[Recipe] Acai Bowl at home

If you’re a healthy eater, or a Pinterest junkie, you’ve probably heard of Acai Bowls. They seem to be getting tons of attention and, unlike many food items that fall into the spotlight, they deserve it.

acai oatmeal via http://rosalieruardy.com/

Acai oatmeal via Rosalie Ruardy

acai powder | sunshine & the bear Acai is a tropical superfood fruit that hails from Brazil. It’s delicious and tart and Jamba Juice has been putting in their smoothies since I got them every day in college. The fruit itself has been touted for intense health benefits like antioxidants, amino acids and omega fatty acids that help slow the aging process by boosting immune and metabolic function and removing destructive free radicals from your body! Yep, I’ll take some of that. PLUS, it’s tasty! The dark purple berries (which can only be found in powder form here in the US) pack more grams of protein than an egg! Add that to its omega 3/6/9 fatty acids and you see that the acai helps improve the look and texture of your hair, skin and nails.

So what is an acai bowl anyway? Basically, it’s a really thick acai smoothie in a bowl with toppings. It kind of looks (and sometimes tastes) like ice cream, but it’s GOOD for you!
Check out my easy recipe below for something basic & this easy how-to video from Oakley Women:

Acai Bowl
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 bowl
 
Ingredients
  • 1 scoop acai powder
  • ½-3/4 C almond milk
  • 1 T chia seeds
  • 2 T coconut flakes
  • ¼-1/2 C pomegranate seeds
  • 1 T honey
Instructions
  1. Add acai powder, milk and chia seeds into a blender (or use an immersion blender) to mix.
  2. Add mix to a bowl and add toppings.
  3. Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

What will you top your acai bowl with?!

[Recipe] Mini Egg White Frittatas!

When do you have time to make a healthy, well balanced breakfast? If you’re like me, you laughed at that question and quickly answered “basically never.”

In the morning, I’m typically always on the go. Whether it’s to/from the gym, taking the dog for a run, meeting media or rushing out the door to work, there isn’t a ton of time. I can rarely whip up some fresh, tasty protein pancakes or even a quick egg white omelet. I’m always trying to pre-make breakfasts that last over time, so I can grab them on the go.

SUPER easy mini egg white frittatas | sunshine & the bear Through my TIU Love Your Body challenge, I’ve been trying to to work on organizing ahead of time. Planning (meal prep especially), helps me focus my energy on other things in the moment – workouts, work, etc. It’s also more affordable! And often healthier! There’s always a temptation to go out and with that come pricey, unhealthy options.

I love that the TIU team has posted the idea of this CRAZY EASY recipe for a delicious, lasting, pre-makable breakfast…mini egg white frittatas!

WHY DIDN’T I THINK OF THIS BEFORE?! They are a serious no-brainer. You can add your own favorite frittata ingredients, but check out my basic recipe below:

Mini egg white frittatas
Author: 
Cuisine: breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 mini frittatas
 
Ingredients
  • 3-4 C egg whites
  • 1 bell pepper (chopped)
  • 1 small onion (chopped)
  • ½ C mushrooms (chopped)
  • non-stick spray
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Spray a cupcake pan with your non-stick spray, making sure to get inside the full cups.
  3. Add your chopped ingredients to each cup. Remember, you can make them however you want - so be creative and make each one different!
  4. Pour in egg whites and fill each cup (leaving approx. ⅛" space to the top of the pan).
  5. Place in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes.
  6. Remove pan and let cool for 5 minutes.
  7. Enjoy!

If you want to make the breakfast even more exciting (who doesn’t?), you can add some turkey bacon and/or avocado to your frittata! To add turkey bacon, place one strip into the pan cup first, then all the other ingredients. Top with fresh chopped avocado for healthy fats!

These will be my new favorite prepped breakfast meals, but I’d love to stock up other options! What are your favorites?

Svelte protein shake recipes!

excited oprah You get some Svelte! You get some Svelte! You all get some Svelte! HAHA I feel like Oprah right now…

I’m so excited to be the winner of one of Svelte‘s #FitnessFriday contests. The company was so generous and they recently sent me five cases of my favorite flavors! (Tom is also excited haha)

They let me choose my flavors, so I picked a few old favorites (vanilla and cappuccino), one for Tom (chocolate) and an exciting new flavor (banana creme)! I’m so pumped to have these because they’re gluten free, dairy free, organic and, let’s not forget, tasty ways to get protein when I might not otherwise get it. PLUS they have a reclosable cap (which means a lot more than you think!). I’m always on the go with work at the Aquarium, work at the gym, workouts, meetups with my BMOREtoned crew and just…life. These easy shakes are there for me when I don’t have time to throw something together.

svelte cases | sunshine & the bear

I love these, but there is SO much! haha I’m not sure I can actually drink them all (I absolutely can). Don’t get me wrong…like I said, Svelte shakes taste great and are good for a quick meal on-the-go BUT they also work perfect for smoothies as a tasty nutritious boost!

One of my favorite smoothies uses the vanilla Svelte (my Pina Colada Smoothie) but I wanted to expand my horizons…I found an awesome new tropical smoothie from the Svelte Pinterest Page to warm up my insides while it’s freezing out – check out the easy recipe below!

svelte kiwi pineapple smoothie | sunshine & the bear Kiwi Pineapple Smoothie
Ingredients:

  • 1 banana Svelte protein shake
  • 2 C fresh spinach
  • 1 C fresh kiwi
  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 C pineapple

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients together.
  2. Imagine you’re in a tropical place…
  3. And enjoy!

So tasty! I have a lot of smoothies to make… I’m also looking for/trying to create some new recipes with the use of these shakes. They are creamy and flavored and I think they could be really great for some sauces, dips, baked goods, etc. Let the experimenting begin…haha (insert mad scientist laugh)

Cappuccino Chia Pudding Snack
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 C cappuccino Svelte protein shake
  • ¼ C chia seeds
Instructions
  1. Whisk chia seeds into Svelte and set aside for 3 minutes.
  2. Whisk mixture again.
  3. Refrigerate for 3 hours to overnight.
  4. Enjoy!

My next move is to try using Svelte to make some flavored ice cream…we’ll see how that goes! :)

Have an idea on how I can use these shakes? Let me know in the comments!  

[Recipe] Chia seed pudding

Let me preface this post by confirming that I was NOT into chia seeds when the craze first started. I mean, they are the same chia seeds you got with a chia pet, right?! Awkward… haha

BUT I’ll try anything. When I was challenged to add them to my weekly menu, I bought them…and now I’ve totally bought in. They are delicious and unbelievably nutritious!

My Tone It Up trainers had all the facts on why chia is so awesome:

  • A rich source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids, chia seeds give you the necessary nutrients for gorgeous hair, healthy nails, and smooth, glowing skin! Beauty starts on the inside ;)
  • With 5 grams of protein per ounce, chia seeds are an amazing source of plant-based protein. Protein is an essential macronutrient needed for almost every function in your body. It even aids in weight control, and is a must for building lean muscle.
  • They’re a great source of fiber, which helps keep you feeling full, controlling hunger and balancing your appetite. It also means less sneaky snack attacks. Fiber helps regulate your system, which will contribute to detoxing!
  • High in magnesium, potassium and calcium! These essential nutrients keep your body healthy and energized!
  • They have the ability to absorb 10 times their weight in liquid, creating a unique gel that is incredibly hydrating and satisfying! Use chia seeds to make a vegan pudding or add some thickness to your smoothies…

Perfect segue…

chia seed pudding Simple Chia Seed Pudding ♥ 

  • 1 C coconut milk (get the can – for some reason it just tastes better!)
  • 1/4 C chia seeds
  • 1-2 T maple syrup
  • Toppings of your choice! 

Directions:

  1. In a glass container, add chia seeds and maple syrup to coconut milk.
  2. Whisk whisk whisk (Make sure you get all the little seeds in the corner of the bowl – if you don’t, those seeds might not absorb the liquid and will form a hard section in the corner!)
  3. Let the mixture sit for approximately 3 minutes then whisk again.
  4. Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least one hour (it’s best to do it overnight or in the morning to prep for an afternoon treat!)
  5. Eat alone or add healthy toppings like unsweetened coconut or raisins or fresh fruit!
  6. Enjoy!

There are so many possibilities – what would you put on your chia pudding?

[Recipe] Muesli Berry Breakfast

So you may recall me mentioning that at Fitbloggin we had this amazing breakfast, including a delicious berry muesli dish by Weight Watchers cheeses. I’ve been meaning to make it again but unfortunately I couldn’t find the main ingredient anywhere! Luckily, Laughing Cow‘s new cream cheese spreads are a bit easier to find and they started making a strawberry one. So I had to change the recipe up a bit. Also, the original recipe was made for serving 10 so I had to cut it down. That being said, it tasted just as good as I remember!

laughing cow cream cheese spread Muesli Berry Breakfast

  • Strawberry cream cheese spread (I used 1.5 wedges)
  • 1C almond or skim milk
  • 1t agave nectar
  • 1C oat & honey granola
  • 1C bran cereal
  • 1/2t cinamon
  • dash nutmeg
  • 1C fresh seasonal berries (I used strawberries/blackberries)

*NOTE: This recipe calls for you to make it and let it sit overnight, but I ate it same day and it was still delicious! 

  • In a bowl, blend together milk, cream cheese and agave nectar together.
  • In a large bowl, combine cereals and spices.
  • Pour the milk mixture over the cereal until it’s well coated.
  • If you choose, this is where you would chill overnight. If not, let sit in refrigerator for approx. 30min.
  • Add fresh berries and enjoy!
weight watchers muesli

Thanks again to Weight Watchers for the great recipe!

As I mentioned, this was originally meant for Weight Watchers cream cheese spread, but I haven’t found it yet. When I do, I’ll let you know how it goes!