Superfood Smoothie Bowl

Did you ever notice how every food is now a “superfood”? Also most foods are now also detox foods. People need to slow their roll with putting food into categories.

Anyway, I know I owe you about a million two travel recaps along with a ton of other stuff I want to share, but I haven’t had the chance to create a recipe for a couple weeks and this takes a lot less brain effort to write then something I have to go fact-check.

Nicaragua was amazing. I’ll recap fully soon, I promise. Of course the first place I made my dad stop after he picked me up from the airport (at 11 p.m.) was the grocery store to buy spinach. I had been feeling pretty gross my whole trip and couldn’t wait to start eating super clean again.

I just felt like I ate so much when I really didn’t. I was just eating differently than normal (trying to eat for energy – surfing is hard work!) and I start to feel weird when I’m not eating a ton of veggies and protein. After Tuesday, I made the exec decision I was no longer going to eat white rice… I don’t love it, my body doesn’t love it, I might as well spend the calories somewhere else and eat something satisfying.

Sunday morning, I woke up pretty hungry from not eating anything substantial on Saturday (the Managua and Houston airports both lack healthy options and plane food is probably just injected with sodium). I also knew I needed vegetables stat. I had a smoothie bowl at this cool raw foods cafe in San Juan del Sur and decided to just Cassie-fy it. I was a little cold after breakfast but I suddenly had a ton of energy and felt like myself again. Oh, and did I mention it was delicious?

Superfood Smoothie Bowl

Superfood Smoothie Bowl | almost getting it together

Start your day the tropical way with a smoothie bowl.

What you’ll need:
Smoothie Bowl
2 huge handfuls spinach
1 cup frozen strawberries
1 cup ice
1/2 cup coconut water
1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder
1/4 cup raw rolled oats
1/4 avocado

Topping
1/2 banana
1/4 cup blueberries
2 tbsp Purely Elizabeth Blueberry Hemp Granola
1 tbsp hemp seeds
1 tbsp shredded coconut

What to do:
Put all smoothie bowl ingredients into your Vitamix blender and blend until smooth. It should be a little thicker than a normal smoothie and not flow out of the container – you should have to use a spatula to get it all out.
Put smoothie into a bowl (duh). Add toppings and try not to get a brain freeze as you dig in (this is coming from experience).

Superfood Smoothie Bowl | almost getting it together

Look at that green goodness.

Superfood Smoothie Bowl | almost getting it together

Smoothie bowl is ready for its close-up.

Superfood Smoothie Bowl Nutrition Facts

Chat with me:
What do you eat when you need to get back on track? Are you as obsessed with vegetables as I am?

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Salted Caramel Chia Pudding

Chia seeds are having a real moment. I personally love chia seeds, mainly because I have a fear of not getting enough omega-3s or fiber, and also a tablespoon of them can turn 1/2 cup of oatmeal into like 3 cups of oatmeal if you do it right. (Okay, maybe 2. Just add double the water). If you want to learn more about chia seeds (and seeds in general), Davida at The Healthy Maven had a great round-up of all thing seed.

Yes, if you live under the superfood rock, chia seeds are what makes chia pets. Also most things you should eat are plants so I don’t know why that scares you. Chia seeds also make pudding, without all the milk and sugar and crap JELL-O sticks in theirs (sorry, Bill Cosby). I’ve been seeing chia pudding everywhere and started craving it. I had a failed pumpkin chia pudding recipe… and then decided I wanted salted caramel pudding. I’ve been craving caramel pudding since I saw it on a post on Running with Spoons, but unfortunately caramel pudding does not exist in the US (or at least not in the greater Pittsburgh metro area grocery stores).

Even though this recipe looks time intensive, it seriously takes five minutes total. It’s kind of an overnight plus the whole next day sitting around waiting time, so start it before you go to bed (soaking the dates and almonds) then blend it all before you go to work/school/have a fulfilling life that doesn’t involve either of those (and then I’m extra jealous of your life and the fact you will be enjoying this delicious chia pudding). Make it for your next dinner party because it’s vegan, gluten free, paleo, raw – whatever, everyone can eat it unless they’re allergic to almonds.

Salted Caramel Chia Pudding
Serves Four

salted caramel chia pudding gluten free vegan | almost getting it together

Topped with a little cocoa powder because life is short.

What you’ll need:
1 cup almond milk, separated into 1/2
1/4 cup raw almonds
1/4 cup dates, pitted
3 tbsp chia seeds
1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan sea salt (or normal sea salt)

What to do:
Put almonds and dates in a small container and cover with water. Let sit overnight.
The next morning, drain water from almonds and dates.
Put almonds, dates, 1/2 cup almond milk and lemon juice into blender or food processor and combine until a liquid and no small parts remain.
Put chia seeds in a container. Poor almond-date-almond milk mixture over chia seeds. Add remaining 1/2 cup almond milk. Cover and shake to combine.
Let mixture sit at least 4 hours, or until chia seeds absorb all the liquid.
Top pudding with sea salt and enjoy.

salted caramel chia pudding gluten free vegan | almost getting it together

Eat it by itself or use on oatmeal, yogurt, fruit or squash.

Salted Caramel Chia Pudding Nutrition Facts

Chat with me:
What’s your favorite superfood? How do you like to eat it?

Mint Chocolate Chip Overnight Oats and a Giveaway

As usual, I’m behind the times on green recipes. Since my birthday falls 10 days before St. Patrick’s Day, clearly I have other priorities in March.

I had actually been craving a shamrock basic b***h shake (i.e. a mint flavored smoothie in my world) but when I made it I just felt… basic and unoriginal. Maybe I’ll still post it because it was pretty good but whatever. (Has anyone seen the nutrition facts on a real Shamrock Shake? Ew. Just ew. I saw them while looking one up to show Davida what they were).

Then it came to me – mint chocolate chip overnight oats. I remembered I had Peppermint NuStevia and had yet to try that flavor. I actually originally made this with just mint and it wasn’t minty enough. True peppermint extract scares me because of a peppermint extract overdose incident (if a recipe calls for 1/8 tsp of peppermint don’t increase it) so I was glad to have a little dropper that held me accountable.

This oatmeal was amazing. So good I had to text Angela to tell her. Honestly it’s vaguely scary looking – I’m kind of self-conscious about how my food looks anyway (#foodbloggerprobs) and I was really self-conscious of this guy. But whatever, get festive and make a jar now – they’ll probably be great hangover food on the 18th. (Off topic: for a while, a kale smoothie was my go-to hangover cure.) Plus – they’re gluten free and vegan!

Mint Chocolate Chip Overnight Oats

mint chocolate chip overnight oats | almost getting it together

Sorry these photos are dark – natural light is no joke.

What you’ll need:
2 cups spinach
½ large banana
½ cup rolled oats
½ cup unsweetened almond milk
2 tbsp cacao powder (or cocoa powder)
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 sprig fresh mint
5 drops peppermint NuNatuals Stevia
1 tbsp unsweetened carob chips

What to do:
Put spinach, banana, almond milk, cacao powder, fresh mint, and peppermint stevia in your blender and blend until smooth.
Put oats and chia seeds in a jar and shake to combine.
Pour blender mixture into jar.
Add carob chips to jar mixture.
Shake well to combine.
Refrigerate overnight. Top with Greek yogurt or additional carob chips! Try not to be self-conscious of your breakfast.

mint chocolate chip overnight oats | almost getting it together

Don’t let the color scare you.

Mint Chocolate Chip Overnight Oats Nutrition Facts

Now you can #getlucky and win a NuStevia prize pack that includes the peppermint, cherry vanilla and lemon flavors! I’m giving away four prize packs and this is open WORLDWIDE. You’ll also get some NuStevia packets for sweetening on the go. If you don’t think you’re lucky, you can score 15% off your purchase with BLG0614 on nunaturals.com.

Now for the not so lucky part… I am not currently self-hosting and the free version of WordPress has some serious limitations, so you have to enter by going to the Rafflecopter page. I hope this doesn’t deter you from entering. Feel free to leave me a comment or shoot me an e-mail if you have any problems entering and I’ll help you out. This giveaway ends at 12:00 a.m. on Monday, March 17th so enter now!

The giveaway is sponsored by NuNaturals but all opinions and recipe creations are my own. I was not paid for this post.

Chat with me:
What was your most memorable (or least memorable… haha) St. Patrick’s Day ever?

What I Ate Wednesday [4]: Savannah and Birthday Eats

Incase you don’t follow me on Twitter or Instagram, I spent the past weekend in Savannah. The last thing in the world I was going to do was spend my 25th birthday in Pittsburgh.

In early February, I received an invite in the mail to an award ceremony for my aunt who lives in Savannah on my birthday and knew it was a sign (she was named a “Woman of Distinction” by the Girl Scouts of Historic Georgia – little known fact, my family, especially my aunt, is super involved with Girl Scouts). I immediately called my cousin Jaimie who lives in Atlanta and we quickly planned a trip.

Since we arrived late Thursday and spent a few hours talking with my aunt when we got to Savannah, we slept in. There was a ton of fresh fruit so I had my favorite breakfast for my birthday – lots of oatmeal with fresh fruit and Greek yogurt (not pictured).

gluten free oatmeal with chia seeds and fruit what i ate wednesday | almost getting it together

My grandmother and aunts all have the same dishes. No matter where I am, I feel like I’m at home!

There was a luncheon for the awards ceremony, but nothing was really gluten-free so I picked at some grilled chicken and veggies. Totally forgot to take a photo and also it wasn’t photogenic. t was at the same table as all of my aunt’s girlfriends, many of whom I have ran half-marathons with in Savannah or Disney, so it was definitely fun. My aunt also did an Ellen-style selfie on stage… and I realized my entire family is selfie-obsessed except me.

family | almost getting it together

I look totally out of place with my cousins and aunt because of my dark hair and skin. Was I adopted?

Afterwards, we decided to go downtown and do a little shopping at my favorite store in the world, Paris Market (more about that on Getting it Together on the Road: Savannah, coming soon). I was hungry – verging on hungry, really – so we stopped by Zunzis and I had my staple salmon salad and one of Jaimie’s falafels that honestly was maybe the best falafel of my life.

Zunzis Savannah Salmon Salad Zunzis sauce What I Ate Wednesday | almost getting it together

Salmon salad from Zunzis with a bite of falafel off to the side.

My Aunt Sherry is a huge runner (I ran my first half-marathon with her on my 21st birthday!) so she signed us up for a Shamrock 5K that ran through the squares of Savannah. I was a little disappointed during the Savannah Half-Marathon that the race didn’t go downtown but after running approximately one hundred corners, I understand why.

I started scheming and thinking I had a chance to place in my age group. Never before (besides the AEO 5K we had at work this summer) have I been in the front of the pack (okay, top 1/5th of the pack) in a race. Eating a salmon salad an hour and a half before was a bad idea (I know better but my hunger got to me) and I definitely felt it around mile 1.5 (despite running a 7:42 mile two). I didn’t place in my age group, but I was in the top 15% overall and top 6% of women so I’ll take it. Also this time is off because I did not cross the start line at the gun – I was definitely sub-26.

savannah shamrock 5k | almost getting it together

THIS TIME IS WRONG, SAVANNAH.

savannah shamrock 5k | almost getting it together

I proceeded to never warm up that night after taking off my gloves, ear band and jacket.

My aunt is also gluten-free and told me about this new restaurant that had gluten free pizza called My Your Pie (JK on the my pie, I’m glad I fact-checked that). Your Pie is basically the Chipotle of pizza – you choose your crust (white, whole wheat or gluten free) then whatever cheeses, veggies and meat you want. I never eat pizza anymore (besides my 10-Minute Gluten Free Pizza), so I was pretty pumped to eat pizza on my birthday. Then I had to indulge because it was my birthday and eat a kid’s sized gelato – half pistachio and half dark chocolate.

what i ate wednesday my pie gluten free pizza | almost getting it together

Gluten free pizza from Your Pie.

what i ate wednesday my pie gelato | almost getting it together

Birthday treat – gelato from Your Pie.

So basically on my birthday I ate a ton and felt totally guilty on Saturday and had to run it all off (kind of… before I proceeded to drink a ton of champagne). This was really different for me because I feel like for the past few years I’ve had to go somewhere fancy for my birthday with my family and this year I just wanted pizza so I had it. This is basically a break-through with me eating things because I feel like I should.

Full Savannah recap coming soon!

And of course, linking up with Jenn from Peas & Crayons for What I Ate Wednesday!

Chat with me:
Have you ever been to Savannah? What did you eat on your last birthday? Is your family as cool as mine?

Autumn Vegetable Fritatta

I know autumn is long gone (unless you’re in the Southern hemisphere, then it is just on the horizon), but this is what a certain someone asked me to make when I asked what they wanted for breakfast. 

My mom used to make frittatas pretty often. I used to think they were so fancy, but they were her way of using up whatever vegetables were leftover in the fridge. I honestly hadn’t really made more than one or two before (that honestly were just failed omelets, so I was so surprised when this one turned out.

I probably would have used gruyere cheese (let me know if you try it with that), but the pepper jack gave it a nice kick. Plus, I add Cholula to anything savory that stands still so it gave me an excuse to use my favorite condiment and a little bit of avocado for some healthy fat on the side. I actually ended up eating a slice of this cold one morning when I was particularly snacky and knew I would be ravenous in an hour so I just wanted to nip the hunger in the bud.

Autumn Veggie Fritatta
Serves six

autumn vegetable gluten free fritatta | almost getting it together

Serve this for St. Patrick’s Day since it has some green in it… right?

autumn vegetable gluten free fritatta | almost getting it together

Gotta Fritatta.

What you’ll need:
4 eggs
5 egg whites
1 chicken sausage link
6 oz pepperjack cheese, grated
½ cup butternut squash, cooked
8 oz shitake mushrooms
4 cups spinach
¼ cup chopped green onions
¼ cup almond milk, unsweetened
2 tbsp garlic
2 tsp olive oil
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp crushed red pepper
¼ tsp crushed black pepper

What to do:
Heat a sauté pan or a cast iron skillet on the stove on low heat.
Add olive oil & garlic. Cook garlic until fragrant, about one minute.
Add chicken sausage and cook about 10 minutes or until nearly fully cooked.
Add mushrooms and cook until soft, about 10 minutes (because you’re on low heat).
While mushrooms are cooking, mix eggs, egg whites, grated cheese, almond milk, salt and both peppers in a bowl and set aside.
Add spinach, green onions and squash and cook until spinach is wilted, about 2-3 minutes. Continue stirring to make sure veggies are well mixed.
Add in egg, cheese and milk mixture. Turn up heat to medium.
Let sit on medium heat until fully cooked, about 10-15 minutes.
Set oven to broil and pop pan/skillet in for 3-5 minutes until top browns.
Serve with salsa, avocado or whatever else you like with your eggs.

autumn vegetable gluten free fritatta | almost getting it together

Look at all that vegetabley goodness.

autumn vegetable gluten free fritatta | almost getting it together

Soooo steamy.

Autumn Vegetable Fritatta Nutrition Facts


Chat with me:
What’s your favorite way to eat eggs? What meal could someone cook to impress you?

Coconut Blueberry Quinoa Pancakes

I had been craving two different breakfast foods – quinoa pancakes (which I had never had before but I often find myself craving foods I’ve never tried) and coconut blueberry waffles (alternatively, which I had never had). Luckily, President’s Day gave me a chance to create the breakfast food of my dreams since Saturday and Sunday breakfasts had been oatmeal (since I assumed I was doing a long run on Saturday then truly did a long run on Sunday).

Coconut Blueberry Quinoa Pancakes

Coconut Blueberry Quinoa Pancakes | almost getting it together

I was starving but managed these epic photos.

Coconut Blueberry Quinoa Pancakes | almost getting it together

The quintessential pancake shot.

What you’ll need:
½ cup cooked quinoa
¼ cup egg whites
¼ cup coconut milk
¼ cup fresh blueberries
1 tbsp coconut flour
1 tbsp shredded coconut
1 tsp vanilla
¼ tsp baking powder

Optional Toppings:
Coconut butter
Almond butter
Greek yogurt
Fresh blueberries

Coconut Blueberry Quinoa Pancakes | almost getting it together

Use the coconut butter. Trust me.

What to do:
Heat skillet on medium heat and spray with coconut oil (or whatever you use as a non-stick spray).
Mix quinoa, coconut milk and egg whites in a bowl.
Add coconut flour, shredded coconut, vanilla and baking powder and mix well. Coconut flour has a habit of sticking together – be sure to mix all of it out.
Fold in blueberries
Pour pancake batter onto heated skittle and let cook 2-3 minutes until bottom browns and is able to flip.

Flip pancake and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
Top with whatever makes your heart flutter and enjoy.

Coconut Blueberry Quinoa Pancake Nutrition Facts

Chat with me:
Do you crave foods you’ve never had? What are you currently craving?

Overnight Carrot Cake Quinoa

I’m all about using whatever random things I have left in the fridge and making a meal out of them. This overnight quinoa is no exception. I had a little extra quinoa from my Pumpkin Quinoa Breakfast Muffin and a little shredded carrot and apple from attempting to make carrot cake waffles.

Last year, I wasn’t as into quinoa as I am now. I was making overnight quinoa to try and use up quinoa. Then I learned about rinsing it before you cook it and everything made sense. Now it’s my second favorite grain (after oats, of course).

This can be sugar free if you don’t add the maple syrup (I did it without but I have super-sensitivity to sugar right now after not eating it for so long) and vegan if you don’t use yogurt. What’s life like without the creamy goodness of Greek yogurt, though? I’m lactose sensitive and I still eat it every day (totally worth it).

Overnight Carrot Cake Quinoa

Overnight Carrot Cake Quinoa | Almost Getting It Together

Getting fancy with text overlay.

Overnight Carrot Cake Quinoa | Almost Getting It Together

Gluten free, potentially sugar free and vegan breakfast.

 

What you’ll need:
3/4 cup cooked quinoa
1/3 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/4 cup shredded carrot
1/4 cup shredded green apple
1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 tbps shredded coconut
1 tbsp maple syrup (optional)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon, plus more for topping
1/8 tsp nutmeg

What to do:
Put quinoa and chia seeds in a mason jar or other container and shake to combine.
Add coconut milk, almond milk, carrots, apple, vanilla, maple syrup (if using) cinnamon and nutmeg and shake to combine again.
Put in refrigerator overnight.
In the morning, top with Greek yogurt, coconut and additional cinnamon. Try not to get yogurt on your hands digging out the last bite like me.

Overnight Carrot Cake Quinoa | Almost Getting It Together

A jar of protein and nutrients.

Overnight Carrot Cake Quinoa Nutrition Info (with unsweetened coconut milk and no maple syrup)

Chat with me:
How do you feel about quinoa? What foods do you not eat?