Almond Meal Blueberry Skinny Muffin

almond-meal-blueberry-skinny-muffin

Time for another muffin recipe.  I was craving something that would taste just like a blueberry muffin without all of the sugar and carbs in a traditional blueberry muffin.  This muffin is grain free & sugar free.  If you are a Fit For Photos Warrior this muffin will fill you up without going off your program.  Enjoy!

Almond meal blueberry skinny muffin

Using Almond meal guarantees this muffin will cook up light, fluffy and very, very moist!

Almond Meal Blueberry Skinny Muffin:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 Whole Egg  or 3 Tbs. Egg Whites
  • 1 tsp. Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 16 blueberries
  • 1/4 cup of Almond meal (Flax meal can also be used)
  • 1 tsp. organic pure vanilla extract
  • 1 packet of Stevia & 1 packet of Xylitol (or 2, if you only have one or the other)

DIRECTIONS:

  • Add egg, vanilla & oil to mug
  • Stir in baking powder with a fork making sure it is fully incorporated
  • Stir in 1/4 cup of Almond Meal
  • Gently fold in the blueberries, reserving a few for the top of the muffin
  • Add those few blueberries to the top of the batter
  • Microwave for 50 – 55 seconds.  The muffin will still look a bit wet.  Don’t over cook.  It will firm up a bit as it cools and be fluffy and moist.

CARB & SUGAR INFO: Carbs: 10.6g, Sugars: 3.4 gms

Almond Meal – 6 carbs, 1 sugar ,  Blueberries -  3.2 carbs, 2.2 sugars per 16 berries.  Egg  - 0.4 carbs, 0.2 sugars,  Baking Powder – 1 carb, 0 sugars,  Olive Oil – 0 carbs, 0 sugars

Gluten Free Almond & Flax Meal Crust Pizza

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Yes, I know, I seem to be obsessed with pizza, right?  The truth of the matter is simply that I love bread and since I am not really eating it anymore (for now), I find myself wanting pizza.  I think it is a great way to feel like you are cheating when you are not.

For those of you following Jorge Cruise’s Belly Fat Cure Fast Track, this is perfect and so Belly Good!

I have posted recipes before for another flax crust pizza and also recently a cauliflower crust pizza.  This recipe is sort of a compilation of what I think worked in each of the recipes.  I substituted about 1/4 of the almond meal with flax meal.  I like the texture and crunch that flax meal lends to the crust.  The almond meal keeps it light!  I know the last time I made this pizza I had thought abut using all almond meal but I find that it doesn’t tend to get as crunchy or hold up as well and it is rich.  I must say the crust was really good this time.  Nice crunch and not dry.  You won’t choke on this like I have heard some have on other recipes, lol.

Here is the recipe:

Heat oven to 375 degrees F

INGREDIENTS:
Crust:

  • 1 1/4 Cups Almond Meal
  • 1/2 cup Flax Meal
  • 2 Large eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 Tbs Coconut Oil
  • 1/4  cup Parmesan cheese

Topping it off:

  • 1/4 cup Low Sugar Tomato sauce (your favorite brand)
  • Granulated Garlic
  • Grated Parmesan
  • Shredded Cheese (your choice of favorites, mix it up)
  • Sliced vegetables: Bell Peppers, Onion, Mushrooms, Jalapenos, Olives, Meats, etc

DIRECTIONS:

  • Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl
  • Press this dough into a lightly oiled cookie sheet
  • Bake at 375 degrees for 10 – 15 minutes until slightly golden
  • Add your low sugar sauce as needed
  • Sprinkle a bit of Granulated Garlic on top of sauce
  • Sprinkle a bit of Grated Parmesan
  • Add Toppings – Bell Peppers, Mushrooms, Onions, Jalapenos, Onion, Meats (if desired)
  • Add Shredded Cheese of your choice
  • Bake again at 375 degrees until cheese is golden and bubbly! About another 13 minutes

Mmm Good! Makes 4 servings -

Coconut Oil – Has Beaten It’s "Bad Rap"



I have had several people email me asking if the coconut oil that I consume and that Jorge Cruise uses in some of his recipes is safe to eat.  I will admit that when I first heard about the idea of eating coconut oil it brought on the same concerns I have heard throughout my entire life.  Coconut oil has gotten a bad rap all these years.  It was believed that it would clog up your arteries and cause heart disease.  After all of these years and thanks in part to the vegan community coconut oil has made a huge comeback and the scientific studies are making this natural oil a new healthy fat alternative.
Coconut oil is also great as a moisturizer for your skin and a conditioner for your hair. 
Keep in mind that any fat that is overly consumed can be unhealthful and lead to obesity.  Portion control is always key to a healthy, clean eating lifestyle!

Read this to find out some more amazing benefits of coconut oil!

  • Coconut oil is antiviral, antifungal (kills yeast too) and antibacterial. It attacks and kills viruses that have a lipid (fatty) coating, such as herpes, HIV, hepatitis C, the flu, and mononucleosis. It kills the bacteria that cause pneumonia, sore throats, dental cavities, urinary tract infections, meningitis, gonorrhea, food poisoning, pneumonia, and many, many more bacterial infections. It kills the fungus/yeast infections that cause candida, ringworm, athletes foot, thrush, jock itch, diaper rash and more.
  • Coconut oil is called the “low fat” fat. It actually acts like a carbohydrate in that it is quickly broken down in the liver and used as quick energy. It is NOT stored like other fats. It boosts one’s energy and endurance. Many athletes use it blended into their drinks. It also supports thyroid function and increases your metabolism (great if you want to lose weight).
  • Coconut oil improves digestion and absorption of fat soluble vitamins, minerals (especially calcium and magnesium), and amino acids. It improves the body’s use of blood glucose and improves insulin secretion and absorption (great for type II diabetes). In fact, many diabetics (type I and type II) use it to reduce their symptoms. One’s risk of diabetes decreases with regular use of coconuts and coconut oil. And as we already mentioned, cooking with coconut oil does not create any harmful byproducts.
  • Coconut oil helps the body heal and repair faster. It aids and supports immune function, protecting us from a variety of cancers.
  • Coconut oil, contrary to much hubbub, is good for your heart. It keeps our blood platelets from sticking together (and causing dangerous clots). Regular users of coconut oils have a much lower chance of atherosclerosis (clogging of the arteries), arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), and strokes. Coconut oil can lower your blood pressure.
  • Coconut oil is a natural antioxidant. It protects the body from free radical damage and prevents premature aging and degenerative diseases.
  • Finally, coconut oil is the best massage oil on the planet. What it does to your skin, you simply have to witness. It forms a barrier against infections, softens and moisturizes your skin, and prevents wrinkling, sagging, and age spots. It promotes healthy hair and complexion, protects from any damaging UV rays.

Excerpt from: http://www.mnwelldir.org/docs/nutrition/coconut.htm

Here is another great article about coconut oil:
http://www.coconutresearchcenter.org/

Cauliflower Crust Pizza – Perfect for Jorge Cruise Diet

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Finally, a wonderful, healthy alternative to a beloved, fattening, American pastime!  Pizza!  I love it but since I am not eating grains or “white stuff” it can be difficult to come up with tasty ways to enjoy our favorite foods.  I posted a recipe for a terrific flax meal pizza crust.  It is also a delicious recipe but for those who have to watch their flax seed intake or want to eat more vegetables then swapping out the flax seed for cauliflower is the way to go!  Cauliflower is one of my favorite vegetables that one can use in so many unique, flavorful and healthy ways.  More recipes to come soon.

My Version Was Topped with Mushrooms and Golden Peppers!

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cooked, riced cauliflower
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp crushed garlic
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt (I use Granulated Garlic)
  • Olive oil (optional)
  • Pizza sauce
  • Shredded cheese
  • Favorite toppings*

Directions:

To “Rice” the Cauliflower:
  1. Take 1 large head of fresh cauliflower, remove stems and leaves, and chop the florets into chunks. Add to food processor and pulse until it looks like grain. Do not over-do pulse or you will puree it. (If you don’t have a food processor, you can grate the whole head with a cheese grater).
  2. Place the riced cauliflower into a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 8 minutes (some microwaves are more powerful than others, so you may need to reduce this cooking time). There is no need to add water, as the natural moisture in the cauliflower is enough to cook itself.

One large head should produce approximately 3 cups of riced cauliflower. The remainder can be used to make additional pizza crusts immediately, or can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week.

To Make the Pizza Crust:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup cauliflower, egg and mozzarella. Add oregano, crushed garlic and garlic salt, stir. Transfer to the cookie sheet, and using your hands, pat out into a 9″ round. Optional: Brush olive oil over top of mixture to help with browning.
  3. Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven.
  5. To the crust, add sauce, toppings and cheese.
  6. Place under a broiler at high heat just until cheese is melted (approximately 3-4 minutes).

Enjoy!
*Note that toppings need to be precooked since you are only broiling for a few minutes.

Source: Eat. Drink. Smile.
Adapted from Your Lighter Side.

Skinny Brownie – Chocoholic Bliss & Gluten Free

skinny-brownie2

Yes, I am back with another recipe in a mug.  Well, not a mug exactly but a cute ramican.
I am always on the quest for something good and chocolate.  I recently saw a recipe for a 1 minute brownie on happyhealthymama.com.  It sounded great and she had tweaked it from a more fattening recipe to a decent lower calorie and fat dessert.

I loved the idea but I wanted something that would be a grain free, gluten free chocolate wonder that cooks in only 30 – 40 seconds.
Here is my rendition:

This is pretty darn good.  I had to play around with it a bit, but the end result is super satisfying.

SKINNY BROWNIE

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 Tbs. Egg Whites or Egg Substitute
  • 1 – 2 tsp. Coconut or Olive Oil (I find a bit more oil makes it more moist)
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking Powder (add less if you want a gooier texture)
  • 1 Tbs. Cocoa Powder (unsweetened)
  • 2 packet of Stevia sweetener (Xylitol can be substituted but will ad 4 more carbs per packet)
  • 1 splash of Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Tbs. of Almond meal (Flax meal can also be used)

DIRECTIONS:

  • Add egg whites to mug
  • Stir in baking powder with a fork making sure it is fully incorporated
  • Add the coconut oil (it will break up and dissolve a bit)
  • Add cocoa powder
  • Add Stevia & a splash of the Vanilla extract
  • Stir in the 1 Tbs. of Almond Meal
  • Microwave for 30 - 40 seconds DON’T OVER COOK!

Some pointers about making the muffin:

  • Be sure your baking powder is really fresh (use less, just a pinch if you want a gooey brownie)
  • You can use either coconut oil or olive oil
  • Add nuts if desired
  • If you cut out the Xylitol and just use Stevia you can save a whopping 8 carbs.

CARB & SUGAR INFO: 14 Carbs, 1g Sugar
Almond Meal - 1 carbs, 1 sugar per 1 Tbs. serving
Xylitol – 4 carbs, 0 sugars per serving
Cocoa Powder - 3 carbs, 0 sugars
Egg Whites – 0 carbs, 0 sugars
Baking Powder – 1 carb, 0 sugars
Vanilla Extract – 1 carb, 0.5 sugar
Coconut Oil – 0 carbs

Zucchini Hash Browns – Stay on Track with Jorge Cruise

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Whether it’s Atkins or Jorge Cruise or just plain simple and clean eating, these little mounds of zucchini goodness will be a welcome treat. If you have cravings for potatoes or starchy things then these “hash browns” made from shredded zucchini will help to conquer those cravings and keep your carb intake down as well!
Zucchini Hash Browns
(From a recipe by Tina T.)
INGREDIENTS
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 dash pepper
  • 1 dash salt
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1  1/2 cups shredded zucchini
DIRECTIONS
  1. Heat oil in skillet.
  2. Mix together zucchini, slightly beaten eggs, salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder.
  3. Drop by spoonfuls into the hot skillet.
  4. After browning on one side flip and brown the other side.
  5. Note: you can substitute egg whites to lower calorie, cholesterol, and fat counts. (1 egg white is about 3 Tbs)
  6. You can also add a bit of shredded onion to the mix if you want them to be more like a potato latke

Week 4, Day 2 The Belly Fat Cure – Jorge Cruise

I transitioned over from The Belly Fat Cure – Fast Track , to Jorge Cruise’s Original Belly Fat Cure Program.  The major differene is that you can have some Healthy grains or “Belly Good Carbs”.  I am still watching my sugar intake, basically, not really eating any sugar, but I am letting myself have 1 or 2 pieces of fruit a day (when I want). 

Since being on Jorges program I have come to realize that you really don’t need to eat all of these processed foods and sugar.  Once your body gets used to not having them, you don’t really miss them.  I know if I want to have a piece of “white” bread, or a cookie every now and then, I can, but I find myself not wanting to even go there. 

I have come up with new ways to satisfy my love of chocolate and carbs in a healthy way!

I have lost about 8 1/2 lbs since the start.  The scale stopped moving after the first 2 weeks, but I am stilllosong inched which leads me t believe that some of the original weight loss was what Jorge calls “False Belly Fat Loss” meaning that most of your initial weight loss is water & waste, so I am not discouraged as I know that the decrease in my measurements proves that the 8 1/2 lbs is now actual fat loss.  I’ll take it!

Cilantro Pesto Grilled Shrimp – Perfect for Jorge Cruise’s Belly Fat Cure

Since I had left over grilled Pasilla Chile Peppers and a nice big bunch of fresh cilantro I decided to make a flavorful low calorie, low carb, low sugar entree.  The result was fabulicious.  Just a few easy steps and some basic ingredients from your pantry and dinner is ready in no time.  With simple clean food like this it is easy to stay on the Fast Track and enjoy what you are eating.
Grilled Cilantro Pesto Shrimp
INGREDIENTS:
  •  1 – 1/2 cups of fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 – 1/3 cup olive oil
  •  Fresh garlic clove to taste (1 or 2)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Juice from a small Lemon & Lime
  • Juice from a small Mandarin Orange
  • 1/2 chopped jalapeno or Serrano Chile
  • 1/2 of a cooked Pasilla Chile chopped
  • 30 Med/Lg Raw Shrimp, cleaned and peeled
DIRECTIONS:
  •  Add cilantro and garlic to a small food processor and chop finely
  • Gradually add in olive oil and watch it emulsify
  • Add squeezes of Lemon, Lime & Orange Juices.  A couple of TBS of each should do it.
  • Go easy on the orange juice , you don’t want it too sweet
  • Add in the jalapeno , pasilla , salt & pepper
  • Continue processing until it gets thicker.
  • Set aside about 1/4 of the marinade as a topping for your shrimp.
  • Marinade the shrimp in the remaining marinade for at least 15 minutes or longer
  • Grill in a grill pan or skillet until done.
  • Remove to a serving dish
  • Drizzle remaining Cilantro Pesto sauce over the shrimp.
  • Add a squeeze of lime if desired.
  • Enjoy!

Beef with Roasted Chiles & Golden Peppers – Fabulicious

I am on Week 3, Day 3 of Jorge Cruise’s “The Belly Fat Cure – Fast Track”.  I have been having fun coming up with new recipes to satisfy my taste buds and keep my carb & sugar intake lower.  No Problem!  For lunch how about a nice serving of Beef with Roasted Chiles & Golden Peppers?

I roasted these Pasilla Chiles on my indoor grill. They were popping and crackling and they smelled so good!

Some Like It Hot! Jorge’s Skinny Muffin Gets Some Flava’

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OK, So by now I am sure you have figured out that I tend to obsess over certain things.  Food is one of them.  I am constantly trying to find new ways to make over great recipes.  I love chocolate and on the opposite end, I also love foods that are spicy & sassy!

One of my favorite things to eat is Jalapeno Cheese “Anything”.  So why not?  With a few minor adjustments this simple skinny muffin can be any flavor you want.

FABULICIOUS!
Ooh La La, Spice Up My Life!
This muffin cooked up super light and fluffy!  It was also very, very moist!  I used almond meal instead of the flax meal and it had a very nice “corn meal” texture which was perfect for this savory muffin.  I substituted egg whites for the whole egg.

Jalapeno Cheddar Skinny Muffin:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 Tbs. Egg Whites or 1 Whole Egg
  • 1 tsp. Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 2 Tbs Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1 Tbs Sliced Jalapenos, or more (the nacho slices in a can or jar)
  • 1/4 cup of Almond meal (Flax meal can also be used)

DIRECTIONS:

  • Add egg whites to mug
  • Stir in baking powder with a fork making sure it is fully incorporated
  • Add the olive oil
  • Stir in 1/4 cup of Almond Meal
  • Stir in the Cheddar Cheese
  • Fold in the Sliced Jalapenos
  • Sprinkle a bit of shredded cheddar on the top
  • Microwave for 50 – 55 seconds

CARB & SUGAR INFO: 8g Carbs, 0g Sugar
Almond Meal – 6 carbs, 1 sugar per 1/4 cup serving
Cheddar Cheese -  0 carbs, 0 sugars
Jalapenos – 1 carb, 0.5 sugar
Egg Whites – 0 carbs, 0 sugars
Baking Powder – 1 carb, 0 sugars
Olive Oil – 0 carbs, 0 sugars