Grilled Avocado

I LOVE avocados! When I started the SCD and saw avocados were SCD legal, I was ecstatic. The three foods I don’t think I could ever live without are avocados, mangos, and cheese! The grilled avocados I made yesterday were wonderful; any true avocado aficionado will enjoy them. I used mini avocados for mine.

Ingredients:

  • 2 avocados
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 fresh lemon
  • Salt (I used pink Himalayan salt; I feel it gives it way more flavor than regular table salt)
  • Pepper

Cut your avocados in half, remove the pits, and sprinkle generously with the grated Parmesan cheese. I put mine in the toaster oven on broil for about 5-10 minutes. Depending on your oven, you’ll want to remove your avocados once the cheese melts and gives a nice brown color. Remove from the oven, squeeze  fresh lemon on top, sprinkle with salt and pepper.

My stomach can’t handle spicy foods but if you like spicy, you can add some chili powder or cayenne to yours. If you’re not on the SCD, you can also add some Sriracha hot sauce for a little extra kick!

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Black Bean Brownies

This is another pre-SCD recipe that I tried a few months back. I had tasted black bean brownies before but the recipe didn’t use egg as an ingredient, and while they were good, the brownies tasted very dry. This recipe I found online for black bean brownies is delicious and makes the brownies turn out very moist! I gave them to our guests and no one knew I had used beans, instead of chocolate, for the main ingredient; in fact, they kept going on about how good the brownies tasted! You can find the recipe here.

I made very few changes. I left out the instant coffee completely; instead, for the cocoa powder ingredient, I used Ghirardelli’s Chocolate Mocha Hot Cocoa Mix, so that the brownies would have both a coffee flavor and a chocolate flavor all in one. I also left the chocolate chips out, to keep it as healthy as possible. These brownies are seriously good!

What I love even more is that you literally throw all the ingredients together in a blender, pour it in a baking dish, and put in the oven. I used a 8 x 8 inch baking dish for mine.

I hope you have fun making these and enjoy eating them even more!

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Hearty Vegetable Stew

I made this stew during winter, before I had started the SCD, and my husband and I really enjoyed it! It’s thick and full of flavor! It’s also the first stew I ever made, so, I was pleasantly surprised at how tasty it turned out. I’ve come to realize that stews are pretty much foolproof. The best part about stews is that although they sometimes require a lot of ingredients, you mostly just throw everything in one big pot and let the flavors all come together.

This stew is perfect for those cold fall and winter nights when you want something that will really warm you up.

Ingredients:

  • 2 c. low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 c. water
  • 1/2 of a 15.5 oz can of garbanzo beans
  • 1/2 of a 16 oz. can of kidney beans
  • 1/2 of a 15.25 oz can of corn
  • 1/2 of a 4 oz can of green chiles, chopped
  • Handful of colorful mini bell peppers, chopped
  • Handful of baby carrots
  • 2 c. spinach, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 c. tomatoes, diced
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

In a pot, saute the chopped red onions and garlic in olive oil. Add the green chilies and diced tomatoes, and continue sauteing. Remove everything from the pot and puree in a food processor; then, return to pot and add the chicken broth and water.

Add the garbanzo beans, kidney beans, corn, mini bell peppers, spinach, and baby carrots. Add the oregano, basil, rosemary, sugar, salt and pepper to taste. Simmer on medium to low heat for 1 hour, stirring occasionally in between. Remove from heat and enjoy!

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Gluten-Free Baked Chicken Tenders

The chicken I made last night looks like fried chicken but is actually baked and it has only 1 gram of carbs per serving! OMG, yes, I said only 1 gram of carbs!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 c. almond meal
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 pounds boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 egg

Preparation:

Mix the almond meal, paprika, salt, pepper, and Parmesan cheese together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, beat the egg. Cut your chicken breast lengthwise into 10 strips. Dip each piece of chicken into the egg, put it inside the bowl with the almond meal and seasonings, and give the bowl a few shakes, so that the chicken tenders get evenly coated.  Lay the chicken tenders flat on a greased cookie sheet and bake in a 425 degree heated oven for a total of 16 minutes; after the first 8 minutes, flip the chicken tenders over, allowing both sides to brown nicely.

Chicken 1

Chicken 2

Lift each chicken tender up with tongs, allow to cool for a few minutes, and enjoy!

Chicken 3

Chicken 4

I love how these look fried but are actually baked. Yum! And, did I mention each tender only has 1 gram of carbs?! Now, how can you beat that?

Just Like Mom’s Lasagna Recipe

Lasagna is one of those things I love making, even now when I can’t eat it! It’s a nostalgic type of food for me. As a kid, I used to love my mom’s lasagna and no one else’s could compare to hers. It’s the perfect comfort food! While this is not SCD legal, I cooked it over the weekend for my husband and our friends.

Ingredients:

  • 24 oz. pasta sauce (I used Classico’s Fire Roasted Tomato and Garlic for a little extra flavor)
  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 14 oz. crushed tomatoes
  • 12 oz. tomato paste
  • 14.5 oz. fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 13 oz. sliced mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp white sugar
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 c. fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 c. water
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried fennel
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 16 oz. cottage cheese
  • 16 oz. whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 6 oz. shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 32 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 12 lasagna noodles

Preparation:

Cook the ground beef over medium heat on the stove. Once browned, drain the fat in a separate bowl. Drizzle the pan with olive oil and add the onions, garlic, and mushrooms; saute for a few minutes. Add the pasta sauce, crushed tomatoes, tomato paste,and diced tomatoes. Add the sugar, basil, fennel, Italian seasoning, 3 tbsp of the fresh parsley, salt, and pepper. Add 1 cup water and let the sauce simmer on low for one hour, so that all the flavors mesh together. Be sure to give it a few stirs every now and then, to prevent your sauce from getting too thick and clumping.

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In the meantime, boil salted water and add the lasagna noodles; cook according to the directions on the back of the package, which should be about 8 minutes. Drain and immerse noodles in cold water to prevent them from sticking. Lay flat on foil sprayed with Pam or on parchment paper until the meat sauce finishes simmering.

In a medium bowl, mix together the cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese (reserving about 1/2 c. for later), the remaining parsley, and eggs. In a 9 x 13 inch baking dish, layer the bottom with meat sauce. Add three lasagna noodles over the meat sauce. Begin layering by first spreading the cheese mixture over the noodles, then, sprinkle with mozzarella cheese, and finish off with the meat sauce as the last layer, before adding three more noodles on top. After layering it twice and having a total of six noodles with the meat sauce as the last layer, sprinkle the remaining Parmesan and mozzarella cheeses on top.

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I ended up having extra meat sauce, so I cut some of the remaining noodles in half and made a “mini” lasagna by using a 8 x 8 inch baking dish. You can either do that or use the remaining six lasagna noodles and make a full second batch. I just feel with a 9 x 13 inch baking dish, trying to layer one dish with 9 noodles and all that cheese makes it overflow in the oven (I tried that once and it was not pretty hearing the oven sizzle as the cheese dripped down from the top!)

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Cover your lasagna with foil and place in a 375 degree heated oven for 25 minutes. After 25 minutes, remove the foil, and bake for an additional 25 minutes.

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Now, wait patiently and let the amazing smell of noodles, melting cheese, the different spices, and nostalgia fill your home! Here’s how my lasagna looked when it was done cooking and out of the oven:

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Unfortunately, due to being on the SCD, I was not able to taste my own masterpiece but my husband vouched that it was the best lasagna I had made to date.

Enjoy!

Frozen Banana and Peanut Butter “Sandwiches”

I’m all about quick and easy snacks, so, when I find one, I latch on to it! Like most everybody else, my life gets busy and I don’t always have the time (or patience) to make something elaborate. The other day I made frozen banana and peanut butter sandwiches. How can something so simple have never crossed my mind before?

Ingredients:

  • Bananas
  • All natural peanut butter

Preparation:

Cut the bananas into small slices, layer one slice with peanut butter and put another slice on top, making a, “sandwich.” Put in the freezer and freeze for at least 3 hours or until the bananas feel hard and icy. For me, the colder, the better, since I like refreshing treats.

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And, that’s it! There’s nothing else to it. A filling, guiltless treat that you can easily make at any time. Who needs a bag of chips when there are so many healthful recipes around, right?

Enjoy!

Coconut Flour Waffles

Coconut flour has quickly become my new favorite flour! This weekend, I made coconut flour waffles twice. Yes, they are that good and seriously delicious! You will love these, and it will make you not miss regular waffles one bit. I found the original recipe on Pinterest (of course!) So, thank you to the person who originally came up with the idea!

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut flour
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup homemade SCD legal yogurt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 eggs
  • Fresh fruit, sliced
  • Butter, melted

Preparation:

Combine all ingredients together and pour by 1/4 cupfuls into your waffle maker. Remove, pour melted butter on top, add fresh fruit of your choice, and drizzle with honey.

It almost looks too pretty to eat!

Waffle

Enjoy!