WIAW: Summer Staples

Hey guys!!

Wow, so this weekend and past couple of days have just FLOWN by, right? Ugh, if only I didn’t have to work and could just stay at home making variations of
Almond Butter Granola Bars! 😉

Who knows, maybe I’ll win the lottery someday*
*Highly unlikely since I’ve never ever purchased a lottery ticket! Lol

But annnnywho…

Who out there is excited for the new What I Ate Wednesday theme?!

Jenn is absolutely BRILLIANT with these themes! Be sure to head over to Peas & Crayons and let her know how much we all appreciate the awesomeness she puts into this shindig each and every week!

As an outdoorsy-type person living in the south, I’m not exactly a fan of summer, but as a FOODIE…I’m all about it! And thanks to the new “Summer Staples” theme, I can show you guys how this summer’s seasonals have been popping their way into my eats!

So let’s get staplin’! 😉

I had a bit of energy when I got off my night shift Monday so I took advantage of it and hit the gym (I know, after a 1o hour night shift…who am I?). When I got home I knew exactly what I wanted…


But I needed something more…I needed a bit of sweet to go with my savory…

Hey, if cheese and JAM work, why not cheese and berries?

For the record, it most certainly DOES…especially when you use grated pesto jack cheese.

Seriously, I’m drooling all over again!

And of course, I know Jenn has my back when I say, WHAT would summer be without salads?!

I’ve actually had the SAME salad for three days in a row now and I STILL can’t get enough!

Wanna know the secret to a KILLER summer salad?

Well, first…and most importantly…is the bowl/plate you choose…

You should choose a nice deep bowl or an extra wide plate for the best salads…

Preferably something about the size of your face…or larger! 😉

Then, it’s just a matter of steps:

Step 1: Greens
Steep 2: Beans/Grains
Step 3: Protein
Step 5: Sprouts…because let’s face it, a salad’s just not a salad without sprouts!
Step 6: Dressing

You could get all fancy with vinegars, oils, and spices, but me? I’m a minimalist kinda gal…

You just can’t go wrong with salsa, hummus, or especially this kalamata olive bruschetta.
And it’s EVEN better if you stir it up with a little nutritional yeast!

I never met a salad I didn’t like!

But what I love most about the summer months when it comes to food isn’t the sweet summer berries, or the amazingly crisp squash, peppers, and okra…

No, what I love most is a big spoonful of cool and creamy!

And lucky for YOU, I just happen to have a recipe for a delicious chocolate treat!

Dark Chocolate Brownie Protein Pudding

By: Heather Powers

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: N/A

Ingredients (Serves 1)

  • 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1/2 frozen banana, sliced
  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cocoa bean extract
  • 5-7 drops NuNaturals Orange NuStevia (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon xanthan gum (optional but helps with thickening)
  • Orange zest and mini chocolate chips for garnish


1. Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth and creamy.
2. Serve immediately or freeze for 4-6 hours.
3. Top with orange zest and mini chocolate chips.

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Yesterday afternoon, I was craving something cold after a super sweaty workout…my first thought was my Cake Batter Protein Pudding, but something stirred in me when I spotted an orange (leftover from Sunday’s pancake diaster) lying on the counter.

Remember when I said there are only few exceptions that will lead me to choosing chocolate over vanilla? Well, I’ve decided to add the orange and chocolate to that list too!

If you love the combo of citrus and chocolate too but don’t have access to the orange Stevia liquid, try subbing in orange extract or a bit of orange zest (+ sweetener of choice) and then blend with the other ingredients.

I also realize not everyone may have a bottle of this lusciousness lying around, but never fear, I believe it will come out JUST fine without it…and if you feel you need a little something more, just have a little “whoops” when you top with your chocolate chips! 😉

Smooth and creamy, rich chocolately pudding,
with a sweet citrusy burst hidden within…

A few more of these, and I’ll be a chocolate convert in no time! 😉

What are some summer staples that have been making their way into YOUR meals lately?

What’s your favorite flavor to pair with chocolate?

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62 Responses to WIAW: Summer Staples

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