"How To" Guides, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, Vegan, Vegetarian

How to Slice Mango like a Pro

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Cutting a mango may be a little intimidating, especially when it has that large pit in the center. With a sharp knife, it’s really quite easy. Once you have your perfectly sliced mango, top oats, smoothies bowls or tacos. Add to salads or salsa. Slice, prep and freeze servings for smoothies. Use for anything! Mangos are a great way to make a dish sweet without adding any extra sugar. Here’s a guide for How to Slice a Mango.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

CocoNUTS for Chocolate Almond Coconut Oats

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My summer semester is right around the corner. While we have most Fridays off, I’m not looking forward to being gone from 6 am to 9 pm on some days for class and clinical. I’ve been looking at meal preps to ease through the day and free up my mornings, and overnight oats, smoothies or quiche are my go-to. I made these overnight oats during finals last month, and I’ve been prepping Chocolate Almond Coconut Overnight Oats ever since. Chocolate gives a nice decadent burst and the combo of almonds, almond extract, coconut milk and coconut flakes all give a fun twist on your morning. Happy meal prep!

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Mad for Matcha Breakfast Bowls

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I previously tried Trader Joe’s Matcha Green Tea Packets as prepared and felt like I was drinking grass. Sorry, matcha fans. Maybe it’s just me or the type of matcha I tried, but regardless, I was determined to find a new way to enjoy matcha, I added it to a chia breakfast bowl. Loved it this way! But then again, I also cut the recipe from 1 t down to 1/2 t, so I’m sure this had something to do with my new affinity for matcha. (Note the subtle green hue to the bowl versus that vibrant green associated with matcha.) I’m so happy I found cardamom. It adds such a citrusy aspect to recipes and paired so well with the “greenness” of matcha. If I make this again, oranges, grapefruit and pineapple would also be great toppings in addition to the mango. Load up the fruit and take a break from oats, eggs and smoothies for breakfast. This Matcha Chia Breakfast Bowl is both light and filling and just what you need for a healthy morning detox of sorts.

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Asian, Dairy-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

Crispy, Crunchy Coconut Tofu

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You know when you go out in the summer and all you see is coconut shrimp this and coconut shrimp that? Here’s a meatless Monday take on that — Crispy Coconut Tofu Bowls. I got this idea/recipe from Well Vegan and it definitely came from a plant-based protein roundup from either SELF or BuzzFeed. (Obviously I receive biweekly emails for meal, recipe ideas and cooking tips from both.) After coming back from Sanibel Island, I was still feeling the tropical vibes during this rainy weather and this recipe seemed like the perfect solution. I definitely cut down on all of Well Vegan‘s prep time, simplified the tofu process, lightened it up by baking instead of frying and skipped their added sauce. This recipe looks way more complicated than it is and just requires a little foresight to prep the tofu ahead of time. By swapping a can of full-drat coconut milk for So Delicious Unsweetened Coconut Milk, the quinoa still turned out dense, yet fluffy with a very subtle coconut flavor. I must say the best part about this is the toasted coconut flakes and panic that result from the baking process — pure perfection.

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Dairy-Free, Drinks, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Vegan, Vegetarian

Rev Up Your Metabolism with This Detox Tea

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I made a boomerang for this, but sadly, uploading videos to my blog is somehow surprisingly complicated. Thus, you’re stuck with these rainy background photos, whose melancholy nature actually makes you want to drink tea, right? I made this Apple Cider Vinegar Detox Tea last spring using local honey in an attempt to keep my allergies at bay. Not entirely sure if it helped for allergies, but I enjoyed drinking the tart tea warm either first thing in the morning or right before bed. I’ve been an on-again, off-again Tone It Up follower for 3 years now, and they recommended a version of this they call “Meta D” with apple cider vinegar (ACV), apple juice, cinnamon and cayenne. (They also have ACV and fruit blends here.) It does boost some health benefits that can’t hurt: cinnamon is anti-inflammatory, ginger helps with digestion and ACV and cayenne rev up metabolism. Here’s a warning, it is quite tart, but try to enjoy without overloading it with honey (aka sugar albeit ). I also really like this not cold, not piping hot, but warm juuuuust right in the middle.

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Asian, Dairy-Free, Meal Prep, Vegan, Vegetarian

Protein-Packed Plantbased Stir Fry

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Happy Meatless Monday! This colorful stir fry packs 30 g of protein when using 1 egg and 3 T egg whites. Not bad for eating meatless. I got this idea for a Colorful Veggie Stir Fry with Tofu from PopSugar. I’ve realized I don’t get enough protein a day (like most women), and I’ve been trying to consciously add more protein to dishes when I can. My existing diet seems to revolve mostly around veggies and grains (not a bad thing! But hey, carbs), so I’m trying to make a transition to one of a more balanced “macro” diet, but thus, incorporating more protein. Macronutrients can be broken down into carbs or carbohydrates, protein and fat. A macro diet doesn’t focus on calories alone, but the types of calories you’re eating and the certain percentage of how those calories compare. For the stir fry, I added in eggs and tofu. I tried both a steamed veggie (less oil, i.e. fat) and stir fry veggie option. Honestly, they had about the same in flavor and the steamed option was faster and more convenient using your handy microwave. The flavor really comes from the soy sauce for the tofu and sriracha to top. My favorite method was the steamed veggies with scrambles eggs because it was just SO EASY, but I included both below. (Looks complicated, but I assure you it’s not.) I already know what I’m having for lunch the next two days. Also great for meal prepping!

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Dessert, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

Buzzing for these Blackberry Cardamom Oats

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So I may or may not have grabbed a handful of this Whole Earth Sweetener packets from Starbucks last weekend 🙈 . . . oops. They’re sitting out for the taking, so I decided why not try them? Not my fault I don’t add sugar or sweetener to my coffee. (Full disclosure: I grabbed three, which I think is a respectable “grab.”) I was grabbing spices to make Indonesian Inspired Quinoa Bowls and saw cardamom hiding out in the back of my pantry. Cardamom has such a nice citrus flavor that I wanted some oats with grapefruit on the side — but the 2.0 version. Thus, I made Blackberry Cardamom Overnight Oats with a Broiled Grapefruit. The grapefruit is amazing! This would be so good on the grill or as a dessert. I foresee myself stalking up on grapefruit during my next grocery run to make this again. Plus, the broiled grapefruit seems like a great standalone side for a brunch or the beginnings of a dessert.

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Asian, Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Salad, Vegan, Vegetarian

Keen on Rainbow Quinoa Salad Bowls

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I’ve been on a colorful salad and bowl kick lately. This Rainbow Quinoa Salad did not disappoint. Can you sense a taste trend here? I also really liked this Peanut Ginger Dressing and it was very easy to make. I made this salad dressing combo during the week when I had exams and presentations and had my last serving today. Can I already have another? I used a combination of yellow and red bell peppers to give a more colorful kick and balance the other colors. Served cold, it hit the spot during this warm, toasty April week.

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"How To" Guides, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Soup, Vegan, Vegetarian

A Practical How To: Homemade Veggie Stock

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The most practical how to ever. How to make Homemade Vegetable Stock. I saw this on BuzzFeed’s Tasty and it’s been a repeat offender for me this winter, so I thought I’d post about it. The ziplock bag fills up quick! Well, maybe quick for me. The first time I made this, I had many stems from basil and the broth had a hint of that. This next few times, I tried to add ginger skin, garlic, more herbs and mushroom to add a more savory aspect. I also really like adding sweet potatoes since they naturally make the broth sweet, as do zucchini, carrots, squash and kale. I don’t add anything else to the broth, i.e. salt — I’m looking at you, since it’s much easier to salt the batch of what you make than try to rectify an overly salty mess. It’s kind of fun to see what you can save and so have fun turning your scraps into something useful. Waste not!

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

Crazy about Carrot Cake for Brekkie

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I’m back on an overnight oat fix (and smoothies, but we’ll get leave that for another time). We’ve had some stressful exam weeks approaching finals so meal prepping has been key. I whipped up a couple jars of some different flavors like Carrot “Cake” Overnight Oats. These are so easy to make, you can enjoy them hot or cold and you have all the flavors of carrot cake without the huge indulgence. I also promise you won’t even realize the carrots are there. They finer you grate them, the more they disappear. (It’s like a zucchini bread turned oatmeal if you still need a hard sell.)

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