Brownie Muffins

Brownie Muffins - sweetheatchefs.com

Here is your swapportunity to take advantage of my new recipe with only 3 ingredients!

I can’t believe it has been a month since my last post, I guess summer gets the best of us and before we know it…the dreaded BACK TO SCHOOL! Yay for me, boo for them ūüėÄ

Ok, back to my recipe, you are not going to want to ignore this one! I found this from Hungry Girl and I am always looking for new ways to swap high fats for good fats and so on. I recently tried those black bean brownies you see everywhere…ya that is SO not for me (or anyone else in the house!) THESE my friends….you are going to LOVE. You know that saying you won’t miss a thing when you are subbing an ingredient for another? Well it is so true here! I promise, you will never make these the “regular” way again! The best part is the calorie count for one of these is 143 calories and 3 grams of fat! You can’t beat that for a moist, fluffy, chocolaty brownie treat!¬†

Count down with me…3, 2, 1…here we go!

Brownie Muffins 3 - sweetheatchefs.com

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Box Duncan Hines Devils Food Cake Mix
  • 1 Can Libby’s Pumpkin Puree (15 oz can)
  • 1 tbsp. Nestles Chocolate Chips, divided

DIRECTIONS -Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

  1. Mix together cake mix and pumpkin puree until well combined.
  2. Add about 2 tbsp. mix into muffin liners and top with a few mini chocolate chips.
  3. Bake for 20 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven and let cool before devouring + enjoy!
  5. Press the STAPLES easy button ūüėÄ

Brownie Muffins 2 - sweetheatchefs.com

 

If you liked this recipe, you will love these:

 

Mocha Cappuccino Banana Bread Bites

mocha cappuccino banana bread bites - sweetheatchefs.com

In keeping up with my low-fat and low-calorie diet, I still need 2 things: (1) SUGAR and (2) CHOCOLATE! There are a few things I won’t give up¬†because, well, I LOVE FOOD and that won’t change! But the reality is you don’t have to give up foods you enjoy to lose weight. Moderation is key. When I say moderation, I mean moderation sometimes in small amounts. You are giving yourself the satisfaction to please your tummy, mind and soul without having to feel like you blew your day’s workout or the progress you’ve made in losing weight thus far. With all that in mind I came up with these banana bites with chocolate, fruit, & even sugar in combination with fiber and¬†protein¬† seriously this is a WIN-WIN if I ever saw it!

mocha cappuccino banana bread bites - sweetheatchefs.com

INGREDIENTS
3 medium-sized ripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup sweetened apple sauce (I use Tree Top pre-packaged for convenience in measuring each cup is 1/2 cup)
1.25 cups white whole wheat flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter, softened
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
2 large egg whites
1/2 tsp real vanilla extract
3 tbsp Jif Mocha Cappuccino Hazelnut Spread (YUM!)
Mini Chocolate Chips (optional to sprinkle on top and is not included int he nutritional value of this recipe)

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat oven to 325¬į. Spray a non-stick loaf pan, or muffin tin, or brownie pan ( I used brownie pan) with a non stick spray. IF your pans are non stick no need to do this.
2. Mash bananas and set aside. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt with a wire whisk. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer. Add egg whites, bananas, apple sauce, Jif Mocha Cappuccino Hazelnut Spread, and vanilla. Beat with mixer until well combined.
4. Add flour mixture, then blend at low-speed until combined. Do not over mix.
5. Pour batter into prepared pan; bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Serving Size: Makes 18 Mocha Cappuccino Banana Bread Bites at 1.75 oz each

 

mocha cappuccino banana bread bites - sweetheatchefs.com

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Nutritional Info

Servings Per Recipe: 18
Calories: 92.1
Total Fat: 2.1 g
Cholesterol: 1.9 mg
Sodium: 197.6 mg
Total Carbs: 18.8 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.6 g
Protein: 2.0 g

Week 1 Healthy Eating

Week 1

My posts for a while will be different from the usual recipe posts. I will include my recipes, but the post will also include my weight loss pictures (how more¬†embarrassing¬†can i get?), things I have seen during the week doing my exercises and any neat or interesting articles I may have come across. I have been doing this for going on 4 weeks now so as I post there is a time-lapse. It takes time to get all these things in order! LOL I hope you enjoy the new posts coming up ūüėÄ

A few things to know going forward:

  1. Please don’t judge my pictures, at least I am trying. I am putting myself out there in the hopes of inspiring!
  2. No rude comments will be tolerated and promptly deleted
  3. I am NOT a dietitian or a doctor
  4. I create my recipes in a database called Spark People, it helps me track what I eat, how much I exercise etc. If you have issues accessing the recipes there, I am going to be adding them on my blog, it is just a slow process.

The first recipe I will share I found and tweaked to my liking. These are my best friend right now. Keeping a low-fat low-calorie diet is hard, especially when you weigh everything, count each and every calorie and measure your food ingredient by ingredient. After all that is said and done you usually are done eating in no time, and then on to the next task at hand. For me that means 5 kids and a household to run plus chairing my Relay For Life event, AND exercise which I do 2 times a day. Having these Mini Egg Foo Young Bites in the fridge are a gift from Heaven when your belly is rumbling and you have no time to make and measure and weigh! They are 24 Calories, 1.4 Fat Grams, and 2 Fiber Grams, Not bad!!

Mini Egg Foo Young Bites

The sandwich in the picture at top is 1 piece of whole wheat bread, 1/4 of an avocado, 4 oz lean turkey meat, some baby spinach leaves, 2 slices tomato, and .25 oz of pepper jack cheese. the entire sammy full of protein and fiber is around 200 Calories. Perfect for a quick lunch on the go, and since the calories are low, you can add an apple or a few multi grain crackers with it.

Besides my go to Egg Foo Young Bites, my other new find this week to fill up my belly in the fly is the Chocolate Dipped Coconut Luna Bars! Like candy bars? Like almond Joy? Replace it with this and you will be in LOVE! It is so yummy and fills you up like no candy bar will, WITH nutrition!

I started this week strong, but in the end this was one of the hardest things to “get into”. I struggled and did my couch to 5K app 4 days this week. I ended up losing 2 pounds, which I was not that thrilled with. I had a goal in mind of losing 10 pounds a month, and if I only lost 2¬†pounds¬†now, didn’t see how I would manage in the coming weeks. I decided to have no excuses to get to where I wanted to be, so I took that 2 pounds and¬†challenged¬†it. Next week, it won’t be a 2 pound loss!

you are worth it

Zucchini Lasagna

Zucchini Lasagne - sweetheatchefs.com

Well here we are several years later and the weight I feverishly¬†fought¬†so hard to get rid of (and did get rid of) is back on this bod like white on rice! When I found out I was preggers in 2009, I swore I would still go to the gym….that did not happen. I always saw this woman at my gym super cute, tiny, and a baby belly bump. I thought well that will be me soon, but it wasn’t and it never was.

Now my son is 2 1/2 and I¬†have¬†yet to return to the gym, don’t you know how easy it is to get away with an infant, then a toddler? Not to mention my 4 other kids. So they gym was not in the cards for me and I guess in my own mind I gave up. Sad really. I worked so hard to get rid of years of weight that I had gained for no real reason. Then in the blink of an eye I am close to being back to “that” person again, I vowed I would never let that happen. Before my clothes don’t fit and before I lose any more self respect, I am back in the game folks!

Zucchini Lasagne - sweetheatchefs.com

I have signed up to be in a 5K run that is so popular around here I found my MOJO. I gave myself enough time to train and get in shape before hand, so as not to feel like a dweeb when that day comes. In honor of my new goal I have made¬†lasagna…I know¬†lasagna¬†is not low fat or low cals, but this one is ūüėÄ The very thought of taking away food one loves, is the very reason people don’t stick with eating healthy. Here you can have your good stuff and eat it too! No carb, no noodles, gluten free, low fat, low cal lasagna

~YOUR WELCOME~

By the way…VEGETARIAN? Lose the chicken ūüėÄ

Zucchini Lasagne - sweetheatchefs.com

INGREDIENTS

1 cooked chicken breast, cooled and diced
1 sweet yellow onion, diced
3 medium Zucchini or Squash, sliced ( I used 2 green 1 yellow)
1 garlic clove, minced (I used the microplane)
2 cups of your favorite red pasta sauce
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons Parmesan Cheese, grated
2 tablespoons whole wheat bread crumbs
2/3 cup Mozzarella cheese, grated

DIRECTIONS

  1. Over medium heat, saute onion, garlic, and 1/2 of the salt/pepper until golden.
  2. Add zucchini and remaining salt/pepper and saute until fork tender.
  3. Pull off stove and set aside.
  4. In a 9″ x 9″ glass¬†Pyrex¬†dish begin layering zucchini in rows until the bottom is covered.
  5. Next add a layer of sauce, then diced chicken, then mozzarella cheese and repeat until all zucchini is used. Leave enough mozzarella cheese for the top.
  6. Top with remaining mozzarella, parmesan, and bread crumbs.
  7. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes until bubbly and golden brown. Serves 6

Zucchini Lasagne - sweetheatchefs.com

Zucchini Lasagne - sweetheatchefs.com

Zucchini Lasagne - sweetheatchefs.com

I decided to include the nutritional information for the dish. It will change slightly based on what type of red sauce you choose. I am not a dietitian or a Doctor, but this is one yummy dish! I used Calorie Count to find the nutritional information for the dish.

Zucchini Lasagne Nutritional Info

Turkey Skewered Meatballs with Pomegranate Sauce

sweetheatchefs.com

sweetheatchefs.com

This week in my kitchen has been a trial and tribulation week. Trial, error, success, mess, crying, laughing and doing it all over again. This recipe was no exception, including all the pictures that went with it that got erased! All I can say is if you don’t try you won’t succeed, AND make sure you read a recipe in its entirety before buying ingredients AND¬†proceeding to make it. This recipe was adapted from one I saw recently on a blog, click here for the original version. I adapted it to fit our household and you can too. This is a healthy meal and pretty filling with just 2 meatballs served with the rice and a salad.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 pomegranates (do not use pomegranate juice as it will not reduce)
  • 1 clove garlic, slightly pressed
  • 3/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 2 lb ground turkey
  • 1 large shallot, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup shredded Pecorino¬†Romano¬†cheese (divided)
  • 2 slices of whole wheat bread
  • 1 egg,¬†beaten
  • ¬Ĺ cup¬†plain breadcrumbs or panko crumbs (divided)
  • 1 cup stock (chicken or vegetable)
  • 1 cup chopped hazelnuts (can use pecans or walnuts instead)
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 cup freshly chopped baby spinach, fine chop
  • 2¬†tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

DIRECTIONS¬†–¬†Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cooks for 30 minutes (or see alternate cooking method at the end)

  1. Halve the pomegranates and over a fine mesh strainer squeeze the juice into it until you get 1 cup. 
  2. In a heavy (or non-stick) saucepan or skillet, heat 1 tbsp olive oil and add a sprig of rosemary and 1 clove of garlic.When the garlic is golden brown, discard it and add wine and the pomegranate juice to the pan. Season with salt and pepper and allow to reduce over medium heat, stirring occasionally. 
  3. Chop the hazelnuts and add 2 tbs bread crumbs and 1/4 cup pecorino romano cheese and set aside.
  4. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a small skillet, add the shallots and garlic and cook until translucent over low and make sure not to brown.  Dump the shallot and garlic mixture into the fine mesh strainer and let set aside to let drain and cool.
  5. Soak the bread in broth until soft, then drain by squeezing all the liquid out, and set aside.
  6. In a bowl, combine the ground turkey with the cooked shallots and garlic, the salt and pepper, spinach, drained bread, nutmeg, egg and additional breadcrumbs as needed to firm up the mixture. Mix everything together really well.
  7. Allow to rest for two minutes until it firms up, making the mixture easier to shape. 
The consistency of the mixture should be soft and wet and hold together in a ball.
  8. Shape into 1″ to 1 ¬Ĺ‚ÄĚ sized meatballs.
  9. Roll the meatballs into the hazelnuts and bread crumb mixture.
  10. Line a baking tray with a sheet of foil and brush with a small amount of  olive oil.
  11. Thread the meatballs onto skewers (If you’re using wooden skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes before cooking)
  12. Arrange the meatballs on the foil in one layer and lightly drizzle the top with a little more olive oil.
  13. Bake until golden brown about 30 minutes. Drizzle pomegranate sauce over the top and serve over my coconut rice and side of salad greens.

Alternate Cooking Method

You can skewer the meatballs and place over indirect heat on the BBQ. Using a medium heat cook the meatballs for approx 25 minutes, checking frequently to make sure they don’t burn. I placed them on an old cookie sheet lined with foil and¬†oiled¬†generously. I turned them every 5-10 minutes to avoid one side from getting too done at a time. Mine took about 30 minutes but remember all ovens & BBQ’s vary in temperature, so your cooking time might not be the same as mine.¬†The flavor you will get from grilling these will add that much extra to the lean protein you are working with here.

This recipe is being shown at Bobbi’s Cozy Kitchen, Manic Monday Party!

Low Fat Monkey Cups aka Banana Muffins

INGREDIENTS

1/3 c. Vegetable Oil or Coconut Oil
1/3 c. Low Fat Sour Cream
1 t. Vanilla
1 Egg
1 1/2 c. Whole Wheat Flour
1 T. Wheat Germ
1 T. Flax Seeds
1 t. Baking Powder
1 t. Baking Soda
1/2 t. Salt
3/4 c. Sugar
DIRECTIONS

  1. In a large bowl combine all wet ingredients except banana.
  2. Mash bananas and set aside.
  3. In medium bowl whisk together all dry ingredients.
  4. Slowly incorporate dry ingredients into wet mixture stirring just until combined. Do not over mix ingredients.
  5. Add mashed bananas at the end.  
  6. Fill your muffin cups 3/4 of the way full.
  7. Cook at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean.