Pumpkin Protein Smoothie

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Dear Diary,

It was just another day of experimenting for the ladies of SFG Diary!  All of us got together, as we often do :), to come up with another great recipe to share… and as usual, it was a day full of fun, laughter… and trial and error.  We originally decided to make a healthier spin on a pumpkin spice latte… sounds easy enough, right?!  Well, it didn’t go exactly as planned– after hours of testing different flavors and combinations, the latte just wasn’t up to par.  After a moment of defeat, we took our original idea and decided to go in a whole new direction– with a PROTEIN SMOOTHIE!  How did this not occur to us before?!  Smoothies?  That’s something WE KNOW:  We’re busy girls on-the-go, who are always looking for a new fun and healthy way to add protein and energy into our daily routine!

Silly enough, we had no idea that pumpkin could even taste good in a smoothie– a squash filled smoothie just doesn’t sound appropriate does it?!  But with all of those terrific fall spices to help lighten up the flavor, it is the perfect fall inspired treat! Pumpkins are full of fiber and low in calories, has tons of vitamin A, and is full of hydrating powers… who knew eating pumpkin could be that good for you too!?

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Here’s what we made:

3 tablespoons of canned pumpkin

1 tablespoon of pumpkin spice

1/2 tsp of cinnamon

1/2 a scoop of chocolate protein powder (vanilla works too if you prefer :))

3 ice cubes

1 cup of almond milk

want to make this smoothie ultra-decadent?!  Add a dollop of organic whip cream and sprinkle on some extra cinnamon!

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And that’s it!!!  Try this fall treat for yourself and tell us what you think! The combination of fall flavors with a protein filled shake?!  We’ll be having this as much as we can this autumn season!  Enjoy SFG’s!

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AUTUMN APPLE NO-BAKE CHOCOLATE TART

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No-Bake Healthy Apple Tart - Skinny Fat Girl Diary - 10190

Dear Diary,

This month on Lauren Conrad we created a tart that is just as delicious to eat as it is to look at!  Not going to lie, we’re pretty impressed with ourselves– we never knew a floral design would be so easy!  Try it for yourself, and check out the post below:

We’re so excited for Autumn… I mean, what’s not to love? Cozy fashion, crisp seasonal air, and decadent comfort food… and to get into the spirit, we decided to experiment with one of fall’s sweetest harvests: apples!  We also couldn’t help, but be inspired by Lauren Conrad’s love of apples… It’s contagious.

Apples are nostalgic of a simpler time; when gathering with family and friends was a common occurrence rather than a special occasion.  But with life being as busy as it is, it becomes hard to make the time!  The change of season reminds us all to slow down, take a break, and spend time with family and friends…over food, of course, it’s the SFG way! And what better way to celebrate than with a guilt-free, delicious apple and chocolate tart treat!

This sweet treat may look extravagant, but this no-bake recipe is a piece of (no-bake) cake!

For the CRUST:

  • In a food processor combine 3 dates(make sure to remove the seeds), 1 cup of cashews, 1 tbsp vanilla extract, 1 tbsp agave and a splash of water. Blend until it looks like oatmeal. Then pat the mixture evenly into decorative tart dish. (It’s all about the details :))

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For the CHOCOLATE LAYER:

  • Melt 1/2 cup of no sugar added Lily’s Dark chocolate chips with  ¼ cup of almond milk in a saucepan until glossy and smooth. (Keep the heat low, so not to burn the chocolate)

  • Pour the chocolate mixture on top of the crust until completely covered, and let settle in a refrigerator for at least 15 minutes. (But the longer the better!)

  • Lastly, thinly slice two apples and decorate the top any way you like! We decided to go for a rose design… trust us, it’s easier than it looks, so don’t be intimidated!

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For the APPLE CONFIGURATION:

To achieve the rose design, layer the apples in a circular pattern, starting with the larger slices around the brim of the tart dish and working your way in towards the middle!

(Optional) Rev up that metabolism and add some additional fall flavor by sprinkling cinnamon on top!

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And there you go!  The perfect, fun, fall treat that looks like it took you all day… when in reality– it took only 20 minutes! Plus, it’s pretty healthy and all natural!

Enjoy this season with friends and family, and let us know… What’s your favorite go-to fall dessert?!

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HALLOWEEN CAKE POPS: a ghostly treat!

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ghost quest bars by SFG Diary

Dear Diary,

Halloween is officially around the corner, and here at SFG Diary, we could NOT be more excited!!!  I’m serious, the excitement is real, and while I’m loving pumpkin patches, haunted hayrides, costume shopping, and lots and lots of candy/treat tasting… the candy tasting has gotten a bit out of hand (I suffer from poor self-control.)  But I can’t help it!  I have a sweet tooth, and it’s rude to ignore the batch of pumpkin cookies and basket full of candy lingering at my office’s front desk, right?!  So with that said, I’m taking a stand with two of my favorite things– quest bars & pops.

ghosts in a row SFG Diary

This isn’t our first rodeo with quest bar cake pops, but we switched up the recipe by putting it in the holiday spirit!  And instead of using white chocolate, we’re using a healthier yogurt sauce… (inspired by those yogurt covered pretzels that I just have to have every time I have a long delay at the airport… these cake pops are delicious and adorable– and not so bad for you too!  The perfect amount of halloween sweetness, without the guilt!

Here’s what you do:

  • take your favorite quest bar (full of protein, few ingredients, low in carb, and organic to boot!) and cut it in half!– my favorite is cookie dough
  • mold the quest bar into a ghostly shape– it doesn’t have to be perfect– just think oval!
  • then place it on a popsicle stick and let it harden in the freezer (for at least 10 minutes– this makes it easier to coat)
  • Next, dunk it in the yogurt mixture!  Here’s what’s in it: 1 cup of greek yogurt (full of protein), 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon of agave, 1/4 cup of a mixture of stevia (no calorie natural sweetner) and powdered sugar… why a combination of the two?  I think powdered sugar tastes better than the stevia– but the stevia helps cut calories. This combination of sugar adds the perfect amount of thickness to the yogurt so that it’s ready to coat!
  • Once the pops are coated, place 2 mini-sized chocolate chips for the eyes, and 1 regular-size chocolate chip for the mouth…
  • Lastly, let sit in the freezer to harden– the longer the better!

And that’s it!!!!!  The PERFECTLY SWEET HALLOWEEN TREAT for the SFG!

SFG Diary ghost bars

Enjoy SFG’s!  Will you try these pops for Halloween?!  Let us know!

SFG Diary pumpkins and ghosts

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Thirsty Thursdays: New Fashion, Old Fashion…I’ll take two

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Dear Diary,

So, it’s no secret, I’m in the liquor business and will support a good cocktail…Sometimes, the best cocktails are the classics, like the Old Fashioned. Lately, this traditional beverage has been popping up all over bars and restaurants. However, mixologists have been making different variations all over town. Here is my new favorite, along with the traditional recipe. If you are looking for a way to unwind on a crisp fall evening this cocktail is perfect.

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 ”Bourbon Old Fashioned”

- 1 Sugar Cube

- 4 dashes Angostura Bitters

- 2 slices of orange

-2 maraschino cherries

-2 ounces rye whiskey( rye whiskey’s are harder to find these days, so bourbon whiskey will do)

-splash of water

Glass: rocks

Preparation: Muddle 1 cherry, an orange slice, sugar and bitters in a chilled old fashioned glass. Remove the orange grind, add the whiskey and ice…Garnish with a cherry

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“New Fashioned”

- 2oz CASAMIGOS Anejo Tequila

-.25oz agave nectar

-muddled orange 1/2 wheel & pitted dark sweet cherry

-pinch of cinnamon

Garnish:  Orange 1/2 wheel & cherry

Glass: rocks

Preparation: In the smaller portion of the Boston shaker muddle orange & cherry, add ingredients, add ice, shake well, strain over big cube, garnish & serve.

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DIY Halloween Decor

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Dear Diary,

Us SFGs looovvvvveeee Fall, but since it’s been unseasonable hot around LA we thought we’d bring a sense of Fall to us… By having a DIY holiday pumpkin painting party with friends chili and wine (of course!).

We wanted the pumpkins to last the entire month so we decided to paint them instead of carving. We choose a fun metallic and black look for an edgy, goth-chic effect. We sprayed the entire pumpkins, glittering some and then just got creative with different designs, even monogramming (you know we love monograms!) my last name initial – “D” for Darling! – with thumb tacks on one! Super simple and fun.

Skinny Fat GIrl Diary girls at the pumpkin patch

Gotta love a pumpkin patch!

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 SUPPLIES:

* Pumpkin 0r gourd

* Spray paint

* Gems / glitter / stickers / thumb tacks / jewels / stencils

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Happy Halloween Crafting!

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How are you decorating your pumpkins?

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Graveyard Mousse!

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Dear Diary,

Halloween is almost here… Tis the holiday where dessert becomes the main course and people are giving candy away…! We mentioned last week that we were giving our favorite Halloween treats healthy makeover on LaurenConrad.com! We tried remaking Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Snickers, candied apples, Mud Pies, Mounds and meringue.  We say tried, because some of our attempts were epic fails, but the ones that did turn out… really worked out.  Maybe too well, we had to stop ourselves from “sampling” the goods.

Our Graveyard Mousse, was one of our favorites in presentation. I mean, how cute is this? It’s a real food dessert made with avocados - giving this recipe healthy fat, helping curb your hungry! Remember, candy that comes in a wrapper is not your friend! It will only spike your insulin, increase your blood sugar and make you hungrier in a couple hours. Yes…even just one mini snickers will send your blood sugar soaring. This dessert is simple, healthy and perfect for any Halloween party!

Here’s what you’ll need:

- 2 ripe avocados

- 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper ( cayenne pepper kicks up your metabolism!)

- ½ cup of agave syrup

- ½ cup of cocoa powder (try chocolate protein powder or ovaltine vitamin rich as a substitute)

- 1 ½ teaspoons of vanilla extract

- 1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract

- Fiber One Cereal and sliced Coconut for decoration

  1. Simply blend all the ingredients together
  2. Add a Milano cookie as a tombstone and use icing to write RIP
  3. Finished with sprinkles of sliced coconut, dyed with orange food coloring and Fiber One cereal. This will add the look of leaves and worms to your graveyard!

Enjoy! SONY DSC

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Raw Bones Bars… A healthier way to indulge for Halloween!

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Dear Diary,

We’re featured on Lauren Conrad again! This time about our love for Halloween and while we love the creativity the holiday inspires; we secretly fear how accessible candy bars, caramel corn and gummy worms become.  Even a recent trip to the doctor’s office tested my resolve with a bowl of Tootsie Rolls. Don’t get us wrong, we love to indulge, but we don’t have the self-control to say no to sweets. This feels like an “us” issue, but we have a feeling we aren’t alone…

So we came up with a solution to satisfy our sweet tooth, but without all the guilt. We gave our favorite Halloween treats a healthy makeover! Actually using ingredients that you can pronounce makes such a difference in satisfying your cravings. We will be featuring them throughout the week!

Our first favorite Raw “Bone” Bars… you have to try these!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 dates
  • 2 cups almonds
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 70% cacao dark chocolate


Instructions:

  1. First blend the following ingredients together, using a food processor: dates, 1 cup of almonds, vanilla extract and coconut oil.
  2. Once coarsely ground, mold the ingredients together into a rectangular bar shape and place in freezer for about 10 minutes.
  3. Melt a bar of 70% cacao dark chocolate in the microwave for 45 seconds, take out and stir. Repeat this process until the bar is completely melted.
  4. Add 1 tablespoon of almond milk to the melted chocolate to thin the mixture and mix until smooth.
  5. Drizzle the bars with the dark chocolate mixture and use the rest of the almond slices as garnish!

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Enjoy… and remember, the SFG “trick” of Halloween is indulging in healthier “treats!”

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Green Breakfast 2 Ways

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eggs on toast SFG Diary with avocado

Dear Diary,

My mornings go one of two ways– it’s either a hectic morning where I’m rushing out the door, or it’s the type of morning that allows me to kick back and relax for a while…

I prefer the days when I can be lazy and laid back… at least for a couple hours. I dream of the mornings where I don’t have anywhere to be… when I can make myself a large cup of coffee, and enjoy my favorite meal of the day.  Breakfast is jam-packed with some of my favorite foods, and there’s nothing like a big breakfast after an intense yoga work-out… but unfortunately, most days are too busy and stressful to enjoy the morning.  We all do so much all the time, and so often, we forget to take a quick moment for OURSELVES!  Our mental and physical health must be a priority, and I’m determined to eat well and put my best foot forward every day.  But even when I do take the time to whip up something fast– it usually consists of solely fruits and nuts.  And while fruits and nuts are perfectly healthy, I’ve been hearing more and more about the importance of getting something green in first thing in the morning!  As I try to eat more vegetables, adding some in to my breakfast routine sounds like the best way to start a long day!

When I have the time, I make my favorite breakfast sandwich, packed with avocado and basically everything else you’d want to want!  But on work days, I’m less inclined to take the time for this breakfast delight– instead, I take 10 minutes to make the ultimate green smoothie!

Here’s what you do for the perfect smoothie!  Combine in a blender:

1.5 cups of fresh kale

handful of ice

2 cups of almond milk

1 tbsp of spirulina powder (this superfood is packed with what you need to boost the start of your day!)

a couple dashes of agave syrup (natural sugar)

1 cup of greek yogurt

1 spoonful of vanilla plant protein powder

1 banana

SFG feel me up smoothie

Is there anything else you’d want in a smoothie?!  I didn’t think so… this smoothie is tangy,delicious and completely satisfying on my commute to work.  Starting my day off healthy keeps me feeling my best, and keeps junk food at bay.

SFG Diary greek protein smoothie

On the days that I have more time in my morning, I’ve been obsessed with this easy and SO DELICIOUS open face breakfast sandwich.  I’m sure you’ve had all these ingredients before, but maybe not quite like this!

SFG Diary healthy eggs on toast

Make it healthy and satisfying by toasting sprout bread (no flour!) and smearing on a layer of avocado (like butter)… full of healthy essential fats!  (aren’t you glad you went with avocado instead of butter or cream cheese this morning :) )

SFG Diary avocado on toast

Sprinkle on some salt to enrich the flavor of the avocado and cut a big slice of tomato… this juicy fruit is full of vitamins and promotes bone and skin health!

tomatoes with avocado SFG Diary

and don’t forget the raw red onion- so sweet and strong in flavor, it adds the perfectly crisp bite this sandwich was missing!

red onion on avocado toast

Finally, top with a protein and nutrient rich egg fried in ghee.  Now I’m ready to take on whatever the day brings me!  I’m not kidding, this sandwich is so good and keeps me full for hours!

SFG eggs toast

Want some more smoothie favorites… check out these two great smoothie recipes here & here!

Will you try one of these breakfast favorites this week?!  Let us know!

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Getting Your House Ready for the Holidays… You need to know about this!

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Dear Diary,

My husband was traveling last weekend, so it felt like the perfect time for a girl’s night in and some changes to the house! It’s better to beg for forgiveness than to ask for permission, right? Thanksgiving is just around the corner and my in-laws are coming to visit. So making the guest room more inviting, is on my long to-do list. First things first, a new mattress.

Nothing is worse than staying at someone’s house and not being able to sleep because their bedding is so uncomfortable. That being said, our guestroom bed needs an update. However, going to a mattress store, hiring movers, and having them drop it off on Monday between 9am – 2PM, seems like climbing a mountain rather than a molehill.

So, I went to the place I usually look for solutions to life’s problems – Amazon. There is nothing better than putting an item in my shopping cart and having it delivered to my door. In two to three business days! It puts the lazy back into my Sundays. I thought mattress shopping was probably a little bit of a reach for Amazon…turns out I was wrong.

There are several to choose from, but the mattresses by Sleep Innovations caught my eye. High quality memory form, really good customer reviews and arrives in a box so it’s easy to move – by YOURSELF! Sleep Innovations had me at box…It’s so easy to #unpackgoodsleep.  You take the vacuumed sealed mattress out of the box, cut the plastic wrapping and it quickly opens up and turns into a full-fledged mattress. It’s so simple and the mattress is ready to use in a few hours..

Step 1                    Step 2                           Step 3                             Step 4

My words aren’t doing this box justice, here’s a video we made explaining how to #unpackgoodsleep!

And if you thought we were gleeful, we didn’t even come close to the trifecta dance number of the company’s official #unpackgoodsleep video…https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkHGvC2rbC8

We decided to have a girl’s sleepover and test this mattress out…This was my first time sleeping on memory form, but Valorie swears by it and I see why. It’s so comfortable and you easily fall into a deep sleep. Feeling rested and ready for that 7am cycle class!

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Sleep is one of the most powerful tools against overeating and helping to regulate your metabolism. It’s also one of the best ways to recover from an intense workout. You could say we take our sleep pretty seriously!

If you are looking for a mattress let me save you the hassle and direct you to sleep innovations on amazon: http://bit.ly/SkinnyFatGirlDiary

Or if you’re feeling lucky, head over to the Sleep Innovations Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/sleepinnovations) and enter to win one for FREE!

Good luck and for your sleep’s sake I hope you win!!!

Sleep innovations

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SFG for Rah Rah!

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Rah Rah Swim

Dear Diary,

While swimsuit season may be dwindling in most areas of the country… in Los Angeles, we’re experiencing a heat wave!  So it was no surprise when our girlfriend decided to throw her bachelorette party- poolside this past weekend.  Not only was it the ultimate celebration to honor the bride, but it was the perfect excuse for us SFGs to get together!  And while all us gals showered the bride-to-be with love, she made the day extra special for all her maids by providing the perfect gift– and pool necessity, a PERSONALIZED swimsuit from Rah Rah Designs!!!!  We didn’t even know customized  suits existed before we were introduced to this cool brand– and now… can we monogram everything?!  Rah Rah Designs allows you to create your own look– choose your favorite color, suit design, and last but not least, your own personal monogram!  Check out what we all picked and try out this trend for yourself! :)

SFG Jackie, chose a pink and white ensemble and a script monogram with her initials across the white ruffle bandeau top!

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SFG rah rah Jackie 2

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Newlywed Lauren chose her signature navy blue bottoms and a blue lined tops with “Mrs” elegantly scripted across the chest–  hey, why not flaunt it?! ;)

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And why not flaunt it with the cutest bouquet.

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Mrs…

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Valorie also went for pink threading on her white ruffled bandeau top, but chose a circle monogram design of her initials!

Rah Rah Swimsuit Personalized

Rah Rah Monogrammed swimsuit

Rah Rah Designs

What design will you get?!  Let us know and tag us on instagram to show us!

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15 Minute Flat Belly Towel Workout

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15 minute Towel Workout

Dear Diary,

With the holiday months approaching and cooler weather (in sight…LA is ready for it!) it’s tempting to indulge more and hide behind your oversized sweaters and winter jackets. But ladies, let’s always remember to “check yourself, before you wreck yourself!” It’s important to stay active throughout all seasons. We’re all girls on the go, so quick and effective workouts are a must in our routine. We put our ponytails together and came up with the 15 minute “Dishcloth Workout” for Lauren Conrad.com.  So although you may think you don’t have time to squeeze in that sweat, we got you covered!

It’s 15 minutes of abs and all you need is a hand towel. Yes, you heard me. That’s it, but the towel is necessary! It helps ensure you are using the correct form during your workout; which is so important when it comes to getting results. We know you have 10 minutes to spare, so grab your dishtowel and let’s get started…

…LAUREN…

15-min Towel Workout // SFG Diary // Lauren Conrad

Carb Cutter

We call this the “Carb Cutter.” It’s the best way to tighten up your love handles. To start, take the towel behind your head and tug on both sides. Then take a grand plié position, like pictured above. You’ll want to touch your elbow to the inside of your thigh (you must touch it!), switching from the right to the left. Keep your back as flat as possible as you touch each side 10 times.

…JACKIE…

Balancing Act Workout // SFG Diary // Lauren Conrad

Balancing Act

Next, it’s the “Balancing Act,” it might take a little time to reach a perfect standing “T” like Jackie, but you will! Take the towel in both hands, make a flat back, extend your arms and left leg until they are perfectly parallel to the ground. After you gain your balance, pull your arms in towards the center of your body while bending your extended leg to meet them. Then, extend your leg and arms back to the “T” position without touching the floor. Do this six times with each leg. Take your time. The slower you do this, the harder your little muscles have to work. And remember: Planks flatten your stomach, while crunches define it.

…VALORIE…

Scissor Switch // 15 min flat abs // Lauren Conrad // SFG Diary

Scissor Stretch

Last in the series is the “Scissor Stretch.” This is such a great workout for your upper abs. Lay on the ground and kick your leg up, making a scissor shape. Take the towel behind your extended legs and grab from both sides. Pull your shoulder blades off the floor and do 25 tiny isolated crunches or pulses. Switch legs and repeat. For a more challenging workout, lift your lower leg a couple inches off the ground.

Repeat ALL these exercises two more times and feel your resolution coming to fruition. At SFG we live by the rule of threes: Do these exercises at least three times a week. Check out our blog for more tips!

Are you going to give this workout a try?

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A Healthier Chili for Fall

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Dear Diary,

I’ve lost my husband to football, pumpkins are on display and squash is in season; fall has officially begun…Toasted browns, burnt oranges and deep reds are making their way into my “foods color palette” and I can’t wait to cook. I’m always hungrier this time of year and love putting a “SFG” spin on hearty foods. Does this happen to anyone else?  I feel like I’m part bear, getting ready to hibernate. I, graze after meals and with so many tasty snacks around the house, it’s hard to stay on track… The packaged goods wouldn’t be in my home, but my husband has made it clear  both chips and cookies are necessary for his happiness. It’s a real test of my self-control…

So to satisfy my “bear” cravings, I’m putting a healthy spin on a hearty favorite – chili. It keeps me full through the night and reduces  late night snacking. I can, also, make it a little less healthy for my sig fig by adding sour cream and cheddar cheese. It’s a win-win.

Here’s what you need:

1 lbs. ground lean white turkey meat

1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped

1 tbsp. olive oil

2-3 cloves of finely chopped garlic

2 tbsp. of cumin

2 tbsp. of chili powder

1 15 oz. can of tomato sauce

1 28 oz. can of diced tomatoes

1 can of kidney beans

1 medium sized yam, remove the skin, and slice into 1/2  inch squares

2 cups of chopped collard green or kale

1/2 tsp of salt

  1. Take a large soup pot, I use my large Le Creuset pot and it’s well worth the money! Place on the stove and begin to preheat.  Add olive oil to the pan. When you place your hand above it and begin to feel the heat, place your chopped garlic and onions in the pan. Sauté  for about 3 minutes, until the onions become translucent.
  2. Place the ground turkey into the pan, sprinkle with salt and cumin. Cook until the meat is crumbling and cooked through
  3. Next add  tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, beans, sliced yam and chili powder simmer for about 25 minutes, or until the yam slices our soft.
  4. Add the swiss chard or kale and cook for another 10 minutes
  5. Taste and salt if necessary, then serve piping hot! You can also add sour cream and cheese to it for people who aren’t on the healthy train

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Enjoy!!!

lauren2

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Red Pepper Brussel Sprouts

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Dear Diary,

Fall to us symbolizes cozy sweaters, leather boots, family, football and lots and lots of comfort food! It’s hard to spend your weekends in front of the tv watching sports without indulging in all the tasty, hearty dishes that go with. So again, we came up with some healthier options to enjoy while your cheering on your home team!

We recently went to a tailgating potluck and along with our baked chicken wings and greek yogurt ranch dip we turned to our favorite all-natural, vegan + gluten-free dressing. Remember our recipes with Savour This Sauce? How could you forget, right?!

Here’s another recipe we whipped up with another one of their amazing flavors… Red Pepper Romesco!

Savour this sauce - red pepper romesco

Need:

 * 2 tbsp. Red Pepper Romesco Savour This Sauce

* 12 oz Bag of Organic Brussel Sprouts

* Sesame Seeds

* Salt + Pepper

Savour this SauceRecipe:

* Rinse off your brussel sprouts and slice length wise. Then, steam.

* Mix 2 tbsp. of your desired dressing in with the brussel sprouts.

* Sprinkle sesame seeds and salt + pepper to taste.

* Serve warm :)

Red Pepper Brussel Sprouts

What’s your favorite fall dish?Signature

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Healthy Appetizers for Football Sunday: Spinach Feta Dip

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Dear Diary,

We were featured on Lauren Conrad again! And with football season in full effect, we thought it was the perfect time to share!  This time we’re talking about comfort food that doesn’t weigh you down…

We struggle with finding healthy options that still taste like indulgences. So, when preparing food for our parties or any social gathering, we try to make dishes that have lots of flavor but with a lot less calories. One of our favorites is Skinny Spinach Tofu Dip. It’s packed with protein and doesn’t weigh you down after eating it.  If you’re looking for the perfect football Sunday dip… this is it!

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Skinny Spinach Tofu Dip

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of Greek yogurt (we used Fage 0% fat)
  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 packages of frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 14-ounce package of soft tofu, drained (we used NaSoya Silken)
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cans of artichoke hearts, chopped
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese (we used Trader Joe’s Fat Free Feta)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Place chopped garlic, tofu, and artichokes in a food processor. If you don’t have one, you can chop by hand. Then place these ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients, saving the spinach for last. Mix together until well blended and then place in an oven safe serving dish.
  4. Bake for about 25 -30 minutes and serve piping hot!

We also have lots of healthy dipping options: carrots, peppers, cucumbers, and whole grain pita bread, oh my!

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Are you going to try this healthy appetizer?

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Healthier Hummus

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Dear Diary,

Last week I went to the LA Green Festival and got the pleasure of checking out everything from solar powered scooters to watching health food demos. Free samples?! I’m there! (I could probably live off pursuing Costco aisles…)

While there, I watched vegan chef Leslie Durso rock the Vitamix and llllloooovvvveeeddd everything she made while learning some clever tips and tricks in the kitchen! She’s adorable, savvy and she used to be Leslie the Lab Girl on Bill Nye the Science Guy! Pretty cool, I know. Check out her site for more tasty, vegan and gluten-free recipes.

When I was leaving I commented on the fact that her cilantro hummus was amazing, but I was surprised it tasted that good without the olive oil. She told me she had every intention to use it, but accidentally forgot. (She had a very hands on “helper” who resembled a garden gnome and was more distracting than anything else… You know those over eager expo volunteers that run up to people with a microphone asking if they have questions…yeah, that guy.) But it got me thinking hummus tastes surprisingly good and has a nice consistency even without olive oil.

Not that olive oil is bad for you, but it adds an additional 477 calories per 1/4 cup serving (typical amount in hummus recipe).

Try it…I dare you to forget something… Or check out my other hummus recipe and healthy tailgating foods here!

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 Ingredients:

* 2 cans of garbanzo beans (make sure to get the kind without any added ingredients like food coloring. Yuck!)

* 1 garlic clove

* 1 juiced lemon

* (Optional) A couple sprays of Braggs Amino Acids instead of salt

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Directions:

1. Take your garbanzo bean and drain one can and use a little over half the water of the other can. Pour the cans and garlic into a food processor and blend on low and then get faster to smooth out any chunks. (The water acts in place of the olive oil)

2. Next, add the juice of one lemon. (This helps preserve your hummus for up to a week) Blend again.

3. (Optional) Spray Braggs Amino Acids (in place of salt) to taste.

4. Serve with fresh veggies and enjoy!

Have you ever left something out of a recipe and it became healthier and still tasted good?! Please share on our Facebook!

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