Fresh Fruit Salad

Nothing says summer like fresh fruit. I like to serve fruit salad at brunch as a side dish or for dessert after a big dinner. Sometimes I add a scoop of fruit salad on top of coconut yogurt or chia pudding to serve to my kids for breakfast. They love it!

The best thing about fruit salad is that you can totally mix up the fruits and it’ll still be delicious every single time. I often substitute pear for apple and swap peaches for strawberries or nectarines. Grapes add a nice crunch to fruit salad too. I usually pick whatver is in season or on sale! Pumpkin seeds provide an amazing source of zinc and many other minerals because these seeds grow underground, within the mineral-rich soil.

My only rule with making fruit salad is that you have to use a variety of colours to not only make it look more beautiful but also to provide the body with a wider range of phytonutrients. More colours = more health benefits to the body. Eat the rainbow, my friends!

Leave a comment below if you tried this Fresh Fruit Salad. I’d love to hear what you think of it and any variations you tried!

Fresh Fruit Salad

Prep Time10 mins
Course: Breakfast
Keyword: Breakfast, Side Dish
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 pear, chopped
  • 2 peaches, chopped
  • 2 tbsp raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1 pinch lime zest rub the skin from the lime on a cheese grater to get a pinch of zest
  • shredded coconut top with desired amount of shredded coconut

Instructions

  • Wash the fresh fruit. Cut the peaches and pears into small cubes.
  • Add the chopped peaches and pears to a mixing bowl with the blueberries.
  • Add the pumpkin seeds, maple syrup, lime juice and pinch of lime zest.
  • Gently mix the fruit salad to evening coat it with the dressing.
  • Sprinkle shredded coconut on top and enjoy!

Mint Green Smoothie

It’s summer and it’s hot out. This fresh, creamy smoothie is the perfect drink to take out with you on a walk or to drink when you get inside to cool down.

I’m a bit obsessed with adding mint to food and drinks when I can. The fresh taste is so satisfying and it helps to soothe a sensitive tummy. I like adding a scoop of collagen powder to this smoothie for a kick of protein. The healthy fats from the avocado help to keep me full for longer than a smoothie with just fruit would. The fresh fruits and leafy greens provide a large dose of vitamin C and a variety of minerals to nourish your body.

Let me know what you think of it!

Mint Green Smoothie

This refreshing smoothie tastes like summer in a glass. The fresh fruit and leafy greens provide a large dose of Vitamin C and powerful antioxidants.
Prep Time5 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Breakfast, Recipe, Smoothie
Servings: 1
Author: andreagracewellness

Ingredients

  • 1/2 Banana
  • 1 Handful of baby spinach
  • 1/4 Avocado
  • 1 Granny Smith Apple (remove core)
  • 1 cup Unsweetened nut milk I prefer oat or almond
  • 1/2 Lemon, squeezed
  • 1/2 cup Cold, filtered water Use more water if you do not want to use nut milk
  • 1 cup Fresh mint leaves
  • 1 scoop Collagen Powder (optional)

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients into a blender
  • Blend on high speed for 1-2 minutes. Add more liquid to create your desired consistency. I like to add a few ice cubes to make it even more refreshing!

Red Lentil Veggie Soup

These cold, winter days call for comfort foods that warm my tummy. This soup is so jam packed with nourishing ingredients. I can’t decide which one is the all-star here, so I’ll highlight a few!

Let’s start with bone broth. The bone broth I use in this recipe is homemade from chicken bones (see notes below if you want to use an alternate liquid). Bone broth is one of the most healing foods you can consume. It’s full of collagen and minerals that help to repair the gut, boost the immune system, reduce inflammation and encourage liver detoxification from the glycine and potassium it contains.

Carrots are one of my favourite vegetables. They contain high levels of vitamin A, and are a great source of vitamin K, fibre, and biotin. Next we have sweet potatoes which are loaded with carotenes, vitamin C and vitamin B6.

Lentils are high in fibre and protein, but relatively low in calories. They help to balance the body’s pH level because they are a very alkaline source of protein. I love cooking with red lentils because I find them to be so adaptable. They cook quickly and blend in well with other flavours. The garlic, ginger, onions and turmeric combine to make this soup an anti-inflammatory powerhouse!

My whole family enjoys this dish. My toddler and baby gobble it right up! My baby is nearly one and has had each of these ingredients separately prior to having this soup, so I feel comfortable feeding it to him knowing he won’t have a reaction. I add more salt to the servings that I give to myself and my husband. I also add one or two Thai green chillies to the recipe if I don’t plan on giving it to my kids.

Red Lentil Veggie Soup

This dish is so nourishing and warming during the winter months, I can’t stop making it. The combination of red lentils, carrots, sweet potatoes and bone broth make this soup a complete meal. 
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course, Soup
Keyword: Dinner, Main Course, Soup
Servings: 6
Author: andreagracewellness

Ingredients

  • 1 cup red lentils soaked and rinsed well
  • 1 medium sweet potato peeled and chopped
  • 2 medium carrots peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup red onion diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic chopped finely
  • 1 cube fresh ginger root peeled and chopped finely
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp dried coriander
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp pink or sea salt add more to taste
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley chopped
  • 4 cups bone broth or water or vegetable stock I like to do 3 cups of bone broth and 1 cup of water
  • 1-2 Thai green chilies, chopped if you like some spice!

Instructions

  • Start by measuring out 1 cup of red lentils and let them soak in cold water. By the time you’ve prepped the rest of the recipe, it’s usually enough time for them to soak (about 20 minutes).
  • Peel the sweet potato and carrots, then chop them into cubes. Dice the red onion and finely chop the garlic and ginger. Make sure to remove the skin from the ginger first. 
  • The lentils will have expanded quite a bit after being soaked.
  • Using a fine-mesh strainer, rinse the lentils well with cold water, until the water runs clear. 
  • In a medium sauce pan, add the coconut oil, onion, garlic and ginger, on medium heat. Stir them around frequently until the onions run clear and begin to brown.
  • Add the bone broth (or liquid combination of your choice) to the saucepan. Then add the rinsed lentils, sweet potato, carrots, dried coriander, turmeric, sea salt and fresh parsley. Give it all a good stir.
  • Turn the heat up to high and bring the liquid to a boil.
  • Once boiling, reduce heat to simmer/low and cover with a lid. Let it simmer for 20-25 minutes. 
  • Stir the soup occasionally to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom. Just be sure to add the lid back on quickly after you’ve finished stirring.
  • After 20ish minutes, the veggies should be quite soft. Use a hand masher to mash up the soup, leaving it slightly chunky. You could also pour the contents of the saucepan into a blender and blend on high for 1 to 2 minutes to make a smoother consistency.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy! Put the leftovers in the fridge to enjoy for a few days. The soup will thicken up quite a bit in the fridge, so I like to add a bit of water to the soup when I reheat it on the stove. 

Did you make this recipe? Let me know what you think of it in the comments below! Any questions about the recipe instructions or ingredients used can also be asked in the comments. Happy cooking folks!


5 Amazing Superfoods

I’m sure you’ve heard the word “superfood” all over town, and seen it plastered on items in the grocery store. But what is a “superfood”? I’m glad you asked! It’s nothing more than a term used to describe a food that is ultra nutrient dense. Below are 5 of my favourites that I use regularly in my house. I’ll tell you how I incorporate them into my meals and snacks to kick the nutrient profile up a notch!

  1. Raw Cacao Nibs
    • These little brown nibs are loaded with magnesium. They are actually one of the highest food sources of magnesium – an essential mineral we could all probably use more of. They may also act as an aphrodisiac. I like to add cacao nibs to my coconut yogurt for a chocolatey, low caffeine crunch. They can also be added on top of a smoothie or used for baking in place of chocolate chips. My favourite brand of raw cacao nibs is Giddy Yoyo (not sponsored or affiliated).
  2. Nutritional Yeast high in B vitamins.
    • The first time I saw nutritional yeast, I thought it was fish food and was hesitant to try it. But, I gave it a chance and quickly became obsessed. It has a nutty, cheesy flavour to it. It’s not really like anything I’ve ever tasted before. Nutritional yeast, or “nooch” for short, is one of the best food sources of vitamin B12 – making it a great addition to a vegan or vegetarian diet! I like to add it to savoury foods, like on my scrambled eggs, mixed into soups, on top of pasta in place of parmesan cheese, or sprinkled on a rice cake on top of hummus. My favourite brand of nutritional yeast is Bragg (not sponsored or affiliated).
  3. Chia seeds
    • Don’t underestimate these tiny warriors – they are small and mighty. Chia seeds are an awesome source of omega-3 fatty acids, calcium and fibre. They are a great way to help keep your digestive tract moving. I often make chia seed pudding, I mix them into yogurt, or I add 1tbsp of chia seeds to my smoothie. I actually don’t have a favourite brand of chia seeds. I’ve been happy with several brands. I just look for ones that are organic ones and non-GMO.
  4. Bee Pollen
    • This superfood is the newest addition to my pantry of the bunch. Bee pollen is a great source of protein and B vitamins. I like to eat them with breakfast to help give me a boost of energy to start my day. They taste great mixed into yogurt with berries, on top of toast with nut butter, or simply sprinkled on to fresh fruit. My favourite brand of bee pollen is Beekeepers Naturals (not sponsored or affiliated).
  5. Hemp Hearts
    • I find hemp hearts to be the most versatile superfood from this group. They pair well with sweet and savoury foods. I use them in a variety of ways. I add them into smoothies, mix them into soups and yogurt, sprinkle them on salads or eggs, or add them to fresh fruit. Hemp hearts are high in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. They are also an awesome source of non-animal protein, as well as manganese and magnesium. My favourite brand of hemp hearts are Manitoba Harvest (brand ambassador).

There are tons of amazing, nutrient dense foods out there, AKA “superfoods.” What are your favourite superfoods? Tell me below!

Starting from the top going clockwise – nutritional yeast, chia seeds, bee pollen, hemp hearts, cacao nibs.

Twisted Tabouleh Salad

I’m a huge fan of simplicity and efficiency in the kitchen. With 2 young kids at home, I don’t have time to be in the kitchen for hours creating elaborate meals. But, I also don’t cut corners when it comes to creating nourishing meals.

Quinoa is one of my absolute favourite foods to eat. I’m a serious carb lover, and I love that quinoa hits the carb-loving-spot, without the gluten, plus the protein! Quinoa is rich in minerals, such as manganese, copper, phosphorus, and magnesium. It’s also a good source of fibre, folate and zinc. Parsley is the true star of the show here. I don’t feel like it gets enough credit for how nutrient dense it is. It’s loaded with vitamin K, C, A, folate, and iron. It is an antioxidant powerhouse!

Another thing I just love about this salad is that it’s very easy to make adjustments to and it’ll still be delicious. Avoid adding the feta cheese to make it dairy-free. If you don’t like mint – no problem! Swap it for cilantro, dill or another fresh herb. Chickpeas don’t do it for you? Sub in kidney beans, navy beans or black beans instead. You will not be disappointed!

If you’re planning to make this, I recommend making the quinoa the day before or a few hours before to allow it enough time to cool. It doesn’t need to be cold, but room temperature at the least. If you’re in a pinch – cook the quinoa and spread it out on a large plate, then pop it in the fridge or freezer to cool faster.

Please leave a comment below and tell me what you think of it. Happy eating my friends!

Twisted Tabouleh Salad

I love this well-rounded, versatile salad because it can be prepared as an appetizer, side dish or main course.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Recipe, Side Dish
Author: andreagracewellness

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked quinoa cooled to room temperature
  • 1 can chickpeas (398mL) rinsed well with cold water
  • 1 cup curly parsley, chopped
  • 1/3 cup fresh mint leave, chopped remove leaves from stems
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 10 grape or cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese I prefer goat’s or sheep’s feta
  • 1 medium lemon, juiced
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp fine pink salt or sea salt add more to taste
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp dried oregano

Instructions

  • In a large bowl, mix lemon juice, olive oil, oregano, sea salt, and ground black pepper to create the dressing.
  • Then add the chickpeas, quinoa, curly parsley, mint, green onions, tomatoes and feta cheese to the bowl with the dressing.
  • Gently mix the salad until dressing is evenly coated.
  • Eat immediately or cover and place in the fridge to consume later. It should last for 2 days in the fridge before getting soggy!