Lightened Up Chocolate Fudge Muddy Buddies (Puppy Chow)- No Peanut Butter

Lightened Up Chocolate Fudge Muddy Buddies (Puppy Chow)- No Peanut Butter

The last few weeks I’ve been experimenting with different types of Muddy Buddy (AKA Puppy Chow) recipes. I’m crazy about these little treats, but the packaged version has way too many ingredients and calories. As I was attempting to lighten up the classic recipe my sister also requested that there be no peanut butter in it! WHAT?! Everyone in my family is PB crazy except Candyce.

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For me, not adding peanut butter to a dessert is a sin. But for the soon to be bride I decided to forgo it. Melting peanut butter with the chocolate chips also helps thin out the mixture and add volume to help coat all of the Rice Chex cereal. I swapped out the peanut butter for some yummy Nutella. If you didn’t want any nut butter (or want even lower calories and fat) in your muddy buddies I have provided a second option.

I know some of us (cough cough* ME) can adapt our taste buds to anything with fewer calories. Personally, I think they’re both good, but the one with Nutella is definitely better and worth the calories. In the second recipe you can add half of a teaspoon of vegetable oil to the melted chocolate. This creates a thinner consistency and is a successful replacement for the nut butter.

 

Ingredients:

-       2 Tbsp. chocolate protein powder (I used Fitmiss chocolate) + 2 Tbsp. of sugar free fat free chocolate fudge pudding mix OR just 1 box sugar free fat free chocolate fudge pudding mix

-       1 tsp. unsweetened cocoa powder

-       ¼ cup stevia baking blend (I use Pyure which is a stevia blend with no calories, you may also use granulated Splenda with no calories)

-       2 cups gluten free Rice Chex

-       ¼ cup semisweet chocolate chips

-       2 Tbsp. Nutella OR ½ tsp. vegetable oil

 

Directions:

  1. In a large Ziploc bag add the protein powder, pudding mix, cocoa powder, and stevia
  2. Close up the bag and give it a few shakes to combine everything
  3. Place the chocolate chips into a medium-large bowl and microwave in increments of 20 seconds stopping and stirring in between until the chocolate chips have completely melted
  4. While chocolate is hot stir in Nutella OR ½ tsp. of vegetable oil
  5. Toss the Chex cereal into the bowl and with your hands slowly mix around until coated
  6. Place your chocolaty Chex into the Ziploc, close up the bag and shake until all the Chex pieces have been dusted with the chocolate powder

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Nutritional Facts (just SF FF pudding mix and Nutella):

Servings: 4

Serving size: ½ cup

Calories: 201

Fat: 7g

Carbs: 33g

Fiber: 1g

Protein: 3g

Sodium: 234mg

Sugar: 14g

 

 

Nutritional Facts (just SF FF pudding mix and vegetable oil):

Servings: 4

Serving size: ½ cup

Calories: 156

Fat: 5g

Carbs: 28g

Fiber: 1g

Protein: 2g

Sodium: 230mg

Sugar: 9g

 

Nutritional Facts (Fitmiss protein powder+ SF FF pudding mix and vegetable oil):

Servings: 4

Serving size: ½ cup

Calories: 161

Fat: 5g

Carbs: 28g

Fiber: 1g

Protein: 7g

Sodium: 230mg

Sugar: 9g

 

Nutritional Facts (Fitmiss protein powder+ SF FF pudding mix and Nutella):

Servings: 4

Serving size: ½ cup

Calories: 206

Fat: 8g

Carbs: 29g

Fiber: 1g

Protein: 8g

Sodium: 182mg

Sugar: 15g

Hidden Gem- Long Island Coffee Shop

Hidden Gem- Long Island Coffee Shop

Yesterday was one of those days you just want to get up and go somewhere new. Unfortunately it is a lot easier to do that on Long Island during the warmer months. The on and off rainy weather really called for a relaxed coffee shop with oversized mugs.  So after having my morning Caramel Cheesecake Protein Shake (<– Click for recipe), I picked up my friend CarlyAnn and we were off!

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CarlyAnn and I have been hearing about a place called Crazy Beans in Miller Place. We decided to venture over there to see what all the hype was about. The place was super cozy filled with a warm color scheme and a quirky decor.

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Here are their salt and pepper shakers (that I want….)

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Crazy Beans had an extensive menu of comfort breakfast foods, soups, salads, and wraps. If I had not just eaten I can honestly say that the peanut butter chocolate chip pancakes would have been ordered in a second. They also have a variety of lattes and mochas. CarlyAnn ordered the Smores where they wrote snow in the foam! How cute!!

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Afterwards we ended up going shopping and I concluded my night with a QuestBar and the last of my froyo! Haha why dirty a plate?!

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Caramel Cheesecake Protein Shake

Caramel Cheesecake Protein Shake

I am not a cheesecake fan but this shake was filling and very yummy!

 

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Ingredients:

-       ½ cup fat free cottage cheese + ½ cup water ORRR 1 cup almond milk unsweetened

-       1 scoop vanilla protein powder

-       1-2 packets stevia

-       1 tsp. sugar free smuckers caramel or walden farms caramel

-       1 Tbsp. sugar free fat free cheesecake pudding mix

-       4-5 ice cubes

-       OPTIONAL: Graham crackers for garnish

 

Directions:

  1. toss all ingredients except graham crackers into the blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Top with crumbled graham cracker

 

Nutritional Facts (cottage cheese version):

Serving size: 1

Calories: 190

Fat: 0g

Carbs: 16g

Fiber: 0g

Protein: 31g

Sodium: 786mg

Sugar: 8g

 

Nutritional Facts (almond milk version):

Serving size: 1

Calories: 149

Fat: 3g

Carbs: 11g

Fiber: 1g

Protein: 21g

Sodium: 614mg

Sugar: 3g

New Years Eve and Keeping Your Resolution!

New Years Eve and Keeping Your Resolution!

Happy New Year! I rang in 2015 with great friends and my boyfriend Andrew, at a party hosted by a local bar on the island. We had a blast and ran into so many people from school which was very unexpected.

IMG_0573   Its crazy how life can change over the course of twelve months. This morning I reflected upon the ups and downs of 2014 and what 2015 has in store for me. I didn’t make a new years resolution last year, but with a whole new perspective on life I figured I would rack my brain and promise myself positive improvements. I advise you to do the same! The key to a successful New Years resolution is setting mini goals that lead up to the big picture. For example, if you want to 20 pounds by summer start with counting your calories 4 days/week. After 2 weeks of doing this and it has become a habit tack on a new goal like walking 2x/week.

Butternut Squash Bruschetta

Butternut Squash Bruschetta

Hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving! Every year, each family member is required to bring a dish or dessert. I decided to do one of each. Along with my 30 decadent chocolate covered strawberries, I prepared Butternut Squash Bruschetta on toasted French bread.

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I am not a tomato person so normal bruschetta just wouldn’t cut it. This appetizer is not only super healthy, but it also has the perfect combination of sweet and savory flavors.

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Even though I practically had to be rolled to the car after dinner, all those carbs kept me going on Black Friday ;). My sister and I went HAM on Bloomies… IMG_0342 And to think I almost didn’t go… bahahaaaa.   IMG_0337

Ingredients:

- 48oz chopped and peeled butternut squash

- 1/3 cup craisins (or dried cranberries)

- ¼ cup chopped walnuts

- 2oz. crumbled Goat cheese (I found some gourmet cinnamon cranberry goat cheese but plain works fine too!)

- 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

- 2 tsp. raw honey

- 1 French baguette

- Olive oil cooking spray

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2.   Toss cubed butternut squash on a baking sheet and lightly coat with cooking spray (or you can drizzle olive oil)
  3. Bake the squash until tender ( test by piercing with a fork. Approx. 30 minutes)

NOTE: When checking the butternut squash you MUST pierce it with a fork because the outside will remain crisp.

  1. Remove squash from the oven and allow to cool
  2. Slice up your French baguette, spray lightly with cooking spray and place them in the oven until toasted.
  3. Once your squash has cooled chop up any of the larger pieces so that it will fit on the French bread.
  4. In a cup mix together honey and vinegar (keep stirring and the honey will dissolve on its own)
  5. Place walnuts in a skillet and toast on low heat until fragrant (3-5 minutes)
  6. Top each slice of bread with a tablespoon of squash
  7. Evenly sprinkle the cheese, craisins, and walnuts on each slice
  8. Using a spoon, drizzle over the tops with your honey vinegar

NOTE: I decided to bake rather than boil the squash to preserve most of its nutrients. Boiling vegetables will leech out a great deal of its vitamins.

Nutritional Facts (not including bread):

Serving size: 1 Tbsp.

Calories: 14

Fat: 0g

Carbs: 3g

Fiber: 0g

Protein: 0g

Sodium: 4mg

Sugar: 1g

 

 

 You can always have this as a side dish rather than an appetizer. Here are the nutrition facts for a larger side portion… 

 

Nutritional Facts (not including bread):

Serving size: ½ cup

Calories: 114

Fat: 3g

Carbs: 21g

Fiber: 5g

Protein: 3g

Sodium: 28mg

Sugar: 9g

Pumpkin Pie Protein Pancakes

Pumpkin Pie Protein Pancakes

I’m so happy to finally catch up on my blogging. I was sure that living off campus and having a kitchen would allow me to post recipes more often while at school. Unfortunately between work and school It’s hard to Crunch and Lunch as often as I would like.

Thankfully I have a mini break, and even though I am in the middle on finishing up some school work I think I can stop for a sec and share with you my breakfast!

It most certainly is PuMpKiN SeAsOn :)

pumpkin pie protein pancakes

Ingredients:

-1 scoop vanilla chai Fitmiss protein powder

- dash of cinnamon

- 1 tsp. baking powder

- 1 packet stevia

- ½ Tbsp. all purpose flour (I used GF)

- 2 Tbsp. pumpkin spice Chobani (any greek yogurt will do)

- 1 Tbsp. pumpkin puree

- 3 Tbsp. egg beaters

- ½ Tbsp. semi sweet chocolate chips

- cooking spray

 

Directions:

  1. Whisk together dry ingredients
  2. Mix in wet ingredients
  3. Stir in chocolate chips
  4. Coat skillet with cooking spray and on medium-high heat pour in batter. (I made 3 mini pancakes cooking on one side for 3 minutes, flipping, and cooking the other side for about 1 minute).
  5. Top with Greek yogurt, nuts, more chocolate chips, pumpkin froyo, maple syrup, whipped cream, peanut butter, or whatever else your heart desires.

 

Nutritional Facts (just pancakes with chocolate chips, no toppings):

Serving size: 1

Calories: 195

Fat: 4g

Carbs: 17g

Fiber: 2g

Protein: 24g

Sodium: 788mg

Sugar: 10g

Chicken Bacon Tortilla

Chicken Bacon Tortilla

A picture speaks a thousand words. Therefore, I will let these pictures tell you how amazing this recipe is….


Chicken bacon tortilla edit

NOMMMMM

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Ingredients:

1/2 tortilla

1 Tbsp. Light mayo

3 ounces grilled chicken breast

1/2 slice part skim mozzarella

1 slice bacon

a few spinach leaves

1 Tbsp. bell pepper

 

Directions:

1. Microwave tortilla or 10-12 seconds to soften 2.Slice chicken into 4 strips

2. Smear mayo on tortilla then layer on chicken strips, cheese, bacon, pepper, and spinach leaves. Enjoy!

 

Nutritional Facts:

Serving size: 1

Calories: 316

Fat: 12g

Carbs: 16g

Fiber: 2g

Protein: 33g

Sodium: 489mg

Sugar: 2g

 

 

Turkey Stuffed Bell Peppers

Turkey Stuffed Bell Peppers

I decided to make dinner last night for both picky and adventurous eaters, to accommodate everyones likes I decided stuffed bell peppers would be a happy medium. The meal was extremely successful and I am happy to announce I can now add stuffed peppers to the menu alongside our basic chicken and brown rice meals. Hallelujah!

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Dont forget to reuse your pepper tops! No reason they should go to waste :)

 

 

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Ingredients:

-       4 large red bell peppers

-       ½ Tbsp. olive oil

-       olive oil cooking spray

-       ½ cup diced onion

-        ½ cup diced red bell pepper (use the tops of your bell peppers)

-       1 cup brown rice

-       2 garlic cloves minced

-       1.3lb package of 93% lean ground turkey

-       1 tsp. salt

-       ¾ tsp. pepper

-       1 cup no salt added tomato sauce

-       4 slices part skim mozzarella

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Cut the tops off bell peppers and remove the seeds
  3. Place peppers in a large pot of boiling water and boil until tender (about 3 minutes)
  4. Remove peppers from the water and set aside on a plate
  5. In a separate pot cook rice according to its instructions
  6. Coat a large skillet with cooking spray and on medium heat add in olive oil
  7. Sauté diced onions and bell pepper in the same pan cooking until the peppers are tender and the onions are translucent
  8. Add ground turkey, garlic, salt, and pepper to the onion pepper mixture. Cook until the turkey has browned breaking it apart in the pan with a spatula.
  9. Mix in brown rice and tomato sauce
  10. Place bell peppers onto a baking sheet and fill each with ½ cup of the ground turkey rice mixture
  11. Bake for 5 minutes, remove from oven, top each with a slice of cheese and bake again until the cheese has melted.

 

NOTE: After baking them I put the broiler on for a few minutes to crisp up the cheese a bit. If you do this watch your peppers veryyyy closely!

Nutrition Facts:

Calories: 271

Carbs: 22g

Protein: 26g

Fat: 10g

Sodium: 688mg

Sugar: 8g

Coconut Cream Quest Pie

Coconut Cream Quest Pie

If you follow my CrunchandLunch Instagram you probably know I can be pretty delayed with transferring my IG posts and recipes on to my blog. For that, I sincerely apologize.

About a week ago I headed over to GNC for my usual supplements and box of questbars (since they have a buy 2 bars get 1 free deal). Naturally, I stick to double chocolate chunk and cookies and cream (Duh!!), but last week the coconut cashew bar caught my eye.  I bought a few to experiment with, test, and try. The first try on this coconut cream quest pie was actually spot on!

Want to know the best part?

…This recipe is Candyce Approved (my sister)

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I do have one warning before attempting this super simple recipe: WATCH YOUR TOASTING COCONUT! I nearly set my house on fire via toaster oven. Thank the Lord my Mom heard me freaking out, (she deals with these situations much better than I do.)

 

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If you would like to watch a fun 15 second recipe tutorial video accompanied with some killer tunes head over to my Instagram page, CrunchandLunch.

 

 Ingredients:

- Coconut cashew questbar

-Non stick cooking spray

-1 Tbsp. Sugar free jello pudding (i used white chocolate but vanilla is fine)

- 1/4 Cup fat free milk

-A drop of coconut extract (be ever so careful and taste the cream to see if you want to add a smidge more)

-1 tsp toasted coconut (optional)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven at 350

2. Cut questbar in half and roll each half out

3. Very lightly spray 2 muffin tins and press questbar inside

4. Bake for 7 minutes or until fluffy and edges have browned

5. In a small bowl combine pudding powder, milk, and coconut extract. Stir and let sit– it should thicken.

6. Toast coconut in oven for a couple of minutes (watch it carefully! I started a fire the first time)

7. Top each mini crust with cream and toasted coconut



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Nutritional Facts(with toasted coconut):

Serving size: 2 mini pies

Cals: 217

Fat: 7g

Carbs: 32g

Fiber: 17g

Protein: 23g

Sodium: 312mg

Sugar: 6g

 

 

Cookies and Cream Protein Crepe

Cookies and Cream Protein Crepe

My sisters engagement party is right around the corner and it happens to be a backyard brunch with an assortment of crepes!

I have been so excited to indulge that I honestly could not wait any longer and needed something to fulfill my creepy crepe craving (ok, not so creepy). Use this crepe recipe as your base and fill it with whatever you want! Strawberries, bluueberries, bananas, nutella, peanut butter, fluff, honey, agave… literally anything.

You can always opt for a savory crepe which can be filled with chicken, eggs, cheese, spinach, etc.

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What really matters is on the inside ;)

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Protein Crepe Ingredients:

- 1 scoop protein powder (I used fitmiss vanilla chai)

- 1/4 cup egg whites

- 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

- 1 packet stevia

 

Topping Ingredients:

- 1 Tbsp. vanilla light and fit greek yogurt

- 1/2 Tbsp. nutella

- 2 Tbsp. fat free reddi whip

Directions:

1. Blend all ingredients together

2. Coat skillet with cooking spray (I use butter flavor)

3. Turn heat on high and allow pan to get very hot BEFORE pouring in the batter

4. Pour in batter and immediately reduce heat to low

5. Cook for approx. 3 minutes, flip, and cook for an additional 45 seconds-1 minute

6. Lay the crepe on a plate, smear top half with nutella and add half of your crushed oreo then fold over once

7. Smear half of your folded crepe with greek yogurt and fold once more

8. Top with fat free cool whip or reddi whip and the other half of your crushed oreo

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 Nutrition Facts: (Just the crepe)

Servings: 1

Serving Size: 1 large crepe

Calories: 131

Fat: 2g

Sodium: 239mg

Carbs: 2g

Fiber: 1g

Sugar: 1g

Protein: 23g

 

Nutrition Facts: (With Topping)

Servings: 1

Serving Size: 1 Crepe with topping

Calories: 248

Fat: 8g

Sodium: 293mg

Carbs: 19g

Fiber: 2g

Sugar: 12g

Protein: 25g