Category Archives: Recipes and Such

Homemade Snacks- Cheaper Than Store Bought?

This is a cross post from my OTHER blog: http://www.thedinerodiaries.wordpress.com which will be LIVE on 1/1/15…I have added info regarding WLS/Diet to make it relevant to THIS blog.

crackers
After reading how much crap goes into snack crackers, cereals and bread I pledged that I would start making my own and not subject my family to any of that garbage ANY MORE! Then, I decided to put myself on a money diet and re-thought the situation…

It’s better nutritionally to make snacks- but is it cheaper?

I don’t feel like breaking out the charts and graphs so I’ll go straight to the bottom line…

If you make Pita Bread like this- http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/whole-wheat-pita-bread-best-pita-bread-recipe/ (which I have) you’ll actually be paying a little more to make it than to buy it at the market but it’ll be healthier for you.

If you make “Goldfish” type crackers like this http://www.superhealthykids.com/whole-wheat-goldfish-crackers/ (which I have) you’ll pretty much break even UNLESS you buy the generic, cheese cracker-ish brand. This recipe is WAY, WAY, WAY healthier than buying that processed stuff.

Wait! What about the time it takes to make it? Did you calculate THAT into the mix?!?!

No. I like to cook so I usually don’t charge for my TIME…

To Wrap This UP:
In MY opinion- if you compare ingredients cost to price at the store/gas getting there, it comes out about even so…bake away Flour Warriors, bake away

With regards to weight loss and nutrition: Whole wheat flour has less gluten than White flour (yes it does, don’t argue with me) but it can still mess with your insides. If you do partake in bread and crackers, measure out your servings so you know what you’re eating.

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Never Buy A Protein Bar Again- RECIPE!

I found a recipe for protein bars online. Tweeked it and made it delightfully edible! Here it is…

PROTEIN BARS

2 Cups Quick Cook Oatmeal
1 Cup Whey Protein (I used Chocolate)
I small Tin Of Salted Almonds (finely crushed)
1/3 cup Dried Cranberries (the lowest in sugar possible)
1/3 cup 74% or above Cacao Dark Chocolate (chopped)
1/3 cup Peanut Butter
1/4 cup Honey
1 cup Unsweetened Apple Sauce

(You can TOTALLY Vegan or Organic these puppies- just buy more expensive ingredients!)

Add dry ingredients together.
Add wet ingredients together and toss into the microwave for 1 minutes. Add to dry ingredients. Mix well!
Line an 8×8 or larger pan (depends on how big you want the bars) with wax paper. Add mixture and pack down.
Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes but longer is better. Cut into individual bars, wrap in wax paper and keep in fridge.

FYI- The bars look way better in person. I had eaten 1/2 before I remembered to take a picture.
11

Butternut Squash/Pear Soup

I’m in desperate need of MORE VEGETABLES and FRUITS. The VITAMIN A in this recipe is out of this world…

Buy This:
2 Tablespoons butter

1 medium onion, chopped

2 cups vegetable or chicken broth

1 pound butternut squash, pared, seeded and cut into 1- inch cubes

2 pears, peeled and sliced

2 teaspoons thyme

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon seasoned or sea salt

1/2 cup heavy cream and 1/2 cup 2% milk

DO this:
In a spaghetti pot: Saute onion in butter until tender.

Add broth, squash, 2 sliced pears, thyme, cumin, pepper and salt. Boil; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until squash is tender, 10 to 15 minutes.

Pour about half of the soup into a blender, cover and process until smooth. Repeat with remaining soup and return to the pot. Stir in 1/2 cream/ 1/2 milk mixture until well incorporated.

Nutrition
8 Servings 1/2 cup each

Amount Per Serving

Calories 113.9

Total Fat 8.7 g

Saturated Fat 5.4 g

Polyunsaturated Fat 0.3 g

Monounsaturated Fat 2.4 g

Cholesterol 29.4 mg

Sodium 18.1 mg

Potassium 185.5 mg

Total Carbohydrate 8.5 g

Dietary Fiber 1.9 g

Sugars 1.6 g

Protein 1.6 g

Vitamin A 78.9 %

Vitamin B-12 0.5 %

Vitamin B-6 3.4 %

Vitamin C 13.1 %

Vitamin D 3.5 %

Vitamin E 0.7 %

Calcium 4.9 %

Copper 1.7 %

Folate 2.6 %

Iron 1.8 %

Magnesium 4.0 %

Manganese 4.4 %

Niacin 2.5 %

Pantothenic Acid 2.3 %

Phosphorus 2.4 %

Riboflavin 1.5 %

Selenium 0.5 %

Thiamin 2.7 %

Zinc 0.7 %

Hidden Veggies

I’ll admit it-I hide veggies in my recipes. You caught me…

I do this for a few reasons:

1) Solid Veggies hate me. This is a Gastric Bypass  thing- my stomach just can’t handle them. When I puree and add them to a dish, my stomach does a lot better with them. Not great, but okay.

2) My 4 year old Grandson will all of a sudden not want to eat veggies AT ALL. He can be a total jerk sometimes- as can most 4 year olds and he’ll make up his mind that this day, month, year  is not vegetable friendly. He makes his own agenda most of the time anyway.

So….

I puree carrots and zucchini and add them to my Spaghetti Sauce which I use for meatballs and lasagna.

I also puree spinach and use it in Meatloaf, Burgers and Meatballs.  It WILL turn your meat green if you use too much. Be forwarned!

Pureed Califlower is actually good when you treat it like it’s mashed potatoes. You can do 1/2 mashed potato and 1/2 califlower as a side dish as well. I also add it to Mac N Cheese. As long as you add a yellow cheese, you can’t tell it’s there.

I’ve heard a lot of Veggie Hiding Moms put pureed Summer Squash in Mac N Cheese too.

DO YOU HAVE A GASTRIC BYPASS FRIEND OR KID FRIENDLY RECIPE FOR HIDDEN VEGGIES? SHARE WITH ME AND IF I LIKE IT- I’ll POST IT2b1e023d2bbde332_veggies_preview I borrowed this picture from popsugar.com so I’m giving them a photo credit. Ta Da!

Green Shakes

I’m a BIG fan of Green Shakes because solid veggies and I don’t get along. My Grandson has suddenly decided that he likes them too and as long as he doesn’t SEE ME add the green part- he’s down for an icy cold one!

GREEN SHAKE VARIATIONS

1 individual bottle of Muscle Milk Protein Shake

Pick a flavor– (Lite Chocolate, Vanilla or Banana)

1 handful of Kale and Spinach Mix or Just plain Baby Spinach

1/2 c Fruit

Pick a fruit– (Frozen or Fresh Strawberries, Frozen Peaches, a Medium Banana, Frozen Cherries, Fresh Blueberries)

A TON of ice

You’ll need a Magic Bullet or a Ninja type blender

Add the greens first, then the ice,  a bottle of protein and then the fruit. Blend the HELL outta this bad boy. Add some water if it’s too thick to get through a straw.

For Kids:  Put it in a cup that is colored and has a lid and a straw so they can’t see the green bits.

Calories Vary. If you drink a whole one yourself, you’ll be drinking around 250 calories.  Split one with a kid and it ends up being a a nice 125 calorie snack!

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Recipe: Anti- Hyper Vegan Chocolate Mini Cupcakes (I swear they’re good)

  

Mr. Caiden is not allowed to have  large amounts of sugar (just like Grandma). Anyone who GIVES Mr. Caiden sugar is in charge of removing him from the ceiling (again- just like Grandma). I found this recipe online and have modified it for Mr. Caiden and myself. I swear- it’s REALLY good!

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup of Granulated Equal or 24 packets of Equal
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 cup water
 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease one mini cupcake pan or use inserts.
  2. Sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Add the oil, vanilla, vinegar and water. Mix together until smooth.
  3. Pour into prepared pan and bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for approximately 20 -25 minutes. If they don’t look done, check them every 5 minutes until they ARE done.
  4.  Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Recipe: Crouching Clucker/ Hidden Carrot Chicken Salad

         

 Yes- he’s eating pizza AND needs a haircut…don’t judge! 🙂                                                                                                                                                  

My Grandson (Mr. Caiden) is a picky, little MONKEY who has me wrapped around his little finger (just sayin’). One of his first words was PIZZA (not good) so we try to redirect him toward more nutritious foods whenever we can. He LOVES this chicken salad (which means he doesn’t try to spit it out, feed it to the dogs or throw it on the floor). This recipe is very Gastric Bypass Friendly too if you can tolerate finely chopped veggies! It’s good for low fat lovers, low carb lovers, high protein lovers and just lovers of chicken salad in general.

Enjoy!

  • 2 Fully Cooked skinless, boneless Chicken Breasts (finely chopped)
  • 2 Hard Boiled eggs (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 A Small, Red Onion (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 cup  Baby Carrots (finely chopped)
  • 1 mini box of raisins or 1 tablespoon dried Cranberries (I swear this is good- trust me)
  • 1 Tablespoon Sweet Pickle Relish
  • 1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
  • Low Fat Mayo to Taste
  • Salt/Pepper

Mix ALL the ingredients together.

Voila! Chicken Salad!

Serve on Whole Wheat Bread, in a pita, a wrap, alone- however it may float your boat.

Makes 2 Adult servings or 4 to 6 Toddler servings

Sorry- no pic but honestly…you know what chicken salad looks like, right?!