Roasted Red Pepper Hummus


Hummus is a food that I typically buy pre-made. In my mind it’s a lot cheaper, and quicker to just buy it already made. But recently, I’ve tried to steer away from pre-made/convenience foods and put more effort and love into the food that I am eating. By doing this, I came up with this yummy hummus recipe that is actually much cheaper than pre-made and takes less than 20 minutes to whip up. Also, by making your own you can control what you put in your hummus. Most store bought hummus has preservatives and is high in oil.

The red peppers can definitely be left out, and the flavor can be changed to whatever you’d like. Add more garlic if you would like a more garlic heavy hummus, add cilantro and lime for a Mexican inspired hummus, or different spices to create whatever kind of hummus your hummus loving heart desires!

Most hummus recipes call for tahini which is similar to peanut butter but made with sesame seeds. This ingredient is pretty expensive, so I have found that just using raw sunflower seeds tends to take on the tahini flavor.

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My Experience Living Off Food Stamps

I am currently taking a Community Nutrition class for my undergraduate major. In this class we learn about the nutrition needs in a community. We have recently been covering food insecurity, as well as the government, state, and local programs/agencies that help with the huge population of people that are food insecure. As part of our course, we are required to participate in the SNAP Challenge. The SNAP challenge is essentially living off of food stamps. We are only required to participate in the challenge for three days. In these three days, we were only allowed to eat off of $4.10/day totaling $12.30 for the entire three days. We were not allowed to eat any food that we already had, or accept food from anyone.

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What I’ve Been Loving Lately

Banana Ice Cream
Winter always seems to be a sad time for fruit. But bananas always are plentiful, and cheap! I’ve been loving freezing bananas in tupperware and keeping a ton in the freezer. When I want a sweet treat, I just throw a few in my blender with a tiny bit of water or almond milk and blend it up. It creates a sweet, creamy ice cream (without the dairy/fat!). I love topping my banana ice cream with some caco nibs or some peanut butter.

For the delicious bowl down below I took two bananas, a teaspoon of cocoa powder, and a splash of almond milk, blended it up and topped with caco nibs. Yum!

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The Perfect (Not Gross) Green Smoothie


Green smoothies can be really intimidating to some people but I have a really simple recipe that I wanted to share. Getting in greens can be really difficult, especially if you don’t have a lot of time to sit and eat them all. Putting them in a smoothie can hide the taste, and make it a lot more enjoyable.

There are three things I’ve learned throughout my green smoothie trials/errors over the years that’s made making smoothies a lot easier…

Don’t overthink / overcomplicate things

When I first started making smoothies, I would try to cram as much stuff in the blender as possible, not thinking about the actual taste of it. I’ve learned to not add a bunch of random ingredients, and keep it as simple as possible.

Fruit is the key 

Fruit should be the main ingredient in your smoothies, not only for taste, but also for calories and carbohydrates. Using at least 3/4 fruit, and 1/4 vegetables you’re guaranteed to have a sweet and refreshing smoothie.

Choose your vegetables wisely 

Choosing the best vegetables to put in a smoothie is also important. If you’re unsure about adding in vegetables, don’t be. You can barely taste them! Sticking with high water content vegetables is best because they have lots of nutrients, but lack in strong flavors. My favorite vegetables to add to smoothies are spinach, kale, celery, celery leaves, cucumber, avocado, and peppers. Not all of them should go into one smoothie, but a choose just a few to put in one.

Now, onto the recipe! I absolutely love this green smoothie recipe because it’s super sweet, inexpensive, easy to make, and it keeps me full for so long.

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 frozen bananas (make sure they are frozen, this really helps to make the smoothie smooth and creamy. also use bananas when they are spotty, that’s when they are ripe)
  • 1 cup frozen mango (you could also use frozen or fresh pineapple instead)
  • 2 cups spinach or kale
  • 4 stalks of celery (include the leaves, they are packed full of nutrition!)
  • 1/3 of a medium sized cucumber (leave the peeling on, it also has lots of nutrients and fiber)
  • 1/4 lemon with the seeds removed
  • 3/4 cup orange juice (I like to buy it with lots of pulp, to include more fiber)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp. freshly grated ginger (optional)

Put all ingredients into your blender, and blend! If you like it thicker, add some ice. If you like it a little thinner add some more juice or water.

I put all the ingredient’s into an online food processor to calculate the nutrition facts. If you’re interested in checking them out, you can here!

10 Foods to ADD to Your Grocery List in 2015

With the new year finally here, lots of people are beginning diets and making decisions to remove things from their diets. Taking foods away can be beneficial to your health, but it can also be disappointing and feel a lot more like a loss/failure if those foods make it back onto your plate. Removing things can feel negative and overwhelming. So instead, try adding things to your diet/life and slowly you will find that you don’t crave the “bad” foods as much! I love the concept of adding foods, rather than removing because adding is much more positive and you’ll be getting those nutrients from the good foods you add regardless of the other foods you’re eating. So here are 10 foods I think you should add to your grocery list and incorporate into your menus in the new year.

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