sweet potato

Sweet Potato Blueberry Waffles with Lifeway Kefir (GF)

I first stumbled upon kefir just over a year ago. That's probably a bit embarrassing to admit, but I honestly had no idea what it was. I pretty much just thought it was yogurt that was a little less thick and a little more liquid-y. The general consistency isn't that far off, but kefir itself is SO much more than that! It is packed with probiotics which are great for gut health and immunity. You may have heard these terms a lot recently, but that is because they are truly so important. Gut health is everything! It literally effects your entire body and is so important when it comes to digestion. Beyond the probiotic aspect, kefir is also high in protein, calcium, and vitamin D just to name a few. 

I was recently introduced to Lifeway Kefir, a brand of a variety of different, delicious kefir, cheeses, and other probiotic products. They have everything from flavored kefir to frozen (dessert-like) kefir to supplements and obviously your standard, plain kefir which I just love! With all of these options, I knew that I needed to have some fun playing around in the kitchen.

I'm starting it off with a sweet potato and blueberry gluten free waffle using Lifeway's blueberry kefir. I know the combo might sound a little weird, but it is SO good! Seriously, you can't knock it until you try it. And the flavor of this kefir is so delicious, you'll never know that there aren't actual blueberries in it.

Here's What You'll Need:

-1/2 of a large sweet potato (or 1 small one)
-1/2 cup Blueberry Lifeway Kefir
-1/4 cup water
-1/4 cup quinoa flour
-1 tsp baking powder
-1 egg

Instructions:

1) Cook you sweet potato until it softens by either roasting it in the oven or poking holes in it with a fork and microwaving . I generally microwave it for about 2-3 minutes per side.
2) Remove the skin, and place the softened sweet potato in a mixing bowl.
3) Mash the sweet potato with a fork until smooth.
4) Add in the remaining ingredients and mix together thoroughly until ingredients are evenly distributed.
5) Preheat and spray your waffle maker. Add in the mixture, and cook according to your waffle maker's instructions.
6) Remove from the waffle maker, serve, and enjoy!

I topped mine with some chopped walnuts for a little crunch and a drizzle of maple syrup. I'd definitely recommend the combination but would also love hear how you enjoyed yours! Let me know what you think in the comments below!

Loaded Breakfast Sweet Potato

I honestly don't have a great back story for this (sorry). I was thinking I wanted to make a stuffed sweet potato for breakfast, but I wanted to use cottage cheese instead of yogurt. This got me thinking on more of a savory route, and before I knew it I had loaded potatoes on the brain. Swap out sour cream for cottage cheese, add in some extra greens, and I was salivating just thinking about it. 

This thing literally came together in like 10 minutes. I took the easy way out and microwaved the sweet potato. Feel free to bake it (I generally prefer to avoid the microwave), but the time crunch was real. Easy AND delicious - does it get much better?

Here's What You'll Need:

-2 small sweet potatoes
-5.3 oz classic Good Culture cottage cheese pack
-1 cup baby arugula
-1 clove garlic, minced
-2 pieces of uncured, all natural turkey bacon
-1/2 tbsp olive oil or ghee
-Hot sauce to taste

Serves 2

Instructions:

1) Poke the sweet potatoes with a fork all over to create little holes. Cook them in the microwave for 3-5 minutes, flip over, and cook for an additional 3-5 minutes.
2) In the meantime, heat up the olive oil/ghee on the stove top. Once hot, add in the garlic and cook for about a minute.
3) Add in the arugula and cook for about 2-3 minutes until it is cooked down. Remove from heat.
4) Cook the turkey bacon on the stove top according to directions until crispy, and chop into small pieces.
5) Remove the sweet potatoes from the microwave and cut each in half.
6) In the middle of the halves, add half the cottage cheese pack to each potato.
7) Top the cottage cheese with half of the arugula and bacon pieces.
8) Top each with desired hot sauce, serve, and enjoy!

This combo is just the perfect balance of salty and sweet with that little kick of heat (if you choose to add hot sauce). This one will definitely be on repeat over here. Let me know what you think in the comments below!
 

Jalapeno Cheddar Spiralized Sweet Potato Waffle

As you all know, I love waffle Wednesday, but I wanted to try something a bit different than the standard waffle.

I had seen spiralized sweet potato waffle recipes before, and honestly, they just seemed overly complicated. Why do I need to cook my sweet potato to then further cook my sweet potato? I don't get it. Isn't the point of a waffle maker to throw it all in and voila - delicious waffle?

I knew my waffle maker had it in it to be the one stop cooking shop for my sweet potato dream. So I was pretty much like, eff it, we are going for this. AND IT WORKED! All the more reason to love my waffle maker. 

Once I knew how easy it was to literally toss spiralized sweet potato with an egg and waffle it (yes I'm making waffle a verb), I decided it was really time to play around. First stop - a delicious and spicy jalapeno cheddar spiralized sweet potato waffle.

Here's What You'll Need:

-1/2 sweet potato, spiralized
-1 egg
-1/2 jalapeno, chopped
-1-2 tbsp shredded cheddar (depending on your cheese loving level)

(Makes 1 waffle)

Instructions:

1) Heat up you waffle maker.
2) Mix together all of the ingredients in a bowl.
3) Throw the mixture in the waffle maker and cook about twice as long as you'd normally cook a waffle. For example, my waffle maker generally takes 5 minutes, so I cooked my sweet potato waffle for 10 minutes. Watch carefully, as timing may vary by waffle maker.
4) Remove the waffle, serve, and enjoy!

It's really that simple. The outside may look a little charred (or it may not), but that's probably just the cheese. Trust that it still tastes AMAZING! Want it to taste even better? Top that baby with a soft fried egg. BEST. COMBO. EVER.

I'd love to hear what you think in the comments below!

Gluten Free Chili Sweet Potato Tots

I've always been a big fan of tots. They are without a doubt my favorite guilty pleasure. So I figured why not try to skip the guilt and make a bit of a healthier version. I swapped the potato for a sweet potato and tried to keep the ingredients as minimal as possible. I also decided to go gluten free with these because I thought coconut flour would be a nice compliment to the sweet potato's natural taste.

Here's What You'll Need:

-1 large sweet potato
-2 tbsp coconut flour
-1/2 tsp chili powder
-Sea salt and pepper to taste
-Coconut oil spray or melted coconut oil

Instructions:

1) Boil a pot of water on the stove top, and once boiling, add in the sweet potato and cook for 20 minutes.
2) Remove the potato from the water, and let it cool until you are able to handle it.
3) Peel the sweet potato, and then shred it into a bowl.
4) Mix the coconut flour into the shredded sweet potato, and start forming the mixture into tots. Place them evenly on a baking sheet coated with coconut oil. 
5) Preheat the oven to 375 degrees, and once preheated, place the tots into the oven. Cook for 30 minutes.
6) Serve and enjoy!

I had mine with dinner one night

and then leftovers the next morning for breakfast.

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Not only are they easy but they're also very versatile. Let me know what you think and how you used yours!

BBQ Chicken Salad with Greek Yogurt BBQ Ranch Dressing

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With the summer season coming to a close, I found myself craving barbecue. I got a little sad for a second because barbecue food tends to be associated with grilling and summer. But then I caught myself; it doesn't have to be! 

This recipe kind of holds onto that summer feeling and taste, but it's prepared and cooked all inside. So when we eventually get to that first really chilly fall night, we can still have a little taste of summer right in the comfort of our own homes.

Here's what you'll need:

For the dressing:

-1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
-1/2 tsp dried parsley
-1/2 tsp garlic powder
-1/2 tsp onion powder
-1/2 tsp German mustard
1/2 tsp lemon juice
-1 tsp BBQ sauce
-1 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
-salt and pepper to taste

For the rest of the meal:

-1/2 Japanese sweet potato, chopped into small cubes for (croutons)
-2 tsp olive oil
-1/2 avocado, diced
-1/2 tomato, diced
-1/8 red onion, chopped
-2 chicken breasts (4 oz chicken breast used for nutrition information)
-4 tbsp BBQ sauce
-4 cups baby kale
-salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

1) Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.
2) in a bowl or bag mix the sweet potato with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Arrange the potato on a baking sheet to form a single layer.
3) Slather the BBQ sauce onto both sides of the chicken breasts, and put them on a baking sheet.
4) Once the oven in preheated, you can put both baking sheets (or one if you put everything on one) into the oven. 
5) After 10 minutes, used a spatula to move the sweet potato pieces around (flipping them over the best you can). Also flip over the chicken breasts. Place all the food back into the oven and continue to cook.
6) After 5 more minutes (15 minutes total) remove the sweet potato pieces, and set them on a plate to cool.
7) After 5 more minutes (20 minutes total) remove the chicken.
8) While the food is cooking you can mix together all of the dressing ingredients in a bowl.
9) Split the kale between two bowls. Top each with tomato, onion, and avocado.
10) Add the sweet potato "croutons" to each bowl.
11) slice the chicken breasts into strips and top each bowl with one breast.
12) Drizzle half of the dressing onto each bowl, and enjoy!

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did! This may be one of my favorite recipes to date! Let me know what you think in the comments below, and feel free to subscribe for e-mail updates.