Don’t Be Blue Salad: Easy Meal Edition

This salad is full with nutrient dense foods, such as spinach, avocado, blueberries, extra virgin olive oil, and walnuts.  It is very easy to whip together and would be a great lunch to bring to work.  The creamy avocado is a nice contrast to the crunchy walnuts.  The blueberries add sweetness.  Next time I will add feta for its salty flavor, I just didn’t have it this time!

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Place fresh spinach in a bowl.  Add blueberries, sliced avocado, and walnuts.  Drizzle extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar on top.

Mix and enjoy!

Festive Cookie Butter Granola

This granola is the best I have ever had.  It is so addicting you will not be able to put it down.  What started out as breakfast to serve alongside Greek yogurt and fruit turned into a whole day snacking affair.  The reason why it is so amazing is due to one special ingredient, cookie butter.  If you have never had cookie butter before believe me when I say it is heaven on earth.  I prefer Biscoff Crunchy Speculoos Spread which is made by grinding spiced Biscoff cookies until they turn into a consistency similar to peanut butter.  The spread is sweet and buttery and my father loved eating it by the spoon!  The cranberries and pumpkin seeds add a red and green holiday vibe and make the granola not too sweet.

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Festive Cookie Butter Granola

3 cups oats

2/3 cup cranberries

1 cup chopped walnuts

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 large egg white

1/2 cup cookie butter

Preheat your oven to 300 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with a silpat or parchment paper.

Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl, excluding the egg white.

Whip the egg white until frothy and then gently mix it into the other bowl.

Scatter the granola on the pan and cook for 55-60 minutes.  Break apart the granola into clusters once it has cooled for a couple of minutes.

Baked Oatmeal

I have been in the kitchen since I arrived home last night because I am finally on Christmas break!!!  Be prepared for a flurry of posts as I attempt to create everything I have saved since August.  The first baked good was for my father’s breakfast who loves oatmeal.  This dish is really simple to whip up and can be made the night before.  You can add in your favorite toppings like raisins, berries, coconut, nuts, etc.  I just added walnuts this time around.  I got the recipe from Alexandra’s Kitchen.  This baked oatmeal was delicious and perfect for a winter breakfast.  It was slightly sweetened by the maple syrup, comforting from the oats, and warm from the notes of cinnamon and nutmeg.  I baked mine the night before and just reheated it for breakfast!

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Baked Oatmeal (serves 4)

3/4 cup steel cut oatmeal
½ cup walnuts halves, toasted and chopped
1 teaspoon baking powder
1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
2 cups whole milk
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 large egg
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  1. Butter a brownie pan and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl combine all of the dry ingredients.
  3. In a separate bowl add all of the wet ingredients.
  4. Add the wet to the dry and mix until everything is incorporated.
  5. Pour it into the prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes.
  6. At the 30 minute mark lower the oven temperature down to 325 degrees and cook for another 20 minutes.
  7. Serve it warm alongside fruit and enjoy!

 

Summer Spinach Salad

This dish was a take on my favorite spinach salad with cranberries, feta, and walnuts, but I added some leftover grilled corn that I had from the night before.  I made it quickly for a family dinner so I did not record the exact proportions, but I don’t think you can mess it up!

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Summer Spinach Salad

spinach

grilled corn

cranberries

chopped walnuts

salted sunflower seeds (shelled)

feta

olive oil

balsamic vinegar

Cut the grilled corn off of the cob using a sharp knife.

Place the spinach in a large salad bowl.  Sprinkle on the grilled corn.  Crumble the feta on top.  Add the walnuts, cranberries, and sunflower seeds.

For the dressing mix 1/3 part balsamic vinegar and 2/3 part olive oil.

Pour over the dressing and toss the salad.