Sunday, July 28, 2013

Skinny Caramel Frappuccino (Starbucks Copy Cat) Gluten Free

Very low calorie version of the Starbucks favorite.. gluten free to boot


3 cups ice cubes (3 big handfuls of cubed ice, not crushed ice)
1 cup cold strong coffee, previously brewed and chilled
1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or your favorite milk)
sugar-free sweetener (Splenda, or your favorite), to taste... I used 4 or 5 packets of splenda cuz i like sweet.
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
2 tablespoons fat free whipped topping, for garnishing
1 tablespoon sugar free caramel sauce for garnishing


  1. Combine first 5 ingredients in the canister of a blender  and blend until smooth, creamy, fluffy, frothy, and combined, less than 1 minute. Taste, and if necessary, adjust with a splash more coffee, milk, dash of sweetener, or a few ice cubes.
  2. Garnish with whipped topping and caramel sauce. Serve immediately.
Tip - Make the full batch and place un-garnished extra portion of frappuccino in a freezer-safe mug. Later on, simply let it unthaw a bit, either 30 minutes at room temp or about 1 minute in the microwave.

Recipe as seen on averie cooks.

For a Starbucks Chai Tea Copycat go here.

The full recipe, a good 24+ ounces, is essentially calorie-free, until garnishing.
3 cups ice cubes = 0 calories
1 cup of strong cold coffee = 0 calories
1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk = 15 calories for 24+ ounces (almost negligible over the big batch)
sugarfree sweetener (white stevia powder, liquid vanilla stevia drops, Splenda, or your favorite) = 0 calories
optional vanilla extract = o calories
Garnish with 2 tablespoons fat free whipped topping = 5 calories
Garnish with 1 tablespoon sugarfree caramel sauce = 45 calories
= Grand total of 50 calories

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

5:2 Diet - Intermittent Fasting and its Anti-Aging Health Benefits

5:2 Dieting . . .  Some see it as a "diet" most see it as a lifestyle change.  I personally love it so far.  I am in my 6th week and already feel a difference.  A side effect of this 5:2 plan, beyond the health benefits, is weightloss.  Can't beat that!  I have lost a total of 6.2 lbs so far.  However, once one reaches their goal weight they transition to a 6:1 plan to continue getting the health benefits and maintain their weight.

The Plan:

As a form of IF - Intermittent Fasting, basically the plan is 5 days of "regular" eating - these are feast days and 2 non-consecutive "fast" days which allows women 500 calories and men 600 calories.  Easy peasy yapaneesy!  The nice thing is that when you get through your 500 calorie day and a feast day comes you're not all that hungry for junk food.  Too, if you are doing this for weightloss try not to over eat on feast days.  Stick to around 2000 calories or your TDEE.  However, I haven't found it very detrimental to the weightloss if you do go over on feast days.

You can plan your fast days when ever you want, Monday & Thursday, Tuesday & Thursday, Monday & Friday.  Its up to you.  Another beauty of the plan is that it allows social flexibility.  If your scheduled fast day doesn't fit into your social schedule (birthday party, social outing, etc), you can just move your fast day to the next day or another day of the week.  It doesn't have to be the same days each week. 

The Health Benefits:

People are seeing lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, blood sugar regulation, more energy, improved mood and clearer skin.  Increased lifespan and protection against age-related diseases such as cancer, dementia and Alzheimer’s are also benefits of this intermittent fasting.  So while some do it for weightloss, some solely do it for the health reasons.

Dr. Michael Mosely  has written a book on the diet and he is known as the 5:2 guru.  He has also done a documentary which can be found on Youtube.


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Copy Cat Chuy's Creamy Jalapeno Ranch Dip

Copy Cat Chuy’s Creamy Jalapeno Ranch Dip

If you have ever been to Chuy's tex mex restaurant then you know the deliciousness that is the Creamy  JalapeƱo Ranch dip. 

After searching around I found a basic recipe that I changed to make it taste as close to Chuy's version as possible. It's very similar and 2 people have said that my version actually has more flavor and they prefer  it but they are close  in taste. 

hope you enjoy.  
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup milk (whole milk)
  • 1 packet hidden valley ranch dressing mix (the dry stuff)
  • 1/2 sliced fresh jalapeno (no seeds if you don't want really spicy; i add the seeds)
  • 1/2 cup pickled jalapeno pepper slices
  • 4 finger pinch of cilantro
  • generous pinch of salt
  • 2 tsp garlic powder to taste
  • 1 tsp of lime juice (Optional)

Throw EVERYTHING in the blender.
Blend on low for 45-60 seconds. (The longer you blend the runnier it gets.)

Serve with tortilla chips.  Perfect opener for delicious Chicken Enchiladas.

Let me know what you think! :)

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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Pico De Gallo

I always reference it in my recipes.. so rather than say how to make it in each of those recipes, I'll just post the quick how to right here.  This is how I make pico de gallo.

You need:

1 onion
1 tomato
cilantro (to taste)  can sub parsley
1 scoop minced garlic
1- 2 dashes of seasoning salt
salt to taste
pepper to taste

Chop onion and tomato.  Mix all together in a bowl.  Dash some seasoning salt, salt and pepper.  Stir and that's it.  You can refrigerate it and use it for tacos, salsa, etc.

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Walking Tacos

 Walking Tacos 

Get some Fritos - Original or [i like] Chili Cheese Fritos.

Brown your meat with taco seasoning.

Make your Pico De Gallo.


Shred your cheese.


Lettuce if you wish ( i don't actually like lettuce so you wont see it pictured here, hehe)

Assemble all the yummyness in a bowl.  Easy and Quick.  

I use chili cheese husband likes regular.

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