Gluten Free Cajun Crab Cakes

cajun crab cakes

Cajun Crab Cakes

  • Servings: 12
  • Time: 30-60 mins
  • Difficulty: medium

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound lump crab meat 
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil 
  • 1/2 small onion, finely chopped 
  • 1/2 poblano chile, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped 
  • 1 garlic clove, minced 
  • 1 tsp salt 
  • 1/4 tsp chile powder 
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper 
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper 
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten 
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp whole grain mustard 
  • A few dashes of hot sauce 
  • 1 scallion, finely chopped 
  • 2 Tbsp finely chopped Italian parsley 
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon 
  • 3/4 cup gluten free bread crumbs 
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil 

 

Directions:

  1. Place the crab meat in a large mixing bowl. 
  2. Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, poblano, garlic, salt, chile powder, black pepper, and cayenne and cook, stirring about 3-4 minutes until the vegetables are softened but not brown. Transfer the vegetable mixture to a mixing bowl and set aside to cool for about 10-15 minutes. 
  3. Add the crab, egg, Greek yogurt, mustard, hot sauce, scallion, parsley, lemon juice, and 1/4 cup of the bread crumbs to the vegetable mixture. Using your hands, gently combine the ingredients. 
  4. Using a 1/3 measuring cup, form the mixture into cakes, packing gently to look like hockey pucks. Cover the cakes and chill for 20-30 minutes. 
  5. When you are ready to cook the cakes, place the remaining 1/2 cup bread crumbs in a pie tin. Dredge both sides of each cake in the crumbs, shaking off the excess. Heat the 2 Tbsp of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot but not smoking, fry the crab cakes for 4-5 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Do not over-crowd the pan- fry in batches if necessary. Serve immediately with favorite tartar or remoulade. 
cajun crab cakes

Mediterranean Pesto Chicken Salad....in A Jar

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For those of you who know me personally, you know I am a planner. I enjoy daily to-do lists, updating my calendar, and thinking five steps ahead for any situation. Since planning is my thing, Sunday meal prep is my game. As they say, “a Sunday well spent, brings a week of content!” It’s hard to beat the feeling of having healthy homemade meals ready to grab and go.

Lunch this week will be salads in a jar, similar to the theme from my last post. (Apparently it’s a “jar meal” kind of week).

 

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Mediterranean Pesto Chicken Salad...in a Jar

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 45-60 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 package (or two bags) of romaine hearts
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 20 grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1.5-2 cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 4 oz feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • Trader Joe’s Pesto Chicken, cooked and diced (or you can cover 1 lb. chicken with 3-4 Tbsp pesto sauce and cook)
  • 4-8 Tbsp Balsamic dressing (I prefer the Annie’s brand)

Directions:

  1. Set out 4 wide-mouth quart-sized mason jars.
  2. In each jar add 1-2 tablespoons of dressing to bottom of jar
  3. Next add 1/2 cup chickpeas, 1/4 of the cucumbers, and 10 tomato halves into each jar
  4. In a small bowl, gently toss avocado in lemon juice (to prevent it from browning)
  5. Divide avocado, feta, and chicken between the jars
  6. Add lettuce until full
  7. Cover each jar with a top and save in fridge for up to 5 days 

 

Hope you enjoy!

What are some of your favorite grab and go lunches?

 

Cheers! 

Megan

Triple protein (noodle-less) mini lasagnas

mini lasagnas

I couldn't resist jumping on the "meal-in-a-jar" trend that's making its way around the internet. Those little jars just make everything so darn cute. And, it's built-in portion control! Since the Seattle summer is starting to fade away and the air has become more crisp, it felt necessary to start adding warm and cozy meals to my weekly menu. What could be better than good ol' lasagna? It's easy, delicious, and protein packed. For the mini lasagna, I skipped the noodles, and instead focused on protein and veggies.

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Triple Protein (noodle-less) mini lasagnas

  • Servings: 6
  • Time: 1hr
  • Difficulty: easy

Ingredients: 

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. cooking oil
  • 2 cups of your favorite tomato/pasta sauce in a jar (I prefer herb or basil sauces)
  • 1 small zucchini, sliced thin
  • 1 cup cottage cheese (2% or less) (or ricotta cheese)
  • 2 egg whites
  • 20 basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 Tbsp dreid parsley
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 9 Tbsp shredded reduced fat mozzarella
  • 6- 7.4 oz clamp jars
  • Optional: add in mushrooms, sautéed bell peppers, diced eggplant, yellow squash, or other veggies of your choosing (just remember, there’s only so much room in those little jars!)

Directions: 

  1. Start by removing the rubber gasket from all jars. (Optional: remove the entire lid from the jar)
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  3. In a large skillet, warm cooking oil over medium heat. Add in onion and garlic, sauté until for 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add turkey to skillet and brown, keeping onion and garlic in pan.
  5. Once brown, drain excess liquid. Add in 1.5 cups of tomato sauce, parsley, and oregano. Mix well and reduce heat to low.
  6. In a small bowl, mix cottage cheese, egg whites, basil, salt, and pepper.
  7. In a 7.4oz clamp jar, spoon 1 Tbsp of tomato sauce. Next, begin layering each jar: 1. add 4-5 slices of zucchini, 2. 1-2 Tbsp turkey mixture, 3. 4-5 slices zucchini, 4. 1-2 Tbsp cottage cheese mixture, 5. 1-2 Tbsp turkey mixture, 6. 1.5 Tbsp shredded mozzarella.
  8. Fill all jars, then place them on a lined baking sheet and bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes.
  9. Once cooked, let cool. Store in fridge, covered, for up to 5 days.
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Thai Chicken Collard Wraps

I’m having a love affair with collard greens and I’m not sorry. Move over bread and tortillas, there’s a lean green wrapping machine that is taking your spot in my lunch bag.

After having a wrap at my nearby PCC market, I was in heaven. The next day I purchased my very own collard greens and have made wraps for lunch ever since. The beauty about these leaves is that they are tough enough to withstand being filled with goodness and then left to sit in the fridge for 3 days before you eat them. Bread, however, is usually partially soggy by the time I get to work.

This past Sunday, I prepped enough wraps for lunch for the week, then just grabbed them out of my fridge each morning on my way to work. SO EASY! Although you could do just about anything with a collard wraps: humus and veggies, turkey caesar, southwest chicken…… this week it was all about the Thai chicken wrap.

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Thai chicken collard wrap

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 30 mins
  • Difficulty: easy

Ingredients: 

  • Collard greens (usually 1-2 leaves per wrap, the bigger the better)
  • 15-20 Thai basil leaves
  • 1 lb baked chicken breast, diced
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1 cucumber, julienned
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 1 serving of spicy almond dipping sauce or peanut sauce/dressing of your choosing

Directions: 

  1. Collard greens have a thick stem and center rib that need to be dealt with first. Start by trimming the stem, then trim down the center rib so that it’s about the same thickness as the leaf. You can go the extra step of making the leaves even more flexible (and less bitter) by blanching them, i.e. placing them in a large saucepan of boiling water for about 30 seconds, then transferring them to an ice bath. If you don’t plan to use all of your collards at once, wrap them in damp paper towels and store them in your fridge for 3-4 days.
  2. Mix the almond sauce and the diced chicken in a bowl.
  3. To assemble, lay the collard green in front of you, stem pointing towards you. Like a burrito, add your ingredients towards the end of the leaf nearest to you (Thai basil leaves, chicken/sauce, carrots, cucumber, and bell pepper). Begin to roll the collard up tightly, tucking in the sides of the leaf as you go. Wrap in parchment paper or Saran wrap to keep tight while storing/traveling. I like to cut mine in half and home and then wrap them again in tinfoil so they don’t leak and they are easier to eat.
  4. Store pre-made wraps in fridge for up to 3 days. 

Enjoy!

 

Gluten Free Raspberry Lemon Yogurt Muffins

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Lazy Sundays are just the best. My idea of a lazy Sunday would include some (or all) of the following: sleeping in, a trip to the farmer’s market, brunch with friends, watching football (GO HAWKS!) or movies, baking or cooking, a nap, a walk around Greenlake, reading a new novel……I could probably go on and on.

Seattle got a little taste of the fall this weekend with crazy windstorms, rain, and power outages galore. With the weather still crisp this morning, it meant one thing….today was going to be a lazy Sunday:

  1. I would take a trip to the farmer’s market all the while sporting tall brown leather boots and a scarf
  2. Bake something delicious for the week
  3. Snuggle up with a good book and a mug of tea in the afternoon

Knowing that berry season is just about over and Fall is just around the corner, I was inspired to pick up some local raspberries during my trip to the Ballard farmer’s market. However, I knew that I wasn’t looking to add these to yogurt or throw them into a smoothie. No, these raspberries had to be made into something warm and “Fall-like”. Summer berries + Fall inspired food = A delicious berry muffin.

Over the last year, I have been exploring fun ingredient substitutions for my recipes. In this recipe, the subtle nutty flavor and higher protein contents of the almond meal offers a pleasant alternative to classic all-purpose flour. I chose to use yogurt instead of oil/butter, simply because I knew the eggs and almond meal would offer enough fat; while the yogurt would give the desired moisture one looks for in a muffin.

Hope you enjoy! 

 

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Raspberry Lemon Yogurt Muffins

  • Servings: 12
  • Time: 30-35mins
  • Difficulty: easy

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups almond meal/flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • 6 oz container of plain Greek yogurt (1% or 2%)
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 Tbsp raw honey
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice + zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Place paper muffin liners in a 12 cup muffin pan.
  2. In a medium to large bowl mix the almond meal, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In separate large bowl, whisk the 3 eggs. Add the Greek yogurt, lemon juice, honey, and vanilla. Mix until smooth.
  4. Gently mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
  5. Fold the raspberries into the batter, trying not to break the berries.
  6. Using a 1/3 cup measuring cup, scoop the batter into the muffin pan cups. The batter should be even with the top of the muffin liner.
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Insert a toothpick into the center of a muffin. If the toothpick comes out clean, the muffins are done baking.
  8. Carefully remove the muffins from the pan and let cool on a wire rack. 
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Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Bell Peppers

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My clients hear me say this all the time, “use your vegetables as your vessel!” What I mean is, skip the white bread, rice, and pasta; look for ways to be creative with your food. You can still have the texture of noodles, but maybe they’re made of broccoli stems. Or, instead of using bread for your sandwich, make a wrap using Boston lettuce or collard greens. I know this can sound weird for many, but with some trial and error, I guarantee that you’ll find some recipes that you love…like this one!

Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Bell Peppers

  • Servings: 4-8
  • Time: 30mins
  • Difficulty: easy

Ingredients:

  • 16 thin slices of provolone cheese
  • 4 green bell peppers, stem removed, cut in half lengthwise, seeds discarded
  • 1/4 pound of deli roast beef, sliced into 1/2-1″ strips
  • 1 small yellow onion, cut into 1/2″ strips
  • 4 cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Line a baking sheet with tinfoil and place the peppers skin side down.
  3. In a skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté until golden brown. Turn the heat down to medium. Add the mushrooms, roast beef, and spices. Stir fry until the mushrooms are soft, about 2-3 minutes.
  4. Place the peppers in the oven to cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Gently remove baking sheet from oven and carefully line each pepper with 1 slice of provolone cheese.
  6. Scoop the beef-mushroom mixture into each pepper.
  7. Place baking sheet back in oven and cook for another 5-7 minutes, or until pepper is soft.
  8. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and add 1 slice of cheese to the top of each pepper. Cook again for 1-2 minutes, or until cheese melted.
  9. Serve immediately. 

 

Sweet Potato Egg Noodle Nests

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I’m pretty sure that my spiralizer is one of my favorite kitchen gadgets of all time. I have made noodles from different fruits and vegetables: broccoli stems, zucchini, apples, and cucumbers to name a few. For this recipe I wanted to try something new; try to incorporate veggie noodles into a breakfast meal! Thus came the sweet potato veggie noodle hash browns! Add an egg and you have a great protein + carb mix!

Sweet Potato Noodle Egg Nests

  • Servings: 2
  • Time: 20mins
  • Difficulty: easy

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled with ends cut off.
  • 4 eggs (2 per person)
  • 1-2 Tbsp coconut oil

Directions:

  1. Attach the sweet potato to the spiralizer and begin spiralizing! For further instruction watch this YouTube video. Divide the noodles into four piles (should be about a small handful or <1 cup).
  2. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
  3. Add the noodles to the skillet, making sure to keep them in four separate piles. Gently hollow out a circle in the middle of the pile for the egg to settle. Let the noodles cook for 3-5 minutes, until golden brown on the bottom and form holding.
  4. Gently flip the noodles over and continue to cook for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown and crispy (like hash browns).
  5. Crack eggs into middle of hollowed area of noodle and cook 2-3 minutes, or until desired consistency. If you don’t like a runny yolk, you may want to flip the “egg nest” over to allow the yolk to cook.
  6. Serve immediately and enjoy! 

Watermelon Salad with Goat Cheese and Basil

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How is it already August?! Summer is flying by and I don’t want it to end! Being that watermelon is an iconic summer fruit, for me this salad wraps up some of the summer flavors in a nutshell (or should I say, a watermelon rind). Quick and easy to make, this recipe is perfect for a picnic, BBQ, or as a refreshing snack while you’re sitting on the porch drinking a tall glass of delicious _______.

Soak up the last few weeks of heat and enjoy these essential summer flavors!

Watermelon Salad with Goat Cheese and Basil

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Time: 15 mins
  • Difficulty: easy

Ingredients: 

  • 1 personalized watermelon
  • 4-5 oz of crumbled goat cheese
  • 4-6 sprigs of basil, leaves removed and cut in a 

Directions: 

  1. Cut watermelon in half. Using a melon-baller, scoop ball shapes out of the watermelon and set them aside in another bowl. Once most of the watermelon balls are removed, scrape out the extra melon flesh and place in tupperware for another use (Watermelon Margaritas anyone?).
  2. Add the crumbled goat cheese to the bowl with the watermelon balls and gently toss. Make sure not to let the goat cheese melt or smear.
  3. Add the mixture back to the hollowed out watermelon “bowl”, garnish with basil, and serve immediately   

Black Bean Noodles, Corn Salad, and a Creamy Chipotle Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

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Recently, a client brought packages of black bean and soybean noodles for me to try. I had never heard of bean noodles, nor did I know what to do with them. However, after reading the nutrition facts and discovering they had a whopping 23 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber per serving, I knew I had to come up with a recipe for them. This sauce recipe was designed to compliment the black bean flavor while also providing rich nutrients and some extra protein and calcium. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

 

Black Bean Noodles, Corn Salad, and a Creamy Chipotle Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 45-60 mins
  • Difficulty: moderate

Corn Salsa

  • 1 cup frozen or fresh hello corn
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1/2 of a small red onion, diced
  • 1/8 cup of cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 lime, juiced

Creamy Chipotle Roasted Pepper Sauce

  • 3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 poblano pepper
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Other ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Mix all of the corn salsa ingredients together. Cover and store in fridge until ready to serve.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line baking sheet with foil. Lay the bell pepper, poblano pepper, and garlic clove on their sides. Place the tray into the oven and roast for 20 minutes. Using tongs, flip the peppers and garlic and roast for another 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. Once cool, remove the stems and seeds from the peppers.
  3. In a blender, combine all sauce ingredients and blend until smooth.
  4. Cook the black bean noodles as the package instructs.
  5. In a separate sauce pan, gently heat the sauce until warm but not boiling.
  6. Plate the pasta, add sauce, and top with corn salsa. Garnish with avocado. Recommend serving with carne asada. 
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Frittata with Spinach, Goat Cheese, Sweet Potato, and Caramelized Onions

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I could have called this my kitchen counter frittata…but that doesn’t sound very delicious. Truly, that’s what this was. The beauty of a frittata is that there are no rules! You’re free to put whatever your heart (or stomach) desires into that skillet. Obviously eggs are a must but, other than that you are free! This combination was inspired by the items on my counter (and a few in my fridge). And since I made this on a Sunday, I had leftovers for breakfast all week! How fantastically easy! I might also recommend making a “muffin tin” version of this recipe….hand held goodness right there. 

Frittata with Spinach, Goat Cheese, Sweet Potato, and Caramelized Onions

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Time: 30-45 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • 4 oz of goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4 of a large sweet potato, skin removed and diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1/2 large sweet onion, diced
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a medium to large oven proof skillet, heat coconut oil. Add onion and sauté. Once translucent, add sweet potato and continue to sauté. Let cook until onions are a caramelized texture and potatoes are soft.
  3. Remove the onions and potatoes from the pan.
  4. In a large bowl, beat eggs with a fork until all yolks are broken and mixture is somewhat consistent. About 30-60 seconds.
  5. Pour the egg mixture into the skillet, add goat cheese, sweet potatoes, onions, and spinach (spread evenly). Cook for 1 minute on stove over medium heat.
  6. Gently place skillet into oven and frittata cook for about 10-15 minutes. Once done, the eggs should be set but not browned.
  7. Serve from the skillet or slide on to a plate. Cut into 6-8 slices and enjoy!