Smokin Hot!

Before it gets warm out – hallelujah! I want to share this super delicious soup with you all. I should have posted this a few months ago, as I make this all the time, but I pulled out the leftovers from the freezer just now and thought, why haven’t I shared this yet?!

This soup is the epitome of sassy. It’s full flavored ingredients not only make your tongue warm from the chipotle peppers, but it truly warms you from the inside out. You also have the richness of the sweet potatoes… Now wait. Before you go and dismiss sweet potatoes as your base in this soup, trust me when I say I’ve served this to individuals that claim they don’t like sweet potatoes. No one knows what it is! They are just so drawn to how creamy, rich and spicy this soup is. That’s because by adding in baked sweet potatoes, you’re just creating creaminess. The veggie broth and the chipotle peppers are the main flavors in this soup. So just go and have fun tricking your toughest critics.

Now if this doesn’t grab your attention, lets talk about the benefits to your health. Just one serving of sweet potatoes give you more iron than a serving of red meat. High volumes of vitamin C in which we still need to help our immune system through the next couple of months of cooties. Collagen in which helps tone and tighten our skin from the inside. Vitamin D, which helps boost our immune system and lifts our spirits if we suffer from seasonal depression. And this list can go on but you get the point;)

I got this inspirational idea from Healthy Happy but instead of using soy milk, I used coconut milk and also tried almond milk. I personally like almond milk but it’s what ever works best for you.

This recipe serves 2 to 4 depending on how much you like to eat in one sitting. I personally can’t just have one serving.

You’ll need:
– 1 cup mashed sweet potatoes (to bake them ahead of time, place your sweet potatoes cut in half on a cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees for about 30 min. You’ll want to coat the tops with a little olive or coconut oil so they don’t dry out).
– 2 cups veggie broth
– 1/2 teaspoon salt
– 1 cup almond milk
– 1 teaspoon chipotle powder.
– 1 diced avocado (optional for toppings)
– tortilla chips (optional)

To make this easier on myself, I add all these ingredients in my Vitamix and blend until smooth. Then I add the mixture to the stove and heat up. If you don’t have a large blender, you can always just purĂ©e your sweet potato by hand, or add it to a food processor and add the cup of milk. This will just guarantee a smooth consistency.

Once you have your soup heated, add some coarse sea salt or even more chipotle if desired. Serve with diced fresh avocado and tortilla chips for added crunch and flavor. Enjoy!

Live Life Pure's photo.

Warm me up

It’s a hot caramel vanilla coconut latte kinda day. Well, it’s Live life’s version that is😉
This sweet frothy drink feels and tastes like an indulgence but is so good for us too. It’s hard to believe but it is! I use coconut milk, hemp seeds, cinnamon, dates and vanilla to make this body warming tonic.
How is this so good for us? The coconut milk is used for good omega fatty acids, the hemp seeds are great for clean proteins and adds the thick frothy texture, the dates add fiber, caramel like sweetness and enzymes that warm up our bodies internal thermostat, and last but not least – vanilla and cinnamon. These not only add great flavor but are anti-inflammatory. So once again, this is a win win kinda treat.
All you need is:

-1 cup coconut milk (can use any milk)

-1 tablespoon hemp seeds

-3 dates (pitted)

-1/4 teaspoons vanilla

-1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

Blend your ingredients and heat up for one to two min over a stove top. And enjoy!

Botox for diner?

Botox for dinner?

Well, not the botulism kind but the clean kind;)

Selenium is a trace element found in soil. Selenium aids in many metabolic pathways and can help with heart disease and even certain cancers. But let’s get real here, many of us ladies want something that also helps with the fine lines and complexion. Selenium’s natural antioxidant properties regenerate vitamins like vitamin E and C. We as humans don’t produce vitamin C and as we age, we slow down on the generation of vitamin E too. So naturally as we get older and are exposed to too much sun and not enough of the right foods, we start to have that dull looking skin.

So how do I like to help this? I eat Brazil nuts! These power house beauties are loaded with selenium. So much that just consuming two Brazil nuts a day, you are consuming over 3,000% of your recommended daily value. The Brazil nut has the highest amount of these trace minerals than any other food out there. And if that isn’t enough the oils/fats moisturize from the inside out. Adding this to a smoothie, salad or even a pesto, you seriously have a win win. These taste great in pesto and no one even knows they’re eating them.

I like to substitute Brazil nuts with pine nuts in my pesto or even buy a store bought “clean” pesto and add a few chopped up Brazil nuts and serve over your pasta or salads. Please make sure though that you read your pesto labels. Many pesto’s use canola or soy oil. A real pesto is made of olive oil. And another ingredient I find disgusting is “rennet”, which is derived from the inner lining of cows stomach. Yes! Gross! And not necessary in my opinion. This is used to “thicken” the cheese product or even pestos. If we just add more Brazil nuts or greens, there’s no room for that stuff. So just read your labels, please.

And for those picky kiddos- try adding a small serving of pesto into their pasta and then add the sauce. This way you can gradually get the greens from the pesto into their diets. As time goes on, many kids including my picky eater liked the pesto better than the tomato sauce.

Below is the recipe for my homemade pesto sauce. Enjoy!

Pesto recipe:
I wish you could smell this right now. Herb gardens are super easy and so much fun for children. Something as simple as basil can be so beneficial for the entire family.

Basil is beneficial for stress, PMS, acne and a great liver cleanser. Mix that with ingredients like pine nuts or avocado and you are set!

I made two different pesto’s tonight. An avocado pesto over spiralized zucchini and squash for the adults and a traditional pesto for the kiddos. The avocado pesto was so creamy that cheese wasn’t even necessary and a pinch of chili flakes made this even better for the ones that like a kick.

Avocado pesto:
– 2 cups fresh basil
– 2 tablespoons pine nuts
– 2 avocados
– 3 garlic cloves
– 1 teaspoons lemon juice
– 1 tablespoon olive oil
– 1/4 teaspoons salt and pepper. You can always add more salt if desired.

Add all ingredients in a food processor and blend for two to three minutes until completely smooth. Place in a saucepan on low over your spiralized zucchini and warm up on low for only about 10 min. Serve immediately.

Traditional pesto:
– 2 cups fresh basil
– 1/4 cup good quality Parmesan cheese
– 1/3 cup pine nuts
– 1/3 cup olive oil
– 3 garlic cloves
– 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper

Add all your ingredients in your food processor and drizzle oil while blending. Blend until creamy smooth and mix with your cooked noodles of choice.

Live Life Pure's photo.

Little Nuggets

Move over fast food chicken nuggets because these nuggets are worth their weight in gold. Plus did I mention these are MSG free? (an excitotoxin found in ALL fast food nuggets) What exactly is MSG? It overexcites your cells to the point of damaging or killing them, causing brain damage to varying degrees. This can result in triggering or worsening learning disabilities like ADHD, ADD, Anxiety, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and the list goes on and on. Why is this powdery substanceput in our foods? It’s used as a flavor enhancer. So more than likely your nuggets don’t taste that good but because they are using cheap processed ingredients they need these flavor enhancers to trick the brain. This is why they taste so darn good! But how about we take the same time we do running to a fast food joint and just bake up some “clean” flavored nuggets.

These nuggets are a staple in our home. Not only are they delicious but nutritious, but use flax meal which is just ground up flax seeds. No flours just pure omega goodness for your brain, and the kids will never know;) Super easy to make and can last in the fridge for up to five days. But don’t be surprised if they don’t, ours never go past two.

You will need: serves 5 to 6
-4 chicken breasts (preferably organic)
-2 eggs beaten
-1/2 cup milk of your choice
-1 cup flax meal
-1/2 cup Panko crumbs (can be GF)
-1/2 teaspoon salt, paprika, onion powder, parsley and garlic powder
-1/4 teaspoon pepper, chili powder or cayenne powder

Pre-heat the oven to 400

Cut up the chicken in bite size pieces.
Prepare two bowls for your dipping. One bowl has the eggs beaten up with the milk and the second bowl has the flax meal and Panko. In the flax bowl combine all your dry spices and stir.

Take small handfuls of your chicken and dunk them into to milk bath then let them drain a bit before submerging them into the flax meal. I use a large spoon with slits in it. This allows the excess to drain off. Once fully coated, spread them out on a cookie sheet with parchment paper. If foil is all you have, you’ll need to grease it down with a good quality oil. It’s almost like going back to those Shake ‘N Bake days.

Bake for approx 15 to 20 min. depending on how large your pieces are. I keep mine at kids size – this will also allow for a faster bake time. Serve with a large salad or steamed veggies and you’re good to go. Did I mention that these are even favored cold over salads for lunch the next day? Enjoy:)chicken nuggets