Salmon Macaroni Salad

This made a great afternoon snack and would also be a great picnic item.

 

Ingredients:

1/2 c. dry macaroni noodles (I used HEB gluten free)

2 small cans of boneless salmon (6-7 oz each)

1/2 c. vegan mayonnaise (or more)

1 tsp mustard

1 tsp lemon zest

1 T. lemon juice

1/3 c. finely minced onion (I used red onions, but you could use regular or green onions)

2 T. chopped fresh parsley

1 T. chopped fresh dill (or 1/2 tsp dried dill)

2 stalks celery, chopped

Black pepper to taste

Tabasco sauce, optional (I didn’t use it)

 

Directions:

Boil the macaroni as per the package directions.  Add 1 T. salt to the water after it is boiling.  While macaroni is cooking, prepare the rest of the salad.

Mix the salmon with the mayonnaise, mustard, lemon zest, and lemon juice.  Add in the onions, parsley, dill, and celery.

Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to the salad while the pasta is still warm.  Season with salt, pepper, and Tabasco sauce (if using).

Refrigerate for at least an hour or two before serving.  Should be served cold.  As it sits in the fridge, it may absorb the liquid, so more mayonnaise may be added to keep it creamy.

Original recipe:

http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/salmon_macaroni_salad/

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Cilantro Hummus (no sesame)

So, for awhile I was avoiding sesame.  Hummus has a lot of sesame, so I found an alternate recipe.  This one is very easy and tasty.  I recently discovered Rudi’s Spinach Wraps (frozen section) and I enjoyed spreading the hummus on the wrap for a tasty snack.

 

Ingredients:

1.5 cloves garlic

1 can garbanzo beans, drained (~19 oz)

2 T. lemon or lime juice

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 c. olive oil

1/2 c. cilantro, washed

optional: add 1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped

Directions:

Blend garlic in the food processor.  Add beans, lime, and salt, and blend.  Add olive oil and blend.  Add cilantro and blend.  I didn’t add jalapeño but you can.

 

Serving:

Take one Rudi’s Spinach Wrap out of the freezer.  Lightly toast grill it in a pan and flip until it is flexible but not crispy.  Spread a few spoonfuls of hummus on the wrap.  Top with lettuce and whatever else you want in there.  Roll up your wrap and eat!

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Muffins

These are mostly made of nuts and apples.  I found myself eating more of these than perhaps I would have if they were straight up flour, sugar, and such.  If you want something sweet but want it to be a little healthier, this is a good compromise.  They do have a little bit of a “healthy” taste because of the nut flour, but if you don’t mind that, they’re pretty good!

 

Ingredients:

2 1/4 c. almond meal/flour

1/2 c. quick oats (I used Bob’s Red Mill GF quick oats)

2 T. ground flax seed

1/4 tsp salt

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 c. coconut oil

1/4 c. maple syrup (I recommend the real stuff!)

1/4 c. non-dairy milk

1 tsp vanilla

3/4 c. finely diced apple with skin on (about 2 small apples)

1/2 c. walnuts or pecans, chopped

Topping:

2 tsp sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

 

Directions:

Combine all of the dry ingredients (almond meal/flour, oats, flax seed, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon in a large bowl.

Melt the coconut oil in a medium bowl.  Add the maple syrup, milk and vanilla and stir.  Next, add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until everything is combined.  Add in the apple chunks and the nuts and stir.  Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners and fill to 3/4.  Put a little bit of the cinnamon/sugar mixture on top of each one.  The original recipe calls for more, but it was way too much and didn’t soak in.  You may use more if you want.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and bake for 15 minutes.

 

Original recipe:

http://www.simple-veganista.com/2013/04/apple-cinnamon-muffinsgluten-free.html

 

Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados

This is a “fancy” dish.  It looks fancy, and it doesn’t fill you up unless you have multiples, so obviously it’s fancy :-).  It is perfect for someone trying to lighten up on meals after the holidays or for anyone looking for a light, summery dish to brighten your winter blues.

 

Ingredients:

4 c. cubed cooked chicken  (I used this baked chicken.)

1 c. mayonnaise (I used Vegenaise to make it egg free)

1 tsp paprika

1 1/2 c. dried cranberries

1 c. red grapes, halved

1 c. chopped celery

2 green onions, chopped

1/2 c. red onions, minced

1 c. chopped cashews

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

6-12 avocados (or you can just eat the chicken salad with crackers)

Romaine lettuce leaves

Optional: 6 tomatoes for stuffing

 

Directions:

Cook chicken and chill.  Combine mayonnaise and paprika.  Add cranberries all ingredients except chicken and stir well.  Add chicken and stir again.  Season with additional salt and pepper if desired.  Chill for at least one hour.  Cut avocado(s) in half and remove pit.  Set out a romaine lettuce leaf.  Set avocado on lettuce leaf.  Spoon chicken salad over avocado and serve.

 

Tomato option: Another possibility is to scoop out the insides of some tomatoes and spoon the chicken salad into it.  I didn’t actually like this option much- it was more work and it didn’t look or taste as good as avocados.

 

Original recipe:

http://www.food.com/recipe/chicken-salad-stuffed-tomatoes-or-avocados-449115

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Strawberry Smoothie

For those looking for an alternative to cereal for breakfast, an alternative to dessert, or a healthy snack, this is a good option.  You could add in other things to help it stick with you longer.

 

Ingredients:

1 ripe banana

1 to 1 1/2 c. frozen strawberries

6-7 pieces frozen pineapple

20 frozen blueberries

1 c. orange juice

Optional add-ins: oatmeal, walnuts, flaxseed, chia, etc. for a heartier smoothie

 

Directions:

Put all ingredients in blender.  Put lid on blender and blend until smooth.  Makes 2 tall glasses of smoothie.

Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps

Feeling like you ate too much over the holidays?  Here is a light and healthy recipe for you to try.  This also would work well for a summer luncheon.  This is our favorite chicken salad so far!

 

Ingredients:

4 c. cubed cooked chicken  (I used this baked chicken.)

1 c. mayonnaise (I used Vegenaise to make it egg free)

1 tsp paprika

1 1/2 c. dried cranberries

1 c. red grapes, halved

1 c. chopped celery

2 green onions, chopped

1/2 c. red onions, minced

1 c. chopped cashews

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

Romaine lettuce leaves, UNchopped

 

Directions:

Cook chicken and chill.  Combine mayonnaise and paprika.  Add cranberries all ingredients except chicken and stir well.  Add chicken and stir again.  Season with additional salt and pepper if desired.  Chill for at least one hour.  Serve on washed romaine lettuce leaves.  Gently fold leaves to form a “wrap”.

 

Original recipe:

http://www.food.com/recipe/chicken-salad-stuffed-tomatoes-or-avocados-449115

 

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Frosted Graham Crackers

We loved this treat as kids.  It was super easy for mom and we were super happy, so everyone was a winner!  As kids we used a jar of frosting and a package of just regular graham crackers.  As an adult eating gluten free, it hadn’t occurred to me to resurrect this easy treat.  One day I wanted something sweet but didn’t want to make a big recipe that I would have to work on for days to finish.  We are trying to eat less sugar and that just wouldn’t do.  I started scrounging in my pantry and freezer.  I came across one lonely graham cracker (Kinnikinnick brand), and in my freezer I had some frozen cream cheese frosting leftover from my carrot cake.  You better believe I set that frosting out on the counter immediately to let it start defrosting :-).  As soon as it was spreadable, I spread it on that graham cracker and relived my childhood.  I invite you to enjoy such an easy treat.  There’s actually a lot of canned frosting that is gluten free and dairy free if you want to make it even easier on yourself.  I have gotten spoiled in my old age and prefer homemade, but as a kid, the canned stuff was just fine by me :-).

 

Ingredients:

leftover frosting (about 1-3 T. depending on the size of your graham cracker)

1 graham cracker (I used Kinnikinnick brand- may contain eggs although it’s not listed in the ingredients.)

 

Directions:

Break the graham cracker in half.  Put frosting in between the two pieces of graham cracker.  Now you have a frosting sandwich.  Enjoy!

 

Other frosting ideas: chocolate frosting, oreo buttercream frosting

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

What to do with leftover pumpkin?  So many recipes call for part of a can of pumpkin, but what do you do with the rest?  We tried our hand at pumpkin smoothies.  We were having such a good time that we forgot to take a picture :-/.  You’ll just have to imagine it.  Or, you can click on the original recipe below and imagine what it would look like if it just had the pumpkin part without any of the whipped cream.  This is quite a hearty smoothie.  Happy Holidays to you!

 

Ingredients:

2/3 c. pumpkin puree (Refrigerate first to make your drink colder.)

1 banana (Can use a frozen one to make the drink colder.)

1/3 c. walnuts

3/4 tsp cinnamon

scant 1/8 tsp ginger

scant 1/8 tsp cloves

1/8 tsp nutmeg

3/4 c. unsweetened cashew milk (coconut milk may be even better)

3 T. maple syrup

2 tsp molasses

1/4 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp salt

 

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a blender.  Blend until smooth.  Enjoy!  This made plenty for two people.

Original recipe:

Healthy Pumpkin Pie Parfait w/ Coconut Whip

Chicken and Apple Salad

I way overbought on produce this week.  I also found an excess of crackers in my pantry that were expiring soon, so I made chicken salad.

 

Ingredients:

2 cups of chicken, cooked, cubed, and cooled

1 apple, diced

1/2 to 1 c. red grapes, sliced in half

1/4 to 3/4 c. Mayonnaise, depending on volume of food and desired wetness (I used Vegenaise)

Crackers of your choice.  We like HEB brand Multi-grain Gluten Free Rice Crackers.

 

Directions:

Combine all ingredients and stir.  Serve with crackers.

Banana Nut Muffins- Gluten free and vegan

I recently went camping and bought 3 bunches of bananas.  Turns out bananas don’t travel that well, so I had a bunch of overripe, partially smashed bananas that I didn’t want to go to waste.  I have a friend from Africa who loves banana bread.  He rarely asks for anything, but after I gave him one muffin, he asked for another.

Ingredients:

1/2 c. oat flour

1/4 c. millet flour

1/4 c. tapioca starch

1/4 c. potato starch

1/8 c. amaranth flour

1/8 c. teff flour

 

1/2 tsp xanthan gum

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

4 overripe bananas

1 c. brown sugar

3/4 c. butter (I used SmartBalance), melted

2 eggs or 2 flax eggs

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 c. chopped walnuts

 

Directions:

Stir together flours, starches, xanthan gum, salt, and baking soda.  In a separate bowl, mash two of the bananas and cream together with the brown sugar mix with beaters for 2-3 minutes.   Add in the “butter” and “eggs” and vanilla extract and beat again with the mixer.  Gently stir in the flour mixture.  Mash the other two bananas, but leave them with bigger chunks.  Stir into batter along with walnuts.

Pour into 2 muffin tins lined with cupcake liners.  You don’t need to grease the liners.  Fill them halfway and then tap the tin on the counter to squeeze out air pockets.

Bake for 18-20 minutes at 375 degrees.  They should spring back when you touch the top without leaving an indentation or you can stick a toothpick in them to see if it comes out clean.

Makes 2 dozen.

 

Note:

If you want to make this with full gluten, replace all of the starches and flours with all-purpose flour and eliminate the xanthan gum.

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Original recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/banana-nut-muffins-recipe.html