Healthy honey chickpeas

As a mom of two I’m always on the search for a quick healthy snack.  I’ve fallen victim one too many times of not being prepared and just grabbing some unhealthy but already prepared or prepackaged food.  It happens to all of us, really.  I want to help you prepare an easy and delicious snack.

Currently hummus is a huge hit among health food experts.  Making your own is even better as you can add in whatever mix of ingredients you want and you can verify the purity of what’s going into your mix.  But that’s another post…

If hummus is so healthy then let’s take the main ingredient, chickpeas or garbanzo beans, and revamp it into another delicious recipe. 

Alright alright, enough rambling about it, let’s make it..

Ingredients
1/2 Tbsp. Olive oil
1 Tbsp. Honey
1/4 tsp. Cinnamon
1/8 tsp. Nutmeg
1/8 tsp sea salt
Dash of red pepper powder (optional)
1 can of chickpeas

Begin by preheating your oven to 350°. 
Line a baking pan with parchment paper or silicone baking mat.  Drain your chickpeas and rinse off.  Personally I use organic chickpeas but it’s not a make or break of the recipe.  Next, put the chickpeas on paper towels to dry off.

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While your waiting on the oven to heat and the chickpeas to dry, I’ve found this is a good time to mix up your sauce.  Just put everything into a bowl and mix until combined. 

Once the oven is preheated put the chickpeas in for 40 minutes or until crispy. Go ahead and test one to make sure its crispy, if its still soft on the inside pop them back in for a few minutes. 

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Once they’re done put them in the bowl with the sauce while they’re still warm.  This helps thin the honey and makes mixing a whole heck of a lot easier.

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Feel free to be done at his step.  If you want the sauce to be hardened on these cute little beans then you can put them back into the oven for 10 minutes. 

I put them into little snack baggies and they’re ready to grab and go!

Let me know what you think!  Also the dash of red pepper is requested by my husband.  What do you guys think of the little kick?

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Healthy Coffee otherwise known as Bulletproof Coffee

I will share with you one of my best finds in the past year, bulletproof coffee.  If your interested the actual mixture for it can be found here.

I heard about a variation of the mixture that’s a bit more sensible on the wallet and considering how often we drink coffee (daily, usually more than once) easier to replace.  My husbands family actually shared this with me (they seem to have good taste right?) and I’ll admit I was skeptical at first.  Butter in my coffee? Gross! Oh and add oil to it?  Yeah, I’m sure that’s healthy to start your morning off.

So what exactly goes into this new fad coffee?  Grass fed unsalted butter.  It has to be grass fed to get the health benefits intended for bulletproof coffee. The only brand I have heard of is  Kerrygold.  You need 1TBSP. of butter per cup of coffee.

Then you add coconut oil.  I buy organic, but nothing I have read has said it has to be organic.  You add 1 tsp. of coconut oil. 

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Now you blend.  I use a handheld stick blender, portable and easy to clean afterwards but I’ve heard of people using a blender.

What is created is a creamy froth on top, that most people equate to a creamer and just drink it straight. 

I can’t seem to break old habits so I still add a dash of creamer to mine.  I did cut out using sugar in my morning coffee.

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End product – delish! 

The health claims that bulletproof coffee are supposed to provide:

-Feeling full.  Originally this was supposed to replace a breakfast.  The high fat content was supposed to make a person satiated.  I’ve always ate a healthy breakfast afterwards so I’m not sure if it works.

-Mental sharpness. 

-Increased heart health.

I won’t agree or disagree with these statements but I will provide you with why they might be true.

Grass Fed Butter

The reason it has to be this specific type of butter is because it provides good doses of vitamin k2.  This actually helps declog arteries, which provides better heart health.

It also provides a type of antioxidant and cancer fighting property. (1). Although this article mentions grass fed beef, I would assume there is hardly any variance with their milk. 

The only problem is there’s nothing that states what a good dosage on a daily basis is.  I’m sure like everything else, even too much of a good thing can be bad. 

Coconut oil

Coconut oil has MCT better know as medium chain triglycerides.  In comparison to long chain triglycerides, which are found in fast foods, margarine and meats such as pork, lamb and beef, MCT’s increase metabolism and again prevent heart disease. (2, 3).

So weight loss, increased heart health and mental sharpness?  Even if its not all entirely true, the placebo effect has its grasps on me and I’m buying in.  We won’t know any benefits until someone does a controlled study on bulletproof coffee, but if I can feel justified in my daily addiction I’ll continue on. 

What are your thoughts on bulletproof coffee?  Has anyone actually had their cholesterol measured since starting drinking this coffee? I’m curious to know!!

Baked Mozzarella Sticks

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Who doesn’t love mozzarella sticks?  I’m pretty sure 9/10 people would raise their hand.  In my quest to fulfill my need for them I ran across a healthy alternative. What’s better than how healthy they are is how quick and easy it is to make them!  Seriously 3 ingredients (if you count the water for basting)?!  

1. Wonton wrapper
2. Mozzarella string cheese sticks
3. Water

Start by preheating your oven to 400°.  {Hint:  I have a gas oven, so I generally turn mine down about 15-25° from whatever a recipe recommends}.

Next cut your mozzarella string cheese sticks in half. {My 5 year old does this with a butter knife}.

Lay your wonton wrappers on a dry surface and place a mozzarella stick perpendicular on a corner.  Then roll until you have  approximately a couple inches left.  Using a basting brush, brush some water onto the corner then finish rolling.

Place on your greased baking sheet.  When you have all of those delicious cheese sticks rolled, I usually brush them with water to help them crisp up. {No worries if you don’t.  I’ve forgotten a few times and they turn out just as delectable}

Slide them into the preheated oven and set your timer for 10 minutes. 

Remember patience is a virtue

Enjoy!! 🙂

I can eat them plain, but my husband loves them with marinara sauce or even spaghetti sauce.

Please let me know what you guys think!  Any different sauce options??

Credits to AverieCooks

Healthy cake alternative

When I stumbled upon this recipe via my mother-in-law I was skeptical of how it would really taste.  I mean how good can cake be that you just microwaved for a minute?  I was thoroughly impressed after my first taste!  My sweet tooth is much larger than I would like, so if I can have my cake and eat it too (without the fat and a portion of the calories) count me in!  What’s even better are the different varities that are available with this method.  This recipe is a huge success on pinterest!

•Start with 1 box of angel food cake mix (any brand works) and 1 box of any flavor of cake mix you desire.  Pour both into a gallon size zip lock bag.  Seal it tight and let the kids have fun shaking the bag to mix both together.  You can now store this bag of mixes for future uses.  Trust me it lasts a while!
•When your ready for cake, use 1/3 cup of cake mix from your bag and pour it into a bowl or mug. {I have found using my daughters plastic bowls are easiest to clean, although I know some people don’t like to microwave in plastic.} Mix 3 Tbsp. of water in, stir until its all combined.  Microwave for 1 minute and that’s it!! You have delicious healthy cake. 

Now let’s talk toppings.  You certainly don’t need any toppings if you don’t want any, this is perfectly tasty bare.  Sometimes we like to try something new in our house.  Some combinations we’ve tried include:
•Whipped cream, flax seed and fresh fruit
•Cinnamon chips and bananas
•Chocolate chips and walnuts
•Artic Zero ice cream ⬅ healthy ice cream!
•Toasted coconut and sliced almonds

Also, you can mix in any of the above ingredients into the cake mix before microwaving it.  So there you have it, a single serving of cake with only approximately 100 calories!!

Try it and let me know what you think!