vegetarian

Shoulder and Arm Burner AND a Quesadilla Recipe!

Glad to be back posting today! I worked hard to publish a post yesterday, but wordpress was being extremely slow, which made it impossible for me to publish the post that I wanted to. I was going to share about our wedding reception, so now I just have most of that post published for next week. 🙂 I couldn’t share that post today because I was too ready to share a new recipe and workout with y’all before the weekend! 🙂

First things first, food!

I am big on meal planning, and every weekend I plan out the meals for the next week so that I know what to cook and so I make sure I have the ingredients I need on hand. Wednesday night I was planning on following this recipe for black bean quesadillas, but as I started getting ready to cook, I decided I would much rather do my own thing and make up my own recipe. 🙂 Risky, I know, but I felt like if I made a few tweaks and added some personal touches the Hubs and I would like it better. However, since I pretty much like every food that is edible, I wasn’t worried if I would like it, but I had to please the man in my life.

I took one bite and thought it was absolutely delicious, but I anxiously waited for my husband to start eating his so I could hear his opinion. When he said, “it’s really good!”, I knew this recipe was a winner. 🙂 So of course, I wanted to share it with all of you.

Black Bean Veggie Quesadillas

This meal was extremely easy, which automatically makes it one of my favorite weeknight foods to cook.

Ingredients:

  • Tortillas (personal choice here, whatever you like. The picture above is a low carb whole wheat tortilla, but I also made one with a corn tortilla. Both were delicious.)
  • Chopped onion
  • Chopped bell pepper (whatever color is fine)
  • Chopped mushrooms
  • Roasted red pepper hummus
  • Almond Milk
  • 1 can rinsed and drained black beans
  • Spinach
  • Taco seasoning
  • Avocado, salsa, or whatever you like for topping.

Steps:

1. Heat some olive oil in a pan on medium heat and sauté onions, bell pepper, and mushrooms. I didn’t say exactly how many onions, bell peppers, or mushrooms to chop up because it really just depends how much you want to stuff your quesadillas with. I can’t even remember how much I used of everything. I also think you could experiment and try a lot of different veggies for this recipe, or take out whatever veggies you don’t like. I plan on trying some different ones next time!

IMG_5313

2. While vegetables are cooking, heat up black beans in a separate pot on the stove.

3. When vegetables are done transfer to a plate, and when beans are fully cooked remove them from heat.

4. Make this “cheese sauce” from  Ashlee using two tablespoons of hummus and one tablespoon of almond milk, and then spread some of it on one tortilla.

IMG_5309

5. Spray the pan where you cooked the vegetables with more cooking spray, and place the tortilla, hummus side up, on the pan over medium heat.

6. Load up the tortilla with beans and the veggie mix. I also put spinach in mine, and I loved it! You could sauté the spinach with the rest of the vegetables earlier if you would rather. After you load up the tortilla, sprinkle some taco seasoning on top. I didn’t measure how much I sprinkled, just use however much you like. (Preferably homemade seasoning so you don’t have any of the nasty, added ingredients, but if you use a package that’s okay too. I will admit sometimes I even have to do that for lack of time/ingredients. Luckily, I had homemade taco seasoning for this recipe.)

IMG_5308

7. Take another tortilla and spread more of the hummus mixture on one side, and then place the tortilla on top of the  other tortilla that is now loaded with toppings, with the hummus side down.

IMG_5310

8. After 2-3 minutes, flip the quesadilla so that the other side can cook.

9. After the other side cooks, remove the quesadilla from heat, and begin to use the rest of the ingredients to make however many  more quesadillas you can make! I was able to make one more quesadilla this size, and then one more smaller quesadilla using corn tortillas.

10. Top the finished quesadillas with whatever you want! We topped ours with avocado and salsa!

Black Bean Veggie Quesadillas

I took a picture before I put salsa on top though. And of course I enjoyed some more veggies on the side. 🙂

Sidenote: If you didn’t want to make the “cheese sauce” with the hummus and almond milk, I think it would taste just as good by spreading the hummus without making the “sauce”. Also, for you meat lovers, you could easily add chicken or whatever other meat you like to this quesadilla. And if you just want meat and no beans, do that! That’s one of the things I love about this recipe; you can constantly change things and make it different! Oh, and if you want real cheese, you can also sprinkle some real cheese inside your quesadilla. I did this for Ryan. 🙂

This recipe was so good, and so easy! If you make it, please let me know what you think!

Now, because it’s Friday and I’m happy, I am also going to share a workout with y’all! I did this yesterday and really enjoyed it!

Big shoulder and ab toner

I know my picture looks very “springy”, and we are smack dab in the middle of winter, but that is exactly why I made my picture look this way. I know I live in Texas and the weather I experience is nothing compared to what some of you are having, but I am sick of this cold weather, and I am so ready for spring! So making this bright colored, flower filled picture made me happy. 🙂 I hope it makes you happy too. 🙂 Oh, and if you do this workout, your shoulder and core muscles will be happy too. 😉

I did this exercise yesterday for a total of three times, and as I have mentioned before, I want to make sure I keep doing strength exercises while I am training for my marathon. I am not overdoing it, but I am doing enough to keep me strong. I have grown to love strength training, and I don’t want to give it up. Besides, I know it makes me a better runner.

In case you don’t know what a plank punch is, you can watch this short video here to see it. I used weight though, so I held a barbell each time I punched the air in front of me.

I hope you all have a great weekend, and if you get a chance to make my black veggie quesadillas or try my shoulder and ab toner, let me know your thoughts!

This weekend I have a wedding shower for a friend from high school that I am going to with my Mom, and tomorrow night we are celebrating my grandpa’s 80th birthday with my family. Should be a fun weekend!

Questions:

1. What are your plans this weekend?

2. What is your weather like? Are you sick of the cold or do you enjoy it?

3. Do you ever plan to follow a recipe but then do your own thing? 

4. I will be meal planning for next week soon, any meal ideas for me? 

A Diet Change and WIAW

If you follow me on Instagram then you might have noticed that I have been cooking and eating more vegetarian/meatless meals lately. There is a reason for this. Ryan and I have decided that we want to start having less meat in our diets. This has nothing to do with wanting to lose weight, wanting to follow a fad, or wanting to label ourselves as vegetarian or vegan. I am not one for labels when it comes to my diet, but we are changing what we are eating quite a bit.

I have been wondering for a while now how healthy meat is for everyone, especially how much meat most people in America eat every day. I feel like for the majority of people, and I know it was this way for us, most of our meals involved meat, and meat was the main course of the meal. Now most of the meat we ate was chicken or turkey products, which I think is much better than too much red meat, but I still wasn’t convinced that we needed meat for every meal.

A few weeks ago Ryan and I watched the documentary “Forks Over Knives”, after my brother and SIL told us we needed to watch it. I won’t give too much away because I think a lot of y’all would enjoy watching this, but the documentary discussed the benefits of a plant based diet. I am a huge believer that fruits and vegetables are full of nutrients that most of us don’t get enough of, and it’s not that I think meat is bad for us, but I don’t know if we need as much of it as most people eat. I also definitely don’t think the way animals are treated and fed is healthy or natural, and I think humans suffer negative consequences from these unnatural ways. This makes all natural, grass-fed meat healthier, but this is a very expensive option.

With that being said, the majority of meals we eat are now meatless and we are finding different ways to get our protein. I am married to a man who loves meat and cheese (the documentary, “Forks Over Knives” says you should go all plant based, which of course would be no dairy either, we haven’t gone that far yet. We are changing our diets gradually), and he has tried more foods and meals in these last three weeks than he probably ever has, and he is realizing that he can like meals without meat, and there are more vegetables that he actually likes than he thought!

If you are anything like me, you won’t have a clue on how to start to make delicious, meatless meals that meat loving people will still enjoy and make sure they are still nutritious. I did some research and looked through multiple recipes, and I thought I would share some of the meals we have eaten with y’all. So what a perfect day to take part in WIAW: Veggie Style! Head on over to Peas and Crayons if you want to see more delicious food people are eating!

WIAW IMG_5074

I made some black bean sweet potato chili, and I loved this meal! Make some healthy cornbread muffins, and this meal is perfect!

IMG_5118IMG_5121

Tofu frittatas from Peas and Thank You. The Hubs wasn’t a fan of this one, but I thought they were really good! They were perfect for breakfast, or a snack, or as an add on to another meal. I really enjoyed putting a couple of them over salads for lunch. I loved to eat mine topped with salsa!. The picture above to the right was a snack for me one day, and I ended up putting a little salsa on the frittata after I took the picture.

IMG_5120

Black bean veggie burger from Peas and Thank You. As you can tell, I ate mine on a bed of spinach instead of with a bun, and then I topped it with avocado, tomatoes and bell peppers. And obviously load up on the vegetables for sides! And if you have a veggie burger, home made sweet potato fries are a must, in case you didn’t know.

IMG_5189

Spaghetti and lentil “meat balls”, that are made without any meat. Again, this recipe is from Peas and Thank You.

IMG_5194

Jambalaya made with quinoa, seasonings, veggies, and some type of veggie sausage. We wouldn’t eat the sausage by itself, but when it was mixed in with all of the seasonings, quinoa, and vegetables, it tasted fantastic! Oh and I bet you can’t guess where I got this recipe. Well maybe you can, Peas and Thank You again.

IMG_5201

Tortilla soup from Oh She Glows. I ate mine with some homemade plantain bread from purely twins. Ryan said this meal was “phenomenal”. This was an incredibly good soup, and I can’t wait to make more of Angela’s recipes.

IMG_5204

Homemade pizza on sweet potato crust from Tina. We loaded it up with veggies and then put some mozzarella cheese on top, followed by some pineapple.

IMG_5228

Eggplant parmesan from Ashlee. I loved this meal! I ate mine on a bed of quinoa, and Ryan ate his on noodles. Ryan thought it was delicious!

IMG_5230 IMG_5231

 

Tempeh “sloppy joes”, which I ended up just calling barbecue sandwiches because that’s what they were. They weren’t like sloppy joes at all. Ryan ate his, and had leftovers for lunch the next day, but he said this wasn’t his favorite, and this meal shouldn’t be on of our regular meals.

IMG_5246

A sweet potato topped with scrambled eggs cooked with veggies and avocado for breakfast .

IMG_5258

Blueberry spinach pancaked topped with 1/2 of a banana, some peanut butter, and a drizzle of pure maple syrup.

IMG_5260

Leftover barbecue tempeh on a bed of quinoa with a salad and green beans.

 

IMG_5267

Carrot cake waffles that are amazing! I topped mine with half of a banana and a little pure maple syrup.

IMG_5244 IMG_5243

 

 

Quinoa, black bean, and corn tacos. Mine are too loaded with toppings for you to see the quinoa mixture, but it was amazing. My plate is on the left, and Ryan’s is on the right.

IMG_5287

The quinoa, black bean, and corn mixture made a ton, so earlier this week for breakfast I sautéed some of the leftovers with spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, onion, and bell pepper, and then cooked two eggs with it. This was one of my favorite breakfasts! I topped it with avocado and salsa and had a lentil banana muffin from Lindsay on the side.

IMG_5295

Last night Ryan and I went to a hockey game, and we didn’t want to pay to eat out or eat at the game, so I packed a dinner that we ate in the car before going into the stadium. Not only was this cheaper, but it was healthier too. I wanted to show this picture so you can see that you can pack vegetarian meals too! I had a salad with some of the quinoa, black bean, and corn mixture in it, with some Greek yogurt and nuts afterwards. Ryan had a peanut butter banana sandwich with Ritz chips and an apple.

So there are a bunch of our vegetarian eats lately! Now we are not going totally meatless, right now, we are having mainly vegetarian meals during the week, and some meat on the weekend if we want it. This is working out great so far because it’s on the weekends when we normally go out with friends or family, and that’s when eating meatless might be a harder option, or might not even be an option.

I am also a huge fish lover, and I think fish has many benefits. I still want us to have fish about once a week or so, and that’s why we are having shrimp this Friday night. Meat and fish give people Vitamin B12, which is one reason I wouldn’t want to get rid of it completely. We are just having much less than we used to. 🙂

Now I do not judge anyone who eats a lot of meat; we are all different and we all need different diets. But for Ryan and I, this diet is working great for us. Ryan even admits that he feels better having less meat; he has more energy and is less tired. Sometimes you just have to explore your food options to see what works best for your body.

Questions:

1. What have you been eating lately?

2. Do you think you would like to watch the documentary, “Forks Over Knives?”

3. Do you like vegetarian recipes?

I’m a Huge Baby

Do any of y’all watch Blacklist?

The-Blacklist-NBC-1

Source

Ryan and I watch this, and it’s really good! It’s suspenseful, exciting, thrilling, except there is only one problem. I’m a huge baby! Shows like this always make me so scared! When the show was over I made Ryan come sit by me on the couch and hug me until I felt better. Luckily it didn’t take long until I felt safe and happy again, but let’s just say I would never watch this show by myself. But I do really like this show, so don’t let me freak you out, you should check it out. 🙂

Anyways, on to more exciting things…like dinner!

eggplant parmesan

I tried a new recipe last night: eggplant parmesan from Ashlee. This was seriously so good!! Even Ryan loved it! I wish I would have taken a picture of the whole dish that I cooked, but I was obviously in way too big of a hurry to dig into my plate, so the picture of my plate will have to do.

eggplant parmesan meal

I ate mine on a bed of quinoa, and then had a salad full of some spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, mushrooms, and avocado with some light balsamic dressing drizzled over it. Ryan had his with some whole wheat noodles and some garlic toast.

Ryan and I have been trying to branch out from our normal meals, and this was a new one for us. I can safely say this is a recipe I will make again!

Workout

Yesterday for cross-training I did a HIIT workout at home and then did some abs. I have really enjoyed doing HIIT workouts at home lately, but I need some good workouts. Anyone have some they like they want to share with me? 🙂

Also, I feel like I haven’t shared a workout here in a while, although I think it’s only been a week…Anyways, I plan on posting a workout later this week so be on the lookout!

I hope you all have a great day, and no matter what, make it a good one! Smile and find the best in every moment. 🙂

Questions:

1. Are you a baby with certain shows like The Blacklist like I am?

2. Do you try to branch out from your normal meals often?

3. Favorite type of workout to do at home?

Freezing Weather and Soft Serve Ice Cream

Are y’all staying warm in this freezing weather?? I can’t believe the temperatures some of y’all are having! In Texas it’s not quite as cold as it is for y’all who are in the negatives, but it’s really cold for Texas! It was 16 degrees yesterday morning when I woke up and the highest it ever got was 30. I know this is normal for some of you, but it’s not for me, and I am never prepared for weather like this! I know, I’m a baby in the cold.

Because it was so cold in the morning, and I knew I needed to get in my run before the afternoon, I switched up my marathon training schedule a bit. I was supposed to run 6 miles yesterday and do cross training today, but I ended up doing my cross training yesterday and I will run 6 miles later today.

I did this workout from Pinterest (follow me!) and then did my own short leg workout.

better add on leg workout

This is a perfect workout for you to add on to another workout you have already done for a little extra strength. I am making sure that I am keeping my legs strong since I will be running more than I am used to for marathon training. I don’t want to hurt a knee or anything else on my leg because they are too weak. I know that maintaining my strength workouts will be important for my training!

After my workout I showered and got ready to go meet Ryan at his work for lunch. I was excited to wear a new outfit that I got this weekend while shopping with my Mom.

IMG_5169I got the gray dress for $10 (regular $70) and the yellow sweater for $10 (regular $45). Perfect outfit for my  new job too!

I packed Ryan and I leftover lentil enchiladas from Sunday night for lunch with apples and bell pepper. The best part though was dessert. Ryan’s work has a soft serve ice cream machine so we thought it was the best decision to balance out our nutritious lunch with ice cream. 🙂 Obviously this makes the most sense. And yes, it was freezing outside, but I still thoroughly enjoyed this treat. I don’t have a big sweet tooth, but I have always loved ice cream. 🙂

IMG_5174

Vanilla is always the best choice, always.

IMG_5172

I wish we could have lunch together more often; it was so nice!

After I left Ryan’s work I went to get my fingerprints taken for work, and then headed home to finish meal planning for the week. Then I went grocery shopping and came home to start cooking dinner.

We had vegetarian chili with some cornbread (both recipes from Peas and Thank you. I am seriously obsessed with this cook book!) I made the chili with tempeh, and Ryan and I both really enjoyed it!

IMG_5178

Ryan didn’t even know there wasn’t meat in it at first. And for those of you who don’t know, he is a meat lover!

IMG_5179

The cornbread was a perfect side for this dish, and I crumbled about half of my piece of cornbread into my chili, which made it even better!

Oh, and one more random fact for you. I wore this “S” sticker on my sweater all day without realizing. I wish I could say this doesn’t happen to me often, but I am the queen at forgetting to take tags and stickers off.

IMG_5177

I’ll leave you with that. I’m going to spend today doing some food prep, running, a little cleaning, and hopefully a little reading! As always, if you try my leg workout let me know how you like it!

Questions:

1. If you have run a marathon, how much strength training did you incorporate into your workouts?

2. Favorite ice cream flavor? 

3. Have you ever cooked with tempeh? What do you like to make with it?

4. Tell me something you are looking forward to today or this week? 

 

My Eats Lately

First off, I want to thank everyone for all of their kind words after yesterday’s post. Y’all were so sweet, and reading all of your comments and tweets made me smile! 🙂 Now let’s get to the food!

I haven’t posted in a while, so I thought I would just show some pictures of what I have been eating lately and then share a recipe I tried out this week and loved! These are all just pictures from the last few weeks, so I haven’t eaten all of this today. 🙂

IMG_3931

I have been on a smoothie kick lately. It is still in the 90’s during the day here in Texas, so the cold drinks still taste so good! This was Melissa’s Apple Cinnamon Protein Oat Smoothie. I highly recommend it.

IMG_3964IMG_3965

I tried Zeggs after reading this post over at the littlehoneybee. (You will notice I have been trying a lot of Amy’s recipes! After making her banana protein muffins from Heather’s blog, I had to try more of her creations!) My first picture was the zeggs before I added anything in, and the second picture is when I mixed in half of a banana, strawberries, blueberries, and peanut butter. My thoughts, it was okay, but I made it a second time and it was much better because I shredded the zucchini into smaller pieces. I think oatmeal tastes better, but I love knowing that I have a whole zucchini with this breakfast! Talk about full of nutrition! I have had it twice and will have it again.

IMG_3936 IMG_3939

Some more of Amy’s recipes! I made her cranberry almond bars, which were seriously to die for!! I made them two weeks in a row I love them so much! The second picture was Amy’s black bean brownies.  I am not really a big chocolate fan, so I really made these for Ryan so that he could have a healthier dessert or snack. I followed the exact recipe for the brownies except I didn’t use chocolate chips since I knew Ryan would like them better without that extra ingredient. I wasn’t sure if he would like them, but he loved them! I was so glad they were husband approved!

IMG_3984

I tried this new flavor (well new to me) of Oikos Greek yogurt, and I think it was my favorite flavor I have ever had. The banana cream  felt like I was eating froyo. I was sad that I only bought one of this flavor that week. (First world problems, right?)

IMG_3981

Eggs with veggies never gets old. 🙂 I always have more vegetables than eggs, but I love it that way! Topped with avocado is what really tops it off though! And then a piece of Ezekial bread with sugar free grape jelly.

IMG_3953

Football season is here, so on the first Sunday that the Dallas Cowboys played I made Ryan and I some healthier football food! Homemade chicken nuggets, sweet potato fries, and zucchini fries!

IMG_4028 IMG_4029

This week I made my spaghetti squash casserole again. This recipe is definitely a winner. Ryan and I both love it! I

IMG_4030

I did a little experimenting with this recipe, and I was extremely happy with how it turned out! These are pumpkin cranberry nut bars, and they are so good! Perfect for fall! (Actually perfect for anytime of the year, because I think pumpkin is too good to not eat year around 🙂 ) I am going to make this one more time to get my exact measurements down and then I will be posting the recipe!

Lastly, this week I finally tried a black bean veggie burger!

IMG_4020

I ate mine on a bed of spinach with a tomato and avocado. Then on the side I had a sweet potato, broccoli, and corn. No meat for this meal! Coming from a traditional southern family, I have grown up almost always having meat, potatoes, and bread at almost every meal. As I have gotten older and researched more about nutrition and health, I have definitely started adding more vegetables into my diet, and I am still trying to add more. I definitely think having vegetarian meals like this one are good to have sometimes because you end up eating more vegetables than you normally would otherwise. More vegetables is always a good thing! I am not saying meat is a bad thing, I just don’t think we have to have it at every meal like we so often think.

I want to post this recipe because I think  a lot of you might want to try them, but this is not my yummy creation. Go here to check out the Dreaming Foodie’s smoky black bean and cilantro veggie burger!

So there’s just a few things I have eaten lately and really enjoyed! Now it’s time for a date night with the Hubs!

Questions:

What have you ate lately? 

Do you like to experiment in the kitchen or always go off of a recipe?

Do you enjoy having vegetarian meals? If you have any favorite recipes please share them with me! I would love to incorporate some more of them into our menu for the week!