I’m no culinary mastermind. While I know a lot about food and eat well, most of my cooking in the past has been pretty basic (colorful salads, steamed veggies, baked chicken fish, etc). Many of the recipes I would make were adaptations created from less healthy versions, as substitutions came a lot easier to me than coming up with unique flavor combinations. There was a lot of cooking that I was virgin to until recently (ie. roasting a pork loin) and have probably used a blender more than in my entire life over the last 6 months. During this time being home with baby girl, I have had the opportunity to try new recipes, many with ingredients I have never cooked with before. Since we all need a little menu inspiration from time to time, I decided to share some of the recipes from my Pinterest board that I have cooked as of late (click on the pic to get to the pin)!
This pizza was 110% amazeballs and takes pizza to a whole new level of deliciousness and healthy. The beet pesto and goat cheese…I’m salivating just thinking about it. We will definitely be making this again and again. One thing to note is that I used fresh whole wheat pizza crust dough that I picked up from Whole Foods. This is pretty much my go-to crust now (unless I am going to make it myself) for any pizza that I make.
I made this combination for a dinner party and it was a big hit! I had never roasted a pork loin before but it came out juicy, tender and full of flavor. The recipe called for a wire rack laid over a rimmed backing sheet but I instead used the roasting pan my husband and I received as a gift for our wedding that had never been used (our families always end up cooking the bird at Thanksgiving, being the lovely people that they are). I was kind of thrilled to bust out my ol’ pocket thermometer from the food service days of my dietetic internship to check the temp. Admittedly this was probably the first time I have ever checked the internal temperature of food at home (but doing so is probably part of the reason it turned out so well because I wasn’t just cooking it until “unquestionably done”…aka dried out). The sticky rice turned out to be the perfect compliment!
I usually prefer to eat vegetarian (if you were to look through my recipes board you would see that 90% of the stuff I pin is plant based) so I was super psyched to find this recipe. She gives you measurements for chickpeas starting from canned and from dried, which is what I did. Tossed in paprika and cayenne, these chickpeas are packed with flavor and a surprising amount of heat (you can cut back on the heat by going easy on the paprika). At first I was a little curious about how much I would like the crunchy aspect of the roasted chickpeas, but it was very good and definitely something you should try.
Another healthy take on pizza, these zucchini boats are perfect for weekend lunch, dinner or an afternoon snack. So easy, fresh and sure to disappear before your eyes!
Again, a vegetarian recipe, so I was really excited to try this one out. I wasn’t as thrilled with the end product and there were a lot of ingredients to coordinate so I’m not sure if I will be making this one again. I think my biggest mistake is I did not prep all the ingredients first before starting so I constantly felt a step behind. My recommendation is to make sure you get all your veggies chopped and measured before you get rolling. I also admit that I didn’t make the avocado verde sauce because I forgot to get the salsa verde, which could have been part of why it didn’t turn out as expected. So if you make this recipe, don’t forget the sauce. Lastly, as a side note: I used regular rolled oats and whole wheat flour. Gluten free foods are not necessary unless you have a genuine gluten sensitivity…which I do not. This is why anytime I come across a recipe that calls for any gluten free ingredients, I simply use the regular, whole grain version. You should not notice any difference in this sort of substitution…unless its a baked good…then I just avoid that recipe all together because baking is super particular.
The hubs was talking one day about how he wanted to make blackened chicken so I decided to up the ante by making these blackened chicken tacos! Since I had a mango on hand, I ended up making mango salsa instead of pineapple but everything else I did the same. My first time making blackened chicken and it was a success! Most of the time we end up cooking these huge chicken breasts that no matter how you season the outside, still feel like you are eating all chicken. But with thinly sliced chicken breasts, there is so much more flavor!
If you haven’t already noticed a pattern, I have kind of been on a gourmet pizza kick here lately. Since you know I love a good substitution, I’m always on the lookout for healthier versions of old favorites. Not only for my own family but also as an menu option for when company come over. I really enjoy taking a food that classically isn’t as good for you but is enjoyed by most people and showing friends how it can be given a healthy twist! This pizza definitely ranks up there with the Beet Pesto. The chickie who shares this recipe in her post says it “requires patience and time…like nursing a baby,” which she attributes to the time it takes to properly caramelize the onions. She’s definitely telling the truth but it’s worth it in the end though because the combination of fig, caramelized onions and feta is really amazing. Believe it or not I had never had a fresh fig before this moment so it was a learning curve there. One tip if you have never bought a fig before: use them the same day you buy them. I waited A DAY and at least half of the figs I purchased were questionable by the time I went to cook this…luckily I only needed three. One more thing is this recipe calls for 2-flatbreads but I just took the whole wheat dough that I mentioned with the beet and kale recipe and split it into two.
We used to spend way too much buying those Outshine frozen fruit bars until this summer I decided I was done wasting our money and bought popsicle molds so I could start making them myself. Unfortunately I haven’t found the time (or maybe the motivation) to make more than one batch, but these parfait pops were given a thumbs up by the hubs and I have a whole slew of other recipes pinned to try out when I get the chance. Mmmm maybe a pumpkin spice one for the fall….yesssss…
Do you have any recipes pinned to your Pinterest board that you think myself or others might like?! Please share the link below in the comments!!! 🙂
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