A salad without toppings is like a cupcake without frosting. What’s the point?!


In my efforts to make more summer salads this year, due to the scortching heat, my mind had to get creative. Sometimes when I am lazy I will throw any topping possible into a bowl of lettuce. This can range from cowboy caviar, corn, crispy chickpeas, crumbled crackers, boiled eggs, fruit, nuts, leftover anything and of course some sort of meat or cheese.

I have no limits with salad combos. You gotta go big or go home with those or there’s really no point to your meal. Something sparked a craving for a simple chicken caesar one day and left me frantically coming up with a homemade dressing recipe.


Just looking at the back of a store bought ceaser salad dressing bottle is frightening. The ingredient list is ridiculously long and the nutritional content is not exactly gonna leave you with a healthy lunch.

Who knew homemade dressing was SO easy? Not to mention homemade croutons. Cornbread croutons. Extra crunchy. My whole palatte revolves around crunchy toppings. Yogurt, oatmeal, pancakes, soups, tacos, salads…the list goes on but basically almost everything I eat gets a crunch to it.



Lately I have been all about cornbread. To make these croutons I used my cornbread pancake recipe except doubled it, and left out the blueberries. I baked it in a square pan and chopped up the bread into tiny squares. A few days later, after letting it get a little stale, I tossed those babies with olive oil and sea salt then baked away. So simple. So delish. Just my style.

Feel free to use your favorite cornbread recipe for this though. I also have a pumpkin maple cornbread recipe that would work great!



This makeover caesar salad doesn’t need a lot of toppings. The dressing, croutons and chicken in itself make it the buisness. You may want to add in some chopped red onion and parmesan cheese to really amp up your salad game. The dressing goes great as a dip for vegetables to if you need an idea for leftovers!


Healthy Caesar Salad with Cornbread Croutons
  1. Caesar Dressing: 2 Tbsp olive oil
  2. 2 sardines
  3. 1 garlic clove
  4. 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  5. 2 tsp worchester sauce
  6. 1/3 cup greek yogurt
  7. 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  8. Sea salt + pepper
  9. Dash of lemon juice
  1. 2 cups diced cornbread (1/2 inch pieces)
  2. 1 Tbsp olive oil
  3. sea salt + pepper
  1. Lettuce blend
  2. Crispy cornbread croutons
  3. Grilled chicken breast, chopped
  4. Red onion, chopped
  5. Lemon + parmesan cheese (optional)
For the Dressing
  1. Blend all dressing ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Set aside.
For the croutons
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees farenheit. Toss cornbread cubes with olive oil, sea salt and pepper. Spread onto a baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes until golden and crispy. Turn off oven, open oven door and let croutons cool in the oven for 5-10 minutes. This allows them to become extra crispy and stay crispy.
  2. Arrange salad by tossing lettuce with desired amount of chicken, red onion, parmesan cheese, croutons and salad dressing.
  1. Dressing stays fresh sealed in a container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Keep croutons in a sealed container as well at room temperature. To reheat croutons if needed, bake in oven on broil for 5 minutes.
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/

Cuz it’s mah birthdaaaay y’all!


The Recipe Redux theme this month could not have come at a better time. “Healthy recipes with spirit”. Aka BOOZE. And it just so happens to be my birthday the day we post our recipes. Oh the beautiful irony.

So when it comes to birthdays I am not one of those “center of attention” people. In fact I am not one of those people in general. This is where my inner Tina Fey really shines and I’m all like “no, just leave me alone and let me eat my cake in peace”.


Yeah that’s me in a nutshell. With birthdays I am more focued on the cake and the chocolate and the food. Ahh birthday dinners are just the best because all bets are off. In fact my day will most likely consist of pancakes for breakfast, cupcakes for lunch and cocktails for dinner. Hey, it’s my day and I’ll do what I want right?!

With all nutrition aside, lets talk chamagne. And dessert. Two dangerously delicious things that will forever be in my heart.
In order to kick start my birthday with a bang I had to go all out with a balls out dessert. And by balls out I mean HOLY YUM. You’ll catch on to my wanna-be cool lingo eventually.


This crisp is the utlimate summer dessert. It has my three favorite berries, (probably everyones favorite?) strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. The crisp part is even made healthier with lots of oats, almonds and almond butter.

To kick up the flavor you will add graham flour (graham crackers belnded into flour, seriously life changing) and brown sugar. Do not replace the brown sugar with regular sugar. You need that caramely flavor from the brown stuff that makes a berry crisp, a true berry crisp.


Oh and so the berries have bellini in it. Bellini and me go way back. I had my first glass (bottle?) when I was 15 years old living in Italy for a month. Yes this happened and yes it was a life changing experience. In any case, lots of delicious food and wine was consumed on this trip but the bellini really left a mark with my best friend Corinnie and I. It became our drink that we ordered to sound cool and hip, and it just tasted so darn good in that scorching Italian heat.

I am always reminiscing on my days in Europe; I even went back a second time at 19 with my boyfriend and traveled through Italy, Spain and Paris. So now it’s safe to say I am HIGHLY addictive to all things foriegn and adventurous.



Somewhere along the lines of all this growing up stuff and becoming an adult, traveling the world became my passion, and so did cooking. This amazing dessert represnets that in so many ways. I Hope you looove it and make sure to have a glass of bellini for me tonight!


Triple Berry Bellini Crisp
  1. 2 cups strawberries
  2. 1 cup blueberries
  3. 1 cup raspberries
  4. 1/2 cup bellini
  5. 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  1. 1 cup oats
  2. 1/2 cup graham flour (graham crackers blended into flour)
  3. 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  4. 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  5. 2 tsp cinnamon
  6. 1/4 cup almond butter
  7. 2 tbsp olive oil or melted butter
  8. sea salt to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9 inch cast iron skillet or baking dish ad set aside.
  2. Mix together berries, champagne and maple syrup. Place in the dish.
  3. Combine oats, graham flour, sliced almonds, brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. Stir in olive oil and almond butter until well combined. You will need to use your hands to crumble the almond butter into the dry ingredients. Once fully combined, distribute over berry mixture.
  4. Bake 40-45 minutes until top is golden and berries have burst through the crumble.
  5. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving. Top with ice cream or greek yogurt!
  1. This goes best with ice cream or greek yogurt! Store in the fridge and reheat in the oven at 350 degrees for 5-10 minutes when you want to have leftovers!
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/

Latest Discrovery: Quiche is like pizza. In breakfast form.


As long as you got the ooey gooey melty heart warming cheese on top. And some fun add ins. On a crispy yet soft in all the right places kind of crust. Yummmmmm. Don’t you love my run on sentences that contain inaccurate grammar?!

I never said I was a pro writer. Quiche maker maybe. But I will leave the grammar accuracy of literature up to the wrting gods of the world.




In the meantime I will be making breakfast pizza and so will you. Aka a quiche with three layers of tastyness.


Bottom layer = Hash browns. I used store bought/pre cut hash browns from the frozen food aisle. The ingredients were just potatoes so how could you go wrong? I am all for the do-it-yourself thing but realistically, saving myself 30 minutes seems more plausible.

Middle Layer = Veggies + Eggs! Yay for nutrition! For this you will steam some brocolli or feel free to use a green vegetable of choice. You will also saute some onion and bell pepper and throw that in there as well for some extra pizazz. The eggs are beaten with milk and cottage cheese for extra creaminess. Creamy. Need I say more?

Top Layer = CHEESE. The fun part. The second best part to every pizza (first would have to be the crust, duh). When it comes to cheese it takes me forever to decide what type to actually use. There are just SO many options out there these days it gets overwhelming. Leave your indecivness out of this and use le gruyere. It melts perfectly, while giving hearty flavor to your breakfast.



So there it is. Three layers of breakfast pizza. Aka quiche. Aka go make this NOW! It’s easy and delicious and we could all use a little upgrade to our blah breakfast routine once in awhile.

Hash Brown Crusted Le Gruyere Quiche
  1. 1 lb frozen hash browns, thawed (about 3 cups, 1 package)
  2. 3 tbsp olive oil
  3. 1 cup broccoli, steamed and chopped
  4. 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  5. 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  6. 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  7. 3 eggs
  8. 2 egg whites
  9. 3/4 cup milk (any milk works)
  10. 1/2 cup cottage cheese
  11. 1/2 cup shredded le greuye cheese
  12. 1 Tbsp seasoning of choice (21 seasoning salute)
  13. salt and pepper to taste
  1. Sauté onion, bell pepper and garlic over medium high heat until tender and cooked. Should take about 5 minutes. Turn off heat and let cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Spray a 9 inch pie pan with nonstick spray. Remove excess mixture from hash browns by pressing between paper towels. Place hash browns into pan and mix with olive oil, salt, pepper and seasonings. Press into the bottom and sides of the pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown then remove.
  3. Set oven to 350 degrees. Whisk eggs, milk, cottage cheese and more salt and pepper then pour over hash brown crust. Pour steamed brocolli and sauted veggies over egg mixture and top with le gruyere cheese. Bake for 30 minutes or until eggs have set and cheese is nice and bubbly. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving. Top with avocado and enjoy!
  1. Makes one 9 inch round quiche
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/

It took me days to come up with a name for this recipe. There is so much going on, so many booming flavors and catchy ways I could have phrased it. But starting it with “sweet peach…” seemed more than appropriate for summer.


These wrap thingys are like P.F. Changs but better. And healthier. And peachy.

My dad even approved stating, quote, unquote: These are better than than Chinese P.F. Changs place.

Ahh those glorious moments where you satisfy even the pickiest of eaters.


This was another thrown together recipe than went down in TNK. The Asian flavors paired with the sweetness of chopped peaches and maple syrup forced me to remake, write down the recipe and photograph for you all.

The ingredients are beyond easy and the result is beyond refreshing, making a perf summer dinner with friends. You can even serve this over quinoa or throw quinoa into the mix just to make em a little heartier.
When it comes to summer meals outside, I prefer a lighter meal. Paired with lots of refreshing white wine. Balance right? ;)


There is a specific seasoning that gives these wraps their Asian flair and overall yummyness. Chinese 5-Spice Powder. You can find this in loval supermarkets or places like Whole Foods and Sprouts. There are no substitutions for this spice, you need to just buckle down and go buy it.

Believe me, you will not be dissapointed! It will come in handy in almost any Asian inspired dishes you wish to make. The stuff is life changing.


Another ingredient that may seem a little odd, is ketchup. I used 1 tablespoon of ketchup in this recipe because it truley adds flavor. Don’t leave this out and don’t be weirded out by it. It adds a sweetness and flavor nothing else will provide. Most sesame chicken recipes call for ketchup, you’d be surprised! Just try to use one that doesn’t have high fructose corn syrup cuz that stuff be naaasty for ya.

Make these at this batch of meat at the beginning of your week and you’ll have yourself an easy meal to come home to for a few days. Seriously it won’t get old. Made it two weeks in a row with no shame whatsoever! I also had to hide it from my parents because those guys were vulture with this stuff! I’m working on the whole “sharing” thing still…


Sweet Peach Sesame Chicken Lettuce Cups
  1. 1 lb lean ground chicken
  2. 2 Tbsp sesame oil
  3. 1/4 cup maple syrup
  4. 1/4 cup soy sauce
  5. 2 Tbsp ketchup
  6. 1 cup purple cabbage, chopped
  7. 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  8. 1/2 large onion, chopped
  9. 2 tsp garlic powder
  10. 1 Tbsp 5 spice Chinese powder
  11. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  12. 1 tsp seasoning of choice (I used Trader Joe’s 21 seasoning salute)
  13. 1 peach, chopped
  14. 1/4 cup almonds or cashews, chopped
  15. Butter lettuce cups
  1. Heat sesame oil into a large skillet over medium heat. Add in cabbage, carrots and onions and saute until wilted, about 10 minutes. Add in ground chicken, maple syrup, soy sauce, ketchup and seasonings. Cook until chicken has browned and cooked through. This will take about another 5-10 minutes.
  2. Reduce heat to low and allow chicken to simmer in flavors for 5 minutes. Stir in chopped peaches and nuts then distribute into lettuce cups.
  1. Serves 8.
  2. Store leftover ground chicken in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/


This is so American.

Cheese, corn and blueberries. I know what you’re thinking. Weird, right?



Let’s call it creative instead. Ever since I was a kid I was adventorous with my food. I dipped my doritos in chocolate pudding, crushed oreos into bowls of peanut butter and put ketchup on my mashed potatoes.

Yeah okay, I was a little weird. Point being, there were never any limits with my recipe concoctions. You have to take risks while taking on the role of chef. These risks will lead to a number of disasters but will also leave you with delicious satisfaction. And those moments are SO worth it.


Like these pancakes. With fourth of July approaching I have had this itch for cornbread. It’s such an Americanized thing to do; make cornbread or biscuits or something with your sizzling rack of baby back ribs.
Oh America, you got this love affair with diabetes and finger lickin food.

Somewhere through my indecisive mind, cornbread turned into pancakes. Stuffed with blueberries and spicy white cheddar cheese, then slathered in honey. There’s nothing like that moment you make pancakes and they end up blowing your mind. If there were ever a glimpse of heaven, it lies in creative cornbread pancakes.



The recipe overall will NOT cause you diabetes or a set back in your summer ab goals. The ingredients are all natural, healthy and finger lickin good. Think whole wheat flour, cornmeal, greek yogurt, almond milk and olive oil. So simple and so heart healthy. Instead of using buttermilk in the recipe you will whisk together vanilla greek yogurt, I like Chobani as you already may know, and almond milk until you create a thick curdled milk.

Balance people. We can still eat like Americans AND be healthy. So don’t hesistate when adding white cheddar to your heart healthy blueberry pancakes. And don’t forget to dazzle it all up in honey or maple syrup. Happy 4th y’all!


Blueberry White Cheddar Cornbread Pancakes
  1. 1/2 cup cornmeal
  2. 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
  3. 1/2 tbsp baking powder
  4. 1/2 tsp baking soda
  5. sea salt to taste
  6. 3/4 cup vanilla almond milk
  7. 1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt (Chobani)
  8. 1 egg
  9. 2 Tbsp olive oil
  10. 1 cup bluberries
  11. 1/2 cup white cheddar cheese
  1. Honey or maple syrup
  2. Extra cheese
  3. Blueberries
  1. Combine whole wheat flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt in a large bowl and set aside. In a seperate bowl whisk together almond milk and greek yogurt until it forms a thick mixture. Whisk in egg and olive oil until well combined.
  2. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix together with a wooden spoon, making sure not to over mix. The batter will be thick but still very moist.
  3. Fold in blueberries and white cheddar. Pour pancakes into a greased and heated skillet to form small circular shapes. I used a cookie scoop to do this and it worked amazing!
  4. Cook pancakes about 4 minutes on medium heat, then flip and continue to cook until cooked through.
  5. Serve immediatley with honey or maple syrup!
  1. Makes 10 medium pancakes
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/