Monday, July 30, 2012

This is how I eat

I once read Tyra Bank's Beauty Inside and Out book. She wrote in one of her chapters "I eat to live, not live to eat." I was fourteen. That impacted me so much so I still remember it to this day fourteen years later. However, it was years before I started to unpack the meaning of that phrase. 
Food is cultural. Food is necessary. Food is sadness, happiness, and some where in between. Think about it. We eat when we are happy and because of special celebrations like reunions or parties. We eat when we are sad and depressed. Food is necessary for you to function. Some people make money marketing food and some don't have enough money to buy food. You might even have a complex relationship with food. Most people do or have at one time.

 I love this fitspiration quote picture above. I am often asked "What diet are you following?" My response  is always "I don't diet anymore; I eat clean. " Some where along the way I found Oxygen Magazine with Tosca Reno on the cover over Christmas break in the Pittsburgh International Airport. I read her books about clean eating. I changed how I ate and stopped counting calories. I began seeing changes in my health and fitness. Now I too can say "I eat to live, not live to eat;" well most of the time.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Crust-less Skillet Quiche


I love simple Sunday meals. Sundays are my relax and reload days. If it is not my weekend to work at the pharmacy I use this day to plan and prepare for the meals for the coming week. Last Sunday I actually batch cooked for the entire week ahead. I only had to cook 3 dinners this past week and most of the ingredients for those meals were pulled from my batch prepping.
Often when I come home with the family after church for lunch we are all starving. Today was no exception and my fridge was nearly bare.  I had 2 eggs, some kale, and leftover ricotta cheese from my zucchini pie recipe. I knew it had to be fast, nutrient dense, and delicious and thus this recipe was born.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Cherry Crisp & Sur La Table Cherry Pitter

A few weeks ago Whole Foods had a great sale on cherries $1.99 a pound! So I bought over 5 pounds of cherries. In fact I still have some in the fridge. I also bought a Sur La Table Cherry Pitter. It is now added to my collection of odd, but useful kitchen tools that I use maybe every 3 months, but of course are absolutely necessary; or so I tell my husband. I would give this pitter 4 stars. It is easy to use,pits four cherries at a time and can accommodate large or small cherries to pit. The pits are collected in a slot at the bottom of the pitter so you don't have pits rolling all over the place. However, for every dozen cherries I pit I have 2-3 cherries with the pits hanging on the outside of the cherry by a string. I almost cracked a crown! So I inspect each cherry after pitting. It is easy to clean and if you are in the mood for a martini it can even pit olives.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Chocolate Dream

I love chocolate in all its forms. Admittedly  I am a dark chocolate addict. Though I do enjoy it in controlled portions as a treat. I use raw cacao instead of cocoa powder because cacao has more antioxidant flavonoids than ANY food including blue berries, red wine and four times the antioxidants of green tea. Cacao increases certain neurotransmitters in the brain that make your outlook more cheerful and feel positive

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Zucchini Pasta Pie

My maternal grandpa or "Pap-Pap" as we call him always had a garden in the summer.   I remember those long gone hot summer days helping my grandparents pick tomatoes, green beans, zucchini, bell peppers, and other produce nearly every summer growing up. My Gram would sit with me, my cousins, and aunties snapping green beans and telling all kinds of stories. My grandma also cans. You name it she has canned it. She still makes her own stewed tomatoes which the family enjoys with homemade baked macaroni. My ultimate favorite veggie out of the garden was zucchini especially if it ended up in my mom's zucchini bunt cake. I do wish I was bringing you that recipe dear friends, but  alas I have yet to come up with my own yummy recipe that is gluten free and clean. A  few months ago I began experimenting with pasta alternatives and zucchini noodles are by far my family's favorite! Rich loves 'em and Bella too! Today's recipe is a fresh twist on spaghetti pie. I hope you enjoy it!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Orange Quinoa Salad

Quinoa pronounced "keen-waah" was one of the first new foods I tried when I started eating a clean whole foods diet. Now that I follow a gluten free diet it sits center stage as a go to grain and side for several meals a week. Most brand's require you to pre-rinse in cold water and drain your quinoa before cooking to rid it of its bitter taste. I use Nature's Earthly Choice  Organic Quinoa which I purchase at Costco and it requires no rinsing. This little seed was a staple to the ancient Incas and was called the "mother grain." 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Trail Mix Cookie Bars (gluten free, dairy free)

Don't you just love snacks that taste good?! When I first started eating a clean whole foods diet I thought my life would forever consist of baked chicken breast and steamed broccoli. Wrong! I thought I would be deprived of sweet treats and have endless sugar cravings after kicking the white stuff habit; sugar that is. One of the hardest and easiest transitions for me was giving up white sugar. After I stopped eating it, baking with it, and buying packaged foods with sugar and corn syrup I did go through a detox. I got through this by increasing my intake of fresh fruit and using more natural sugar alternatives like honey. Dried fruit especially dates and raisins can really help you satisfy  your sweet tooth craving without giving in. What made this process easy was the positive reaction I felt in my body, my clearer skin, and also being cavity free for the last two years! Today's recipe is a great snack to stash in your purse, carry along for road trips, or feed your hungry toddler after you pick her up from school. 

Monday, July 23, 2012

A Sip of Summer- Strawberry & Mint Aqua

Can you believe July is more than half over?! Me neither! We are truly in the dog days of summer in south Florida and I'm thirsty. All the time. I usually drink 2-3 liters of water per day; perhaps more if my workout is really intense. We are simple folk around here when it comes to beverages. We rarely have juice (unless we make some fresh in our juicer), never have soda pop, but there's always room for milk or iced tea at my table. To be frank water can get boring. There have been meals where Rich has said "Do we have anything other than milk or water to drink?" I responded, "Alas my love no." So I came up with a fresh twist to serve up some aqua for these hot summer dinners. I was inspired by my trip to the Lane Spa yesterday for my mani & pedi. They always have cucumber water or citrus water for their cliental to enjoy. This time they were serving up strawberry & orange water and it was yummo! The wheels began turning and I decided I too shall serve fruited water. We had friends over for an evening and I had them try my refreshing Strawberry & Mint Aqua; it was a hit!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Wake Me Up Cherry Zinger Smoothie

LIFE IS JUST A BOWL OF CHERRIES or so they say. This phrase means everything is great and well today is Friday so this morning smoothie foots the bill. I've been having this shake every morning this week with one of my yummy blueberry muffins as my pre-workout breakfast. I drink half the shake for breakfast and save the other half for my midmorning snack with a scoop of protein powder added in.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Streusel Topped Blueberry Muffins (gluten free, dairy free)

 I am upon the 1 year anniversary of living a gluten free life style. It is almost impossible to believe. This year has been an incredible amout of trial,error,learning, and more error. I have been "glutened" by myself or by another party on accident a handful of painful times. The first gluten free blog I started reading after learning my plight was The Gluten Free Girl. She is a fabulous writer and describes some gluten free foods "as more a texture than a taste." My first trip to Whole Foods to explore the world of gluten free gourmet was a sad disappointment as far as finding substitutes for my beloved ezekiel bread, muffins,bagels, & cereal. I found a lot of the packaged products to be loaded with sugar, starches, and carbs. I ended up leaving the store with just produce, some various protein sources, and quinoa. Thus began my quest to discover and create delicious, wholesome gluten free foods. I kept getting good reports and thumbs up for the gluten free fair that I was creating in my kitchen and this blog was born.
Today's recipe is a celebration of this milestone; it will literally be a party in your mouth. This muffin is light, fluffy, has a delicate crumb topping, and is moist. Did I mention it is gluten free? If you've thrown in the towel with gluten free baking give this recipe a go. Let me know what you think!

Streusel Topped Blueberry Muffins (gluten free, dairy free)


1 cup of brown rice flour ( I use Bob's Red Mill)
1/2 cup of potato starch (I use Bob's Red Mill)
1/2 cup of blanched almond flour ( I use Honeyville Farms)
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup Blonde Palm Sugar
1 TBS baking powder
1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 cup of blueberries, defrosted if using frozen
1/4 cup of chopped walnuts
1/3 cup refined coconut oil melted
1 tsp of vanilla extract
2 eggs beaten
1 cup of cashew milk or coconut milk

Streusel Topping

1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup Blonde Palm Sugar
2 TBS of brown rice flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1&1/2 TBS refined coconut oil melted

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a muffin tin well. I use a food grade rubber silicon muffin tray and lay it on top of a regular steel muffin tin to give it support. I grease it well and my muffins come out easily once cooled.
Prepare streusel by mixing all the ingredients for topping in a bowl mixture should be course and moist, but not wet. Set aside. Mix brown rice flour through sea salt in a large mixing bowl with whisk. Place blueberries in a separate bowl and add 1 TBS of flour mixture to the berries and toss. This keeps the berries from sinking in the batter.
In a third bowl mix oil, vanilla, eggs and milk then pour into dry flour mixture and stir well to combine then add in berries. Load muffin tray with batter and top with streusel topping. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and test with a toothpick in your biggest muffin; if it comes out clean they are done!

Today's Workout Blip:

Today's workout from my Get in Shape Girl Bikini Plan worked shoulders and triceps plus I did my 35 minute step mill workout. The funniest and one of the challenging exercises from today was crab taps. I lost my balance several times and had to perform 20 reps for 3 sets each. Here is a demo below from you tube.

Let's Connect!
You can now follow me on pinterest  and twitter @LeanGourmet. Also on the sidebar of the blog you can sign up to have the blog emailed to you. I have a facebook page too!

Until next time stay strong and carry on!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Lean Gourmet Eats Out at Seasons 52

Seasons 52 Palm Beach Gardens, FL picture by Brooklynn

My dear friend Kim introduced me to Seasons 52 about 5 years ago. I remember her saying
"we have to check out this restaurant it's healthy and you'll love it!" That was way before gluten free and clean eating entered the picture of my life's journey. I will say I am pleasantly surprised that despite my high maintenance diet Seasons 52 is a safe and fantastic place for me to dine. So I decided to take my camera, my best friend, and have a girls date night dinner to give you all a little review of one of my favorite restaurants in Palm Beach Gardens, Fl.

Before I give you a  visual montage of my tasty dinning experience let me highlight why I love this restaurant so much.

  1.  A knowledgeable wait staff attune to the needs of those that can not eat gluten. My server for this particular visit knew exactly what items I could not enjoy off the menu due to containing gluten and made sure my meal was properly prepared. The restaurant was serving a tomato bisque (which I love!),but she mentioned that the thickening agent for the soup contained gluten. Instead I had the organic spinach salad with seasonal fruit; delish! The desserts are served as " mini indulgences"  presented beautifully in small shot glasses. Only the fruit mini indulgence is on the gluten free menu, however my server made an excellent recommendation of pairing the chocolate and peanut butter mousse without the cake as a gluten free option. It was sensational!
  2. A fresh seasonal menu and an International wine list. Unlike many chains Seasons 52 has a rotating seasonal menu serving up unique and visually stunning dishes.  The wine list is extensive and upon a recommendation from a server  at a previous visit I found a new favorite wine, Jam Jar Shiraz.
  3. A warm inviting dinning experience. Whether you are dinning on the patio, at the piano bar, or in the heart of dinning area you can sense the warm ambiance of this place.  It is truly a beautiful relaxing dinning venue.
The Best Friend picture by Brooklynn
Organic Baby Spinach Salad Picture by Brooklynn

The Rainbow Trout picture by Brooklynn

Yours Truly picture by Kim
The Big Finish, Peanut butter & Chocolate Mousse Indulgence picture by Brooklynn

Buckwheat Baby Cakes!

I have always loved breakfast. I have always loved pancakes. My freshman year of college IHOP had all you could eat pancakes for $4.99. Rich and I were friends at the time and I was invited along with the gang to the couture dining experience at The International House of Pancakes or IHOP. Well as the story goes all the guys decided to have a pancake eat-off contest. And oh yes I joined too! And I won! I out ate 6 college guys. I ate 13 IHOP pancakes fully loaded with syrup and butter. I even rotated the different flavors of syrup between plates of cakes. Needless to say I didn't eat pancakes for months! I know my parents hoped that I applied that steadfast iron will to my studies and not just pancake eating contests.
Those glory days are behind me and I stick to reasonable sized portions; see the picture above? Just kidding. I eat like 2 maybe 3 on a good day. Enough about me and onto today's recipe Buckwheat baby cakes. Did you know that buckwheat is not "wheat" at all ?! Me neither until  a year ago!  It is a "nutritional giant"that grows wild in Asia and rhubarb's cousin. My first experience with buckwheat pancakes was at the tender age of 8 or so on a family snow skiing trip. Mom made them. I hated them. Somehow through the years I've developed a taste for buckwheat. It is definitely a distinct taste of its own. On first bite it may not be true love, but give it another go. After all second chances are a beautiful thing don't you think?

topped with Tap n' Apple butter, honey, and sliced almonds
photo by Rich

Buckwheat Baby Cakes

1 cup of buckwheat flour ( I use Arrowhead Mills Organic Buckwheat flour)
1 cup of all purpose gluten free flour mix ( add 1/2 tsp xanthan gum if not in mix)
2 TBS rapadura or coconut sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp sea salt
2 eggs separated
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
2 cups of buttermilk ( I use Saco; I mix the powder in with dry ingredients and add the water with eggs/oil)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 apple grated
Mix buckwheat, g-free flour, sugar, baking powder, sea salt, and cinnamon ingredients in a bowl with a whisk and set aside. Next separate 2 eggs. Place whites in a bowl and beat with mixer until stiff peaks form. Set aside. Combine yolks, oil, vanilla, and buttermilk and add to flour mixture. Fold in whipped egg whites and then add grated apple.I grated my apple with a cheese grater.
Preheat griddle and oil it. Pour batter onto griddle and flip cakes when edges are set and tops have bubbles. Enjoy!

Today's Workout Blip:

I may have been silent the last few days on the blog, but I've been knocking out my workouts for week 5 of my Get in Shape Girl Bikini Plan  the past 2 days. I griped about Monday's pull ups exercises in the last post. I surpassed my own expectations and managed 2.5 reps the first set and 1.5 reps set 2 and 3. I did the remaining reps assisted with the machine to get a total of 10 reps. My trainer Kyra recommended that I practice an additional 1 or 2 times a week following my workout for that day. I really want to get to 12 full reps unassisted pull ups by week 8! I also did a new exercise per the plan that I love stability ball pike + pushups. This exercise will work your mummy tummy for sure! I really felt it in my lower abs and believe me after baby that is a difficult area to tone up. Give it a go and keep your core tight and strong while performing this exercise.

Let's Connect!
You can now follow me on pinterest  and twitter @LeanGourmet. Also on the sidebar of the blog you can sign up to have the blog emailed to you. I have a facebook page too!

Until next time stay strong and carry on!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Moussaka A Post by Mr. Gourmet

Tonight Brooklynn is working late.  With this in mind, daddy is writing today’s blog!  LOOK OUT!When I was a single male, I had a wide variety of foods that I would eat.  It usually consisted of some kind of carb (pasta, rice,…. pasta) and a sauce (canned tomato sauce, canned alfredo sauce, cream of chicken soup).  Sometimes, depending on the week’s earnings, I would spice things up with some frozen broccoli or even some chicken - BUT only on special occasions.  In college, I lived mostly off of frozen pizzas and frozen Mac and Cheese.  Ok, you can stop grimacing; this stuff was a delicacy for a single guy! To say the least once I started dating and eventually marry my lovely Lean Gourmet, things changed – DRASTICALLY! I discovered the beauty of non-frozen foods.  I tried new things like seafood and different veggies.  I wasn’t raised with a taste for such things until Ms. Gourmet came into my life. When mommy works late sometimes she squeezes in time in the morning to prepare some food for her darling family so that her daughter won’t be subject to the usual noo-noos and meat (translation – spaghetti and ground turkey) that daddy cooks up.  We love to use the crock-pot for such evenings or like tonight, prepare an early  casserole type meal that I can easily pop in the oven when I get home.  This not only will quickly feed the tummies of two hungry people (hubby and Bell) ,but allows us to have a lean and gourmet meal as well (like how I tied the name in there??). Tonight’s meal is moussaka.  Yeah, I had no idea either and the first time she made it and said it contained egg plant…. Not so much.  BUT ILOVE IT!  It has a great taste and is easy to make.  Enjoy and thanks Mommy!!-Rich


1 large eggplant washed and trimmed
1 TBS olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves minced
1.25 lbs lean ground turkey
Grated fresh nutmeg (dash)
1/2 tsp sea salt
15 oz pasta sauce
1/2 cup low fat mozzarella cheese ( I used soy based)
1 cup low fat Greek yogurt
1 egg
1/2 tsp each dried basil, parsley, and oregano
2 TBS grated Parmesan cheese

Thinly slice eggplant with mandolin. Lay eggplant in colander in the sink and coat with sea salt. Let it sit salted for hour in colander. This removes the bitter taste of the eggplant ( do not skip this step.) After the hour rinse with cold water and dry thoroughly with paper towels. Set oven to broil. Line a broil proof baking tray with foil and lay eggplant on top then spritz eggplant with olive oil. Broil for a few minutes until tender watch it doesn't burn. Remove from oven and cool. Turn off broil setting and preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Heat 1 TBS olive oil in skillet add onion, garlic and turkey and nutmeg. Sauté until meat is cooked through.  In a separate mixing bowl combine Greek yogurt, egg, Parmesan cheese, parsley,basil and oregano.
Oil a small casserole dish 8x8 will work. Place 1/2 cup of pasta sauce spread evenly on bottom of dish. Next place a layer of eggplant on top of the sauce using about half of the eggplant. Then top with cooked meet, then the remaining sauce. Place remaining eggplant on top of the meat then top with Greek yogurt mixture and then finally your shredded mozzarella cheese. Cover dish with foil and bake for 45 minutes or until bubbling and and the cheese is melted.

Today's Workout Blip:

I worked and ran the ship at the pharmacy all weekend so no Get in Shape Girl Bikini Plan  for me the past 2 days. Tomorrow, Monday, I will dive into weeks 5-8 with a whole new routine and increased amount of cardio. I have to do pull-ups tomorrow (unassisted) I think maybe I can do 1. I will let you know!

Let's Connect!
You can now follow me on pinterest  and twitter @LeanGourmet. Also on the sidebar of the blog you can sign up to have the blog emailed to you. I have a facebook page too!

Until next time stay strong and carry on!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Mongolian Beef & Shirataki noodles with Greens

As I was browsing Facebook earlier today I noticed a status update by Cassey of Blogilates  post about  training and diet. In her post she mentioned her upcoming appearance on QVC for Miracle Noodles. Her blog is one of my new favorite fitness and health blogs and she posed a great question asking her readers what was harder  for her readers to  do training or diet. This was my response:
"For me it just depends on the day of the week. I love to workout hard which makes me have a larger appetite. I do my best to eat clean whole foods 99.9% of the time, but sometimes a gal just needs some dark chocolate;right?! I believe what is key is balance and finding your "sweet spot.” That place between over doing it in exercise and under feeding yourself and eating too much and not exercising enough. The beauty of this it’s different for everyone because YOU are unique in your own beautiful way:)"
Honesty time. I made myself Isabella oatmeal raisin cookies this week when she asked me to make cookies. I've had my fair share throughout this week. They are so good! I usually keep my treats to once a week and I will bake on Friday or Saturday, but  alas the cookie monster in me has given in. I write this to say I'm not a perfect eater; is there such a thing? NO! However, I am a balanced eater. Enough said. Now back to   today's recipe. I had wanted to make beef stir fry all week long and wanted to have it with gluten free buckwheat soba noodles, but alas could not find any at Whole Foods when I stopped there today. However, I did find Miracle Noodles which I remember reading about on Blogilates. Miracle noodles are made  of the soluble fiber glucomannan and water; the nutrition facts are here. They are fantastic!!!!! So without further ado...

Mongolian Beef & Shirataki Noodles with Greens

1 lbs lean stir fry beef
1 tsp minced ginger
1 lime juiced
2 TBS soy sauce ( gluten free)- divided
2 tsp sesame oil
1 minced shallot- divided
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 cup frozen shelled edamame
1 large sweet bell pepper sliced
Noodle dressing
Mixed Greens
1 package of Angel Hair Miracle Noodles

Mix minced ginger, lime juice, 1 TBS soy sauce, 1 tsp sesame oil, & shallot, in a large bowl. Toss beef in mixture and set aside. Coat large skillet with 1 TBS of olive oil or grapeseed oil and heat on medium low heat. When oil is hot place beef with marinade in skillet. Saute for 5 minutes then toss in  mushrooms, edamame, bell pepper, and 1 TBS soy sauce. While stir fry is cooking prepare miracle noodles according to package. Make the noodle dressing then toss the cooked miracle noodles in dressing.
Assemble meal by placing divided portions of greens onto plates. Then place noodles on top of greens and stir fry mixture on top of noodles. Drizzle  rice vinegar and sesame oil on top for additional dressing.

Noodle Dressing

1 TBS rice vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp honey
dash of ground ginger
1 tsp sesame seeds
Mix all dressing ingredients together until honey is dissolved.  Toss Noodles in dressing.

Today's Workout Blip:

Today I did my Get in Shape Girl Bikini Plan  HIIT cardio, but ran out of time for more than the 22:30 minutes of HIIT.

Let's Connect!
You can now follow me on pinterest  and twitter @LeanGourmet. Also on the sidebar of the blog you can sign up to have the blog emailed to you. I have a facebook page too!

Until next time stay strong and carry on!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Sweet Potato Stuffed Acorn Squash ( gluten free,dairy free)

Photo by Rich
My local Publix Greenwise Market makes this delicious stuffed acorn squash and inspired today's recipe. This recipe maybe a little too involved for your typical weeknight dinner, but it would make a great dish to impress company or addition to your next holiday meal!

Sweet Potato Stuffed Acorn Squash         

Photo by Rich

  • 1 acorn squash
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • honey for drizzling
  • 2 TBS almond milk
  • 3 TBS turbinado or rapadura sugar
  • 1 large sweet potato baked & peeled
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash acorn squash and cut in half long ways then scoop out seeds and discard. Place squash cut side up in a glass rimmed baking dish and fill with 1/4" of water. Sprinkle each half of squash with 1/4 tsp of cinnamon and drizzle honey on top. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour until tender. Meanwhile beat sweet potato with remaining 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1 TBS sugar, and milk until smooth. In separate bowl beat egg whites, vanilla extract,  tartar, and 2 TBS of sugar until stiff peaks form. Fold egg whites into sweet potato mixture. Line a rimmed baking dish (that can be placed under broiler) with parchment paper and place cooked acorn squash cut sides facing up. Stuff sweet potato mixture into acorn squash ( I used my pampered chef Easy Accent Decorator to get the pretty swirl.) Broil until sweet potato is set and golden. Watch to make sure it doesn't burn.

Today's Workout Blip:

Today I totally trashed my shoulders. One exercise I did today to work my shoulders and lats was single arm dumbbell rows with 30 lbs for 3 sets of 12 reps per arm (yikes!) Today I again did my Get in Shape Girl Bikini Plan  step mill workout. I have to confess I enjoyed it and am falling in love with the step mill!

Let's Connect!
You can now follow me on pinterest  and twitter @LeanGourmet. Also on the sidebar of the blog you can sign up to have the blog emailed to you. I have a facebook page too!

Until next time stay strong and carry on!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Simple Crunchy Granola (gluten free)

 Here at the Lean Gourmet Kitchen we are serious aboutbreakfast. I mean just look at that face; nothing gets between us and breakie!

Today’s recipe is crunchy, slightly sweet,and just like us a little bit nutty (sshhh don’t tell the neighbors!)  I found this recipe for this delicious homemade granola out of magazine in 2009. Since adopting a gluten free diet I have found that store bought gluten free granola is expensive, overly sweet,and lacking in protein.
What I love best about this recipe is you can “shop” your cupboards and use what you have and adapt it to your taste and own preferences. Simply use this recipe as a guide and get creative!

Simple Crunchy Granola

2 cups of gluten free rolled oats
1 heaped cup of unsalted raw nuts ( use a combo if youlike)
¼ mixed seeds ( I love chia, sesame, pumpkin, sunflower)
¾ cup unsweetened shredded coconut ( I’ve made it with orwithout, both ways are good!)
1 tsp of ground cinnamon
5 TBS of maple syrup or honey
3 TBS of grapeseed oil or virgin coconut oil
1&1/2 cups of dried fruit ( use small pieces as large chunks of apricot and prunes become rock hard!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Don’t skip the parchment paper your granola will stick and burn to the panL . If you have been following my blog I suggest you buy stock in the stuff asI use parchment paper frequently. In a large mixing bowl toss the oats through cinnamon together until combined. Then drizzle the honey or maple syrup and oil over the granola and stir until well coated. Spread granola out on parchment paper lined pan ( don’t worry I haven’t forgotten the fruit!) and bake for  25 minutes or until golden brown and toasted.Then remove from oven and stir in your dried fruit. Cool and store in an airtight container. It should stay fresh for about 2 weeks if its not all gone by then! We enjoyed our granola with cashew milk; yes you read that right and you can find out how to make cashew milk here.

For my granola feature in this shot I used hemp hearts, chia seeds, almonds, raisins,& walnuts.
I didn’t have any coconut so I omitted it in the granola that is pictured.
Hey Mickey! She likes it she really really likes it!

Today's Workout Blip:
I worked out at home yesterday and thus skipped my incline treadmill workout. So today I did a little combo and performed incline HIIT; oh Lord! I found this workout from and pinned it here.

Let's Connect!
You can now follow me on pinterest  and twitter @LeanGourmet. Also on the sidebar of the blog you can sign up to have the blog emailed to you. I have a facebook page too!

Until next time stay strong and carry on!