Blueberry Protein Smoothie

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Yay! I’ve gotten back to blogging, its been very difficult to balance school, ballet, and blogging and unfortunately, blogging has been taking a back seat to school and ballet ūüė¶ But, thankfully, everything is starting to come to a close.  Ballet will be over tomorrow and I graduate high school in a week.  There’s a feeling of nostalgia that has been passing over me lately.  I will be going to college next year, and officially closing the door on my professional ballet career. While this was an incredibly difficult decision to make, it is also very liberating to know that I have a thousand possibilities waiting for me. I’m beyond excited to start college and start a new chapter of my life.  As I look back on the past few years, I learned so much about myself and who I want to be.  Everything is going to change drastically.  High School is going to be over soon and college awaits, and while I am so scared about what lays ahead, I’m excited to embark on a new adventure.

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So now that you have that little update on my life, I thought I’d give you all a great protein smoothie recipe because right now smoothies are all I seem to be able to handle.  I recently got hemp protein powder from Manitoba Harvest, and I am loving it. I wanted to get a plant based protein powder just because I’ve never used protein powder before and figured I’d rather play it safe and stick to plant based stuff.  Also, I freaked out when I saw it was hemp protein powder because hemp seeds are one of my favorite supplements and I put them in practically everything. If you’ve seen any of my other smoothie recipes you know hemp seeds are always included.

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Anyway, we’ve had so much fresh fruit in the house that I just had to make a smoothie!

What you need

1 container of greek yogurt

2 tablespoons hemp protein powder

handful blueberries and blackberries

1/2 frozen banana

3 ice cubes

water-amount to preference

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I hope you’ve enjoyed this recipe! If you make it let me know how you like it!

Love,

Jess

Whole Wheat Blueberry Pancakes

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Pancakes are one thing that I prefer to make from scratch. Most people would rather just the boxed mix but I am a firm believer in making my own pancakes, which is mostly because then I can make fun, healthy concoctions.  I made this recipe which is egg free and low calorie. They were really good but I do plan on improving the recipe in the future.

I used this recipe from Foodie Fiasco and instead of just plain pancakes I added blueberries for a sweet and fun touch to the dish. ¬†One of the reasons I love this recipe is because it is so simple, all you do is combine the ingredients and together and pour into a skillet. Simple, easy, and quick. For me, recipes that allow me to move fast in the morning is always a plus. I have a hard time making breakfast food because there just simply isn’t enough time.

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I’ve been in a pancake and waffle mood lately. ¬†Typically, these are foods that I only eat when I indulge, but recently, I’ve been craving them on a normal morning, which is fine because they are so yummy and delicious. ¬†Also, this is a great step for me in self improvement because I’ve been allowing myself to eat them normally. ¬†My relationship with all kinds of food has significantly improved. ¬†I don’t have negative association of certain foods and food fears, and I allow myself to relax and eat what my body wants and needs, rather than what I believe is “healthy.”

So overall, I’ve made some big steps in self acceptance and recovery this year, and I plan on going deeper into that development in another blog post. ¬†Also, I’ve been super MIA lately on my blog because my life has been super hectic right now, but I plan to start updating more regularly. I update my instagram more frequently so follow me on there if you want to more updates, more often ūüôā ¬† But for right now, enjoy these yummy blueberry pancakes!

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Recipe found here.

What you need

*I doubled the original recipe, so if you want the original measurements, just halve these

1/2  cup white whole wheat flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

pinch salt

1/2  cup almond milk

1 tablespoon unsweetened applesauce

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

sweetener, to taste (I used coconut sugar)

What To Do
In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients and stir until completely combined. Allow the batter to sit for a minute while the pan is heating up.
Spray a skillet with cooking spray (I used coconut oil spray) and heat over medium heat. Once the pan is hot, pour the batter into the pan in 2 tablespoon rounds (or larger, depending on desired size) and cook until golden, about 2-3 minutes. Flip and cook for a few more minutes, then transfer to a plate.

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Note* these pancakes have a pretty strong whole wheat flavor, which I like, but if you aren’t on board with it, you could always use regular flour ūüôā

Hope you liked these pancakes and are enjoying your morning!

Love,

Jess

Strawberry Chocolate Chip Cake

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So this was a big event for me baking wise. ¬†I have been wanting to make a cake for a really long time, but just haven’t had the time yet. ¬†I have made cakes before, but they were smaller. ¬†This is my first real layer cake complete with frosting and filling, so I was really excited. ¬†Mostly I make individual sized desserts like brownies, bars, and cupcakes.

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I wanted to do something different than your traditional chocolate and vanilla. ¬† I found this wonderful recipe on Sally’s Baking Addiction, and I knew immediately I had to make it. Originally it called for raspberries, but since I didn’t have any, I substituted with strawberries and it came out wonderful! ¬†Its a vanilla cake recipe and then filled with chocolate chips and strawberries…what more could you want?

Also, just to note, the recipe calls for it to be a 3 layer cake; however, I only had two cake pans, so I just made a two layer cake, which was delicious all the same!

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I brought it to my family for Easter Sunday last week, and everyone loved it! I think its just a really great recipe that can satisfy a lot of different people.

Original Recipe can be found here.

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What you need

Ingredients:

3 and ¬ľ cups (405g) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, melted
1 and ¬ĺ cups (350g) granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 cups (480ml) buttermilk*
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup strawberries
Chocolate chips (as many as you want!)
MILK CHOCOLATE FROSTING
1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
3-4 cups (360-480g) confectioners’ sugar
3/4 cup (63g) unsweetened cocoa powder
3 – 5 Tablespoons (45-75ml) heavy cream (or half-and-half)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract*
salt, to taste*

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Generously coat three 9x9x2 inch round baking pans with nonstick spray (I used coconut oil spray). Set aside.

To make the cake, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl and then set aside. Melt the butter in the microwave in a large bowl. Then, vigorously whisk in the granulated sugar, then the eggs, milk, and vanilla extract. Once the wet ingredients are whisked together, slowly whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until there are barely any lumps. The batter will be very thick – try not to overmix. Fold in the raspberries and chocolate chips – be gentle.

Divide batter evenly between prepared cake pans. Bake for 22-24 minutes. Cakes are done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool completely in the pans on a wire rack.

Make the frosting: Cream the butter with a hand or stand mixer on medium speed for 3-4 minutes. This will create a nice creamy base for the frosting. Add 3 cups of powdered sugar and 3/4 cup of cocoa powder. Mix on low. Add 3 Tablespoons of heavy cream and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. If your frosting is too thin, add up to 1 more cup of powdered sugar. If your frosting is too thick, add up to 2 more Tablespoons of heavy cream. Taste and add salt if you prefer.

Assemble and frost: Place 1 layer on your cake stand. Evenly cover the top with frosting. Place 2nd layer on top, and add more frosting on top and spread around the sides.

*I did not have buttermilk, so I just made it myself.  To do this for the 2 cups milk, add 2 two tablespoons white vinegar to it and let sit for 5-10 minutes.

* I forgot to add the salt and vanilla to the frosting and it tasted fine, it was just very rich.  These measurements are from the original recipe, so use if you like.

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This was such a delicious cake, I really recommend it if you’re looking for something a bit different or a bit more sophisticated.

Let me know how you liked it!

Love,

Jess

Chorizo and Bean Soup

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Hello Winter!

All the sudden it got very, very cold. ¬†We went from having a 60 degree winter break to an 11 degree day…I have no idea what mother nature is thinking right now. ¬†I’ve been trying to enjoy the cold, but its just so hard. ¬†I’m a warm weather girl, and I simply don’t like being cold.

Anyway, winter is always a great time for soups! Today, my mom and I made a vegetable bean soup with mexican chorizo, and it was very yummy and tasty…perfect for a cold winters day. ¬†Soup is surprisingly really simple to make, and if you stick with low sodium broth, it can be very healthy (as long as you put healthy things in, that is!). ¬†Recently I’ve been on a soup and salad kick, which is always a good combo.

This soup was intended to be a minestrone, but when my mom saw the chorizo in the store, we decided to change it up a bit.  So its basically minestrone with chorizo, or just a vegetable, bean, sausage soup.

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What you need:

1 onion

2 stalks Celery

2 Carrots

1 Turnip

Thyme, salt, pepper, and 3 cloves of garlic pressed, and a bay leaf

2 links of Chorizo, chopped

46 fl ounces Lower sodium chicken broth

12 ounce Can of diced tomatoes

1 green and 1 yellow zucchini

1 can of white beans

Favorite kind of pasta

Prep:

Rinse and drain one can of white beans

Chop up vegetables

Chop up the chorizo

To start:

Add the onion, celery, carrots, turnip, and chorizo to a large pot. Sauté for about a minute and then add salt, thyme, pepper, the 3 cloves of garlic, and bay leaf till tender, or for about 8 minutes.

Add the chicken broth and the can of diced tomatoes; let heat up

Then both the zucchinis and cook for 10-15 minutes

Add more salt and pepper, to taste, and the small can of white beans, rinsed and drained, to the pot.

Let this mixture cook for a 5-10 minutes.

Turn off the heat.

Now, in a separate pot, cook the pasta of choice al dente. Once cooked, add carefully to the soup.

Enjoy (with parmesan cheese sprinkled on top if desired)!

This recipe was a bit more adventurous for me, as I don’t normally make soup, but my mother was teaching me this time, so she did most of the work ūüėČ

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I hope you all are enjoying your winter so far!

Love,

Jess

 

Cinnamon Raisin Cookie Oatmeal

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Nutcracker has been underway for about 3 weekends now, and it has been very exciting but very exhausting.  For some reason, my favorite pre performance breakfast is oatmeal.  Its just a great way to get carbs into the day and keep you full and satisfied.  I really love creating fun oatmeal recipes, because just plain oatmeal is really boring. Today i made a cinnamon raisin oatmeal and topped it with a brown sugar crumble, which literally made it taste like a cookie.

The crumble, however, is really difficult to make, not because its complex, but because getting accurate measurements is nearly impossible.  Its one of those things where you have to continue to add as you go to get the right consistency and texture.

What you need

1 cup water

1/2 cup old fashioned or rolled oats

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon* (I would add a tiny bit more if you like a lot of flavor)

Sprinkle of raisins

*optional hemp or chia seeds

Crumble

1/2 cup flour

a little less than 1/4 cup brown sugar

2 teaspoons butter chopped

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

*** Like I said before keep adding butter and brown sugar until you get a good crumbly texture, these are only guestimates.

Pour water into a pot over the stove and set on medium heat.  Once water is boiled, pour oats, cinnamon, raisins, almond extract, and any additional seeds you would like.  Stir occasionally for about 5-7 minutes.  While doing this, mix the flour, brown sugar, butter and cinnamon in a food processor on low.  Once oatmeal is cooked, serve in a bowl and top with crumble topping.  Enjoy!

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Hope you love my cookie inspired oatmeal!

Love,

Jess

Strawberry Banana Pomegranate Smoothie

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I’ve been meaning to make a smoothie for a while, and I really don’t have an excuse for the delay in making it considering smoothies take about five minutes. That’s one of the things I love so much about smoothies. ¬†They are a great way to get fruits (and even veggies) in the morning and if you add some yogurt or protein powder to them, they can be very filling.

Most people would much rather grab something hot than an ice cold smoothie in the winter, but personally, I love smoothies anytime, anywhere.  I prefer my smoothies to be on the thicker side, so I always add some sort of greek yogurt.

Right now, I’ve currently fallen in love with Siggi’s Icelandic Skyr (yogurt). ¬†It’s super healthy and is packed with ¬†protein. Its similar in taste to greek yogurt, but the texture is a bit thicker. ¬†It’s also not too sweet, which is perfect if you’re trying to watch your sugar intake, or simply don’t like super sweet yogurt. ¬†Definitely give it a try! ūüôā

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What you need

1/2 cup pomegranate cider (or pomegranate juice)

1/2 frozen banana

3 frozen strawberries

1/2 container strawberry siggis yogurt (or greek yogurt)

sprinkle of hemp seeds

sprinkle of chia seeds

Blend and Enjoy!

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Don’t let the cold stop you from enjoying a smoothie!

Love,

Jess

Apple Pie Pancakes

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I haven’t had pancakes in a really long time. ¬†I’m always reluctant to make them because its just carbs and I have to take the time to cook them. ¬†In reality, pancakes are one of the easiest things to make, but I’m not a morning person, so the only thing I want to do when I wake up is grab a coffee and an english muffin. ¬†Today, however, was different. Its a beautiful Sunday, and I figured a nice way to enjoy my morning would be to make some delicious pancakes and indulge in a wonderful breakfast treat that I hadn’t had in a while.

Of course, the predominant fruit in my house is apples, so I decided to make apple pie pancakes. ¬†I was looking through my recent recipes and I realized they’ve all used apples in them. ¬†I swear to you, this was not done on purpose, but its the simple fact that apples are delicious, especially this time a year. ¬†Also, my dad is kinda crazy and insists on eating like 2 apples a day, so we end up always having a billion apples in the house.

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The recipe I decided to use is from Chocolate Covered Katie.  The only thing I really changed was the amount of sugar used.  I cut back, only using half a tablespoon.  She recommends serving them à la mode, but I was not in the mood for ice cream early in the morning, so I passed, but feel free to use ice cream as a topper instead of syrup. I also used a little more than a 1/3 of a cup of milk.  What I would recommend is put in the 1/3 cup and stir, and then depending on your preference for the thickness of pancakes, slowly add small amounts of milk until you get your desired consistency.

1/3 cup flour (ww pastry, white, spelt, or arrowhead mills’ gf mix)
2 tbsp rolled oats
1/2 cup finely-chopped apple
1 tsp cinnamon
2/3 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tbsp sugar
1/3 cup milk of choice (or more, for thinner pancakes)
1 tbsp oil (coconut oil is delicious here!) or vegan butter, and reduce milk by that amount
Combine dry ingredients in a bowl, then add wet. Mix, but don’t overmix. Cook on an oiled (or sprayed) pan, on low-medium, flipping each pancake once. Top with syrup or ice cream, and enjoy!

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Love,

Jess