The Basics of Juicing

The Basics of Juicing

We are a fan of juicing! If you are new to the idea of juicing, I want to tell you that if this mom of three small boys can juice in the morning on a school day AND get her boys to drink said juice, it’s simple enough for you to do, too! What You Will Need: A Juicer — Do not freak out about which one to buy! Simply head over to Amazon.com and search “juicer.” Narrow your search to juicers costing between $50-$100 and by ones that have reviews of 4 stars and up. Then pick one! To get started in juicing you just need one that will extract the juice and isn’t a total bear to clean. By sticking with reviews four stars and higher, this is what you will find. Personally, we have an older version of this one. (Full disclosure: this is an affiliate link) Produce — The gold standard of juices starts with greens. That could be anything from kale to romaine to arugula (although this last one’s a bit peppery and bitter as a base). Then you want to add some other green veggies. We like cucumber and celery for their hydrating effects. Next, add in some veggies that have other desired effects you’re going for: carrot for some sweetness, beets for liver cleansing, herbs like parsley for overall detox. Last, select a fruit or two to add some pleasing flavor that will hook your kids or a new juice fanatic. This could be a green apple or a pear, pineapple or strawberries. Not too much fruit, though, or you will have...
Holy Guacamole! (or How Taste Buds Can Change)

Holy Guacamole! (or How Taste Buds Can Change)

I never really liked avocado. But somewhere in my teenage years I heard that taste buds change every three years, so I kept on trying avocado despite it being a “thumbs down” for me each time. And while the research I’ve done recently on taste buds and taste development does not support this theory of the three year turn over, I am happy to say that somewhere in my twenties, because of my commitment to continue trying foods I wasn’t fond of, I began to love avocado! It all changed with this amazing guacamole dip that I tried deep in the heart of Texas. I have three small children — 7, 5 and about to be 2. What I’ve learned about taste from them is that it is possible train a child’s palate. Many parenting books tell you that kids may need to try foods anywhere from 10-15 times before they will accept the taste and texture as good to them. It may have something to do with the sensitivity of these new “taste radars” they’ve been equipped with. My kids eat pretty much everything under the sun. I credit this not only to consistently trying all different kinds of foods with them during their toddler years, but also to having a dinner table rule that says they must try at least one bite of everything on their plates. Even if the last time they ate it they didn’t like it. Like magic, salad has become acceptable on the dinner plate! And, remarkably, things like broccoli and spicy foods and coconut curry have always been on the menu for them. As we go through pregnancy and menopause (ladies) and as we age our taste...
GF Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (and Why I Love Oats)

GF Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (and Why I Love Oats)

        I’m posting this recipe for gluten free banana chocolate chip muffins today in celebration of reaching 100 Likes on the Facebook page. (Woohoo!) Thanks for being a part of getting us here! I chose this recipe because it’s my most popular one. My kids and family absolutely love these muffins, I take them to church, I make them for holiday brunch spreads and I send them to people as gifts. Everyone seems to love them (except my friend Lisa, who is allergic to bananas — Boo!). And no one even knows they are this “specialty” bakery item called gluten free. I’m in the camp that believes gluten free cannot mean subpar in taste or texture. I believe anything gluten free must be delicious and satisfying in its own right. And my kids serve as the perfect taste testers for this benchmark! I make these muffins with certified gluten free oats. I use Bob’s Red Mill gluten free rolled oats. I can find them at my local Publix, but when you buy them in bulk, you definitely save money ($9 at my local store vs. $6/pkg when you buy a case of 4 on Amazon). So why am I so hopped up on oats? I’ve had a condition called Irritable Bowel Syndrome (“IBS”) for most of my life. You’ve probably heard of it since the NIH reports that between 15-20% of the adult population in the United States suffers from the condition (although only 7% seem to have received a firm diagnosis). IBS isn’t an easy definitive diagnosis to come by because it is primarily a collection of symptoms...
Why Am I So Tired on This Cleanse?

Why Am I So Tired on This Cleanse?

I’m currently facilitating a three week cleanse and elimination diet via a Facebook group for about 55 people and today we’re on Day 5. The glorious Day 5! The day when most detox symptoms begin to disappear and we generally hit the “flow” of clean eating. Headaches float away, muscle and join pain subsides, nausea vanishes, bloating is a thing of the past. Can’t you just hear the angels singing off in the distance? Maybe you can’t because you’re still so stinking tired. Fatigue can be a major symptom when you make drastic changes to your diet, especially when you exclude one or more food categories. There are a few reasons why this could be happening to you. And there are certainly some things you can try to get the pep back in your step even while continuing on a cleanse program. Here are four: You have excluded virtually all food-based stimulants from your diet. With the pace of life the way it is these days, many of us have learned to rely on caffeine and sugar to get through the day. We use these foods to wake up and get moving and we use them to stay moving by mid-afternoon. On a cleanse, caffeine and sugar are removed from the diet. If you’re doing an elimination component then things like dairy, wheat, corn and processed foods may also be removed. These foods contain or break down into sugar as well, so they have become part of our energy equation. To combat fatigue resulting from removing stimulants from the diet, try upping your water consumption and making sure you are consuming enough...
“You Can Do This” Chicken Bone Broth

“You Can Do This” Chicken Bone Broth

I want to start with this simple (and true) statement: YOU can do THIS! Practically with your eyes closed. Not even kidding. You just need a few ingredients, a big pot, a stove and time. That’s it. First, let’s start with the Why: Bone broth is extremely healing, especially for those who have gut issues, joint pain, allergies or brain related issues like ADHD and Autism. The primary benefit of bone broth is its ability to rebuild the gut lining and connective tissues in the body; collagen and various minerals being released from the bones and connective tissues are responsible for these regenerating qualities. Check out this post by Paleo Mom to read more about the specifics of why it is so healing. And if you want a little more in general on the topic, check out this post by Wellness Mama. I’ll just say that I have had digestive issues for most of my life and have found that just one day of consuming bone broth significantly calms my symptoms. It’s really that powerful. There are many recipes out there, but I’m going to give you one for a chicken bone broth that you could do in your sleep (in fact, it does most of its cooking while you do just that — sleep!). You can also make a bone broth from beef bones or fish bones and shells. With beef bones you will want to roast them in the oven for a bit before you boil/simmer them with veggies and herbs and spices, and then you’ll want to simmer it for up to 48 hours. Yes, 48 hours. Chicken...
Tasty Rubs for Steak, Chicken or Fish

Tasty Rubs for Steak, Chicken or Fish

Over the years I’ve collected and perfected a number of different rubs that we use on steak, chicken or fish. Since we’ve gone Whole30(ish) this past month, these rub recipes have become super important! Here are our favorites . . . Blackening Rub (covers 2 lbs. steak, chicken or fish) 1 tsp. paprika 1/4 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper 1/2 tsp. ground cumin 1/2 tsp. thyme 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper 1/4 tsp. onion powder Chili Rub (makes about 12 Tbl of rub) 2 Tbl. chili powder 2 Tbl. ground cumin 2 Tbl. paprika 1 Tbl. oregano 1 Tbl. dried coriander 1 Tbl. garlic powder 1 Tbl. onion powder 1 Tbl. sea salt 1 tsp. cayenne (adjusted for heat) 1 tsp. crushed red pepper (adjusted for heat) 1 tsp. ground black pepper Outback Rub (covers 2 lbs. steak, chicken or fish) 4 tsp. sea salt 4 tsp. paprika 2 tsp. ground black pepper 1 tsp. onion powder 1 tsp. garlic powder 1 tsp. cayenne pepper (adjusted for heat) 1/2 tsp. ground coriander 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric Ribeye Rub (covers 2 lbs. steak) 2 Tbl. chili powder 1 tsp. cayenne pepper 1/2 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper London Broil Rub (covers 3lbs. steak) 2 Tbl. chili powder 1 Tbl. oregano 1 Tbl. paprika 2 tsp. garlic powder 1 tsp. sea salt 1/2 tsp. ground black...