Wellness Wednesdays: Winter Warmup


  • Pie Filling:
  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 16 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 6 carrots peeled and chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 2 cups frozen peas
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon each of dried rosemary and thyme (or fresh herbs to taste)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Sweet Potato Mash Topping:
  • 2 lbs. of sweet potatoes
  • 2.5 tablespoons cream cheeses (light or fat free)
  • 2.5 tablespoons diary or non- dairy milk
  • ½ teaspoon of each thyme and rosemary

Directions:Start by preparing your potatoes to be mashed. Wash, peel and boil your potatoes- or use an instant pot for quick and easy results. Your potatoes need to be soft enough to mash easily, or fork tender. Drain, mash and mix in your cream cheese, milk and dried herbs. Then set aside. To prepare your pie filling first heat olive oil over medium heat in large oven-safe pot. Add onions and garlic, sauté until onions are translucent. Next add mushrooms, carrots and dried herbs. Cover and sauté again until carrots are softened. Next add tomato paste and flour, stir well. Slowly add vegetable broth, stirring until a gravy starts to form. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer over low heat to thicken your filling. Then remove your bay leaf and add frozen peas. Spread mashed sweet potatoes on top (drizzle with olive oil if you want for a little extra touch). Finally bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. This warm comfort dish is perfect for a cold winter day!

Recipe Notes: If you decide to use fresh herbs remove prior to adding your potato topping and placing your dish in the oven. You can create a golden-brown top by setting you oven to broil for an additional bake time of 2-3 minutes. Feel free to substitute your vegetables to what you have on hand or replace sweet potatoes with a white potato. Additional alternatives to consider, Greek yogurt or dairy free yogurt in place of cream cheese. This dish is also great prepared with a protein option like lentils, beans, ground turkey or chicken.

This recipe yields about 8 servings at about 1.5 cup per serving and was inspired by

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving (about 1.5 cup)- 332 calories, 13 gm protein, 7.7 gm fat, 3.8 monounsaturated fat, 2 polyunsaturated fat, 55 gm carbohydrates, 11.5 gm fiber, 168 mg sodium, 109mg magnesium


  • Olive oil cooking spray
  • ¼ cup panko breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 8 oz whole wheat pasta
  • 1 cup low fat milk or non-dairy milk
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 1 ½ cups sharp light cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin
  • ½ tsp mustard powder¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper1/8 tsp ground nutmeg (optional)

Directions: Preheat oven to 375-degrees F. and coat medium size baking dish with cooking spray (I used a square 9x9 inch dish), then set aside. In a medium bowl combine breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese, toss well. In a large pot, boil 4 quarts of water. Add pasta and cook for 10 – 12 minutes, drain and set aside. While pasta is cooking, heat milk in the microwave unit steaming. In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook for 1 minute, whisking slowly, remove from heat and gradually add milk while whisking to avoid clumps. Return pot to medium-high heat and simmer until mixture thickens (about 3 – 5 minutes). Add cheddar cheese, pumpkin, mustard powder, black pepper, cayenne and nutmeg. Stir until cheese melts completely. Mix cooked pasta into cheese mixture. Pour mac and cheese in prepared baking dish and sprinkle breadcrumb/parmesan cheese mixture on top. Bake for 15– 20 minutes or until breadcrumbs are crisp and golden. Serve and enjoy!

Recipe Notes: Serve as a side dish or mix in steamed vegetables and chicken for a one pot meal. Store any leftovers in an airtight refrigerator safe container, for up to 3-5 days. This recipe yields about 6 servings at 3/4 cup per serving and was inspired by

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving (3/4 cup)- 204 calories, 13.7 gm protein, 6 gm fat, 1 monounsaturated fat, 0.36 polyunsaturated fat, 31 gm carbohydrates, 6 gm fiber, 225 mg sodium, 37.46 mg magnesium


  • 3 tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil
  • Juice of 1 medium lemon (approximately ½ cup
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • ½ teaspoon dried dill (or 1 tablespoon fresh dill)
  • 1 ¼ pound salmon fillets
  • 3 large carrots peeled and sliced into circles
  • 1-pound brussel sprouts trimmed and cut in halves
  • ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ lemon, thinly sliced (for finished topping)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:Line a large rimmed baking sheet (or two small) with parchment paper and set aside. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Prepare your marinade in a small to medium size bowl by whisking together oil, lemon juice, garlic, dill and a pinch of salt/pepper. Place salmon fillets in a shallow dish and pour half of the marinade over top. Allow your salmon to marinate by placing it in the refrigerator while prepping the vegetables. Place your sliced carrots on your prepared baking sheet and drizzle with 2-3 tbsp spoons of marinate. Bake for 10 minutes, remove from the oven and toss. Add brussels and onions to the baking sheet, drizzle with remaining marinate. Bake for 5 minutes, remove from the oven and toss all vegetables. Place salmon on the center of your baking sheet and top with lemon slices. Bake vegetables and salmon for 10 – 15 minutes. Once finished serve the salmon and vegetables with additional lemon slices and enjoy!

Recipe Notes: Vegetables can be substituted with a wide range of options. For example, sweet or white potatoes, greens beans, peppers, snap peas, broccoli and/or asparagus. Your bake time for salmon may vary depending on the thickness of your fish. Salmon will flake easily with a fork when it is done. Alternative fish suggestions maybe tuna steaks or trout. Cooked salmon can be stored safely in the refrigerator in an airtight container or wrap for 3-4 days.

This recipe yields about 4 servings and was originated from

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving (about ¼ of total recipe)- 403 calories, 32 gm protein, 18 gm fat, 12 monounsaturated fat, 4 polyunsaturated fat, 17 gm carbohydrates, 4.7 gm fiber, 185 mg sodium, 32 mg magnesium


  • Olive Oil cooking spray
  • 1 lb extra lean ground turkey
  • 1, 15 oz can black beans (low sodium), drained and rinsed
  • 1.5 cups shredded reduced fat cheddar cheese
  • 1, 15 oz can diced tomatoes (no salt added)2 bell peppers diced (color of your choice, I used green and orange)
  • ½ red onion diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 6 small corn tortillas

Directions: Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees and coating a square baking dish with cooking spray. I used a 9x13 dish. Prepare ground turkey with 2 cloves of minced garlic over the stove. Once fully cooked add, black beans, tomatoes, bell pepper, onion, cumin and black pepper. Mix well and bring to a simmer. Place 3 corn tortillas on the bottom of prepared baking dish, overlapping as needed. Top tortillas with half of filling mixture sprinkle ¾ cup cheese. Layer with remaining tortillas, then top with remaining mixture and cheese. Baking until cheese is melted and filling is bubbling about 25 – 30 minutes. Let set for 5 minutes and enjoy!

Recipe Notes: My family loves this recipe and we swap out the ingredients for whatever we have on hand and have never had bad results. Feel free to incorporate additional vegetables, use salsa in place of diced tomatoes, top with cilantro, green onions, slices of avocado and/or sour cream. Consider substituting more beans or shredded chicken in place of ground turkey. This dish can be tailored in so many ways, prepared in advance frozen and baked later. If you have extra filling it is great served over brown rice or mixed greens. Leftovers will keep in a refrigerator safe container for up to 3-5 days.

This recipe yields approximately 6 servings cut into equal sized square portions and was inspired by multiple recipe resources.

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving (1 square portion)- 296 calories, 34 gm protein, 8.9 gm fat, 0.75 monounsaturated fat, 1.06 polyunsaturated fat, 20 gm carbohydrates, 3.98 gm fiber, 280 mg sodium, 52 mg magnesium

Wellness Wednesdays: Breakfast


  • 1/4 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed well under water
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (or any dairy/non dairy milk of your choice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 medium banana, sliced
  • 6 strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 cup blueberries (or raspberries)
  • 1/8 cup chopped walnuts (or any unsalted nut of your choice)1/4 cup warmed almond milk

Directions: In a small pot bring almond milk, cinnamon and vanilla to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and add rinsed quinoa. Cover and cook on low until liquid evaporates, about 15-20 minutes. Fluff with a fork and divide hot quinoa in 2 bowls. Top each serving with fruit and walnuts. Drizzle with honey and additional warm milk, if desired. Enjoy this sweet and nutrient packed dish!

Recipe Notes: This is a great recipe that puts a twist on a traditional savory ingredient like quinoa. You can make the quinoa in advance and store it either in the freezer or refrigerator for quick and easy prep. This recipe yields 2 servings and originated from bowls.

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving:215 calories, 4.7g protein, 3.45g fat, 0.75g monounsaturated fat, 1g polyunsaturated fat, 43.4g carbohydrates, 5.6g fiber, 46.2mg sodium, 69.45mg magnesium


  • 1.5 cups unsweetened almond milk (or any dairy/non dairy milk of your choice)
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 2 bananas, chopped
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon flaxseed (optional)
  • Nonstick cooking spray

Directions: Using a blender puree milk and oats until smooth. Add bananas, flour, salt, baking powder and flaxseed. Puree until thoroughly blended together (only requires a few seconds). Let batter rest for 10 minutes. Heat a large nonstick sauté pan (or griddle), at medium heat. Mist with nonstick spray. Scoop batter onto heated pan (or griddle). Reduce heat to medium low and cook pancakes until air bubbles appear, about 3-5 minutes. Flip and cook for another 3-5 minutes. Pancakes will be golden brown in color. Top with sliced fruit (bananas, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries) or dark chocolate chips. Serve with real maple syrup and enjoy!

Recipe Notes: I used a large cookie scoop which holds ~ 5 tbsp of batter for each pancake. My pancakes were medium to large, in size. You could easily use a smaller amount of batter and make mini pancakes. These pancakes can be tightly wrapped and stored in the refrigerator or freezer for easy meal prep.

This recipe yields 3 servings at 2 pancakes per serving and originated from Blog | Cancer-Preventing,

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving - 263 calories, 7.5 gm protein, 3.8 gm fat, 1.3 monounsaturated fat, 1.3 polyunsaturated fat, 50 gm carbohydrates, 7.2 gm fiber, 95 mg magnesium


  • 1/3 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1 tablespoon ground chia seed
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon natural unsalted peanut butter
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • ½ cup fruit (I used a frozen blend of strawberries and peaches then topped with some fresh fruit prior to serving)
  • Drizzle with honey if desired

Directions: In a jar, bowl or any refrigerator safe container combine oats, chia seeds, cinnamon and nut butter. Add ¼ cup milk and mix well. Then add your fruit and rest of your milk, stir until fully combined. Cover your container and refrigerate overnight, or up to 5 days. When ready to serve you can drizzle with honey and/or top with some additional fruit. Enjoy this chilled easy/on the go recipe!

Recipe Notes: If you prefer warm oats you can heat this recipe in the microwave to a temperature of your preference. A thinner consistency of oats can be prepared by adding more milk. Additionally, alternative ingredients may be- gluten free oats, unsweetened applesauce, any fresh/frozen or canned fruit, any dairy/non- dairy milk, any nut butter and/or yogurt.

This recipe yields 1 serving and originated from

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving – 325 calories, 9.7 gm protein, 12.8 gm fat, 5.6 gm monounsaturated fat, 4 gm polyunsaturated fat, 47.3 gm carbohydrates, 10.2 gm fiber, 92.6 mg sodium, 91.7 mg magnesium


  • Egg Mixture:
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup dairy or non-dairy (I used skim milk)
  • Pinch of salt and pepper (or any herbs and spices of your choice)
  • Optional Ingredients/Variations:
  • Southwestern Style Mini Quiche: Diced avocado, canned no added salt Ro-Tel (diced tomatoes and green chilies) and reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese. Topped with
    salsa and sour cream.
  • Orange Pepper Mini Quiche: Diced onions and orange peppers, any pepper color or variety of colors would work.
  • Green Mini Quiche: Sautéed collard greens, onions, mushrooms, minced garlic and olive oil with shredded mozzarella cheese. Spinach would work as an alternative in place of collard greens.

Directions: To prepare mini quiche you will need a mini muffin tin (or make larger with a standard muffin tin, portion sizes will vary). Start by preheating your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and preparing your pan with non-stick spray. Make egg mixture by beating together 6 eggs with 1 cup of milk (dairy or non- dairy), add pinch of salt and pepper for taste. Add approximately 1.5 tablespoons of egg mixture to each mini muffin cup. Once egg mixture is added you can add your optional vegetables, cheese or protein items to your liking. Try not to over fill. Bake for 15 – 25 minutes or until mixture is set. Remove from the oven and let mini muffins cool. You may want to let the quiche cool for approximately 10 minutes,

to prevent them from sticking to the tin. This recipe can be cut in half if you are preparing for a smaller amount of people or don’t plan on freezing extras. If you plan on freezing them let the quiche cool completely. Place them on a plate in the freezer for about 30 minutes. Once frozen you can then place them in a freezer storage bag or container for up to 2 months. For reheating frozen quiche set your oven to 375 degrees and bake for 8-10 minutes. Make sure you date your storage bag or container with the date you prepared the recipe, that way you can keep track of how long they have been frozen. Enjoy fresh or reheated!

Recipe Notes: You can prepare this recipe with your favorite crust recipe as well. Any vegetables canned, fresh or frozen would work well. Egg substitute can also be used in place of whole eggs. Replace with ¼ cup liquid substitute per egg.

This recipe yields 8 servings or approximately 2 dozen mini muffins and was tailored from multiple recipe resources.

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving (3 muffins-calculation only includes egg and milk mixture no additional ingredients included) – 60 calories, 5 gm protein, 3.5 gm fat, 1.35 gm monounsaturated fat, 0.5 gm polyunsaturated fat, 1.2 gm carbohydrates, 53 mg sodium, 6.4 mg magnesium

Wellness Wednesdays: Sweet Treats


  • 3 cups frozen strawberries and bananas
  • 2/3 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tbsp honey

Directions: Place ingredients in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth consistency. This recipe can be enjoyed as soft serve as is or placed in an airtight container and stored in the freezer for 1-2 hours for a harder consistency. Great served with fresh fruit, granola or nuts.

Recipe Notes: This recipe can be safely stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. Try alternative ingredients like peanut butter or dark coco powder. Substitute with any frozen fruit or fruit blends. For an additional twist on this recipe place blended ingredients into popsicle molds for frozen yogurt pops.

This recipe yields 4 servings or approximately 0.5 cups per serving and was tailored from multiple recipe resources

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving – 123 calories, 5 gm protein, 0.8 gm fat, 25 gm carbohydrates, 1.5 gm fiber, 14.7 mg sodium, 5.75 mg magnesium


  • 3 apples, halved and core removed (any type of your choice medium to small in size, about the size of your fist)
  • 1 apple, diced into cubes (any type of your choice medium to small in size, about the size of your fist)
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped within a food processor
  • 1 orange, ½ peeled and diced other half providing juice and orange zest (medium to small in size, about the size of your fist)
  • 2 tbsp dried cranberries finely chopped
  • ½ tsp honey
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 3 tbsp sliced almond

Directions: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Halve 3 apples then remove the core and scoop out about 1 tbsp spoon of apple flesh. Creating a space for filling. Place apples on a baking sheet (cut half up) and bake for about 15 – 20 minutes. While apples are baking mix together prepared diced apples (with the skin), chopped carrot, diced orange slices, juice from half an orange, approximately 1 tsp of orange zest, chopped dried cranberries, honey, cinnamon and nutmeg. Combine well and add about 1-1.5 tablespoons of mixture to each baked apple. Top with sliced almonds and return to the oven for another 15 – 20 minutes. Until apples are soft. Server on their own or with ½ cup low fat yogurt.

Recipe Notes: Leftovers can be stored in a refrigerator safe container for 3-5 days. For a softer filling sauté fruit mixture on the stove for about 5-10 minutes prior to placing them in the baked apples. Ingredients for the fruit mixture can be substituted with raisins, prunes or dried apricots.

This recipe yields 6 servings or ½ stuffed apple per serving and was tailored from

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving – 110 calories, 1.6 gm protein, 1.8 gm fat, 1 gm monounsaturated fat, 0.5 gm polyunsaturated fat, 23 gm carbohydrates, 4.4 gm fiber, 8.5 mg sodium, 9.4 mg magnesium


  • 3 ripe medium bananas, peeled and mashed
  • ½ cup dairy or plant-based milk, unsweetened (I used skim milk)
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp ground chia seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 and ¼ cups whole-wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp sunflower seeds
  • 3 tbsp sliced almonds
  • 3 tbsp chopped walnuts
  • Nonstick cooking spray

Directions: Prepare loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a medium to large mixing combine bananas, milk, vegetable oil, chia seeds, vanilla and brown sugar for at least two minutes. Add flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. Mix again until fully combined. Now add sunflower seeds, almonds and walnuts. Pour bread mixture into loaf pan and bake for 30 – 40 minutes, until cooked through the center. Using fork or toothpick to test for doneness. Remove and cool for at least 10 minutes before slicing. Enjoy as is, topped with fruit or with a small drizzle of honey.

Recipe Notes: This recipe can be altered with any type of unsalted nuts/seeds of your choice and/or shredded coconut. For best results you may want to consider using a handheld or standing electric mixer.

This recipe yields 12 servings or 1 slice per serving and originated from Get Nutty Whole Grain Banana Bread - American Institute for Cancer Research (

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving – 232 calories, 4 gm protein, 13.785 gm fat, 2.5 gm monounsaturated fat, 6 gm polyunsaturated fat, 35 gm carbohydrates, 4 gm fiber, 80 mg sodium, 35 mg magnesium


  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp honey (or maple syrup)
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or any dairy or non-dairy milk)
  • ½ cup chia seeds
  • Pinch of salt (if desired)

Directions: In a medium bowl whisk together cocoa powder, honey, ground cinnamon, salt (if desired) and vanilla. Once well combined add small amounts of milk until a smooth paste like texture is created. Add chia seeds and whisk once again to combine. Cover and refrigerate overnight. This will allow mixture to form a pudding consistency. Enjoy as is or topped with fruit!

Recipe Notes: Leftovers can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days. For a creamer texture blend all ingredients prior to placing them in the refrigerator. Additional ingredients to consider are Greek yogurt and/or nut butter.

This recipe yields 4 servings or ½ cup per serving and originated from

Nutrient analysis per 1 serving – 151 calories, 4.6 gm protein, 7 gm fat, 1 gm monounsaturated fat, 5 gm polyunsaturated fat, 21 gm carbohydrates, 9 gm fiber, 47 mg sodium, 109 mg magnesium

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