Category Archives: Recipes

Win a Sweet & Healthy NuNaturals Giveaway Package!

Want to win a super sweet healthy treat? Learn more about NuNaturals stevia and enter for your chance to win a NuNaturals giveaway package valued at $70.00!

WIN NuNaturals Stevia!

WIN NuNaturals Stevia!

If you have been following the blog for a while now, you know I am a huge fan of using NuNaturals stevia in my oatmeal, smoothies, and tea. But I’m often asked, what the heck IS stevia and…. is it even good for you? Here’s the inside scoop on stevia and a chance for you to try some for yourself.

What Is Stevia?

Stevia is a plant native to South America. It is part of the sunflower family and its leaves are naturally sweet. In fact, the indigenous people used to chew them for their sweet taste and use them to naturally sweeten beverages. Stevia is unique among food ingredients because has 0 calories and it is 100-300 times sweeter than sugar in the same concentration. It comes in powder or liquid form and can be found in supermarkets or health-food stores.

Is Stevia Good For You?

Actually YES. Stevia is natural, unlike other sugar substitutes. It is NOT an artificial sweetener. It is a real food sweetener! The FDA approved the purified form of stevia as safe to use. Several studies have shown that stevia in its pure form (not processed products like Truvia or PureVia) may actually offer many types of health benefits.  It’s been shown to be safe without containing toxins or producing side effects in those who consume it. And because it’s zero calorie and doesn’t spike blood glucose, it’s a great sweetener for diabetics or others with blood sugar issues.  Recent research suggests it may help to stabilize insulin levels as well, and some studies even show that it can regulate blood pressure. A Japanese study (where stevia is immensely popular) found that stevia can help to prevent plaque buildup on teeth. In addition, stevia (like all plants) contains antioxidants, known to help fight free radicals that can lead to chronic conditions and cancer.

What is the best kind of Stevia to Buy?

I’ve tested at least half a dozen stevia products and found NuNaturals stevia to have the best flavor and price. NuNaturals NuStevia is Non-Bitter tasting, has ZERO calories, and does not effect blood sugar levels. NuNaturals products DO NOT contain aspartame, saccharin, sucralose, high-fructose corn syrup, sugar, soy, yeast, what, milk, synthetics, artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. They are GMO Free,  from sustainable agriculture assisting in making a healthy Earth. NuNaturals products are a safe choice for diabetics, people who follow specific diets (paleo, keto, candida, low carb), and a hit with figure conscious fitness fanatics.

NuNaturals has an extensive line of Stevia products that are 100% natural. I like to use NuNaturals collagen in my oatmeal and enjoy using their pure liquid stevia to sweeten my protein smoothies. I’ve sweetened tea with their peppermint liquid stevia and added fiber to dishes with their Oat Fiber. I’ve also tried their Dutch processed Cocoa powder for sugar free brownies and their Organic Green Banana flour for gluten free baking. The options to use their healthy products are ENDLESS,there’s even an all-star world wide recipe collection that NuNaturals has created online through partnering with healthy living bloggers. 

Here are some of my Favorite Healthy NuNaturals Stevia Recipes:

I have so many great recipes to share, but I’m curious to hear what you want to cook up with NuNaturals Stevia! Want to enter this NuNaturals Giveaway and sweeten your life a little?! Here are the details:

NuNaturals Stevia Giveaway Details:

Who: Four winners from anywhere in the world (THANK YOU, NuNaturals!!)

What: Each winner will receive:

In addition, each of the 4 winners will also receive a FREE BONUS item. The total retail value of each package is $ 70.00!! 

NuNaturals Stevia Products

NuNaturals Stevia Products

Does this Stevia make me look sexy? LOL!! I have no idea why I chose to go "Victoria Secret" pose with NuNaturals, but it's funny.

Does this Stevia make me look sexy? LOL!! I have no idea why I chose to go “Victoria Secret” pose with NuNaturals, but it’s too funny not to share.

That’s a super sweet deal! Here’s how to enter:

  1. Follow @carolinejordanfitness and @nunaturals on INSTAGRAM
  2. I will post the NuNaturals giveaway photo on 7/20.
  3. Double tap and like the giveaway post on INSTAGRAM
  4. Tag a friend in the photo comments on the INSTAGRAM giveaway post

Thats it! 4 lucky winners will be randomly selected to WIN this incredibly generous giveaway to try NuNaturals stevia products. This giveaway will run July 20-26th. Giveaway winners will be announced on July 27th at 8am.  Don’t wait – follow on instagram to double tap and tag a friend! This giveaway package is too sweet to miss out on! I can’t wait to share a little bit of healthy indulgence with you my friends.

Oh and BONUS! NuNaturals has generously extended SPECIAL DISCOUNTS on all orders placed on the NuNaturals website:  www.nunaturals.com for all of my blog readers. Use the DISCOUNT CODE of:  BLG1217  to receive a  -15% DISCOUNT on your entire order. This discount remains EFFECTIVE UNTIL DECEMBER 31, 2017. Online ordering customers may also receive FREE SHIPPING to the CONTINENTAL U.S. on all orders exceeding $ 35.00 after discounts.

I’m so grateful to have partners that take such good care of me and my people. Thank you NuNaturals for the opportunity to share the sweetness online and off. I use NuNaturals stevia daily and stay sweet the healthy way. Looking forward to hearing what you think of my favorite way to sweeten up each day.
Love and smoothies,
Caroline
Disclaimer: Although I received free products from hosting this giveaway, I was not compensated by the company in anyway to write this review. All opinions are my own and based on my general satisfaction with the products. 
My mission is to help you develop a positive relationship to self and exercise that adds to the quality of your life. Check out my list of services, stay connected about upcoming events by subscribing to my email newsletter, or contact me at carolinejordanfitness@gmail.com to discuss ways we can work together and live well.

Other Things To Check Out: 

Easy Vanilla Blueberry Protein Smoothie To Keep You Full All Day.

One of my favorite simple Protein Smoothie recipes that is low in sugar, high in protein, full of real food ingredients, and free of artificial junk. Positive fuel to keep you full all day!

Easy Protein Smoothie

Easy Protein Smoothie

Having a few quick, easy, protein smoothie recipes on hand can be life saving for busy days. That way you can quickly blend up a delicious, nutritious, protein smoothie to have the fuel to be your very best.  But you have to be careful! Not all protein smoothies are good for you, protein smoothies from local gyms and juice shops often carry more added sugar than a dozen donuts. Sorry to say, slugging those back every day won’t get you any closer to your health and fitness goals. You want to make sure your protein smoothie recipe choices are low in sugar, high in protein, full of real food ingredients, and free of artificial junk. This easy vanilla blueberry protein smoothie is one of my fast, healthy favorites. It features 30 grams of premium plant based protein, and is rich in antioxidants, amino acids, and probiotics.  Getting enough protein in your diet controls your appetite, prevents overeating,  and helps you maintain stable blood sugar levels (read: stable energy levels) all day long. This recipe is gluten free, dairy free, vegan, and certified non-GMO (so pretty much a good choice no matter what diet you follow). Drinking this protein smoothie will help build and repair healthy muscles and deliver high quality nutritional support so that you can continue to kick butt in work, wellness, and life.

Pull out your magic bullet blender and mix up this healthy protein smoothie in less than a minute! Let me know how you like the recipe by leaving me a comment below. It always feels good to choose foods that feel good, and this thick protein smoothie will make your body and taste buds happy.

Easy Protein Smoothie

Easy Protein Smoothie

Easy Vanilla Blueberry Protein Smoothie

(serves 1)

Ingredients:

Preparation

  1. Add all the ingredients at once in your blender, blend until smooth, and enjoy!

For more healthy and quick smoothie recipes, check out these posts:

Getting enough protein in your diet helps you maintain a healthy weight, manage stable energy levels, control cravings, and feel your very best.  I hope this easy vanilla blueberry smoothie recipe becomes one you can turn to when life gets busy and you need protein power. Let me know if you try this recipe by leaving me a comment below. Here’s to your health, your happiness, and feeling your very best.

Caroline

My mission is to empower feel good fitness inside and out. I am here to be of service in your wellness and help you get your mind, body, and spirit in shape so you can love your life. Lets work together and live well. Contact me at carolinejordanfitness@gmail.com 

For more feel good fitness inside and out : Check out my book, Balanced Body Breakthrough and get your mind, body, and spirit in great shape so you can love your life.

Rich, Chewy, and Totally Guilt Free Balanced Body Paleo Protein Fudge Recipe

Hi Friends!

Headed to a holiday party and want to bring something nice that tastes naughty? I’ve got the perfect recipe for you.

Last year I was getting ready for a christmas potluck and needed to bring a dessert dish. I started playing around in the kitchen and came up with this healthy fudge recipe using only healthy, whole food ingredients.  Once I realized how easy it was to produce a decadent dessert based on real food it was a game changer. Gone were the days of giving in to cravings and eating sweets made with heavy cream, white sugar, and butter which would leave my stomach in pain and my head pounding! My healthy fudge recipe left me feeling content and satisfied with a body that felt the same. 

I believe the holidays can be enjoyed without leaving you sick, tired, hungover, exhausted, or overdosed on sugar. Sometimes all you need is a little coaching on how you can satisfy your cravings to indulge life while still honoring your health goals.  In my book, “Balanced Body Breakthrough”, I work with you to think outside the box, personalize your approach to health, and find habits that make you feel good inside and out. That includes recipes that taste as good as they feel and I want to share this Balanced Body fudge recipe with you. This fudge encompasses everything I could want in a fudge – tons of nutrients including fiber, vitamins, minerals, natural sweetness, protein, AND that unforgettable chocolatey, hearty, dense, and delicious fudge taste and texture.

Are you drooling yet?

Get ready to be the biggest hit at your holiday event with this rich, chewy, and totally guilt free Balanced Body protein fudge recipe. 

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Rich, Chewy, and Totally Guilt Free Balanced Body Paleo Protein Fudge Recipe.

  • Serves: 24
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients:

Directions:

  • Line a 6×6 pyrex with foil.
  • Melt the coconut oil (microwave for 20s) and mix base ingredients and line the bottom
  • Warm up the nut butter by microwaving for 30s. Stirring, and microwaving for another 30s
  • Blend the fudge ingredients, stopping every 10s to mix with fork. It will get very thick and will start to cool and set fast.
  • Distribute the fudge over the base. Wet your spoon with a bit of water to make this easier as the fudge will be thick and will start to set very fast.
  • Let chill in the fridge for 30 minutes or in the freezer for 5-7.
  • ENJOY!! Bonus fun: experiment with coconut flakes instead of almond, cashew butter instead of almond, vegan chocolate chips, the possibilities are endless!

Nutrition: Calories: 152, Total Fat: 14g, Total Carbohydrate: 6g, Protein: 3g

That’s it, that’s all – no flour, no refined sugars, no chemicals, no additives, no fake sh*t!

Even though this healthy fudge isn’t really “low calorie”, it’s so indulgent you’ll be satisfied from one portion size and won’t end up sidelined with a headache. Remember: not all calories are created equal 🙂

This fudge is gluten free, dairy free, paleo and wellness coach approved. Just good whole food to put you in a really happy mood! Healthy desserts CAN be made, enjoyed, and still taste amazing while feeling just as good as they look. 

What is your favorite kind of fudge? Have you made healthy fudge before? What  ingredients did you use? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!

Hungry for more? get your copy of Balanced Body Breakthrough here and start living your best life now. I hope you get a chance to enjoy some sweetness this holiday season. I am sending love to you.

Happy holidays sweet thing,

Caroline

Other Things To Check Out:

Please SHARE this with your friends on Facebooktwitter, or email. Everyone deserves to be healthy and live a life they love. 

Healthy Rainbow Recipes To Celebrate Pride.

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Healthy Rainbow Recipes

To Celebrate Pride!

Hi Friends,

How’s your weekend going? I hope its been fun and fulfilling. I am still high on life after such an incredible BOOTYcamp event last week.  Big thank you to the product sponsors ZICO Coconut WaterALOHA , and Clearly Kombucha for your generosity. It’s always nice to work with companies/people who believe in what you’re doing and want to genuinely be a part of a cool experience.

So grateful to everyone who took part in making the event such a success and an uplifting, BOOTYlicious experience. My butt loves you. I hope you know how BOOTYful you are inside and out. I’ll be posting an event recap with fun photos (and even funnier stories) on the blog soon, so stay tuned. And even though I’m sore, I already want some more……. For upcoming events, healthy hour monthly meet ups, and training tips to keep your BUTT happy for life, SUBSCRIBE to my email newsletter below:



Since the month of June is LGBT Pride month, I thought it would be fun to share some delicious rainbow recipes with you to celebrate. San Francisco is decked out in rainbow and it’s awesome to live in a city that supports LOVE and equality. June became LGBT pride month to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which occurred in late June of 1969. More recently, the landmark Supreme Court case Obergefell v. Hodges was decided on June 26, 2015, which granted marriage equality to same-sex couples. Try out these healthy rainbow-colored detox recipes to show your support and pride for this historic month.

Rainbow Protein Smoothie

Spring Celebration Smoothie

Recipe from Vega

Serves one

Ingredients

Preparation

  1. Blend 1 serving of Vega One with 1 banana, ½ cup ice, and 1 cup unsweetened almond milk, until smooth
  2. Pour half of smoothie into a glass, keeping the other half in the blender
  3. Add raspberries and blend until smooth
  4. Pour half of remaining smoothie on top of 1stlayer in glass
  5. Add blueberries to remaining smoothie in blender, and blend until smooth
  6. Top off the glass with your final layer of smoothie
  7. Enjoy!

Rainbow Detox Salad

Try this healthy rainbow detox salad when you are looking for a tasty and filling lunch. Low in calories, rich in vitamins, low in carbohydrates, vegan, gluten-free, with plant based protein, and fiber to keep you going throughout the day.

Recipe from ALOHA

Makes 2-4 servings, based on portion size (you will have dressing leftover).

Ingredients

Lemon & Olive Oil Superfood Dressing

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup lemon juice

1 small clove garlic, finely chopped

1 packet of ALOHA Daily Good Greens

1 teaspoon honey

Salad

2 cups chopped kale

1/8 cup chopped mint

1/4 cup cooked quinoa

1/4 cup grilled garbanzo beans

1/4 cup grilled corn

1/4 cup chopped cherry tomatoes

1/4 cup chopped red pepper

1 tablespoon of olive oil

Preparation

In a medium saucepan bring 1/4 cup water to a soft boil. Add 1/8 cup uncooked quinoa. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the water has boiled off, and then set aside.

Heat a frying pan on medium. Add the olive oil, beans, and corn. Grill them until seared. Set aside.

In a large to medium mixing bowl add the kale, mint, tomatoes, and red bell pepper. Top with the grilled quinoa, corn, and garbanzo beans. Serve with the Lemon & Olive Oil Superfood Dressing and enjoy!

Do you have a favorite healthy rainbow recipe? Let me know in the comments below. I’d love to know how you eat the rainbow 🙂

Wishing you a happy pride weekend. Here’s to living life in color and supporting others in doing the same.

In Pride,

Caroline

If you liked this post, please SHARE it with your friends on Facebooktwitter, or email. Everyone deserves to be healthy and live a life they love. 

Other things to check out:

GIVEAWAY. “Thrive Fitness. The Program for Peak Mental and Physical Strength—Fueled by Clean, Plant-Based, Whole Food Recipes.”

Thrive Fitness. Clean, plant based nutrition

Thrive Fitness. Clean, plant based nutrition

I am a partner and brand ambassador for Vega: a premium, clean, plant based nutrition company. Im so grateful to have found Vega whole food plant based nutrition products and thankful for the strength they’ve added to my life. Over the years Ive learned nutrition absolutely has to be a priority if you want to look, feel, and perform your best longterm. When you are working, working out, and living a busy life you absolutely need the right nutritional support.  It can be hard to eat naturally without the right resources. Vega makes it easy to get the REAL FOOD fuel you need to live your best life.

Born from the belief that one should not have to compromise between whole food goodness and fast food convenience, Vega products are developed with Alkaline-forming, plant-based whole foods which help build a platform for optimal health. All of their products are dairy, gluten and soy free, and contain no artificial flavors, colors or sweeteners. The nutrient-dense, high net-gain, alkaline-forming nutrition found in plant-based whole foods and natural health products like those offered by Vega is truly the best building material available for your body.

I love working with the company and love that all of the VEGA products are in sync with my whole food-based, clean eating nutritional philosophy. I feel good knowing I am eating real food when investing in Vega products and getting the most value from my eating as a result. I believe in the company and believe in its mission to support a healthier world through it’s clean, all natural products. 

I also totally have a huge career crush on Vega creator and co-founder Brendan Brazier . Brendan is a former professional Ironman triathlete, a two-time Canadian 50km Ultra Marathon Champion, the creator the Vega award-winning line of whole food nutritional products, and the bestselling author of Thrive. He is also the creator and host of Thrive Forward, a web series he developed to help people take health into their own hands and boost their performance.

Brendan recently published the Second edition of his best selling book, “Thrive Fitness” and Vega sent me a copy to read. The book is fantastic. I’ve highlighted page after page, tried out Brendan’s workouts and exercises, and cooked up some of his delicious performance enhancing recipes. It’s an incredible resource for anyone who wants to improve their fitness, energy, and health. Here’s a little more information and the inside scoop on Brendan’s book from the publishers:

Thrive Fitness

The Program for Peak Mental and Physical Strength—Fueled by Clean, Plant-Based, Whole Food Recipes

Second Edition

By Brendan Brazier

I am forever grateful to Brendan…I have noticed increased energy and more-restful sleep. My desire for sugar and salt is waning.—Hugh Jackman

The Thrive diet feeds your body all the nutrients it needs without empty calories and with minimal stress.—Chicago Tribune

“Vegan” and “athlete” are not terms that people generally think of together, but as professional Ironman triathlete and longtime vegan Brendan Brazier shows in Thrive Fitness, a vegan diet can help enhance performance at any level. In fact, vegan athletes are top competitors in their sports, living healthy and productive lives on—and off—the playing field.

 In the second edition with a foreword by American professional tennis player Venus Williams, Brazier presents his own easy system for total health and fitness, complete with new photos and step-by-step exercises. Since its first publication, Brazier has made significant developments, specifically to training structure and efficiency. He completely reworked the program to be more dynamic, resulting in gains achieved in less time; and, unlike in the first edition, this program can be performed without any gym equipment and can be done at home.

Whether you’re a time-crunched beginner or an experienced athlete, Thrive Fitness will help you:

  • Sculpt strong, lean muscles
  • Reduce body fat
  • Prevent disease and injuries
  • Increase energy
  • Cut sugar cravings
  • Sharpen mental clarity

Thrive Fitness features a complete six-week workout plan and training log, illustrated exercises with step-by-step instructions, the top fifteen foods to fuel workouts, and strategies to boost creativity, productivity, and mental sharpness. Brazier also includes thirty vegan, performance-enhancing recipes like Coconut Lime Curry Chickpea Stir-Fry, Collard Greens Buckwheat Wrap, Pumpkin Seed Pesto, and Frozen Chocolate Brittle, as well as sample menu plans and shopping lists.

Ive read the book cover to cover and loved every word. Its a refreshing read full of resources to support living a vibrant life. Want to know the BEST part? Vega is sponsoring a book giveaway for the Caroline Jordan Fitness community. Enter the giveaway below to win a free copy of Brendan Brazier’s “Thrive Fitness” mailed straight to you.

Heres How To Enter:

  1. Visit and LIKE the Vega Fan page and the Caroline Jordan Fitness Facebook page
  2. Leave me a comment below and tell me why you want to win a copy of Brendan Brazier’s book “Thrive Fitness: The Program for Peak Mental and Physical Strength—Fueled by Clean, Plant-Based, Whole Food Recipes
  3. BONUS POINTS: Share this blog post on twitter or facebook with a tag to @Caroline Jordan Fitness and @vegafanpage In your post or tweet tell me why you want to win a copy of Brendan Brazier’s book “Thrive Fitness: The Program for Peak Mental and Physical Strength—Fueled by Clean, Plant-Based, Whole Food Recipes

The winner will be randomly selected by March 18th and receive their free copy of Thrive Fitness. SHARE this blog post with your friends on Facebooktwitter, or email to increase your chances of winning your free copy of Thrive Fitness. 

Its YOUR time to THRIVE. I believe that with the right resources, information, encouragement, and support you can fulfill your vision of living well. Thank you Vega for helping me fuel a vibrant, healthy, life. Looking forward to sharing some of the workouts and recipes from “Thrive Fitness” with my community and rewarding one lucky reader with a free copy!

Heres to learning, growing, and fueling our full potential now and always. Till next time, keep moving my friends. 

Caroline

Want to learn more about Vega Sport and Vega products? Check them out on the web, like their page on facebook, or follow them on twitter!

Other Things To Check Out This Week:

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My Favorite Thanksgiving Recipes

My brother and I cooking up the Turkey on Thanksgiving.

My brother and I cooking up the Turkey on Thanksgiving.

Before we dive into my favorite Thanksgiving dishes, I have a quick announcement: Its getting CLOSE! I only need to sell 250 copies of my Caroline Jordan Fitness coaching book in order to receive publishing. So far Im at 170 copies sold – 80 copies away from making this dream a reality. With your support, I know this book baby can come to life! I aspire to be a wellness coach that helps you keep your mind, body, and spirit in great shape so that you can LOVE your life. I believe this book will be a great resource in empowering personal and community wellness. Plus, this book makes a great holiday gift, the gift of wellness! Please visit: https://www.inkshares.com/projec…/balanced-body-breakthrough to pre-order your copy. I know this book will help readers live a healthier happier life. I hope to share “Balanced Body Breakthrough” with you in 2016 and am so grateful for your support. 

Cousin Jacque, Sister and Law Amber, and I on Thanksgiving

Cousin Jacque, Sister and Law Amber, and I on Thanksgiving

This weekend Im excited to host a very special “Friendsgiving” with some of my favorite people. Its an opportunity to come together, to celebrate friendship, and to share our personal favorite Thanksgiving recipes. Food tells a story. From childhood memories to holiday celebrations, from the happy moments to the challenging, the food that fills your life with both savory and sweet is part of the recipe that makes you unique. And when you share those recipes with someone, you are in someway sharing a part of yourself.

These recipes are a part of me. They were present at every family Thanksgiving and made with love. My mother’s glazed carrots were my all time favorite and everyone went for seconds on her sweet potato dish. And even though we might only know each other through this blog, I wanted to share them with you dear reader. Because YOU are part of my family. You are what motivates me to keep writing, to keep creating, and to keep doing work with purpose. I want you to know how much you mean to me and how grateful I am for you. Thank you for being a part of my family. Wishing you and your loved ones a very happy Thanksgiving.

Caroline’s Favorite Thanksgiving Recipes (memories made with love)

Making Sweet Potato Pecan Casserole for the Holidays

Making Sweet Potato Pecan Casserole for the Holidays

Sweet Potato Pecan Casserole
Serves 8. Gluten + Dairy Free. Delicious.

Ingredients

Cooking spray
3 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 5 medium), peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1/3 cup honey
1 large egg
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
Kosher salt
1 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup finely chopped pecans

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Mist an 8-inch square baking dish with cooking spray.

Bring a few inches of water to a boil in a pot with a large steamer basket in place. Put the sweet potatoes in the basket, cover and steam until tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the potatoes to a bowl and let cool slightly. Add the honey, egg, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, the nutmeg, ginger and 1/2 teaspoon salt; whip with an electric mixer until smooth. Spread the sweet potato mixture in the prepared baking dish.

Mix the brown sugar, pecans and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a bowl; sprinkle over the potatoes. Bake until hot and beginning to brown around the edges, 40 to 45 minutes.

Nutritional Info Per serving: Calories 160; Fat 4 g (Saturated 1 g); Cholesterol 25 mg; Sodium 180 mg; Carbohydrate 31 g; Fiber 3 g; Protein 3 g

Pomegranate Glazed Carrots

My mom’s famous carrot dish. Sometimes we even serve it at special occasions throughout the year because waiting just for Thanksgiving is too hard. Serves 6. Gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, low sodium

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup pomegranate juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled, cut into 1-inch diagonal slices
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper, freshly ground
  • 1/2 cup California walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup cranberries, dried
  • 1 tablespoon thyme, fresh, chopped

DIRECTIONS

  1. Place juice in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook for 15 minutes or until juice is reduced to 1/4 cup; stir in honey. (Mixture may be prepared several days ahead and stored tightly covered in the refrigerator.)
  2. While glaze is cooking, preheat oven to 400°F. Place carrots, oil, salt, and pepper on a small baking sheet; stir well to coat. Bake for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drizzle glaze over carrots and stir to coat. Bake for 10 minutes more, stirring once or twice.
  3. Stir in walnuts and cranberries and cook for 5 minutes or until carrots are nicely glazed and reach desired tenderness. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with thyme. Recipe may be doubled.

Nutritional Info:

Per Serving: Calories: 259, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Sodium: 133mg, Carbohydrates: 48g, Dietary Fiber: 3g, Protein: 2g

Pear, Pecan, and Cranberry Salad with Maple Vinaigrette. This is my all time favorite festive fall salad. My family makes it every year and I look forward to it more than dessert! (And thats saying a lot 😉 ) 

Serves 6. Gluten free, Dairy Free, HAPPY.

Ingredients:

Vinaigrette

  • ¼ cup real maple syrup or maple-flavored syrup
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup canola or vegetable oil

Salad

  • ⅓ cup pecan halves
  • 8 cups torn mixed salad greens
  • 3 medium pears, peeled, cut into wedges
  • ⅓ cup sweetened dried cranberries

Directions

  1. In small bowl, mix all vinaigrette ingredients except oil with wire whisk. Beat in oil until blended.
  2. Place pecans in 1-cup glass measuring cup. Microwave on High 2 minutes to 2 minutes 30 seconds, stirring every 30 seconds, until browned.
  3. Divide salad greens among 6 serving plates. Arrange pear wedges on greens; sprinkle with pecans and cranberries. Drizzle vinaigrette over salads.

Nutrition Information Per Serving: Calories: 240 Calories from Fat: 120 Total Fat: 14g  Saturated Fat: 1g Trans Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 130mg Total Carbohydrate: 26g  Dietary Fiber: 5g Sugars: 18g  Protein: 2g

There you go! My all time favorite Thanksgiving recipes and an inside look at the food that tells my story. What recipes will you be bringing to Thanksgiving this year? Leave your favorite dish as a comment below, Id love to learn what ingredients make you YOU. 

If you liked this post, please SHARE it with your friends on Facebooktwitter, or email. More great content is headed your way every week to help you live a happy, healthy life!  Thanks for your support and for being a part of the healthy, happy, community online.

Sending lots of gratitude and all my love for a happy, healthy, Thanksgiving,

Caroline

Other Healthy Thanksgiving Posts to Check Out This Week:

 

Balanced Body Healthy Holiday Drink Recipes + A Giveaway

CJordan_9999_215-1Photo Credit Toni Alejandria 

I am a wellness coach and an advocate for BALANCE. I believe in living fully and savoring all the joys life brings. I don’t believe in deprivation diets, quick fixes, extremes, or “surviving” through life with strict regulations. Depriving yourself to an extreme isn’t sustainable long-term and neither is indulging 24-7. When you don’t let yourself enjoy the things you love, you end up craving them more. You want to find a healthy diet that keeps your body nourished and your spirit satisfied. A way of eating that doesn’t just allow you to achieve a one time goal, but keeps you fueled with energy for a long and vibrant life. This is where learning the practice of moderation comes in. Moderation allows you to enjoy some of the sweeter (or more savory) things in life without overdoing it so you don’t sabotage your efforts to maintain healthy habits. By indulging wisely and treating yourself once in a while, it actually makes it easier to stay on track and maintain balance.

Life is meant to be enjoyed and personalizing ways of enjoying your life in health will allow you to thrive. Sometimes all you need is a little coaching on different ways you can remix your health habits to have them help you. In my coaching book, “Balanced Body Breakthrough”, I work with you to customize your approach to living well and adopt healthy habits that help you stay on track, find moderation + balance, and maintain a feel-good life. 

Are you an “all or nothing” type of eater? Have you tried every diet out there only to find yourself right back where you started (or worse, 5 pounds heavier)? Do you feel frustrated, confused, or defeated? Are you exhausted from the fight of trying to eat well and exercise “right”? It doesn’t need to be a struggle, you can find a healthy balance that works for you. In my book I give you strategies for success and help you customize your wellness to work with you to enable you to reach your full potential.

The “Body” section of my book, provides you with many of my favorite feel good recipes that will satisfy cravings and give energy for your life. I want to share a few of the book beverage recipes with you, so you can decide if you are hungry for more. These recipes are the perfect healthy indulgences for the upcoming holiday season. Whip up a few of these balanced body beverages in your kitchen and let me know what you think. Notice what happens in your life when you make the choice to feel good.

Sample Balanced Body Breakthrough Beverage Recipes

Vega Pumpkin Pie Smoothie. Enjoy pumpkin pie flavors all year round with this pumpkin pie smoothie recipe. Beautifully smooth and creamy rich, this is a healthy smoothie recipe to keep in your arsenal every day of the year! Who said that dessert can’t be part of a healthy diet?

Ingredients

Preparation

  1. Add all ingredients to blender, blend until smooth and enjoy! Tip: Freeze extra pumpkin puree in mounds on wax paper ahead of time, then place in bags and store in the freezer for pumpkin pie smoothies all year long.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 cup Calories: 341.9 Fat: 8.1g Saturated fat: .1g Unsaturated fat: 2.6g Carbohydrates: 51.1g Sugar: 18.6g Sodium: 363.4mg Fiber: 16.6g Protein: 20g
CJordan_9999_296-1
Healthy Hot Chocolate and Healthy Chocolate Milk (Serves 1)
A sugar free way to curb your sweet tooth in a healthy way
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice)
  • 1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Stevia to taste (I use 10 drops of NuNaturals liquid stevia)
Hot Chocolate Directions:

Heat milk in the microwave in a microwave safe mug for 2 – 2 1/2 minutes (depending on your preference) or place in a small pot on the stove on medium and heat slowly until it starts to bubble. In the mug of milk, add cocoa powder and stevia. Use a spoon to stir quickly until cocoa has dissolved. Add more stevia if desired. Enjoy immediately.

Chocolate Milk Directions:

Place milk, cocoa powder, and stevia in a blender. Blend on high for 15 seconds. If you like a lot of froth, blend for as much as 30 seconds (no longer or milk will get warm). Pour into a glass and add more stevia if desired. Enjoy immediately.

Nutrition Information:
Serving size: 1 cup Calories: 52  Fat: 4.2 Saturated fat: 0.7 Carbohydrates: 4.9  Sodium: 181 mg Fiber: 2.8  Protein: 2.1

To help you stay healthy during the holidays, I am hosting a Balanced Body Breakthrough GIVEAWAY! Entering the giveaway will allow you to cook up the recipes above and try the NuNaturals high quality ALL NATURAL stevia sweetener for FREE. The Vanilla flavored stevia makes GREAT smoothies and baked goods, and the hot cocoa is the perfect treat for the holidays that wont pack on extra pounds. The to-go packets are perfect to throw in your purse for on the go use for if you find yourself out at work, or coffee with a friend and don’t have a healthy sweetener choice. Just pop out a packet and you’re good to go.

As a healthy holiday gift to you and to support the “Balanced Body Breakthrough” kickstart campaign, NuNaturals has generously offered a sweet giveaway package for Caroline Jordan Fitness readers. I’m able to award FOUR winners who will each receive the following:

You can read more about NuNaturals in this post. Ive done my research – this sweet treat IS actually good for you! I want to help you savor the sweetness of the holidays. Heres how you can enter:

How To Enter the Super Sweet Holiday Giveaway:

  1. Visit and LIKE the NuNaturals Facebook page and the Caroline Jordan Fitness Facebook page.
  2. Support my “Balanced Body Breakthrough” book kickstart campaign by visiting my InkShares page and pre-ordering your copy for $9.99 : https://www.inkshares.com/projects/balanced-body-breakthrough
  3. I need to reach the goal of 750 pre-order copies to have my book published! Im almost to 200…. I SO appreciate your support! 
  4. Share your “Balanced Body Breakthrough” book purchase on twitter or facebook with a tag to @Caroline Jordan FitnessIn your post or tweet tell me one way you practice BALANCE in your life and why you want to win “Caroline Jordan Fitness’s Super Sweet Holiday giveaway”!

THATS IT! Spend $9.99 and get $54.00 worth of goodies in return. Super Sweet Giveaway! So what are you waiting for? Get those entries in! FOUR of you will win!

Giveaway Rules:
* Contest is entry to contestants WORLDWIDE. Be aware no PO boxes are acceptable for shipping, so if you enter, please have a physical location where it can be shipped if you win. All ages welcome. Contest ends Sunday November 15th, 2015  at 11:59 p.m. PST. Four winners will be randomly chosen and announced Monday, November 16th, 2015 by 9 a.m. PST. Winners will also be notified via email by Monday, November 16th, 2015 by 9 a.m. PST*

Your body wants you to eat well. My “Balanced Body Breakthrough” book will give you the tools (and recipes!) to personalize your diet and have it HELP you instead of frustrate you.  Eating healthy foods makes you feel better and have more energy, along with reducing digestion problems and mood swings. Healthy eating doesn’t mean deprivation, tasteless, or time consuming. It can be delicious, nourishing, and balanced with foods you love. Eating for energy means eating clean, eating regularly, and eating light. Be moderate with alcohol, stay away from emotional eating, and MOVE more! Within a short period of time your days and nights will not only be filled but fulfilled. Take action now: whip up one of the recipes above. Satisfy your holiday beverage sweet tooth with a nutritious and delicious choice.

Cheers to your health,

Caroline

Other Things To Check Out This Week:

Eat the Rainbow. Clean Eating Acai berry bowls from Hawaii!

My green acai bowl from lanikaijuice in hawaii : "the mana green bowl" with kale, spinach, orange, mango, papaya, chia seeds, blueberries, and extra added protein.

My green acai bowl from lanikai juice in hawaii : “the mana green bowl” with kale, spinach, orange, mango, papaya, chia seeds, blueberries, and extra added protein.

Eat the Rainbow with this new trend in the Healthy Eating World: The Acai Bowl!

Acai berries (pronounced ah-sai-ee) are the fruits of acai palm trees, which are mostly grown in Brazil’s Amazon rain forest. These small, dark-purple berries pack a nutrient punch with a whole host of antioxidants, amino acids and essential fatty acids. Named by the Brazilians as the “Beauty Berry,” acai berries truly do the body good from the inside out, with health benefits such as increased energy levels, a boosted immune system, improved metabolic function and better hair and skin. Not only is this superfood incredibly good for you, but it’s also delicious (it kind of tastes like dark chocolate!).

One of the most popular ways to eat the acai berry is by blending it up into an acai bowl. An acai bowl is an acai berry smoothie in a bowl. It’s a combination acai with other frozen fruit and healthy ingredients blended until thick and frosty. This acai blend is then poured into a bowl served with of fun and delicious toppings. Acai bowl blends are thick, creamy, and eaten with a spoon like healthy ice cream. The topping combinations are endless and include fresh fruit, granola, nuts, seeds and more. I dont know about you, but anything edible that includes toppings is an instant win in my book 😉

One of the most popular places where acai bowls are enjoyed outside of South America is Hawaii. I had my first acai bowl on vacation in Oahu last week and was instantly in love with its fresh flavor and refreshing taste.  I’ve taken some inspiration from the island to create a few recipes below. I also reached out to one of my favorite healthy living nutrition brands ALOHA for a few of their recipe ideas as well! The result? Four amazing acai bowls to sample! Dont blame me when you get addicted….. keep reading for my “How to Build an Acai Bowl Guide” and fun, delicious recipes to add to your healthy life.

My traditional acai berry bowl from Goofy Cafe and Dine in Oahu, Hawaii

My traditional acai berry bowl from Goofy Cafe and Dine in Oahu, Hawaii

How-to Build an Acai Bowl Guide:

First Buy Acai. Acai comes in a few forms. Frozen acai smoothie packs, acai juice, and acai powder. My favorite way to enjoy acai is via the frozen smoothie packs because you can easily blend up frosty smoothies and creamy purple acai bowls. When choosing acai you can either buy 100% acai or a “blend” product. Here are a few brands and options for frozen smoothie packs.

      • Sambazon: This sweetened acai smoothie pack contains energizing guarana. To taste, the pack is quite sweet, and almost tastes like a popsicle. The acai flavor is a bit less bold due to the added sugar that “waters down” the acai content a bit. The color is a light purple rather than deep purple. Delicious, but a bit less potent than 100% acai packs. Note: The Sambazon brand has a wide variety of delicious acai juices worth trying and testing out as well! Great company and you can find them in many stores which is even better. They also have an acai powder that is very high quality. Check out all Sambazon Products on Amazon
      • Acai Roots: This pure premium acai is 100% wild grown and organic too! Again, 100% acai, unsweetened, nothing added so you get a super deep purple color and rich caco-berry acai flavor. Start with Acai Roots Organic Acai Pure Powder, 16-Ounce Pouch
      • Amafruits. Very high quality and deep purple color. Another great option for frozen acai freezer packs. Pure Acai Berry Puree Smoothie Packs
      • Acai Powder. You can also buy acai powder. I like the wonderful Navitas Naturals brand of acai. It is super easy to add to smoothies to boost the flavor and nutritional content. Try these: Navitas Naturals Organic Acai Powder, 8-Ounce Pouches

Second Build Your Bowl:

Blend. First blend together two acai smoothie packs, a generous splash of liquid and (optionally) some frozen fruit. I like to add one fresh or frozen banana. Vanilla almond or soy milk tastes delicious as the liquid base of an acai bowl. Or you can try coconut milk for a richer, creamier tropical flavor. Blend the ingredients in a high speed blender until creamy, but still very thick and frosty.

Texture troubleshooting:

Too thin? To prevent a too-thin texture, add the liquid in very small amounts, gradually. Just until the blend starts churning.

Too thick? If you have trouble with a “too thick” blend, simply keep adding liquid slowly until things smooth out. You could also add in vegan yogurt or even a scoop of silken tofu. Taste test the blend before serving. You can add sweetness (if needed) via agave or maple syrup, fruit like bananas or even using a more sweetened non-dairy milk base.

Chocolate spin:
Want a super chocolate-y flavor? Blend 1-3 tsp cacao powder into your acai blend. Or blend in raw cacao nibs. You could even use a chocolate protein powder if you’d like.

Pour. After your acai is thick, frosty and blended, spoon it out into a bowl. Tips: Use a chilled bowl to help keep your acai from melting too quickly! – Or add some frozen fruit to the bottom of the bowl (frozen wild blueberries or frozen organic strawberries perhaps) to prevent quick melting as you eat.

Top. Start adding toppings! Nuts, cacao nibs, a splash of coconut milk, coconut shreds, fresh berries, sliced fresh banana, chopped nuts, chia seeds, ground flax seeds or even a spoonful of almond butter. There are so many options for toppings. Choose healthy foods you have on hand and fresh fruits that are in season or have a tropical vibe.

Third ENJOY! Serve right away and eat with a spoon! Here are a few recipes to get your creative cooking juices flowing:

Hawaii 5-0 Rainbow Bowl
Serves: 1
Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Total time: 15 minutes

Using frozen fruit in the acai purée helps to achieve a thick consistency, but avoid adding ice as it can water down the flavors. For the topping, fresh fruit works best, but frozen and thawed can also work in a pinch.

INGREDIENTS:

ACAI PURÉE

  • 1/2 small banana
  • 1 100-g (3.5-oz) pack frozen unsweetened acai berry pulp (TRY: Acai Berry Puree with Guarana Smoothie Packsbefore opening your acai pack, run pack under water for 5 seconds to thaw and break the frozen pulp into smaller pieces.)
  • 1/2 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk

TOPPINGS

  • 1/4 cup blueberries
  • 1/2 kiwi, peeled and sliced or chopped
  • 1/2 small banana, sliced
  • 1/4 cup peeled and chopped pineapple or mango
  • 1/4 cup strawberries, sliced
  • 1/4 cup granola, optional
  • Drizzle of raw honey, optional

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Prepare acai purée: In a blender, add banana, acai pulp, strawberries, blueberries and a splash of milk. (TIP: Add to blender in that order as adding softer ingredients first makes it easier on your blender blades.) Blend on low until larger chunks are broken down, then gradually increase speed, adding a splash of milk at a time, and stopping to scrape down sides of blender if needed. When ingredients have mostly come together and all of milk has been added, blend on high for 15 to 20 seconds more.
  2. Add toppings: Pour acai purée into a bowl and arrange toppings in stripes of their respective color to form a rainbow: from left to right, arrange blueberries, kiwi, banana, pineapple and strawberries. Sprinkle with granola and drizzle with honey (if using).

Nutrients per serving (1 bowl): Calories: 327, Total Fat: 9 g, Sat. Fat: 2 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4 g, Carbs: 63 g, Fiber: 11 g, Sugars: 37 g, Protein: 4 g, Sodium: 106 mg, Cholesterol: 0 mg

Green Tropicalada Bowl
Serves: 1
Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Total time: 15 minutes

For an added health and color boost, try adding about 1 teaspoon of spirulina to the acai purée.

INGREDIENTS:

ACAI PURÉE

  • 1 cup fresh spinach
  • 1 cup fresh kale
  • 1/2 small banana
  • 1 100-g (3.5-oz) pack frozen unsweetened acai berry pulp (TRY: Acai Berry Puree with Guarana Smoothie Packsbefore opening your acai pack, run pack under water for 5 seconds to thaw and break the frozen pulp into smaller pieces.)
  • 1/2 cup frozen mango chunks
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (TIP: Instead of almond milk, you can substitute a mix of ¼ cup coconut milk combined with ¼ cup water.)

TOPPINGS

  • 1/2 small banana, sliced
  • 2 tbsp peeled and chopped pineapple
  • 1/4 cup granola, optional
  • 1 to 2 tbsp shredded unsweetened coconut
  • Drizzle of raw honey, optional

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Prepare acai purée: To a blender, add spinach, kale, banana, acai pulp, mango and a splash of milk. (TIP: Add to blender in that order as adding softer ingredients first makes it easier on your blender blades.) Blend on low until larger chunks are broken down, then gradually increase speed, adding a splash of milk at a time, and stopping to scrape down sides of blender if needed. When ingredients have mostly come together and all of milk has been added, blend on high for 15 to 20 seconds more.
  2. Add toppings: Pour acai purée into a bowl, then add toppings and drizzle with honey (if using).

Nutrients per serving (1 bowl): Calories: 344, Total Fat: 13 g, Sat. Fat: 6 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4 g, Carbs: 55.5 g, Fiber: 10 g, Sugars: 31 g, Protein: 8 g, Sodium: 153 mg, Cholesterol: 0 mg

And a few to try from the amazing people at ALOHA, one of my favorite healthy living nutrition partners. The ALOHA way is a source of happiness!

Fit for a Princess Pink Acai Bowl

In honor of Princess Charlotte, I am sharing an açaí bowl from The Whole Tara. This is the most refreshing and energizing breakfast choice bursting with antioxidants and nutrients.

Ingredients

1 banana frozen

1/2 cup blueberries

1/2 cup raspberries

1/2 cup blackberries

1/2 cup coconut milk

1 tablespoon almond butter

1 handful spinach

1 tablespoons açaí powder

1 packet ALOHA Daily Good Berry (Im obsessed with these little pouches of antioxidants and add them to everything I can smoothies, oatmeal, and more. Use the code “CAROLINEJORDANFITNESS” at checkout for a great discount on these superfood daily greens pouches)

Oats for topping

Preparation

Blend all the ingredients, except the toppings, on high speed until smooth and creamy. A thick frozen yogurt consistency is best.

Top with oats or any fruit, nuts, and seeds. Serve and enjoy!

Get more recipes from Tara at TheWholeTara.com. Follow @TheWholeTara Instagram.

Acai Banana Super Antioxidant Bowl

Ingredients 1 frozen unsweetened acai pack (you’ll need to run it under water for a few seconds and break it up into pieces before blending)1/2 frozen banana (Make sure you don’t freeze your bananas until they’re quite ripe – it means that your acai bowl will be naturally sweeter!)1/2 cup frozen berries

1 packet ALOHA Daily Good Berry Blend (Use the code “CAROLINEJORDANFITNESS” at checkout for a great discount on these superfood daily greens pouches)

1/2 cup coconut almond milk blend*

1/2 sliced fresh banana

1 tbsp chopped almonds

1 tsp bee pollen

Honey or agave to taste

Preparation

1. Blend together the frozen acai pack, frozen banana, frozen berries, Daily Good, and coconut almond milk. I use a food processor, but a blender should work well too, you might just need to add a little bit more liquid

2. Top with 1/2 sliced (not frozen!) banana, 1 tbsp chopped almonds and 1 tbsp bee pollen

3. If you like it on the sweeter side, drizzle a tiny bit of honey or agave on top!

*I make my own coconut almond milk, but it can be purchased in most major health food stores

DIY Coconut Almond Milk

Ingredients

1 cup raw and organic almonds

1 cup dried, unsweetened organic coconut flakes

5 cups of filtered or best quality spring water

1 tsp cinnamon

Preparation

1. Soak the almonds overnight in a few cups of water to soften and to release phytic acid (an enzyme inhibitor that can interfere with digestion)

2. Strain and rinse the nuts until water runs clear.

3. Cover the coconut with two cups very not (but not boiling) water for about 10 minutes, until coconut softens

4. Add coconut and its water to a blender with the nuts, cinnamon and two more cups of water and blend (If your blender is big enough you can add all three additional cups; mine isn’t so I add the last cup of water at the end)

5. Strain through a nut bag (squeeze HARD to get out all of the water) into a container, add one more cup of water and shake to combine. You can use the ground almonds and coconut to make almond coconut meal if you desire!

The nut milk will last about four to five days in the refrigerator. It will separate, so before use just make sure to shake it up before you use it!

Follow Julia Taylor-Brown on Instagram and Twitter

*** For all of the above, feel free to sub in different nut milks, add in a scoop of nut butter or protein powder for added protein, or sprinkle in boosters such as bee pollen and get creative with your toppings! That is the best part after all 😉

After all that reading Im seriously craving an acai bowl! Have you tried acai bowls? What is your favorite combination of toppings? Leave your thoughts as a comment below, Id love to hear from you! And as always, if you enjoyed this post SHARE it with your friends on Facebooktwitter, or email. More great content is headed your way every week to help you live a happy, healthy life! 

Now off to blend up a bowl of goodness,

Caroline

Other Things to Check Out This Week:

  • I’ve been nominated for 80’s Prom Queen! (yes seriously lol). Help me support the Gaurdsmen and raise funds for at risk Bay Area youth. 100% of your donations go directly to the cause. Not only that but the nominee that raises the most dollars in donations gets to be crowned Queen of the court! Thank you for your support and totally awesomeness. Please share this link:   https://www.crowdrise.com/SF80sProm/fundraiser/carolinejordan 
  • Teaching Fitness 101. Questions to consider before starting your fitness career. 
  • Have you tried ALOHA healthy superfood chocolate? Peruvian fair-trade organic cacao combined with nutritious superfood greens. Indulging in your chocolate craving has never tasted this amazing. Want to taste some for yourself? Enter the code: “CAROLINEJORDANFITNESS” at: https://aloha.com/home for 10% off your superfood chocolate!

Raw Coconut Chocolate Almond Treats and a Super SWEET NuNaturals Giveaway!

NuNaturals Logo Helping 4 x 4

VALENTINES holiday is almost here! Want to sweeten it up a bit?

Whether you follow specific diet, or just want to reduce the amount of white sugar in your life, you’ll want to check out STEVIA, a fabulous natural sweetener and a healthy alternative to sugar. Stevia, is an herb 300 times as sweet as sugar with a glycemic index (GI) of 0.

Stevia is a plant native to South America. It is part of the sunflower family and its leaves are naturally sweet. In fact, the indigenous people used to chew them for their sweet taste and use them to naturally sweeten beverages. Stevia is unique among food ingredients because it doesn’t add calories. Stevia has no calories, and it is 100-300 times sweeter than sugar in the same concentration. It comes in powder or liquid form and can be found in supermarkets or health-food stores.  Stevia sometimes has a slightly bitter, licoricey aftertaste that not everyone likes. 

Can something THAT sweet be good for you? Actually YES. Stevia is natural, unlike other sugar substitutes. It is NOT an artificial sweetener. It is a real food sweetener! The FDA approved the purified form of stevia as safe to use. Several studies have shown that stevia in its pure form (not processed products like Truvia or PureVia) may actually offer many types of health benefits.  It’s been shown to be safe without containing toxins or producing side effects in those who consume it. And because it’s zero calorie and doesn’t spike blood glucose, it’s a great sweetener for diabetics or others with blood sugar issues.  Recent research suggests it may help to stabilize insulin levels as well, and some studies even show that it can regulate blood pressure. A Japanese study (where stevia is immensely popular) found that stevia can help to prevent plaque buildup on teeth. In addition, stevia (like all plants) contains antioxidants, known to help fight free radicals that can lead to chronic conditions and cancer.

Thats where NuNaturals (and this week’s Valentines giveaway) come in. I tested at least half a dozen stevia products and found NuNaturals stevia to have the best flavor and to be reasonably cost-effective.

NuNaturals has an extensive line of Stevia products that are 100% natural. They have pure Liquid Stevia in several flavors (like peppermint, lemon, chocolate, vanilla and orange), NuStevia White Stevia Powers, NuStevia No Carbs Blend Stevia Powder, and their newest products- Simple Syrups and Cocoa Syrups. NuNaturals products DO NOT contain aspartame, saccharin, sucralose, high-fructose corn syrup, sugar, soy, yeast, what, milk, synthetics, artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. They are GMO Free,  from sustainable agriculture assisting in making a healthy Earth.

NuNaturals NuStevia is Non-Bitter tasting, has ZERO calories, and does not effect blood sugar levels so it is safe for diabetics and figure conscious fitness fanatics. I like to use NuNaturals in my oatmeal and enjoy flavoring my beverages with it too. The options to use it are ENDLESS, theres even an all-star world wide recipe collection that NuNaturals has created online through partnering with healthy living bloggers. To help you celebrate Valentines day, I thought I’d give you one of my favorite HEALTHY, sweet, no-guilt recipes to try featuring NuNaturals stevia. 

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Caroline’s Raw Coconut Chocolate Almond Treats

These are really fun and easy to make. Healthy enough for a pre-workout bite but indulgent enough for a valentines treat!

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup almond butter
  • 1 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/4 tsp NuNaturals Vanilla NuStevia
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/3 cup + 4 tbsp unsweetened almond milk 
  • unsweetened shredded coconut (optional)

Directions:

  1. Melt almond butter in medium saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Remove from burner; add in unsweetened cocoa powder and Vanilla NuStevia, and stir until smooth.
  3. Stir in coconut flour and almond flour (mixture will be crumbly), then add almond milk until fully combined.
  4. Using a tablespoon, scoop out dough and roll into balls using your hands and place on baking sheet lined with wax paper. Repeat until all dough has been used (optional: roll balls in unsweetened coconut flakes).
  5. Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes to set.

Enjoy!!!

As a HAPPY VALENTINES gift to you, NuNaturals has generously offered a sweet giveaway package for Caroline Jordan Fitness readers. I’m able to award FOUR winners who will each receive the following:

NuStevia Cocoa Syrup NuStevia MINT COCOA NuStevia 50 Packets Top Angle Liquid Cherry Vanilla

Entering the giveaway will allow you the chance to try this high quality ALL NATURAL sweetener for FREE. The Cherry Vanilla flavored stevia makes GREAT smoothies and baked goods, and the peppermint is just good in anything ranging from homemade healthy candies, tea, coffee, and hot cocoa. The to-go packets are perfect to throw in your purse for on the go use for if you find yourself out at work, or coffee with a friend and don’t have a healthy sweetener choice. Just pop out a packet and you’re good to go!

How To Enter:

  1. Visit and LIKE the NuNaturals Facebook page and the Caroline Jordan Fitness Facebook page.
  2. Share this blog post on twitter or facebook with a tag to @Caroline Jordan Fitness and @NuNaturals . In your post or tweet tell me why you want to win “Caroline Jordan Fitness’s Super Sweet NuNaturals Valentines giveaway”!

THATS IT! So what are you waiting for? Get those entries in! FOUR of you will win! 🙂

Giveaway Rules:
 * Contest is entry to contestants WORLDWIDE. Be aware no PO boxes are acceptable for shipping, so if you enter, please have a physical location where it can be shipped if you win. All ages welcome. Contest ends Sunday February 15th, 2014  at 11:59 p.m. PST. Four winners will be randomly chosen and announced Monday, February 16th, 2014 by 9 a.m. PST. Winners will also be notified via email by Monday at 9 a.m. PST, February 16th 2014.  * 
BONUS SPECIAL DISCOUNT for Caroline Jordan Fitness readers :
*Ive got an Exclusive BONUS for you! If you want to order any NuNaturals products, visit their website where you can get a ONE TIME special discount and free shipping over $35 for all U.S residents, however they ship worldwide to anyone. 
* This is a great time to stock up on your favorite stevia products, healthy baking supplies, and other goodies. They have a HUGE library of healthy recipes that wont damage your diet and are fun to experiment with 🙂 Check out  the NuNuturals website and use this code at checkout: BLG0615  to receive 15% DISCOUNT on your ENTIRE ORDER. This discount remains  EFFECTIVE UNTIL JUNE 30, 2015.

Whats one sweet you’ll be enjoying this Valentines Holiday? Cant wait to hear what you think of stevia!

As always, if you liked this post, be sure to share it with your friends on Facebooktwitter, or email. Join the community online and get the support you need to live a healthy, happy life you love.

Wishing you all a super sweet Valentine’s Day full of love,
Caroline
Disclaimer: Although I received free products from winning the giveaway, I was not compensated by the company to write this review. All opinions are my own and based on my general satisfaction with the products. 
Other Things To Check Out This Week:

Recipes and Workouts for a WINNING Superbowl Sunday!

Want to have a healthy Superbowl? Read my healthy Superbowl guide for winning recipes and a workout to help you get game day ready and feel your best.

Want to host a healthy Superbowl sunday? Read on for my guide on how to host a healthy Superbowl party.

Sharing time with people you enjoy, delicious food, and unforgettable commercials – the Superbowl is always a good time. But unfortunately, along with the fun of the party comes lots of calories and sitting (not really a winning combination).  According to an article in the USA TodaySuper Bowl parties are second to Thanksgiving when it comes to the number of calories consumed.  If we are not careful, we could eat our daily intake of calories, doubled, during one super bowl game.

DO NOT FEAR!!!!

I have created a healthy superbowl guide to help you. Below are my choice football party recipes and workout videos to get you game day ready. You might be surprised how delicious choosing a healthier superbowl celebration is and you’ll feel so good you’ll have ample energy for the after parties.  With these resources you can prepare a game day plan that wins all around. Have fun, be safe, and may the best team win! TOUCHDOWN!

Healthy Superbowl Guide.

Healthy SuperBowl Recipes.

Plan ahead and cook up a few nutritious recipes so that you have something healthy to serve at your party. Here are a few of my favorites:

Healthy Superbowl Crispy Kale Chips

Ditch the Doritos and put out a bowl of these (healthy) bad boys instead. To make them, simply wash kale, dress with olive oil and a bit of sea salt, and roast in the oven until crunchy and crispy.

Ingredients

  • 1 large bunch of kale (I used the curly kind)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • sea salt

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
  • Wash kale, remove the inner rib or stem, and tear into chip-size pieces. Make the pieces a little larger than you want the chips because they will shrink.
  • The kale must be thoroughly dried. I ran it through a salad spinner, laid it out on paper towels for 5 minutes, and then ran it through the spinner once more.
  • Put the kale pieces in a gallon plastic baggie and add the olive oil. “Massage” the kale to ensure that each piece has a coating of oil.
  • Arrange the kale in a single layer on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper (or you can place them right on the sheet). You may need a to use more than one sheet or bake in batches.
  • Sprinkle with sea salt. Use a bit less than you think you need because the kale shrinks and the salt intensifies.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes, until the kale is crisp and slightly browned.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

If the chips last more than 5 minutes (mine never do) you can store them for 2 days in an airtight container or bag. Make sure they are cooled thoroughly before storing.

Healthy Superbowl Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Rosemary  ( adapted from FeedMePhoebe)
Makes 2-4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 large sweet potato (about 1 pound)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons loosely packed fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Toss the sweet potatoes in a large mixing bowl with the olive oil, rosemary, salt, and paprika until well incorporated.

3. Arrange the sweet potatoes on the baking sheet in an even layer. Bake in the middle of the oven for 20 to 30 minutes, redistributing once during the cooking process, until browned and crispy. Allow to cool slightly – they will get even crisper and firmer as they come to room temperature.

Serve the fries alongside ketchup, lemon aioli, and perhaps a turkey burger, if you’re feeling frisky.

Healthy Superbowl Root Vegetable and Black Bean Chili (Gluten/Dairy Free from FeedMePhoebe)
Makes 10 servings

This chili is the perfect earthy blend of sweet and spicy. If you want to get even more rich flavor out of the vegetables, roast them until they are nice and caramelized and then add them to the stew. You’ll cut down on your stove-top cook time, and the extra step is worth it. If you can’t find chile negro any mild dried chili will work here.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces dried chile negro
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • Olive oil
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • 4 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • Sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons ancho chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 3 28-ounce cans fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and diced
  • 4 small parsnips, peeled and diced
  • 4 cans black beans, rinsed and drained

1. Place the chiles in a bowl and submerge in boiling hot water. Soak for at least 20 minutes, up to an hour. Remove the chiles from the water, reserving the liquids. Rinse off the seeds and skin and discard along with the stems. Place the cleaned chiles in a small food processor along with 1/2 cup of roughly chopped cilantro stems, the garlic, and 1/2 cup of soaking liquids. Puree until you get a fine paste, adding more liquid as necessary.

2. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large lidded Dutch oven over a medium-high flame. Saute the onion and carrots until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the chili powder, cumin, oregano, and 1 teaspoon of salt. Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. You want the spices to get nice and toasted. Carefully pour in the tomatoes and bring to a simmer.

3. Add the sweet potatoes, parsnips, black beans, black chile paste, and remaining soaking liquid. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer, adding one or two cups of water if necessary. You want a soupy consistency, as the chili will thicken as it simmers.

Simmer, partly covered for 20 minutes, until the potatoes and parsnips are tender. Season with salt and cayenne pepper to taste. Simmer 5 minutes more. Ladel the chili in bowls and serve!

Healthy Superbowl Happy Tummy Gluten and Dairy Free Chocolate Chip Cookies (paleo friendly!)

Ingredients:

  1. Grease the baking sheet. Mix the almond flour and baking soda together.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a separate bowl, mix together eggs, vanilla, and syrup.
  3. Mix together the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients bowl.
  4. Mix the chocolate chunks into the batter. You can get creative and add whatever additional ingredients you’d like. Some awesome  options would be: unsweetened dried fruit, walnuts, pecans, coconut, cranberries, mint leaves, or cherries!
  5. Melt the coconut oil and mix it into the batter. The original recipe said it was okay to add extra almond flour if your batter ends up being too runny but my batter stayed firm. I guess it all depends on the quality of your coconut oil.
  6. Drop the cookies onto the sheet. (about 1 & 1/2 tablespoon) The dough is trickier to work with because it has no flour. Don’t be afraid to get your fingers sticky! Place them on the GREASED baking sheet and press down into a cookie form with your hands.
  7. Bake about 10-11 minutes. Let them cool for about two minutes.
  8. Remove from the baking sheet and add to a cooling rack or a separate plate.
  9. Let cookies cool (if you can wait that long ;) and ENJOY!

Healthy Superbowl Workouts: “Get in the Game”!

Fuel a healthy SuperBowl Sunday with POWER by getting your workout in before the first commercial. The below drills are designed to work on your strength, speed, stamina, and agility while burning calories and boosting energy. It’s a challenging series – as always, please check with a doctor before beginning any new exercise routine. And note: *You DO NOT need a football or access to a football field for these workouts. Just a positive attitude, a bottle of water, and some space! ; )

Running/Jogging Warm Up Drills. 10 minutes.

  • Easy jog 5 minutes
  • Walking Lunge. 20-30.
  • Butt kicks (kick your heel towards your butt)
  • Squat with side shuffle 1 minute
  • High Knees 1 minute
  • Plank with mountain climber knees 1 minute

“Make a Tight End”

Build a “tight end” with my free “build a better butt” workout videos! I have two videos just for you to help you strengthen and shape a tight derriere. These all-level workout videos include some of the most effective bodyweight butt, hip, thigh, and leg exercises. You don’t need any equipment and can do them at home before the game starts! As always, check with your doctor before starting this or any other exercise routine. Be mindful and pay attention to your form. Modify as needed to prevent injury and get the most out of your time exercising!

Part One : “Build a Better Butt Workout” Standing Series.

Part Two: “Build a Better Butt Workout” Floor Series

Bring a Superbowl SIXpack. 
Bring your six pack to your super bowl party and you’ll feel GREAT 😉 . Take 8 minutes to work through this quick, effective ab workout video.  This video is appropriate for all levels and involves a some of the most effective moves for stronger, tighter stomach muscles. A short, effective combination of planks, sit ups, v sits, pilates teasers, and other challenging abdominal strengthening moves to work both the upper and lower abdominals. Do a little bit or all of it for a core workout that will make you feel great long after half time.

Cardio BURST: TOUCHDOWN

This high-impact cardio circut will get you sweating in less than 10 minutes. Its a challenging all-levels workout that works the entire body, doesn’t require any equipment, and includes the perfect mix of cardio exercises. It’s a winning combination – you’ll feel like such a rockstar when you’re done you might need your OWN halftime show. Its a feel good, endorphin rush. Give it a try pre-kickoff and let me know what you think!

 


Once through the circuit is GREAT – you can also repeat the above 2-3 times and go home with a longer workout.

If you liked the above recipes and workout videos, SUBSCRIBE to my Youtube channel and share it with your friends on Facebooktwitter, or email. Join the community online and get the support you need to live a healthy, happy life you love.

Wishing you a safe and healthy Superbowl celebration. Now get focused, put on your game face, and get ready to “BRING IT”. Im positive you’ll have a healthy Superbowl. TOUCHDOWN!

Caroline

For more uplifting feel good fitness Check out my book, Balanced Body Breakthrough. It will help you keep your mind, body, and spirit in great shape !!

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