Tag Archives: easy recipes

Craving Something Unhealthy?

Well, I was too! I wasn’t craving the worst thing, Campbell’s Vegetarian Vegetable Soup, but there are things on the ingredient list that just don’t work for me. The corn is most likely GMO which is a controversial subject, but I choose to err on the side of caution and avoid it when possible. And the pasta is made with wheat which I try my best to avoid because it causes me grief, and eggs (probably not pastured and who knows what the chickens ate) and sugar which shouldn’t be necessary to cut the acidity of the tomatoes because there are carrots in the soup.

All of which left me in the lurch so I started checking around and found Amy’s Organic Fat Free Vegetable Soup which was delicious once I added a squirt of olive oil, but pricey at around $3.60/can. That can was enough for one nice-sized bowl and I definitely bought it, then found it for a around $2.50 online through Walmart.

One day a few weeks ago I was walking through the grocery store and spotted a package of mixed veggies. That’s something I hadn’t looked at or purchased in years, but the picture got my attention because it is exactly what’s in Campbell’s or Amy’s vegetable soup. The light bulb came on! I checked out the ingredients on Amy’s can and knew that with a can of tomatoes and a few spices I could duplicate the veggie soup of my craving! And, it works! Here’s how:

  • 1 large can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 bag of frozen mixed veggies
  • 1/3 bag of frozen organic corn*
  • 1/2 bag of frozen edamame*
  • 1/2 bag of frozen spinach
  • 1-2T reduced sodium tamari or soy sauce
  • Dehydrated onion flakes, celery salt, garlic powder, salt, pepper to taste
Delicious, and lots of it! The bowl in the front was today's lunch served with some watermelon slices. YUM!

Delicious, and lots of it! The bowl in the front was today’s lunch served with some watermelon slices. YUM!

Using a large pot, put all of the ingredients together along with 1 1/2 tomato cans of water. Heat it all up and then simmer for a couple of hours.
I like extra corn and wanted a bit of protein thrown in. Use organic when possible and practical. You can use onions, garlic and celery, I just didn’t happen to have any on hand when I put mine together.
The second time I made it I cleaned out the bits and pieces of veggies in my freezer and added some okra, peas and kale. Play with it and enjoy!

So, the moral of the story is, you don’t have to pay a fortune for a healthy version, nor does it have to be difficult to create. I’d love the challenge of finding healthy alternatives for you. Visit my website http://www.nancyoglesby.com and click on Contact Me.

Bon Apetite!

 

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Nancy’s Soon-to-Be Famous Accidental Chili

I’ve found a combination of ‘secret’ ingredients that make meatless soup, chili and spaghetti sauce taste, for lack of a better word, meaty. I’ve tested my recipes on diehard, meat-loving dudes and they are all shocked when they find out there’s no meat in them.

So, add this to your meal rotation and save the money for a grass-fed steak! (For more on reasons to add in meatless meals see Breakfast for Dinner.) The story explaining the name is in the recipe instructions below.

This recipe is high in protein, fiber and phytonutrients. Enjoy!

(Gluten Free)

1 Can (28oz)     Diced Organic Tomatoes
2 Cans (15oz)   Kidney Beans (I like Light Red)
1 Can (15oz)     Pinto/Black Beans
1 Can (15oz)     Pizza Sauce (I use Muir Glen Organic)
2 Med                 Onions (chopped how you like them)
2 Cloves            Garlic (crushed)
6-8 Small           Red Potatoes (quartered, unpeeled)
1 Cube               Edward & Sons Not Beef Bouillon (or a brand you prefer)
1 T                     Bragg Liquid Aminos (available either online or in the health section
of your grocery
1.5T                   Smoked Paprika  (or to taste)
3 T                     Chili Powder  (or to taste)
2 T                     Cumin  (or to taste)
1.5 T                  Coconut Oil (I use raw, organic, extra virgin)

Rinse & drain the beans, toss everything in a crockpot, cook. J I have to confess that I don’t always use a raw onion or garlic cloves. If I’m in a hurry and don’t have either, I add dried, minced onion and garlic powder. (There, I said it. Confession over.)

Okay, here’s how the accidental, fabulously delicious potato chili happened:

I was at the grocery store and googled ‘chili’ since I can never remember the ratio of tomatoes to tomato sauce or paste. I checked out three and all of them had only 1 large can of tomatoes so that’s what I bought. I got home and started adding ingredients and quickly realized that I needed another tomato product so I looked in my cabinet and the only thing I had was a can of Muir Glen Pizza Sauce. I read the ingredients and thought, “That should work. The Chili Powder and Cumin should do a good job of covering up most of the basil and oregano.”

I tossed everything in the Crockpot and cooked it several hours before dinner. I fixed myself a bowl, took a bite and realized that the bouillon cube added way too much salt … Hmmm, potatoes will absorb that, so tomorrow I’ll add some potatoes.

The next morning, I tossed it all back in the Crockpot and cubed 6-8 small red potatoes and added them. Several hours later I had the best chili I’d ever tasted … NancyO’s Accidental, Fabulously Delicious Potato Chili! But you don’t have to believe me. I demonstrate this in my cooking classes while the students eat some that’s already cooked. This is what I hear:

“OMG – the chili was AWESOME! … That is a recipe my meat-eating hubby would like too!”

“This chili is really amazing!”

“I can’t believe there’s no meat in this. It’s delicious!”

I hope you get a chance to try this because it is really good and the perfect answer to Meatless Meals!

THANKS!!
Nancy Oglesby, The Practical Health Coach

Just a quick disclaimer: I make a small amount if you purchase from the links I provide. However, primarily I add links because it allows you to know exactly what product I’m talking about when I identify brands that I like and use.

Get Yourself a Prep Cook

Get Yourself a Prep Cook!

Get Yourself a Prep Cook!

The number one thing that stops me from preparing a healthy meal at home is the prep work. All that washing, peeling, slicing and dicing is not what I want to be doing when I get home from work.

One solution would be to hire a Prep Cook. Unfortunately, I’m not Oprah. My wallet currently does not support hiring a kitchen goddess. However, I’ve figured out the next best thing: Use the services of someone else’s Prep Cook. The salad bar at your favorite grocery store is the perfect place to find most of the ingredients you’ll need to create a delicious meal.

There are no signs up at the salad bar that say, ‘SALADS ONLY!’ Go ahead and load up on washed, peeled, sliced and diced onions, celery, carrots, beets, cabbage, mushrooms, snow peas, bean sprouts, spinach, kale … whatever you need. Going for a sweet dish instead of savory? They have cranberries, melon, strawberries and nuts as well. You can also get small amounts of cheeses and meats.

Kitchen Prep Made EasyThe per pound price might be higher, but I’ve saved a bundle by not buying the full-sized package or bundle of ingredients that I don’t need and often never use. After all, how many mung bean sprouts can a single person use in a few days? This choice also keeps a lot of food out of the landfill.

Want one more tip? While you’re there, pick up a salad for tomorrow’s lunch!

If you like these ideas, and are in the Kansas City Metro, check out my Class Schedule at HealthWorksKC. Just click on ‘events’ at the top of the page.

Next up? Make mine pilaf!
Nancy Oglesby, The Practical Health Coach

Breakfast is for Champions!

It’s critical that you end your overnight fast, and fuel your body for the coming day, with good, solid nutrition. I’ve heard so many people say they feel hungrier if they eat. I’m going to guess that they begin their day with sugary cereal, donuts or muffins. This is your opportunity to end that!hat the

The key to a great start is protein, so start with an egg, nut butter, lean meat, beans or low-fat dairy. Protein powder is my easy solution. I don’t eat meat or dairy, so I add a scoop of Sun Warrior Raw Vanilla Protein Powder to my smoothie in the morning. Even a healthy fruit smoothie can leave you hungry if you don’t have protein to slow down the release of sugar into your system.

One way to add a healthy breakfast to your daily routine is to decide what you’re going to have and make it consistent. If you love eggs, have them two or three days a week. On the other days have a smoothie, yogurt or nut butter with an all-fruit spread on whole grain toast.

Fast, Easy, Healthy
Hard boiled eggs is one of the easiest, lowest-sugar ways to add protein to your morning and it speaks to our standard of having eggs at breakfast. Cook up several at a time so that they’re handy.

Make the same smoothie for the week. Buy the ingredients, measure and freeze into individual bags, and all you have to do in the morning is toss in the blender with your choice of liquid and you’re good to go.

If you choose the nut butter option, make sure to measure your nut butter so that you don’t kill it on the calories. I enjoy organic sunflower butter, Trader Joe’s Organic Super Fruit Spread (Morello cherry, red grape, blueberry, pomegranate) on a Lundberg Organic Brown Rice Cracker (so much better than any others).

Be careful when you buy yogurt. It’s loaded with sugar or artificial sweeteners. To avoid that, buy a large container of plain yogurt and a bag of frozen berries. Thaw the berries and combine with the yogurt. Transfer to single serve containers.

winnerIf you love bananas, add a mashed banana to plain Greek yogurt, sprinkle with a tablespoon of chopped walnuts and you have a powerhouse breakfast!

These breakfasts are all under five minutes in the morning and can even be taken with you on your commute (except for the yogurt).

Start your day with nutritious food as the first step on your journey to better health.

Nancy Oglesby, the practical health coach.

Kale, Collards & Scrambled Eggs

What leafy greens did you eat today? I am really lucky because my neighbor has a HUGE collard green patch and she gave me a bag of just-picked goodness so I added some of my curly kale fresh from my garden and cooked it up in a quarter cup of water. When it was tender I chopped it up, added some chopped onion and broccoli and sauteed it all together. When the onion was tender and slightly caramelized I poured a scrambled egg over the top and cooked it to perfection … Served with a side of ice cold watermelon and I was in heaven! By the way, the egg was from a different neighbor’s sister’s homestead. Am I spoiled or what?

For lunch I added the remaining greens (and cooking water) to my leftover homemade vegan split pea soup. It didn’t look like much, but it was delicious! I chose Missouri peaches and a handful of cherries for a side.

Greens are soooo good for you and now is the time to find them locally. Add them to smoothies, omelettes, salads and soups for some serious nutrition!

Greens are full of vitamins and phytonutrients. They improve circulation, purify the blood, strengthen the immune system, reduce cardiovascular disease and diabetes risk, protect against macular degeneration … and they lift the spirit.

Imagine what your life would  be like if you had clear thinking, energy & excitement every day … if you were leaner and stronger! As a Certified Health Coach, I am your Personal Trainer for Lifestyle & Nutrition! I work with you to create an energized and passionate life, helping you develop a happy, healthy lifestyle in a way that is flexible, fun and free of denial and discipline. Working together, we will discover the food and lifestyle choices that best support you. Making gradual, lifelong changes enables you to reach your current and future health goals. For more information, or to contact me, visit my website at www.HealthWorksKC.com