Category Archives: Gluten-Free

Breakfast Gluten-Free Vegan

Carrot Cake Granola

I can’t believe this week is finally here! It’s our wedding week! Travis and I have been engaged for about one year and a half, and after so many months of wedding planning and thinking about our special day, we are both thrilled that it’s here.

We are getting married in Boston (where I grew up) on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend, and flying from Boston to Greece for our honeymoon a few days later. If you’ve been to Greece and have any recommendations with us, be sure to let me know! I know the next week is going to be a whirlwind, and I am going to do my best to soak it all up.

If you love carrot cake, then you're going to love this healthy Carrot Cake Granola! It's gluten-free, vegan, and packed with delicious carrot cake flavor. Eat it with yogurt, milk, or just on its own! ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Now back to our regularly scheduled programming…food!

I’ve been on a major granola kick recently. After months of regularly making my favorite Cardamom Granola, I decided to change things up a bit. For this new granola recipe I wanted to make something reminiscent of my all-time favorite dessert: carrot cake.

If you love carrot cake, then you're going to love this healthy Carrot Cake Granola! It's gluten-free, vegan, and packed with delicious carrot cake flavor. Eat it with yogurt, milk, or just on its own! ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

This granola has all of the essential elements of a good carrot cake (minus the frosting, of course!). It’s packed with freshly grated carrots, walnuts, pecans, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. It’s also an ideal recipe for anyone with dietary restrictions because it’s dairy-free, gluten-free, and soy-free.

If you love carrot cake, then you're going to love this healthy Carrot Cake Granola! It's gluten-free, vegan, and packed with delicious carrot cake flavor. Eat it with yogurt, milk, or just on its own! ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

If you love carrot cake like I do, then I know you’re going to love this carrot cake granola. Serve it on top of yogurt, with milk, or just snack on it right out of the container!

 

Carrot Cake Granola
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 3 cups
Ingredients
  • 1.5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • ½ cup grated carrots
  • ½ cup unsalted pecans, chopped
  • ½ cup unsalted walnuts, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • pinch of ground cloves (optional)
  • ⅛ cup maple syrup
  • ⅛ cup melted coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup raisins
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl combine the rolled oats, grated carrots, pecans, walnuts, cinnamon, salt, ginger, nutmeg and cloves (optional). In a separate small bowl mix together the maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla extract. Pour the maple syrup mixture into the bowl with the oats and carrots, and toss until well combined.
  3. Spread the mixture out evenly on the lined baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes, rotating the pan and stirring the granola halfway through the baking time. Remove the pan from the oven and allow to cool until the granola reaches room temperature. Then add raisins and toss to combine. Store the granola in a sealed container for up to 2 weeks.
 

If you love carrot cake, then you're going to love this healthy Carrot Cake Granola! It's gluten-free, vegan, and packed with delicious carrot cake flavor. Eat it with yogurt, milk, or just on its own! ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Dog Treats Gluten-Free

Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats

It’s Thanksgiving week, my favorite time of the year! I am so excited to be writing this post from my parents’ home in Boston. I am here for the week, celebrating Thanksgiving and spending lots of time with my family.

Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats -- your pup will LOVE these! ll Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Fiber-Packed ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I couldn’t wait to share this Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats recipe with you! We recently started incorporating pureed pumpkin into Bessie’s food after we read that it can help reduce itchiness and stop dogs from licking their paws.

Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats -- your pup will LOVE these! ll Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Fiber-Packed ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Bessie has a few food allergies, so we have to be careful with what we feed her.  I am especially happy with this recipe because it’s very allergy friendly for most dogs. These Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats are gluten-free and dairy-free, plus the fiber from the pumpkin and carrots is great for a dog’s digestion.

Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats -- your pup will LOVE these! ll Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Fiber-Packed ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I also added parsley, which helps freshen up stinky dog breath, and egg, which can add shine to a dog’s coat.

Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats -- your pup will LOVE these! ll Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Fiber-Packed ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I’ll admit, Bessie isn’t necessarily the fairest taste-tester because she loves ALL FOOD (seriously, this dog will eat anything). But her tail was wagging even faster than usual for these treats, so I think they were a big success!

Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats -- your pup will LOVE these! ll Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Fiber-Packed ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

If you have any leftover pumpkin after Thanksgiving, I’m sure you know a pup who would love these homemade pumpkin pie dog treats!

 

Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 16 square treats
Ingredients
  • ½ cup gluten-free flour
  • ¾ cup gluten-free rolled oats
  • ½ cup pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
  • ½ ripe banana, mashed
  • ⅛ cup carrot, peeled and grated
  • ½ egg, beaten
  • 1 Tablespoon raw honey
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8x8 baking dish with parchment paper. Spray paper with cooking spray.
  2. Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl until well combined. Spread the batter into the prepared pan and smooth to a ¼ inch thickness. Using a pizza cutter (or sharp knife), score the batter into 16 squares (3 lines horizontally and 3 lines vertically).
  3. Bake for 15 minutes, then rotate the pan and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
  4. Using the parchment paper, lift the bars out of the pan and finish cooling on a wire rack. Use the pizza cutter to break the bars into 16 even squares. Store the pumpkin pie treats in a refrigerator. Since my dog is small, I froze half of mine to use at a later time.
 

>Pumpkin Pie Dog Treats -- your pup will LOVE these! ll Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Fiber-Packed ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Bread and Muffins Breakfast Gluten-Free

Gluten-Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins…and some EXCITING news!

Hey guys! Sorry, I know I was completely M.I.A. last week, but I have a REALLY good excuse!

Travis and I got engaged last weekend in Philadelphia! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEK! (—> That’s really the best way to capture all of my emotions.)

Rachel and Travis Got Engaged!

I am so excited and happy and aaah, #somanyfeelings! I promise I will share our engagement story with you later this week. I’ve been trying to put all of my thoughts concisely together into one post, but at this point I have a novel written and I don’t think you want to read that…

 

But for now, I think we should dive into these Gluten-Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins.

What do you think?

Moist & Delicious Gluten-Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins ll Gluten-Free and Refined Sugar Free ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

If you or anyone you know is gluten-free, then you MUST get this Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1 to 1 Baking Flour! Neither Travis or I follows a G-F diet, but we definitely try to be conscious about the amount of gluten we eat. If we’re out at a restaurant and we see a G-F option available (like pasta or pizza crust), we usually opt for that.

Of course, I want to make it clear that “Gluten-Free” doesn’t necessarily mean “healthier”, but removing some gluten from our diets has definitely had positive effects on both of our skin and stomachs.

Moist & Delicious Gluten-Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins ll Gluten-Free and Refined Sugar Free ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I made two versions of these gluten-free banana muffins before perfecting the recipe. The first version was really good, but I felt it needed more banana. The key to making the best banana bread or banana muffins is making sure your bananas are really ripe — the browner, the better!

As bananas ripen, the sugars begin to caramelize, which results in a sweeter, more flavorful muffin or bread.

Moist & Delicious Gluten-Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins ll Gluten-Free and Refined Sugar Free ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I know you guys are going to LOVE these Gluten-Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins. If you make them, definitely let me know in the comments below!

 

Gluten-Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 3 large extra-ripe bananas
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup coconut sugar
  • 2 cups Bob's Red Mill 1 for 1 Gluten-Free Flour
  • 1.5 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup dark chocolate chips (low sugar if available)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin pan with muffin liners and spray the insides of each liner lightly with cooking spray to prevent as much sticking as possible.
  2. In a large bowl, mash the bananas. Whisk in the eggs, canola oil and vanilla. Stir in the coconut sugar and mix well.
  3. In a separate large bowl, combine the gluten-free flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix to combine. Slowly pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and stir until there are no dry lumps. Stir in the dark chocolate chips and mix.
  4. Pour the batter into the lined muffin cups, only filling each cup about ¾ of the way. Bake for 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Remove the pan from the oven and allow to cool for 2 minutes. Then remove each muffin from the tray and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
 

Disclaimer: I was provided product for this post from Bob’s Red Mill, but the recipe and all opinions are my own. 

 

 

Moist & Delicious Gluten-Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins ll Gluten-Free and Refined Sugar Free ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Gluten-Free Poultry Salads

Taco Salad with Chicken and Lime-Cilantro Dressing

Hi guys — it’s Friday, wahooo!

I am headed to Philadelphia this weekend for Travis’s 5th year college reunion (mine is next year, eek!). I am so excited to see friends and walk around my old college campus. Plus, you know I will be eating my way through the city these next few days. I had so many favorite restaurants in Philly and I can’t wait to get back to some of them!

I wanted to pop in before my trip and share a new summer recipe: a Taco Salad with Shredded Chicken and a delicious Lime-Cilantro Dressing!

Taco Salad with Shredded Chicken and Lime-Cilantro Dressing! l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

You guys know that I love to take a classic recipe and make it healthier. So why not deconstruct everyone’s beloved taco and turn it into a flavor-packed, BOMB DOT COM salad!?

Sure, taco salads are nothing new, but a good restaurant version might cost you upwards of 1,000 calories!

What, are you surprised? Those salads come swimming in cheese, fried toppings and fatty dressings. No señor, not going to fly in my book.

Taco Salad with Shredded Chicken and Lime-Cilantro Dressing! l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

In comes my Taco Salad.

It’s packed with veggies like corn and bell peppers, healthy fats from avocado, a good dose of fiber from black beans, and lean protein — shredded chicken!

The Lime-Cilantro Dressing might be my favorite part. Mannnn, is this dressing good. It SCREAMS summer with every bite.

Taco Salad with Shredded Chicken and Lime-Cilantro Dressing! l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

You have to make sure you don’t leave out the crushed tortilla chips on top — they add a necessary crunch to this monster salad.

Taco Salad with Shredded Chicken and Lime-Cilantro Dressing! l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I created this Taco Salad recipe for the Del Real Blogger Recipe Challenge and I would LOVE it if you guys could vote for me! You have to have an active Facebook page to vote, and you can vote once per day until Thursday, June 9th!

The winner gets a prize package valued at over $10,000, so help me win! 🙂 🙂

Click here to be taken to the voting page! Scroll down and click the “Vote” box on the right side of the recipe!

Thank you in advance for voting! You guys are the BEST.

Taco Salad with Shredded Chicken and Lime-Cilantro Dressing! l www.littlechefbigappetite.comDisclaimer: I was provided Del Real Shredded Chicken for the purpose of this post, but the recipe and content are all my own. Thank you for your continued support of this blog!

Taco Salad with Chicken and Lime-Cilantro Dressing
 
Serves: 2
Ingredients
For the Salad:
  • 5 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 6 oz. Shredded Chicken
  • ½ cup black beans, cooked
  • ½ cup charred corn (either frozen and defrosted or grilled on a grill)
  • 1 medium bell pepper, chopped
  • ½ avocado, diced
  • 6-8 tortilla chips, crushed
Lime-Cilantro Salad Dressing:
  • 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • pinch sugar
Instructions
  1. To make the salad, divide the chopped romaine among two large salad bowls. Add half each of the shredded chicken, black beans, corn, bell pepper, and avocado to each bowl. Top each salad with crushed tortilla chips.
  2. To make the dressing, combine all dressing ingredients in a blender or mini food processor and pulse until the ingredients come together, 15-20 seconds.
  3. Dress each salad with about 2 Tablespoons of the dressing, or to taste. Season with additional salt and pepper as needed.

Gluten-Free Main Meal Poultry

Insanely Delicious Spicy Basil Chicken

Hi friends! Anyone else glad that it’s Wednesday already? Me, me, me! This week is cruising along and I am not complaining. Travis and I have fun weekend plans on the horizon, so I am itching to get there.

I’ve got an AWESOME weeknight recipe for you guys today. This Spicy Basil Chicken is definitely going to be on regular rotation for me. I’ve made a lot of stir fry recipes and this is easily one of the best.

Insanely Delicious Spicy Basil Chicken with Brown Rice l It's healthy, gluten-free, and easy enough to make on a weeknight! The whole family will love this dish. l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Reasons why I love this recipe:

  1. It’s freaking delicious. Duh.
  2. You can make it under 30 minutes. (Because who has more time than that on a weeknight?)
  3. The veggies are completely customizable, so you can just use up what you already have.
  4. Many of the ingredients should be pantry staples – especially if you like to cook Asian food.
  5. Leftovers are REALLY good.

Shall I go on?

Insanely Delicious Spicy Basil Chicken with Brown Rice l It's healthy, gluten-free, and easy enough to make on a weeknight! The whole family will love this dish. l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I think this recipe would also be delicious with shrimp, but for a vegetarian alternative, I’d bet tofu would be great, too!

Insanely Delicious Spicy Basil Chicken with Brown Rice l It's healthy, gluten-free, and easy enough to make on a weeknight! The whole family will love this dish. l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

 

Spicy Basil Chicken Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
Chicken + Vegetables
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 2-3 Tablespoons canola oil
  • ¼ cup shallots, minced
  • 1 large bell pepper, chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • ½ yellow onion, chopped into 1 inch pieces.
  • 2 cups bite-sized broccoli florets
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • ⅓ cup basil leaves, thinly sliced
  • brown rice for serving
Spicy Basil Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon raw honey
  • 4 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2.5 teaspoons sriracha or other asian chili paste
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
Instructions
  1. Whisk 1 Tablespoon of soy sauce and 1 teaspoon of cornstarch together in a medium bowl. Add the chicken cubes and coat the chicken in the soy sauce mixture. Set aside.
  2. In a separate small bowl, combine all of the Spicy Basil Sauce ingredients. Whisk together to incorporate the cornstarch. Set aside.
  3. Heat a large pan over medium heat. Add 1 Tablespoon of canola oil and once hot, add the shallots. Saute for 1 minute, until they begin to soften. Add half the chicken to the pan, browning on all sides for 2 minutes. Do not cook fully. Remove the chicken from the pan and place into a bowl. Add the second batch of chicken and repeat. Add the browned chicken to the bowl.
  4. Add an additional Tablespoon of oil to the pan. Add the bell pepper and onion and saute for 2 minutes. Next add the broccoli and saute for an additional minute. Add the garlic to the pan, adding additional oil as needed to ensure nothing burns. Saute until the vegetables are soft and cooked.
  5. Add the chicken back into the pan. Then add the Spicy Basil Sauce and mix thoroughly to coat the chicken and vegetables. Remove from heat and stir in the sliced basil.
  6. Serve immediately with brown rice.
 

 

 

 

Insanely Delicious Spicy Basil Chicken with Brown Rice l It's healthy, gluten-free, and easy enough to make on a weeknight! The whole family will love this dish. l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Gluten-Free Snacks Vegan

The Best Spicy Mango Salsa

Today is Cinco de Mayo! So what better day than today to introduce you to my incredible Spicy Mango Salsa recipe!?

The Best Spicy Mango Salsa -- Perfect for Summer BBQs! l Vegan + Gluten-Free l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I don’t mean to brag, but this stuff is GOOD. Like really good.

I know, because the first time I made this salsa, Travis ate it all in one sitting. He inhaled it so fast that I’m pretty sure he forgot to breathe.

So yeah, it’s some good stuff.

The Best Spicy Mango Salsa -- Perfect for Summer BBQs! l Vegan + Gluten-Free l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

This Mango Salsa is a little bit sweet and a little bit spicy. I can’t handle ultra-spicy food, so the heat level is perfect for my tastebuds — I’d say it’s about medium.

If you’re feeling more daring than me, feel free to increase the amount of jalapeno in the recipe.

The Best Spicy Mango Salsa -- Perfect for Summer BBQs! l Vegan + Gluten-Free l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I love this salsa with corn tortilla chips, but it’s also delicious with grilled white fish like mahi mahi or tilapia. It’s a summer meal I always look forward to — plus it’s super easy and healthy!

The Best Spicy Mango Salsa -- Perfect for Summer BBQs! l Vegan + Gluten-Free l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I know you’ll love this spicy mango salsa and it only takes 10 minutes to throw together! So run to the store, grab the ingredients, and celebrate Cinco de Mayo with me, why don’t ya?

The Best Spicy Mango Salsa -- Perfect for Summer BBQs! l Vegan + Gluten-Free l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

P.S. Don’t forget to enter my Chef’s Cut Real Jerky Giveaway! One winner will be selected tomorrow, so don’t miss out!

 

The Best Spicy Mango Salsa
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1 cup
Ingredients
  • 1 large mango, diced into ¼ inch cubes
  • ½ cup red bell pepper, diced
  • ⅛ cup red onion, minced
  • ⅛ cup cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon jalapeno, minced
  • 1-2 Tablespoons lime juice, to taste
  • ⅛ teaspoon each salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl combine the mango, bell pepper, red onion, cilantro, jalapeno and 1 Tablespoon of lime juice. Stir in the salt and pepper. Taste, and add additional lime juice, salt or pepper as needed.
  2. Chill for 15 minutes to let the flavors come together before serving.
The Best Spicy Mango Salsa -- Perfect for Summer BBQs! l Vegan + Gluten-Free l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Gluten-Free Main Meal Poultry

Chicken Masala with Figs and Golden Raisins

I had a very busy day on Saturday and by the time I got home around 5PM the last thing I wanted to do was cook dinner. Ever have those nights?

I do! More often than I’d like to admit.

But we had a bunch of leftover ingredients in the fridge that I wanted to use up before our upcoming trip, and since I hate to waste food, I used that to motivate myself to get off my lazy butt and cook something. Earlier last week, I bookmarked a Nigella Lawson recipe that looked absolutely delicious, so I decided to recreate her dish using what I had on hand.

Chicken Masala with Figs and Golden Raisins l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

This Chicken Masala with Figs and Golden Raisins is the perfect comfort dish for a cozy night at home. Everything gets cooked in one pan, which makes cleanup soooo much easier.

On a side note, does anyone else get really excited about one-pan dishes!? Meeeeee!

Chicken Masala with Figs and Golden Raisins l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I highly recommend using chicken thighs for this recipe because they stay very juicy as the masala simmers. But if you prefer chicken breasts (or if that’s what you already have), they’ll do the trick.

Vegetarians and vegans, I am sure this would be great with organic tofu as well. If you try that version, let me know.

Chicken Masala with Figs and Golden Raisins l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

We ate this masala with whole wheat couscous, which was great at soaking up all of the sauce. Yum!

 

Chicken Masala with Figs and Golden Raisins
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup dried figs
  • ¼ cup golden raisins
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 4 cloves (or ¼ teaspoon ground)
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic (3-4 large cloves)
  • 1 Tablespoon minced ginger
  • 3 Tablespoons canola oil
  • 1.5 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1.5 onions, chopped
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted diced tomatoes
  • 1.5 Tablespoons tomato paste, diluted in ½ cup low-sodium chicken stock
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped (for serving)
Instructions
  1. Combine the dried figs and raisins in a medium bowl with 2 cups of hot water. Soak for 2 hours. (Or soak in a bowl of cold water overnight.)
  2. In a small bowl, combine the cumin, coriander, cloves, red pepper flakes, cardamom, garlic and ginger. Add ¼ cup water, and stir to make a paste. Set aside.
  3. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add 2 Tablespoons of oil. Add half the chicken and brown on all sides for 4-5 minutes. Do not cook completely. Remove from pan and onto a plate or bowl, set aside. Add the remaining chicken and repeat, adding to the bowl once browned.
  4. Add the remaining Tablespoon of oil to the pan and add the cinnamon stick. Add onions and salt, and sauté until onions begin to soften, 3 minutes. Add the spice mixture and stir. Add the chicken back to the pan, then add the figs, raisins and their soaking liquid. Stir. Next, add the diced tomatoes and diluted tomato paste.
  5. Cover and simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes. At the 10 minute mark, remove the cover from the pan and allow the liquid to reduce for the remainder of the cooking time. Serve hot with couscous and sprinkle each dish with fresh cilantro.
Notes
Recipe adapted from Nigella Lawson.
Chicken Masala with Figs and Golden Raisins l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Appetizer Gluten-Free Poultry Soups

Tuscan White Bean Soup with Chicken

Tuscan White Bean Soup with Chicken l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

For those of you freezing your butts off right now, I hope this soup comes at the perfect time. I love one-pot meals and I especially love them on weeknights when I don’t want to do a lot of cleanup.

Because, let’s be real, who has time to scrub multiple pots and pans on a Thursday night when you’re trying to binge ShondaLand?

Not me!

Tuscan White Bean Soup with Chicken l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

This Tuscan White Bean Soup couldn’t be easier to prepare. It’s hearty and filling enough to be a main meal thanks to plenty of beans, veggies, and shredded chicken.

Tuscan White Bean Soup with Chicken l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

For a vegan version of this soup, leave out the shredded chicken and substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth – easy peasy.

Tuscan White Bean Soup with Chicken l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Leftovers were great the next day, so for a larger family, feel free to double the recipe.

 

Tuscan White Bean Soup with Chicken
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1½ cups chopped onion (about 1 medium)
  • 1 cup diced carrot
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 2 cups kale, stemmed and chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves (or ½ teaspoon dried)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 15 oz. can great northern beans, strained and rinsed
  • 2 cups rotisserie chicken, shredded (Try my Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken)
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese, shaved
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
  1. Heat one Tablespoon of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots and celery and saute for 6-7 minutes, until the onions begin to turn translucent. Add a pinch each of salt and pepper.
  2. Add the second Tablespoon of olive oil to the bottom of the pan, then add the kale and saute for 2 minutes, until the kale breaks down slightly. Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds. Add the tomato paste and stir into the vegetable mixture.
  3. Add the chicken broth, thyme, bay leaf and beans to the pot. Give the mixture a quick stir. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the rotisserie chicken and allow to simmer for 2 minutes to heat the chicken through.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with shaved parmesan.
 

Cookies Desserts Gluten-Free

Dark Chocolate Meringue Cookies

Valentine’s Day is on Sunday! Travis and I never typically go out to eat on the actual day because we try to avoid the restaurant madness (and fixed-price menus!). So Travis and I have plans to go out on Saturday night instead, and then we’ll likely stay at home and cook together on Sunday night.

Dark Chocolate Meringue Cookies -- www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Every year I like to bake something for Valentine’s Day, but baking for Travis can be tricky because he only likes cookies (or chocolate-covered strawberriesand he only will eat cookies that are either gluten-free or made with whole wheat flour. I have a healthy, healthy guy on my hands, friends!

Travis was away this past weekend, so I spent some time in the kitchen experimenting with different recipes. Meringue cookies are gluten-free by nature, so I decided to make dark chocolate meringue cookies. Boy, did they turn out well!

Dark Chocolate Meringue Cookies -- www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Whether or not you have a special Valentine in your life, you have to try these cookies. All you need is six simple ingredients, all of which I already had in my pantry and fridge and I’m sure you do, too!

Dark Chocolate Meringue Cookies -- www.littlechefbigappetite.com

One important piece of advice: don’t microwave the chocolate. The best way to melt chocolate for baking is with a double boiler.

If you don’t have one, they are incredibly easy to make at home using existing kitchen equipment.

Dark Chocolate Meringue Cookies -- www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Hope you guys love these delicious chocolatey cookies and Happy (early) Valentine’s Day!

 

What do you have planned for Valentine’s Day (or weekend)? Do you prefer to go out to eat or stay at home?

 

Dark Chocolate Meringue Cookies
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 16-18 cookies
Ingredients
  • 2 egg whites
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon juice
  • pinch salt
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • 6 oz. 50-60% cacao dark chocolate, melted and cooled
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries, separated and not stuck together
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Use a hand mixer or stand mixer (fitted with a whisk) to beat the egg whites, vanilla, lemon juice and salt until foamy. Slowly add in the sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Fold in the melted chocolate and cherries (Make sure none of the dried cherries are in clumps).
  3. Scrape the batter into a one gallon plastic bag. Cut a one half-inch hole in one corner of the bag. Pipe cookies into 2 inch rounds on the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 1 inch of space in between each cookie.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the outside of the cookies is set and dry. Allow to cool completely on the baking sheets, about 15 minutes. Use a spatula to remove the cookies from the baking sheet and store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
 

Appetizer Gluten-Free Slow Cooker

Super Bowl Recipe Roundup

Hi friends! Happy Monday!

Whew, I am exhausted after my trip this weekend. I got to spend the last couple of days with some fellow awesome female bloggers as we toured farms in the Coachella  Valley and Imperial Valley in California! The tour was organized by the California Farm Water Coalition, in an effort to create more awareness of the water issues California farmers face every day (and especially during our current drought).

The trip was SO informative, you guys. I learned a ton about what our farmers do every day and the process that brings the healthy fruits and veggies we love from the field to grocery stores (hint: it happens really, really, ridiculously fast).

Be sure to check back in to the blog later this week to read all about it.

California Farm Water Coalition Farm Tour - www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I am currently sitting on the train back to Los Angeles (for me it’s Sunday night, but this post will go live tomorrow morning). Thankfully the train is pretty quiet right now, so I have two seats to myself and I am able to stretch out and type up this post.

Super Bowl Recipe Roundup -- www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Okay, now to the real reason for this post – my Super Bowl Recipe Roundup!

Even though I grew up in a major sports city, I hate to break it to you — I just don’t follow sports. I’ve just never had an interest, despite Travis’ best efforts to get me involved. (I know, I’m the worst). But, if I had to choose, I root for Boston teams because that’s my hometown!

Travis, on the other hand, loves sports so we always have a game on in our apartment. Even though I won’t watch with him, I will happily make snacks for him and whichever of his friends are over. The more recipe testers around, the better!

Today I want to share with you some of my favorite recipes for mid-game Super Bowl snacking and a couple of recipes that are a bit heartier if you’re looking to serve a complete meal this weekend.

Whoever you’re rooting for during the big game, enjoy!

 

Super Bowl Recipe Roundup!

 

Avocado Hummus

The creamiest hummus + the best combination! Serve this dip with veggies or chips.

Avocado Hummus Recipe - www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Sun-Dried Tomato Dip

Nothing could be easier than this dip made from greek yogurt and feta. Serve this with whole wheat pita chips for a protein-packed snack.

Sun-Dried Tomato Dip Recipe - www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Charred Corn and Tomato Salsa 

No grill needed for this charred corn and tomato salsa recipe. Broil the vegetables in the oven for a delicious charred flavor! This one is a winner, for sure.

Charred Corn and Heirloom Tomato Salsa Recipe - www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Muhammara (Roasted Red Pepper Dip)

Okay, how many times have I told you guys that this is the best dip ever? If you haven’t made it yet, what the heck have you been doing?, make it NOW!

Muhammara (Roasted Red Pepper Dip) Recipe -- www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Honey Sesame Almonds

There is no reason to buy these from the store when they are incredibly easy to make yourself. I love making them at home because then I can control the amount of added sugar. Can you say addicting?

Honey Sesame Almonds Recipe - www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken

There is nothing plain about this chicken after you add your favorite BBQ sauce, Buffalo sauce, or hot sauce. Add the chicken to tacos, nachos, sandwiches and more!

Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken Recipe -- www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Slow Cooker BBQ Beef Short Ribs

I seriously cannot sing enough praise for this recipe. If you make this, you may want to double up because they’ll go fast!

BBQ Beef Short Ribs - Little Chef Big Appetite

Sesame-Glazed Chicken Drumsticks

One of my favorite recipes I’ve posted on the blog recently. If you’re looking for something heartier on Super Bowl Sunday, make these! They’re a little messy, so be sure to put out lots of napkins!

Sesame-Glazed Chicken Drumsticks - Healthy & Delicious - www.littlechefbigappetite.com

If you try one of these Super Bowl recipes, let me know. Upload your photos to Instagram and be sure to tag me @littlechefbigappetite!

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