Canning 101

Canning 101

Canning 101

Even for those of us that are well-versed in canning, putting up your own food can be super intimidating. But, I promise, once you know the basics, canning is a safe and easy way to preserve the bounty of summer (either from your own garden or from local farmers). And, as an added bonus, it’s super fun! You can can!

There is a ton of really wonderful information out there that outlines exactly how to can. My friends at Ball have an excellent, in-depth resource (complete with videos) for learning how to can that I recommend checking out if you really want to learn more. Instead of reinventing the wheel and rewriting their entire how-to, I thought I’d give you a general overview (to really show you how easy it is!) and then provide you with a glossary of terms that I’ll be using in my canning recipes. This will be a great resource to have as I post more and more canning recipes.

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Introducing: The 1000 Jar Project

Cantaloupe Jam

Salted Cantaloupe Jam

To a lot of people, canning dill pickles or strawberry jam is just a fun way to preserve some of the freshness of summer. And it’s that to me, too, but it’s also so much more. Canning is a connection back to my roots (see what I did there?).

I remember my hair being hot to the touch after spending a whole day out in the garden picking Roma tomatoes to put up. I remember pretending to hate the smell of dill pickles being canned in the middle of August, but really loving it. I remember getting lulled into afternoon naps thanks to the rhythmic click, click, click of the pressure canner working away on quarts of green beans.

Canning is a huge part of my Midwestern culture, and I am proud to carry on the tradition of putting up food. Not only is it delicious, healthy, and economical, but it also just feels right.

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I Eat High Fructose Corn Syrup

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I eat high fructose corn syrup. And Red #40. And artificial flavors. And MSG. And all the other food additives that you’ve heard bad things about. Yup. I eat them. Not all that often, and not in large amounts, but sometimes, I do eat them. And I don’t feel guilty about it either.

I love growing, cooking and eating clean and healthy foods. I am passionate about showing people that healthy eating is not only delicious, but also accessible to everyone. Eating a healthy diet has changed my life and made me feel incredible, and I love sharing that with the world. But, please, don’t get me wrong, my diet is not perfect. And, I do not take for granted that I have a special set of circumstances that allow me to eat as healthfully as I do.

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Healthy Meal Plan: Loving Lentils

Healthy Meal Plan: Loving Lentils

Healthy Meal Plan: Loving LentilsI love menu planning. I think it is absolutely key to helping you eat a healthy diet that helps you feel awesome. Because I think meal planning is so important, I’ll be sharing a five-day healthy dinner meal plan with you guys every few weeks. These are all recipes I’ve tried in my own kitchen (and snapped a photo of), so you can trust they are tasty!

Each menu will revolve around a theme, and each menu will include tips and tricks from me, as well as a pre-made, printable shopping list. The menus will go up on Friday, so you can shop over the weekend, and have your kitchen stocked for cooking on Monday. I’m kicking things off with a meal plan that centers around the lowly lentil. Lentils are packed full of plant-based protein, healthy fibers, and nutrients. Plus, they are cheap, hearty, and readily available. Lentils are where it’s at. Don’t think you could eat meatless meals made from lentils five nights in a row? Wrong! These five super-varied dishes will leave you saying, “Meat, who?”

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Lunches Lately

Lunches Lately

Lunches Lately

Back in September, I wrote a quick little post that showed off a few of the lunches I’d been packing for myself lately. That little post has quickly become one of the most popular posts on my blog. Apparently people really like healthy lunch ideas! I had plans to share my lunches regularly, and I’m finally back with another installment!

You are probably thinking, “Um, but you work from home, why in the world do you pack lunches?” Well, I find that by packing my lunch and being more intentional with my food choices, I can stay on track with my healthy diet. In other words, when I don’t pack my lunch for work days, I end up eating a lunch of tortilla chips while I answer client emails. Lunch packing works for me!

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Bacon Almond Cheddar Bruschetta

Bacon Almond Cheddar Bruschetta

Bacon Almond Cheddar Bruschetta

Something you might not know about me: I’m kind of a huge, obsessive, scream-at-the-top-of-my-lungs sports fan. Yep, I’m totally one of those people. College basketball (go Hoosiers!), hockey (go Hawks!), and open-wheel racing are my drugs of choice, but I really don’t discriminate. If it involves someone keeping score of something and a winner and a loser, I’ll probably watch it.

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How to Make Chicken Broth (the Lazy Way)

Chicken Broth

Chicken Broth

I’m going to let you in on a little secret: I haven’t bought chicken broth in years. I used to think making chicken broth was this big, long, complicated process, and that kept me from making my own forever, but then I discovered the really easy to trick to super easy chicken broth, and I haven’t looked back. Homemade chicken broth is tastier, healthier (you can control the sodium levels), and, the main reason I make it, it’s so much cheaper! Especially with this method. It’s practically free!

The key? Scrap bags.

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101 Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes

appetizers

101 Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes

This might seem like sacrilege to say, but here goes anyway: Thanksgiving dinner doesn’t have to be a totally glutenous meal that knocks you off course. In fact, I think you can have an incredibly delicious, totally enjoyable Thanksgiving dinner without eating processed food, using yucky ingredients or sending yourself into a post-dinner sugar coma.

Don’t believe me? I’ve gathered up 101 pieces of evidence to prove my point! Pull a recipe (or two) from each section of this list, and you’ve got a totally healthy Thanksgiving menu that will please all your guests. Happy Turkey Day!

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