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Self-Love and Tasty Treats for You and Your Family

February is Love Month . . . Pamper yourself with self-love and delicious food!  Giving, creating and being with others can make a positive impact on your well-being and on the health of others.  Gather your friends or family in the kitchen and enjoy the following fun recipes.

First, it is time to kick ‘Hangry’ to the curb and be mindful of what you eat, how it affects your mood, your mental state, and your overall health.  When our mood levels are low, we are more vulnerable to consume comfort food.  So, why not ‘give in’ and make comfort food delicious and nutritious for all ages to enjoy.  Everyone deserves this type of self-love.  For instance, an ice cream cone brightens up a child’s face, brings back happy memories to adults and seniors and holds a special place in all our hearts.  The Chicken Salad recipe is so delightful in an ice cream cone.  The smile, the texture, the flavor, the satisfaction followed by the upswing on the mood is a home run.

Nachos are another comfort food that can be tempting when at a sporting event, while socializing or even when you are craving a tasty and gooey high-caloric treat.  So, why not try a healthier version like Sweet Potato Nachos.  This recipe is so satisfying on the taste buds and will leave you feeling much lighter!

And dessert . . . don’t get me started – yes, you can enjoy a delicious dessert without the guilt . . . and if you can turn a delicious Cold Oats breakfast into a delectable dessert . . . now that is a double win!  Plus, watch your mood, energy, and attitude soar in a positive way.

Craving chocolate?  No worries – simply transform healthy fat and high-nutrient avocados into a creamy Chocolate Pudding or should try sweet potato chocolate puddingNow that is amazing!

Lastly, take time to enjoy all of the wonderful flavors.  The quality of the food is crucial, but the quantity is just as important.  Go ahead, indulge in one serving and enjoy your self-love time!

Chicken Salad

1 lb. chicken, cooked – cubed or shredded

½ cup plain Greek yogurt, 0% fat

½ cup celery, sliced thin

½ cup red grapes, cut in quarters

½ t. celery salt

½ t. paprika

¼ t. ground black pepper

Option: ½ cup walnuts or almonds, chopped

One Step: Mix all ingredients in a bowl.  Enjoy with a spoon, on a piece of bread or fill into an ice cream cone, large tomato or pepper, or in a lettuce or multi-grain wrap.

Nutrition: 241 calories per ½ cup serving (with nuts), protein: 34.5g, carbohydrates: 7.5g, fat: 8.5g, fiber 0.9g

Sweet Potato Nachos

2 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced thin to about a ¼” round

1 T. avocado oil

2 t. paprika

1 t. garlic powder

½ cup black beans, drained and rinsed

½ cup tomatoes, chopped

½ cup avocado, chopped

Option: ½ cup cheddar or colby-jack cheese, shredded

  1. Prepare two baking sheets for ultimate crispness. Lightly grease the baking sheet with avocado oil. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Mix the oil, paprika and garlic powder in a large bowl. Toss the rounds in the oil mixture and place in a single layer on the prepared baking sheets.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes then carefully flip the sweet potatoes and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the sweet potatoes with beans and cheese (if using) over the top. Return to the oven for 3 minutes, until the beans are heated, and the cheese is melted. Remove from oven once more and dress the top with fresh tomato and avocado.  Serves 6.

Nutrition: 223 calories per 3/4 cup serving (w/cheese), protein: 8.1g, carbohydrates: 31.5g, fat: 8g, fiber 7.6g

Overnight Cold Banana Pie Oats

1 banana

1/3 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

½ cup almond milk, unsweetened

¼ cup plain Greek yogurt, 0%

1 T. pure honey

½ t. pure vanilla extract

1 t. flax seed meal

Option: Garnish with unsalted almonds or salted for slightly sweet and salty.

One Step: Smash the banana in a bowl then add all of the ingredients.  Blend well.  Cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least 8 hours.  Store in an easy to-go container like a mason jar.  Enjoy!  and combine all ingredients in a bowl.  Enjoy with a spoon, on a piece of bread or fill into an ice cream cone, large tomato or pepper, or in a lettuce or multi-grain wrap. One Serving.

Nutrition: 278 calories per serving, protein: 8.5g, carbohydrates: 56.1g, fat: 3.5g, fiber 5.5g

Chocolate Avocado Pudding

2 large avocados, ripe and pitted

1/3 cup cocoa powder, unsweetened

1/3 cup agave nectar

½ cup coconut milk, 100% – unsweetened

2 t. pure vanilla

½ t. fine-grain sea salt

One Step: Place all ingredients in a blender or preferably a food processor.  Blend until completely smooth.  Refrigerate pudding until chilled, about one hour.  Serves 8.

The options are endless as you can eat with a spoon, use as a fruit dip, create a unique charcuterie or combine it with other flavors like the Overnight Cold Banana Pie Oats.

Nutrition: 180 calories per 1/3 cup serving, protein: 2.3, carbohydrates: 15.5g, fat: 14.1g, fiber 6.4g

Chocolate Banana Oats Dessert Shooters

Create layers between the two delicious and nutritious treats then top it with crunchy granola and/or your favorite berry!

Recipes & Additional Recipes: ‘Q2 ~ A Healthy Recipe for a Balanced Life’ and

‘Bucky & Daisy’s Moody Adventures ~ Discover: Eating Healthy’

Interested in an early childhood wellness book collection?

After all, it is crucial to learn and nurture habits from an early age.

Check out ‘Bucky & Daisy’s Moody Adventures’ @ DonnaFatigato.com

Donna Fatigato is a Best-Selling Author, Holistic Nutrition & Cooking Coach,

Personal Trainer, and Yoga/Pilates & Wellness Specialist. @ Q2Fit.com

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