Month: July 2015

Green Mint Smoothie

This green mint smoothie is the perfect way to get your daily dose of organic, leafy greens. Made with organic banana, fresh mint and your favorite nut milk, it’s so good you won’t even taste the spinach or kale! Add 2 scoops of your favorite protein powder, and you’ve got the perfect breakfast or after-workout drink. 🙂

Ingredients:

1 organic banana
1 cup organic spinach or kale
3-6 fresh mint leaves
3 cups coconut milk or almond milk
stevia to taste

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together in a Vitamix® or blender until creamy and smooth!

Homemade Sweet Potato Fries

Mmm … french fries. How many times are we tempted to order them at a restaurant. Pretty much any time we order a burger or a chicken sandwich, fries are our side of choice. These days, many people are turning to sweet potato fries as a “healthier” option, but whether or not they are actually healthier depends on a number of factors.

What makes fries so unhealthy? Most of the time, they are fried in unnatural, processed, hydrogenated oils like vegetable oil or canola oil. (Don’t let the name “vegetable oil” fool you – that stuff is actually made from rancid vegetables and unnatural fragrances to mask the horrible smell you’d likely get when opening a bottle. And there’s no such thing as a canola plant…)

This homemade sweet potato fries recipe uses grapeseed oil which is great for cooking, since it has a low smoke point. Oils that have a high smoke point, such as olive oil, turn into unhealthy trans fats when heated, so you want to make sure you use oils with low smoke points when cooking. Also, these fries are baked instead of fried, and seasoned with sea salt, cilantro and lemon zest. They have great flavor – so great, in fact, you won’t even be tempted to dip them in ranch dressing! And I highly recommend that you don’t.

Tip: These homemade sweet potato fries are great to serve with grilled grass-fed burgers!

Ingredients:

4 medium organic sweet potatoes cut into ¼ match sticks

2 tablespoons grapeseed oil

Lemon zest

4 tablespoons chopped cilantro

½ tsp Kosher sea salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly oil baking sheet. Combine oil, sweet potatoes, lemon zest, chopped cilantro and sea salt in bowl and gently toss. Place on baking sheet and put in oven for 35-40 minutes or until golden and crisp. For even baking, stir 1-2 times throughout. Serve immediately and garnish with parsley.

Cucumber Pizza Bites

We all love pizza. But the combination of bread and mozzerella cheese can wreak havoc on our health, especially when eaten frequently. For anyone with gluten allergies, your options are pretty limited…

That’s why I love these cucumber pizza bites. They are a great snack or appetizer to serve at your next gathering and are much healthier than the frozen pizza bites you can buy at the grocery store. The ingredients are easy to come by extremely fast to prepare, which is great if you’re looking for a quick appetizer before your next meal.

Next time you’re craving pizza, skip the Papa John’s and make these instead. I promise you won’t regret it!

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
3 organic cucumbers, cut into ¼-inch thick rounds
½-1 teaspoon Kosher salt, to taste
½-1 teaspoon black pepper, to taste
1/3 cup organic tomato paste
½ cup raw goat cheese crumbles
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning

Instructions:

Preheat oven to broil. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add cucumber and cook, flipping once, until golden, about 1-2 minutes on each side; season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Place cucumber rounds onto a large baking sheet. Top each round with tomato paste and raw goat cheese crumbles; sprinkle with Italian seasoning. Place into oven and broil until the cheese has melted, about 1-2 minutes. Serve immediately.

Grass Fed Burgers Recipe

Not only is organic grass-fed beef much healthier for you than its mass-produced, hormone-injected alternative; it also tastes so much better. Anyone who has eaten grass-fed beef can attest to the difference. (It’s amazing how good food actually tastes when we don’t alter it!)

These burgers are meant to be eaten without buns… and trust me, they are so delicious, you won’t even miss the bread. The parsley adds amazing flavor. Not to mention, it’s incredibly good for you with its cleansing and detoxifying properties.

Next time you have a cookout, try this grass fed burgers recipe out. It’s certain to be a palette pleaser… and as you can see in the picture below, I had a great time grilling!

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons coconut oil, divided
1 medium sweet onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon thyme
1 lb. organic grass-fed ground beef

Instructions:

In a 9- or 10-inch skillet, heat 1 tbsp. oil and onion over medium heat until onions are transparent, about 5 minutes.  Stir in vinegar, 1/8 tsp. salt and tiny pinch of pepper. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 35-40 minutes, until onions are reduced and caramelized, checking occasionally and stirring to be sure they are not sticking. Cool completely.

In a rectangular or square pan, combine cooled onions, parsley, thyme and remaining 2 tbsp. oil. Stir well with fork. Top mixture with pieces of ground beef. Sprinkle the beef with the remaining ¾ tsp. salt and 1/8 tsp. of pepper. Mix lightly but thoroughly with hands or two forks. Separate into 4 equal pieces, each weighing approximately 4.8 oz. With wet hands, roll each between palms to form a ball, then flatten lightly with fingers to form patties about ½– ¾” thick.  If desired, sprinkle each lightly with additional salt and pepper before placing on hot grill (450 degrees F). Grill about 3 minutes each side, then transfer to platter to rest 5 minutes. Burgers should be pink in the center after resting.

Serve on lettuce wraps with grilled veggies on the side!

Green Eggs Recipe

I bet you’re wondering if these were the green eggs referred to in Dr. Seuss’ famous children’s book Green Eggs and Ham. That was the first thing that came to my mind too, so it’s quite possible! And you may be thinking that you probably won’t like them since they’re green, right?

Well, I’m willing to bet you’ll love this green eggs recipe as much as I do. It’s an amazing way to get your green leafy vegetables in, especially if you already eat eggs for breakfast regularly like I do! It’s also a fun way to get your kids to eat spinach. I recommend skipping the ham though. Try serving it with orange slices and fresh berries instead. 🙂

Ingredients:

6 organic free range eggs
3 cups organic baby spinach
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon Black Pepper
1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon coconut oil

Instructions:

Combine all ingredients in a Vitamix® or food processor and mix well.  Heat skillet (ceramic or cast iron) to medium temperature and melt coconut oil to grease the surface. Pour egg mixture into skillet and let cook. After eggs have set, stir 1-2 times to scramble. Add additional sea salt or black pepper to taste, and sprinkle with your favorite raw cheese before serving.

Apple Chips

Remember the recipe for zucchini chips that we posted a few days ago? Here’s another, less-salty-and-more-sweet, healthy version of America’s favorite snack! These apple chips are great for when you’re craving sugar and/or junk food.

Ingredients:

2 organic Granny Smith apples
⅛ teaspoon stevia
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.  Slice apples with a mandolin or sharp knife. Place apple slices flat on parchment paper, making sure none overlap, and sprinkle stevia and cinnamon on each slice. Bake for 40-50 minutes and flip each apple. Reapply cinnamon and stevia to each slice. Bake another 40-50 minutes until edges are curled and appear crispy. (They should feel dry to the touch.) Remove from oven and let cool completely. Transfer to a ziplock bag to keep fresh. Best served within 3 hours but can be eaten up to 3 days after baking.

Lemon Coconut Macaroons

Who doesn’t love macaroons? I remember the first time I tried one at a local French bakery. It was absolute heaven.

However, these amazing cookies have a reputation for being not-so healthy, especially at the speed at which most of us tend to devour them. These lemon coconut macaroons offer a healthier alternative to the famous french dessert that is sweetened with stevia instead of sugar and calls for lemon oil, which has excellent detoxifying properties and helps to aid digestion.

Yes, now you can eat dessert that actually helps your body digest your meal. You’re welcome. 🙂

Did I mention they are excellent paired with a cup of organic coffee? Go ahead. Try them. I dare you…

Ingredients:

4-5 free-range egg whites
1 pkg. unsweetened organic coconut, shredded
⅛ teaspoon stevia
4 drops food-grade lemon essential oil (*I use DoTerra)
lemon zest (for topping)

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large mixing bowl whisk together egg whites, stevia and lemon oil until foamy. Add shredded coconut and mix. Transfer into piping bag to drop macaroons onto a parchment paper-covered baking sheet, or use a spoon.  Zest lemon on top of each macaroon. Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown on top. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

Couscous Salad

Ah, couscous. The food so nice, they named it twice! This whole grain is actually considered a pasta, but it is MUCH healthier than your average spaghetti noodle. Couscous is a great source of protein and dietary fiber, as well as essential vitamins and trace minerals.

This couscous salad recipe is healthy and full of flavor. Next time someone tells you healthy food doesn’t taste good, just put a spoonful of this in front of them, and you’ll win that debate pretty fast. 🙂

Ingredients:

2 cups organic chicken broth
1 ½ cups couscous (cooked, rinsed and drained)
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ tsp sea salt
⅛ teaspoon black pepper
6 organic green onions
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
6 organic radishes
2 stalks fresh parsley (to garnish)

Directions:

Cook the couscous according to package directions using chicken broth in place of water. (Note: 1 cup of dry couscous makes 1 ½ cups of cooked couscous.) The couscous will seem sticky straight from the pot, but no worries, it won’t be sticky after it’s rinsed and drained!

In a large bowl, add olive oil, chopped onion, and apple cider vinegar; whisk until combined. Stir in the couscous, radishes and green onions. Add salt and pepper to taste and toss to combine.

Serve this salad right away or store covered in the refrigerator for later. If you prepare this salad the day before for an event, cover and chill the salad add fresh parsley.

Zucchini Chips

Chips are one of my vices. Luckily, there is a healthier version of this famous snack that is free from processed oils and baked instead of fried… and I’m going to share it with you!

Next time you’re craving junk food, try making these healthy zucchini chips instead. They are great paired with grilled grass-fed burgers, and a fantastic way to get your kids to eat their veggies!

Ingredients:

2 organic zucchini
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon vinegar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Chop zucchini. (I use a mandolin which makes for thinner and crispier slices). In a medium bowl mix together sea salt, black pepper, olive oil and vinegar. Add sliced zucchini to mixture and toss until all pieces have dressing on them. Arrange slices on baking stone or cooking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden-brown.  Let cool before serving.

Caramelized Brussels Sprouts

Don’t like brussels sprouts? I promise you will after you try this AMAZING recipe! Many people think brussels sprouts are gross—and they can be if you don’t cook them right. There are lots of recipes out there for brussels sprouts. They are one of the healthiest vegetables you can put into your body, so finding a way to get them down, even if you don’t like them, is definitely in your best interest in terms of your health. This recipe combines honey, balsamic vinegar, garlic and onion, to create a flavor profile unlike anything you’ve ever tried.

(Ahem… I’ll be expecting someone to bring this to our next Recipe Night…)

Ingredients:

1 lb. organic brussels sprouts (chopped or cut into 1/4’s)
1 chopped organic red onion
3 chopped cloves organic garlic
3 tablespoons olive oil
¾ teaspoon celtic sea salt (*fine grains)
½ teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoon organic balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoon raw honey

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Clean and chop brussels sprouts, red onion and garlic cloves. In a separate bowl combine olive oil, sea salt, black pepper, balsamic vinegar and raw honey. Toss brussels sprouts into mixture. Layer on glass cooking pan or baking stone. Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper.  Roast 20-25 minutes until caramelized.

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Queen City Health Center is a Charlotte Chiropractic and total wellness center for individuals and families. With locations across Charlotte, NC and Matthews, NC, we specialize in helping individuals and families find true health and ways to maximize their lives through nutrition, lifestyle classes, detoxification and spinal correction.


SouthPark Office 4421 Sharon Rd #100 Charlotte, NC 28211 980-422-2000
Matthews Office 1730 Matthews Township Pkwy Matthews, NC 28105 704-844-6368