Some of My Favorites

Happy Thursday to you all! I hope everyone is having a fabulous week full of happiness.

A quick rewind to Tuesday evening

I had tacos on my mind. I had some pre-cooked pinto beans in the freezer so I grabbed those, defrosted them, and threw them in a pan with sautéed onions, garlic, red pepper, cumin, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. I then added a splash of chicken bone broth to the pan and let it cook out; this helps make the beans more saucy (just don’t let them cook too long after the liquid has cooked out or they will start to get too starchy).

I love cooking a huge batch of beans and freezing them so that they are ready for me whenever I need them. I use canned beans on occasion and am sure to rinse them really well to remove some of the sodium, but I prefer dried beans that I cook myself. That way I know exactly what goes into them.

bean tacos

I used lettuce cups as the taco shells then assembled the bean mixture, shredded cheddar cheese, tomatoes, avocado, and lastly the salsa.

bean tacos

This dinner seriously came together in about 10 minutes and it was SO good as always! Taco night is one of my all-time favorites!


After my Insanity workouts, I often crave a huge fruit and veggie-packed smoothie. Yesterday, I threw together one of my favorites:

  • a large handful of kale
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 Tbsp peanut butter
  • 3/4 scoop of chocolate egg-white protein powder
  • ~1/2-3/4 cup almond milk
  • splash of aloe vera juice

Again, I give full credit to my friend Shannon for this one. I think of her every time I make it. It tastes like a chocolate shake and who doesn’t enjoy a chocolate shake in the morning?! I am totally into it.


I have some exciting news. When it comes to my coffee I am a coffee with cream kind of gal. I enjoy a smooth creamy mug of coffee and as much as I tried to “wean” myself off of the creamer, I just couldn’t get into it. I tried for a good 5-6 months to go au natural, which I would say was a fair shot, but still no dice.

The main reason I wanted to stop with the creamers is because I was not liking the ingredient labels on some of my favorite creamers, namely hydrogenated oils aka trans fat. Not only that, the ingredient labels were way too long and full of unrecognizable words.

I have been on the prowl for a creamer replacement. I tried coconut milk, almond milk, soy creamer, but nothing was giving my coffee that creaminess that I loved and missed so much.

I made a trip to Whole Foods to browse their milk and cream section and I found something that has made me so extremely happy and makes my coffee blend into creamy just the way I like it…


SO Delicious Coconut Milk Creamer in hazelnut flavor. That’s the stuff!


There are a few ingredients that I’m not particularly fond of, but for the most part, I can accept it considering I do a very good job everywhere else in my diet with keeping things clean. What’s great about this creamer is that it’s dairy free and trans fat free!


Until I find my next creamer replacement, I am very happy with this one. Can you count how many times I said cream or creamer or creamy in that last little coffee bit?! Haha.


While I prepared dinner there was some major snackage happening. We have a ginormous bag of carrots because I am a huge carrot eater and lover, so I cracked into that along with some hummus to tide myself over. This has to be up there on the list of my favorite snacks: veggies and hummus. NUM.

snack carrots hummus

Thanks to some food prep earlier in the week, dinner came together in a snap.

In a saucepan I browned up about 1/4 lb of lean ground beef. I then sautéed mushrooms in the same pan as the beef and lastly added no sugar added spaghetti sauce. I let this all blend together, added a few sprinkles of garlic powder and onion powder and let it simmer until everything was cooked and heated through.

In a separate pan I sautéed two minced garlic cloves and then added pre-cooked spaghetti squash. I like to cook the squash in a pan for a little while to help cook out some of the extra liquid and moisture, which helps prevent a super watery plate of spaghetti squash.

Once the squash was heated through I plated it up, ladled on a big scoop of meat sauce, and then sprinkled fresh grated parmesan cheese over the top.

spaghetti squash

Such a comforting and healthy dish, and a very healthy italian dish. Italian food is another one of my favorites!

I’ve had a couple of days of my favorite types of foods. Of course I snacked on some bananas and peanut butter here and there too, so don’t worry, I got those in. That snack is high up there on my favorite foods list. And chocolate. I had to have some dark chocolate. My list of favorite foods is probably a mile long. What can I say? I’m a foodie!

I’m off to take on the day! Go tackle yours too!

What are some of your favorite meal cuisines? Italian? Mexican? American? Etc.


This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Jessie

    Those tacos look delicious. How do you like the egg white protein powder? Also what brand do you use?

    1. Melanie

      I use Jay Robb’s Chocolate Egg White Protein Powder and I really like it!

  2. I love spagetti squash too – I usually add in some spicy turkey sausage to my squash, sauce mix! yum! And I just had thai food for the first time on vacation a few weeks ago, and I am officially in love. Unfortunately there are no thai places in Mankato. . . boo!
    Katie @ running4cupcakes recently posted…Playlist updateMy Profile

    1. Melanie

      What?! Come on, Kato you can do better than that! 😉

  3. I (unfortunately) love ALL types of ethnic foods – Italian, Mexican, Thai, Japanese, Middle Eastern – you name it, I’ll probably eat it and love it 😉 I am glad that I never started using cream in my coffee – I have always enjoyed it black! If I do ever decide that cream is the way to go, I’ll have to check out your coconut creamer. It looks a heck of a lot healthier than the “normal” brands!
    Becky @ Olives n Wine recently posted…No-Spend April Update!My Profile

    1. Melanie

      I love all types of ethnic foods as well! We may just have to meet up for an ethnic dinner sometime!

  4. That smoothie sounds really good! I’ll have to give that combo a try.That coconut creamer looks much healthier than the traditional kind. I’ve never been a big coffee drinker because I have to have SO much cream in order to like it and never felt like it was worth the extra calories.
    Hands down, Italian food is my favorite. Tomatoes, bread, basil, mozzarella…ugh…the list goes on and on! 🙂
    Sarah @ Making Thyme for Health recently posted…Quinoa & Honey Whole-Wheat Pizza DoughMy Profile

  5. I love ethnic foods, I think some of my favorites are Thai, Indian and Mexican. Mexican is the only of these that I have made at home, I find a lot of ethnic foods a but intimidating to cook.
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  6. Lynne McMillan

    I have not tried eating tacos lately so I guess this is a nice idea of making tacos. I like making a dish compared to eating from an establishment because in that way I knew what ingredients I am eating. Smoothies sound great because I love the taste of smoothies but I am not aware of coconut milk creamer. Can I use other milk creamer as an alternative if this is not available?
    Lynne McMillan recently posted…How Much Fish Oil Should a Woman Take Per Day? [video]My Profile

    1. Melanie

      Hi there! The coconut creamer is for my coffee not for the smoothies. 🙂 For the smoothies I just use regular coconut milk, but you could use almond milk or regular cow’s milk if you prefer.

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