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Grilled Thai Peanut Chicken and Veggie Fried Quinoa

I’m sorry I have been gone for so long. All of my classes decided to have exams at the same time. Isn’t that always how it works though. When it rains it pours, right? I’ve missed blogging so much, but was always so tired and too stressed. I just couldn’t sit down and write something worth reading. But never fear, I am here 🙂
I am almost done with the chaos for the time being. And I was in serious need of a study break, so why not post?

An ode to peanut butter:

Peanut butter, oh peanut butter/
Where are thou/
oh, thou are right next to me/
and I have a spoon/
how convenient.

My brain is basically a mushy mass of unrelated, crazy thoughts. Don’t judge me.

I love peanut butter. I eat it with everything. Apples, celery, popcorn, toast, crackers, bagels, oatmeal, pancakes, cookies, cereal, rice cakes, and (of course) on a spoon. Is it just me or is one spoonful just not enough? I can’t ever stop at one. I can stop at one chip, I can stop at one cookie, but I can never stop at one spoonful of peanut butter. Since I’ve gotten to school (which is now a little over a month) I have eaten three [and a half], yes THREE, family size jars of peanut butter. That may be a record. I’ll have to check on that.

If you feel like it’s time for an intervention, I would not argue with you. Instead I would agree with you, sneak to my room, and take my peanut butter (that I’m hoarding) and run for it.

*Hello, my name is Chelsea and I am completely addicted to peanut butter.*

-Anyway-
I was craving peanut butter [surprise] but it was dinner time and I wouldn’t want to ruin my appetite now would I? So I combined my craving of peanut butter with dinner. This Thai Peanut Chicken is SO good and easy. The sauce is literally 4 (ish) ingredients and takes 2 minutes. Pair it with my veggie fried quinoa and you have one tasty, hunger-quenching dinner.

This is one of my favorite meals to make because it is ridiculously easy and it SO DARN DELICIOUS. You’ll just have to try it out and see for yourself!

Thai chicken and veggie fried quinoa

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Cinnamon Banana Bagels

I really love bananas. If you have been following my posts you will see that a lot (most) of my posts have something to do with bananas. They’re just so darn good, am I right or am I right? Especially home grown bananas. SO GOOD. Once you’ve had a home grown banana there’s no going back.

Here is the story leading to my banana addiction:
One day my parents decided to plant a banana tree in our backyard.
If you don’t know about how banana trees work I will inform you. Once the banana trees are all grown up, they start a stock of bananas. These stocks are HUGE. Then they ripen on the tree. You cut off the stock and you admire your cute little bananas and then devour them. [These bananas are about half the size of a ‘normal’ banana you see in the grocery store] That is the only stock that particular banana tree will make. It only makes one and then it dies. I know, it is sad.
However, they pour down their little seedlings all over the ground and before you know it you have five banana trees in your backyard.
{I think we may have close to ten trees right now, hehe}
For some reason, the trees decide to grow stocks and ripen all at the same time. Remember I said the stocks were huge? So, you have like 400 bananas that you have to try to mash/bake/eat/freeze/chip-ify, etc, before they rot.
And now you understand why I have so many banana recipes…it was out of desperation! We didn’t have anymore room in our freezer and we were tired of dehydrating them.

I totally made the inundation of bananas sound like a bad thing, but I actually love it a whole darn lot. I make smoothies, cupcakes, bread, chips, oatmeal, pancakes, muffins/mugfins, cake, dough, filling, ice cream, and use them as a topping. It’s an art.

Soo now after that long introduction about bananas I present to you…..CINNAMON BANANA BAGELS!
Perfection? I’m thinkin’ yes.
These bagels are slightly sweet, and not super banana-y. You could add more sugar if you want them to actually be sweet, but I like them just how they are.
They smell heavenly. That’s thanks to cinnamon and banana combo.

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Cereal squares

I’m coo-coo for cocoa puffs! They’re GREAAAT! Silly Rabbit! They’re magically delicious! Breakfast of Champions.
If you haven’t caught on yet, those are slogans for a few of the very popular cereals on the current market. Cereal, oh cereal how I love thee. I, and many others on this Earth, include cereal in their daily routine.

*stands on soap box*
I must tell you, though it breaks my heart, that the cereal on the grocery shelves that you have spent hundreds of dollars on over the years is terrible. There I said it. It is filled with a ridiculously large amount of sugar (in several forms), artificial food coloring, BHT, random “stabilizers and preservatives”, and a whole bunch of other ingredients you have never heard of and certainly wouldn’t use in your kitchen. I literally almost had a panic attack when I looked at the ingredients and understood what I was putting into my body by the bowlful.
Why, oh why, do they need to put such terrible things in our food? Cereal companies focus on selling their product to children with their colorful boxes, cute spokespeople/things, and catchy commercials. They count on kids being drawn in and their parents buying it for them. Most cereals have at least 9-11 grams of sugar (refined and processed, of course) in just a 3/4 cup. Let’s be real though, who only eats a 3/4 cup serving..not me. We are only supposed to have 24 grams (for woman) or 36 grams (for men) of sugar in our diet a day and that is the max. With all of the other foods we eat, this bowl full of sugar is not helping us keep that number in check.

You know how all the specialists say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day? Well, if that is true, why would you be feeding yourself a bowl of sugar n’ chemicals? That is most certainly not great.

So those cute colorful (delicious) marshmallows, those mini chocolate chip cookies, those little balls that taste like a peanut butter cup, and even your ‘natural’ (ha) granola, are now banned forever from entering into my body again and I hope yours too!
I have been trying to create something to squash my intense cereal withdrawals. This particular recipe came about by accident, actually. I was trying to make gluten free crust and it didn’t work out, but it most certainly worked as cereal! YAY FOR EXPERIMENTS!

This cereal is gluten free, vegan, vegetarian, kid friendly, adult friendly, no processed sugars, preservative/chemical free, and very-happy-tummy approved. Winner all around.
Cereal squares
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Peanut Butter Quinoa Bowl

Happy weekend everyone! These past two years of college weekends were never exciting because I would spend all day doing homework. This year I decided to stop (sort of) being such a workaholic and do some fun things on the weekends. I went rock climbing today! They have all of these activities for free with my college ID: rock climbing, water skiing, kayaking, disc golf, sailing…how did I not know about this? Oh yeah…I was holed up in my room…

I am currently trying to put more balance in every aspect of my life: food, work, fun, and so on. Stressing is so not worth it. You only live once, so why not make the most of it?
So back to my adventures of conquering the wall. Rock climbing is hard and rigorous (at least it is to me, since I have 0% body strength), but oh-my-goodness it was SO much fun. I took me a while to actually get up the wall, but I felt good about making it to the top both times I climbed! It helped that my belay guy was cute; motivation?
Well, this morning I decided if I was going to ‘work out’ I needed a good, filling, nutritious breakfast. To me that = peanut butter. Peanut butter keeps me feeling full for hours and satisfies even my most vicious hunger pangs. Combine PB with quinoa and you have a super protein-filled breakfast; ready for anything. So I concocted this breakfast beauty. Behold the perfect rock climbing, hunger quenching breakfast!

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Healthy, Happy, Homemade Pop Tarts

We’ve never had a lot of Pop Tarts in my house. And when we did have them…none of us ever ate them for breakfast. It always seemed to be an ‘I’m hungry right before bed so I’ll sneak out and try to open that stupid silver, ridiculously loud, package and eat my delicious Pop Tart without getting caught’ kind of thing…at least it was for me. It had to be strawberry and I had to toast it. Is there any other way? Well, that was until my mom saw Pumpkin pie Pop Tarts, and knowing me oh-so-well, got me a package. Let’s just say, they didn’t last long.

Here’s the scary part. Pop Tarts, among many other ingredients, are made with enriched flour, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, sunflower oil, palm oil, modified corn starch, caramel color, soy lecithin, and food coloring. What?? Those pastries you see on TV with huge grins, are filled with garbage?

Needless to say, I don’t eat Pop Tarts anymore. RIP Pumpkin Pie Pop Tart.

But never fear! I have created my own version to bring toasty goodness and smiles back to the people again. Now you can be rest assured that your Healthy and Happy Pop Tarts are good for your body and your taste buds. You can thank me later 🙂

pop tart close up   Continue reading