Naturally Amazing Dressings and Dips for Summer

Naturally Amazing Dressings and Dips for Summer


Are you getting enough veggies in your diet? Sorry to have to play Fiber Patrol, but somebody’s got to… right?

One of the things I love and appreciate most about summer is the variety of seasonal vegetables. The farmers market is always overflowing this time of year with a variety of produce and with the heat, I personally love to enjoy my veggies raw.

Today I’m excited to be partnering with French’s Yellow Mustard to bring you four #NaturallyAmazing delicious dressings and dips which are perfect for seasonal picnics and grill-outs!

French’s yellow mustard starts with farm-grown, whole mustard seeds and select herbs and spices (including turmeric). French’s is 100% natural, gluten-free and kosher and it has 0 calories. Unlike some mustards, there’s nothing artificial: no preservatives, fillers or thickeners. French’s is naturally amazing and is the preferred mustard for your favorite summer foods. From flavorful marinades to tangy salad dressings, French’s yellow mustard brings wholesome goodness and fresh taste to your table. Awesome.

Now let’s make some dressings and dips for summer!

This post was brought to you by the makers of French’s Yellow Mustard. I received compensation to write this post through the French’s Naturally Amazing Program, but all opinions expressed here are my own.


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The Trader Joes Healthy Meal Plan

The Trader Joe's Healthy Meal Plan: Recipes for Paleo, Vegetarian, Vegan, & Gluten-Free Diets

Let me start by saying that this is NOT a sponsored post for Trader Joe’s. :)

If I had things my way, I’d probably only shop at the farmers market and my local co-op, but with some recent career changes, life feels busier than ever. And you know what this means? It means a lot of shopping at Trader Joe’s.

A couple of times a month I get emails from readers with questions about how to make healthier decisions at the grocery store. I also frequently get asked to create meal plans with servings. This isn’t something I normally do, but since I’ve been focusing on my own food budget lately and doing a lot of shopping at Trader Joe’s, I thought this would be the perfect chance to create a Trader Joe’s Healthy Meal Plan!

In this post I’ll show you what my typical shopping list for the week has been looking like and the recipes I make. These recipes are a mix of some basic prep and pretty simple cooking. Since I’ve been tight on time lately, my goal has been to keep meal prep and cooking time under 30 minutes per meal so these recipes are definitely great for busy folks! Each section shows you the amount of servings along with the total price and price per serving.

I typically only shop and cook for myself so I will do 1 – 2 shopping trips a week and do batch cooking usually twice a week to make sure I always have fresh food on hand. If you are cooking for 2 or a larger family, you can adjust the recipes and multiply the items by how many additional servings you need for the week. Make sense?

So let’s get to it!


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SuperSeedz Review and Giveaway

SuperSeedz Review & Giveaway

I think it’s pretty obvious by now that I’m obsessed with food. I’m always planning my next meal, brainstorming a new recipe, or trying to find healthy options for snacks. Some of my favorite snacks include my yam fries with garlic aioli, raw veggies with vegan walnut and mushroom pate, and most recently, this toasted coconut and goji berry trail mix. Yum.

When it comes to snacks, I really like options that are portable because it’s easy to keep them in my bag or at the office without worrying about spoilage. This is exactly why I’m so excited to share my latest snack obsession with you: SuperSeedz.

SuperSeedz are shelled, dry-roasted pumpkin seeds that come in eight different flavors: Sea Salt, Really Naked, Sugar & Cinnamon, Tomato Italiano, Somewhat Spicy, Super Spicy, Coco Joe and Original Curry.  Not only are they delicious, but they’re also gluten-free, peanut free, tree nut-free, dairy-free, grain-free, vegan, MSG-free and non-GMO. Score.

Nutritionally, I also like pumpkin seeds for a couple of different reasons:

1. Protein: 1 ounce of pumpkin seeds has 8 grams of protein (16% RDI). When I was plant-based I would often add pumpkin seeds to smoothies to increase my protein intake and they’re a perfect way to add more healthy protein into your diet.

2. Iron: 1 ounce of pumpkin seeds contains 2 mg of iron (15% RDI). Pumpkin seeds are one of the best plant-based sources of iron, which helps facilitate the growth of healthy cells and is especially important for women.

3. Zinc: 1 ounce of pumpkin seeds contains 2 mg of zinc (13% RDI), which is pretty important because this essential trace mineral that helps our immune systems stay strong!


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Toasted Coconut and Goji Berry Trail Mix

Toasted Coconut and Goji Berry Trail Mix

There are a lot of reasons why people make trail mix. Most people I know make trail mix because they need quick energy on a hike. Or a bike ride. Or perhaps a good run.

But me? No. 

I make trail mix prior to a shopping trip at IKEA. I mean, can you think of a better time when you’ll be under stress, most likely hungry, and really needing some energy? I certainly can’t.

I made this batch of trail mix in preparation for an IKEA run a few weeks back. Even though my friend and I were estimating it would be a “quick trip,” I knew I had to be prepared and that definitely meant bringing food along.

Three hours, two lamps, a kitchen cart, and a giant shelf later I found myself stuffing this trail mix into my mouth by the handful and I couldn’t have been more grateful.  If you need a tasty and nutritious snack on hand to prevent low blood sugar, I think this toasted coconut and goji berry trail mix is the solution…


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Vegan Walnut and Mushroom Pate

Vegan Walnut and Mushroom Pate

Have you been on a spring cleaning kick lately? I have.

Me and my trusty DIY All Purpose Cleaner and DIY Citrus Vinegar Cleaner have been scrubbing every surface in my apartment and I’ve been decluttering like mad. At this point it’s getting crazy. If something isn’t somehow attached to the apartment itself I’ve found myself trying to figure out how to get rid of it.

I knew I was going overboard the other day when I found myself debating about donating my food processor. I mean, I love that thing, but somehow I haven’t used it since I was recipe testing for my cookbook last summer. That’s when I knew it was time to put it to use again.

So, what to make in my lovely food processor? Enter vegan walnut and mushroom pate. If you’ve been needing a reason to keep your food processor around, I think this just might be it.


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Fruit-Free Green Smoothie

Fruit-Free Green Smoothie

This year, I desire….

  • to feel empowered in my body.
  • to speak my truth.
  • to feel vibrantly alive.
  • to trust my intuition.
  • to be madly in love.
  • to feel creative and inspired.
  • to eat green things and nourish my body.

Instead of starting the year with body hate/guilt/remorse, let’s start the year feeling strong and showing our bodies compassion and love.

Instead of starting the year on a diet and thinking about restricting, start the year feeling nourished and enjoying an abundance of real food.

Instead of starting the year thinking about what you want to change, focus on what you love about yourself.

This year if you’re desiring to take better care of yourself, have more energy, and feel comfortable in your body, start by choosing high-quality real food.


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Spicy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Spicy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

This week I’m working on taking it easy.

Of course, as I’m typing that I have to laugh at myself. Who has to work on “taking it easy”? Apparently I do.  It’s hard for me to clear my schedule, stop the to-do list and ignore the inbox… but sometimes it has to be done. Can you relate?

If you want to join me in this taking-it-easy business, might I suggest making these incredible spicy roasted pumpkin seeds?  There’s nothing that will keep you focused on the present moment like carving open a slippery pumpkin with a very sharp knife. That’s just something you don’t mess around with.

Well, that and karma. Just sayin.


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Post-Halloween sugar coma? Let’s talk.

Post-Halloween sugar coma? Let's talk.

If you live in the United States and celebrated Halloween yesterday, I’m just going to assume that we need to have an intervention.

No? Oh, so that wasn’t you who brought in all those bags of candy to the office? Yeah, uh-huh. I’ve seen you snacking on them all day.

(Ok, not really. And I didn’t mean to sound so creepy. I have not been spying on you. Promise.) 

But anyhoo, let’s talk healthy snacks, shall we? I think it’s time we play a little game called “healthier options.” Here we go:

Craving pumpkin pie? There’s a healthier option! Try this pumpkin spice smoothie instead!

Craving potato chips? Try these crispy baked beet chips!

Craving a candy bar? Try these dates with almond butter and coconut! Plus the protein from the almond butter will help to balance blood sugar. Score

Craving chili cheese fries?  Try these yam fries with garlic cashew aioli! They’re da bomb.

Craving ice cream? Try making your own sugar-free coconut vanilla ice cream at home! No ice-cream making needed! And, bonus points if you top this off with a baked apple. Yum.

And if your sugar cravings are driving you absolutely mad, it might just be time for a fresh juice. I’d recommend a Love Your Liver (Detox) JuiceDigestive Aid Juiceor a Mean Green Juice.  

I’m just here to help. :)

Hope you have a wonderful (and healthy!) weekend,