Category Archives: Eat, Drink, Be Merry!

Are muffins just naked cupcakes???

I used to think so, but then I started to find delicious recipes that made me love muffins as much as their cousin cupcake….and this recipe is one of them!

Since it is October, I can completely embrace my status as a Pumpkin-a-holic! I know I’m not alone with this….and my fellow basic bitches will agree. All pumpkin everything errrryyyyyddayyyyyyyy.

Lately I’ve been baking like a maniac, and everything seems to incorporate pumpkin in some way. It’s a great way to make (some) dishes healthier, but the recipe I’m going to sure isn’t one of those, but it is a tasty one!

Whether you want a nice pumpkin snack or a pumpkin muffin to pair with your morning coffee, this is the recipe to make!

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These are super easy and great for Fall!

                                    Katie’s Pumpkin and Cream Cheese Muffins
Ingredients:

For muffins:
-2 large eggs
-1 3/4 cups flour (I use whole wheat but you can use all purpose)
-1 tsp baking soda
-1 tbl pumpkin pie spice
-1/2 tsp baking soda
-15 oz can of pumpkin (make sure it is pure  pumpkin puree)
-1/2 tsp salt
-1/2 packed brown sugar
-1 cup sugar
-1/2 cup vegetable oil
-1 tbl vanilla extract

For cream cheese mixture:
-1/4 cup sugar
-2 tsp vanilla extract
-8 oz cream cheese
-1 large egg yolk

Line muffin tin with liners as oven preheats to 375 degrees. Combine pumpkin spice, baking soda, flour, and salt using a whisk. Set aside after well combined. In a separate bowl, beat vegetable oil, vanilla extract, and eggs, then whisk in the flour mixture until smooth. Fill muffin tin with mixture until each cup is about 3/4 cup full.

Beat the cream cheese in a separate bowl until smooth, then add in egg yolk, vanilla, and sugar until well combined.

To swirl the cream cheese in the muffins: top each muffin with about one tablespoon of the cream cheese mixture. Using a toothpick or knife, swirl the mixture into the batter.Don’t worry if it looks a little strange; once it bakes it will have a nice swirled look.

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Bake muffins for 20 minutes (keep an eye on them; every oven is different, and you don’t want them to burn). Store in the fridge in an airtight container after baking.

Enjoy!

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Give me S’more S’mores!

Last week I was in complete Fall mode and was craving S’mores like nobody’s business. Since I have yet to buy a fire pit for my backyard, I decided on a different solution to making S’mores: an easy, yet fabulous cookie recipe that I loved.

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The best S’mores cookie ever!

I shared a picture on Instagram and instantly was bombarded with people asking for the recipe. I have to preface this by stating these should be eaten in moderation because they will NOT fit into any meal plan, regardless of how hard you try.

                                                 Katie’s S’mores Cookie Recipe

-Chocolate Chip Cookies
-1 package mini marshmallows
-10 oz melting chocolate
-1 sleeve of graham crackers, crushed

If you have a specific chocolate chip recipe you love, I encourage you to use it. I use my family’s recipe (which I keep secret because some things should be). Obviously, you want to make the cookies first and let them cool completely.

Crush the graham crackers completely as you turn the oven on to BROIL. This is extremely important…you don’t want to have the BAKE setting on!

Place 7-10 marshmallows on each cookie (depending on the size of the cookie), pressing into cookie slightly before putting cookie sheet into oven and broiling until the marshmallows are golden brown. This happens FAST, so keep an eye on them or you will be really sad when you have burnt marshies!

Remove from oven and allow the cookie to cool completely. Once cooled, melt the chocolate, dipping each cookie in halfway and then sprinkling with crushed graham crackers. Transfer to cooling rack to allow the chocolate to harden completely.

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Sorry, Murphy. No cookies for you!

These are so easy to make and are always a huge hit, especially with kids! Enjoy!

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Me gusta Mexicano!

Food, food, food…..I love you! I know it is pretty clear if you follow me on social media, but I really love Mexican food, especially tacos. There’s just something about the flavors in Mexican dishes that make me happy!!!!

Several years back I experimented with a dish that has become one of my favorites to make when entertaining because it is a) simple to make b) something that puts a spin on your regular stuffed shell recipe and c) absolutely delicious.

Mexican Stuffed Shells! Yes, you heard right!

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I made these last week and posted some snaps on my snapchat and IG story, and so many of you messaged me or snapped me back asking for the recipe. Here it is, friends!

                                                Katie’s Mexican Stuffed Shell Recipe
Ingredients:

-1 lb ground beef
-1 package taco seasoning
-4 oz cream cheese
-1 box of jumbo pasta shells
-1 1/2 cups salsa (you can use any kind you prefer or make your own)
-1 cup taco sauce
-1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
-Black Beans, rinsed (optional)
-Corn (optional)
-Green onions, chopped
-Sour cream OR plain greek yogurt

Directions:

Cook the ground beef as oven preheats at 350. Once beef is cooked, mix in cream cheese, taco seasoning, corn, and black beans if you are using. I have made this recipe both with corn and black beans and without, and I definitely prefer with!

As you cook the ground beef mixture, bring a pot of water to a boil and boil the shells. It’s all about multitasking, friends!

Use a 9 x 13 baking dish (I use a stoneware baker from Pampered Chef because I love how it cooks them),  and pour salsa on the bottom of the pan to coat. Spoon meat mixture into shells and place in pan. Drizzle taco sauce on top of shells, cover with foil, and bake for 30 minutes.

After your timer goes off, remove foil from shells and add shredded cheese, baking for another 15 minutes. Once completed, remove and top with sour cream and green onions.

***I provided the option of Greek Yogurt as a substitute for sour cream. This IS a recipe you can make healthier, and this is one of those healthier swaps.

These are so tasty and are different….prepare to share this recipe because once you make them for friends, they are going to ask you for the recipe!

I often get asked what I pair with these since your traditional garlic bread and salad may not go as well. I typically make homemade guacamole and chips!

ENJOY!

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Eat Chili when it’s not Chilly….

Anyone else love some chili?

I could take or leave plain old chili….I eat it about once a year, and I’m good with it.

White chicken chili on the other hand….I could eat that for weeks on end without complaint!

My meal plan this week included my delicious 21 Day Fix Approved White Chicken Chili, a favorite not only because of its zesty flavor, but because it involves dumping everything in a crockpot and letting it do all of the work.

Here’s how you make it!

                                                  Katie’s White Chicken Chili

Ingredients:

-1 1/2 pounds chicken breast
-1 15oz can of Great Northern Beans
-1/2 teaspoon chili powder
-1/2 teaspoon cumin
-2 cans of canned corn
-1/2 teaspoon pepper
-32 oz of chicken broth
-1 can diced tomatoes with green chiles
-1 can green chiles (I use Old El Paso)

Throw all ingredients into crockpot and cook on low for about 5 hours. Do not drain the corn or chiles. Once it is done cooking, mix in 8oz of cream cheese.

I garnish with a dollop of plain Greek Yogurt (if you don’t care about healthier options you can do sour cream), shredded cheese, green onions, and a few crushed up tortilla chips.

****If you like thicker chili, don’t use as much chicken broth. If you use the 32 oz it will have a more soup-like consistency.

Super easy, guys, and so so so good…plus you can freeze it for a day you are in the mood for it!

Try it and be happy 🙂

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I DONUT live a life without donuts!

Donuts are one of my all time favorite things….I’m pretty sure anyone who reads my blog and follows me on Facebook knows this. I mean…..I captain a running team called Running for Donuts and run the race with a donut on my head. It’s an obsession. I’ve embraced it.

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I go by the running name “Bearclaw.”

Every now and again I like to enjoy a donut from Peace, Love, and Little Donuts….a franchise that makes the best donuts around, but most of the time I prefer making healthier versions of this treat.

I know what you are thinking…they don’t taste like real donuts. If you are after the Fruity Pebbles donuts or Creamsticks, then you are right….you can’t make those kinds healthy regardless of how hard you try. I love chocolate, and I love chocolate glazed, so the recipe that I make the most is the closest thing to that. They are so good!

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Donuts that taste like a brownie but fit in any meal plan. 

Here’s my recipe!

                                                                         Katie’s Chocolate Donuts

– 1 cup whole wheat flour (or oat flour)
-2 scoops Chocolate Shakeology
-1/2 cup Truvia (you could use Stevia if you prefer)
-3 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
-1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
-1/2 Teaspoon Salt
-1/4 cup egg whites
-8 ounces natural applesauce
-1/4 cup water

Mix well. If batter is too thick, add more applesauce or water until it reaches desired consistency. Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees! Enjoy!

**If you are a 21 Day Fixer, I break one donut down to be 1/2 cup yellow, 1/2 purple, 1/2 red.

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You won’t regret these beauties!

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Need some Energy?

I’m a huge fan of energy bites….I have so many recipes I could share! 

I wanted to share the one I make the most…it’s so easy, quick, and delicious! Plus it’s versatile…so feel free to omit or add something to change it up!


Ingredients:

-1/2 cup natural peanut butter

-1 cup oats

-1/3 cup honey or agave

-6 tablespoons dark chocolate chips

-1 tsp vanilla

-2/3 cups shredded coconut

-1/4 cup chia seeds

Combine everything in a bowl (using your hands is best) and place covered in fridge for about an hour. Then roll into bite sized balls and keep stored in fridge for up to a week. 

Enjoy!

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Tacos are Life.

Guys, my love for tacos….it is a deep, deep love. They are right up there with pizza when it comes to my favorite foods.

One thing I pride myself on is finding a way to balance the things I love with living a healthy life. This is so so so important! No lifestyle should have you completely eliminating everything you love; that is just setting you up for failure.

Tacos are one of those foods that YOU have the power to make healthy. I brown ground beef all the time and use a taco seasoning (my favorite is the Southwestern mix from the 21 Day Fix plan) and serve on healthy taco salads, as tacos, or, in this case, as taco cups!

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Super easy….super quick…super delicious.

Here are a few ways you can make your tacos a little healthier:

1. Use corn tortillas. These are actually gluten free and a tasty alternative.

2. Swap out sour cream and use Greek yogurt instead.

3. Utilize ingredients such as black beans and corn.

4. Opt for cheese that is grassfed…stay away from the bagged shredded cheese! Do you know that bagged cheese includes powdered wood pulp (on the bag it says CELLULOSE), which prevents it from clumping? Gross! If you can’t find grassfed, buy a block of cheese and grate it yourself. Wood pulp doesn’t fit into any meal plan….sorry to break the news.

5. Use lettuce as a taco shell or top with as much lettuce as you can!

This week’s meal plan featured my incredibly easy and delicious taco cup recipe, and I had to share for my fellow taco lovers! This is a recipe that is great for kids and adults, can be easily transported, and can also serve as a great, healthy appetizer for events.

                                                           Katie’s Taco Cups

What you need:

-Corn tortillas
-Ground turkey or beef
-Taco Seasoning or Fix Southwest Seasoning
-Greek yogurt
-Guacamole
-Cheese

What you need to do:

Coat a muffin tin (or two depending on how many you are making) with coconut oil or nonstick cooking spray.

Brown the meat and mix in the taco seasoning, just as if you were making regular tacos.

Cut the tortillas into squares. (I take the excess and make homemade cinnamon chips with them to pair with fruit salsa….I can share that recipe later!) Place one square in each muffin cup, spooning some of the meat mixture into each cup. I use between 1-2 tablespoons in each. Top with a sprinkle of cheese. If you prefer, you can top with chess AFTER baking; it’s up to you!

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Ready for some cheese!

Bake at 375 for about 20 minutes…but keep an eye on them. Every oven is different!

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Watch your shells…no one likes a burnt taco!

Top your taco cups with whatever you want….I use a small dollop of greek yogurt and another of guacamole!

If you are following the fix meal plan, I usually count three cups as one serving, but it all depends how much meat you are using.

Store in fridge and heat before serving! Enjoy!

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Hope you love them!

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Operation: Don’t Eat the Feelings!

Do you ever feel like you absolutely KILLED the week?

That was me this week.

I officially started Core de Force Monday as a participant with a coach launch group as well as started a focused launch group of my own. These two groups were EXACTLY what I needed. Not only did I stick to my workouts, but I was laser focused on my meal plan, too. I’ll tell you what…when you have people who can see if you logged your workout or not….who encourage you when you don’t quite feel like pushing play….great things can happen. I’m so excited to take my progress pics tomorrow and measurements! Besides that, this program is proving to be a great fit for the stress and weird feelings I associate with this time of year. Let’s just call it DVD therapy!

Last week I totally failed and forgot to post my meal plan….sorry guys!

Here’s what on tap for this week.

This week I am fully exercising my right to the crock pot. Do you realize how many incredible recipes you can make in one pot with minimal effort???? Last year I ran a group focused on sharing healthy crockpot recipes that was a big hit….I’ve been toying around with the idea to run another one. The pumpkin overnight oats I am making this week came from that group originally, and I’m also making 21 Day Fix Pork Carnitas for dinner. They are so good!

Aldi’s has had some great deals on Jalapeños, so I am using them in my egg muffins as well as the Jalapeño Cheddar Burgers that came from the Core de Force recipe book. These are very flavorful, and if you are making meals for people who aren’t as focused on eating healthy as you are, serve them with a bun instead of plain.

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This week is going to be a little hectic for me…I will be out of town Tuesday-Wednesday, which will result be eating out for a few meals. Since I will be back home by my favorite local spot, All Good Things (be on the lookout for a blog on them coming soon), I will be grabbing dinner there Tuesday…their Quinoa Salad is one of my favorite things! I’m also trying out a new place Wednesday for lunch that is a vegetarian restaurant….I haven’t ben able to access their menu online, but I’ll make sure to share how it is! I get a lot of questions as to why I add an extra snack on Wednesdays…I always have an apple before I teach Cize Live….it’s just my little energy boost!

Besides being on the go this week is also going to be a tough one for me emotionally. Tomorrow would have been my Grandmother’s birthday, and since it has only been two months since we lost her, I know I am going to be a little sad. Besides that, Sunday is the one year anniversary of losing my dad. I’m worried I will deviate from the meal plan this week and eat my feelings, but I am going to do my best to stay on track. I know the groups I am in will help me, too. However, if you see me and I am going for a brownie…or cookie…or pizza….you have my permission to smack me.

Let’s do out best to make it a great week, ok? I know we can do it.

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Happy Birthday in Heaven to my sweet Gram. She is missed so much!

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Something Old, Something New.

Another Monday is among us…..did you get your meal prep done so your week is a success???

I didn’t!

That’s right….my usual Sunday routine did not happen today. Mark your calendars, because that’s rare!

Since I will be out of town tomorrow and not returning until Tuesday night, I wanted to wait to do my meal prep until Wednesday, so my plan is a little off this week. My meal plan is always full of fresh meat and produce, and I didn’t want fresh items to sit around for two days for no reason. I’m ok with the change of plans….I know I will be making healthy choices while out of town, but I’m excited for the recipes I get to make when I get back home! This week is all about blending something old with something new!

My snacks are usually always the same….I love having my Shakeology at night, and having Nice Cream for my morning snack is a great way to make sure I am getting my fruits in every day (anyone else struggle with this…or just me?).

Things I am excited about this week:

Coconut Chicken! I love coconut anything, and when I stumbled across this baked chicken recipe I just had to try it. I’ll make sure to share the recipe once I can attest to whether or not it is as good as it looks!

Ahi Tuna! This week is all about new recipes…..and this marinated seared ahi tuna is another one. I’m making it as my main dinner this week, but I will be making fish tacos with it, too. And because I just love fall….I’m pairing the tuna with a maple cinnamon butternut squash recipe that is ah-mayyyyyyyy-zinngggggggg.

Fix Enchiladas! I haven’t made these since New Year’s Eve when I made them for my family. Mexican food is one of my true loves, so you will typically see at least one Mexican recipe on my meal plan!

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Other things I am excited for this week????

The sneak peek of Core de Force tomorrow! Anyone else trying this with me by using On Demand??????  Bring it, Joel and Jericho! I can’t wait to change up my training.

Annnddddddddddd…….

It’s Super Saturday week!

Super Saturday is a huge event that takes place quarterly for coaches and fitness lovers who get together, work out, learn about some exciting new updates/programs/etc, and network! I am honored to serve on the Market Council for the Cleveland Market, as well as being on the Star Diamond panel to answer your questions. There is a small fee for coaches, but the event is free for guests! Come join us! We will be sharing a big celebrity announcement for our January event, and everyone in attendance gets first dibs on tickets for it!

Get your Super Saturday tickets here!

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I hope your week is full of Sparkle!

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Cheesecake for Eeeeerrrryyyyyyyyybody!

Things we should know about me by now:

-I like to eat healthy.

-I like to meal plan.

If you are a Life is Katetastic blog regular, you know that this is a very important part of my weekly routine and equally serves as part of the success I have found with losing weight and feeling better overall. From time to time I share my meal plan for the week with my Facebook followers, and usually it sparks at least one person asking for a particular recipe. This week I began the 21 Day Fix with a new batch of Fix challengers and wanted to show how diverse your meal plan can be while eating healthy……and, as usual, had some requests for some of the recipes. I figured I would share two of my favorites so you can spice up your meal plan next week! Here’s a look at my complete plan for the current week:

Don't think eating healthy is boring. I assure you, in my world, it's not.

Don’t think eating healthy is boring. I assure you, in my world, it’s not.

A few weeks ago I, like a million or so others, purchased the newly released Fixate cookbook, a cookbook created by Fix created Autumn Calabrese that shares 101 recipes. This week I made a few of the recipes and have to share with you one of my favorites to date….ladies and gentleman, let’s talk Caprese Chicken.

(Let me preface this by saying the Italian part of me generally gravitates to the Italian dishes….I can’t help it!)

CAPRESE CHICKEN

Ingredients Needed:

-Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts

-2 tsp pesto sauce

-Large tomato

-Fresh Mozzarella

-Balsamic Vinegar

-Pepper and Salt

-Fresh Basil Leaves

I prepared my chicken on a stovetop griddle….it is just easier, plus it allowed me to prepare everything else to save me some time. You could use a grill or even bake it if you prefer. Tip: I always opt for a coconut oil cooking spray for a healthier prep option. 

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Here’s a little secret…I prefer Roma tomatoes aka maters over those big guys….not sure why, but find a mater you like and use that. Cut the mater up into slices, and cut the fresh mozzarella up, too!

Once your chicken is completely cooked, top chicken (while on your grill/griddler/whatever) with a spoonful of pesto sauce, a slice of tomato, some fresh basil leaves, and a slice of mozzarella. Cover and cook at a reduced setting for a few minutes until the maters are soft and the cheese is melted. Then plate!

Here’s how I plate: a spoonful of pesto on the plate, a splash of balsamic vinegar, the heavenly chicken breast, then some fresh basil on top. Doesn’t it look fab? I like serving it with spaghetti squash.

Seriously, so easy and delicious. My fix friends, this is one red, 1/2 green, one blue, and one teaspoon.

A+ from Kyle.

A+ from Kyle.

 

Another item on my meal plan that always seems to catch people’s attention is cheesecake. Yes, I have found a way to eat cheesecake on a healthy eating plan. Best part? Super simple!

Katie’s Fix Approved Cheesecake

-Ricotta Cheese

-Splash of vanilla extract

-dash of cinnamon

-Squirt of honey (the natural healthy kind)

-Strawberries

Mix up everything (minus the berries), then top with them. You could also use peaches or cherries, whatever you want. I usually mix it up in my red container (that’s what the ricotta is) to save on a dish and keep me on track.

Easiest dinner life hack.

Easiest dessert life hack.

There you go, folks….a healthy dinner and dessert/snack idea to add to your meal plan.

I like food. I like food a lot. Know what else I like? Sharing these healthy and delicious recipes with you so you can still have an exciting and amazing meal without feeling bored or disappointed. I think many people avoid eating healthy because they think all you eat is veggies and water……not the case at all, my friends.

Those of you who haven’t purchased this yet, get it…..especially all of my fixers!

Life is too short to eat boring. Enjoy!

Pie, Cake, OMG!

Pie, Cake, OMG!

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