Muhammara with Za’atar Pita Chips

You know what’s really fun?  Listening to your husband try to say fun new words like muhammara and za’atar.  To be fair, it wasn’t until a few days ago that I even read the word muhammara let alone ate it or said it out loud and za’atar is a little funky with that apostrophe.

It’s mu (like in mud) ha (like in hum) mar (like in mark) a (like in uhhh) and za (like the end of pizza) a (this is silent… don’t say it) tar (like the black sticky stuff).

I’m not a linguist folks.  I just like words.  And food.  Always food. Muhammara with Za'atar Pita Chips | Life Healthfully Lived Continue reading

DIY Wednesday: Pizza Kale Chips

Ok, before you go running from this post because kale was mentioned, calm yourself.  Yes, kale is a leafy green vegetable.  Yes, it might not be the most appetizing thing IF it isn’t prepared properly.  Yes, kale is a trendy superfood and in everything including lotion and maybe you have tried kale chips before and weren’t impressed.  Hopefully, I can fix all of these things today, I’m just asking that you give it a shot.DIY Wednesday: Pizza Kale Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

You can find kale chips pretty much everywhere these days and while there are plenty of brands that do a good job and use minimal ingredients in their products, they’re expensive.  Like, way expensive for such a little amount of food.  I like to eat and I want my money to get me as much food as possible without having to take out a small loan.  Which is why when I can, I make my own versions of store-bought stuff.  Including these kale chips.

My sister was actually the first one to give me a homemade kale chip and while I thought it was going to be dry and crumbly and generally taste like ash, it had a nice crunch and taste to it.  I made my own a few times and recently decided to play with the seasoning and see what I could come up with.  I wasn’t going for pizza-flavored when I tried this, but that’s what it tasted like so I ran with it.  DIY Wednesday: Pizza Kale Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

Now, I will tell you one of the keys to getting a good chip and not a soggy mess is making sure that you dry the leaves SUPER well.  I used a salad spinner and then set them out on a towel for a few minutes to really let them dry off.  Whatever you do, make sure you dry the leaves as much as possible.  Other than that, make a really big batch because if you’re like me, you’ll eat the entire thing in one sitting.  Good thing these are vegetables and good for me….

Pizza Kale ChipsDIY Wednesday: Pizza Kale Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

  • 1 bunch of kale leaves
  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp basil
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 2-3 tablespoons nutritional yeast (more if you want extra cheesy flavor)
  1. Remove the thick stem from the kale leaves and tear the leaves into bite-size, or chip-size, pieces.  Rinse them really well under cool water and then dry them.  You can use a salad spinner (works best) or paper towels but make sure they are really dry.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat.  Don’t use aluminum foil or you’ll end up with a mess.  Once your kale chips are dry put them in a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil.  Not too much but enough to coat the chips.  Massage the leaves a little to make sure they are really coated but don’t mash them up too much.
  3. Spread them in an even layer on the baking sheet making sure there aren’t any spots that are too crowded. Mix all the seasonings together and sprinkle them over the chips.  You can coat them really well to have super flavorful chips.
  4. Bake the kale chips for about 10 minutes and pull them out to check on them.  If the are getting brown on the edges and feel crisp they’re done.  If not cook for another 2 to 5 minutes.
  5. Remove them from the oven and let them cool.  Keep them in an airtight container for 2 to 3 days. DIY Wednesday: Pizza Kale Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

DIY Wednesday: Coconut Chips

I’mDIY Wednesday: Coconut Chips | Life Healthfully Lived not a huge snacker, but every now and then the snacking bug will bite and I can’t seem to stop grazing.  Luckily I try to only keep healthy snacks around the house so I’m not binging on cookies and chips, but store bought healthy snacks can be full of unnecessary ingredients.

While some people might crave sweet snacks or salty snacks, I usually crave a combo.  I love the mix of sweet and salty.  Kettle corn is a weakness and Garrett’s Chicago Mix (it will never be anything else to me)?  Forget about it.

I have seen coconut chips in the stores and online for awhile now and they always sound really good.  A nice mix of sweet and salty, healthy fats from the coconut, and the satisfying crunch of the baked chips.  A snacker’s dream.  Not so dream like?  The cost.  A tiny bag of coconut chips at the store can cost almost $15.  Ain’t nobody got time for that.DIY Wednesday: Coconut Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

Good for you and me that it’s really easy to make your own at home!  A few things, don’t worry if you don’t like the flavor of coconut these do not have a very coconutty taste.  You will also want to make sure that you get the coconut flakes and not shreds otherwise you’ll end up with a pile of shriveled and burnt coconut shreds.

These come together fast and don’t require many ingredients, so if you feel a snack attack coming on you’re only a few minutes away from these sweet and savory coconut chips!

Coconut ChipsDIY Wednesday: Coconut Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

  • 2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes, not shreds
  • 2 tbsp coconut aminos, you can also use liquid aminos, soy sauce, or tamari
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup, honey could also work
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  1. Preheat the oven to 350
  2. Dump the coconut shreds into a large bowl.  Add in the rest of the ingredients and stir to coat everything.
  3. Place some parchment paper or Silpat onto a large baking sheet and spread the chips in an even layer.
  4. Bake for 5 minutes and stir the chips.  Bake for another 2 minutes, watching carefully so the chips don’t burn.
  5. Remove from oven and let cool…. or dig right in if you can’t wait!

Make sure to keep an eye on the coconut chips in the last few minutes because these can go from golden and delicious to charred very quickly.  Store them in an airtight container for up to a week…. if they last that long! DIY Wednesday: Coconut Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

DIY Wednesday: Plantain Chips

SnackDIY Wednesday: Plantain Chips | Life Healthfully Lived foods are one of the biggest things that people buy in the store rather than make themselves.  It is just so easy to buy those prepackaged and prepared foods to grab and go rather than create a snack for yourself.

I’m not going to completely knock bought snacks, there are a few healthy options out there.  But for the most part, they are full of sugar and other ingredients that have no need to be in food or your body.

That leaves us with making our own snacks and often people default to cut up fruit and vegetables, especially if they are trying to be healthier with their choices.  While fruit and vegetables are a great snack option, they can get a little boring after awhile.  Boredom with food can lead to unnecessary snacking or choosing something not quite as healthy.DIY Wednesday: Plantain Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

So what do you do?  You leave it to me!  Well, don’t leave it to me to actually make your snacks because there is no way I could get snacks to you personally every day even if I wanted to.  No, leave it to me to come up with some tasty snacks that you can make on your own and will fuel you through your day.

Plantains chips are kind of a trendy food/snack right now.  Plantains have been around for a very long time and are usually grown in warmer climates like South America.  They are part of the banana family and actually look like bananas, but they are much starchier.  Which makes them amazing for baking and making things like chips.

These plantain chips are really easy to make and you can make a big batch to snack on throughout the week.  You also probably have all the ingredients other than the plantain in your kitchen right now.  Just one big note:  Make sure you get a greener plantain rather than a yellow or yellow/brown plantain.  The yellow variety is sweeter and while tasty, it won’t make the nice crispy savory chip that the green variety will.

Plantain ChipsDIY Wednesday: Plantain Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

  • 1 to 2 large green plantains, peeled
  • half a lime
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt, divided
  • olive oil
  1. Slice the plantains very thinly.  The thinner the slice, the crispier the chip!
  2. Place the plantain slices in a large bowl and squeeze the lime juice over them.  Sprinkle with the chili powder and 1/2 tsp of salt and then toss to coat them
  3. Place a paper towel onto a large plate and set aside.  Heat a little olive oil in a medium cast-iron or non-stick skillet and once the oil is hot layer the plantain chips in an even layer with plenty of room.  You may have to work in batches.
  4. Cook the chips until the bottom is golden brown and then flip over.  Watch carefully so you don’t burn the chips.  Once they are cooked move them to the plate.  Take another paper towel and blot the top of the chips and while they are still hot sprinkle with the rest of the salt.DIY Wednesday: Plantain Chips | Life Healthfully Lived

Simple and crispy chips that are a fun twist on regular chips but will still satisfy your snack craving!  You can keep these in an airtight container for 2 to 3 days, if they last that long!