Apricot Oat Breakfast Cookies

This wheat-, dairy- and sugar-free recipe is a healthy alternative to your morning muffin or scone, but it’s just as satisfying! Using just 4 ingredients, these cookies are quick and simple to make, and the whole family will be asking for more.

I like to make a small batch, as these breakfast cookies are better if eaten the same day. If you are making for your entire family or a group of people simply double the recipe.

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Apricot Oat Breakfast Cookies
Servings
4large cookies (or 6 small cookies)
Servings
4large cookies (or 6 small cookies)
Apricot Oat Breakfast Cookies
Servings
4large cookies (or 6 small cookies)
Servings
4large cookies (or 6 small cookies)
Ingredients
Servings: large cookies (or 6 small cookies)
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a medium bowl mash the banana. Add the oats and egg whites and mix well. Let mixture sit for 3-5 minutes so oats become moist.
  3. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. With a small ice cream scoop or spoon, transfer batter to cookie sheet.
  4. With a spoon make a small impression in the top of each cookie. Place a tablespoon of jam on top of each cookie.
  5. With a spoon make a small impression in the top of each cookie. Place a tablespoon of jam on top of each cookie.
  6. Bake 12-15 minutes. Let cookies cool briefly and then transfer to a wire rack.
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Lobster with Ginger Rice

I am a fan of seafood. I’m always trying to come up with new dishes to feature the season’s best. Some of my favorite recipes from the Healthy You Diet cookbook include the Miso-Glazed Salmon, Crab Cakes, and Fish Tacos. But this Lobster with Ginger Rice recipe may be a new frontrunner.

As we approach lobster season (May is typically one of the best months to buy lobster), I wanted to make a light, yet flavorful meal with lobster as the centerpiece. It’s different from the typical seafood recipes mentioned above and will make a good impression on the family or dinner guests.

Sometimes lobster alone isn’t enough. When combined with rice, it becomes a more satisfying meal. The addition of lime zest and a little bit of ginger provides a fresh, citrusy flavor with a nice kick.

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Being in Florida and close to the Caribbean, my family often vacations in the Bahamas. This dish reminds me of our family vacations and the delicious fresh seafood we’re able to enjoy while there. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do and leaves you with that vacation-like feeling.

Lobster with Ginger Rice
Servings
2
Servings
2
Lobster with Ginger Rice
Servings
2
Servings
2
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven.
  2. Add the shallot and garlic and sauté for 1 min or until tender. Add the ginger and sauté for an additional minute. Add the rice and toss to coat.
  3. Add broth and bring to boil. Add lobster, lime zest and peas. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 – 25 min or until liquid is absorbed.
  4. Add salt, divide between two bowls and serve.
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Clean Eating Helped Me Lose 40 Pounds and Keep it off!

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I originally wrote this piece for MindBodyGreen.com and when it received such an enthusiastic response, I decided that I also wanted to share it with you here. Read my weight loss story below and how I achieved my goal through clean eating.

As seen on MindBodyGreen.com:

I was fat, exhausted and desperate to lose weight. Clean eating changed my life and my weight!

I know being overweight is unhealthy but when I was in my 20’s and 40 pounds overweight my health wasn’t my main concern. I was more concerned with fitting into the clothes in the closet than I was about the health consequences of being overweight. My minuscule clothes budget couldn’t keep up with my ever-expanding waistline. My closet became a war between my “fat” clothes and my “skinny” clothes and unfortunately my fat clothes were winning the battle.

I went from being an extremely fit teenager to being a somewhat fit college student to a 40-pound overweight working-woman in my 20’s.

I still remember turning down company get-togethers and blind dates because I was so uncomfortable with my weight. I was fat, tired and unhappy. I was desperate to lose weight and I tried just about every diet available.

As a true lover of food, none of the fad diets satisfied my craving for good food. On each weight loss attempt, I would lose a few pounds only to give up and gain all the weight back and then some.

It wasn’t until I realized that the media-hyped fad diets weren’t a viable solution for me that I started to work on a solution. After years of failed attempts to lose weight, I finally found a way to drop all 40 pounds and keep it off for good—I’ve been at or near my goal weight for nearly 20 years!

The solution wasn’t about depriving myself of good food or starving myself in order to see the number on the scale drop. The solution was simple—the solution was clean eating.

Eliminating excess sugar, processed foods and artificial sweeteners, chemicals and preservatives was just the start. When I finally found a way of eating that had me dropping the pounds quickly and allowed me to eat good food (like Fish Taco’s with Mango and Avocado Salsa, Chicken Skewers with Chile-Lime Sauce, Kale and Maple Roasted Sweet Potato Salad, Wild Rice and Spinach Soup, Three Bean Chili and even wheat-, gluten- and dairy-free triple chocolate brownies) I knew I found my weight loss silver bullet.

I know what it feels like to be overweight and unhappy but I also know what if feels like to finally fit into a smaller size pair of pants and smile when you step on the scale. I wish everyone who is struggling with their weight and feeling hopeless, like I felt, could know what it feels like to finally lose all the excess weight.

That’s why I wrote The Healthy You Diet: The 14-Day Plan for Weight Loss with 100 Delicious Recipes for Clean Eating. I know what it’s like to lie in bed and cry—thinking you’ll never lose weight. I know what it’s like to turn down invitations because you have no clothes that fit. But I also know how great it feels when the weight starts melting off.

Nearly twelve thousand people have already found success with my free 14-Day Healthy You Challenge—the jump-start to clean eating.

If you’ve just about given up on ever reaching your goal weight, if your tired of depriving yourself of good food and if you’re tired of seeing the number on the scale creep up rather than down, clean eating may be just what you need to jump start your weight loss and once and for all reach your goal weight.

Now that I’m in my late 40’s, I believe the most important benefit of being a healthy weight and eating a clean diet is countering disease and keeping your body working well/healthy. But I can’t lie; I also love the feeling of fitting into my skinny jeans!

Whether you pick up a copy of the, The Healthy You Diet, (and/or join me for The Healthy You Challenge) or embark on another clean eating program, I hope you’ll give clean eating a try. You have nothing to lose but your excess weight!

Gluten-Free Cherry Vanilla Oat Bread

If you’re like me and love the combination of cherry and vanilla, you’ll be head-over-heels for this Cherry Vanilla Oat Bread. It’s not too sweet which makes it the perfect breakfast choice, but it’s just sweet enough that it also makes a great mid-afternoon snack or after-dinner treat.

With two little kids at home, I’m always well stocked on bananas, as they’re a quick grab-and-go snack. But this also means I often find myself with bananas that are too ripe for the kids’ taste. I found a great way to use up my over-ripe bananas and at the same time make my bread recipe extra moist without adding any dairy.

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Cherry Vanilla Oat Bread
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free
Servings
12
Servings
12
Cherry Vanilla Oat Bread
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free
Servings
12
Servings
12
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line the bottom and short ends of an 8” x 4” loaf pan with parchment paper or lightly coat with olive oil.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oat flour, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs. Add the mashed bananas, honey, almond milk, coconut oil and vanilla extract.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture and stir gently to combine. Fold in all but 10 to 12 cherries.
  5. Pour the batter into the pan and scatter the remaining cherries over the top of the loaf.
  6. Bake for approximately 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean and the top is golden brown.
  7. Set the pan on a rack for 10 minutes to cool. Remove the loaf from the pan and cool completely on the rack before slicing.
Recipe Notes

(Make sure to mash the bananas before you combine them with the other wet ingredients. I’ve made the mistake of just tossing in the bananas before and although it works, it can get a little messy.)

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5 Foods to Rev Your Metabolism

chili pepper

Simply put, metabolism is the rate at which your body burns calories. When comparing people with the same activity level, diet and weight, those with a fast metabolism may lose more weight than a person with a slow metabolism.

Metabolism can be influenced by age, gender, heredity, and weight. Although many of those influencers may be out of our control, we can also stimulate our metabolism by what we eat. Here are 5 foods (with tasty recipes) that can help rev your metabolism: 

Chili peppers

Chili Peppers contain capsaicin, a compound that gives peppers their heat. Your taste buds aren’t the only thing experiencing the heat; Peppers push your body to use energy several hours after eating and can burn up to 100 extra calories a day. Although the more heat the better, don’t ignore mild peppers – they also contain compounds that help burn calories by sending fat-burning signals to the brain. My Black Bean Tostadas recipe has the perfect amount of spice to speed up your metabolism.

Garlic

For a simple metabolic boost, add crushed fresh garlic to your meals. Garlic raises your body temperature, naturally burning more calories. Additionally, it has the ability to break down fat and increase your metabolism. This Chicken and Vegetable Stir-Fry is a great example of how to easily add garlic to your meals.

Avocado

Avocados are the definition of “healthy fats.” Packed full of essential amino acids, monounsaturated fats, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, avocados help keep inflammation down and metabolism up. Incorporate avocado into your diet by trying one (or more) of these recipes.

Beans

Foods high in resistant starch and fiber, like beans, require more energy to break them down. The more energy required during digestion, the more calories burned. This Three Bean Salad is the perfect meal to get your metabolism kicking into high gear.

Salmon

Foods boasting Omega 3 fatty acids, like salmon, help build muscle, burn calories, and process your food effectively. Try eating salmon, or other fatty fish, once or twice a week. Try this incredible Salmon and Citrus Salad to get you started.

 

Don’t forget the drinks! In addition to foods we eat, the drinks we drink can help fuel metabolism.

Water

There are plenty of reasons to stay hydrated, and your metabolism is one of them. Drinking water is an easy (and free) way to keep your metabolism in gear. Always have water available throughout the day. If you find it difficult to keep the water flowing, try drinking with a straw – I find that my water intake doubles when I have easy access.

Coffee

Caffeine is a stimulant to the central nervous system and can boost metabolism by 5 to 8%. 1 cup of coffee a day can be just what you need to awaken your metabolism – but leave out all the sugar and creamers as those can add unnecessary (and unwanted) fat and calories.

Green tea

Green tea boasts caffeine and antioxidants, both of which help stimulate the nervous system and burn fat.