Monday, December 11, 2017

Triple Chocolate Layer Cream Cake







   If you think this Triple Chocolate Layer Cream Cake looks like it tastes delicious...You. Are. Right!  Wanna piece!?  Then get to the kitchen and make one for yourself, and you will see exactly what I mean!  Each of the 8 pieces are only 176 calories, 6g net carbs and 13g protein.  I have to say that I have thoroughly enjoyed sinking into my chair at night with a rich piece of deep chocolate heaven accessorizing my fork... #lifeisgood  ;)

Ingredients for Cream Filling~
10.5oz 2% Fage Greek Yogurt
1/3 cup Swerve Confectioners Erythritol
1/2 scoop  Quest Chocolate Milkshake Protein Powder
2 Tablespoons Black Cocoa Powder or regular Cocoa

Ingredients for Chocolate Cake~
1/3 cup Coconut Oil, melted
1 jumbo Egg
1 cup 30 cal/cup Almond Milk
1 scoop Quest Chocolate Milkshake Protein Powder
1/3 cup Swerve Confectioners or Granular Erythritol
1/4 cup Black Cocoa Powder or regular Cocoa Powder
1/4 cup Coconut Flour
3.5oz 2% Fage Greek Yogurt
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Nielsen Massey Organic Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Extract
Dash Cinnamon

Ingredients for Chocolate Frosting~
2 large squares from Lily's Dark Stevia Sweetened Chocolate Premium Baking Bar (or 2 Tablespoons Lily's Stevia Sweetened Dark Chocolate Chips)
1 Tablespoon 30 cal/cup Almond Milk

     Mix all Cream Filling ingredients and chill in fridge while baking cake.  Mix all Cake ingredients and pour in 8'' parchment lined on the base  and Pam sprayed sides cake pan, bake at 375 for 30 minutes.  Remove and cool, when cooled slice cake horizontally (insert toothpicks around diameter as a guide if necessary).  Take half of filling and frost bottom half of cake, stack other cake half on top, and finish frosting with other half of filling.  Chill in fridge.  Meanwhile, mix frosting ingredients in bowl and microwave til softened, stirring til smooth.  When cooled enough to frost, add to baggie, snip the corner and top cake with lattice work design.  Store leftovers in fridge.  Enjoy!  ;)

Monday, December 4, 2017

Christmas Sprinkle Cookies






Nothing says the Holidays like Christmas Sprinkle Cookies.  And, nothing says good cheer like a cookie for only 55 calories, 1.4g net carbs and 5.5g protein.  Kinda makes you wanna shout Ho Ho Ho...(or is that just me!?  :0)  You will not be able to resist these melt in your mouth treasures, in fact, I didn't resist and ate about 3...ok ok, 4...but who is counting...!?  Merry Christmas  ;)

Ingredients for 19 Sprinkle Cookies~
1/4 cup softened Coconut Oil
1 Jumbo Egg
1 scoop Quest Vanilla Milkshake Protein Powder
1/2 cup Swerve Granular Erythritol
1/4 cup Coconut Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
Dash Cinnamon
Dash Vanilla
Dash Almond Extract
- - - - - - - - - - - -
2oz 1/3 reduced fat Cream Cheese, softened
1/4 cup Fage Greek Yogurt
1/4 cup Swerve Confectioners Erythritol
 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Sprinkles if desired (not included in macros)

     Mix first set of ingredients together thoroughly, batter will be slightly sticky.  Drop by Tablespoon onto Silpat lined cookie sheet, should yield 19 cookies, bake at 350 for 8 minutes.  Meanwhile, mix second set of ingredients and chill til ready to frost cooled cookies.  Top each cookie with 1 1/4 teaspoon frosting, and decorate with Sprinkles if desired.  Enjoy  :)

Shrimp Scampi Coctail







     Entertaining is at an all time high during the Holidays.  Overindulgence and celebrating seem to go hand in hand, but those don't have to be mutually exclusive.  I enjoy serving leaner options like my Shrimp Scampi Coctail.  Also, Whole Foods Market offers a large aray of options to help you be the hostess with the mostess, all the while providing a savory variety of healthy choices.  Fabulous produce with Hope Hummus for dipping, not to mention beautiful Shrimp that make the perfect appetizer becoming the shining star of any gathering.  Not to be forgotten, a top notch area with exquisite cheese selections that pair wonderfully grapes, pears, and apples.  And the best part is, if time is short, Whole Foods will make up your platters for you, call the store directly or order online at wholefoodsmarket.com.  They cook, you feast...or you can slave away in the kitchen all night...and probably the next morning too.  You choose  :)

Shrimp Scampi Coctail~8 servings, each 4oz serving is 97 calories, NO carbs and 18g protein:
1 Tablespoon 365 Everyday Value Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon fresh chopped Garlic (you can buy prepared Garlic in Produce Department)
2 pounds shelled raw Shrimp from Meat Department
1 Meyer Lemon, cut in half
- - - - - - - - - - - -
Sriracha
Ketchup

     Add Oil and Garlic to large skillet (I love my Copper Skillet), heat til Garlic becomes fragrant and starting to change to a golden brown.  Add shelled raw Shrimp til cooked thru and pink,  squeeze half of Lemon thru mesh sieve over Shrimp and stir to coat well.  If desired, serve with a Coctail dipping sauce by stirring together Sriracha and Ketchup to desired heat level.  Slice remaining half of Lemon and squeeze in dipping Sauce or over Shrimp before serving as desired.  Enjoy  :)  #sponsored #Wholefoods #Wholefoodfaves #Tasteofwholefoods

Bonus feature:  Shop the produce department and choose your favorite fresh veggies with a prepared Hummus, Whole Foods Market makes it easy to entertain.  And if you are really pressed for time, take advantage of their already prepped vegetables or Platters.

Avoiding Holiday Weight Gain


Eight Great Tips To Fight Holiday Weight Gain 

     The Season of overindulgence is here, but don’t fret! You can keep your healthy habits from now until the new year while still enjoying yourself.  I came across a short list of suggestions by Jeanette Kimszal, RD, NLC and found her ideas align with my thinking, so I simply had to share.  I am sure more than a few will speak directly to your struggles.  See these simple tips for avoiding temptation while fueling your brain and body this holiday season:


1.      Fill up on fiber and protein rich foods: When you go to a party look for the veggies, beans, and lentils, and lean protein foods like eggs, chicken, turkey, grass fed beef, and pork. Vegetables have fiber that will fill you up and nutrients you need to thrive. Eat less fried foods, processed meats, foods with sugar, and cheeses.

2.      Keep moving: Eating well and exercising go hand in hand to maintain weight. Find time to work out at least four times a week. This includes cardio, strength and flexibility exercises. Any activity you like to do that will get your heart pumping and build lean muscle. Don’t know where to start? Take a long walk after dinner, check out Youtube videos (check out Fitness Blender), or join a class with a buddy to keep that motivation going.

3.      Bring Your Own Food: Going to a place that might not have any healthy options? Bring your own dish. Veggie platters, or a vegetable based entree will fill you up with fiber and protein.

4.       Drink Liquor In Moderation: I am not going to tell you not to drink, but I would recommend to stick to 1 drink a day if you’re a woman and 2 drinks if you are a man. Too many drinks will increase your waistline along with your risk for type 2 diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. So if you are conscious of carbohydrates and calories you can try to stick with vodka, rum, gin, tequila, whiskey, scotch, and brandy. Use lime and seltzer instead of sugary mixers like juices or tonic. Want to avoid those holiday hangovers? Stay hydrated with water and stick to clear liquor.

5.      Watch Your Sugar: Sugar is abundant this holiday season in everything from cookies and cakes to candy canes, pies, and even entree and side dishes. Too much can increase your waistline and also put you at risk for heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, and dementia. One teaspoon of sugar is equal to 4 grams of sugar. This can add up pretty quickly, so be sure to check food labels and try to stay below 25 grams (6 teaspoons) a day.

6.      Plan Ahead: If you know you’re going to a party tonight plan your meals for earlier in the day so you are eating whole nutrient dense foods that will satisfy your hunger. Foods like almonds, walnuts, pumpkin/sunflower seeds, avocados, or plain yogurt are great snacks to eat before your event later in the day.

7.      Give In To Your Indulgence: The last thing you want to do is deny yourself a treat during this season. Make it something special that you may not be able to have any other time of the year.

8.      Watch Your Portions: Portion distortion is alive and well in our society. Fill up on nutrient rich foods like vegetables. Eat much smaller portions of sweets, treats, and other indulgent foods. One trick is to use a small plate and wait 20 minutes until your brain knows your stomach is full.

Remember healthy habits start with one step at a time. Any small step is a win that you can celebrate! :)

Zing Bars


 
     One of the top New Year’s resolutions is the goal to stay fit and healthy.  Unfortunately, most of us are impulse snackers---meaning that when the urge to snack hits us we reach for ANYTHING we can find.  Nutrition bars have become a popular choice, yet many bars contain too many ‘empty’ calories that lead to sugar highs, brain fog, and afternoon slumps. But,  Not Zing Bars. Developed by four Seattle dietitians it’s formula is deeply rooted in managing blood sugars with heart- healthy fats, fiber, and proteins for everyone—whether you’re a 46 year-old diabetic, a 20 year-old athlete, or a 10 year active kid. 

     NY Knick and NBA superstar Kristaps Porzingis says Oatmeal Chocolate Chip is his favorite flavor, and it just may be partly responsible for his success to better compete in this year’s basketball season!  PorZINGis has just become the face of the nutrition bar company, ZING.   Lucky for Porzingis, the company has also recently released two new holiday/New Year flavors to coincide with his NBA schedule: a Maple Pecan as well as a Dark Chocolate Cherry Almond. The new Zing flavors have a new look and are gluten free, vegan, non-GMO, free of soy, additives, artificial colors and flavors. 


New Zing Bar Flavors
 
Dark Chocolate Cherry delivers on its name. Tart Montmorency cherries combine delectably with Zing’s artisan dark chocolate and creamy almond butter.  It includes the creaminess of your favorite chocolate covered cherry dessert without the sugar slump—this Zing bar only has 8 grams of sugar per bar! For muscle tone, Dark Chocolate Cherry Almond packs 11 grams of high quality plant-based vegan protein that delivers 12% of the recommended daily value.  For digestive health, 8 grams of dietary fiber meet 32% of the recommended daily value.  For brain and heart health, 6 grams of monounsaturated fats from almonds and sunflower seed butter.  Dipped in real dark chocolate for full antioxidant benefits.    Gluten-free, soy-free, non-GMO, and vegan.

The Maple Pecan bar blends creamy pecans and rich cashews with maple syrup to create a scrumptious version of this flavor favorite.  It’s reminiscent of grandma’s pecan pie, just not as sweet, and nutritionally updated for a modern lifestyle.  No sugar crash here--this bar only has 7 grams of sugar per bar! For muscle tone, this bar packs 10g of high quality plant-based vegan protein that covers 11% of your recommended daily value.  For digestive health, 6 grams of dietary fiber satisfy 24% of the recommended daily value.  For brain and heart health, 6 grams of monounsaturated fats from sunflower seed butter.   Gluten-free, soy-free, non-GMO, and vegan.

About Zing Bars
Zing Bars are vitality bars, combining great taste with smart nutrition to deliver sustained energy and that feeling of being fit, strong and ‘on your game.’ Recognizing that when you eat right, you feel better and perform at a higher level, the company is on a mission to vitalize life through great, all-natural nutrition. For Zing Bars, smart nutrition means the right balance of quality proteins, fiber, low-glycemic carbs and heart-healthy fats. Zing Bars are nutrient-dense and free from wheat, gluten, soy, artificial ingredients and additives of any kind.  
The company was founded in Seattle by four registered dietitians as a convenient, wholesome snack for their clients and their kids. Zing Bars are available in twelve distinctively different flavors in three types of bars: Chocolate Covered, Soft Cookie and Nut Butter & Fruit. Dark Chocolate Cherry Almond and Maple Pecan are the latest flavor additions to the lineup.  A two-time winner of Taste For Life Magazine’s Essential awards, today Zing Bars can be purchased at 3,000 retailers in 47 states nationwide. For more information, visit www.zingbars.com.




Sunday, November 26, 2017

Pumpkin Gingerbread






   
     And these are a few of my favorite things...Pumpkin Gingerbread has stolen my heart...right after it delighted my taste buds.  But seriously, this may be one of the best things I have ever made.  Moist, dense and flavorful are all adjectives that come to mind.  Not to mention, each of these nine baby loaves are only 212 calories, 11g net carbs and 9g protein.  These are so delicious they need no topping, but add a Tablespoon of low fat Cream Cheese for only another 35 calories, 3g net carbs and 2g protein if you are in the slathering mood.  Either way,  you will be tasting the Holidays with each and every bite.  :)

Ingredients for 9 mini Loaves~
1/2 cup Cinnamon Roll Sweet Mama Mels Coconutter, softened (use code Paige15 for 15% discount, may sub with Coconut Oil if necessary)
3 extra large Eggs
1 cup Oats, grind to flour in Magic Bullet or Food Processor
15oz can Pumpkin
6 scoops Gingerbread Vital Protein Collagen Creamer (vitalproteins.com)
1/2 cup Swerve Granular Erythritol
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
Dash Pumpkin Pie Spice
Dash Cinnamon
Dash Vanilla

     Add ingredients to mixing bowl and beat til fully combined.  Add to sprayed non stick mini loaf pan with 9 slots, each slot will receive a scant 1/2 cup batter.  (Use a loaf pan or 8X8 pan if preferred, may need to alter bake time.)  Bake at 350 for 25-28 minutes.  Top each loaf with 1 Tablespoon reduced fat Cream Cheese, if desired.  Enjoy  :)

* A note about Vital Proteins Collagen Creamer:  Vital Proteins Collagen Creamers are a nourishing way to boost your morning brew. Also great in teas, baked goods, and desserts, their versatile Creamers are Whole30-approved and free of dairy, artificial flavors, added sugars, and carrageenan. A healthy way to start your day, they’re rich in clean collagen protein and healthy fats from organic coconut milk.
  • Boost Energy: Their Collagen Creamers are rich in energy-boosting MCTs, a type of healthy fat found in coconut milk.**
  • Add Protein: Their creamers boast 10 grams of clean collagen protein from grass-fed, pasture-raised bovine.**
  • Support Connective Tissues: As the most abundant protein in the body, collagen is responsible for the maintenance of healthy hair, skin, nails, bones and joints.**
  • 100% Clean: Their Whole30-approved Collagen Creamers are made with only real-food ingredients and are free of artificial sweeteners, refined sugars, dairy, and gluten.**
**These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.




Healthy Homemade Gift Giving






     Sugar does not mean love people.  PLEASE do not bring me cookies, cakes, pies, rolls or candy as a gift and especially not at Christmas.  We all like to give food as a sign of our affection, which is wonderful and perfectly acceptable, but there are a few things to consider.  Overindulgence is already at an all time high, and further inventory only compounds the problem.  The Holidays seem to open the flood gates on Sugar Season.  Since excessive gatherings offer even more high Sugar opportunities, this year consider giving something toward the healthy end of the spectrum.  In fact, I have a few Sugar Free options that you may really enjoy and the receivers will appreciate the reprieve.  And don't forget to invest in a fun decorative jar to hold your goodies, let that be part of the gift.  So, before you label me a ''Debby Downer'', take a peek at my creative Healthy Homemade Gift Giving ideas...you will soon realize that I'm really a ''Perfect Present Presenting Paige''!

Nuts~ One of the beauties of giving Nuts, is that not only are they a healthy option as well as many varieties,but also, they don't have to be consumed immediately or all at one time.  As a double bonus, if you want to add spice we have further options as well.  Check out my Salted Candied Pecans as well as Chocolate Dipped Almonds.  Nut Butters are another great choice and super easy to make, you will love my Honey Roasted Peanut Butter recipe.
http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2017/11/salted-sugarless-candied-pecans.html

http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2017/11/salted-dipped-almonds.html

http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2016/12/honey-roasted-peanut-butter.html

Olive Oil~ Flavor infused Olive Oils are a super idea and oh so easy.  The options are only limited by your imagination.  Use the Oil for dipping your bread, drizzle on pasta, or in your cooking dishes.  Enjoy my Garlic Olive Oil recipe, then scour Pinterest for a ton of other varieties.
http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2017/11/garlic-olive-oil.html

Jam~ Fruit spreads are always popular, and can still hold a healthy element.  Check out how I make my Blueberry Chia Jam, feel free to sub with other berries of your choice.
http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2016/09/blueberry-chia-jam.html

Vanilla~ Homemade Vanilla is one of my favorite things and such a fun craft project.  I make this in bulk so I will have plenty to last a long time.  Plus, this opens up opportunities for even more gift giving.  Look for the perfect container to bottle your extract, which adds to the feeling of celebration.  This is super easy and super delish.
http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2014/02/homemade-vanilla.html

Salsa~  Have you ever thought of Salsa as a gift!?  I have.  Can you think of anything you would rather receive than an awesome jar of Homemade Salsa!?  I can't.  Check out how I do Salsa!
http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2016/06/homemade-salsa.html

Pretzels~ There are a few low carb Pretzel options out there, and why not take it a step further and dip them in a low carb Chocolate for a touch of Christmas, all the while still sugar free.  Win win!
http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2017/11/chocolate-cinnamon-pretzels.html

Prepared Ground Beef~ I have prepped Ground Beef into one pound freezer zip lock baggies for loved ones, this is a priceless gift.  I saute diced Onion in Olive Oil, Garlic and Cayenne til golden brown, then add several pounds of ground beef, drain and weigh out a pound at a time, add to freezer zip lock baggies and store in freezer til ready to use or give as a gift.  This is invaluable to the working mother, and will be received as a treasured possession.
http://foodfitnessbypaige.blogspot.com/2016/12/ground-beef.html

There are many other healthy sugar free gifts that you can give at Christmas time.  Here are some of the things I've received and accepted with gratitude:
Unsweetened Cocoa in a decorative jar
Ground Cinnamon in a decorative jar
Citrus fruit in an attractive basket, especially Grapefruit.
Designer Apples, such as Fuji, Honeycrisp and Braeburn.
Fresh Pineapple with a pretty red bow
Low Carb or Edamame Pasta with a Gourmet Sauce
Flavored Balsamic Vinegar
Gourmet Pink Himalayan Salt and Black Peppercorn, give a nice set of Grinders too
Freezer Dinners, find out your friends favorite casserole and prep one for their freezer, give this prepared in a lovely new casserole dish

I also have a few non-food related gift ideas that might help for that person who is impossible to buy for:
Homemade Dog treats for their favorite pooch
Gym membership
Magazine subscription
Specialty Candle
Scented Lotion
Body Scrubs (try making your own)
Sentimental or Homemade Christmas Ornament
Personalized Mug, Towel, Bath Robe, Note Cards
Manicure/Pedicure
Car Wash Gift Certificate
Massage Gift Certificate
Phone Charger (can we have enough of these around the house!?)
Copper Skillet or Kitchen Gadget
Movie Tickets

Here are a few tips to help with controlling your weight during the Holidays:

1.      Fill up on fiber and protein rich foods: When you go to a party look for the veggies, beans, and lentils, and lean protein foods like eggs, chicken, turkey, grass fed beef, and pork. Vegetables have fiber that will fill you up and nutrients you need to thrive. Eat less fried foods, processed meats, foods with sugar, and cheeses.

2.      Keep moving: Eating well and exercising go hand in hand to maintain weight. Find time to work out at least four times a week. This includes cardio, strength and flexibility exercises. Any activity you like to do that will get your heart pumping and build lean muscle. Don’t know where to start? Take a long walk after dinner, check out Youtube videos, or join a class with a buddy to keep that motivation going.

3.      Bring Your Own Food: Going to a place that might not have any healthy options? Bring your own dish. Veggie platters, or a vegetable based entree will fill you up with fiber and protein.

4.       Drink Liquor In Moderation: I am not going to tell you not to drink, but I would recommend to stick to 1 drink a day if you’re a woman and 2 drinks if you are a man. Too many drinks will increase your waistline along with your risk for type 2 diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. So if you are conscious of carbohydrates and calories you can try to stick with vodka, rum, gin, tequila, whiskey, scotch, and brandy. Use lime and seltzer instead of sugary mixers like juices or tonic. Want to avoid those holiday hangovers? Stay hydrated with water and stick to clear liquor.

5.      Watch Your Sugar: Sugar is abundant this holiday season in everything from cookies and cakes to candy canes, pies, and even entree and side dishes. Too much can increase your waistline and also put you at risk for heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, and dementia. One teaspoon of sugar is equal to 4 grams of sugar. This can add up pretty quickly, so be sure to check food labels and try to stay below 25 grams (6 teaspoons) a day.

6.      Plan Ahead: If you know you’re going to a party tonight plan your meals for earlier in the day so you are eating whole nutrient dense foods that will satisfy your hunger. Foods like almonds, walnuts, pumpkin/sunflower seeds, avocados, or plain yogurt are great snacks to eat before your event later in the day.

7.      Give In To Your Indulgence: The last thing you want to do is deny yourself a treat during this season. Make it something special that you may not be able to have any other time of the year.

8.      Watch Your Portions: Portion distortion is alive and well in our society. Fill up on nutrient rich foods like vegetables. Eat much smaller portions of sweets, treats, and other indulgent foods. One trick is to use a small plate and wait 20 minutes until your brain knows your stomach is full.



Salted Sugarless Candied Pecans








     I'm not sure if anything could be easier or better tasting.  My Salted Sugarless Candied Pecans is like a dream come true, it's a healthy treat that is sugar free as well as good for you!  And what a perfect gift for that figure conscious friend.  Each 1/4 cup/1 oz serving is only 210 calories, 2g net carbs and 3g protein...and worth every macro!  This is a must try  ;)

Ingredients for 6 servings~
1/2 cup Swerve Granular Erythritol
2 Tablespoons Water
Dash Salt
Dash Vanilla
1 1/2 cups Pecans  (I like to get nice big beautiful Pecans out of the bins at my local Whole Foods Market vs packaged)
Beautiful Container, if gift giving

     Add Erythritol, Water, Salt and Vanilla to skillet (I use a copper skillet, love the way it cooks), stir til well combined and melted together, add Pecans and blend til well coated, continue to stir and coat till all of sauce in skillet has been used in coating, pour onto parchment paper taking care to immediately separate any touching Pecans, give another light sprinkling of Salt depending on taste while still wet.  Allow to dry, then add to decorative container if gift giving...otherwise enjoy to your hearts content.  :)

Salted Dipped Almonds







     If anyone calls you a cheater, tell them to talk to the hand.  Salted Dipped Almonds may look like a decadent sinful treat but are nothing of the kind.  Take comfort in knowing that these little babies are filled with only good things.  Each of these 1/4 cup servings are only 251 calories, 4.5g net carbs and 8g protein.  And if you are wanting to share with your health conscious friends, this would be the perfect opportunity...then they won't be a "cheater either"...and everyone can just use their hands for eating!  :)

Ingredients for 4 servings~
2 teaspoons Coconut Oil
1 square Lily's Stevia Sweetened Dark Chocolate Premium Baking Bar
1 cup raw Almonds
Salt to taste

     Melt Coconut Oil and Chocolate in microwave safe bowl til softened, stir to thoroughly combine.  Dip half of Almond in Chocolate one at a time and dry on parchment paper, season with Salt as desired while still wet.  When done transfer to fridge til set, as well as store in fridge.  If you prefer the counter top method that is fine too, let rest overnight til no longer wet.  Add to decorative container if gift giving.  Enjoy  :)