Meatless Monday Recipe: Super Clean Green Smoothie


Does the idea of choking down a glass of liquified lettuce and kale make you more than a little queasy? I have to admit, I have tasted a green smoothie or two that was truly awful! Enough to turn me off completely until I found this one … the Green Smoothie from Dr. Oz’s 3-Day Detox Cleanse. It’s yummy enough that I want to drink it all the time, not just during a cleanse.

Dr. Oz Detox Smoothie

Photo courtesy of

It’s super easy to make, and if you despise one of the raw ingredients (like I despise raw celery)  just leave it out!! In my opinion, the pineapple and coconut oil are what make this smoothie a winner, so try to include these if at all possible!

Here’s what you need …

How To Make A Green SmoothieIngredients:

  • 4 celery stalks
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 cup kale leaves
  • 1/2 green apple
  • 1/2 lime
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen unsweetened pineapple chunks


Simply add all ingredients to a blender, blend well, and enjoy!

Green Smoothie Recipe




Meatless Monday Recipe: Tomato-Basil Pesto Pizza

Good morning, peeps! I hope everyone had a fabulous weekend. I’m cheery today because I’m taking a well-deserved rest day from my half-marathon training schedule. The race is less than two weeks away — yikes! After completely almost 10 miles yesterday with my partner-in-crime & race buddy, Courtney, I’m confident that we’ll have a strong finish in Palmetto Bluff!

Now, on to food! 🙂

Today I’m sharing a modified version of a pesto pizza recipe from Budget Savvy Diva. This girl has some recipe pics that literally make you run to the market to grab the ingredients as soon as you glance at them!

Tomato Basil Pesto Pizza-sm



Here’s What You Need …

  • 1 Roll of Whole-Wheat Refrigerated Pizza Dough (I used the Pillsbury Artisan dough)
  • ¾ Cup of Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 4 ounces of Goat Cheese
  • 1 Cup of Fresh Basil Leaves
  • 1 Cup of Broccoli florets
  • 4 ounces of Goat Cheese
  • 1 medium heirloom tomato
  • ¼ teaspoon of red pepper flakes
  • Kosher Salt, pinch
  • Freshly-ground Black Pepper, to taste
  • 4 Tablespoons of Olive Oil


  1. Preheat oven and pre-bake dough according to the instructions on the pizza dough package.
  2. Using the microwave, steam broccoli florets until fully cooked. The cooking time depends on your microwave. Mine were done in about 30 seconds.
  3. In a food processor – combine ⅓ cup of parmesan cheese, pinch of salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, olive oil, ⅔ cup of basil leave and cooked broccoli. Process until the mixture reaches pesto consistency.
  4. Spread pesto on the pizza
  5. Sprinkle goat cheese and the rest of the parmesan cheese on the pizza
  6. Place tomato slices on the pizza
  7. Bake for about 14 minutes. Keep an eye on the crust so it doesn’t burn.
  8. Garnish with the rest of the basil leaves, serve, and enjoy!


Meatless Monday Roundup: 5 Meatless Italian Favorites


Meatless Monday Roundup: Your 5 Favorite Italian Recipes
Italian food is one of my favorites, and judging from all of the LIKES and REPINS on Pinterest, you love some of these Italian meatless dishes too.

For today’s Meatless Monday post, I’m featuring the FIVE Most Popular Italian Recipes on my blog based on feedback from InstagramPinterestFacebook, and Twitter.

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Stuffed Portobello Mushroom

Tomato-Basil Pizza with Gluten-Free Crust

(you’ll NEVER guess the secret ingredient in this crust!)

Gluten-Free Tomato Basil Pizza | The Wellness Scientist

Gluten-Free Tomato Basil Pizza | The Wellness Scientist

Three Cheese Baked Ziti

Vegetarian Baked Ziti

Vegetarian Lean Lasagna


Linguine with Arugula and Tomato Sauce

Linguine with Arugula and Tomato Sauce

Which one is your favorite? Tell me below in the comments!


Meatless Monday Recipe: Linguine with Arugula and Tomato Sauce



Happy Monday! Last week I wrote about my great-grandmother’s homemade biscuits, this week I’m thinking about the homemade marinara that my Italian grandmother used to make. Any time we went over on Sundays, she always seemed to have a pot bubbling on the back of the stove. This is a super simple pasta recipe that you can make any night of the week, so it is perfect for Meatless Monday! The only time consuming part is just giving the sauce the right amount of cooking time. I recommend one hour of simmering, and there is plenty you can do in the rest of the house while that sauce is simmering, right? Or a free hour of weeknight Pinterest fun 🙂  I won’t tell!

 fresh arugula


I made this on Sunday night since I always get nostalgic on Sundays for some good old-fashioned home cooking. I always try to make things a little bit healthier than the original, but I don’t think you’ll notice a difference 😉

Here’s what you need:

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic (peeled and sliced thinly)
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes
  • One 28-ounce can organic diced tomatoes (including juice)
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 ounces boxed linguine
  • 5 ounces fresh arugula
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese



  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium-low heat. Throw in the sliced garlic & chile flakes and cook for about 3 minutes. Careful not to let it burn!
  2. Add the canned tomatoes and their juice, season with 1 teaspoons of salt and a little freshly ground black pepper.
  3. Turn the heat up and bring the sauce to a boil
  4. Once the sauce is boiling, turn the heat down to low and let the sauce simmer for about an hour.
  5. Before you are ready to serve, grab a potato masher and use it to crush up the cooked tomatoes. If you don’t have a potato masher, a wooden spoon will work just fine!
  6. When your sauce has been simmering for about 45 minutes, grab a pot for your linguine and get the water boiling.
  7. Once the water is boiling, throw in a little salt and then add your pasta. Linguine takes about 10-11 minutes before it’s al dente (you don’t want to overcook your pasta!)
  8. About a minute before your pasta is done, throw the fresh arugula right on top of your pasta so that it starts to wilt.
  9. Grab a colander and drain your pasta/arugula mix, then throw right on top of your tomato sauce.
  10. Toss and serve with a little freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!

Pasta with arugula and tomato sauce

Linguine with Arugula and Tomato Sauce


Meatless Monday Recipe: Homemade Buttermilk Drop Biscuits

Having grown up in the South, I know a good biscuit when I see one. One of my favorite food memories as a child was going to my great-grandmother’s  house for lunch on Sunday. We called my great-grandmother “Muh,” which stuck when one of her kids was learning to talk and trying to say “Mother”.  Muh  usually served up steak and rice ‘n’ gravy with green beans from her garden and biscuits or cornbread (or both!) on the side. I remember she used to keep the biscuits warming in the electric skillet in the kitchen so when you wanted seconds (always), your biscuit would still be nice and hot!!  That was some good cookin’!!!!

My biscuit craving is still present, and I love the Buttermilk Biscuit recipe from Joy of Cooking — it reminds me of my Muh’s recipe. She used to say that they tasted so good because they were made with LOVE.  I always loved it when she said that. Brings a smile to my face just thinking about it. 🙂

Though it is tempting to take a short cut & use Bisquick and the like, these Homemade Buttermilk Drop Biscuits aren’t that much more effort. And like Muh said, you can taste the love in them.  Here’s what you need:

Buttermilk Drop Biscuits


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons cold, unsalted sweet cream butter
  • 1 cup buttermilk

How to Make:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F and grab a large ungreased cookie sheet.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
  4. Pour in the buttermilk.
  5. Mix with a wooden spoon until most of the dry ingredients have become moistened.  You want the batter to be moist and sticky, but not too smooth.
  6. Using a teaspoon, scoop up a heaping spoon full and use a second spoon to scrape the batter onto the cookie sheet.
  7. Place the drop biscuits about 1 1/2 inches apart.
  8. Bake for about 12 minutes, until the biscuit bottoms are a golden-brown.

Serve hot!

Homemade Drop Biscuits






Meatless Monday Recipe: Easy Arugula Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

Arugula is my new all-time favorite salad ingredient, and it’s so versatile! After a few nights of a simple “rocket and parm” salad, I wanted to sweeten things up a bit.  I love adding dried cranberries and bleu cheese to my salads, especially in the winter. This one was super easy and did not disappoint!

Here’s what you need to serve 4 (or 2 people who always go back for seconds 🙂 )

Easy Arugula Salad

Easy Arugula Salad


  • 5 ounces baby arugula
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 tbsp bleu cheese crumbles
  • 1/2 cup large croutons
  • Homemade balsamic vinaigrette (recipe below)


  1. Add arugula, cranberries and bleu cheese to a large salad bowl.  Gently toss.  Add croutons and dress with salad dressing (use as much or as little as you prefer)
  2. Serve and enjoy!

Balsamic Vinaigrette



  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 Dorot crushed garlic cube (or 1 clove minced garlic)
  • 3 Dorot chopped basil cubes (or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Add all ingredients to a salad dressing shaker or empty container of your choice.
  2. Shake until ingredients are well blended.

Note: You can find the Dorot brand garlic & herb cubes in the freezer section at your local Trader Joe’s, or check their website for other locations.

Question: What is your favorite winter salad? Share a link in the comments below!

Meatless Monday Recipe: Eggplant with Buttermilk Sauce

Happy 2014 everyone! I hope everyone had an amazing holiday season filled with good food and fun!

I got an AMAZING new cookbook for Christmas called Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi

The photos in this cookbook are so beautiful, I just want to make and eat everything in it!!! This book retails for $35, but you can pick up a hardback copy from Amazon for a GREAT PRICE by clicking the link above.



The Eggplant with Buttermilk Sauce featured on the cover was the first recipe I tried. Can you blame me? How good does that look?

This recipe serves 4 as an appetizer. I decided to make the entire recipe as an entree and serve a whole eggplant to each person, but honestly it was a bit too rich for that so I’d recommend keeping it as a starter. The following are the ingredients and preparation instructions as specified in the PLENTY cookbook.

At the bottom, you’ll find a few shortcuts that I used when I prepared myself. ENJOY!!


  • 2 large and long eggplants
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. lemon thyme leaves, plus a few whole sprigs to garnish
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1 tsp za’atar


  • 9 tablespoons buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil, plus a drizzle to finish
  • 1 small garlic clove, crushed
  • pinch of salt

How to Prepare:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cut the eggplants in half lengthways, cutting straight through the green stalk (don’t eat the stalk). Use a small sharp knife to make three or four parallel incisions in the cut side of each eggplant half, without cutting through to the skin. Repeat at a 45-degree angle to get a diamond-shaped pattern.
  2. Place the eggplant halves, cut-side up, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush them with olive oil – keep on brushing until all of the oil has been absorbed by the flesh. Sprinkle with the lemon thyme leaves and some salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, at which point the flesh should be soft, flavorful and nicely browned. Remove from the oven and allow to cool down completely.
  3. While the eggplants are in the oven, cut the pomegranate into two horizontally. Hold one half over a bowl, with the cut side against your palm, and use the back of a wooden spoon or a rolling pin to gently knock on the pomegranate skin. Continue beating with increasing power until the seeds start coming naturally and falling through your fingers into the bowl. Once all are there, sift through the seeds to remove any bits of white skin or membrane.
  4. To make the sauce. Whisk together all of the ingredients. Taste for seasoning, then keep cold until needed.
  5. To serve, spoon plenty of buttermilk sauce over the eggplant halves without covering the stalks. Sprinkle za’atar and plenty of pomegranate seeds on top and garnish with lemon thyme. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil.


Questions & substitutions:

I couldn’t find any fresh lemon thyme, so I simply used 1 1/2 teaspoons of regular dried thyme and juice from half a lemon.  It worked just fine!

What the heck is za’atar???







A mixture of dried herbs, sesame seeds, dried sumac, and often salt, as well as other spices popular in the Middle East (per Wikipedia).  This can be a bit tough to find, but if you live in an area that has a middle eastern market you shouldn’t have a problem.

Question:  Do you have any awesome eggplant recipes to share?  Please add them in the Comments section below!

Thanks for stopping by! Happy cooking 🙂




Meatless Monday Recipe: Chocolate Mint Chip Cookies

So many people I know look forward to the Pumpkin Spice Latte coming out each year to kick off the holiday season. I’m not a fan of it myself (I know! Crazy!!) but I love a good Peppermint Mocha! A long-time fan mint and chocolate in one bite, I was happier than a kid on Christmas the first time I tried these Chocolate Mint Chip Cookies.

Chocolate Mint Chip Cookies

There are several varieties of chocolate mint cookie recipes out there.  I’ve tried several, and this one is the by far the best! The only brand of mint chips I’ve ever seen is made by the Guittard Chocolate Company. The following is Guittard’s recipe for what they call “Polka Dot Cookies.” This recipe will make about 4-5 dozen, depending on how large you make your cookies.

With tomorrow being New Year’s Eve, I’d say its a good day for baking!!  Let me know what you think of these yummy cookies.



  • 2 cups (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (12 ounces) Guittard Green Mint Chips


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Pour semisweet chocolate chips and butter into medium-sized microwave-safe bowl. Heat at medium power (50%) for 2-3 minutes, stirring well after each minute. Continue to heat at 30 second intervals and stir until smooth.
  3. In a large bowl (or using a stand-up electric mixer,) beat eggs, sugar, and vanilla until light. Blend in the melted chocolate, then slowly mix in the dry ingredients.
  4. Stir in green mint chips and chill in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes.
  5. Drop by well-rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes (slightly longer for larger cookies). Remove from oven and allow cookies to sit another minute or two to continue to harden.




Here is a link of grocery store chains and shops that carry Guittard brand chips.

Happy Holidays!






Meatless Monday Recipe: Reduced Fat Asparagus Quiche

Hey there! Hope all of you had a very Happy Thanksgiving and got plenty to eat!!! 🙂

The transition from Thanksgiving to Christmas prep seemed WAY TOO QUICK this year, didn’t it?  Yesterday, I spent a few hours taking down all the fall decor & pulling out the boxes of Christmas stuff. My husband decked the house out with lights, and tonight we’re putting up the tree after we eat a light dinner.

And what ARE we having for dinner, you ask? A little Asparagus Quiche with a goat cheese salad for tonight’s Meatless Monday dinner!

If you tried my Broccoli and Parmesan Quiche recipe, you’ll want to give this one a try too! Super easy to make, and I used mostly 2% milk with just a very small amount of heavy cream to keep the fat & calories to a minimum (you do need a little fat for pull off a decent quiche, though, so I didn’t do without the cream completely)

Here is what you will need to make one 9-inch Asparagus Quiche (approximately 6 servings)

Asparagus Quiche Recipe


small skillet
9-inch pie plate
medium mixing bowl
fork or whisk
aluminum foil
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.


1 pre-made pie crust (for a 9-inch pie)
1 tsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 egg yolk
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 1/4 cup 2% milk
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 freshly ground black pepper
pinch of ground nutmeg
8 spears of asparagus, blanched & cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup of grated Gruyere/Swiss cheese blend from Trader Joe’s


  1. Let your pre-made pie crust come to room temperature (about 20 minutes) and roll out into a pie plate that can accommodate a 9-inch pie crust. Lightly beat an egg yolk, and then brush the edges of the crust with it to prevent burning.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. When hot, saute the garlic for 1-2 minutes. Don’t let it burn. Pour the garlic right into the pie crust.
  3. In a medium-sized bowl, beat together 3 large eggs, add the cream & milk, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Beat together until mixed.
  4. Add the cut asparagus and cheese blend to the pie crust. Pour the egg mixture right on top.
  5. Bake until the filling is browned & set (about 40 minutes). Check to make sure that the outer edges of the crust isn’t burning. You may need to place aluminum foil around the edges if it starts to get overdone.

Enjoy!  I’ll share the Goat Cheese Salad recipe with you next week!

Question: Do you have a favorite Quiche recipe to share? Please add you links below!

Meatless Monday Recipe: Pumpkin Persimmon Oatmeal Cookies

I had more than half a can of organic pumpkin puree left after finishing another recipe as well as some really nice super-ripe persimmons from a friend’s tree, AND I was in the mood for a little baking.  What could I do to use up these persimmons and pumpkin?

I scoured the pantry and found some gluten-free oats and chocolate chips, and I was ready to start putting together this new recipe.

After pureeing two large ripe persimmons together with half a cup of pumpkin puree in my food processor, I added the mixture to a bowl containing one cup of quick gluten-free oats.  The mixture looked a little runny at this point, so I grabbed my coconut flour (which is known to soak up liquids in recipes) and added 1/3 cup.  The consistency was PERFECT after adding the coconut flour.


Next, I added cinnamon, a little Truvia Baking Blend, and semi-sweet chocolate chips. I was pretty happy with the results of these cookies.  And considering I used NO EGGS and NO BUTTER, they were quite a tasty healthy treat.


Here’s what you need to make two dozen cookies.


  • 1/2 cup persimmon puree (use two very ripe persimmons)
  • 1/2 cup organic pumpkin puree (I used canned pumpkin puree from Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 cup quick-cook oats (if you want this recipe to be gluten-free, make sure you choose oats that say gluten-free on the label)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup Truvia Baking Blend
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (for dairy-free cookies, use dairy-free chocolate chips)



  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add oats to a large mixing bowl.
  3. Puree the persimmons with the pumpkin puree until texture is smooth. It’s ok if there are still some visible pieces of persimmon once you are done.
  4. Add the puree to the oats and mix well.
  5. Add the coconut flour, mixing again.
  6. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.
  7. Add mixture to a parchment-lined baking sheet using an ice cream scoop. After all of the cookies are on the baking sheet, use a spatula or your hand to flatten out the mixture into a cookie shape.
  8. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes. Allow to cool before eating.  Enjoy!


Question:  Do you have any recipes using persimmons? Have you ever made persimmon cookies before? Tell me about it below!