Chickpea Spinach Stir Fry

Stir fry is one of the easiest dinners to make. First of all, it’s a one-pot-wonder so there are very few dishes to clean up after your meal. Second, throw just about any veggie in the pot with the right seasonings and you have a delicious, healthy meal. Third, it’s super easy to double or triple the recipe to make leftover lunches for the week.

I like this particular stir fry recipe because you pretty much just dump already prepared veggies in the pot – there’s no need to worry about cooking chicken separately before you start cooking the main meal. It’s also vegetarian, which is great if you’re going meatless (I usually try to go vegetarian one day a week). Plus, it’s overall just plain healthy. In fact, I found the recipe that inspired my own variation from a running magazine featuring great meals for runners’ recovery. Chickpeas have both protein and fiber, and the spinach adds tons of vitamins and nutrients.

Whether you’re recovering from a long run or hard workout, or even if you’re looking for just an easy, healthy weekday meal, throw this recipe together for dinner and an extra couple lunches during the week. And feel free to throw in some extra veggies if you have them in your fridge! This dish is delicious by itself or over quinoa or rice.

I love the nuttiness of the chickpeas, the tang of the lemon, and the acidity of the tomatoes. Delicious.

I love the nuttiness of the chickpeas, the tang of the lemon, and the acidity of the tomatoes. Delicious.

What you’ll need:
2 x 14-ounce cans chickpeas, drained
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 tablespoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons ginger (dry or fresh)
1 tablespoon lemon pepper
1/4 teaspoons cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
2 x 10-ounce packages frozen spinach, defrosted

What you’ll need to do:

If your spinach isn’t already defrosted, go ahead and get that going.

Meanwhile, set your wok or large pan over medium-high heat on the stove. Add the olive oil, chickpeas, garlic, and ginger. Saute for about 4 minutes.

While the chickpeas are cooking, slice your grape tomatoes in half and set aside for later.

After the 4 minutes have passed, add the spices and lemon juice. Cook for about 1 minute, then stir in the spinach and tomatoes. Heat through for about 1 minute.

This dish made 4 good sized servings for 2 dinners and 2 lunches.

This recipe makes 4 good sized servings for 2 dinners and 2 lunches.


Avocado, Tomato, and Cucumber Salad with my Zesty Dressing

A few weeks ago, I posted about how much I love avocados, so much so that an avocado tree was my tree of choice when I was a kid. Well today you’re in for a treat, this recipe was made with avocados from that very tree.

This salad is one of my favorite summer dishes because it’s fresh and light. The ingredients are all in season, which makes them super flavorful. The avocados taste smooth, buttery, and rich with a subtle nuttiness; the tomatoes pop with a slight sweetness and acidity; the cucumbers add lightness and a crunch to the salad; and my zesty dressing adds the citrusy zing that brings this simple salad to the next level. Whenever I make this dish, I can’t help but go back for a giant scoop of seconds.

I love how fresh and delicious this is. And I love that it’s not your typical salad.

What you’ll need (makes 4 servings):

For the salad:

  • 2 large avocados
  • 3 vine-ripened tomatoes (or 4 plum tomatoes)
  • 1 cucumber

For the dressing:

What you’ll need to do:

For any salad, as I’ve mentioned, I always start by making the salad dressing because it gives the flavors some time to marry. In whatever container is good for salad dressing, start by combining your zesty Italian salad dressing mix, lemon juice, and sherry. Shake or stir, and then set it aside until you’re done preparing your avocados, tomatoes, and cucumber.

As I wrote in my guacamole recipe, start with ripe avocados. You’ll know they’re the perfect ripeness if they’re about the same density as if you press on the pad of your hand. Use your knife to cut your avocado all the way around length-wise, dragging your knife tip around the pit and being careful not to puncture it. Twist your avocado like an Oreo to release it. Then, use your knife to chop into the pit to get a grip on it, then twist your knife to release the pit. Slice your avocado vertically while it’s still in the skin, but be careful to not puncture the skin, then slice horizontally to make perfect chunks. Use a spoon to scoop the chunks out of the skin into a medium bowl.

**Tip: I found this awesome diagram of how to cut an avocado, which I posted on my Facebook page here. Like my Facebook page while you’re there!

See those beauties? Those were grown on the tree I planted years ago at my parent’s house. Delicious. My pride and joy.

Chop your tomatoes into the same-sized chunks as your avocado. Then peel your cucumber and slice into similarly-sized chunks. Add the tomato and cucumber to the bowl with your avocado.

Go back to your salad dressing and add the oil, then shake or stir to combine. Toss your avocado, tomato, and cucumber with about 1/2 cup of your dressing (you’ll have leftover dressing, perfect for any regular salad). The lemon juice in the dressing will help the avocados stay green and not brown. Most importantly, it adds an extra zing to your delicious dish.



Tuna Salad Stuffed Tomatoes

Nothing beats a beautiful beefsteak tomato, and nothing’s easier than whipping up a simple tuna salad. I love tuna stuffed tomatoes because of how simple it is, so it’s a perfect go-to when you really don’t want to put forth any effort. For under 200 calories and in less than 5 minutes, you can have a delicious summer lunch or snack.

The acidity in the tomato works great with the tuna.

What you’ll need:
1 beefsteak tomato
1 can light tuna in water (not oil)
1 tablespoon light mayo
1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish

What you’ll need to do:

Open your can of tuna and drain out the water. In a regular bowl (the bowl you’ll eat this in so you save a dish), mix together your tuna, mayo, and pickle relish with a fork (again, the fork you’ll eat with so you save another dish) to make your tuna salad.

You can use any tuna salad recipe you like, but this is my favorite, most simple go-to. I sometimes throw in onions if I have them.

Slice your beefsteak tomato in thin slices and position around the edge of your bowl. Make sure you have a hole in the middle so you can scoop up tuna salad with a slice of tomato.

And enjoy! It’s as simple as that.