Monthly Archives: August 2012

Pumpkin Pecan Banana Bread

Earlier today, my father-in-law flew into San Diego to visit my hubby and me for a long weekend. Whenever loved ones come into town, I have a fun time making goodies in the kitchen. My signature drink to make when I have guests is sangria, while I like to mix up my homemade meals and treats. Last night, this is what I whipped up in preparation for his arrival:

Holy pumpkin, this bread is delicious! I’ve adapted this vegan recipe from the Skinny Bitch cookbook, and it comes up insanely moist and delicious.

pumpkin banana bread

Pumpkin Pecan Banana Bread  

Makes 10 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all purpose flour (I usually do 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 1 cup of white)
  • 1 large ripe banana, mashed
  • 1 1/2 c pure pumpkin
  • 1/2 c canola oil
  • 1/2 c almond milk
  • 1 c evaporated cane sugar
  • 1/2 c packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 TSP baking powder
  • 1 TSP baking soda
  • 1 TSP cinnamon
  • 1/2 TSP nutmeg
  • 1 TSP salt
  • 1 TSP vanilla extract
  • 2/3 c chopped pecans, optional

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease a large loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and salt.
  3. In a separate large bowl, beat together the pumpkin, oil, and milk with an electric mixer until well combined. Add the sugars, vanilla extract, and banana, and beat until creamy. Stir in the pecans.
  4. Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture and stir until all of the ingredients are well combined.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for an hour. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.

Nutrition facts per slice: 350 calories, 17 g fat, 4 g protein, 50 g carbs

Contest Giveaway!

Happy Hump Day!

I think we can all agree that a big component of healthy eating is understanding serving sizes. I believe a lot of people have a hard time comprehending what a portion looks like because it’s so common for restaurants to serve single meals that contain 3 or 4 servings of food, or for a sports drink to actually contain 3 servings of beverage. In a world of excess and super sized eats, it’s important to remember that moderation is key, but we can’t eat only a serving of something if we have no idea how much that actually is.

What does 2 oz of dry spaghetti look like?

How about 1 oz of cheese? Or a serving of cashews?

I used to guesstimate these things all the time… until I started using one of my now favorite little kitchen tools, a food scale.

These days, I throw something on the scale and know exactly how much I’m eating instead of giving it an educated guess. And after you’ve measured something a few times, you have an eye for what it looks like. When I’m out at a restaurant, I have a pretty good idea of what 3 oz of pasta looks like. The same principle goes for measuring foods with measuring cups and spoons. 2 tablespoons of peanut butter may be a lot less goodness than you think, and the same goes for a 1/2-cup serving of ice cream (unfortunately!).  

If you don’t have a kitchen scale yet and would like to start using one to be more conscious of how much food you’re putting into your mouth, you’re in luck my blog friends! Today I’m doing the very first giveaway contest on Foodie Loves Fitness, courtesy of the folks at SlimKicker.

SlimKicker is a recently launched game and calorie counter that keeps people motivated to achieve their healthy living goals through a level-up game with points and rewards. Users can rack up points by tracking healthy eats and completing challenges. People can also upload a picture of a desired reward, and SlimKicker reminds them to cash in on it once they’ve reached a certain number of points. They also offer recipe ideas  for many diets.

Here’s the deal: The challenges on SlimKicker include tasks like abstaining from drinking soda or resisting snacks after dinner for 30 days. They’re looking for some new creative ideas of challenges for their users to participant in, and that’s where you come in!To enter the contest, simply leave a short comment below with a creative fitness or diet challenge idea. SlimKicker will pick their favorite idea, and I’ll announce the winner after a week. That person will receive a handy dandy kitchen scale, and the idea will be used as a challenge on SlimKicker. Sound like a plan? Great, now leave a comment below!

 

 

Mediterranean Veggie Burgers & Sweet Potato Fries

Hope your week is off to a good start!

While I cranked through work,  a workout, and getting Harley some exercise earlier in my day, my late afternoon was spent at one of the most dreaded places ever – the dentist. Not only do I despise getting my mouth poked and prodded at (does anyone actually enjoy it?!), I always seem to have a rough time after getting any dental work done. Tonight I’m left with a colossal headache, but have regained feeling in my face so YAY for that! You’re probably thinking…

Would you like some cheese with that whine?

…and so I’ll quit my complaining and tell myself that I’m lucky to be able to go to the dentist and have healthy teeth. Going to the doctor and dentist is certainly a facet of healthy living, although sometimes not a fun one. 

I’ll move on from my unpleasant dentist trip and talk about good stuff, like yummy food.

Rewind to last night’s dinner…

This meal is broken down into 2 parts: First, I adapted this recipe for veggie burgers from Vegetarian Times magazine and used what I had available in my kitchen. (You can find their original recipe here.)

Mediterranean Veggie Burgers

Makes 6 burgers 

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz rigatoni 
  • 1/2 c quinoa
  • 7 oz vegetable broth
  • 2 TBSP + 1 TSP olive oil
  • 1/4 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 15-oz can garbanzo beans, rinsed, drained, and patted dry
  • 1/4 c finely chopped cabbage
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 1/4 c marinated artichoke hearts, drained and finely chopped
  • 2 TBSP tomato sauce
  • Salt & pepper

Cook rigatoni in a large pot of boiling salted water until very soft, around 19 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Bring quinoa and vegetable broth to a boil in a saucepan. Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook 13 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Heat 1 TSP of oil in a small saucepan over medium heat, then add onion and garlic. Cook for 2 minutes, then remove from heat.

Process the rigatoni and white beans in a food processor until smooth and paste-like. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Stir in the quinoa, cabbage, bell pepper, artichoke, tomato sauce, onion and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and mash to combine everything.

Form 6 patties, then use the remaining oil to brush both sides of the patties.

Heat your grill to high heat, then cook your patties for around 10 minutes or until lightly browned. *Side note: the burgers tend to fall apart a bit, so just use a spatula or fork to mash any pieces of burger back into the mix.*

Eat the burgers on their own, or dress them up with the works. I ate mine on a whole wheat bun with ketchup and sliced fontina cheese.

Per burger: about 275 calories, 10 g protein, 9 g fat, 41 g carbs

For the second part of the meal, check out these bad boys…

Sweet Potato Fries

Makes 4 servings

What you need:

  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 2 TBSP + 1 TSP vegetable oil
  • 1/2 TSP salt + more for sprinkling
  • Pepper & garlic powder to taste

Peel the sweet potatoes, then cut them up lengthwise into fry-like slices as pictured:

Place all the slices into a bowl. Pour 1 TBSP of oil and sprinkle 1/4 TSP salt + a touch of pepper and garlic powder into the bowl, then toss to coat evenly. Repeat this once more.

Place all of the sweet potato slices onto a baking sheet in a single layer.

Bake in the oven at 400 degrees for 10 minutes, then remove from heat and flip the fries over with a spatula. Spread 1 TSP of olive and sprinkle some salt evenly over the fries, then return to the oven to bake for another 10-20 minutes, depending on how crispy you like your fries.

Nutrition stats per serving: 150 calories, 8 g fat, 2 g protein, 19 g carbs

Trying Out The Bar Method

When it comes to working out, I love variety. Not only does this mean that in any given week I do a number of different types of exercise, but it also equates to me trying new workouts that peak my interest. A few months ago, I stumbled by a Bar Method studio. I had heard good things about this type of workout before, and was intrigued to try it.

(source)

The Bar Method combines dance conditioning and isometric exercises with light weight training and more to help target and tone typical problem areas – arms, thighs, butt, abs. I decided to look into one of the studios in San Diego and try a few classes. I asked my friend Jackie to join me, and so a few nights later, I had a workout buddy to look somewhat clueless in class with….

”Nicole, tuck your hips!”

”Jackie, point your toes!”

The first Bar Method workout I did, the instructor must have corrected me 27 times, no joke (side note: I definitely prefer to be corrected and to actually learn the right form then to continue doing it wrong!). I was a competitive cheerleader for a lot of my life, not a dancer, and the idea of tucking my hips in is a bit of foreign concept to me. The Bar Method is also a very different style of working out than I usually do, and it definitely takes a bit of getting used to.

After the first class, I was really sore in a couple of pretty odd places. My achiness confirmed what I had suspected – that The Bar Method had targeted parts of my muscles that don’t typically get so much attention. Following the second class, though I definitely felt like it was as great of a toning workout as the first, I experienced no soreness at all. I always am surprised by how sore a new workout can make me, and then as equally surprised by how quickly my body adapts to that new form of exercise.

I’ve now done 3 of The Bar Method classes and am thoroughly enjoying them. Here are a few of my favorite moves from class and how to easily replicate them at home:

Standing back leg extensions: With palms down and elbows bent and out to the sides, place one hand on top of the other. Bend forward and place your hands & arms on a chair or couch in front of you, hinging at the hips. Point your toes on one leg, then extend your leg backwards until it’s in line with your upper body, as pictured. Pulse your leg for about 257 counts… okay, that may be an overestimate,  but we do a TON of reps in class. Repeat the exercise until your butt is on fire, then repeat on the other side!

(source)

Two-count Push-Ups: These are just like a regular old push up, only you lower for 2 counts (count 1- mid way down, count 2- lowered all the way), and return to your start position in 2 beats. Sounds easy, right? Try to do 30 (or more) and your arms will probably be shaking like crazy!

(source)

Plie Squats on Toes: This is where my awkward attempt at hip tucking comes into play. Stand with the couch or chair on your right side, hand lightly gripping the furniture with a soft elbow. Stand with your legs in a wide stance, feet pointing outwards. Lift as high as you can on your toes, then begin to rep out plie squats, tucking your hips and squeezing your thighs and butt. Extend your other arm overhead.

(source)

I love the fact that The Bar Method includes active stretching. Instead of stretching only at the beginning and end of the routine like a lot of workouts, you stretch muscles right after you train them mid-workout. For instance, immediately following push-ups, we do an overhead arm stretch.

(source)

One thing to consider is the price to consistently do The Bar Method. Unlimited classes for a month costs $200. If I were to continue classes at the studio, I’d incorporate it into my exercise regimen as a toning workout to supplement my others workouts,  and would probably go to about 10 classes a month. This would cost me $135 a month. I personally think that’s a bit expensive, especially considering that I go the gym in my neighborhood for free, and also have access to the gyms on the Marine Corps base for free. I know that a lot of specialty gyms, such as CrossFit and boxing, rival The Bar Method membership prices. However, since I don’t think that The Bar Method is a one-stop shop for my exercise regimen, I’m not sure the price is worth it to me. But, I am definitely glad to have tried this workout and will happily continue to attend classes (and improve my form!) through my trial period. 🙂

On that note, I’m off to enjoy the rest of my Sunday night!

Exciting Blog Changes + Pumpkin Pie Smoothie Redo

As you may have noticed, Foodie Meets Fitness has turned into Foodie Loves Fitness! I’ve spent many hours trying to figure out all of this tech stuff and am so excited to finally have begun my transition to a new site. It may just be because I’m not all that technologically savvy (go figure, I work in public relations in the technology industry!), but I have put in a serious amount of time staring at my computer screen this week. Has anyone else spent hours just looking at website themes?! Perhaps I’m just picky. Or have no idea what I’m doing. Or both. But I’m learning!

Anyways, if you go to my WordPress.com site from now on, you will be redirected to this URL. As you can see, foodielovesfitness.com is up and running, but in the coming weeks, I will making a lot of fun changes to add functionality (and awesomeness) to my blog. WOOHOO!

Last night I blogged about my dinner the night before, which may or may not have included ice cream. I put together a lovely little post, published it, and then BOOM!, my site moved to my new self-hosted blog (FYI, then say it takes up to 72 hours for the move to occur, and you don’t know exactly when it’s going to happen) and my newest post disappeared off the face of the Internet. Guess you’re not supposed to publish posts during this transition time, but this smoothie recipe was really yummy and I couldn’t help myself…

So tonight, I am reposting this deliciousness:

There’s good reason to eat pumpkin more than that once a year slice of pie during the holidays: Pumpkin is high in a number of vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin A, K, and B, as well as potassium. It’s also high in antioxidants and fiber. In this smoothie, I incorporated typical pumpkin pie flavors, such as vanilla extract and cinnamon. I also added chia seeds to the mix to amp up my pumpkin pie smoothie from a nutritional standpoint, as chia seeds are high in lots of goodness, including omega-3s, fiber, calcium and iron.

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
Ingredients
  • ½ c pure pumpkin
  • 1 c almond milk
  • 1 TSP vanilla extract
  • 1 TBSP graham cracker crumbs
  • ¼ TSP pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 TBSP chia seeds
  • ½ c light vanilla bean ice cream
  • ½ TBSP light brown sugar
  • Ice
  • Cinnamon, to taste
Instructions
  1. In a blender, combine pumpkin, almond milk, vanilla extract, pumpkin pie spice, chia seeds, ice cream, brown sugar and ice. Mix until well blended, then pour into a glass.
  2. Add the graham cracker crumbs and sprinkle cinnamon on top. Mix with a spoon or straw, then enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Calories: 330 calories, Fat: 13 g fat, Carbohydrates: 51 g carbs Protein: 10 g protein

Zucchini & Rigatoni Parmesan

When I first became a vegetarian, I was the only one in my family to not be a meat eater. My grandma, a little Italian lady who spends approximately half of her life in the kitchen cooking, used to say things like, “How are you going to find a boy if you don’t eat meat? What are you going to make him for dinner or eat on a date?”

[Side note: I somehow nabbed a really great guy eating salads on dinner dates and never cooking him a steak 😉 ]

While she may or may not have understood my choice to go vegetarian, she always went out of her way to accommodate me with vegetarian eats, in addition to about 20 other dishes she would make for every family dinner. One of the things she used to whip up all of the time was eggplant parmesan. While I loved eggplant, I somehow developed an allergy to it in my teenage years. Whomp. From then on, instead of eggplant parmesan, she started making me things with zucchini – especially zucchini parmesan.

I thought of her on Monday night, when I made my own zucchini parmesan dish for dinner:

I first made my own tomato sauce, but if you’re short on time or want to simplify the process, use jarred tomato sauce instead.

Zucchini & Rigatoni Parmesan

Serves 4

  • 2 large zucchini, cut lengthwise into thin slices
  • 2 c tomato sauce
  • 6 oz rigatoni, or other short shaped pasta
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 c part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 c chopped fresh basil
  • salt & pepper to taste

Boil a pot of salted water and cook pasta according to directions. Preheat oven to 350.

Meanwhile, heat 1 TBSP of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until lightly browned. Add half of the zucchini slices and cook until tender on both sides. Repeat once more.

Spread 1/2 of the zucchini slices into an 8 x 11 pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Layer 1/2 of the pasta on top. Next, pour 1 cup of tomato sauce over pasta. Arrange 1/2 of the basil over the sauce, then add 1/2 of the mozzarella evenly. Repeat this process 1 more time.

Bake the dish in the oven for about 10-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted and lightly browned.

Nutrition facts per serving: 350 calories, 15 g fat, 16 g protein, 43 g carbs

Banana Peanut Butter Pancakes

First thing this morning, Harley and I ventured out for a long walk around our neighborhood trail. As my stomach growled, I started to think about breakfast. Most days, I eat Greek yogurt with fruit, cereal with protein powder and fruit, or a smoothie for breakfast. But every couple of weeks, I get a craving for pancakes. Today was one of those days, and as we got some exercise in, I concocted a breakfast recipe in my head.

Despite my love for pancakes, you won’t find pancake mix in my kitchen cabinets. I’ve become accustomed to mixing a bunch of ingredients together to make up my own recipe when I have pancake yen. Here is today’s creation:

These light and fluffy banana pancakes have a subtle hint of peanut butter, and are the perfect portion to serve breakfast for one. I used butterscotch flavored peanut butter, and think they’d also be awesome with chocolate peanut butter (and of course, plain old peanut butter never fails!).

Banana PB Pancakes

  • 1/4 c whole wheat all purpose flour
  • 1/2 mashed banana
  • 1 packet of Stevia sweetener
  • 1/2 TBSP baking powder
  • 1/4 TSP salt
  • 5 TBSP unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 TBSP vegetable oil
  • 1 TBSP peanut butter

Heat up your skillet to medium high heat.

Mix the flour, banana, sweetener, baking powder, salt, almond milk, and oil in a bowl. Warm the peanut butter in the microwave, then add it to the pancake batter. Combine everything well.

Form 3 pancakes and cook until lightly browned on both sides.

Nutrition stats: 310 calories, 14 g fat, 7 g protein, 45 g carbs

I’m off to the gym to for a workout!

Tips for Making Smart Choices in Unhealthy Environments

Happy Sunday Funday!

Our job as puppy babysitters has come to an end. Hogan was adorable and fun to play with, but watching him for a few days reminded me of how far we’ve come as dog owners with our Harley girl. It is so nice to be out of that puppy stage and for her to be fully potty trained, no longer teething and way more chilled out. I’m happy with just having one dog and think it’s safe to say that we won’t be getting a new puppy anytime soon!

This weekend was a very sporty one for me. Last night we went to the Chargers/Cowboys preseason game. I’m a huge NY Giants fan, but it was a really fun time finally going to an NFL game in San Diego. It was even better because the Chargers were playing the Cowboys, who I strongly dislike, so last night I was all Go Chargers! and just rooting for the Cowboys to lose as I usually do.

Then, I spent this afternoon downtown at Petco Park for a Padres/Giants game. This also marked the first baseball game I’ve been to in San Diego. As I said, this weekend was sports packed!

Between these two sporting events and the concert I went to last week, I’ve been around a ton of unhealthy food lately. This got me thinking about the ways I try to make it easiest on myself to make good choices in environments that aren’t necessarily promoting healthy eating and drinking. Here are a few tips I have:

  • Don’t go hungry. Before the football game last night, we made sure to have dinner. I had a busy morning today, but on the way to the baseball game, I made sure to fill up with a fruit smoothie and protein bar. If you go to the event with a full belly, you’ll be less likely to crave the fat-filled nachos or sugar-filled cotton candy everyone’s eating around you.
  • Scope out all your choices. If you do go hungry, check out all your options before standing on the first line you see. At the Chargers game, I saw a farm-to-table food stand full of decent for you eats, such as mozzarella & tomato salads. I obviously got excited about this even though I wasn’t hungry or eating –YAY for healthy options! These types of stands may not be available everywhere, but it’s smart to look around and see. The more we as consumers request higher quality eats, the more choices we’ll be presented with.
  • Hydrate. Sometimes your body will mistake thirst for hunger, so make sure you drink water and stay hydrated before and during a sporting event, concert, or whatever your plans may be. Out of all the overpriced things for sale, the $5 bottle of water is most worth your purchase.
  • Pick one indulgence. If you’re dying for a beer and could kind of go for popcorn with it, just buy the beverage. An all-or-nothing mentality (which I can certainly be guilty of myself) will only make you feel guilty afterwards, but if you only eat/drink the thing you’re in the mood for the most, you can lessen the damage and enjoy it more. Better yet, split your purchase with a person you’re with, as popcorn and nacho orders are usually multiple portions anyways.
  • Skip the soda. Okay, so you can’t get the jumbo pretzel out of your head at the ball game. Instead of depriving yourself of something you’re really in the mood for, I say go ahead and get that pretzel. But, don’t get a regular soda along with it, as it will knock you back hundreds of more calories, not to mention all of the sugar it contains. Instead, opt for water and hydrate yourself!  *Random tidbit: According to the HBO series The Weight of the Nation, soda and sugar sweetened beverages are the #1 calorie source in Americans’ diets. It’s also the ONLY individual food/drink directly linked to obesity.*
  • Lastly,  if you overdo it at an event one night (and who hasn’t done this?!), there’s no use in punishing yourself and feeling guilty afterwards. The important thing is to just shake it off and get back to a healthy routine the next day.

“Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you who you are.” – Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

A Boozy Monopoly Night

Happy Saturday!

Look who we’re babysitting for the weekend:

Adam’s friend recently got this 10-week old Bulldog and had to go out of town this weekend, so we are watching him for a few days. I can’t even deal with the way Hogan wiggles his cute little body around!

Hanging in his little bed

We were interested to see how Harley would act with Hogan here. She’s gotten a little territorial with him, but last night they were rough housing with each other like old buddies. Harley is typically really submissive and kept rolling over and letting him get on top of her to play. He is just this little goofball who was flopping around and doing his miniature bark and it was pretty entertaining!

Moving onto food, check out what I baked this morning:


Banana cinnamon muffins from the Skinny Bitch cookbook. One of my first blog posts talked about this recipe (here) – they are SO yummy!

Now for this week’s edition of “What this Vegetarian Eats in a Day,” here is a rundown of my Friday eats –

Breakfast was a cinnamon apple sandwich: a Granny Smith apple cut into thick chunks with cinnamon peanut butter, Kashi Go Lean Crisp Cinnamon Crumble cereal, and sprinkled cinnamon in the middle.

When my stomach started growling for lunch, I whipped up some homemade hummus

…and spread some on whole wheat toast with sliced avocado, lettuce, tomato, and a slice of cheddar cheese, along with some strawberries:

I liked this lunch so much I just might repeat the same exact combo this afternoon.

Later on in the day, I snacked on a Chobani apple cinnamon yogurt. I’m kind of obsessed with Greek yogurt. It’s high in protein, low in fat and calories and delicious. I think this may be my new favorite flavor!

For dinner last night, Adam and I used a Groupon we had for a restaurant in Hillcrest called Fig Tree Cafe. First we share an appetizer of roasted tomato, onion, basil, and goat cheese bruschetta:

And then my entree was a mixed greens salad with goat cheese, walnuts, dried cranberries and lemon-poppyseed dressing:

[Easy healthy living tip: always order your dressing on the side. I usually don’t wind up using all the dressing and save myself some unwanted calories by doing this!]

San Diego has so many great areas and things to do and see, and I love getting deals for places I’ve never been to and trying them out. Sure, some deals wind up working out better than others (I got a pretty weird massage recently with one), but I adore exploring our city. And who doesn’t like to save some bucks?!

After dinner, for a reason I’m not sure of, Adam decided that he really wanted to play Monopoly. Once we picked up the game at the store and returned home to hang with the dogs, it turned into a boozy game night at our place.

It became my “cheat” night and I enjoyed a bottle couple glasses of Gewurztraminer wine and some pretzel crisps while Adam and I got into our game of Monopoly. Hey, we all deserve to indulge sometimes right? 😉

We were laughing at how we used to play this game as kids, but probably had little concept of what it was all about. Mortgages? Rent? Utility bills? I’m pretty sure as a 10-year old I wasn’t too in the know on these things, but I distinctly remember having drawn-out games of Monopoly with my older brother. They lasted for days, and we would take our money and pieces to our rooms when we were done playing for the night, in fear that the other person would cheat and steal some of the other’s assets.

It was also pretty comical because at the start of the game I said, “One of the biggest things I remember about Monopoly is that whoever lands on (and buys) Park Park and the Boardwalk first always wins in the end.” I was right, and unfortunately, that person was Adam! No worries though, I have plans to coax him into playing cards sometime in the near future and redeeming myself (…but we aren’t competitive with each other!).

Question: What were your favorite games to play growing up? 

Besides Monopoly, I also remember loving Life, Uno, Candy Land and Sorry.

15 Minute Meal: Spinach Ricotta Pasta

Hi friends! Hope you’re having a great week.

This evening when I got home from the gym, I was pretty ravenous. Wanting to prep dinner quickly, I threw together this easy, cheesy pasta dish:

Spinach Ricotta Pasta

Serves 4 

  • 8 oz [multigrain] angel hair or spaghetti
  • 6 c of raw baby spinach
  • 1 c cherry tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 c light ricotta cheese
  • 1 c light shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Salt & pepper

Boil a pot of salted water and cook pasta according to directions.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and cook for a few minutes until lightly browned. Add tomatoes and cook for about 5 minutes.

Add a large handful of spinach to the pan. Cook until wilted, then add more spinach a handful at a time until all of it’s wilted.

In a bowl, combine the ricotta and mozzarella cheese. Mix together well.

Once pasta is done cooking, drain then return to the pot. Mix the cheeses and veggies in with the pasta. Add salt and pepper to taste, and combine everything well. Serve immediately.

Per serving: 380 calories, 13 g fat, 24 g protein, 44 g carbs

Quote of the Day: “Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” – Jim Rohn