Posts Tagged ‘blender’

Tasty Tuesday: Breakfast Pumpkin Smoothie

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013

People often ask me what I eat for breakfast before going on a run. One of my current favorites breakfasts has been a Pumpkin Smoothie*. It’s hearty enough to fuel a long run, but goes down quick and easy. While it’s vegan and gluten-free, it’s certainly not lacking in nutrients or flavor. Check it out!



1 cup of almond milk

1/4 cup rolled oats

2 tablespoons chia seed gel (basically chia seeds soaked in water; awesome fuel for any activity!)

1/2 cup canned pumpkin

1/2 frozen banana (I pre-peel bananas, cut them in half, and place in small baggies to freeze. They are ready to pop in a smoothie straight from the freezer)

2 dates, pitted

1 tablepoon maple syrup

generous sprinkle of cinnamon

dash of giner and nutmeg

3 ice cubes


Soak oats in almond milk for at least 1 hour in the refrigerator. (Quick Tip: I usually soak mine right before bed time so they are ready to right when I wake up). Add all ingredients into blender and blend on high until creamy and smooth.

YUM! I really look forward to waking up to this smoothie. It’s sooo good!!


*Adapted from Oh She Glows 

Tasty Tuesday: Cashew Nut Cream

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

I had a craving for something sweet the other night so I made this simple cashew nut cream and put it over fresh mixed berries. It was sooo yummy and definitely satisfied my sweet tooth. In fact once my kids saw me munching, they ended up eating most all of it. You would have thought they were eating the most decadent dessert ever the way they enjoyed and devoured it. However it was four simple ingredients: cashews, maple syrup, water, and fruit….that’s all!


1 cup of raw cashews

1/2 cup of water

2-3 tablespoons maple syrup (or sweetener of choice; if using syrup, use real maple syrup!)


Put all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth; approximately 2 minutes. Stop and scrape sides of blender as needed to ensure cream is thoroughly mixed.


Serve with fruit of choice. I like to scoop a generous dollop atop mixed berries or chopped apples with cinnamon sprinkled on top (as shown in picture). You could add raisins and sliced almonds with apples for an extra yummy and filling treat. You could also use the cream as a dip for sliced apples, strawberries, or peach slices.  Ohhh, yum…now I am craving some cashew nut cream with fruit, lol!

The recipe above is enough for a few servings, however if you try to cut recipe in half, there likely will not be enough for your blender to mix. You can store any left-over cream in the fridge for a day or two, but chances are you won’t have any left! 🙂



Tasty Tuesday: Kale Smoothie

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

I confess, I am a bit obsessed with kale and finding new, exciting (and tasty) ways to include in my family’s diet. My kids are so used to me putting kale into their food, my 5 year old even asked me if I put kale into his pancakes the other day. Although I assured him there was no kale in his pancakes, he didn’t believe me. “Why are they a funny color then?” he inquired. They were admittedly kind of a funny color but kale was not the culprit this time; the pancakes had blueberries in them. I did however serve the blueberry pancakes with a kale smoothie. 😉

We are on vacation right now which makes eating the way I prefer to eat a challenge…in other words I suck at being vegan right now. Although we did travel with our blender (a true sign of a blender addict) so smoothies have my redemption! Plus they are a cool and refreshing treat during the hot summer weather. This kale smoothies has been a particular recent favorite of mine:


1.5 cups coconut milk

1/4 cup frozen mango

1/4 cup frozen pineapple

1/2 frozen banana (fresh is fine too, I just prefer it frozen)

1 date, pitted (optional, but I tend to include it, especially if I am giving some to the kids)

2 tablespoons hemp seed

3-4 de-stemmed pieces of kale


Blend on high for at least two minutes or until kale is completely blended smooth (you don’t want little chunks of kale in your smoothie). This recipe makes enough to share!

Two quick tips for awesome smoothies:

1. Green smoothies tend to blend best when liquid is on the bottom and greens are on the to, so put your liquid (milk, milk alternative, water, etc) in first and your greens in last.

2. If you have bananas that are about to spoil, peel them, half them, throw them in a plastic baggie, and pop them in the freezer. Then when you want to add a banana to a smoothie, you have a sweet frozen banana ready to go! (extra ripe means extra sweet!).

What do you like to include in your smoothies? Any favorites you want to share? Would love to hear what others are blended up these days! 🙂


Tasty Tuesday: Homemade Almond Milk

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

We drink a lot of almond milk in our family. My top choice brand is Pacific Natural Foods Organic, Unsweetened Almond milk which sells for $2.70 a quart in my area. That is $10.80 a gallon…wowzers! Once I did the math and realized how expensive it was, I decided I really needed to start making my own. Especially considering it’s ridiculously easy to make. It literally takes 2 ingredients and about 5 minutes to make your own almond milk. The trickiest part of it is finding almonds at the best price possible because raw organic almonds can be kind of expensive. However I calculated that for the brand of almond milk I like to buy as long as I purchased almonds for under $11 a pound, it was cheaper to make my own versus buying it. Most of the time I pay about $7 a pound for organic almonds, so it is significantly cheaper to make my own.

There are other benefits to making your own almond milk besides saving money. For example there is virtually no packaging involved. Almonds tend to come in very minimal packaging as opposed to the cartons that almond milk comes in. As with most homemade foods, the flavor of homemade almond milk is far superior to store bought varieties. Additionally more of the nutrients remain intact when it’s made fresh and consumed raw. Another added bonus is you are left with a blob of almond pulp that can actually be used in a variety of different ways/recipes.

So how does one make their own almond milk? It’s as simple as blending 1 cup of almonds and 4 cups of water together for 2 minutes. Then use a cheesecloth to strain the pulp. That’s all! I promise it really is that simple. If you want to add a dash of vanilla and sweeten it to taste you can, however it is quite creamy and delicious all on its own.

Step one: Add one cup of raw almonds and four cups of water to blender.

Step two: Blend for two minutes

Step three: Strain over a bowl covered with cheesecloth. After straining, you may want to gather the fabric and squeeze out any remaining milk. Also some people consider this step optional and don’t strain their almond milk. It really is a matter of personal preference.

Step four: Enjoy! Keep in the fridge and consume within 3-4 days.

This is what the pulp looks like. It will keep in the fridge for a few days or you can freeze it to use at a later time.

Do you make your own nut milk? Any tips to share?


Tasty Tuesday: SALSA!!

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

We got some lovely Roma tomatoes at the Farmer’s Market this weekend. As soon as I saw them I felt inspired to make SALSA. Homemade salsa with chips is definitely a family favorite…and boy do we like our salsa chunky! Here a basic salsa recipe that I have been making for 14 years. Wowzers, am I really old enough to have a 14 year old recipe? Guess so!


6 Roma tomatoes, chopped

1/2 small sweet onion, finely diced

1 jalapeno, diced

1 bunch green onion, chopped

1/2 bunch cilantro, stems removed and chopped

lime juice to taste

salt to taste


Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and serve with your favorite tortilla chips. Salsa taste best if refrigerated 1/2 before serving, although it’s fine to dig right in if you cannot wait.

Salsa-making tips:

  • You can never have enough cilantro…when in doubt, add more!
  • Don’t substitute other varieties of tomatoes; stick with Romas as they truly make the best salsa
  • Be sure to remove the seeds from your jalapeno unless you like your salsa super spicy
  • Be careful when cutting the jalapeno to minimize exposure to your skin. Wear gloves if possible (I often use a plastic baggie in a pinch). If the juices from the jalapeno get onto your skin, it will tingle/burn for a while. Also it’s painful if it gets in your eye or nose.
  • If you don’t have a lot of time or patience for chopping ingredients by hand, you can make salsa in your blender. Pulse tomatoes gently or else your salsa will be very bubbly/watery. If I am in a hurry I might pulse a few of the tomatoes in the blender, along with the other ingredients, and then hand-chop the remaining tomatoes. This helps keep the consistency on the chunky side, but speeds up the process. I do prefer to chop everything by hand so this method is reserved for emergency purposes only. (you know how those salsa emergencies can be ;))
  • Play with the flavoring to create new salsas. You can add chopped pineapple or mango for a sweeter salsa. You could add garlic powder or garlic salt (but not fresh garlic) if you like the taste of garlic. You can use different peppers to experiment with the heat level.

Fresh homemade salsa not only taste spectacular, it’s also a healthy snack. The tomatoes are packed full of antioxidants so don’t be shy about enjoying your homemade salsa and chips…heck I don’t even need the chips; I can eat homemade salsa by the spoonful! 🙂

Do you have a favorite salsa recipe? Care to share your secrets for delicious salsa? Would love to hear some fresh ideas!