I wanted a Banana Split

{banana split, reconstructed}

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Last weekend, we went to Kalahari with Chase & my little brother.  On Friday, I started to get that sore throat feeling / clicking in your ears when you swallow feeling.  Great.  I was going to have a head cold while in a germ thriving 85 degrees indoor water park.  Luckily, I ended up being completely fine the day of the water park & only started to get congested Saturday evening.

On Sunday, I wasn’t feeling too hot at all.  When we came home, I took 4000mg of Vitamin C.  Since I work in a pharmacy, I am very aware that the majority of this was expelled from my body, but I also believe vitamin c cures all. Remember when I talked about eating organic after watching several food documentaries?  Well, they discussed their thoughts on how vitamins heal and cure in depth.  Since watching those, I’ve been religiously taking a vitamin C tablet and multivitamin everyday.  That being said, it may be in my head, but I instantly started feeling better after the vitamin c and a brief cat nap.

Once I started feeling better, I made myself a sandwich and spent the rest of the night on the couch perusing Pinterest and catching up on my Bloglovin’ feed.  After eating somewhat very crappy last weekend, I knew the last thing I needed was dessert.  Buttttttttttttt I neeededdddd something sweet.  I walked in and out of the kitchen convincing myself NO.  Must. Lose. Ten. Pounds.  I hate playing this game and it only makes me cranky.  So I gave in, but made myself a simple, not too unhealthy dessert.

Enter the reconstructed banana split.

Such a simple, yet delicious dessert (or snack) that won’t hurt your waistline too terribly.  You certainly can add whatever toppings you fancy / have on hand at the time too.  Another recommendation is to use Nutella instead of peanut butter!  So if you’re craving something sweet, but want to reduce your sweets, try out this dessert!

reconstructed banana split

Ingredients
1 banana
1 Tbsp peanut butter
2 strawberries, diced small
2 Tbsp mini oreos, crushed

Directions
1.  Cut the banana in half lengthwise.
2.  Smear the peanut butter overtop the banana.
3.  Top with strawberries and oreos.

IMG_3795Enjoy!

 

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Strawberry Banana Flaxseed Smoothie

{the pretty smoothie}

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I have been really into smoothie-making again.  They are just so easy to prepare and the combinations are endless.  I started making individual bags of smoothie combinations and putting them in the freezer.  I portion each for 1 smoothie, freeze it, pop into the blender, add a liquid, blend, pour, go.  The whole time change caused me to wake up a bit later so they were quite handy for a morning breakfast.

IMG_3639For these two combinations, I did the following:

#1) 3 very thin lemon slices, 1/2 cup frozen peaches, 1 handful of kale
#2) Fresh strawberries, blueberries, cherries, a handful of kale

Have you ever tried the Naked brand “smoothie” blends?  I really like them and usually cut them in half with water.  However, they are pretty calorie packed so I try to just use them as meal replacements.  I started trying different blended juices at the store and really liked the Bolthouse blends.  I tried the Carrot and Mango one – it was just OK, but the Amazing Mango one was, well, amazing.  It also is pretty thick so I cut it with water again.  I only used 4oz of the juice and the rest water.

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I am featuring this smoothie as a “recipe” on today’ post because I used the little addition of flax seeds.  Now, I wish I had used ground flaxseeds to reduce the seediness if you will.  So if you have a grinder, grind those babies up.

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So what’s the deal with flaxseed?

These seeds aren’t new to our world, they have been around for millions of years.  Us smart humans are just now wrapping our head around the health benefits of them – some of which are listed below.

+ Omega 3 essential fatty acids — the good fat that keeps our ticker healthy
+ Fiber — keep things flowin’ and our digestive system clean
+ Lignans — an antioxidant that protects against cancer-causing agents

Flaxseeds are pretty tasteless in my opinion.  I tend to add them into smoothies or sometime sprinkle over a salad.  For 2Tbsp they have about 75 calories – not bad at all for the health benefits that they punch.  A large container will last you a while too so go grab one and start using this wonder seed.

strawberry mango banana flaxseed smoothie

Ingredients:
1/2 cup strawberries
1 frozen banana
1 Tbsp flaxseeds
4 oz Amazing Mango
4 oz (or more) H2O

Directions
Add all ingredients to a blender and process until desired consistency.

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Taste of Tuesday: A Smo-ake

200x200ButtonGlit_zps84c0db97Happy Tuesday!  This is my 2nd Taste of Tuesday week and I am sharing with you all a healthy smo-ake [smoothie shake] I made the other night for dinner.  We had a Sunday Funday and I had a mimosa and Bang Bang shrimp tacos for lunch so for dinner a smo-ake was plenty.

You won’t seeing me drink a glass of white milk UNLESS there is an oreo at the bottom and several others for dunking.  I use milk in cereal and other recipes, but a glass of it grosses me out.  Lately, this almond milk fellow has intrigued me.  I came across it in several smoothie recipes and the commercial is kinda catchy.  I grabbed a carton of the Silk light version to try it out.

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I will be honest, it is a bit weird – it literally tastes like liquid almonds.  However, I found it to be very nice in the smo-ake.  It made it perfectly creamy, slightly sweet and a nuttiness to it.  Will you find me drinking this by the cup full?  No way.  I will be using it instead of cow milk in my smo-akes, however.  Try it out and let me know what you think!  And don’t forget to check out Jessica & Ashley’s blogs!

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Banana Pear Smoothie-Shake

1 pear
1 banana
1 cup light Almond milk
squeeze of 1/2 a lemon
2-3 ice cubes

Use a blender to puree all ingredients and serve chilled.

enjoy.

xoxosara

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Homemade Cinnamon Applesauce

{never buy again}

I finally got around to using a large amount of our apples from our trip to the Apple Orchard. Who knew apples kept so long?  Needless to say, we ate a lot of our apples plain for breakfast, lunch, and dinner so we are a bit appled out.  I couldn’t bear to waste nearly half a bushel of apples and I have wanted to make applesauce for a long time.

On Saturday, it was chilly and yet another fall day.  Dinner that night was Cincinnati chili requested by Bryan for the UofM vs. State football game.  I do have a pretty fabulous homemade Cincinnati chili recipe, but I wanted to focus on my applesauce so I went with one of the seasoning packets.  They are pretty dang good and only need a pound of beef and 6 oz of tomato paste.  I recommend the packets for sure, but when feeling ambitious make my homemade Cincinnati chili {post to come soon}.

As the chili bubbled on the stove, I started coring, peeling and cutting the apples.  I used what we had picked:  Red Delicious and Empire apples.  I researched applesauce for some time and there wasn’t a particular apple that was recommended across the board.  Feel free to use whatever is on sale at the store or if you prefer a more tart applesauce go with Granny smith.  Either way the apples release their sugars during the cooking creating the sweetness naturally.

Let me tell you.  My house smelled AH-MAY-ZING.  We had some people over and they thought an apple cinnamon candle was burning.  The applesauce tasted great right out of the crock pot warm and was even more delicious after sitting in the fridge.  I definitely have a new appreciation for homemade applesauce.  I plan to make it again with different apples and maybe a spin.  Pumpkin applesauce?

applesauce

{Click here for the recipe}

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