Sardine and Avocado Salad

Lots of protein and healthful fats to keep you sated throughout the day!

Ingredients:

1 avocado, cut in half and pitted 2 cans sardines (packed in water in a BPA-free can!), drained 2 tbs. mayo of your choice 1 celery stick, de-stringed and finely chopped 2 tbs. fresh chopped flat parsley 1 tsp. chopped capers Salt and pepper to taste 1-2 cups greens of your choice (mixed, spinach, baby kale...)

Method:

Plate 1-2 beds of greens (depending on if you're sharing your lunch or not).

Scoop the flesh, in its entirety, of the avocado halves onto each plate, pit side facing up to create a little bowl (optional step to scoop the flesh out).

Mix the remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl until well-combined.

Scoop equal parts of the sardine salad into your two avo bowls.

Garnish with any remaining flat parsley and enjoy!

Creamy Paleo Chicken Casserole

It's casserole time! Enjoy this creamy, dairy free meal during the chilly weather months!

Inspired by PaleOMG

Ingredients:

1.5-2lbs chicken thighs, excess fat removed 1 medium heads of broccoli, chopped into florets 1 head of cauliflower, chopped into florets 1 cup of mushrooms, sliced ½-1 yellow onion, diced *optional: 1 garlic clove minced 1 cup vegetable broth 1 (14oz.) can of coconut milk 2 tsp. garlic powder ½ tsp. smoked paprika ½ tsp. cayenne pepper Salt and pepper to taste 2 tbs. olive oil (or other fat) 2 tbs. ghee or coconut oil

Method:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place the cauliflower and broccoli florets in a 9×12 glass/pyrex baking dish. Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Bake broccoli and cauliflower for 15-20 minutes while prepping other ingredients.

While the florets are cooking, place a large skillet over high heat.

Once skillet is very hot, add the ghee and chicken.

Salt and pepper the chicken while it cooks.

Cook each side for 4-5 minutes, until both sides are lightly browned.

Once chicken is ALMOST cooked through, remove it from the pan and place into the baking dish with the florets that have come out of the oven.

Put the pan over a medium heat and add the garlic and onions. Cook until translucent.

Add the mushrooms and cook for a few minutes more.

Add the coconut milk and vegetable broth, as well as the other seasonings, and mix well.

Once it is all thoroughly combined, pour directly onto the chicken, broccoli, and cauliflower dish.

Add a bit more salt and pepper.

Mix it all together until well-combined and bake for 20-ish minutes, until the chicken skin is crispy and the liquid is bubbling.

Allow to cool to help the sauce thicken.

Enjoy!

Jazzed Up Rice Pudding

This rice pudding recipe uses other types of dried fruit and nuts for an even tastier take on the comfort food classic.

Ingredients:

1/4 chopped dried fruit: figs, dates, prunes, apricots, raisins, etc. 1/4 cup chopped pecans 1 1/2 cups cooked brown rice 1 1/2 cups whole raw milk (you can use coconut milk if you're not into dairy) 3 eggs 1/4 cup maple syrup (or less if you're like me and think that every dessert is over sweetened) 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice Pinch nutmeg Pinch sea salt Ghee for greasing the pan

Method:

Preheat the oven to 375° F.

Grease an 8X8 pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together all the ingredients and pour into the pan.

Bake, uncovered, at 375° for 40-50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool. (If you can wait that long!)

Pour milk over each serving if desired. Refrigerate leftovers.

Jazzed Up Rice Pudding

Benefits:

It's delicious soul food...Need I say more? If so, see below:

Brown Rice: When properly prepared, brown rice is an excellent source of manganese, and provides a good amount of selenium, phosphorus, copper, magnesium, and niacin (vitamin B3) in the diet. It's also super high in fiber (which in combo with selenium packs a one-two punch for colon health). See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Local Raw Milk: This is a VERY touchy subject. So I will leave it to the professionals. See here if you’re interested in learning more about raw milk. Otherwise, good organic milk is a fine alternative.

Pecans: Pecans contain a plethora of vitamins and minerals including vitamin A, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, a variety of B vitamins and zinc. One ounce of pecans provides 10 percent of the recommended Daily Value for fiber. Pecans are also a source of monounsaturated or "good" fat and protein. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

 

Pan Fried Tilapia and "Instant" Slaw

Need dinner, pronto? I made this in 20 minutes, start to finish. You can too!

Ingredients:

Fish: 2 good-sized fresh wild tilapia filets 2 tablespoons almond or coconut flour Salt and pepper to taste Ghee for frying

Tartar Sauce: 4 tablespoons mayo Juice of 1/4 lemon 1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish 1 teaspoon capers Teeny pinch cayenne pepper Salt and pepper to taste

Slaw: 1/4 of a small to medium head green cabbage 1/2 an apple Teeny splash apple cider vinegar Juice of 1/4 lemon 3 tablespoons mayo or Greek yogurt (or 1/2 and half) Teen sprinkle of organic sugar or sweeter of choice 1 drop doTERRA lemon essential oil Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Fish: Rinse tilapia fillets in cold water and pat dry with paper towels.

Season both sides of each fillet with salt and pepper, then sprinkle with a little almond flour.

Heat the ghee in a skillet over medium-high heat and cook the tilapia until the fish flakes easily with a fork (about 4 minutes per side.)

Top with tartar sauce and serve with a lemon wedge.

Tartar Sauce: Make this ahead.

Combine all ingredients. When fish is ready, place a little dollop on each fillet.

Slaw: While fish is cooking (if you are capable of multi-tasking...if not, make this first and let it sit while fish is cooking), finely slice cabbage into 1/8-inch shreds and place in a large mixing bowl.

Core the 1/2 apple and slice in 1/8 slices.

Combine the vinegar, lemon juice, salt, sweetener, and mayo in a large measuring cup. Whisk until smooth.

Add to the prepped vegetables and mix well.

Serve alongside the fish, or cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Benefits:

Apples:  My, what balanced phytonutrients you have, oh beloved apple. Apples contain a wide array of polyphenols which help regulate our blood sugar. They're also a great source of Vitamin C and other antioxidants, and fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cabbage: Cabbage is a powerful cancer fighter and lowerer (new word?) of cholesterol. It contains massive amounts of Vitamin A and is a good source of Vitamin C. While purple cabbage is more nutrient dense than the lighter green varieties (due to their added phytonutrients), all varieties are nutritional powerhouses. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Lemon: Lemons are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon oil has many properties including antidepressant, antifungal, antiviral, antiseptic, and antioxidant. It is refreshing and invigorating, had can be used to help lower blood pressure, improve memory, ease sore throats and anxiety, help dissolve cellulite, boost energy, calm digestive problems, cleanse the lymphatic system cleansing, and promote a sense of well-being. It is also miraculous for removing grease, gum, oil, and unwanted marks and spots. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Tilapia: This is a low calorie, low fat fish with a mild flavor. Try to find wild-caught, if possible. If not, then at least try to get farm raised tilapia from a country with strict policies on quality control (such as the U.S.). See here for more health information and nutritional info.

Zucchini Fritters

Got zucchini and then some? This special little dish is perfect way to use up that extra squash on a lazy Saturday morning.

This recipe was inspired by Slim Palate.

Ingredients:

2 medium zucchini 2 green onions thinly sliced ¼ cup almond flour ¼ cup fresh grated parmigiana reggiano (packed firmly) 2 eggs Salt and pepper to taste (freshly ground, please) 1 drop doTERRA lemon essential oil Ghee for frying

For topping: Applesauce, Greek Yogurt, chives, or some combo thereof!

Method:

Grate zucchini with a medium sized grater into a bowl.

Place shredded zucchini in a clean dishtowel and squeeze to get as much liquid out of it as possible.

Place back in bowl with beaten eggs, thinly sliced green onions, almond flour, parmigiana reggiano, essential oil, and fresh ground salt and pepper and mix thoroughly.

Heat 2 tablespoons of ghee over medium heat and wait for that pan to get hot (but not to the smoking point).

Add spoonfuls of mixture to the hot pan and fry until golden brown on each side (2-3 minutes-ish per side).

Place fritters on platter lined with paper towels to soak up extra ghee, then serve each with Greek yogurt, applesauce, and extra green onions on the side.

Benefits:

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Greek Yogurt: Greek yogurt is a thicker, creamier version of "regular" yogurt that boasts high protein, healthy bacteria which support healthy gut flora, and is a good source of calcium. It's a versatile addition to your diet and can replace higher fat dairy products. See here for more about the nutritional info and health benefits of yogurt.

Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon oil has many properties including antidepressant, antifungal, antiviral, antiseptic, and antioxidant. It is refreshing and invigorating, had can be used to help lower blood pressure, improve memory, ease sore throats and anxiety, help dissolve cellulite, boost energy, calm digestive problems, cleanse the lymphatic system cleansing, and promote a sense of well-being. It is also miraculous for removing grease, gum, oil, and unwanted marks and spots. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Zucchini: Excellent source of manganese and vitamin C, and is a good source of vitamin A. Summer squash also retains its nutrients when eaten raw, lightly steamed, and/or frozen. And make sure to eat the seeds! Summer squash seeds contain omega 3 fatty acids which are helpful in the prevention of inflammation. The seeds are also thought to contain anti-microbial properties and are still used in some parts of the world to treat intestinal parasites. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Chilled Avo and Cucumber Soup

Try this soup for a cool, creamy, savory treat. I love this recipe because it's so easy and delicious. If you want a quick snack or addition to a meal that's high in protein and healthy fats, but is also soothing to the digestion (thank you cucumber!), then give this a try. If you're not a fan of dairy, then just double the avo and omit the yogurt.

Bon appetít!

Ingredients:

1 English cucumber, peeled and diced ( *optional: 1/4 cup reserved for garnish) 1 avocado, pitted, peeled, and diced (*optional: 1/4 cup reserved for garnish) 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro, plus sprigs for garnish 1 cup plain Greek yogurt 1 cup cold water or broth 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper 1 drop doTERRA lemon essential oil *Optional: 1 scallion, white and pale-green parts only, coarsely chopped (about 2 tablespoons) *Optional: 1 jalapeno, seeded and coarsely chopped

Method:

Puree ingredients in a blender.

Divide soup and reserved cucumber and avocado among 4 bowls.

Cover with parchment paper and allow to chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Garnish with cilantro sprigs if desired.

Benefits:

Avocado: Avocado is an excellent source of healthy fats, fiber, folate, vitamins K, C, and B, and potassium. It also contains a wide spectrum of inflammation-fighting nutrients. Avocado also helps increase our intake of two key carotenoid antioxidants—lycopene and beta-carotene—when eaten with romaine lettuce, spinach, and carrots. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cilantro: Cilantro is a powerful cleansing agent which helps remove heavy metals and other toxins from the body. It's also beneficial for the digestive tract due to its production of digestive enzymes, acids, and juices. Its essential oils stimulate peristalsis, relieve gas, and aid with digestion. Cilantro also has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, and helps to increase HDL cholesterol (the good kind), and reduces LDL cholesterol (the bad kind. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Cucumber: Cucumbers contain three types of phytonutrients which provide with valuable antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer benefits. They are also very low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium and are a good source of Vitamin A, C, and K, pantothenic acid, magnesium, phosphorus and manganese. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Greek Yogurt: Greek yogurt is a thicker, creamier version of "regular" yogurt that boasts high protein, healthy bacteria which support healthy gut flora, and is a good source of calcium. It's a versatile addition to your diet and can replace higher fat dairy products. See here for more about the nutritional info and health benefits of yogurt.

Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon oil has many properties including anticancer, antidepressant, antifungal, antiviral, antiseptic, and antioxidant. It is refreshing and invigorating, had can be used to help lower blood pressure, improve memory, ease sore throats and anxiety, help dissolve cellulite, boost energy, calm digestive problems, cleanse the lymphatic system cleansing, and promote a sense of well-being. It is also miraculous for removing grease, gum, oil, and unwanted marks and spots. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTERRA because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTERRA Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per batch. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils.

Meatloaf Patties and Whipped Yams

Is isn't your average "meat-n-taters." This flavor bomb contains lots of protein packs a nutrient punch! Ever notice that when you try to avoid certain foods, then that's all you seem to crave? (Chocolate, booze, cheese, gluten...ring a bell?) There's another, usually more effective, way of eliminating foods from our diets that don't serve us well. It's called "crowding out,"and it means to include all kinds of other delicious foods in your daily diet, so there's very little room (or even craving) of those other foods that you're looking to avoid.

In an effort to stop craving sweets late at night, I've been experimenting with including a few sweet vegetables in my diet. It seems to be working. So, instead of drinking green juice all day, then binging on chocolate late at night (not that that's ever happened....), it's worth including even just a serving or two of sweet vegetables, such as squash, sweet potatoes, and carrots into your daily diet. You might notice that come chocolate thirty in the evening, you are perfectly satiated and would rather drink a cup of tea instead. Voilá! Chocolate crisis averted.

This meal is very hearty. It's a nice combination of protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates, to keep you feeling fuller longer. To boot, it's a delicious combo. Feel free to get creative with the meat add-ins. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Meat Patties: 1 pound organic (if possible) grassfed ground buffalo or beef 1 egg 1 tablespoon almond flour Big pinch garlic salt 1-2 big pinches sea salt 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 1 medium carrot, shredded 1 celery stalk, finely chopped 1 handful shelled pistachios 1 small handful golden raisins 1 teaspoon dried oregano or thyme 1 tablespoon dried or fresh flat parsley 1 small pinch cayenne pepper 1-2 tablespoons organic Worcestershire sauce 1 tablespoon ghee or coconut oil for pan sauteing Fresh chopped herbs to garnish (optional)

Method: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Place all ingredients, except the ghee or coconut oil, into a bowl and mix until well combined.

Make into single-serving patties.

Heat an oven-proof saute pan over medium-high heat.

Sear each side of the patties until browned (a couple minutes each side), then place the pan in the oven until juices run clear (about 5 more minutes).

You can cut a patty in half to check for done-ness. Cook until it's no longer pink in the center. (But try not to overcook, otherwise you will end up with expensive hockey pucks for dinner.)

Whipped Yams: (You can make these ahead and reheat so they're ready when you're meat is done.) 2 medium to large yams, peeled and chopped into 1" hunks 1-2 carrots, peeled (optional) and chopped into 1" hunks 2 tablespoons ghee or coconut oil Sea salt and pepper to taste

Method: Place a steamer basket in a medium saucepan and fill to the pan with water until it reaches the bottom of the steamer basket.

Place your veggies in the steamer basket, and steam on medium-high heat until they're tender (about 12-15 minutes).

Drain the water from the saucepan and place the still warm veggies in a food processor or blender (or a bowl to mash with a hand-masher) with some ghee or coconut oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Blend or mash your carrots and taters until creamy.

Return them to your saucepan and heat through until your meat is ready to eat.

Serve the meat patty atop your whipped taters and garnish with fresh herbs (like basil!)

Benefits:

Buffalo: Grass fed buffalo is an excellent source of lean protein, riboflavin, vitamin B6, phosphorus, zinc, and selenium. It's also high in Omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin E. See here for more nutritional info.

Carrot: Carrots are well known for their rich supply of the antioxidant nutrient, beta-carotene, which is GREAT for our eye health. However, these root vegetables are also a great source of a variety of antioxidants and other health-supporting nutrients such as vitamins A, C, K. Studies have shown their effectiveness in the prevention of colon cancer, and their benefits to our cardiovascular health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Celery: Celery is jam-packed with vitamins K and C, beta-carotene, and manganese. But also contains phytonutrients that are shown to have anti-inflammatory benefits and protect the digestive tract. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Yams: A great source of Vitamin B-6, potassium (a mineral that helps to control blood pressure), and manganese. According to Chinese herbal medicine, yams also support kidney function and the female endocrine system. The yam’s composition of complex carbohydrates and fiber make them a great food for maintaining steady blood sugar while helping you feel fuller for longer. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Warm Pickled Beet Salad with Goat Feta

Cleanse your blood and please your palate with this tasty pickled beet salad!

This recipe was inspired by A Thought For Food.

February marks the last bit of winter. In Ayurveda it is "kapha" season, which means that our digestion and our bodies might feel sluggish. It's an important time to start to boost our metabolism of fat in preparation for spring cleansing. So in order to assist our gall bladders and livers rev up their fat-busting super powers, we should favor natural cleansers such as vinegar, lemons, beets, kale, and beans.

Beware of too much dairy this time of year, as it can keep our systems slow and sludgy. If you're going to partake, then try to include goat dairy, as it is generally easier on the digestion than most cow dairy.

In terms of seasonal eats, there's not much growing outside in February, so it's nice to have stocked up on some canned or pickled items (I just learned how to make pickled beets in November...Thanks Tamlin!). And folks who are fortunate enough to have a greenhouse or cold frame might have some greens growing. So thus was born this warm pickled beet salad with arugula and goat feta. Feel free to add whatever kinds of herbs to your vinaigrette that sound tasty. I personally liked the basil/mint combo, but get creative and enjoy!

Tamlin and me, having a domestic goddess day in our frilly aprons. She taught me how to can beets. So fun!

Ingredients:

1 Pint jar of pickled beets (or you can just roast or boil 4 beets that have been trimmed, peeled, and sliced into rounds) 1/4 Cup extra virgin olive oil 2 Tablespoons ghee 3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar 1 Clove garlic, minced 1/2 Teaspoon ground allspice Salt and pepper 1/2 Drop doTERRA basil essential oil 1/4 Cup chopped mint, or 2 tablespoons dried mint 1/4 Cup chopped basil, or 2 tablespoons dried basil 1 Small red onion, thinly sliced into rounds 4-6 Cups arugula (you can use spinach or watercress in its place too...) 1 Cup goat feta cheese, crumbled

Method:

Drain the pickled beets. (If using fresh beets, roast or boil them to your liking, skin, and slice them into rounds, and allow them to cool a bit.)

In a small bowl whisk together olive oil, vinegar, garlic, allspice, salt and pepper to taste, the mint, the basil. Then dip a toothpick in the doTERRA basil oil and stir it into the mixture.

Heat a medium saute pan over medium heat, add the ghee, and the onions. Allow the onions to brown, then add the pickled beets. Saute them together for a few minutes until sufficiently warmed. Add a bit of the dressing mixture into the pan to coat the beets and onions.

Toss the arugula in remaining dressing. Put it into serving bowls (2 for a meal-sized salad, 4 for an app-sized salad), then adorn each bowl with a bit of the beet onion mixture.

Crumble some goat feta atop each one. Serve and enjoy!

Benefits:

Arugula: Arugula is a rich source of folate, Vitamin A, Vitamin K, and B-complexes (such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B-6, which are essential for optimum cellular enzymatic and metabolic functions). This is a low-cal lettuce leaf that packs a nutritional wallop, so don’t be afraid to ask for a second helping! See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Basil: Basil contains flavanoids called orientin and vicenin, which protect us at a cellular level. It also has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Basil is also high in vitamin K, so is great for our blood health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Basil Essential Oil: Basil has powerful anti-infectious, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, antioxidant, and antiviral properties. It can be used to boost alertness and concentration, ease anxiety, nervous depression, headaches, mental fatigue, and insomnia. See here to learn more about doTerra essential oils.

Beet: A great source of phytonutrients called betalains, which provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. They are also an excellent source of folate, which is a crucial nutrient especially for those who are (or are looking to get) pregnant. They are also very high in manganese and fiber. These root veggies contain nutrient compounds that help protect against heart disease, birth defects and certain cancers, especially colon cancer. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information (raw) (cooked).

Ghee: A favorite among Ayurvedic practitioners, said to help cure ailments from tight muscles to memory loss. Ghee is essentially clarified butter that has been separated from the milk solids and saturated fats. I highly recommend replacing your regular butter with this. Read up on the health benefits and nutritional information.

Peppermint: Peppermint is a good source of vitamins C and A, as well as manganese and copper. It is also great for the digestion and has antimicrobial properties. See here for more health benefits.

Apple Cinnamon Paleo Pancakes

These pancakes are the perfect Sunday morning treat. My husband and I have officially dubbed Sunday as "Pancake Day," because of these filling and delightful pancakes. They're very hearty and will keep your tank full for whatever Sunday shenanigans you have planned. This recipe made enough for two hungry hippos, but you could certainly double the batch if you're hosting brunch. Try them topped with berries for sweetness or a fried egg if you're looking for an extra hit of protein. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup homemade apple sauce (or organic, no sugar added) 4 eggs 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 4 tablespoons coconut flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 cup almond meal 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, or to taste 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, or to taste 1-2 drops doTERRA cinnamon essential oil coconut oil for cooking oil *optional: 1-2 teaspoons maple syrup

Method:

Whisk together apple sauce, eggs, (optional maple syrup) cinnamon oil, and vanilla extract together in a bowl until smooth.

Combine coconut flour, baking soda, salt, almond meal, nutmeg, and ginger together in a separate bowl.

Stir the applesauce mixture and flour mixture together in the bigger bowl until well combined.

Allow batter to sit for a few minutes.

Heat a dab of coconut oil in a skillet over low heat. Pour palm-sized circles of batter into the hot oil. Cook until lightly browned, about 3-5 minutes per side. (You'll know when it's safe to flip them, as they won't be jiggly in the center when you wiggle the pan).

Serve with more applesauce, ghee, and if you have it, pure maple syrup.

Benefits:

Almonds: Almonds are a Supernut. High in monounsaturated fats (associated with reduced risk of heart disease), almonds contain high amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. They are also high in protein, which makes them an ideal snack. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Apples:  My, what balanced phytonutrients you have, oh beloved apple. Apples contain a wide array of polyphenols which help regulate our blood sugar. They're also a great source of Vitamin C and other antioxidants, and fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cinnamon Oil: Cinnamon essential oil helps to boost metabolism and digestive health. It is also a powerful antioxidant, helps support immunity, enhance circulation, strengthen libido and elevate mood. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed and/or organic) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Ginger: Ginger is very effective in alleviating symptoms of gastrointestinal distress such as gas, bloating, motion sickness, and morning sickness. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Nutmeg: Nutmeg has been used in traditional medicines as an anti-fungal, anti-depressant, aphrodisiac, digestive aid. It is also a good source of copper, potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, zinc, and magnesium, and B-complex vitamins including Vitamin C, folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, and Vitamin A. In small doses it’s great, but don’t overdo it! This powerful spice can be toxic if consumed in large amounts. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Black Bean and Squash Chile

Have a Halloween party coming up? Use pumpkin in this recipe for a festive holiday meal. Whoever invented the "slow cooker" is my new best pal. Who knew that it was so easy to cook beautiful, homemade meals with very little preparation? I recently discovered the crockpot that had been hiding at the back of our kitchen cupboard. Could it really be so simple as tossing a whole mess of ingredients in the crockpot, turn it on, come back a few hours later to a beautiful dinner? Pretty much.

On days when you don't have a lot of time to cook, let a slow cooker do the work for you. When you ladle yourself a bowl of hot, yummy goodness, you might wonder why it has taken you so long to clear the cobwebs off this handy kitchen tool. Bon appétit!

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons coconut oil 1 medium onion, chopped 1 medium sweet yellow pepper, chopped 1 garlic clove, minced 2-3 cups cooked black beans, rinsed and drained 1-2 cups cooked winter squash, cubed (pumpkin is orange and delicious, but kabocha or butternut would be yummy too!) 3 stewed, or really ripe, tomatoes, chopped 1-2 cups veggie or chicken broth 2 teaspoons chili powder (Chimayo chile from New Mexico is best in my opinion) 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin 1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano 1/2 teaspoon salt *Optional: cubed avocado, thinly sliced green onions, chopped cilantro *Optional: 1 cup ground or cubed turkey, ground buffalo, or chorizo *Optional 2 drops doTERRA oregano essential oil

Method:

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat.

Add onion and pepper, and cook and stir until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer.

Transfer to a 5-qt. slow cooker; stir in the remaining ingredients, except for the essential oil.

Cook, covered, on low 4-5 hours.

If desired, add 1-2 drops doTERRA oregano essential oil to the whole batch before serving.

Garnish with avocado, cilantro, and/or green onions.

Benefits:

Black Beans: These magical legumes are touted for their abundant protein and fiber content, but are also packed with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients such as folate, tryptophan, and manganese. Great for gut, heart, and overall health. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Bell Peppers: NOTE! Bell peppers, a member of the nightshade family, are not for everyone. They are on the "dirty dozen" list of pesticide laden produce (when not organic), and have been known to cause inflammation in some people. HOWEVER, they have lots of health benefits too: Sweet bell peppers are high in vitamins C and A, and contain other antioxidants. Don't cook over high heat or they loose some of their nutritional wallop. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cilantro: Cilantro is a powerful cleansing agent which helps remove heavy metals and other toxins from the body. It's also beneficial for the digestive tract due to its production of digestive enzymes, acids, and juices. Its essential oils stimulate peristalsis, relieve gas, and aid with digestion. Cilantro also has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, and helps to increase HDL cholesterol (the good kind), and reduces LDL cholesterol (the bad kind. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Oregano Essential Oil: Oregano is a powerful antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-parasitic oil. It battles common intestinal, skin and lung infections, while fending off colds and flu. It is also a general nerve tonic. Be BEWARE! A dab will do ya. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Pumpkin: This tasty winter squash is packed vitamins A and C, magnesium and potassium, as well as dietary fiber. It’s also contains high amounts of carotenoids, the little nutrients which help to neutralize free-radicals within the body, and is low in calories. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTERRA because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTERRA Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per dish. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils.

Add some chorizo, turkey, or buffalo for an added boost of protein and flavor.

Apple Beet Salad Stacks

Tired of boring tossed salads? Get architectural and stack which ever veggies you have on hand for a new take on salads! Autumn is one of my favorite times of year because a huge variety of produce is in season. I'm happy to report that the veggies in this salad were grown locally. I'd say they weren't harmed in the making of this salad, but I'd be lying. They were all gobbled up (with love and appreciation, of course!).

If you're looking for a new and delightful way to enjoy fruits and veggies, I highly recommend engaging your creative streak and stacking your veggies to towering heights. It's important to tickle all the senses while preparing and eating one's food, so may you build glorious vegetable stacks. (Sorry, Mom...I guess I'm telling people to play with their food.)

What other stackables can you imagine? Squash? Peppers? Eggplant skyscrapers? Other potential items to crumble over the top: bacon...maybe I'll just leave it at that. (Apologies, vegans...a little chopped avocado would be delicious too...) Bon appétit!

Ingredients:

Salad: (Serves 2)

Large handful or two of local, organic mixed greens 1 large apple, sliced thinly (honeycrisps are my personal favorite: sweet, tart, and crisp!) 2-3 medium sized beets, boiled or roasted until soft Balsamic glaze for drizzling *Optional toasted walnuts or pecans *Optional blue cheese crumbles

Dressing:

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil squeeze of 1/2 a lemon 1/2 teaspoon local honey hefty pinch of salt 1-2 drops doTERRA lemon essential oil

Method: Mix dressing ingredients and set aside.

Skin and slice the beets to match the width of your apple slices.

Toss the greens in the dressing in a mixing bowl.

Plate the greens.

Atop the greens, stack slices of the beets and apples, until you've reached your desired level of stacked-ness (new word?)

Sprinkle with nuts and cheese and drizzle with balsamic glaze.

Serve and enjoy!

Benefits:

Apples:  My, what balanced phytonutrients you have, oh beloved apple. Apples contain a wide array of polyphenols which help regulate our blood sugar. They're also a great source of Vitamin C and other antioxidants, and fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Beet: A great source of phytonutrients called betalains, which provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. They are also an excellent source of folate, which is a crucial nutrient especially for those who are (or are looking to get) pregnant. They are also very high in manganese and fiber. These root veggies contain nutrient compounds that help protect against heart disease, birth defects and certain cancers, especially colon cancer. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information (raw) (cooked).

Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon oil has many properties including anticancer, antidepressant, antifungal, antiviral, antiseptic, and antioxidant. It is refreshing and invigorating, had can be used to help lower blood pressure, improve memory, ease sore throats and anxiety, help dissolve cellulite, boost energy, calm digestive problems, cleanse the lymphatic system, and promote a sense of well-being. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Mixed Greens: Salad greens abound with vitamins A and C, beta-carotene, calcium, folate, fiber, and other phytonutrients. Make sure to rinse them thoroughly before eating. See here for more health benefits and safe handling instructions and nutritional information.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTERRA because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTERRA Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per dish. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils.

5-Minute Mediterranean Wraps

Make these wraps in a snap. Throw a few ingredients in a bowl and voilá, a healthy snack or meal. Eating out of a can is not my forte. However, when the moment calls for an instant snack, sometimes a can of beans is a lifesaver. With this recipe, I just scavenged leftovers from the fridge, added a can of garbanzo beans, a huge dollop of pesto, and rinsed a few cabbage leaves. Presto change-o, there was lunch. Other potential additions: cucumber, chopped red onion, Greek olives, fresh or sun dried tomatoes, feta cheese, avocado, or even hunks of leftover fish or chicken. Perhaps a few more herbs like flat leaf parsley or cilantro would be nice. No wrong way to make a wrap! Enjoy.

Ingredients:

1 large can garbanzo beans 1 can black, green, or Greek olives 1 jar roasted red peppers 1-2 tbs. capers 1/4 cup pesto (or you can just use olive oil, spices, salt and pepper to taste...) Juice of 1/2 a lemon Zest of 1/2 lemon 1-2 drops doTERRA lemon oil Hefty sprinkle garlic salt Sprinkle cumin Salt and pepper to taste Cabbage or lettuce leaves for wrapping

Method:

Empty garbanzo beans into large mixing bowl.

Chop the olives and peppers and add to the bowl.

Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until well-combined.

Salt and pepper to taste.

Scoop a dollop into your leaf of choice. Serve and enjoy!

Benefits:

Bell Peppers: NOTE! Bell peppers, a member of the nightshade family, are not for everyone. They are on the "dirty dozen" list of pesticide laden produce (when not organic), and have been known to cause inflammation in some people. HOWEVER, they have lots of health benefits too: Sweet bell peppers are high in vitamins C and A, and contain other antioxidants. Don't cook over high heat or they loose some of their nutritional wallop. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Garbanzo Beans: Also known as "chickpeas," these beans are particularly high in insoluble fiber, which means you have a squeaky clean colon and feel fuller for longer when eating these legumes. They are also extremely high in lots of nutrients such as manganese, folate, and tryptophan. They are a great source of plant-based protein. If you find legumes make you gassy, try pre-soaking them for easier digestion. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.  Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Lemon: Lemons are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon oil has many properties including anticancer, antidepressant, antifungal, antiviral, antiseptic, and antioxidant. It is refreshing and invigorating, had can be used to help lower blood pressure, improve memory, ease sore throats and anxiety, help dissolve cellulite, boost energy, calm digestive problems, cleanse the lymphatic system, and promote a sense of well-being. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Olives: The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of olives abound, making them ideal cancer fighting food. Olives are also rich in iron, fiber, copper, and monounsaturated (read "healthy") fats. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTERRA because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTERRA Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per dish. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils.

Grilled Veggies Chickpeas and Pesto (a.k.a. the easiest lunch ever)

Toss some leftovers in a bowl, swirl with pesto, and voilá! Lunch! I love pesto. So much that I often snag a spoonful from the jar all by itself. But when I feel like not being a barbarian, and actually putting a full three minutes into lunch preparation, pesto of any variety (cilantro, basil, or arugula...whatever you have on hand) is quite a treat when mixed in with veggies and beans.

If you're on the Paleo diet, then you can replace the beans with diced chicken or hard boiled egg for protein. It works with just about any type of grilled or sauteéd veggie you have on hand. What's your favorite combo? Bon appétit!

Ingredients:

1 cup of chopped sautéed or grilled veggies, diced (for this batch I used grilled zucchini and carrots) 1/3-1/2 cup garbanzo beans (or the beans of your choice) 2 tbs. pesto of your choice (I used basil pesto) Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Stir all ingredients in a bowl.

Serve and enjoy!

Borscht

Beets. It's what's for dinner. There's something so magical about this dish. Maybe it's the rich-magenta hue, or the smooth and creamy texture. Whatever it is, I've enjoyed this dish since infanthood and wanted to share it with you. There are lots of variations. Some like it chunky, others like it puréed. I prefer the latter. Serve it warm or cold, by itself or topped with a drizzle of créme fraîche, truffle oil, or snipped chives. You really can't go wrong with this velvety soup. Bon appétit.

Ingredients:

6 medium sized beets, skinned, roasted and chopped 1 medium sized onion, chopped 2 medium carrots, skinned and shaved (using a potato peeler) 4 cups chicken, beef, or veggie broth *1 can kidney beans (optional) A splash of cooking sherry 4 tbs. nutritional yeast (optional, but lends to the creaminess) 2 bay leaves Juice of 1/2 a lemon Salt and pepper to taste 1-2 tbs. coconut oil for sautéeing 1 drop doTERRA lemon oil *1 drop doTERRA dill oil (optional)

Method:

Heat up a medium stock pot over a medium flame.

Melt coconut oil and add the chopped until. Sautée until lightly browned and aromatic.

Add the shaved carrots, beet, and beans (optional).

Sautée together until the flavors have cross-mojinated. (About 3-5 minutes)

Add the broth and the bay leaves. Cover and bring to a gentle simmer.

Allow to simmer for 15-20 minutes. Remove the bay leaves.

Place in the blender (may have to blend in batches) with the nutritional yeast, sherry, lemon juice, and essential oils.

Salt and pepper to taste.

Serve warm or chilled. Serve as is, or top with créme fraîche, a dollop of Greek yogurt, fresh herbs, or a swirl of truffle oil.

Benefits:

Beet: A great source of phytonutrients called betalains, which provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. They are also an excellent source of folate, which is a crucial nutrient especially for those who are (or are looking to get) pregnant. They are also very high in manganese and fiber. These root veggies contain nutrient compounds that help protect against heart disease, birth defects and certain cancers, especially colon cancer. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information (raw) (cooked).

Carrot: Carrots are well known for their rich supply of the antioxidant nutrient, beta-carotene, which is GREAT for our eye health. However, these root vegetables are also a great source of a variety of antioxidants and other health-supporting nutrients such as vitamins A, C, K. Studies have shown their effectiveness in the prevention of colon cancer, and their benefits to our cardiovascular health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Dill Essential Oil: Dill is a powerful anti-bacterial, antioxidant, antiseptic, anti-spasmodic, carminative(prevents gas and fermentation in stomach and intestinal tract), and digestive aid. See here to learn more about doTerra essential oils.

Kidney Beans: These legumes are packed with fiber, folate, and tryptophan. They also abound with a special trace mineral called molybdenum, which helps combat sulfites (a food preservative commonly found in wine, and foods found in salad bars). They are also an excellent source of protein, and minerals such as manganese, iron, and copper. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon oil has many properties including anticancer, antidepressant, antifungal, antiviral, antiseptic, and antioxidant. It is refreshing and invigorating, had can be used to help lower blood pressure, improve memory, ease sore throats and anxiety, help dissolve cellulite, boost energy, calm digestive problems, cleanse the lymphatic system cleansing, and promote a sense of well-being. It is also miraculous for removing grease, gum, oil, and unwanted marks and spots. See here to learn more about doTerra essential oils.

Nutritional Yeast: Nutritional yeast is a staple source of protein, particularly for vegans and vegetarians. It is one of the few non-animal sources of B-12, is rich in folic acid and other nutrients and amino acids. Nutritional yeast is free of the Candida Albicans strain, making it safe for those concerned with candida. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Onion:  Like garlic, onions are high in sulfur (and while that might make us a little, ahem, stinky, this may be an important part of a our otherwise sulfur-deficient diets. They are a very good source of vitamins B6 and C, fiber, and manganese. They help protect our blood, bone, and connective tissue. See here for other health benefits and nutritional info. Please note: due to its rajastic nature, garlic and onions are NOT part of the traditional Saatvic diet.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTerra because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTerra Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per dish. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTerra Essential Oils.

Buffa-Loaf (Meatloaf)

This high-protein and low glycemic carb meal is a delicious alternative to the previous incarnation of ketchup-drenched meat loaf and mashed taters. Even though it's faux pas to bake in the heat of summer, sometimes a gal gets a craving for meatloaf. Prepared correctly (with lots of love and gratitude for the buffalo), I have enjoyed experimenting with bison as a protein. It has a distinctly sweet flavor, and is generally lower in sodium and cholesterol than beef. But local, grass fed, ground beef would be delicious in this recipe as well.

And meatloaf is a fantastic way to use up veggies which need eating, pronto. What do you like to put in your meat loaf? Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients:

1 lb. ground buffalo meat 1-2 pasture fed, organic eggs *optional: 1/4 cup raw, organic milk (better for higher elevation cooking!) 1 tbs. ground mustard 2 tbs. organic Worcestershire sauce 2 trickles of Tabasco or preferred hot sauce 1 tbs. coconut flour (to help bind) 1 medium or 2 small carrots, shredded 1/4 cup finely chopped onion 1 tbs. chopped garlic or garlic scape 1 tsp. sea salt 1 tsp. black pepper 1 tsp. dried or 1/2 tsp. fresh oregano

Method:

Massage together all ingredients in a medium-sized bowl until well-combined.

Allow to sit in the fridge for up to a few hours to allow the flavors to co-mingle.

Then bring to room temperature before baking (to prevent tough meat).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a loaf pan with high-quality fat. I like organic ghee.

Place the meat mixture in the loaf pan and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until browned on top and internal temperature reads 160 degrees F.

Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Benefits:

Buffalo: Grass fed buffalo is an excellent source of lean protein, riboflavin, vitamin B6, phosphorus, zinc, and selenium. It's also high in Omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin E. See here for more nutritional info.

Carrot: Carrots are well known for their rich supply of the antioxidant nutrient, beta-carotene, which is GREAT for our eye health. However, these root vegetables are also a great source of a variety of antioxidants and other health-supporting nutrients such as vitamins A, C, K. Studies have shown their effectiveness in the prevention of colon cancer, and their benefits to our cardiovascular health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Local Raw Milk: This is a VERY touchy subject. So I will leave it to the professionals. See here if you’re interested in learning more about raw milk. Otherwise, good organic milk is a fine alternative.

Crustless Quiche

Have leftovers that need to get eaten, stat? Quiche is the answer.

Ingredients:

4 organic, local (if possible) eggs 1.5 cups whole, organic, local milk (or 1 cup milk, 1/5 heavy cream) *NOTE: For those who aren't eating dairy, you can use 8 eggs and omit the milk and cream 1/2 cup diced onion, sauteéd 1 cup cooked asparagus cut into 1/2-inch pieces 1 cup diced and cooked ham, sausage, or ground beef (or 1 more cup of the veggie of your choice, such as tomato, cooked spinach, zucchini, mushroom, etc.) 1 tsp dried sage, basil, or oregano splash of Tabasco sauce coconut oil, or other oil of choice, for greasing salt and pepper, to taste *GET CREATIVE: Some great combos are leek and mushroom, veggie, salmon and asparagus...you name it and it'll probably taste pretty great!

Method:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a 10-inch pie plate.

In a medium bowl, beat the eggs. Stir in the rest of the ingredients.

If desired, save some asparagus tops or sliced tomatoes to use as decoration.

Pour into the prepared pie plate.

Decorate the top of the quiche with asparagus tops or tomato slices.

Bake for 40 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean and the center no longer jiggles. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Veggie Crustless Quiche

Benefits:

Asparagus: Asparagus is packed with vitamins K and A, as well as iron and folate. It is also a powerful anti-inflammatory and abounds with antioxidant nutrients such as vitamin C, beta-carotene, vitamin E, and the minerals zinc, manganese, and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Local Raw Milk: This is a VERY touchy subject. So I will leave it to the professionals. See here if you’re interested in learning more about raw milk. Otherwise, good organic milk is a fine alternative.

Onion:  Like garlic, onions are high in sulfur (and while that might make us a little, ahem, stinky, this may be an important part of a our otherwise sulfur-deficient diets. They are a very good source of vitamins B6 and C, fiber, and manganese. They help protect our blood, bone, and connective tissue. See here for other health benefits and nutritional info. Please note: due to its rajastic nature, garlic and onions are NOT part of the traditional Saatvic diet.

Tomato: Tomatoes are packed with antioxidants such as vitamin C and beta-carotene. They also contain high amounts of manganese and vitamin E. Multiple studies have shown that tomatoes are wonderful for heart health. See here for more health benefits of tomatoes. Heirloom varieties of any flora and fauna are dear to my heart. I’ll write more about this later. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Rustic Crustless Quiche

Beetberry Smoothie

Rich, red, creamy, and packed with delicious nutrients, this smoothie is a keeper! Beet in a smoothie! Ew! Just kidding, it's actually delicious. If they're roasted or boiled, beets have a very sweet flavor that blends splendidly with whatever berry you have on hand. I like the blueberry combo for the rich fuschia hue...the depth of color just screams that this smoothie abounds with antioxidants and other health-promoting nutrients. Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients:

1 cup coconut water 1/2 cup blueberries 2 tbs. almonds (preferably soaked over night and de-skinned) 1 little squeeze lemon juice 1/4 pinch sea salt * optional: 1 medjool date

Method:

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend to smithereens!

Pour into a glass and enjoy heartily.

Benefits:

Almonds: Almonds are a Supernut. High in monounsaturated fats (associated with reduced risk of heart disease), almonds contain high amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. They are also high in protein, which makes them an ideal snack. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Beet: A great source of phytonutrients called betalains, which provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. They are also an excellent source of folate, which is a crucial nutrient especially for those who are (or are looking to get) pregnant. They are also very high in manganese and fiber. These root veggies contain nutrient compounds that help protect against heart disease, birth defects and certain cancers, especially colon cancer. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information (raw) (cooked).

Blueberries: These berries should get their own cape. They are a superfood, packed with antioxidants that can help prevent cancer, meanwhile protecting your nervous system and brain health. They're rich with manganese, and Vitamins K and C, and are also a good source of dietary fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Coconut Water: Coconut water is perfect for replenishing simple sugars, electrolytes, and minerals within the body. It contains cytokinins with significant anti-aging, anti-carcinogenic, and anti-thrombotic properties, and is very soothing to the digestive tract. But there's so much more! See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Lemon: Lemons are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Paleo Apple Cardamom Muffins

These protein-rich muffins make a delicious on-the-go breakfast or snack. Some mornings are just too chilly for a juice or smoothie. What better way to awaken your digestive fire than a fresh muffin? They're easy to make, and are super easy on the taste buds. My husband devours them with a little ghee. I like them with homemade nut butter and jam. Put a couple in a wax paper bag keep your stomach sated (and blood sugar balanced) for hours. Bon appétit!

Ingredients:

1 16-ounce jar of organic apple sauce 1/2 cup of coconut flour 2 tablespoons organic coconut oil (melted) 6 eggs (yes, 6.) 2 teaspoon of vanilla extract 1 teaspoon of cinnamon 1 teaspoon of nutmeg 1 teaspoon cardamom 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda *Optional: 3 tablespoons honey or maple syrup *Optional: 1/4 cup walnuts or pecans *Optional: 1/4 cup chopped dates, dried currants, or dried figs

Method:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Prepare 12 muffin cups lined with paper.

In a medium mixing bowl, sift coconut flour, baking powder, baking soda, and spices together.

Whisk remaining wet ingredients.  Combine well but don’t over mix!

Divide batter between muffin cups.

Bake for about 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Benefits:

Apple Sauce:  My, what balanced phytonutrients you have, oh beloved apple. Apples contain a wide array of polyphenols which help regulate our blood sugar. They’re also a great source of Vitamin C and other antioxidants, and fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cardamom: This spice is an excellent source of iron and manganese, making it a rock star for blood and cellular regeneration. It also contains significant amounts of riboflavin, niacin, vitamin C, and can be used as an anti-spasmodic and digestive aid. Great for the belly AND the heart. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Cinnamon: Cinnamon has long been used as a medicine. It’s a good source of manganese and calcium. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and helps to lessen unwanted blood clotting. It also has strong anti-microbial properties and help control blood sugar. The list of the powerful spice’s benefits continue, so see here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Dates: Dates are rich with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and copper. They are also high in other antioxidants such as beta carotene and lutein, which help protect and nourish our cells. But they’re high in sugar, so a dab’ll do ya. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Nutmeg: Nutmeg has been used in traditional medicines as an anti-fungal, anti-depressant, aphrodisiac, digestive aid. It is also a good source of copper, potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, zinc, and magnesium, and B-complex vitamins including Vitamin C, folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, and Vitamin A. In small doses it’s great, but don’t overdo it! This powerful spice can be toxic if consumed in large amounts. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Pecans: Pecans contain a plethora of vitamins and minerals including vitamin A, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, a variety of B vitamins and zinc. One ounce of pecans provides 10 percent of the recommended Daily Value for fiber. Pecans are also a source of monounsaturated or "good" fat and protein. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

"Rooted" Hummus

This sweet and savory hummus dish is a definite crowd pleaser. Who doesn't like pink food? I've been co-teaching a workshop series based on the chakra systems (energy centers in the body which govern various aspects of our health and well-being), and have focused one section on nutrition for each individual chakra. Red and high-protein foods are great for the first chakra, called the muladhara or "root," which is our center of survival, stability, safety and self-preservation. So if you're feeling ungrounded, or just want to try a different spin on this Mediterranean staple, toss some roasted beets in with your chickpeas for a stabilizing and delicious snack.

Ingredients:

1 15-ounce can chickpeas (or soak and cook your own 2 medium skinned, roasted or boiled beets (*though roasted yields a richer flavor) 2 cloves roasted garlic, or 1 tsp. garlic powder 2 tbs. tahini or homemade nut or seed butter Juice of one lemon 3 tbs. extra virgin olive oil 1 drop doTerra lemon essential oil Salt to taste

*optional: serve with fresh chopped herbs, crumbled goat cheese, and fresh cracked black pepper over flatbread or skinny crackers.

Method:

Once cooked and cooled, combine the garlic and beets in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse 8 to 10 times to chop.

Add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor bowl and process for approximately 30 seconds.

Add a smidge more olive oil if the hummus feels too dry, scrape the bowl and process again until it is the desired consistency.

Add salt to taste.

Serve with other root vegetables, crackers or the crudite of your choice. Enjoy!

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTerra because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTerra Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per dish. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTerra Essential Oils.

Benefits:

Beet: A great source of phytonutrients called betalains, which provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. They are also an excellent source of folate, which is a crucial nutrient especially for those who are (or are looking to get) pregnant. They are also very high in manganese and fiber. These root veggies contain nutrient compounds that help protect against heart disease, birth defects and certain cancers, especially colon cancer. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information (raw) (cooked).

Garbanzo Beans: Also known as "chickpeas," these beans are particularly high in insoluble fiber, which means you have a squeaky clean colon and feel fuller for longer when eating these legumes. They are also extremely high in lots of nutrients such as manganese, folate, and tryptophan. They are a great source of plant-based protein. If you find legumes make you gassy, try pre-soaking them for easier digestion. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.  Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Garlic: Garlic has long been touted as a health promoting food. It is high in sulfur (and while that might make us a little, ahem, stinky, this may be an important part of a our otherwise sulfur-deficient diets. Garlic is also rich with manganese and is a very good source of vitamins B6 and C, as well as selenium. This "stinky rose" also protects our blood vessels from inflammatory and oxidative stress, but its other health benefits abound. See here for nutritional info. Please note: due to its rajastic nature, garlic and onions are NOT part of the traditional Saatvic diet.

Lemon: Lemons are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon oil has many properties including anticancer, antidepressant, antifungal, antiviral, antiseptic, and antioxidant. It is refreshing and invigorating, had can be used to help lower blood pressure, improve memory, ease sore throats and anxiety, help dissolve cellulite, boost energy, calm digestive problems, cleanse the lymphatic system, and promote a sense of well-being. See here to learn more about doTerra essential oils.

Olive Oil: Olive Oil is packed phytonutrients including polyphenols. Most of the polyphenols in olive oil function as both antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients in the body. When eaten in moderation, olive oil can be very beneficial to our gastrointestinal and cardiovascular health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Sesame Seeds: (Found in tahini) These  little seeds are packed with essential nutrients such as copper, manganese, tryptophan, calcium, magnesium, iron, and phospherous, and zinc. They're also a good source of vitamin B1 and dietary fiber. Great to sprinkle to any meal for an added boost of nutrients! See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Raw Raspberry Jam

Smear a dollup of these preserves on a homemade muffin, or swirl them in your yogurt for an added boost of berry bliss!

This recipe was inspired by www.vegiehead.com.

Few things are more pleasurable than a freshly baked goodie with a dab of raspberry jam. And fortunately, raspberry and other berry jams are exceedingly simple to make. Mush and stir a few ingredients together and voilá: preserves that are suitable for brunch with The Queen. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1 1/5 cups fresh or defrosted organic raspberries (or any other berries you love) 3 tablespoons coconut sugar, or to taste (blended date paste would also work) 1/2 cup chia seeds

Method

Blend or mash berries with the coconut sugar.

Stir in the chia seeds and mix well.

Pour mixture into a sterilized jar and allow to set in the fridge for an hour or overnight.

Will keep in the fridge approximately 3 weeks

Note: Excess jam can be stored in the freezer in zip lock bags.

Benefits:

Chia Seeds: "Chia" is the Mayan word for strength. Once an important energy source for Mayans, Incas and other ancient cultures, they are now favored by athletes and birthing mothers for their strength and energy enhancing properties. They are a great source of omega-3 acids, calcium, protein, fiber and potassium. Plus they’re low in cholesterol and sodium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Coconut Sugar: This sweetener contains trace amounts of vitamin C, potassium, phosphorous, magnesium, calcium, zinc, iron and copper. Coconut sugar does not cause your blood sugar to spike as quickly as its sugar-cane based relatives, which is a real plus for diabetics and others who are concerned with maintaining stable insulin levels. See here for more nutritional info.

Raspberries: These little berries are an excellent source of vitamin K, manganese, and dietary fiber. They also abound with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients which help protect against oxidative stress and excessive inflammation. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.