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Vegetarian Quinoa White Chili

By: Snap Fitness

This meatless chili is hearty and filling. Leave the toppings off to keep it vegan or add
more broth if you prefer a looser chili.


Vegetarian Quinoa White Chili


1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 cup water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño pepper, seeds and ribs removed, minced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 15 ounce cans white kidney beans (cannellini beans), rinsed and drained
1 15 ounce can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), rinsed and drained
2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
1 cup frozen corn
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Monterey Jack Cheese (optional)
Fresh cilantro (optional)
0% plain Greek yogurt
Whole grain tortilla chips


In a 2 quart saucepan, bring quinoa and water to a boil over high heat. Cover, reduce
the heat to low, and simmer until the water is absorbed, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the
onion and cook, stirring, until softened, 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and add
the garlic and jalapeño. Cook, stirring, for one minute. Add the cumin and chili powder
and cook, stirring, for another minute.


Add the beans, broth, corn, lime juice, and quinoa. Season with salt and pepper and stir
gently to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer uncovered,
stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes. If you prefer your chili more like soup, add an
additional cup or two of broth.


Serve chili in bowls topped with a sprinkling of monterey jack cheese, fresh cilantro, and
crushed whole grain tortilla chips, or swirl in a spoonful of plain Greek yogurt.

 

8 Reasons to Love Oatmeal

By: Snap Fitness

January is National Oatmeal Month! Oatmeal might just be the perfect food. It’s easy to make, tastes good, and can be used in any number of recipes. Whether it’s your go-to morning fuel or a quick mid-day snack, there are plenty of reasons to love oatmeal!

 

Not convinced?

 

Here are eight more reasons that will have you adding oatmeal to your diet:

 

1. Low in Calories

One 1/2 cup of oatmeal contains only 150 calories!


2. High in Fiber & Protein

One cup of oatmeal contains 4 grams of fiber and 6 grams of protein (one of the highest levels of protein found in a grain).

 

3. Stabilizes Blood Sugar Level

The fiber levels found in oatmeal help control blood sugar levels and slow down digestion time, prolonging the absorption into the bloodstream.

 

4. Reduces Risk of Diabetes

Oatmeal is also a good source of magnesium which helps regulate the body’s insulin and glucose levels.

 

5. Lowers Bad Cholesterol

Oats contain a fiber known as beta-glucan which has been proven in numerous studies to have beneficial effects on cholesterol levels.

 

6. Helps Athletic Performance

Oats are a slow-digesting carbohydrate that provides long-lasting energy – which makes for a great pre-workout meal. 

 

7. Safe for Those That Can’t Consume Gluten

Those with an allergy to gluten can consume certified gluten free oats.

 

8. Keeps You Full

Since oatmeal is full of fiber, it stays in the stomach longer and helps you feel fuller for longer, preventing the mid-morning snack urge.

 

 

Tips:

 

• The less processed the oats, the more fiber and health benefits can be gained. Avoid the instant oatmeal and opt for rolled or old-fashioned oats and add in the flavor of your choosing.

 

• Add-ins:

Toasted or Roasted Nuts

Nut butters such as peanut butter, almond butter, or cashew butter 

Fresh fruit such as apples, blueberries, bananas, or strawberries

Dried fruits such as cranberries or raisins

Chia or Flax Seeds 

Dark Chocolate Chips 

Shredded Coconut

Spices such as ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, or ground cloves

 

Check out our Oatmeal Protein ShakeOatmeal Applesauce MuffinOvernight Oats, and Upgraded Oatmeal recipes for an idea of how you can get more oats in your diet!

 

The Benefits of Coconut Oil

By: Snap Fitness

What if we told you there was something on your grocery store shelf that could help fight certain types of diseases like diabetes, cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, and help with weight loss? On top of all of that, it is good for your hair, skin, and you can cook with it? Can you guess what it is?

Coconut oil is your answer! Coconut oil is a natural remedy that has been around for centuries, but until recently has created buzz in the health and wellness industry. Studies show that consuming good, healthy fats like those found in coconut oil leave us feeling more satisfied and less likely to snack on unhealthy foods to curb cravings. Let’s take a look as to why coconut oil is so beneficial and how you can start using it to better your overall health.

Benefits of Coconut Oil

 

Weight Loss

Yes, coconut oil is a fat, but it actually can help in losing weight. The body does not store the fat in coconut oil as fat, but instead converts it into energy.


Diabetes

Coconut oil helps regulate blood sugar levels in the bloodstream.

Healthy Skin & Hair

Coconut oil is shown to help with bruising, scars, and cellulite. It is also good on the hair as it contains natural oils the body loses over time.

Helps with Brain Function

Studies have shown that coconut oil can improve cognitive function

Lowers Cholesterol

Coconut oil is made up on lauric acid which protects the heart by reducing total cholesterol and increasing good cholesterol.

Cooking with Coconut Oil

Unlike many other cooking oils, coconut oil can withstand high cooking temperatures. It’s the perfect addition to stir fry’s, baking, and roasting. Below are a list of substitutions and ideas for adding coconut oil into your diet.

Replace Butter for Coconut Oil in Baking

Because of its high saturated fat content, coconut oil has the same consistency as butter.

- Melt coconut oil on top of toast, popcorn, or fish.

- Add coconut oil into your smoothie for added flavor.

- Swap out olive oil when roasting vegetables with coconut oil.

- Use coconut oil in your coffee or tea as creamer.

It won’t take long to notice the benefits of coconut oil on your skin, hair, and in your cooking. It isn’t surprising why this natural remedy has been around for centuries, and remains a great health-aid for all types of ailments.


 

How do you like to use coconut oil? Tell us on our Facebook or Twitter

Tips for Eating Healthy While Traveling

By: Snap Fitness

With holiday breaks coming up, you might be logging a lot of hours driving or flying to see loved ones. When you’re traveling, healthy dining options can be limited. Fast food restaurants and cheap snacks at gas stations may be convenient, but they are not the best choices – especially if you’re stopping at them throughout your trip!

 

Just like packing your clothes, take a little time and try to plan out what you’ll be eating during your travels beforehand. Not only will it save you money, it’ll help you avoid unhealthy choices like French fries, greasy double cheeseburgers, and more.

 

Here are some easy tips to follow when it comes to eating while traveling:

 

Pack snacks. This is a great way to avoid grabbing candy or chips at the airport or gas station. Pick foods that are nutrient-dense and good sources of protein; they’ll help you stay full longer. Granola bars, dried fruit, and trail mix are solid snack options. Keep portion control in mind so you aren’t eating several servings in one sitting.

 

Drink more water. There are countless benefits to drinking water: flushes out toxins, boosts your immune system, improves skin complexion, and more. If you have the choice between water and soda, water’s always the clear winner.

 

Don’t skip breakfast. You need a morning meal to get your metabolism going. The longer you go without eating a meal, the hungrier you’ll be and in turn, more likely to over-eat. Start your day with a serving of oatmeal and a banana to get some energy!

 

Download a nutrition app. There are plenty of them available on your smart phone or tablet, like MyFitnessPal, Calorie Counter Pro, and more. If you’re ever unsure of the nutritional content in a meal or food item, simply scan the bar code or look it up by name.

Deep Green Sandwich Recipe

By: Snap Fitness

This satisfying sandwich is full of healthy fats and dark green veggies. Pile as much
kale, spinach, or spring mix as you can onto your sandwich to make this almost a salad
in disguise.


Serves 2


Deep Green Sandwich


1 avocado, mashed
1 tablespoon fat-free feta cheese
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
Coarse kosher salt
4 slices whole grain bread, toasted
2 radishes, thinly sliced
1 cup Kale, spinach, spring mix, or any combination of the three


In a small bowl, combine avocado, feta, and lemon juice. Season lightly with salt.
Spread the avocado mixture onto two slices of bread. Top with sliced radishes, leafy
greens, and another slice of bread.

 

Baja Chicken & Slaw Sliders

By: Snap Fitness

Flavorful and tangy, Baja Chicken & Slaw Sliders will be a hit at your

next barbecue. 

 

Baja Chicken & Slaw Sliders

4 Servings, or 8 sliders

 

1 medium mashed avocado

1 teaspoon lime juice

1/2 teaspoon finely minced lime zest

1/4 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, plus more to taste

2 cups broccoli slaw vegetables (or 1 1/2 cups peeled and julienned

broccoli stems, 1/4 cup thinly sliced red cabbage and 1/4 cup julienned

carrot)

1/4 cup thinly sliced sweet red pepper

3 tablespoons thinly sliced sweet onion

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

2 teaspoons jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely minced

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice

4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

8 gluten free slider buns or 4 gluten free hot dog buns, sliced in half

Mixed lettuce for sandwiches

8 tomato slices

 

In a small bowl mix avocado, lime juice, and lime zest. Season with

desired amount of salt and pepper and mix well. Cover and refrigerate

until time to assemble sandwiches.

 

In a bowl combine broccoli slaw mixture, red pepper, sweet onion,

cilantro, and jalapeño pepper. Whisk together olive oil, lime juice and

1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper.  Cover and place into

refrigerator until time to assemble sandwiches.

 

Heat  grill. When grill is heated and ready, sprinkle chicken breast with

cumin, chili powder, and desired amount of salt and pepper. Oil grill rack

lightly, then grill chicken over medium heat until cooked through, about 6

to 7 minutes per side. If preferred, chicken can be broiled 4” from heat

in the oven for the same amount of time.

 

Assemble sandwiches: Slice cooked chicken. Toast buns, if desired. Spread

avocado on rolls, then layer with lettuce, tomato, chicken and slaw. Top

with buns top. Serve sandwiches with extra slaw.

 

 

Chicken Satay Skewers

By: Snap Fitness

Warm summer months bring outdoor parties, picnics and grilling season. Instead of the same old burger, try grilling up something a little different. Chicken Satay Skewers are loaded with flavor. Lemon grass,ginger, garlic and cumin combine to make a fun and flavorful marinade that everyone can enjoy. Combined with the dipping sauce, the skewers are a fun dish to serve to family or friends. As this dish is also gluten and dairy free, you can share it with friends who may be sensitive. If you have peanut allergic guests, replace peanut butter with sunflower seed butter and reduce the sweetener slightly.

 

 

Chicken Satay Skewers with Coconut-Peanut Dipping Sauce

 

Serves: 6

 

 ¼ cup of lemongrass, minced

1 large shallot, minced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated

½ tbsp ground cumin

3 tablespoons gluten free fish sauce

3 tablespoons gluten free soy sauce

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons oil

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1/2” wide strips

1/2 cup canned coconut milk

6 tablespoons natural creamy peanut butter

1/4 cup water

1 to 3 tablespoons brown sugar, to taste

1 1/2 tablespoons gluten free red curry paste

1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

bamboo skewers, soaked in water for at least 30 minutes

 

Marinate chicken:

In a medium sized bowl mix together lemongrass, shallot, garlic, ginger,

cumin, fish sauce, soy sauce, honey and oil.  Put chicken in the bowl and

mix, coating chicken with marinade. Cover and refrigerate. Allow chicken

to marinate for at least two hours.

 

Make dipping sauce:

In a sauce pan over medium heat, whisk together coconut milk, peanut

butter, water, brown sugar, red curry paste and apple cider vinegar until

smooth and sugar crystals have dissolved. Remove sauce from heat and place

in a covered container in refrigerator until serving time.

 

When ready to make satay skewers:

Use metal skewers or soak bamboo skewers for at least 30 minutes. Preheat

grill or broiler.

 

Thread the chicken onto skewers. Repeat with all chicken.

 

When grill is heated, scrape down grate and oil lightly. Place chicken

skewers onto the heated grill. Cook for a few minutes, allowing the

chicken to get a nice sear, without burning. After a few minutes, flip the

chicken, and cook another few minutes, until the chicken is cooked

through.

 

If broiling, line a rimmed baking pan with foil. Lightly oil foil and

place chicken skewers on pan. Broil for 3-4 minutes, flip and broil on

other side. Continue to flip and broil until chicken is cooked through.

 

Serve cooked skewers with cold or warm dipping sauce, and your favorite

salad.

Spring Vegetable Frittata

By: Snap Fitness

This spring vegetable frittata is a great way to use those first farmer’s market finds of the season and add more vegetables to your diet. Serve this for brunch or alongside some baked sweet potatoes for a light supper. Using a flavorful cheese means you’ll need less of it, which saves on fat and calories, but if you don’t have any on hand a little cheddar or Monterey jack cheese will do just fine.

 

Spring Vegetable Frittata with Balsamic Burst Tomatoes

 

8 large eggs

2 tablespoons whole milk

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1/2 vidalia onion, chopped

1/2 bunch asparagus, ends removed and cut into bite size pieces

2 scallions (green onions), white and light green part only, chopped

1 cup baby kale or arugula

1/2 cup shredded smoked black peppercorn gouda cheese

Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 pint grape tomatoes

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

Dried parsley flakes, for garnish (optional)

 

Preheat the oven to 375ºF. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and milk. Set aside.

 

In a 10 inch, non-stick, oven-safe skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add the vidalia onion and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the asparagus and continue to cook, stirring often, for another 5-6 minutes. Add the scallions and kale and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until the kale begins to wilt. Add the egg mixture and stir quickly to incorporate. Sprinkle the cheese over the top and season with salt and pepper. Transfer the skillet to the hot oven and let cook 20-25 minutes or until set and just beginning to brown. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for a few minutes before cutting into 6-8 slices.

 

While the frittata is cooking, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the tomatoes and garlic and cook, shaking or stirring the pan often, until the tomatoes begin to burst, about 10 minutes. Add the balsamic vinegar and allow to cook, stirring often, until the tomatoes become coated in the syrupy juice.

 

Serve slices of frittata topped with burst tomatoes and sprinkled with dried parsley if desired.

10 Ways to Make Your Groceries Last Longer

By: Snap Fitness

Eating healthy means eating lots of fresh produce. Sadly fresh veggies and fruit don’t stay fresh for very long. Here are some easy tricks to give your groceries some extra shelf life.

 

1. Store delicate herbs like flowers.

Put them in a jar with water, cover them with plastic, secure it with a rubberband, and refrigerate. This keeps delicate herbs like parsley, basil, cilantro, and chives fresh the longest.

 

2. Use a vinegar solution to make your berries last longer.

Mix together one part vinegar (white or apple cider) and ten parts water. Soak the berries in the mixture, drain, rinse, and put them in the fridge. The solution is diluted enough that you won’t taste the vinegar. Raspberries will last a week or more, and strawberries almost two weeks without getting moldy and soft.

 

3. One rotten apple can spoil the bunch.

It’s not just an old wives’ tale. When apples begin to decay, they emit ethelyne gas. If the rotting apple is mixed in with the good, the good apples start to absorb the gas and rot.

 

4. Don’t store onions with potatoes.

They spoil faster together. Instead store separate in a cool dry place with good air circulation, onions will last 2-3 months.

 

5. Store potatoes with apples.

The ethelyne gas produced by apples prevents potatoes from sprouting.

 

6. Put onions in pantyhose, and tie knots between each onion.

Onions stored in pantyhose will last as long as 8 months.

  

7. Wrap the crown of a bunch of bananas with plastic wrap.

They’ll keep for 3-5 days longer than usual. Bananas also produce more ethelyne gas than any other fruit, so keep them isolated on the counter.

 

8. Wrap celery, broccoli, and lettuce in tin foil before storing in the fridge.

It’ll stay crisp for 4 weeks or more.

 

9. Mason jars are your friend.

Produce will keep a few days longer if stored in a jar. Mason jars also provide a healthier and longer-lasting alternative to plastic tupperware, which deteriorates and stains easily. 

 

10. Clean your fridge.

Once something goes bad in your fridge or cupboards, it leaves behind mold that's ready to eat up your new food. Disinfect the fridge, it’ll make everything last longer.

 

What's your favorite trick that helps your groceries last longer? Share with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!

5 Ways to Eat Less Sugar

By: Snap Fitness

These days we’re drowning in sugar. It’s estimated that Americans eat 22 teaspoons of added sugar each day, which adds up to 56 pounds each year! This added sugar not only leads to weight gain, but some serious health problems.

 

Here are 5 easy ways you can cut down on your sugar intake:

 

Cut out sweetened beverages.

Nearly 40% of the added sugar in our diets comes from sugary beverages like soda, juice, and sweet tea. Trade out your sweet drinks for good ole water. If you still need some flavor add in lemon, lime, fresh mint, or even some mashed fruit.

 

Beware of hidden sugar.

Sugar can be sneaky. There are many foods that have more added sugar than you may think.  The best way to avoid added sugar is to check the ingredients list. Avoid foods with corn syrup, fructose, dextrose, molasses, cane sugar, and evaporated cane juice.

 

Sweeten things yourself.

Buy truly unsweetened goods (not products made form calorie free sweeteners) and sweeten them yourself. For example greek yogurt, oatmeal, and almond milk. You can then add in organic honey or maple syrup, both contain some nutrients and antioxidants.

 

Go Natural.

Replace your favorite sugary treats with fruit. Strawberries and blueberries are naturally sweet and just as satisfying. Also there are many tricks to replacing sugar in your recipes with delicious fruit options for less calories. You can add pureed fruit to any recipe form cookies to coleslaw.

 

Establish your limits.

For many a life without sugar just isn’t as sweet. It’s not realistic to cut it out all together. Everyone once in a while you need to treat yourself. Pick a day each week or even a number of when or how many sugary treats you can have. Use this to help you avoid temptation during the rest of the week.

 

What’s your trick to cutting down your sugar intake? Share with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!

 

Sources:

 

Sass, C, (MPH) 5 Ways to Eat Less Sugar (2014) Health.com. Retrieved May 14, 2014.

       

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