Gluten-Free Turkey Meatballs

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Earlier this week, I didn’t know what to make for dinner. I had ground turkey in the freezer and a spaghetti squash in the fridge. Then I remembered that my friend posted Jessica Alba’s Turkey Meatballs on Facebook. It looked good and seemed simple enough to make. So with just one alteration, we had Gluten-Free Turkey Meatballs for dinner! Yay! (And this recipe made so much I had leftovers for lunch. Yummy!)

RECIPE

  • 2 pounds lean ground turkey
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped carrots
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped zucchini
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon coarse sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  1. In a large bowl, mix turkey, almond meal, carrots, zucchini, onion, eggs, Italian seasoning, and salt. Form into 1-inch balls.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add meatballs and cook, turning, until browned, about 7 minutes.
  3. Add 1/2 cup of chicken broth; cover and reduce heat to low. Cook until liquid is almost completely absorbed.
  4. Add the remaining 1/4 cup of broth and increase heat to medium; cook, uncovered, until liquid is absorbed.
  5. Serve over spaghetti squash, zoodles (zucchini noodles), or a side of roasted veggies.
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Pistachio-Crusted Cod

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I love pistachios! And if it’s used to “crust” something, I’m game! It’s Lent for us Catholics and so Fish Fridays are here until Easter. The original recipe used halibut but I had cod on hand so the recipe is now called Pistachio-Crusted Cod. But you can use any kind of flaky fish such as tilapia or salmon.

Low-carb, light and gluten-free. It’s such an easy dish to make for lunch or dinner. It has dijon mustard so it’s got “bite” that goes straight up your nostrils like Mater did when he ate the “avocado ice cream” (or wasabi) in Disney’s Cars 2. Lol. 🙂

RECIPE

  • 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp. finely grated lemon peel
  • 1 dash sea salt
  • Ground black pepper (to taste; optional)
  • Four 4-oz. raw cod fillets (or halibut, tilapia, salmon, etc.)
  • ¼ cup raw, unsalted pistachios, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. corn meal or almond meal
  • 1 Tbsp. finely chopped parsley
  1. Preheat oven to 400° F.
  2. Combine mustard, lemon peel, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.
  3. Pat the fish fillets dry with a paper towel and lay in an over-safe baking dish.
  4. Spread mustard mixture evenly on the top side of each fillet. Set aside.
  5. Combine pistachios, corn/almond meal and parsley in a medium bowl.
  6. Press pistachio mixture evenly into top side of each fillet.
  7. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until halibut flakes easily when tested with a fork.

Serve with grilled vegetables and brown rice. Delicious!

Zucchini Brownies

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What?! Zucchini Brownies? It doesn’t sound appetizing but I can tell you that it is very good. It’s moist, rich, super dark, not too sweet, and yes, guilt-free (gluten-free, no refined sugar, no butter or oil, nut-free, and wheat-free). My 9-year old daughter loves them. My 4-year old son won’t try anything with the word “zucchini” it in no matter how chocolatey it is. If you’re lucky, it’s a great way to get veggies in your child or husband’s diet. 🙂 Perfect for dessert or a snack.

The recipe is from cookingalamel.com but I made my own changes because I want it EXTRA DARK!

RECIPE

  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1/2 cup Peet’s unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup plain Fage Greek yogurt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 T vanilla extract
  • 1/2 t liquid stevia (or 1/2 cup more coconut sugar, added to the dry ingredients)
  • 2-3 zucchini squash, shredded
  • One (1) 3.5 oz. of 85% or higher dark chocolate bar, roughly chopped
  • Optional: 3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease or line an 8″x 8″ pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the almond meal, cocoa, salt, baking soda, and coconut sugar.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the yogurt, eggs, vanilla, and liquid stevia together, until smooth.
  4. Slowly add the dry ingredients until fully incorporated.
  5. Fold in the shredded zucchini, chocolate pieces, and nuts.
  6. Pour into a greased 8×8 baking dish.
  7. Bake for 30-35 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Let cool before cutting.

Bagels

Before I get to the bagel recipe, I’m so sorry that I haven’t been posting in a while. I’ve been bitten by the “workout bug” and have delved into the land of fitness. My life has been consumed by daily exercise so I haven’t been cooking as much or trying out new recipes but I am still eating clean and always refer to my recipes for weight maintenance.

If you’d like to see NEW Before & After Pics, click here.

Now on to the Bagel recipe…

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I love bagels! I practically salivate when I smell their delicious aroma when I pass by the bakery at Costco or when they’re toasting in the toaster! BUT… since I stay away from bagels because it’s full of carbs, I only eat them very rarely. And when I do, I will only eat half, and eat is ever-so-slowly so that I can enjoy it. Then I found this gluten-free, grain-free, paleo, lower-carb bagel recipe from Elana’s Pantry. Ok, so it doesn’t have the chewiness and texture of a bagel, but it LOOKS like a bagel, it has a hole in the middle, and I can eat it with cream cheese for breakfast. So, I’ll take that over nothing. 🙂 You can also use this to make bagel sandwiches for lunch or dinner. Yum, yum!

I altered the instructions a bit since I don’t have a food processor. I used a mixer and the bagels came out fine.

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RECIPE

  • 1-1/2 cups of almond meal
  • 1/4 cup of flax meal
  • 1 T of coconut flour
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp of salt
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T of poppy or sesame seeds (optional)
  1. Preheat oven at 350˚F. Grease and dust a donut pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients (except for the seeds).
  3. In a large bowl, beat eggs and vinegar on a medium setting using a mixer. Then slowly add the dry ingredients a little bit at a time mixing with a spatula until you form batter.
  4. Place the batter in a piping bag or a plastic bag, and snip off one corner and pipe the batter into the donut pan.
  5. Sprinkle the seeds over the bagels.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the bagel comes out clean.
  7. Cool the bagels for an hour, then serve.
  8. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Toast to reheat.

Cauliflower Pizza Crust

cauliflowerpizzaDoesn’t this Cauliflower Pizza Crust look like a REAL pizza crust?! I finally found a recipe for this gluten-free, wheat-free, low carb crust that doesn’t turn out soggy and is actually a decent guilt-free substitute for pizza crust. This is based from a recipe from GoSuperSisters.com. The trick is getting ALL THE EXCESS WATER OUT! And it’s best to make this a personal-sized pizza vs. a regular family-sized pizza because then the center will be soggy. I couldn’t bake it longer without burning the edges. And look at those edges! Yup… there is a little crunch with this crust!

RECIPE

Crust:

  • 2 cups of rough chopped cauliflower
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tbs coconut or oat flour
  • 1 T Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp of dry Italian herbs or seasoning
  • Pepper (optional)

Toppings

  • 2 T tomato sauce or sugar-free pizza sauce
  • 2 T Parmesan cheese
  • 1/8 cup of shredded mozzarella
  • Your choice of toppings
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Place cauliflower in a food processor (or in a blender with a bit of water) and process until “riced.”
  3. Put the riced cauliflower in a microwave safe bowl and heat in the microwave for 4-5 minutes or until soft.
  4. Once cauliflower has completely cooled (a couple hours?), pour the cauliflower “dough” in a clean kitchen towel or cheese cloth and squeeze the excess water out. I’m talking SQUEEZE! There is a lot of water in cauliflower and when you think you’ve squeezed it all out, SQUEEZE some more! You’ll be thankful you did.
  5. Place cauliflower back into a bowl and add your egg white, flour, cheese, garlic, salt, seasoning and pepper. Mix well and form into a ball.
  6. Place the dough on your lined baking sheet and flatten into a round circle with your hands. Place in oven for 15 minutes, then remove and carefully flip (I used another lined baking sheet on top to support the crust and make sure it didn’t fall apart).
  7. Put it back into oven for 5-10 minutes or until golden brown (more if you want).
  8. Once your crust is done, top it with sauce, cheese and any other toppings.
  9. Place it back into the oven for 5-10 minutes or until cheese is golden.
  10. Buon Apetit!

Overnight Oats

overnightoatsWhen I get lazy or don’t have time to make old-fashioned oatmeal, I can make these… I love these Overnight Oats! I found the idea from a friend’s Instagram post. She’s a fitness and nutrition coach (TineySpark) and now I can have oatmeal without all the work. You can use either a mason jar or an almost-empty-jar* of peanut butter.

(* almost empty means you have about 1 tablespoon of peanut butter around the jar)

RECIPE

In a mason jar…

  • 1 Tbsp of PB (or any nut butter)
  • 1/2 cup of uncooked old-fashion oatmeal (not quick oats or steel-cut)
  • 1/2 cup of almond milk (soy, coconut or rice milk works too)
  • 1 Tbsp of agave nectar (or other sweetener of choice)
  • 1 tsp of shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • a splash of vanilla extract
  • a couple shakes of cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp of chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp of flax seeds
  1. Put the lid tightly back on the jar.
  2. Shake vigorously!
  3. Place the jar in the refrigerator overnight and you’ll have a guilt-free, dairy-free breakfast ready in the morning!

Other options:

  • Use 1-2 Tbsp of PB2 instead of peanut butter.
  • Add sliced bananas before refrigerating overnight.
  • Add 1/4 cup of Greek yogurt or do half yogurt and half milk.

Chewy Chocolate Pecan Cookies

ChewyChocPecanSandiesFresh out of the oven, these Chewy Chocolate Pecan Cookies could almost pass for brownie edges. Almost. Store them in the refrigerator for about a week. You can heat them up a bit in a toaster oven later. I love dunking these in a glass of cold coconut milk!

RECIPE

  • 2 cups of blanched almond flour (lighter) or almond meal (darker)
  • 2 T cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 cup of pecans or walnuts (raw or roasted)
  • 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, ghee, or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup of coconut nectar or agave nectar
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • course salt for sprinkling on each cookie (optional)
  • 1 tsp of ground cinnamon (optional)
  1. Preheat your oven to 325°F.
  2. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl.
  3. Add in the wet ingredients.
  4. Prepare baking sheets with parchment paper or a non-stick mat.
  5. Place small balls of cookie dough about an inch apart on the cookie sheet. Press them down with a fork like you would for peanut butter cookies.
  6. Sprinkle a bit of salt over each cookie.
  7. Bake for 12-15 minutes.