Monthly Archives: February 2014

Apple Whole Wheat Muffins


I am a true believer of an apple a day will keep the doctor away! I am an avid follower of that saying. Here is an easy way to add some apple into your diet if have a love of apples like I am.

1 cup of shredded apple ( no need to peel) you need they extra fiber !!
1 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup raw sugar
1/2 tsp ground high quality cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1 3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup canola oil
1/4 cup egg substitute or 4 egg whites
3/4 cup (6oz) vanilla fat free yogurt
Zest of one small orange
1/2 tsp Mexican Vanilla or high quality vanilla
Cooking spray

Cinnamon and sugar to taste
Cooking spray

This recipe yields 12 muffins


1. Preheat oven to 350. Line 12 standard muffin tins

2. Take flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, spices and zest of orange place in a large bowl and whisk together.


3. In a small bowl mix together yogurt, egg substitute, vanilla, and oil.


4. Pour liquid batter into dry ingredients.


5. Fold the batter together try not to over mix.


6. Add shredded apple.


7. Fold apples into batter.


8. Potion out using 2 oz scoop into lined and cooking sprayed
muffin tins.


9. Bake for 22-23 minutes on 350 degrees.


10. Let muffins cool in tin for 3 to 5 minutes remove from tin spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.



Heath No Bake Granola Bars


We had a lunch and learn today and I always try to make a special treat for my co-workers. I made these bars in a pinch at 9:45 last night. This has to be the easiest, quickest bar I have ever made! The honey flavor really shines through!

This recipe yields 18 bars

1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup honey
1/3 cup unpack brown sugar
1 cup of quick oats
1 cup of old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup of crispy rice cereal preferably brown rice
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 TB chopped Heath Candy bar


1. Line 8x 8″ glass or metal dish with foil. Spray the foil with cooking spray to coat the foil to prevent sticking.

2. Place on medium heat a 2 quart sauce pan, add canola oil, honey, and brown sugar.


3. Heat liquid mixture until bubbles appear then reduce heat to low and cook for 2 additional minutes.


3. While the liquid mixture cooks combine dry ingredients ( except for Heath Chips) into a large bowl.


4. Remove liquid mixture from heat and add vanilla. Stir honey mixture into dry ingredients using spatula.


5. Press the batter into the pan evenly.


6. Sprinkle the Heath chips evenly on top of the bars and press the chips down with a spatula.


7. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 2 hours to overnight. Remove from the pan. Cut into 18 bars.




Vegan Black & Pinto Bean Soup


One of my favorite soups is black bean. I love it with a little spice. Yesterday sure was a cold day, so this warm soup really hit the spot (even my 2 y/o nephew liked it).

My mom made this for me initially on a cold fall day when we were moving my sister. She always takes care of me being the vegetarian in the family and all. She made everyone else chili with meat and bean soup for me; which is a great source of protein by the way. I asked her for the recipe right away and have been eager to try to recreate it ever since. When I asked her for the recipe all she gave me was the ingredient list. As any good cook (wink wink ….mom) they tend to leave out all the portions because it’s “a pinch of this and that”. And like all recipes made by loved ones it’s the person making the recipe that make them so comforting and special to us. So naturally on my birthday I made this recipe!

This recipe yields 7 (1 cup servings) 3 WW plus points per serving

Ingredients :
3/4 cup carrots chopped
3 large cloves of garlic (minced)
1 cup of celery diced
1 cup of red onions diced
3/4 cup cherry tomatoes ( 15 cut in half)
1 (15 oz) can of black beans undrained (1 3/4 cups) (reduced sodium if able)
1 (15 oz) can of pinto beans (reduced sodium if possible (1 3/4 cup) undrained
1 tsp of ground cumin
32 oz water
2 tsp of high quality vegetable base ( Penzeys)
1/8 tsp chipotle seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste
Add some red pepper flake for extra heat adding 1/8 tsp at time
Canola Cooking oil spray
Fresh cilantro (optional)

Special note: if you do not have vegetable base you could always use low sodium vegetable broth instead of the water (preferably from a carton not a can) .

1. In a medium stock pot sauté onion, carrots, garlic, and celery with cooking spray. Add cumin, salt, pepper and chipotle. Sauté on medium high heat until onions become translucent.

2. Add water, soup base, tomatoes, cans of beans and bring to a boil.


3. Turn to lowest setting and cook covered for 4 hours.

Add a pinch of cilantro to each bowl for extra flavor if desired.


Chewy Whole Grain Protein Bars


I was asked to speak at a Breast Cancer Support Group Tuesday evening. The meeting was right around supper time. I didn’t want to be talking about food and not have anything for the members to snack on. I always get told by my clients that I make them hungry talking about food. I thought these would be the perfect treat to hold the ladies over until they made it home from our meeting. This recipe was adapted by Eating Well’s Almond Honey Power Bar.


This recipe yields 16 bars


  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/3  cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoon milled flaxseed
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1 cup unsweetened 100% whole-grain puffed cereal (such as kashi or arrowhead mills kamut)
  • 1/3 cup chopped dried dark cherries
  • 1/3 cup chopped dried blueberries
  • 1/3 cup chopped raisins
  • 1/4 cup creamy nut butter ( I used peanut butter)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar not packed or unprocessed sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon high quality vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 13 by 9-inch-square pan with parchment paper.
  2. Spread oats, almonds, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds on a large, rimmed baking sheet.




3. Bake until the oats are lightly toasted and the nuts are aromatic, stirring the nut combination halfway through, about 10 minutes.




4. Once the toasted nut and seed mixture is cool to the touch place in large bowl. Add dried fruit, milled flaxseed, and puff cereal mix together.



5. Combine nut butter, sugar, honey, and salt in a small saucepan. Heat over medium-low, stirring frequently, until the mixture bubbles lightly, 2 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add in vanilla.



6. Add butter mixture over the nut mix.



7. Pour batter to the prepared pan with the parchment.



8. Use cooking sprayed spatula to press bars down into the dish.



9. My bars did not go all the way to the end of the dish. There was about an inch to an inch and a half empty from the edge (but not a problem).  Freeze until firm, about 30 minutes; cut into 16 bars.



French Onion Slow Cooker Soup


One of my husband’s favorite soups is French Onion. Every time we go out to eat, if a restaurant has the soup on the menu he orders it. The first time we ever tried to make french onion soup, we burnt the onions (which was years ago). This is round two. I thought there is no better way to prevent burning of the onions other than to slow cook the onions in the crock pot all day.

This recipe yields 8 servings.

3 TB butter, unsalted
3 extra large onions ( we used a variety red, sweet, and white)
60 oz.s of high quality beef broth
1 TB Worcestershire sauce
3 TB flour
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 TB brown sugar
3 TB low sodium soy sauce
7 turns on the pepper-mill ( freshly cracked pepper)
1 Bay leaf
1/4 cup Sherry or more beef broth
2 thyme sprigs
4 -5 small garlic cloves,minced

8 slices Baby Swiss Cheese or your favorite cheese
Beer bread croutons


Slice the onions and add them to the crock pot with the butter and the minced garlic. Start the cooker on high.


Stir the onions every 45 minutes to an hour.


After the first hour add the pepper, salt, thyme, & brown sugar. Continue to stir every hour.

After four hours have elapsed turn slow cooker to low. Add broth, soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, sherry, and flour. Stir well and cover. Cook for 6 more hours. Stirring ever 1 to 2 hours.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place amount desired in a ramekin.


Add a few beer bread croutons. Take a few slices of the beer bread (cut into 1 inch pieces) and toast them in the toaster oven for about 8 minutes.


Top croutons with cheese.


Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until cheese is melted throughout.


Enjoy with a grilled cheese if you please 😉

Pumpkin Pecan Braid Remake


I’m still trying to use up some of crescent rolls that I had stock piled. Not to mention we received homegrown pecans from my husband’s aunt from Louisiana! And I couldn’t wait any longer, I had to add them to a dish or meal ASAP!

This recipe is a Pillsbury Recipe. I wanted to decrease some of the extra unwanted calories and fat From the original recipe so this is what I came up with. I was able to cut calories down by 28% and decrease the fat content by 32 %, which took the ww plus points from a 9 to a 7.

This recipe yields 6 servings

3/4 cup puréed pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix!)
1/3 cup brown sugar (not packed) or use Splenda brown sugar (2 1/2 TB)
1 tsp ground high quality cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp nutmeg
3 tsp egg substitute
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1 can Pillsbury reduced fat crescent rolls
Egg white wash (one egg white mixed with scant water)

1/3 cup powered sugar
2 tsp skim milk or soy vanilla
1/2 tsp high quality vanilla extract
1 TB chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray.

2. In medium bowl add pumpkin, egg substitute, spices, and brown sugar. Mix with spoon.


3. Add chopped pecans and stir to combine.

Set a side.

4. Now open the crescent dough and spread out on baking pan. Made sure to pinch seems together.


5. Add pumpkin filling to center of the pastry dough (3 1/2 inch wide lengthwise) down center of the dough within 1 inch of the ends.


6. Take kitchen scissors and make 1 inch cuts down the sides of the rectangle just to the edge of the filling.


7. Fold strips at an angle across filling, overlapping ends and alternating from side to side.


8. Brush with egg wash.

9. Bake in oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown.


10. While the braid is baking mix together milk, vanilla, and powdered sugar. Set a side.


11. Once braid is done removed from cookie sheet and place on platter. Pour the glaze over the braid sprinkle with chopped pecans.





Nutrition Facts


Pumpkin Braid Remake
  6 Servings
Amount Per Serving (7 ww plus points)
  Calories 239.1
  Total Fat 10.9 g
  Saturated Fat 2.5 g
  Polyunsaturated Fat 3.0 g
  Monounsaturated Fat 4.4 g
  Cholesterol 0.1 mg
  Sodium 304.9 mg
  Potassium 66.1 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 37.4 g
  Dietary Fiber 1.6 g
  Sugars 22.0 g
  Protein 4.1 g
  Vitamin A 37.7 %
  Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
  Vitamin B-6 0.9 %
  Vitamin C 0.6 %
  Vitamin D 0.3 %
  Vitamin E 2.0 %
  Calcium 2.4 %
  Copper 5.7 %
  Folate 0.5 %
  Iron 5.9 %
  Magnesium 2.9 %
  Manganese 21.7 %
  Niacin 0.5 %
  Pantothenic Acid     0.7 %
  Phosphorus     2.4 %
  Riboflavin 0.6 %
  Selenium 0.7 %
  Thiamin 3.4 %
  Zinc 2.3 %
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The original recipe had 330 calorie, 16 grams of fat, 41 grams of carbohydrate, 2 grams of fiber, 5 grams of protein. Previous recipe as website reports was 9 WW plus points.


The calorie amount listed above is entered by using the first ingredients listed on the ingredients list.