Mediterranean Veggie Bowl

Switching up my salads weekly is like a game to me. How can I combine my favorite toppings in different ways to make a delicious salad that I don’t mind eating all week? Usually I try to base them off salads I’ve had in a restaurant or seen on Pinterest. Last week was a Pinterest copy-cat recipe – a Mediterranean salad bowl. I added all my favorite “Mediterranean” toppings (as well as avocado…I just can’t have a salad without it…) on a big pile of greens and it was delicious! Since I topped with hummus, I don’t think it really needed dressing, but I tried to make one anyways. I used tahini, lemon juice, olive oil, a little milk, and some sriracha. Kind of random, I know. It was ok but not fantastic – so Mediterranean dressing ideas are welcome!

Also, I fully planned to make the falafels from scratch, but ran out of time. Story of my life! So the ones I used were in the frozen section at Trader Joe’s and they’re really really good. But if you make them from scratch, I’m jealous of you. Someday I will have time to do that too. ūüôā

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Mediterranean Veggie Bowl

Adapted from: The Minimalist Baker

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups spring mix
  • 1/4 cup cucumber, diced
  • Handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 1/8 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1/8 cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • 2-3 falafel patties
  • 1/4 cup hummus
  • Dressing (optional)

Directions:

1.) Preheat oven and bake falafel (frozen or homemade).

2.) In a big bowl, add spring mix. Top with the rest of the toppings and the warm falafel. Enjoy!

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Game Changing Snacks with Blue Diamond Almonds!

The big game is almost here! Naturally, being a Massachusetts girl, I’ll be rooting for New England ūüôā Whether you are going to a party, hosting your own, or just¬†plopping down on your couch¬†for the game, you need game time snacks! In my opinion, the best part of the game is the food, so I came up with two great snack ideas that are super easy to whip up. I made one salty and one sweet (to satisfy all types of snackers) and both are quick to throw together in a hurry.¬†Also neither require heating or baking, so you can keep your focus on the game and not worry about burning anything! They are the perfect crowd-pleasing snacks for any occasion. Enjoy –¬†let’s go Pats!

Team 1: Sweet Smokehouse Party Mix

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Team 2: Asian Almond and Garlic Hummus

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Sweet Smokehouse Party Mix

  • Servings: 12 (1/2 cup servings)
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Ingredients:

  • 1 (8 oz.) bag Turtle Chex Mix
  • 2 tbsp coconut chips (I get them at Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 1/2 oz. (about 42) Blue Diamond Smokehouse Almonds
  • 1 (1.69 oz.) pouch M&Ms
  • 3 tbsp peanut butter chips
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries or raisins

Directions:

1.) Chop up almonds into halves. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and serve! Could also be put into decorative bags to hand out before the game ūüôā

Nutrition Info (Per 1/2 cup serving, from My Fitness Pal):

Calories 160
Fat 7 g (3 g saturated)
Fiber 1 g
Carbs 22 g
Sugars 12 g
Protein 3 g

Asian Almond and Garlic Hummus

  • Servings: 32 (2 tbsp servings)
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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup water (or less if you want the hummus to be thicker)
  • 9 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cans (15.5 oz. each) chick peas/Garbanzo beans
  • 1/2 cup Blue Diamond Wasabi & Soy Sauce almonds
  • 2 tbsp shredded parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 1/2 tsp minced garlic (about 5 cloves)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika

Directions:

1.) Add all ingredients to a food processor and blend until creamy. Store in the fridge for about an hour before serving to thicken the hummus. Serve with pita chips, crackers, or veggies for dipping!

Nutrition Info (Per 2 tbsp serving, from My Fitness Pal):

Calories 92
Fat 7 g (1 g saturated)
Fiber 2 g
Carbs 6 g
Sodium 144 mg
Protein 3 g

This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds. For more Game Changing Snacks, visit Blue Diamond Almonds on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

My Favorite Healthy Snacks Under 300 Calories!

Anyone who know me knows that I am a snacker. I’m that one friend who always has trail mix in her car, granola bars in her purse, dried fruit at her desk…basically, I will never go hungry (bring on the apocalyse!) I actually consider my afternoon snack as one of my 4 meals a day, that’s how important it is to me. Gotta fuel up during the mid-afternoon slump! It also¬†ensures that I am never hungry at the gym, because ain’t NOBODY got time for that. There is probably nothing worse than being hungry at the gym. Especially on pizza Monday #planetfitnessproblems.

Anyways, I wanted to share my go-to favorite snacks. My afternoon snack is usually around 200-300 calories with a decent amount of protein to keep me going through my workout. I also included some lower-calorie snacks that I like to have after lunch or dinner when a sweet craving strikes!

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My usual favorite: yogurt parfait! I layer fruit (frozen or fresh), plain Greek yogurt, and granola. If I use frozen fruit, I will make it in the morning and it will be thawed by the afternoon. I also put the granola on right before I eat it so it stays crunchy!

A great salty, crunchy snack is hummus with crackers/pretzels! These Triscuit Thin Crisps are smaller, so you can eat more for less calories – win!

A great snack when you’re on the go – individual trail mix pouches (I get them at Trader Joe’s!) and fruit!

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These chocolate covered banana slices¬†are SO GOOD! I get them at Trader Joe’s and you just eat them frozen.¬†They¬†are only 32 calories each, so they are great if you just need a little something to satisfy a sweet craving after lunch or dinner! Dole makes them as well in 100 calorie packs (4 slices per pack), but I like that the Trader Joe’s ones are all in one box…that way if I only want one, I don’t need to open a whole pack!

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Chocolate and coconut bites are a delicious way satisfy your sweet tooth! They are super gooey thanks to the secret ingredient Рdates! Speaking of ingredients, there are only 6, and they are all clean and healthy. These are only 157 calories each and you can leave a batch of them right in the fridge or freezer. Find my recipe here!

  

Arctic Zero is a life (and waistline) saver. It’s very low cal (150 calories in the whole pint!), made with whey protein, low in sugar, and it’s¬†a great ice cream substitute! However, the only flavor I have actually liked¬†is mint chocolate cookie; I get¬†it at Walmart, near the frozen yogurt, and it’s a little expensive (about $5 a pint). It has a good minty chocolate flavor, but no “chunks” of cookie or anything, so I add my own! I used to add a 100-calorie pack of Oreos, but I have now found Horizon Organic Chocolate Snack Grahams (also at Walmart) which have ingredients that I can actually recognize. I scoop out 1/3 of the pint (50 calories) over 17 snack grahams (130 calories) in a bowl and let it soften, then I mush it all together and break up the cookies. It has a soft-serve type texture and the cookie bits make it¬†taste like an indulgent treat, but it’s less than 200 calories!

Quick apple crisp is a great way to have a “comfort” sweet treat without blowing too many calories! It also has a lot less sugar than traditional crisp and can be whipped up in just a few minutes! Put 1 tablespoon of almond/nut butter in a bowl and add a diced apple. Top with cinnamon, 1 tablespoon of honey, 1 tablespoon coconut flakes, and 2 tablespoons of granola (I used my mom’s recipe which has nuts and maple flavor!) Microwave until warm, mix it all together, and enjoy!

What are your favorite low-cal, healthy snacks??