Thursday, February 27, 2014

Clean Quinoa and Berry Breakfast Bake & AdvoCare Update

A Berry-Licious Healthy Breakfast Option
If you're eating clean and tired of scrambled eggs or oatmeal for breakfast, I have the perfect recipe for you: this delicious berry and quinoa breakfast bake. It’s AdvoCare friendly (for both the Cleanse and Max Phase) and my kids and hubby loved it too, win-win!!!

I know I've been talking about AdvoCare a lot lately—but I can't help it. I love the products and the program and it’s been so exciting for me personally to see the positive changes AdvoCare has made to my body and my life. And even BETTER, I've seen how much happier and healthier it’s made several people that are near and dear to me.

I don't just talk the talk, either. I’m a firm believer in practicing what you preach. I just wrapped up my second 10-Day Cleanse mid-February to get rid of that last bit of holiday “fluff.” Here’s my before/after pic. Not too shabby for 10 days, right? Total belly buster! (To learn more, visit or email me any time at

10-Day Cleanse complete! I'm 4 pounds lighter, 2.5 inches smaller, and leaner with less mid-section "fluff." I'll take it!

Now, on to that yummy recipe!!!

Clean Quinoa and Berry Breakfast Bake
Serves 12

2 cups dry quinoa
4 cups water
Coconut oil or extra-virgin olive oil spray (I used coconut)
½ cup egg whites
1½  cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (alcohol-free preferred)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 packets of stevia powder (about ½ teaspoon)
1½  cup blueberries, washed any stems removed
1½ cup strawberries, washed, stems removed, cut into small chunks

Rinse quinoa in cold water, unless already pre-rinsed. (A mesh strainer works well for this step.)

Place rinsed quinoa and water in a medium-to-large pot with a lid. Bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer, cover, and cook until all the water is absorbed, about 12-15 minutes. You’ll know it’s done when it becomes soft and translucent and the germ ring becomes visible along the outside edge. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Spray a 13x9-inch baking dish (I used glass) with coconut oil spray or olive oil spray. (Coconut oil will taste better with this recipe.)

In a large bowl combine, egg whites, coconut milk, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and stevia. Stir well.

Add berries, mashing them a little as you stir.

Fold cooked quinoa into the berry mixture and stir until evenly distributed.

Pour quinoa/berry mixture into baking dish and use a spatula or large spoon to make sure it is evenly distributed in the dish. Sprinkle with additional cinnamon, if desired.

Bake for 25-30 minutes at 375 degrees until the edges begin to brown and the eggs whites set.

Spoon onto plates or into bowls and sprinkle with a little extra cinnamon and stevia powder just prior to serving. 

Fresh out of the oven. Yum!!!

I’m not gonna lie…this smells too good to be good for you
especially while it's cooking in the oven. The scent is like cinnamon-berry cobbler or pie—or both—mooshed together. Divine!

There’s a lot of wiggle room with the different ingredients you could try in place of the berries here (I’m thinking my next test will be a peanut butter/banana/cinnamon version).

But if you want a berry-licious, healthy, protein-packed breakfast—that isn't plain eggs—this will hit the spot. It makes a great afternoon snack or good-for-you dessert, too. 

Let me know what you think, and if you come up with variations of your own, I'd love to hear about them. 

Until next time,

P.S. If you've been on the fence about giving the 24-Day Challenge a try, now is a fantastic time. The 24-Day Challenge Bundle is now customizable so you can choose energy drink and shake flavors and pick which vitamins are right for you (which is really exciting)! Just email me at and I can share my favorites and help walk you through choosing which products best suit your needs. 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Chicken Sausage Jambalaya

Hearty, Delicious, and Healthy!

If there are any die-hard traditional jambalaya fans out there, I apologize in advance: This recipe might disappoint you. This version only contains clean chicken sausage (I don’t care for shrimp and didn’t have chicken on hand when I made it), I used brown rice instead of white to make it acceptable for those doing the 24-Day Challenge, and I threw it all in the Crock Pot, which goes against the preparation methods of true jambalaya.

But, if you are looking for a savory, slightly spicy, good-for-you meal that will stick to your ribs but not your waistline, you’ve come to the right place.

When you shop for clean sausages, look for those with no additives, fillers, preservatives, etc. I like to take the casings off before I slice mine. It makes them even healthier, however, it’s not a necessary step.

I used the Crock Pot (surprise, surprise!) for this dish but a Dutch oven or stockpot would work equally well. Here’s what I came up with:

Chicken Sausage Jambalaya
Serves 6

3 cups chicken stock or broth (organic preferred)
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
1 (4-ounce) can diced green chile
1 (15-ounce) can white beans, drained & rinsed
4 chicken sausages, sliced (I used the spicy Italian ones from Trader Joe’s and removed the pork casing)
1 cup brown rice (I used the frozen, already cooked version from Trader Joe’s)
1 bell pepper, chopped (I used yellow but have used orange in the past too)
1 cup celery, chopped (approximately 4 large celery stalks)
1 small red onion, chopped
1-2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning (for a lower sodium version, use Cajun seasoning just omit the salt)

Toss all ingredients in the Crock Pot (or Dutch oven or stock pot) and cook on HIGH for a MINIMUM of two hours. Soups always taste better the longer they simmer but since the chicken sausages I used were pre-cooked, I was really just waiting for the veggies to soften and the flavors to mingle.


I’ve made this several times in the past few months because it’s such a tasty and easy go-to meal. The hubs is obsessed with Old Bay seasoning (he went to high school and college in Maryland—Go RAVENS!!!) so I’m pretty liberal with this seasoning in this particular recipe. As noted above, if you want a lower sodium alternative, make your own Cajun seasoning and leave out the salt.

I had it for lunch the day after I made it and I’m not gonna lie—it’s even tastier as leftovers. This dish is definitely in our regular rotation and I hope you enjoy it as well.

Until next time,

P.S. For more information about AdvoCare and the 24-Day Challenge, email me at or visit

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Crock Pot Chicken & Chickpea Clean Green Stew

Hearty, Healthy, Green and CLEAN!!!

A lot of my AdvoCare friends have either just finished or are getting ready to start their 24-Day Challenges so I wanted to get another yummy (and easy!) clean Crock Pot recipe out there. I’m starting my second 10-Day Cleanse on February 3rd so I’ve spent a lot of time this week planning out some really healthy meals that are so tasty that it’s hard to believe they are actually good for you. Which brings me to today’s steamy bowlful of deliciousness.

There is simply nothing better than a hot and hearty soup or stew when it’s cold outside. It actually rained here yesterday, so having food that warms you from the inside out was an extra bonus. (Yes, I realize that in Southern California what we call “rain” equates to “a light sprinkle” pretty much everywhere else in the country, but hey, it’s all relative, right?)

My friend Whittney sent me a picture of the white chicken chili she was making for dinner the other night and that got my wheels spinning. I went to the cupboard and fridge, pulled out everything I had that was green, and came up with this recipe. I usually make these types of dishes with black, kidney, white, or pinto beans, but I had several cans of chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans) on hand, PLUS the label was green so it fit in with the color scheme. I’m weird like that.  If you’d prefer to use white beans instead, please feel free.
Look at all that yummy green goodness!!!

Crock Pot Chicken & Chickpea Clean Green Stew 
Serves 6


Olive oil spray
1 small onion, coarsely chopped (I used ½ white and ½ red because that’s what I had in the fridge)
4-6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs or two breasts, aim for about a pound (organic preferred)
2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed
1 (12-ounce) jar green salsa (look for a “clean” brand without sugar, preservatives, etc.)
1 (4-ounce) can diced green chile
3-4 cups chicken broth or stock (organic preferred, use less for a thicker consistency)
1 teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
1 avocado, cubed (garnish)
Cilantro (garnish)
Green onion (garnish)
Lime wedges (garnish)


Lightly spritz the inside of the Crock Pot with olive oil spray. This step is not necessary, I just find that it makes clean up a little easier.

Place chopped onions in Crock Pot. Place chicken on top of onions. Add garbanzo beans, salsa, diced chile, chicken stock, and spices. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-6 hours.

Just prior to serving, ladle out about a cup of the stew containing the chickpeas/chicken/onion mixture. Using a blender, food processor, or hand mixer, pulse until smooth. Add pureed mixture back into the crock pot and stir. NOTE: This step is completely optional. I wanted a little creamier texture. Omitting the blending step will result in a more broth-y soup and I was going more for stew.

Ladle chili into serving bowls. Garnish with avocado cubes, cilantro, green onion, and lime wedges and serve immediately.

If you have the time, cook this on low ALL DAY LONG. Your house will smell AHHHH-mazing and the longer you let this simmer, the better it tastes!

And speaking of taste---OMY!!! You read that right…oh my YUMMY! So flavorful! The hubs and I gobbled this up went back for seconds. I’m pretty excited about the leftovers for lunch today, too.

Could you do this on the stove? Absolutely. But the beauty of the Crock Pot is that you literally throw all the ingredients in and walk away. No fuss, no muss! If you don’t have a Crock Pot, go out and get one—immediately. They are pretty inexpensive at places like Wal-Mart, Big Lots, Target, etc. and they will save you tons of time and provide lots of leftovers.

Until next time,

P.S. For more information on AdvoCare, the 24 Day Challenge, or the 10-Day Cleanse, check out A HUGE group of people just finished the challenge and another large group is getting ready to kick off their challenge the day after the Super Bowl. Pictures speak louder than words. Check out these impressive before/after images. (That’s me in the purple tank top with the peacock feather in the background!) If you have any questions, feel free comment below or email me at