Banana Bread Quinoa

IMG_3239 IMG_3234This could not be easier, all ingredients go right in the Crockpot! It comes out tasting like a bowl of oatmeal and a loaf of banana bread had a baby! It is packed with protein and is so yummy! You have to try it!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup of light cream
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1.5 tablespoons of melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 very ripe bananas
  • 1/8 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon
  • Fresh Banana, honey, and cinnamon(to garnish)

Directions:

Mash bananas in crockpot. Add all other ingredients (except garnish ingredients) and whisk to mix. Cover and cook on low for 3.5 hours. Garnish with a few slices of fresh banana, a drizzle of 1 tsp of local honey, and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Enjoy!!

This recipe makes about seven 1/2 cup servings. Weight watchers Points Plus 2012: 6 points

*This recipe was inspired by nutritionfor.us.

Quinoa Lauren

photo-2Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of quinoa
  • 1/2 cup of feta
  • 1 medium zucchini, steamed
  • 1 pint of grape tomatoes
  • 1 can of garbanzo beans
  • 3 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp EVOO
  • 1 tsp dry oregano
  • 1/4 cup of chopped fresh basil
  • Salt and Pepper

Directions:

Start by bringing 1 cup of quinoa and 2 cups of water to a boil without lid. Once vigorously boiling reduce heat to medium-low and put lid on for 15 minutes. Fluff with fork. While quinoa is cooking, cut up your steamed zucchini (to steam, I use a steamer basket), tomatoes, and basil. Rinse garbanzo beans. Mix them all together along with the other ingredients and enjoy!!

This recipe makes about 6 cups of salad. Weight watchers Points Plus 2012: 6 points for each salad!

One cup has 10 grams of protein!  Pair with a fruit salad or yogurt and a piece of dark chocolate for an awesome lunch!

Crock Pot Sweet Potatoes

The very best way to cook sweet potatoes, in my experience, is in the crock pot! They come out PERFECT every single time! This is easiest way to get the best outcome with the least prep time!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 or 3 sweet potatoes (similar in size, about 5″ is great for a single person)
  • 1/4 cup of water

Directions:

Pour the 1/4 cup of water into the crock pot, the temperature of the water doesn’t matter. Clean the outside of the potatoes off with warm water; you can use a vegetable brush if you have one but I just do the best I can with my hands. Place the potatoes in the pot, cover, and cook on high for 4 hours.

Serve with a little butter, salt, and pepper or gravy! Delicious.

I also really like to put these into a salad, especially with a red wine vinegar dressing! (see photo above)

The water and the heat steam the potatoes; when they come out they are so soft!

If nutients were money, sweet potatoes would be considered the Oprahs, Bill Gates’, and Beyonces of the vegetables. They are full of fiber, potassium and a variety of vitamins. This article discusses the benefits of sweet potatoes in even more detail, if you are interested!

Weight watchers Points Plus 2012: 4 Points for 5″ potato with 1/2 tbsp of butter spread (I like Smart Balance Butter & Canola and Extra Virgin Olive Oil Blend), salt and pepper.

*I have only ever used this technique to cook 2-3 potatoes at a time so if you were looking to make more, I would be lying if I told you it works, or not. I don’t think it could hurt to try…if you do, let me know how it goes…

 
Enjoy!!

Hongo Soup

Ingredients:IMG_0270

  • 32 ounces of vegetable broth
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1.5 cups of pasta (dry)
  • 1 bundle of asparagus
  • 8 ounces of button mushrooms
  • 1 small yellow squash
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 packet of Sazon (by Goya)
  • Block of Parmesan or Asiago cheese to shred (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Cut the bottoms of the asparagus off and cut the stalks into thirds. Slice yellow squash into thin circles. Steam (put steamer basket over 1 inch of water in a pot, put veggies inside the basket, sprinkle with garlic powder, and cover with the pot lid) the asparagus, mushrooms, and squash, sprinkled with garlic powder for about 5 minutes. While waiting for the veggies to steam, put the remaining ingredients (except the cheese) into a large pot (wait until veggies are done to put the large pot on the stove). When veggies are done, add them to the large pot and cook soup until pasta is done (with lid on). Taste the broth to make sure there is enough salt and enjoy! I shred some Asiago cheese on top with a microplane! Delicious.

This soup is so healthy and it’s vegan if you hold the cheese at the end! The mushrooms in this soup provide an excellent source of potassium, even more than bananas, and have antioxidant qualities!! The asparagus is rich in folic acid, keeping your cells healthy!!

This recipe makes about 5 cups of soup! Weight watchers Points Plus 2012: 3 points for 1 cup

**Hongo is spanish for “mushroom” and since this is an original recipe I thought I would give it an original name. The addition of the spanish seasoning gave me the inspiration for the name!

Mediterranean Tuna Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 (15 ounce) can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 3 (4 ounce) cans of chunk light tuna in water, drained
  • 1 cup of cucumber, chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 2 teaspoons of dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup of feta cheese
  • 1/2 cup of lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Combine all ingredients and serve over greens, beside some sliced fruit with a slice of toasted whole wheat baguette, or with a bowl of soup! Enjoy!!

Add olives if you wish! (I don’t care for olives so I leave them out)

This recipe makes about 6 cups. Weight watchers Points Plus 2012: 4 points for 1 cup

This is very filling, full of protein, healthy fats, and fiber! All the lemon juice is great for weight loss because it aids in digestion!

*this recipe was adapted from laaloosh.com!