Tag Archives: protein

White Bean and Kale Soup

Soup makes us feel good. It’s warm. Filling. Easy to make. This soup especially is extra healthy as well, so you are basically firing on all cylinders.

Don’t let the kale scare you either – you aren’t going to notice the taste and if a pair of young kids will eat it… you should be fine too!


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 5 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced (the celery stalks… at midnight)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 (6 inch) sprigs of rosemary, leaves removed and finely chopped, stems reserved (use half of the rosemary if you don’t want this taste to be super strong).
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 cans of chickpeas
  • 2 cups chopped kale or other winter green (radish greens, chard, spinach, etc.)
  • 1 ½ tsp miso paste
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to
  • Fresh parsley for garnish


Heat the olive oil in a medium-sized pot over medium heat. Add the sliced garlic and fry, stirring, until golden brown. Remove to a plate and set aside.

Add the onion to the oil and fry until transparent. Then add the carrots, celery, bay leaves and rosemary stems and fry for a couple of minutes until the vegetables are slightly softened.

Add the stock and beans, bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Use an immersion blender to blend some of the beans, being careful to avoid the bay and rosemary, until you reach the consistency you want. Add the chopped rosemary leaves and kale (or other winter green), cover the pot and simmer until the kale is soft.

Remove the pot from the heat, ladle about half a cup of the soup into a bowl and add the miso paste. Stir well to dissolve then add it back into the soup along with the lemon juice. Taste and add salt and pepper, the quantity will depend on how salty your stock and miso paste are – I didn’t add any to mine.

Remove the bay and rosemary stems and serve, garnished with the reserved crispy fried garlic and fresh parsley.

Pineapple Banana Green Protein Smoothie

This is a variation on my favorite smoothie of all time – David’s Green Smoothie. Using the pineapple instead of berries will give you you a different flavor profile and another tool in your green smoothie arsenal.


  • 1 handful fresh spinach or kale
  • 6 baby carrots or 1 full size carrot
  • 1/2 half cup frozen pineapple
  • 1/2 half of a raw banana (can also use frozen banana for extra creaminess)
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (optimum nutrition gold standard is my recommendation)
  • un-sweetened vanilla almond milk OR water (the choice here is based on taste vs. calories)


Throw everything into a blender and blend until you reach the desired consistency. This shake for me normally fills about 3/4 of a large shaker bottle if you are looking for a comparison.

Garlic (Quinoa) Noodles

Hope you like garlic! Me? I love garlic… which means I love this recipe. I don’t eat too much pasta these days, but the noodles in this recipe are made from Quinoa! They aren’t available everywhere (we get our from Trader Joe’s), and I strongly recommend them for this recipe! If you don’t have any, your standard high protein whole wheat pasta will work… I just won’t be happy about it!

This is a great vegetarian recipe – but you can very easily toss a chicken breast on top and it will be delicious.


  • 1 package Quinoa spaghetti
  • 1 each red yellow and green pepper
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 carrot (or five baby carrots!)
  • 1 green chilie
  • 1 jalapeño
  • 1 cup shredded cabbage
  • 12-15 cloves of garlic

For the sauce:

  • 4 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp sweet red chili sauce

Optional toppings:

  • Cilantro (OMG GROSS… but if you like it, use it I GUESS)
  • Red pepper flakes


Cook pasta according to package directions.

Meanwhile, chop up all your veg. Heat a couple table spoons of olive oil in a large skillet. Add your garlic and onions and stir for about 2-3 minutes. Add the rest of your veg and stir until combined.

Add sauce ingredients and whisk to combine. Add to the skillet with your veg and stir to coat the veggies.

Drain your pasta and add it to the skillet and toss to combine.

Vegetarian Chickpea Caeser Salad

Everyone always thinks SALAD when they think vegetarian meals. Well, this time we are actually gonna prove ’em right and eat some salad!

caesar salad

Basically what you are doing is supplementing chickpeas in place of chicken and croutons. And replacing the cheese with nuts. You are going to have a very similar taste profile, but in a more healthy package.

This is a complicated recipe, but it’s delicious and totally worth it when you are sitting down to eat.


Roasted Chickpea Croutons:
  • 1 15oz can chickpeas drained and rinsed
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 to 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (add more as needed)
Caesar Dressing (makes 3/4-1 cup):
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 medium garlic clove
  • 2 tsp capers
  • 1/2 salt
Nut and Seed Parmesan Cheese:
  • 1/3 cup raw cashews
  • 2 tbsp hulled hemp seeds
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • salt to taste
  • 1 small bag of kale/spinach mix
  • 2 small heads romaine lettuce (10 cups chopped)


Soak your cashews in a bowl of water overnight, trust me on this one. Drain and rinse when done.

Next you’ll roast your chickpea “croutons”: Preheat oven to 400°F. Drain and rinse chickpeas. Place chickpeas in a paper towel and rub dry. Place onto large rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle on oil and roll around to coat. Sprinkle on the garlic powder, salt, and cayenne. Make sure they are evenly coated. Roast for 20 minutes at 400°F, then gently roll the chickpeas around in the baking sheet. Roast for another 10-20 minutes or until golden brown.

Dressing is next. Add the cashews and all other dressing ingredients (except salt) into a high-speed blender, and blend on high until the dressing is smooth. You can add a splash of water if necessary to get it blending. Add salt to taste and adjust other seasonings, if desired. Set aside.

Now we are doing our Parmesan “cheese”: Add cashews and garlic into food processor and process until finely chopped. Add in the rest of the ingredients and pulse until the mixture is combined. Salt to taste.

Lastly lets throw it all together. Add dressing onto greens and toss until fully coated. Season with a pinch of salt and mix again. Now sprinkle on the roasted chickpeas and the Parmesan cheese.

Consume immediately.

Strawberry Poppy Seed Chicken Salad

This is a great spring inspired salad that has delicious sweet and savory flavor profile from the fruit and chicken. This recipe is a knockoff of the popular Panera Salad, for that “I want to go out to Panera” taste, without the “I just spent 14 bucks for a salad and a drink at Panera” feel…

You can adjust your protein/veg/fruit levels to your liking.

Ingredients:(for one salad)

  • 1 chicken breast per salad (or half a chicken breast depending on hunger levels)
  • sweet onion chopped finely
  • fresh strawberries
  • fresh blueberries
  • almond slices
  • Panera Poppyseed Salad Dressing (use sparingly, as the cals from this can add up)
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 mixed salad bag or salad green of your choice (I prefer fresh spinach)
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper


Season chicken breast(s) with olive oil, salt and pepper. Sear in a skillet over medium high heat for 3 minutes per side and then turn heat to medium low, cover the skillet with a lid or foil, and cook for 10 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes, and then chop into bite sized pieces.

Chop cucumbers. Chop strawberries. Chop onion. Add all of your greens to a plate, top with your chicken and fruit. Remember, a little fruit and dressing go a long way, so use it sparingly!

Eat salad.

Selfishly count all the money you saved from eating at home instead of going out!

Mango Peach Cinnamon Green Smoothie

I love fruit and I love veggies. Blended together in an ice cold smoothie is about my perfect healthy breakfast choice. So here we have a tasty green smoothie with a bit of a cinnamon kick. Don’t like cinnamon? Thats okay! It’s still a perfectly edible green drink without the spicy after shot.


  • 1 cup of mango/peaches (loosely measured into a cup, not packed)
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (this smoothie is great with water as well, which is how I drink it, the almond milk gives you an extra flavor boost for about 30 cals…)
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (to taste)
  • two big handfuls of spinach (can also substitute kale, but its a MUCH stronger flavor)
  • 4-8 baby carrots


The easiest directions ever… toss all the ingredients into your blender. Blend until… blended. Pour into drinking vessel (shaker bottle, old shoe, mason jar, etc, etc, etc)… drink and be healthy!!!

*note – if this is your first green smoothie, start with more fruit and less veggies. At first ANY veggies are better than none, so start small and work your way up!

Chicken Nugget w/ Spicy Dipping Sauce

Chicken and veggies. The bastion of everyone when they start eating healthy, and for many of us, a regular menu item as our healthy eating journey continues.

Variety is the spice of life, and this chicken nugget recipe is a great compromise between healthy and naughty food and one that your entire family will love.

If you are counting calories, keep an eye on how much sauce you are using as it can get you into trouble!


  • 3-4 pounds of chicken
  • whole wheat italian bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper


Preheat your oven to 425. Cut up chicken into bite sized pieces, and season with salt and pepper. Coat chicken with olive oil and dredge in the bread crumbs to thinly coat. Place in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Put some foil down on your cookie sheets (you’ll need 2) and spray them with cooking spray to save you some clean up time.

Bake nuggets for 10 minutes, flip and bake for another 10 minutes or until cooked through.

Spicy dipping sauce:

  • 1/4 cup light mayonnaise
  • 4 tbsp scallions, chopped fine plus more for topping
  • 3 tbsp Thai Sweet Chili Sauce
  • 2 tsp Sriracha (or to taste)

Mix all ingredients in a bowl and use for dipping your nugge…ys.

Top salad greens with your chicken nuggets and a little bit of the sauce. Serve with cut up veggies for your kiddos!

Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie

I always have SOME kind of green smoothie for my breakfast. The ability to get a shot of veggies and protein first thing, in an easy to drink shaker bottle, that is ready (including clean up) in less than five minutes is too hard to beat.

This green smoothie looks NOTHING like it tastes – so give it a try and trust your nose and tastebuds, not your eyes.


  • 2 tablespoons PB2 (powdered peanut butter)
  • 2 large fist sized clumps fresh raw spinach
  • 5-10 baby carrots
  • One half of a frozen medium banana
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • A splash of water


In your blender add all of your ingredients EXCEPT the water. At first, especially if you aren’t used to green smoothies, you’ll want to go lighter on your veggies. As you get more and more comfortable with the taste, you can fill that sucker up with veg.

For your water, you’ll want to only add a little bit of water at first, then try blending to get your ratio right. I normally add about 1/2 a cup of water or more, but I’m also using A LOT of veggies, so your mileage may vary.

This recipe will work with a fresh banana, but the frozen ‘nana and extra cold water will definitely make it better.

Banana Oatmeal Protein Muffins

Want a delicious snack that even your kids and spouse will eat?
These amazing, protein packed, MOIST muffins are a sweet alternative to store bought and preservative filled snack bars.
  • 2 cups oats (quick cooking or old fashioned)
  • 2 large very ripe bananas
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 scoops vanilla protein powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • OPTIONAL – 1/4 cup chocolate chips
  • OPTIONAL – 1/4 cup chopped pecans
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Spray a muffin tin lightly with cooking spray, fill with cup cake liners, and then hit the liners with a little more cooking spray.
Place the all ingredients but the chocolate chips and pecans in a blender.  Blend  on high, stopping to scrape down and stir the ingredients once or twice as needed, until the batter is smooth and the oats have broken down almost completely, about 3 minutes.
By hand, stir in the chocolate chips and pecans.
Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups, filling each no more than three-quarters of the way to the top. Sprinkle with additional chocolate chips or nuts.
Bake for 15 minutes (10 for mini muffins), until the tops of the muffins are set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place the pan on a wire rack and let the muffins cool in the pan for 10 minutes. They will deflate but still taste amazing!
Remove from the pan and enjoy!

Chicken Tortilla less Crock Pot Soup

It’s wet n’ stormy weather outside. There’s a spicy salsa beat pumping from the speakers. A delicious and healthy chicken tortilla crock pot soup cooking in the kitchen. This is exactly what is happening in my life right now… well, everything except for the salsa music part.


We have a recipe here that lets you easily scale the spiciness and is simple enough that anyone can cook it. It essentially boils down to one step: dice everything and throw into crock pot, go to work or school, come home and eat.

Lets do this!


  • 1.5 to 1.75 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 1 bell pepper (red or green, I normally buy whatever is cheapest)
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 jalapeno pepper (keep the seeds if you want it to be more spicy, bin the seeds if you want it less)
  • 2 15oz cans diced tomatoes (do not drain, we want that juice)
  • 1 15oz can black beans (optional recipe is great without)
  • 2 cup chicken broth (I use the reduced sodium stuff)
  • 2 garlic cloves (finely minced)
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes (if you like your soup on the less spicy side, start with a 1/2 tsp)
  • 1 tbsp chili powder (if you like your soup on the less spicy side, start with a 1/2 tsp)
  • 1/2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 2 bay leaves
  • *after cooking*
  • avocado (cubed, to use as a soup topping prior to serving)


Add all ingredients to crock pot (except the avocado). Make sure the chicken is covered by all of spices, juice, and vegetables.

Cook on high for 4-5 hours. Remove chicken, using a pair of forks (or whatever your preferred method is, ninja sais or robotic claws work also ) shred your chicken, return chicken to pot. Cook on low for another 2 hours.

Salt and pepper to taste. I normally do 10-15 cracks on the pepper mill for mine, but I like it a bit more peppery.

Throw your soup in a bowl, toss some cut up avocado chunks on top and enjoy!