Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Tropical Mango Ice Pops

I've been super into ice pops (and making them) lately. I had some mango around the house, so of course I decided to come up with something with mangoes (my favorite fruit). I love mango and I didn't want to make it super complicated because they taste so great on their own. I think i did an awesome job; the orange juice really brings out the mango flavor!

These are super healthy with no extra sugar or other yucky stuff like you get from the store. All it's sweetness, nutrition, and wonderful texture comes from the ripe fruit! They are also packed with vitamin C! Two of these pops equal 122% of your daily vitamin C. I wouldn't mind vitamins if they all were in popsicle form!

This simple and easy recipe for mango pops really sends you away to a tropical paradise! 

Tropical Mango Ice Pops

  • 4 cups fresh mango chunks (two large mangoes)
  • 1 cup fresh orange juice (two medium sized oranges)

  1. Put the mango and orange juice into a blender and blend until pureed. You can leave some chunks if you like, but I just pureed mine all the way.
  2. Pour mixture into ice pop molds and place in the popsicle sticks.
  3. Freeze for 6-8 hours or until fully frozen (I do it overnight, so then it doesn't feel like I'm waiting for my ice pops because I'm asleep the whole time).

This recipe makes 10 ice pops (with this ice pop mold) at 51 calories per pop! I calculated this recipe on MyFitnessPal, so go ahead and add it to your daily intake!

I haven't tried it with frozen mango, but I will experiment in the future!

If you try out this recipe with frozen mango (or fresh mango), please let me know how it went in the comments or on Google+.

Thank you for stopping by!
XOXO Shelly

Monday, August 24, 2015

Watermelon-Lime Ice Pops!

The other day I was in need of something sweet without all of the calories. Then I thought: ICE POPS! So I looked up some recipes on Pinterest (my favorite place) and came up with these babies! They are also perfect for a hot day, like we have been having here in Los Angeles, when you just need to cool off!

The pops are naturally two-toned because watermelon juice separates really quickly. It will all taste the same and it looks fancy too!

Please enjoy these super tasty ice pops using the recipe below. They definitely have to be good because even my sister liked them and she's picky!

Watermelon-Lime Ice Pops

  • 4 cups cubed watermelon (preferably in season watermelon)
  • 1/3 cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons agave nectar

  1. Put all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until fully pulverized.
  2. Pour liquid into ice pop molds and place in the popsicle sticks.Freeze for 6-8 hours or until fully frozen (I do it overnight, so then it doesn't feel like I'm waiting for my ice pops because I'm asleep the whole time)

This recipe makes 10 ice pops (with this ice pop mold) at 32 calories per pop! Perfect because I will usually eat more than one! I added this recipe to MyFitnessPal, so go check out the details!

I would love to know if you try out this recipe, so please let me know in the comments or on Google+.

Thank you for stopping by!
XOXO Shelly

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Home Grown Tomato Bruschetta

The other day, we bought french bread to have with a meal, but we didn't end up eating it. A few days later it was getting stale, but I didn't want to waste it. So, I thought, "bruschetta!" because we had just picked a bunch of tomatoes (quadruple of what is pictured below). Plus, we had all of the other ingredients!

Finished Product!

I was already grilling chicken for dinner, so I decided to grill the slices of bread instead of baking it. The bruschetta came out wonderfully! If you don't want to grill it, you can broil it for 3-4 minutes on each side. Follow the rest of the steps as shown. 

Left: Tomatoes from our garden || Right: Tomato mixture 
Continue scrolling for some awesomeness!

Home Grown Tomato Bruschetta

  • 1 loaf day old or fresh French bread, sliced on the diagonal (I got 17 slices minus the heels)
  • 2.5 cups diced tomatoes (6 medium or 4 large tomatoes)
  • 2-3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried or 1/2 tablespoon fresh basil (I used dried)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1-2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar, to taste (I used 1 teaspoon)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup and 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 mozzarella cheese sticks, cut in half and pulled into pieces OR 17 slices of block mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  1. Dice the tomatoes, mince the garlic, and chop the parsley and basil into small pieces. Put all of these in a bowl.
  2. To the same bowl add the balsamic vinegar, oregano, 3 tablespoons olive oil, salt, pepper, parmesan cheese, and red pepper flakes (if you are using them). Whisk together until combined. 
  3. Now, test the tomato mixture. Does it need more salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, basil, etc? If so, add more to your taste.
  4. Turn your grill on medium-low. 
  5. Next, slice the bread diagonally and set on a cookie sheet. Put 1/4 cup of olive oil into a small bowl and brush the oil onto each slice. Only do one side for now.
  6. Cut the mozzarella sticks in half and pull it apart into strips; if you have a block of mozzarella, cut slices of cheese to fit the slices of bread.
  7. Once your grill is at about 200° take your bread outside and place the slices oil side down. Now brush the rest of the oil on the side that is now facing up.
  8. Grill the slices for about 5-7 minutes on each side with grill top closed or until golden brown. Once the bottom side is done, flip over the slices and add the mozzarella to the top. Close the grill and let the cheese melt for another 5-7 minutes.
  9. Once the bread is done and cheese is melty, put them back on the cookie sheet and bring them inside. Spoon about a 1/2 tablespoon of the tomato mixture on top of the melted mozzarella.
  10. Serve immediately and enjoy!
***Serving size depends on the size of the bread you use and how thick/thin you slice it. I got 17 slices from my bread (not including the ends of the bread), but if I had sliced it thinner I could have gotten more. There should be enough of the tomato mixture if you end up having more slices of bread than I did. However, you will need to slice some more cheese.

I would love to know if you try out this recipe, so please let me know in the comments or on Google+.

Thank you for stopping by!
XOXO Shelly

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Easy Calimex Tacos

Ever since I can remember, my dad has been making our family tacos for dinner.  These are not authentic Mexican street tacos (which I love!); they are total Americanized tacos with ground beef or turkey, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and salsa. They are the best thing to make when a person doesn't feel like cooking because they are so quick and easy.

Close up!

Please enjoy our family's Calimex Tacos! 

Chop of the veggies and shred the cheese first!

Cooking the tortillas! Flip them and they will puff up.

Browning the meat.

Add taco seasoning and onions (optional). 

 Meat is done!!

Tortillas done!

Set up the tacos and enjoy!

Easy Calimex Tacos

  • 1 package Tortillaland Corn Tortillas
  • 1 lb ground beef, browned and strained
  • 2-3 cups shredded cheddar cheese or Mexican cheese blend
  • 2-3 cups Iceburg or Romain lettuce, chopped
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • Salsa or taco sauce, to taste
  • Taco seasoning (optional)
  • 1 tbsp onion, diced (optional)
  1. Before you cook anything, chop up the lettuce, dice the onion and tomato, and shred the cheese. Put each in their own serving dishes and set aside under paper towels.
  2. Put the ground beef in one large non-stick pan on medium-high. Use your wooden spoon or spatula to chop up the ground beef into small pieces. Stir frequently to cook every piece fully.
  3. This is an optional step, but if you want to add more flavor to your meat, add some taco seasoning and a few diced onions to the cooking meat.
  4. Get out another non-stick pan for the tortillas and turn the heat to medium.
  5. The tortillas take about 30-45 seconds on each side. You will know they are done once you flip it and the tortilla starts to puff up like a balloon. Put each cooked tortilla onto a plate and set aside when done with all tortillas (there are also instructions on the package).
  6. Line a large bowl with paper towels; once the meat is cooked, put it in the paper towel bowl and let it sit there for a second so you drain most of the fat out of the meat. Dab the top of the meat with another paper towel.
  7. Put the meat back into the pan and brown it a little bit. Maybe 2-3 minutes in the pan on medium heat, but you will see it turn brown.
I would love to know if you try out this recipe, so please let me know in the comments or on Google+.

Thank you for stopping by!
XOXO Shelly

Monday, April 7, 2014

Copycat Starbucks Caramel Macchiato

I am literally obsessed with Starbucks' Caramel Macchiato. I have been getting one every time I go somewhere within range of a Starbucks. I'm telling you! OBSESSED! Then recently when I went grocery shopping, I saw that Coffee-mate had a caramel macchiato flavored creamer!  So, of course I had to get it (I needed creamer anyway).  Then a great idea came to me: make an at home version of my fav caramel macchiato from Starbucks!

This is totally the easiest and best thing ever. You don't need anything fancy like an espresso machine; you only need coffee, creamer, and caramel! This recipe will taste more like the Starbucks version if you use Starbucks brand coffee, so that's what I did.

Please continue to the yummy recipe!!

First, add the caramel and spread all over the glass.

Next add the caramel macchiato creamer.

Then add your Starbucks coffee and ice!!

Maybe add some more ice...

Add whipped cream and more caramel on top, if desired!!!

Copycat Starbucks Caramel Macchiato

Ingredients (about 350 calories)
  • 1-2 tablespoons caramel sauce, chilled (sticks better to glass if cold)
  • 1/4 cup caramel macchiato coffee creamer, chilled
  • 8oz (or 1 cup) of strong coffee, chilled
  • Ice
  • 1/4 cup whipped cream (optional)
Lower Calorie Option (about 156 calories)
  • 1 tablespoon caramel sauce, chilled (sticks better to glass if cold)
  • 2 tablespoons caramel macchiato coffee creamer, chilled
  • 2 tablespoons cold milk
  • 8oz (or 1 cup) of strong coffee, chilled
  • Ice
  1. First, take one tablespoon of the caramel sauce and drizzle on the bottom and sides of the glass.
  2. Then add the caramel macchiato creamer (and milk) to the glass.
  3. Next add the cold coffee to the glass. Lightly stir until coffee and creamer/milk are combined.
  4. Add as much ice as desired.
  5. OPTIONAL: Top with whipped cream and another tablespoon (or more) of caramel sauce to the top!

I would love to know if you try out this recipe, so please let me know in the comments or on Google+.

Thank you for stopping by!
XOXO Shelly

Monday, March 31, 2014

Saffron and Lemon Orzo

This lemony saffrony orzoy pasta will make a wonderful side dish to any entrĂ©e whether it be with chicken, beef, or shrimp. Saffron is actually the most expensive spice in the world. That means if you want to impress someone, use saffron!  Saffron is from the Crocus flower and people not only use it in food, but they use it as fabric dye as well.

I decided to make this recipe because I am always up for something new. I've never cooked orzo pasta nor have I ever used saffron in any recipe before. I have never tasted saffron either, so I didn't know what to expect. To my wonderful surprise, this dish was delicious! It was buttery, lemony and fresh! It was extremely quick and easy, so do not be afraid!  You can do it!

The saffron is blooming! 

Add the orzo to the saffron infused chicken broth.

Add the ingredients to the cooked orzo!

Completed recipe!! Delish

Saffron and Lemon Orzo

  • 4 cups low sodium chicken broth 
  • 1 teaspoon saffron threads 
  • 2 cups dried orzo 
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or any other oil you have around 
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened 
  • 1 whole lemon, juiced 
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest 
  • 1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped 
  • 1-2 teaspoons salt, to taste 
  • Ground black pepper, to taste 
  1. In a large pot, bring the chicken broth to a boil over high heat; then reduce the heat to low and bring the stock to a simmer. 
  2. Add the saffron, stir, and allow the saffron to bloom for about 5 minutes. 
  3. Return the heat to medium and bring the stock to a boil. 
  4. Add the orzo and cook until tender, but still firm to the bite – about 8 to 10 minutes. Stir occasionally. 
  5. Drain orzo (even if there isn’t much liquid left) and transfer to a large bowl. 
  6. Add the olive oil, butter, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and parsley. Toss to combine.

I would love to know if you try out this recipe, so please let me know in the comments or on Google+.

Thank you for stopping by!
XOXO Shelly

Monday, March 17, 2014

Spicy Pad Thai with Chicken

I love Thai food. My favorite Thai food restaurant is in Hollywood, CA. It's called Torung Restaurant; it only takes cash, the parking is across the street at the gas station, and it's the best Thai food you will ever have. My go to dish is the Kang Ka Ree, which is yellow curry with potatoes, carrots, onion and your choice of meat.  Even my dad likes this place the best for his favorite dish, Thai Fried Rice, and he is picky!

But today, we aren't talking about curry or fried rice.  Today we are talking about Pad Thai. This is a favorite not only with me, but all across America as well as Thailand. There are street carts in Thailand making this noodle dish for tourists and citizens to enjoy. It was originally concocted in order to lower domestic rice consumption (Thailand's largest export was rice) and promote Thai nationalism during WWII (sorry, I love history). Anyway, I have been testing out this recipe for a while now and this one is a winner!  I hope you have fun trying it out!

Continue below for tasty looking pictures and recipe!

Mince garlic and chop shallots.

Slice up the green onions.

Juice some lime juice!

Chicken before...

... chicken after!

Saucey goodness mmmmm!
Noodles added to chicken!

After bok choy and green onions are cooked, scramble the eggs on the side of the pot.



Yummy close ups below! 
I'm totally eating this for lunch tomorrow...

Pad Thai

Estimated time to make is 45 minutes


Sauce (makes about 1.25-1.5 cups)
  • 1/4 cup palm sugar (can use brown sugar as substitute)
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce (can use 1-2 tablespoons salt as substitute)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 whole lime, juiced
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons garlic chili sauce
  • 1/8 tsp. ground white pepper
  • 1-3 tablespoons sriracha sauce, to taste
Pad Thai
  • 1/2 of the pad thai sauce (use more if desired)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (for stir frying)
  • 1 package of rice stick noodles (white, flat noodle)
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 3 bunches of baby bok choy, roughly chopped
  • 1lb chicken breast or thigh, cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce 
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 bunch of green onions, sliced (1/2 for cooking, other half for serving)
  • 1 cup fresh bean sprouts (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted peanuts, finely chopped (optional)
  1. Start by adding 1 tablespoon of oil to a medium sauce pan and turn to medium heat.
  2. Add your garlic and shallots and stir fry for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
  3. Next, add the rest of the sauce ingredients in the same pan and turn the heat to low until palm sugar/brown sugar is dissolved (it will only take a few minutes).
  4. While the sauce is doing its thing, chop the rest of the ingredients and bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once it’s boiling, drop the whole package of noodles in and let them boil for 2-3 minutes; until limp but too firm to eat. 
  5. Turn off the heat, drain the noodles in a strainer, and rinse them with cold water (the cold water will help stop the cooking process so the noodles don't get too mushy). Leave the in the strainer for now.
  6. Back to sauce! Once the sugar is dissolved in the sauce pan, increase heat and boil for a few seconds. Remove from the heat. The sauce is done!
  7. Now it’s time to stir fry. You’ll need 2 utensils to stir fry the pad thai (I used two wooden spoons). It is easier to separate the noodles this way, so they don't stick together.
  8. Add 1 tablespoon of oil and 1 tablespoon soy sauce to the same large pot you cooked the noodles in (trying to save pots here).
  9. Turn the heat to medium and drop in the chicken chunks; cook until done (about 6-8 minutes, test by cutting the largest piece with your wooden spoon). 
  10. Add the drained noodles and 1/4 cup of chicken broth and toss. Then add the bok choy, green onions, and 1/2 of the prepared Pad Thai sauce. Mix into the noodles.
  11. Make sure to constantly separate the noodles to prevent them from sticking to one another. If noodles are too sticky, add a little more oil. 
  12. Once noodles, bok choy, and green onions are cooked (2 minutes), it’s time to add the eggs. Move noodles to one side of the pot and toss the beaten eggs in. Scramble and stir the egg until cooked (about a minute or so).
  13. Turn off the heat, add the sugar, peanuts, and bean sprouts and toss until thoroughly combined.
  14. Serve with more green onions on top!  Enjoy!
I would love to know if you try out this recipe, so please let me know in the comments or on Google+.

Thank you for stopping by!
XOXO Shelly