Monthly Archives: February 2016

Homemade Oatmeal Packets

I love oatmeal in the winter months. I eat it just about everyday. You can add just about anything and everything to it. I generally buy the store bought low sugar packets. I always add additional fixings to them to doctor them up (vanilla extract, almond milk, steiva, unsweetened applesauce, or puréed pumpkin… Plus lots and lots of cinnamon). I have been wanting to make my own for sometime now. 

I tried 8 different varies today but the options are endless.


All the packets contain

3/8 cup of rolled oats

1 tsp ground Vietnamese cinnamon

1 teaspoon of low sugar vanilla protein powder

1 pack of stevia (Optional & not pictured)

Plus one of the following

  • 1 tablespoon of slivered almonds
  • 2 tablespoons of PB 2 powder
  • One dried fig finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon of raisins chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of Chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon of flaxseed milled
  • 1 tablespoon of sunflower seeds

Place them in a Ziploc size snack pack baggie. 

Take to work and keeping your desk. 


For Hot Water or Milk Preparation

1. Empty packet into bowl. 
2. Add up to 3/4-1 cup hot fat free milk, unsweetened almond milk or boiling water, stir.

3. Let sit for 60 seconds covered. Enjoy!

For Microwave Preparation 

1. Empty packet into microwave-safe bowl.
2. Add up to 1 cup unheated milk or water; stir.

3. Microwave on HIGH 1 to 2 minutes; stir again.


Lemon, Almond & Herb Chicken Salad 

I made Ina Garten’s Lemon Baked Chicken the other day for supper. For the leftovers I decided to use some in the lasagna I made last night and the rest for this chicken salad for lunch today.

This recipe is quick and easy! Not to mention prefect for a lunch at home on the weekend or to pack for work.

1 cup of leftover baked lemon chicken (chopped or diced)

4 tb olive oil mayo or greek plain nonfat yogurt

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

1 tsp Dijon mustard with whole grain seeds

2 tb slivered almonds

2 tb dried cranberries

Fresh ground pepper to taste


1. Place everything in a 2 cup airtight resealable container. Mix the salad together with small spatula. Enjoy on some whole-grain bread with spinach or on top of a mixed greens.

Chili Spice Fries in the actifry 

Today we had a healthy cooking food demo at work for the wellness program. Our dietetic intern presented on slow cooker meals and quick easy healthy dinners. This was her second presentation on this topic. Last week I made partytime beans in the crock pot for her presentation and today we decided to share the love of the actifry. The actifry is one of my favorite healthy kitchen tools, I love the fact it eliminates all the fat except for 1-2 TB or even sometimes, I just use cooking spray. I think by the end of the session we had everyone participating wanting an actifry. For the demo, I made my chili spicy fries, which were and always are a big hit.



4 large baking potatoes (scrubbed well and washed with water)

1 1/2 c tsp chili powder

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp garlic powder

2 tb olive oil


  1. Cut fries about 1/2 inch thick and 3 inches long. Do not peel the skin (all the nutrition and fiber is in the skin). Place the fries, seasonings, and oil in actifry. Set timer for 40 minutes or until browning effect takes place and fries are cooked to your standard.
  2. Enjoy!


Quick Enchiladas

Who doesn’t love a fast & tasty dinner. These are my husband’s favorite go to enchilada. I love the fact that they are so versatile. They can be vegetarian or you can incorporate meat, either way you can sure get your protein in with these. This dinner cooks in 15 minutes and who doesn’t have time for that….

Serving Size 2 


4 Corn Torilla’s (I like the trader joe’s reduced fat 6 inch ones)

2 TB salsa

1/4 cup black beans

1/2 cup Mexican Blend or Colby Jack Cheddar Shredded Cheese or 2% cheddar, divided

2 green onions, chopped, divided

1 tsp ground chilli powder

1 large garlic clove, finally diced

3-4 oz of grilled chicken breast, shredded, if making vegetarian switch out the meat for tofu or more beans pinto is a good combo

1/2 cup of fat free ricotta or fat free cottage cheese

1/2 cup enchilada sauce, divided



  1. Place 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce on the bottom of an oven proof  8 by 10 glass baking dish. Set aside. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a small to medium bowl mix, ricotta cheese, 1/4 cup shredded cheese, garlic, chili powder, green onion (save a few slices for garnish), salsa, chicken,& black beans.
  3. Down the center of each tortilla place 5-6 TB down of the filling. Roll the tortilla up and place it fold side down in the prepared baking dish. Repeat with all the tortillas.
  4. Evenly add the remaining enchilada sauce ontop and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup of cheese and bake for 15-20 minutes on 375 degrees.
  5. Once you remove the dish from the oven you can sprinkle with remaining green onion for garnish.

Applebutter Pork with carrots & haricot verts


I love Sundays and especially I love to use my slow cooker on Sunday’s. I attribute this dish to Sunday classic slow cooker home cooked meals. This dish literally takes three minutes to get ready before you’re off to enjoying your Sunday. There is no reason you can’t number one afford this dish or not have time for a home cook Sunday dinner. 

 This past Sunday it was nearly 70° outside and I couldn’t bear staying indoors so this was perfect to put in the slow cooker and be off to enjoying the sun in the strip District.

One pork loin or tenderloin 1 to 2 pounds

3/4 cup of apple butter

2 tablespoons of low-sodium soy sauce

1 teaspoon of ground ginger

One bag of baby carrots (approximately 2 cups)

2 cups of fresh Haricot Verts or Green beans 

1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar

1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder 

1/8 tsp ground pepper

4 quart crockpot 


1. Place the carrots and on the bottom of the crockpot. Place the pork on top of the carrots.

2. In a small bowl mix the Applebutter,  pepper, garlic, ginger, soy sauce and vinegar. Place the marinade on top of the pork.

3. Turn the slow cooker on low. Cover and allow the slow cooker to slow cook the meat for 7 1/2 hours. On the mark of the last half-hour (7.5), add Haricot verts. Allow them to steam for the last half an hour which would make the pork cook for a total of eight hours. 

If you don’t like haricot verts use broccoli or another favorite green. 


Chicken Cordon Bleu Pizza


Chicken Cordon Bleu used to be something we made often when my husband and I first got married. Now a days we rarely make this dish.  This is a take on one of my husband’s favorite chicken dishes and well who doesn’t love pizza.

This recipe yields 6 slices


1 lb package of pizza dough or a fresh batch (we make fresh and freeze it) 

1/3 – 1/2 cup Alfredo Sauce

1 cup Baby Swiss cheese shredded

1/2 cup cooked cubed ham

1 (6 oz)  baked chicken breast seasoned (sliced 1/8 inch thick) I like to season the meat with Penzey’s Ruth Ann’s Muskego chicken and fish seasoning 

1/8 cup bread crumbs

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. 

2. Place the dough in a 12 inch cast iron skillet. Form the dough to fit the pan. 

3. Spread the Alfredo sauce on the dough evenly. 

4. Evenly distribute the chicken and ham ontop of the sauce. Bake the pizza in the oven for 20-25 minutes. 

5. Remove from oven and sprinkle the cheese over the top and return the pizza to the oven for 3 minutes or until the cheese melts. 

6. Remove from oven and sprinkle with bread crumbs. 

7. Remove the pizza from the cast iron skillet and cut into 6 slices. 


Red Velvet Donuts

It’s here Valentine’s Day weekend! I love Valentine’s Day! It is a perfect time of year to remember those we love and celebrate the relationships we hold dear. 

Last year I made red velvet scones! Red Velvet can be made just about into anything. I have made in the past pancakes, waffles, brownies, cake, cupcakes, & cookies. 

This recipe yields 14 donuts

Donut Ingredients:

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1 tb cocoa

1 1/2 tsp red food coloring 

1 tsp vinegar 

2/3 cup sugar

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

3/4 cup low fat buttermilk

1/2 tsp kosher salt

2 tsp baking powder

2 large eggs

2 tb canola oil

Cream cheese frosting ingredients:

2 oz 1/3 fat reduced cream cheese (room temperature)

1 tb skim milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

1cup powdered sugar

Sprinkles (optional)


1. Preheat oven 425 degrees.   Cooking spray your donut pan. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl mix flour, cocoa, baking powder, sugar, & salt. 

3. In a seperate bowl mix vinegar, buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Pour into dry ingredients. Mix well with spatula however be careful to not overmuch.

4. Use a piping bag to fill the donut vessel 2/3 full. Please note this batter will leak out of the bag. 

5. Pat the pan on the counter and bake for 5-6 minutes at 425 degrees. Or until tooth pick comes out clean. 

6. Allow to cool in pan for 1-2 minutes, remove from pan and allow to cool for 5 minutes on wire rack. 

7. While donuts are cooling, start the frosting. In a small bowl mix the soft cream cream with milk and vanilla. Gradually add the powdered sugar. Mix well so all the powdered sugar clumps vanish.

8. Place the frosting in a squeeze bottle and once donuts cool decorate as you wish. Sprinkle with red hearts or lips. 


Grandma’s 60 minute rolls

I found this recipe by going through my grandma’s recipes. I couldn’t wait to try it! It makes me feel like she had dinner with us tonight. We had some hot peppers tonight that accompanied it well.
This recipe yields 22 rolls


This looked like a keeper. So I thought I’d give it a try.  


4 1/2 AP flours

1 tsp kosher salt

3 tb honey

1 1/2 Tb active yeast

1 cup skim milk

1/2 cup water 

1/4 cup unsalted butter (1/2 stick)


1. In a stand mixer bowl mix flour, salt, side aside. 

2. In a sauce pan combine milk,  butter, water, milk, & honey. Allow the liquid to reach 120 -130 degrees and remove from the heat and wait to add the yeast until the milk mixture reads 70-80 degrees. Add yeast and allow the yeast to proof this should take 5 minutes. 

3. After yeast blooms slowly add to the flour blend and beat with dough hook for two minutes on low speed. Increase the speed to medium low and continue to beat with dough hook for 5 more minutes or until dough ball forms.

4. Divide the dough into 22 round balls place in deep dish round baking stone. Cover the dough with plastic wrap.  Allow the dough to rise for 60 minutes. 

5. Once the dough has rested for 60 minutes in a warm area. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the pan in the center of the preheated oven and bake for 23 minutes or until the rolls turn slightly golden brown. 

6. Enjoy with some homemade apple butter or hot peppers. 

Savory Pork Loin

I had my sister and her family over for the super bowl and I made this savory Porkloin. This slow cooked meat will just melt in your mouth. My sister literally said this meat melts in your mouth.

1 (3-4) pound pork loin

2 bay leaves

2 cups of chicken stock 

4 large potatoes cut into 2 inch chunks, unpeeled

1 cup of baby carrots

1 medium onion cut into large wedges

2 stocks of celery, diced

1/4 cup Dijon Mustard (seeded mustard)

2 tsp dried Rosemary

1/2 tsp dried thyme 

Natures seasoning to sprinkle on meat (if you don’t have this use salt and pepper)

1 tb Rosemary infused olive oil

1 tsp garlic salt

1. Sear the meat in a large sauté pan on all sides, over medium heat, I would suggest for about 6 minutes on each side on medium heat. 

2. Place seared meat in the center of the crockpot. A range the vegetables around the meat. Pour the stock over the meat. 

3. Take the mustard, Rosemary, thyme and garlic salt and make a paste. Place it ontop of the meat evenly. Place bay leaf on top. Cover with lid and allow to cook on low for 8 hours. 

4. Enjoy!

Homemade Fat Free Snickerdoodle Coffee Creamer


My husband loved the last coffee creamer I made from scratch, the pumpkin spice. We recently ran out of the liquid gold and I needed to either purchase another store prepared creamer or making a new. 

This recipe yields 2 cups


2 cups of fat free half and half

1/2 cup dark brown sugar

2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp ground Vietnamese cinnamon 


1. Place in a 2 at sauce pan the water, brown sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla. 

2. Bring to a low boil. Gradually add in the half and half. Allow mixture to come to a boil and remove from heat. Allow to cool and pour into a heat safe container. 

3. Store in the refrigerator and make sure to shake well before each use to evenly distribute the cinnamon (it tends to settle to the bottom).

4. Enjoy with your favorite cup of Joe!