Category Archives: Starters & Snacks

The Doughbar Doughnuts

Last week REB and I indulged in a treat he had shipped to our house from The Dough Bar – protein doughnuts! As promised, here’s a quick review on them, what they are, how they tasted and overall thoughts!**

For those of you who don’t know what it is, The Dough Bar was started by a husband-and-wife team in California with a mission to provide a healthy alternative from traditional doughnuts and theirs are handmade, baked, lower in carbs and sugar and full of protein. It’s a great way for people to indulge in something sweet without straying from their fitness goals. They created this company, which will ship a box/pack of doughnuts right to your door.


Orders are placed on a Thursday through their site, and then shipped on a Tuesday. And they sell out quick! It’s a pretty hot commodity I guess! REB placed the order the Thursday prior, they were shipped on a Tuesday and we received them on a Thursday; so about a week turn around time from order-to-door.

Upon arriving, the packaging was cute! I liked how they looked like homemade, hand packed boxes because they are. I also liked their little note card that explained their mission, how to eat them, store them and how to spread the word of the product and business.

My favorite thing is what they stood for: “We are excited and humbled to share our vision with you – which is defined by nutritious eating, active living, and giving back to others.” They find ways to give back to the community and charities. A portion of sales go towards a charity of their choosing for the month, like helping reduce childhood obesity or helping kids get up and moving. I really liked this about them!


So now, onto the doughnuts! The doughnuts are in vacuum sealed plastic and the glazes that come with are in little plastic containers. REB ordered a dozen doughnuts in various packs/flavors:
• The Classic Variety Pack with 1 of each: Maple, Cake Batter, Chocolate and Vanilla
• A 4 Pack of Cookies & Creme
• A 4 pack of Vanilla Bourbon

We put half the doughnuts in the freezer to help keep them fresh since we knew we weren’t going to eat them all in that day. We placed them in the fridge to thaw overnight when we were ready to eat them the next day or whenever.

The concept to consume is pretty simple: remove doughnut from plastic, place on plate, warm in microwave for 10-15 seconds. Warm the glaze in the microwave for 5-8 seconds until melted/thinned out, drizzle over doughnut, add garnish if provided. E N J O Y !

We did find we had to warm the glaze up in batches of 3-4 seconds at a time since we didn’t want to melt the plastic container it came in, but other than that, the whole process is pretty fool-proof.


Cookies & Creme with Oreo Crumble

Now, here’s the thing: you have to take these for what they are. These are not Krispy Kreme doughnuts, nor are they trying to be. You aren’t going to bite into it and taste something from your local bakery. However that said, these are not bad at all.

I will say that there are certain flavors I favored over others. For one thing, the chocolate did not remotely taste like chocolate or look like a chocolate glaze, which was a little bit of a disappointment. The vanilla bourbon and maple were probably my favorites – the glaze was more like an icing and tasted delicious! The doughnuts are pretty dough-y and can seem a little chewy, but again, you’re nuking them in the microwave and they’re baked, not fried.

Here’s the breakdown of Macros per doughnut on average (this includes the glaze):
Calories: 179
Carbs: 21-23g (depending on flavor/glaze)
Fat: 5g
Protein: 11g
Fiber: 2

Overall I am pleased with the product. It was a no-guilt treat for us. I know some of you might think “Well, if I’m going to treat myself, I’m going all out” and that’s totally fine! I’m not a big doughnut person to begin with, but these are something I can feel OK about eating every once in a while if I want that sweet treat or need something with protein post-lifting/working out a shake won’t cut it. They are a little expensive, but they are handmade, hand packaged and shipped from California. Plus, I really like their mission and the way they give back to the community, too! If you guys try them, let me know what you think!

What is your favorite doughnut flavor?


 **I was not compensated for providing this review. Nothing in this post was sponsored. The views and opinions are my own!

Vibrant Bites: Raw Coconut Truffles


I had mentioned on various social media sites that I was going to start having guest posts from fellow bloggers and health nuts and now it’s time to start the fun! This is my dear friend Michelle, who will share some healthy tips and recipes with all of you once a month in a bit we like to call “Vibrant Bites”.


I’ve known Michelle since 2008 when we worked together as professional nomads. We both got along very quickly and became friends almost instantly. She is also one of the only friends I have who has struggled with healthy habits and weight the way I do and still am. We could relate on so many levels. She has always been athletic and strived for a healthy lifestyle, and now she’s moved out to Seattle to start a new adventure and I’ve never seen her happier! She is currently studying to become a health coach and has started giving me some great advice and tips to make small changes that will make for big changes in the long run (I’m always happy being my friends’ guinea pigs!). We decided to collaborate together and I’ve invited her to come share a post on my blog once a month. We’re going to call them “Vibrant Bites” since her web site is Vibrant Health Coaching. Check it out! She’s starting out a great thing. 

She recently made the recipe we’re sharing on here now: Raw Coconut Truffles. When you chill them in the fridge and then take a bite, they taste just like cookie dough. Intrigued by her Facebook picture of these, I told her I would recreate them and then have her come share the recipe, the benefits of the ingredients in it and any other tidbits that will help all of you! I made them and OH. MY. GOD. They are GOOD. So without further ado, take it away Michelle!

Hey there everyone, I am pleased as punch to share this recipe with you to kick off Vibrant Bites! I am currently training as a Holistic Health Coach through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and will receive my certification in July 2014. I’m really stoked about that because I love geeking out about healthy food, exercise and how to live your life more vibrantly and naturally.

To me, living vibrantly means finding a balance in your diet, relationships, physical activity, work and spiritual life that makes you feel energetic and happy. By making small, sustainable changes, we all can discover our individual, unique path to happiness and wellness…my job as a health coach is to guide you to YOURS!

So…these Raw Coconut Truffles, where do they fit in? They are homemade treats that are reminiscent of eating raw cookie dough, but are packed with nutrients instead of processed sugars.


Dates are rich in dietary fiber, potassium, calcium, copper and magnesium. The natural sugars do not cause a spike in your blood sugar like white sugars and I’m a fan of sweetness from whole foods over processed foods as a general practice. The fiber is a treat for you gut, making you feel full and assisting in keeping you, ahem, regular.

Cashews are heart healthy, vanilla is a natural aphrodisiac (woohoo, talk about more vibrant relationships hehe!) and dark chocolate is full of antioxidants that help free your body of free radicals which cause damage to your cells. Dark chocolate is also a great source of flavonoids, which may help to lower blood pressure. Shoot for at least 60% cacao, but I always just grab the highest cacao kind available.

Shredded coconut is low carb but packs a whallop in the fat department. Use sparingly as I still would prefer to see someone eat some organic, unsweetened coconut in a homemade goodie than a procesed Almond Joy.


Try it out, be creative and do your best not to eat the whole batch at once! xoxo Michelle

A big thanks to Michelle and check back next month when she offers up another Vibrant Bite! Happy Monday, friends!

Raw Coconut Truffles
A healthy poppabale snack that tastes just like guiltless cookie dough
Recipe type: snack, healthy, vegan
Serves: 12
  • 1 cup (8 oz.) pitted dates, roughly chopped (take out pit if unpitted)
  • 1 cup raw, unsalted cashews, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut, plus extra to roll balls in
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips (can use mini, semi-sweet, whatever, just shoot for at least 60% cacao)
  1. Combine all ingredients, except chocolate chips, in a food processor and pulse/mix until the mixture is dough-like.
  2. Fold in chocolate chips (I used my hands cuz why not?)
  3. Take 1 or 1½ tablespoons of mixtures and roll into balls
  4. Roll in unsweetened shredded coconut, chopped nuts, or whatever, if you like
  5. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  6. Chill for 45 minutes or up to 2 hours
  7. Makes 12-16 balls, depending on size you roll
  8. Store in your fridge or freezer.





I know I always talk about how my mom is my rock, my best friend and I don’t know what I would do without her. While all that is very true, it doesn’t mean I don’t feel the same way about my dad.

He is one way rad dad.


Growing up he was pretty strict with both my sister and I – more so with her than with me. I did get away with a lot more, but he was still very strict about schoolwork, having fun vs. studying, being prepared for college and figuring out what I wanted to do with my life.

And it always amazes me how after almost 30 years, he still remembers the tiniest details about my likes and dislikes. I wanted to make sure he knew I remembered one of his likes: blueberries. So I made him scones; the kind he can enjoy with his morning coffee while talking to my mom, or afternoon tea, or sneak a snack in, in between his classes at the university.


While baking them, I kept thinking about how he and I were when I was growing up. There were a lot of times I wanted to be a stupid, rebellious teenager (and I was at times I’m sure) because I wasn’t allowed to go to dances, or go see my friends band play in downtown Flint while all my other friends went. But when I think back on it now, I realize, “Hmmm…so he didn’t want his 15-year-old daughter hanging out in downtown Flint at 10:30 p.m….and I thought that was weird?” If anyone knows Flint, it’s not horrible, but it’s also not the safest place, especially if you’re rather new to the area, like we were.

But that didn’t mean he didn’t have a sweet spot for kids, because he did! When I look through old albums and see pictures of he and my sister, or he and I, it melts my heart. He really was – and still is – a loving, caring, sweet dad who just wanted the best for his daughters.


I have really fond memories with my dad, like when he taught me how to skip stones, introduced me to photography, how we’d sing along to The Carpenters in the car on family road trips to national parks, and when I’d take his video camera and conduct interviews with our friends at parties (a journalist from the ripe young age of 8!)


Regardless, I want to make sure he knows that despite being strict and and the fact that we didn’t always get along when I was growing up because I was a typical pain-in-the-ass teenage girl, he shaped me into the person I am today. I wouldn’t be as neat, clean, a bit of a perfectionist, motivated or driven in my job or life the way I am if it weren’t for the values both he and my mom instilled upon me. I’m a better person because of him and he and I have really grown to appreciate the things we both do.

Blueberry Lemon Scones with Lemon Glaze
Prep time
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Scones bursting with blueberries with a light, refreshing lemon glaze drizzled on top.
Recipe type: scones, breakfast, baking, blueberries, lemon
Serves: 12
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, plus 1 teaspoon for sprinkling on scones
  • Pinch of salt
  • 6 tablespoons (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 1 cups blueberries
  • 1 tablespoons lemon zest (1-2 lemons)
  • 1 cup half & half, plus 1-2 tablespoons for brushing on scones
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup confectioners sugar
  • Juice of two lemons (5-6 tablespoons)
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  3. Sift flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in a large, mixing bowl
  4. Add the cold butter cubes and mix with hands or pastry cutter. The mixture should look like a crumble when you are finished
  5. Fold in blueberries and lemon zest
  6. Make a well in your mixture, and add the half & half
  7. Mix well – the mixture will be very sticky!
  8. Pour mixture out onto a well floured board or surface
  9. Using your hands press out the dough into a rectangle
  10. Cut lengthwise once, then horizontally three times. You should end up with 7-8 squares. Cut the squares diagonally so you end up with 10-14 triangles
  11. Place scones on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  12. Mix 1 tablespoon half & half with vanilla extract, mix and brush on each scone
  13. Sprinkle the scones with some sugar
  14. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown and blueberries are bursting.
  16. Mix the confectioners sugar with the juice of 2 lemons. Mix well until kind of runny. If too thick, add more lemon juice. If too thin, add more sugar until consistency to be pourable.
  17. Drizzle glaze over scones once they have completely cooled


Edamame White Bean Hummus


Superbowl Sunday is this weekend. I can’t believe football will be over after this weekend. A lot of you know that both REB and I love football and get so sad when college ball is over. But we always have the NFL to carry us through until February. Then it’s all over until August. Sadness.

But as much as I love football, I can honestly say that I don’t have an ounce of interest in the Harbowl this weekend. I didn’t want either team to end up here, but any given Sunday, right? I at least hope the Harbaugh brothers can entertain me and fight on the field or something.

So in preparation for the big game, I started thinking about snacks I probably want to eat while watching. Yes, I do this a week in advance. Don’t judge me. Usually REB and I make individual pizzas with our kick-ass homemade dough recipe, but since we’re trying to be a little healthier and I’m trying to not eat pizza that’s carbed out (although I COULD jump on the cauliflower crust wagon), I was thinking of other things we could make.


Then hummus came to mind. It’s relatively easy to make, keeps well in the fridge and when you add Tahini to anything it becomes a pile of win. And instead of the boring run-of-the-mill hummus, I decided to 86 the garbanzo bean all together and use white beans and add other yummy flavors.

However the recipe in this post is version 2.0. I made a similar recipe on Sunday except I made it more as a “white bean dip”. It was really good, but it was missing that nuttiness that Tahini adds. That and you can’t call something “hummus” without Tahini (in my opinion anyway). But you can make hummus without garbanzo beans.

I’ve started a love affair with white beans when it comes to dips because I love how creamy they are. They make for a great substitute to using garbanzos!  Then when you pair the white beans with edamame and the Tahini, the world starts making sense. But when you pair that with cumin…?

Well, let’s just say you haven’t lived until you’ve had more cumin in your life.


Edamame White Bean Hummus
Prep time
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Creamier, nuttier and healthier – this is not your run-of-the-mill hummus!
Recipe type: dips, snacks, healthy, vegetarian
Cuisine: appetizers, snacks
Serves: 8
  • 1 15-oz. can Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup shelled edamame (storebought, or you can thaw frozen and shell it yourself)
  • 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Tahini (sesame paste)
  • ½ medium lemon, juiced
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons parsley leaves
  1. Add all ingredients to food processor and pulse until desired consistency.
  2. Adjust salt as needed.
  3. Serve immediately or refrigerate for 30 minutes.


Spicy, Smokey, Sweet Roasted Chickpeas

The best thought I had on Thursday, was knowing that Friday was around the corner. I can’t wait for the weekend. I feel like the work weeks are busier than they need to be. So much so, I find myself getting to work before 8, sometimes before 7:30 and working until almost 5 or past that. It’s not like I should complain.

I really do love what I do. But when you’re in meetings almost all day, every day, it’s hard to get the actual work done! I’m lucky to have an amazing team that keeps things going and moving forward when I’m not around. I’m sure I’d be 8479374938 times more stressed if that wasn’t the case.

So when I finally did leave the office, and then took my 25 minute bus ride home, I was beat. I fed the pups, laid down on the couch and this happened.

But shortly after that, the chickpeas happened. I wanted nothing more than to have the worst kind of snack in the world (read: ice cream, chips, chocolate, anything!) but we don’t have those types of things in the house (except Skinny Cows, but wasn’t in the mood for that). So I made the roasted chickpeas and it was the perfect snack.

I’ve made roasted chickpeas a million times before and they’re usually savory with rosemary and sea salt, salt and black pepper, sriracha and franks red hot…and you get the point. I still need to try making sweet ones, but this time, I wanted a blend of it all because I couldn’t decide between spicy and sweet.

So Triple S was born: spicy, smokey and sweet.
•Spicy and smokey was the garam masala. I make my own, but you can also buy it already made. I made a small batch of garam masala but without the cardamom so it was more smokey with the cumin and coriander.
•Sweet came from the cinnamon and brown sugar. A beautiful combination.

And all was right in the world. At least for the day anyway.

Spicy, Smokey and Sweet Roasted Chickpeas
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: snack, appetizer
  • 1 can (15 oz.) garbanzo beans, drained, rinsed and dried
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala (homemade or store bought)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 425°F
  2. Drain, rinse, dry the beans and put in a small bowl
  3. Add olive oil, garam masala and brown sugar.
  4. Toss well
  5. Spread onto a baking sheet in single layer.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes, tossing after 20 minutes.
  7. Chickpeas are done when they are toasted and crispy.

Friday with Friends


Well hello my lovelies!

It’s officially summer and it’s officially warm outside and officially the start of a what I hope to be a very fun few weeks!
We had our first house guests in our house this past weekend! It was so much fun, too. I’m sure some of you may have seen the progression of sloppiness on Instagram, but perhaps there should be a story or background to the fun.

Two of our best friends came over for the night and it was a beautiful night out so we took full advantage of sitting outside and wining and dining.

And do you see that yummy looking dip on the left side of the picture? That’s was my contribution to the spread of the appetizers we had before REB made his brother’s warm pasta salad. Delicious!

Now let’s talk about the dip! It was a black bean, corn and avocado salad that I had in Chicago a few weeks ago. It was so delicious so I searched the Pinterest board and saw a pin for it and decided to make it for the start to the weekend. I changed up a few things to our tastes, but it was absolutely delicious.

I did a lot of prep work the night before to save some time.

Can we take a second to look at the beautiful colors? This is one of the reasons I love summer for this reason! It helps to make this the night before because then you can add the avocado right before serving and they won’t turn brown. I added more lime juice on top just to be sure it wouldn’t turn brown. You can never have enough lime juice in a salad like this.

Bottom line: this dip was delicious and so fresh and light. We served it up with pita chips and tortilla chips and the evening was so much fun. I can’t wait to start having more people over! Entertaining is going to come so much easier with the extra space!

What are your favorite summer time dishes?

Recipe adapted from Once Upon A Chef

5.0 from 1 reviews

Black Bean, Corn and Avocado Salad
Prep time
Total time
Recipe type: Dip, Appetizer, Vegetarian
Serves: 8
  • 2 15-oz. cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • ¾ cup corn kernels (frozen, then thawed)
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 red bell peppers, diced
  • 2 avocados, scored and scooped
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 4-6 tablespoons fresh lime juice (zest 2 of them first!) — this took about 2-3 limes
  • Drizzle of olive oil to desired consistency
  1. Combine the black beans, corn, red bell pepper and cilantro in a bowl and mix.
  2. Add the garlic, lime zest, cayenne pepper, shallot, sugar, salt and lime juice and mix well.
  3. Cover and chill in the fridge for a few hours, or over night.
  4. Right before serving, score and scoop avocado into the salad, give it another squeeze of lime to help keep them green, and sprinkle some cilantro on top and you’re good to go!

Parmesan Baked Pita Chips


Hello hello! I was reading Sarah’s blog the other day and she had mentioned something about how she starts her posts. She said she usually starts with a greeting as if she’s in a conversation with her readers, instead of just listing a random fact. I realized I do the latter most of the time. I’m going to try doing what she does – greeting all of you! I do love that I’ve gotten more response on my blog this year than I ever have since starting this thing back in 2007. No lie. I am so grateful for all of you and that some of you really do like coming by and reading! I hope you all continue to do that.

OK enough mushy stuff. Onto the chips!

In the last post about the guacamole dip, I mentioned you could serve it up with baked Parmesan pita chips.

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That’s exactly what I did. Why buy them when you can make them and make them without frying? Much healthier, less greasy and ridonk easy. Yes, ridonk.

Here’s what you need!
•Whole wheat pita (I used 4 and made two batches)
•2 tablespoons olive oil
•1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
•Pinch of salt and pepper
•1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated (more if you want more, less if you want less)

Start by preheating your oven to 350°F. Next cut each pita in half and then in thirds (to get triangles). Then pull them apart so you end up with 6 pieces per half. Lay the pieces on an ungreased cookie sheet.

In a small bowl combine the oil, garlic and S&P. Brush a little on each pita triangle and sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese.

Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Keep your eye on them because if you’re like me, you’ll burn a batch. I’m not saying I burned a batch, but it’s possible that my second batch was more crispy than the first.

Serve it up with hummus, salsa or make that guacamole dip I was talking about! The great thing about them is that you can season them how ever you want. Other options: curry powder, cumin, garam masala or cajun seasoning (for a spicy twist!). You could even go the sweet route and do cinnamon and sugar and serve with your favorite sweet dip!

Either way, they will go fast so either make enough or eat them all before they disappear. Now, I’m not saying we ate them all in one day, but I’m also not saying that we didn’t ;) Enjoy!

Have you ever made homemade chips before?


Holy Moly Healthy Guacamole


Hello my lovely readers! Is it just me, or do the weekends go by too fast? It seems like just yesterday it was Friday and now the week is starting up again.

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I had quite the weekend, though! I did a full day of cooking today. So much so, that I’ll have three different posts for the three things I made. So bear with me, please :) One of my favorite parts was not only the cooking, but Oscar Sunday! I’m such an awards show junkie. I made a dip to eat for the Oscars that was healthy and flavorful and was so so good!

If you haven’t already guessed, I made a guacamole dip! I saw a few recipes online and decided to give it a try and I’m so glad I did. The star ingredient? White cannellini beans instead of all avocado. I know avocados have healthy fats, but it’s all about moderation, right? Right.

Can I be honest? I’ve never bought, cut open, or used an avocado on my own. I was a big nerd and was pretty excited when I was able to cut it and then get the pit out without ruining any part of it. It’s about the little things :)

So here’s what you need to make this lovely dip:
Adapted from Good Housekeeping
•1 can (15 oz. weight) white cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
•1 tablespoon lime juice (about 1-2 limes)
•1 jalapeño, seeded, and diced
•1 tsp salt
•1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
•1/4 cup onion, chopped
•1 avocado, halved and pitted
•2 tomatoes (I used Campari, but you could use Roma. If you use smaller ones, you’ll need more of course)

In a food processor or blender, add the beans and lime juice and pulse until smooth and mixed. Transfer to a bowl. Next add the avocado to the bean mixture and mash with a fork to combine. Keep some chunks though (at least I like chunks for added texture!). In the food processor again, add the jalapeño, onion, cilantro and salt and pulse until thick and combined. Cut the tomatoes in half and squeeze to get rid of the juice and seeds. Coarsely chop and add to the bean-avocado mixture. Add the onion-cilantro to the mix, stir everything well. Squeeze a little more lime juice and serve! You can eat this right away, or you can store it in the fridge for up to an hour. Make sure it has enough lime juice so the avocado stays green!
Possible garnishes: cilantro leaves or finely minced onion.

Serve it up with some fresh cut veggies or with these homemade Parmesan baked pita chips!
The great thing? This makes about 3 cups and one serving (1/4 cup) is only 65 calories! Not so bad when you’re really having half that and sharing that 1/4 cup. Enjoy!

Are you an awards show junkie like me?
What are your favorite snacks while watching them?

Cashew-Mushroom Pâté

Made this tonight for the big game in addition to some other dips. We saw this recipe on the same site as the Seitan Piccata from the Vegetarian Times. We made a few changes, but it tasted really good! I’ve never had pâté but that’s probably because it’s usually spreadable liver of some animal or something. I never thought it could be made vegetarian! I’m not even sure this is really a pâté, but it tasted good which is what mattered.

One change we did was instead of baking the cashews, we just dry roasted them in a pan on the stove. I MIGHT have kept my eye off them too long – whoops – but it didn’t make the pâté taste bad or anything. The other change was that we didn’t use vegan margarine. We used normal unsalted butter. The recipe also called for curry powder but I don’t have any of that in the house. I just had garam masala so I figured that would be OK and it worked great actually!

Lastly, the original recipe called for 4 cups of sliced mushrooms since it served 12. We didn’t need nearly that much, so we just cut down on certain ingredients so it didn’t make quite as much.

The end result was really good! I’m glad we tried it. We paired ours with cracked pepper crckers, carrots, celery and pretzel thins.

Here’s what you need:
•2 1/2 8-oz. cartons of baby bellas, sliced (2-to-2 1/2 cups)
•1/4 cup whole cashews, toasted
•1/4 cup onion, chopped
•1 teaspoon minced garlic
•1 teaspoon garam masala (or curry powder if you would rather use that)
•1 tablespoon butter
•1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/8 teaspoon cumin powder
•1 teaspoon cooking sherry
•1 1/2 teaspoons chunky peanut butter
Start by toasting your cashews either on the stove or on a baking sheet in the oven.
Heat the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, onions, garlic salt, cumin powder, garam masala and cook through until the mushrooms are golden brown, tender and most of the liquid has evaporated. Then add the sherry and cook another 1 or 2 minutes, or until all the alcohol has evaporated. Transfer the mixture to a blender or food processor, add the cashews and peanut butter and pulse until smooth and creamy. Pour into a dish and refrigerate for 2 hours or more. Garnish with parsley and red bell pepper and serve with crackers or vegetables. Serves 6.

What snacks did you make for Superbowl Sunday?

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Roasted Chickpeas with Rosemary and Sea Salt

While REB and I are back on our health track, I have to admit I’ve had some cravings for bad, salty treats that I shouldn’t eat. You know, things like chips, chex mix…those kinds of bad things. So instead, I decided to make a snack that’s so easy to make and not terribly bad for you, and full of protein!

I’ve made roasted chickpeas before and last time I made them, I made them spicy. This time around I wanted to try a more savory combination. So I thought rosemary and sea salt would be a nice!

Rosemary is a great herb, but it’s extremely bold in my opinion. I never use a lot because it’s so strong. But it has a woodsy smell, looks kind of like the woods – a pine tree or something – and is full of this flavor that I can only define as “savory”. When I think savory, I think of this herb paired with cheese, salt, or on potatoes or fish or something.

It did take some time to cook, but it was totally worth it. They were crunchy on the outside and a touch soft on the inside and it was bursting with delicious flavor.

It would be a perfect snack for Superbowl Sunday, or just pack it up, take it to work and munch on during the mid-afternoon cravings. I know that’s what I’ll be doing! I hope you all enjoy!

Here’s what you need:
•2 15-ounce cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
•2 tablespoons olive oil
•1 teaspoon rosemary leaves, minced
•1 teaspoon salt (plus a pinch sprinkled at the end)

Preheat your oven to 400°F
Start by draining and rinsing the beans under cold water. Place a couple sheets of paper towel on a rimmed baking sheet and pour the beans on it. Then take each end of the paper towel and put them over the beans and roll back and forth to help dry them off. This will also take the skin off some of the beans.
Pour 2 tablespoons of olive oil over the beans. Then I took a teaspoon of the dried rosemary leaves and used my mortal and pestle to help smush it up. Sprinkle that over the beans along with a teaspoon of sea salt.
Use your hands or a spatula and toss the ingredients with the beans so it’s well coated. Arrange them in a single layer on the pan.
Bake for 45 minutes, checking them every 15 minutes to make sure they aren’t burning and to also stir/toss them.
When they come out, sprinkle a pinch of salt on top and enjoy!

Is there a healthy go-to snack you love and can get enough of?

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