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Michaela’s Organic Guilt-Free Nutella Recipe!

Ok Nutella lovers; who knew our fabulous Michaela was also a chef! Here is her recipe for all organic, guilt-free Nutella!fullsizerender-6


1 cup Organic Hazelnuts

3 Oz. Organic, 80% Cacao Dark Chocolate

2 Tbs. Flaxseed Oil

2 Tbs. Organic Confectioner’s Sugar

2 Tbs. Organic, Unsweetened Cocoa Powder

1/2 Tsp. Vanilla Extract

3/4 Tsp. Sea Salt

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Quick Healthy Breakfast Options

Have you found yourself in a breakfast rut? After a conversation with a client this morning (at 6:30 am nonetheless), I realized just about every one of us gets stuck eating the same breakfast over and over again until all of a sudden we absolutely must eat something else.

We all could use some variety in our breakfast routine but, of course, time is limited. I’ve picked a few of my favorite healthy breakfast options that won’t throw off your morning routine. Try something new with one of these great options:


Smoothies: Smoothies are relatively easy to make, especially if you keep frozen berries or pre-cut fruit on hand. I also love smoothies because the options are literally endless. Have you ever heard of an Apple Cinnamon Coconut Smoothie!?  You can find so many healthy smoothie recipes on Pinterest or Google, there are even old school books with tons of options. Don’t feel like pulling out the blender?  Try Ashker’s Juice Bar on Elmwood or Squeeze Juicery on Main Street in Williamsville for healthy and convenient smoothies with absolutely no clean-up needed.




Yogurt, fruit, granola: I just read an article that stated how unhealthy yogurt and granola can be for breakfast. I disagree. If you do it right, yogurt and granola can be a great healthy breakfast option! I always choose a granola with as little added sugar as possible. If you can find something with honey or coconut sugar instead of standard sugar, that’s even better. Are you a great meal planner? Make your own granola so you can control the ingredients better. Keep the amount of granola you use on the minimal side, just enough to add a crunch. Opt for plain organic greek yogurt for your healthiest option, but as long as you get yogurt with no (or at least very little) added sugar and completely natural ingredients (I like Stonyfield Organic), you’re good. Lastly add fruit and other healthy add-ins for maximum nutritional benefits: berries, bananas, walnuts, pecans, ground flax seed, etc.


Whole grain toast with peanut butter, honey, and bananas: This breakfast is quick, easy, delicious, and comforting. One slice is enough if you load it up with peanut butter (or any nut butter) and sliced banana. I like to put a drizzle of honey on first and spread it over my toast, then the peanut butter, then fill every space with banana slices. I recommend using the heartiest, healthiest bread you can find. I prefer Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Bread, available at most grocers.




Whole grain toast ricotta cheese, honey, and blueberries: A variation on the toast and peanut butter above, this delicious and unique breakfast was discovered by my Mom who absolutely swears by it. Again, use the heartiest bread you can find for maximum nutritional benefits. I recommend mashing your blueberries on top of the toast so you don’t have to deal with blueberries rolling off your breakfast!




Brown rice cake with almond butter and jelly: Another toast and peanut butter variation, this is my ultimate on-the-go, in-a-huge-rush breakfast. I use brown rice cakes with no salt added. Heed caution when purchasing rice cakes, they aren’t all healthy. I use all natural almond butter (preferably raw) but any nut butter will do here. Peanut butter is really the least healthy of the nut butters, but its delicious, so do yo’ thing. Just like with the rice cakes, it can be challenging to make sure your jelly is actually healthy. Look for no sugar added, all natural, and/or fruit juice sweetened varieties. Always check the ingredients to be sure you aren’t getting something with high fructose corn syrup or sugar as the first or second ingredient. Whenever possible, I get strawberry jelly that’s either ALL strawberry or sweetened only by natural fruit juice. I can eat this easily in the car when necessary.


Mini Frittatas: I first tried mini frittatas during a run in with the South Beach Diet back in college.  Although I don’t recommend, the diet, I do recommend these convenient little “egg muffins” for on-the-go nutrient-rich breakfasts. You can make your frittatas however you like them (please pack in the veggies!), make them all at once, freeze ’em til you need ’em, and then heat up in the microwave and get going! Here are some recipes you can try: Mini Frittata Muffins




Oatmeal and…anything: This is the only breakfast option on my list that is a bit challenging to eat on the go, but thats okay, its GREAT to sit down, breathe, and enjoy your breakfast at a proper table. Oatmeal can be made in so many different ways. Add some fruit, add dried fruit, add nuts, add cinnamon, use some pure maple syrup, throw in some nut butter and flax seed. The options are really infinite. Browse Pinterest for great ideas or simply get creative with what you already have on hand. And if you are looking for a super convenient way to eat oatmeal, check out Wegman’s frozen breakfast section; they sell frozen oatmeal bowls that are actually super healthy! Thanks, Wegmans! 🙂


What’s your favorite healthy breakfast? Please share in the comments below!



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A New Take on Hummus

Hummus is an awesome, healthy go-to snack that is surprisingly easy to make and always great to have on hand.  The protein and fiber from the beans keep you sustained and satisfied for a good amount of time and the nutritient to calorie ratio is very high.  Sometimes, however, roasted red pepper or garlic hummus can get a bit boring.  We also need to expand our views of hummus to go beyond chickpeas.  In this light, I give you an exotic hummus substitute, CURRIED WHITE BEAN DIP.  This dip is thick and hearty like hummus but features white beans instead of garbanzo beans and packs a powerful curry punch.  I had this dip with a sliced cucumber for lunch today and it kept me full for hours, not to mention how delicious it is!


Curried White Bean Dip (Based on recipe from Foodnetwork.com)

15 ounces white beans (drained)

1 packed cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped  (I used dried parsley and it worked out fine–use 1/2 cup if using dried)

1/4-1/2 cup olive oil (Start with 1/4 cup and add more as needed when processing)

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 clove garlic (peeled and roughly chopped)

2 tsp curry powder

1 1/2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp sea salt

1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper

Zest of 1/2 lemon


1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth.  Season with salt as needed.  Enjoy with fresh veggies, or multigrain chips.


Be well!


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Very Veggie Vegan Rice and Lentil Bowl

I love bowls of rice.  I love veggies. I love avocado. I love tahini sauce.  Don’t you?  This bowl has all of those things and then some.  It’s chock full o’ healthy starch, protein, vitamins, nutrients, healthy fats, and flat out deliciousness.  I adapted the recipe from this one here to fit my likes and what I had in the fridge/pantry.  Feel free to try my version or the one from Food & Wine Magazine.

Verry Veggie Vegan Rice and Lentil Bowl 

1 cup brown rice

1 cup lentils

4 Tbsps olive oil, separated

1 small onion, finely diced

1 whole carrot, peeled and sliced in 1/4 inch pieces

1 zucchini, sliced in half lengthwise then cut into 1/4 inch pieces


1 head of broccoli, chopped into florets

1 bunch kale, large stems removed and roughly chopped

1/2 cup tahini, room temperature

Juice of 1 lemon

2 cloves of garlic, minced

3-5 Tbsps warm water

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more to taste)

More salt

1 ripe avocado, diced



1.  Cook the rice as indicated on package. In the meantime, cook the lentils as indicated on package as well.

2. Heat 2 tbsps of olive oil up in a large skillet and, over medium heat, cook the onions for about 4 minutes, until they turn translucent.  Add the carrots and cook, stirring occasionally for another 3 minutes.  Add the zucchini, a healthy dose of salt, and cook until tender (about 4 minutes).  Transfer into a bowl.

3. Put remaining olive oil in the skillet and over medium heat cook the broccoli, covered for about 5 minutes–stirring occasionally–until broccoli is dark green.  Add the kale and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with some salt, mix in the other vegetables, and remove from heat.

4. Whisk together your tahini, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, garlic, and warm water.  Add more water as desired for a thinner sauce.

5. Mix together your rice, lentils, and cooked veggies. Serve topped with avocado and tahini sauce.

**Note for the carnivores: My boyfriend topped his dish with a chicken breast that he cooked in a light coating of teriyaki sauce. He said it was phenomenal.


Be well!