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Healthy Homemade Gingerbread Latte

 

’Twas the night before the holidays, when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse…

OK, so that’s not exactly the way it went down in our house—especially the quiet, peaceful part. 😊 Yes, it was snowing, but that’s about where the story ends. Over here, Tammy’s twin daughters had 3 friends over who were screaming and yelling and playing some sort of slide-someone-around on the floor like they’re dead, yet kicking (don’t ask 😊 ), and these two, twin registered dietitians were dreaming up a new lightened up concoction (and the kitchen is never quiet or peaceful when we’re both concocting! If you watched us on Food Network’s Chopped!, that’s the tame version of what happens at home 😊 ).

The good news is what came out of all of the chaos—this delicious Healthy Homemade Gingerbread Latte. We lightened it up in a major way—shaving 100 calories off a small, typical-size latte—our version has only 33 calories a serving! Plus, our house smells like a gingerbread cookie factory (no joke!) and if you need a ‘lil pick-me-up, this bevvie uses strongly brewed coffee.

And if you need a to flush out the bloat if you’ve overdone it on a little too much holiday cheer—check out these “detox” drinks—and be sure to check out our 21-Day Body Reboot™, which will help you to look and feel your best in no time (it’s our life-altering program that helps you to lose your last 10 pounds or more—while going wild on the weekend!)

Cucumber Blueberry Water Flush
Lemon Ginger Turmeric Tea “Detox”
Lemon Ginger Detox drink
Vitamin C Infused “Detox” Water

  Aside from the heaping calorie-savings in this Gingerbread latte, there’s even another reason to sip it—the cinnamon! And if you like things extra-cinnamon-y, go ahead and sprinkle away!

Cinnamon: Studies have found that cinnamon helps to reduce inflammation and a number of studies have found improved blood sugar levels associated with cinnamon intake. So it certainly can’t hurt to aim for ½- 1 teaspoon of this delish spice daily!

Ginger: Ginger (especially fresh ginger) is also great for reducing chronic inflammation (the kind that’s linked to many chronic diseases), and is a total tummy soother, which means it may just keep you free from nausea or stomach discomfort!

 

 

Healthy Homemade Gingerbread Latte

Yield: 1 latte (8 oz)

Ingredients:
½ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
½ tsp blackstrap molasses
¼ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
Stevia, to taste (I used 2 drops liquid stevia)
½ cup very strong brewed coffee

Directions:
1. Place almond milk, molasses, ginger, cinnamon, and stevia in a pot or microwave-safe mug. Heat on the stove or in the microwave until piping hot.
2. Transfer the almond milk mixture to a 16 oz mason jar, seal, and shake vigorously, until frothy. You can also use a milk frother if you have one!
3. Pour the brewed coffee into a mug, top with the almond milk mixture, and stir gently to combine.
4. Enjoy!

Nutrition info (per serving): 33 calories, 1.3 g fat, 81 mg sodium, 5.4 g carbs, 0.9 g fiber, 0.5 g sugar, 0.7 g protein

 

 

 

 

Frozen Banana Chocolate Bites

 

By now you know that we’re girls who mean business when it comes to our sweets. 🙂  Although we do eat a well-balanced, wholesome diet, we are NOT girls who pass on a daily treat!  In fact, if we skip a daily indulgence, well, that means we’re probably fighting the flu or sick in bed.  Since we’re girls that love our sweets, we work hard to lighten them up (and sometimes we keep them small and bite-sized) as best we can (after all, we kind of have to if we want to indulge daily!)– you probably know this already if you’ve seen our posts like our Skinny Oreo Balls, our Chocolate Drizzled Granola Balls  or our Chocolate Coconut Chia Balls, just to name a few!

 

So here’s another one to add to the collection: these tasty treats are easy, satisfying, and simply delicious! And they’re pretty darn good for you to boot! If these don’t become your new besties we’ve got you all wrong! 🙂 And even if they don’t we think you’ll at the very least find them yummy. Give these nips a whirl and you just may never look back…

Whenever you have a sweet tooth craving, simply grab one of these and bust if for only 15 calories!

Added bonus? Even if you eat the entire thing, you get a healthy dessert that packs in 7 grams of protein, 4 grams of fiber and bloat busting potassium from the bananas and the yogurt—great to balance any extra sodium you may have eaten!

Frozen Banana Chocolate Bites

Serves 14

 

Ingredients

1 small ripe banana, about 6 inches long
2 ounces fat free flavored yogurt of your choice (we used Greek yogurt, raspberry and strawberry)
14 chocolate chips

 

Directions

1. Slice a banana into coins, about 1/4-1/2 inch thick and lay inside freezer safe Tupperware.
2. Top each coin with a dollop of yogurt.
3. Place a chocolate chip in the center of each and place the Tupperware in the freezer.
4. Allow time to freeze—roughly 1-2 hours.Enjoy!

 

Nutrition Information per Serving: Per 1 bite or nip:
15 Calories, 3g Carbohydrate, 1 g fat, 0 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 1 g protein, 0g fiber,

Nutrition Facts for the entire recipe:
201 Calories, 37 g Carbohydrate, 5 g fat, 4 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 7 g protein, 4 g fiber,

 

 

For more than 100 delicious recipes like this, a 10-day Weight Loss Jumpstart and Detox Plan, plus a GET HEALTHY plan please check out The Nutrition Twins’ Veggie Cure

 

 

Savory Sweet Potato Soup

Growing up in our parent’s plant-based, healthy household, there were a number of meals and food staples that were no stranger to our humble abode. Our favorites? Our mom’s homemade pizza (yes, even with the dense whole wheat crust 😉 ) was number one. After all, how could pizza not be top of the list?! 🙂  And next on our favorite list was our mom’s hearty bean and other cozy veggie soups as well as meaty, sweet and satisfying sweet potatoes. So, say hello to our dish that marries the two!

 

If you love sweet potatoes and healthy comfort food the way we do, give these a whirl!

Sweet Potato Nachos

Smoked Paprika Chips

Guilt-free Kale Chips

Spicy Carrot Fries

Skinny Zucchini Fries

 

 

This Savory Sweet Potato soup isn’t just for that rainy day – this makes the perfect lunch or dinner any day of the week. Sweetness from the potato blended with the creamy white beans and yogurt creates the ultimate smooth and creamy healthy comfort food.

 

More reasons you’ll love this babe!:

 

You get a healthy bonus: With 21 grams of protein combined with 10 grams of fiber, the combo will keep you satisfied for hours– and you won’t believe a 270-calorie soup kept you feeling full for so many hours.

 

Thanks to the orange sweet potato, this savory number is loaded beta-carotene, a potent antioxidant, that protects your body from damage from free radicals.  It will help to keep your immune system strong, help fight chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease and help to protect your skin from sun damage, helping it to glow!

 

It’s super easy to make! The blender makes it so easy.  If you thought your blender could only be used to make your morning smoothies, think again! 🙂 Simply boil the ingredients in the soup and blend! So whatcha waiting for? Grab a spoon and dive on in! 🙂

Savory Sweet Potato Soup

Serves 1

Ingredients:

1 small sweet potato, peeled and diced (about 4.5 oz, 1 cup chopped)

½ cup cauliflower florets

½ cup chickpeas or white beans, drained and rinsed

½ teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon smoked paprika

¼ teaspoon garlic powder

1 cup water

¼ cup + 2 tablespoons nonfat plain Greek yogurt, plus 2 tablespoons for topping

 

Directions:

Place the diced sweet potato, cauliflower, white beans, spices, and water in a pot. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low and cover.

Cook on low heat for about 10 minutes, until the sweet potato and cauliflower are both tender.

Transfer to a blender and add ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt. Blend until smooth.

Top with 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of smoked paprika for garnish.

 

Nutrition facts: 270 calories, 0.5 g fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 69 grams sodium, 47 grams carbs, 10 grams fiber, 21 grams protein

 

 

Frozen Yogurt Bark with Blueberries and Pomegranate

As registered dietitians and personal trainers you may think that since we eat a healthy diet, exercise and love veggies that we automatically must just not like sweets. Ha! If only!

The truth is we love chocolate and frozen desserts—and have a long love affair with fro-yo. It started in high school when one our best friend’s worked at a Fro-yo store and she’d give us all the fro-yo we wanted—free! As students on a budget we weren’t shy and ate A LOT. Roughly four small frozen yogurts each! And we’d skip a healthy lunch and would end up eating those instead—Oy! Thank goodness we don’t do that anymore (yes, we didn’t feel so good the rest of the afternoon) but that doesn’t mean we love fro-yo any less! 🙂

 

You may also like:

Skinny Strawberry Mint Ice Cream

Skinny Banana Ice Cream Sandwiches 

Dark Chocolate Banana Ice Cream

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream

 

And if you love fro-yo (or other frozen ice cream-like desserts) the way we do, you’ll completely get why we’re super excited to introduce our latest love… Frozen Yogurt Bark with Blueberries and Pomegranate…and it’s only 18 calories per piece of heaven!

 

If it’s a hot summer day, and you’re craving a bowl of your favorite ice cream but you don’t want all the sugar that comes along with it, or you’re jonesing for something quick, light and refreshing to squash a sweet tooth, this bark will be your new bestie– right in the convenience of your freezer when you need it most!

Not only is this bark only 18 calories for each 2-inch piece– and low in sugar too– it’s also packed with lots of beneficial nutrients. Yogurt is filled with probiotics, helping to keep your gut healthy and helping to boost your immunity. Both blueberries and pomegranate arils are antioxidant powerhouses, helping to protect your body from harmful free radicals that damage your body and your skin and that speed the aging process. Consuming these antioxidants helps keeps your cells healthy! And healthy cells = happy you! And fro-yo (in any form) = a happy us! 😉

 Frozen Yogurt Bark with Blueberries and Pomegranate

 

Serves 15 (about 2×2 inches, each)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups non fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tbsp. honey
  • 1 tbsp. semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp. pomegranate seeds
  • ¼ cup blueberries
  • 1 tsp. unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tbsp. slivered almonds

Instructions:

  1. Combine the yogurt and honey in a medium-sized bowl and then stir in the chocolate chips and pomegranate seeds.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and pour the mixture on top. Then spread the mixture so it is approximately ½ inch thick.
  3. Sprinkle the blueberries, coconut and sliced almonds on top.
  4. Put the baking sheet in the freezer, and allow the yogurt mixture to freeze completely (should take a few hours).
  5. Once frozen, you can cut the bark into desirably sized pieces and place them into separate bags or a combined container. Then place them back in the freezer so you can enjoy a frozen treat later!

 

Nutrition facts: 18 calories, 1 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 1 mg sodium, 6 mg potassium, 3 g carbs, 3 g sugar

 Preparation Tip: when consuming these treats, they work best when served in a bowl. They melt fairly fast, so this will help prevent a mess to clean up!

Frozen Yogurt Bark with Blueberries and Pomegranate
 
Author:
Serves: 15
Ingredients
  • 2 cups non fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tbsp. honey
  • 1 tbsp. semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp. pomegranate seeds
  • ¼ cup blueberries
  • 1 tsp. unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tbsp. slivered almonds
Instructions
  1. Combine the yogurt and honey in a medium-sized bowl and then stir in the chocolate chips and pomegranate seeds.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and pour the mixture on top. Then spread the mixture so it is approximately ½ inch thick.
  3. Sprinkle the blueberries, coconut and sliced almonds on top.
  4. Put the baking sheet in the freezer, and allow the yogurt mixture to freeze completely (should take a few hours).
  5. Once frozen, you can cut the bark into desirably sized pieces and place them into separate bags or a combined container. Then place them back in the freezer so you can enjoy a frozen treat later!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 piece Calories: 18 Fat: 1 g Saturated fat: 0 g Sugar: 3 g Sodium: 1 mg

 

 

 

 

5-Ingredient Microwave Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

 

 

Yesterday, it happened…

While as identical twin sisters we pride ourselves in both being veggie-loving, registered dietitians and personal trainers who have an identical love for chocolate (plus a thang for sweets 😉 that we work hard to keep from getting the best of us—and from you), we also pride ourselves in having the identical prepared healthy kitchens for when our pesky sweet tooth rears its’ head.

And yesterday, a dreary Saturday, it happened—both of us felt like the sweet cravings were a bit more intense than usual –and our kitchens did not disappoint! Oh yeah! 🙂

 

Ever in the mood for an ooey-gooey cookie you don’t have to slave over the stove for?

 

Um, hello? Who isn’t?! ;)…

 

We recommend our clients keep a few healthy, necessary sugar-tooth busting pantry staples on-hand that can be used for many recipesA’hem, you better believe that yours & yours 😉 truly also keeps these in our house to satisfy our sweet tooth while keeping our waistline intact.

A few staple that we recommend are:

an over-ripe banana

peanut butter

whole oats (rolled is OK)

(We also suggest chocolate chips—hidden away if you can’t control yourself around them, but a few here and there go a long way if you can!).

 

You may remember these loves using our staples-

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream

Frozen Banana Chocolasicles

Frozen Banana Chocolate Bites

 

 

Why Peanut butter?  As a pantry staple—other than it’s freakin’ delicious 🙂 , it’s got a creamy, hearty texture that helps to add to any faux high calorie dessert’s success.

From a nutrition standpoint—peanut butter’s got healthy fats (for the ‘ole ticker), lots of antioxidants (to protect your skin and your cells from damage from everyday living—i.e., pollution, stress, etc.), and a good dose of potassium for fighting high blood pressure—and for fighting bloat!  Add that PB (as we call it in our land of the PB- obsessed) has protein, is rich in fiber and has heart-healthy plant phytosterols.

The one caveat—peanut butter does add up quickly in calories, so a teaspoon or two will do ya! 😉  One level tablespoon clocks in at nearly 100 calories, so do not eat it straight from the jar and do measure portions of our <3 to keep it real and to be honest with yourself about how much you’re getting.

 

As kids, if we heard the word “peanut butter” everyone knew you could count us in.  And nowadays, our favorite indulgence is chocolate–and anything chocolate (hello Skinny Oreo Balls! 😉) .  As you can probably imagine, simply marry our two loves and we’re in pure heaven.  🙂  Of course, we like to combine peanut butter and chocolate in healthy, lower calorie indulgences that keep our waistlines in tact.   And we gotta admit, when we made this and added some oats, and overripe banana and a splash of almond milk, we were a bit beside ourselves with happiness.  Healthy, ooey, gooey goodness that we mixed, mashed and microwaved!  We hope you love these as much as we do.

 

Why a banana?

What better way to get sweet flavor but without any adding processed sugar?  The OVERRIPE banana is key here.  So sweet and delicious, yet no added sugar!  Plus, you’ll get loads of health-promoting nutrients and bloat-busting potassium and some fiber!  Bust your sweet tooth craving and beat bloat?  Someone just landed in flat-belly heaven! 😉

 

 

 

One of the things we love about these cookies is how truly easy they are to whip up!  If you liked our Cinnamon Oatmeal Raisin Cookies,  Skinny Speedy Walnut Oatmeal Cookies,  Wild Blueberry Cookies and how quick and easy they are to make, then you’ll love the

 

Other than the fact this cookie has no added sugar and tastes insanely delish and perfectly sweet, it’s packed with wholesome goodness.  As you now know,  protein, nutrients and fiber are just the appetizer.

An added bonus? Unlike most sugary desserts which leave you with an energy crash when the sugar leaves, this cookies’ high quality carbohydrates from the banana and oats will give you an energy boost, while its’ fiber (from oats and peanut butter) and protein from the peanut butter will keep you from grabbing the nearest peanut butter cup before your next meal!

 

It’s time to Mash, Mix & Microwave!!!  YAHOO!!  (PS—you can bake these if you want!)

 

 

 

 

5-Ingredient Microwave Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Other than the fact this cookie has no added sugar and tastes insanely delish and perfectly sweet, it’s packed with wholesome goodness. You’ve got protein, nutrients and fiber.
Serves: 4 small cookies or 1 large cookie

Ingredients:

1 very ripe banana, mashed
1/2 Tbsp. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
3 Tbsp. rolled oats
1 Tbsp. peanut butter

1-1/2 tablespoons chocolate chips

 

Directions:
1. If using an oven rather than microwave, preheat to 375°F.
2. In a medium sized bowl, combine banana, almond milk, and peanut butter, stirring until thoroughly combined. Stir in chocolate chips.
3. If using microwave: For one large cookie, simply spread mixture in bowl and microwave on high for 4-1/2 minutes. If you are making four cookies you can spray a plate, 4 small bowls or 4 ramekins. (The ramekins are nice to keep the cookies contained and perfectly round.)
4. Scoop out about 2-1/2 tablespoons each, and flatten on the plate or in ramekin. Repeat for each ramekin.

5. Place the four ramekins or the one plate in microwave on high for 4 minutes.  Depending on the strength of your microwave cooking time may vary. Simply use a toothpick or a fork and poke cookie the whole way through. *If wetness comes off on fork or toothpick, continue to put back in microwave in 30 second increments until cooked.

If making one big cookie, may want to place plate in fridge or freezer to help “congeal” for a minute after cooking.

*If using oven: Place 2-1/2 Tbsp of mixture on a greased baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven when cooked completely through.

 

Makes 4 Cookies.
Nutrition Facts Per Serving (1 Cookie): 89 Calories, 14 g carbohydrate, 4 g fat, 2 g protein, 25 mg sodium, 2 g fiber

 

5-Ingredient Microwave Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
 
Microwave Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie! Only 89 Calories --and you can make 'em in 5 Minutes with 5 ingredients you already have at home. Healthy, you'd never know they don't even have sugar 😉
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 very ripe banana, mashed
  • ½ Tbsp. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 3 Tbsp. rolled oats
  • 1 Tbsp. peanut butter
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Directions:
  2. If using an oven rather than microwave, preheat to 375°F.
  3. In a medium sized bowl, combine banana, almond milk, and peanut butter, stirring until thoroughly combined. Stir in chocolate chips.
  4. If using microwave: For one large cookie, simply spread mixture in bowl and microwave on high for 4-1/2 minutes. If you are making four cookies you can spray a plate, 4 small bowls or 4 ramekins. (The ramekins are nice to keep the cookies contained and perfectly round.)
  5. Scoop out about 2-1/2 tablespoons each, and flatten on the plate or in ramekin. Repeat for each ramekin.
  6. Place the four ramekins or the one plate in microwave on high for 4 minutes. Depending on the strength of your microwave cooking time may vary. Simply use a toothpick or a fork and poke cookie the whole way through. *If wetness comes off on fork or toothpick, continue to put back in microwave in 30 second increments until cooked.
Notes
IIf making one big cookie, may want to place plate in fridge or freezer to help “congeal” for a minute after cooking.

*If using oven: Place 2-1/2 Tbsp of mixture on a greased baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven when cooked completely through.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 4 cookies Calories: 89 Calories Fat: 4 g Carbohydrates: 14 g Sodium: 25 mg Fiber: 2 g Protein: 2 g

 

 

Green Warrior Weight Loss Smoothie

We made our first smoothie in junior high school.  We were with our best friend, making different food concoctions as we often did, and we ended up blending strawberries and milk together (there may have been some M&Ms in there too, but it would have been good without them too! 🙂 ) and loved the taste and knew that our concoction wouldn’t be the last.

Now, as registered dietitians, we make smoothies on the reg. Tammy makes them for her daughters for breakfasts nearly every day, Lyssie makes her boyfriend one nearly daily as well, and one of our clients’ most popular requests is for recipes for weight loss smoothies, so we’re always whipping up new smoothie recipes.

What’s our secret to creating a weight loss smoothie that actually helps to promote weight loss?

We make it super satisfying (so you’re not hungry soon after and so that there’s no need to troll the streets for the nearest vending machine ;)) while also not breaking the calorie bank. We also make sure that it provides long lasting energy so you brain isn’t craving a quick-pick-me-up that sends you on the hunt for sugar. And we add healthy ingredients that are beneficial for weight loss, so we always are creating new combinations that taste great. And of course, being nutritionists, we put a huge emphasis on packing in extra nutrients so you get more nutritionals bang for your bite (well, sip!), so we’re sure to pack in vitamins, minerals and extra antioxidants from fruits and veggies.

In this smoothie, we’ve got 3 special loves 😉 :

Pistachios:

They contain the trio of fiber, plant-protein and better-for-you unsaturated fats that can help keep you feeling fuller longer.  Pistachios are among the snack nuts highest in protein, but lowest in calories and fat.  We used the Wonderful No Shells Pistachios in this smoothie since they made it super easy to add!  Plus, the green and purple hues from pistachios signify that the pistachios are packed with antioxidants.

Ginger:

As you know, we’re ginger-obsessed, and Lyssie finds a way to work it into most of her meals. 😉 It adds a zesty kick to keep your taste buds satisfied so that they’re not craving more excitement. Ginger soothes the stomach and intestinal tract and has powerful anti-inflammatory properties to protect your body from free radicals and helps to keep your body in better working order. A calm intestinal tract= less bloat and a flatter tummy!

Spinach:

Greens, specifically, are the number one food you can eat regularly to improve your health–and to aid in weight loss because they’re super low in calories but packed with fiber to fill you up and with nutrients. Spinach is one the mildest of the greens and is like a barely detectable (like a chameleon!) in a smoothie, so it’s the perfect addition to a weight loss smoothie. (In this smoothie, we started with 1 packed cup of spinach, which is similar to two fistfuls)

 

Green Warrior Weight Loss Smoothie

This weight loss smoothie will crush your sweet tooth with only 309 calories and keep you feeling satisfied thanks to the protein and fiber. Naturally sweet fruit, creamy Greek yogurt and zesty, inflammation-fighting ginger keep your taste buds excited, while the anti-oxidant-packed pistachios are the secret ingredient since they contain the satisfying trio of fiber, plant-protein and better-for-you unsaturated fats so you feel full and don’t end up overeating at the vending machine soon after.

Makes 1 serving

Ingredients

• ¾ cup non-fat Greek yogurt
• 1/4 cup pomegranate juice

• ½ cup green grapes
• ½ cup pineapple pieces
• 1 cup packed spinach
• 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled
• 1/8 cup Wonderful No Shells Pistachios, lightly salted (roughly 25 kernels)

• 4 ice cubes

Directions
In a blender, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth.

Nutrition Facts per Serving: 309 Calories, 10 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 39 g carbohyrdate, 5 g fiber, 23 g protein

 

Photo Credit: The Wonderful Company

Green Warrior Weight Loss Smoothie
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • • ¾ cup non-fat Greek yogurt
  • • ½ cup pomegranate juice • ½ cup green grapes
  • • ½ cup pineapple pieces
  • • 1 cup packed spinach
  • • 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled
  • • ¼ cup Wonderful No Shells Pistachios, lightly salted
  • • 4 ice cubes
Instructions
  1. In a blender, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth.