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Quinoa Trail Mix Bites Recipe

Today is Day 23 and it is a scheduled rest day so no workout happened. But I did make these:

Lately temptation has been everywhere and I have been coming unraveled because of it. It makes me cranky and no one wants to be around when I am cranky. So the solution to my problem was to make myself a treat that is not only healthy but gluten-free, high protein and that falls into the clean eating category.  The best part is there is no baking involved. When it is warm out nothing turns your house into an oven quicker than turning on the oven.

About a year ago I featured a Quinoa Ball recipe on my blog but decided I needed to amp it up a bit. So here is the recipe with all my revisions added in. I made quite a few changes!

Quinoa Trail Mix Bites. Don’t they look delish??



1 cup old-fashioned oats, dry (Bob’s Red Mill brand offers gluten-free oats, most oats are not gluten-free, these are)

1/4 cup quinoa, dry

3/4 cup water

1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut (I used half flaked and half shredded because I like the difference in texture)

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1/3 cup unsalted sunflower seeds

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

1/3 cup dried cranberries

1 tbsp pure vanilla extract

1/2 tbsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 cup peanut butter (almond butter work too, I used chunky PB)

1/3 cup honey


1. In a small pan combine the quinoa and water and bring to a boil. Cover then simmer for about 12 minutes, until quinoa has completely absorbed all liquid. Fluff it with a fork and pour into a large bowl.

2. Add oatmeal, dried cranberries. cinnamon and the coconut to quinoa and mix until everything is completely incorporated.

3. In a small pan bring the honey to a simmer then stir in the vanilla. Pour honey and vanilla mix onto the other ingredients in the bowl and mix until everything is combined.

4. Cool the mixture then add the chocolate chips, peanut butter and salt.  Mix until everything is evenly mixed through. using your hands seems to work the best.

5. Pop it all in the fridge to cool (takes about an hour). or you can pop it into the freezer and just stir it occasionally (it takes about a half hour then)

6. After it is thoroughly cooled scoop out the mixture by a heaping tbsp full and form into a ball. This works best if you keep your hands damp.


I made a double batch and half the mixture in the fridge to ball up later. I like to ball them up in small batches to keep myself from chowing down. They are just that good. These also freeze really well.


Day 12 & 13 of 120 & Cleaner Chess Pie

What a weekend! Between birthday dinners, weddings, our car puking out, and everything in between I did not take the time to blog for days 12 and 13. Day 12’s scheduled workout was Pump and Burn and Day 13 was a rest day. Granted I think for my rest day I got plenty of cardio in. Gotta love the dance floor.

My food intake was not so great. On Friday when my DH and I went to dinner for his birthday I ordered what I thought would be the cleanest thing on the menu. To my surprise the only thing I should have eaten was the side salad. EVERYTHING was processed. The meal that I ordered didn’t even come out, because they gave me the wrong meal. It happens, I understand. I was kind of wondering why anyone works in their kitchen if no one cooks anything. So I ended up eating instant potatoes and white bread.
Saturday I ate a slice of pizza at lunch leftover from when my friend watched the kids friday. Because I was in a hurry and didn’t want to take the extra 5 minutes to make something. Really should have made a better choice there. At the wedding I had one fried chicken drumstick, peeled off the skin but still. It was fried and also some dressing and a small slice of cake. I had tons of veggies though. And let’s not get started with my beer consumption. How much beer did I drink? I don’t know. So yep, I totally sucked at making good choices this weekend. Do I regret it? YES! Am I going to beat myself up or punish myself for it? NO! Just going to hop back on the wagon and chug along.

So I never took a picture of the Cleaned Up (not 100% clean) Chess Pie I made with my DD. I will at least get the recipe out there and use a generic picture of some to kind of give you an idea what it looks like.

Chocolate Chess Pie. Photo from There are some awesome meals and sinful treats on this site! My pie looked the same minus I finger pressed the edges of my crust


2 Large Eggs, beaten
(1) 5 Ounce Can of Organic Fat Free Evaporated Milk
1 Cup Stevia in the raw
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1/4 Cup Organic Butter, melted
2 Tablespoons Cornmeal
1 Teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
2 Cups Unbleached White Wheat Flour
1 Cup organic Butter, very cold
6-8 Tablespoons of Ice Water
2 Teaspoons Stevia in the Raw
1/2 Teaspoon Salt

1. Crust: In a food processor add the flour, Stevia and salt and mix it well. Cut the butter into pea sized pieces and add to flour mixture.  Mix until it is crumbly. There may still be little chunks of butter and that is okay.

2. Add water one tablespoon at a time then pulse. Do this until your dough is still crumbly but can hold together if you squeeze a little bit in your hand.
3. Take your dough and with as little handling as possible ball it up and then roll it out  to fit your pie pan. After it is in your pan cover your edges with foil and pop into the fridge.

1. Filling: mix together the Stevia, brown sugar, corn meal and cocoa powder. Add in the eggs and then mix until it is all completely mixed together. Then add in your evaporated mils, butter and vanilla.
2. Pour filling into your pie crust. It will be very runny and that is okay! Be sure your foil edges are not touching the filling!!
3. Place into your preheated oven and bake for 45 to 55 minutes. Your pie will rise and then fall and crack a little on top as it cool. That is normal and just what Chess Pie does.

Clean Eating Pumpkin Apple Oatmeal Bake / Food Scale

Today my DH bought me a new kitchen scale. After weighing my dinner portions I figured out that my guessing on how much to eat has been way off.  Not that I am eating too much, I am actually underestimating and not eating enough. and when you don’t eat enough your body stores it. Gah!  Oh well, with the new scale the problem is solved. Until I get back to properly portioning food on my own the scale it is.

Something I have been slacking on in the worst way is eating breakfast. So I have breakfast for the next few days in the oven now.  The only thing I will have to do is pop some in the microwave and grab a piece of fruit. Easy peasy! With the gloomy fall weather today pumpkin came to mind. Nothing says fall like pumpkin, and who doesn’t love pumpkin? After looking through the pantry Pumpkin Oatmeal Bake is what I came up with.

Here is the recipe:

2 cups pumpkin puree
1/2 cup honey
2 tablespoons molasses
2 large eggs
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup greek yogurt
2 1/2 cups steel-cut oats
1 cup diced apples
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 tsp coconut oil

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, Grease 8 x 8 baking dish with the coconut oil.
2. In a large bowl beat together the pumpkin, honey, molasses, eggs, spices, salt, baking powder, vanilla, milk and yogurt until smooth.
3. Add in oats and apples and mix until incorporated.
4. Put into greased pan, sprinkle pecans over the top of the mixture and cover with foil. bake for 35 minutes then uncover and bake for 20 minutes more.
Serves 8.

Can't wait until the morning to try this!

Can’t wait until the morning to try this!

Unexpected Exercise and BLT Pasta Recipe

With the rain yesterday morning raining on my fitness parade I had mentioned hitting the gym and seeing what I could accomplish. I really need to have the something is better than nothing attitude right now. Well, I did not make it to the gym. But, I did get a walk in. It kind of happened due to an unexpected circumstance. Here is the story….

Yesterday was Emma’s first day back to school so we decided to take her back and forth instead of having her take the bus. I wanted to help her find her classroom, she was pretty nervous about getting lost in the first grade wing. So, off we went, I got her to her class and I went home and got some things done that I needed to do, had lunch with a girlfriend and then Pat and I ran back out to the school to pick her up. They have an area that the First Graders are released to after school is dismissed and I waited and waited and did not see my kid anywhere (Pat was in the car). So I went to the cross-guard and the attendant outside and she told me to continue to wait because she thought there were more kids that have not come out. So I did, I waited and waited. I didn’t see any kids coming out, the parking lot was almost empty so I was freaking out and pissed off. I marched my ass into the office and of course I had to wait in line even though I was freaking out trying to tell them my kid was MISSING! I called pat and told him to go home in case she was on a bus or left with a neighbor or something. I was able to track down her teacher and found out that she was put on a bus (without my consent)! I don’t think that there is a word to describe the amount of stress, worry and anger I was feeling. Being at the school and having sent Pat home I decided I did not feel like waiting for Emma to get off the bus, him load her in the car and come get me so I decided to start walking. Probably not the best idea seeing I was wearing flip-flops, it was hot as heck out and I was wearing jeans. Oh well, I needed to blow off steam and I had no desire to sit at the school any longer. It was not the teacher’s fault or even the office but the bus attendants and transportation department. None the less I was mad. After I got close to a mile and a half in Pat and Emma met up with me and scooped me up. I felt like crap from the heat but ended up just fine. The good thing was I got some exercise in. It’s about time!

Today we were supposed to go to the Kiss/Motley Crue Concert with another couple so it was postponed until tomorrow. So I decided I would give the kitchen a go. The original dinner plan was fast-food on the way down to the concert. Oh the shame in having to admit that! HA! I have not done much in the kitchen lately. The smell of raw and/or cooking meat does not sit well with this baby. The October issue of Family Circle Magazine came in the mail today and i saw the recipe for BLT Pasta in it. The picture looked delish and it is pretty healthy (compared to how I have been eating) and light. There are very simple ways to make it quite healthy, swap out bacon for turkey or chicken bacon, cut out the bacon fat, use whole grain pasta, up the amount of veggies, all in all simple to adjust to healthier.

It is sooooo good!


  • ounces center-cut bacon (12 or 13 slices), diced
  • 1 pound box penne pasta
  • tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound bunch spinach, trimmed, roughly chopped
  • medium onion, diced
  • bunch red chard, well cleaned, tough stems discarded, sliced
  • cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil, torn
  • tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper


1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boiling.

2. Cook bacon in a large skillet for 10 minutes over medium heat until just crispy. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate. Reserve 2 tbsp of the drippings in skillet.

3. Meanwhile, cook penne in boiling water for 11 minutes. Drain.

4. Add 2 tbsp of the olive oil to skillet with bacon drippings. Return to medium heat. Add onion and cook 5 minutes. Add spinach and chard and cook 4 minutes until wilted. Stir in cherry tomatoes; cook 2 minutes.

5. In a large bowl, toss penne, bacon, spinach mixture, basil, remaining 2 tbsp olive oil, the vinegar, salt and pepper.

Apple Chips

Well I made the apple chips and my house still smalls amazing. I think making these is worth doing daily just to have the smell of baking apples and cinnamon in the house. Emma did not care for them, but I love them. So worth a try. Once again I got the recipe at Delighted Mama’s blog.

What you will need:

  • 2 apples
  • Cinnamon


  1. Remove apple core.
  2. Thinly slice the entire apple.
  3. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and place apple slices on it.
  4. Sprinkle with cinnamon.
  5. Bake at 275 degrees for two hours. At the end of hour one flip them over so they bake evenly.

I used green apples for mine and mine did not come out as pretty as her’s did. I would recommend them though 🙂 Super easy, two ingredients, healthy and they  make your house smell heavenly. what is not to like about this?!

My apple chips

Dessert without guilt: My Healthier Chocolate Cake Recipe!

It is possible to eat something sweet and not feel the need to beat yourself up afterwards. It is okay to treat yourself every once in a while, it is even better to do it and still feel you made a far better choice than you could have. This was me last night. I wanted, chocolate, I wanted crunchy and I wanted salty all at the same time. So I hit the kitchen and threw together a microwave chocolate cake. It was far healthier than any processed snack and still fell within my clean eating guideline so I was pleased with myself and my craving was satisfied. I still don’t harbor any guilt over my choice either. That is rare for me. So here is a picture of my delicious creation and the recipe. This is a single serving recipe.

Oh so tasty!

Clean Eating Chocolate Cake:


  • 1 tablespoon dark chocolate cocoa powder
  • 3 tablespoons 100% unbleached whole wheat graham flour
  • 2 teaspoons agave nectar
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 packets Stevia In the Raw
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened coconut
  • 2 teaspoons applesauce
  • 3 tablespoons skim milk (you could substitute with milk of choice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon dark chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon unsalted shelled sunflower seeds
  • 1 pinch course sea salt

In a small bowl mix together all of the dry ingredients (minus the chips and salt) and Stevia well. Add wet ingredients and stir well. After it is fully mixed pour into mug or ramekin add chips reserving a few, sprinkle remaining chips, seeds and salt on the top of batter. Place in microwave and microwave on high for 1 minute. It did bubble over just a tiny bit so I would recommend placing it on a microwave safe dish or paper towel.Let cool for a minute then enjoy! I am yet to calculate the nutrition to an exact but my rough calculation rounded it out to about:

  • Calories: 170
  • Fat: 2 grams
  • Carbs: 35 grams
  • Fiber: 6.5 grams
  • Protein:5.6 grams

I feel like I am running on E today. I slept less than two hours. I am so temped to grab a Sugar Free Red Bull so I can function. So far I have resisted but have accomplished nothing. I rarely have caffeine via doctors orders. Apparently caffeine and Sleep Deprivation Disorder is not a good mix. Who would have thought, huh? Right now I am having a smoothie in hopes that it give me some up and go. If not, I will be naughty and have some caffeine. After I blog I am going to have an egg to so I get my protein in. Thank goodness today is an easy workout day. Yoga and C25K!  I think I will do LMP Flow and some Gaiam Energizing Yoga too, get the blood flowing before my C25K. Yawn!

Already looking tasty!

Hope this gives me some energy!

What was in my smoothie?

  • 1 mango
  • 1 kiwi
  • 1 handful spinach
  • 2 mandarin oranges
  • 1/2 cup FF Greek yogurt
  • 1 handful ice
  • 1 handful of mixed berries: blueberries, raspberries and blackberries
  • 1/3 cup FF milk


I may eat this everyday…

for breakfast! so today I tried something new for breakfast so I figured I would share while these kids are happy, quiet and occupied. They were pretty wound up for the funeral showing and dinner after this afternoon and evening. Boredom affects a 5 and 6 year old like 20 Redbulls would a full grown adult. So I brought mine plus one other back to my house for part of the late showing for board games to wind them down before we head back.

So for breakfast I made Quinoa with berries and pecans. It was amazing and I think I may eat it daily.


Here is the recipe:

  • 1/4 cup FF milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup quinoa
  • 1 cup mixed berries I used a mix of blackberries, raspberries and blueberries
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1 teaspoons agave nectar
  • 2 tbs FF Greek yogurt
In a saucepan combine quinoa, milk and water, bring to a boil then cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. While quinoa is cooking toast pecans in a dry skillet for 2 to 5 minutes, set aside. Put berries in a microwave safe dish and microwave for 2 to 3 minutes until the berries start to soften and break down a little, set aside. When quinoa is done fluff and put in bowl, top with cinnamon, then fruit, then yogurt then pecans and last drizzle the agave on top and enjoy.
I found a similar recipe here and adapted it to my own tastes and needs as I listed above.
Bon Appetit!

Week 7 Check in and Bonus Recipes.

First of all thanks for the shout outs maranack and lose it big . My wordpress/blogger support group is the best! Check out their pages when you get a change. Good reads ya’ll.

Oh joy, it is once again Tuesday so I once again am required by some law in my own head that I should babble on about random topics and then tell the world what I weigh and how many inches I measure. But I don’t mind. It has now become more of a habit than a chore for the most part.

So what shall I babble on about today? I think I will start with the status of The Color Run (my first 5k) I went on at the assigned time to register to find out they moved the registry two more weeks away. Meh, I was slightly peeved for a second then realized it was a silly thing to be bothered by. Then later I found that they moved the date and there is a HUGE difference. That would cut off 5 plus weeks for me to get used to the running distances thing. So I better get on it. And given the date half of my team has to drop out. That gives me a huge sad face.  With it being in the midst of wedding season I have a wedding to attend as well as a Bridal shower to which I am the Matron of Honor both the day before the 5k. Still figuring out how I am going to pull off doing both then running. But I am sure I can figure it out.  I always do. It’s one of those things us moms are good at. Spreading ourselves super thin and needed to be two places at once and end the day basking in the awesomeness of success! I am still doing the 5k; it may be more inconvenient, but hell. I said I was going to do it so there is no turning back. I can’t fathom being a quitter before I even start. That kind of attitude will put me back in those size 20’s I wore last year.

I thought that I started Pump Extreme yesterday but it was actually a walking day so I did 35 minutes of step aerobics, walked for 10 and did about 10 minutes worth of abs on the stability ball. I love that thing!  So today is Pump Extreme for real. I am excited to see how it is. Every time I move up to a harder workout I really have to push to make it through but I always make it. Sometimes i cry while working out because it is hard, and it hurts and I am in terrible shape (but working on it). I say those tears are just me shedding extra water weight so bring it on. I am so glad Les Mills Pump is now available for the home. It was just what I needed to get started on sculpting the new and improved me.

Ooo Look, something shiny!

Last nights Dinner 🙂

You like that? I so distracted you so you wouldn’t notice I was going to change subjects on a whim. Now let’s move onto one of the most important things in the world. Food!  I have a habit of cooking food and then posting pictures of it on my facebook.  Last night I made Mock Chicken wings, Cheesy Quinoa Bites, Avocado Ranch and Crudités or people who don’t want to sound all fancy schmancy, cut up vegetables.  I was asked for the recipes so I was thinking what better place is there to put them other than my blog?

Mock Chicken Wings:


2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves – cut into nugget size pieces

2 Tbsp whole wheat flour or rice flour

1/4 c milled flax

2 Tsp garlic powder

1 Tsp cayenne pepper

1 Tsp

1/4 – 1/3 c Franks Red Hot

3/4 c panko bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 400 F. Mix all dry ingredients minus Panko in a bag. Coat chicken strips in mixture. Put Franks in a bowl and coat floured chicken. Put Panko bread crumbs in a bag and coat chicken. Bake for 25 minutes.

Cheesy Quinoa Bites (I pinned this but ended up making changes to make it work in a 400 degree oven and to my personal tastes and make them a bit lower in calories):


2 cups cooked quinoa

3 egg whites

1 cup shredded carrot

3 stalks green onion, diced

1 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 c sharp cheddar

2 Tbsp whole wheat flour

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper

1/4 tsp smoked paprika

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix everything together and put into greased mini muffin tin, it took about a tbsp each. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes.

Avocado Ranch Dip/Dressing:


1 Avocado pitted and removed from skin

1/4 c olive oil mayo (I am sure you could use FF Miracle Whip, but I can’t stand the stuff)

2 Tbsp parsley

1 Tbsp dried dill

1 clove garlic

3 green onion stalks chopped up

1 Tsp dried basil

1 Tsp pepper

2 Tbsp skim or rice milk

1/2 Tsp sea salt

1 juice of 1 small lime

Put everything into a food processor and run until smooth, if dip is too thick add more milk until it is the right texture for you.

And if you cannot figure out how to make Crudités you take some veggies and cut them with a knife into pieces and serve raw.

So that was my dinner last night. And, if I must say so myself it was pretty darn tasty! It really helped squash my chicken wing craving. I reheated leftovers and we ate the mock wings and quinoa bites for lunch, both reheated wonderfully. I think I will make a huge batch of both and wrap up small portion for a quick “frozen’ snack to reheat when I don’t feel much like cooking.

Now onto what you all come here for on Tuesdays… the results are in!

  • Chest: 36 inches  (- 0 inches)
  • R Arm: 12 inches  (- 0 inches)
  • L  Arm: 12 inches (- 0 inches)
  • Waist: 34.5 inches (- 1.0 inches)
  • Hips: 42.5 inches (- 0.5 inches)
  • R Thigh: 25 inches (- 0 inches)
  • L Thigh: 25.5 inches (- 0.5 inches)
  • Weight: 173 pounds (- 1 pounds)
  • Pant Size: 12
  • BMI: 33.4

So I am down a total of 2 inches and 1 pound this week, now I am getting closer and closer to my 90 days. I am excited to see what the overall totals will be! On to week 9! Now I better get moving my cat has been staring a hole through my head for the past half hour. I think she is ready for some kibble. I did hear once before that you should feed your pets. Guess I will give it a go.


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