Healthy Happy Life

Purple-Citrus Strawberry Banana Smoothie

Since this week's Meal Plan is all about smoothies and salads, I wanted to share a favorite smoothie that I have been making lately. This Purple-Citrus Strawberry Banana Smoothie is an upgraded version of a classic banana-strawberry smoothie. I add in some blueberries for bonus antioxidants and a pretty purple color. And the real secret ingredient is the orange citrus zest! It adds such a bright accent of flavor. This blend is sweet, vibrant and summery. I have been making this as a late afternoon post-workout smoothie. Give it a spin, also I share a documentary I recently loved..


Quinoa Corn Black Bean Fiesta Bowl

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Duda Farm Fresh.

Summer is my favorite season for big, beautiful salads and veggie-filled bowls. I find that I crave salads more when it is hot outside, probably because salads are hydrating and offer up a wide array of nutrients. One challenge people often have when trying to make a "salad" into a meal is that they do not just want veggies in their bowl. Well, plant-based recipes can easily solve that problem using ingredients like legumes, nuts, seeds and grains. As well as using hearty, nutrient-rich veggies like one of my faves: fresh summer corn.

Today I am boosting my salad bowl with a base layer of protein-rich quinoa, some hearty black beans and plenty of sweet and colorful corn. This Quinoa Corn Black Bean Fiesta Bowl has spicy-sweet-zesty flavors from lime and chipotle dressing, and is topped with avocado and hot sauce to taste. You can serve with a fork, or layer the mixture into corn tortillas for tacos!

Easy dinner or lunch recipe coming your way, plus I am chatting all about summer corn today..


Vegan Walnut Brownies

These were our Saturday night in. Vegan Walnut Brownies are always a good idea. They bake up swiftly and pack a big chocolate punch. They also pair perfectly with a scoop of vanilla vegan ice cream or even some sliced strawberries and coconut whip. Or drizzle some warmed peanut butter on top. Or just spoon dive right into the dish!

These brownies are rich and chewy and fluffy and just what you need when a chocolate craving hits. I also love that they keep very well in the fridge for a few days. You can even wrap the brownies and store in the freezer. I plan on chopping up my leftovers and folding them into some chocolate ice cream for some DIY Brownie Fudge ice cream! Get today's brownie recipe!...


Vegan Meal Plan Sundays: Week 3, Smoothie + Salad Challenge

Hey guys, it is late Sunday and I am about to pop on Game of Thrones, but I am feeling awful because I haven't posted this week's plan yet! This weekend just seemed to zoom by in a mix of sunshine, tennis, cat naps and cooking projects and playing. But it hasn't all been rainbows and sunshine, I can assure you! But I like to focus on all the good stuff. And there was a whole lot of good stuff this weekend just like any week, if I look closely. I mean, looking to my right there is the fuzziest kitten muffin ever curled up on my leg and off to my left, my awesome husband finishing dinner. Good stuff.

The Plan: Smoothie + Salad Challenge. This week I am doing something a bit different, as I will from time to time. Instead of a straight up plan I am challenging you! For each day, I have one of my favorite salads and a fave smoothie. For each day, I challenge you to try at least one of those items! And no, I don't expect most of you to nail down all 7 days, but if you can do even one or two new recipes this week, you get a big fat gold star from me! Check out this week's recipes...


D23 in Review. (And the best salad recipe!)

disclosure: This post is sponsored by DOLE but all opinions are my own.

Last Saturday I did something really exciting. Scary. Exhausting. But mostly really exciting! I was given the opportunity to present three cooking demos with DOLE at Disney's D23 Expo in Anaheim. The D23 Expo is Disney's annual convention, also known as the ultimate Disney fan event. And since you guys might know by now that I am a big Disney fan, this was a pretty cool opportunity.

In today's post, I get to share that day with you! Along with the salad recipe I made during the demo. And seriously guys, this salad recipe from DOLE is soooooooo good. Seriously, I devoured the big bowl in the photos right after shooting. I couldn't stop eating it! YES, salad. Let's go!..