Fit Hungry Mama

One mama's journey of finding balance with food, fitness, family, and fun

Chai Tea Protein Smoothie

Last week, my husband and I had to attend a parent orientation at our son’s pre-k school. We got there a little early, so we stopped at a nearby coffee shop to kill some time. I ordered a Chai tea smoothie. Oh my, it was sooo good! Anyway, I have daydreamed about this beverage since that day so I decided to buy some pre-made organic Chai Tea concentrate for homemade Chai tea lattes.  The lattes turned out well but I was curious to see if I could come up with my own Chai tea smoothie. I did and I loved it!

Chai Tea Protein Smoothie 

1/2 cup cold Chai Tea Concentrate, such as Oregon Chai’s Chai Tea Latte Concentrate

1/2 cup milk or milk substitute (I used unsweetened almond milk)

a serving of vanilla whey protein powder (I used EAS 100% Whey Protein )

ice for desired consistency

cinnamon (optional)

Add all ingredients to blender and blend until smooth. Pour in tall glass and sprinkle with cinnamon, if desired. Enjoy!

If using the ingredients above, this drink is  255 calories, 26.5 g protein, and 29.5 g carbs

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Crispy Grilled Chicken, Apple Cider Broccoli Slaw, and Spicy Lime Corn on the Cob

I am so excited I finally have time to tell you about last night’s meal. It was so dang delicious. I think it will probably one of my favorite home-cooked summer dinners!

I’ve made the two sides before and knew they tasted good, so I was really curious about making “fried” chicken on the grill.

I’ll start with the Crispy Grilled Chicken Thighs. I followed this recipe pretty closely. I used regular olive oil mayo and panko breadcrumbs (since I didn’t have the regular kind). I also used 12 thighs instead of the ten since I  bought two six packs of thighs. I’m sure boneless skinless chicken breasts pounded thin would work as well. I prepared the marinade the night before and put it into a ziplock bag along with the thighs. I squeezed all the air out and massaged the marinade into the meat before letting it marinate for about 20 hours.

I only use the panko for six of the thighs and left the other 6 bare. They were so thin and spread out so they really soaked up the breading! And they didn’t take long to cook at all. They looked gorgeous, just like baked fried chicken with grill marks. And the taste was absolutely amazing. I couldn’t believe it was grilled breaded chicken. They are quite addicting, so be sure to make enough for everyone! As for the bare ones, I sampled a small piece and decided that these particular pieces would make a great topping for salad or a spicy chicken sandwich.

Crispy Grilled Chicken Thighs (from PreventionRD.com)

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup low fat olive mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt
  • 10 boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed (about 2 1/2 lb)
  • 1 1/2 cups breadcrumbs
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Combine the mayonnaise, chili powder, cayenne and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add the chicken and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat a grill to medium low. Place the breadcrumbs and black pepper in a shallow dish, then add the chicken, turning to thoroughly coat. Grill the chicken, turning once, until golden brown and cooked through, about 8 to 9 minutes per side.

Yield: 10 servings (1 thigh each)

 

I ran across the recipe for spicy lime buttered corn on the cob many years ago and can not remember where I found it.  This is what I do when I make it for our family of 4.

Spicy Lime Buttered Corn on the Cob

Ingredients:

  • half stick (4tbsp) of unsalted butter, softened
  • the juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/8 tsp or so of red pepper
  • 4 fresh ears of corn (grilled or boiled, your preference)

Directions: Mix first 3 ingredients thoroughly and refrigerate in a serving dish until ready to serve corn on the cob.

Then I made the broccoli slaw by modifying the recipe found on the backside of the bag of  Eat Smart’s Broccoli Slaw. I replaced the vinegar with apple cider vinegar and the 2tsp  of sugar with a packet of Truvia. I also used olive oil mayo instead of traditional mayo. Next time, I may experiment with using nonfat plain Greek yogurt.

Apple Cider Broccoli  Slaw (adapted from Eat Smart Broccoli Slaw recipe)

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 1/4 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2tsp sugar or 1 packet of no-calorie sweetener
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 12 oz Broccoli Slaw

Directions: Mix first 4 ingredients thoroughly in large bowl.  Add slaw and gently toss until evenly coated. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

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Oatmeal Waffles

I love cooking special breakfasts on the weekends. Back in the day, I used to just rely on Bisquick for my waffle needs. I decided to give up the Bisquick and try making them from scratch. I’ve tried several recipes and none of them were tasty enough to try again. That is until I ran across this oatmeal waffle recipe!

The very first time I made them, I followed the directions exactly. They were superb! The next time I made them, I replaced half of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour. They were a little more dense (which I prefer!), but just as flavorful as the original. I like that the recipe has butter in it because the butter combined with the brown sugar and cinnamon makes the house smell so good! Plus, I find that there is no need to put extra butter on the waffle, which saves me some calories.  And let us not forget about the syrup. The old me would drown my waffles and pancakes in pancake syrup. Now, I prefer to use real maple syrup over the artificially flavored stuff. Maple syrup has more calories per serving (1/4 cup = 200 calories), so you really have to watch how much you pour. I’ve found that 1/8 cup  (2 tbsp) is plenty for two squares of these particular waffles. You don’t want to drown these in any topping you decide to use. Otherwise, you will miss out in the rich comforting flavors!

Oatmeal Waffles (adapted from allrecipes.com)

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

Directions

  1. In large mixing bowl, stir together flour, oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt; set aside.
  2. In small mixing bowl, stir together eggs, milk, butter and brown sugar.
  3. Add to flour mixture; stir until blended.
  4. Pour batter on to grids of preheated, lightly greased waffle iron.
  5.  When the waffle is finished, top with desired toppings ( fresh fruit and yogurt, or my favorite pure maple syrup!)
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Parmesan and Sage Crusted Pork Chops with Mashed Sweet Potatoes Brulee

I’ve craved all sorts of naughty foods lately thanks to an annoying situation I had dealt with all week. Today, I was craving fried pork chops for dinner. So the search was on. My eyes landed on Cooking Light’s Parmesan and Sage Crusted Pork Chops. Oh my, the name alone had my mouth watering! I had to modify the recipe because all I had on hand were dried sage, canned bread crumbs and whole wheat bread, and Dijon mustard (I’m not a big fan of yellow mustard).  I refuse to buy white bread and didn’t think  whole wheat bread would work, so I just used plain pre-made breadcrumbs from a can.  I also used olive oil in place of the canola oil, because I love sneaking in MUFAs for additional health benefits. The end results were amazing. The chops had beautiful golden brown crispy crusts and were very moist on the inside. So good!!

This is what I did:

Parmesan and Sage Crusted Pork Chops (adapted from Cooking Light)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup plain  bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 tablespoon or so of dried sage
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 4 (4-ounce) boneless thin-cut pork loin chops, trimmed
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

Directions:

1. Combine breadcrumbs, cheese, sage, salt, and pepper in a shallow dish. Place flour in another shallow dish. Combine mustard and egg whites in another shallow dish, stirring with a whisk.

2. Working with one pork chop at a time, dredge pork in flour, shaking off excess. Dip pork into egg white mixture, allowing excess to drip off. Coat pork completely with breadcrumb mixture. Set aside. Repeat procedure with remaining pork, flour, egg white mixture, and breadcrumb mixture.

3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add oil to pan, swirling to coat. Add pork; cook 3 minutes on each side or until browned and done.

Earlier in the week, I  bought some sweet potatoes and was originally going to grill them. However, it has rained every evening this week so I had to come up with another plan. I love mashed sweet potatoes but wanted to make them extra special tonight. I ran across the words Mashed Sweet Potatoes Brulee and looked at the directions because I feared I would need one of those fancy brulee torches. Nope, all I needed was a broiler!  Basically, all you do is make mashed sweet potatoes as usual, put it in an oven safe dish, sprinkle some brown sugar on it, and pop it under the broiler for a few minutes. So easy!

To make it less like a Thanksgiving dish, I left out the nutmeg. Also, I used real unsalted butter since I no longer buy light butters/margarine. I also like my mashed potatoes thick so I add a little milk at a time until it is at the right consistency. Today, I only needed 1/2 cup of 1% milk. It turned out really well. Everyone really loved the crunchy bits of brown sugar on top. My 16 month old son was practically screaming for more because he couldn’t get enough of it!

Here is how I made it:

Mashed Sweet Potatoes Brulee  (adapted from SkinnyTaste.com)

Ingredients:

  • 5 1/2 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled and boiled until soft (6 cups cooked)
  • 1/2- 3/4 cup 1% milk
  • 3 tbsp  unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup unpacked light brown sugar

Directions:

When the potatoes are fork-tender,  combine with milk, butter, salt, and cinnamon and mash until smooth.  

Spoon into a 9 x 9 inch baking dish.

Preheat the broiler. Sprinkle 1/2 cup brown sugar evenly over the top. Broil 2 minutes or until sugar melts, careful not to burn. Let it stand until the melted sugar hardens, about 5 minutes.

The parm and sage chops and sweet potato mash really go well together. I can easily see myself eating this meals on cool autumn nights!

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Baked Panko Onion Rings

A few days ago, I was in the mood for onion rings so I did some research on baked ones. I found a simple recipe on Baked by Rachel that worked very well on short notice. I left out the cayenne pepper since my 4 year old son isn’t a fan of spicy foods (yet!). I had to bake them a little longer than the time suggested, but overall the texture was good and satisfied my craving. Next time, I think I will omit these spices and experiment with adding in 1- 1.5 tsp of seasoning blend  (Old Bay, Cajun, Jerk, or steak/burger seasoning) for a more exciting flavor.

Baked Panko Onion Rings

Ingredients:

1 yellow onion
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup plain breadcrumbs
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp cayenne  (optional)
2 eggs

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper or a wire rack.

3. Cut top and bottom off the onion and remove outer ring and skin.

4. Cut rings to desired thickness and set aside.

5. In one small bowl add breadcrumbs and spices. Stir well to distribute spices.

6. In a second small bowl beat eggs. Add several onion rings to eggs. Coat well.

7. Transfer one ring to panko mixture, toss breadcrumbs onto ring. Remove and gently place on prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining onion pieces.

8. Bake for 10 minutes or until desired crispness, watching carefully to not burn.

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Fat Free Oat Bran Muffins

My dear friend at  Fit Foodie for Life shared this recipe with me several years ago.  I started using it regularly when my first born son became old enough to eat solids. He always asks for these muffins, so I like to double or sometimes triple this recipe and freeze the leftovers for a quick nutritious breakfast!

Fat Free Oat Bran Muffins

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups flour (I use whole wheat flour to bump up the nutrition value)

1 cup oat bran

1/2 cup sugar or sugar substitute (I use a sugar substitute called Stevia in the Raw)

1 tbsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cup fat-free milk

1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce

1 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 cups of your favorite fruit (chopped, mashed, or pureed) ***

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 400 F. Combine all dry ingredients in bowl. Then add milk, applesauce, vanilla, and whisk together. Fold in fruit. Pour into greased muffin pan. Bake until golden, about 15 minutes.

***Fruit recommendations:

2 bananas (pureed or mashed) ; you can add chopped walnuts just remember that nuts are full of healthy fats and will increase total calories per serving

1 banana (mashed) and strawberries (finely chopped)

blueberries (whole)

sliced apples or pears marinated in cinnamon and part of the sugar/sweetener called for in recipe

sliced apples marinated in Torani’s Sugar-free caramel syrup and cinnamon (be sure to cut back on sugar/sweetener in the dry ingredients)

canned pumpkin (not the pumpkin pie filling); add pumpkin pie spices to mix

shredded carrot and ripe peaches

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