Smoothies

Vegan Shamrock Shake

I am really excited, anxious, and nervous to share my YouTube video with you guys today! I shared with you all last week that I’ve felt that my weight gain had really held me back from wanting to do videos and be on camera, but I’m really proud of myself for crushing that fear and making (and posting!) this video! I’m so hard on myself and never see myself the way that I used to since I was super underweight, so it’s been a huge process to learn how to accept myself again at any weight. Your comments and support have meant the world to me and were a huge reason I was able to find the courage to do this!

I know it may sound silly to some people, like posting a YouTube video isn’t anything special, but this was a huge milestone for me. Putting myself and my story out there on the internet is one thing, but to step outside of my comfort zone of this typed blog and onto video is rather scary. I can’t help but think that people will judge how I talk, how I look, etc. So thank you for letting me get that out there just now, and thank you for being so supportive of me and my rabbit food adventures!  I feel like I’m getting less cool by the day on my blog haha. I mean I am pretty darn normal… I struggle with body image, I get nervous to talk on camera (see beginning of video), I have anxiety, my weight is a freaking roller coaster… I’m losing my internet sparkle as I type!!!

Crazy anxiety aside, I hope that you love the video! It was really fun to make, and I shot it in one take with two cameras! Matt was using one camera on a monopod, and my camera was set on a tripod! It was pretty nerve wracking to shoot (I thought I was going to forget the entire recipe) but ended up being a blast! You can see all of the weird faces and all of the strange sounds I make in one video haha! I can’t wait to do more video tutorials! So let me know what you guys want to see next!

Healthy-Vegan-Shamrock-Shake-Tutorial-1 And of course, who would I be if I didn’t link you to my outfit deets?! My favorite color block hat is on sale right now!!! Outfit and kitchen gadget details from the video are below!

Hat: Urban Outfitters  |  Top: Cotton On  |  Blender: Vitamix  |  Cutting Board: Boos Block  |  Measuring Spoons: Le Creuset  |  Glass Jar: Kerr  |  Paper Straws: Amazon

Healthy-Vegan-Shamrock-Shake-Tutorial-2 Healthy-Vegan-Shamrock-Shake-Tutorial-4 Healthy-Vegan-Shamrock-Shake-Tutorial-5

Can you believe tomorrow is already St. Patrick’s Day?! One of my Instagram followers challenged me a few weeks ago to make a healthy version of a McDonald’s Shamrock Shake. Challenge, gladly accepted!!! I was dying when I read the nutritional facts online for the Small 12 oz. Shamrock Shake. It has 43 ingredients, artificial coloring, 530 calories, 15g fat, 10g saturated fat, 86g carbs, and 73g of sugar!!! OMG!!!!

I’m happy to tell you that my Vegan Shamrock Shake is none of that! My shake is made from 7 plant-based ingredients and is loaded with vitamins, minerals, and fiber! Go check out my video to see how to make it, and don’t forget to subscribe to my channel!

Healthy Vegan Shamrock Shake

Serves 1

1 cup almond milk
5 Medjool dates, pitted
½ tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp peppermint extract
1 handful fresh spinach
¼ medium avocado
2 Tbsp cashews

Combine all ingredients in a high powered blender and blend until smooth.
*Recommended: Soak Medjool dates in water for 2-3 hours, and strain before blending. This is not necessary, but the dates will be extra plump and will blend into your smoothie perfectly.

Health & Happiness
xo-Catherine

Almond Milk Ice Cubes

Hi Bunnies!
I know it’s been over a week since my last post, YIKES ( I haven’t done that for over a year) but I have had so much going on recently. I am back and ready to kill it this week!

I’ve been thinking a lot about the direction in which I want my blog to go. I get so many comments on social media asking for more Youtube videos, so I definitely want to start doing some recipe tutorials as well as fun hair tutorials for you guys, but honestly I’ve become so self conscious that it’s holding me back from doing videos. During recovery, I gained weight and I came so insecure about it that I never talked about it on my blog. I actually became quite guarded and quiet about my personal life on my blog and I feel like I haven’t had much of a voice. I used to speak so openly about the ups and downs of weight loss and what it’s like to struggle with losing weight, maintaining weight, and getting myself to the gym, but I honestly can’t remember the last time I’ve done a post like that.

This past weekend my friend Kathy of Healthy Happy Life stayed over for the weekend and we were Expo West buddies. As we we’re driving to the Anaheim convention center together, I was telling her that I was struggling with my voice on my blog. I told her that I felt like it lost what it used to be because I was insecure about where I am in my weight loss journey now, and that I almost wanted to give up blogging. Let me start by saying that Kathy inspires me so much. She has her vegan recipe blog Healthy Happy Life, her yummy drool-worthy site Finding Vegan, and two books 365 Vegan Smoothies, and Healthy Happy Vegan Kitchen. She is the definition of #GirlBoss. When I told Kathy I was about to throw in the towel because of my insecurity, she completely shut my idea of giving up down. She reminded me of what my blog is about. It’s not just about the “after” pictures. It’s about my story, my feelings, my accomplishments, my bad days, my recipes, my goals, and my connection with my readers who have been here since the start. I had gotten so in my head and wrapped up into the fact that the majority of my blog readers know me as my before and after photos – a weight loss success story. I’m proud and honored that my weight loss story has inspired and motivated so many people to change their lives, and in the back of my mind, I’ve had a fear that if I gained weight or fell of the wagon that my readers would judge me, but I can’t hide that I’m not that teeny tiny sickly thin person in the old after photos anymore. I am putting my silly insecurity aside and I want to be an example that recovery is possible, that happiness is possible, that life goes on, and that for the most part, these crazy thoughts of insecurity and unworthiness are all in your head. Right now, I am so inspired to do more posts about what I have been going through and thinking about because not only is it therapeutic for me (I completely forgot until just now) but if it helps just one person out there that can relate, it’s 100% worth it.

Cat-and-Matt-Self-Help-FestivalPhoto by: Ashley Osborn
Matt and I on Saturday night at the Self Help Festival

I don’t know how many of you read Andie Mitchell’s blog Can You Stay For Dinner? but this post is a must read, her TEDx Talk is a must watch, and her book “It Was Me All Along” is a YOU NEED TO BUY IT AND READ IT RIGHT NOW. I resonate with her so much. In fact, I’m pretty sure most people do. She’s amazing, and her honesty and bravery also helped me with this post!

I started a public Snapchat (@EatRabbitFood) that shows behind the scenes videos and pictures of me working on my blog, and doing boring silly things that are carefree and fun. I want to show my readers that not everything is as perfectly curated as Instagram and let my personality show. I mean at the end of the day, I am just little old Catherine who writes a blog!

Almond-Milk-Ice-Cubes-for-Thick-Smoothie-1
For the past month I’ve been breaking out in crazy hives all over my forearms, wrists, ankles, and knees and I cannot figure out what is causing them. Food allergies? Thyroid off again? Stress? It’s been super irritating and uncomfortable so I finally made an appointment to see a new allergist with my friend Celina tomorrow. We both have really severe food allergies (in fact that’s how we bonded when we first met), so tomorrow we have back-to-back allergist appointments together. So romantical! Kind of a bummer, but recently I’ve been wondering if I have developed an almond allergy. I use almond milk every morning in my coffee and in tons of my smoothies and recipes (like today’s!) and I would be pretty heart broken if I found out I was allergic, but I’m quite nervous that I could be. Wahhhh. An hour or so after this smoothie I broke out in hives, which was concerning. I also made an iced coffee with the remaining almond milk ice cubes the next day and ended up with hives later in the day. Ugh, since then I’ve tried to avoid almonds and almond milk but I’m still getting hives. So… onto the allergist I go.

Almond-Milk-Ice-Cubes-for-Thick-Smoothie-2
The idea behind almond milk ice cubes is to replace regular ice cubes so that the smoothie doesn’t get watered down. Almond milk ice cubes will add creaminess to any smoothie that normally uses regular ice cubes! Simply put almond milk in an ice tray, and freeze overnight! They can also be used to make iced coffee. Brew coffee an pour over a cup of almond milk ice cubes for a creamy cool caffeinated treat!

I like using Almond Breeze Original because it doesn’t have added sugars!

Almond-Milk-Ice-Cubes-for-Thick-Smoothie-3 Almond-Milk-Ice-Cubes-for-Thick-Smoothie-4 Almond-Milk-Ice-Cubes-for-Thick-Smoothie-5 Almond-Milk-Ice-Cubes-for-Thick-Smoothie-6 Almond-Milk-Ice-Cubes-for-Thick-Smoothie-7 Almond-Milk-Ice-Cubes-for-Thick-Smoothie-8Tropical Almond Milk Ice Cube Smoothie
Serves 1

5 almond milk ice cubes
1 handful of spinach
1/2 cup coconut water
1 cup frozen pineapple
1 frozen banana

Pour almond milk in an ice tray and freeze overnight. Add all ingredients to blender and blend until creamy and smooth.

20 Medjool Date Recipes // National #MedjoolDateDay

Today is National Medjool Date Day! To celebrate this naturally sweet holiday, I’ve gathered all of my super sweet recipes for you! I knew I used Medjool dates a lot, but WOW, I didn’t realize just how often I used them in my recipes! As you guys know, you will never find any recipes containing refined sugar on my blog, so Medjool dates make the perfect choice for most of my creations!

If you didn’t already know about Nature’s power fruit…
Natural Delights™ Medjool Dates, named an official “heart healthy” food by the American Heart Association, are low-medium on the glycemic index and packed full of fiber and potassium (50% more, by weight, than a banana) – making them perfect for boosting energy, satisfying hunger and helping with muscle recovery. Their caramel-like taste, consistency and natural sweetness gives them an advantage over refined sugars in recipes and pre- and post-workout snacks. Medjool dates are also gluten-free, Vegan, Halal and Kosher, making them perfect for nearly every diet.

Explore all of my sweet & savory Medjool date recipes, plus scroll all the way to the bottom for information about tonight’s #MedjoolDateDay Twitter Party brought to you by @NDmedjooldates for a fun Medjool convo with fellow blogger and host @CoryanneEttiene and a chance to win some awesome prizes (um, I heard there’s really cool fitness gear!) from Natural Delights™ Medjool Dates!

Meddjol-Dates-Lightened-Up-Date-ShakeLightened Up Date Shake

Medjool-Date-BBQ-SauceMedjool Date BBQ Sauce

Medjool-Date-Black-Bean-BrowniesBlack Bean Brownies

Medjool-Date-Brownie-BitesRaw Brownie Bites
Medjool-Date-Caramel-Date-SauceCaramel Date Sauce

Medjool-Date-Cashew-Cookie-Larabr{Copycat} Cashew Cookie Larabars
Medjool-Date-Chocolate-Chip-Chickpea-CookiesChocolate Chip Chickpea Cookies

Medjool-Date-Chocomole-1Chocomole

Medjool-Date-Crunchy-Chia-BitesCrunchy Chia Energy Bites

Medjool-Date-Espresso-Chocolate-Avocado-Mousse-6Espresso Chocolate Mousse

Medjool-Date-Hail-To-the-Kale-Salad-DressingHail To the Kale Salad & Dressing

Medjool-Date-Healthy-Chocolate-Chip-Cookie-Dough-DipHealthy Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Dip

Medjool-Date-Mini-Vegan-Pumpkin-Pies-1Mini Vegan Pumpkin Pies

Medjool-Date-Olive-Date-Tapenade-1Olive Date Tapenade

Medjool-Date-Peanute-Butte-rand-Jelly-SmoothiePB&J Medjool Date Smoothie

Medjool-Date-Raw-BitesRaw Bites

Medjool-Date-Raw-Gingerbread-MenRaw Gingerbread Men

Medjool-Date-Valentines-Day-Cookie-SandwichesValentine’s Day Cookie Sandwiches

Medjool-Date-Vegan-Banana-BreadVegan Banana Bread

Medjool-Date-Vegan-EggnogVegan Eggnog

National-Medjool-Date-Dat-2015-Twitter-Party

To mark the holiday, Natural Delights™ is partnering with blogger and power-Tweeter Coryanne Ettiene for a one-hour Twitter party TODAY Feb. 4 at 5pm PST/8pm EST. Guests who participate in the conversation by tagging @CoryanneEttiene, @NDMedjoolDates and using #MedjoolDateDay will have the opportunity to win more than $1,200 in fitness prizes, as well as downloading recently added recipes.

Don’t forget to tag @NDMedjoolDates@CoryanneEttiene and use #MedjoolDateDay!!!

Dole Super Bowl Superfood Smoothies + Giveaway

I feel obligated to start off this post by telling you that I am writing to you from Seahawks territory. Yes, I am in the hawk’s nest (Seattle). I flew here on the big hawk this afternoon, but rest assured my blog is Super Bowl neutral, and I am not a 12th man! I mean, I watch the Super Bowl for the commercials (anyone else guilty?)!

Funny story, when boarding my plane in Orange County, the person at the front of the gate announced over the speaker system “Anyone wearing a Russell Wilson, jersey may now board the plane” ahead of all of the general boarding passengers. And then after the 2 people with Russell Wilson jerseys boarded the plane, she announced “Anyone in Seahawks apparel may now board the plane!” I should’ve worn 12th man gear. I wouldn’t gotten better overhead bin space. DARN IT!

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We all know the Super Bowl usually consists of watching the game, drinking beer, eating burgers or pizza, and tons of chips, salsa, and junk food, but I am here to change that! I mean, how cute are these Super Bowl team rivalry smoothies? Even if you’re going to snack during the game, at least give your team some good juju and start your morning off right with a Super Bowl Superfood Smoothie for your team!

I love combining fruits and veggies together in my smoothies and juices, and Dole has a huge variety of fresh fruits and fresh vegetables to choose from to make juicing and smoothie making simple and easy!

Seahawks Blue
1 cup Dole Blueberries
1 handful of Dole Baby Spinach
1/2 Dole Banana
1/4 cup coconut water
1/4 cup almond milk

Seahawks Green
1 huge handful Dole Baby Spinach
1 cup Dole Pineapple
1/2 Dole Banana
1/4 cup orange juice

Patriots Red
1 cup Dole Strawberries
1/2 cup Dole Raspberries
1/2 Dole Banana
1/2 cup orange juice

Patriots Blue
1 cup Dole Blueberries
1 handful of Dole Power Up Greens™ Baby Kale
1/2 Dole Banana
1/4 cup coconut water
1/4 cup almond milk

The trick to making layered smoothies is using the least amount of liquid as possible. You want each smoothie to be extra thick so that they can sit on top of each other without the colors mixing into each other. Less liquid is better. Think of a soft serve consistency.

DOLE_Dole-Tonic-and-Running-Man-Recipe
Dole has two brand new Get Up and Grow healthy juice and smoothie recipes combining both Dole fresh fruits and Dole fresh vegetables! Click the links to get the new free recipes for the Running Man and Dole Tonic!

Now it’s your chance to win some Dole goodies!
Dole love love loves my readers and giving you guys awesome prizes, and this one makes me so happy because it includes one of my favorite books “365 Smoothies” by one of my close friends Kathy Patalsky from Healthy Happy Life!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
*Must use a valid email address to enter. Must be a US resident to enter. Giveaway ends on Sunday, February 1st at 11:59 PM (PST). 1 winner will be randomly selected and announced on Monday, February 2nd.

This post has been sponsored by Dole. I received compensation for this post. All opinions are my own.

Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter + Blendtec Designer 725 Review

When I was contacted to review the new Blendtec Designer 725 blender and Twister Jar, I have to admit I had some slight hesitations and doubts. I had been loyal to my previous blender for years. I baby it, I talk about it as if it’s my child, I hand dry it with only the finest towels, and I think it does an exceptional job. So why make the switch and try a Blendtec? Well, they told me about their new Twister Jar, and it was time to give Blendtec a chance! I also love the brand’s collaborative spirit and desire to work with bloggers, it makes me so happy!

So here it is, in all of it’s shiny sleek glory – The Blendtec Designer 725 (in Gunmetal)!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-5When I first pulled it out of the box I thought to myself. “Where are the buttons? They forgot the buttons! My blendtec is missing all of the buttons and knobs!” But then I plugged it in, and it lit up like a little space ship!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-1The digital touchscreen interface is the coolest thing! Is this what I have been missing out on for years?! The touchscreen allows you to select the speed by sliding your finger along the line at the bottom of the screen, plus it makes cleaning a breeze. During my first blend I quickly learned that there are 100 speeds, yes 100 speeds on this puppy! I slid my finger a little too fast and it went into lift off mode and I thought this thing was going to take off to mars! I cannot believe how much power it has –  I’m so used to generic speeds 1-10!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-2Another reason I had always been hesitant to try Blendtec was because of it’s single blunt safety blade. Blentec’s signature is their single blade which is 80% thicker and 10 times stronger than their competitors blades, and completely safe to clean and use. It seems kind of strange right? One dull blade? I mean, wouldn’t you want multiple sharp blades to chop up and pulverize your produce and ingredients? I am SO SO SO very glad that I gave Belndtec a chance and tried it out, because they have 100% proved me wrong and have completely blown my mind! The single blade pulverized everything in sight!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-3Above is the Blendtec Designer 725 (in Gunmetal) on the right, and the Twister Jar set on the left!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-4The Twister Jar is probably the coolest thing since sliced bread. It comes with the Twister Jar, patented Twister lid (BRILLIANT!!!), Mini Gripper™ lid for containing thinner blends, and the Spectacula (epic!).

For my first recipe with the Blendtec Twister Jar, I decided to make a Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-6 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-7 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-8 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-9 This is not your average blender. This is a teacher. And during today’s lesson, it taught me when I needed to stir (none of my other blenders did that, they just stopped blending everything), taught me when I needed to add more liquid (say what?!), and gave me congratulatory messages when I succeeded in snack making with virtual praise and high fives on the digital interface!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-10I am OBSESSED with the Twister Jar. I wish that all blenders had this genius little gadget. It’s absolutely brilliant! You know how when you try to make really thick things you have to turn off the blender, scrape down the sides with a spatula, and then turn it back on to continue blending? Well, with the Twister Jar, there is none of that! You put the Twister Lid on and if anything gets stuck to the edges of the jar, you just twist the lid while it’s blending! SO STINKIN’ COOL! I’ve never made any type of nut butter before, and I’m so glad I waited until now to do it myself, because this was the best possible experience ever.
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-11 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-12 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-13The single blade is sooooo easy to clean, and the shape of the Spectacula is just spectacular for getting every last bit of almond butter out of the jar! Another plus about the “dull” blade is that since it’s thicker, it doesn’t cut into your rubber spatulas and ruin them!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-14 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-15 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-16
Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter

1.5 cups roasted almonds
1/4 + 1 Tbsp raisins
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla

Place the almonds, cinnamon, and vanilla in the Blendtec Twiter Jar. Place Twister Lid on top of jar. Set slider speed to 7. Blend until smooth. Twist the Twister Lid as needed. Remove almond butter from the jar and transfer to a mixing bowl. Fold in raisins. Store in a glass jar with lid in the refrigerator.

Of course after I played with the Twister Jar I had to move onto the big guns and give the big container a test run, so I made a smoothie with my new Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter!

Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-17 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-18 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-20I love the “walk away” blending features that allow you to select what you’re making, walk away and do other tasks, and then come back to a perfectly blended smoothie and blender turned off by itself. Blendtec is such a little smarty pants! Plus I love the little messages that it displays after each blend!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-19Check out that power!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-23Cinnamon Raisin Banana Bread Smoothie
Serves 1

1 Tbsp Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter
1 cup vanilla almond milk
1/4 cup rolled oats
1/2 frozen banana

Combine all ingredients in the Blendtec. Press the smoothie button, let it blend until completely smooth and creamy, and enjoy!

The Rabbit Food Pyramid Breakdown:
Produce: banana and raisins
Whole Grain: oats
Protein: none
Plant Based Fat: almond butter

Rabbit Food Meal Tip: Complete this meal with a scoop of vanilla protein powder in your smoothie!

Show Blendtec some love
Website // Blendtec.com
Facebook // fb.com/blendtec
Instagram // @blendtec
Twitter // @blendtec
Youtube // youtube.com/blendteconsumer
Pinterest // pinterest.com/blendtec
Google+ // google.com/+blendtec

This post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of Blendtec.

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