Layered Nacho Dip (With a healthier twist!)

nacho dip.jpg

Don’t we all get the cravings for all the summer snack foods when this beautiful weather comes around? … Dreams of s’mores, homemade pizza pockets on the campfire, chips and dip?

I think most of us can relate. Today I thought I would re-create the fabulous nacho dip my family used to make when we were kids… sour cream, cream cheese, salsa, allllll the cheese. This version is just as fantastic but packed with less calories and more nutritional benefits!

I made a few healthy swaps to the traditional well-known nacho dip and voila! It was a hit. Plain non-fat greek yogurt is a great swap for sour cream as it is packed with protein, calcium, and has no fat. The added black beans give a fibre and protein boost to this dish. Meanwhile, the peppers and tomatoes fire up the antioxidant content and Vitamin C! Give it a try

Ingredients:

Bottom Layer 5:

  • 500g (1 small tub) plain 0% fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tbsp taco seasoning (I used Simply Organic’s Taco Seasoning.. great ingredients).
  • 2 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp lime
  • 1 tbsp Vegenaise (vegan mayo, or mayonnaise of choice)
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper
  • ground sea salt to taste
  • *mix all ingredients together in a bowl*

Layer 4:

  • 1/4 large onion, diced and chopped finely
  • 1-2 large avocados, smashed and mashed
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • Ground pepper and sea salt to taste
  • *Mash all ingredients together in a bowl – guacamole consistency*

Layer 3:

  • 1 1/2 cup black beans, rinsed and drained
  • *Layer on top of the avocado layer*

Layer 2: 

  • 2 large garden tomatoes, diced and chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, diced/chopped
  • 1 yellow pepper, diced/chopped
  • 1 orange pepper, diced/chopped
  • 1 tsp freshly minced garlic
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp taco seasoning
  • *Dice/Chop and mix together in a bowl and spread over the beans*

Layer 1 (the top):

  • Sprinkle with shredded cheese of your choice.

Instructions: 

  1. Make each layer separately one at a time in their own bowl and mix ingredients together. Starting with Layer 5, once all ingredients are thoroughly mixed, spread into a baking pan or Tupperware container.
  2. Continuing layer 4-1. Adding one layer on top of another one at a time.
  3. Store in the refrigerator until consumption.
  4. Enjoy!

nacho dip1

Coconut Chocolate Chunk Energy Bites

oat chocolate coconut

Ingredients (serves ~20 bites):

  • 1 ½ cup Quick Cooking Oats
  • ½ cup natural almond butter
  • 3 ½ tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 ½ tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 3 tsp hemp hearts
  • ½ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chunks, chopped
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp ground sea salt

Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats and room temperature almond butter. Mix thoroughly.
  2. Add in the melted coconut oil. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Combine the rest of the ingredients with regular mixing. Fold in the chocolate chunks last.
  4. Roll in to bite-sized balls and store in the refrigerator.
  5. Enjoy chilled.  🙂

Easter Quinoa Crunch Bites

If you follow my instagram, I just posted a Instagram story making this recipe. Watch the clips and you will see how quickly you can whip up these Easter treats! They are simple and fast to prepare. So if you’re in a hurry, definitely try out this recipe for the weekend. They are always a hit with my family… we just add the mini eggs as a treat for Easter.

easter cookies 3

What you will need:

  • 2 Camino 55% chocolate bars
  • 1 1/2 cups GoGo Quinoa Puffed Quinoa Cocoa Cereal (or a puffed rice cereal)
  • 2 small bags of mini eggs
  • Optional: ground sea salt to taste (some of us love a little sweet and salty!)

Directions:

  1. In a small saucepan on low heat, melt the dark chocolate.
  2. While the chocolate is melting, add 1 cup of quinoa cereal to a large mixing bowl.
  3. When the dark chocolate is thoroughly melted, pour the chocolate into the mixing bowl.
  4. Mix the ingredients with a spatula until all of the quinoa is covered in the chocolate. Add your other 1/2 cup of quinoa and do the same thing.
  5. Set aside the mixing bowl. Chop up one small package of mini eggs.
  6. Add the crunched mini eggs into the bowl.
  7. Form into bite-sized cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  8. Using your other bag of mini eggs, add a mini egg on the top of each cookie.
  9. Chill in the freezer or fridge.
  10. When the chocolate has fully hardened, remove from the fridge, and enjoy 🙂

easter cookies

Ranch Dip (you can whip it up in under 10 minutes!)

Whip this easy vegan ranch dip up for SuperBowl Sunday… A much healthier alternative than the other cream dressings you find on the market. It also is quick and easy to make. Preparation time is under 10 minutes! Woohoo! 

Why not give it a try?

Ranch Dip Ingredients:
1 cup Vegenaise (or vegan mayonnaise of choice)
1/8 cup plain almond milk, unsweetened
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp parsley
1 Tbsp fresh chives, chopped finely
1 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper

Directions: Combine ingredients one at a time in a bowl and mix!

vegan-ranch-dressing

Pair with fresh cut veggies, my cauliflower buffalo bites recipe, crackers, whatever you fancy!

Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Popcorn! #YUM

Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Popcorn

I combine two of my FAVOURITE foods! Popcorn + Dark Chocolate. 

Try it out:

  • In a popcorn machine or in a pot on the stove, made your own popcorn in 1 -2tbsp coconut oil (depending on how much you want to make).
  • Spread the popcorn on parchment paper on the kitchen counter.
  • Melt dark chocolate (at least 70% cacao) and drizzle all over the popcorn.
  • Distribute ground sea salt to taste.
  • Allow this to sit and harden on the counter…. or don’t wait and eat it warm and gooey with chocolate! and ENJOY.

Why do I choose to make my own homemade popcorn versus microwave bagged popcorn? Make your own popcorn at home with plain popping kernels – it is just as fast and saves you from consuming hydrogenated oils, trans fats, artificial colors, artificial flavours, unneeded sodium, and much more.

Why choose dark chocolate (>70% cacao) and not regular dark or milk chocolate? Dark chocolate and cocoa powder are the least processed forms of chocolate. Therefore, they contain the highest flavonoid content (an antioxidant). As an antioxidant, flavonoids help repair damaged body cells, fight free radical damage, and may help reduce the risk of heart disease.

(Milk chocolate and white chocolate are very poor sources of flavonoids).

Roasted Chickpeas – An Easy…and Healthy Snack!

Roasted Chickpeas

Ingredients:
2 tbsp olive oil
1 can chickpeas (garbanzo beans, rinsed & drained
Ground sea salt

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 400F.
Rinse and drain the chickpeas.
In a bowl, mix the chickpeas with the olive oil to coat them.
Pour chickpeas onto a baking sheet lined with tin foil
Add ground sea salt evenly on top.
Bake for ~1 hour, mixing/rotating chickpeas around every 15 minutes.
They are done when they become brown/crunchy.

You can add more ground sea salt if needed and stick to the salt flavour! OR feel free to spice them up with cayenne pepper, chili powder, popcorn seasonings, cinnamon/coconut sugar (to make a sweet version)…. ETC!

and of course ENJOY 🙂

#ThrowbackThursday

antsonalog

Happy #ThrowbackThursday. Who else ate ‘Ants on a Log’ as a kid?! …. and who knew that it was great snack that includes all your essential macronutrients: Carbohydrates (celery & raisins) + protein/fats (natural almond/peanut butter).

Make sure you choose to use natural almond butter or peanut butter to avoid added sugars/oils. Nuts are a great source of monounsaturated fats (the good fats) that play a role in heart health.

So really it is a easy, fun, and satisfying snack for the kids……… or for yourself. I know I enjoyed mine right after I took this photo 😉