Sunday, May 31, 2015

Turkey Meatball and Goat Cheese Cups

First of all, shout out to mom for the inspiration for these. She made these with regular meatballs and bleu cheese, and they were delicious.

So I decided to change it up a bit, because my love for goat cheese is pretty much unparalleled.

This is a great, easy, and quick appetizer.  It literally takes like 10 minutes to put together, and another 10-15 to bake.  When I served these at a dinner party, they disappeared in minutes!

Turkey Meatball and Goat Cheese Cups


24 premade mini phyllo shells
12 fully cooked turkey meatballs, sliced in half
Goat cheese crumbles
1/4 cup sweet chili sauce

Preheat oven to 350.  Place phyllo cups in baking sheet.

In a large bowl, toss the sliced turkey meatballs in the sweet chili sauce.

Then, place a 1/2 tsp. of goat cheese crumbles in each cup.  Top with a slice of the turkey meatball.

Bake for 10-15 minutes (or until heated through). 

Serve immediately.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Snack Attack

I am a snacker. I've always been a snacker.  Which sometimes can be an issue, but in the last few years I've really made the effort to make my snacks of the healthy variety.

I'm also an elementary school teacher, and snack time is still a time honored tradition there, thankfully.  I eat breakfast right when I get up at 5:45 and lunch is at 11:45.  That's a long stretch, and around 10, I find myself needing a bit of a pick me up.

So I thought I'd share a few of my go-tos, things that are easy to pack and bring along as well as being healthy!

1.  Hummus - I love this protein packed snack so much, and I really haven't found a flavor I don't like.  I recently tried this one and really like bit of a spicy kick.  I generally have it with vegetables, like cucumbers or carrots, but sometimes, especially if I am gearing up for a longer workout or run, I'll dip a few pretzels in it.

2. Popcorn - this particular brand is a recent fave, but really any kind of portion controlled bag (important!) works for me.  If I'm bringing it to school, I will pop it in the morning, so it won't be hot, but it's still crunchy and that works for me.

3.  Hardboiled Egg - I love whipping up a batch on the weekends and having them for snacks throughout the week.  I have been trying to get more protein into my diet as a whole, as well as my snacks, and this is a perfect fit!

4.  Fresh Fruit - I'm not too picky when it comes to fruit, I pretty much will go with what's on sale and create my own little cup of fresh fruit salad.  When I eat fruit, I do need to pair it with a protein, so I either pack one of those hardboiled eggs or....

5.  Cheese Sticks - I've never made a cheese I didn't like.  Thank goodness for portion controlled sticks.  Again, that bump of protein is a great addition to fruit or veggies!

6.  Skim Latte - A caffeine boost with some skim dairy in one.  Some days you just need it.

Have any favorite snacks?  Comment below!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Fabulous Find: Premium Slicer

I've been very intrigued by all the recipes I've seen online and in cookbooks using "veggie" noodles. 

However, I'd never made them. I thought it would be super complicated.

As it turns out?  Not so much.

I took a gamble and got this Premium Slicer on Amazon

It was really affordable and came with storage bag, a cleaning brush, and a top that also doubles as a way to push smaller vegetables into the slicer.

I have used it with zucchini and it was fast and simple!  In less than a minute, I had turned a medium zucchini into noodles!

I ended up using them in a recipe (to be posted soon), but these would be delicious just sauteed up in some coconut oil!

I'm excited to try out some other veggies and even some fruits with this!  Definitely a great tool to add to the healthy cooking arsenal!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Fantastic Friday Four!

A few things that are making me happy this week!

I have a very large obsession with the car clips from Bath and Body Works.  To the point that I have one for every season, and the seasonal scents to go with it!  I got this Blue Blossom with a Turquoise Waters scent and now whenever I get into the car it smells like the beach.  Which makes me happy and yet also makes it tough to go to work!

Celebrated Mother's Day with this fabulousness! I first had a Spicy Chipotle Pineapple Martini on the Carnival Splendor last summer and became obsessed.  It's vodka, chipotle pineapple syrup, pineapple juice, and fresh mint.  It's incredible!  And just sipping it made me feel like I was back on deck.  Only 81 days until I'm back onboard!

Two of my birthday cards, which pretty much sum me up.  Beer and superheroes!  Throw in New York Sports teams and you have me!

Gorgeous two toned roses from my parents for my birthday.  Definitely springing up my living room!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Chocolate Peanut Butter Toffee Bark

Candy is good.  Especially when it is this easy to make.

I was inspired by this Trader Joe's Copycat Cowboy Bark.  I just don't like nuts.  I love peanut butter, but not nuts.  I know.  Weird.

So I did a little switching up.

What I came up with was both sweet and salty, and incredibly easy to make.  It'd be a great dessert to bring to a party because it travels easily and takes so little time to make!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Toffee Bark
(Inspired by Averie Cooks)

4 large Hershey's chocolate bars (about 1 pound)
8 Oreos, chopped
1 1/2 cups of mini pretzels, broken up
1/3 cup of Heath bar toffee bits
2/3 cup peanut butter chips
Coarse sea salt

Line large cookie sheet with wax or parchment paper.  Make sure to have all the toppings prepped so that you can add them while the chocolate is still melted.

In a large microwave safe bowl, break up the chocolate bars and begin melting in 30 second intervals, stirring after each 30 seconds.  Continue to do this until chocolate is melted and smooth.

Spread chocolate on wax paper with an offset spatula or a large flat spatula.  Chocolate should be about a /14 inch thick.

Sprinkle toppings evenly over chocolate.  Use another spatula to press toppings into chocolate a bit.  Sprinkle coarse sea salt over the top.

Place cookie sheet in refrigerator for at least an hour, or in the freezer for 30 minutes.  (I actually had it in the fridge for about 2 hours, so it's definitely something that can be made way in advance!).

When hardened, break into pieces and enjoy!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Fabulous Find: Vita Coco Cafe Mocha Latte

I'm kind of obsessed with all things coconut.

I've pretty much completely switched to a coconut almond milk blend.  I love coconut oil and use it all the time. 

So I decided to venture into the world of coconut water.

I saw this at the store and it intrigued me, because my love for coconut is only surpassed by my love for coffee.

I loved the small ingredient list - espresso, coconut water, and milk.

It is 140 calories, so I had it as a mid morning snack at work.


It rivaled Starbucks to be honest. 

Very creamy and delicious, and it's never bad to get a caffeine hit during the day!

If you like coffee and want to experiment with coconut water, definitely check this out!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Out of the Kitchen: Lush Breath of Fresh Air Toner Water

I've always been intrigued by Lush.  I've tried a soap from them here and there but never much more because there was never a store near me.

Enter the Shops at Nanuet, with a shiny new Lush store.

I'm not going to lie, I went a little crazy in there.

One of my favorite things I bought (and need to repurchase soon!) is the Breath of Fresh Air Toner Water.  It's cooling and refreshing and smells fabulous.  It has aloe vera, herbs, and roses and it's all natural - even has an expiration date!

I use mine as soon as I get up in the morning, after I wash my face, and again at night.  It's perfect before putting on any moisturizer!