Quick & Easy Smoothie Recipe

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Back at it again with a recipe for a smoothie I’ve been making so much lately before work. Its pretty quick and easy and satisfying for anyone on the go. I WILL mention that I’ve never really been a fan of bananas IN things other than banana bread. I don’t like the taste of bananas in smoothies, ice cream, pies, pudding….but this is so good, I don’t even mind the taste!!!

Try it out and let me know what you think.

1 banana (ripe or frozen– either works)

2-3 pitted dates that have been soaked in water for 20 minutes (this is optional based on how sweet you want your smoothie)

1/2-1 scoop of vanilla protein powder (I use the EAS Lean 15 Vanilla Creme) (Link Below)

1 tbsp chai tea mix (Link Below)

1 tbsp Honey (use only dates if you are a Vegan!) (Also, this is optional based on how sweet you want your smoothie)

1 cup (roughly) of vanilla soy milk. (Feel free to use the milk of your choice!)

Cinnamon. I didn’t put a measurement because I just sprinkle it in until I feel content. Start light and you can always mix in more!

Ice

I have a Ninja Auto-IQ Blender (link below), that comes with a smoothie attachment, so I fill the cup with enough ice to get almost to the top, but with enough room that I can put my blending lid on.

Blend!

Its so easy! I love the creamy texture, the spice of the chai, and the sweetness of the honey and dates. Try it out and let me know what you think!

 

Have a good one y’all,

Sarah Montana

——

Links for products

Vanilla Cream Protein Powder

Chai Tea Mix

Ninja Blender

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Taking on the Whole30 Challenge

So today marks day one of the Whole30 challenge. (For more info go here.) I’m going to be updating you guys with pictures, recaps and sometimes recipes for any of you who are thinking about checking it out.

I did make a YouTube video on my new channel talking about why I decided to start this crazy diet, so if you want to view it, go here!

DAY ONE

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Breakfast 9:30AM

1 banana, a few strawberries, 4oz steak, 1 egg fried in ghee with unsweetened green tea with a lemon in it.

By about 11:30 I started craving sweets. I kept drinking more tea and soon the cravings went away.

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Lunch 12:20PM

1/2lb shrimp cooked with Badia blackened redfish seasoning, some pineapple, some baby carrots and more unsweetened green tea with lemon.

By about 2:30, I started getting cravings for sugar, so I drank more water and tried to focus on the InkMaster marathon I was working on (haha. Season 2, if anyone was wondering!)

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Dinner 6:30PM

I tried to make pea, broccoli and cauliflower patties, but they turned into a sloppy fail. They still tasted great, and I turned them into a more couscous-esq thing, served with baked potato ‘fries’, tons of W30 approved hot sauce, and a fruit salad of grapes, raspberries and pineapple. I also had a cherry lime LaCroix because that shit is amazing.

I am currently hungry and craving sweets. Might have to have a snack of some fruit and water or something. Man. I could really use some M&M’s right now (bonus points if they’re peanut butter m&m’s!)

Have a good one, y’all,

Sarah Montana

What’s up, doc? 

I come with a very quick and totally awesome recipe for a side that works great with, well, anything for lunch or dinner. If you’ve got some patience, and like carrots, then this is for you!  

   
I found these carrots at the grocery store that I shop at for $1.99. And what’s better- they’re organic! Awesome. 

Recipe! 

1 bunch of carrots. They don’t necessarily need their greens, just as long as they’re carrots (that have been washed and the skins removed) you’re golden 

Ginger salad dressing. I found mine in the produce section. Has a little ninja guy on it. Adorable. 

A few dollops of butter. We really like Melt butter. It’s coconut butter, and vegan. Yum! 

Salt & Pepper 

Other spices (whatever you like, I used a leftover tossed potato spice mix I got a few weeks ago) 

Olive Oil. No measurements. I’m not the measuring type (yeah… I’m one of those). 

Pam or any other spray (I’ve been using coconut oil spray). 

How – To: 

1. Preheat oven to 350*F

2. Spray a glass baking dish with your Pam-like spritz of your choice. 

3. Put your carrots in the dish and sprinkle some of the olive oil on them. You don’t have to go overboard. 

4. Put a few little dollops of your butter. No precise science to this, people. Feel free to be a little willy-nilly. 

 5. Sprinkle your salt, pepper, and seasonings of your choosing on top. 

6. Pour some of the ginger dressing on top. I want to day I put about a quarter of a cup on mine, and then used a pastry brush to evenly distribute. 

  
7. Toss in the oven for about 25 minutes. Increase the temp to 400*F and roast for about 10-15 minutes more. Make sure you move them around a little bit every 10-15 minutes to make sure all the yummy juices get all over your carrots. 

8. Once they’re a little browned, take them out. You’ll want to eyeball the carrots when you increase the temp just to make sure you don’t burn the heck out of them. 

9. Let cool for about 10 minutes and enjoy.

  
I really really loved these and have a feeling I will be making those more often. 

Have a good one y’all,

Sarah Montana 
 

Quick & Easy Baked Apple Pie Oatmeal

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1/2 cup Trader Joes Rolled Oats (cooked following instructions on bag)
1/2 cup applesauce
1 apple diced into small chunks
Cinnamon to taste (I like a lot. I just shook some in until it tasted how I like it)
1 tbsp maple syrup, honey or agave
1 tbsp light brown sugar
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg

1. Preheat oven to 325*F
2. Put all ingredients into a bowl (except brown sugar).
3. Spoon into 2 creme brûlée ramekins.
4. Put brown sugar on top
5. Bake for 15-20 minutes
6. Turn oven to broil and bake for an additional 3-5 minutes.
7. LET COOL. (You’ll burn your mouth!)
8. I topped mine with cream, but you could put any kind of milk, coconut cream, whipped cream….whatever tickles your fancy.
9. Enjoy!!

Have a good one, y’all,
Sarah Montana

Avocado-Basil-Spinach Pesto Pasta

Today I went to the grocery store to get necessary items for the next few days. I bought a thing of Rain Lime Gatorade to have on hand for those days where I need a few electrolytes. Unfortunately, those days are often due to some migrainse I’ve been having. Well, sometime during the ride home, that darn Gatorade spilled all over the contents of the shopping bag it was in- including a brand new box of Cavatappi pasta…. So when I got home and started unloading my things, I realized that pasta had to be cooked TODAY or it would get soggy and therefore be ruined. SO, making life out of Lime Gatorade, I made some pasta. Here’s a quick recipe for y’all, however there won’t be exact measurements since I’m one of those ‘non measuring types’.

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Avocado-Basil-Spinach Pasta
1 entire box of Cavatappi pasta (or kind of your choice).

SAUCE
1 avocado
A few basil leaves (to your taste)
Olive Oil
Scallions (I added roughly 1/2 tsp chopped)
Salt & Pepper & garlic powder & italian seasoning to taste
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Handful of spinach leaves
1 bag of shredded mozzarella cheese

DIRECTIONS:
1. Cook pasta per box directions.
2. Add all other ingredients into food processor (except cheese) and pulse until smooth. You will want to add olive oil every so often to keep a sauce-like consistency. Add more or less seasonings to make it the way you taste.
3. Dump pasta water out and put in bowl and immediately dump in bag of mozzarella cheese and stir while it melts.
4. Add in your sauce and stir until evenly coated.
5. Either place in fridge for a few hours for a pasta salad type dish, or serve immediately with some chicken or whatever you’re feelin’!
6. ENJOY. Its so tasty and healthy(ish) and the green color is gorgeous!

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*All photos by the devilishly handsome Douglas Horn.

Sorry I’ve been a little MIA!

Have a good one, y’all,

Sarah Montana

Something easy for two!

As the weather here in Philly gets a little cooler (cold, in my humble 16 years of living in Florida opinion), and Douglas is spending the next month in Florida for work (coincidental!? yes…), I am starting to crave hearty comfort foods. One of my favorite things to eat this time of year, is chicken pot pie, but never those nasty store-bought frozen food section ones, with a gazillion calories and preservatives. And with my work schedule getting crazier (reminder: I work at the mall), I am looking for something easy that will be filling, but not with so many leftovers that I will never get to. So here’s a recipe for something you can make in less than a half our (not counting oven time…) that will feed you and one other (or yourself again tomorrow!)

*The picture quality sucks. The lighting in my kitchen is very yellow/orange and I’m still adjusting to the lighting change because of the daylight savings!

Easy peasy chicken pot pie for the lazy person such as myself!

Ingredients

(*Note: you can double the ingredients to make enough for more people!) (I usually make a big pan of this for Douglas and myself and it lasts us a few meals)

*1 can Progresso Chicken Pot Pie soup (*note: I tried Campbells Pot Pie soup last time and I hated it, honestly).

*1/2 lb chicken breast, cooked (I pan cooked mine in coconut oil)

*1 1/2 cups Bisquick (This is becoming a staple in my recipes lately)

*1 egg

*1/3 cup milk

*1/2 bag frozen veggies (my mix has corn, carrots, peas, green beans and lima beans) (*I ALWAYS pick out the green beans)

*1/4 tsp McCormick Perfect Pinch Italian seasoning (my go-to every day seasoning)

*pinch of salt

*pepper to taste

Directions

Preheat your oven to 350*F

Cook your chicken however you like. I didn’t season mine just to keep it simple in this recipe.

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Put your soup in a pot and cook it. Add in your mixed frozen veggies and then your chicken (cut into cubes) and let it cook until its all warm.

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Mix your Bisquick, egg, milk and seasonings. You don’t want the consistency to be too watery. Add more or less Bisquick to make sure its thick enough to scoop out with your ice cream scooper thingy (you know, the one that you use to fill muffin/cupcake tins with!!)

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Pour your soup mix into a glass baking dish, I used my small one (forgot to look at the dimensions before I put it into the oven…but suffice it to say that its maybe 6″x9″ or so.

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Scoop your Bisquick ‘biscuits’ on top of the mix like so.

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Pop into your oven for 25-30 minutes. You want the tops of the biscuits to be a golden brown. (Don’t worry about the bottom layer, everything has been pre-cooked so you don’t have to worry about it being undercooked!) I put a piece of foil down on the bottom of the oven to catch any spill over so I don’t have to clean it later!!!)

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Remove from oven and cool long enough that its not going to burn the heck out of your tongue when you eat it! I like to serve this with a sweet potato on the side and some fruit!

Enjoy!

Have a good one, y’all, stay warm!

Sarah Montana

Running out of time…..

Sometimes, when I have a day off, all I want to do is be lazy and get nothing accomplished. Today was not that day. The weather was boasting a near 70*F temperature, which, from what I can assume, is abnormal for Philadelphia at the near-end of October. So what is a gal to do, but take her dogs to the dog park to ensure they get a good run under their belts to ensure they don’t drive me too crazy today. And, its ALWAYS good to be outside breathing some fresh air. (I must say the area that the dog park I go to is in such a gorgeous location. Beautiful trees, a cute little creek nearby…totally worth the 20+ minute drive to get there ((and away from the craziness of living with a major road right in my front yard!)).

Curtis Hall Dog Park, Cheltenham PA

Curtis Hall Dog Park, Cheltenham PA

So after I returned from the dog park (and quick excursions into Trader Joes/Pathmark and Sally’s) I decided it was time to bake. I had no idea what I was gonna do, so I went into the basement and rode on my stationary bike for a half hour while I looked at Instagram to get some inspiration. I knew I had bananas, sweet potatoes, and a half used can of pumpkin puree all looking like they needed to be used, before they reached the point of no return and I had to throw them out.

So today I bring you photos and a recipe I adapted from a gal named Karina, who runs the awesome blog, Cafe Delites.

Cinnamon Cheesecake Swirled Pumpkin Blondies (OMG, I know, right?)

Blondies

*1 Large Egg

*1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed

*1/4 cup Stevia (or your preferred sweetener)

*1 cup pumpkin puree (canned or fresh)

*1 tbsp honey/agave

*2 tbsp applesauce

*1/4 tsp vanilla

*1 cup all purpose flour

*3/4 tsp baking powder

*1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

*Pinch of salt

*1/2 cup of chocolate chips (she says 1/4…but I’m a sucker for chocolate)

Cheesecake (This is where I added a LOT of bells and whistles. I will keep her recipe items on top and let you know which ones I added because….well…I live on the wild side(mine have extra ***’s).

*8 oz cream cheese, room temperature

*2 tbsp all purpose flour

*1 tsp cinnamon (I added a few extra shakes for good luck)

*1/4 cup stevia

*****1/2 tbsp maple syrup

*****1/2 tbsp honey

*****1/2 tsp vanilla extract

*****1/2 cup whipped coconut cream

*****1 scoop vanilla protein powder

*****Extra coconut milk/almond milk/milk/whatever you like just to thin the cheesecake a bit to make it easier to spread

OPTIONAL CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE

*1/2 cup chocolate chips

*1/4 cup half and half (plus more if you need to thin it out a bit more)

DIRECTIONS

Preheat your hot box to 350*F/175*C

Mix all of the blondie ingredients together in a large bowl or your Kitchenaid mixer with the standard mixer attachment. (I like to do all of the ‘liquid’ ingredients first, and then slowly add in the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt etc).

Gently mix in the chocolate chips.

Pour into a parchment paper lined baking pan (I recommend an 8×8 but mine is gone, so I used a 6×9)

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Mix all of the cheesecake ingredients together and gently spoon on top of the pumpkin blondie mix. If you need to add some extra coconut milk/almond milk (whatever you used) to thin it out to make it easier, go ahead, but use sparingly!!!

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I added a little more cinnamon on top (and a sprinkle of sugar for that churro effect!)

Place in the center rack of your oven for 25-35 minutes. The top layer should be a little jiggly but not too liquid…so eyeball it every 5 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool for 20-30 minutes.

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I put mine in the fridge for an hour (while I watched an episode of Boardwalk Empire with Douglas) to let the cheesecake layer set up.

And, because we all know I love chocolate, I melted chocolate chips with half and half and drizzled on the top of my cheesecake bars….

To serve, I put a small scoop of Trader Joe’s Pumpkin ice cream on top….wowie!!!

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Triumphant Return!!!

Well hello everyone, MANY apologies for such a delay. I spent 8 amazing days in Florida on a vacation with Douglas, and my parent’s oven was broken! I went many days without baking and something just wasn’t right in the world. But never fear! I return with a recipe for you to try out, in hopes that you will forgive my extended absence!!

If you’re anything like me, you wake up and already your sweet tooth is calling out for something delicious. While I have visited the grocery store twice since we landed on Friday night, my trips have been short and for absolute necessities… Lucky for me, todays recipe is simple, and I have everything I needed laying around!

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I feel like almost everyone has canned black beans in their pantry. Canned food is a staple in most homes, and black beans are such a versatile item that you shouldn’t live without. Some of you may be new to this idea, but black beans are GREAT when you use them in brownies. I know, I know, it sounds SO WEIRD, but believe me, these brownies are SO FREAKING GOOD.  What is even better about this recipe: there is NO flour. So its GLUTEN FREE. Yeehaw. AND! You can make them vegan if you wanna. (Kateland friendly!)

Black Bean Protein Brownies

(adapted from a recipe on Tastofhome.com)

1 15 oz can black beans (rinsed)

1/4 cup semi sweet chocolate chips (Vegan option: vegan chocolate chips or chunks)

3 tbsp coconut oil (canola, sunflour, almond work too!)

3 large eggs (Vegan option: 3 tbsp chia seeds mixed with 6 tbsp water. Let them sit until they become a nice thick mix (stir often!)

2/3 cup brown sugar (packed)

1/2 cup cacao powder  (or cocoa powder!)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 scoop chocolate protein powder

1/2 tsp baking powder

pinch of salt

(Feel free to mix in other goodies, marshmallows (vegan or not), nuts (if you’re into that kinda thing), cookie chunks, chia seeds (for extra omega 3’s!), etc etc)

You can also drizzle melted cookie butter, peanut butter or any other nut butter on top for some tasty variation!!!

1. Mix the black beans, chocolate chips and oil of your choice in a high powered blender or food processor.

2. Add all other ingredients until the batter is nice and whipped and smooth.

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Looks like real brownie batter to me!

3. Dump the delicious mixture into a 9″ square pan (I used an 8×11 because my square one died when I moved from Montana to Nashville (RIP). Make sure that pan is sprayed down with pam or rubbed down with some oil so it doesn’t stick!

4. Pop into a preheated 350*F oven for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick comes out nice and clean.

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5. Enjoy!! They’re always good with a glass of milk mmmm.

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Someday, I will bake when I have a day off with Douglas. My photos do the foods no justice. And Douglas can make ANYTHING look good- even with his cell phone. Just imagine what he can do with a camera!

I’m gonna be back sooner this time with more tidings of joy and good foods!!

Have a good one, y’all!

Sarah Montana

Hey Baby Pt 2: The Great Pumpkin.

It should come as NO surprise that I LOVE fall- especially fall foods and fall colors and fall clothes! I know we haven’t QUITE yet hit the official fall season (which just so happens to usually ‘fall’ on my birthday, Sept 22nd) (I turn 30 this year- eek!) but I have already started the pumpkin celebration. (As are Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts and our local convenience shop WaWa).  If you follow me on Instagram, you will have seen that I’ve already made a few pumpkin things… Well today, I bring you something I am SUPER proud of….and a RECIPE! (Who doesn’t love a good fall recipe).

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Mmmm Pumpkin Puree… You can make this yourself, y’know. As we get closer to Halloween, maybe I will show you how to make your own pumpkin puree.. For now, you can use the canned stuff you can pick up at your local grocery store.

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Pumpkin Spice Dutch Baby Pancake

(Serves 1-4, depending on whether or not you want to share).

3 Tbsp butter (divided into 1 tbsp squares)

3/4 cup milk, heated in the microwave for 20-30 seconds

3 eggs

2 heaping tbsp pumpkin puree

3/4 cup all-purpose flour (I used unbleached flour)

1 tbsp sugar

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 tsp nutmet

1/2 tsp cinnamon (I love cinnamon)

pinch of salt

pinch of ginger (just cause)

 

Set your oven to 400*F and put your divided butter in a cast iron skillet and place in the oven to preheat and melt into heavenly goodness.

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Put the rest of your ingredients into a blender and mix for 30 seconds. Make sure you scrape the sides so its all evenly combined.

Pour into your cast iron skillet.

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I sprinkled some extra cinnamon (and brown sugar) on top for some extra flavor.

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Pop that sucker back into your oven and let it do its thing in there for 20-30 minutes. It all depends on your oven, so start eyeballing it every 5 minutes or so at about 15 minutes (free smells!)

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VOILA! Look at how MARVELOUS it is!!! (And it tastes really REALLY awesome- I am eating my slice right now!!)

 

Looking back, I should’ve thrown some vanilla protein power in there for some extra oomph to my day. I’ve been enjoying putting that stuff in almost everything. Yolo I guess, right?

I hope you all try this VERY soon. Its the weekend starting tomorrow! What a great excuse for a dutch baby pancake…. You can also melt down some cookie butter to drizzle on top of it so you can serve it as a dessert!!!

If you make it, tag me in your instagram so I can see and applaud your greatness!!!

Have a great weekend, y’all!!!

-Sarah Montana