Immune Boosting Blast

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Hello fellow guys, girls, RDs, yogis, foodies, fit fanatics, moms, dads, aunts, uncle, and anyone else who is living a healthy lifestyle with a little help from my blog!

It has been an extremely busy couple of months and I will be the first to say, “Long time, no post!”. Since my last update was in February I will start off by letting all of my newest readers know a little bit about me. I am a Registered Dietitian who works in the community setting and at a residential health recovery center in the greater Chicagoland area. If you are interested, you can find more information about my services under the Services Available tab on my home page.

If you have been following me since the beginning, I thank you for including me in your journey to a healthier lifestyle. I noticed there are a lot more viewers recently and I would like to restate the type of lifestyle I lead to stay healthy for those who may not know. I originally created my blog to have a permanent and credible resource for my friends and family to resort to instead of asking me a million questions all at once. I would answer the same types of questions over and over again. I thought getting this information in writing for everyone to see at once would be easier for me and more convinient. Through MyNutritionVision I advocate no one specific diet. I will repeat…No One Specific Diet! Instead, I choose to encourage others to incorporate whole foods and exercise into their daily “diets” to improve overall quality of life.

I say the word “diet” sparingly because I do not really like the stigma that has come attached to it. A diet insinuates a short term fix, we all know that doesn’t exist otherwise I would not be here. I use the term diet meaning the food and beverages consumed each day considered in terms of its qualities, composition, and its effects on health. 

I wanted to announce the type of diet I follow again to be 100% clear on my beliefs. I prepare foods for myself and my loved ones that revolve around our specific needs and likes. If I had to give an answer, I suppose I would say I follow the palo diet the closest. That does not mean 100% because I could never give up cheese, occasionally of course. 😉  Yes, I make all different types of recipes including vegan, vegetarian, paleo, whole30, raw, gluten free, ect. It simply depends on who I am cooking for, what I feel like eating, what I have time to make, and more. Since I post my recipes to MyNutritionVision I try to make a well rounded board of options for all types of people. So if you are ever wondering, “What type of diet does she follow?”, I hope you now know the answer…I don’t. Whole foods all the way!

Now that we have that out of the way lets focus on this amazing drink!

I like to refer to it as my magic medicine. Although, there is no magic necessary. You can improve your health with simple, whole foods. Thats right! No medicine or chemical required.  This drink is a great antioxidant loaded with Vitamin A, Vitamin C, potassium, fiber, calcium, and iron. I know I incorporated a few ingredients that may not be the norm for a juice or smoothie. Below are some of the health benefits of those ingredients explaining why I included them in my recipe.

Garlic 

1. Cardiovascular benefitsDue to its sulfur compounds, vitamin C, vitamin B6, selenium and manganese.

2. Antiviral and antibacterical benefits 

3. Anti-inflammatory agent 

4. Cancer prevention: Daily intake of garlic has been found to lower risk of virtually all types of cancer with the exception of prostate and breast cancer.

*Interesting tip: If you let garlic sit after chopping or crushing it increases its health benefits.

Ginger Root 

1. Reduces gastrointestinal distress: Shown in research to be more effective compared to Dramamine. Also 100% safe and effective to use during pregnancy to reduce nausea and vomiting.

2. Anti-inflammatory effects: Ginger contains a high level of the anti-inflammatory agent known as gingerols. People with osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis have seen a noticeable decrease in joint pain by increasing their intake of fresh ginger.

3. Immune boosting: Helps promote healthy sweating which is part of fighting sickness.

Turmeric 

1. Anti-inflammatory agent: Curcumin is the main main anti-inflammatory agent. Potent for reducing inflammation, especially in IBD (Irritable Bowel Disease).

2. Cancer prevention: Inhibits the growth of cancer cells by protects the cells from free radicals.

3. Improves cardiovascular health: Curcumin in turmeric leads to improvements in endothelial function reducing risk of heart disease.

 

Immune Boosting Blast  

Prep Time: 5 minutesIMG_3617

Servings: 3 pints  

Ingredients:                                                         

  • 1 1/2 large oranges
  • 3/4 c pineapple, chopped 
  • 1 Granny Smith apple
  • 3 large carrots  
  • 1-1 1/2in ginger root
  • 1/2in turmeric
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • cayenne to taste
  • water
  • ice

Directions:

  1. Chop the pineapple, apple, and carrots into pieces that will fit in your blender. My biggest mistake with this step was not cutting the apple into small enough pieces, everything else was fine. Takes about 1 minute. I cut my apple into 8 pieces compared to the original four I tried to stuff in my vitamix. Peeling the skin is unnecessary. Leaving it on the apple adds fiber to your drink.
  2. Add the peeled oranges, ginger root, turmeric, garlic, lemon juice, cayenne, about 1 cup water and ice. Add more water or ice for desired consistency. Blend thoroughly and enjoy.

If you have not subscribed yet, I hope you do. This summer is going to be filled be lots of good for you recipes that are practical and fun your the whole family!

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Looking forward to everyone following a healthy lifestyle by visualizing nutrition with me once again!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

 Per serving: Calories: 104; Total Fat: 0.3 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 14.6 mg; Potassium: 358.8 mg; Total Carbs: 29.1 g; Dietary Fiber: 5 g; Protein: 1.4 g; Calcium: 8.2%; Vitamin A: 43.7%; Vitamin C: 124.1%; Iron: 9.7%.

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Greek Yogurt Smoothie Bowl

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 When I made this smoothie bowl I did not initially think the finish product would be this large. Typically, I do not shy away from demolishing a dish as delicious as this one, but there was honestly too much this time. In the recipe below you will notice I said this makes 2 servings. Once all ingredients are mixed, I recommend separating it into 2 containers. I ate this for lunch and as a sweet dessert later that night.

I used Stonyfield® organic vanilla Greek Yogurt as the base. This adds twice the protein compared to other yogurts without artificial sweeteners. Beet root powder can be found at Whole Foods or Mariano’s. I know it may sound expensive, but the truth is a little goes a long way. I bought 2 ounces for $3.00 and I have used it for 4 different recipes and have yet to run out. Use it sparingly! Plus it creates a pretty pink/red color that is aesthetically pleasing!

Now, if you do not want to go through the trouble of cutting open a coconut and scrapping the meat out on your own, toasted coconut chips are a good alternative. I personally prefer to use fresh coconut meat because the prepackaged option is usually toasted with added sugar and sodium, but do what you will.

I try to wash and cut all my fresh fruit immediately when I buy them. This always increases your chances of eating them and not allowing fresh foods to spoil. Of course, not everyone will have the time to do this and I certainly am not able to do it every time I come home from the grocery store. I have thrown away fruits and vegetables due to spoilage just like everybody else. Simply aim to get this beneficial tasks completed and hopefully, over time, it will become part of your normal routine. My fruit was already diced and sliced for this recipe making it extremely simple for me to make. All I had to do was mix the base together and top it with what my boyfriend likes to call “My voo doo foods”. (I still don’t know why he is surprised by some of my cooking methods after 8 years of living this lifestyle together. lol)

I could go on and on about the nutritional benefits from this particular smoothie bowl, but that will be too lengthy. If you do have any questions or would like to learn more about proper nutrition, please contact me at rraymundo810@gmail.com for health inquires and nutrition coaching.

Greek-Yogurt-Smoothie-Bowl 

Prep Time: 5-10 minutesIMG_1638

Servings: 2 

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 c Greek Yogurt
  • 2 tsp beet root powder
  • 1 tsp maca powder
  • 3 strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 kiwi, sliced
  • 1/4 c cantaloupe, diced
  • 1/8 c pomegranate seeds
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp gluten free granola
  • 1 Tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tsp cacao nibs
  • 1/2 tsp bee pollen
  • 1/2 tsp chia seed
  • young coconut meat, shredded

Directions:

  1. Combine greek yogurt, maca, and beet root. Blend thoroughly until evenly mixed.
  2. Top with remaining ingredients. Eat quickly before others want a taste, everyone will want to steal this yummy bowl of health.

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Thank you for visualizing nutrition and health with me once again!

Help support by subscribing to my email listing to receive automatic updates when new recipes have been posted.

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

 Per serving: Calories: 334; Total Fat: 14.6 g (Saturated Fat: 6.9 g); Cholesterol: 37.5 mg; Sodium: 123.6 mg; Potassium: 650 mg; Total Carbs: 41.6 g; Dietary Fiber: 3.4 g; Protein: 10.4 g; Calcium: 29.6%; Vitamin A: 21.2%; Iron: 6.8%.

Double-Layer-Chocolate-Chia-Spirulina-Smoothie

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 Okay… I am in a crunch for time, however, I promised I would post the recipe today, therefore, I am going to make this as short and sweet as I can (Just like the smoothie…well the sweet part anyway) ;).

If you follow my blog (which I hope all of you do!!), you know that whenever I use a chia recipe, I always prepare it the night before. If you do not have that far in advance of a notice to prep it, don’t worry. Allowing chia seed to sit in liquid for about 1-3 hours will work too. The longer you allow it to sit the thicker the consistency becomes, I simply prefer mine to be of pudding consistency. The prep time in the recipe below does not include the chia pudding, be sure to account for that.

I know I say this a lot, but I am obsessed with this recipe. It is extremely easy and quick to make a healthy breakfast smoothie that will help start your day off right. Who doesn’t enjoy convenience? Am I right or am I right? In all honesty, I threw this together on a morning before work when I was running late and I managed to get 1 serving of fruit and 2 servings of vegetables in it. Not to mention loads of omega-3’s, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory agents, and more.

Now many people have asked me where I buy the ingredients I use and my answer for you is I have used numerous brands from all over the place. However, one of my favorite companies to buy maca and spirulina powder is from organic burst® ,which I order from online. Maca has been used for centuries as a natural energizer. It also increases endurance, stamina, and helps hormonal balance. Check out my Breakfast of Champs post to learn more about the health benefits of using spirulina.

Using chia seed is a great way to get an extra boost of Omega-3 fatty acid (FA) into your diet if needed. In fact, chia seeds contain even more Omega-3 FA than flax seed. They can be used as an excellent way help to keep you hydrated because they have the ability to absorb 9-10 times their weight in water. They are also a good source of fiber, protein, calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc.

Now, I added the raw cacao powder, not only because it is rich in antioxidants, but because it adds a delicious chocolate flavor. It also makes the chia pudding thicker. Antioxidants help destroy free radicals that cause damage to our cells and tissues and work to decrease inflammation in the body. A specific type of flavonoid, called anthocyanidin is highly concentrated in the cacao bean creating a powerful antioxidant that may help lower your risk of:

cardiovascular disease

some types of cancers

I made sure this smoothie was gluten free and vegan friendly (no dairy, woo hoo!). All fresh produce used was organic.

Double-Layer-Chocolate-Chia-Spirulina-Smoothie 

Prep Time: 5 minutes

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Servings: 1 (pint)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 Tbsp organic honey
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp raw cacao powder
  • 1/2 zucchini, peeled
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/2 banana, large
  • 1 tsp maca powder
  • 1 tsp spirulina
  • 3/4 c coconut milk

Directions:

  1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a tupperware container and refrigerate over night. In the morning, add the cacao powder to chia pudding and mix thoroughly.                                   (NOTE: Measurements for this chia pudding used above will provide you with 2 servings, I used half and filled the other half of the mason jar with the green smoothie. I accounted for changes in the nutrition facts below.)
  2. Blend zucchini, avocado, banana, maca, spirulina, and milk. Add into mason jar as top layer and enjoy.

Toppings used: raw cacao nibs, cinnamon, and a slice of fresh zucchini.

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Enjoy your weekend and your smoothie! Thanks for visiting!

Subscribe to my email listing to receive automatic updates when new recipes have been posted.

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

 Per serving: Calories: 391; Total Fat: 26.9 g (Saturated Fat: 7.7 g) (Polyunsaturated: 6.8 g) (Monounsaturated: 10 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 75.3 mg; Potassium: 967.5 mg; Total Carbs: 43.1 g; Dietary Fiber: 24.6 g; Protein: 16 g; Calcium: 78.2%; Vitamin A: 116.5%; Iron: 32.2%.

Breakfast of Champs

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Hey Y’all!

I know i’ve been MIA for the past couple months and for that I apologize! I have been cooking up a plethora of yummy, healthy meals I would love to share with you all and trust me… they are coming! Since I am back logged with recipes to choose from I am going to attempt to make a new post every few days to get caught up. If I haven’t mentioned already, I have a bit of OCD and even something as small as not posting my recipes as I create them makes me feel super unorganized. (I am sure many fellow type A people can relate, right?) A very important reason why I created this blog was to have a place where I can share and encourage my clients and followers to live a healthy lifestyle, the fact that I can have my recipes organized in a safe place that will last forever just so happens to be the best bonus ever (and a dietitian’s dream if I say so myself!)

Okay everyone… Now lets get back to visualizing nutrition in a healthy way for 2015. Here we go again!

This recipe is one of my favorites to make for breakfast during the week because it provides easily digestible complete proteins making it easy on your tummy, lots of energy, antioxidants, and most importantly… it’s S I M P L E !

This was exactly what I needed to get through Hump day and once the middle of the week rolls around, I’m sure it doesn’t hurt anyone to have a nourishing treat in their arsenal.

For this recipe, I used cultured greek plain coconut milk as the base. The brand I typically buy when searching for dairy free yogurt is So Delicious®.  You can find it at most health food store, but I bought this from Mariano’s. Its thickness and creaminess makes you feel like you are taking little bites of heaven. I love this brand because it is organic and fiber rich. Since it is plain, I would suggest adding a natural sweetener. I added banana, agave nectar, maca powder, and spirulina (the stuff that makes it green).

Check out my previous post Greek Yogurt Cup for more information about maca root powder.

I have touched on the topic of using spirulina briefly in the past so I will elaborate. The chlorophyll makes the pigment over powering so be prepared to consume green green green! Regardless, it tastes delicious, therefore, it truly shouldn’t matter.

Spirulina is a micro-algea originally used by the Aztecs. I know, algea, ew sounds gross right? Well that is wrong. I have had many people hesitant to try it because the word algea was associated with something that was thought to be inedible. The reality of the matter is it’s a source of Vitamin B1, B2, B6, B12, beta-carotene, and iron among others.

If this is not enough to fill your stomach like me add a small side. I devoured half a grapefruit for an added does of the powerhouse vitamin known as vitamin C.

Co-Yo Bowl with Spirulina  

Prep Time: 5 minutesScreen shot 2015-02-05 at 7.47.42 PM

Servings: 1

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cultured greek plain coconut milk (so delicious®)
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 tsp spirulina (organicburst®)
  • 1 tsp maca powder (organicburst®)
  • 1 Tbsp agave nectar

Toppings:

  • 1/2 kiwi, sliced
  • 1/2 bananas, sliced
  • 1/4 cup blueberries
  • 2 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp raw cacao nibs
  • 1/8 cup gluten free vanilla granola bites

Directions:

1. Blend ingredients for base first.

2. Top with your favorite fresh goodies! As easy as 1…2…3!

I topped mine with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant rich fruits (kiwis, bananas, blueberries), chia seeds, raw cacao nibs, and homemade granola. (I promise I will post the recipe for the granola the next time I make it so it can be perfected ;). This breakfast recipe is gluten free and vegan friendly making it great for everyone.

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 The best trick to create a healthy and filling breakfast is to chose what you have on hand to save money. If you do not have any fresh fruits around buy whats in season to get the best deals. Avoid using processed foods and artificial sugars such as acesulfame K, aspartame, neotame, saccharin, and sucralose. 

Enjoy your breakfast of champs!

Thanks for visiting!

Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog to receive automatic updates about new posts.

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

 (Not including grapefruit) Per serving: Calories: 550; Total Fat:20g (Saturated Fat: 8.1g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 137.3mg; Potassium: 858.8mg; Total Carbs: 75.3g; Dietary Fiber: 22.1g; Protein: 13.3g; Calcium: 51.3%; Vitamin A: 162.5%; Iron: 33.2%.

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!

Subscribe to my email listing to receive automatic updates when new recipes have been posted.

❤ 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%.

Butternut Squash Mash

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Squash is an extremely versatile vegetable. In fact, among all types of winter squash butternut is the most popular. I have been using it a lot lately, so I hope you do not get tired of seeing squash recipes because I don’t think I ever will. Not to mention, I still have a couple different kinds of squash at home I need to make on top of this. Butternut squash mash is a play off mashed potatoes. I am very careful not to call this mashed potatoes, because as my boyfriend so kindly pointed out, there are no potatoes in it. He did however agree that it still tasted amazing as we almost finished it all. If you really wanted you could add in a few potatoes so the change in flavor will not be as drastic if you are not big on new foods.

Squash is commonly recommended for weight loss/management and high cholesterol because it is low in calories and contains no saturated fats or cholesterol. The amount of squash used in this recipe provides more vitamin A than an entire pumpkin and 1/2 cup of squash provides only 45 calories. It is a rich source of dietary fiber and B-complex vitamins like folate, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B-6, thiamin, and pantothenic acid.

The consistency of my butternut mash is exactly the same as normal mashed potatoes. The end product comes out fluffy and creamy just the way we all like it. I personally think this one is my biggest winner by far. I can only describe it as heaven in your mouth. Please do yourself a favor and make this as soon as possible.

Butternut Squash Mash

Prep Time: 40 minutes bake, 50 minutes total 

Servings: 10 cupsIMG_4407

Ingredients:

  • 1 butternut squash
  • 2 lemon
  • 2 Tbsp earth balance
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 Tbsp cumin

Directions:

  1. Bake squash at 400 degrees for 40 minutes or until tender. Once baked, allow time to cool, and peel skin off. Skin should peel off easily. Cut squash into small enough pieces to place in food processor. Make this recipe in two batches; use ½ squash at a time. This is to be sure the food processor is not over stuffed and the motor will not burn out. It also ensures all ingredients are being well mixed.
  2. Add in all other ingredients and blend until smooth. Spoon out with a spatula and enjoy! Best served when warm.

Finish off by topping with fresh chives and thyme (optional). Enjoy along side a delicious salad and piece of lean chicken or your favorite main course to make the perfect dinner.

I love hearing from my followers, so please remember to tag me in any of my recipes you recreate at #brnutritionvision. You can subscribe to my email listing and follow me on instagram, twitter, tumblr, and pintrest to stay updated with my latest healthy recipes and nutrition information.

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Thanks ladies and gents! Keep visualizing nutrition with me daily!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving (1 cup): Calories: 97; Total Fat: 6.8 g (Saturated Fat: 1.2 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 158.1 mg; Potassium: 54.3 mg; Total Carbs: 9.4 g; Dietary Fiber: 1.6 g; Protein: 0.6 g; Calcium: 5.6%; Vitamin A: 8.9%.


Pumpkin Turkey Bean Chili

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Crock pot recipe, woo hoo! When I see the words “crock pot” my mind already says yes, yes, and yes.

Throw in the ingredients, turn on the heat, and indulge. Yes, you can come home for dinner to a house filled with delectable smells and a ready to eat meal? Yep, like I said before, yes.

Now I know it has been a couple week since I have made a post and all my recipes are starting to pile up. With the weather changing from blistering hot days to chilly grey, I think we can all benefits from an appropriate change in our diet. Some people may not particularly like chili, but I have always been a chili and soup kind of girl. It is one of my favorite things when the fall and winter months sneak upon us. If I did not get the crazy stares when I order chili in the middle of June, I would.

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Chili is the best type of food! It warms you right up on a cold night, can be acceptably eaten for days because you always have leftovers (what person makes homemade chili for one?), is one of the best foods to make for football Sunday (Bear Down), makes you feel better when sick, and it is just absolutely delicous. Wow… you would think I am a sponsor for a chili company or something, I just love it so much. Specially, I love my chili ;).

I have turned the original staple meal into a healthy, convenient, fall themed delight. If you asked my boyfriend, he would classify me as “one of the pickiest costumers ever” when it comes to ordering chili or any food for that matter. I rather bypass the disappointing meal and just make my own because I know I can make it exactly how I want it, hearty. (Not that every single place is bad, because I have my favorite spots) My biggest thing, I don’t skimp on the meat people, that’s one of the best parts!

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I also love to play with all my recipes and even though pumpkin chili sounds a bit funky, trust me. I have been making it for years and it is always a hit. I might even go far enough to say I think it’s better then chili without pumpkin.

Adding pumpkin makes your recipe fun and perfect for fall, but it doesn’t stop there.

Just 1 cup of pumpkin puree provides:

-3.4 grams of iron

-contains more than 2x your daily recommended amount of vitamin A

-provides about 15% of your Daily needs for vitamin E

All of which are supportive for a strong immune system. Sounds like a vital quality to have in your food during the common sick month doesn’t it?  Vitamin A also keeps your eyes, bones, and teeth healthy and vitamin E protects your body from cellular damage that can lead to certain types of cancer.

You can add pumpkin to a variety of recipes from sweet to savory making it perfect for so many things. Personally, I have been using it in basically every recipe and I will do my best to get all the recipes up on the blog ASAP.

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Please do not get intimidated because of the ingredient list.

To be honest is may look long, but it is not that bad. Chili has a funny way of needed tons of ingredients, but most are spices or common items you might all ready have in your home. Plus, you can take my recipe loosely and improvise/play with ingredients yourself if need be. You do not always have to go running to the store to spent more money. See what will work for that meal out of the items you already have.

The recipe below is my version including tips and tricks, however, chili is a super easy uncomplicated thing to make. Through everything in a pot and heat. I need to make this more often?

Now it’s time for you to run to the kitchen and whip up a big batch to see just how good this is for yourself.

Pumpkin Turkey Bean Chili        

Preparation time:

-15 minute

Cook time: 

-6-8 hrs

Serves:

~12-14 (2 cup servings)

Ingredients:

-1 can pumpkin puree (15 oz)

-1.5 lbs grass fed, lean ground turkey

-2 Tbsp olive oil

-16 bean soup mix, uncooked

-1/4 to 1/2 large yellow onion, diced

-4 cloves garlic, chopped

-3 cups chicken broth (fat free)

-2 medium tomatoes, diced

-1 tsp chili powder

-1 tsp oregano

-1 tsp ground pepper

-2 tsp cumin

-1/4 tsp cayenne powder

-1 bay leaf

-1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

-5 sprigs fresh thyme

Toppings (optional): chives, cilantro, shredded cheese, avocado slices, plain greek yogurt (in place of sour cream).

Directions:

Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Place turkey in skillet and cook until brown. Transfer turkey into slow cooker, add all other ingredients, turn heat on high for 6 hours or low for 8 hours.

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There is the shortened version for all ya’ll. Now for what I did…
I used the bullet to chop garlic cloves in 5 seconds, transferred it into the crock pot along with all other ingredients expect turkey. I bought grass fed organic turkey from Mariano’s.
Did you know they cook the meat for you right in front of you? If you live by a Mariano’s save time by getting your meat cooked in the store. They even season it how you want with a variety of seasonings available. If it’s convenient for you, kill two birds with one stone like I did. The turkey I used was cooked in store and I walked off to finish my grocery shopping for the week, came back in 15 minutes, and it was done. When I got home I added the turkey in the crock pot, stirred and allowed to simmer for another ten minutes to allow the flavors to blend.
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This chili is dairy free, but feel free to add cheese. It is also gluten free and can easily become vegan friendly if you omit the turkey and use veggie broth. Vegan or not this recipe will provide you with a good source of protein and energy. If using meat, choose lean protein like turkey, it’s less fatty than beef typically used.
 Thanks for visiting and keep visualizing nutrition with me. Bon appetit!
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❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving: Calories: 225; Total Fat: 4.9 g (Saturated Fat: 1.3 g); Cholesterol: 40 mg; Sodium: 450.9 mg; Potassium: 103.8 mg; Total Carbs: 35.1 g; Dietary Fiber: 17 g; Protein: 21.8 g; Calcium: 5%; Vitamin A: 32.7%; Vitamin C: 9.2; Iron: 18.2%.

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%.

Raspberry Walnut Salad w/ Massaged Kale

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As I made this fantastic recipe I realized, without a doubt, I had enough to feed a small army. It was for my sweet nephews 2nd birthday party. (Side note: I cannot believe he is already 2 years old, time sure does fly and now he truly is our little man!) Yes, it may sound weird because I choose to make this type of recipe for a kids party, but I couldn’t forget all the adults. At such a young age it is mostly adults anyways and this party was a big one. Plus, we can never forget Brantley loves these types of foods anyways. It worked out perfectly, he ate his nutritious fruit/kale salad and chicken for lunch then quickly transitioned into a sugar coma after stuffing his fondant cake into his cute tiny mouth. I was surprised and thankful at the same time for having so much salad because typically kale shrinks when cooked, massaged, or whatever else you choose to do to it. Not this time, I overestimated and there was plenty of massaged kale to go around. Yes, it shrank a bit, but the end quantity was still more than enough.

I typically make my own dressings, but this time I did use a pre-made one. I bought it from Dominicks the last day it was open during the big sale blowout and never opened it so I thought this sounded like the perfect dressing to fit exactly what I was trying to achieve. I’m not to sure where else it is sold, but if you are down right determined to find it just google it, I am sure it can be ordered online. The brand is Open Nature® Raspberry Walnut Vinaigrette. It has no artificial preservatives, low sodium, low cholesterol, low saturated fat content. Plus it obviously tastes amazing. After looking at the ingredients, I debated wether I wanted to make my own version of this dressing, but decided not to due to the lack of time. It is pretty simple, if you want to do it yourself, replace the store bought dressing with:

Red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar, olive oil, raspberries, walnuts (soaked overnight), dash of sea salt, fresh garlic, onion powder, organic honey, lime, and spices of your choice.

Note, this is not the same exact ingredient list as on the store bought vinaigrette, but this is my version of how I would replicate it.

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For this recipe I decided to add millet as a healthy gluten-free alternative for a grain. It was cheaper than quinoa and that is enough of a reason right there. Fruit salad, you do not normally think of grains being involved at all right? Well, it’s a staple for me.

1. I add the grains to yield a larger quantity, hence the 40+ people I was making this for.

2. It adds extra fiber and other beneficial nutrients.

3. In this case, it helped to soak up the flavors. (aka the juices from the fruits and the dressing) This contributes to the amazing taste ;).

Millet is contains heart protective properties due to its magnesium content, helps develop and repair body tissue because of its phosphorus levels, and has been linked to protect against diabetes, atherosclerosis, ischemic stroke, insulin resistance, and obesity. 

Raspberry Walnut Salad w/ Massaged Kale      

Preparation time: 40 minutes

(Since I made a large quantity it took me much longer)

Serves: 35-45IMG_3223

Ingredients:

  • 1 pineapple
  • 1 cantaloupe
  • 2 pints of raspberries
  • 2 bunches kale
  • 2 cups millet, uncooked
  • 2 Tbsp crushed nuts
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 1 cup raspberry walnut vinaigrette
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • 7 sprigs fresh thyme
  • sea salt to taste

Directions:

1. Cook millet according to packet. Bring water to a boil, place millet in. Continue to boil for another 10 minutes or until water dissipates. Cover and allow to simmer for 3-5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and allow to cool. Water: grain ratio is 2:1.

2. Meanwhile, prep your raw fruits and veggies. Since I had so much to prepare this is want took me the longest. Cut the pineapple and cantaloupe then set aside. I used a melon baller to make the ball shaped cantaloupe pieces. Juice the lime, set aside. Rinse kale and separate from stem.

3. Wash hands thoroughly, place kale into a large salad or mixing bowl and pour vinaigrette, honey, lime, thyme, and salt. Massage dressing into kale for 5-7 minutes. Next, place all other ingredients into bowl with kale and mix thoroughly. Top with nuts and enjoy.

 If you do not like your salad grain heavy, do not use all the millet that was cooked. I only used about half and stored the rest to use as left overs for the week. That still allow my salad to have a lot of millet in it too.

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If you want to make this salad for a family dinner or party, you could cut down on time in many different ways. Pre-cut the fruit the night before, separate the kale from its stem the night before, and cook the millet the night before. That is the great thing about this salad, with the exception of the millet, no cooking is involved and so many steps to make this can be done ahead of time. I hope you all try out my recipe and if you do please don’t forget to #brnutritionvision, tag me, or share me on facebook with friends and family! Thanks guys and have a fantastic Sunday!

GO BEARS!!!!

❤ Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving (2 cups): Calories: 84; Total Fat: 1.7 g (Saturated Fat: 0.1 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 46.5 mg; Potassium: 185.9 mg; Total Carbs: 14.9 g; Dietary Fiber: 0.8 g; Protein: 2 g; Calcium: 0.6%.

Hibiscus-and-Berry Iced Tea

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If there was ever a drink created in life to sip from while in your back yard on a hot and humid summer night while watching the sun go down, it is iced tea. I am so glad I made this when I did because the humidity that has come along with all this rain in the midwest is not okay with me anymore. Everyone was in need of something light a refreshing and this was the answer to our prayers.

So here’s my twist on iced tea.

I brewed up some delicious Hibiscus-and-Berry Iced Tea infused with fresh thyme for everyone to enjoy during these humid days and nights.

The acids naturally in hibiscus flowers are known for their potent antioxidant properties. It is rich is vitamin C, anthocyanins, and flavonoids. Hibiscus has been used to combat stress, fatigue, coughs, colds, prevent bladder infections, relieve menopausal hot flashes, and help with constipation.

Some research has shown hibiscus to be effective for:

Lowering high blood pressure

Lowering high cholesterol

Improving digestive health

Reducing inflammation

 My favorite health benefits is hibiscus aids in weight loss. It inhibits the production of amylase, which aids in the absorption of carbohydrates. Although more research is needed to show sufficient evidence for the effects of hibiscus, it has been used since ancient times.

Hibiscus-and-Berry Iced Tea infused with thyme

Prep time:  15 minutes

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Cool Down: 1 hr

Serves: 2.5 gallons or 40 (8 oz)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried hibiscus flowers, organic
  • 8 cups water
  • 1/2 cup honey or your sweetener of choice
  • 1/2 cup strawberries
  • 1/2 cup blackberries
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme

Directions:

1. Place water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Add hibiscus flowers and honey into pot. Continue to boil over high heat for another 3-5 minutes, stirring continuously until honey dissolves.

2. Change heat to low, cover, and allow to simmer for another 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temp.

3. Meanwhile, muddle strawberries, blackberries, and fresh thyme in tea pitcher with a wooden spoon.

4. Once tea cools, using a fine mesh strainer, strain liquid into pitcher. Push down on hibiscus flowers in strainer with spoon to extract any excess liquid. I added some of the soaked hibiscus flowers in the tea pitcher with the thyme and berries for added flavor. Add additional water until pitcher is full to dilute color and enjoy. Keep refrigerated until next use.

Personally, I do not like extremely sweet drinks in general. This made the honey a perfect addition for me. Try adding 1 tsp of stevia in the raw, honey, agave, or sugar per 8 oz of liquid if you like a sweeter beverage.

Do not throw the hibiscus flowers away! I kept mine to use them in many different ways. My favorite, candied hibiscus flowers. I will be writing a post for that recipe soon, so keep an eye out for it.

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Dried hibiscus flowers are not always the easiest to find. I bought these at a market in the city where they were dirt cheap. I suggest searching local farmers markets to find organic hibiscus flowers for reasonable prices.

Thank you all for continuing to visualize nutrition with me! Keep hydrated and refreshed with my Hibiscus Tea, I hope you enjoy it!

 Rebecca Raymundo, RD, LDN

Per serving : Calories: 17; Total Fat: 0 g (Saturated Fat: 0 g); Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 0.2 mg; Potassium: 8.5 mg; Total Carbs: 3.7 g; Dietary Fiber: 0.2 g; Protein: 0.1 g; Calcium: 0.1%.