Posts tagged ‘avocado’
I have been in quite the soup mood lately. I’m blaming it on the rainy, cold and windy weather.
All I want is to be bundled up on the couch with a blanket and a giant bowl of soup — with this chipotle chicken tortilla soup to be exact. It’s delicious, warms you to the core and fills you up!
Mmmmm comfort in a bowl
This soup can be made on the stove top or on in the Crockpot for an easy meal that will be ready when you get home after a long day. I opted for the quicker stovetop version made with a store-bought rotisserie chicken for an easy weeknight meal that made for scrumptious leftovers for lunch too!
I even made my own tortilla strips for an extra special touch! If you want a quicker route, you can easily substitute tortilla chips.
Chipotle Chicken Tortilla Soup (adapted from Food.com)
1/2 Tbsp olive oil, ghee, butter, or canola oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, minced
1 small onion, diced
4 tomatoes, diced
2 tbsp minced cilantro
1 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
6 cups homemade chicken stock or low sodium chicken broth (one 48 oz carton)
8 oz gluten free red chile enchilada sauce (I used All-Natural Frontera Red Chile*)
1 (15 oz) can no-salt added diced tomatoes
4 cups cooked and shredded chicken
1 can diced fire-roasted green chiles (or regular)
1 15-oz can no salt added black beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup yellow corn kernels, frozen (or no salted added canned, rinsed and drained)
Shredded monterrey jack and cheddar cheese (omit for dairy free)
1 avocado, diced
Lime wedges (this brightens the flavors! I wouldn’t leave this out)
6 corn tortillas, cut into 1/4 inch strips OR gluten free tortilla chips, crushed
Coconut oil or olive oil for sauteeing and sea salt (omit if buying chips)
1. In a large soup pot, add oil/butter over medium heat. Add garlic, jalapeno, and onion and saute for 2 minutes stirring frequently.
2. Add spices and saute for 30 seconds until fragrant and pepper and onion are fully coated.
3. Add remaining ingredients (stock/broth through corn) and bring to a boil. Cook for 2 minutes then reduce heat and simmer for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to meld (60 minutes is recommended).
4. Meanwhile, (if you are making homemade tortilla strips) heat 1/2 tsp of oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add a handful of strips at a time and cook stirring frequently until crisp like a chip, about 3-4 minutes. Sprinkle with salt remove from pan. Repeat with remaining strips.
5. Serve soup in bowls and garnish with avocado, cheese (if desired), a squeeze of lime, tortilla strips and a sprinkle of cilantro. Enjoy!
*If you don’t have enchilada sauce, you can always substitute tomato sauce but the flavor will be altered
Recipes Notes: If you (or the kiddos in your family) don’t like texture or certain vegetables in your soup, puree the tomatoes, green chiles and onions with a bit of the stock/broth for a smoother base
For a crock-pot preparation, throw all of the ingredients except for the garnishes into the slow cooker and cook on low for 8-10 hours or high for 5-6 hours.
I’ve been on a BIG cereal kick these days…going through one box of peanut butter puffins and/or granola a week by myself has been routine. I think all the sugary and carb goodness is catching up with me so I kicked it into gear and created a more healthy alternative for my everyday snack/meal.
This recipe can easily be deemed “chilled dessert soup with a crunch” but considering my recent love affair with cereal, I felt the current title was more appropriate. Not to mention, I first made this after a morning run and it was the perfect high-protein meal that was both filling and refreshing!
The crunch from the cacao nibs, walnut and pecan pieces along with the buckwheat groats makes this quick and easy “cereal bowl” squash any craving for a bowl of puffins or granola. I am not saying I will be staying away from cereal but eating a box (or more) per week might be overkill, what do you think? No need to answer that
This is one of those recipes too that you can tweak to your liking — change up the nuts, fruit/avocado, protein powder, extracts, and toppings and you can make a ton of different variations. Add in a tablespoon of two or cacao or carob powder for a chocolate-ly punch or make a coffee-inspired version by subbing some of the milk for your favorite coffee. Decisions, decisions!
Recovery Crunch Cereal Bowl
1 cup ice cubes
1 cup non-dairy milk (I’ve used unsweetened almond milk and coconut milk)
1/2 avocado, 1/2 frozen banana or 1/2 cup frozen mango chunks
1 scoop of your favorite protein powder (I used 1/2 chocolate Vega performance and 1/2 scoop vanilla whey)
splash of pure vanilla extract (almond would be good too)
2 Tbsp raw buckwheat groats
1 Tbsp cacao nibs
1 – 2 Tbsp chopped walnuts (I used 2 T)
1 – 2 Tbsp chopped pecans (I used 2 T)
optional: drizzle of honey, agave or maple syrup to taste (depends on sweetness of protein powder)
optional: 1/2 Tbsp of your favorite nut or seed butter (if using, blend with milk/ice/protein)
optional additions: chia seeds, fresh or frozen fruit chunks (frozen blueberries would be yum!), flaxseeds, shredded coconut, 1 tbsp cacao or cocoa powder, ground cinnamon, etc.
1. Blend ice, milk, avocado/banana/mango, protein powder and vanilla until smooth.
2. Pour into a bowl, top with remaining ingredients and enjoy!
I’ve missed blogging so much…I am really overdue for a post. Not only do I feel I have a responsibility to my you all, my fabulous and inspiring readers, to come up with recipes and accompanying photos, I have to admit there’s a selfish motivation backing this blog as well. Cooking/baking + photography is a stress reliever as well as a creative outlet for me. At the same time, the actual writing part has been more difficult these past few weeks yet I’ve missed all of you dearly in addition to being in the kitchen.
There are many changes going on in my personal life right now…I am an emotional roller coaster to say the least and I am taking one day at a time as I am experiencing a level of sadness and grieving that I’ve never had to before. At the same time, I feel stronger every day as my crying outbursts diminish and my negative feelings are turning into more positive ones. I realize I am being vague but please bear with me as I find myself and my strength with each day that passes, I will eventually be back in full swing again!
Not to mention, I’ve been without internet for the past 11 days so I am happy to report that issue has been remedied this evening…one thing to mark off on my check list. Things are looking up
While this might not be a crazy creative recipe, it’s very fitting for where I am right now: simple ingredients, good carbs, healthy fats and light summer flavors…this translates into a serotonin rush and a full, happy tummy. Eaten alongside a few of my salted millionaire shortbread bars, I am momentarily transported to my happy place
This easy grain salad can be made with your favorite gluten free grains, I chose quinoa, millet and amaranth but brown rice, buckwheat or sorghum could also do the trick! If you prefer one grain in particular, feel free to use 1 full cup for an even simpler dish. This recipe is an easy side, quick make-ahead lunch or a filling vegetarian entree…it’s up to you!
Mixed Grain Salad with Avocado and Black Beans
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa (red or white)
1/2 cup uncooked amaranth grain or millet or 1/4 cup of each (I used 1/4 cup both)
2 cups vegetable broth or stock
1 Tbsp coconut oil, olive oil, grapeseed oil or Earth Balance, divided
3/4 cup onion, diced (or even 4 scallions, diced for a variation)
1 1/2 cups cooked black beans (or one 15 oz can rinsed and drained)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped + more for garnish
juice from 1 lime
1 avocado, pit removed and diced into chunks
1/4 cup walnuts (sunflower seeds, pepitas, almonds or your favorite nut can be substituted)
sea salt and pepper to taste
Optional: nutritional yeast or dairy free shredded cheddar cheese for serving
1. To a medium pot, add quinoa, amaranth/millet, vegetable broth and 1 tsp oil. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to simmer for 15 minutes until liquid is absorbed and grains are cooked through. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork.
2. In a small skillet, heat 2 tsp oil over medium heat. Add onions and saute for about 3-4 minutes until onions are translucent and tender. Toss in the black beans, garlic and ground cumin, cooking for one minute or until fragrant. Remove from heat.
3. Transfer grains to a large mixing bowl. Add onion-bean mixture and toss to combine. Stir in remaining ingredients and season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with additional cilantro and nutritional yeast or cheese if desired and enjoy!
I ‘ll leave you with a quote that has resonated with me recently:
“When your heart speaks, take good notes.”
Pomegranates were one of my favorite fruit discoveries as a teen. I remember the excitement of carefully peeling the pomegranate “skin” back to reveal the bright and crunchy red arils that would burst in my mouth. I still love pomegranates to this day, but I find the peeling part a bit more tedious when I am on the go.
So when I saw already peeled and ready-to-eat arils at Costco for a decent price, I happily added the package to my cart with a big smile on my face. I’ve added these little jewels to my yogurt, oatmeal and smoothies along with just munching on them as a snack…mmmmm!
This creamy smoothie is one of my new favorite ways to enjoy pomegranate – it’s thick and creamy and full of antioxidants. I’d say that’s pretty decent way to start my day!
Side note: Come to think of it, I should make time to peel a pomegranate; maybe it would be therapeutic and a stress reliever…well, that’s if I am not starving, right?
Triple Berry Pomegranate Smoothie
1 cup fresh or frozen mixed berries (I used the combo of blueberries, strawberries and raspberries)
1/4 to 1/3 cup pomegranate arils (or you could sub pomegranate juice if desired)
1 to 2 scoops plain or vanilla protein powder (I used brown rice, optional)
1/2 ripe avocado
1-2 Tbsp chia seed, Mila or flax seed, optional for added nutrition
1 1/2 cup nondairy milk (almond, coconut, rice, soy or hemp)
ice cubes, if desired (I didn’t use this since I used frozen berries)
1. Add all ingredients into a blender (I used a high powered Health Master) and blend until smooth. Pour into glass(es) and enjoy!
Serves two (cut recipe in half if single serving is needed)
Note: I used a high powered blender in this recipe as opposed to my Magic Bullet to help blend/crush the seeds of the berries and pomegranate