Tagged: Healthy recipes

Zucchini Bread Recipe

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Good afternoon, this has been a childhood favorite of mine for years. Smelling this bread cooking takes me right back to the kitchen I grew up in. I remember coming in out of the fields and sitting down on my bar stool at the island waiting for my mom to take this bread out of the oven.

Below you can find the original recipe and if you want to make it healthier I will give suggestions next to the ingredients. I always make this bread in small mini loaf pans because my husband and kids like to eat it for breakfast, snacks, it makes it easier to grab and go. It may not be the healthiest recipe but when I bake I always use the everything in moderation rule. I’ll only eat one mini-loaf at breakfast in place of my Ezekiel bread.

Zucchini Bread: 

1 1/2 cup flour (wheat flour)

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp. baking powder

1 cup sugar (brown sugar)

1 1/2 cup shredded zucchini

1 egg

1/4 cup oil (applesauce)

1/2 cup chopped walnuts or almonds

*(healthy substitutes) 

  • Mix first 6 ingredients together
  • In a mixing bowl beat sugar, zucchini, egg and add oil
  • Stir flour mixture into zucchini mixture and fold in nuts
  • Bake at 350 for 1 hr (mini-loaf pans, require less time and you will need to check every 10-15 minutes, they don’t take a full hr to cook)
  • grease pan and cook until a tooth pick comes out clean

 

Enjoy and Blessings,

Michelle

 

 

 

Cook With Michelle Thursday: Homemade Wedding Soup

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Good MORNING!

It is blustering cold here. My oldest has a snow day and I want to stay wrapped up in my bathrobe and drink coffee all day. I have wedding soup cooking on the stove and the house smells immaculate as the wind gusts bang against our windows and the girls clang around in pretend high heels and frozen dresses.

As a new season of resolutions and goals begins, my husband and I have really made a commitment to cut out snacking and eating out in the New Year.

Evening snacks are our nemesis. We used to be in a very good grove when it came to preparing a meal plan, eating clean, not snacking past 8pm and limiting our eating out as a family to one time per month.

But, life happens. Right. It throws you for a loop and some of our good eating habits sustained through a difficult season while some of the negative ones returned.

You learn from setbacks and mistakes and use them as knowledge to become better.

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Soups are great to freeze for future lunches

One thing I love to do is prepare meals for lunches and freeze them. Easy and quick to grab when you are in a rush and this also prevents my husband from buying his lunch. I feel the winter can be a hard time to fit your daily serving of vegetables and soups are a great way to get those servings of vegetables in.

Here is my homemade wedding soup recipe:

Ingredients:
1 bag of celery
1 bag of carrotts
1 full chicken
1 3lb can of chicken broth
meatballs (you can make your own or buy tiny meatballs) I cheat sometimes and buy a frozen pre-made bag at a little mom and pop Italian Store in town
escarole (we buy it frozen at the Italian Foods store)
Romano cheese (I also buy this at the local Italian store, can you see the trend that we love Dioguardi’s)
salt
pepper
Acini De Pepe 1lb

Cooking Directions:
I created some of my own chicken broth by boiling the entire chicken in water; enough to cover it a few inches. I cooked on medium to low for 2-3 hours. I removed the chicken (carefully) and let it cool. I bought a Ninja last year at target and am in love with how it dices the vegetables for soups and salads and it is a huge time saver. I placed the carrots and celery in the ninja one at a time and diced them up. I ladled out any remaining chicken and made sure the broth was ready for cooking. I added the 3lb can of broth and diced veggies. Once the chicken was cool I shredded it and added it back to the pot of soup. Add meatballs, Romano cheese, salt, pepper (to taste), and escarole.

Cook the carrots and celery until soft. Boil the pound of pasta separately and strain. Add to soup once cooked and ready.

Enjoy, What’s your favorite winter soup? Hope you will enjoy this Wedding Soup recipe and that it keeps you warm on this cold winters day!

Fitness Tip: 1 cup of escarole is rich in fiber, vitamins K, A, and C. It can help aid in prevention of osteoporosis and hypertension. Dark leafy green vegetables like escarole may produce healthy eye health and prevent development of cancers.

Blessings, Michelle

 

 

Homemade Wedding Soup

Homemade Wedding Soup

 

Holiday Party Favor’s: Cook with Michelle Thursday

Good Afternoon Live Fit,

Quick post this afternoon as I need to squeeze in my workout still today (Back and Biceps). We been preparing for Christmas and my husband has been remodeling our kitchen in the mist of the holiday season. The days have seemed so long lately as we are missing our sweet Angelina Hope so much. We have been trying to document and create family traditions to help celebrate Angelina as we decorate, bake and wrap presents with the girls.

Homemade Granola

Homemade Granola

 

Today I made my homemade Granola and packaged it in these adorable little gift bags for my training clients and for a Christmas cookie exchange that is being hosted by one of the other girls that teaches aerobics at our gym.

Homemade Granola

Homemade Granola

 

I am so blessed by these women who I have gotten to know over the last few years at the gym. Our conversations are usually held while crab walking, performing burpies, holding planks and running stairs. We usually don’t get together to often outside the gym due to the craziness of life but are having a cookie exchange tomorrow and I wanted to make a cute favor to bring. I am so excited to hang out with these ladies as they have been such an incredible extended support system over the last year. It brings this verse to mind:

“Two are better then one, because they have a good return for their work. If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Below is the link to the recipe for my homemade granola recipe: I love making big pans of this recipe and placing the crumbled up granola in little snack baggies to throw in my gym bag or purse for a quick on the go pick-me up and in my chobanni yogurt. 

https://livefitwomensfitness.com/2013/08/08/quick-clean-eating-on-the-gohomemade-granola/

Packaged and Ready to Go!

Packaged and Ready to Go!

I got the gift bags at a local Giant Eagle for $1.99 and the small clothes pins at Micheal’s for .99 cents.

Are you attending a cookie exchange this year? what is your favorite type of cookie to make? Do you make favors for any of your holiday parties? Please share your idea’s and favorite cookie idea’s in the comments section below! 

 

Blessings, Michelle

Nutrition Tip Tuesday: Eating Smart this Holiday Season

Welcome to Nutrition Tip Tuesday in the Live Fit Community. What is it about the holidays that sends my appetite desiring more. Maybe it’s because so much time during the holiday season is centered around food and celebration. I personally feel when I am more active in the summer months and on the go I’m not reaching for that midnight snack that I often reach for in the winter.

Over the years I have developed a little bit of a strategy to propel me through the holidays and winter months and it’s about this time each year that I start to implement it again, when I am feeling like that 10pm snack is sounding pretty stinking good. 

Here are a few simple steps that help me eat smart during the holidays.  These tips allow me to celebrate our savior being born, enjoy family, delicious food, and not focus on what I shouldn’t have ate at holiday meals.  

Tip 1: This visual aid is a great reminder of how to eat smart this holiday season. You can create one on your own with using a plate/paper plate and a dry erase marker. 1/2 of your plate should consist of fruit and vegetables. 1/4 meat or protein and 1/4 starch or whole grain. Often times at meals we end up filling 1/2 our plate with starch and 1/2 the plate with protein.

Healthy Portions Visual

Healthy Portion’s Visual

 

Tip 2: Avoid eating two hours after dinner and two hours before bedtime. This can help with unnecessary cravings. I have really noticed over time I don’t have them anymore after consistently giving up eating after dinner for 2 weeks.

Tip 3: Eat to nourish your body. If you are feeling like you want to fill your plate for seconds drink an 80z glass of water and see if you still feel hungry after. If there are appetizers, holiday drinks, and dessert consider these calories before grabbing a second plate. I am a big believer in eating in moderation. I love dessert so I will cut back on appetizers and bread with my meal.

Tip 4: With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season don’t forget to eat breakfast, it helps start your metabolism and try to eat it within one hour of getting up each day. Plan your meals I talk about my meal rotation plan: here:https://livefitwomensfitness.com/2014/04/04/egg-steak-and-rice-stir-fry-cook-with-michelle-thursday/ This will help when you are busy and on the go (having healthy snacks to keep on hand (nuts, granola, smoothies, veggie trays). These healthy snacks preventing you from reaching for that (bag of chips or crackers). They prevent unneeded stops in which you may be hungry which could cause overeating, picking up things that are unnecessary and fast food trips.

Below is a picture of a really quick meal I made. My husband is remodeling our kitchen and I honestly wanted to eat a burger and fries. It’s so chaotic in our kitchen area currently, some days it’s so hard to cook. Instead of heading out to grab fast food I made homemade burgers on the stove grilled in a little bit of evoo. I have a half open sandwich since we were eating homemade fries. For the fries I grabbed two big Idaho potatoes and cut them small drizzling a small amount evoo, onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, a sprinkle of seasoning salt and pepper to taste. I baked them in the oven until crispy at 375 stirring them every few minutes so they wouldn’t burn. Fruit isn’t pictured here but generally I prepare it for our family to eat throughout the day breakfast, lunch, and snacks.

Quick Meal

Quick Meal

Live Fit how do you eat smart during the holidays? Please share your comments and healthy quick recipes with us below in the comments. 

I hope you find this information helpful and are able to apply it to your life as you enjoy this holiday season.

Blessings, Michelle 

The Fitness Professional’s Manual Third Edition by National Exercise Trainers Association; was referenced when writing this post. 

 

Quick Guacamole Recipe

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Hey Fitness Family,

Over the years I have tried various guacamole recipes and finally crafted one that is quick and easy. My kids beg me to make the green stuff for a snack and my husband loves refueling with some fresh guacamole after what he calls a “good Pump” in the weight room.

Here are a few benefits of incorporating avocado into your diet:

Helps with Immunity- Provides vitamin C, B6, helps fight off illness, heal infection, tissue repair and wounds.

Muscles- Helps grow, develop, assist in formation of connective tissue

Helps the body digest and metabolize food turning it into energy

Helps with skin health, teeth, bones and with the cardiovascular system.

Quick Guacamole Recipe:

2 ripe Avocado’s

1 tomato

Mash with a fork or wooden spoon (I love the chunks)

2 squirts of lemon and lime juice

sprinkle of garlic, onion powder, salt and pepper

I really love making a whole wheat quesadilla and placing this on top of it!

Enjoy and Blessings! -Michelle

Burrito Night

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Hey Fitness Friends, Totally forgot to post this recipe! It’s delicious and my husbands and I’s remake of chipotle!

The original recipe is actually from a girl that I teach aerobics with at the gym. She is always making great healthy dishes. We get together regularly and let the kids play and hangout together. I get to try all types of new healthy recipes when I hangout with these ladies. They have truly been an inspiration to me on my health journey. Blessed to have these women and their children in my lives!

2cans(15oz ea)black beans, rinsed and drained
1can(11oz)mexicorn,drained
1tomatoe chopped
1 avacado,peeled and cubed
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup canola oil
1/4cup red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp hot pepper sauce (optional)
Tortilla chips
In a bowl, combine the beans,corn,tomatoe,avacado,and onion. In a small bowl, whisk the oil, vinegar, salt, and hot pepper sauce;pour over bean mixture toss to coat. Serve with tortilla chips if desired.

My husband and I ate it with tortilla chips and then decided to take the recipe one step further. We used the leftovers for burrito’s. We just cooked some hamburger in taco seasonings, threw it in a whole wheat tortilla and added a few scoops of this recipe. I added extra guacamole, tomatoes, and instead of using chopped onion I used onion powder. We did not have the hot pepper sauce on hand. This is also a great end of the year garden recipe to use up extra tomatoes and corn.

Fit Tip: Always rinse contents that you are using to cook with from a can it helps wash off excess sodium used to preserve!

Blessings Live fit, I hope you enjoyed this recipe as much as we did. What is your favorite chipotle remake recipe?

Home-canning Recipes

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Hey LIve Fit,
Here are a few of my favorite canning recipes. If you are new to canning and have questions about what process or hot bath means please comment away and I will do my best to help answer your questions. My pizza sauce recipe is also just a lot of throwing together so please if you have questions with that let me know! I always make notes on my recipes in my cook book about where and who I got them from. From one kitchen to the next lets spread the wealth of healthy eating ladies!

Tomato Soup: ( My mother-in-Law for found this delicious treasure! great for a quick lunch in the winter. It tastes out of this world with the fresh tomatoes)
14 quarts ripe tomatoes
14 ribs celery
14 stems of parsley
11 bay or basil leaves (We prefer basil Leaves)

Cook this together first until it cooks down and is tender. Put through a sieve( I always have my husband do this part) Place back in the kettle. Add these ingredients:

7 Medium Onions
2 Cups of Cream
14 T. of flour
1lb of butter
8 T. of salt (I cut this in half and do 4)
16 T. of sugar (I cut this in half and do 8)

Boil a half hour and then pour in hot jars and process jars for 15 minutes

*I usually double most of my recipes, so my yield is higher

Yellow Peppers: (My mother-in-law found this a couple years back great on sandwiches, on top of fresh pizza, or in a skillet with eggs, potatoes and rice)

1 pinch of alum
1 T salt
1 clove garlic

put in each jar, then add cut up banana peppers

pour over top of above mixture after it has boiled:
6 c vinegar
6 c water
2 c sugar

Make sure the jars are hot right out of the dishwasher along with the lids. Make sure the lids pop to ensure proper sealing. You will hear a little pop and the lid will be pushed down to indicated it sealed.

Salsa: (Got this recipe from one of my best girlfriends Melissa we can it together each year)
8 cups of tomato
2 1/2 cups onion
1 cup jalapeños or green or assorted peppers
6 cloves garlic
2 1/2 tsp cumin
2 tsp black pepper
2T canning salt
1/3 cup vinegar
15oz tomato sauce
12oz tomato paste

boil 10 mins and then squirt in lime, place into hot canning jars and process 15 mins

End of the Year Pizza Sauce: ( Use up the rest of your tomatoes and bell peppers)

cut up a pan full of assorted tomatoes, green peppers, onion, garlic,
have these spices out and ready (pepper, salt, oregano,)

Fill the bottom of the blender with tomatoes and a little bit of water, add green pepper, onion, clove of garlic and a shake of pepper, salt, oregano and blend (I Usually fill blender until almost full)

have a big pot on the stove ready and pour in the blended batch and repeat until you are done with the cut up vegetables. Bring to a boil and let it cook down. Have your jars hot and ready fill them up and process them in the hot bath for 15 minutes.

when you get out a jar of this add a can of paste and heat up to thicken on the stove. Place on pizza crust, Enjoy:)

Please post your favorite canning recipe, we are on this journey of health and fitness together!

Blessings, Michelle