Raw Apple Nachos

IMG_4526Happy hump day everyone! Since I have been slacking on the blog posts lately I felt entirely obligated to fit in a delicious recipe to help everyone get through the second half of the week. Well here is a perfect side dish you can enjoy at any time of the week. Personally, I like to make this for football Sunday because the foods typically associated with “Sunday Funday” can pack on the pounds. I’m here to tell you that all snacks and sides accompanying football Sunday do not have to be bad for you. Try out my amazing nacho alternative; raw apple nachos. If you are wondering if I am aware of the fact that this recipe does not include actual nachos, the answer is yes. (My boyfriend made sure to point that out to me in the nicest way possible) However, it’s a fun way to incorporate the idea of nachos and provide a nutrient-dense snack food that would be great to take tailgating or over to a friends to watch the game. It is sweet enough to be used as a dessert and mass quantities can be made in a short amount of time for everyone to enjoy.

Try out my recipe below, I can guarantee you my apple nachos will stay crisp and tasty all day long!

Raw Apple Nachos 

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Servings: 5

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ small gala apples, sliced
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 Tbsp honey, organic
  • ¼ cup melted raw chocolate
  • 1/4-1/2 cup pumpkin almond butter
  • 1 Tbsp goji berries
  • 1 Tbsp raw cacao nibs
  • 2 tsp sunflower seeds, unsalted
  • 1 tsp chia seed, raw
  • ¼ cup crushed almonds
  • ¼ c desiccated coconut shreds, unsweetened

Directions:

  1. Slice apples, arrange them on a large platter, and pour lemon juice evenly over the entire plate. This will prevent browning.
  2. Now this part is not rocket science. Top the apples with all the toppings evenly. I started with liquid and ended with the seeds. Serve immediately or chill for 5-10 minutes.

Note: I used my pumpkin nut butter that I made previously in the day. Check out Pumpkin Nut Butter for full recipe. I also used my Raw Vegan Chocolate Chip recipe for the melted chocolate. Click on link for full recipe.

I have a bag of these raw chocolate chips in my freezer left over from the last time I made them. I simply grabbed a handful and heated them in a small saucepan on medium heat for 15 seconds. It truly takes only about 15 seconds, so do not leave it on your stove and walk away. Even though I made the nut butter and chocolate sauce before hand, neither of these recipes are time consuming. In fact, I can whip both of them up in less than 5 minutes so there is no need to do it ahead of time, just convenient.

If you haven’t thought about buying your own condiment bottles I strongly suggest you do. They are only a couple dollars at any grocery store and are great to use for dressings, vinaigrettes, or sauces. I used a condiment bottle to squeeze the melted chocolate and pumpkin nut butter onto the apple nachos. (Note: pumpkin butter is thick so using a squeeze bottle may not be the best idea. I learned that the hard way.)

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Enjoy your healthy alternative apple nachos! Thanks for visiting!

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❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

 Per serving: Calories: 201; Total Fat: 7.4 g (Saturated Fat: 1.5 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 27.8 mg; Potassium: 79.1 mg; Total Carbs: 15.5 g; Dietary Fiber: 4 g; Protein: 3.1 g; Calcium: 3.7%; Vitamin A: 41.6%; Iron: 4.4%.

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Avo-Cholocate-Protein-Mouse w/ Vanilla-Chia-Pudding

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I have previously mentioned I am training for my very first marathon and if you follow me, I am sure you have seen my fitness posts and refueling recipes. The Chicago Marathon is now exactly 6 days away and it is a extremely scary thinking I will soon be running 26.2 miles non-stop along with thousands. I am so excited to be a part of such a great event because this has been something I have wanted to do since I was a freshman in high school. I love crossing items off my bucket list and that is exactly what I am doing with this. Come Sunday, I can forever say I finished the Chicago Marathon. Yay!

If you are a fellow marathon runner, short distance runner, or just run for fun I know we can all agree on feeling exhausted afterwards. Especially when the distance traveled is long distance. Our body’s glucose stores are being used up for energy because glucose is the bodies preferred fuel source. Once they are depleted it is essential to refuel our body with proper nutrition for optimal recovery. The rule of thumb for marathon training is to refuel with a meal containing a 3:1 ratio of carbs to protein and rehydrate with a beverage containing 4:1 ratio.

Therefore, after my grueling 20 mile run the other day in the heat, I rehydrated with a sports drink to help ignite the recovery process and refuel my body with the electrolytes I lost through sweat. Within an hour I made sure to get a mix of high-carb and moderate protein into my body. The post run meal 3:1 ratio is essential because your body is craving simple carbs for quick energy and complex carbs to balance out your insulin levels.

This avocado-chocolate mouse/chia pudding may not be the easiest thing to make after running long distance, but I planned for this. Account for time needed to prepare this recipe and prep before your run as I did. If you know you will be too exhausted to blend and assemble something like this, than plan to replenish your body with simpler foods such as a banana, yogurt, bagels and muffins, or fruit. Don’t forget to balance your carb to protein ratio with a lean protein. This recipe provides almost 27 grams of complete protein that will help aid in your recovery, repair, and rebuild muscle.

The sound of avocado and chocolate mixed together doesn’t sound like it fits right? I understand all you skeptics out there because if I never tired it, I would think that sounds disgusting too. Remember the old saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover”? Well, that is the same motto I always teach when dealing with food. This combination actually gives the mouse a delicious creamy texture that nourishes your body with omega’3 and anti-inflammatory agents. Once everything is mixed together you can’t even taste the avocado. No one has ever noticed it was in there until I told them. The chia pudding recipe is the same one I used in my Pumpkin-Coconut-Vanilla-Chia-Pudding, so check it out if you like this post because they are both very similar. I topped mine off with a plethora of super foods and continued to finish every last bit.

Please don’t get stuck in the mentality of thinking you have to eat less to lose weight even though you are still hungry or eating nothing after workouts because you just “aren’t hungry” and don’t want to eat calories you just burned. Even if you don’t feel hungry your body needs to refuel. This recipe is a serious refueling meal for your body after a long run and most importantly it is done the proper way. The delicious and satisfying taste just so happens to be the added bonus. 😉

Avo-Chocolate-Protein-Mouse w/ Vanilla-Chia-Pudding        

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Serves: 1 (pint)IMG_3970

Ingredients:

Chocolate Mouse

  • ½ avocado, scored
  • 2 Tbsp raw cacao powder
  • 2 Tbsp honey, organic
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 banana, frozen

 Chia Pudding

  • 5 Tbsp chia seed
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp pumpkin spice
  • ½ cup almond milk
  • ½ tsp fresh ginger, grated

Optional Toppings: gluten free oats, raw cacao nibs, sunflower seeds, goji berries

Directions:

  1. Put all ingredients for chia pudding into a tupperware container and allow sufficient time to chill and expand in fridge at least 6-8 hrs. This is always easiest to do the night before.
  2. Once chia is ready, blend all ingredients for avocado chocolate mouse into a food processor and blend until consistency is smooth.
  3. Place avo-chocolate mouse in cup, layer with gluten-free oats for an added crunch (optional), add chia pudding on top. Sprinkle some of your favorite toppings including fresh fruit, seeds, or nuts. Enjoy!

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Try my recipe for dessert or breakfast. For further questions please contact me via email. I’ll be sure to share my race day fitness and health routine with all of you soon enough. Stay Healthy!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving: Calories: 622; Total Fat: 21 g (Saturated Fat: 1.1 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 81.7 mg; Potassium: 625.6 mg; Total Carbs: 89.2 g; Dietary Fiber: 22.8 g; Protein: 26.4 g; Calcium: 39.7%; Iron: 15.4%; Vitamin C: 32.2%.

Fun with Fall Food

Since everybody is obsessed with Fall and Halloween so much, including myself, I thought it would be a great idea to share some of the personal favorite recipes I have done in the past that are fall theme. I am only including the shortened version of each recipe so I can post lots of ideas. If you have questions or comments about any item below, please feel free to ask and I will help you as best as I can. Thank you everyone, Happy October!

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1.  Pumpkin Spiced Carrot Juice 

Carrots, oranges, pumpkin spice, turmeric, grated ginger, and a dash of cayenne pepper. I used a juicer for this one, but if you do not have one try using a blender. It will not come out as smooth with a blender, so you will most likely have to add water. However, I think it will taste just as delicious. Other option, buy freshly squeezed orange juice and carrot juice at a local store, ex. Mariano’s, then add the spices and your done. Aim for using organic, non-gmo produce. This recipe is immune boosting with a variety of antioxidants like vitamin A, C, and phytonutrient beta-carotene. Try out my amazing orange juice today and enjoy it as it’s polyacetylenes, an anti-inflammatory agent, provides cardiovascular protection. 

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2. Raw Peach Pumpkin Pie

My signature raw pumpkin pie is perfect for so many people. Whether you are following a raw diet, vegan, dairy-free, or gluten-free this is the recipe for you. I made a fully raw nut crust using almonds, walnuts, pecans, dates, flax seed, and spices (grated ginger and cinnamon). Blend in food processor, press in pan and freeze. Next I sliced peaches and layered them as the filling and topped with pumpkin puree and drizzled organic honey and desiccated coconut. Modify at your discretion because making minor changes are extremely simple in this case. Use any fruit you have on hand: apples, pears, plums. Prefer it warm? I made two and left one raw and baked the other for 10-15 minutes at 225 degrees. If you have a sweet tooth, this is a great health option for you. 1 slice= 280 kcals, 10 g fat (the “good” fat), and 7 g protein.

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3. Health Candy Corn Cups 

First layer, chopped pineapple (organic of course). Second layer, clementines. Top layer, Whipped topping. The easiest recipe known to man, am I right? I’m going to be honest with this one, I saw something sort of similar last year online, but of course I had to modify it to make it my own. I made my own vegan whipped topping with coconut milk so my sister could enjoy it as well. I made these for a halloween event I worked where all the kids loved it. Needless to say, I skipped the wine glasses for the little ones;). To save time, using fat free cool whip or vanilla greek yogurt are both great options to use as well. Plus you get the added protein bonus with the yogurt. This is a fun and quick sweet treat that can be shared with your kids and family for Halloween. Adults can use a wine glass to make it a bit more fancy;).

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4. Cauliflower Mashed Boo-Tatoes

I clearly love my veggies and try to get them in everywhere. The best advice for weight loss and weight management is to get in as many veggies as you can, but the trick many people struggle with is not getting tired of them so quickly. Cooking with vegetables is like an art. You can use them in many different forms using creativity and disguising them to look like something new. For this recipe, simply steam the cauliflower. I added some of my favorites: fresh garlic, onion powder, a small amount of grass fed butter, and salt and pepper to taste. This is a good low carb side dish that is nutrient dense and great way to get your kids to eat their veggies. The pumpkins are made from sweet potatoes and topped with a sliced almond. Bake for 10-15 minutes at 350 degrees. I used a plastic bag and cut the tip in place of a pipet to form the ghost and pumpkins.

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5. Pumpkin-Cabbage Smoothie Surprise 

This one may sound weird, but the finished product was amazing and was more filling than any other smoothie I have every eaten. Red cabbage, oranges, and mango for the purple, pumpkin, oranges, and carrots for the orange. Use coconut water and sweetener of your choice for the whole thing. I used stevia in the raw. Blend in food processor.

I hope you all have at least one new fall recipe idea after reading this post. Now go enjoy this weather and have a fantastic Sunday!

Thanks for visualizing nutrition at MyNutritionVision!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Pumpkin-Coconut-Vanilla-Chia-Pudding

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Listen up everyone, this is some vital information…

When making this recipe be sure to make an abundance because you will want some for later. I made four mason jars filled with this good stuff and in all honesty, 1 mason jar can easily be shared and split into two servings. The recipe below is for a half pint so feel free to multiple it to achieve desired yield.

Pumpkin-Coconut-Vanilla-Chia-Pudding       

Preparation time: 5 minutesIMG_3824

Serves: 1 half pint (8oz)

Ingredients:

Chia Pudding~

  • 3 Tbsp chia seed
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup coconut milk

Pumpkin Pudding~

  • 1/2 can pumpkin puree (15oz can) NOT PUMPKIN PIE FILLING
  • 1 1/2 banana
  • 1/2 cup pitted dates, soaked
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 2 Tbsp organic honey

Toppings: Pumpkin pie spice, cacao nibs, and unsweetened desiccated coconut.

Directions:

1.  Mix chia seed, spices, vanilla extract, and dairy free milk (or milk of your preference) in a container and refrigerate over night to allow time for seeds to soak and expand. Soak dates in water overnight to soften, they will blend a whole lot easier so do not skip this step.

2. Blend all ingredients for the pumpkin layer in a blender for 15-20 seconds. Your done! That’s it! Layer the two in a cup and top with your favorite goodies. My personal toppings are listed above.

(Note: The longer chia seed sits in liquid, the thicker the consistency will become. The chia pudding in this recipe was prepped the night before, as usual.)

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Since I am not the person who has a serious sweet tooth, try using natural sweeteners if you need. For example, add more dates, bananas, honey, or even sugar.

I absolutely love using mason jars to store food because it creates the perfect portion size and a ready to go breakfast, lunch, or dessert. Ladies and gentlemen, this one really hit the spot and it tastes even better than it looks! (If you can believe that.)

 If you or someone you know are in need of nutrition services from a Registered Dietitian, please contact me via blog email for more information on prices. Thanks!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving: Calories: 225; Total Fat: 7.2 g (Saturated Fat: 3.4 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 30.8 mg; Potassium: 395.3 mg; Total Carbs: 33.5 g; Dietary Fiber: 10 g; Protein: 4 g; Calcium: 37.1%.

Watermelon and Mangerry Sorbet

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If you follow my blog, you may know I am training for my very marathon and I am so grateful it is the Chicago Marathon. It has always been something I planned to do in my 20’s, one of those bucket list items. I cannot begin to explain how excited I am for it and nervous at the same time as it creeps closer and closer. I don’t know if I will become an avid marathon runner, most likely not because they are so expensive, but I will be endlessly proud to say I did it. I finished to the best of my ability and that will never go away. Well, with all my long runs I get very dehydrated, as any runner would. I made the perfect combination of a refueling and rehydrating sorbet the other day after my early morning 24k. I was absolutely drained and it was much needed to say the least.

At the time, I was blissfully unaware that my run that morning would be one of the last in warm weather.:( Within only a few days, the sun in the midwest went from 80’s and shorts to 60’s and hoodies. Today, I am sad to report it even reached mid 50’s. With that said, I hope this does not have to be one of my last summer like post. I suppose I have to stop denying fall weather is coming and begin to embrace the autumn that I do love so much. You can’t blame a girl for hoping for one more hot day, right? Once I adjust my wardrobe accordingly I know my fall obsession will kick into high gear. Do not get my wrong, it is not like you cannot eat cold foods during the colder months because I am the first to make smoothies, fake ice creams, and sorbets in the winter. I am just stating the season is changing and so is my grocery list.

This was my favorite sorbet/(n)ice cream recipe I have ever made, I am truly obsessed! My only mistake was not making more because it all disappeared so quickly… I don’t know where it all went.;) I try to make all my ice cream recipes dairy free to alleviate any chances of stomach aches later as I am sensitive to dairy.

In no time at all you could create your own delicious organic sorbet that will treat your body well. No cooking, baking, or freezing necessary. Just blend the 3 main ingredients:

-Fresh fruit of your choice (I choose watermelon, mango, and raspberries)

-Maca root powder

-Dates (soaked)

In my boyfriend Tim’s words, “This is the perfect homemade Italian Ice”. In other words call it what you want, sorbet, Italian Ice, fake ice cream, (n)ice cream, or heaven in your mouth;). That last option is my favorite.

Among the many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants these fruits provide Vitamin C and lycopene is among one of the highest in my sorbet recipe.

A watermelon’s anti-inflammatory properties from lycopene increases as it ripens, so be sure to use a watermelon that is fully ripe. Lycopene is not only anti-inflammatory, but it is also known for its cancer-fighting health benefits. In addition, watermelon is rehydrating to due to its high water content and it is enjoyed at a low calorie cost.

Raspberries have anthocyanins which may lower blood pressure and improve blood circulation. While mangos contain beta-carotene which may contribute to reduced heart disease and cancer risk, and  increased protection against infection.

I chose to add dates as a natural sweetener and the maca root powder acts as a natural energizer, plus it boosts your immune system. It’s safe to say this is a nutrient dense recipe.

Watermelon and Mangerry Sorbet (Mango/Berry)       

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Serves: 5 (4 oz)IMG_3419

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups watermelon, cubed and frozen
  • 1 mango, frozen
  • 1/4 cup raspberries, frozen
  • 1 cup dates, pre-soaked
  • 2 tsp maca powder

Toppings: Chia seed, cacao nibs, unsweetened desiccated coconut, and raspberries.

Directions:

1. Soak dates the night before in a bowl of water. Make sure water is covering dates completely. This allows them to soften and blend easier. I did not include pre-soak time in the preparation time above.

2. Blend all ingredients together in a food processor until smooth. Top with toppings and your done. Freeze left overs if you have any!

Let me quickly clarify what I mean when I say fresh vs frozen. My frozen fruits are fresh organic fruits I buy from the market, wash, cut, and freeze myself. If you do not choose to buy organic fruit, the frozen packaged fruit is fine to use as well. Try to stay clear from canned fruit preserved in juice with added sugar.

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I hope you enjoy my watermelon sorbet all year long, I know that’s what I’m planning on doing! Feel free to share my blog with family and friends, it’s much appreciated! Happy Weekend!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving: Calories: 100; Total Fat: 0.3 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 1.8 mg; Potassium: 281.4 mg; Total Carbs: 25.6 g; Dietary Fiber: 2.1 g; Protein: 1.5 g; Calcium: 2.6%.

Chocolate Peanut B(e)tter Ice-No-Cream

IMG_2420Hey all, so I have been on vacation for the past week enjoying the beautiful weather from Pensacola, FL. I would have made a couple post from Florida because everything I ate was amazing, but did you think I was going to bring my computer and spend vacation time doing that? Sorry! I loved the seafood options, fresh veggies and fruit, and of course the scenery. I had my fair share of eating out during the week while I was there, so now that I am in Illinois again I am getting back on track with some of my favorite foods.

As I mentioned before in my Tips on How to Keep Food Healthy and Fun: Banana Edition post, there are a ton of ways you can utilize bananas to make a healthy version of your favorite sweet treat. Anyone who knows me personally knows I am all for using alternative baking methods so when it comes to replacing sweetened condense milk and heavy cream with bananas I am jumping for joy. If you follow my blog, instagram, or other social networks you know I always make my “ice cream” with frozen bananas. This is the key ingredient because once it’s blended it is a close contender with the consistency of real ice cream. Of course, it is not exactly the same and my boyfriend and father would be the first people to argue my version of ice cream is not comparable to the real thing, but I will argue that it is even better because it taste delicious, is a lighter choice in calories and fat, is filling, and leaves your body feeling good not guilty. You know what I mean, that feeling of eating an entire carton of ice cream to then feel horrible immediately after doing it. Well I was never really a fan of ice cream anyway and now because of my obsession with banana fake ice cream I will never buy the real thing again. I’m sure my boyfriend is thrilled about that one. 😉

This recipe is vegan friendly, gluten free, and dairy free. To learn more about the benefits from maca root powder check out my Greek Yogurt Cup post.

Chocolate Peanut B(e)tter Ice-No-Cream 

Prep time: 5-8 minutesimage

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup diced mango
  • 1 Tbsp raw cacao powder
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 tsp maca powder
  • 1 Tbsp almond butter
  • 2 Tbsp PB2
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • Ice

Toppings: Raw cacao nibs and my homemade 1 -minute vegan chocolate sauce

Directions:

1. Blend all ingredients until consistency is smooth and creamy. Food processor, the bullet, vitamix, or any old blender will work. If you choose not to add milk the consistency will be much thicker and you might have to scrap the sides down a couple times, but it still works. 😉

(Note: My measurements are precise for an accurate nutrition analysis, however, with a recipe such as this one you can just eye ball the ingredients. This makes it much faster for you. When I make anything I typically eye ball because I have gotten good at knowing how much I am using, but when I make a post I make sure to use measuring spoons just because I want to provide my audience with the most precise nutrition analysis as I can.)

2. The vegan chocolate sauce is my homemade recipe. You can get it here: 1-minute vegan chocolate chips  . I already had some of these chocolate chips left over in my freezer from the last time I made them so I took about three pieces and heated them in a sauce pan for 30 seconds because they melt quickly. You may not even need 30 full seconds. Next, I drizzled the sauce over my fake chocolate peanut b(e)tter ice-no-cream and topped with cacao nibs.

(Note: the raw cacao nibs are not accounted for in the nutrition info, to be honest it’s only because I forgot to add them and did not want to do it all over again, I am in a pinch for time. I used a bit less than 1 Tbsp, which would add roughly 30 calories to your dessert.)

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 I hope you enjoyed my version of chocolate peanut butter ice cream. Indulging never felt so good and this dessert is something I will eat for breakfast. How exciting!? Remember to tag me at #brnutritionvision when you make something from my blog. I love seeing beautiful photos of my recipes out there. Keep visualizing nutrition with me. Thank you!!!
❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving (no toppings) : Calories: 198; Total Fat: 7.9 g (Saturated Fat: 3.1 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 64.4 mg; Potassium: 443.8 mg; Total Carbs: 27.4 g; Dietary Fiber: 5.6 g; Protein: 6.4 g; Calcium: 27.2%.

 

Greek Yogurt Cup

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I am a victim to those late night cravings. If I eat dinner too early or get home too late to make a full meal, my stomach is still rumbling for food. When it’s late and I am hungry, all I want if something small, something fast, something now. Since I am in need groceries, I currently have a bunch of random foods in my fridge, so what I did was throw a few items together and within seconds my delicious late night snack was ready to eat. See, eating healthy does not always have to be as hard as you think.

I used vanilla greek yogurt, yes I am indulging in some late night dairy, freshly cut watermelon, blueberries, maca, mint, and bee pollen. That’s all it was, no need to run to the grocery store every time you want to make a nutritious meal or snack. Many things you may already have in your home can be made into a delicious healthy meal, you just have to know how to use healthy foods to your advantage. Yes, I know its not typical to have bee pollen in your pantry, but you don’t always need those specialty food items, be creative to keep yourself satisfied. For instance, switch the bee pollen topping for some freshly grated ginger or cinnamon.

The two superfoods I used that you may not know much about are the maca and bee pollen. They have both become staples in my everyday meals and using them can be very beneficial to your health. So for a little nutrition education:

1. Maca Powder 

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Maca is a root that has been used for years by the Peruvians as medicine. The plant root produces a powder that is nutrient dense and can produce good balance to your daily diet. Maca has been used for anemia, chronic fatigue, and athletic performance because it enhances energy levels and stamina. It also has been used for fertility, memory improvement, and hormone imbalance. Maca powder can also boost your immune system and help with osteoporosis, depression, and symptoms of menopause.

2. Bee pollen   

Screen shot 2014-07-31 at 11.29.07 AM Bee pollen has been used for years in Chinese medicine to correct nutrient imbalance. It is used to improve endurance and vitality, aids in recovering from chronic illness, reduces cravings, prevents illnesses such as the cold and flu, boost immune system, and helps to build new blood cells. Of course, you will not see these results over night. Adding it into your everyday diet could help your body over time. I sprinkle 1 tsp over many of my foods including smoothies, oatmeal, cereal, chia bowls, and even salads.

Vanilla Greek Yogurt Cup     

Preparation time: 2 minutes

IMG_1622 Serves: 1

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup greek yogurt, vanilla
  • 4 pieces watermelon, cubed
  • 5 blueberries
  • 1 tsp bee pollen
  • 1 tsp maca powder
  • 5 leaves mint, fresh

Directions:

1. Place greek yogurt and maca powder into a cup, stir until mixed well.

2. Top with watermelon, berries, fresh mint, and bee pollen.

The mint just adds something extra by giving an aroma that is so refreshing and delectable. If you don’t have it on hand, use any of your favorite topping, preferably sticking with fresh items, such as fruit.

I used Greek yogurt because that is what I had and I need the added protein because of my marathon training, but you can easily switch this out for a yogurt of your choosing or vegan coconut yogurt. I do enjoy the “So Delicious Dairy Free” greek yogurt.

My whole point is a healthy meal or snack can be made in as easy as 1,2,3. You do not always have to stress and run to the store to make your family or yourself something good for you, use what you have.

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 Love your body, feed your body, fuel your body with healthy and easy recipes from MyNutritionVision. Remember to tag me at #brnutritionvision if you try my recipes to let me know what you think! Thanks for visiting!
❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving : Calories: 223; Total Fat: 0.9 g (Saturated Fat: 0.2 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 106 mg; Potassium: 406.1 mg; Total Carbs: 30.4 g; Dietary Fiber: 2.2 g; Protein: 22.6 g; Calcium: 62.7%.

Tips on How to Keep Food Healthy and Fun: Banana Edition

IMG_1566Among the top fresh fruits Americans consume, bananas are at the top of the list with an average of  30 pounds per person per year. You have heard the old saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”, well now add a delicious banana if you haven’t already because they are extremely beneficial to your health and can easily boost the nutritional value of your meals.

If you have been enjoying your daily dose of potassium through bananas then you are probably in need of creative fresh ideas to keep you from getting bored with them. Incorporate bananas into desserts (raw and baked), healthy snacks, or delicious smoothies. We can all agree their creamy rich flavors will never disappoint, but the best part is they are enjoyed by people of all ages from infants to the elderly.

Bananas are a good source of vitamin B6 and a good source of manganese, vitamin C, potassium, fiber, biotin, and copper. Adding them into your daily routine is not only convenient, but can also help improve:

  • Cardiovascular Health
  • Digestive health
  • Blood Sugar Levels (Bananas are low in their glycemic index (GI) value)

Since they are easily portable, inexpensive, and easily digested athletes can enjoy them as a perfect snack before or after physical activity.

Start using bananas in a new way at least once a week. From vegan popsicles to muffins and summer treats to breakfast on the go. It is undeniable that bananas are a quick and healthy snack, so why not add them to any meal. Here are 5 of my favorite recipe ideas I love to incorporate bananas in for adults and kids that will leave your mouth watering.

1. Banana Boats

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  • 1 organic banana, almond butter, cacao nibs, unsalted sunflower seeds, crushed pistachios, goji berries, cinnamon, chia seeds, bee pollen, and desiccated unsweetened coconut.
  • Slice banana twice; lengthwise and in the middle creating four equal pieces. Spread almond butter on banana boats and sprinkle toppings on. Can be made in less than 5 minutes and taste just like candy. Great idea to get kids to eat a snack packed with superfoods.

2. Banana sushi 

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  • 1 organic banana, 1 whole grain tortilla wrap, almond butter, raw cacao nibs, chia seeds, and desiccated coconut.
  • Spread almond butter on wrap, no need to go all the way to the edges. Place banana at one end and roll the wrap up. Spread 1 tsp of almond butter in a thin straight line across the top of the wrap and sprinkle with toppings. Cutting into 1/2 inch thick slices and enjoy.

3. Banana Chia Pudding 

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  • 1/2 organic banana, 3 Tbsp chia seed, 2 tsp vanilla, 1 cup almond milk, cinnamon, and star fruit.
  • Blend banana, almond milk, and vanilla. Add chia into mixture and refrigerate overnight or 6-8 hrs. It will form a pudding consistency, in the morning stir, serve, and top with cinnamon and star fruit.

4. The “Healthy” Meal (MickeyD’s Alternative Happy Meal) 

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  • 1 red and yellow bell peppers, 1 large apple, banana, strawberries, grapes, and nut butter of choice.
  • Simply cut and slice as seen in picture and assemble. I only used 1/4 of the yellow pepper and 1/2 a banana. Research has found kids, specifically between the ages of 4 and 7 years are twice as likely to consume fruits and veggies when the meal is visually appealing. This is a fun and creative way to get your kids turned on to healthy eating.

5. Banana Ice Pops 

IMG_1561Visit MyLifeandKids.com for full banana pop recipe
  • I continuously keep a stash of frozen bananas in my freezer to use for vegan (n)ice cream, raw desserts, and smoothies. It might be crazy to have as many bananas in the house as I do, but hey, I am a victim of their deliciousness.

I hope my vision of nutrition helped you find some fun and delicious recipes to try! These are all easy, quick, and vegan friendly. Never forget, food should be fun! Don’t forget to follow me on instagram, twitter, and tumblr @MyNutritionVision for more nutritious recipes. Nutrition services available are under the “Services” tab or you can email me with questions and inquires under the “Contact” tab. Thank you! Have a great Saturday!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

1-Minute Vegan Chocolate Chips

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Chocolate lovers, look no further! Pure, organic, and raw ingredients is all it takes to create these rich chocolate chips. If I knew it was this easy, I would have done this a long time ago.

I typically buy raw cacao nibs in place of chocolate chips, but this time I wanted something bigger for my Mint-Chocolate Chip Ice-(No)Cream recipe. While I rummaged through my cabinets to see what ingredients I had, I realized I didn’t need any more then 4 things. Cacao powder, coconut oil, vanilla, and honey is all it took to create these healthy vegan chocolate chips.

Raw Cacao Powder   

Cacao powder is made of 100% pure cacao that is certified as organic, kosher, non-gmo, gluten free, dairy free, and raw. It is a good source of fiber and cold-pressed to protect existing nutrients. This can be used for a variety of foods including raw desserts, baking, sauces, spreads, smoothies, or juices.

1. Rich in antioxidants. Cacao naturally contains a rich supply of antioxidants protecting our cells from damage caused by free radicals. It is known as one of the highest dietary sources of magnesium, flavanols and polyphenols. In fact, it contains a higher level of antioxidants per 4 oz compared to acai berries, goji berries and blueberries. 

2. Improves your mood. Cacao powders contain dopamine and phenylethylamine (PEA), two types of neurotransmitters. They aid in mental alertness, improve mood to make you feel good and help with weight loss.

3. Increases weight loss. Flavonoids have also been shown to increase production of the hormone known as adiponectin. This hormone works to regulate metabolism of fatty acids, thus assisting in weight loss and reducing obesity. 

The big question when it comes to raw cacao is:

“What’s the difference between cocoa and cacao?” 

Cacao is not so different from cocoa because they are both made by grinding cocoa nibs to a paste or liquor and then removing the cocoa butter (the fat). The process to make cocoa powder it called hydraulically pressed. This is basically roasting at high temperatures changing the molecular structure, this ultimately reduces enzyme and antioxidant levels. The cocoa butter removal process to make cacao powder is cold-pressed, this preserves the vital nutrients.

The main benefit to using raw cacao versus cocoa powder is the antioxidant level. Raw cacao contains over 3x the antioxidant profile that cocoa powder due to the heating process. When using raw cacao, keep in mind the addition of any dairy products will decrease the absorption of antioxidants. Using vegan friendly products such as almond milk, rice milk, coconut milk, or water will help to avoid this.

Coconut Oil 

The use of coconut oil is beneficial for the heart healthy diet. The existing saturated fat are not harmful to the body as you often see in other oils, such as vegetable. It contains roughly 50% lauric acid, which helps in preventing a variety of heart problems. Among the numerous health benefits, here a list of a few ways coconut oil can benefits you. 

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1- Minute Vegan Chocolate Chips 

Preparation time: 1-2 minutes, freeze 15 minutes

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Serves: 16 oz

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder
  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 Tbsp vanilla
  • 2 Tbsp organic honey

Directions:

1. Heat all ingredients, expect cacao powder, in a small saucepan over low heat until smooth. Once ingredients are blended add the cacao powder to the saucepan and continue to heat until sauce is smooth and all ingredients are well combined. Take roughly 1 minute. IMG_1372

2. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Pour chocolate sauce over lined cookie sheet evenly. Place cookie sheet in freezer for 15-20 minutes or until completely hard. Gently break hardened chocolate sheet into pieces big or small. Use as topping for ice cream, smoothies, or cakes.

NutritionVision Tip: You do not have to freeze right away! Before freezing my chocolate mix, I used it as a dipping sauce for freshly cut fruit.

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Enjoy this simply 1 minute sweet treat and Visualize Nutrition with me everyday! 
If you enjoy my blog, please help me get the word out by subscribing to the email listing and sharing it on facebook, instagram or twitter with friends and family! Thank you, Love you all!! 

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving: Calories: 55; Total Fat: 3.7 g (Saturated Fat: 3.1 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 1.7 mg; Potassium: 37.4 mg; Total Carbs: 2.8 g; Dietary Fiber: .5 g; Protein: 0.4 g; Calcium: 0.3%.

 

 

 

 

Mint Chocolate Chip Ice-(No)Cream

IMG_1295 Since it has been a week full of rain, 60 degree nights, and chilly winds I decided to jump at the chance to make fake ice-(no)cream because this weekend it will finally be back in the 80’s! Yay! This recipe is fully raw if you do not add my homemade vegan chocolate chips (recipe will be posted separately 😉 .

After my sister told me I use chia too much I thought to myself, “That’s because it is awesome, why would anyone not love using chia all the time!” Well, I looked back at all my food post on my blog, instagram, and other social media and I did realize it’s in a lot of recipes. Thus, I took her advice and changed things up a for my audience.

My mind was set on Mint Chocolate Chip Ice-(No)Cream once a received requests for healthy dessert recommendations that can still fit into a “clean eating” meal plan. My main goals when creating an ice cream recipe are: make it healthy, make it vegan so all walks of life can enjoy, and make it creamy and delicious. While blending ingredients together is simple, the tricky part is finding the perfect balance to make a great tasting ice cream. With this recipe I did two things that were different than my usual, I used coconut milk instead of almond milk and used my secret ingredient spirulina to increase the nutrient profile.

Spirulina

1. Spirulina is an algae that has been used as a dietary supplement to improve our overall health. Don’t get scared off just yet. It is one of the truest forms of a superfood containing over 100 important nutrients such as the vitamin B complex, vitamin E, beta-carotene, iron, calcium, zinc and other antioxidants. This product is also rich in essential amino acids making it a great source of vegetable protein, especially for vegetarians and vegans.

2. This product has already been long used helping many people maintain good health, improve metabolism, boost energy, and contribute to weight loss.

3. Spirulina added the color due to its high levels of chlorophyll and can be used to benefits individuals who are malnourished or have a diet with poor nutrient intake.

***Although, I do not advocate any single supplement as a miracle drug for weight loss, I will agree with the fact that spirulina will undoubtably improve overall health due to its high nutrients profile. Always consult a doctor before taking any new supplements to avoid negative side effects that can occur.

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The fat in coconut milk helps the ice cream form a creamy texture compared to milk low in fat. You can make this ice-(no)cream in batch quantities and store in your freezer to enjoy for days.

(Note: If you decide to make enough to freeze I recommend using canned coconut milk. The coconut milk I used gave the ice cream a smooth and creamy texture when I served and ate it immediately, however, once frozen to consume at a later date the ice cream become slightly grainy. The higher fat content in canned milk could help eliminate this issue.)

This tasty treat is vegan friendly, gluten free, oil-free, and preservative free. It was rather simple and very quick to whip up.

 Mint Chocolate Chip Ice-(No)Cream 

Preparation time: 7-10 minutes

Serves: 4-5IMG_1296

Ingredients:

  • 3 bananas, frozen
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp spirulina
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint, loosely packed
  • 1 tsp peppermint extract (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp & 2 tsp raw cacao nibs

Directions:

1. Combine all ingredients, except cacao nibs, into a food processor and blend until a smooth.

2. Add only half the liquid to determine how thick you want your end product. Pour in the second half slowly if ice cream is too thick. ( I added the whole cup, but did pour in halves to test out the consistency.)

3. Fold in cacao nibs with a spatula, top with fresh mint, serve, and enjoy!

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Top with more cacao nibs or with my homemade vegan chocolate chips. The choices are endless. Try my recipe and let me know what favorite toppings you added to your mint ice-(no)cream!

Happy Weekend!  Visualize Nutrition with me even during dessert!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving: Calories: 111; Total Fat: 2.8 g (Saturated Fat: 2.1 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 14.8 mg; Potassium: 315.9 mg; Total Carbs: 20.2 g; Dietary Fiber: 3.1 g; Protein: 1.5 g; Calcium: 9.9%.