Tortilla Wrap: Shrimp Scampi & Veggies

I bought tapioca flour just to try this recipe, and I’m so happy I did. With a love of tortilla wraps, I was really missing the flour tortillas that I used for so many favorite recipes. But now I’ve found a non-grain, Paleo version. Yay! Eating healthier means I miss out on some old favorites, so if I can find a replacement recipe I am a happy lady.

Note that I do not use cheese often and, when I do, I use only a little. It is more like a treat, and one I will likely be cutting out completely.

Ingredients

2 almond flour tortillas (I use this recipe from Paleocupboard.com.)

1 tomato slice, diced

2 cucumber slices, diced

shredded lettuce

6 shrimp scampi (I use the scampi recipe from Paleoplan.com.)

mozzarella cheese, shredded (optional)

mild cheddar cheese, shredded (optional)

  1. Place the tortillas on a plate.
  2. Spread shredded lettuce over each tortilla.
  3. Top with the other vegetables.
  4. Place three shrimp on each tortilla.
  5. Top with just a little of each shredded cheese.
  6. Enjoy!

Tips

  • Almond and tapioca flours do not come cheap. Shop around online and off for the best deals.
  • Buy whatever vegetables you like that can be found on sale, to save money.

Serving Suggestions

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Shannon

Melon Parfaits

I enjoy my parfaits with vanilla or mint flavored coconut cream when consuming them as a snack or dessert, but can also be used as a side at lunch or dinner. This is a refreshing dish to have on a warm day.

Ingredients

1/8 cup diced cantaloupe

1/8 cup diced honey dew melon

1/8 cup diced watermelon

coconut cream flavored with pure vanilla or mint extract

1 tsp crushed almond slivers or unsweetened coconut flakes

  1. Place a tablespoon of cream at the bottom of a tall, clear glass.

  2. Put the cantaloupe into the glass, and top with another tablespoon of cream. Spread the cream over the cantaloupe.

  3. Add the honey dew and spread another tablespoon of cream over diced melon.

  4. Add the watermelon, and add more cream.

  5. Top this with a teaspoon crushed almond slivers or unsweetened coconut flakes.

Tips

  • Top with berries rather almonds or coconut flakes.

  • To save money, grow your own melons and berries.

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve parfaits with a casserole.

  • Serve in place of salad with meat and sweet potato meals.

Enjoy!

Shannon

 

Pancakes with Apple-Maple Syrup

During my healthy eating journey, I’m trying to refrain from saying ‘I’m on a diet’. What I’m really doing is creating a lifestyle change. One that will not only help me to lose weight and be healthier, but will allow me to keep the weight off and stay healthier. Diets don’t do that. Lifestyle changes do. A healthy lifestyle will help me to live life to its fullest.

That’s not to say that sometimes I wont want a treat. For instance, I love pancakes and syrup. I don’t eat them often, but I wanted to find a healthier way to enjoy this breakfast just the same. I use a Paleo pancake recipe, and maple syrup and not the sugary syrups. I also do most of my cooking in coconut oil these days.

Pancakes with Apple-Maple Syrup

Apple-Almond Pancake Recipes

Apple-Maple Syrup

Cinnamon

Ground cloves

  1. Make the pancakes according to the recipe directions.
  2. Make the syrup according to the recipe directions.
  3. Place two pancakes on a plate.
  4. Top with warm syrup.
  5. Sprinkle cinnamon and ground cloves over the top.
  6. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Try different pancake and syrup recipes for variety.

Serving Suggestions

  • Serve the pancakes and syrup with a smoothie or citrus water.

Shannon

 

Smoothie Bowls

I recently received samples of Leap Organic Instant Smoothie Bowl Powders from their team. They want to get the word out to a wider range of people about their products, and I agreed to try these powders and write about my experiences.

I was more than happy to help. I love smoothies, and have toyed with the idea of trying smoothie bowls for a while now. This is the beginning of my smoothie bowl journey, and I’m planning more combinations in 2017. I’ll be sure to post all recipes here.

When the packets arrived, I read them over front and back. They contain many ingredients that are healthy. Depending on what package is used, you’ll see they contain things such as pea protein, kale, pomegranate, hemp, coconut, goji, spinach, apple, and pineapple. Notice the superfoods. This means that important nutrients are packed into each powder packet, like protein, Omega – 3, fiber, and a bunch of vitamins your body needs to function properly. Learn more about what ingredients go into the powder here. The point of a smoothie bowl is to pack a lot of nutrients into one meal.

According to the site, these powders are gluten-free, vegan, and kosher. They also do not contain dairy or soy, and are non-GMO. I noticed on the site that you can order samples for the cost of shipping. $3.00 and some change. So if you want to try the powders, now is a good time.

A bonus of the LEAP Organic Instant Smoothie Bowl Powders is that you can stock up on them and store in the pantry. They will last quite some time, and can be used in many ways. (Read more about this below.)

Here are the smoothie bowl combinations I’ve tried so far:

Red Power Bowl with Banana Slices

Photograph byShannon L. Buck copyright November 17, 2016.6 ounces chocolate almond milk

1/2 packet of Leap Red Power powder

1 egg

1 large banana, peeled

sprinkling of slivered almonds

  1. Pour the 6 ounces of almond milk into a blender and add the Red Power powder, an egg, and 1/2 of the banana.
  2. Blend until mixed, then pour into a bowl.
  3. Top with sliced banana and slivered almonds.

Blue Zeal Bowl with Banana and Pear

6 ounces coconut milk

1/2 packet LEAP Organic Blue Zeal powder

1 egg

1 large banana, peeled

1 pear, cored

2 Tbsp. organic, unsweetened coconut flakes

  1. Pour the 6 ounces of coconut milk into a blender and add the Blue Zeal powder, an egg, 1/2 of the banana, and 1/2 the pear.
  2. Blend until mixed, then pour into a bowl.
  3. Top with sliced banana, diced pear, and the organic, unsweetened coconut flakes.

Blue Zeal Bowl with Grapes and Kiwi

Photograph byShannon L. Buck copyright November 17, 2016.6 ounces vanilla almond milk

1/2 packet LEAP Organic Green Revive powder

1 egg

1 small banana

1 kiwi

12 grapes, halved

a sprinkling of slivered almonds

  1. Pour the 6 ounces of vanilla almond milk into a blender and add the Green Revive powder, an egg, and the banana.
  2. Blend until mixed, then pour into a bowl.
  3. Top with sliced kiwi, halved grapes, and the slivered almonds.

You may have noticed that I only used half a packet each time I made a smoothie bowl. That amount is plenty filling for me, when adding other ingredients, and I want to be able to experiment with other uses as well. I’m thinking I can sprinkle the powder on other foods, or add it into other recipes, throughout the winter, to add some much-needed nutrients when funds are low.

Some of what I plan to do:

  • Sprinkle on my oatmeal bowls.
  • Add to my Paleo brownie batter.
  • Add to my Paleo muffin batter.
  • Add to my Paleo cookie dough.
  • Sprinkle over hot cocoa.

Have you used this product yet? What are your impressions? In what other ways can you think of to use the powders? Comment below, or email me at shannonlbuck@gmail.com.

Shannon

The Experiment: Saving Money by Not Using a Shopping List

If you read Try This to Save Money on Groceries and A New Way to Plan Meals, you know I was planning an experiment. I meant to do this before now, but the temperatures have been too low for me to walk from Walmart to work. Ordinarily I do the shopping then walk to work, placing my food in the refrigerator until my shift is over. However, I’ve not been able to shop regularly because my asthma kicks in at drastically low temperatures.

This weekend has been marvelous! And I decided today was the day to shop.

Ordinarily I plan my menu before I go to the store, shop sales, and use coupons (trying to use sales with coupons when I can!) and keep it all very organized. Today I decided to do things a little differently. I did not plan a menu, except to know that I wanted lemons and limes so I could make some lemon-limeade this week. I also needed some almond milk.

I did take stock of what I have available at home. I was all set with:

  • Organic diced tomatoes
  • Organic coconut milk
  • Coconut water
  • Coconut cream
  • Organic coconut oil
  • Organic ghee
  • Organic almond flour
  • Organic coconut flour
  • Organic tapioca flour
  • Organic raw honey
  • Organic maple syrup
  • Eggs (A few store-bought + 1 dozen farm fresh from my friend Tam!)
  • Carrots
  • Sausage, enough for 1 meal
  • Frozen fruits, for smoothies (Some melon chunks, and some citrus fruits.)
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 1 side salad
  • 1 Granny Smith apple
  • 1 Buttercup squash

Keep in mind, I usually have most of the above items on hand before a grocery shopping trip.

During a good shopping trip, where I buy quite a bit, it would not be uncommon for me to spend between $60.00 and $65.00. Just for me. And that is (mostly) good-for-you stuff, with just a few items that are processed and not real good for you to lessen costs a little.

I did not want to spend that much, and I wanted to test out my theory that one can save money without planning for a shopping trip, while buying many of the less expensive things and still getting enough healthy food to feed oneself for the week.

Stew meat, on sale at $3.80 per pound = $16.07 (saved $7.53)

Organic spinach and arugula, good size package, 5 ounces = $3.28

Almond milk, 1/2 gallon = $2.98

Vegetable tray (cherry tomatoes, green beans, celery, carrots), 2 1/2 cups = $5.98

Organic Red Delicious apples, 7 count = $3.67

Kiwi, 3 = $1.35

Bananas, 4 = .77

Limes, 4 = $1.32

Green cabbage, 1.94 pounds = $1.32

Strawberries, 1 pound = $1.98 (Saved $.50)

Meyer lemons, 7 count = $1.98

Sweet potatoes, 2.15 pounds = $2.11

Red potatoes, 1.19 pounds =$1.17

Total Spent = $43.98

Savings over a typical week = $16.02 – $21.02

  • I can get quite a few meals out of the stew meat, red potatoes, and sweet potatoes, when using them with the carrots and squash I have on hand.
  • The spinach and arugula will mainly be used in smoothies, but I might also make a couple of meals where I serve them with eggs and sausage. This will allow me to stretch the sausage to two meals, and be plenty filling.
  • I may also make some homemade applesauce.
  • I was so happy they had lemons and limes. They didn’t the last time I was in there.
  • I was surprised at how good the strawberries looked, and could not resist the price.
  • Organic is expensive, and I cannot afford to get everything this way. So I do what I can, with what is available. I hear apples are one of the worst fruits to buy non-organic, so I’m trying to be good with that. The same with the spinach.
  • I do know the Clean 15 and the Dirty Dozen, but Walmart in my area does not always have organic options for everything, and I couldn’t afford to get all organic anyway.
  • I truly wish I could afford grass-fed, etc., meats, but they are just not in my budget.
  • The trays of organic vegetables did not look all that fresh this week, so I went with the non organic tray.
  • Notice how I did not use coupons, and only a couple of items were on sale, yet I still came in at less.

I’ll have to deal with what I have on hand now that the shopping trip is over, but I don’t think that will be a problem. Between my groceries and what I already had on hand, I am pretty well set.

Tomorrow is my day off, and I’ll spend it making meals for the week. I will better know afterward how many meals I have for the coming week.

Happy shopping!

Shannon

Apple-Almond Pancakes

I’m living a Paleo lifestyle now, for the most part, which means no grains for me 😦 I needed to mix things up a bit, so I bought some almond flour.

An expensive treat, let me tell you! Thank goodness not much is needed at a time. Once in a while I can make pancakes or another such treat, and it wont break the bank. Mind you, I don’t have pancakes for breakfast every day. But once in a while it will be nice to have a couple.

I don’t drink cows milk, but enjoy having almond milk on hand. Only the unsweetened variety, which is actually pretty sweet in my opinion. Any type of apple will work well in this recipe. A good size jar of coconut oil may seem expensive, but really isn’t. I bought my jar 30 ounce jar toward the end of March, and am not even half done with it more than two months later. I paid $6.99 plus tax.

Because I’m trying to eat healthy, I am not consuming syrup. I needed a substitute for this condiment, and decided on unsweetened applesauce and cinnamon. The combination was very tasty.

Apple-Almond Pancakes

Serves 2, 2 pancakes each

Can be refrigerated for a second breakfast tomorrow.

Ingredients

2 eggs

1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup almond flour

1 apple, peeled, cored, and diced

1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce

cinnamon

coconut oil for cooking

  1. Crack the eggs into a medium size mixing bowl. Whisk the eggs together.
  2. Add the unsweetened almond milk and whisk again.
  3. Whisk the almond flour and baking soda into the egg mixture, then add the diced apples and mix well.
  4. Allow to sit a few minutes while warming a skillet over medium-high heat. Melt a little coconut in the pan.
  5. Pour some of the batter into the hot skillet, and cook until the edges are cooked. Flip and cook a minute longer.
  6. Top each serving with 1/8 cup of unsweetened applesauce, and sprinkle with cinnamon.

Tips

Serving suggestions

  1. Serve with a side of greens and a hard-boiled egg.
  2. Serve with sausage and vegetables.

Enjoy!

Shannon