easy

Gingered Carrot and Orange Soup

The healthy DOLE recipes continue!

This is a Gingered Carrot and Orange Soup that we got to enjoy at the DOLE Summit. The soup is vegan and gluten-free, while still remaining creamy and thick. There’s also an unexpected ingredient; DOLE Mandarin Oranges, that give it a little extra flavor! Paulette Lambert, R.D. also added a dollop of nonfat Greek yogurt atop of our soups which is of course optional, but totally delicious!

Healthy-Carrot-Ginger-Soup-1
Healthy-Carrot-Ginger-Soup-2
Gingered Carrot and Orange Soup
Recipe By: Paulette Lambert, R.D., CDE
Serves 8
Calories per serving: 95

1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 pounds carrots, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2-inch piece of fresh ginger root, peeled and grated
2 quarts reduced sodium, fat-free, organic vegetable broth
1 cup DOLE Mandarin Oranges, drained
1 teaspoon sea salt (or more, to taste)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup plain, non-fat Greek yogurt (optional)
2 Tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped

In a large Dutch oven, over medium-high heat, add olive oil. Saute carrots, onions and ginger until soft. Add broth and simmer until carrots are fork-tender. Working in batches, puree Mandarin oranges and cooked vegetables in a blender, food processor or use an immersion blender (or your Vitamix! Just add to blender at this step then puree until smooth and very hot, continuing on with step four). Return soup to Dutch oven. Season well with salt and pepper. Serve hot or cold. Garnish with Greek yogurt and chopped cilantro.

Healthy-Carrot-Ginger-Soup-3
Healthy-Carrot-Ginger-Soup-4

Barbie Bowl + Pitaya Plus Giveaway

Today’s recipe and giveaway is brought to you by my new favorite superfood brand: Pitaya Plus!
Ummm, how gorg is this color?
Seriously, to die for.

Pitaya-Bowl-Pitaya-Plus-8

I’ve been obsessing over pitaya smoothies and smoothie bowls at my favorite local spot Nekter, and when Pitaya Plus caught wind of my new healthy addiction, they offered to send me some of their smoothie packs to try! They were also kind enough to giveaway some Pitaya Plus Smoothie Packs to one lucky RFFMBT reader!

can’t. contain. my. excitement. right. now.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ok. excitement is now contained.

So… what is Pitaya?
Pitaya, otherwise known as dragon fruit, is a fruit that comes from the cactus species. It’s native throughout Asia as well as Mexico, Central America, and South America. It’s glossy magenta exterior cuts open to reveal a gorgeous vivid pink interior (Central America), studded with black seeds. Depending on where the fruit is from the flesh can also be white inside (Asia).

What does it taste like?
Its texture is very similar to a kiwi, but its flavor is more mild, almost a cross between a kiwi and pear.

Pitaya-Bowl-Pitaya-Plus-1
Pitaya-Bowl-Pitaya-Plus-7

Here’s why I love Pitaya Plus Smoothie Packs:

Raw // Did you know that Pitaya Smoothie packs are never cooked or heated? Most other smoothie packs are cooked and pasteurized. Our pitayas are picked at the peak of ripeness, and flash frozen to ensure you get the most nutrients. Maybe that is why it looks so bright and alive when blended?

No added sugar //  Helping maintain healthy levels of insulin in the blood, keeping energy levels stable, a low-carb, low-sugar diet has proven to be a good weapon in the war against obesity. A low-carb diet is essential to maintaining safe blood sugar levels for diabetics, and can help reverse the onset of adult diabetes.

Antioxidants  // Helps neutralize the formation of cancer causing free radicals.

Fiber // Helps to lower cholesterol, Lower blood-glucose levels and improve you digestive health by removing harmful toxins.

Vitamin C // Experts say Vitamin C is one of the safest and most effective antioxidants. Benefits of vitamin C are known to include strengthening and protection against immune system deficiencies, cardiovascular disease, prenatal health problems, eye disease, and even skin wrinkling.

Calcium & Magnesium // Calcium is essential for the  body to protect and heal. Magnesium increases the absorption of calcium in the body. Both are required for general health. They work in harmony to help the body in numerous ways to keep illness and disease at bay.

Omega-3s // Research shows that omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation and may help lower risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and arthritis.
(source)

I  would definitely say that Pitaya puts the “Super” in Superfruit!
These smoothie packs are an easy way to add pitaya to your daily noms. Since pitaya can be tricky to find (often at Asian and exotic food markets), it’s great to have it right at my fingertips and year round in my freezer!

Pitaya-Bowl-Pitaya-Plus-2
Pitaya-Bowl-Pitaya-Plus-6
Barbie Bowl
Serves 1

Pitaya Plus Smoothie Pack
1/4-1/2 cup coconut water
1 frozen banana
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
1/2 tbsp coconut butter

Toppings:
1/2 banana, sliced
2 Tbsp granola (I love Nature’s Path Hemp Plus)
1 Tbsp shredded coconut

Blend until smooth. Start with 1/2 cup of coconut water and add until desired texture is reached. Add toppings, and enjoy!

Pitaya-Bowl-Pitaya-Plus-4
WIN PITAYA PLUS SMOOTHIE PACKS!

Thanks to Pitaya Plus, one lucky RFFMBT reader will win a case of Raw Organic Pitaya Plus Smoothie Packs!
Giveaway ends on Sunday, March 9th at 11:59pm PST.
Winner will be announced on Monday, March 10th.

*Must use a valid email address and be a US resident to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Show Pitaya Plus some love:
Instagram // @pitayaplus
Facebook // fb.com/pitayaplus
Twitter // @PitayaPlus
Pinterest // pinterest.com/pitayaplus
Google + // pitayaplus
Website // pitayaplus.com
Where to buy // store locator
I need to buy it right now // online

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Overnight Oats

The following post is sponsored by ICED Media on behalf of Arrowhead Mills and Maranatha. The opinions expressed are honest and my own.

Chocolate-Covered-Strawberry-Overnight-Oats-1Thank you to my sister Jessica for the lovely photo of me and my oats!

Chocolate-Covered-Strawberry-Overnight-Oats-3

My favorite thing about overnight oats is that they’re so simple to make, and easy to grab and go in the morning. There is no cooking when it comes to “ONOs,” just combine everything, mix it up, and let it soak overnight while you get your beauty sleep! Then come morning time, you can quickly grab your jar of fully prepped oats amidst the morning madness and eat them on your way to work or while getting ready. There is no excuse for skipping breakfast when it’s already prepared for you! I loveeee eating them cold, right out of the fridge.

Some of you may ask, what is the difference between whole rolled oats & steel cut oats?
The difference between rolled and steel cut oats is that while both contain whole grain oats, they are processed differently. Rolled oats are steamed, rolled, steamed again and toasted, ending up as thin flakes. Steel cut oats are made from oat kernels that have been chopped into thick pieces.

Both types of oats are great choices (especially compared to extremely processed instant oatmeal), but steel cut oats get even more points in my book because they digest slower than rolled ones. Like all other grains in whole or cracked form, steel cut oats rank lower on the glycemic index than rolled oats because they take longer for digestive enzymes to reach the starch inside the thicker pieces, slowing down its conversion to sugar. In a nutshell, they don’t cause a spike in blood sugar!

Chocolate-Covered-Strawberry-Overnight-Oats-4

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Overnight Oats
Serves 1

1/2 cup strawberries, sliced
1/2 cup almond or soy milk
1/4 cup Arrowhead Mills Gluten Free Steel Cut Oats
1/2 ripe banana, mashed
1 Tbsp chia seeds
1/2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 Tbsp maple syrup
1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract

Directions:
Combine all ingredients in a glass jar and mix until well combined. Cover with lid and store in the refrigerator overnight.

Tip:
If you’re feeling adventurous, add some fun healthy toppings to send your tastebuds over the top into mouthwatering goodness!

Optional Toppings:
1 Tbsp Maranatha Sunflower Seed Butter
1/2 Tbsp dark chocolate chips

Chocolate-Covered-Strawberry-Overnight-Oats-2

The Rabbit Food Pyramid Breakdown
Produce: strawberries and banana
Whole Grain: steel cut oats
Protein: milk
Plant Based Fat: chia seeds
Free Extras: cocoa powder and vanilla

Show Arrowhead Mills & Maranatha some love!

Arrowhead Mills
Facebook: facebook.com/arrowheadmills
Pinterest: pinterest.com/arrowheadmills
Twitter: @arrowhead_mills
Website: arrowheadmills.com

Maranatha Foods
Facebook: facebook.com/maranathanutbutters
Instagram: @maranathafoods
Website: maranathafoods.com

Apple Pie Oatmeal

For the first time all winter, today actually feels like winter. Since it was gloomy and a super chilly low of 60 degrees, I was craving a warm bowl of oatmeal. This recipe is extremely thick, filling, and naturally sweet. Stay warm little snow bunnies!

Apple-Pie-Oatmeal-1
Apple-Pie-Oatmeal-3

Apple Pie Oatmeal
Serves 1

1 fuji or gala apple, chopped
1/2 cup whole rolled oats
1/2 cup milk of your choice
2 Tbsp chopped walnuts
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

Chop apple and combine with rolled oats, milk, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a simmer/boil, then cover and bring down to low heat. Cover and stir occasionally and until the oats and apple become cooked and liquid is absorbed. Top with chopped walnuts and enjoy!

Toppings: Enjoy with 2 tablespoons of chopped walnuts, or if you’re feeling crazy, try 1 tablespoon of peanut or almond butter!

Apple-Pie-Oatmeal-2
The Rabbit Food Pyramid Breakdown
Produce: apple
Whole Grain: rolled oats
Protein: milk
Plant Based Fat: walnuts (or 1 Tbsp nut butter!)
Free Extras: cinnamon & nutmeg

nd-promo-january-popup
I’m so excited and honored to be featured in Natural Delights free eBook “Nature’s Power Fruit” this month! Click through the image to download the free ebook featuring 5 recipes!

Health & Happiness
xo Catherine

Spinach Chips

Hoppy Monday everybunny!
I am so excited to announce that I am taking over the Natural Delights Medjool Dates Facebook page this week! I have a special recipe for tomorrow and I’m hosting a live chat this Thursday (1/9) at 12pm (noon) PST! The live chat will take place on the Natural Delights Facebook page, so if you have any questions about cooking or weight loss, be sure to join me!

Spinach-Chips8

This could be my new favorite recipe. I’m calling it right now, Spinach Chips are the new Kale Chips. Actually, I’m probably way late to this party since I remember a few readers mentioning spinach chips before haha. But man oh man are they good! They literally melt in your mouth. I’m pretty sure you’re going to LOVE these. They’re super easy to make, have a short baking time, and only 4 ingredients! What’s not to love? They’re the ultimate healthy snack!

My friend Anna Marie and I just ate the entire batch of them, so I’m not sure how well they store if you have leftovers. Pretty high change you will eat these in one sitting, but no shame or guilt, they’re actually good for you! Completely gluten-free, vegan, low-calorie, and awesome! Not to mention, packed with vitamins and minerals!

Spinach-Chips96 Facts About Spinach:

  • Filled with powerful antioxidants such as vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, manganese, zinc and selenium, which combat the onset of osteoporosis, atherosclerosis and high blood pressure.
  • One cup of spinach contains over 337% of the RDA of vitamin A that protects and strengthens “entry points” into the human body, such as mucous membranes, respiratory, urinary and intestinal tracts.
  • One cup of spinach has nearly 20% of the RDA of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion, and curbs overeating.
  • The abundance of vitamin K contributes to a healthy nervous system and brain function.
  • Contains two anti-inflammatory epoxyxanthophylls; Neoxanthin and violaxanthin.
  • Packed with magnesium, folate, iron, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin B2, potassium, and vitamin B6, and a great source of selenium and niacin.

Spinach-Chips1
Spinach-Chips2
Spinach-Chips3
Spinach-Chips4
Spinach-Chips5
Spinach-Chips6
Spinach-Chips7
Spinach Chips
Serves 1-2

2 large handfuls of spinach (I used about 1/2 the bag)
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 Tbsp Italian herb seasoning  (I use Frontier & sometimes McCormick)
1/8 tsp sea salt, or to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Massage oil into spinach until all leaves are completely coated.  Add italian seasoning and salt, combine until evenly dispersed. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place leaves on the parchment paper so that they aren’t overlapping (this will allow them to cook evenly). Bake for 9-12 minutes until crispy.

1 2 3 12