Strawberry Poppy Seed Salad

I am a salad girl.  Have you noticed?  I love fresh crisp salads topped with fruit, veggies, nuts, cheese, and a homemade dressing.  While I am pretty sure that I could survive on salads alone, I know for a fact that my kids could not.  The dressing that accompanies this salad is sweet, sweet enough for a three-year-old that recently begged me to “make this salad again.”


Strawberry Poppyseed Salad

  • Strawberries, mangoes, blueberries, etc.
  • Greens of your choice – we love a mixture of spinach, romaine, and green leaf lettuce.
  • Crushed nuts – almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and/or pecans are my favorite.
  • Cucumbers
  • Dried fruit –  unsweetened cranberries and coconut are some examples
  • Poppy seed dressing
  • Roasted chicken for the meat eater. (optional)
  • Feta cheese for the dairy lovers. (optional)

Wash and prepare your lettuce, berries, and cucumbers.  Toss ingredients together in a large bowl or assemble on individual plates.


Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple Spinach Salad

Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple Spinach Salad

2-3 apples chopped into chunks
1 butternut squash – with seeds removed, peeled, and cut into chunks
2 Tbsp. maple syrup
1-2 Tbsp. olive
salt and pepper

feta cheese (omit for a dairy-free diet)
crushed almonds (omit for a nut-free diet)
spinach – rinsed and cut into bite sized pieces.

4 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 teaspoons mustard (sugar-free)
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh ground pepper


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a glass pan, combine apples and butternut squash.  Toss squash and apples with maple syrup and olive oil.  Sprinkle with with salt and pepper.  Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the squash and apples are soft.

Meanwhile, combine balsamic vinegar, olive oil, mustard, maple syrup, salt, and pepper.  Mix until smooth.

Combine spinach, butternut squash, apples, feta cheese, and almonds.  Drizzle balsamic dressing on top and enjoy!

Romano Rice and Beans

My mother-in-law gave me this recipe years ago.Easy to prepare and inexpensive, this dish greets our table on a regular basis. I usually do not have fresh parsley on hand and to substitute I sprinkle the dish with dried parsley. I hope you enjoy this dish as much as we do!


Romano Rice and Beans

2 cloves of garlic – minced
1 large onion – chopped
2-3 carrots – chopped
1 green pepper – chopped
1 stalk celery – chopped
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2/3 cup fresh parsley
2-3 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. oregano leaves
3 large tomatoes – diced
1 can (or 2 cups) kidney beans
5 cups cooked wild/brown rice
Parmesan cheese – grated
Salt and pepper to taste

Drizzle oil into a large skillet.  On medium heat – combine garlic, onion, carrots, pepper, and celery.  Cook until tender.  Add parsley, basil, oregano, tomatoes, salt, pepper, and kidney beans.  Heat through.  Add brown rice and parmesan cheese.  Stir until cheese is melted.  Serve with additional cheese – if desired.


Omit cheese if vegan or on a dairy-free diet.

Sucanat and Mustard Glazed Salmon

Sucanat and Mustard Salmon
adapted from Rachel Ray

1/3 cup sucanat
2 1/2 Tbsp. sugar-free mustard
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper
16 ounces salmon fillets
2 teaspoons olive oil oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Combine sucanat, mustard, lemon juice, and pepper in a small bowl.  Stir until smooth.

Heat a large ovenproof skillet over high heat.  Rub salmon with oil and season with salt and pepper.  Place the salmon skin side up in the warm skillet and cook until a crisp brown crust forms – about 3 minutes.  Remove salmon from the heat, flip, and coat with the sucanat mustard mixture.  Transfer skillet to oven and bake until the galze caramelizes and the fish is cooked through – approximately 5 minutes.

Serve with a side of wild rice and steamed broccoli.

Garlic Chicken

You might notice from the recipes posted on this blog that we are not big meat eaters.  After two years of experimental veganism, we have slowly began to incorporate small amounts of meat and cheese into our diets once again…. but that is another story.

When purchasing meat, I always scout out sells on organic and all-natural meat.  Animals that were fed artificial growth hormones prior to their death – still contain artificial growth hormones in their bodies when they are prepared for human consumption.  If these hormones resulted in bigger animals… wouldn’t they create bigger human beings??  Just a thought.

Garlic chicken is our absolute favorite chicken recipe.  It is a fabulous addition to salads, pizza, and rice bowls.  Enjoy!


 Garlic Chicken

1 lb. chicken tenders
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. sweet paprika
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 tablespoons grape seed oil


Mix together garlic, paprika, and pepper in a small bowl.  With clean hands, massage the spice combination into the chicken. Heat the grape seed oil on a large oven proof skillet over medium-high heat.  Place the chicken into the skillet and sprinkle any left-over spices on top.  Brown the chicken on both sides, rotating it once, until cooked.

When the chicken is cooled, place on a cutting board and thinly slice.

Cinnamon-Apple Oatmeal

Lazy Saturday Morning Oatmeal

1/3 cup of oats
1/2 cup of soy milk
1 small apple cut into bite sized pieces
big dash of cinnamon
little dashes of ground ginger and nutmeg
2 tsp of dark molasses
1 large scoop of peanut butter
chocolate chips or unsweetened carob chips (my favorite)


Heat milk in a saucepan on low heat. Mix in spices, oats, molasses, and apples – cook until tender. Serve with a big scoop of peanut butter and chocolate chips.


** chocolate chips with breakfast should not be an every morning indulgence.

Herb Roasted Potatoes

Herb Roasted Potatoes

3 lbs. potatoes – cut into small wedges
1 medium onion, diced into small pieces
1/4 cup coconut oil
4 tsp. thyme
4 tsp. rosemary
Salt and pepper to taste


Bake potatoes in oven at 350 for an hour.

Once the potatoes have cooled, cut potatoes into small wedges.  Saute onions in coconut oil.  Once your onions have turned soft and translucent, add potatoes and spices.  Cook until potato wedges are crisps.