Easy Roast and Veggie Slow Cooker Dinner

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This was one of the days where I had to be to work at 3am. I can’t tell you how much I love having a slow cooker for days like today, I can prepare a meal before I go to work and after I get home there’s a delicious lunch waiting for me. I also love the way it makes the house smell – it’s so inviting. This doesn’t take long to prepare and get into the cooker, and on a cold snowy day it’s worth it to wake up a little bit early for it.

Ingredients:
1 1/2-2 pounds chuck roast
salt and pepper, to taste
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup baby carrots
1 medium onion, sliced into 1/2″ pieces
4 medium potatoes cut into 1/2″ pieces
3 celery stalks cut into 1/2″ pieces
2 cups beef broth
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon rosemary

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Season the meat with salt and pepper and coat a skillet with the olive oil. Cook the meat over medium high heat, until all sides are golden brown (about 6-8 minutes). Transfer to the slow cooker and pour the beef stock over top the meat, then add the rest of the seasonings and vegetables. Turn the slow cooker on low and allow to cook for 6-8 hours. The roast and vegetables should be very tender (basically falling apart) to the touch of a fork when done.

Perfect meal for a cold day – Enjoy!

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Chicken Avocado Burritos

avoburrito1I’ve always liked burritos and tacos. They’re a great meal when I’m having family or friends over since you can build your own. I’d been wanting to make some that were a bit healthier – and I wanted to incorporate turmeric after a discussion I’d been having about it with my mom. So I came up with these delicious burritos for dinner.

Ingredients:
1 pound cooked shredded chicken
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1-2 ripe avocados, diced
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 small jalapeno, diced
1 cup grape tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup pepperjack cheese, shredded

gluten free tortillas of choice (I used Udi’s)

In a large skillet over medium heat place the olive oil and chicken. Sprinkle the salt and turmeric over both sides of the chicken and cook until no longer pink in the center, then gently shred it.

Prepare the rest of the toppings and combine in the tortillas. Serve warm. Serves 4. Enjoy!

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Gluten Free Quick Cinnamon Bread

gluten free cinnamon bread   I love the way the smell of cinnamon in the oven warms the whole house. Its such a comforting smell, and once I start to smell this bread baking – I’m ready to sample the first piece! It only takes about 15 minutes to put it together and get it in the oven, and 40-45 minutes to bake. It’s a great snack!

cinnabread4Ingredients:
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2/3 cups brown rice flour
1/3 cup tapioca flour
1/3 cup sweet rice flour
1/4 cup almond flour
1/2 cup sugar (I typically use coconut sugar)
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 large egg whites
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

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Preheat the oven to 350F. Mix together the milk and lemon in a small bowl together and let sit for about 10 minutes while preparing the other ingredients.

Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl, and the wet ingredients in a smaller bowl, adding the milk and lemon mixture at the end and whisking together. Then add the bowl of liquid ingredients into the large bowl of dry ingredients, and combine well.

Lightly oil a 9×5 pan (or use parchment) and carefully pour the mixture into the pan. Place into the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes, until a toothpick placed into the middle comes out clean.

Enjoy!

*I’ve only made this with coconut sugar – however it’s perfectly interchangeable with regular sugar.

Asian Quinoa Salad

asian quinoa saladThis fresh and flavorful salad is one of my favorites. I love all the colors in it, it looks so inviting – and it’s very healthy and filling. It can work both as a side dish or a meal, I served this as a dinner for two with leftovers for lunch the next day.

Ingredients:
2 cups cooked quinoa
1 1/2 cups red cabbage, chopped
1 cup cucumber, diced
1 large bell pepper, diced
1 cup bean sprouts, chopped

Dressing:
3 tablespoons gluten free soy sauce
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
sea salt, to taste

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Cook the quinoa to package directions and prepare the vegetables. Combine all in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients, then stir into the salad. Can be served while the quinoa is warm, or chilled. Enjoy!

Roasted Red Potatoes and Asparagus

Roasted potatoes and asparagusI made this dish to go along with a large salad for a vegetarian meal. I like to have a hot dish to go along with a cold salad in the winter, and since I wasn’t in the mood for soup, I went for roasted vegetables. Asparagus is also a favorite of mine and I like to look for different ways to serve it and keep it healthy. I roasted the potatoes for a bit on their own first so that the asparagus didn’t get overly soft, while waiting on the potatoes to soften.

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Ingredients:
1 pound asparagus, cut into 1″ pieces
1 pound red potatoes cut into bite sized pieces
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon worschiresauce
2 garlic cloves, minced
fresh ground pepper and sea salt, to taste

Preheat the oven to 375F. On a baking sheet spread out the potatoes and toss them in the olive oil with the garlic, salt and pepper. Place in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven, flip the potatoes and stir in the asparagus and worschiresauce and return to the oven and roast for another 15 minutes. Serve hot.

Overnight Gluten Free Apple Cinnamon Oats

gluten free overnight oatsHappy New Years to everyone! I know with the new year that a lot of us are trying to make some changes in our lives, and often eating healthier is one of them. I wanted to share this recipe for a hearty and healthy breakfast that will fill your belly and tastes delicious. It takes about 5 minutes to put together the night before, I’ll prepare one of these sometimes while I have dinner in the oven when I have an early day at work the following day and I won’t have time to make a decent breakfast. I’ve taken them to work with me even to eat on my break.

oats2Ingredients:
1/4 cup old fashioned gluten free oats, uncooked
1/4 cup Greek yogurt
1/3 cup milk
1/4 cup diced apple (I used gala, any variety works)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon chia seeds

Combine ingredients together in a container with a tight lid. Place in the fridge and allow to sit overnight – or about 8 hours. Open and enjoy for a quick and healthy breakfast! You can also change the fruit (I also like bananas with a bit of cocoa, mango, or blueberry!)

I wish all of you a safe and healthy 2015.