Crockpot Pot Roast {Whole30 Approved}



  • 2-3 lb chuck roast
  • Olive oil
  • 21 seasoning salute (or steak seasoning )
  • Garlic powder
  • Smoked paprika
  • Kosher salt
  • Pepper
  • 1c beef broth (for whole30 make sure your broth contains only compliant ingredients (Ie no honey, etc.)
  • 5-6 Celery stalks, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 6 large carrots, peeled & diced
  • Rice (optional: for whole30 use cauliflower rice)


  1. Rub roast with olive oil
  2. Sprinkle with seasonings on top and bottom
  3. Heat large skillet over medium high heat and sear all sides of roast
  4. Add roast to crockpot
  5. Dice veggies, toss with olive oil and season with seasonings
  6. Saute veggies in same skillet for 5-6 minutes
  7. Add veggies to roast and pour 1c beef broth over everything
  8. Cook on low for 8-9 hours
  9. Serve over rice

Gouda Mashed Potatoes

If you’re still looking for delicious recipes to add to your Thanksgiving menu, here’s Bryan’s absolute favorite. Ever since I made it for our first Thanksgiving together, he asks for it constantly. Just last night when I was going over the menu for this years feast (as if he cared), his only question was “and your mashed potatoes right?!” So if you’re looking for some truly incredible potatoes to add to your table, look no further. These are hands down the best around…at least according to the judges in our house.

Gouda Mashed Potatoes

mashed potatoes


  • 7oz package of Gouda cheese, shredded (can add more. We’ve started using the smoked variety due to Bry’s love of all things smokey)
  • 1 tsp. black pepper + more to taste
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt + more to taste
  • 2 tbsp. horseradish sauce
  • 2lbs baby red potatoes, diced + blemished removed
  • 1/3c milk (any milk works, we use 1%)


  1. Dice and remove blemishes from potatoes (you could leave them but they sometimes add a funny taste/texture that might affect your final dish).
  2. Add potatoes to large pot and cover with water. Boil until tender.
  3. Drain water and return to pot. Add pepper, salt, horseradish sauce, milk and shredded gouda.
  4. Blend with a hand mixer until well mixed. Adjust salt + pepper to taste and enjoy!

Almond Pinecone Dip

Growing up, there are two things that always reminded me of holidays at my Grandma’s house. One was her amazing green beans. I’m fairly certain they were the canned variety that she’d dump into a pot to heat, but somehow she sprinkled them with enough love and comfort that they were my favorite item on the holiday table. The second was my Aunt’s incredible almond pinecone dip. She’s made it for every family gathering since I can remember, and has had to double, triple and finally, quadruple the recipe, we all love it so much!

Now that we have a family of our own, we’ve started to spend the holidays in the comfort of our own home, making our own traditions. But we’re sure to include our family traditions that bring so much love, comfort and warm memories to this time of the year. Including: my Aunt’s almond pinecone dip. If you’re looking for a yummy appetizer or side dish for any gathering, try it! It is sure to not disappoint…until you reach the bottom of the plate and are left in utter sadness that it’s somehow disappeared.

Almond Pinecone Dip
Yields 1 1/2 cups



  • 1 ¼ cups whole almonds
  • 1 8-oz package cream cheese, softened (both original and light work)
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 5 crisply cooked bacon slices, crumbled (I use turkey bacon, my Aunt uses regular)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped scallions (green onions)
  • ½ teaspoon dill weed
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Spread almonds in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes or until almonds just begin to turn color, stirring often.
  2. Combine softened cream cheese and mayonnaise until well combined.
  3. Add bacon, green onions, dill weed and pepper. Mix well.
  4. Cover and chill overnight (or for at least an hour or two).
  5. Remove from fridge and shape dip into pinecones on a serving platter (or any shape you want like a heart, football, etc.).
  6. Beginning from narrow end of the pinecone, press almonds into dip at a slight angle, in rows. Continue overlapping until dip is completely covered by almonds.
  7. Garnish with tops of green onions or artificial pine sprigs.
  8. Serve with crackers and enjoy!

Last Week’s Workouts (+ Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes!)

Between 2 trips to the ER and a chest infection my week was very light on the workout front. Some is better than none! And I know that taking a break is more beneficial to my body recovering then trying to push through.


Saturday: 9mi run! (8:20pace) <– 30 degree run. It was absolutely frigid & I kicked myself the entire time for not bringing gloves. My hands were numb, swollen and red the entire time. Ouch!

Sunday: OFF

Monday: Walk (trip to ER for corneal scratch)

Tuesday: 20m ab + booty barre workout

Wednesday: 4mi treadmill  run + 3/4mi warm up and cooldown (9:38 pace) <— so so sick

Thursday: Walk (ER allergic reaction)

Friday: Rest or at home workout (like yoga or barre)

Now to what you really want…CUPCAKES!

Vegan Funfetti Cupcakes



  • 1/2 cup vegan butter (I use Earth Balance)
  • 1c organic cane sugar
  • 2tbsp ground flax mixed into 6tbsp water
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/3 cup nondairy milk (I used unsweetened soy milk)
  • 1/3 cup rainbow sprinkles


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy
  3. Add flax egg and vanilla and beat until combined
  4. Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl
  5. Add half of the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined
  6. Add the milk
  7. Once mixed, add remaining dry ingredients
  8. Fold in sprinkles
  9. Pour into cupcake tins and fill 2/3 of the way full
  10. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until cooked through (test with a toothpick)
  11. Let cool completely before frosting

I recommend topping with a vegan buttercream but I have yet to be able to create one that doesn’t melt on me immediately. The frosting on the cupcakes above I made using whipped coconut cream but neither Bry nor I liked the taste at all. This one looks good though.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Have I got a new treat for you. A cookie recipe!

i’m fairly picky when it comes to my cookies. My main requirement is that they’re soft and chewy. I like cookies that taste like they’re fresh out of the oven, even when they aren’t. I usually go for chocolate cookies: Oreos, chocolate chip cookies, etc. but one of Bryan’s favorites is the original Oatmeal Raisin Cookie. I decided to whip up a batch a few weeks ago and the outcome was a delicious, soft and chewy winner.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies



  • 1 cup Earth Balance or other butter, softened (I nuke it in the microwave for 10 seconds)
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon rice syrup (can sub. honey, molasses, syrup)
  • 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup raisins


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Mix together softened butter and both sugars, until smooth.
  3. Add egg and mix. Add vanilla, rice syrup, mix and set aside.
  4. In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
  5. Add flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix until combined. Beat in the oats and raisins.
  6. Place dough in refrigerator for 5 minutes to avoid cookies spreading too much when cooked.
  7. Scoop out about 1″ balls of dough on a lined cookie sheet and bake 10 minutes, or until golden brown.
  8. Remove, let cool and enjoy with a cold glass of ice cold milk.

Pumpkin Pancakes

We started a weekly tradition of Sunday Morning Pancakes a few months back and it’s still going strong. Now that it’s finally Fall we’ve swapped out the blueberries for pumpkin. The result? Absolute deliciousness. Enjoy!


Pumpkin Pancakes
Makes 16 pancakes


-1c all purpose flour
-1c whole wheat flour
-2 scoops vanilla protein powder
-4 tsp baking powder
-1/2 tsp kosher salt
-1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
-2 tbsp. ground flaxseed
-2 bananas, smashed into a puree
-2 eggs
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-1c pumpkin puree
-1 tbsp. olive oil
-1 1/2c unsweetened vanilla almond milk or other milk


1. Mix all dry ingredients in a large bowl
2. Add eggs and mix.
3. Add banana and pumpkin puree. Mix.
4. Add remaining ingredients and stir until smooth.
5. Cook on griddle or skillet over low to medium heat until golden.
6. Top with butter, syrup and/or whipped cream and enjoy!

Veggie & Banana Pancakes

We’re officially smack dab in the middle of toddler pickiness when it comes to food. Cheese, granola bars, milk are all fair games (as are any treats we might offer him such as a donut or cookie–though those are rare). Vegetables these days, however, are typically thrown off his tray as soon as they’re placed in front of him. Sometimes he returns to his fruitbat ways and devours kiwi, banana, mango, etc. but typically I find myself fighting to get real nutrients into Jackson’s tiny body. Being pregnant and in the third trimester where my cravings tend to lean towards the sugar food group, I’m not doing much better than our little one in getting in my veggies. This morning I decided to sneak some color into our food so we can both get a much needed nutrient boost, whether we know it or not.

A few months ago Emily posted this recipe for Fluffy Summer Vegetable Pancakes. I decided to recreate it with some adaptations of my own. The result? Epic deliciousness. And healthy to boot! Enjoy 🙂

Veggie & Banana Pancakes
Makes ~15  2.5″ pancakes



1c all purpose flour
2/3c + 1/6c white whole wheat flour
2 scoops of vanilla protein powder (if omitted, add additional 1/6c white whole wheat flour)
2 TBSP organic cane sugar (any sugar would work)
4 TSP baking powder
1/2 TSP kosher salt
1/2 TSP ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
1.5c unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or any milk)
2 ripe bananas, smashed
1 TSP vanilla extract
1 TBSP olive oil (or any oil)
1 large zucchini, grated
1 large carrot, shredded
Optional: Chopped walnuts and/or raisins

1. In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients together. Once combined, add in 2 eggs. Mix. Add milk and mix. Add vanilla, oil & smashed banana. Stir until well combined.
2. Shred carrot & grate zucchini. Pat dry with papertowels to remove excess water and add to pancake mix. Stir until combined.
3. Heat pan over medium heat and spray with nonstick spray. When warm, add batter by spoonful until desired size is created. Add a sprinkle of chopped walnuts, raisins or both while batter is still wet.  I made some with walnuts for me and daddy and some with raisins for Jackson (since he’s still not really able to chew nuts).
4. Wait a minute or two (the edges will begin to turn up and bubble). Flip pancake and let cook on other side until lightly browned and cooked through. Remove from heat and repeat.
5. Top with favorite topping and enjoy!