Low Carb Ranch Pasta Salad (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

This pasta salad is a quick and easy side dish to make ahead for lunch or dinner – perfect for those busy weeknights!

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If you’ve ever been to a Ruby Tuesdays, you very likely know the pasta salad I’m talking about. Creamy, crunchy, and a little salty from the ham and Ranch.

Growing up in Woodstock, Georgia (which was very small then) Ruby Tuesdays was one of the only sit-down restaurants in our area. When my parents felt like treating us to a dinner out, we usually went there or our favorite Mexican food joint.

My mother loves to tell stories about what a veggie lover I’ve always been (apparently, I used to ask for a breakfast of carrots, celery, and ranch – who’d have guessed?!). So naturally I gravitated toward the salad bar and piled it high. The pasta salad became one of my favorites very quickly.

I haven’t been to Ruby Tuesdays in forever! The last memory I have of going there, I was pregnant with my daughter (which was 5 years ago). So, you can understand my excitement when I found this pasta salad EVEN BETTER than the one at the favored restaurant chain.

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It’s a fantastic use of leftover ham, veggies sitting in the fridge, or those last few Tablespoons of Ranch at the bottom of your jar.

My kids were digging this pasta salad too, even the veggies (that they normally shy away from).

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This salad is creamy, delightfully crunchy, and FRESH. Just look at all those flecks of fresh herbs from the homemade Ranch dressing – gorgeous!

Ranch Pasta Salad (THM S)

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Time: 10 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 8oz Dreamfields Pasta (any short cut variety, I used elbows), cooked (makes about 2 cups cooked pasta)
  • 1 1/2 c finely diced ham
  • 1/3 c frozen peas (don’t worry about thawing or cooking, they thaw very quickly)
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, finely diced
  • 2 Tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2-3 heaping Tbsp Homemade Ranch Dressing
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour, and add more mayo and/or ranch if the salad gets too dry.
  2. Store refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Cinnamon Crunch Protein Coffee Cake (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

This recipe made me so happy! Not only did it work on the first try, which can be rare for baking, it was easy to throw together before Sunday morning breakfast. This was my first gluten/sugar free coffee cake, and I could not be more pleased with the result.

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If you have all the ingredients, this cake is quick and simple to throw together. I liked using protein as a big part of the base here for 2 reasons: it makes the cake texture more like coffee cake (sturdy and slightly dry) and it adds more protein to the cake (making it a great snack or finishing complement to an S breakfast or lunch).

First, get your dry ingredients together in a small bowl: almond flour, whey protein isolate, Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet, baking soda, and salt. Stir to combine.

Next is your wet ingredients: eggs, unsweetened vanilla almond milk, melted coconut oil, vanilla bean paste, and vanilla extract (yes, I like both because I like vanilla, however you can leave out the paste if you want.) Stir it up.

Then whisk the wet into the dry. The consistency is pretty wet, like runny pancake batter.

Get your pan ready, and make sure your oven is preheated to 350. I prepped my 8×8 baking dish with coconut oil spray and a square of parchment paper. I did it this way because I wanted to make certain the cake would slide right out of the dish. With the parchment in there, each piece came out perfectly, and the dish was easy to clean.

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Prepare your topping by combining softened butter, cinnamon, Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet, and nuts. I chose to use sliced almonds but you could use pecans, hazelnuts, walnuts, whatever you fancy. It’s going to look like a paste, that’s OK.

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Pour half of your cake batter into your prepared dish, dot it with half of the nut topping, then pour on the other half of cake batter and dot the top with the rest of the nut mixture.

If you want more of a streusel-like topping, you can add some coconut flour to the mix to dry it out and make it more crumbly but I do like how this turned out. The butter melts, making the cake moist and you still get the crunch of the nuts with the cinnamon sweetness.

Bake the cake at 350 for about 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown delicious on top.

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All of that topping sits just under the golden brown surface.

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Gorgeous! Let it cool slightly before cutting.

Slice it into 9 pieces, and have you a piece, girl.

See? All that cinnamon, sweet goodness floating throughout the cake. The cake has flecks of vanilla bean and a crunch factor from the nuts. The cake is fluffy, sturdy, and slightly dry – making it the perfect partner with your coffee or tea.

This is a perfect make-ahead snack for the week. I’ve sent pieces with my husband to work, and heated it up as a snack. Just store the pieces in a large gallon zip-top bag in the fridge.

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Cinnamon Crunch Coffee Cake (THM S)

  • Servings: 9
  • Time: Prep, 10 minutes Bake, 30-35 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients


Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Combine dry cake ingredients in a small bowl: almond flour, protein, sweetener, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Combine wet cake ingredients in a separate bowl: eggs, milk, oil, vanilla paste and extract.
  4. Whisk wet and dry together.
  5. Combine all ingredients for the nut topping in a small bowl and set aside.
  6. Prepare an 8×8 pan with parchment paper and coconut oil spray.
  7. Add half of the cake batter to the dish, dot with half of the nut mixture, pour on second half of cake, and finish with the second half of the nut mixture.
  8. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes, or until completely set in the middle and golden throughout.
  9. NOTES: A few have experienced an “eggy” taste with this recipe. Baking with whey can have that taste. Make sure you add enough vanilla to your batter, even if you don’t have the paste. To further tone down the whey, add some almond extract as well (about 1/2 tsp of almond and 1 tsp vanilla). The final note is to TASTE the batter before you bake it. If the batter is good, the cake will be good. Happy baking!

Easy Grilled Asparagus (THM FP)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

I love no-fuss sides that add a fresh complement to any meal – this easy grilled asparagus is definitely one of them.

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Asparagus on the grill can be a little frustrating. You don’t want the thicker bottoms to be too raw, and if you cook them longer the tops may burn – UGH. Well, this method will give you perfectly tender, slightly smoky asparagus every time. The best part? You only need 3 ingredients!

Let’s start with the star of this side – the asparagus. When you buy fresh asparagus at the store, make sure you use it within about 2-3 days of purchase. The easiest way to cut off the fibrous stumps is to leave the bottom rubber band on, and cut the whole bunch at once right above that band (about 1-1 1/2 in. from the bottom).

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Next, you’re going to quickly blanch the asparagus. Don’t be scared – all blanching means is that you’re going to cook it for a short amount of time, and then shock it really fast to stop the cooking. This ensures that your asparagus will be perfectly al dente all the way through.

You’ll get a pot going with a few inches of water and a big pinch of salt. Doesn’t have to be a lot of water, just enough to submerge the asparagus. Also, make sure that your pot is wide enough to fit the asparagus laying horizontally. While the water comes to a boil, get your shock bowl ready with ice water.

When it boils, drop the asparagus and cook it for 3 minutes (time it!). If you have some asparagus that’s on the thicker side, cook it for 4 minutes.

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At the end of 3 minutes, use a wire spider to remove the asparagus from the boiling water, and place it immediately into the prepared ice bath. Let it hang out there for about a minute.

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This method keeps your asparagus vibrant green, while also getting it cooked.

Next, heat up a cast iron grill with a spritz of coconut oil spray. Remove the asparagus to a paper towel to dry off the excess water, then place it onto the hot grill.

It doesn’t need much cooking, just until it has some grill marks on each side (you don’t want it looking like a limp noodle though).

Take it off the grill, place it onto a plate, and lightly season with salt and pepper.

Lightly zest a lemon. I like using this easy grip zester because it gives the long, pretty curls of zest. If all you have is a regular microplane or zester, that’s fine too.

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Throw some of that zest right over the warm asparagus, and finish with a light sprinkle of Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese. Of course, if you’re paleo or dairy free, just leave the cheese off.

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This is a light, zesty, fresh (and fast!) vegetable side that can literally go with anything. My husband’s favorite side is asparagus, and he raved about how perfectly cooked this was. He even ate the asparagus bottoms, whereas he’s normally a strict upper-half-only guy.

Easy Grilled Asparagus (THM FP)

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 10 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch fresh asparagus
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • light sprinkle of Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese, optional
  • salt and pepper
  • coconut oil spray

Directions

  1. Bring a pot with salted water up to a boil. Also prepare a large bowl with ice water off to the side.
  2. Boil the asparagus for exactly 3 minutes, remove with a wire spider, and place directly into a prepared ice bath. Leave the asparagus in the ice bath for about 1 minute. Remove and pat dry.
  3. Heat a grill pan with a spritz of coconut oil. Place the asparagus onto the hot grill and grill it for about 2 minutes.
  4. Place the grilled asparagus onto a plate. Season lightly with salt and pepper, lemon zest, and a sprinkle of cheese.

Low Carb Gruyère Chive Biscuits (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

I have been working on my biscuits recipes, trying new things, and tweaking a few recipes. I listened to some of your critiques of my parmesan garlic biscuits, and tweaked the recipe a bit to add some moisture. Then I started building on that recipe, and created deliciously cheesy Gruyère Chive Biscuits.

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Believe me, these sound so fancy but they’re easy with just a touch of elegance.

Gruyère is a hard yellow cheese that you typically find atop French onion soup. It’s nutty, buttery, slightly salty, but very mild in flavor (hence, being an excellent pairing in your biscuits!). For this recipe, I actually used smoked Gruyère for a little hint of smoky flavor, but feel free to use regular as well.

When I’m baking, I always throw together my dry ingredients first – it’s just how I work. In a small bowl, combine the coconut flour, almond flour, baking powder, salt, cheese, and fresh chives.

Then cut in the softened butter with a fork, and add the beaten eggs.

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As you can see, this dough is fairly wet (which means more moisture!). I used a small measuring cup to get even portions of the dough, about 1/4 c or 1/3 c measure should do.

Scoop it out, add it to a lightly sprayed cast iron skillet (or parchment-lined baking sheet), spacing them about 1/4 – 1/2 inch apart.

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I like my biscuits to have nice buttery, brown tops, so I brushed them with about 2 Tablespoons of melted butter.

Pop them into a 350 degree oven for about 20-25 minutes (watch the sides and bottoms for doneness).

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Look at those beauties!

The tops get a little cracked (a la traditional biscuits) and the bottoms have a light crunch. The cheese melts into the biscuits and the chives add a very delicate onion flavor. The texture is fluffy, light, and moist.

Enjoy these alongside any S meal. We had these with our Loaded No-Tato Soup last week, and I tell ya – my kids get SO excited for biscuits. They are biscuit maniacs, and I’m just happy we can ALL have biscuits that are good for us.

Low Carb Gruyère Chive Biscuits (THM S)

  • Servings: Makes 6
  • Time: 35 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients


Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Combine the coconut flour, almond flour, baking powder, salt, cheese, and fresh chives in a small bowl.
  3. Cut in the softened unsalted butter with a fork, then add the beaten eggs.
  4. Using an ice cream scoop, or small measuring cup, scoop the biscuit batter into even portions and place into a lightly sprayed cast iron skillet (or a parchment-lined baking sheet is perfectly fine too) about 1/4 – 1/2 inch apart.
  5. Brush the tops lightly with a few Tablespoons of melted butter.
  6. Bake at 350 for about 20-25 minutes, until the tops are lightly browned. *NOTE: Check the sides and bottom for browning, as they will get darker before the tops get very browned. Serve warm with a little extra melted butter, if you like.

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Copycat Chipotle Cilantro-Lime Brown Rice (THM E)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

I’m about to throw down an easy, zesty side for your E meals.

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First, a few tips for cooking your rice to perfection every time.

My favorite rice to use for E meals is brown jasmine rice. Yes, it takes a little longer to cook, but it has fantastic flavor and holds its shape well.

I always start by sautéing my rice in a little coconut oil. This gives your rice a little *bite* and prevents it from becoming mushy after cooking. Just sauté the dry rice in a little bit of butter or coconut oil (about 1/2 tsp) on medium-low heat until it starts to change color.

My second best tip is to add flavor to your rice by using broth as your cooking liquid. My favorite to use is chicken broth, but any kind will do so long as it’s low (or no) fat. Even using half broth and half water still adds a ton of flavor to your rice. Nobody likes bland rice, so don’t be afraid to give it a little somethin’-somethin’.

Last, and this is pretty important, do not stir the rice after you add the liquid. Stirring the rice activates the starches (a la risotto), and you’ll end up with soupy instead of fluffy rice. Also, try not to peek on the rice while it cooks.

If your pans have glass tops, it’s very easy to see the rice without having to lift the lid. I hardly ever time my rice, because I always go by the liquid bubbling around the rice. If I can still see bubbles, I keep cooking. No bubbles, turn the heat off and let it sit on the hot eye for about 7-10 minutes so that the remaining liquid has a chance to absorb.

If your pans have opaque tops, then by all means time your rice and lift when necessary towards the end – but no stirring!

Once your rice has cooked and stood with the heat off for at least 10 minutes, add the juice of half a lime and a big handful of fresh chopped cilantro. You want to do this while the rice is still warm so that the juice seeps into the rice grains, but it’s not piping hot to where it’ll turn your cilantro brown.

My favorite tool for getting the most juice out of your limes is to use a hand-held lime squeezer. It helps get the most juice out of your limes and keeps the seeds from jumping into your food.

I told you it was easy! Just 5 ingredients and you’re on your way to a zesty Southwestern side dish for any E meal.

Cilantro-Lime Rice (THM E)

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 c brown jasmine rice
  • 3 cups broth (any low or not fat variety) or a mix of half broth and half water
  • 1/2 tsp coconut oil
  • juice of 1/2 a lime
  • big handful of chopped fresh cilantro
  • pinch of salt

Directions

  1. Melt the coconut oil in a medium sauce pan over medium-low heat. Add the uncooked rice and saute until the rice starts to brown (about 5 minutes).
  2. Add the cooking liquid and salt, then cover. Bring to a low boil, then reduce to a rapid simmer for about 20-25 minutes. You should not see bubbles or any liquid around the rice when it’s done.
  3. Turn the heat off and let it sit for about 10 minutes, so the remaining liquid has a chance to absorb.
  4. Uncover, add the lime juice and cilantro, and fluff with a fork. Serve immediately or refrigerate for later use.

Copycat 4-Ingredient Chipotle-Style Guacamole (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

I did  not grow up loving avocados. It wasn’t until my adult years that I realized all the buttery goodness avocados have to offer.

Avocados were one of my kids’ first foods, and they still love those beautiful greenies well into their toddler years. [In fact, one of my toddlers threw an epic hissy fit just last week simply because I didn’t make guacamole for dinner. That’s commitment right there.]

If I’m being very honest, Chipotle is one of our favorite meals on the go. Chipotle is committed to clean, sustainable ingredients and I can very easily get a filling S meal while we’re there. In fact, I think my kids eat the *most* vegetables when we eat at Chipotle. [Hey, whatever works, right?]

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This recipe takes just 4 simple ingredients, and it can be thrown together in no time flat.

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Start with the avocados – the most important part!

It’s vital to have bright green, ripe avocados. When you’re picking them at the store, the skin should be dark and they should have a little give when you squeeze them. If they have a little stem still attached at the top, pop it out and it’s a pretty accurate measure as to how ripe the avocado is.

Using a sharp knife, cut straight down to pit and circle your knife around the pit until you get two halves. Cut large cubes while the avocado is still in the skin, then use a spoon to scoop between the flesh and skin.

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Scoop the cubes straight into a small mixing bowl, and douse with the juice of 1/2 a lime. I love using this lime juicer! It’s seriously one of my favorite kitchen tools, because limes are notoriously difficult to juice. This handheld juicer makes it so easy, and you get ALL the juice that lime has to offer.

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Toss to coat the cubes in the lime juice. This helps keep your avocados from oxidizing.

Then add 1/2 a fresh jalapeño, finely diced. I have a trick for getting the ribs and seeds out of these guys using a grapefruit spoon. Sounds weird, I know, but it WORKS. Check out my how-to here. Chop that jalapeño very finely, especially if kids are partaking in your guacamole. No one wants to chomp down on a large piece of jalapeño – that’s how tongues get hurt.

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Add a handful of fresh cilantro, salt and pepper.

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Toss to coat, and mash to your desired consistency with the back of a fork. I like mine chunky, a-la Chipotle, so I don’t mash it too finely.

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Ta-da! Beautiful, buttery guacamole. Enjoy it with cut veggies (peppers, cucumbers, celery, etc.) or with your favorite S tacos/taco salads. It’s the perfect game day treat the whole family can munch on!

Copycat Chipotle Guacamole (THM S)

  • Servings: Multiple
  • Time: 7 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 4 ripe avocados, cubed
  • 1/2 fresh jalapeño, finely minced
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro, chopped (about 1/4 c)
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Place the avocado cubes in a small mixing bowl, and coat with the lime juice. Toss to combine.
  2. Add the jalapeño, cilantro, salt and pepper and mash together to desired consistency with the back of a fork.
  3. Serve immediately, or store in an airtight container until ready to serve. Store in the fridge for up to 4 days.

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Low Carb Parmesan Garlic Biscuits (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

As I was making my zucc-ghetti and meatballs last week, I was really itching for a dunker. You know, something you can pull apart and use to scoop up spaghetti sauce remnants. Don’t pretend like you don’t do it. Everyone does.

I didn’t want to crossover, so I decided to whip up some garlic biscuits.

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The gluten free flour base I used was a mix of fine almond flour and coconut flour. If you have THM Baking Blend, you can also use that in place of the almond flour.

The best thing about this recipe is how easy it is. It comes together in one bowl, and the ingredients are pretty straight forward. (I don’t know about you, but I personally love recipes that are easy to make, and don’t require my entire pantry.)

Start by combining all the ingredients except the eggs in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk the eggs together before adding them to the rest of your ingredients, and combine using a fork or pastry cutter, if you have it. The mixture should be homogeneous and easy-to-form. (Not too dry!)

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The dough should stick together without feeling dry or crumbly.

Form the dough into palm-sized domes with your hands, and place it into a 10-inch cast iron skillet. Place the dough about 1/2 inch apart, as they will puff/spread a little.

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Brush the tops with some melted butter, and bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until the tops are lightly golden.

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Puffy, soft, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious.

You can brush the tops with a little more melted butter after baking, if you wish. It helps keep them moist.

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Low Carb Parmesan Garlic Biscuits (THM S)

  • Servings: Makes 6
  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients


Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Combine all ingredients except eggs in a medium-sized bowl, and begin to cut together. Add the beaten eggs and continue cutting until the fully mixed. The mixture should stick together without feeling dry or crumbly.
  3. Form the dough into palm-sized domes and place in a 10-inch cast iron skillet about 1/2 an inch apart.
  4. Brush the tops with melted butter, and bake at 350 for about 15-20 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven, and apply more melted butter to the tops (if you wish). Serve immediately (while they last!).

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Wedge Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

I’m probably preaching to the converted here, but I’ll go ahead and say it – ranch dressing rocks my world.

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I’ve spent time scouring store brands trying to find something that’s Trim Healthy Mama compliant while keeping within my budget, and it’s either a unicorn or it doesn’t exist. Most brands have varying sugar levels, and it seems the sugar levels and price have a variable relationship. Smaller levels, higher price. Quite frankly, I’m just not willing to pay upwards of $5 per bottle for something I’m not sure I’ll enjoy.

Enter: homemade ranch.

Honestly, it blows my mind how much better homemade dressings/sauces taste than store brand. I’m not even remotely exaggerating!

After mixing this dressing together, I really had to refrain from drinking the entire bowl.

I chopped everything by hand, but if you like the pieces smaller feel free to use a food processor.

*NOTE: Even If you’re using a food processor, still grate the garlic so that you don’t get any large pieces. I used a fine hand grater.

Start off by making a homemade buttermilk from unsweetened almond milk and apple cider vinegar.

Combine all other ingredients in a small bowl, season with salt and pepper, and add the buttermilk to your desired consistency.

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It tastes best when it has a few hours to hang out in the fridge, but straight from mixing to serving works too. The taste will deepen over time.

The first night, I paired this with one of my favorite classic sides: the wedge salad. There’s something about a wedge salad that feels so simple yet elegant. Even when I make it at home, I feel like I’m in a fancy steakhouse.

The best way to get your iceberg wedges is to start by cutting the stem end off the head of lettuce. Then cut diagonally down toward the center twice, and rock your knife side-to-side to free your wedge slice from its prison.

Add it to a bowl with some chopped seedless cucumbers, tomatoes, blue cheese crumbles, and bacon. Season with a little salt and pepper.

And finally, drizzle on your homemade ranch dressing.

Store the dressing in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks (although I’m almost certain it won’t be around that long), stirring before each use. This recipe makes about 8 servings.

Buttermilk Ranch Dressing (THM S)

  • Servings: Multiple
  • Time: 5 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 1 c mayonnaise
  • 1/2 c reduced fat sour cream
  • 1/2 c unsweetened, plain almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely grated (I use a hand grater
  • 4 Tbsp fresh chopped parsley
  • 3 Tbsp fresh chopped dill
  • 2 Tbsp fresh chives
  • 1/2 tsp white balsamic vinegar
  • few dashes hot sauce
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Combine almond milk and apple cider vinegar in a small bowl and set aside. This makes your “buttermilk”
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients in a medium-sized bowl.
  3. Add the reserved buttermilk until the mixture reaches your desired consistency. Adjust salt and pepper as needed.
  4. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

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Roasted Pork Tenderloin & Baked Apples

Pork chops and apples is one of my all-time favorite Fall combinations. It’s probably my dad in me, because he’s an apple man unlike no other.

Growing up, I remember (somewhat fondly) having Stouffer’s baked apples. It must have been my dad’s favorite side dish, because we had it a lot. I haven’t had those apples in years, because with their sugar content they might as well be candy. Since I’ve stopped eating sugar, my palette has changed and I just don’t enjoy crazy-sweet things anymore.

That’s why these baked apples are the bomb. The sweetness comes from pure apple-y goodness, and I spiced them up with a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and a little salt. I added a little xanthan gum to the mix to make a light sauce, and it all came together perfectly.

The pork tenderloin, I kept relatively simple with light seasoning, searing it in my cast iron skillet, and finishing it in the oven.

I topped it all off with some FP gravy from last week’s turkey feast.

All in all, the perfect Fall-inspired meal.

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Roasted Pork Tenderloin (THM FP)

  • Servings: 4-5
  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 1-2 lbs lean pork tenderloin
  • 1 tsp ground sage
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Season the tenderloin with the sage, thyme, salt, and pepper and rub it into all sides of the meat.
  3. Place the meat into the hot pan, and sear it about 3 minutes on all sides.
  4. When flipping the meat onto the final side to sear, remove from heat and place into the oven to finish. Bake for about 10-15 minutes, or until desired internal temperature is reached.


Baked Apples (THM E)

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 45 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 2lbs apples (any variety or mix that you like. I used Honeycrisp)
  • 1 Tsp softened butter
  • 2 palmfuls ground cinnamon
  • 1 palmful ground ginger
  • 2 pinches nutmeg
  • 2 pinches salt
  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Peel and slice the apples. Mine were on the larger side, and I used an apple cutter, then halved some of the larger pieces. The only thing to note here is the thinner you slice them, the faster they cook. Place the sliced apples into an 8×8 pan.
  3. Season the apples with the softened butter, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, salt, and sprinkle on the xanthan gum. Stir to combine and place in the oven uncovered to bake for 30-40 minutes.
  4. Stir halfway through to help activate the xanthan gum.
  5. Let stand for 5-7 minutes, and serve.

Easy S Thanksgiving for Four

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, it’s sneaking up on us faster than we know. It’s my first Thanksgiving being 100% on the Trim Healthy Mama plan. I know the THM plan gives us food freedom, in that we can always restart in three hours, but let me be completely  honest and say…I don’t like going off plan. After eating clean for so long, I find that when I do take tiny steps off plan I’m gravely disappointed. Then I’m dealing with the inevitable sugar spikes, and I don’t enjoy doing that to myself.

That’s why I wanted to be ahead of the game, and get my holiday preparations in order well before the craze of the holidays begins.

Most of this meal came together in under an hour and, as many of us know, that’s a fraction of what is normally spent in the kitchen or even just prepping for turkey day. This meal is equal parts flavorful and low-key.

I made the cornbread 2 days prior to making the meal so that it could dry out some. If you like your dressing as more of a casserole, or even want to stuff your turkey breasts with it, you could certainly make it the morning of so that it’s more pliable.

I modified this recipe for the actual cornbread part of the dressing. I left out the bacon and cheddar, then added ground sage, a little poultry seasoning, salt, and pepper.

I went fairly simple with the turkey, pan roasting it in butter. I did this for two reasons: 1) turkey airs on the dry side, and there’s nothing I despise more than dry protein. 2) BUTTER. I got the herbes de Provence on a recent trip to Trader Joe’s, and love the blend! I highly suggest using it, but if you don’t have it you can of course use your favorite herb blend.

I topped off the meal with some creamy mashed cauliflower, and it was a real winner! My husband was excited to take the leftovers to work, and he’s not a big “leftovers” guy.

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Southern Style Cornbread Dressing (THM S)

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 1 1/2 hours
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

    For the cornbread:
  • 1/2 stick butter, softened
  • 1/4 c Nutiva shortening, or coconut oil/butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 c unsweetened, plain almond milk
  • 1/4 c masa cornmeal
  • 3/4 c almond flour
  • 1/4 c coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground sage
  • 1/2 tsp ground poultry seasoning
  • sprinkle of black pepper
  • For the Dressing:
  • 1 loaf low carb cornbread, sliced in half lengthwise
  • 6 eggs
  • 3/4 c heavy cream (half and half or unsweetened plain almond milk will also work)
  • 1 1/2 c turkey stock
  • 3 stalks celery, finely diced
  • 1 medium red onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 c diced cremini mushrooms
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350, with your cast iron skillet in the oven while it heats.
  2. Mix all the ingredients for the cornbread together in a medium-sized bowl. Spray cast iron skillet with coconut oil, and pour the batter in. Bake for 30-35 minutes. When it’s finished, let the cornbread cool, then remove it from the skillet to dry out for 6-48 hours.
  3. Preheat oven to 375. Bake the halved cornbread for roughly 10-12 minutes. Cut into 1/2 inch cubes and set aside in casserole dish.
  4. Preheat a large, deep skillet over medium heat with 2 Tsp butter. Saute the onions, celery, and mushrooms for about 5-7 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic, salt, and pepper and cook an additional minute. Remove from the heat and add to the casserole dish with the bread cubes.
  5. Whisk together the eggs, milk or cream, and turkey stock, then pour over the bread mixture and stir.
  6. Bake uncovered for 35-40 minutes, or until lightly browned and crispy on top.

Butter Basted Pan Roasted Turkey (THM S)

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 10-12 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 2 large (roughly 1 lb each) turkey breasts, butterflied in half
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • about 1 Tsp herbes de Provence
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Melt the butter in a large, deep skillet over medium heat.
  2. Season the turkey liberally with herbes de Provence, salt, and pepper. When the butter begins to bubble (not brown), gently add the turkey to the pan.
  3. Saute the turkey 3-4 minutes, or until golden brown. Flip, then turn the pan down to low heat to finish.
  4. Baste the cutlets along the way by gently tilting the pan towards you, spooning up the butter, and pouring it over the turkey.
  5. Saute about another 4-5 minutes, or until cooked through, then remove from the pan and cover with foil.

Turkey Gravy (THM FP)

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 10 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • Pan drippings from cooking the turkey
  • 2 c turkey stock
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tsp gluten free Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. In the same pan where you cooked the turkey (any residual butter removed), heated to medium, de-glaze the pan with the turkey stock working any bits from the bottom with a wooden spoon.
  2. Whisk in the mustard and Worcestershire, then heat until the mixture starts to lightly bubble.
  3. Whisk in the xanthan gum and a pinch of salt and pepper. Continue whisking occasionally until the mixture thickens to your liking. NOTE* Do not add any more xanthan gum, or the mixture may start to get gloppy (technical term). Be patient and keep whisking. It will thicken!