We just came off a quick weekend of travel. The four of us left Colorado on Friday and returned on Sunday. Our trip was for a family wedding. It’s the first time my kids had a chance to meet some of Josh’s family. It was fun but traveling with kids in that short of a time is exhausting for us all. Despite the lack of sleep both Cia and Cash were amazing. Friday night was the rehearsal dinner, we had just under 2 hours from when we arrived at our hotel before we had to leave for dinner. They were overwhelmed by all the people, all the noise, and all the excitement but I have no complaints. Saturday night was the wedding. And Sunday morning was the day after brunch before we left midday on our return. The bottom line is my kids are troopers and overall really well behaved children. I definitely stood as a proud mom gaining lots of confirmation in my parenting abilities :).
Unfortunately Saturday Cia woke up looking a bit ill. I wasn’t quite sure what was going on but her energy was low so we took is slow. During our outing at breakfast she threw up at the table. It was amazingly discrete and I caught it all in napkins. This seemed to do the trick in perking her back up to her usual self. But it was the onset of some sort of scratchy throat dry cough. Then a few hours later Cash came down with a fever which lasted him until Monday morning after we had returned home. He never complained but instead stayed in my arms for most of the trip resting his body. Poor kid. And as for me well I managed to come down with Cia’s dry cough. I guess it was expected with running ourselves down due to our busy schedules. I will say Josh is on the upswing. He managed to get worse right before we left and is finally coming out of it.
All of this crazy sickness brings me to this soup. We are in need of some immune boosting warming foods. Our fridge was pretty empty but I ran to the store Monday morning and bought just what I needed to make a healthy crockpot meal. A simple chicken soup with veggies, quinoa, ginger, and turmeric. Quinoa as it is not your typical grain or pasta. It doesn’t feed any yeast build up or sickness. Ginger and turmeric because of their numerous healing properties. And chicken, well because everyone loves a chicken noodle style soup! Simple and delicious! To say we are sick and tired of being sick and tired is an understatement.
Immune Support Chicken and Quinoa Soup
A perfect soup for when you're feeling run down, fighting off a cold, or just in of a little warm comfort food.
- 1 onion, chopped
- 6 garlic cloves, minced/pressed
- 4 celery stalks, chopped
- 4 carrots, chopped
- 1 zucchini, chopped
- bunch of radish, chopped
- 1 inch piece of turmeric, peeled and grated
- 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
- 1 cup quinoa, I used a tri blend
- 1 lb chicken thighs, boneless and skinless
- 1 teaspoon Trader Joe's 21 salute seasoning
- 1 quart chicken stock
- Place all prepared ingredients in the crockpot. Stir to combine. The broth should barely cover all the ingredients.
- Cook on low 6 hours.
- Lightly shred chicken with 2 forks pulling apart the thighs.
- Serve warm and enjoy!
Soup are versatile. Feel free to use whatever vegetables you desire!
I haven’t shared my exciting news with you guys yet and I’m thinking now it the time. *drumroll…. As of April 1st I became owner of Kaia FIT Boulder! Yes you read that, I now own a business!! The opportunity presented itself earlier this year and after asking the universe for momentum with my career I knew I had found my new path. I’m a firm believer in manifestation and have seen it work for myself numerous times. Yeehaw!
Kaia FIT is a functional intense training program designed for women to improve both their strength and cardio. All abilities are welcome and it’s an amazing group of supportive women who are all working towards a common goal. I’ve been a coach for the last 6+ months and I’ve never seen any other program close to what this is. Fitness has always been important to me whether I’ve ‘lived it’ or not. It brings me joy on so many levels and I can honestly say it was one of the best decisions I’ve made for myself to incorporate it into not just my daily life but my career. The example I set for my children, the lifestyle I’m living, it’s a perfect balance for this time in my life.
But of course with transitioning to owning a business life is nuts. So many hours of being on the phone, in front of my computer, organizing, getting business documents transferred, etc.. And to add to it I decided to move the business to a new location last weekend. It was the right decision but to say I’m spread a little thin at the moment would be an understatement. Most morning start with me waking up at 4:30-5am and I’m on the run all day. My kids lives are juggled into the mix too! Then this weekend I’m out of town for a wedding, the following weekend I’m out of town for a certification, and I could go on but you get the point. Of course it will all mellow out in due time and I will find my groove with new responsibilities of being a business owner.
So when I’ve said my cooking has been drastically simplified over the last month+ now you know why. I’m still cooking from home 5-6 nights a week. I really can’t complain. Caffeine has become a close friend but life is good, life is full, and life is fun. It was about time I started really doing something with myself!
A chicken recipe flavored with mustard, maple syrup, lemon juice, garlic, and thyme - baked over a layer of sweet potatoes. Super tasty and tender! I love making large batches of chicken to eat over the course of a few meals. It simplifies my cooking life! I served this with a side of broccoli. Easy, healthy, and delicious. What more do you need?
- 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 2 tablespoons mustard (I used German style, Dijon or stone ground would work just as well)
- 2 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 lemon, juiced (~2 tablespoons)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced/pressed
- 1/4 teaspoon dried fancy thyme
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1" rounds
- Preheat oven to 375.
- Lightly grease a 9x13 pyrex dish. Place sweet potato rounds in a single layer.
- In a medium bowl mix the mustard, maple syrup, lemon juice, garlic, thyme, and olive oil. Season generously with s&p. Taste and adjust if necessary adding more mustard, syrup, or lemon juice. Add the chicken thighs and mix well.
- Place chicken in a single layer on top of the sweet potatoes. Pour any leftover marinade on top.
- Bake ~45 minutes until chicken is cooked through and browned. (This may take less time in your oven so watch).
If you'd like a bit more mustard flavor/spice add more mustard to your recipe. I chose to keep it light since I was sharing this with my kids. And it worked, they happily ate it!
I’m not sure what inspired me to make a batch of chicken parm. I recently made my ground beef and cauliflower rice and had some left over marina sauce waiting to be used… let’s just say thanks to the inspiration that took hold. Both kids gobbled this down with vigor and Josh and I were just as happy! I used almond flour instead of bread crumbs and zucchini noodles instead of pasta. I’m not sure anyone would complain that this dish was lacking in flavor or texture! It was good, like really good.
I’m still amazed I pulled it off with such ease. Cash is sick, needing to use a tissue with assistance every 30 seconds. Due to him feeling off his behavior takes a huge turn for the worse and in between needing a tissue he is tearing apart the house. Literally.. couch cushions, bed sheets, dumping out toy bins. And if it’s not this he’s fighting with Cia. Or rather taking her toys so she screams and whines. Oh the joys of parenthood. And after losing a week of productivity (last weeks ridiculous sickness) I’m in over my head with work right now. This exciting announcement will be coming soon. And to cap it off Josh is slammed with his work meaning after a full day of work at work he comes home to do a few more hours of work at his desk. Oh and one more, Cia appears to be coming down with Cash’s cold so she’s a bit more needy than usual. I typically don’t break it down like this, instead just keep on keeping on, but every now and then I do and realize how crazy family like can be! It’s good to vent it all out, release the frustration that builds, but we all know I wouldn’t trade it in for anything! Now I’m going to let the pictures do the rest of the talking..
Chicken Parm with Zucchini Noodles (GF)
A gluten free and almost paleo version of chicken parm.
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups almond flour
- 1/4-1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp dried basil
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 2 large zucchini, spiraled into noodles
- 4 oz mozzarella cheese
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Lightly grease a 9x13 pyrex dish. Place the spiraled zucchini noodles in an even layer in the dish.
- Crack eggs into a wide mouthed bowl and scramble with a fork.
- In a shallow wide bowl mix the dry ingredients.. almond flour, garlic powder, and dried basil. Season generously with s&p.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat with a bit of olive oil.
- Take a piece of chicken and dip it into the egg. Then place into the almond flour and lightly coat eat side of the chicken. Place the coated chicken into the warm skillet. Repeat with another piece of chicken until the skillet has enough chicken to be full but not crowded. Brown each side of the chicken and then place on top of the zucchini noodles. Repeat until all the chicken has been browned.
- Thinly slice the mozzarella and top each piece of chicken.
- Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Broil for the last few to brown the cheese.
I doubled this making 2 pounds of chicken thighs to have for dinner two nights in a row. A perfect solution to cutting down my time in the kitchen!
This was a killer soup! It has all the right flavors for a white chili with the addition of a few extra veggies. In other words a nutritionally complete one pot meal. My ideal! And since we don’t eat many beans these days the easy substitution is hominy. This chili was not only a success for Josh and I but the kids happily ate it too. Serious winning going on over here!!
White Turkey Chili (beanless)
A beanless white chili filled with veggies, hominy, ground turkey, plenty of flavor, and lots of love!
- 1.5 lbs ground turkey
- 12 oz baby zucchini, chopped
- 2 chayote, peeled/deseeded and chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced/pressed
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1/2 lime, juiced
- 4 oz can green chilies
- 30 oz can hominy
- 1 quart chicken stock
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- tortilla chips
- lime wedges
- cilantro leaves
- In a large skillet brown the ground turkey in a bit of oil over medium high heat. As it's cooking sprinkle in a bit of each of the seasonings (oregano, cumin, and smoked paprika). I didn't measure but I probably used about 1/4 teaspoon of each. Season with s&p. Once cooked through place in crockpot.
- To the crockpot add the zucchini, chayote, garlic, onion, lime juice, green chilies, hominy (drain and rinsed), oregano, cumin, and smoked paprika. Season generously with s&p. Stir to combine and add the quart of chicken stock. It should just cover all the ingredients.
- Cook on low for 8 hours.
- Serve with chopped avocado, limes wedges, tortilla chips, and cilantro leaves.
There is something special about roasting a whole chicken. It’s a beautiful centerpiece on the table bringing warmth and comfort to any meal. It was only a year or so ago that I roasted my first whole chicken. I guess I was intimidated by the process but truth is quite the opposite. It’s extremely easy to roast a whole chicken ending with a juicy and tasty finished product. Plus you can roast a larger bird, enough to have chicken for multiple meals. And as a bonus, you can take it one step further roasting the chicken on a bed of vegetables for a one pot meal. I love cooking this way creating one pot meals. And when the oven does all the work it’s about as easy as it can get!
Roast Chicken and Vegtables
A flavorful one pot meal of roasted chicken and vegetables!
- 4 lb whole chicken
- 1 lemon, halved
- lots of thyme
- 8 garlic cloves, peeled
- 2 tablespoons ghee, melted
- smoked paprika
- green beans
- 1/8 cup white wine
- 1/8 cup chicken stock
- olive oil
- Preheat oven to 450.
- Use a large skillet or a roasting pan. Chop all the vegetables into large chunks (fennel, parsnips, carrots, and onion). I trimmed off the ends of the green beans and left them whole. Place the prepared vegetables in the skillet along with half the garlic cloves whole. Add in half the thyme, season with s&p, and coat in a thin layer of olive oil, 1-2 tbsp. Pour in the white wine and chicken stock. Stir to combine.
- Remove giblets from whole chicken and rinse the chicken with water. Pat dry with a paper towel. Season the inside generously with s&p. Crush the remaining garlic cloves and stuff in the cavity along with both halves of the lemon and the rest of the thyme sprigs. Place the bird breast side down on the bed of vegetables. Cover the outside of the chicken with the melted ghee and season generously with s&p. Lastly coat with a dusting of smoked paprika.
- Roast at 450 for 15 minutes, reduce heat to 350 and roast for 1 hour and 20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let rest 10 minutes before slicing and serving with the roasted vegetables.
I chose to serve the chicken off the bone tossed with the roasted vegetables. This method worked perfect for my kiddos!
I use this website for roasting times.