No Bake S’mores Bars + 5th Annual Chili Contest Details!!

No Bake S’mores Bars 1

Mr. Prevention has a designated shelf in the pantry for all of his goodies. I try not to even glance in the general direction of the shelf as it contains nothing healthy and nothing remotely low in calories.

Poptarts, Reeses Pieces, Twizzlers, frosted animal crackers, and the list goes on and on. I mean, the man easily eats 3,000 calories between 7pm and 10pm every night and yet I’m the only always battling the scale. #lifeaintfair

No Bake S’mores Bars 2

Speaking of which, the scale and pregnancy can be a tough. At just about 30 weeks, I’m up 20 pounds and while I realize many women have gained more than that at this point in their pregnancy, my pre-pregnancy weight didn’t warrant more than 15 pounds of weight gain. That said, I’ve changed very little about my diet over the past 30 weeks and so it’s just tough to lack that control over what my body’s up to.

Luckily, I never battled nausea and I’ve continues to eat healthy 80% of the time and splurge the rest of the time ;) Since my splurges are no longer on craft beer or an aged glass of Chianti, desserts have been my go-to splurge. In moderation, of course…despite all of the prods of, “Baby Shea wants it!” or “You can eat whatever you want, you’re pregnant!”

BONK. Very much so BONK.

No Bake S’mores Bars 3

I’ve tried to keep the sweets to not-so-sinful sweets, like Lime Creamsicles and Strawberry Frozen Yogurt. It’s easier to keep things on the lighter side when summer’s here and fruit is not only delicious, but affordable.

But then, there’s other times where summer’s sweets include no fruit but are just a perfect take on the ever-loved s’more. I mean, unless you’re living under a rock, s’more everything is everywhere this time of year…and, I love it. Give me s’mores in any form and I’m one happy girl. The no-bake and 139 calories per serving are certainly added perks to this recipe, however!

No Bake S’mores Bars 4

No Bake S’mores Bars
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
 
Ingredients
  • 12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 3 cups mini marshmallows
  • 6 cups Golden Grahams cereal
Instructions
  1. Line a 9x13-inch dish with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large microwave safe bowl, combine the chocolate and coconut oil. Microwave on high for 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds or until melted. If additional time is needed, microwave in 15-20 second increments, stirring between. To the chocolate, stir in 1 cup of marshmallow and mix until melted and incorporated into the chocolate.
  3. Stir the remaining 2 cups of marshmallows and the cereal into the bowl, mixing to coat in the chocolate completely. Transfer mixture to the 9x13 and flatten over the entire bottom of the dish, using the back of a spatula coated with cooking spray. Refrigerate for 2-4 hours or until chocolate has set. Cut into bars; store in the refrigerator.
Notes
Recipe adapted from Crazy for Crust
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 bar Calories: 139 Fat: 5.5 Carbohydrates: 23.4 Sugar: 15.1 Sodium: 95 Fiber: 0.3 Protein: 0.9 Cholesterol: 0

 As s’more season transitions into football season, I’ll be anxious to have a baby. And maybe drink a pumpkin ale. But most certainly, I’ll also be pumped up and ready for my 5th ANNUAL CHILI CONTEST!! How has it been 5 years already!?

So, here’s the very simple deal. If you have a GREAT chili recipe you’d love to submit, email it to me at nicole@preventionrd.com. I will accept the first EIGHT chili entries and will email you either way to let you know if you were one of the first 8 :)

The 1st place winner will win a $100 Visa gift card and the 2nd place winner, a $50 Visa gift card.

SEND ME YOUR DELICIOUS CHILI RECIPE NOW! Illini football season kicks off on August 30th and my chili posts will begin in early September and will wrap up by the close of the college football season, when the winners will be announced. :-D

Be well,

sig4

Lime Creamsicles

Lime Creamsicles 1

 I can’t help but feel like summer is coming to an end. It always seems like from the 4th of July until the kiddos head back to school is over in a quick minute. Literally.  As I walk across the hospital’s campus, I bask in the sun and am thankful for the sunny rays as I know how much more snow we see than warm sunshine (on the days it hasn’t rained, of course…).

And then I get a little grouchy because within a few short minutes, I’m back inside and back to work…without a window in sight.

Sad.

Lime Creamsicles 2

 Summer has slipped away from me this year, just as it has every other.

I mean, it’s late July and we’re just getting around to the first popsicle post of the year?!?!?!?! BLASPHEMY!

I realize I was on a soft serve kick for quite some time (including Friday when I celebrated passing my glucose tolerance test with a small soft serve from Dairy Queen), but still. Popsicles are over-due by at least a month. At least.

Lime Creamsicles 3

 I knew with sweetened condensed milk that these would be delicious. Paired with a bunch of lime juice and frozen to a creamy, dreamy treat on a stick? Yeah, if you don’t have a popsicle mold…you now need one.

Yes, need. It’s not a want but a necessity.

At the very least, freeze these babies in some dixie cups with some toothpicks and ENJOY. Summer never tasted this good (for reals).

Lime Creamsicles 4

Lime Creamsicles
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10
 
Ingredients
  • 1⅔ cups nonfat milk
  • ½ cup fresh lime juice (from about 6 limes)
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
Instructions
  1. Whisk together ingredients in a medium bowl until well-combined.
  2. Distribute the mixture between each of 10 popsicle mold wells and freeze for about 15-20 minutes. Remove from freezer to insert popsicle sticks two-thirds of the way into the tops of each popsicle and freeze for an additional 6-8 hours or until frozen. Allow to defrost slightly for 5-10 minutes before removing from popsicle mold to serve.
Notes
Recipe ever so slightly adapted from Girl Versus Dough
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 popsicle Calories: 150 Fat: 3.0 Carbohydrates: 26.2 Sugar: 24.4 Fiber: 0.1 Protein: 4.4 Cholesterol: 11

 This week looks crazy busy and long…waaah. Let’s do it.

Be well,

sig4

 

Arugula-Basil Pesto + Weekly Menu

Arugula-Basil Pesto 1

I’m trying something new — photos with no black and white boarders. They look naked and it’s weird! But, change is good. Or can be good.

I think I freak Mr. Prevention out every time I say, “This may be our last time doing blahblahblah or going to blahblahblah before Shea is here.”

Or I’ll say, “Eighty-two days to go…less than twelve weeks.”

It’s like he breaks into a cold sweat and he sees his life as he knows it flash before his eyes.

Arugula-Basil Pesto 2

As as we were sitting on the beach today I was reading aloud parts of my baby book I thought he’d find interesting.

Newborns sleep approximately 16 hours a day. He seemed to like that fact.

Newborns also cry about 2 hours a day and by the age of 6 months, they cry 3 hours a day, on average.

My personal favorite: by the end of year 1, a baby has gone through approximately 3,000 diapers (8.2 per day).

Whoa. Just…whoa.

Arugula-Basil Pesto 3

 Change isn’t always easy…and it’s often a little scary. But not always.

Just the same as last year, Wednesday mornings are like Christmas when my CSA box arrives on my front porch. I get to plow through the box and brainstorm what I’ll do with all the beautiful, organic loot that will soon fuel my body with all of its nutritiousness. But at the beginning of the CSA season (which it is currently, being that this is Michigan and all), I get a TON of leafy greens and quickly run out of ways to enjoy them.

Last year, I did a lot of salads and pastas. This year, I’m enjoying pesto for the time being. I’ve detoured from the traditional basil only version of this classic and wow, I’ve been missing out.

Arugula-Basil Pesto 4

Arugula-Basil Pesto
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: makes 3 cups (24 servings, 2 tablespoons each)
 
Simple and delicious! This recipe makes enough pesto for 3 lbs of pasta...so look to freeze some of it for later. Pesto freezes and reheats amazingly well so you can enjoy summer's best all year long.
Ingredients
  • 4½ oz fresh arugula
  • 4 oz fresh basil1
  • ½ cup pistachios
  • 1½ cups extra-virgin olive oil
  • ⅓ cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor, food prep, or blender. Scrape down the sides, as needed to incorporate all ingredients fully. Use as desired, such as over pasta, in dips, as an appetizer, etc.
Notes
I divided this recipe into thirds (about 1 cup each). Each third will work perfectly with 1 pound of dry cooked pasta.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 Tbsp Calories: 143 Fat: 15.1 Carbohydrates: 1.3 Sugar: 0.3 Sodium: 122 Fiber: 0.6 Protein: 1.3 Cholesterol: 1

Weekly Menu: July 20th – July 24th

I’m heading out for a run/walk before I lose all motivation…the beach does that to a girl!

P.S. Soooo sorry for the long downtime. I’m getting some upgrades worked on that will make Prevention RD faster, better, and prettier :-D Thanks for your patience :)

Be well,

sig4

Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps + Weekly Menu

Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps 1

Memorial Day weekend was spent the way it should be — family, friends, cookouts, tennis, beach, reading, sun, sleep…it was perfect! If anything was lacking, it was sleep. Three days off work and only one 1-hour nap? I’m not sure whether to be impressed or saddened. The weekend was filled with too much other fun stuff to let a little fatigue get in my way.

Saturday we hosted both of our families for a total of 9. We cooked out and did the whole gender reveal bit. FYI, I will go on record saying that we are 99% sure baby girl will be Baby Shea…so that’s what we’ve been referring to her as. Any suggestions on middle names? I’m liking Shea Olivia. Any other suggestions? ;)

Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps 2

Sunday was a day of rest. And reading. We even went out for a leisurely meal at 9pm after we hoped all of the weekend out-of-towners were through crowding our local restaurants. No such luck. Summers in southwest Michigan are packed with vacation-ers Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Monday included a bit of tennis, Lily’s first beach trip of the year, an interior cleaning of my car, and a dreaded trip to the grocery store. We held an impromptu get together with friends and their families totaling 9 hungry mouths yet again. Let’s just say leftovers and paper plates were involved…but at least the weather was perfect and a good time was had by all.

Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps 3

While I’ll need today to recover from the weekend and as a reprieve from the kitchen, the rest of the week’s menu is simple. Quick meals. When the weather is nice, the grill and meals ready in minutes are the name of my game. As much as I love to cook, I’d prefer a tennis match or reading in warm weather. Time is (somewhat) wasted in the kitchen when there’s so few beautiful weeks in Michigan. And sometimes, I’m just lazy/pregnant…or just straight up HUNGRY and unwilling or unable to wait to eat.

The evening I threw together these lettuce wraps, I had braced myself for the push back from Mr. P. I was expecting complaints of them being “too healthy” or “not substantial enough for a meal”. But instead, this turned into a meal for 2 — mostly for him….inhaling these Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps. My mom made lettuce wraps recently, as well…and hers don’t stack up against these (sorry, ma!!).

Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps 4

5.0 from 2 reviews
Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 lettuce wraps
 
GREAT flavor and they come together quickly. These are perfect as an appetizer or to chow down on for dinner. This is a favorite, for sure!
Ingredients
Sauce:
  • 2 Tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 Tbsp chili garlic sauce
  • 1 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
Chicken:
  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts. cut into ½-inch cubes
  • 2 Tbsp peanut or olive oil
  • ¼ cup cashews, roughly chopped
For Serving:
  • 8 butter leaf lettuce leafs
  • ½ cup bell pepper, cut in thin slices
  • ¼ cup cilantro, finely chopped
Instructions
  1. Whisk together all sauce ingredients until smooth; set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet or wok, over medium heat, until hot. Add the diced chicken and stir-fry until cooked through and no longer pink, about 8-10 minutes. Add the sauce and mix well; bring a simmer and allow to thicken, stirring often for 3-4 minutes. Stir in cashews. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  3. Assemble the wraps by scooping chicken into the lettuce leafs and top with bell pepper and cilantro. Serve immediately.
Notes
Recipe from Foodie with Family
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 lettuce wrap Calories: 133 Fat: 7.6 Carbohydrates: 5.3 Sugar: 3.5 Sodium: 284 Fiber: 0.3 Protein: 12.5 Cholesterol: 33

 Weekly Menu: May 26th – 29th

Hoping this short work week is less busy than the last few have been!

Be well,

sig4

Healthy Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins + Weekly Menu

Healthy Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins 1

I can’t remember a time I’ve been so incredibly sick that I’ve lost my appetite. Even when I had thrush and could hardly taste food, I still ate. The day after I gave myself food poisoning (totally my fault…expiration dates are more than a suggestion, it ends up), I was back to my regularly scheduled 3 meals/day. Nothing slows down this appetite and pregnancy has been no exception.

Oh, pssst. In case you missed it, I’m pregnant. Due October 10th. If you want all the details of our infertility journey, check out yesterday’s post.

I remember driving home from my first ultrasound at about 3pm. I passed by a Dairy Queen and it was like my Kia and stomach took over. Within seconds, I was staring at the drive thru menu thinking, “What the heck, Nicole?” And then, I settled on a Mini French Silk Pie Blizzard. It was quite possibly the best thing to pass my lips in quite some time and it was the first moment I felt like a crazy pregnant woman. I’m proud to share that since that moment in time about 7 1/2 weeks ago, I’ve limited myself to 1 other DQ visit (same order). Given the close proximity to my home and the fact that I can’t get to or from work, the grocery store, the gas station, the GYM without passing this DQ…this is quite the accomplishment.

Healthy Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins 3

Here’s the thing, though. I’m not only a dietitian (who loves French Silk Pie Blizzards and cheddar + caramel corn), but I’m now growing my most precious gift…nutrition is no joke. As much as I’ve caved on the indulgences, I’ve also been carefully watching my diet at the same time. You know, I’ve had chia seeds in my pantry since 2011 and I’ve used them maybe once. Good thing their shelf life is 5 years because I’m sneaking them into some creative places. Same thing with avocado and walnuts, and you should SEE the handful of vitamins I take daily (of course a prenatal, but add to that vitamin D3, 1200 mg fish oil, + 400 mg magnesium and 200 mg CoQ10 for these darn pregnancy headaches…). And my caffeine intake is next to nothing (::shudder::). I’m also going artificial sweetener-free (I didn’t do a ton, but it’s note-worthy).

And then there’s exercise. Of course hockey was nixed right off the bat. And then, so was running (because of the fertility drugs). But then, the OB disapproved of tennis until I was in my second trimester. I was left with walking, elliptical, biking, and the stairmill. I did some spin classes, but as a hockey playing runner and tennis star wannabe, these restrictions were…tough. If I thought I lacked motivation to workout before, taking away all the activities I love didn’t make things any easier. I am proud to say that I can walk at 4.4 miles per hour AND read my Kindle, however…that’s a skill I’ve acquired.

Healthy Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins 2

But if I’m being perfectly honest, pregnancy has increased my cravings for foods that are not-so-good for me, and drastically decreased my desire to keep active. Not. Good. However, I’m discovering that this is pretty normal (but no excuse).

The very good news is that while most women who love to cook find a lull in their desire to keep busy in the kitchen, mine has never waned. *knock on wood*. I’m still meal planning, cooking, and drooling over healthy meals to make at home. I’m shopping with my grocery list and steering clear of the grocery store’s traps…fairly well. ;) I’m also spending weekend time baking up healthy items to grab-and-go for busy work days. The only thing better than one of these Healthy Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins this morning would be adding to it a piping hot latte. So, you enjoy the latter for me, mmkay?

Healthy Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins 4

5.0 from 2 reviews
Healthy Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Simple, classic, subtly sweet blueberry muffins.
Ingredients
  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour or white wheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup unsweetened vanilla almond or coconut milk
  • ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a muffin tin with 12 liners or lightly grease; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk to combine the flour, baking powder, and baking soda; set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until well-combined. Add the milk, applesauce, and honey; whisk well.
  4. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry with a spatula until moistened throughout. Fold in blueberries. Scoop batter evenly into muffin wells and bake for 18-20 minutes or until an inserted toothpick is cleanly removed. Allow to cool for several moments in the muffin tin before transferring to a wire baking rack to cool completely.
Notes
Recipe from Pastry Affair, as seen on In This Kitchen
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 muffin Calories: 133 Fat: 1.3 Carbohydrates: 27.4 Sugar: 10.9 Sodium: 154 Fiber: 3.3 Protein: 3.2 Cholesterol: 31

 Weekly Menu: April 6th – 10th

Back to the grind and it looks like one busy, busy week + vacation catch-up. Boo.

Be well,

sig4