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Why make boring, plain, bland, white mashed potatoes when you could enjoy these incredible Rustic Smashed Sweet Potatoes? I was blow away by its satisfying sweet flavor, especially in light of how simple and quick it was to make. This recipe can easily replace the marshmallow-covered sweet potato casserole that inevitably appears on your holiday table.

Here are my other favorite Holiday Sweet Potato Recipes:

Whipped Sweet Potatoes

Firehouse Sweet Potato Hash

Pecan Crusted Sweet Potato Casserole

Layered Sweet Potato Gratin

 

Rustic Smashed Sweet Potato
A Recipe by Diana Keuilian
Prep time
15 mins
Cook time
6 mins
Total time
21 mins
INGREDIENTS
Serves 15

  • 4 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons coconut cream
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • pinch of black pepper
  • fresh chives, chopped for garnish
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the cubed sweet potato and boil until fork-tender, about 15 minutes. Drain the sweet potato and return to the pot.
  2. Reduce the heat to low. Cook, stirring the sweet potatoes, for 4 minutes. Remove from heat.
  3. Add the coconut oil, coconut cream, coconut sugar, cinnamon, salt and black pepper. Mash with a potato masher until creamed to your desired consistency (I like to leave a few intact pieces of sweet potato for a rustic texture.) Garnish with chives. Enjoy!
NUTRITION
Calories: 233     Fat: 8g     Carbohydrates: 39g     Sugar: 2g     Sodium: 177mg     Fiber: 5g     Protein: 4g    

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Here’s the too-tasty-to-believe one-pan recipe that I’m making for dinner tonight…

Buttery, flaky salmon fillets and crispy roasted broccoli are perfectly seasoned with garlic and lemon in this simple, nutritious dish. Enjoy!

One-Pan Garlic Roasted Salmon and Broccoli
A Recipe by Diana Keuilian
Prep time
10 mins
Cook time
20 mins
Total time
30 mins
INGREDIENTS
Serves 5

For the Broccoli:
  • 2 heads broccoli, cut into florets
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • sea salt and black pepper
For the Salmon:
  • 5 (6oz) salmon fillets, skin-on
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons dried marjoram
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 lemon, cut into 5 slices
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Lightly grease a rimmed baking sheet with olive oil.
  2. In a large bowl toss the broccoli ingredients together, seasoning generously with sea salt and black pepper. Mix until well combined.
  3. Spread the seasoned broccoli in a single layer over the prepared baking sheet and roast in the preheated oven for 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, drizzle the olive oil over the salmon fillets and evenly sprinkle with the minced garlic, lemon zest and dried marjoram. Season generously with sea salt and black pepper.
  5. Remove the baking sheet from the oven, and move the broccoli to create open spaces for the fillets. Place the salmon in the empty spaces and put back in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, until the salmon is flaky and cooked through. Top each fillet with a slice of lemon and place under the high broil for 1 minute. Remove from the oven. Enjoy!
NUTRITION
Calories: 401     Fat: 19g     Carbohydrates: 12g     Sugar: 3g     Sodium: 356mg     Fiber: 8g     Protein: 42g    

 

 

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Here’s a zero sugar treat that has endless possibilities in the flavor department. Have fun swapping out the chopped pistachios for shredded coconut, other ground nuts, or crushed freeze dried fruit.

Chocolate Buttons
A Recipe by Diana Keuilian
Prep time
15 mins
Cook time
10 mins
Total time
25 mins
INGREDIENTS
Serves 48

INSTRUCTIONS
  1. In a double boiler, melt the chocolate and coconut oil until smooth.
  2. In a mini whoppie pie pan (or mini muffin pan) place ½ teaspoon of chopped pistachios in 48 tins. Top with a spoonful of the melted chocolate mixture.
  3. Press a pecan into the top of each button and sprinkle with a pinch of coarse sea salt. Place the buttons in the fridge or freezer to harden. Store in the freezer. Enjoy!
NUTRITION
Calories: 124     Fat: 12g     Carbohydrates: 5g     Sugar: 0g     Sodium: 43mg     Fiber: 3g     Protein: 2g    

 

 

 

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Much like the father in My Big Fat Greek Wedding, my in-laws are able to trace anything and everything back to Armenian roots. So I found it hilarious to read that gingerbread is thought to have originated in Europe by an Armenian monk. All these years I was mentally giving credit to Germany every time I’d bite into a gingerbread cookie, when really rightful credit goes to Armenia.

Tender and spiced, these gingerbread pancakes are a huge hit at my house on Christmas morning, the perfect thing to eat when you want to feel festive and happy. It’s a bonus that the recipe contains zero grains and zero cane sugar.

Gingerbread Pancakes
A Recipe by Diana Keuilian
Prep time
15 mins
Cook time
30 mins
Total time
45 mins
INGREDIENTS
Serves 10

INSTRUCTIONS
  1. In a medium bowl combine the almond flour, coconut flour, spices, baking soda and salt.
  2. In another bowl beat the eggs, add the syrup, coconut milk, vanilla extract and molasses. Add the egg mixture all at once to the flour mixture. Stir just until moistened.
  3. Cook the batter on a preheated, greased pancake griddle until browned on both sides. Serve warm with pure maple syrup and Apple Pie Topping. Enjoy!
NUTRITION
Calories: 111     Fat: 8g     Carbohydrates: 7g     Sugar: 3g     Sodium: 157mg     Fiber: 2g     Protein: 3g    

 

 

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I really enjoy saying the word goulash. Try to say it without smiling. Goo-La-Shhhh. And I tend to use it as a general term for anything messy. “Kids, you better not spill that goulash on the couch!” Well, it turns out that the word goulash comes from a Hungarian word that means herdsmen. Apparently the shepherds would prepare their dinner in a pot over a fire out in the fields, the original recipe for goulash. I’m guessing that my recipe for Turkey Goulash with Apple and Bacon is pretty far off from that original recipe crafted by herdsmen in Central Europe back in the 9th century. My version is also different from many recipes that are popular today. For one you’ll notice that instead of traditional noodles we are using flat zucchini noodles to lighten it up. Also I topped my goulash dinner with Coconut Sour Cream.

Turkey Goulash with Apple and Bacon
A Recipe by Diana Keuilian
Prep time
15 mins
Cook time
25 mins
Total time
40 mins
INGREDIENTS

  • 3 strips bacon, chopped
  • 2 pounds ground turkey
  • sea salt and black pepper
  • 2 apples, seeded and diced
  • 2 yellow onions, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 tablespoons sweet paprika
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2½ cups broth (chicken or bone)
  • 5 medium zucchinis
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • coconut sour cream (optional)
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Place a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until crispy. Transfer the bacon to a plate with a slotted spoon.
  2. Add the ground pork to the pot in the bacon drippings, cook, breaking it into smaller pieces. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add the apples, onions, bell pepper, thyme and bay leaf. Cook until the onions soften, about 5 minutes. Mix in the paprika and cumin.
  4. Return the bacon back to the pot, along with the lemon juice and broth. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook until the goulash thickens.
  5. Use a veggie peeler to peel the zucchini into flat noodles in a large bowl. Toss with the olive oil and season with sea salt. Mix in the parsley and dill.
  6. Serve the goulash warm over zucchini noodles with a dollop of coconut sour cream. Enjoy!
NUTRITION
Calories: 360     Fat: 18g     Carbohydrates: 19g     Sugar: 10g     Sodium: 359mg     Fiber: 5g     Protein: 37g    

 

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After years of reflection, I’ve come to realize that I judge dinner recipes on these 3 simple questions:

  1. HOW QUICK IS IT TO MAKE?
  2. HOW HEALTHY (FAT-BURNING) IS IT?
  3. HOW GOOD DOES IT TASTE?

It’s quite common for a recipe to have one or two favorable answers but be lacking in one of the three categories.

(These Paleo Enchiladas taste spectacular and are definitely healthy and fat burning, BUT I can’t whip up a batch in the 20 minute span between Andrew’s football practice and Chloe’s guitar lesson…these grain-free Chicken Nuggets are addicting and free of the typical chicken nugget toxins, but unless I make a big batch on the weekend to freeze and reheat during the week, there’s simply no time to make them from scratch on a weeknight.)

And then there are those rare unicorn dinner recipes that possess all 3 of the perfect answers: It’s FAST, HEALTHY, AND TANTALIZING! A trifecta!!!

This recipe for Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken is one such unicornesque recipe. It only takes 5 minutes of prep. It’s as healthy and fat burning as can be. It tastes so good you’ll lick the plate and go back for more.

Drop the mic.

(And then plan when you’ll make this phenomenal recipe again. And again. And again.)

Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken
A Recipe by Diana Keuilian
Prep time
5 mins
Cook time
6 hours
Total time
6 hours 5 mins
INGREDIENTS
Serves 8

  • 3 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • sea salt
  • black pepper
  • ½ cup coconut aminos
  • ½ cup natural ketchup (no added sugar)
  • ¼ cup raw honey, melted
  • 1 Tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • *optional sesame seeds for garnish
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Generously salt and pepper the chicken thighs. Place in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  2. Combine the coconut aminos, ketchup, honey, garlic and dried basil. Pour over the chicken. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours. Garnish with sesame seeds. Enjoy!
NUTRITION
Calories: 372     Fat: 12g     Carbohydrates: 12g     Sugar: 12g     Sodium: 314mg     Protein: 50g    

Serve over Cauliflower Rice <<==You’ll find multiple cauliflower rice recipes at this link!

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I’m not sure if this work of art should be eaten…it’s too darn pretty! This Beet and Citrus Salad is quite possibly the perfect holiday salad, although don’t limit it to just special occasions. My husband, B, is especially keen on salads that contain beets, so I took things over the top by adding two colors of tender beets. Citrus is amazingly fresh this time of year, and pairs beautifully with the sweet beets in this salad.

Beet And Citrus Salad
A Recipe by Diana Keuilian
Prep time
15 mins
Cook time
60 mins
Total time
1 hour 15 mins
INGREDIENTS
Serves 12

  • 3 red beets
  • 3 yellow beets
  • 3 grapefruits
  • 3 mandarin oranges
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ⅛ teaspoon Liquid Stevia (or 1 Tbsp maple syrup)
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 6 cups Baby Arugula, fresh
  • ¼ cup pistachios, chopped
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Trim the beets, wash and place in an 8×8 casserole pan with ¼ cup of water. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for an hour, until tender. Remove from the oven, uncover and cool completely. Peel the beets and slice into wedges.
  2. Cut the ends off the grapefruits, and slice off the peel and the white pith. Remove cut into segments and peel the membrane off each slice. Reserve ¼ cup of grapefruit juice.
  3. Whisk together the olive oil, stevia, vinegar, sea salt, black pepper and reserved grapefruit juice. Toss the dressing with the beets and grapefruit wedges.
  4. Arrange the arugula on a platter. Top with the beet and grapefruit mixture and sprinkle with pistachios. Enjoy!
NUTRITION
Calories: 71     Fat: 3g     Carbohydrates: 10g     Sugar: 8g     Sodium: 200mg     Fiber: 2g     Protein: 1g    

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When you’re looking for a snack that’s savory and salty to enjoy while watching the game or your favorite show, these Cheesy Pepperoncini Pitas seriously deliver! Tender, buttery flatbread is topped with creamed cashew cheese that’s dotted with tangy pepperoncini, zesty lemon and earthy basil. Think of these flavorful triangles like real food Doritos!

It’s a labor of love, as you can see from the ingredient list and the instructions, but truthfully it comes together more quickly than you’d think. By making the flat breads the day before you’ll dramatically cut down on prep time, or if you have a gluten-free pita bread that you have on hand then use that.

I simply love the vegan technique of creaming cashews into a cheese spread. It’s nutritious, it’s easy (just throw everything in a food processor!) and the flavor is something special. Here are recipes where I use the vegan technique of creaming cashews in recipes:

SAVORY creamed cashew recipes…

Squaginni Roast

Pizza Kale Chips

Roasted Onion Dip

Ground Beef Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

Zucchini Boats (Dairy & Gluten Free)

Baked Chicken Chiles Rellenos

SWEET creamed cashew recipes…

Triple Chocolate Cookies With Raspberry Filling

Raspberry Walnut Torte

Cheesecake Bites

Dairy-Free Cheese Spread

Real Food Strawberry Cheesecake

No-Bake Caramel Cheesecake Bars

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Nothing jazzes up a green salad like ruby red fruit. Crisp red grapes and tangy pomegranate seeds take a simple romaine salad from basic to glamorous. I love the addition of salty sunflower seeds sprinkled over the top, and the dressing is light and refreshing.

Romaine Salad With Grapes And Pomegranate
A Recipe by Diana Keuilian
Prep time
10 mins
Total time
10 mins
INGREDIENTS
Serves 6

For the Dressing
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 3 drops Liquid Stevia
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon shallot, minced
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste
For the Salad
  • 1 head romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup red seedless grapes, halved
  • ¼ cup pomegranate seeds (arils)
  • 2 tablespoons roasted and salted sunflower seeds
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. For the dressing: Whisk together the oil, vinegar, stevia (or 1 Tablespoon honey), mustard and shallot. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  2. For the salad: Toss the romaine, grapes, pomegranate and sunflower seeds in a salad bowl with the dressing. Enjoy!
NUTRITION
Calories: 100     Fat: 6g     Carbohydrates: 11g     Sugar: 7g     Sodium: 100mg     Fiber: 1g     Protein: 1g    

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