Grand Marnier Cranberry Cookies [Recipe]

One of my favorite parts about living in California is the food.

My inner fat kid is in heaven.

Aside from all of the restaurants we’ve been trying, I’ve also loved all the produce.  Citrus is amazing here!  These protein lemon squares didn’t last long in my kitchen… but the cookies I’m sharing today disappeared almost immediately!

I had a bunch of oranges left over from our citrus picking adventure and was trying to think of a fun way to use it.  Naturally, I turned to cookies and booze.  Boozy cookies might seem a bit strange, but they are amazingly good.

Grand Marnier Cranberry Cookies

… 

Read More »

Oatmeal Jam Cookies [Recipe]

The fun part about moving is using all the baking supplies.

Flour, and sugar, and buttah…. oh my!

I made Cat’s browned butter cookies for the gym crew.  Then I did the Fudgy Brownies that Juli linked up to last week’s #strangebutgood to have as road snacks for Vegas and me.  For ease, I made them as peanut flour-dusted balls (and because balls).

Next up is my own concoction – Oatmeal Jam Cookies.  Jam may sound strange… but – in fitting with the Friday theme – it’s good!*

*Don’t take my word for it – my boss said it’s one of the more delicious things I’ve ever brought in to work.  The he asked if I used “real” butter.

Banana Jam Oatmeal Cookies… 

Read More »

A Perfect 10

I am not-so-secretly a teensy bit Type A.

In my head, I hide it well… but no.  

1 more day until Vegas gets here for the holidays.  I Can’t Focus.  So I make lists (you’re not the only one Meghan).  Lists of things to cook, places to take Vegas, items to remember to bring to mom’s for Christmas, errands to run, random tasks to complete before Vegas gets here… it’s all fun to me though.

So today I bring you a list of fun things I’m focusing on to pass the time while waiting for Tuesday.  It’s a perfect 10.  Because I like lists of prime numbers or 10.

1. House Plant’s Mate

Flowers arrive from Vegas on the regular.  Last week’s delivery was a friend for House Plant – Christmas Cactus.  Now we both have mates from the desert.

House Plant's Desert Mate… 

Read More »

Treat Yo’ #strangebutgood Self [Holiday Cookie Recipes]

Happy Month of Indulgence!

You know it’s true.

A lot of people try to fight it… but this is the one month of the year when you have to indulge a bit.  I’m not saying go overboard with a bean feast, but don’t be trying to deprive yourself.  It will only drive you crazy.  Treat ‘yo self!

In the spirit of treats, today’s #strangebutgood is dedicated to some of my favorite holiday cookie recipes.  Some strange, some just indulgent, and one that’s even healthy.

Chocolate Sea Salt Cookies… 

Read More »

Cryofreeze: My Real-Life Frozen + WIAW

Who’s singing the Frozen song?

I refuse to see that movie.

you’d think I’d rather see a movie than actually be frozen.  But no.  I got frozen.  My friend, Tori, heard me complaining about all my injuries (shit falls apart when you get older, y’all!), and offered to hook me up with a trial for Icebox Cryotherapy.  Basically, they freeze you with gasified liquid nitrogen.  It looked like I was standing in a cylinder of dry ice – but it’s not as dangerous.

In Tori’s words: “You know how when you bang your thumb, blood rushes to it and it gets really hot because your body is trying to fix it? Basically same body response when you do cryo. Your body thinks you’re freezing to death, so it sends signals all over and sees what’s ‘broken’ or hurt and focuses on it.”  Sounds great, right?! It really is great for recovery; in fact, many professional athletes have been using if for years!

Cryptherapy

Recovery aside, Cryotherapy has multiple other benefits:

  • Increased circulation
  • Reduction in pain & inflammation
  • Assists in a quicker surgical recovery
  • Aids in the treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis and osteoarthritis
  • Boost immune system
  • Decreased fatigue
  • Tighter skin (cellulite, say what?!)
  • Increased libido (woot!)
  • Weight loss assistance

So was it that bad?  It was 3 minutes at negative 130 degrees Celsius (-266 Fahrenheit). It wasn’t a cake walk… but honestly, I didn’t ever think I’d never make it out alive.  I had gloves and booties on (I have Raynaud’s, which the owner made sure she looked out for).  The parts that hurt the worst were my legs (which are sore and injured) and my nipples (apparently common), but I recovered right after.  Your core temp doesn’t actually change, so you don’t freeze to death.

After wards, my body felt SO relaxed, I slept like a little baby that night, and hit a couple PRs in the gym the next day.  I’d like to do it a few more times for my injuries, but it definitely helped with the general soreness and recovery!  If you’re in Atlanta or have a facility in your city, I definitely recommend it!

… 

Read More »

PB&J Yogurt Bowl Recipe + WIAW

Staple foods.  We all have them.

Some of us have them literally.

Amy's burrito staple

When my boss referred to Amy’s burritos as a staple food… he meant literally.  He opened this little gem and found something shiny in it.  Normally I like shiny things, but a staple in my burrito?  I’ll pass.

He emailed Amy’s and got a scripted response from customer service about an hour later.  The person didn’t seem too concerned,but said they send the pics to someone else int he company.  Well see… in the mean time, I’m especially grateful I go my food prep!

… 

Read More »

Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

My inner fat kid loves baked goods.

 

So does my outer fat kid.

I really could eat baked goods all day long.  Keep your Twizzlers and Sour Patch Kids, I’ll take the homemade oatmeal cookies.

Sadly, cookies aren’t exactly on my training plan.  Until now.  I strange’d it up in a storm of “use everything in my pantry.”

Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

 

I balled up a version of one of my favorite cookies because everything’s better as balls.  I also altered the ingredient list a bit so it can be eaten guilt-free.  Not that I feel guilty about eating dessert… but sometimes my abs do.

These chocolate chip-laced treats are just as good as the real thing.  Really!  My boss ate one and said “oh my god… these are good!” with a only slightly suppressed tone of  surprise.

Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

 

You could probably use any flour here – try coconut flour to make it gluten free.  They can easily be made vegan with a flax egg.  And, if you’re not ready to bring back pumpkin yet, try mashed sweet potato or banana!

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

  • 1 C almond meal
  • 1 C rolled oats
  • 1/2 C spelt flour
  • 2 scoops (62 g) vanilla protein powder (I used Growing Naturals rice protein)
  • 2 T  brown sugar, packed
  • 2 T Stevia (or more brown sugar)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 C pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 C water
  • 3 T coconut oil
  • 3 T egg white (or flax egg)
  • 2 tsp NuNaturals simple syrup (or maple syrup)
  • 1/2 tsp maple pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 C sugar-free chocolate chips

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place dry ingredients in a large bowl and stir to combine.

In a small bowl mix coconut oil (softened in micro if necessary), syrup, egg white, water, and extract.  Pour wet mixture into the dry.  Stir until well-combined (you can use your CLEAN hands).

Fold in the chocolate chips.  Make balls of ~2 T of dough, place on cookie sheet and and flatten with your palm.

Bake for 10-12 mins at 350 degrees.  Remove from oven and let cool.

Makes about 30 cookies.

*See notes in post above for gluten-free, vegan, and other options!

_____________________________________________________________________________________

How have you enjoyed making co-workers, friends, or family stare with strange but good creations this week? The link up rules can be found here or by clicking on “Strange But Good” in the menu bar above. In short, I want to see what concoctions have earned you weird looks from co-workers, family and friends! Post your Strange But Good creations, grab the logo below for your blog, and link up here.

Sprint 2 the Table

 

 

Remember to use #strangebutgood in any Tweets and Instagrams of your creations. :)



***

I’m thinking I need to finally try a clean(er) cheesecake of my own next!

Baked goods or candy?

What childhood favorite would you like to health-ify?

 

Top 13 in 2013

You guys like dessert.

I guess that’s why we get along?

Happy New Year!!!

As I looked back at the top posts of 2013, I knew there would be a lot of sweeter dishes.  But whoa.  Of the top 13 2013 posts, 6 were sweet recipes.  What I didn’t realize was that the Work It Out posts are popular too!  I’ll do a better job to writing more of those in 2014 – I’ve been pushing it at the gym, but slacking on the writing.

Thank you to everyone for all of the visits, comments, and many, many laughs in 2013.  I’ve loved getting to know so many awesome people this year, and look forward to continuing these relationships for years to come.

Enough much!  Here’s the lucky (top) 13 to start out ’14…

Top 13 in 2013… 

Read More »

3 Ingredient Coconut Macaroons

This is for those that think my recipes have too many ingredients.

Not really, but it should make you happy.

These coconut macaroons are the most requested Christmas cookie I make.  Ironic, since I don’t love coconut.  But if you DO like coconut, you’ll love these.  If you don’t, you’ll still eat a couple because they really are good.  Especially after I had the brilliant idea to dip them in chocolate.

Coconut Macaroons

They technically have 4 ingredients, but I refuse to count vanilla.

When you form balls, you’ll feel like they aren’t sticking together enough.  Don’t be scared.  Just roll them together as best you can.  The sugar will melt and bind with the egg as it bakes – just be sure to let the cookies cool before you touch them.

Coconut Macaroons

I’ve made these for a couple of years sans chocolate.  I have no idea why.  This year I melted chocolate, added some bourbon extract (yes, I put booze in everything), and painted the bottoms.

If you do this, place them in the fridge to harden before you serve them.  It’s good with the gooey chocolate, but extremely messy. 😉

Coconut Macaroons with chocolate

Linking these up to Katie’s MIMM… because cookies are marvelous.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Coconut Macaroons

Coconut Macaroons

  • 3 C sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1 C granulated sugar
  • 5 egg whites
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • Melting chocolate (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.

Place all ingredients in a medium bowl and mix with (clean) hands until the ingredients are completely combined.

Place tablespoon sized dollops of batter onto a baking sheet making sure cookies are at least an inch apart.  They will feel loose, but don’t worry.  They will bind as the sugar melt during cooking.

Bake, one sheet at a time, for 10-15 minutes or until edges are browned.  Let cool for 10 minutes.

Dip in melting chocolate, if using.  Store up to 1 week in fridge.

***

I may not blog again until after Christmas… resting and enjoying the season is a glorious thing.  Happy Holidays!

What are your favorite Christmas Cookies?

Do you like coconut or chocolate better?  Both?

Touring Atlanta + Sizzlefish Holiday Giveaway

Staying in town can feel like a vacation.

 

Not quiiiiite like going to Tahiti… but you know.

This weekend Sarah graced me with her presence.  She drove in Monday night from Birmingham and we spent the next 2.5 days touring rainy Atlanta.  It’s fun to entertain out-of-towners because you get to see your city in a whole new way!

Sarah arrived Friday afternoon with cookies in hand.  She shared the Vegan Carob Peach Fudge Cookies from her #strangebutgood post Friday.  They were the perfect appetizer before we headed to dinner.  We did so much I have to break it up into 2 posts.  Today is the “doing,” and the Atlanta food tour will happen Wednesday.

Sarah cookies

 

Saturday morning we hit my gym for a glute workout.  Check out this IG video for a taste of what we did.  Sarah hung like a champ!  She’s a natural.

After a solid hour of hard work, I told Sarah she was ready to compete… so we practiced a pose (this is why I don’t do bikini):

Sarah, Toisha, me posing

 

Naturally this had to be followed with a trip to Buford Highway to shop the massive international farmer’s market, where we met up with Sarena.  We were there for 2 hours… only a food-friend can understand how grocery shopping is an entertaining sightseeing activity.

I had told Sarah how cheap it is, but she was still shocked at how little her market finds were!  The new-to-me treats this time were a Ponkan orange and some sort of Korean puffed rice crackers.  I also found a giant bag of my favorite Chimes peanut butter ginger chews!

Buford Farmer's Market

 

That market is massive – it’s like the size of Wal-Mart.  You can browse an entire aisle of Mexican hot sauces, or sample baklava at the Easter European bakery or peruse greens you’ve never heard of before. Watching my friend wander around filled with wonder at all the international delights was the best part of my weekend.

Sarah left yesterday.  After trying to convince her to stay, I sent her on her way in true blogger fashion – with a to-go container of protein oatmeal. More to come later in the week… I need to leave room to tell you about an amazing giveaway!

________________________________________________________________________________________

I have been obsessed with Sizzlefish ever since I had the opportunity to try a box via Fitfluential.  The fish is delicious – it surprised me how fresh it tastes despite being frozen.

Last week I pulled out a piece of the salmon to cook when I was short on groceries.  It thawed while I was at work, so all I had to do when I got home was squeeze some lemon juice, dill, and pepper on top before broiling it for 7 mins.  Easy dinner!

Sizzlefish Salmon

So what’s in it for you?

The awesome people at Sizzlefish agreed to do a special holiday giveaway!  Not only will you win a box of this Holiday Sampler (worth $59!), but they will also send a box as a gift to a person of your choosing!  Feel free to pick me. 😉

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***

I’m a little sad it rained all weekend – I wanted to take Sarah on a walking tour!  From the looks of it, everyone else had rain or snow too.  Bring on the sunshine!

What is your favorite fish?

Do you consider grocery shopping a form of entertainment/tourism?