Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Chicken with Roasted Garlic Cashew Cream Sauce

So today was a draining day...just a lot going on and it was mentally draining...but I still worked out with P90 and made a really good dinner.

Speaking of dinner, my recipe tonight was thanks to Clean Eating Magazine...Chicken in Roasted Cashew Cream Sauce.  Something great about a simple clean meal. You have to prepare for this one since you have to soak the cashews overnight to become soft.  This has been on my menu for a few weeks but never got cooked since I kept forgetting to soak them.

Chicken in Roasted Garlic Cashew Cream Sauce
Serves 5
21 Day Fix Containers: 1R, 1G, 1B


3/4 cup raw unsalted cashews (6B)
Olive oil cooking spray 
1 head garlic (whole) plus 2 cloves garlic, minced, divided 
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice 
1 1/2 tsp olive oil, divided (1 1/2 tsp)
5 5-oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts (5R)
Pinch sea salt 
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper 
1 large shallot, finely chopped 
5 cups broccoli florets (5G)


Place cashews in a bowl and cover with cold water. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut a 10-inch square of foil and mist with cooking spray. Slice 1⁄4-inch from top of head of garlic. Place cut side up on foil and wrap tightly. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 1 hour. Set aside to cool.
(Or there's my cheater way since I HATE peeling whole cloves of garlic, I buy them already done and put them in my foil).

When garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze cloves out of peel into a blender; discard peels (or dump them like I did since they were already peeled). Drain cashews and add to blender along with lemon juice and 1 cup cold water. Begin blending on low speed, gradually increasing to high, until mixture is smooth, 1 to 2 minutes.

In a large nonstick skillet on medium-high, heat 1 tsp oil. Season chicken evenly with salt and pepper. Cook, turning halfway, until browned on both sides and cooked through, 8 to 12 minutes. Remove from skillet to a plate and cover to keep warm.

Heat remaining 1/2 tsp oil in skillet. Add shallot and broccoli (I quickly steamed my broccoli 1st, man I love steamer bags) and sauté for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until shallot is browned and softened. Add remaining minced garlic and sauté for 1 more minute. Remove to plate with chicken.

Add cashew mixture to same skillet and cook, stirring constantly, until warmed through and slightly thickened, about 1 minute (mine thickened a lot and I had to add more water to it). Serve over chicken and broccoli. Season with additional pepper.
Nutritional info according to MFP:
Calories: 345
Fat: 18
Carbs: 11
Fiber: 2
Protein: 35
VERDICT: Well 1 of my 3 kids liked the sauce and hubby and I like it.  I will make it again...it really did do a nice job and add a good flavor.  I was concerned but it worked.  Make sure you have a good blender so it's not gritty, I have a vitamix and it worked perfect.

Baked Meatball Parmigiana

Okay who doesn't like a little italian food...I LOVE it but it isn't always diet friendly.  

So tonight's dinner is a treat...Meatballs (sure you may not be able to see those yummy meatballs in that sauce but they are there)!  I even made a double batch of this and froze it for a friend who is having surgery soon so her family will have a yummy meal and she won't have to worry about it.

Baked Meatball Parmesan
Serves 9
21 day fix containers: 1R, 1B, 1/2P

1 lb extra lean ground beef (4R)
1 lb extra lean ground pork (4R)
4 cloves of garlic

chopped parsley
1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs (I make my own) (2Y)
3/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese (3B)
2 eggs (1R)
sea salt & pepper to taste
5 cups organic marinara sauce (5P)
1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese (6B)

Heat oven to 400
In a large mixing bowl mix meats, parsley, bread crumbs, parmesan cheese & eggs.  Form into 2 oz meatballs (I got 18 out of the mix) and place in your baking dish (I used a 9x13 glass baking dish sprayed with cooking spray).  Bake for 20 minutes.

Lower heat to 375

Pour your marinara sauce over the meatballs and add your mozzarella cheese.  Cover with foil and bake for another 20 minutes.

Uncover and continue baking for another 20 minutes until the cheese is nice and melted and bubbly (you can also broil for a few if you want).

Serve with a side of pasta (or in my case zoodles) and a nice salad...my family loved garlic bread also.

Verdict: AMAZING!!! who says italian food can't be diet friendly

Enjoy your family time and make an extra batch for the freezer for when you don't want to cook again

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sneak Peek: Menu for the Week of 11/17

So with so much going on I have planned my menu for this upcoming week...I will post recipes and pictures when I make these items...so here is a sneak peek of what is to come this week:

5 ingredients Lemon Chicken w/Asparagus
Chicken in Roasted Garlic Cashew Cream Sauce
Chicken Divan

Baked Meatball Parmigiana (double)

Beef & Mushroom Stroganoff

Clean Eating Roasted Shrimp & Green Beans

All meals will be 21 Day Fix approved and delicious...it's a yummy week coming up. 

My week is crazy with my kids having half days every day, we have doctor & vet appointments planned, shopping, working out, Bunco and my kids school Thanksgiving feast and on the calendar...oh it's going to be a crazy week but bring on the holidays!


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Steak with Red Wine Reduction

Oh what a week it has been already...I first want to say Thank You to all Veterans and their families who have or are serving for our military.  It is because of you I am free today...My husband is was a marine and I married into a family of military and my niece and her husband are in the Navy.  I am blessed and honored to know so many military people...God Bless You All!!!

Yesterday was cross fit...let me tell you I am feeling it today...my abs hurt and boy do I love it.  My arms and legs are screaming and I dead-lifted 55 lbs, it may not be a lot but it's 20 lbs heavier than last week and it's progress...I am loving it!  Oh and if you need a good abs move, grab someone's ankles and do let lifts while they push your feet down in all directions...YIKES!

Tonight's dinner special was delish...I have been craving steak so that's what we had.  I made a nice sirloin with a rich red wine reduction (amazing what a little butter can do for a sauce), roasted potatoes (I didn't eat those) and roasted asparagus...MMMMM who needs to go out and pay a fortune when you can have this super simple meals.

Steak with Red Wine Reduction Sauce
Serves 4

21 DF Containers: 1R, 1tsp, 1/4Y


1 tablespoon olive oil (3tsp)

2 (8-ounce) top sirloin steaks, trimmed (4R)

3/8 teaspoon sea salt, divided 

3/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided 

3 tablespoons minced shallots

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

1/2 cup full-bodied red wine (I used a red blend) (1Y treat)

1/2 cup unsalted beef stock 

1 1/2 teaspoons organic butter (1 1/2tsp)
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard


1. Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Sprinkle steaks evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add steaks to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until desired temp (we like a nice medium rare and remember it will still cook while it rests). Remove steaks from pan. Let stand 5 minutes.
2. Reduce heat to medium-high. Add shallots and thyme to pan; sauté 1 minute or until lightly browned. Add wine; cook 2 1/2 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates. Add stock; cook 3 minutes or until liquid is reduced by half and mixture is slightly thickened. Remove pan from heat. Add remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon pepper, butter, and mustard; stir with a whisk.

3. Cut steak across the grain into thin slices; serve with sauce. 

I served this with potatoes that I seasoned with a little olive oil and garlic herb and roasted and also some roasted asparagus.  This came out perfect and tasted so yummy.  Make sure to trim your steaks of all visible fat to keep it healthy.  My family ate this up as usual when I serve steak and potatoes (we will do it a few times a month but that's it usually)...never any leftovers at this house.

So until tomorrow...make sure you thank a vet if you haven't today and if you can thank one every day...they deserve more than 1 day a  year!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Balsamic Fig Pork Tenderloin

Do you ever get antsy?  I am at that point, I feel I do the same thing day in and day out.  I love being a SAHM mom it gets boring and I need a change every now and then. I need to get out and away from my house and my normal every day life...trying to figure out what that will be but I am not coming up with any ideas.

So tonight's dinner is complements of Skinnytaste.com and saying that I really didn't have to do any changing of the recipe except for how many it served.  

Fig Balsamic Pork Tenderloin 
Servings: 8 
21 Day Fix Containers: 1R

  • 2 1/4 lb pork tenderloins (9R)
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Trader Joe's fig butter
  • parsley for garnish

Preheat the oven to 375

Season the pork with salt and garlic powder and put on a baking sheet.

Mix the balsamic vinegar and the fig butter in a bowl.  Nicely brush the pork with all the mixture.

Roast in the oven for about 25 - 30 minutes or until the internal temp is 145.

Let it rest for 10 - 15 minutes before slicing (don't want to lose any of that wonderful juices now do you...)

Sprinkle with parsley if desired

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Casserole

So today was a good day, I went for a long walk with the dog and then to the dog park, I went to my son's football game, cooked dinner and then it was off to cross fit and boy did that kick my butt...

When I was a kid, my mom use to make stuffed cabbage rolls but man was that a lot of work, boiling the cabbage leaves, gently stuffing them with meat and rice, folding them so they didn't break and then baking them...that is just too much work for this mama so I found this recipe at diaryofarecipecollector.com and slightly adapted it to make it 21 Day Fix friendly.  I have rounded these containers up (or down) to make make it an even nice containers to count to make life a little easier.

Unstuffed Cabbage Roll Casserole
Serves 6

21 Day Fix Containers: 1 1/2R, 1Y, 1/2G, 1/2P, 1/2B


  • 1 lbs. extra lean ground beef (4R)
  • 1.25 lb of lean ground turkey (5R)
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • 1 cup whole grain brown rice, uncooked (6Y)
  • 4 cups roughly chopped cabbage (4G)
  • 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce (1P)
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained (1.5P)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese of choice (4B)


  1. Season and brown ground beef and turkey. Drain off any grease you may have (I usually rinse under warm water to get all the fat off).
  2. Add rice, cabbage, tomato sauce, 2 cups of water and diced tomatoes with all the juices. Stir.
  3. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium low and cover to simmer for about 20 to 30 minutes or until rice is done and cabbage is soft (please do not lift lid before 20 minutes is up or else you let all the steam out and the rice needs it to cook properly)
  4. Once cooked, top with cheese and cover with lid to melt a few minutes.
The Verdict: everyone but my daughter liked this, it was filling, large portions and hey only 1 pot to clean up...If you want more of a cheesy yummy goodness and want to use a full B container then up the cheese to 1 1/2 cups...SCORE
So enjoy a healthy dinner with the family

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

I Survived Day 1 of Cross Fit

So yesterday was a good day.  I did P90 Sweat B & Ab Ripped B in the morning and then proceeded to do the dreaded grocery shopping for the week.  Dinner was a simple meal so I could drop my oldest son off at youth group and then go to Cross Fit.

Every now and then on busy nights you need a simple throw together meal that everyone likes, for my family it's usually spaghetti.  I always have the fixings in the pantry for this simple dish.  So last night's dinner was spaghetti with whole wheat pasta and a meat sauce.  It consists of very lean ground beef, whole wheat pasta, Newman's Own pasta sauce and italian seasoning...no expenses spared here LOL.  My containers were 1R, 1/2P & 2Y and I had a side salad with that.  I figured you didn't need a recipe for something that simple.

All day I had anxiety of cross fit...well I am not sure why I was so worried, granted they took it easy on me but I was able to keep up.  I did become one with the wall as I leaned how to do a proper squat without leaning forward. I felt like the kid in trouble as everyone was doing bar squats but I was doing a squat facing the wall (very close to it) and not trying to touch it.  About 50 squats later it was time to move on.  We had a circuit of bar lifts (like you see on weight lifting competitions) and then burpies (oh I hate burpies).  It went like this...20 bar lifts, 7 burpies, 15 bar lifts, 7 burpies, 10 bar lifts, 7 burpies, 5 bar lifts, 7 burpies then as many bar lifts as possible until your 9 minutes runs out...now you might not thing 9 minutes is long but OMG it is long.  I started out with a 20 lb medicine ball then went to a 15 lb bar with no weights on it then she put on like an extra 10 lbs...not to shabby I guess for my 1st workout.

So there you have it, I didn't die, I am okay so far today (I expect that to change) and I am looking forward to tomorrow's workout!

Stay tuned tonight for dinner...Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls...a one pot meal!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Chicken & Asparagus Lemon Stir Fry

So I love to cook and don't repeat meals much but I am not that creative to just throw something together usually.  I love finding new recipes on Pinterest, the many cookbooks I own and other websites.  I usually adapt recipes to fit my families likes and needs.  I will always, when possible (I might have found a recipe YEARS ago and not know it's source) give credit where credit is due.   
So tonight for dinner is Chicken & Asparagus Lemon Stir Fry.  I have adapted this to make it more 21 Day Fix friendly from Skinnytaste.com.  With a few simple changes in ingredients this has become a fix friendly meal that everyone will love.

Chicken & Asparagus Lemon Stir Fry
Serves 5
Fix containers (1R, 1/2G, 1/2tsp

  • 1 1/2 pounds skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes (6R)
  • Sea Salt, to taste
  • 1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce or Tamar
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tbsp olive oil, divided (3tsp)
  • 30 asparagus spears, cut into 2-inch pieces (3G)
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • fresh black pepper, to taste

Season chopped up chicken with salt.  In a small bowl combine chicken broth & soy sauce.  In another small bowl combine cornstarch and water and mix well.

Heat a large wok or pan to medium high heat, add 1 tsp of olive oil, saute asparagus until tender crisp.  Add in the garlic and ginger and saute until golden brown.  Set aside.

In the same pan, increase the heat to high and add in the remaining olive oil.  Add in chicken and cook until it's golden brown and cooked all the way through.  Set aside.

Add the soy sauce mixture; bring to a boil and cook about 1-1/2 minutes. Add lemon juice and cornstarch mixture (you will have to stir this in the small bowl again to mix up the cornstarch again) and stir well, when it simmers return the chicken and asparagus to the wok and mix well, remove from heat and serve.

This really was an easy meal to cook and came together fast (and if you are a busy mom like me you need fast meals). The lemon taste was strong so if you don't like lemon don't put it in or put less in. Next time I will add in another 20 asparagus spears to make it a full green container and bulk up my stir fry. I served this simple stir fry with some brown rice & a salad on the side and my total meal was 1R, 2 1/2G, 1/2Y (I didn't eat all my rice), 1O & 1/2tsp!

Verdict: everyone loved it and asked for me to make it again...SCORE! 

So enjoy your dinner and some good family time!

A Peek: Menu for the Week

     Good Sunday Morning...It's going to be a lazy day today at my house...a day of chillin, planning and a little light cleaning.

     Yesterday I went and took a sneak peak at the CrossFit class I am going to be taking and talk to the trainer...wow those people are intense but then again they have been doing CrossFit for over a year now.  I sat and watched with a woman who is also starting with me so we are both beginners (thank god).

     I have planned my menu for the week and I will post the recipes daily with some of my favorite breakfasts.  I try to eat pretty clean and really limit the processed stuff.  21 Day Fix is based on clean eating anyway and who needs all that junk anyway right. My menu will have the 21 Day Fix containers guesstimated based on the ingredients but when I post the actual recipe I will post the containers I use when I make the recipe. I will also only give the containers for the main dish since a side dish is optional and depends on how much you put on your plate (if you do or not). So here goes nothing....my menu for the week:

Chicken & Asparagus Lemon Stir Fry (1R, 1/2tsp, 1/2G)
Brown Rice

BBQ Salmon (1R)
Pasta with Real Butter & Parmesan Cheese

Sausage, Spinach & Artichoke Pasta (a one dish meal) (1R, 2Y, 2tsp, 1/2G)

Chicken in Roasted Garlic Cashew Cream Sauce (1R, 1G, 1B)
Brown Rice

One-Pot Cabbage Casserole (1R, 1/2Y, 1/2G, 1/2P. 1/2B)

Fig Balsamic Pork Tenderloin (1R)

Steak w/Red Wine Sauce (1R, 1tsp, 1/2Y)
Roasted Potatoes

Spaghetti (or zoodles) w/Meat Sauce (1R, 1/2P, 1Y, 1G)

     So there you have it...my menu for the week and if you want to see the recipe you will have to check back daily for the recipe.

     Have a happy and healthy day...remember life gets away from you so spend time with your family!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Day of Recovery After Halloween Fun...Shakeology

Happy Day After Halloween...I really hope everyone had a nice day and was safe and dry (it poured rain all night in our little town) We live on a busy main street so we never get any trick-or-treaters, it's a bitter sweet since we don't buy candy but I love all the cute costumes that come to the door and beg for candy. 

Last night we went to a friends house to celebrate their twins birthdays and to scare some kids (they have a really cool decorated scary house), have pizza, nachos, M&M's and too many fireball jello shots...yes I am human and I can't stay on plan 100% of the time.  

I won't let 1 night of a good time ruin my journey because today is a new day.  I am going to enjoy a few more wonderful shakeology shakes as breakfast and lunch then have a balanced dinner and a few cups of green tea and really down the water today to flush out my system from yesterdays damage.

So what am I going to talk to you about today in my journey?  My Shakeology love...

So I love this stuff...my favorite is Chocolate and it's super yummy, all natural and full of really good stuff for you that does amazing stuff for your body.  For me it's energy, no cravings, I am fuller longer and helps me shed the weight faster.  There are so many yummy recipes....my favorite is the peanut butter cup one made with unsweetened almond milk, peanut butter and chocolate shakeology...taste like a reeses...YUMMY.

Today I am also going to go check out a demo on the crossfit that I am starting on Monday and see what type of torture I have signed up for...

Have a happy and healthy day...tomorrow I will post my meal plan for the week...

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Let the games begin! 21 Day Fix, P90 & CrossFit...

     Well life is crazy.  Between kids and family I am not sure how I breath.  I graduated last spring with my AS in Accounting and it was a big accomplishment for me, it took me 13 years on and off to get my degree but I finished.  

     So now that school is done it's time to really focus on my health and happiness.  I have started to workout and eat healthier and about 2 months ago I found a wonderful program from BeachBody called 21 Day Fix.  It's so simple and I love it.  It's about portion control and no calorie counting, no counting points and all you do is just stuff your food in the right container, eat all your containers, work out 30 minutes a day and enjoy a shakeology daily (if you want to, but it's all yummy good stuff and I love the chocolate) and lose weight.  It's a total win win if you ask me.  I will go more into this program tomorrow.

     I have also been doing another BeachBody program called P90. This program is Tony's newest program and it's a beginner's program to his very popular P90X, P90X2 & P90X3 (you all know the crazy program right).  Well I am no where near ready for those programs but I like P90 so far (I am on week 5).  I am starting CrossFit next week, I am sure you will be hearing about it and all my aches and pains.
     So in my 1st month of P90 I lost 3.5 lbs, 7 inches and 8% body fat.  This is not normal but it's pretty exciting for me.  I have been doing my best on the program but I am no saint to it and life happens as it does with everyone.  With the 21 Day Fix you do the program for 21 days and then you can take a break if you wish.

     So for my blog I am going to continue to post my workouts, my struggles, my successes and family approved recipes for your viewing pleasure.  Also if you wish for more info on any of these programs of any BeachBody programs please let me know.  I am also a new coach and just want to help people on their weight loss journey. 

     So welcome and hop on this crazy wild ride I am about to take on and hopefully you will join me.