Spicy shrimp, corn and avocado cocktail salad

I am originally from California so I have a deep love of Mexican food, but here in Seattle it’s hard to find a decent place that serves good mexican. But we always have fresh seafood and I am always looking for ways to make my meals a little lighter. So I thought why not combine my love of mexican, spicy, and make a cute fun version of a shrimp cocktail. This is a fun meal to eat just for dinner or to serve as a light appetizer if you have a few guests over. Its super simple and quick to make!

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Ingredients: Serves about 4

  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp of taco seasoning
  • 1/2 pound peeled and devained large shrimp
  • 1/2 diced avocado
  • 1/2 lime
  • 1 cup cooked corn (I used a frozen bag of colorful corn and cooked it according to the bag)

Directions:

  1. In a bowl mix together the chili powder, paprika, salt, pepper, and olive oil.
  2. Toss the shrimp into the spice mixture and make sure everything is coated.
  3. You can use a grill but I don’t have one so I heated up a grill pan on med-high heat and spray it with some cooking spray
  4. Place the shirmp on the grill pan and sear until are cooked through, about 2min per side. remove from the pan and let them cool down a little.
  5. In a bowl combine the corn, avocado, shrimp, taco seasoning, lime juice and toss together
  6. Divide the shrimp into cocktail glasses and garnish with a lime wedge!! I used these cute hybrid wine/martini glasses that I picked up at Home Goods

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Homemade Blackberry Pie

I love pie.. I think that it is a dessert that can be eaten any time no matter the occasion. Last year I visited Mt. Rainier in Washington with my family and on our way home we stopped at this little mom & pop restaurant cafe and I had the most amazing pie I have ever had. Ever since then I have been craving blackberry pie. For the past few month I have been trying and tweeking pie recipes, and I finally came up with my own version of blackberry pie with a twist.

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 I have never been  a fan off making my own pie crust I find it so tedious and not very fun lol. So I bought a pie crust, but I am sure this pie would taste even better, if I didn’t decide to be lazy, if I made the crust from scratch.

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The twist to this recipe is that instead of only using blackberries I added a few raspberries to the mixture to just add some depth of berry flavor to the pie. I found when I only used blackberries I didn’t like pie as much..Just my own personal preference, but you can leave out the raspberries and just use blackberries alone.

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Cut out and a piece and serve with some vanilla bean ice cream and enjoy!!

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Filling:

  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • 5 cups of blackberries
  • 1 cup of raspberries
  • 2 tsp of butter cut into pieces

Directions:

  1. In large bowl, mix sugar, flour, and stir in blackberries and raspberries until everything is coated.
  2. Spoon into pastry-lined pie plate.
  3. Place your cut butter pieces on top of the blackberry mixture.
  4. Cover with top pastry that has slits cut in it; and seal the edges with a fork. (you can make the crust cover into any design you like I did a criss cross weave top for some extra cuteness!)
  5. Cover the crust edge with 2- to 3-inch strip of foil to prevent excessive browning on the edges.
  6. Bake 45-55 minutes or until crust is golden brown and juice begins to bubble through slits in crust, removing foil for last 15 minutes of baking.
  7. Cool on cooling rack at least 1 hour to allow filling to thicken.
  8. Cut into slices, serve and enjoy with some yummy ice cream!!

Grilled Summer Watermelon Salad

Sweet juicy watermelon paired with salty feta, fresh arugula,  a balsamic glaze, topped with fresh cracked pepper.

You aren’t going to believe this, but I am probably one of the very few people who isn’t the biggest fan of watermelon. So it was a huge surprise to everyone when I decided to buy a watermelon to try a new salad. So this is the first watermelon I have ever bought and it just happens to be for this salad. I know, I’m crazy!

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 I decided to start small and buy the baby size instead of a full size one, just in case I didn’t end up liking the salad and I did want to waste an entire watermelon, and it’s easier to cut and takes up a lot less space.

So, this salad is a bit of a twist I decided to grill the slices of watermelon on a grill pan, but just be careful not to grill it too long. If you do it gets kind of mushy and slimy which is not a very pleasant taste or texture. A good alternative is to actually use a grill, I just don’t own a grill so I used a stovetop pan. Watermelon paired with feta is a sweet and salty combination that I surprisingly absolutely love! Then when you throw in the freshness and peppery taste of arugula really send this salad over the top. I finished the salad with a sweet balsamic reduction drizzled on top will some fresh cracked pepper, which not only made the grilled watermelon salad look beautiful, but completes the sweet and salty flavors of this delicious summer salad on your taste buds! To my surprise I found this salad delicious, if your looking for a new twist on a salad I highly recommend this one.

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Ingredients:

  • one watermelon (whole or baby)
  • feta cheese crumbled
  • arugula
  • fresh cracked pepper to taste(optional)
  • Balsamic reduction (recipe found here)
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt

Directions:

  1. Cut the watermelon into desired shapes either in cubes for skewers or in t block squares like I did.
  2. Place the slabs of watermelon onto a heated grill pan and grill for about 2-3 minutes per side or until marked and warm. Remove from pan
  3. Place the grilled watermelon onto a little bed of arugula, add more arugula on top sprinkle some feta cheese, and drizzle the balsamic reduction on top before serving.
  4. Top with some kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper.

Enjoy!!

yummy diy homemade popcorn!

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mmm popcorn! My love for it developed at the movies (which is probably the case for most people). I used to buy bags of microwavable popcorn at the store, and over time as I change my eating habits I realized that microwavable popcorn isn’t very healthy. So I figured a good alternative for me to have my cake and eat it too is to make my own! It’s twice as yummy and so easy to make, and you get to season it however you want.

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Ingredients:
½ cup popcorn – Orville Redenbacher Original is our favorite
2 Tablespoons oil – vegetable, coconut, canola your choice (I used coconut oil)
2 Tablespoons butter – optional
seasonings – salt, garlic (whatever you like thats the fun part!)

Directions:

  1. In a large/deep pot plop your oil into your pot. If you use coconut oil you want to make sure you have enough oil  so that it melts and covers the entire bottom of the pot. (leave your pot lit to the side)
  2. Add enough popcorn kernels to cover the entire bottom of the pot, and so that the kernels are covered in the oil.
  3. Place the lid on the pot (it’s to prevent the popcorn from flying all over the place, and they can shoot pretty far) and wait for the kernels to start popping, about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Once they start popping a lot, give the pot a good shake or two to make sure nothing burns and your letting the unpopped kernels sink to the bottom.
  5. When the popping slows down to a few seconds between each pop you hear, turn off your heat and let it sit on the stove or about a minute.
  6. Remove your cover and pour your toppings (butter (melted), sea salt, garlic)
  7. Pour into a large bowl and enjoy!!

p.s. This is really good alternative to bagged or store bought popcorn because the ingredients you use are less processed and nutritionally just better for you!!

Yummy Snacks! Chocolate Protein Smoothie

Lately I have been obsessing with protein shakes. And I find that they are a must when trying to include more protein into your diet. This protein smoothie includes some chocolate protein powder and all my favorites to make this delicious healthy snack!

I am not a huge fan of mixing protein powder and water and then drinking it, more power to you if you can, but for me it’s a little too chalky tasting. So I want to share my way of masking that taste as much as possible, and for me thats a smoothie! As an added bonus this smoothie makes me feel full and can help curb your sweet tooth as well as including some yummy fruits into your diet!

xoxo Thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoy my recipe!!

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Ingredients: 

  • 1 Banana
  • A handful of fresh berries. (I used some strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries)
  • 1/2 cup Greek Yogurt (you can use plain but I love Oikos vanilla greek yogurt it’s amazing with granola!)
  • 1 spoonful of Peanut Butter (almond butter is best but I ran out so I just used what I had)
  • 1 Scoop of chocolate Protein Powder (I use Muscle Milk)

Instructions:

  • Combine all of your ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.

p.s: If the consistency of your smoothy is a little too thick blend in a little water to think it out a little.

And Voila!! Pour it into your favorite glass or a cute mason jar, I got mine at Tjmax, and you have a yummy healthy snack or a pre/post workout treat!
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Last Minute gift!! Homemade Granola

Happy Valentines Day loves!!

I have been racking my brain all week on what to give for Valentines Day gifts this year, and on a budget? I love making things, one year for Christmas I gave everyone a custom holiday cd, so I decided to make my gifts this year for Valentines Day!

Granola is one of my favorite breakfast or snack foods. It’s full of nuts and whole grains and a bunch of other healthy stuff, with a hint of coconut, vanilla, and cinnamon. And plus it’s so easy to make. Pour it into a mason jar and tie with a pretty ribbon and voila you have the perfect and cute/healthy gift for not just Valentines but for any occasion.

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Ingredients: 

  • 3 Cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup flax seeds
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 1 cup of agave nectar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup of coconut chips
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

p.s. I bought whole walnuts and pecans and chopped them myself on a chopping board

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
  2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. In a large bowl stir your dry ingredients together, oats, flaxseeds, nuts, coconut chips, and cinnamon.
  4. Melt your coconut oil in a small saucepan, and add the vanilla extract.
  5. Pour over the oat mixture and stir well until everything is evenly coated.
  6. Pour onto your baking sheet making an even layer. Bake for about 15min, and stir and continue to bake at 7-10min intervals until everything is evenly golden.
  7. Allow to cool completely on your baking sheet. Break up your granola and stir in your cranberries.
  8. Store in an airtight container. I used mason jars.

p.s: once your granola cools on your baking sheet it will harden and give it a nice crunchy texture.

And voila! you have your homemade granola the perfect gift to give for any occasion, especially as a last minute Valentines Gift!

Yummy Homemade whole wheat pancakes

Homemade whole wheat pancakes that are healthy and delicious, and you won’t feel so guilty to eat! These pancakes are made with whole wheat flour and they were so fluffy! To me the fluffier the pancakes the prettier and tastier they are (I know weird lol). I hope that you enjoy this recipe, I know there’s so many different recipes and variations to this, and if you have one I would love to know how you make yours, so I can try different variations!

xoxo I hope you enjoy!

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 3 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 tbsp of sugar
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt

 Directions

  1. Mix together all of the dry ingredients, and set aside.
  2. Mix together all of the wet ingredients minus the lemon juice in a separate mixing bowl.
  3. Add the wet ingredient mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until everything is combined to a batter texture
  4. Add the lemon juice to the batter an stir it in a couple of times
    1. Don’t overmix your batter, it will prevent the pancakes from rising and becoming fluffy
  5. Let your batter sit while your pan heats up
  6. Scoop your batter into the pan and spread out evenly
  7. Cook until you see bubbles form around the edges of the pancake and gently flip, and cook until it’s lightly brown.
  8. Cut up some fresh strawberries or your favorite fruit, and pour on some maple syrup

Voila!! You have yummy healthy pancakes!!