Baked Blueberry Oatmeal for One [recipe]

Good morning!!  A favorite breakfast of mine lately has been baked oatmeal.  Not only do I love if for it’s taste & comfort food qualities – warm & gooey on a cold winter morning, but I also love it for it’s health benefits.  Yes, it’s HEALTHY!!

BakedBlueberryOatmeal

Some health benefits of the recipe ingredients:

Oats and whole grain oatmeals are rich in beta glucan –  a fiber that known to help lower levels of LDL cholesterol.  Oats are also rich in selenium, phosphorous, fiber, magnesium, & zinc.  Oats are also rich in carotenoids, Vitamin E, & polyphenols.

Besides the oats, this recipe has an added egg, which not only adds protein, but contains Vitamin B2, is rich in selenium, choline, Vitamin D, B6, B12, and minerals such as iron, zinc, & copper.

I’ve also included hulled hemp seed hearts in this recipe, which are a great source of nutrients, such as: healthy fats like omega-6 & omega-3’s, as well as being a high quality complete protein source.  They are also a source of Vitamin E, phosphorous, potassium, magnesium, sulfur, calcium, iron, & zinc.

As for the blueberries, they are great for supposedly helping to ward off heart disease.  They provide fiber, potassium, folate, Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, & phytonutrients.

Last, but not least, I’ve topped off the recipe with some organic peanut butter, which is not only delicious – but, nutritious as well.  It’s a great source of healthy fats, protein, potassium, fiber, magnesium, Vitamin E, & antioxidants.

Oatmeal

I don’t know about you, but I usually just do breakfast for one.  I’m in a hurry in the morning, as well as my husband – it’s just easiest if we each do our own breakfasts when it’s most convenient.  This baked oatmeal for one fits the bill!  Healthy, quick, delicious, & simple.  Boom.

Baked Blueberry Oatmeal for One

Ingredients:

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Directions:

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  1. In a medium bowl, whisk egg.
  2. Add vanilla extract, salt, oats, hemp seeds, blueberries, and water.  Mix well.
  3. Cover with a small lid, or plastic wrap & poke a small hole in the middle.  Microwave for 2 to 2 1/2 minutes.
  4. Remove from microwave and top with T of peanut butter.
  5. Enjoy!

Nutrition Info:

306 calories, 20g carbohydrate, 17g fat, 14g protein,  and 5g fiber.

Are you an oatmeal lover?

Diet Expansion Update – & Peek at My Plate!

Hi there, friends!!  So… if you read my post back from January 26th, then you know that I’ve been experimenting with widening/opening up my diet a bit again.  I thought an update may be appropriate… ok, I’m HAPPY!!  I’m so much happier since opening up my diet and eating a wider variety of foods.  This is yet another example on why we are all different & need to do what is right for us.  Overall, you try to be healthy, but it’s not mentally healthy if you constantly restrict food groups either – especially if you don’t have a problem tolerating those foods.

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Anyway… I’m happy for now experimenting.  So far, so good.  Maybe we should take a look at some of the things I’ve been enjoying lately – how about we peek at yesterday’s eats?

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It’s been a bit since we’ve had a good ‘ol Peek at My Plate!  The following is what I ate yesterday… enjoy!

Breakfast…

A warm bowl of organic blueberry baked oatmeal with hulled hemp seed hearts & topped with a bit of organic PB.  Yummmm.

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Lunch…

Roasted sweet potato wedges in coconut oil, sea salt, & cinnamon; with chopped up Applegate organic grass-fed beef hotdogs & half a T of organic butter.  I also had a bunch of raw baby carrots on the side, unpictured.

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Afternoon snack…

Cottage cheese with a chopped nectarine, a bit of Angie’s Boom Chicka Pop popcorn…

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Dinner…

We went out for dinner to Red Robbin… I got the Chicken Ensenada Platter, which was SO yummy!!  It’s also one of their “lighter” choices that’s noted in the back of the menu. 😉

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Evening Snack…

A Healthy Banana Oat Bar (via Pinterest) that I’d made this past weekend, and an unpictured apple.

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Yummy day of healthy eats!!  :)

Tell me – do you want me to post a recipe for the baked oatmeal for one?

Meal Planning Tips

I originally wrote this post for another blog and area resource… but, I thought it’s something that a lot of people can benefit from, so I wanted to share it here on my blog as well… 

Do you plan your meals, or are you more of a ‘fly by the seat of your pants’ type of person – or, maybe it’s wherever your appetite and mouth take you?    Well, if you’re like me and are trying to eat healthy, the ‘fly by the seat of your pants’ method can get you into a bit of trouble.  When hunger or “hanger” (hunger + anger = hangry) strikes, well… you had better have something planned, or in place to eat, or all bets are off.  As they say, “plan for success”, right?

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So how does one go about setting up a meal plan and planning out their meals for the week?  Good question!  I honestly tend to find it a bit overwhelming, so I do a simplified version, which I’ll share with you:

  • I think about the upcoming week and any activities or events/dinners that are upcoming that may throw my week off
  • Check local adds to see what’s on sale veggie and protein-wise, or what’s in season and build menu-ideas off of that
  • Aim for recipes that use similar ingredients, but in different ways so that you can use everything you purchase
  • Check Pinterest for simple and fun new recipe ideas (my board is HERE)
  • Allow for nights off that you can enjoy some healthy takeout or dinner out
  • Think about making extra for leftovers that will freeze well
  • Plan a shopping day, as well as a day (I do Sundays) for meal prep, where you chop and prepare the majority of the meals so cooking during the week is a cinch

Think about using a calendar to plan your weekly meals, like this one, here (free download):  whatsfordinner1

Personally, I find meal planning for the entire week to be a bit overwhelming and to not really fit well with my lifestyle, so what I choose to do is I basically meal plan for my breakfast and lunches for the work week.  Doing it this way helps to keep me on track and I like knowing what I’m having for those two meals during the day, but it also allows my husband and I to have freedom to go out to dinner, which is what my husband usually prefers.  Just work with what your family prefers and modify it accordingly to fit your needs.

As I said above, I meal plan for breakfast and lunch for myself during the week, so what I tend to do is buy all of the groceries on Saturday night or on Sunday and spend part of my day on Sunday washing and prepping any vegetables that need chopping, and just getting my food ready and more assembled for the week.  You can take this to all different levels and some people are pros at this, but it can be as complicated or as simple as you like.

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Either way you look at it, planning some of your meals is a step in the right direction and a way to show you care about what you eat and nourish your body with.  Plan for success!

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Meal planning resources:

Do you meal plan or meal prep?

JavaFly Coffee Review

Who likes coffee?!  **raises hand** I do, I do!!!  Well, I guess that’s why I was a good fit for what I’m talking about today – a review of JavaFly Coffee!

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Ok, coffee lovers – what’s your brew of choice?  For me, it’s usually a really dark, smooth French roast.  My tastes have definitely evolved over the last couple of years.  I was once a flavored coffee only, kinda gal, but these days – the richer, the better.  Don’t get me wrong, every now & then I like a good flavored brew too… like this delicious FARO French Vanilla I got to sample & review from JavaFly.com!

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JavaFly graciously sent me 2 flavors of FARO Roasting House k-cups to try, in exchange for an honest review.  I chose the French Vanilla & the Decaffeinated Swiss Process.

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The first one I tried was the French Vanilla, which I really enjoyed.  It has a nice vanilla flavor, but is not overpowering, plus it’s smooth.  I give it two thumbs up!!

I also tried the Decaffeinated Swiss-Process after work one day since it’s the perfect option when you need a cup ‘o joe in the afternoon & don’t want to be kept up all night.  I have to say, it was pretty good!  Definitely one of the better decaf coffees I’ve had – also, nice & smooth, not too bitter.  I would give this one the thumbs up too!

You don’t only have to take my word for it though – I shared my coffee samples with family when they came over this past weekend.  They tried both flavors & it was unanimous thumbs up!!  Everyone only had good things to say about them.

Sooo… if you’re looking to expand your horizons & try out some new k-cup brews, check FARO Roasting House out at JavaFly.com.

A big thank you to JavaFly for providing me with these wonderful samples!

**I was provided coffee samples in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

Have you ever used JavaFly before, or have you tried FARO coffees?

Simple Chicken Stew [recipe]

I don’t know about you, but with all of this crazy cold & snowy weather, I just want to stay home & enjoy a nice, hot dinner.  I have the perfect thing for you guys – a Simple Chicken Stew!  It was cold & snowy the other night & I came home to this hot, delicious, nutritious, & filling stew – all ready to go!  

ChickenStew

This is a hearty, veggie-packed stew, not some wimpy, mainly broth-based one!  If you like beef stew & are a fan of chicken booyah, then you’ll love this stew!  Plus, did I mention it’s a crock pot recipe?!  All you have to do is toss everything in the night before or morning of, & go about your business!  So simple!!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1.29 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs (preferably free-range or organic)
  • 1 medium bag frozen green peas
  • 1 can cannellini beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 medium russet potato, chopped
  • about 4oz white button mushrooms, chopped (about half an 8oz package)
  • 4c organic vegetable or chicken broth
  • 2c red cabbage, shredded or chopped
  • 1c shredded carrots
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 2T green onion, chopped
  • 1T sea salt
  • 2tsp black pepper (or to taste)

crockpot

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Place chicken thighs spread out along bottom of crock pot & sprinkle with a bit of sea salt.
  2. Add all other ingredients.
  3. Cover & cook on low 6-8 hours.
  4. Stir to break up & shred bits of chicken.
  5. Enjoy!

NUTRITION:

(per 1/5th of recipe): 399 calories, 9g fat, 1007mg sodium, 317mg potassium, 40g carbohydrates, 10g fiber, 7g sugar (natural), and 33g protein.

I hope you & your family enjoy this nutritious & filling stew!