Hooray for Friday!

I bet I can predict what you’ll be doing on Sunday – whether you’re more interested in the game, the commercials, or the halftime show (I do love me some Justin Timberlake) you’re going to be watching the Super Bowl!

Game watching snacks tend to be pretty low in nutrition but it doesn’t have to be that way.  You can get the best of both worlds incorporating good tastes and more nutritious ingredients by reading more below!  Score!

-SPICY BLACK BEAN HUMMUS: everyone loves a dip, but I love a good dip even more when it’s full of natural and good stuff!  By using black beans you’re getting a little more fiber than chickpeas, as well as more iron, potassium, magnesium, and vitamin B1.  Serve with sliced veggies like peppers, cucumbers, carrots, or celery.  Inspired by Pop Sugar Fitness.

Ingredients

1 clove garlic
1 small jalapeño pepper, chopped (or 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper)
15 ounces black beans, rinsed and drained
1 tablespoon tahini
Juice from 1 lemon
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Add the garlic and jalapeño to a food processor or blender and puree. Add in the remaining ingredients and mix until smooth.
  2. Enjoy immediately or store in an airtight glass container in the fridge for up to a week.

-CRISPY CAULIFLOWER BUFFALO WINGS: buffalo and football just go hand in hand but as we all know, deep fried wings don’t do a body good.  Instead try using cauliflower and in one serving you’ll get 77% of your daily Vitamin C among tons of other benefits.  If you follow a gluten-free diet you’ll be pleased to know this recipe will work for you.  Inspired by Mind Body Green.

Ingredients

1 medium head cauliflower, chopped into bite-size pieces
1/2 cup garbanzo bean flour
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon melted butter or ghee
2/3 cup hot sauce

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450ºF. In a medium-sized bowl, combine flour, water, garlic powder, and salt. Whisk together until smooth.
  2. Toss cauliflower into garbanzo batter, making sure to coat each piece completely, then place battered cauliflower on a lightly greased, nonstick baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, tossing halfway through.
  3. In the meantime, combine melted butter and hot sauce in a large bowl, regularly stirring. When cauliflower is done, remove it from the oven and gently toss it in the hot sauce mixture. Place cauliflower back on the baking sheet and cook for an additional 25 minutes until it becomes crispy. Allow cauliflower to cool for 15 minutes before serving.

-SPICY SWEET POTATO FRIES: oh how I love sweet potatoes.  So versatile, easy to cook, easy to store, and delicious.  These fries are a much more nutritious alternative to regular fries (yay for vitamin A!), plus they can be made at home.  Inspired by The Food Network.

Ingredients

2 large garnet yams or sweet potatoes, cut into wedges
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne

Dip
1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons chipotle peppers, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425ºF.
  2. Toss cut sweet potatoes in olive oil, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, and cayenne. Make sure every wedge is evenly coated.
  3. Roast cut-side down for 30 minutes, turning once.
  4. While sweet potatoes are roasting, mix Greek yogurt, peppers, and lime juice in a small jar. Set aside in the fridge for whenever you’re ready to dip!

-SPICY ROASTED CHICKPEAS: I know I talked the slightest amount of smack on chickpeas earlier, but the truth is that I love them and they definitely have their place in a well balanced diet.  These little guys will benefit you with tons of fiber and protein.  Make extra because they’ll go fast!  Inspired by Pop Sugar Fitness and Nopalito.

Ingredients

1 15-ounce can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons of spice mixture (a curry, Moroccan, or Mexican spice mixture works well.)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Drain and rinse chickpeas in a colander. Pat dry.
  3. Toss chickpeas in a medium-sized bowl with olive oil, sea salt, and spices.
  4. Arrange chickpeas on a baking sheet in a single layer.
  5. Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until crispy. While baking, shake pan or stir chickpeas to avoid burning.
  6. Transfer to a serving bowl.
  7. If desired, sprinkle and toss with more spices.

-ZUCCHINI FITTERS: I’ve always been a huge fan of zucchini so any chance I have to use them, I jump on it.  It doesn’t hurt that zukes provide potassium and folates among lots of other goodies.  If you want to make these even lighter, brush them with a little olive oil on each side then bake in the oven at 400 degrees for 10 minutes instead of pan frying.  Inspired by Bon Appetit.

Ingredients

Soy Dipping Sauce
3 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
Crushed red pepper flakes

Fritters
1 1/2 pounds zucchini (about 3 medium), grated
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus more for seasoning
1 large egg
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives
1 tablespoon cornstarch
Freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup vegetable oil

Directions

Soy Dipping Sauce

  1. Mix vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, and a pinch of red pepper flakes in a small bowl until sugar is dissolved. Set aside.

Fritters

  1. Place zucchini in a colander set in the sink and toss with 1/2 teaspoons salt. Let stand 10 minutes, then wring zucchini dry in a clean kitchen towel. Place zucchini in a large bowl and gently mix in egg, flour, chives, and cornstarch; season with salt and pepper.
  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Working in 2 batches, drop 1/4-cupfuls zucchini mixture into skillet, flattening slightly; cook until golden and crisp, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer fritters to a paper towel–lined plate; season with salt. Serve with soy dipping sauce.
  2. Do Ahead: Fritters can be made 30 minutes ahead. Keep warm in a 200° oven.

-TANDOORI TOFU PIZZA: you had me at Tandoori.  As I’ve mentioned before, I can’t get enough of Indian food and Indian flavors!  The mix of Indian flavors combined with the benefits of tofu (provides all the amino acids among other good stuff) make this an awesome treat for everyone, including those who follow vegan diets.  Inspired by Veggieful.

Ingredients

Vegan Natural Yoghurt (Used for 3 steps)
0.66 lbs silken tofu (about 2/3 of a 1 lb package)
4 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon light soy milk
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Tandoori Marinated Tofu
0.66 lb extra firm tofu, diced and drained (about 2/3 of a 1 lb package)
1 tablespoon tandoori paste
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon vegan yoghurt (recipe above)

Tandoori Base Sauce
vegan yoghurt (recipe above)
1 tablespoon tandoori paste
1 tablespoon sugar
1 garlic clove, minced

Mint Yoghurt
vegan yoghurt (recipe above)
1 tablespoon mint leaves, thinly sliced

 2 pizza bases
coriander leaves to garnish
1 red onion, thinly sliced
3/4 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
2 handfuls baby spinach
1 tablespoon oil
salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Make the natural yoghurt – process silken tofu, lemon juice, soy milk and apple cider vinegar until completely smooth. (This yoghurt will be used for three different components: the tandoori marinade, the pizza base sauce and the garnishing mint yoghurt)
  2. Make the tandoori marinated tofu – add the diced extra-firm tofu to a bowl. Top with the tandoori paste, garlic cloves and 1 tablespoon of the vegan yoghurt (made in step 1). Stir until tofu is evenly coated. If possible, allow to marinate in the fridge for about 3 hours. If you in a hurry, allow at least half an hour.
  3. Make pizza base sauce – Take half of the remaining vegan yoghurt mixture (from step 1) and put it in a bowl. Add the tandoori paste, sugar and the garlic clove. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust the sweetness and saltiness if needed. Set aside.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  5. Make the mint yoghurt sauce – Add the remaining yoghurt mixture (from step 1) to a bowl with the mint leaves. Stir to combine and set aside.
  6. Add the marinated tofu and the oil in a pan. Fry on high heat until browned on all sides. Set aside.
  7. Line two pizza trays with baking paper or spray oil. Add the pizza bases to the trays and divide the pizza base sauce on both. Spread with a spoon until both pizza bases are evenly covered. Top with the onions, cherry tomatoes and the marinated tofu.
  8. Bake for approx. 30 minutes until slightly browned on top.
  9. Serve hot with a drizzle of mint yoghurt, salt and freshly cracked black pepper and a handful of baby spinach on each pizza. Enjoy!

-SALTED CHOCOLATE CHIP CHICKPEA COOKIES: these cookies are a combination of a few things that I just love and to make things even better, these are much lighter and healthier than a typical cookie.  It doesn’t get better!  Your guests will love these…just maybe wait to tell them the secret ingredient until after they rave about them.  🙂  Inspired by Clean Eating Goddess.

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 egg (can sub with flax/chia egg)
1/2 cup nut butter
1 1/2 tbsp vanilla
small pinch of fine salt
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
2 tbsp coconut flour
1 cup 70% dark chocolate chips
1 tbsp coarse salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper. Rinse chickpeas well and dry with towel.
  2. In a food processor or high-powered blender, blend chickpeas and baking soda until smooth. (about 1-2 minutes)
  3. Add egg, nut butter, vanilla, small pinch of fine salt, maple syrup and coconut flour. Blend until completely smooth and combined. Transfer mixture to a bowl and fold in chocolate chips.
  4. Using two small spoons, place desired cookie amount onto the cookie sheet. The cookies won’t change much in the oven, so form into the desired shape. Sprinkle each cookie with a pinch of coarse salt.
  5. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden. Allow to cool and enjoy! Store in an airtight container for 1-2 weeks.

Eating in a balanced and nutritious way is all about preparation, so now you have some great food ideas and enough time to get ready for the big game next weekend.

Hope your favorite team wins!  And for the record – I don’t have a dog in this fight!

Laissez les bons temps roulez et bonne santé,

Claire

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