Jenn's Summer Four Bean Salad

Jenn's Summer Four Bean Salad Prep Time:10 minutes Cook time: None!


  • 1 can Goya Butter Beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 1 can Goya Garbanzo Beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 1 can Goya Cannelloni Beans (drained and rinsed)
  • ½ lb Green Beans
  • 1 carrot (shaved or julienned)
  • ¼ cup Fresh Basil (chopped)
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic (smashed)
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  1. Steam green beans to "al dente", drain, and pour over ice bath to cool them off.
  2. In a small bowl with a lid, combine balsamic vinegar, E.V.O.O., garlic, salt, and pepper. Cover, shake and set aside.
  3. Drain cooled green beans, cut them into 1" pieces and place in large bowl.
  4. Add canned beans, carrots and basil to green beans. Pour dressing over salad, mix and enjoy!

Easy Slow Cooker Vegetarian Cashew Chili

Easy Slow Cooker Vegetarian Cashew Chili Ingredients: 5 servings 1 onion, diced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 pepper, chopped ( I love the yellow and orange ones) 2 carrots, chopped 1/2 cup corn 1/2 cup celery, chopped 3 jalapeños, chopped (for more heat leave the seeds and membrane, for less take them out) 1 zucchini, diced 1 can kidney beans thoroughly rinsed 1 can black beans thoroughly rinsed 2 15 ounce cans diced tomatoes (I like the Muir Glen Fire Roasted Tomatoes) 1/2 cup water or vegetable stock 1 1/2 tbsp chili powder 1 tsp cumin 1 bay leaf 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar salt and pepper to taste 1/2 cup cashews

Directions: Combine all ingredients except for cashews in a crock pot. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Stir in cashews prior to serving.

6 Tips to Change How You Eat

6 Tips to Change How You Eat 1. Avoid foods with ingredients you cannot pronounce. Grab that box of cereal or package of cookies and spend some time perusing the food label. What is in the ingredient list? Do you know what that all is? The likely answer is a giant NO! If you can't pronounce it, the likelihood is your body can't do much with it. Stick with your real, whole foods instead. And make sure that breakfast bar really does have strawberries in it if the pictures says it does.

2. If it came from a plant, eat it; if it was made in a plant, don't. I heard this a few years ago and find it to just be ingenious! Making healthy choices doesn't get much simpler than this idea! The challenge? Just about all of our convenience, on the go, in the vending machine and super market are produced in a plant somewhere! This change takes time and planning. Start small. Replace one food at a time each week and keep going.

3. Don't eat breakfast cereals that change the color of the milk. Those marshmallows and fruit pieces are jam packed with additives and processed ingredients. Translation is no good in the body. All of those manufactured sugars don't satisfy your body, leaving you look for more food in the end and the trans fats are a dangerous path to chronic conditions. Stick with cereal that has 100% unrefined, whole grains and minimal sugar. Then put your own fresh fruit on top!

4. When you are craving junk food, make it yourself. There is nothing wrong with eating sweets, fried foods, pastries or baked goods in moderation. I like my chocolate chip cookies just like the rest of them! But food manufacturers have made eating these formerly expensive and hard-to-make treats so cheap that they are available at every corner and we're eating them everyday. Instead, enjoy these treats as often as you're willing to prepare them. Then give some away!

5. Eat when you are hungry, not when you are bored, tired, stressed or upset. For many of us, eating has surprisingly little to do with hunger. We eat out of boredom, when life gets tough or when your day could not have been worse. Stop this cycle and get connected with your body. Learn to be aware of why you're eating. Ask yourself if you're really hungry before you eat and during your meal. Slow down, enjoy your food.

6. Do all your eating at a table. No, a desk is not a table. If we eat while we're working, or while watching TV or driving, we are eating mindlessly and as a result eat a lot more than we would if we were eating at a table, paying attention to what we're doing. The mind must be engaged with the process of eating for you to gain true satiety. Example: Place a child in front of a favorite movie and put a bowl of fresh vegetables in front of him or her. The child will likely eat everything in the bowl, often even vegetables that he or she doesn't ordinarily touch, without noticing what's going on. The same thing can happen with a bag of chips. resent your offer, ensure it is specific, and includes a call to action and time frame.

Why Diets Don't Work

Why Diets Don't Work You can't turn on the TV, drive down the road or go to a party without being confronted with America's hottest obsession: weight. Diets are a billion-dollar industry; companies spend millions of dollars luring you to try the latest diet (low carb, high protein, low fat, no fat, you name it) with promises that this will (finally!) be the solution-your shortcut to a thinner body.

Advertising efforts also deeply affect our children, who develop distorted body images and are often on diets as early as nine or ten years of age.

Our culture touts diet pills, celebrity workouts, convenience foods and trendy diets to help us achieve our desired weight, but these quick-fix solutions have backfired. As a country, we have hit our highest weight in history. About half of Americans are overweight; one-third are obese. Part of the reason? Diets steer us away from our common sense and elicit few, if any, lasting results.


  • Diets don't work because each person is unique, with different needs based on gender, age, lifestyle, activity level, dieting history; how could one diet be right for everyone? Of the 20 diet books you could go out and buy today, the likelihood of that book addressing the unique needs of YOUR body is slim to none.
  • Diets don't work because they are extreme solutions. As in physics, if a pendulum swings to one extreme, it has to swing equally to the other. A diet might work for a short amount of time, but research shows that almost all diets result in a 10-pound gain once off the diet.
  • Diets don't work because they are very restrictive. People who fail on diet plans are not flawed or weak. Diets by nature require discipline and restriction at levels that are unsustainable by a healthy human body. Our body inherently fights against this restriction, and it usually wins.
  • Diets don't work because many of us are disconnected with the cues and signals our body provides each day, directing us to the right foods and quantities.

In our fast-paced world, we have lost sight of many aspects of life that truly nourish and balance our bodies, such as slowing down, eating a home-cooked meal and spending quality time with loving people. This type of balance is just as important as eating your broccoli and brown rice. Eating consciously and making simple lifestyle changes will create positive results and release you from the endless cycle of dieting.

Given half a chance, your body will balance out by itself, but this is only possible by getting out of the diet mentality and listening to what you truly need. Imagine taking all of the outward energy you expend on diets, fads and gimmicks and turning it inward, so that you can listen to your body and your inner wisdom.

The ultimate reality: there is no such thing as a quick fix; you already have everything you need within you. With careful thought and loving reflection, you can feed yourself in a nourishing way. Working with your body rather than against it will bring you increased energy, stabilized weight and sustainable health.

Quick tips to move forward and leave diets behind:
  • Track your food for the next 5-7 days. Learn from your behaviors. Notice your energy, hunger, mood and choices. They are signals.
  • Experiment with different foods and combinations. Stay present with your body and notice how the food(s) feel.
  • Focus on fruits, vegetables, 100% whole grains, healthy sources of protein.
  • Sleep more. Decrease your stress. Give yourself some love.

Walnut Oatmeal Date Balls

Walnut Oatmeal Date BallsAdapted from PB Fingers Makes 12 balls Ingredients

  • 6 Medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/3 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts


  1. Place all ingredients into a food processor and pulse until everything is blended and a thick batter forms.
  2. Roll batter into balls and refrigerate until ready to eat.

2 Grain Energy Bars

2 Grain Energy Bars Ingredients (serves 12) 3/4 cup rolled oats, uncooked 3/4 cup quinoa, uncooked 2 bananas, peeled and sliced into thin discs 1/2 cup agave nectar 2 tbsp cocoa powder 1/2 tsp vanilla extract 1 tsp cinnamon powder 1 tsp salt 4 cups water 2 tbsp coconut oil

Directions: Add all ingredients except for the coconut oil in a saucepan and stir to combine. Bring mixture up to a simmer and cover for 20-25 minutes until it reaches the consistency of a thick batter. Stir occasionally. In the meantime, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Melt the coconut oil by microwaving for 20 seconds and use half to coat the bottom of a 9" by 6" non-stick baking pan. Once your mixture has finished simmering and formed a batter, add the batter to the baking pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Coat the top of the mixture with the remaining coconut oil. Bake for 1 hour. Let cool completely then slice into 12 bars. Store in the refrigerator.

Slow Cooker Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Carrots

Slow Cooker Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Carrots Ingredients: 4 servings 2 large sweet potatoes, cut into thick pieces 4 large carrots, chopped into large pieces 2 onions, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 4 chicken breasts 1 32oz box reduced sodium chicken broth 1 tbsp. chili paste 1 tbsp. soy sauce 1 tsp. curry powder (optional)

Directions: Combine chicken broth, chili paste, soy sauce and curry powder in the bottom of a crock pot. Add vegetables and chicken. Cook on low 6 - 8 hours until chicken is fork tender.

Oatie Bites

Oatie Bites Adapted from Heather Eats Almond Butter Makes 12-15 bites


  • 1 cup rolled oats.
  • 1/2 cup nut butter
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts
  • 1/2 cup mix-ins: chocolate/carob chips, dried fruit
  • 3 tbsp chia seeds or flax seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt


Preheat oven to 325°.

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Scoop a tbsp amount of dough onto parchment or cookie sheet lined with foil or cooking spray.

Bake 10-12 minutes.

Allow to cool on cooling rack.

Cool Cucumber and Avocado Soup

Cool Cucumber and Avocado Soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes Yields: 4 servings


1 cucumber, peeled and chopped 1 avocado 2 green onions Juice of 1 lime 1 cup plain or soy yogurt 1 cup water Salt and pepper to taste


Roughly chop the cucumber, avocado and green onions and toss in the blender. Add other ingredients and process until smooth.

Cardio vs. Strength Training: Which is better for you?

Cardio vs. Strength TrainingWhich is better for you?

Both aerobic exercise and resistance training can promote substantial improvements to our physical fitness and health. The benefits include a decrease in body fat, increase in bone density and an increase in metabolism. The question is - When putting together your weekly exercise program, what should you do: Cardio or Strength?

The answer is simple - Do Both.

The American College of Sports Medicine's overall recommendation is for adults to engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each week. This can be done in either a continuous session (30-60 minutes a day) or multiple shorter sessions (of at least 10 minutes). To decide how much of each, assess what you desire to achieve (ie lose weight, increase strength, lower cholesterol, improve bone density, run a 5k) and check out the table below to design a program that best supports your goals.


Good Luck!!

Black Bean Brownies

Black Bean Brownies Prep time: 15 min Serves: 12 brownies

Ingredients: Butter, for greasing pan 3/4 cup cooked black beans 1/2 cup coconut oil, or olive oil 2 eggs 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 2/3 cup favorite natural sweetener (I used maple sugar conveniently found at Trader Joe's) 1 tsp instant coffee or espresso 1 tsp vanilla extract 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips, divided 1/3 cup pastry flour or favorite gluten free flour blend 1/2 tsp baking powder


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 by 9-inch square baking pan In a blender, puree the beans with the oil. Add the eggs, cocoa, sugar, coffee, and vanilla. Melt half the chocolate chips and add to the blender. Blend on medium-high until smooth. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add to the blender and pulse until just incorporated. Stir in the remaining chocolate chips. Pour into the prepared pan. Bake until the surface looks somewhat matte around the edges and still a bit shiny in the middle, about 20 minutes. Let cool at least 15 minutes before cutting and removing from the pan. - Adapted from

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Pancakes


  • 2 cups of whole wheat pastry or regular flour
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 5 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 5 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 cup brown sugar
  • 1/8 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp apple or pumpkin butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 cups skim milk … (I used almond milk!)
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 3 egg whites


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and spices.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together the egg fold pumpkin, brown sugar, maple syrup and butter. Stir in milk until well-blended.
  3. All at once, add milk mixture to dry ingredients and stir just until combined.
  4. In a medium bowl, beat egg whites until light and fluffy (you can use a fork, whisk or electric beater for this).  Fold egg whites into the batter.
  5. Ladle batter bu 1/4 cup amounts onto a preheated nonstick griddle lightly sprayed with cooking spray.  Cook until evenly browned on both sides.

Recipe makes 20 pancakes (when the 1/4 cup measure is used). Number of servings: 20 Nutritional info (per serving): Calories: 74.3 Total fat: 0.5 g Cholesterol: 10.7 mg Sodium: 176.3 mg Total Carbs: 15.1 g Dietary Fiber: 1.9 g Protein: 3.2 g