Mini Stuffed Peppers

I have a serious love for stuffed peppers. And I have a serious soft spot for all things mini. Just so cute! Kroger’s mini peppers were on sale for $1.99 (whaaaat?), so I grabbed a bag and decided to make baby stuffed peppers.

Great idea in theory. Those suckers are way difficult to stuff. Nonetheless, they were delicious, cute, and quick, and I WILL be making them again. Maybe with an Italian twist?

Anyway, I paired these Mini Mexi Peppers with refried beans (I LOVE them!). How hilarious is this can?

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How cute are these?

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I never said they were pretty.

I never said they were pretty. I got a little excited with the cheese and missed some peppers….

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Mini Stuffed Peppers

Ingredients:

  • 8 mini sweet peppers
  • 1/2 pound ground turkey
  • 1/2 c. shredded cheese (I used fiesta blend for some added spice!)
  • 2+ tbsp taco seasoning (amount totally depends on your preference)
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
  • “splash” of olive oil
  • 1 can Rotel (or other tomato and green chile brand)
  • 8 jalapeno slices (I used pickled because that’s what was on hand)

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Seed and half the peppers, long-ways. Put pepper halves in a bowl of hot water to soften and become more pliable.
  • Cook garlic cloves with oil and turkey and seasonings until brown and no longer pink.
  • Add drained Rotel, and mix well. I kind of break up the tomatoes a little bit to make them mix better with the meat.
  • Drain peppers and set them on a cookie sheet.
  • Stuff each pepper as best as you can 🙂
  • Top with the cheese, and jalapeño slice on each pepper.
  • Bake until the cheese is bubblin! I chose to broil mine a bit, because I LOVE that browned cheese taste! YUM.

If you try this recipe, let me know! Instagram me @lovethekate using #feistyfrench. 

I look forward to hearing from you!

Let me know what other posts you’d like to see on the blog below!

Surviving Restaurants: Fast Food

Hey, guys!

So I have decided to start a new mini series called “Surviving Restaurants.” We don’t eat out very often, but I know there are a lot of people who do. One problem I used to always have going out to eat would be what to order. Obviously. It is so super hard to order something healthy when all of these “cheesy” or “fried to a golden brown” entrees are yelling at you. This series will explore different tips and tricks to eating out, from fast food to coffee shops to your typical sit down restaurants.

Since I just had Taco Bell for dinner (when the hubs is away, the wifey will….eat Taco Bell?), it seems fitting that the first part of this series deals with a fast food.

As much as I hate to admit it, fast food is sometimes too convenient to pass up. We really don’t eat it very often, maybe once or twice a month. I try to avoid it, because holy moly fat and sodium. Honestly, sometimes I crave Taco Bell. This was one of those days. I’m only human! One who really loves Taco Bell…

Anyway, here are a few quick and dirty tips for behaving at fast food restaurants.

  1. Suck it up and look at the nutrition information. For me, I can usually be talked out of a bad decision with nutrition information. Most people have smart phones, and can quickly look up calorie and fat content for just about any order on the planet. Seriously. Probably the entire planet.
  2. Remember how food makes you feel. If you’re given the choice between a greasy hamburger and a grilled chicken salad to eat before a race, what should you choose? Obviously the salad. Remember how it makes you feel! Do you want to be able to walk after you eat, or would you rather feel like you’re busting out of your pants? Occasionally, busting out of your pants feels worth it, but is it worth that Big Mac? Honestly, probably not.
  3. Get water. Come on now, ya’ll. This should be a no brainer. I love me some Mountain Dew, but I would much rather devote 250 cals to food that will stay with me a little longer than 25 minutes. Water will also help fill you up so you don’t eat nearly as much. If you feel the need to drink soda, as I occasionally do, get a small and sip slowly. It will be just as satisfying, and you won’t sacrifice as many calories.
  4. Avoid combo meals. Yeah it may be cheaper, but you are most likely ordering way more food than you actually need to. If a combo meal really is the way to go for you, choose a healthier side. Most places offer “healthier” side dishes now, such as apple slices in place of fries. And never, ever super size. You do not need it, I promise you that!

What are some of your tips for healthy eating at restaurants? What else would you like to see in this series? Let me know in the comments below! Check me out on Instagram and Twitter (@lovethekate)

Easy Italian Chicken Bake

Sunday night, I made a delicious chicken dish. It was super simple and super yummy! Each serving (this makes 2) is under 400 calories. That seems like a lot, but when you pair it with two low cal side dishes, it’s a pretty low cal dinner! I found this recipe on The Pinning Mama. I made a couple of changes to suit my needs: canned tomatoes and it’s only two servings. I try not to have leftovers every night. This recipe can easily be adapted to add more servings, or even lower the serving size to one!

My prep station. How fabulous is this kitchen cart?

My prep station. How fabulous is this kitchen cart?

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Yum. So good.

Yum. So good.

Lovely dinner table. I served this with a salad and garlic roasted Brussels sprouts.

Lovely dinner table. I served this with a salad and garlic roasted Brussels sprouts.

Italian Chicken Bake

Ingredients:

  • 2-4 oz chicken breasts, thawed and patted dry
  • Marinade: olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper
  • 4 ish tbsp. pesto (I used Buitoni)
  • 1/2 c. diced tomatoes (I cheated and used canned)
  • 1/2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese

Method:

  1. Combine marinade ingredients in a large ziploc bag. Marinade for a couple of hours. I think I ended up marinading for a little under 2.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 and grease a casserole dish with cooking spray.
  3. Lay the chicken in the dish, and layer equal amounts of pesto, tomatoes, and cheese on both.
  4. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until chicken is totally done. Be careful not to overcook. I used a meat thermometer to determine done-ness!

As always, thanks for stopping by! Leave me a comment below! I’d love to hear from you!

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Top 5 Healthy Kitchen Must-Haves

Happy Sunday, friends! And go Colts! I was super pumped to watch the game today, because I missed the last game. I was in Bengals territory and they played at the same time! We are (hopefully) ready to take on the Broncos next week!

Today, I was thinking about what kinds of posts I could do to help ya’ll with your weight loss and healthy eating goals. We’re always told that abs are made in the kitchen, or that you “can’t out-exercise a bad diet,” so I thought that I’d post a little guide of my top healthy kitchen must-haves!

  1. Electronic kitchen scale like this one from Wal Mart. I love ours. We only got it a few months ago, and I have no idea how I survived so long without it! It’s perfect for weighing meats and cheeses to make sure you have the correct portions. Just be sure to lay a piece of plastic wrap down prior to weighing raw meat to avoid cross-contamination!
  2. Good, solid, grill pan like this one from Bed, Bath, and Beyond. We just bought ours yesterday and I already love it. It’s perfect during these cold months, and a heckuvalot easier to use and clean than an electric grill. You can cook chicken, veggies, burgers, whatever! It’s super useful and gives you those beautiful grill marks.
  3. An extensive spice, herbs, and other flavorings collection. That guy below is just one of my spice racks. Spices and herbs are super easy, low cal ways to add tons of flavor to otherwise bland food. These suckers can liven up chicken, veggies, fish….Really whatever you’re eating!IMG_0296
  4. Frozen veggies galore. Use that freezer, kids. Cold temperatures make it super difficult to be have access to fresh fruits and vegetables. I love love love the frozen bags Kroger makes. It’s just veggies, flash frozen. I always have broccoli, brussels sprouts, carrots, etc. in my freezer. You can use those spices mentioned above to really kick em up a notch!
  5. An open mind. This seems so obvious, but it took me forever to develop a good relationship with healthy cooking. Take the time to make healthy swaps, and don’t knock anything until you try it. Cheeses and oils can be your friends, in moderation. My mindset with being healthy was always prefaced with “no.” No sugar, No ice cream, no this and that. Keep an open mind and know that there are swaps and other options, and these things are totally fine in moderation!

 Well I have a delicious Italian chicken dish in the oven! I can’t wait to share the recipe with you later!

As always, thanks for stopping by!

Don’t forget to follow me on this blog so I can do an awesome giveaway! 

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Motivational Monday: What You Deserve

Happy Monday!

Not. The Mondays after holidays just plain suck. I was 15 minutes late to work (Gasp! Katie!), and got off late (yay, childcare). I had to stop by Kroger on the way home from work because I’m a ding dong and forgot a couple of things I needed to make dinner tonight. While at work today, I came close to grabbing a pop because “I deserved it.” When I walked through the door of our apartment, I almost made the decision to skip my workout to relax and watch TV because “I deserved it.” So, in the spirit of procrastination (I’m doing the workout as soon as I whip this post out. Sweaty Selfie will be on Instagram for accountability), here is my revelation on what I “deserve.”

After I tried really hard to convince myself not to work out, I had this wonderful revelation. Twice today, I almost made unhealthy choices because I thought I “deserved” it. I probably have that conversation with myself at least once a week. Oh I worked out today, I deserve something loaded in bad fat and empty calories for dinner.

What the heck kind of logic is that? Good job working out today, self. You go right ahead and eat that candy bar. Huh? To me, this is (for lack of better analogy) settling for that dirt bag significant other because you think you deserve it. Don’t get me wrong–I probably have one pop a month, and I occasionally indulge in desserts that are less than stellar health-wise. I’m not saying you should never eat or drink anything “bad.” Change your mindset like I just did!

You deserve to take care of yourself. You deserve to sweat it out and be sore the next day. You deserve to choose a salad with grilled chicken (dressing on the side) over a greasy burger. Why? Because you have this ONE body. This ONE body that only YOU can take care of. Your body does amazing things. You can run, do cartwheels, fight off illness, create new life. So don’t you think your amazing body and the soul that inhabits it deserves some healthy habits?

Again, I would like to reiterate that I am not saying “shame on you” for having a burger and pop every once in a while. All I’m saying is that you and your body deserve for most of your choices to be healthier choices!

 

With that being said, I’m off to get my rear end kicked by Cassey Ho from Pop Pilates! (Youtube sensation. You really oughta check her out here!)

Literally never thought I would sincerely say that I deserve to get my butt kicked.

What do you think?? Let me know in the comments below!

And don’t forget to help me get to 100 followers! I’m excited about this giveaway 🙂 When I get to 75, I will reveal what it will be!

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Spicy Peanut Shirataki Noodles

So, shirataki noodles are awesome. They don’t really taste like anything. They kind of absorb whatever flavors they’re cooked in. They’re tofu noodles, and there is really nothing to them. Super low calorie (about 20) and low carb. I found a spicy peanut recipe here, and decided to adapt the recipe to suit my preferences.

Ahhh garlic.

Ahhh garlic.

Broccoli slaw is a great way to add some crunch and color!

Broccoli slaw is a great way to add some crunch and color!

Shirataki noodles.

Shirataki noodles.

Yum. I love the combo of peanut and sriracha.

Yum. I love the combo of peanut and sriracha.

Finished product! Easy, healthy, and delicious.

Finished product! Easy, healthy, and delicious.

Spicy Peanut Shirataki Noodles

Ingredients:

  • 2 packs of Shirataki tofu noodles, rinsed and drained
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 c. or so of broccoli slaw
  • 1 tsp olive oil (or any other cooking oil)
  • 4 tbsp PB2
  • 2 tsp creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp or so of sriracha sauce
  • 2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 c. vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp ginger

Method:

  1. In a medium to large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add minced garlic clove and broccoli slaw. Continue to cook until tender.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine vegetable broth, PB2, peanut butter, sriracha, soy sauce, honey, and ginger. Whisk gently until smooth.
  3. Add to a sauce pan. Heat to a low boil.
  4. Add in rinsed and drained noodles. Allow to boil for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. To serve, divide the noddle mixture among two bowls. Top with the sauteed garlic broccoli slaw.

As always, thanks for stopping by!

Don’t forget to follow me on this blog so I can do an awesome giveaway! 

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Healthified Banana Bread

I am the banana bread queen. My mom had some super ripe (perfect for bread!) bananas, so I decided to make banana bread. I have my go-to recipe, but it has loads of shortening, sugar, and white flour. While it is delicious, I wanted to sub in some “better-for-you” ingredients to make it almost guilt-free. It turned out AWESOME! If you like banana bread, give it a try! You won’t regret it.

 

Healthified Banana Bread

I love my stand mixer.

I love my stand mixer.

I never said this was a pretty process!

I never said this was a pretty process!

Cinnamon makes this bread warm and cozy! (Can bread be warm and cozy??)

Cinnamon makes this bread warm and cozy! (Can bread be warm and cozy??)

Ta-da! Beautiful, beautiful  bread.

Ta-da! Beautiful, beautiful bread.

Let’s get down to it!

Healthified Banana Bread

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 c. plain, unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tbsp margarine or butter, softened
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1/2 c. Truvia baking blend
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 c. whole wheat flour
  • cinnamon to your liking (I really like cinnamon)

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a loaf pan. I used cooking spray, but you can use butter.
  2. With a hand or stand mixer, blend the applesauce and margarine or butter. Add in the eggs one at a time.
  3. Add Truvia; mix well.
  4. Add in bananas. You can pre mash these, but I am lazy and never do that. 🙂
  5. Add in soda and salt.
  6. Add in flour 1/4 c. at a time. Add in cinnamon. I’m not sure how much I used here, but use as much as you’d like!
  7. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Mine baked for about 34 minutes!

What’s your favorite bread? What’s your favorite healthy swap? Let me know in the comments below!

Don’t forget, when this blog reaches 100 followers, I am going to have a sweet giveaway to celebrate!

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