Wholly Healthy Momma

A site meant to share healthy versions of delicious food so that more people can enjoy living a healthier lifestyle!

Stuffed Acorn Squash

This recipe was somewhat of a mistake.  I went to the store to get the ingredients for a summer squash recipe and got acorn squash instead.  When I went to make it I had the wrong ingredients.  After returning from the store for the correct ingredients I didn’t know what to do with the acorn squash… so I decided to stuff the acorn squash with the summer squash and see what happened.  My husband and I both loved it!  Now, at the request of my baby sister, I share it with the world.

 

 

Stuffed acorn squash with sausage

Stuffed acorn squash with sausage

Stuffed Acorn Squash

2 acorn squash

2 yellow squash

2 cups chicken broth

1 clove minced garlic

1 tbsp butter

1/4 cup pecans

3/4 cup Italian blend cheese

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

 

Directions:

  1. Cut the acorn squash in half and remove the seeds and guts, place in a baking pan and fill each cavity with chicken broth.  Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour (until fork tender).
  2.  Julienne the summer squash.  Melt butter in a pan and saute with garlic and pecans.
  3. Mix the summer squash mixture and cheeses together.
  4. Remove the acorn squash from the oven pour about half of the chicken broth over the squash and cheese mixture, discard the remaining juice.  Mix until combined and scoop the mixture into the empty cavities of the acorn squash.
  5. Return the squash to the oven and bake and additional 10-15 minutes until cheese is melted.

optional – add some cooked sausage or bacon for a different flavor.

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Whipped Sweet Potatoes

This one is for my sis! One of my favorite parts of any holiday meal is whipped sweet potatoes.  YUM!  It is like having desert with dinner! They are so easy and the kids love them!  My sister recently asked me to post the recipe so she can have it so here goes!

Whipped Sweet Potato Bake

Ingredients:

2-3 large baked sweet potatoes

¼ cup butter melted

½ cup honey

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp ground nutmeg

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350o remove sweet potatoes from skins, beat remaining ingredients on medium speed until well blended.
  • Spoon into lightly greased (1 ½ quart) casserole dish.
  • Bake 15-20 minutes or until heated through

Traditionally these had marshmallows on top which I LOVED but I do not usually do this anymore, because homemade marshmallows add to the difficulty of the recipe.  However if you want to add this feature – use my marshmallow recipe found here. Just make large sized marshmallows bake the sweet potatoes until they are nearly done then arrange the marshmallows over the top and bake just long enough for the cornstarch to brown.  Otherwise they melt into a big puddle across the top and make a pretty good glaze.

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Green Chili Cheese Ball

A friend of mine would frequently supply my coworkers and I with the most fabulous cheese ball ever… I got the recipe and was surprised to find that this delicious appetizer is deceptively simple.  Now we frequently find ourselves fulfilling requests for this party staple.

The following recipe is how we most commonly prepare it however it is delicious in many ways.  We have tried it with sun-dried tomatoes, garlic and basil.  Or how about some crispy bacon, ham, or pepperoni… Get creative and make up your own recipe – what would you put in your cheese ball?

Green Chili Cheese Ball

Green Chili Cheese Ball

Green Chili Cheese Ball

1 Block Cream Cheese

1 Can black olives – chopped

1/4 cup chopped green chili

1 cup fiesta blend cheese

1/8 tsp garlic powder (optional)

1/2 cup pecans

 

1. Combine all ingredients except pecans in a bowl.  Mix until all ingredients are evenly distributed through cream cheese.

2. Shape into a ball

3. Spread pecans over a flat surface.

4. Roll ball over pecans, making sure to cover entire surface.

5. Serve with triscuits or other favorite crackers, chips or pretzels.

 

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Mini Sopapillas

What better to accompany any Mexican dish than sopapillas!  I loved these when I was younger and there is a local restaurant that includes them with many of their combo plates… so I helplessly looked on as my husband at mine and his because I believed they would be difficult to make.  Until now… I attempted them and they were SO EASY and SO GOOD that now I make them almost every time we have Mexican food for dinner.  The kids love them plain or with honey, the adults love them, well… dripping with honey!

Here’s the recipe, enjoy!

Sopapillas

Sopapillas

Mini Sopapillas

INGREDIENTS:

2 cups Whole wheat pastry flour (regular whole wheat flour works as well they are just a little heavier)

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon applesauce

1/2 tsp canola oil

3/4 cups warm water

 

oil for frying
DIRECTIONS:

1. In a large bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, salt and applesauce and oil until well combined and crumbly.

2. Stir in water and mix until dough forms.  Knead until dough is smooth.

3. Cover and let stand for 20 minutes.

4. Roll out on floured board until about 1/8 inch thick. Cut into ~ 3 inch triangles or squares.

5. Heat oil in deep-fryer to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Fry until golden brown on both sides.

6. Drain on paper towels and serve hot.

 

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Stuffed Hamburgers and Sweet Potato Fries

A couple of years ago we purchased a stuffed burger maker because it was on sale and looked interesting.  What a purchase! This has become our favorite way to eat hamburgers.  Granted, it is not as easy as throwing a frozen patty on the grill or even making your own hamburger patty but they are infinitely better and well worth the effort!  Plus with the toppings all conveniently tucked inside the burger there is less mess and fewer toppings sliding off the bun… well, unless you add even more on top like guacamole, yum…   Add a side of sweet potato fries and some grilled veggies and you’ve got the makings of a great meal!

So what do you put inside a stuffed burger?  Mushrooms, onions, green chili, garlic, cheese, bacon, pineapple… anything you want!

If you don’t have a burger press, you can still make stuffed burgers, it is just more difficult to get uniform burgers.  To do it you make two patties about 5 inches in diameter indenting the center of the burger and leaving a rim around the patty about ¼ inch wide and ¼ deep.  Scoop filling into one side and place the remaining patty over the filled patty.  Seal the edges well and cook until burger is completely cooked through.

Here’s my recipe – it makes about 6 stuffed burgers

Stuffed Hamburger

Stuffed Burgers

Ingredients:

2 pounds lean ground beef

¼ cup whole wheat flour

1 egg

1 tsp garlic salt

½ tsp pepper

Mix the above ingredients together well and shape into patties.  Prepare stuffing,

Stuffing:

¼ cup spinach

¼ cup mushrooms

¼ cup onion

1 Tbsp minced garlic

1 Tbsp olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 cup cheese

Chop spinach, mushrooms and onion into small pieces.  Put oil into medium sized skillet, add chopped vegetables and garlic.  Sautee until onions are translucent and mushrooms are tender.  Add salt and pepper, mix well.  Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool, then stir in about ½ cup cheese.  Scoop into prepared patties, seal burgers and cook.

 

Sweet Potato Fries with Orange Dipping Sauce

2 Large sweet potatoes Peeled and cut into fries

1 tsp salt

2-3 Tbsp Olive Oil

Place cut fries into a bag, add oil and salt.  Toss in bag until well coated.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes or until soft (time may change depending on thickness of fries) turning once.

 

Orange Dipping Sauce

½ Cup Sour cream

2 Tbsp Orange Juice Concentrate

1 Tbsp Honey

Mix well, serve.

*This recipe originally came out of the Disney Princess Royal recipe collection

royal recipes

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Ginger Barbecue Sauce

We bought a gigantic grilling cookbook with lots of great recipes, but after trying the ginger sauce  recipe, we rarely make anything else.  Yes, it is THAT good!  After giving the recipe to yet another friend I decided that it should be posted here.  The original recipe called for brown sugar, which I replaced with honey.  Although the recipe calls for this to be prepared ahead of time and refrigerated, I don’t think that we have ever done it and the sauce still turns out fabulous.  So if you are like me – a little spacey and always behind schedule…  don’t worry make it anyway!

Ginger Sauce

Ginger Sauce

Ginger Barbecue Sauce:

1/2 cup Organicville organics ketchup (sweetened with agave)

a little less than 1/4 cup honey,

3 Tbsp (1/8 cup) water

3 Tbsp (1/8 cup) soy sauce

1 tsp dried ginger.

Mix well, refrigerate for 6 hours

Great on any type of meat – brush it on during the last few minutes of grilling time or serve on the side.  Enjoy!

(if our ketchup is nearly gone -just enough left to make the recipe- we add the other ingredients to the bottle and shake it up.  It’s quick, easy and less cleanup!)

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Best Ever Cheese Sauce

So, a staple at our house is cheese sauce, we call it yellow gravy and serve it frequently.  It is a very versatile topping – we use it over vegetables, pasta and sometimes over meat.  We change the flavor by using different spices or different cheeses… altogether it is just wonderful!  It is interesting to note that I was not able to make it very well until I changed my diet and now it is the simplest thing to make – and comes out perfectly every time!  The secret is — heavy cream.

Cheese Sauce

Cheese Sauce

Best Ever Cheese Sauce

2 Tbsp butter

1 Cup Heavy Cream

1 Cup Cheese (I like to use the preshredded because it is just easier)

Salt and pepper to taste

Melt the butter in a sauce pan add cream and seasonings, mix until the cream starts to bubble gently then add cheese.  Stir mixture until cheese melts.  If mixture is too thin add more cheese until it reaches desired consistency, if it is too thick add cream.

I frequently use lemon pepper (which I make myself because the store bought stuff has sugar) or garlic salt in lieu of salt and pepper.

For yellow cheese sauce to make macaroni and cheese or to serve over vegetables I use Fiesta blend cheese and add a little bit of sharp cheddar – the sharp cheddar really makes the flavor great even though we do not like the taste of sharp cheddar.

For alfredo sauce – use Italian blend cheese and Parmesan cheese (I sometimes use mozzarella to stretch the sauce if I am short on money but the Parmesan is a must for alfredo sauce.

For mozzarella based sauce to use in vegetable lasagna I use mozzarella  a little bit of Parmesan or Italian blend cheese and add about a tablespoon of pureed bell peppers.

So simple, yet delicious! Enjoy!

p.s. for those of you worried about the fat content of this see check out this post (http://creativenutritionblog.wordpress.com/2013/06/02/cheese-sauce-too-much-fat/ ) over at http://creativenutritionblog.wordpress.com/ which explains about the fat content and how to best eat such foods.

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Almond Chicken and Mushroom Rice

Years ago, a friend invited us to dinner and prepared us this fabulous meal.  I got the recipe and it was immediately added to our regular menu.  What more can I say except that these are wonderful recipes.

I am horrible at timing, I often have a cold main dish while I am trying to prepare the sauces or sides… so for those of you like me… Timing tip:  brown rice takes a very long time to cook.  Prepare the rice first and put it in 1 hour before putting the chicken in the oven.

Mushroom Rice 

1 Cup Brown Rice

1/4 cup butter

1/2 cup celery finely chopped

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms

2 cups chicken broth

1/3 cup water

1-2 Tbsp soy sauce

1 Tbsp dried parsley

sautee rice in butter for 2 minutes, until golden brown.  Add celery and onions, cook and stir 2 minutes.  Add mushrooms, cook and stir until celery is tender.  Transfer to a 1 1/2 quart baking dish.

Stir in broth, water, soy sauce and parsley.

cover and bake at 350 degrees for 90 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid  is absorbed.  Add water during cooking if needed.

ps. I often save time by throwing the mushrooms onions and celery into a food processor rather than chopping them by hand.  I also like having the mushrooms throughout the rice rather than big chunks.

Almond Chicken

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp butter, melted, divided

1 tsp celery salt

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

6 chicken breast halves

1 1/2 cup whipping cream

1/3 cup dried whole wheat bread crumbs (or seasoned whole wheat flour)

3/4  cup sliced, toasted almonds

Put flour in a bowl.  In a separate bowl combine butter and seasonings.

Coat chicken with flour then with butter.  Arrange coated chicken in a 3 quart baking dish.  Pour cream around chicken.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.

combine bread crumbs (or seasoned flour) with remaining 1 Tbsp butter.  Sprinkle  bread crumb mixture over chicken, top with toasted almonds.

bake uncovered an additional 5-8 minutes until golden brown.

Enjoy!

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Hello world! and Cinnamon Swirl Pancakes

How exciting to get started sharing my passion with the world!   I love taking things that are not overly healthy and changing it into something I can feel good about feeding my child!

Pancakes are so quick and easy! I love having them on hand during the week so I cook a big batch over the weekend.  I stack the pancakes in pairs and freeze the whole batch.  Most mornings are too hectic to make breakfast so I grab a pair of pancakes from the bag, pop them in the microwave for 45 seconds smear on peanut butter and jelly… and voila! I have a pancake sandwich as I run out the door.    Well I thought I had a great recipe for pancakes, my husband even ate them, considering them almost “normal people” food, to which he would add “but I’ve gotten used to eating that stuff”.  Then we went to visit the in-laws and my mother-in-law made pancakes that met all my criteria but totally blew my pancake recipe out of the water!  Wow… these were almost the real thing.  So I have been making her recipe… I will never go back to my old pancakes.

Today, I tried a recipe inspired by a post on pinterest:  Cinnamon roll pancakes.  We have been trying to get our daughter to eat because the doctor is concerned about her weight, so I was delighted to find that she devoured these pancakes sucked down the frosting and begged for more!  But I must admit that I really wanted to try them too… they looked so delicious!

The post stated “use regular pancake mix and add a cinnamon swirl”  looked easy enough…  Before I could make the pancakes, I had to get a squeeze bottle (the kind you put ketchup and mustard in for picnics).  I found a set at Dollar General for $1 yesterday, so today was the day. (even though I have almost a full batch of regular pancakes in the freezer!

The final product was delicious and possibly the best pancake I have EVER eaten.  Warning, they are very rich!  Here’s the recipe

Mom’s Blender Pancakes

2/3 cup whole wheat berries (you may use whole wheat flour – just decrease the blending time)

1 Cup milk

1 egg (2 if you want extra fluffy pancakes)

1/2 Cup oil (I use 1/4 cup apple sauce and 1/4 cup oil)

1 Tbsp honey

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp vanilla (not in mom’s recipe but I like it)

Put the wheat berries and milk in a blender.  Cover and blend on liquify for 4 minutes.  Add remaining ingredients to the blender.  Cover and blend for 1 minute.  Pour ~1/4 cup batter for each pancake onto heated griddle.  When the bubbles start popping on the top of the pancake they are ready to be flipped.  Flip, cook 1-2 minutes longer (until golden brown) serve and eat!

* These pancakes are delicious plain but for cinnamon roll pancakes… after pouring the batter on the griddle, squeeze a cinnamon butter spiral over the raw batter, continue cooking normally.

p.s. I have also added almonds, milled flax seed and almond oil (instead of vanilla) to the batter to add nutrients or flavor.

Cinnamon Butter 

1/8 cup butter

1/8 cup honey

1 Tbsp cinnamon

(ingredients can be adjusted to taste)

Melt butter in a microwave safe dish.  Pour all ingredients into a squeeze bottle, shake well.

* this made a lot more than I used to make swirls on my pancakes so I used some as syrup over the finished product.

Cream Cheese Frosting

1/4 cup Heavy Cream

1/4 pkg cream cheese

3 Tbsp honey (or to taste)

tsp cinnamon

2-3 Tbsp milk

Whip heavy cream until fluffy.  Add cream cheese and mix until well blended.  Add honey and Cinnamon, mix well.  Add milk until thinned to desired consistency, serve over pancakes.

So that is it…  they are more work than my regular pancakes and I am not sure I could handle having them every day, but they are delicious!

On a side note, I also found an idea to make shaped pancakes using a squeeze bottle so I made Lizzie fun shapes by putting part of the batter into my remaining squeeze bottle which I had modified by cutting the tip of the nozzle off  in order to make wider lines.  This was such fun! I could make any shapes I wanted (not just the mickey mouse that was mom’s specialty when I was growing up ;} )

ENJOY!

*substitution notes – honey is high in sugar.  I use it now a lot but I did not when I was trying to get pregnant.  Agave Nectar is a wonderful substitute for honey- use an equal amount or a little less.  Want to go really low on the glycemic index? Use Stevia – make sure to taste it as you go along, a little goes a long way with Stevia.

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