Sunday, July 26, 2015

Easy Salsa Slow Cooker Chicken

I really need to use my slow cooker more often.  It makes for an easy-to-clean and quick meal.  This time I decided to try a recipe that my friend Hannah made.  It was delish and so versatile!   Like stew, you can put whatever you want in it.


-2 chicken breasts (I used partially frozen chicken breasts and 4 chicken thighs, skin off since I was making it for my whole family)
-1 can of drained beans (any kind)
- A handful of baby carrots (because that's the veggie I had)
-1/2 jar of Pace Mild Salsa (I use the 24 oz jar and poured 3/4 of the jar in there because of amount of chicken).  Pace also does not have added sugar.


Place the chicken in the slow cooker.  Pour 1/2 jar of salsa (or homemade) on top of the chicken.  Throw in whatever veggie you have that need to be cooked.  Set it for 4-5 hrs.  About an hour before it is done, pour in the drained can of beans.  Shred the chicken with a fork.  Voila!  It came out so yummy and moist!  I was thrilled.

I sauteed some onions and bell peppers in some water (yes water.  I try to do that when I can instead of using oil).  We used 100% whole wheat tortillas for the wrap, some quinoa for the "rice", topped it with the salsa chicken, shredded cheese and a little avocado...our homemade and delicious burrito.  You can also add a bit of plain greek yogurt as a sour cream substitute.  It really is similar in taste and so much healthier!

My kids (5.5 and almost 3yo) both ate and enjoyed the meal (adjust accordingly for your kids' preferences).  I haven't had a chance to do it yet, but I plan on maybe baking homemade chips from the tortillas, using the same chicken to top it off for homemade nachos.  Enjoy!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

3 Day Refresh?

I posted earlier about doing the 3 Day Refresh, but didn't talk about why.  It's not like I had weight to lose, right?  Well, that's not what it's about.  Prior to starting, I had a few heavy meals for Father's day and my dad's birthday.  Our family also went to eat out at Red Robin's the following weekend.  I chose a chicken wrap, which was super yummy.  BUT I also ordered the sweet potato fries...healthier than regular fries, right?  That's where my head was anyway.  Needless to say, soon after eating the fries, I felt SOOO uncomfortable and bloated.  I felt that way after the other two heavy meals too, and it didn't feel good.  I was lethargic and I had to lay down on the couch because I felt bloated.  My mind space was not where it needed to be.  Even though I felt bad, I felt snacky and wanted more of the same bad foods.  I was just not with it.

So along comes the Refresh.  I had it already, thinking I wanted to try it but was waiting for an appropriate time.  Voila!  The time arrived.  The Vanilla Fresh shake was actually pretty good.  I was expecting super sweet, but it wasn't (might've helped that I added more water to it).  Because it was more diluted, it seemed to have a slight almond flavor to me.  The fiber sweep was gross, even though the flavor was ok.  Mix it fast and then drink it fast.  Otherwise it keeps getting thicker and thicker...think goopy texture.  Bleh!  The green beans recipe from yesterday's post is one of the recipes you're allowed to have at dinner. 

The first day I was hungry.  I didn't know what to expect and part of my attitude about it all was that I didn't want to do it.  I almost gave in and ate a cracker later in the evening because I was hungry after "dinner."  But I told myself it was only 3 days!!!  By Day 2, I was already used to the amount of food, and Day 3 was a breeze.  It isn't very much food, BUT, I didn't feel starved.  I was hungry, sure, but mainly on the first day, and I think it's because my body was use to feeling much fuller than it needed to be.  The shakes, fruits, and healthy fats you were allowed to eat surprisingly kept me nourished even though it was low in calories.

What are my results?  Less bloat, though you can't tell from the pictures...sorry.  You have to just trust me that along with feeling bloated came the unpleasant effects of it too.  Also, I lost 4 pounds!  I wasn't expecting that part at all.  So, does it work?  Yup.  Is it easy?  Nope, but think of all the prep time you're saving by not cooking much.  haha.  It's not bad, but you can do anything for 3 days and the added weight loss is a plus.

Before                                                                                     After

So what is the 3 day refresh?  Its a 3 day cleanse that is designed to help you lose weight, to help you regain control of your nutrition and to give your body that fresh clean slate it needs to continue making healthy lifestyle choices. The Refresh is a calorie restricted 3 day diet but it will not kill your metabolism or harm your body.  You are eating nutrient dense foods that will give your body the proper nutrition that it needs to function properly each day over the 3 day period.

Why Refresh?

  • You need a break from a period of unhealthy eating.
  • You used to eat pretty well but have recently fallen off the wagon and need some help getting back on.
  • You want to jump start healthy eating habits for a new workout program.
  • You want to quickly lose a few pounds for an upcoming event.
  • You've never been a healthy eater, but are ready to kick start better nutrition for the first time.
  • You want your clothes to fit better.
  • You want more energy.
  • You love food and want to be satisfied while you lose weight and get healthier
  • You've tried liquid fasts or other fad diets and they simply don't work.
What does a day look like while refreshing?
  • Water, lots of water!  In addition to the water you drink in your shakes and teas, we recommend you drink at least half your body weight in ounces of filtered water each day.
  • Breakfast:  Shakeology, plus one fruit option
  • Morning Tea:  1 cup of unsweetened herbal or green tea
  • Late Morning:  Fiber Sweep, a digestive health drink
  • Lunch: Vanilla Fresh shake, plus 1 option from the fruit list, 1 option from the vegetable list, and 1 option from the healthy fats list
  • Afternoon snack: 1 option from the vegetable list, and 1 option from the healthy fats list
  • Afternoon tea: 1 cup of unsweetened herbal tea (caffeine free)
  • Dinner:  Vanilla fresh shake, 1 option from the dinner recipes, and 1 cup of organic vegetable broth (optional)
  • Evening tea:  1 cup of unsweetened herbal tea (caffeine free)

What can you expect when refreshing?  

 Its about 900 calories per day but because the shakes and food selections are high in protein and fiber they  help keep you satiated throughout the day.  If you get a little gas or bloating that is a sign that you need to up your fiber level in general.  Fiber promotes satiety, balances blood sugar, promotes cardiovascular health, and keeps your digestive tract functioning.  Can you exercise?  Yes, but only mild to moderate exercise during the 3 day refresh because the program will be more effective if it can focus on cleansing.

Want to learn more about it?  Click the picture below or comment below.