Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Brownies

2nd Barbell Strength class back from maternity leave under ma’  belt! i used class as my warm up and went downstairs to get a solid back workout in afterwards.  i’m taking my time, trusting the process, and sticking to my 6 Pack USA plan these days.  i want to maintain balance and not go crazy with the exercise this time around. no need!  well, as long as i’m sticking to the nutrition part of the plan too.

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 baking has been on my brain this week.  why?

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most likely cause Sonny surprised Chiso and i with this really, really, magically, delicious lemon bundt cake tuesday from Nothing Bundt Cakes, ugh.  he says they were randomly giving out free mini bundt cakes to the companies in his office building. is that not the best marketing strategy ever?? um, it worked cause now i want one and will most likely use them for a future event. that reminded me of HEB’s and Whole Food’s sample stations throughout the store. if you feed me while i shop, well hey, i’m coming back there again and again to spend my money. and eat. and buy things that were never on my shopping list. and blow my grocery budget. genius. ok anyway, soon as i eat white sugar i just want more, more, MORE. sugar addiction is real. real annoying.   Chiso was super happy but yall know how i am around large amounts of my trigger foods!!! womp, womp.  i couldn’t let all my work from the past few weeks go to crap so i did have a small piece, cut Chiso some, and threw it out.  my very preggo sis-in-law was the first person i thought to give the leftovers to, but that’s just evil lol! i would have taken a bite every single time i entered the kitchen until it was all gone, SMH. we are all for minimizing waste when possible, but this was a game time decision that had to be done. so, that’s how these brownies came about. i was so excited about whipping them up regardless cause i haven’t baked anything sweet since i was waiting around trying to get Dego outta this tummy. these are naturally sweetened for the most part; the chocolate PB2 does contain sugar but not a mind-blowing amount like Mr. Bundt cake up there. i used agave nectar but you can use honey as well. it’s up to you!  heck you can also use full fat peanut butter if ya want.  just melt it in the microwave a little first for better mixability.

IMG_20140828_173837 Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Brownies

the stuff: (source)

  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 cup chocolate PB2
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • *optional* 1/4 cup rolled, uncooked oats (either leave them as-is or grind them into a fine flour)
  • 1/2 cup light agave nectar
  • 1/2 cup water + 1 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp vanilla

do this:

  1. combine eggs, vanilla, agave nectar and water in a small mixing bowl.
  2. combine PB2, cocoa powder, oatmeal, baking soda, salt, and chocolate chips in a large mixing bowl.
  3. add the wet ingredients into the dry and stir until combined.
  4. pour mixture into an 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 pan coated with no stick cooking spray.
  5. bake for 30 minutes on 325 degrees or until an inserted coupon comes out clean.

recipe makes 12 brownies.  nutritional stats can be found on my Instagram post at the moment until i add them here!

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before i go, thank you to Rosa from Enlightened Ice Cream for the coupons!! i cannot WAIT to pick up my samples at Sprouts Farmers Market soon.  these bars are low in calories (70), high in protein (8g) and fiber (5g), 20% of the RDA for calcium, and contains only 2g of fat and 3g of sugar.  It’s made from rBST-free milk, is gluten free, and contains no added sugars or artificial sweeteners!  i like. review coming soon.

nite!

le

 

 

let the Christmas shopping BEGIN + clean, gluten-free, dairy-free SUGAR COOKIES!

finally started a little Christmas shopping!

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 for myself :lol: .  i found these guys yesterday at Hobby Lobby for half price and i can’t wait to make healthy sugar cookies with Chiso.  here’s a tip that you may or may not have known- you can just pull up the featured Hobby Lobby coupon right on your mobile device and show it to the cashier, no printer or hard copy needed.  i found that out while in line yesterday cause the lady in front of me did it.  i logged onto www.hobbylobby.com super fast before my turn and immediately clicked on Coupon; it was for 40% off one regular priced item. SCORE.

we might leave these out for Santa this year, try’em!

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clean, dairy-free, gluten-free, vanilla and chocolate sugar cookies

the stuff:

  • 1 1/2 cups almond meal / flour
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup honey or agave nectar
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla OR almond extract (either works)
  • dash of sea salt

—>for the chocolate cookies, make 1/4th of the almond meal unsweetened cocoa powder (which leaves 1 1/4 cups almond meal left, right? right.)<—

do this:

  1. mix your batter well.
  2. place bowl in the fridge for 15 minutes. **i know you want to skip that step but don’t!** it determines the texture of your cookies.
  3. press dough out on flat surface and use cookie cutters, or roll dough into 22 balls.
  4. bake for 7-9 minutes on 350 degrees or until golden brown.

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makes 22 cookies! per cookie: 44 cals, 3g fat, 4g carbs, 3g sugar.

Q: :shock: Christmas shopping……. have you started!?

le

Blog Elevated Conference + peanut butta banana fudgy brownies


blogelevated

fit foodie le is headed to the Blog Elevated conference this month!!!!! i learned about this conference a few months ago and, well, everything about it grabbed my attention.  learning more about one of my favorite things to do in one of my favorite places in Houston?  um i HAVE to be there.  i must. and by the grace of God, I AM IN THAT THANG, free of charge.   i am just one big ol’ sponge ready to soak up ALL kinds of blogging knowledge.  crazy excited to say the least… this is like an overnight adult field trip.  if you’re going, well, i’ll be seeing you there then won’t i :)! i’m ready to take Fit Foodie Le to the next level baby.

everything you need to know about attending this fan-flippin-tastic  conference is right HEA.

oh you like brownies? me three. try theeeeeeese:

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peanut butta banana fudgy brownies

the stuff:

  • 2 medium bananas
  • 1 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • dash of salt
  • 2 tbsp Stevia for Baking blend
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 2 tbsp PB2 (in powder form)

do this:

combine everything in your food processor and blend until smooth.  this is optional, but you can fold in 1/4 a cup (or however many you like really) mini chocolate chips, or mix up some PB2 slightly gooey-er than usual (using unsweetened vanilla almond milk) and swirl it into the top of your brownie batter before baking.  see below:

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your call though, as always.  350 degrees for 40 minutes in your baking pan that has been coated with no-stick cooking spray,  and all is right with the world.  under your roof anyway.

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oooooh yeah. the topping on this one is mashed banana and chocolate PB2 swirled together and dotted with mini chocolate chips.

makes 12! for 1(excluding toppings):

fudgy brownies

Q: have you ever attended a conference concerning your area of interest? was it worth it? how did you benefit from it? you knew that was coming, come on.

le

sunday family fun day

i have been teaching my 11am 24 Hour Fitness Total Conditioning class since the beginning of 2013.  i’ve had a crazy good time meeting so many new members and sweating our faces off together sunday after sunday for these past 9 months!   nevertheless, after having a sit-down with Sonny and fighting weeks (ok months) of conviction, i have finally decided to give it up.  even if a class inconvenienced me, leaving is always difficult.  i despise disappointing and letting people down, especially when they get a routine going and expect me to hold up my end of the bargain and be there.  i guess i despise it cause i know how it feels.    this isn’t the first class i’ve had to leave in my 6 years of teaching, but yesterday gave me that overwhelmingly bittersweet feeling.  again.

i could barely let my supervisor know my decision let alone share my ‘important announcement’ with my class today.  yeah…. this is always my answer to that dreaded ‘what’s one thing you would change about yourself’ question.

if we made it to church for early service, i felt good.  starting my sunday with Word and worship with my fam is well, the best way to start the day IMO.  however,  if we were out too late at a saturday night event (which happened all too often e.g. birthday parties, dinners,  gatherings, weddings, etc.) early service was out of the question, which meant church didn’t happen at all.  i have missed church more times this year than i have in my entire life…and that is so unfair to my family.   individual worship is important to grow your relationship with God, definitely….  but church is a vital part of that growth for me and my spiritual life has suffered because of its absence.  when this happens, i have to evaluate whatever is going in my life at the time,  pinpoint those distraction(s),  and either move or remove them.  it took me 9 months to accept this, but i finally let it go.  why? because it’s the best move for our family and the head of my household and heart agree.  masking those feelings of disappointment completely will come with time, but putting it that way makes me feel a whole lot better.

and i really miss going out to eat after church. lol. not just as an immediate fam, but meeting up with my parents, friends, and extended family, etc.  we have either turned down those invites or showed up super-duper late.  rushing off to the gym after service was the only thing on my mind…  if i hadn’t gotten my routine together the night before, i found myself writing down moves during service instead of giving God my undivided attention.  ok i could go ON.

———->let nothing hinder or get in the way of your worship & relationship with God or block the spiritual & emotional growth of your family.  nothing.<———-

now does this mean i won’t workout on sundays anymore?  not at all! i appreciate having the option to go at a more convenient time though vs. mandatory for sure. no pressure.  those family gym dates will keep right on rolling.

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 i’m so grateful for these two knuckleheads cause they are totally worth the sacrifice.  so each sunday when we do our family thing, i’ll capture the moment, upload it to Instagram, and hashtag it #sundayfamilyfunday.    seeing other families spending quality time together really makes you appreciate and cherish what you have.  so if you’re following me on IG, well, join in and share!  just don’t forget to hashtag it #sundayfamilyfunday. eating, chilling, hanging out, exercising….WHATEVER it is you and your family do together, share it.   i have a feeling most pics will revolve around food – i know most of ours will :shock:

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if there’s a HEB by you, fresh salmon is on sale for 6.97 a lb this week until tuesday!

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 i got us a couple pounds this past weekend and i have been roasting it with hidden valley ranch dry ranch dressing mix.

Walden Farms dressings have been BOGO (buy one get one free) at Sprouts Farmers Market this week so i got the Asian and Balsamic flavors on my last trip there.

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 you can use them as actual salad dressings, or as marinades for your proteins (fish, chicken, beef, shellfish).

that chicken up there turned out great (roasted it for 50 minutes on 350 degrees) and i threw it on a salad for lunch last week.

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see! it’s a berry almond Asian chicken salad.  romain lettuce mix, raw sugar snap peas, strawberries, cherry tomatoes, sliced almonds, roasted chicken breast (marinated and sprinkled with Mc Cormick Perfect Pinch Asian seasoning), all drizzled with a little more Asian dressing.  crunchy, crispy, fresh and healthy.

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back to the salmon – i’ve been making these ‘teriyaki’ bowls by throwing everything into a container (carbs, veggies, protein, fat) and drizzling it all with one of the WF dressings.  flavorful, fresh, and addicting.  switch out any and everything for your favorites!  countless combos i tell you, COUNTLESS!!!!!!

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  these fantastic sales are over this week (tuesday and wednesday), so take advantage.

happylife

we always have enough to be happy if we are enjoying what we do have and not worrying about what we don’t have.

you’ll always be waiting for or on SOMETHING.  take a look over your life and praise Him for all you have right, right now.  you are so BLESSED!

Q: what day of the week do you consider your family day?

le

ooooh fluffernutter

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TGIF.  why did i even bother setting regular clothes out last night? idk.  it’s just too hot to be cute.  i threw on what i feel most comfy in before hitting the streets- GYM CLOTHES.  knowing good and well i will NOT be seeing the inside of a gym today at that!  the older i get, comfort > style indeed. oatbran banana pancakes and a veggie egg white omelette fueled me up and out the door this morning.

so messing around with this fluffernutter stuff had me creating all kinds of crazy recipes. like this one:

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Dark Chocolate Cashew Butter Graham Cracker Fluffernutter Brown Rice Crispy Treats (from memory!)

the stuff:

  • 3 cups gluten-free crispy brown rice
  • 1 cup Barbara’s Snackimal Vanilla Blast cereal
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp light agave nectar (or honey, or maple syrup)
  • 1/2 cup roasted cashew butter (or any creamy raw or roasted nut butter)
  • 1/2 cup brown rice syrup
  • 1/2 cup Enjoy Life dairy-free chocolate chips (you can use real/regular choc. chips, YES!)
  • 5 honey graham cracker sheets (enough to cover the surface of the bottom of your pan
  • Fluffernutter (just any plain marshmallow fluff) to top

do this:

  1. combine cereal, syrup, vanilla, brown rice, agave nectar, cashew butter together in a large mixing bowl until incorporated WELL.
  2. spray your rectangle pan  (9 x 13 or something similar)  with no stick cooking spray and line the bottom when 1 layer of the Enjoy Life chips.  set the pan into a heated oven until the chips begin to melt, about 5-7 minutes.
  3. take the pan out and make a flat layer of graham crackers on top of the melted chips.  press down SLIGHTLY until even all the way across.
  4. dump the cereal mixture on top of the graham cracker layer and GENTLY press into an even layer all the way across the pan.
  5. sprinkle a few more Enjoy Life chips on top and put the whole thing in the fridge to set for at least an hour.
  6. cut into squares, (flip some over to see the cool bottom layer if you’re being fancy) and top with a dollop of fluffernutter cream and more crushed graham crackers on each one.

FREAKISHLY GOOD!!!!! please share.

20130815_215833i cut 14 bars outta my rectangle so the stats are for 1.  remember, gluten and/or  dairy free does NOT mean fat or sugar-free yall!  these are a bit indulgent, but definitely better for ya than the packaged stuff.

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please check out this eye-opening Q & A with former magazine editor and Senior graphic design and photographer, Jennifer Lau.

you might say crazy photo editing jobs are nothing new…and i agree.  however  this doesn’t just apply to mags and print anymore as social media is a really big deal this day in age.  so before you scroll through pic after pic of ‘perfect’ (filtered AND unfiltered) bodies then advert your eyes to yourself,  remember to:

be confident

 we all have special, unique talents, and most important, FLAWS & SHAPES! accept and love yourself AS YOU ARE; perfectly imperfect.  just like ‘her/him’!

HAPPY FRIDAY.

le

family + fitness + food = birthday trifection

what a difference a year makes.  i feel like i have finally LIVED these past 12 months and it only took me 30 years!  i have been spending more time focusing on my passion (fitness, creating and cooking healthier recipes, blogging, etc.) and it has opened up so many doors and avenues beyond my small, limited imagination.  i’ve crossed a few things off my bucket list and i have so many more to tackle.  however like all things in life, i’m simply striving for progress, not perfection.  i am content, appreciative, and so hopeful for what the future holds!  i thank God for another year that wasn’t promised, and i’ll walk right behind Him into 31 and all it has to offer!   Sonny put a little something together for lil ol’ me for my bday this year and it was … everything. what was it? those 3 simple f’s up there.

*****

i started my saturday morning off how i normally do-

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with a GREAT early morning workout!  i had way too many cartons of 98 cent strawberries (from HEB) on my island and i planned on incorporating them into our breakfast somehow.20130406_124056

so i diiiiiid. strawberry shortcakes came to mind!  i don’t normally eat whipped cream for breakfast lol but hey, the occasion called for it.  recipe is coming right up- had to do a little tweaking first.  i was given specific instructions to be ready to go by 5pm later that day and to ‘do something with myself’. IMG_20130406_173333

i did my best to make my bun as neat as possible. :lol:  so i’ve said in the past i don’t like shopping for clothes… i should clarify that i don’t like shopping ALL DAY LONG for clothes. i love Urban Outfitters cause 9 times outta 10 i find the cutest thing on the sale rack within minutes. UO keeps my shopping bug alive and kicking cause i almost stepped on it and killed it.  it’s become my go to store for a quick, cute outfit or top! i found this black lacy number for 10 whole dollars. what?  i thought it was clearly a mistake. i was too through after that awesome find! i even did my nails for the first time in a really, really long time. aaaaand i went to get some eyelash extensions done!!! watch out nah!  it was fun to get a little glam.

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 back pose!

we dropped off our Stank Tank with our ‘rents and headed to a private dinner at Tango & Malbec South American Cuisine.

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Mr. Impeccable Taste himself;)

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straight to the meal!

aaaaah, the lovely bread bowl.  it was filled with real, fried potato chips, bread sticks, and sourdough bread. so hard to resist this thing at any restaurant.  if it wasn’t for Sonny, i’d tell them to not even bring it to our table.

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our appetizers were Lamb Lolichops and El Calamar (grilled calamari steak) and they were both and cooked and seasoned perfectly.

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before we tore it up, we snapped a pic!

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my lil appetizer plate. to be honest, the lamb was too rare for me..i don’t do the bloody meat thing, so i gave it to Sonny.

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i decided on the Trout topped with mushrooms and carmelized onions for my entrée.   i told myself no salmon and no chicken breast!!! i knew Sonny would order some type of steak so i planned to just get a piece of his.

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i also had some old, faithful asparagus on the side.

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there it is- Como En El’s the name!  Sonny’s dish was a combo of  beef tenderloin, pork ribs, lamb chops, flank steak sausage and black sausage.  the ‘protein platter’!

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as we dined, a couple waltzed to music – very nice touch!  i enjoyed our dinner and it didn’t end there- complimentary dessert was on the way.

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hey i know her! i devoured that tres leches cake and received a little something i wasn’t expecting at all…

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a quality camera to take my blogging pics with! i’ve been using my cell for ALL of them as our previous Casio bit the dust a couple months ago.  it was right on time.

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we ended the evening with more dessert- self serve fro-yo!  apparently dancing was on the agenda  but after that meal our night was a WRAP.

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thanks, Polar! April 7th was the big day.

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first thing i did was thank God, then went to make me some birthday pancakes!  chocolate peanut butter banana pancakes with chocolate sprinkles.

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chocolate peanut butter banana pancakes

the stuff:

  • half a banana
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp chocolate PB2
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 packet stevia (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp butter extract
  • more PB2 for topping

do this:

whip this all up in your blender or food processor, then cook them up like cakes in your skillet.  3-4 minutes on medium heat for each side.  top with more PB2 and sprinkles! they are optional too:)

for the entire stack:

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i topped mine with more strawberries, and it tasted like a big peanut butter and jelly sammich. omg, YUMMINESS!!!

  i didn’t get a sub for my class…no need. i had some gifts to give out too- the gift of sweat.

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and i did so with new workout gear, whoop, whoop! that is ALWAYS appreciated, no matter what the occasion! i’ve been #upgraded!

afterwards, we got ready to go take some professional family pictures, and eat some lunch.

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lunch where? where else!?!?!? yep, RG.

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the weather was perrrrrfect, so we found a great table outside.  if you have a little one of age then you know an ipad or any electronic device works wonders to keep their little minds occupied until the food arrives.

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we tried the hi-protein hemp empanadas for the first time and WOW. i will definitely be remaking this at home! i LOVED the sweet and savory flavor combo.  seasoned ground beef, raisins, cilantro, mozzeralla and cheddar cheeses all stuffed inside a hemp and wheat flour pocket.  and yeah, they are fried… you’ve been warned!

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before pizza,

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after pizza.

i know exactly where he gets his hunger attitude from. :roll:

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this kids loves some cheese pizza, so of course we ordered him one along with…

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 grilled fish tacos on corn tortillas! Sonny’s was super spicy,

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mine was not.

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oh and i got some butternut squash too.  it’s the LITTLE THINGS that made my birthday so special and memorable!

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clearly the pizza had Chiso’s undivided attention until it was gone.

there was a lambo car show going on at the same time in City Centre so it was definitely alive:

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from newer models, 
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to classics.  

#justlooking

very last thing….. more, YES, more fro-yo!

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from Red Mango.

and that’s a wrap! thank you so much for reading!

i’m back on track with more EXCITING product reviews, and more GIVEAWAYS!!!!

i’m THRILLED about some of the products i’ll be featuring shortly that YOU will be able to enjoy yourself as well!!! stay tuned :)

le

spanana pancakes + sweaty saturday

still waitin’ on that pancake recipe? :lol:  i really dropped the ball- this was supposed to be up days ago.  but here it IS, right now, i won’t make you wait any longer!!!

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spanana pancakes

the stuff:

  • 1 whole egg (or 2 egg whites)
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/3 cup fresh or frozen, microwaved / cooked spinach, cooled
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (or more…be generous!)
  • half a banana
  • 1 packet stevia (optional)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

do this:

throw everything in the blender and turn it ON!  the banana makes the batter sweet enough for me, but if you need more, add the packet of stevia.  blend to your liking- if you’re making it for your kiddos though, definitely blend until super smooth.  we don’t want them to discover our little secret!

turn your non-stick pan on medium heat and cook them up like cakes.  when bubbles start to form and pop, flip them.  3-4 min on each side should be about right.

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for the entire stack: w/out the greek yo and using 1 whole egg

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remember this is pretty much a complete meal for your little one(s)! veggies (spinach), complex carbs (oatmeal), protein/fat (eggs) and plen-tay of fiber!

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have you tried this?

honey crisp apples are the bomb, but they are also pretty pricy per lb.  i buy red delicious apples a lot, and i make a dip for the slices using chocolate PB2 and 0% greek yogurt mixed together. sweet, protein-filled dip/treat.

i snacked on it while i made us this dinner last nite:

20130315_211745lean, grilled, apple-turkey burgers stuffed with mozzarella cheeeeeese! WHAT! we added ripe, mashed avocado, fat-free feta, juicy tomatoes, and coarse ground mustard, all on sara lee 45 cal whole wheat bread. mmm-mm-mmmmm.

i’m holdin’ out on ya again… recipe will be in tha e-book, but go make my apple-chicken patties until then..they are just as good;)

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i made some meatballs out of the rest of the batter and stuffed them with low-fat mozzarella also- you can toss these over veggies, whole wheat pasta, rice, quinoa,  salad…WHATEVER! avocado, fat-free feta, and low carb ketchup was what i was feelin’ along with my sweet potatoes and okra.

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how was your saturday!? mine was FAN-FLIPPIN’ TASTIC! can you tell?!  i subbed for another instructor at the gym and i always love the saturday morning crowd and a great, sweaty, saturday morning workout.  75 minutes of only the best class ever…Total Body Conditioning baby! even on spring break, people showed up and got their sweat on with me!  little man was there too, so we hit the Lifetime Cafe for some all natural, ‘pee-za’ on whole wheat crust, his fave.

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this spoke to the Techy in me:)

HAPPY SATURDAY!!!

le