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Water, Water Everywhere

We know that it’s important for all of us – including our kids – to drink plenty of water every day. It’s even more important during these hot summer months! (more…)

Benefits of Backyard Eggs

Benefits of Backyard Eggs

Healthy, fresh eggs can be right outside your door!

Did you know that raising your own chickens is cheaper and easier than you might think? Of course, as cute as those baby chicks are, most people don’t raise chickens as pets. After about 4 months of raising them, delicious and fresh eggs start to show up! So what are some of the benefits of farm-/backyard-fresh eggs? (more…)

Healthy Halloween Hints!

Healthy Halloween Hints!

Halloween is fast approaching and let’s face it … this day can be a nightmare for any family trying to make healthy choices! The good news is, a little planning and foresight can take the fright out of the night. So try on these Halloween hints for size!

Here are a few Halloween hints to make your day safe and healthy!

  • Decide in advance what to do with the loot! A piece of candy isn’t a bad thing but a sugar coma from eating half a bag of candy is! How will you divvy up the goods? The danger isn’t just for the kids; it’s really easy for us adults to help ourselves to those treats as well.
  • Go Trick or Treating. Sure, you’re filling your bag with candy but you’re also out walking the neighborhood. Map out your streets and take the whole family out for an hour or so. Challenge yourselves to walk a certain number of miles while you’re out!
  • Make sure you wear reflective clothing or have flashlights on your family. Kids are excited and drivers are distracted, so do you best to make yourself visible.
  • Remember it’s a school night! Start early enough that your kids still get a good night’s sleep and limit their sugar intake. Your child’s teacher will thank you!
  • Lead by example. Find fun and healthy treats to give away at your house. We got some great ideas via facebook; from small bags of microwave popcorn, small boxes of whole grain cereal, fruit snacks, stickers and more! You’ll be glad when you don’t have left over candy lying around to tempt you too!

If you have any other Halloween hints, we’d love to hear them! Feel free to share on our facebook page!

An Apple Taste Test for National Apple Month!

An Apple Taste Test for National Apple Month!

Let’s do an Apple Taste Test for National Apple Month! Apples are also an OrganWise Guys Foods of the Month for October, and the perfect food for the fall season. Apples are such a versatile food that can be used in anything from salads to desserts and they come in so many delicious varieties!

Chew on this interesting apple trivia:

  • Americans eat approximately 120 apples apiece each year!
  • Apples are nutritious because they contain lots of fiber, vitamins C, B6, and A, and potassium, as well as antioxidants.
  • 2500 known varieties are grown in the United States.
  • 36 states grow them with Washington, New York, Michigan, California, Pennsylvania, and Virginia being the top production states.
  • Apples are available all year round and are a perfect take-along snack anytime!
  • Apples don’t require peeling so eat the skin because it contains healthy nutrients.

A taste test is a really fun way to encourage kids to try a small sample of a new food where they may typically be more close-minded about trying new things. This interactive apple taste testing worksheet will help you introduce several different apple varieties and let’s them provide feedback.

We would love to hear about your at-home taste tests! Share with us how it went and include any pictures of the finished worksheets on our Facebook page!

 

 

Baking with Whole Wheat Flour

Baking with Whole Wheat Flour

Did you know that you can substitute whole wheat flour for white flour when baking? What better time that September, when whole grains are a Foods of the Month, to try this out?!

ICYMI, whole wheat is a subset of whole grain that strictly applies to wheat products. So when a product is labeled whole grain, it means that it includes the entire kernel of the grain – including the outer bran layer, the germ (the part that can sprout into a new plant), and the inner, starchy endosperm. Refined grains, on the other hand, only include the endosperm; that’s why whole grains generally take longer to cook.

One of our favorite ways to get more whole grains (organic is best) is by swapping out white flour for whole wheat flour in pizza dough. The great thing about making your own pizza dough is that you can make a big batch and store it in the fridge, to create various healthy dinners throughout the week. To make whole wheat pizza dough, we recommend using half whole wheat flour and half white flour in your favorite pizza dough recipe. By leaving some white flour, the dough is not too dense, but you still get the fiber benefits of whole wheat flour. Combine your flour with yeast, hot water, a little salt and sugar, some extra virgin olive oil and mix thoroughly.

Now, what to do with your healthy homemade pizza dough? Get a little more creative than a regular pizza and try making a calzone or Stromboli! To make these traditionally fatty dishes healthier, spread a thin layer of tomato sauce on the dough, add organic cheese, and then top with tons of veggies like tomatoes, peppers, onions and spinach. Carefully roll it up, and put in the oven at 375 degrees for 35 minutes. Enjoy!

For Pizza Night, Try Mini Zucchini Pizzas!

For Pizza Night, Try Mini Zucchini Pizzas!

Try a healthy take on an old Friday favorite …

If you’re  looking for a low-carb, high-fiber alternative to the old fan-favorite, pizza, try mini zucchini pizzas! The summer squash, zucchini, is an August Foods of the Month because it is in-season and ripe for the picking (so it’s at peak flavor)! Zucchini contains so many fantastic nutrients such as vitamin A, magnesium, folate, potassium, copper, and phosphorus as well as a high content of omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, niacin, and protein. Click here for more incredible benefits!

To make this simple recipe, slice zucchini into rounds (or if you prefer, lengthwise), place on a baking sheet and then grill or broil for several minutes until the zucchini begins to soften. Remove from the oven and top with tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese and any other topping you’d like. Try nitrite-free turkey pepperoni, olives or your favorite spices to make each ‘slice’ unique! Continue to broil until the cheese begins to bubble and serve hot.

Mini Zucchini Pizzas are a fun way to get your pizza fix and your veggies all in one! 

 

Corn Side Dishes

Corn Side Dishes

Corn side dishes make any meal more delicious!

Corn is a July Foods of the Month! Health benefits of corn include fiber and antioxidants, which our OrganWise Guys love. Also, corn is tastiest in the summer because it is fresh. Be sure to pick up some fresh (non-GMO) corn, which is the best value, from your local grocery store this summer to make these tasty corn side dishes for your next get together: (more…)

Tasty Tropical Fruit Popsicles

Tasty Tropical Fruit Popsicles

Tasty, refreshing and, and oh so tropical!

Cool off this summer with refreshing, 100% tropical fruit Popsicles! The fruits found in this recipe provide replenishing vitamins (like Vitamin A, C and K) and minerals (like potassium) for all your outdoor activities … and that’s why tropical fruits are a July Foods of the Month! Enjoy the tropics in your own backyard with this guilt-free hot weather treat!

Ingredients

2 cups coconut water

1 medium banana, sliced thin

1 kiwi, chopped into little pieces

1/2 pineapple, chopped into small chunks

(Optional – Squeeze a little grapefruit or orange into each mold.)

Directions

  1. Fill your Popsicle molds* with coconut water to about 3/4 of the mold, leaving extra space for the fruit. If you do not have molds, use a small paper cup and Popsicle sticks. 
  2. Carefully drop the fruits into the molds so the coconut water doesn’t spill. Fill the molds with more coconut water, if needed.
  3. Freeze overnight, or at least 4 hours.
  4. Remove Popsicles from their molds (you may need to run them under hot water to loosen them) and enjoy!

*To make these Popsicles as fancy as they are tasty, check out this fun list of molds from realsimple.com!

Spinach Hamburger Buns

Spinach Hamburger Buns

Baking with spinach is a great idea…

Spinach is for more than just salads and dips! Besides adding spinach to these dishes, did you think it was possible to put spinach in baked goods? Adding spinach to breads and pastas not only enhances the nutritional profile of these foods, it’s also incredibly easy. We’ll tell you how with this simple recipe for Spinach Hamburger Buns…

You’ve probably eaten a wrap sandwich on a spinach wrap or green pasta before, right? If so, you’ve tried a baked good made with spinach. When you make these things at home, you can guarantee that you are getting a really healthy dose of spinach in your bread product. Also, you know that there are no artificial colors or flavors added, which can be an issue with store bought items.

This recipe for Spinach Hamburger Buns has an entire package of spinach in it! When spinach is cooked and steamed, it packs down considerably. So, even though these Spinach Hamburger Buns don’t have an overly spinach-y flavor, they are full of all the vitamins and minerals that make spinach a super food. Don’t forget that there is also a big serving of iron in these Spinach Hamburger Buns too. Follow the recipe below to make these green beauties for your family.

Spinach Hamburger Rolls
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Ingredients

    For the Dough
  • 1 10 oz. box frozen chopped spinach (organic if possible)
  • 2 tbsp. butter, room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cups warm water
  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp. cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. active dry yeast
  • For the Topping
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tbsp. sesame seeds

Instructions

  1. Thaw spinach according to directions. Let cool then use a towel to squeeze out all the excess moisture.
  2. Use a stand mixer or bread machine on the dough setting to make the dough.
  3. If using a bread machine, add ingredients according to manufacture's instructions and set to dough setting.
  4. If using a stand mixer, first combine wet ingredients (spinach, butter, egg and water) until incorporated.
  5. Mix together dry ingredients in a separate bowl and add them to the wet ingredients, until a sticky dough is formed. Add more flour if the dough is too sticky to handle.
  6. Remove dough, and form 8 small, slightly flattened balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  7. Cover and let rise for 1 hour.
  8. After the dough has risen, brush with the beaten egg and top with sesame seeds. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Serve hot with a lean ground beef burger or salmon filet!
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