Greek Chicken Cauliflower Rice Bowls — 30 Days of Whole Food Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

Colorful food is the best. But who said it couldn’t be healthful, too?

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Healthy food is sometimes given a bad name. But food can be beautiful and healthful…and most of important, delicious!  That’s what this recipe is all about.

These chicken bowls are absolutely delicious. They are bright and colorful and full of great flavors. Cauliflower rice is a great way to get more veggies into your diet. And if you are a bit tired of rice, this is a fun twist to try.

The good thing about this recipe is you won’t mind the leftovers at all. They make a perfect lunch the next day!

Click here to get the recipes and the instructions.

30 Days of Whole Food and Garden Fresh Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

 

We’re sharing 30 days of healthy slow cooker recipes that use whole foods or garden fresh produce. Click here to see all the recipes in this series. Don’t miss a post! Sign up to get them delivered to your inbox by clicking here. 
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Paleo Teriyaki Chicken — 30 Days of Whole Food Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

Chicken drumsticks! Who doesn’t love them? They are one of the classic foods Americans around the country.

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I like to serve drumsticks. They are a meal that is easy to serve, goes with a lot of different sides and that my family always enjoys. The nice thing about these Teriyaki Chicken Drumsticks is that they are super simple to make and they are paleo friendly. There’s no hidden, less-than healthful ingredients in these guys. And look at how gorgeous they look, right out of the slow cooker?

I like to serve teriyaki chicken with a nice side of fried rice. I think hawaiian or asian coleslaw would be a great compliment to the meal, too.

Click here to get the recipe and instructions.

30 Days of Whole Food and Garden Fresh Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

 

We’re sharing 30 days of healthy slow cooker recipes that use whole foods or garden fresh produce. Click here to see all the recipes in this series. Don’t miss a post! Sign up to get them delivered to your inbox by clicking here.

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Cherry Chocolate Clusters — 30 Days of Whole Food Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

I’ll admit. This is not entirely  whole food friendly. But I can’t resist the dried fruit and nuts with chocolate!

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These chocolate cups look beyond incredible. Chocolate and cherries are one of my favorite combinations. I love the sweetness of chocolate, and the chewy tartness of the cherries together. Add in some of those delicious, toasted almonds and it gives it a wonderful salty crunchiness. It’s pretty much the perfect dessert on the go.

 

The one benefit of melting these candies in the slow cooker is you don’t have to worry about sitting over it and stirring it constantly. If you are careful to check that it’s staying on a low temperature, it will melt the chocolate gently and perfectly and make scooping up these into their cups easy and and worth it.

Click here to get this recipe and instructions.

30 Days of Whole Food and Garden Fresh Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

Looking for easy, healthy meals you can make in your slow cooker? We’re sharing 30 Summer Slow Cooker Recipes that use Whole Foods and garden fresh produce this month! Click here to find all the recipes in the series.  Would you like a menu of slow cooker meals, along with a color-coded grocery list all done for you?  Find your perfect Eat at Home Weekly Meal Plan here.

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Paleo Spaghetti & Meatballs — 30 Days of Whole Food Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

If you need to cut out grains from your diet and are afraid of what you’ll miss if you do, this recipe is for you.

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I’m pretty sure Spaghetti Squash is one of the unsung heroes of a grain-free diet-or its something we think we would only eat if we “had to eat it”. I think for a lot of us pasta lovers, we’re afraid that we’re destined to only eat lettuce wraps and salad. And as good as those are, sometimes you just want the comfort of something familiar and hearty. Like spaghetti and meatballs.

I love spaghetti squash. If you season it properly and serve it right, it is so flavorful and wonderful. Okay, it’s not pasta. But it’s a pretty darn good substitute. And it’s so healthful for you!

Click here to get the recipe and instructions. 

This recipe was created to be compatible with the paleo diet. It’s really easy to put together and the seasonings are everything you expect in a pasta dinner. Serve it with bread (if you aren’t following the paleo diet) or something delicious like grilled zucchini.

30 Days of Whole Food and Garden Fresh Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

We’re sharing 30 days of healthy slow cooker recipes that use whole foods or garden fresh produce. Click here to see all the recipes in this series. Don’t miss a post! Sign up to get them delivered to your inbox by clicking here. 

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Ginger Peach Pork Tenderloin

Ginger Peach Pork Tenderloin

 

One of my goals for this summer is to increase my grilling skills.  I’ve been wanting a ceramic grill for a while, but now is not the time for us to buy.  So I’m committed to really learning to use the gas grill.

I’ve cooked on a gas grill for years, but I’ve never really tried to learn any techniques.  But this year, I’ve really been working on seeking out good grilling methods.

Enter this 7-6-5 Method for grilling pork tenderloins.  This is so easy and so full of flavor!  I’ve done this multiple times already.  The process involves brining the pork for about 45 minutes.  Brining just means pouring cool water mixed with kosher salt and sugar over the pork and letting it sit in the fridge.  It couldn’t be simpler.

After the brine, I pat the meat dry and usually give it a generous sprinkle of McCormick Montreal Steak Seasoning or McCormick Maple Smokehouse Seasoning.  But this time I decided to give it an extra summery flare and use peaches.

I pureed a couple of peaches, added McCormick ground ginger and rubbed the meat down with the peach sauce.  The sugar in the peaches gave the pork a nice char on the outside.

To serve along with the meat, I added a teaspoon each of brown sugar and soy sauce to the remaining puree and warmed it in the microwave for a minute.  The ginger, peach and pork make a wonderful combination!

Here’s what you’ll need:   [Read more…]

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Chicken Cacciatore –30 Days of Whole Food Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

The best foods are the ones that make good, happy meal time memories with your loved ones.

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This Chicken Cacciatore is one of the crowd pleasing recipes in my repertoire. My family always loves this dinner, and it brings back memories of all the good times we’ve had talking around the dinner table.

I love this recipe because it’s not just easy, but filled with vibrant colors and good flavors that get my mouth watering as I’m putting it together. Plus, who doesn’t love a delicious sauce over pasta? I make my own sauce in this recipe, and if you can, use peppers fresh from your garden or a local source. They add so much more to the dish than the older ones in the super market.

Click here to get the recipe and instructions.

Pop this in the crockpot at lunch time and it’ll be ready by dinnertime. I like it served with a nice crusty, artisan garlic bread and a good salad.

30 Days of Whole Food and Garden Fresh Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

We are sharing 30 summer slow cooker recipes that use garden fresh or whole food ingredients this month! Click here to see all the recipes in this series. Sign up to get these delivered to your inbox so you don’t miss a post by clicking here.

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If you’ve ever wanted to improve your food photos (or any photos)

How to Improve your photos

I’ve been blogging for nearly seven years now.  I’m still not a great photographer, but I’ve come a long way.

(Most of this post focuses on food photography, but these basics are applicable to photographing any subject.)

Here’s one of the very first photos I took for the blog.  The recipe is still one of our favorites (I really need to shoot a new photo!).  The original photo probably wouldn’t convince you to try it.

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Now here’s a photo that I took more recently.  The recipe is based on the slow cooker version in the photo above, but it looks much more appetizing in this photo:

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I know others can take better photos.  But I try not to compare myself to others.

I want to see growth when I compare myself to myself – old work to new work.

Here are a few things I’ve done to improve my photography over the years:

1.  I learned to use my camera on manual mode.

After attempting to read the manual and learn on my own, I finally took a class to learn to use my Nikon D40 on manual mode.  The teacher got me up to speed quickly.  Much, much quicker than if I’d tried to do it on my own.

2.  I learned about lighting.

Good photographers are always chasing daylight.  In the beginning, I never did that.  I just shot the picture where I happened to be standing, usually at the kitchen counter under artificial light.

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(photo above taken with iPhone and edited with PicTapGo)

Now I’ve learned a few tricks:

* I move the food near a window.  I’ve learned which places in my house have the best light.

* I use white foam core boards to bounce light on the subject.

* I use a tripod to keep the camera steady while shooting in lower light.

* I use special photography lights when I have to shoot in the winter.  There’s just no way for me to get enough light in the house during the darkest months of the year.

There are other things I’ve learned over the years, of course, but these are the things that have had the biggest impact on my photography.

I’d like to say that I never take a truly bad photo anymore, but that’s not the case.  I’m still learning.

In fact, I just took advantage of the chance to buy the Ultimate Photography Bundle.  It’s packed with 13 eBooks and 5 eCourses.  That will keep me learning for a long time!

I started with iPhone Only Photography, because that’s the camera I have with me most often.  I’ve already learned a few things that I didn’t know about the iPhone camera, in spite of the fact that I’ve been using an iPhone for years now.

(updated for iOS 8) iPhone Only Photography will teach you the three MOST IMPORTANT lessons to get UHHHMAAZZZZING photos every time with your iPhone: 1. How to take manual control of your iPhone camera. 2. How to create strong composition.  3. How to edit to recreate the feelings you felt when you took the photo.  Also you’ll get specialized teaching and tutorials for portraits, food photography, night shooting, landscapes, concert photography, and panoramas.

(updated for iOS 8) iPhone Only Photography will teach you the three MOST IMPORTANT lessons to get UHHHMAAZZZZING photos every time with your iPhone:
1. How to take manual control of your iPhone camera.
2. How to create strong composition.
3. How to edit to recreate the feelings you felt when you took the photo.
Also you’ll get specialized teaching and tutorials for portraits, food photography, night shooting, landscapes, concert photography, and panoramas.

I’m also looking forward to diving into Eat Pretty Things and Tasty Food Photography, so I can gather tips I can use here on the blog.

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Tasty Food Photography February 10 2015

And The Unexpected Everyday eBook looks great for capturing images of my family’s everyday life.
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The Photography Master Class: Your Complete Guide to Photography eCourse sounds like it will cover it all, and in a video format too.

This is an amazing deal at just $37.  The bundle is only available for a week, June 22-29.  The Photography Master Class alone is worth $199.

I’m excited to improve not just my food photos, but also photos of my family too.

This post contains affiliate links.

 

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Easy Chicken Legs — 30 Days of Whole Food Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

Can you believe July is just around the corner? Get a head start on your celebration menus by checking out this recipe.

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This has to be one of the simplest recipes for chicken legs you’ll ever make. It’s just a matter of rubbing a special seasoning blend on the legs and popping them into the crock pot. I imagine you could tweak the seasoning blend to be whatever your family enjoys the most.  The rest is left to the goodness of letting those flavors slow cook into the meat. By dinner time, you’ll have yourself a family-pleasing pot of chicken legs, ready to be devoured!

I like this recipe because it’s so simple and affordable. It’s kid friendly, too! Because it’s so easy to make, I can’t help but think it’d be the perfect addition to a holiday feast–like the Fourth of July celebrations we’re all getting ready for!

Click here to get this recipe and instructions.

Serve these chicken legs up with either one of these  scrumptious sides, Wild Rice Salad or Green Bean Tomato Salad, and you have created a colorful, satisfying dinner for your family to enjoy.

30 Days of Whole Food and Garden Fresh Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

 

Looking for easy, healthy meals you can make in your slow cooker? We’re sharing 30 Summer Slow Cooker Recipes that use Whole Foods and garden fresh produce this month! Click here to find all the recipes in the series.  Would you like a menu of slow cooker meals, along with a color-coded grocery list all done for you?  Find your perfect Eat at Home Weekly Meal Plan here.

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Ham & Swiss Frittata — 30 Days of Whole Food Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

Think the only things you can make in your Slow Cooker are stews and soups and heavy entrees? Look at this!

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I love frittatas. They are great for brunches, lunches and I like them for dinner too! When I learned you could make a pretty decent frittata in the slow cooker, I was happy. It makes it easier because I don’t have to watch it in the oven and can do other things while it cooks!

You could probably swap out the veggies in this recipe for spinach or kale or maybe even zucchini and it’d still be yummy. Use whatever you have on hand or in your garden! But broccoli and ham are a delicious combination that we always enjoy.

Click here for the ingredients and instructions for this recipe.

I like to serve my frittatas with skillet potatoes and a nice fruit salad. It’s easy, and it just feels like it rounds out the meal perfectly.

30 Days of Whole Food and Garden Fresh Summer Slow Cooker Recipes

Looking for easy, healthy meals you can make in your slow cooker? We’re sharing 30 Summer Slow Cooker Recipes that use Whole Foods and garden fresh produce this month! Click here to find all the recipes in the series.  Would you like a menu of slow cooker meals, along with a color-coded grocery list all done for you?  Find your perfect Eat at Home Weekly Meal Plan here.

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Weekend Links – Fun things to read and listen to

It’s been forever since I’ve shared a weekend links post with you. The end of the school year is always a little crazy and these posts went on the back burner for a while. Now school is over and we’ve been to the beach for vacation and I’m feeling refreshed!

Here are some things that have caught my attention lately:

Happy Listening

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I’m back to taking morning walks.  I always listen to a podcast while I walk and my current favorite is Happier.   It’s a fun listen with lots of interesting info that can be applied to make your life happier.

Fun Reading

I’ve also started reading Gretchen Rubin’s new book, Better than Before.  Her insights into personal tendencies and how those affect our habit making and breaking are really useful.

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Modern Mrs. Darcy’s latest Summer Reading Guide came out a few weeks ago.  I’ve got several of her picks on my reading list, but I hit the beach with Love Walked In.  It’s got lots of old movie references, which was fun.    The story was breezy, but still had substance.

Better Photos

Speaking of the beach, I didn’t take one, single photo.  These days, most of my photos (other than food photos) are taken with my phone.  For vacation, I just wanted to put my phone down and not be tempted to check email or Facebook or blog stuff.  It made me wish I had a small point and shoot camera, because I now regret that I have no photos of our time together.

I love this free resource for learning to take great family photos.  It will help you capture everyday moments and special times with your family.  A lot of taking great photos is just being mindful of picking up the camera and learning to really see and notice the moments happening around you.  Guides like this one help us do that.

Good Watching

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My youngest daughter and I blew through the first season of When Calls the Heart.  We’re anxiously waiting the second season to be added to Netflix.

510H87W38RLOne of my very favorite movies is on Netflix right now.  Of course, I had to watch it again.  The book is better, but the movie is fantastic too.

Just for Fun

My parents shared this video with me a few weeks ago.  It’s a fun watch and it introduced me to some new music too.  Dustbowl Revival is now a station on my iTunes radio.  Good stuff!

I hope you’re enjoying summer!  What fun reads, watches and listens have you been enjoying?

This post contains affiliate links.

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