncut avocados on the counter, not in the refrigerator. If your avocados are hard as ricks, naturally speed up the ripening process by placing them in a paper bag with a banana. Bananas release ethylene gas that ripen fruit quickly! Store cut avocados in a sealed container with their seed, sprinkled with a bit of lemon juice.

Avocados turn brown after cutting due to oxygen reacting with the freshly opened cells of the fruit. Adding an acid like lemon juice will not allow these reactions to take place because the acidity will help denature the enzyme needed to complete the browning reaction.

Guacamole is best made immediately before eating. But if you do happen to have some left over, this is the best way to store it: this idea came from the Kitchn.
• Press guacamole down into a seal-able bowl to eliminate any air pockets.
• Cover the top of the guacamole with an inch of lukewarm water.
• Seal with a lid.
• When ready to enjoy your guacamole again, pour off the water and fluff with a fork. It should stay green for a day or two if stored like this!

 

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Sweet Basil Guacamole

SweetBasilGuacamole
Ingredients
2 Large Hass avocados
1 Large tomato (about ¾ cup), diced
1/8 cup Red onion, diced
½ cup Packed sweet basil, julienned
1 teaspoon Dried minced onion
¼ teaspoon Garlic salt
1/8 teaspoon Sea salt

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Directions

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1. Scoop avocado into a medium sized bowl.
2. Roughly smash with back of fork until chunky.
3. Add tomato, onion, basil, minced onion and salts.
4. Stir to combine.
Despite this guacamole having no lime juice, it will keep green for quite some time.

Nutrition Facts
Yields 2 cups, Serving size 4
Calories: 124
Fat: 10g
Sat Fat: 1g
MUFA: 7g
PUFA: 1g
Chol: 0mg
Sodium: 200mg
Carb: 9g
Fiber: 6g
Sugar 3g
Protein: 2g

 

Learn more about the amazing Jessa here…

 

Sweet Basil Guacamole
 
Nutrition Facts Yields 2 cups, Serving size 4 Calories: 124 Fat: 10g Sat Fat: 1g MUFA: 7g PUFA: 1g Chol: 0mg Sodium: 200mg Carb: 9g Fiber: 6g Sugar 3g Protein: 2g
Author:
Serves: 4

Ingredients
  • 2 Large Hass avocados
  • 1 Large tomato (about ¾ cup), diced
  • ⅛ cup Red onion, diced
  • ½ cup Packed sweet basil, julienned
  • 1 teaspoon Dried minced onion
  • ¼ teaspoon Garlic salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon Sea salt

Instructions
  1. Scoop avocado into a medium sized bowl.
  2. Roughly smash with back of fork until chunky.
  3. Add tomato, onion, basil, minced onion and salts.
  4. Stir to combine.
  5. Despite this guacamole having no lime juice, it will keep green for quite some time.

berry parfait

Overnight Berry Parfait

If you’re always racing out the door and worry about having time for a healthy breakfast, then have no fear—your overnight berry parfait is here! :)   Even if you hit the snooze button a few too many times, you won’t be without the most important meal of the day. At only 207 calories and 16 grams of protein, this delish dish will keep you satisfied with its’ winning combo of protein and fiber.

berry parfait

 

 

Overnight Berry Parfait

Serves 2

 

Ingredients

1 cup fat free, plain Greek yogurt

1 tbsp ground flax seeds

1/4 cup almonds

1 cup frozen mixed berries

 

Directions

  1. Using two separate containers or glasses, divide ingredients between the two containers starting with almonds, followed by the yogurt, flax seeds and frozen berries. Cover and place in refrigerator.
  1. Refrigerate overnight to allow berries to thaw and release their flavorful juices. :)
  1. Grab in the morning and enjoy!

Nutrition facts per serving: 207 Calories, 7 g fat, 16 g protein, 20 g carbohydrate, 6 g fiber, 64 mg sodium, 10 mg cholesterol

 

Overnight Berry Parfait
 
Author:
Serves: 2

Ingredients
  • 1 cup fat free, plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp ground flax seeds
  • ¼ cup almonds

Instructions
  1. Using two separate containers or glasses, divide ingredients between the two containers starting with almonds, followed by the yogurt, flax seeds and frozen berries. Cover and place in refrigerator.
  2. Refrigerate overnight to allow berries to thaw and release their flavorful juices. ☺
  3. Grab in the morning and enjoy!

Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 Calories: 207 Fat: 7 Carbohydrates: 20 Sodium: 64 Fiber: 6 Protein: 16 Cholesterol: 10

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Salmon Cakes with Chia and Lemon Zest

Looking for an easy weeknight recipe that also gives you those omega -3, heart healthy fats to give your skin a rockin’ complexion and help calm your insides by fighting the damage done from inflammation? You have met your weeknight Wonder!  These Salmon Cakes with Chia and Lemon Zest hit the spot and are super easy to make.  We didn’t realize how much the salmon cakes had us at “lemon zest” until we ate them.  Surprisingly, these are addictive–watch out!  Your skin’ll thank you! :)

 

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Salmon Cakes with Chia and Lemon Zest

Serves 3

• Prep time 15 Minutes
• Cook Time 8-10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 14-1/2 ounces boneless, skinless pink salmon, drained
  • 2 teaspoons chia seeds
  • 2-1/4 teaspoons lemon peel
  • 4 tablespoons, plus two teaspoons Greek nonfat yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons plus an additional tablespoon whole grain Dijon mustard, divided
  • 2 teaspoons white horseradish, shredded, divided, optional
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1/4 cup diced red cabbage
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 cups spinach
  • 1 tomato, sliced

 

Directions
1. Mix the salmon, lemon peel, yogurt, mustard, and  horseradish in a medium bowl using a fork. Add the celery and cabbage. Add freshly ground black pepper and salt, to taste. Mix thoroughly.

2. Spray a medium skillet (nonstick works great if you have one!) with canola oil cooking spray.  Heat for one minute.

3. Divide the salmon mixture into 6 round patties, each 1/2- inch thick. Lower the heat to low and place the patties in the pan. Cook 2 minutes per side, then flip and cook 1 minute more, or until heated through and lightly browned.

4. Combine the remaining 2 teaspoon Greek nonfat yogurt, 1 tablespoon mustard, and 1 teaspoon horseradish and 1 tbsp lemon juice in a small bowl. Spoon on top of the salmon cakes.

Suggested serving: With spinach and tomatoes, yum!

Nutrition Facts Per serving (2 salmon cakes): Calories 260, Protein 33g, Carbohydrates 14g, Fat 7g, Saturated Fat 1g, Cholesterol 55g, Sodium 360mg, Fiber 8g, Sugar 4g

Salmon Cakes with Chia and Lemon Zest
 
Prep time

Cook time

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Author:
Serves: 3

Ingredients
  • 14-1/2 ounces boneless, skinless pink salmon, drained
  • 2 teaspoons chia seeds
  • 2-1/4 teaspoons lemon peel
  • 4 tablespoons, plus two teaspoons Greek nonfat yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons plus an additional tablespoon whole grain Dijon mustard, divided
  • 2 teaspoons white horseradish, shredded, divided, optional
  • ½ cup diced celery
  • ¼ cup diced red cabbage
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 cups spinach
  • 1 tomato, sliced

Instructions
  1. Mix the salmon, lemon peel, yogurt, mustard, and  horseradish in a medium bowl using a fork. Add the celery and cabbage. Add freshly ground black pepper and salt, to taste. Mix thoroughly.
  2. Spray a medium skillet (nonstick works great if you have one!) with canola oil cooking spray.  Heat for one minute.
  3. Divide the salmon mixture into 6 round patties, each ½- inch thick. Lower the heat to low and place the patties in the pan. Cook 2 minutes per side, then flip and cook 1 minute more, or until heated through and lightly browned.
  4. Combine the remaining 2 teaspoon Greek nonfat yogurt, 1 tablespoon mustard, and 1 teaspoon horseradish and 1 tbsp lemon juice in a small bowl. Spoon on top of the salmon cakes.
  5. Suggested serving: With spinach and tomatoes, yum!

Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 salmon cakes Calories: 260 Fat: 7g Saturated fat: 1g Carbohydrates: 14g Sugar: 4g Sodium: 360mg Fiber: 8g Protein: 33g Cholesterol: 55g

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The Glute Bridge with Variations- for a perkier butt!

The Glute Bridge with Variations- for a perkier bootay!  Watch the video above or read below for a few pointers to make the most of this at-home exercise.

 

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A few pointers:

As you lift and squeeze and with each movement remember to:

  • Squeeze your abs tight and focus on using your ab muscles to pull your belly button towards your back
  • Press the ground through your heels
  • Contract your glutes and feel the tension all the way down in your hamstrings as you squeeze
  • Keep both shoulder blades on the floor

 

Hello, sexy booty! ;)

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Skinny Burrito Bowl

Are you craving Mexican comfort food but don’t want to blow your hard efforts to look your best for spring? Well, now you don’t have to! Indulge in this satisfying, delicious Mexican style burrito bowl. . You can serve it up in a bowl or make lettuce wrap tacos for a delicious and nutritious version of a calorie-laden meal. This dish is perfect for Meatless Mondays or whenever you’re craving a hearty meal without the meat.

 

 

Time crunched on weeknights? One of our favorite things to do make this meal in advance so it’s ready the moment we crave it after a long day! It can be made and stored for up to a week without going bad. So keep it in the fridge for a quick & easy grab.

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This meal is served up hot with 9g of protein per serving and only 180 calories per cup!

Fun Fact! Did you know that grains can, be a good source of protein?

 Even a cup of brown rice has 5 grams of protein! Quinoa has even more — about 8 grams per cup!

Protein isn’t the only bonus up this bowl. It rocks B vitamins including folic acid (hello, vitamins you need for energy; goodbye birth defects!), zinc (hello, strong immune system), and iron (hello, oxygenated blood! Yep, we all could use that! :)  )!

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Skinny Burrito Bowl

(Makes 4 servings – serving size 1 cup)

 

 

Ingredients:

¼ cup uncooked quinoa

¼ cup uncooked brown rice

¼ cup black beans

¼ cup pinto beans

½ cup drained diced tomatoes

¼ cup corn

4 zucchini, diced

Olive oil in a spray bottle

Low sodium taco seasoning (if desired)

 

Directions:

Boil 1 cup water in a large saucepan; add the quinoa and rice and return the combination to a boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally—until quinoa and rice absorb water. Remove from heat and cool. Meanwhile, sauté zucchini using olive oil spray until slightly seared. Combine all ingredients in the saucepan with the quinoa and rice. Serve and enjoy! We love to eat this with a large side of our favorite steamed veggies.

 

Note: You can also make lettuce wrap tacos using lettuce leaves as taco shells! :)

 

Nutritional Information per 1 cup serving (Makes 4 servings):

Calories 180; Fat 2g; Saturated Fat 0g; Carbohydrates 36g; Protein 9g; Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 85mg; Fiber 5g

Skinny Burrito Bowl
 
Author:
Serves: 4

Ingredients
  • ¼ cup uncooked quinoa
  • ¼ cup uncooked brown rice
  • ¼ cup black beans
  • ¼ cup pinto beans
  • ½ cup drained diced tomatoes
  • ¼ cup corn
  • 4 zucchini, diced
  • Olive oil in a spray bottle
  • Low sodium taco seasoning (if desired)

Instructions
  1. Boil 1 cup water in a large saucepan; add the quinoa and rice and return the combination to a boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally—until quinoa and rice absorb water. Remove from heat and cool. Meanwhile, sauté zucchini using olive oil spray until slightly seared. Combine all ingredients in the saucepan with the quinoa and rice. Serve and enjoy! We love to eat this with a large side of our favorite steamed veggies.

Nutrition Information
Serving size: 4 bowls Calories: 180 Fat: 2 Saturated fat: 0 Carbohydrates: 36 Sodium: 85 Fiber: 5 Protein: 9 Cholesterol: 0

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Egg Cups with Creamy Avocado and Sun-dried Tomato

Looking for a scrumptious, new appetizer to serve up at your next dinner party? Well look no further than these little bundles!

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Wow your guests with this unexpected, tantalizing combination! This wonton is no ordinary creamy filled delight; it houses a mouthwatering combination of baked scrambled eggs, a cilantro-lime avocado mash and sundried tomatoes. Eggs are so much more than a breakfast staple. These eggs make the perfect bite—a crunchy, creamy combination of stimulating flavors.

Finally, an appetizer that you can feel good about eating! Eggs pack in protein to keep you feeling satisfied, as well as B vitamins and vitamin D  We use Eggland’s Best , because they are the only egg with 4 X the vitamin D of other eggs, double the Omega 3s, 3 X the vitamin B12, as well as 25% less saturated fat that other eggs.

Avocados contain monounsaturated fat which helps to enhance the absorption of fat soluble vitamins like vitamin D, E and A (all found in eggs).  Plus, they’ve got some skin-beautifying nutrients other than the monounsaturated fat, which moisturizes the skin from the inside out, they’ve got phytonutrients that help mop up damaging free radicals and protect it from pollutants and stressors that cause it to show signs of aging.

The cherry (well, sun-dried tomato!) on top of this decadent appetizer supplies Vitamin C, which supports the immune system and neutralizes free radicals throughout the body to fight disease and slow some of the decline that comes with aging. It also delivers beta carotene for vision and a healthy immune system. Lastly, lycopene, lutein and zeaxanthin are important for eye health and protecting against macular degeneration. Yep, no doubt about it—you’ll be sayin’—“ I love this recipe from my head to-ma-toes!” :)

Only 7 minutes in the oven and this appetizer just needs to be topped off with its two toppings!

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Egg Cups with Creamy Avocado and Sun-dried Tomato

Ingredients

Yields 40 wontons

 

1 wonton pack (typically 40)

6 eggs (We use Eggland’s Best eggs  because they’re the only egg with double the omega 3s and 4X the vitamin D of other eggs.)

2 avocados

Juice of 2 limes

1/2 cilantro bunch

1/2 12 0z. jar sun-dried tomatoes

Salt and pepper to taste

 

Instructions

  1. Spray mini cupcake baking sheet with cooking spray and fold wonton wrappers into cupcake molds.
  2. Crack and scramble eggs into a large mixing bowl and add a tablespoon of eggs to each wonton wrapper in cupcake tin. Bake at 250 degrees F for 7 minutes or until eggs are fully cooked.While wonton shells and eggs are cooking, blend 2 avocados, cilantro bunch, and lime juice in a blender.
  3. When wontons are done cooking, top the egg with the avocado mash, about ¼ to ½ tablespoon to each.
  4. Then, top with sun-dried tomato to each wonton and season with salt and pepper to taste.

The Nutrition Twins work with Eggland’s Best to help people to get more nutrients from their food.

Nutritional Information for 2 wontons:

Calories 116; Fat 7g; Saturated Fat 1g; Carbohydrates 11g; Protein 5g; Cholesterol 99mg; Sodium 250mg; Fiber 2g

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Egg Cups with Creamy Avocado and Sun-dried Tomato
 
Cook time

Total time

 

Author:
Serves: 40 wontons

Ingredients
  • 1 wonton pack (typically 40)
  • 6 eggs (We use Eggland’s Best eggs because they’re the only egg with double the omega 3s and 4X the vitamin D of other eggs.
  • 2 avocados
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • ½ cilantro bunch
  • ½ jar sun-dried tomatoes

Instructions
  1. Spray mini cupcake baking sheet with cooking spray and fold wonton wrappers into cupcake molds.
  2. Crack and scramble eggs into a large mixing bowl and add a tablespoon of eggs to each wonton wrapper in cupcake tin. Bake at 250 degrees F for 7 minutes or until eggs are fully cooked.While wonton shells and eggs are cooking, blend 2 avocados, cilantro bunch, and lime juice in a blender.
  3. When wontons are done cooking, top the egg with the avocado mash, about ¼ to ½ tablespoon to each.
  4. Then, top with sun-dried tomato to each wonton and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 wontons Calories: 115 Fat: 7g Saturated fat: 1g Carbohydrates: 11g Sodium: 250mg Fiber: 2g Protein: 5g Cholesterol: 99mg