Turkey Bacon Meatballs Over Zoodles

As zucchini season is here I am ready to dive into all the zucchini recipes! I love how tasty and easy zoodles are. Perfect with chicken, steak tips and now meatballs! I came up with this one as I have been craving bacon lately, which I always have on hand. I almost always have ground turkey or beef in my fridge as well, as I make lots of tacos. This time I saw the bacon on top of ground turkey and thought hm what a great combination!

Bacon in meatballs seems weird, but it’s actually quite tasty. I added breadcrumbs and onions and the flavor was just perfect. Since my meatballs weren’t whole 30 compliant, I decided to find a whole 30 compliant sauce. One whole 30 compliant portion is better than none!

These meatballs would taste great over pasta or spaghetti squash as well! I might tackle the spaghetti squash option next.

First I mixed my ground turkey with 1/4 cup finely diced onion, 3 strips diced bacon, 1/4 cup breadcrumbs, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, 1 tbsp minced garlic, 1 tsp parsley, 1 tsp garlic powder, salt, pepper, and 1 whisked egg.

Meatball Mix

Mix together and roll into 1 inch meatballs. Heat 2 tbsp EVOO over medium heat. Cook your meatballs in batches so they have space to brown. I cooked on each side about 2-3 minutes and did about 3 batches.

Cook meatballs over 2 TBSP EVOO

Once all meatballs are browned add in 24 OZ of your favorite sauce. I used OrganicoBello’s marinara sauce, which is delicious and whole 30 approved! You can use any sauce you’d like or make your own. I covered and let simmer for 20-25 minutes.

Add marinara to your meatballs and simmer

While your meatballs are cooking prepare your zucchinis. I washed and spiralized 3 zucchini’s. First I heated 1 tbsp EVOO over medium high heat on a skillet. Then I cooked the zucchini for 3-5 minutes. Not too long or the zucchini will get soggy. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook your zucchini

Once your zoodles are finished place them on a plate and top with your meatballs and sauce. Enjoy!

Turkey Bacon Meatballs Over Zoodles

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 3

Turkey Bacon Meatballs Over Zoodles

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground turkey or beef
  • 3 strips of bacon, diced
  • 3 zucchini’s spiralized
  • 1/4 cup finely diced onions
  • 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp mined garlic
  • 1 tsp parsley
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 whisked egg

Instructions

  1. First mix your ground turkey, breadcrumbs, onions, parmesan cheese, bacon, and spices. Roll into 1 inch meatballs.
  2. Heat 2 tbsp EVOO over medium heat. Place your meatballs in pan and brown each side 2-3 minutes. Brown your meatballs in batches ensuring to not overcrowd.
  3. Once all your meatballs are browned, add them all back to pan. Add 24 oz of your favorite sauce. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 20-25 minutes.
  4. While your meatballs are cooking, wash and spiralize your zucchini’s.
  5. Heat 1 tbsp EVOO over medium high heat. Once heated add your zucchini’s and cook for 3-5 minutes making sure to not overcook (they will get soggy). Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Serve zucchini on dish and top with your meatballs and sauce.
  7. Enjoy!
https://appetiteforlifee.com/turkey-bacon-meatballs-over-zoodles/

Air Fryer Fried Dilled Zucchini Sticks

Pickled anything and I am totally there. I have always loved pickles. Catch me always ordering any fried pickle appetizer. So how did I come to think of this dish?

A while back I made dilled brussel sprouts by simply marinading brussel sprouts in pickle juice overnight and OMG, they were so tasty.

I’m sure you guys remember my All Things Pickled post. From pickling peppers, to onions, to jalapeƱos, to avocado, I love them ALL. I also love how simple and easy it is to pickle things. If you haven’t experienced with your own pickling, get started!

Since getting my Air Fryer I have made breaded pickles and zucchini chips multiple times. Yesterday I started to think of how I could vary it up with different seasoning. I immediately thought of the dilled brussel sprouts and thought hmm I wonder if that would taste good?!

Up close and personal

In that second, I walked over to my fridge to see if I had enough zucchini and pickle juice to start them ASAP. Of course I did, since zucchini and pickles are both staples in my fridge.

This recipe is so tasty and fun! Also whole 30 compliant and fairly easy to make. You most likely have all the ingredients on hand, as well.

So first I prepared the zucchini by washing and cutting 3 zucchini’s into “sticks”. I’ve noticed the thinner the better purely so they crisp up better. Then I placed them in a ziploc bag. Add 1-1/2 cups of pickle juice (depending on how big your zucchini’s are) to your bag. Add enough juice so when you lay your bag flat all the zucchini sticks are covered in the pickle juice.

3 small zucchini’s cut into sticks

I placed the bag in the fridge flat to ensure all the sticks soaked in the pickle juice. I let them sit all day and made them for dinner that night. So they sat for about 10 hours.

Pickle juice sealed in, bag placed flat down

When your ready to cook them remove them from the fridge and strain the juice out. I let mine sit in the strainer for quite some time to ensure all the liquid strained out.

While they sat I made the dry seasoning which was 1 cup of almond flour, 1/2 tbsp garlic powder, 1/2 tbsp mustard powder, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp pepper, and 1 tsp paprika. Mix well and set aside. In another bowl whisk one egg.

Take your zucchini sticks and dip 2-3 into egg, then into the dry mixture. Place into air fryer with enough space so that the zucchini has space to crisp up. I cooked them at 360 degrees for about 14 minutes in multiple batches. Trust me its worth it!

Enjoy with a sauce of your choosing! I love them with ranch!! Of course, let me know what you think! I’ll be switching up and playing around with the seasoning in the future, I’m sure. Let me know what you come up with!

Air Fryer Fried Dilled Zucchini Sticks

Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 45 minutes

appetizer, snack

Yield: 4

Air Fryer Fried Dilled Zucchini Sticks

Whole 30

Ingredients

  • 3 small zucchini’s cut into sticks
  • 1-1 1/2 cups pickle juice
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 egg whisked

Instructions

  1. First prepare your zucchini. Wash and cut 3 small zucchini’s into sticks.
  2. Place your zucchini sticks into a ziploc bag and add your pickle juice.
  3. Let mixture sit for at least 2 hours. I let mine sit all day! The longer the better.
  4. Once your ready to make preheat your air fryer to 360 degrees.
  5. Take 2-3 zucchini sticks and dip them into egg. Then dip them into the dry mixture.
  6. Place enough in the air fryer so they aren’t touching and have space to crisp up.
  7. Cook at 360 degrees for 13-15 minutes, depending on how crispy you like them. I made several batches to ensure they crisped up better.
  8. Serve with your favorite sauce, ENJOY!
https://appetiteforlifee.com/air-fryer-fried-dilled-zucchini-sticks/

Xo, Rachelle

Too Blessed To Be Stressed Challenge #TBTBS

Today marks the beginning of a new journey for me. I must say these last few months have been very eye opening for me. By focusing on myself, my thoughts, and actions I have been able to learn so much about myself, my growth, and my happiness.

It brought me to the idea of incorporating the gratitude I feel everyday into my life and talking out loud about it. We all know about the law of attraction, right? It’s no secret šŸ˜‰, how the law of attraction works. If you haven’t watched The Secret or read the book then you must! I learned so much about asking, believing, and receiving and how important your thoughts are.

The Too Blessed To Be Stressed challenge is about focusing on what you are grateful for each day (your blessings). By focusing your thoughts on what you are grateful for, you will come to be more appreciative of those things and other things in general. Instead of stressing about something that went wrong or something you are not looking forward to, focus on the gratitude you feel in that moment. What are you grateful for?

Whether you start your mornings with gratitude or end your nights with gratitude, make sure you make a point to take the time. I love keeping a journal but it doesn’t have to be written down. As long as you are thinking about it every single day.

“All that we are is the result of what we have thought” -Buddha.

By making your thoughts more positive, your outlook on things and life will become more positive. I have noticed this in myself in just a few months. I only watched The Secret yesterday and was mind blown because I realized that I have already been experiencing this! I have been practicing gratitude almost daily in some form or another. Now I will be making a more conscious effort to spend more time EVERY SINGLE DAY practicing gratitude and visualizing what I am grateful for.

So for the next 30 days join me! I’ll be sharing at least 3 things a day that I am grateful for. I’ll be using the hashtag #TBTBS Too Blessed To Be Stressed, and posting it to my stories everyday. So check-in, share yours with me, reach out, ask questions! Let’s be thankful and grateful together.

Quick & Easy Ginger Sesame Asian Salad

With all this beautiful weather and sunshine, I’ve been craving light weight, easy salads. Maybe it’s being in the garden, or just the simple idea that salad’s are so refreshing this time of year, either way I find myself making more salads. This is a great thing as I have lots of greens growing in my garden!

It’s been a while since I played around with an Asian salad and I don’t know why, as they are quite tasty! The first time I ever made homemade ginger sesame dressing I remember thinking, this might be the best homemade sauce I have EVER made. Yes this sauce does happen to be one of my absolute favorites. This recipe introduced me to dates a little over a year and a half ago, and I use them in so much of my cooking now!

The items used for making this sauce have become staples in our house as we’ve learned to make most of our own sauces instead of buying store packaged ones. Coconut aminos, sesame oil, rice vinegar, fresh ginger, EVOO, minced garlic, dates, red curry paste, and fish sauce.

I always double this sauce recipe as its perfect for a meat marinade, a salad dressing, or a dipping sauce for veggies!

For my salad portion of this recipe I usually use a coleslaw mix. You can mix in a broccoli slaw as well, which is also delicious! Depending on how quick I am trying to be sometimes I add extra lettuce and sometimes I don’t. It’s perfectly fine to just use coleslaw mix, KEEP IT SIMPLE!

I do however, always add red pepper slivers and red onions slivers. I just simply slice half a red pepper as thin as possible and half a red onion as thin as possible as well. Mix in with your coleslaw mix and your good to go.

Adding Protein?

This batch I added shredded chicken right in with the coleslaw and it was so tasty. I cooked my chicken in the InstantPot because I love the way the chicken comes out. I cook it in about 1 cup of chicken broth with Italian seasoning and salt and pepper for about 10 minutes. Chicken comes out perfectly moist!

You could add steak tips as well! I might add that for my next batch.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag of coleslaw or 4 cups
  • 1/2 red onion sliced thin
  • 1/2 red pepper sliced thin
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded chicken
  • 2-3 scallions
  • sesame seeds

Dressing: (This is for two batches, I always double to make a little extra!)

  • 1/2 cup coconut aminos
  • 4 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 4 tbsp EVOO
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 5-6 large pitted dates
  • 2 tbsp red curry paste (optional)
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce (optional)

Instructions:

  • Add all dressing ingredients to your blender and blend well.
  • Mix your chicken, coleslaw, red onions, and red peppers in a large bowl.
  • Pour half your sauce into coleslaw mixture and mix well. If you need to add more sauce add a little at a time to ensure you don’t add to much.
  • Top with scallions.
  • Serve cold and enjoy!

WHOLE 30 FOR THE WIN, AGAIN

Another round of Whole 30 has come to an end. This being my fifth or sixth round (I have lost count) I knew what to expect and what to have on hand in order to be successful and stay motivated. I feel that this was my BEST round for many reasons that I want to share with you all.

Why Another Round?

First let me start with why I decided to do another round of whole30. This round actually wasn’t planned and I’m wondering if that is why it was my best yet?! Around Easter I was noticing a drop in my energy, stomach ache flare ups, anxious feelings, headaches, and other “not my best self” feels. The weather was starting to get nicer, the days longer so I was spending a lot of my time consuming alcohol and snacks.

I noticed my mood swings and knew immediately what was going on. So then the impromptu whole 30 happened and I am so happy it did. Here I am 34 days later and I feel incredible. My moods are more positive, those anxious moments happen less, no more headaches, no more gross gut feels and I know I have whole 30 to thank.

Growing up I was the world’s pickiest eater. I wish I knew back then, what I know now. I still find it incredible how important of a role food plays to our bodies. Now that I have experienced it and understand it, it makes sense.

What Works For Me?

After doing a few rounds I have learned things that work for me and things that don’t work for me. What’s the number one thing that works for me and helps me stay on track? FOOD PREP. I know you’ve read everywhere how crucial food prep is and your probably over hearing it BUT it is absolutely crucial. For example, if your running late and your on whole 30 (which will happen, cause life happens) and you don’t have the time to make something or find something compliant… your in trouble. We’ve all been there. Either this means you skip a meal or you cheat. Skipping a meal is NEVER a good thing in general but especially when your on whole 30.

So take the time, set aside 2 hours and prep some items that:

  • YOU LOVE- makes things you will look forward to eating. Nothing like that feeling of dreading your lunch and dreaming of something better…
  • ARE EASY- make things that are simple and don’t require tons of steps/crazy ingredients. Keep it simple. 30 days is a long time. Be practical.
  • ARE NUTRITIOUS- make things that add value. Nutrients, vitamins, healthy fats, etc. Be mindful.
  • ARE QUICK FOR ON THE GO- make things you can grab from the fridge and bring anywhere. Don’t have a way of heating something up? Have a cold and hot option to grab in a jiffy! For example, chicken salad is perfect to throw over lettuce when you are on the go! NO need to heat up.

I promise you being FOOD PREPPED is going to make your whole 30 journey more successful.

What I Always Have In My Kitchen

Some things I must have hand for those I NEED FOOD moments:

  • Almonds- I use almonds for cooking and snacking. I’ve started to buy mine in bulk to save money since we consume a lot. I recently started buying this brand.
  • Cashews- I also use cashews for cooking and snacking. Love Terrasoul’s products!
  • Carrots plus ranch. You can make your own whole 30 ranch or buy one. If I am in a jiffy I use Primal Kitchen’s ranch.
  • Which brings me to mayo. Having whole 30 compliant mayo on hand is important as it is used in so many sauces!
  • Dried Fruit. I try not to eat a lot of fruit because of the sugar however I do like to mix dried fruit in with my cashews and almonds.

Why Having A Plan Is So Important

Another important part of being successful is having a plan. By that I mean know what your next meal will be and when your next meal will be. I plan a day a head always if not more. Why? So I am not rushing or stressing an hour before lunch or dinner trying to figure out what I’m going to make or eat. Not having a plan leads to laziness which leads to bad food choices. Knowing what I will be making allows me to relax and not worry about that next meal or have to think about coming up with a meal.

Most Importantly…

Remain positive! Having a good attitude is the best thing you can do for yourself on this journey. Instead of focusing on the negative such as not being able to drink, or eat your favorite snack, focus on how amazing your body will feel after a week of whole 30. Focus on the positive relationship you are building with food! Focus on learning how to cook new things and being in the kitchen a little more.

There will be things you love and hate about this journey. Keep a journal, track your feelings. Reflect on some of your best moments and worst moments so you can learn from them.

Share your journey with friends and family! I always love to hear of whole 30 journeys!

JalapeƱo Ranch Shredded Chicken Avocado Boats

I know Iā€™m not the only one who looks forward to Taco Tuesday…Ā  of course I love to enjoy a taco any day of the week but Tuesdays just seem so fitting….Ā 

My past few taco adventures have been ground beef or turkey so I decided to tackle chicken this time around. 

One of my favorite chicken recipes is cool ranch shredded chicken. SO GOOD! So I decided to blend that into my recipe. 

For my boats I went for avocados but I think this blend would pair well with a sweet potato boat, zucchini boats, or a lettuce wrap!Ā 

I would have to say avocado boats are my absolute favorite… probably because I LOVE avocados! 

The flavors here pair so well, between the cool ranch shredded chicken mixed with the jalapeƱos/onion/pepper mixture and the jalapeƱos and ranch topping.. so tasty !Ā 

Here is what you need:

Ingredients:

  • 2 jalapeƱos diced
  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 3-4 chicken breasts
  • half a green pepper
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp Homemade Dry Ranch Mix
  • salt & pepper
  • compliant ranch
  • scallions

Instructions:


  1. First Cook your chicken. I used the Instant Pot. But you can stove top as well. I added 1 cup of chicken broth, my homemade dry ranch seasoning, & salt and pepper to the Instant Pot. *Homemade Dry Ranch Mix*- parsley, garlic powder, salt, pepper, onion powder, and dill.
  2. Turn Instant Pot to pressure cook for 10 minutes. It will take about 10 minutes to heat up.
  3. While chicken is cooking dice your onion, jalapeƱos, and green pepper. Saute in a pan over oil at medium heat until they soften. Add 2 cloves minced garlic and cook two more minutes.
  4. Once your chicken is finished let pressure release. Drain most of the liquid, leaving a little. Shred your chicken. Mix in the onion, pepper, jalapeƱo mix and stir.
  5. Cut open your avocados and scoop out some of the inside leaving a small well for your chicken. Add your chicken into your avocados and top with compliant ranch and scallions.
  6. Enjoy!