gluten free, recipes, Uncategorized, vegan

Mexican “Beef” and Beans

I love Mexican food! I never met a guacamole I didn’t like, and I’ve been known to eat my body weight in rice and beans!

My friends and I from my last job always hit up this great Mexican place in Philly for lunch, and I’ve been fortunate to find another fabulous Mexican restaurant here at the beach.

Since money is tight, I don’t go out to eat very much. Also, I find that since I don’t eat meat, my choices can be a little limited when I dine out.

Over the weekend, I was really in the mood for Mexican food. After a quick trip to the grocery store, and just a few short minutes in the kitchen, I whipped up this amazing dish.

I hope you’ll try it, and I hope you enjoy it! If you make it, leave a comment below and let me know what you thought.

Mexican “Beef” and Beans

1 package of veggie crumbles (I use the Gardein version)
1 small white or yellow onion, diced
2 teaspoons of minced garlic
1 can of light kidney beans, drained and rinsed (you can also use dark kidneys, or even black beans)
2 cups of brown rice
2 teaspoons of olive oil
Dash of hot sauce (optional)
Topping choices – Guacamole, sour cream, tortilla chips, (optional)

1. In a large skillet heat the olive oil. Cook the garlic and onions for about 5 minutes, or until the onions are translucent.
2. Add the veggie crumbles and cook per the package directions.
3. Add in the kidney beans and about a half a cup of water and cook until beans are heated through.
4. Add a little splash of hot sauce (if desired).
5. Cook brown rice (I usually just toss mine in the microwave; follow the package directions).
6. Assemble dish by putting a layer of brown rice on the bottom. Top with the “beef” and bean mixture and top with topping of your choice. As you can see, I used a whopping serving of guacamole.

In all, the dish took me less than 10 minutes to make! The recipe yielded enough for almost a week of meals and I switched up the toppings throughout the week to make it a little different each time.

There you have it!

Take care of yourself, be nice to yourself, and be well. And until next time – veg in, don’t veg out.

Karen

Are you a busy professional? Stressed out? No time to cook? No time to exercise? No time to take care of yourself or your family? STOP…I can help! Email me today at karen@thecaringcoachingcenter.com for your free health consultation. I work with busy professionals who are trying to take care of themselves and their families. I change people’s lives by introducing them to little changes that yield BIG results. Don’t delay, reach out today!

Karen Ann Kennedy’s commitment to wellness and service is at the heart of her life and career. As a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, a decorated United States Army veteran, and a longtime Human Resources Director, it is only natural that Karen would launch The Caring Coaching Center, to support others in reaching their health, fitness, and lifestyle goals. As the company’s President, CEO, and “Coach in Chief,” Karen provides individual, group, and corporate health and wellness coaching that is flexible, fun, and free of denial. As Karen likes to say: “Little changes. BIG results!”

Thanks to her studies at The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, the world’s largest nutrition school, Karen is well versed in the importance of nutrition and healthy living. Karen also has extensive experience in compassionately coaching and counseling others through her work in human resources and volunteer management, having worked in this industry for over 20 years.

Karen shares her knowledge and passion for healthy living as a regular contributor to The Huffington Post. Known for her bright smile, boundless energy, and approachability, Karen is an in-demand speaker who has presented training programs for many prestigious organizations and schools in the Philadelphia area, including The National Constitution Center, The Urban League of Philadelphia, Constitution High School, Planned Parenthood of New Jersey, The Penn Museum of Archeology and Anthropology, City Year of Greater Philadelphia, and the Upper Darby School District.

Karen is also a decorated veteran of the United States Army, serving her country for eight years including a tour of duty in Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Storm.

Born and raised in Philadelphia, and now residing in Ocean City, New Jersey, Karen offers Caring Coaching to clients nationwide. In addition to coaching, she loves cooking, marathon running, and writing her blog, Carrots Don’t Scream When You Boil Them.

Karen is also the author of Your Best Year Yet! 365 Days of Little Changes that Add Up to Big Results! Available on www.amazon.com.

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breakfast, gluten free, recipes, vegan

Creamy Quinoa

If you’re looking for a gluten free, vegan, hearty, healthy, and delicious hot breakfast, look no further!

This fabulous recipe that will warm your belly on those chilly fall mornings.

I love that the recipe is so versatile. Add in peaches, blueberries, strawberries, or blackberries. Bananas and cinnamon one day, pumpkin puree the next! This recipe can be customized to meet your tastes.

Creamy Quinoa
1 cup of quinoa – make sure you rinse it really well
2 cups of water
1 cup coconut milk, or milk of your choice
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of ground cardamom
Dash of salt
1 ½ cups blueberries, peaches, strawberries, or other fruit of your choice

1. Combine quinoa and water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.
2. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 – 15 minutes.
3. Stir in milk, spices, and fruit; warm through.
4. Top with brown sugar, chopped pecans or walnuts, or hemp seeds, if desired.

That’s it! Quick, easy, and delicious!

If you make this recipe at home, leave a comment and let me know what you put in to make it your own.

Take care of yourself, be nice to yourself, and be well. And until next time – veg in, don’t veg out!

Karen

Did you get your copy of Your Best Year Yet! October is all about cooking, so get your copy TODAY at http://www.amazon.com.

Karen Ann Kennedy’s commitment to wellness and service is at the heart of her life and career. As a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, a decorated United States Army veteran, and a longtime Human Resources Director, it is only natural that Karen would launch The Caring Coaching Center, to support others in reaching their health, fitness, and lifestyle goals. As the company’s President, CEO, and “Coach in Chief,” Karen provides individual, group, and corporate health and wellness coaching that is flexible, fun, and free of denial. As Karen likes to say: “Little changes. BIG results!”

Thanks to her studies at The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, the world’s largest nutrition school, Karen is well versed in the importance of nutrition and healthy living. Karen also has extensive experience in compassionately coaching and counseling others through her work in human resources and volunteer management, having worked in this industry for over 20 years.

Karen shares her knowledge and passion for healthy living as a regular contributor to The Huffington Post. Known for her bright smile, boundless energy, and approachability, Karen is an in-demand speaker who has presented training programs for many prestigious organizations and schools in the Philadelphia area, including The National Constitution Center, The Urban League of Philadelphia, Constitution High School, Planned Parenthood of New Jersey, The Penn Museum of Archeology and Anthropology, City Year of Greater Philadelphia, and the Upper Darby School District.

Karen is also a decorated veteran of the United States Army, serving her country for eight years including a tour of duty in Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Storm.

Born and raised in Philadelphia, and now residing in Ocean City, New Jersey, Karen offers Caring Coaching to clients nationwide. In addition to coaching, she loves cooking, marathon running, and writing her blog, Carrots Don’t Scream When You Boil Them.

Karen is also the author of Your Best Year Yet! 365 Days of Little Changes that Add Up to Big Results! Available on http://www.amazon.com.

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Uncategorized

Raspberry Smoothie

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This past weekend, I ran a Spring Detox Event. The highlight of the event was making smoothies for the group. It was fun to mix different combinations and give everyone a try. Each participant went home with a “smoothie starter kit” that had maca powder, ground flaxseed, cacao powder, and some recipes to get them started.

While we didn’t make this particular recipe at the seminar, it’s a really good one, and so I wanted to share it with all of you. This is a gluten-free, vegan, protein-packed smoothie that will really get your day started in a healthy way. Enjoy!

Raspberry Smoothie

5 ounces silken tofu

1 cup frozen raspberries (you can use strawberries instead, if you prefer)

1/2 cup fresh orange juice

2 TBSP honey (use brown rice syrup if you want to keep the recipe vegan)

1 TBSP fresh lemon juice

Blend and enjoy!

Take care of yourself, be nice to yourself, and be well!

And until next time, veg in….don’t veg out!

Want to be at the next great event? Don’t miss a thing! Hop on over to http://www.thecaringcoachingcenter.com and check out all the latest information. While you’re there, be sure to sign up for my monthly newsletter so you’ll always be in the know!

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Uncategorized

Denial is not Just a River in Egypt!

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After months of debate with myself, I have finally made the decision to go gluten-free. I have known for several months that I needed to do it, but I was too busy visiting another state; the state of denial!

I had every excuse under the sun, “it will be too hard,” I’m a vegan; what will eat?” I felt bad every time I ate bread or pasta, but not bad enough! You see, that’s what happens when you decide to make a change, you have to feel bad enough, be uncomfortable enough, to make that change!

The decision became crystal clear this week when, after eating bread at breakfast, pasta at lunch, and a peanut butter sandwich at dinner, I felt more horrible than I could remember feeling in recent years. I spent a half hour of my one-hour karate class in the bathroom (TMI), and knew then that it was time to leave the state of denial and move to a new state; the state of ACTION!

Will it be easy to go gluten-free? Probably not! But I need only think about how crappy I felt the other day to remind myself that eating that muffin, bowl of pasta, piece of bread, or piece of cake is not worth it!

Is there something in your life that you are denying? Is there something you feel strongly that you need to do? You could do what I did and wait until it’s so uncomfortable that you have no choice but to make a change, or, you can be proactive in your life and decide to make the changes in your life that you know will benefit you.

Some people need that “rock bottom” moment before they make a move, and if that’s you, than at least you can recognize it. But if you can make changes now, DO IT! Trust me, in six months you’ll wish you had started today!

Take care of yourself, be nice to yourself, and be well!

And until next time, veg in, don’t veg out!

Karen

On a gluten-free diet? Struggle with your weight? Living with high blood pressure, diabetes, or any other health issue? Health coaching can help put you on the path to wellness! Contact me TODAY for a FREE health consultation, karen@thecaringcoachingcenter.com. Evening, weekend, and phone consultations are available, but sessions fill up FAST, so don’t miss out, get yours today!

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Uncategorized

Awesome Amaranth

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If you haven’t yet discovered Amaranth, now is the time to give it a try. Amaranth is nutty, peppery, and naturally gluten free! It is also an excellent source of the amino acid lysine, making it a complete protein, which is great for vegans and vegetarians looking to bump up their protein intake.

Amaranth is rich in fiber, calcium, iron, and magnesium, so there’s no reason not to give it a try!

Amaranth is very absorbent so when cooking it, you’ll need about 5 cups of water to cook 1 cup of the grain. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and then simmer for 20 – 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Amaranth is quite versatile, as it can be used as the base for a sweet or savory dish. Try mixing your cooked amaranth with sauteed vegetables (mushrooms are excellent) or make it a sweet breakfast dish by adding coconut milk, nuts, or fruit.

You can also get amaranth flour, which is great for gluten-free baking.

Ready to give amaranth a whirl? Of course you are! Check out the recipe below to get you started.

AMARANTH CORN CAKES

1 cup yellow cornmeal

3/4 cup amaranth flour

1 1/2 cups vegetable broth

1 TBSP olive oil

1/4 cup diced onion

1/4 cup diced roasted red peppers

1 tsp minced garlic

2 TBSP white wine vinegar

1/2 tsp chili powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp ground cumin

1/8 tsp ground pepper

Coconut oil (for frying)

1. Combine cornmeal and flour in a large bowl.

2. Bring veggie broth to boil and pour the broth over the flour mixture. Stir and set aside; the consistency will be thick.

3. Heat olive oil over medium heat. Saute the onion, peppers and garlic until softened.

4. Stir in vinegar and seasonings.

5. Fold vegetable mixture into amaranth mixture. In a hot skillet with a little of the coconut oil, scoop batter into mounds, flatten slightly, and brown on both sides. 

6. Drain off extra oil on paper towels.

Enjoy!

Already an amaranth fan? Reply to this post and tell me how you use amaranth in your cooking!

And until next time, veg in, don’t veg out…

Karen

Want more recipes? Sign up for my monthly newsletter! Just go to http://www.thecaringcoachingcenter.com and click on the newsletter button.

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Uncategorized

Gluten-Free Biscuits

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A few blogs ago I talked about the biggest mistake that people make when going gluten-free. In case you missed it, the mistake is relying too much on over-processed foods that are loaded with sugar and other non-natural ingredients.

The biggest complaint I hear from clients and friends that are gluten-free is that they miss bread and other baked goods so much! There are lots of gluten-free varieties of bread out there on the market, but, if you like to bake, you can also make your own! Or you can skip the bread…and make biscuits!

These biscuits are lovely and light and are the perfect complement to a bowl of thick, hearty chili, soup, or stew. They also make a fine side to your breakfast, and taste yummy with a little orange marmalade on them!

Enjoy! And until next time, veg in, don’t veg out!

Gluten-Free Biscuits

1/3 cup coconut flour

5 TBSP coconut oil or butter, melted

4 large eggs

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Mix flour, oil, eggs, and salt together. Add baking soda, then apple cider vinegar and mix again.

3. Drop rounded tablespoons onto baking sheet and press down to a disc shape.

4. Bake 11 – 13 minutes, or until cooked through. Cool 10 minutes before serving. 

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Uncategorized

Why You’re Doing Gluten Free All Wrong – And How to do it Right!

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Gluten free has become the “sexy” diet. People are jumping on the bandwagon of gluten free eating without doing the necessary research to find out if it’s truly right for them!

First off, unless you have Celiac disease or are gluten intolerant, you may be causing more harm than good. I am not advocating for any particular diet, I am just asking people to do, what I always ask them to do, and that is, be educated!

If you are following a gluten free diet for weight loss, please understand that you may or may not experience weight loss. Giving up gluten alone will likely not shed the pounds.

So what is the biggest gluten free mistake???

People rely too much on commercial, manufactured gluten free products. Now, I am not bashing these products. There are a lot of amazing companies out there like Enjoy Life, Udi’s Gluten Free, and Glutino, that make fabulous products. But gluten free products are still processed and can promote sharp increases in blood sugar and insulin (the fat-storage hormone).

Some gluten free products contain ingredients that are high on the glycemic index, meaning that they convert to sugar quickly in the body. This can lead to spikes and crashes in your energy levels, and, can lead to increased hunger! This can lead to weight gain, not weight loss! And commercial gluten free products can still contain ingredients like corn, sugar, and soy.

I always encourage people to eat real, whole foods, with ingredients that they can pronounce. Whether you eat a gluten free diet or not, this principle is still the same. That’s not to say that you need to spend your life eating nothing but fruits and vegetables, but it does mean paying attention to food labels and knowing what you are eating.

Below are some tips to help you shop and eat smarter:

1. When you select a gluten free product, try to stick with those that are low in sugar, and eat them in moderation. Treats should be just that…TREATS…you should not be relying on packaged foods (gluten free or otherwise) as your main source of food. Indulge periodically but keep the packaged stuff to a minimum.

2. Make your own baked goods. Opt for almond or coconut flours that are naturally gluten free. Invest in some gluten free cookbooks. If you are truly gluten free in your home, cooking at home will help you avoid cross contamination. Learn to make some really fabulous gluten free dishes that you can enjoy at home. And learn enough dishes that you can swap them in and out to avoid boredom!

3. Get to know your gluten free companies! Research them on the web, write to them, CALL THEM! These companies exist because they want to provide products to people who need them. Ask them about their practices, learn about their manufacturing processes. How do they ensure their products are completely gluten free? Become an educated consumer!

Not sure if you have a gluten intolerance? An elimination diet may help! I can help you work through the elimination diet process and help you discover other food allergies and sensitivities that you may have. Visit my website at http://www.thecaringcoachingcenter.com to get started today!

And until next time, veg in, don’t veg out!

Karen   

 

 

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