Dun dun dunnnnnn!!!

The moment we have all been waiting for is here! Even I was super giddy last night clicking the button to randomly choose the winner of the Annie’s Homegrown Giveaway! I wanted to take the time to make an entire post out of this because well it’s exciting, fun and everyone deserves a huge THANK YOU!

trailmix-6

Let’s just say I am feelin sentimental. I wanted to thank everyone for taking the time to participate in the awesome giveaway hosted by Annie’s. This blog would be nowhere without all my fellow readers, supporters and sponsers. This blog all started as a way for me to express my passions and a place to go to when I needed to escape the chaos of life, and just get lost in a recipe.

Now it has become a way for me to reach out to the community and conenct with people who share the same inspirations, goals and weird food obsessions. All I can hope for is to continue to create recipes that you all will love and share fun giveaways like this so you can benefit from the healthy lifestyles we all aspire to create.

trailmix-3

And lastly, a HUGE thank you goes out to Annie’s Homegrown for giving me this opportunity. I had way to much fun playing around with their ingredients, photographing those cornbread muffins and spreading the word on #teamannies! Below is a fun little recipe of savory trail mix, with Annie’s cheddar bunnies included! It’s not a rocket science recipe, it’s just an easy go-to snack mix you can have on hand during the week!

And now time to get to the point! The winner of the Annie’s Homegrown Giveaway is: Amanda Garcia!!

YAY!! Congrats! I will be emailing you the details of everything and how you will receive your package later today!

trailmix-7

Savory Cheddar Bunnies Snack Mix
Print
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups Annie's Homegrown Cheddar Bunnies
  2. 2 cups mini whole grain pretzels
  3. 1 cup roasted peanuts
  4. 1 cup golden raisins
  5. 1 Tbsp parmesan cheese
  6. 2 tsp bbq seasoning (or savory seasoning of choice!)
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients and wa-la! Trail mix for the week is done! Feel free to play up the ingredients, like adding almonds or hazelnuts instead of peanuts. Any dried fruit will work in palce of the golden raisins as well. I sometimes like to add crunchy granola clusters to the mix too!
Notes
  1. Makes one big batch!
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/

Apparently I have been really into “stuffing” things lately. Like earlier this week when I channeled my inner food-truck cravings and stuffed mac n cheese into Cornbread. I tend to have a go big or go home mentality sometimes and when it comes to food, this is a major plus.

stuffedsweetpot-8

My latest cravings this month have been centering around sweet potatoes. They are just so versatile and can be played up with so many things. My go-to lunches have been omelettes with roasted sweet potatoes topped with peanut butter, apple butter and granola. Another side note: I LOVE toppings.

A lot of my dinners have consisted of roasted chicken, veggies and bakes sweet potato wedges. And let’s not forget breakfasts’ that consist of Maple Sea Salt Sweet Potato Pancakes.
Clearly, I’m obsessed and if I start turning orange we know where the culprit lyes.

stuffedsweetpot-4

stuffedsweetpot-12

And P.S. I am also determined to make sweet potato cookies happen. Be on the lookout for that recipe this winter! But until then, let’s play up the savory side of life and whip up the easiest brunch meal you will ever create. And it’s totally Fall approved because roasted sweet potatoes = Fall in a nutshell.

They’re in season, the farmers markets are flooding with them and the weather is starting to get cool enough where warming up your teeny tiny apartment with baked goods in the oven all day is completley acceptable.

stuffedsweetpot-9

This was the first time I ever ate a “stuffed” sweet potato and to be honest it was quite a good time. It’s like a one pot meal except you’re eating out of this big baked potato. I could talk food detail all day long. Which is probably why I am writing this blog post instead of studying for my Anatomy lab practical…

By the time you’re reading this I will hopefully be released of my hellacious midterm, relaxing through the aisles of Trader Joes and catching up on much needed DVR time. After a week of nonstopness, this is how I plan to spend my Friday night (not the typical college girl, I know). But some chocolate and wine will hopefully be included as well. Again, totally wild.

stuffedsweetpot-17

Oh and I am like DYING to see Gone Girl. Has anyone seen it or extremely obsessing over the book? Going to the movies is one of my favorite things ever and since Fall quarter started there has been no time for movie dates. Not acceptable.

I’m thinking after finals some Gone Girl action + major dessert action will be happenng. Until then…let’s stuff our sweet potatoes with crispy prosciutto, scrambled eggs, melty cheese and creamy chipotle aioli. Happy brunching!

BTW: Sunday is the last day to enter the Annie’s Homegrown Giveaway! Click on this link: http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/mac-n-cheese-cornbread-muffins-with-pretzel-cheddar-streusel-annies-homegrown-giveaway/ for your chance to enter a free box of Annie’s products!

stuffedsweetpot-20

Prosciutto Breakfast Scramble Stuffed Sweet Potatoes with Chipotle Aioli
Print
Ingredients
  1. 2 large sweet potatoes, roasted*
  2. 2-4 slices prosciutto
  3. 2 tsp olive oil
  4. 4 eggs
  5. Handful chopped onion
  6. Mozarella cheese
  7. Cherry tomatoes, sliced
Chipotle Aioli
  1. 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
  2. 1 Tbsp Olive Oil Mayo (Earth Balance Mindful Mayo)
  3. 2 tsp chipotle sauce from canned chipotle adobes
Instructions
  1. Grease a skillet with olive oil and add your chopped prosciutto. Cook over medium high heat for 3-5 minutes or until crispy. Remove from pan and set aside. Whisk your eggs and onion in a bowl then cook on a skillet over medium heat. Toss in your prosciutto and chopped cherry tomatoes and cook eggs until well scrambled.
  2. Slice your sweet potatoes in half then evenly distribute your egg scramble mixture into each. Sprinkle seasoning of choice like basil or oregano then top with mozzarella cheese.
  3. Whisk together your chipotle aioli ingredients and drizzle over each potato. Serve immediatley!
Notes
  1. *To roast your sweet potatoes, wrap them in foil and bake at 400 degrees for 45-60 minutes. You can alternatively wrap them in a paper towel and microwave for 5 minutes or until soft. Roasting brings the best flavor in my opinion!
  2. **I used Earth Balance Mindful Mayo, they use olive oil and healthy ingredients versus regular mayo. Veganese would also work well too.
  3. Serves 2
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/

#spon: I’m required to disclose a relationship between my blog and Annie’s Homegrown. This could include Annie’s providing me w/ content, product, access or other forms of payment.

anniescornbread-12

Hello Fall season. I welcome you with a hungry appetite, lots of muffins, mac n cheese and pretzel crumbles. Comfort food never sounded so good. And my kitchen never felt so peaceful.

That’s what I think of when I think Fall. A warm, comforting and peaceful kitchen. With a fireplace, close friends and gooey cookies baking in the oven. And scrumptious carb filled snacks. Specifically carbs-on-carbs-on-carbs filled snacks that involve cheese.

anniescornbread
anniescornbread-2
anniescornbread-4

And that’s where the cornbread comes in. So these muffins don’t exaclty sound all Nutritious Kitchen-y status. I mean really, mac n cheese stuffed into cornbread? With pretzel topping? These are the types of things you see in booths at Food Truck Festivals next to “bacon mac n cheese grilled cheese sandwiches” and “double layer bacon chocolate waffle ice cream sandwiches”. Intense stuff, I kid not.

But don’t let the title overwhelm you. It really just comes down to a science.

Healthy cornbread + whole grain mac n cheese + crunch topping.

All natural, full of flavor and creamy carb love. How that’s scientific, I do not know, but let’s just roll with it.

anniescornbread-8
anniescornbread-7

The sweet people over at Annie’s Homegrown sent me a lovely package filled with boxes of mac n cheese, cheddar snack mixes, a fun spork and other goodies. Needless to say it felt like Christmas morning coming home from Physiology class to foodie blogger presents.

I have always been a fan of Annie’s Bunny Grahams but never have gotten the opportunity to try their other products. Let me just say, it is always nice to find a comapny selling packaged food that is good for the body and the soul. Annie’s strides in selling all natural, organic, non gmo, non artifically flavored, family friendly packaged goods.

anniescornbread-9

Think whole grain mac n cheese, pizzas, granola bars, snack mixes and graham crackers. Like it just makes me excited to have kids and be to able to get this stuff for their lunch boxes!

But on that note, I seriously can wait to have kids. Like I can wait a really, really long time. You get my point though!

Be sure to enter this awesome giveaway hosted by Annie’s Homegrown so you too can come home to a box full of yummy goodies sponsored by Team Annie’s!

Just leave a comment below then log in to the Annie’s Homegrown Giveaway to confirm your comment and you could be a mac n cheese winna!
Have any of you used Annie’s products before?
How do you incorporate Annie’s Homegrown into your meals?

Check out all of Annie’s Homegrown products here: http://www.annies.com/

anniescornbread-16

Mac n Cheese Cornbread Muffins with Pretzel Cheddar Streusel
Print
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  2. 1 cup cornmeal
  3. 2 tsp baking powder
  4. sea salt to taste
  5. 1 egg
  6. 2 Tbsp honey
  7. 1/4 cup melted butter
  8. 1 cup milk
  9. 1 box Annie's Organic Cheddar Shells
Streusel
  1. 1/2 cup Annie's Cheddar Pretzel Snack Mix
Instructions
  1. Prepare Annie’s cheddar shells according to package instructions. Once that is ready and prepared, set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a muffin tin with 12 liners, or spray with olive oil spray.
  3. In a large bowl combine whole wheat pastry flour, cornmeal, baking powder and sea salt.
  4. In a separate bowl whisk the egg until well beaten then whisk in honey, melted butter and milk. Pour your dry ingredients into your wet ingredients and slowly mix together with a wooden spoon. Be careful not to over-mix the batter; stir until just combined.
  5. Gently fold in your mac n cheese then distribute into muffin tins. Place your Annie’s pretzel cheddar snack mix and parmesan cheese into a blender and blend until a crumble forms. Layer the crumble over each muffin evenly and bake for 15-18 minutes.
Notes
  1. Makes 12 muffins.
  2. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days. These are also freezer friendly and go really well alongside some bbq chicken!
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/

a Rafflecopter giveaway

>

I have been wanting to share this recipe with you for months. How terrible is that? To withhold these crunchy, peanut buttery bars of love from you guys?

pbgranolabars-6

I know, it’s bad and I am deeply sorry. Sometimes things come up like, Sweet Potato Pancakes and Skillet Mac n Cheese. But I clearly need to get my priotities straight and keep you guys in the loop of all the peanut butter filled things to come.

These homemade crunchy bars got me through the summer. They were my go-to snack during 8 hour work days, part of my pre workout pick-me-up and a favorite during road trips/vacations. In fact Joey and I demolished an entire batch during our traffic filled drive to Vegas in July.

pbgranolabars-10

These little snacks that I leave laying around the kitchen throughout the week is what I think my parents miss the most about me living at home. They got to be the guinea pigs and reap in all the benefits of whatever cravings I would be having that week.

While it’s like pulling teeth just to get them to read my blog, hopefully this recipe catches their eye and they attempt to make em on their own.

pbgranolabars-13

The ingredients are too easy and nothing out of the ordinary. Sometimes looking at the back of a granola bar ingredient list at the store can be scary. All ya need for these babies is:

Peanut butter
Apple Butter
Honey
Rolled Oats
Crunchy cereal of choice
Sea salt + Cinnamon

Easy peasy. Oh and of course you need some baking soda and optional add ins like peanuts or chocolate chips but that’s on you! I used Peanut Butter & Co. “The Bees Knees Honey Peanut Butter” for this recipe because they were ever so sweet enough to send me samples and it really did make these bars “the bees knees”. And p.s. great tip is to spread extra peanut butter inbetween two of these…life changing snack!

pbgranolabars-5

The Bees Knees Crunchy Peanut Butter Granola Bars
Print
Ingredients
  1. 1.5 cups rolled
  2. 1/2 cup crunchy cereal of choice*
  3. 1/4 tsp baking soda
  4. 1/4 cup honey
  5. 1/4 cup honey peanut butter (Peanut Butter & Co. Bees Knees)
  6. 1 Tbsp apple butter
  7. Sea salt + cinnamon to taste
Peanut butter Glaze
  1. 1.5 Tbsp peanut butter
  2. 1/2 tbsp honey
  3. 1/2 tbsp apple butter
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees farenheit. Line an 8x8 square baking dish with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Combine oats, cereal, baking soda, sea salt and cinnamon in a large bowl. In a skillet over medium heat melt your peanut butter, honey and apple butter together until a slightly thick mixture has formed. You can alternatively do this in the microwave checking every 30 seconds.
  3. Pour your peanut butter mixture into the oats and combine with a wooden spoon until completely mixed through. Pour into the baking dish and pressdown hard either with the back of your spoon or the back of a glass jar works well too. You need to make sure the oat mixture is pressed down firmly.
  4. Stir together your peanut butter glaze ingredients with a fork then drizzle over the bars. Place in the oven and bake for 22-25 minutes. Once done, you must let the bars cool for atleast 15-20 minutes before cutting into squares. This allows the bars to get crunchy!
Notes
  1. Makes 12-16 bars, depending how you cut them.
  2. *I used trader joes high fiber O's as my cereal add in.
  3. Feel free to add in a handful of peanuts or chocolate chips to the matter as well! Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/

“By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the National Pasta Association and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”

macncheese-14

Long titles. They can be so overwhelming yet so intriguing at the same time. I didn’t know how to shorten this one without leaving out all the vital elements. So I settled with a long title, and we’ll just have to deal.

Let’s go over the key points here:
Texture = Creamy
Nutrition = Whole Wheat
Process = Skillet
Base = Pasta + Cheese (aka mac n cheese)
Toppings = Crispy Prosciutto Breadcrumbs

You see, there was no way I could leave any of these factors without degrading your first impression of this meal. I wanted you to get the whole picture before you even saw the pictures. Because this meal might be my all time favorite meal to ever come out of TNK, and it deserves every inch of a long title.

macncheese

macncheese-4

The National Pasta Association has challenged us Recipe Reduxers (Reduxers, can that be a thing?) to create a healthy pasta based meal. Pasta is so versatile and can be your best bet for a one pot meal when you’re in a pinch during the week.

Growing up, mac n cheese was my life. This is not an over exaggeration either. Everyday I came home from school and whipped up a box of Kraft mac n cheese. Dinner was made for me in a matter of seconds and I found this deep love for pasta + creamy cheese.

Fast forward to adulthood and boxes of Kraft just aren’t going to cut it. Why result to a box of processed junk when making the real thing is as easy as my Anatomy Physiology exam?! Just kidding, this recipe is light years easier than any form of a science exam, thank jesus.

macncheese-8

As an over-worked student, easy + healthy meals are my go to. Especially considering I like to stay active and work out regularly, a balanced meal is a must. Between exams and squats at the gym, this skillet mac n cheese really helps feed the brain as well as the glutes.

And it’s ready in 20 minutes. Music to my ears; no long hours of baking in the oven until you’re completely famished to the point of no return. Skillet mac is where its at guys. See what I did there?

macncheese-10

In order to make pasta healthy and not an over-processed unnecessary carb overload you will use 100% WHOLE WHEAT based pasta. This gives you the healthy fiber filled carbs you need to fuel you through the day.

Instead of over-doing it on saturated fat filled butters and whipping creams, you will make the base of your pasta with natural white cheddar cheese, fat free cottage cheese and fat free milk. Don’t let the cottage cheese scare you. All it does is aide in the creamiest of textures and gets you an extra dose of protien. Needless to say, my glutes are happy.

Oh and the crispy prosciutto topping? It’s completely necessary. Don’t leave it out. It’s what makes a kid mac n cheese turn into a grown up mac n cheese. Not only do you get a crispy topping, but the flavors will do wonders to your palette. Enough of my ranting though, go celebrate National Pasta Month by doing some squats and making this creamy whole wheat skillet mac n cheese!

macncheese-16

Whole Wheat Skillet Mac n Cheese with Crispy Prosciutto
Print
Ingredients
  1. 8 oz whole wheat elbo macaroni
  2. 1 cup white cheddar cheese or jack cheese*
  3. 1/2 cup fat free cottage cheese
  4. 1/2 cup fat free milk
  5. 1 tsp garlic powder
  6. 2 tsp dijon mustard
  7. Sea salt + pepper to taste
Prosciutto Breadcrumbs
  1. 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  2. 2 Tbsp parmesan cheese
  3. 4 slices prosciutto, chopped
  4. 1 Tbsp olive oil or butter
Instructions
  1. Cook whole wheat macaroni according to package and set aside. While the macaroni is boiling, you can make your breadcrumbs.
  2. Heat olive oil or butter in a skillet over medium heat and add chopped prosciutto. Cook for about 3 minutes then add your panko bread crumbs and parmesan cheese. Stir together with a wooden spoon and continue to heat for another 2 minutes. You will notice the mixture become crispy, that's when you know it's done. Remove from pan and set aside.
  3. Drain your pasta once it's done cooking and set aside. In a large pot add milk, cottage cheese, white cheddar cheese, dijon mustard and seasoning and cook over medium low, stirring with a wooden spoon until mixture comes together. Add in your whole weat macaroni and stir until completely combine.
  4. Top with proscuitto breadcrumbs and eat up!
Notes
  1. *For the cheese I used a mix of both white cheddar and jack cheese, which worked great! One or the other should work just as good too.
  2. Makes about 4 servings
The Nutritious Kitchen http://thenutritiouskitchen.com/