Try This: Mango Green Smoothies

The best mango green smoothie ever! (The secret is to use coconut milk and add a splash of OJ)

Marina shared her favorite mango green smoothie recipe the other day and I dreamed about it for a week straight. I finally got to the store and stocked up on frozen mango so I could make these for breakfast yesterday.

They were everything I knew they would be and more, just delicious. I’m thinking of making another one right now!

Mango Green Smoothies

Slightly Adapted from Yummy Mummy Kitchen (we just adjust to our tastes and family size)

Makes 4-5 smoothies

- 1 to 2 cup(s) Coconut Milk

- several handfuls of spinach

- 1/2 bag of frozen pineapple (fresh is even better!)

- 1/2 bag of frozen mango

- Drizzle of Honey (Optional)

- Splash of OJ (optional)

Blend coconut milk and spinach first in order to get that beautiful green smoothie look you want and not bits and pieces of spinach that get stuck in your teeth! Then add fruit and blend again until you reach your desired consistency. Pour and serve immediately.

Note: Our new favorite is Almond Coconut milk, I love the slight tropical vibe it gives this green goodness. Sometimes I also add a splash of OJ to amp up the citrus flavor

See Marina’s recipe here: Favorite Green Smoothie

Adding this to our breakfast rotation, and searching for more green smoothie recipes to try.

Do you have a favorite green smoothie?

Tell me what’s in it, I’d love to try it next.

Southwestern Chopped Salad & 3-Ingredient Sangria

Add meat and cheese, some tortilla strips would be great too! End up with this, a super simple weeknight meal your whole family will love.

Really, all three of my kids gobbled this up. My 6 year old had three bowls full of this salad. I’d love to tell you he was a salad nut (he does “like” salad), but the real secret was in the spicy ranch, so so good.

May I present you with your new go to weeknight salad:

southwestern chopped salad

Southwestern Chopped Salad

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • finely chopped lettuce
  • finely chopped cabbage
  • shredded carrots
  • diced cucumber
  • cherry tomatoes
  • black olives
  • steamed corn
  • pepper jack cheese
  • grilled chicken (diced or sliced)
  • Avacado (diced – optional)
  • Hidden Valley Spicy Ranch (optional – but so good)

Directions:

This couldn’t be more simple. Grill the chicken however you like, or cook it up quickly on the stove using some EVO and salt & pepper. Dice all ingredients, taking the time to finely dice the lettuce and cabbage. Layer them in a large bowl, sprinkle with cheese (as heavy handed as you need to be) then place cooked chicken on top to serve.

Notes:
In a pinch or on busy weeknights, use store bought rotisserie or grilled & ready chicken. You can even find southwestern chopped salad kits with lettuce & cabbage pre-chopped, ready to go.

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and as long as you’ve whipped up this tasty salad with time to spare, why not make this evening extra special with a 2 minute, 3-ingredient sangria.

3 Ingredient Sangria

Ingredients:

  • Red Table Wine (I used First Timer Red)
  • Orange Passion Mango World Market Italian Soda
  • Bag of Mixed Frozen Fruit (mine had strawberries, mango & peaches)

Directions:

  1. Have a simple sangria ready to go in 2 minutes flat. Pour in red wine, then follow with Italian Soda; the ratio is 1:1. Open your bag of frozen fruit and pour in as much as you want. The fruit will not only chill the sangria, but as it melts the flavors will even enhance it.

Notes:
If you’re like me and you’re not the biggest fan of mushy fruit, then you may want to sip this sangria with a straw. While sure I’d prefer fresh fruit in my sangria, this is a super simple alternative you can whip up just about any time. Perfect for when unexpected company drops by.

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Kids can have their own sparkling punch, just pour in some Italian soda and a few frozen strawberries and/or peaches to jazz it up a bit.

The result is a low fuss, no stress dinner that feels a bit more like a vacation than a chore.

Enjoy!

These recipes were developed as part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™, but all ideas and opinions are my own.

I had such a great time working with World Market, you can find them on Twitter,Google+Facebook and/or Pinterest!

School Lunch Idea: Mini Hawaiian Subs

kids lunch ideas

I asked all my friends on Facebook how I could be most helpful in getting them back in to the rhythm of balancing school, and work, and family life. I was super surprised to see 90% of them needed some fresh ideas for packing lunches, but you know what? — this seems to be a growing topic in our home too!

I sat down with my kiddos and we did some serious brainstorming.  We took school guidelines, allergy restrictions and all of their unique likes and dislikes into heavy consideration. We came up with a list of lunch ideas for school, some more healthy than others … we could all be happy about.

First up, are the cute little mini subs. Did you know Hawaiian Bread made mini sub rolls now? Me neither. Check it.

packed lunch ideas

These sweet little hawaiian subs have turkey, provolone and a squeeze of Ken’s Lite Honey Mustard. I microwave the meat & cheese on the bread for 10-12 seconds to give it that straight from the deli effect.

These are outstanding at home fresh out the microwave and I havent had any complaints or half eaten sandwiches since we started packing them for school.

healthy lunch ideas

I paired this lunch with some scrabble cheezits (confession: cheez-its are my all time weakness) and some freeze dried fruit, like this.

crunchies mixed fruit

I’ve tried a lot of freeze dried fruit in our house and it doesn’t always get the warmest welcome. This brand however, all 3 of my littles enjoyed.

There you have it, our first back to school lunch idea. Stay tuned for more ideas for school lunches.

The containers we’re using are glad products. They are BPA free and we have them in sandwich and snack size. I like that I can fit the snack container into the sandwich container like this. Handy. Dandy & Cheap. :)

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I have partnered with The Glad Products Company through DailyBuzz Moms to help promote their BPA-free Food Storage products. I have been compensated for my time and efforts. However, my opinions and ideas are, as always, entirely my own. I have not been paid to publish positive comments. Thank you GLAD!

Balsamic Chicken & Toasted Tortellini

It’s been quite a few Valentine’s Days since my first go round with the goodness that is brown butter and basalmic vinegar. I remember our first Valentine’s Day as new parents, we couldn’t go out for a romantic dinner so I made us one at home. That night it was brown butter & balsamic toasted ravioli (awesome!), but this version with tortellini was equally good and pretty kid friendly too.

Basalmic Chicken; Toasted Tortellini w/ a Caprese side salad

Balsamic Chicken & Brown Butter Toasted Tortellini

Heat some olive oil & minced garlic in a large pan. Add your chicken breasts or tenderloins and after a few minutes add a few tablespoons of a nice quality balsamic vinegar. I think we used 4-5 small frozen breasts here with 1.5 tablespoons of vinegar, increase the amount based on how much chicken you are using. Let the chicken cook until the juices run clear and the outside starts to brown and get a bit crispy.

Cook tortellini according to package directions (we used grocery store brand frozen spinach & cheese tortellini), drain and set aside. Melt 4-6 tablespoons of butter in a frying pan and continue to heat until butter starts to turn brown (5-7 minutes). Add tortellini and a tablespoon or two of balsamic vingear (depending on how much tortellini you have). Stir around until tortellini are coated in butter & balsamic vinegar and then a few minutes more until tortellini starts to “toast” a bit.

close ups

Sprinkle with parmesan cheese & sit down to enjoy this truly fabulous meal with your family.

Served here with one of my favorite summer salads — the caprese salad.
So simple, yet so tasty. All you need are some mixed greens of your choice, cherry tomatoes cut in half (any tomatoes will do, dice a larger one if that’s what you have on hand), some fresh mozzerella (we used tiny mozzerella balls, so simple), a bit of olive oil, a bit of balsamic vinegar, basil, and some salt & pepper. Sometimes I add parsley and oregano too, if I have it on hand.

If you’ve never cooked with or experimented with Balsamic Vinegar … then we have lots to talk about! It’s a staple in my pantry and I would love to help make it one in yours as well.