Tag Archives: Blue Diamond

Gluten-Free Smoothies Vegan

Gingerbread Smoothie

The holiday season turns me into a cookie monster! Everywhere I turn there are cookies and sweet treats: our office, holiday parties, ahhh! Give me aaaaall the cookies.

Gingerbread Smoothie Recipe - Vegan and Gluten-Free

But seriously, I have little self control around dessert, so I make an effort not to keep any in the house during the holidays because there are enough temptations elsewhere.

That means, when I have a sugar craving or need something sweet after a meal, I have to get creative. That’s why I LOVE this Gingerbread Smoothie! It’s deliciously creamy and it has the same flavor profile of your favorite gingerbread cookie recipe.

Gingerbread Smoothie Recipe - Vegan and Gluten-Free

The Almond Breeze Almondmilk Cashewmilk blend makes this smoothie a bit creamier than using regular almond milk (however, I am sure that would work fine, as well).

I also added a couple tablespoons of plain greek yogurt for added protein and creaminess, but that’s totally optional.

Gingerbread Smoothie Recipe - Vegan and Gluten-Free

Now don’t skimp on the molasses and spices here – that’s what makes it taste like gingerbread.

Enjoy this smoothie for breakfast, as a mid-day snack, or whenever a sweet craving strikes. Happy Holidays!


Gingerbread Smoothie
Prep time
Total time
Serves: 1 Large or 2 Small
  • 1 cup Almond Breeze Almondmilk Cashewmilk Blend
  • ½ frozen banana
  • 3 large ice cubes
  • 2 Tablespoons plain greek yogurt (optional for additional protein)
  • 1 Tablespoon molasses
  • Dash each cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg, to taste
  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until desired consistency. Garnish with a sprinkle of nutmeg and drink immediately.

This post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk. Enter for a chance to win the Ultimate Kitchen Prize Pack, get great savings and ideas for delicious Blendabilities at AlmondBreezeBlendabilities.com. As always, I greatly appreciate your support with sponsored posts!

Breakfast Smoothies Vegan

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie

Monday night I came home from work and our apartment was HOT. I knew Travis wanted a “real” meal for dinner, but cooking was the last thing I felt like doing. I had just picked up lots of fresh produce at the grocery store, and the only thing that sounded appealing to me was a cold, fresh smoothie.

I know, that is so unlike me. I typically would consider a smoothie a pathetic dinner, but I really wanted something refreshing and my body could use the greens.


Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I threw lots of leafy greens, part of an avocado for creaminess, and fresh fruit into the blender along with some almond milk to get things moving.

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

You really don’t taste the kale and spinach in this smoothie because they’re masked by the sweetness of the banana and mango. If you feel the smoothie isn’t sweet enough for you, try adding two pitted dates – they add a delicious sweet flavor.

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

This smoothie was SO good – I know I will be making it regularly throughout the summer. It’s healthy, vitamin-packed, filling, and so tasty.

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie


This “Easy as Breeze” post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk. For more “Easy As Breeze” recipes made with five ingredients or less, visit Almond Breeze on Facebook. As always, I thank you for your support with sponsored posts.


Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie
Prep time
Total time
Serves: 1-2
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • ½ cup fresh kale
  • ¼ cup fresh spinach (optional)
  • ¼ cup avocado
  • ½ frozen banana
  • ½ cup frozen mango
  • 2-3 dates (optional for added sweetness)
  • 2 ice cubes
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for 30 seconds, until desired consistency.


Delicious Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie Recipe! ll Vegan, Gluten-Free and Refined-Sugar Free ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Loving Lately

What I am Loving Lately – June 2015

This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds. As always, all opinions are my own and I truly appreciate your support!


Hello! Good morning and happy Friday! I am kicking off the weekend with a “What I am Loving Lately” post. Feel free to share something you’re loving in the comments below.


Amazon Customer Service


I am VERY picky about workout headphones. Many of the earbuds on the market are too big for my very small ears. When I find a pair that I like, I buy them over and over until the manufacturer stops making them. I recently purchased a new pair that I loved, but they broke in the middle of my workout on Tuesday! Since I ordered them from Amazon, I used their Chat service to contact customer support to see what my options were. The chat service is the BEST. You get connected to someone right away, and my representative refunded me for the old headphones and sent me a NEW pair with same day shipping. Talk about unreal customer service! And that’s why Amazon is going to take over the world…


Blue Diamond Sriracha Almonds

Blue Diamond Sriracha Almonds

When Blue Diamond offered to send me their NEW Sriracha-flavored almonds, I JUMPED at the opportunity. We cook with sriracha a lot in our house, so I was curious how this new flavor of almonds would taste. Travis and I brought a jar of these to munch on while traveling to Chicago and we both loved them. They aren’t too spicy and I like them much more than other savory-flavored almonds. I plan on using the other jar to make a spicy almond crusted shrimp or chicken dish.


Fresh Flowers from the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market


I try to go to the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market as often as I can. There are a few vendors who sell beautiful flowers, but I usually pass them and just head for the produce. Last weekend, I noticed that one vendor had a sale for two bouquets for only $5! I jumped at the opportunity and brought home some gorgeous flowers. Later that day, I spent some time placing small bunches of flowers in mason jars throughout the apartment and I just LOVED the way that it looked. These flowers seem to be lasting much longer than other flowers I’ve purchased. From now on, I am making a point to pick up a bouquet or two from this vendor once a week. It’s the little things that make me happy!


Bessie’s Egg Bed

Bessie's Bed

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve likely seen many photos of Bessie in her bed. Let me tell you, this bed was the best $20 we ever spent on Bessie. I found her bed at TJ Maxx and I honestly just picked it up because of the color – it matches our living room perfectly. As soon as I brought it home, I immediately could tell that Bessie was obsessed with this bed. The “egg” shape allows her to rest her head on the side like a pillow and it’s the cutest thing ever.

About a month into owning this bed, I started searching online for another one, so we have a backup for when this one gets too worn. It’s called the “Deep Dish Cuddler” from Best Friends by Sheri. I found it on Amazon listed for an INSANE price (over $100), which I could never justify spending on a backup bed. Every couple weeks or so, I search on various sites for the bed. PetSmart has some but not in the same color. In case your pup would want a pink bed, Amazon recently dropped the price to $29! If you have a small dog, I HIGHLY recommend this bed. Bessie gives it her wag of approval.


What’s one thing you’re loving this Friday? Let me know in the comments below!

Gluten-Free Smoothies Vegan

Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie

This post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk. The recipe and all opinions are my own.


Hi guys! How is your week going so far? I have a deeeeeelicious smoothie recipe to share with you all today.

In my last job, I had to wake up very early in order to squeeze in some gym time before work. Given that my time in the morning was limited, I was always searching for fast breakfast options that I could inhale in under 2 minutes or easily bring in the car on the way to work. Protein smoothies quickly became my go-to, especially in warmer weather. I loved that I could prep everything the night before and the next morning I would have a nutritious breakfast in under one minute – no cooking required!

This Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie is so refreshing after a workout! It's vegan, dairy-free, and tastes just like mint chocolate chip ice cream! ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com ll Mint Chocolate Smoothie, Mint Chocolate Chip, Protein Shake, Vegan Smoothie, Vegan Protein Shake Recipe, Dairy-Free Protein Smoothie, Dairy-Free Smoothie

Currently, I am very fortunate that my new job allows me a lot more time in the morning. I now have time to cook myself a meal for breakfast (usually eggs or protein pancakes) so protein smoothies have gone to the wayside.

Two weeks ago, I found my protein powder buried far back in my pantry and realized how long it’s been since I’ve made one of my favorite smoothies. The next day this Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie was born. If you love mint chocolate chip ice cream (like me!), this smoothie is right up your alley! Fresh mint is key here. I’ve tried this with peppermint extract and it not nearly the same (that version tasted very artificial).

This Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie is so refreshing after a workout! It's vegan, dairy-free, and tastes just like mint chocolate chip ice cream! ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com ll Mint Chocolate Smoothie, Mint Chocolate Chip, Protein Shake, Vegan Smoothie, Vegan Protein Shake Recipe, Dairy-Free Protein Smoothie, Dairy-Free Smoothie

A handful of spinach lends this drink its bright green color, but I promise you won’t be able to taste it at all! The mint are chocolate are the flavors that really shine through.

Try this smoothie for breakfast or even dessert! If you don’t have any chocolate protein powder on hand, I think 1/2 cup greek yogurt and some cocoa powder would be a good substitute. You may need to add a bit of stevia for extra sweetness.



Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie Recipe
Prep time
Total time
Serves: 1
  • 1 cup Almond Breeze Almondmilk Coconutmilk
  • 1 scoop Chocolate Protein Powder
  • 1 handful fresh spinach (about ⅓ cup)
  • ½ frozen banana
  • 3-4 fresh mint leaves, to taste
  • ½ Tablespoon almond butter
  • 2 ice cubes
  • cocoa powder (optional)
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high until smooth. Garnish with fresh mint leaves and cocoa powder.

This Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie is so refreshing after a workout! It's vegan, dairy-free, and tastes just like mint chocolate chip ice cream! ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com ll Mint Chocolate Smoothie, Mint Chocolate Chip, Protein Shake, Vegan Smoothie, Vegan Protein Shake Recipe, Dairy-Free Protein Smoothie, Dairy-Free Smoothie

Fitness Tips and Tricks

Four Easy Ways to be Healthier for Summer

This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds. I was recently invited to become a Blue Diamond Tastemaker, and as a longtime customer, I am incredibly thankful for this opportunity. As always, all opinions are my own and I truly appreciate your support!


Summer is SO CLOSE. Can’t you feel it? It’s right about this time every year that you start seeing hundreds of articles about how to slim down and get that perfect bikini body. While many of these tips are good, sometimes they can be unrealistic. We’re busy! We work, we have social lives, there are going to be times when we want to treat ourselves, and we should. A healthy lifestyle is all about balance.

So today, I want to share with you four easy ways to be healthier for summer. No calorie counting, crazy diet tricks, or anything of the sort. Just REAL tips that YOU can do to be healthier.


1. Schedule your workouts.

4 Easy Ways to be Healthier for Summer

Do you try to wake up early to workout, but end up pressing snooze over and over again? Or do you try to go after work, but end up telling yourself you’re just too tired? If you start thinking of your workouts like you do your work meetings, you will stop skipping them.

You wouldn’t tell your boss, “Sorry, I just wasn’t feeling up to that 2PM meeting,” so you shouldn’t let you tell YOURSELF that either. When setting your schedule for the week, or even just the next day, figure out when you can squeeze in a workout. For me, I always prefer morning workouts because I get it out of the way and it is a really positive way to start the day! You can read my tips to help you workout in the morning.


2. Pack Healthy Snacks

In my job, I am constantly on the go. Since I spend a good amount of time in the car, I always make sure to have healthy options to munch on. That way, I am never tempted to reach for the first unhealthy thing I can find. Also, when you let yourself go hungry for too long, you’re more lucky to overeat later on.

Read this post to see some of my favorite healthy work snacks. Recently, I always have almonds, a healthy protein bar, or fresh fruit like apples and bananas with me in the car or at my desk.

4 Easy Ways to be Healthier for Summer

I’ve always been a loyal Blue Diamond customer, so when their team sent me their new Honey Roasted Cinnamon Almonds to review, I was PUMPED. If you’re a cinnamon-sugar fan like me, you’re going to love these almonds. They taste indulgent, but they’re actually not loaded in sugar. From a nutrition standpoint, they are everything I want in a snack: packed with protein, healthy fats, and SUPER delicious. The only problem is that they are incredibly addicting, so I have to be careful about how many I eat in one sitting, which leads me to my next tip…


3. Portion Control

Portion control is something I am actively working on. It is so easy to sit in front of the TV or computer and mindlessly munch on a bag of chips or popcorn.

I’ve have had these bowls from Sur La Table for a few years now. They come in a set of five and I love them for cooking and baking because there are measurement markers on the inside of each bowl.

4 Easy Ways to be Healthier for Summer

I’ve recently started using these bowls for snacking, as well, because I can measure out a proper serving of almonds, popcorn, cereal, etc. rather than just guessing. If I left it up to my eyes, I would probably eat a double portion (or more!) of everything.

I am certainly not telling you to count calories, but try measuring out a proper serving of a snack you tend to “binge” on. Portion control is a key component to weight loss and healthy living.


4. Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!

4 Easy Ways to be Healthier for Summer

I can’t stress this one enough. Often times, when we feel hungry, our bodies actually just need water. Over the next few weeks, practice carrying a water bottle with you wherever you go.

I love my Bobble, especially for travel. It contains a water filter, so I have no qualms filling it up in the airport sink because I am confident that that my water will be filtered, just like from my Brita at home.

If you struggle to drink enough water, try adding sliced fresh fruit like strawberries or oranges. I am considering getting one of these infuser water bottles.



I’d love to hear your thoughts: what other easy ways can we be healthier? Share your ideas in the comments below!


Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or a certified nutritionist. These are simply tips that work for me and help me to create a healthier lifestyle.




Eats Lately

What I Ate Wednesday 4/15/15

Hi Friends!

Yay for Friday! Is it me or did this week draaaaaaag on!? I have a lot of fun plans in store this weekend, so I was just anxiously awaiting the weekend since Monday. Travis’ birthday was yesterday and his sister, Justine, flew in from NYC to surprise him. I am so happy she is here with us this weekend. Justine has the ability to make everything way more fun so I know this weekend is going to be a blast!

Now without further ado, here’s a quick little What I Ate Wednesday post! I always love seeing these posts on other blogs so hopefully you guys are into it, too.


7:30AM: Breakfast

Protein Pancakes

My Wednesday morning started off with my favorite protein pancakes. I think I’ve had these every morning since Passover ended. I seriously missed my oat-filled pancakes.


11:30AM: (Early) Lunch

I workout in the morning, so by the time lunch rolls around I am usually famished. I packed a salad for lunch at work, but I was so hungry that I forgot to snap a pic! So I am sharing another salad picture with you guys, which is honestly way more appetizing than my tupperware lunch.




3:30PM: Snack Time!

I keep lots of snacks in my desk drawer at work because as you guys know, I need to eat every 3-4 hours. No one wants to see my HANGRY side. This Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Zing Bar in my drawer definitely hit the spot that afternoon. I love that these bars are packed with protein and fiber. They always hold me over until dinner.

Zing Bar


7:00PM: Dinner

I tried a new Hoisin Salmon recipe for dinner, but both Travis and I agreed it was just…BLAH. For some reason you couldn’t even taste the hoisin or other flavors in the marinade, so we were both left feeling pretty disappointed. I HATE wasting food, so I still managed to eat it anyway.

I made the salmon with a side of roasted vegetables, and at least those were delicious! There is something about roasting vegetables that makes me want to eat ALL OF THEM. Travis and I polished off the baking sheet of roasted sweet potatoes, zucchini, bell pepper, and onions in no time.

Salmon Dinner


8:30PM: Nighttime snack

I never used to eat snacks after dinner but Travis has been on an after-dinner cereal kick recently, so he got me hooked. It is probably not the best habit to get into, but after a less than satisfying dinner, cereal was in the cards.

I poured myself a bowl of Cheerios with fresh sliced organic strawberries and Blue Diamond Vanilla Unsweetened Almond Milk. It was exactly what I needed.



That’s it from me! Hope you all have a great weekend and I’ll be back early next week to say hi to you guys!