The holiday season is here! It came so quick; Thanksgiving is literally right around the corner. In this recipe round up, I am sharing delicious and indulgent plant based recipes that are perfect to enjoy on Thanksgiving. Who says that vegetables can’t be super satisfying?! From appetizers, entrees, side dishes and yummy desserts like sweet potato bourbon pie, there is something for everyone. Make one of these recipes and take it to your Thanksgiving dinner, I promise it will be a hit. People won’t even know it’s plant based! Continue reading Healthy Plant Based Recipe Round-Up, Perfect for Thanksgiving
Have you ever eaten a ‘meatless’ or plant based meal? If not, it is because you can’t imagine a meal without meat? Do you think it will lack in flavor or taste weird? The recipes I am sharing today will change your mind. Plant based food tastes good! Lightlife, my favorite brand of tempeh, makes a variety of products that you can use to enjoy a delicious meatless meal. Plant based protein does NOT have to be boring. In fact, in these recipes you won’t even know it is missing.
I’m not a vegan or vegetarian, but I tend to be a ‘meat on the side’ kinda girl. I love eating plant based food! That being said, I still need to make sure I am eating enough protein so I build and maintain the muscles I am using during my workouts. I have lots of options as there many ways to get protein other than meat. However when preparing a meal, it can seem like meat is your only option. I like using tofu in recipes or making my own veggie burgers. I had tried tempeh but wasn’t a huge fan until I found Lightlife Flax Tempeh one day at Whole Foods. I randomly came across it when looking for tofu, I was intrigued by the added flax seeds & decided to give it a try. I LOVED it. Ever since, I haven’t bought any other brand of tempeh! I am excited to be working with Lightlife because I already loved them & I know you will too. This post + giveaway is sponsored by Lightlife. As always, all opinions are my own.
Like I mentioned, Lightlife make lots of products that taste GOOD and give you lots of options! I took a salad with the Lightlife tempeh to a dinner party and everyone raved about it. My personal favorite is the tempeh. Due to my food allergies, I have limited options: Lightlife tempeh, the veggie tempeh burger and the smart strips chickn.
Eating a meatless meal doesn’t mean sacrificing flavor or taste. You can use plant based proteins to create a delicious meal for your family and/or friends.
Want to try Lightlife?
1) Find out where to find Lightlife products near you!
2) Enter to win some Lightlife products at a discount. All you have to do is comment on this blog post! I will pick a winner on 5/4/16.
Recipe Round Up
You will love the delicious, plant powered recipes I’m sharing with you today. You won’t even notice the meat is missing! Even the pickiest eaters love these! Because of my food allergies, I only share or feature gluten free recipes. Some of the recipes below are not gluten free, but I have included the modifications below the link 🙂
with a side of baked sweet potato fries… yum!
To make gluten free: Substitute the black bean quinoa burger (not gluten free) for the Lightlife garden veggie tempeh burger or another gluten free veggie burger. Use a lettuce wrap or a gluten free bun. Substitute gluten free beer in making the BBQ sauce or use a GF bottled BBQ sauce.
I am so excited about these recipes & for this giveaway with Siggi’s! You have the chance to win an entire month’s supply of yogurt! How cool is that?! More details & some delicious recipes below.
Siggi’s is different from any other yogurt you have ever tried! It’s an Icelandic called skyr. It is higher in protein than normal yogurt. It is similar to greek yogurt with the high protein content, but the taste is closer to regular yogurt. The texture is so creamy, it’s unlike any other kinda of yogurt. It’s delicious! Siege’s is remarkable because they don’t use any artificial ingredients. They do add a little sugar to their yogurt, but it is a small amount compared to the other yogurt companies. Read more about skyr & Siggi’s HERE.
I first tried Siggi’s at Blogfest & I have not had a flavor of Siggi’s I didn’t like. Their top seller is the vanilla. I love the unique flavors they have like ‘orange & ginger’, ‘pomegranate & passion fruit’ and ‘pumpkin & spice’. Be sure to check out the recipes below the giveaway 😀 If you aren’t sure where to find Siggi’s yogurt, use their store locator.
There are 2 parts to this giveaway.
- Enter here! (see below) Then after hitting submit, you will see a screen that will give you bonus entries for following me and Siggi’s on social media. Do that to get extra entries!
- Instagram: on you Instagram account (make sure your account is public so we can see it!)
— post a picture of you favorite way to enjoy Siggi’s
— make one of these recipes & post a pic
— post about WHY you would like to win a month of Siggi’s yogurt
****use the hashtags #dailysiggis & #SBFLsiggis and tag me @sweetblondesfitlife & @siggisdairy****
You can post all 3 ways and get an entry with each post in addition to the bonus entries here. I will select the winner on 9/17.
These recipes were inspired by recipes I tried at blogfest and that were featured on Siggi’s website. They have a wonderful selection of recipes. They are both delicious and very easy to make.
Smoked Salmon with Skyr
this recipe is so yummy and makes the perfect lunch. It’s rich in protein and one of my favorites. It’s such a unique way to enjoy yogurt!
serves 4 – you can easily reduce amounts to make one serving
What you need:
3 cups of siggi’s plain yogurt
1 Tbs Kosher salt
4 Tbs red onion, finely diced
6 slices smoked salmon, roughly chopped
2-3 tsp dried dill
1 slice gluten free bread, toasted then crumbled
1 seedless cucumber, diced
Coconut, Date & Nut Balls
this recipe is a great combo of carbs, protein and fat which makes these perfect for on-the-go or a healthy dessert
makes 18 balls
What you need:
1 cup Medjool Dates, chopped (about 12-13 large dates)
1 cup raw cashews
1/4 cup hemp seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/2 cup almond meal
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut plus more for rolling
1/4 cup siggi’s vanilla yogurt
Optional: 2 Tbs cacao powder & 1 Tbs hemp seeds
Combine all ingredients in a food processor or high powered blender and blend to desired consistency. Keeping the pieces larger for a crunchier ball and smaller for smoother. When desired consistency is reached, form 1oz balls then roll in the shredded coconut OR cacao powder and hemp seeds to coat. Store in the refrigerator and enjoy as a quick snack!
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Memorial Day is this weekend! It came so fast. Memorial Day is often seen as the kick off to the summer season (which is my MOST favorite time of year) 😀 So while I am sad that May is almost over, I am so excited summer is almost here!
Memorial Day is also a day to remember all of those who have served and and fought for our freedom here in the USA. If you, or anyone in your family, has been or is in the military – THANK YOU! They make tremendous sacrifices and I am so grateful.
There is usually a BBQ or two involved over this long weekend, and lots of food. Here in the PNW we cross our fingers hoping that this weekend has nice weather so we can get outside and fire up the BBQ! Family get togethers, picnics and potlucks can bring out some tempting foods. Pair that with summer right around the corner, it’s no bueno! I mean really, we are trying to look good in our shorts, crop tops and swimsuits, but there are tempting treats all over the place!
The most effective way, I have found, to deal with these temptations is to bring something to the party. Make sure it is something you can enjoy. That way, in the event that there is NOTHING to eat at the party or BBQ, you know you can chow down on what you brought. If you are really concerned about what options will be available, or that your will power won’t be strong enough, consider eating before you go! Fill up on lots of protein and nutritious foods before you go, so saying no to the brownies won’t be as difficult.
If you are hosting the get together, that’s even better because you can choose a bunch of healthy things to serve at the party. Have you ever noticed that the healthy food is what seems to get eaten the fastest? For example, I made a veggie and hummus tray for my friends baby shower this last weekend, and it was the first thing everyone gobbled up!
Check out these cool recipes I found that are perfect for this weekend.
What a delicious and refreshing salad! Chickpeas are also a great source of protein. This could be a side or part of the main dish.
This recipe simple, festive and healthy. Plus berries are one of the best fruits you can eat. It could be a side or a dessert!
BBQ friendly! Easy to eat and easy to make. Veggie kabobs are one of my favorite summer staples. You can eat as the main course or pair the veggies with a protein.
Check out even more recipe ideas on my Pintrest Board 🙂
Follow my Healthy Memorial Day board on Pinterest.
ALSO — I created this quick one page guide to a fun and guilt-free Memorial Day. Click on the image below to check it out. I hope it is helpful to you this weekend and all summer long!
Comment below and let me know, what is your favorite way to make holidays like Memorial Day guilt free???
You may be thinking, why do I need to know how to peel a pom??
Trust me when I say, peeling a pomegranate is a wonderful skill to have. If you don’t know how to peel one the right way, eating pomegranates seems like a huge pain. I want to show you that pomegranates are easy to peel and you can enjoy the delicious fruit and it’s health benefits easily!
I will cut to the chase as I meant for this to be a vlog – I explain all about pomegranates and their health benefits in this video as well as show you 2 different ways to peel them. Choose which ever method you like better as they both get the job done. 😀
Now that you are an expert in peeling a pomegranate, try some of these delicious recipes that use the pomegranate seeds (aka arils).
Butternut Squash and Kale Salad – I’ve made this several times, it is so delicious and really showcases the flavors of fall and winter. I made it for Thanksgiving this year & it was a hit. recipe HERE
A Pomegranate Parfait (one of my fav snacks)
1 cup greek yogurt
1/2 cup (or whatever amount you like) pomegranate seeds
drizzle of honey
Chiles En Nogada – this is Mexican dish that is traditionally for their independence day, however many eat it at Christmas time too. It’s a fun and delicious recipe with pomegranate seeds. recipe HERE
Pomegranate Guacamole – might sound like a crazy combo, but it’s literally SO good. I had a version of this once at a Rick Bayless restaurant in L.A., it was so delicious it was mind blowing. If you like guacamole, give this a try! recipe HERE
Spinach Pomegranate Salad — this is an easy, refreshing salad. To take it from a side dish to an entree, add some protein like grilled chicken breast. recipe HERE
Before we get to the recipes, I want to know…
What are your plans? What is your favorite Thanksgiving tradition? Are you going to go Black Friday shopping?
Here are my plans for tomorrow:
- sleep in
- eat a super yummy breakfast
(SO IMPORTANT! Don’t skip meals!)
- run my own virtual turkey trot – I was planning on running a 10K (6.2 miles) but considering I haven’t run in the last week, I may settle for 8K (5 miles)
- make a kale salad to bring to Thanksgiving dinner (and maybe a healthy pie, depends on how ambitious I am feeling)
- have a green smoothie before going to the party
- enjoy dinner & time with family!!!
Here’s a quick recipe round up of some of my Thanksgiving favorites. They are all gluten & dairy free and fairly easy to make. I looooove to eat whole foods, but I don’t like a lot of fuss and complications in the kitchen 🙂 I know you will find these recipes so delicious and that they will satisfy you in a healthy way on Thanksgiving, during this holiday season, or whenever you want to make them!
Let me know which one of these recipes you would try by tweeting me (@sweetblondefit) or by leaving me a comment!
Butternut Squash & Kale Salad
Why I love it: creative salad full of fall flavor, a great addition to the Thanksgiving plate & full of superfood nutrients!
Adapted from Sur La Table cooking class
Yield: 4 servings
8 oz butternut squash, peeled & cut into 1-1/2in cubes
1/4 cup plus 1T extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1-1/2 tsp dijon mustard
2 T lemon juice
2 tsp maple syrup (omit if you don’t need sweetness on salad)
1lb kale, (Tuscan kale is my fav) discard stems & cut into 1/2 inch ribbons
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds (about 1/2 pomegranate)
Kosher salt & fresh ground black pepper
To cook squash: (preheat oven to 350F)
1. place squash in large bowl and toss with 2T of olive oil until coated
2. season with salt and pepper
3. spread squash in even layer on baking sheet
4. place baking sheet in oven and roast until golden brown & tender (about 30 mins)
To make vinaigrette:
1. In medium bowl, use a whisk to combine mustard, lemon juice & maple syrup
2. Use a whisk and mix vigorously
3. While whisking, drizzle in 2T of olive oil until well combined
4. Add salt and pepper to taste
To cook kale:
1. In large bowl, toss the kale with 1T of olive oil until coated
2. Place nonstick skillet on stove over medium heat
3. When skillet is warm, place enough kale in skillet to cover bottom of pan
4. Stir frequently until very lightly browned on both side and tender (about 4 mins)
Instead of cooking kale, massage in bowl with your hands, massaging makes kale more tender and not as bitter to eat. Same effect as cooking the kale without the warm salad.
Transfer kale to a bowl and using spatula, add vinaigrette and butternut squash. Carefully mix, try not to mash/break up squash.
Serve on large plate or in salad bowl. Sprinkle with pomegranate seeds immediately before serving.
Thyme & Lemon Green Beans
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2½ lbs. green beans, trimmed (about 10 cups)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
½ tsp. sea salt
¼ cup water
1 tsp. finely chopped lemon peel
3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
¼ cup chopped fresh thyme
1. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.
2. Add green beans and garlic. Season with salt; cook, stirring frequently, for 4 to 6 minutes.
3. Add water; cook, covered, for 2 minutes.
4. Remove lid; cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until water evaporates.
5. Add lemon peel, lemon juice, and thyme. Serve immediately.
Cranberry Quinoa Stuffing
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
8 medium celery stalks, chopped (about 4 cups)
2 medium green apples, with peel (about 2 cups)
4 cups low-sodium organic vegetable broth
2 cups dry quinoa, rinsed
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. ground cumin
½ tsp. ground black pepper
½ cup dried cranberries
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
½ cup pine nuts
1.Heat oil in medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
2. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes, or until fragrant.
3. Add celery and apple; cook, stirring frequently, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until tender.
4. Add broth, quinoa, salt, cumin, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook, covered, for 15 minutes, or until most of liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat.
5. Add cranberries. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes.
6. Add cilantro and pine nuts; fluff with fork and serve.
Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
Yield: 4-5 servings
2lb cauliflower (1 very large head) 7-8 cups chopped
1T unsweetened almond milk
1 tsp kosher salt
1 1/2tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup white beans (cannelloni or navy beans), rinsed
1. in 4 quart pot, cook cauliflower in 5 cups of water, covered, until very soft (about 10 minutes)
2. Drain well using colander
3. Place cauliflower in blender, add almond milk, salt, & garlic powder.
4. Blend on low, 15 seconds
5. Push down cauliflower (be sure to get off sides) and blend on low again. Repeat as needed until reaching desired consistency.
6. Once coarsely ground, add beans and blend on low sped just until smooth but NOT creamed.
Variations: use 1/2 cup baked potato instead of white beans.
Top with a little bit of grass-fed butter.
Why I love it: Turkey breast is the leanest part of the turkey & super juicy. It’s great if you aren’t having many people over for dinner or have a lot of vegetarians/vegans as it isn’t as big as a whole turkey.
from Inspired Taste
1 whole bone-in turkey breast, 6 1/2 to 7 pounds, thawed
1T minced garlic (3 cloves)
1T chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1T chopped fresh thyme leaves
1T chopped fresh sage leaves
2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
2T olive oil
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2T freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 orange, sliced
Preparation: visit Inspired Taste for the rest of the recipe!
Why I love it: this is the one recipe on here I haven’t tried, delicata squash is delicious, easy to slice (unlike other squash) and inexpensive. I modified the original recipe a little bit. This recipe is BEAUTIFUL and a great way to use this wonderful ingredient
recipe adapted from My Man’s Belly
2 Medium Onions (sliced thin)
¼ cup Olive Oil (divided)
2 delicata Squash
2 large cloves garlic (grated)
½ tsp Dried Thyme
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- Heat half of the olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat.
- Once oil is hot, add onions.
- Cook onions until they are slightly browned and softened. Stir occasionally. This should take about 8-10 minutes. If they are browning too fast, reduce the heat and add a tablespoon of water. You want the onions soft.
- Remove onions from heat when done.
- While onions are cooking, cut the squash in half (lengthwise) and remove the seeds.
- Trim the squash ends and slice into thin half moons (about ⅛” thick).
- Preheat oven to 400F
- Spoon onions into 8″ oven proof pan and spread evenly.
- Top onions with sliced Delicata squash pieces. Begin arranging slices skin side up along the outside edge of the pan. Overlap the slices and continue arranging them in circles until you get to the middle and there is no more room to add any more.
- Pour remaining olive oil into a small dish and add the garlic, thyme, salt and black pepper. Whisk to combine.
- Brush the herbed oil mixture over top of the squash slices and make sure to coat the surfaces well.
- VERY lightly sprinkle the top of the dish with maple syrup (very very lightly)
- Slide into the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until squash slices have softened to your desired consistency.
- Remove from oven and let cool slightly before serving.