Are you looking for a quick, easy and healthy lunch? Then give these Tuna Pita Pockets a try! The are yummy, full of crunch and flavor.
For the on plan dressing I used Boathouse Greek Yogurt Ranch and it added so much flavor! If your dressing has more than 2 carbs per serving, just use a bit less than 2 tablespoons. If you need more moisture you could add some 1% Cottage Cheese or 0% Fage Greek yogurt.
Another good idea would be to add some garlic powder or onion powder for more flavor. Pair this lunch with some fruit and you are good to go!
I can tuna
1 cup chopped greens or chopped salad mix
2 tablespoons plan approved dressing
5-6 cherry tomatoes halved
1 Joseph’s Pita pocket
The holidays are gone, but the junk food around my house still exists! So I am trying to balance eating right with a little bit of non-plan chocolate or sweet treats! The good news is I started exercising before Christmas and I have kept it up through the holidays and into the New Year! I am not a New Year’s Resolution kind of person, I truly just want to make healthy decisions all year long so this post won’t be all about my New Year’s resolutions, but I do have some goals for this year.
For those of you who don’t know I have started following and creating recipes for the Trim Healthy Mama Eating Plan. On this plan I have cut out a lot of sugar and gluten products from my diet and I lost about 7 pounds in 3 months. I know that is not a lot of weight but I also have never followed the plan 100% so imagine if you did! Imagine how wonderful you would feel. The basis of this plan is to eat every 4 hours and to eat meals that fit into certain categories. S meals are Satisfying meals and have higher amounts of fats and E meals are lean proteins with a carb source and you make sure to space these meals out (about 4 hours apart) to give your body a chance to digest each fuel type. This is a very, very basic explanation of the plan, if you would like to learn more about this plan join the or visit the Trim Healthy Mama Website for more information.
One of my goals this year to drink more smoothies in the morning even though its winter! Burr! I don’t love smoothies in cold weather, but I have found that if I exercise like I want to and drink a smoothie right after when my body is still warm, its not too bad. Why do I want to drink smoothies? I feel like I loose weight faster when I start the morning with a nutrient and protein rich smoothie paired with an on plan muffin (my favorite muffin is the Peanut Butter Cookie Muffin (page 371 of Trim Healthy Table cookbook) which is a FP and pairs with any breakfast) or piece of sprouted grain toast. This kick starts my metabolism and prepares my body for the day ahead. Smoothies also make a great breakfast to eat on the run! I have even started making smoothies for my husband the night before and he tells me they are still good in the morning.
My newest smoothie recipe is an Orange Strawberry Green Smoothie (recipe below). It’s so yummy and refreshing! I bet your wondering what the “green” is in the smoothie. Well it’s Frozen Okra! Yes, okra! The THM plan uses a lot of okra and I have found if used correctly you can’t even taste it, nor will anyone know its there if you don’t tell them. I don’t have all the ideas behind Okra researched myself, but its like putting spinach in your smoothie. It packs in a green vegetable that has lots of nutrients that your body needs and you can’t even tell that is there. I challenge you to use some okra this year. My husband I love the casserole recipes that use Laughing Cow Cheese and Okra to make creamy delicious sauces. (See this post for recipes I created with this type of sauce.) Okay back to the smoothie recipe you have been waiting for, I hope you enjoy it!
1-½ cups of Almond, Cashew or Alternative Milk of Choice
½ cup of Frozen Okra (hint on using Okra below)
1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar (optional)
1 tablespoon Peanut Butter Powder (no or low sugar varieties)
1 tablespoon Vanilla/Plain/Strawberry Whey Isolate Protein Powder (tip below)
3-4 Whole Frozen Strawberries
2 small Satsuma’s/Madrins peeled or 1 large orange peeled (NO SEEDS)
1-3 Tablespoons Alternative Sweetener of Choice
Step 1: Pour milk and apple cider vinegar in blender and add frozen okra. To avoid your okra getting slimy blend these three ingredients right away until no green bits show.
Step 2: Add peanut butter powder, sweetener, peeled oranges and frozen strawberries. Blend until smooth.
Step 3: Add Protein Powder. We add this at the very end because if you blend whey protein powder for too long you smoothie double in volume because the more you blend whey protein powder it because very fluffy and foamy, doubling the size of your smoothie. If you like that consistency blend you protein powder as long as you wish.
Why do I love casseroles? Because they are easy to make, provide left overs or feed a crowd! Also, they smell delicious, are warm, filling and easy to pair with a side of veggies or a salad for a delicious meal on a cold winter evening.
This casserole came to life on Sunday afternoon when we had been gone all weekend, but needed a small dinner and leftovers to start our week. I created it from ingredients I knew I already had in my kitchen. Maybe I should have called it Kitchen Sink Casserole? The first time I made it, it was a THM-S dish, because I didn’t rinse my meat. Knowing I cook way to many THM-S dishes I wanted to find a way to turn it into a THM-E meal. Below is the revised recipe. Don’t forget to rinse ground beef (if you use it) really well under hot water before putting it in the casserole. This removes all that excess fat and grease.
Some things you could add to this dish to make it your own are a can of diced green chilies, diced up chicken breast instead of ground meat, diced tomatoes, or corn. (The casserole in the photos is made from shredded pork (S), diced tomatoes, onion and pepper seasoning blend without the beans and rice. Serve with baked tortilla chips for dipping.)
This is a super simple casserole to put together and if you are following THM and have made any of the cheesy casseroles in their cookbooks you might just have all of these ingredients on hand! Yes, this does contain the secret ingredient okra, you can leave it out if you wish, but it thickens the sauce up nicely and adds some good nutritional value to the dish. I hope you enjoy this recipe!
Creamy Enchilada Casserole (THM - E 8 Servings)
1.5 lbs. lean ground Grass Fed beef/Chicken/Turkey
1 jar salsa (heat intensity - your preference)
1 can pinto beans
1 cup Frozen Seasoning blend (peppers and onions)
1 cup cooked brown rice
1-tablespoon onion powder
1/2 cup Okra
4 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese
6 Wedges Laughing Cow Cheese
1-cup veggie broth
1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Heat oven to 375 degrees
Brown ground beef in frying pan, then rinse under hot water, add back to frying pan and cook with 1/2 cup salsa, pinto beans and 1 cup frozen seasoning blend.
Spray 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray.
Spread meat mixture in the bottom of baking dish.
Top with all but 2 tablespoons of salsa.
Layer with cooked brown rice, then sprinkle with garlic powder, onion powder and salt to taste.
In blender: almond milk, veggie broth and okra, blend until there are no green bits of okra showing. Add 4 oz. cream cheese, 6 wedges laughing cow cheese and 2 table spoons salsa, blend well. Pour over contents in the baking dish, top with shredded cheddar.
Bake for 25 - 30 minutes until heated through and bubbly. Serve with a side green salad or steamed veggies.
These cookies are not quite like traditional molasses cookies, but they do meet expectations for a sweet treat. The following recipe is adapted in THM style, but the changes to the recipe have altered the way they bake, they don’t spread out thin like traditional molasses cookies but they still taste great and make for a perfect treat.
I believe that if you kept the butter at 3/4 of a cup instead of reducing it like I did that they would probably bake more like the traditional recipe, but I was aiming for an E cookie instead of a crossover. I have countered the lack of spreading by pressing my cookie down with a fork before baking, like a peanut butter cookie and this has seemed to help. The cookies are still soft and chewy like you expect from a molasses cookie.
I altered a few more ingredients and methods when I made my cookies than listed above. I used 1/2 a cup of monk fruit and approximately 1/2 cup of honey for my “sugar” sources. Yes, I know that honey is considered off plan but I tend to like it’s flavor better. I also did not roll all my cookies in Pyure sweetener before baking because I experienced an aftertaste from the stevia and I liked the cookies better without the extra sweetener. I know that a lot of people feel that stevia doesn’t have an aftertaste, so it really depends on your own preference. I also found that in my oven the cookies only needed 8 minutes baking time to turn out perfectly.
If you make any other variations or use more butter I would love to hear about your results. I hope you enjoy this recipe.
Sprouted Molasses Cookies (THM -E)
2 cups Sprouted Whole Wheat Flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-3/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup plus 1/3 cup Sweetener of choice
1 egg, room temperature
1/4 cup molasses
Mix together all the dry ingredients except 1/3 of a cup of sweetener
Melt the butter and cream in sugar and egg, then stir in molasses.
Mix with the dry ingredients until a dough forms.
Refrigerate 1 hour.
Pre heat oven to 375
Roll chilled dough in balls and roll in reserved sweetener. (Optional)
Press down with a fork. (Optional)
Bake 8-10 mins
This recipe actually comes from my sister. The funny thing is that she isn’t a THM’er and she wasn’t even trying to make a recipe that worked in my eating plan, but she did and it was so good!
My first time creating this soup myself I used Italian sausage and realized after the fact that that meat combined with the beans probably created a crossover instead of on E.
When my sister made it for me and my husband she used ground chicken instead of sausage. That’s the wonderful thing about soup like this, there are so many ways you can make it and it will still taste good.
Pair this soup with a side salad and a sprouted grain roll or peice of toast for a complete meal.
Italian Minestrone Crockpot Soup (THM-E)
1 lb lean meat (ground chicken or turkey)
1-14.5 oz diced tomatoes
3-14.5 oz chicken broth
1-15.5 oz can rinsed and drained Great Northern Beans
1 Med zucchini chopped
1 cup copped carrots
1/2 medium onion diced
2 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
Brown meat of choice in a frying pan with the onions. (if you want to use Italian sausage I believe the meal would then become a crossover)
While cooking put all other ingredients in the crockpot
Rinse meat under hot water to get rid of excess grease, add to crockpot
Cook on low for 8 hour or high for 4 hours
Serve with a green salad and sprouted toast or roll.
When I started creating this dish, I originally wanted it to be an E meal, but after I created the recipe and started calculating the fat content I realized I had an S with an S helper and that I was going to have to reduce some of the fat content for it to be an E. So I have included in the recipe both E and S options.
I based the idea for this dish off of a recipe I saw on Pinterest and the Queso Chicken Bake in the Trim Healthy Table Cookbook on page 123, which by the away is another family favorite. I was concerned that my new dish would not have enough flavor or that it would be dry. But I baked it and served it to my husband with the disclaimer that it was newly created recipe and asked him for an honest review. I was blown away! He loved it! As I tasted it I also enjoyed it! It reminded me of comfort food at its finest and another family favorite was born! Yes, I was honest with my husband and told him there was okra in it, but if you have picky eaters, you don’t have to tell, because they won’t even be able to see it or taste it.
We will be eating this one quite often. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole (THM-S (with S helper) or E) 8 Servings
3 cooked chicken breasts shredded (I cooked mine in the crockpot an then shredded it.)
1.5 cups of brown rice cooked
1 can of chicken broth
1 cup okra (optional, but helps thicken your sauce)
Parmesan (green can)
4 tablespoon bacon bits (1.5 grams fat or less per tablespoon)
8 slices lean ham lunch meat cubed
12 wedges laughing cow cheese
8 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese
2 tablespoon bacon bits (1.5 grams fat or less per tablespoon)
6 slices lean ham lunch meat cubed
8 laughing cow cheese wedges
3 oz less fat cream cheese
Preheat oven to 375
Place shredded chicken, cooked rice and bacon bits in a greased 9x13 baking dish and mix, season with salt, pepper and garlic powder
lay ham across the top of the chicken
In a blender blend the okra, cream cheese, laughing cow cheese, chicken broth until smooth, pour over mixture in the baking dish
Sprinkle with a little bit of Parmesan
Bake for 30-35 mins until golden on top.
My husband and I have always loved spaghetti squash and there are so many various ways you can serve it. I have made Asian, Italian and Mexican dishes out of it. Spaghetti squash is the perfect replacement for noodles or rice in many dishes and so much healthier for you.
This week when I went to the local pumpkin patch with my sister for our annual pumpkin outing the stand was also selling squash for only $1! We both chose the LARGEST squash we could find. It was such a great deal! Then my only dilemma was what THM E meal could I make out of it. Why an E meal? Because, we have been eating too many Crossover and S meals. It’s best to mix up the meal types for weight loss. The crossovers more closely resemble what we ate before THM, so I am challenging myself to cook more E meals and figure out how to make them complete meals.
In true E fashion I introduce to you my Crockpot Chicken Fajita Spaghetti Squash Bowl, a quick and easy one bowl dinner for those of you who like simple. But if you like to serve sides with your meals, you can pair this with a nice side salad with an E dressing and some oven roasted veggies.
Leftovers microwave well and are just as enjoyable the next day! The recipe and instructions are below.
Crockpot Chicken Fajita Spaghetti Squash Bowl (Crockpot, THM-E)
1 Large Spaghetti Squash
3-5 Chicken Breasts (depending on how many people your feeding)
8 oz. Frozen Seasoning Blend (onions, red peppers and green peppers)
2 6.5 oz. cans mushrooms
4 fresh tomatoes sliced (optional)
1/2 large onion sliced (optional)
1 15.5 oz. jar of salsa
½ package gluten free Fajita Seasoning or
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp mineral salt
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp chili powder
Cayenne to taste
Light Sour Cream – 3 grams of fat or less per 2 tablespoons
0% Greek yogurt
Shredded Cheese (if doing a crossover or for growing children)
Place thawed or frozen chicken breast in the bottom of your crockpot.
Then add the un-drained cans of mushrooms, frozen seasoning blend, salsa, tomatoes, onion slices and seasoning to the crockpot. Cover and cook on low for 7-8.5 hours.
Depending on how you are cooking your spaghetti squash you will want to start cooking it about about 20 – 45 minutes before you want to serve dinner. I like to microwave my squash, but poking two holes on either side making sure you get into the center of the squash so pressure can escape while cooking, then I microwave my squash for about 4-5 minute increments until the outside skin is soft to the touch and gives when you poke it.
While your squash I cooking you want to shred or cut up your chicken in the crockpot so that it is spread evenly throughout and mixed in with your peppers, onions and mushrooms.
Then once you are able to handle your squash without burning yourself, you want to cut it in half, clean out the seeds an then shred the meat with a fork to make squash “noodles.”
After you have made your noodles, serve with squash in the bottom of the bowl, with the crockpot mixture on top, then your optional toppings! Enjoy!
I started the Trim Healthy Mama (THM) lifestyle about 6 months ago and I am loving the recipes. I am in no way a die-hard THM eater. I probably go off plan several times a week, but with each recipe I find that I can use to replace something that I love to eat, I am getting closer to being on track than ever before.
I love to bake and cook, so finding ways to still do those things in a healthy fashion makes me very happy! I have had a couple of kitchen failures on the THM plan and everyone will. I had a pizza crust that just turned into a soggy crummy mess. (P.S. My not so picky husband asked me not to make that one again.) I tried to replace almond flower with THM baking blend in a pumpkin muffin recipe and tried to add some applesauce and milk I think because it didn’t look anything like muffin batter; another kitchen fail. (I didn’t even serve these to my hubby, I tasted them and threw them out.)
I still don’t have the E, S, Crossover and FP completely figured out, but I do know what’s on plan and what is not. So my recipes won’t be labeled with a category, it will be up to you to figure out how they fit into your eating plan.
I did learn this week from the every so helpful THM Facebook page, that sprouted grain bread is always an E, but it depends on what you eat with it that will either keep it and E or turn it into a crossover. My friend Jennifer, who introduced to me to THM loves to remind me that crossovers are on plan, so don’t worry if you eat a few of them. She is such an encouragement in the whole THM lifestyle.
I have also found that some of the on plan sweeteners don’t agree with my system, so I have added in some honey and pure organic maple syrup, but these can always be replaced with on plan sweeteners of your choice.
This week I started experimenting with sprout whole-wheat flour. Which can be hard to find in the store, I bought my first bag at our local food co-op, then after success with a few recipes I purchase a larger bag on Amazon. (Amazon is great for those hard to locate ingredients so that you don’t have to run all over town looking. I think my first few THM shopping trips took me half a day because I had to read all the packages to make sure it was on plan, but once you do it a few times you will know exactly what to buy.)
My first success with sprouted whole-wheat flour was a very yummy dinner roll! This recipe is super easy and only takes 30 minutes to whip up. If you have never used yeast before, don’t be scared. Its not that hard to navigate, just make sure your water isn’t boiling, but warm. You should be able to stick your finger in it to test the water. The honey is what helps the yeast work and there is not so much in the in recipe that you need to be concerned about it throwing you off plan, as these are a dinner roll, not a sweet roll. So on to the shopping list and recipe:
Spouted Whole-Wheat Flour
Rapid Rise Yeast
Grass Fed Butter
I apologize in advance I did not take photos of this recipe, but future blogs will have photos of what I actually made and any issue I came across or hints to make it easier.
I also must give credit to where credit is due. This recipe was adapted from www.mymontanakitchen.com/30-minute-rolls-with-sprouted-flour*, and was created by Sarah Hardy another THM blogger who has wonderful, wonderful recipes on her blog. I have tried quite a few of them and they have all be great!
30 Minute Rolls with Sprouted Grain Flour
1 Cup plus 2 TBS Warm Water
1 Package Active Dry Yeast (or 2 TABLESPOONS)
1 TBS Honey
½ TSP Mineral Salt
1/16 TSP Pure Stevia ( I used half a 1/8 TSP as I don’t have a “Doonk”)
2 ½ cups Sprouted Whole-Wheat Flour
1 tablespoon melted butter
For Egg Wash
1 egg white (I just poured some eggs whites from the carton and used what I needed)
2 TSP water (I didn’t use the water I just used pure egg whites)
1. Preheat oven to 400.
2. In a small bowl, combine warm water, yeast and honey. Stir until dissolved. Let stand for 2-3 minutes. In a few moments, you should begin to see bubbles form on the top of the water (this shows your yeast is working).
3. In a large mixing bowl, combine salt, stevia, and sprouted flour.
4. Add yeast mixture to flour mixture, then add melted butter and egg. Mix until combined and a soft dough forms.
5. After all the ingredients are mixed together, turn out the dough onto a flat surface lightly dusted with more sprouted flour. Knead 8-10 times, or until the dough is smooth.
6. Using a dough cutter, divide the dough into 4 equal sections. Then divide each section into 3 parts. This will give you exactly 12 dinner rolls.
7. Shape each piece of dough into a roll and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Let rest for 10 minutes.
8. Brush tops with egg white wash, if desired.
9. Bake for 10 minutes, or until tops begin to turn golden.
My tips and hints
When I make yeast bread I make sure not to knead in to much extra flour as that can make your bread very dry and not quite as enjoyable. I only use as much flour as is needed for me to be able to handle and form the dough into the desired shape
I also do not own a dough cutter, so I use my best judgment to divide the dough evenly.
These dinner rolls compliment any E meal perfectly and they freeze well. After I made my first batch, my husband and I enjoyed them with the “Wipe Your Mouth BBQ” recipe from the Trim Healthy Mama cookbook on page 43. Then I tossed the rest in the freezer and we have been pulling them out to go with E soups when we need a little something extra.
I hope you enjoy this recipe. Coming soon, my adventures in sprouted whole-wheat flour cinnamon rolls, BAM Cake and Fajita Stuffed Spaghetti Squash!
*This recipe was adapted from the website www.mymontanakitchen.com. I have made adjustments and changes to suite my taste buds.