WIAW #6 – Donut, Cereal, Quinoa & Bean Tex-Mex Chili and More…

Happy Wednesday everyone! :-)

WIAW#2

I hope you all are having a great week, so far! :-)

With no further ado, here we go with today’s WIAW

Breakfasts…

1 Zucchini-Banana Spice Muffin & 1 Banana Blueberry Muffin + Egg over-easy + Protein Pudding/Strawberry Greek Yogurt & Banana Bowl

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Kashi Go Lean Vanilla Graham Clusters Cereal with Vanilla Greek Yogurt, Almond Milk, & Sliced Bananas + Protein Pudding/Cherry Greek Yogurt Bowl + Egg Over-Easy

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Tasty Overnight “Eggy” Oats (Recipe Posted Yesterday Here) + Protein Pudding/Banana Greek Yogurt + Banana Slices Bowl

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A Dunkin Donuts Glazed Donut (YUUUUMMM!) + Protein Pudding/Banana Greek Yogurt + Banana Slices Bowl

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Lunches…

French Toast Grilled Cheese Sandwich+ Protein Pudding/Strawberry Greek Yogurt + The rest of the bag of Kay’s Cinnamon Twist Pretzels (I crunched on while making lunch) + Lemon White Chocolate Chip Blondie

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Cucumber Noodles with Chicken in Peanut Caramel Thai Sauce (Recipe Here) + Protein Pudding/ Bowl with Kay’s Pretzels + Van’s Fire-Roasted Veggie Multigrain Crackers (Full Product Review on Monday 7/21 Posted Here!)Lemon White Chocolate Chip Blondie

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Dinners…

Quinoa, Black Bean & Veggie Tex-Mex “Chili” (Made with Black Beans, Quinoa, Red Bell Peppers, Onions, Sriracha, a dollop of almond butter, a dollop of sour cream, and herbs: Red Chili Pepper, Turmeric, Cumin, Ginger, Curry, Black Pepper, Oregano, Garlic, Parsley) + Protein Pudding/Strawberry-Banana Greek Yogurt Bowl (with leftover pretzels eaten as I was making lunch) + Tropical Banana, Apricot & Orange Muffin + Lemon White Chocolate Chip Blondie

chili3 chili1 chili6 chili7 chili4-pp chili5-muf-blondie

Burrito (Made with: Ole Spinach Tortilla Wrap; Inside: Chunky Chicken, Black Beans, Mozzarella Cheese, Red Bell Peppers, Onions; Topped with Sriracha & more Shredded Mozzarella Cheese + Protein Pudding/Cherry Greek Yogurt Bowl + Lemon White Chocolate Chip Blondie

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P28 Flatbread Chicken & Mozzarella Pizza (Made with Daisy Sour Cream, Spinach, Green Bell Peppers, Onions, Sriracha, Herbs, Chunky Chicken in Water, Kraft Shredded Mozzarella Cheese) + Protein Pudding/Cherry Greek Yogurt topped with remaining Kay’s Pretzels (I’d eaten while making lunch) + Lemon White Chocolate Chip Blondie

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*Recipe Coming Up Tomorrow (Thurs 7/24)  -  Blackberry & Raspberry Bread / Muffins!

Questions:
What have been your favorites meals you’ve eaten this past week?
Do any of the meals you’ve seen here prompt you to want to make or eat them?

Tasty Overnight “Eggy” Oats

Happy Tuesday everyone! :-)

I know the classic Overnight Oats is a common breakfast for many Healthy Living Bloggers and readers. Yet, I do know that people stumble upon this blog every day who may not have heard of this particular yummy breakfast meal. So…with that being said, if you are a blogger, just feel free to just yawn (Ha ha!) and skip this post today (but I do hope you’ll come “back” tomorrow!)

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This recipe is very similar to the Zucchini & Banana Flavor Infused Overnight Oats Recipe I posted a bit ago. Feel free to check it out here!

However, for those of you who may be curious about this healthy and very tasty breakfast-in-a-bowl, this particular OO’s (Overnight Oats) recipe has a slight “twist” on it with the addition of cooking in an egg. Here’s how you make it:

Tasty Overnight “Eggy” Oats
By: Amy @ Healthy Stuff Reviews
Yield: 1 serving

Ingredients:
1/2 cup rolled/old fashioned oats
1/4 tsp of each of the following extracts:
coconut, banana, strawberry & raspberry
1/2 tsp chia seeds
3/4 cup almond milk*
1/2 tsp Stevia*
1 egg

Directions:
1. Combine all ingredients together, except for the egg, together in a jar, bowl or tupperware container with a lid. Make sure ingredients are well mixed.

2. Make sure you close the lid on the jar or cover the tupperware or bowl with plastic wrap. The oats need to “soak” in the almond milk, and you don’t want any moisture to evaporate. Place the jar/bowl in the refrigerator and leave there overnight.

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(This is actually the photo of my previous OO’s recipe done a few weeks ago. I didn’t take a photo of today’s OO’s recipe when it was in it’s jar in the fridge).

3. In the morning, crack an egg into the jar with the overnight oats mixture. Stir until egg is well blended.

4. Heat a medium-sized saucepan on a medium setting (between 6-8). Pour contents from the jar into the pan. Continuously stir well so the mixture doesn’t burn. The mixture will become foamy/fluffy. Cook for about 2-5 minutes, until you can see the “egg” within the mixture has turned from translucent to white and fairly fluffy.

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5. Pour Eggy Overnight Oats mixture from the saucepan into a bowl. Top with berries, nuts, syrup, nut butter, a dollop of yogurt, chocolate chips or whatever you want!

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6. Eat and enjoy!

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Notes:
* I used Old Fashioned/Rolled Oats. I suggest you don’t use Quick Oats because they don’t absorb as much moisture or retain the same thickness, richness as rolled oats do.
* I used Silk Vanilla Almond milk.
*  I used NuNaturals Nustevia White Stevia.

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Questions:
Have you made Overnight Oats or Oatmeal by adding an egg into it to make it “eggy” (aka: fluffy)?

 

 

Van’s *New* PB&J Bars, Crackers & Chips

Happy Monday, everyone! It’s a fresh new week! :-)

Marvelous Monday

I honor of Marvelous Monday, I thought it would be a “marvelous” thing to post a Product Review today!

A representative was so generous and gracious in contacting me then sending me samples Van’s Natural Foods of the following
1.  Van’s Multigrain Chips (GF) in Mighty Good BBQ
2. Fire Roasted Veggie Crackers (GF)
3. PB&J (Blueberry) Bars (GF)

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Before we move on, I wish to note that back in 2012, I posted reviews for Van’s Waffles and Van’s French Toast Sticks which I hope you will also take a look at!

Before we get going, let’s go ahead and review come information about the company of Van’s Natural Foods, which you can also view here.

“You may not know it, but Van’s has been cooking up tasty, good-for-you waffles for almost a half century. It all started back in the 1970s at the original Van’s restaurant. It was there, inspired by our California beachside roots, that we first dished up whole grain and gluten free hot ’n toasty waffles. By the late 1980s, we decided it was time to bring our tasty waffles to a whole new group of customers – right in their local grocery stores.”

“That same passion for seriously wholesome, seriously tasty foods lives on at Van’s today. We value artisanal quality and we cook our products in small, minimally processed batches with always-fresh ingredients. And since we want everyone to be able to enjoy our waffles, we offer gluten free waffles along with organic, mini and our signature 8 Whole Grain varieties.”

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 Here is a bit of information about Van’s *New!* Products from a representative:

“Summer is a time for outdoor activities and days spent hanging by the pool. With all that fun in the sun, hunger is bound to strike at any moment so it’s always helpful to have some wholesome snacks on hand.”
Van’s Natural Foods, the market leader in gluten-free and allergy-friendly, natural and organic breakfast and snack foods has some better-you-you swaps for traditional snacks to bust the hunger while keeping your food values intact.”
  • Love potato chips but want a healthier snack? Try Van’s Multigrain Chips in Nacho, Nacho, Man! and Mighty Good BBQ! Made with gluten-free oats, brown rice, millet, quinoa and amaranth, the chips are loaded with 18 grams of whole grains and just 130 calories per serving. These guilt-free treats keep it real, containing no high fructose corn syrup, artificial ingredients, hydrogenated oils or GMO oils.
     
  • Want to find a lower-calorie, less-messy alternative to a classic PB&J? Look no further than Van’s PB&J bars, a delicious, classic blend of real peanut butter and fruit jelly, sandwiched between two whole-grain, gluten-free bars. This sweet, chewy delight, available in Blueberry and Strawberry, is perfect for a quick, healthy breakfast, lunchtime treat, snack or dessert featuring 10 grams of whole grains.

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My Review & Ratings:

First item Reviewed: Vans Mighty Good BBQ Gluten Free Multigrain Chips4.0 out of 5

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Texture – These chips reminded me a lot of Pringles BBQ Chips both in taste and texture. They are light and very crisp to the touch. Easily breakable. As soon as I bit into one, it almost “melted” in my mouth due to it’s airiness. This isn’t a bad thing at all. I believe these honestly are a great snack at parties, BBQ’s (Ha ha! See the irony in this play-on-words?!)
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Taste - I enjoyed the BBQ taste of the spices and herbs that make up the flavor of these chips. Looking at the ingredient list on the package, I understand why a little “zest” of flavor hit my lips as the chips did.
The tomato, garlic and onion powders, as well as the paprika extract and natural jalapeno flavor all combine to provide the smoky BBQ flavor.
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Now…I will say that these Vans BBQ chips are much less flavorable than Pringles and other chips. They contain a much milder and subtle flavor overall. I can imagine one reason is because, in order for these chips to remain natural and more healthy nutritionally, Vans couldn’t drown the chips with salt, oil and mass-quantities of spices/seasonings. So, I just wanted to share this honestly with you all (at least that is how I’m tasting them).
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Nutritionally – These chips are pretty “average” in terms of their nutritional information. They aren’t particularly low-fat or low-carb. However, the serving size is 15 chips to equal 130 calories, so you can munch and crunch a fair amount of these little guys to hit 1 serving. The pros are that these are gluten-free for those who are trying to eat GF and are pretty low in sugar with only 4 grams.
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Stats: 1 serving = 15 chips, 130 cals, 4.5 fat, 0 cholesterol, 200 mg sodium, 22 carb, 1 g fiber, 4 g sugar, 2 g protein.

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Second item Reviewed: Vans Fire-Roasted Veggie Crackers4.5 out of 5

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Texture – These crackers look and felt much like Wheat Thins. However, they are actually more appealing to the eye than their competitor. I could see colorful “specks” of green, brown and red, which indicated the different herbs to flavor and seasonings used. The texture is crunchy – a nice balance of crispness with a slight buttery-ness similar to Wheat Thins.

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Taste – One of the reasons why I rated these with 4.5 stars is because I actually like the taste of these more than Wheat Thins! I was honestly surprised and impressed. I was somewhat skeptical after the Mighty BBQ chips had more of a subtle taste than I prefer (I like things spicy…hence my love for Sriracha).

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In any event, the seasonings in these crackers really made them “pop” with each bite. In particular: Dried Red Bell Pepper, Dried Carrot,  Tomato Powder, Salt, Sun Dried Tomatoes, Onion Powder, and Garlic Powder to name a few.

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Nutritionally – These crackers are quite similar in nutritional value as the Mighty BBQ chips. In fact, quite similar…

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Stats: 1 serving = 12 chips, 130 cals, 4.5 fat, 0 cholesterol, 130 mg sodium, 22 carb, 2 g fiber, 3 g sugar, 2 g protein.

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Third item Reviewed: Vans Gluten Free Blueberry & Peanut Butter Snack Bar 5.0 out of 5

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Texture – This snack bar had a very similar texture to a Nutri-Grain Cereal Bar. This Van’s Blueberry & PB Bar is soft and semi-moist on the outside and crumbled somewhat easily both when I cut it in half (for the photo) and also when I ate it. However, I like personally that texture. The middle (blueberry filling) was smooth yet with a little grittiness of the fruit.

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Taste – First of all, I thought it was brilliant that Vans came up with this flavor for their snack bar line. After all, Kellogg’s doesn’t have a PB&J flavor in their cereal bar line! I don’t know about you, but I love anything PB&J flavored. So, perhaps I’m a bit biased (or perhaps that helps this product review?!) but I really like this Vans Snack bar. With each bite, I got a nice “balance” of both the peanut butter and the blueberry filling. They very nicely complemented each other…no one flavor dominating the other.

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Out of all 3 products I was sent samples for featured in this blog post review, Vans Gluten Free Blueberry & Peanut Butter Snack Bars are my favorite. I’ll buy these at my local grocer or online.

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Nutritionally - In all honesty, these Snack bars don’t rate “super swell” in any particular health/nutritional profile, yet they certainly aren’t awful either. I’d say they are about average for a snack bar. For some, they may be a bit high up there in sugar, ranking in at 13 g sugar. For me, that’s not horribly high. But, I know for some (such as diabetics, etc), it may be. Yet, two “pros” for these snack bars are: Again, they are gluten-free for those desiring or maintaining GF eating. These bars are under 200 calories, so if you are looking for something in that range, they can fit-the-bill.

vanspb&j1 Stats: 1 serving  = 1 bar, 160 calories, 6 g fat, 0 cholesterol, 115 sodium, 24 g carbs, 2 fiber, 13 sugars, 3 g protein.

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Here is a run-down of all the categories of products Van’s sells:
Cereals                              Pancakes
Crackers                            Snack Bars
French Toast Sticks       Waffles
Multigrain Chips            Gluten Free

Also, I encourage you to check out Van’s blog…where you can sign up for coupons, view great recipes, and more!

van's blog

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Here is some great Van’s Links:

 Van’s Website                     Van’s on FacebookAbout/The Van’s Story        Van’s eClub

Van’s on Twitter                 Van’s on Pinterest Van’s Blog                            Van’s Store Locator

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Question for My Readers:  Have you ever tried any of Van’s products? Which are your favorites?

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