I got back from a work trip on Saturday morning and after flying all night and enduring a three hour layover in Atlanta on no sleep, I finally made it home only to be sick the entire weekend with food poisoning. For someone who likes to cook and eat, food poisoning is brutal. I already had no food in my fridge because I was gone all week which is just as well because the only thing I’ve been willing to get down is water. I still haven’t been able to get to the store or think about food yet and am going on my third day of little to no food. But as I’m starting to feel a little bit better, I’m considering (maybe) a smoothie. This is reminding me of this Creamy, Dreamy Tropical Smoothie I made before I left on my work trip. When I was feeling 100%, this was a perfectly cool summertime treat for these dog days of summer.
Frozen pineapple, Greek yogurt, coconut milk, and honey are blended together until smooth and creamy. A little topping of toasted unsweetened coconut finishes off this smoothie which really is like a drinking a sip of the tropics. Since I used frozen pineapple, I didn’t use ice but if using fresh pineapple, you’ll need the ice to thicken it up. Thinking about this smoothie, I’m dreaming of the days when I will be lakeside next week listening to the waves instead of home laying in my bed under the weather.
Place pineapple, yogurt, coconut milk, ice, and honey in a blender. Process on high speed for 60 seconds or until smooth or desired consistency.
Pour into tall glasses. Garnish each serving with 1 teaspoon toasted shredded coconut, if desired. Serve smoothies immediately.
Overall Rating: Love it
Source: Cooking Light magazine
After all of the cheese and wine I consumed last week in Buenos Aires, I need to get it together. Quite frankly, I’m tired of chicken, have no desire for salads, and can’t eat any more eggs. When I get into an eating rut like this, where I want to eat healthy but can’t stand to eat the same old, same old, I like to replace a meal with a smoothie a few times a week. It’s the middle of October so it feels completely appropriate to break out the pumpkin. This Banana Pumpkin Smoothie is the perfect fall meal that tastes more like a treat and keeps my pants fitting.
Vanilla yogurt, canned pumpkin, orange juice, and frozen banana are the basis of this smoothie which is jazzed up with warm spices and a hint of brown sugar. Right around now, you can find all kinds of recipes for pumpkin pie smoothies but what makes this one unique and different is the addition of the banana and fresh orange juice. I always have slices of frozen banana in my freezer just for smoothies like this but if you don’t, a fresh banana will work fine, you just may want to add extra ice. I never thought to combine orange and pumpkin together but the flavors marry perfectly, giving this drink a light freshness you don’t typically get with fall pumpkin flavors. I’m sold.
Combine yogurt, pumpkin, ice, orange juice, brown sugar, spices, and banana in a blender, and process until smooth.
Garnish with dash of ground cinnamon, if desired. Serve immediately.
Overall Rating: Love It
Source: Cooking Light magazine
Every once in a while I become obsessed with certain foods and eat them constantly. I’ve been through brownie batter fits, black bean burger rages and trail mix binges. Recently, I’ve been on an almond milk kick. I’m not really the biggest milk drinker in general and only have it in the house if a specific recipe calls for it or if I have a box of cereal. But lately, I’ve been drinking almond milk, both plain and chocolate, like it’s going out of style. I decided the chocolate almond milk was begging to be mixed with the bag of frozen cherries I’ve had in my freezer for a while now and despite the fact that I’m always cold and am still dealing with 11 inches of snow from the other day, I wanted to make a smoothie. This Chocolate-Cherry-Almond Smoothie completely knocked my winter socks and slippers off.
Cherry Greek yogurt, chocolate almond milk, frozen cherries, and a dash of almond extract are blended together until smooth making for a rich, sweet and satisfying smoothie. Regular milk and regular yogurt could be substituted here but I really love the thickness of the Greek yogurt and the added hint of flavor the almond milk provides. The chocolate almond milk adds just the right amount of chocolate which pairs so perfectly with the bright cherries. With 1 gram of fat and 14 grams of protein, this smoothie is perfect for breakfast, an after workout drink or satisfying enough for dessert.
Chocolate-Cherry-Almond Smoothie (makes 1 smoothie)
Combine all the ingredients into a blender and blend on high for 30 seconds. Add ice if necessary to reach your desired thickness. Top with a cherry and chocolate shavings (if desired).
I had dinner with a friend last night and as I was driving home, under an almost-blue moon (which is tonight, by the way), with the windows down and the sunroof open, I felt a change in the air. It was the change that comes in the summer when evenings get slightly cooler and temperatures dip into the 60s for the first time. And even though it’s supposed to get a little warmer here for the weekend than it’s been the last couple of beautiful days, I’m eagerly waiting for those nights when I can turn off the air conditioning and sleep with the windows open. Which should be any day now. I hope. As I wait, I’ll just savor these remaining warm summer days and keep sipping on something cold and refreshing like this Strawberry-Mango Smoothie.
Fresh strawberries, frozen mangoes, yogurt and mango nectar are blended until creamy, smooth, sweet and tangy. I prefer to use frozen fruit in my smoothies as opposed to ice because I like the texture of the frozen fruit but obviously you can use fresh fruit and ice instead. Also, if you can’t find mango nectar (which I find in the international foods section of my grocery store), simply substitute orange juice or apple juice. Really, just throw in whatever you want. Smoothies are a sweet ending or a good accompaniment to a weekend brunch, as a way to get a couple servings of fruit in you, or just to cool off on a hot day. Whatever your day brings you, I hope you have fun today or tonight and do something you wouldn’t normally do, something off the cuff and unexpected. That way when you tell your kids/friends your story, you can officially say, “I did it once in a blue moon.”
Have a great weekend everyone!
Strawberry-Mango Smoothies (makes 2 smoothies)
- 1 cup strawberries, quartered
- 1 cup frozen mangoes
- 1/2 cup mango nectar or fruit juice
- 1 6-ounce carton fat-free strawberry yogurt
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for one minute until smooth. Garnish with fresh strawberries or mango slices.
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for one minute until smooth.
Garnish with fresh strawberries or mangoes.
Have you ever had one of those weekends where you just had too much? Too much food? Too much drink? Too much fun? That was the weekend I had last weekend. When my friend in Florida came home to spend Father’s Day with her pop, we decided to take the opportunity to get the girls together and have some fun. From Friday afternoon until the wee hours of Sunday, we partied. And hard. I decided it was probably necessary to get something healthy in my body and pronto!
The Pineapple-Mango Yogurt Smoothie I made was both tasty and filling. Frozen pineapple and mango chunks are blended with non-fat vanilla yogurt, non-fat milk, and a little sugar. As I spent Sunday resting and relaxing, I sipped on this and felt refreshed. I liked it so much, I made another one for breakfast on Monday. What is it about smoothies that somehow just make you feel better?
Pineapple-Mango Yogurt Smoothie (makes 1 smoothie)
- 1 cup frozen pineapple
- 1 cup frozen mango
- 6-ounces non-fat vanilla yogurt
- 2 tablespoons sugar or Splenda
- 1/2 cup non-fat milk
Place all of the ingredients in a blender and blend on high until smooth. Add more milk if necessary to reach desired consistency. If you prefer to use fresh fruit, simply add 1 cup of crushed ice.
Place all of the ingredients in a blender and blend on high until smooth.
Add more milk if necessary to reach desired consistency.
I’ve been going a little crazy lately in the produce department of my grocery store because as the weather gets warmer, the fruits seem to be getting brighter and more colorful and they all call my name. I swear I don’t know which direction to go to first and end up spinning around in circles as I decide on peaches vs. nectarines, grapes vs. cherries, blueberries vs. blackberries, or apricots vs. plums. The problem with not being able to decide is that I end up buying a little of everything and I’m left with more fruit than I know what to do with. Generally, I whip up a big batch of mixed fruit salad but sometimes when friends come over I want to make something a little less ordinary.
Sweet Raspberry Dip is a creamy, light fruit dip perfect for dipping summer stone fruit or other seasonal gems. Fresh raspberries are mashed with sugar and blended with plain Greek yogurt to make a dip similar in taste to raspberry yogurt except fresher and brighter. Serve with slices of mango, peaches, apricots, or plums or use strawberries or cherries to dunk. Use thawed frozen raspberries in the fall or winter and serve with autumn fruit like apples or pears. If you’re craving something sweet but are trying to stay healthy, this is one fruity appetizer or dessert where you won’t feel guilty if you eat too much.
Speaking of SWEET, today is my sweet, sweet sister Katie’s birthday! She’s 12 years younger than me and one of my best friends. I wish I could’ve made some cookies or cake for her but she is in Texas so that means it would have all ended up in MY belly and on MY thighs! Maybe next week when I see her in Chicago, we’ll make something sweet that we can share with you! 🙂
In a small bowl, mash the raspberries with the sugar.
Stir in the yogurt.
Serve with your favorite fruit.
Overall Rating: Like It
Are you one of those people who doesn’t like a really sweet dessert? Or are you someone like me who loves sweet dessert but doesn’t want to feel guilty after eating it? And are you also someone like me who keeps frozen fruit on hand for smoothies? If so, Greek Yogurt with Warm Berry Sauce is just for you.
Frozen blueberries and blackberries are simmered with sugar, water, and lemon juice to create a rich and vibrant berry sauce that is spooned over plain Greek yogurt for a slightly tart yet slighty sweet and overall delicious dessert treat. The smell of cooking berries permeates the kitchen so beautifully that you wonder why you ever bought a berry-scented candle before. This berry sauce is beautiful and would be delicious over ice cream, pancakes, waffles, or anything else you can think of. Use any mixture of berries you like as I think strawberries or raspberries would be delicious too.
Combine blueberries, blackberries, water, lemon juice, and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring mixture to a boil and reduce heat to medium-low, simmering for 10 minutes
Stir in butter until melted.
Spoon 1/2 cup yogurt into each of 4 bowls and top each serving with about 1/4 cup sauce.
Overall Rating: Love It
Source: Cooking Light Magazine