The Local Ladle

Healthy Spaghetti Squash with Lemon, Thyme, Asparagus, & Ricotta

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So what’s this big trend around Spaghetti Squash?  This gorgeous yellow squash is available year-round in most grocery stores and can be considered both a summer or winter squash.  By adding this vegetable to your table, you will easily get hooked on this delicious treat and the several health benefits it can bring to your body.

That moment you realize you may have waited a little too long shed that winter coat and jump into that new tiny bikini… this summer squash might just be a life saver!   With only 42 calories and 10 carbs in a 1-cup serving of cooked spaghetti squash, this vegetable is a safe addition to any diet!

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4 Healthy Summer Salads Recipes

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Summer means Famers Markets and beautiful fresh produce, so why not celebrate with a few of my favorite healthy salad recipes! Check out these 4 quick and simple recipes below and feel free to get a little creative with your own favorite ingredients! Read more

Eggs Baked In Avocado

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Avocados are hands down one of my favorite snacks and a great addition to just about anything!  When I am getting ready in the morning, I will crack eggs into my halved avocado and toss them in the oven.  In 20 minutes, I have a vitamin packed breakfast that is great to spread on bread or simply to enjoy with a spoon!

One big tip I have is to scoop out about 1-1.5 tablespoons of avocado (wide not deep) to create enough room for your egg. Otherwise it will overflow!

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Citrus Ricotta Toast

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Artisanal toast… a trend that has taken off like crazy and even as much as I roll my eyes at the trend, I do admit I have a hard time passing up avocado toast on any brunch menu. The toast below uses ricotta, which is similar the creaminess of the traditional avocado. The creaminess pairs well with the citrus punch and earthiness of the pistachios and pine nuts!

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Grilled Mediterranean Romaine

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This salad is a fun healthy twist on a Cesar salad. Rather than a heavy cream dressing, I have tied in one of my favorite yogurt dressings and substituted a meat protein for chickpeas and pine nuts!

Grilling romaine is actually something I learned from my mom. One of her favorite summer dinners is a large plate of grilled romaine with a light dressing. After picking up romaine at the grocery store today, my plan was to make a fulfilling winter version of her salad!

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One Pot Chicken Noodle Soup

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It’s 5 degrees outside today and I have very little to no motivation to even step outside into the frozen Windy City! Grocery shopping… no thank you! So quickly I became a contestant on the show Chopped with my fridge of 5 ingredients being my “basket.”

Now I wasn’t given the challenge of wasabi candy canes or banana ketchup…. but rather chicken breasts, vegetable stock, Brussels sprouts, onions, and carrots!  Probably the easiest Chopped basket ever given.  Not much of a “challenge,” but one pretty darn good soup on such a cold day!  Read more

Tuna Poke Bowl

Tuna poke bowl

Last year my parents took a trip to Hawaii and came back LOVING tuna poke and ever since I feel like I am seeing it everywhere! (pronounced POH-keh)  A lot of my Rockit Ranch venues here in Chicago offer it as an appetizer and let me tell you.. It’s addicting!  If you haven’t tried it,  I suggest trying the recipe below!

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Spiral Mediterranean Veggie Salad

Spiral Mediterranean veggie salad

The effort put into this salad doesn’t even come close the beauty and flavor that comes out it.  The earthy and deep raw flavors of the vegetables seamlessly compliment the creamy richness of the chickpea hummus. The addition of cilantro and sumac not only add great color, but celebrate the Mediterranean pops of flavor!

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Summer Herb Potatoes

Summer Herb Potatoes

Simple, yet delicious! After cooking school, I have really come to appreciate each individual ingredient and I really believe that this recipe below highlights the beauty of these potatoes! Instead of coating them in sour cream or yogurt, I decided to keep this recipe light with a burst of fresh herbs.

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