Showing posts with label Bon Appétit. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bon Appétit. Show all posts

Moody Girl Eats: Pumpkin Spice Smoothie

There are so many signs that autumn is finally here - the cooler air, the leaves changing colors, and of course let’s not forget the return of Starbucks’ pumpkin spice latte.  I have to admit that I used to buy this drink religiously over the past few years, but I haven’t bought one this season.  Mostly because I’m trying to cut back on eating or drinking anything with too many artificial flavorings and added sugars.  Don’t get me wrong, I still crave the taste of this pumpkin-y delight, but I’m trying to make better choices for my body. 

Another reason I haven’t bought this drink is because I recently read a blog post from the Food Babe that questioned some of the ingredients in Starbucks’ drink.  After I did a little research, I decided that I needed to take a step backwards to reevaluate my drink options.  Of course, I don’t know if the Food Babe post is accurate, but I am equally concerned regarding the amount of sugar used in the latte and the chemicals used in Starbucks’ signature pumpkin spice syrup.

So when I found this Pumpkin Spice Protein Smoothie recipe, I knew it was going to be my favorite treat.  It’s filled with real pumpkin, which is a great source of vitamin A and beta-carotene, making it a healthy addition to your diet. This smoothie that has less sugar and fewer calories than the traditional Starbucks latte, but will still tackle that fall pumpkin drink craving. Check out the recipe below to get your Starbucks fix at home with infinitely more nutritional value.  If you decide to try it, let me know what you think. Happy blending!

Pumpkin Spice Smoothie
[Inspired by this pumpkin spice smoothie from Lululemon.]

1 cup of canned pumpkin
1 cup of almond milk
1 or 2 frozen bananas (depending on how sweet you want it)
2 dates
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp of nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves and ginger, to taste
1 scoop of protein powder (optional)
A handful of ice cubes

Makes 2 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes

Blend all ingredients together until you achieve the desired consistency.  Adjust flavorings as needed and add more almond milk or water if it’s too thick.  Pour the drink in a glass and Enjoy!

Moody Girl Eats: Avocado and Chickpea Salad

I love finding quick and easy side dishes that are both healthy and flavorful.  And this one is the perfect mix because it’s loaded with avocados, which I love.  This salad can also serve as a main dish since the chickpeas are a good source of protein and rich in both soluble and insoluble dietary fiber.  And although avocados may be fatty, that doesn’t mean that they are bad for your health.  In fact, avocados are full of healthy good fats, they are rich in vitamins K, C, E and B and they also have healthy dose of dietary fiber.  Anyways, this recipe takes less than 15 minutes to make especially if you are quick on the cutting board.  I doubled up the recipe so I eat it for the rest of the week – it’s reflected in the pictures below.  Let me know what you think.  Enjoy!

Avocado and Chickpea Salad
[Inspired by this avocado chickpea salad from Once Upon a Cutting Board.]

1 medium ripe avocado
1/3 cup red onions (diced)
1 can chickpeas, drained
1 lime - juice
1-tablespoon olive oil
⅓ cup fresh cilantro
1 clove garlic, finely minced
Salt and pepper for taste


Makes 3 servings.

1. Add diced onions, cilantro, and chickpeas in a bowl. 
2. Slice avocado in half, carefully scooping out the inside, and dice the avocado into cubes.
3. Place avocado in a bowl with bean mixture.
4. Whisk together the dressing ingredients: lime juice, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper.

5. Add the dressing to the bean mixture and toss until the avocado and beans are coated. Chill until ready to serve.

Moody Girl Eats: Breakfast Smoothie

For the past several weeks I’ve been drinking this breakfast smoothie whenever I’m in town. It’s one of my favorite go-to recipes because it’s super tasty and surprisingly filling.  If you’re looking for a new smoothie idea or a meal replacement, then this is the one for you.  Do any of you have a favorite breakfast go-to smoothie?  Let me know all about it in the comments below.

Dr. Oz’s Breakfast Smoothie
[Adapted from Dr. Oz’s 2-Week Rapid Weight Loss Plan]


2 tbsp rice protein powder 
2 tbsp ground flaxseeds 
1/2 cup frozen berries 
1/2 banana
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk  


Makes 1 serving.

Blend all ingredients together until you achieve the desired consistency. Pour the drink in a glass and Enjoy!

Moody Girl Eats: Moroccan Spice Chickpeas and Spinach

I found this amazing recipe online a month ago and I knew that I had to try it.  The original recipe was Moroccan Spice Chickpeas and Spinach, but I added a little chicken and some quinoa for a fuller and complete meal.  If you have a chance to me this one, let me know what you think in the comments.

Moroccan Spice Chickpeas and Spinach [Adapted from Cook Republic]


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 brown onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 small red chili, seeded and finely chopped
2 tablespoons Moroccan Spice (see below)
1/2 cup tomato paste
1 pound of chicken breast
2 cups spinach leaves, coarsely chopped
400g can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
juice of half a lemon
salt and pepper to taste

1 cup of cooked quinoa (follow the directions on the package)

Moroccan Spice Mix 


5 tablespoons ground cumin
5 tablespoons ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon allspice
1 tablespoon ground paprika
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric

This spice mix makes about 10 tablespoons. Combine all ingredients in a dry bowl. Mix well. Store in airtight container in a cool corner of your pantry.


Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium heat.  Season chicken with salt and pepper and cut the chicken into cubes.  Cook the chicken over medium heat and set aside.  Cook onion, garlic and chili for about 5 minutes until soft. Add Moroccan spice and then mix well.  Add the tomato paste, cook for a minute and then add the chickpeas.  I added some water to the pan next because I wanted the mixture to be a little loose to cover the quinoa.  Then add the quinoa, chicken and spinach.  Cook, stirring occasionally until spinach has wilted (about 3 to 4 minutes).   Remove the pan from heat and stir in the lemon juice. Season the dish with salt and pepper to taste.

Moody Girl Eats: A Go-To Green Drink

I’ve been drinking this amazing green drink ever since I saw the actress/co-founder of the Honest Company, Jessica Alba, on a variety of talk shows several months ago.  On the talk shows, Jessica Alba revealed her secrets to her hot new body after giving birth to her baby in her new book, The Honest Life.  One secret that she revealed in her book is that she sips on this green drink throughout the day to help keep her feel full.  So, she didn't feel the need to snack as often throughout the day. I never had a chance to buy her book to get the exact measurements of the drink, but the ingredients below is what I was able to gather based on her various television appearances.  When I heard Jessica list out all of the ingredients together I knew it was going to be pretty amazing. I made a couple of changes to the recipe based on my tastes and I wanted to share it here with you all.  Let me know what you think about this drink if you have a chance to try it.  Do any of you have a favorite smoothie or juice that you like to mix up on a regular basis?  Let me know all about it in the comments.

Go-To Green Drink
[Adapted from The Honest Life, by Jessica Alba]


2 stalks of celery, chopped
1 whole cucumber, skin on, chopped
2 apples, chopped (either a golden delicious or granny smith)
2 big handfuls of kale (2-3 large leaves)
1 whole lemon (juiced)
1 teaspoon of a peeled fresh ginger (you can add more to taste)
2 tablespoons of MILA chia seeds (OPTIONAL - I added this ingredient for extra nutrients).
3-4 cubes of honeydew melon or watermelon for sweetness.  Or you can also use a pinch of stevia or a tablespoon of honey.  (I added the honey to this recipe because I personally think it tastes great with it).
5-7 ice cubes


Makes about 2 servings.

Place all ingredients in a blender and add just enough water to get it going. Blend until smooth and sweeten the drink to taste. Pour the drink in a glass and sip it right away with a straw and Enjoy!

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