Recipe: Green Bean Caprese Salad

Fresh summer vegetables and herbs are arriving on a weekly basis from my CSA farm share. Boy, is this my favorite time of year when delicious, local produce is available!

It’s so much fun to cook up some of my summer favorites, but I also like to mix things up and try something new. That’s how this week’s recipe was created. It’s a mash-up of some of my favorite recipes for Green Beans, Caprese Salad, and Creamy Balsamic Dressing. And what’s the creation? A fresh, delicious Green Bean Caprese Salad that can be served hot or cold.

Green Bean Caprese Salad is a fantastic hot or cold salad made with green beans, tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil, and a creamy balsamic vinaigrette!

Honestly, I can’t imagine more of my favorite foods in one dish—green beans, cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and basil … all topped off with my yummy Creamy Balsamic Vinaigrette. Absolute perfection on a plate! (more…)

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Recipe: Banana Almond Coffee Cooler

It’s August and summer’s full heat is here. After going for a run, exercising, or working outside there’s no better way to cool off than to drink a green smoothie or my favorite Banana Almond Coffee Cooler.

This Banana Almond Coffee Cooler is the perfect summer drink to cool you down, and it's made with real ingredients and no added sugars!

Now I’ve been known to buy coffee coolers at my local coffee shop, and they are delicious. Unfortunately they’re also filled with lots of sugar. So I’ve come up with a quick and easy alternative that’s not so sweet but still yummy and much kinder on my bank account too—my Banana Almond Coffee Cooler. (more…)

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Recipe: Caprese Salad

I wholeheartedly believe in enjoying the simple pleasures in life. And when it comes to food, one of the simplest, most delicious pleasures around is a Caprese Salad.

A Caprese Salad is one of the easiest, most delicious salads you can make. Here's my classic recipe to help you get started!

Made with fresh tomatoes, sliced buffalo mozzarella, basil leaves, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and a little salt and pepper, real food doesn’t get any better than Caprese Salad. And there’s no better time to make this salad than now since fresh, summer tomatoes and garden-picked basil are essential for a great Caprese Salad. (more…)

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Recipe: Creamy Balsamic Vinaigrette

There’s nothing like the perfect salad dressing to make a salad delicious! And that’s exactly what my Creamy Balsamic Vinaigrette does—makes your salad pop!

There's nothing like a Creamy Balsamic Vinaigrette to make your salad pop! Easy, simple, and made from real ingredients, this recipe for homemade dressing is a keeper!

Why Do I Make Homemade Salad Dressing?

Why do I make my own salad dressing? Honestly, homemade dressings just take minutes to make and they taste so much better. And despite the claims of some popular salad dressing manufacturers, there are still plenty of additives and highly processed ingredients in most dressings.

In fact, Kraft just started airing this commercial where they tell us to “assume nothing” when it comes to bottled salad dressings and then they go on to say: (more…)

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Recipe: Cold Press Coffee Made with a French Press!

Fifteen years ago I never drank coffee. Yuck! I just didn’t like the flavor. Now, I’m a huge fan!

Cold Press Coffee is a deliciously cool way to enjoy coffee that's naturally sweeter and a little more caffeinated.

Part of my coffee conversion came when I discovered cold press coffee at a local coffee shop. I truly believe it just tastes better—at least according to my taste buds. 🙂 So while it’s still HOT out, I thought I’d share one of my favorite cool drinks—Cold Press Coffee. (more…)

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Recipe: Grilled Steak with Garlic Lime Marinade

I loved creating this Grilled Steak with Garlic Lime Marinade recipe. Honestly, there’s something just so relaxing about cooking on the grill. And doesn’t everything taste better cooked over the open fire?!?!? I think so. 🙂

Over the past couple of months I’ve been experimenting with this recipe for thin, deliciously seasoned grilled steaks. My quest was inspired by a Cuban dish I ordered at a restaurant in Florida years ago. I’ve been doing my best to try to recreate it, and I’ve finally done it! So join me in welcoming my Grilled Steak with a Garlic Lime Marinade recipe to the blog!

This Cuban-inspired grilled steak recipe with Garlic Lime Marinade is the perfect most flavorful way to cook up steaks in less than 6 minutes!

Called Bistec de Palomilla in Cuba, this traditional dish is marinated in garlic and lime, pan-fried, and served with black beans and rice and sometimes a side of sweet fried plantains.

Grilled Steak with Garlic Lime Marinade Recipe

How is this beautiful dish made? For starters the recipe uses a lean, 1/2-inch thick cut of steak. Personally I prefer using skirt or hanger steak, but in Cuba a thin cut of round steak is traditionally used. If you can’t find any of those cuts of beef, try asking a butcher for his or her recommendations.

The true secret, however, is in the sauce (more…)

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Recipe: Easy Homemade Almond Butter

I absolutely love nut butters made with real ingredients. Almond butter is one of my favorites. It’s such a great, healthy way to add nutrient-rich fat and protein to our diets.

Homemade almond butter is a deliciously easy way to start eating healthier while saving some money!

Unfortunately, almond butter can get pretty expensive—easily costing over $10 for a 16-ounce jar. While I’m not opposed to spending more for wholesome, real food, if you’re looking for a way to spend less consider making your own homemade almond butter. It really is super easy to make, especially if you have a high-speed blender like a Blend-tec, Vitamix, or Ninja. (more…)

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Recipe: The Best Homemade Berry Sauce

There’s nothing like the taste of berries. That’s why I love to whip up a batch of my Homemade Berry Sauce. Made with just two ingredients plus a little water, it’s a simple way to add LOTS of flavor to yogurt, desserts, pancakes, or waffles.

There's nothing like the taste of berries. That's why I love to whip up a batch of my Homemade Berry Sauce. Made with just two ingredients plus a little water, it's a simple way to add LOTS of flavor to yogurt, desserts, pancakes, or waffles.

Why should you make a homemade berry sauce?

Unlike most store-bought bottled alternatives, with your homemade berry sauce you won’t have to worry about artificial ingredients and additives. Although big food companies have made some progress cleaning up labels for many packaged foods, that’s not the case when it comes to these sauces. (more…)

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Recipe: Easy No-Bake Cheesecake Cups with Berries

This recipe goes a ways back for me. A year or so after graduating from college, two of my best friends from college (Steve and Betsy) invited me over for dinner. For dessert they served these No-Bake Berry Cheesecake Cups. OMG!!! I’ve been over the moon for this dessert ever since. Why? It’s delicious, easy, and made with simple ingredients.

These easy, No-bake Cheesecake Cups with Berries are a deliciously cool way to get all the taste of cheesecake with none of the fuss!

Originally called Frozen Cream with Fruit I’ve renamed this dessert Easy No-Bake Cheesecake Cups because it tastes like little cheesecakes but is soooo effortless to make. No baking. No crust. 5 ingredients. BOOM!!!

And although the original recipe called for powdered sugar, about 5 years ago I switched to maple syrup and I’ve never looked back. In fact, I think the maple syrup gives these No-Bake Cheesecake Cups an even richer flavor! (more…)

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Recipe: Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette

There’s nothing like this Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette to top off some fresh greens. Made with fresh or frozen strawberries this salad dressing turns your salad from ordinary to extraordinary in a flash!

My Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette salad dressing is made with fresh or frozen strawberries and turns your salad from ordinary to extraordinary in a flash!

But is it simple? Definitely! Made with 4 common ingredients and a few pulses of an immersion blender, you’re literally a couple minutes away from WOWing your family or guests! (more…)

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Recipe: Strawberry Salad with Goat Cheese and Pistachios

I love this Strawberry Salad recipe … especially this time of year when fresh, local berries and salad greens start showing up at farmers markets, co-ops, and grocery stores.

Serve up a delicious helping of spring or summer with this Strawberry Salad with goat cheese, pistachios, and a creamy Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette!

Made with your choice of salad greens, fresh strawberries, goat cheese, pistachios (or your favorite type of nut) plus a little chopped red onion and boom! You’ve got the makings for an amazing spring or summer salad. I love to top it off with my homemade strawberry balsamic vinaigrette, (more…)

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