Quinoa Stuffed Peppers {Gluten Free}

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When it comes to dinner, we’re all about simplicity in this household. (Oh, and flavor of course!) These easy-to-make gluten free quinoa stuffed peppers did just the trick for our Monday night dinner this week. Hubby approved!

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers {Gluten Free}

makes about 4 servings (2 peppers per person)

What ya need:

  • 8 medium bell peppers (mix of yellow, orange & red!)
  • 1 c. quinoa (rinsed)
  • 1 jar all-natural marinara sauce
  • 1 package ground turkey
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 Vidalia onion, chopped
  • olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • about 2 c. shredded cheese (mozzarella, cheddar or monterey jack best!)
  • salt & pepper to taste

1. Rinse quinoa & add to pot with about 2 c. water. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and cover for about 15 minutes.

2. In the meantime, sauté onion in olive oil on medium heat until cooked through. Lower heat, add in crushed garlic, and stir for another minute. Set aside.

3. In same pan, cook the turkey burger on medium heat. Once cooked, add in the marinara sauce, lower heat and let simmer. Mix in cooked quinoa, onion & garlic, and can of black beans. Add salt & pepper to … Read More!

Healthy Chicks in the Community: A Zenned Out, Yoga-Loving, Gluten Free Eating Entrepreneur

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Good morning ladies! Now I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted a feature for Healthy Chicks in the Community, but I’m excited to get it going again this week with a very special lady.

As a past client of mine, this Healthy Chick always wows me with her strength, guts and drive to go after what she wants. Not only did she just start her own biz, but she also works full time at Harvard Business School. Talk about gettin’ stuff done! I’ll let Erica take it from here…I’m sure you’ll fall in love with her mission as I have.

[second to the right]

Name/Age: Erica Zendell, 23

Blog/Twitter: http://erica-zendell.blogspot.com, @ezendell

Current City: Boston, MA

Photo: I traveled to China on a recent work trip and met the lovely founders of the organization ‘Gluten-free Shanghai,’ whose resources made my time in a land of soy sauce and wheat buns so much easier!

What I do for work: I am balancing work as a research associate at Harvard Business School and starting a healthy snack food business, Zen Cookery!

Number one passion: Building my business, which seeks to help those with special diets in their desire to feel … Read More!

Healthy Chick(en), Broccoli & Avocado Fettuccine “Alfredo”

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I’ll let you in on a little secret: my go-to requested birthday meal is Fettuccine Alfredo with Chicken Parmesan. Yes, the two of them together. But it has to be homemade by my mother. And it only tastes that good on my birthday. It is my birthday meal, after all. I simply adore the combination of a hearty, homemade marinara with the creamy white Alfredo. Not a likely combination, but it’s genius.

Sometimes I think I could eat that meal every day for the rest of my life, but then again it wouldn’t taste as good that way. Since it isn’t my birthday every day (and no one should consume that amount of cream & cheese 365 days of the year), I’ve created my own health-i-fied version. The Healthy Chicks version.

Using avocados in place of cream and just a pinch of optional parmesan cheese, you can feel a bit more confident indulging. I’m not saying you should eat this meal every day of the year either, but you can feel a little better about it (as will your tummy) when you do prepare it. Enjoy!

Healthy Chick(en), Broccoli & Avocado Fettuccine “Alfredo”

Makes 4 to 5 servings

What Ya … Read More!

“The Bowl Of Goodness” {Warm Quinoa Bowl with Greens & Creamy Garlic Sauce}

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It’s no surprise that The Boy and I like to make our own creations in our tiny box kitchen! We’re always playing with different greens, oils, herbs, meat, seasonal produce and garlic (lots and lots of garlic) to tantalize our taste buds.

Then we have our classic dishes, our staples if you will. The Boy’s include soup (particularly his heart-warming Potato Corn Chowder), Breakfast Frittatas and his famous meatloaf (which he literally won’t stop talking about…he keeps telling all my friends and family to “Ask Rach about my meatloaf!”) Classic Rachel dishes include Almond-Crusted Coconut Chicken with Sweet Potato Fries/Mashed Sweet Potatoes, fancy salads, and an apartment favorite: Warm Quinoa & Veggie Bowls which The Boy just dubbed “The Bowl of Goodness.”

The original inspiration came from our favorite local organic cafe Live Alive, as we are absolutely addicted to their warm grain bowls. That’s when I decided to get my experimenting (and my apron) on!  I never make one bowl exactly the same, but all are vegan and free from gluten and dairy ingredients. Sometimes I add in raisins or curry powder, while other times I load up on the garlic and create a more savory dish. … Read More!

Make This: BBQ Chicken Sausage Pizza with Cauliflower “Crust” {Gluten & Dairy Free}

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The Boy & I have been trying to severely cut back and/or eliminate both gluten and dairy from our diets. While gluten is something I’ve learned to eliminate over the years (due to personal digestion issues and bloating), I occasionally indulge in a tasty snack or fresh-baked slice of bread made with real ingredients. I know my limits, and I’ve pretty much learned to live without it. I guess I’m lucky because I’ve never really had a sweet tooth so fresh bread is really my only temptation.

However, dairy is a completely different beast. You see, I love cheese. Nothing beats a slice of fresh mozzarella, hard cheese paired with fruit, or local feta from the farmer’s market. That being said, this past year I’ve also come to the conclusion that my love for cheese may have some sort of connection  to my skin issues. So I’ve been trying to cut back as much as I can to experiment. Again, this is just my own personal experiment and I’m not saying everyone should give up dairy for clear skin. After all, we are all different and what works for one may not work for another (see: bio-individuality).

I’m … Read More!

Coconut Curry Tempeh Tacos with Creamy Garlic & Ginger Tamari Sauce

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I am not a vegan, nor am I a “meat-eater.” I am not Paleo, Macrobiotic or Carb-Free. While I try to eat gluten and dairy-free most of the time based on experience with my own body, sometimes I “give in” and want a piece of good-quality sourdough bread or cheese from the local farmer’s market. (Um, the cheese thing happens more than sometimes.) I avoid red meat for the most part, but I won’t say no to a good-quality, organic grass-fed burger every now and then…when I’m in the mood that is. My body knows what it can handle, and I listen to it 99% of the time.

The thing is, I don’t like to define myself, or my diet. I like to think of food as food, and load up on as much food that makes me feel good inside, reducing those things that make me feel not-so-good. It’s as simple as that. As you learn to listen to your body and treat it with lots of love, you’ll come to realize your own recipe for happiness and contentment in your body.

One of the many things that make my body feel really darn good is loading up … Read More!

Be Green: St Patty’s Festivities Plus Buckwheat Veggie Pasta with Pesto & Chicken Sausage

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Good afternoon ladies! Hope you all had an amazing weekend, and a happy & green St. Patty’s Day. I spent the weekend catching up with old friends, eating good food, wining, and roaming the packed streets in South Boston. (I even got to catch some of the parade this year!)

[Ladies’ night apps: green grapes, herbed goat cheese, When Pigs Fly sourdough]

[The Boy & I]                                                             [best friends]

While I didn’t get around to Green Eggs ‘n’ Ham or dying our milk green (boo to artificial coloring), I did make a delicious green pesto pasta the other night that I’ve been dying to share with you ladies. Even better, it’s both gluten and dairy-free!

Buckwheat Veggie Pasta with Pesto & Chicken Sausage (Dairy & Gluten-free)

Makes 4 large servings

  • 8 oz. bag of buckwheat pasta
  • 2 links all-natural chicken sausage, sliced into thin circles (We used garlic-flavored)
  • 1 c. frozen green peas
  • Half a bag frozen spinach
  • 2 c. frozen broccoli
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 TB cold-pressed coconut oil (for cooking)
  • salt, pepper & seaweed gomasio to taste

For pesto:

  • About 2 c. fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 c. chopped walnuts
  • 3/4 c. extra-virgin olive oil
Read More!

Wild Mushroom & Sweet Potato Coconut Soup (Dairy & Gluten Free)

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I have an over-the-top crush on soup. From thick stews and chowders to broth-based and bisques, soups make my heart melt.

There’s noting like coming home to a hot bowl of soup in the winter, especially when it’s homemade. It brings me back to childhood when I’d rush into the house from the bus stop to the heavenly aroma of parsley, dill and colorful vegetables. This meant my mom’s homemade Chicken Noodle Soup was about to be served!

Unfortunately, most soups and stews found at the store or restaurant are loaded with cream, sugar, sodium and other additives to enhance the flavor. But for me, the natural ingredients in soup create enough flavor as they are.

Last week, I was itching for a hearty bowl of soup, but not necessarily the heavy ingredients that come with it. Therefore, I browsed through some recipes for a little inspiration and decided to create my own thai-style coconut mushroom soup with sweet potatoes. If you know me, I’m not a huge fan of recipes because I enjoy experimenting in the kitchen and playing with flavors! (I apologize in advance for my rookie recipe-writing skills since I rarely go by the exact tablespoon, cup … Read More!

Pancakes Make Me Happy (Especially When They're Gluten Free)

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I remember when I was a little kid, having pancakes for breakfast was just as exciting as seeing presents under the tree. Our family made such an event out of it. There were blueberry pancakes, banana pancakes, and my absolute favorite childhood flavor: chocolate chip pancakes. And of course we made a batch or two of plain, only to smother them in butter and Maple syrup. Seriously, there was nothing like pancakes for breakfast. 

Then I developed a gluten/wheat sensitivity two years ago, and haven’t been able to enjoy pancakes ever since. Seriously, I had forgotten what they tasted like. Last year, our roommates hosted a winter day brunch, and all I could eat were the eggs, fruit salad and bacon. The pancakes just sat there staring at me, with all of their ooey gooey goodness. Grr. I cursed them for containing wheat, but then again, I guess it’s not really their fault. 

Well, it wasn’t until this morning that I was brought back to childhood with a bite of some damn good pancakes. Yesterday while strolling my favorite place in the world -Trader Joe’s – I stumbled upon a box of frozen gluten free pancakes, and … Read More!

Sweetie Pie “Spaghetti” & Meatballs

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           What? That’s NOT spaghetti??!


This healthy dish is a wonderful substitute for your traditional spaghetti ‘n’ meatballs. Eat one of the all-time favorite comfort foods with absolutely no guilt at all. Serve with a side salad or small piece of homemade garlic bread! Trust me: it’s so darn good that your guests won’t even know it’s not real spaghetti. Note: this recipe is GF- gluten free AND guilt free! 


*serves 4

For squash:

-1 spaghetti squash

-2 TB extra virgin olive oil

-1 tsp. cinnamon

-1 TB ground pepper

-1 TB red pepper flakes

-1 TB oregano

-1 TB parsley

For meatballs/sauce:

-1 package lean ground turkey

-1 c. of fresh Marinara sauce

-1 clove garlic, crushed

-1 tsp. salt

-1 TB red pepper flakes

-1/4 c. red onion, chopped into small pieces

-1 tsp. pepper

-1 TB basil 

-Extra Virgin Olive Oil 



1. Preheat oven to 375. Cut squash in half (lengthwise). Scoop out the insides, and set on a large baking sheet. Coat squash with olive oil, along with the dry ingredients “for squash” listed above. Bake for 45 minutes.


2. In the meantime, mix ground turkey in a large bowl with 2 TB olive oil, salt, pepper … Read More!

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