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Saturday, September 20, 2014

Kids Carrot Macaroni

My wonderful friend Sarah and fellow mommy gave me this idea to try.  Our toddlers are getting older and beginning to know when we get "sneaky" with their vegetables.  She decided that since carrots were orange, the sauce would look just like cheese sauce.  Well, she was right.  It looked and TASTED just like standard macaroni and cheese.  Awesome.

Serves 6 (I made a big portion for leftovers to freeze)


2 cups whole wheat penne pasta
1 cup cooked baby carrots
1/2 cup low fat cream cheese
1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese


Cook pasta and set aside to cool.  Boil baby carrots until tender.  Using a blender or food processor, puree the carrots with the cream cheese and chicken broth until creamy.  Stir in salt, pepper and garlic powder.  Set aside to cool.

Preheat oven to 350. 

Once all ingredients are cool, mix together with the cheddar cheese.  Pour into a baking dish and bake, covered, for 15 minutes.  Turn oven to broil, remove the lid of the dish, and broil about 4 minutes or until browned and bubbly on top.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Cheesy Cauliflower Quinoa Bake

This is a great "hearty" side dish.  I love to pair this with steak or pork.  It is a comfort food without all the carbs and fat. 

Serves 6


1 head cauliflower
1 cup quinoa (cooked according to package)
1 cup chicken broth (there will be a little extra in the can, save incase you need to add more liquid)
1 cup cream of chicken soup
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 Tbsp Salt
1 Tbsp Pepper

1.  Clean and trim cauliflower into florets.  Using a food processor or blender, pulse small amounts of cauliflower at a time, finely chopping it.

2.  Combine quinoa, cauliflower, broth, cream of chicken, cheese and salt and pepper.  In a casserole dish, bake at 400 for about 20 minutes, or until browned and bubbly on top. 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Pesto Shrimp and Zucchini "Pasta"

Again, a terrible picture, but a delicious healthy and easy meal!  You will need a Spiraler, if you don't have one. 

Serves 2


3 zucchinis, spiraled
10 previously frozen cooked jumbo shrimp, thawed and tails removed
1/4 Cup + 2 Tbsp olive oil, separated
1/2 Cup lowfat cream cheese
Juice of 1 lemon
1 Tbsp grated lemon zest
6-7 Large fresh basil leaves
2 Garlic cloves
Pinch of cayenne pepper
2 Tbsp crumbled feta cheese
2 Tbsp toasted pine nuts

1.  Spiral the zucchini and place in a sautee pan on the stove.  Add 2 Tbsp olive oil and heat on low to soften zucchini "noodles".

2.  Using a food processor or a handheld immersion blender, blend the remaining olive oil, cream cheese, lemon juice, lemon zest, basil, garlic and salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. 

3.  Add shrimp to zucchini and toss.

4.  Add sauce to zucchini and shrimp. 

5.  When tossed and hot, serve and top with feta and pine nuts.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

BBQ Chicken "Skinny" Pizza

Ok so I'm not the world's best photographer.  But, the title should say it all.  This is SO easy, SO delicious, SO healthy and a weeknight staple here in the Stephens household.  Feel free to get creative with the ingredients!

Serves 1 (individual pizza pies)


1 Tofouyan brand whole wheat low carb wrap (found in the deli)
1/2 cup barbeque sauce (I prefer Sweet Baby Ray's)
1/2 cup cooked chicken (rotisserie or Perdue pre-cooked frozen, thawed chick breast) shredded
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
2 Tbsp chopped red or white onion
1 Tbsp fresh chopped basil
1 handful fresh spinach, chopped (or you can use broccoli florets)
1/4 Cup crumbled goat cheese
1/4 Cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Pinch crushed red pepper


Preheat the oven to 375.  Throw the wrap (pizza crust) in the oven alone for a few minutes.  It will bubble up, and then take it out.  This gets it a little toasted so it doesn't get too soggy with all the toppings.

Let cool for a couple minutes. 

Spread BBQ sauce evenly on crust.  Add peppers, onions, chicken, spinach and basil.  Then top with shredded mozzarella, goat cheese, and sprinkle with crushed red pepper.

Put in oven an additional 5 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is melted.