This week in my kitchen…

This week I tried a bunch of new recipes at home! I love trying things I find on Pinterest & tweaking them to make them healthier. I rarely measure out or write down my recipes, so I am vaguely sharing. A lot of times I just see a picture of food and it helps me come up with something from what I already have at home. I always have tons of produce so that helps.

If you are needing some ideas for breakfast here are a few that I like:

Nature’s Path Organic Waffles (choose any of their varieties – chia, honey/whole grain, flax, etc). I like to top the waffle with Peanut or Almond butter (read labels! The ONLY ingredient should be the nut itself. look in the natural/organic section of your grocery. Second best option is one with the nuts + salt only) I also often add a tiny bit of raw honey because it can’t help fight off germs in your system. Another option is topping your waffle with Ricotta cheese. Then you can also add fruit or a salt free spice mix on top of the ricotta. **Don’t put syrup on your waffles! They are already made with (healthy) carbs, lets not ruin it but soaking it in sugar!

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Loaded up scrambled eggs. I usually crack 2 eggs in a bowl (lightly coated in olive oil) and add whatever veggies I want, scramble them up, and then microwave until cooked through. So easy. I often add: spinach, tomato, jalapeños, onion, avocado, etc. Make it however you like!

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Oatmeal Smoothie. I tried this recipe for the first time today actually. It was like dessert. I’m not a huge oatmeal fan, so this was a way for me to get in some oats. I may only do this one once a week or so. The carbs can add up so be careful, it would be good on a day when you have an intense workout day.

Here is the original recipe: http://www.marthastewart.com/851771/oatmeal-smoothies

I omitted the ice. I used oikos organic plain fat free greek yogurt. I used unsweetened Almond milk, instead of coconut water (I only added a small amount that was needed, not a whole cup). I also added a few dark chocolate chips 🙂 Ok. So maybe it was dessert. But it is Sunday!!

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Here are some other things I made this week:

Salmon Salad. I buy a big bag of frozen WILD caught Salmon. Cook it as directed. I usually wrap it in aluminum foil to cook and sprinkle a salt free spice mix on top + red pepper. I like spicy 🙂 I put the cooked salmon in a bowl and stir with a fork to get it broken up (like shredded chicken). Then I add greek yogurt, fresh or frozen dill, about 2 teaspoons of mustard, a little chopped onion, some chopped tomato & avocado, and a splash of lime juice. I LOVE this recipe. Sorry I don’t have measurements, but play around with it. You can always add more if needed. I often eat it plain, or on a slice of Eziekiel 4:9 bread, or in a wheat pita.

P.S. If you are not a fan of salmon, or any fish, this is a GOOD recipe to sneak some healthy fish in your life! Also, try making tacos with tilapia!

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Egg/Asparagus dish. This is SO good and SO easy to make. Just eggs, asparagus, pepper, olive oil, and parmesan cheese (although I left out the cheese and it was still amazing!) Here is the link to the recipe I used: http://www.prevention.com/food/cook/asparagus-recipes-easy-ways-cook-asparagus

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Turkey Burgers. Super simple. I just added chopped onion and spinach to ground turkey meat along with my salt free spice mix. Then patted out and cooked in a skillet. I served it with purple sweet potato chunks that I tossed in olive oil + tiny bit of salt + pepper. Bake at 430-440 degrees for 15 min on each side (On a baking sheet lined in aluminum foil).

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Stuffed Bell Peppers. Here is the link that I used for general cooking info to cook the peppers: http://greaterdc.wholefoodsmarketcooking.com/recipes/11795_roasted_bell_peppers_stuffed_with_quinoa

I just used ingredients that I had on hand. I first cooked ground turkey in a skillet then mixed with chopped onion, parsley, carrot, jalapeño, tomato, spinach, and shredded mozzarella. Then cooked as directed. Use whatever you want!

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Hope these recipes help anyone who is stuck in a food rut! Let me know if you ever have questions about certain dishes, recipes, or anything! Play around in the kitchen. Also read up on what foods do what for your body! A lot of my weight loss involved getting in foods that my body NEEDED to burn fat, build muscle, protect joints, recover, build immune system, and keep in balance.

Happy Sunday! I took my first REAL yoga class today. It was a 2 hour class!! I was kinda nervous, but actually did really well for a first timer apparently! My teacher (she’s legit & learned from a hindu woman who was very immersed in the yoga world), even asked if I was a dancer/gymnast. I have kept so much flexibility from gymnastics when I was little. And I dance around my apartment on a daily basis 🙂 I even got a few of the arm stands/crows position/handstand/whatever you call those crazy balance things. NEVER let fear hold you back from trying things! I am now making this yoga class a part of my regular Sunday routine! Perfect workout for a Sabbath day. 

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Healthified Broccoli Slaw

I had broccoli slaw for the first time a couple weeks ago at my cousins bridal shower. I DO NOT normally like raw broccoli. It’s one of the few foods I can’t handle (raw at least), but this stuff is amazing!! I love to edit recipes to make them actually GOOD for you so that you can enjoy them often. I focus on proteins, healthy fats, and good-for-you carbs. The original recipe says to serve it immediately, but I prefer it the next day when the broccoli softens a little and the flavors are more united. I encourage the use of organic food items, but do as you wish! I will warn you now, I kind of “wing” recipes, I rarely measure when I make my own stuff and I don’t really get as detailed as some. Sorry 🙂 Feel free to make your own changes and let me know what you like! Here is the link of the original recipe I used:

http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/crunchy-broccoli-slaw-10000001875871/

Here is my Version:

  • 8 slices turkey bacon (I like Applegate Farms)
  • 1 large head broccoli
  • 1 small red onion, minced (1/2 cup)
  • 1/3 cup raisins (golden or regular)
  • 1/3 cup plain greek yogurt (I used Stoneyfield)
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Cook turkey bacon in a skillet over medium heat until crispy. Cut into small pieces.
  2. Cut florets from broccoli stems and chop into small pieces. I cut them pretty small.
  3. In a bowl, mix greek yogurt, honey, and vinegar until evenly mixed. (I actually bought regular balsamic vinegar instead of WHITE as the original recipe called for, but it still tasted great!) Add broccoli, bacon,  raisins, and onion. Mix well. Add salt & pepper to taste.

Pardon my iPhone picture 🙂

I get most of my original recipes from Pinterest (I am slightly obsessed. ok, extremely). Follow me on Pinterest to see my health, food, drinks, fashion, and inspirational pins! http://pinterest.com/leighminnigan/

Side note: I started a program to become a Certified Personal Trainer and Fitness Nutrition Specialist about 3 weeks ago. I am LOVING it! I hope to take the Exam by January. I am doing it with the National Academy of Sports Medicine. I am so excited about this new part of my journey, that I have quickly become so passionate about.

Meet Me.

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My name is Leigh. This is what I currently look like. I say currently because I have changed a lot over the past 6 months to a year. I lost about 30 pounds, went from very dark brown hair that I had all through college, back to my natural dirty blonde, then cut off 8 inches of hair!

I have a Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Tennessee (Go VOLS), but due to my indecisiveness and pickiness about jobs, I currently work as a nanny & part-time in a gym daycare nearby. Obviously I love kids. I interact with mommies & kiddos more than people my age. They teach me a lot! I actually got into Social Work because of the beauty I found in adoption.

My plans for this blog are to document so many of the beauties I am discovering. I am constantly discovering new passions. The biggest one I have discovered this year is health. I have become so passionate about nutrition and exercise, that I am now looking into becoming a certified trainer and nutrition specialist. I will update you on that journey along the way!

I am also very passionate about culture – I love learning new things, tasting new foods, and experiencing the art of cultures around the world. I love fashion. I am a shopaholic. I think beauty can be expressed in your home, your clothes, your food, and anywhere imaginable. I love to cook. I love to explore. I love being active. I love wine.

This year I decided to let go of fear. It has been the best decision of my life! I am loving all of the new things I am learning and can’t wait to start sharing more! I plan to alternate between topics of health/fitness, recipes, life lessons, good finds, and whatever inspires me at the time! I would love to hear feedback if you have questions, or have any topics you ever want me to talk about. That is, if anyone ever reads this 🙂

“Sometimes the most ordinary things can be made extraordinary, simply by doing them with the right people.” -The Lucky One (Nicholas Sparks)

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