Showing posts with label Kitchen. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kitchen. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The Secret Foods To Help Your Hair Grow Faster




1. Sweet potatoes  2. Yellow Bell Peppers  3. Salmon  4. Avocados

Stock up those foods in your refrigerator and watch your hair grow! One of our favorite Instagram accounts, @Shredz, enlightened us on these important foods to help your hair grow that we just had to share. Shredz puts it all into perspective:

Eat Salmon twice a week. The Vitamin D, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids will contribute to long healthy locks and a hydrated, nourished scalp.

Yellow bell peppers contain 5.5 times more Vitamin C than oranges which is great news for your hair because the antioxidant properties of Vitamin C strengthen hair follicles and prevent hair damage and breakage.

Sweet potatoes are packed with beta carotene, which is a precursor to Vitamin A, a nutrient known to promote hair growth and a healthy scalp.

Avocados can be eaten to gain the benefits of its healthy fats, but it can also be applied to your hair and scalp to stimulate collagen and elastic production. Apply to skin and hair for about ten minutes before thoroughly rinsing.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Easy Super Bowl Recipe


Co Founder, Karen, is a Seahawks' fan so of course she cannot wait for the Super Bowl! Like her and probably many other fans, she will be hosting a Super Bowl party. No Super Bowl party is complete with out food, drinks, friends, and football. But, the most important would be the food! Whether you decide to order pizza, KFC, or grill some hotdogs and hamburgers, it is always good to have variety. One of our favorite items to make the most amazing dishes is a crock pot. Slow cookers can make the most amazing dishes from meatballs, to tasty dips, to rice and beans and much more. Target is one of the best places to get a variety of crock pots. To help you with a Super Bowl crock pot recipe, Boulder Organic, has shared with us a special recipe they've suggested that is the perfect dish. Check out all the details below and get excited for Sunday's Football Showdown!

Boulder Organic's Souper Easy Super Bowl Pulled Pork 

Ingredients
  • About 2 lbs of pork shoulder
  • 1 tub of Boulder! Organic Green Chile Corn Chowder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (if desired)
Cooking Instructions
  • Place the pork shoulder, 1 tub of Boulder! Organic Green Chile Chowder, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt (optional) into your crockpot. Leave in the crock pot for 6-8 hours.
  • After 6-8 hours, pull the pork apart with a fork and eat as desired!
Suggestions on how to eat the pulled pork:
  • Place on a bun and eat as a sandwich
  • Use as a side with mashed potatoes and beans
You won't be disappointed with the tasty results!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Top 14 Posts of 2014


2014 was a year of growth for us! We loved continuing to share our best kept sorority secrets with you all and hearing a lot of your secrets. Your support of us is showing as we recently passed a major milestone: 3 million+ views! In lieu of that, we compiled your favorite fourteen posts of 2014. From beauty, to fashion, to tips and advice, you loved and read these posts. Thanks for continuing to make us your go-to site; we appreciate you!
  1. Beach Waves Hair Tutorial {by Maddie}
  2. Second Day Curls on the First Day!
  3. 20 Best Friend Date Ideas
  4. Top 10 Words To Cut From Your Writing
  5. Campus Security 101: 5 Tips To Keep You Safe
  6. Study Session Survival Guide
  7. Recruitment Conversation All-Star Tips
  8. 4 Travel Tips Every Wanderlust Should Know
  9. Clip-In Hair Extension Secrets
  10. Eyelash Extensions- Pros & Cons
  11. How To Successfully Travel Internationally
  12. 10 Ways To Nail An Interview
  13. Spring Recruitment Guide
  14. Music Festival Outfit Guide
Have a favorite blog post that didn't make the Top 14? Well, we would love to hear which post of 2014 was your favorite so leave a comment below!

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Thanksgiving Leftovers Recipe






If you're like us, then you probably stuffed yourself to the brim this Thanksgiving leaving no room for thirds or fourths (be honest, you went for seconds!). Well, there is no point in throwing away your leftovers so we stumbled across an awesome Thanksgiving Leftover Recipe from one of our favorite food blogs, Hot Dog It's a Food Blog. It's called the Cheddar Mashed Potato Waffle Thanksgiving Leftover Sandwich and well, our mouths are watering just typing that. Get the recipe below and try making it yourself. It's pretty simple! Thanks for letting us share, HDFB!

Cheddar Mashed Potato Waffle Thanksgiving Leftover Sandwiches
Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
  • 1 cup buttermilk or whole milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp. chopped herbs (rosemary, thyme, sage)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated white cheddar
  • your Thanksgiving leftovers, reheated if needed
Directions:

In a large mixing bowl, mix together the mashed potatoes and milk until smooth. Add in the eggs, 1 at a time, mixing well in between additions. Fold in the chopped herbs.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and add into the mashed potato mixture. Mix well until combined. Fold in the cheeses and mix well once more.

Preheat your waffle maker and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Cook about 1/4-1/2 cup of batter at a time, depending on how big your waffle maker is, until nice and golden brown.

Place the reheated leftovers between two waffle slices and enjoy.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Stuffed Acorn Squash from South Fork & Spoon + Ango



Before we know it, Thanksgiving will be here so we wanted to start collecting some recipes to make this Thanksgiving's dinner one for the books. We are at the age where we can no longer hide from the kitchen; it's our turn to contribute with a delicious dish! South Fork & Spoon + Ango shared with us a dish that is sure to make some mouths water: Stuffed Acorn Squash. One of the key ingredients for this meal is grapeseed oil which we have been hearing a lot about as it is apparently better to use than olive oil. Find the Stuffed Acorn Squash recipe below and share with us any of your favorite Thanksgiving recipes in the comments below. 
Stuffed Acorn Squash from South Fork & Spoon + Ango 
Yields: 8 servings
Ingredients
4 Acorn Squash, ideally 1-2 lbs each, halved lengthwise and seeds removed

5 teaspoons or more to taste, Salt

2 teaspoons, Ground Black Pepper

2 cups wild rice

3 oz Grapeseed oil

1 teaspoons fresh ground pepper

1 Tablespoons minced garlic

2 cups thinly sliced shiitake mushrooms (stems removed)

4 cups cleaned and rough chopped kale

2 Tablespoons toasted sesame seeds

2 Tablespoons chiffonade ( cut like ribbons) mint leaves

Equipment
  • Medium sized pot
  • Fine meshed strainer
  • Baking sheet
  • Pepper mill
  • Sauté pan
  • Spatula
  • Large Bowl
Directions

1) Pre heat the oven to 475 degrees

2) In the fine meshed strainer, place rice and run under cold water until clean.

3) In medium sized pot, add rice + 2 t of salt + 4 cups of cold water. Cover the pot with a lid and bring to a boil on high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat until rice is simmering. Simmer for 30-45 minutes or until the rice has absorbed the water and is cooked. (Note: rice can be cooked up to two days in advance)

4) On baking sheet, place squash flesh side up and rub with 1 oz grapeseed oil + 2 t of salt + fresh ground pepper. Place in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes or until tender. Use a fork to test for tenderness.

5) In a separate sauté pan heat 1 oz grapeseed oil on medium-high heat. Add shiitake mushrooms + garlic + 1/2 t of salt and sauté until mushrooms are cooked but not browned. Remove from heat and place in large bowl.

6) In the same sauté pan used for the mushrooms, heat 1 oz of grapeseed oil on medium-high heat. Add kale + 1/2 t of salt and cook quickly using tongs or a spatula. Keep the kale moving so it doesn’t brown. Once wilted, remove and place in bowl with shiitake mushrooms.

7) In bowl, add cooked wild rice + sesame seeds and mix together.

8) Taste rice mixture and season accordingly

9) Fill the cooked squash halves with the rice mixture. Garnish with mint

Monday, September 15, 2014

Spicy "Cheesy" Kale Chips Recipe





Kale is all the rage! This is the perfect delicious, yet healthy snack filled with tons of flavor without gaining the extra weight! Paulding & Co. has some awesome recipes that we were happy to come across their Spicy "Cheesy" Kale Chips Recipe. It is simple to make and pretty healthy. Check out the full recipe below!

Spicy “Cheesy” Kale Chips
This recipe makes 12 oz. chips (2 one-gallon zip bags)

Ingredients 
▪ 2 ½ cups of raw cashews
▪ 1 large (Holland type) red bell pepper
▪ 2-3 red Fresno peppers
▪ 1-2 tsp lemon juice (to taste)
▪ 2 tsp mineralized sea salt
▪ 2 Tbs. nutritional yeast
▪ 3 bunches curly kale


TIP: Be sure to purchase ultra-fresh organic vegetables for this. Soak the cashews in water for 3-4 hours. Combine with the stemmed and seeded peppers, lemon, salt and yeast in a blender. Puree. Taste the mixture, and if it needs it, add more salt or lemon. Strip the stems from the kale leaves-you can do this easily by holding the end of the stem in one hand, and firmly running the other hand up the sides of it, dislodging the leaf. The tough part of the stem will come off, leaving the tenderer part intact.

In a large bowl, combine the Kale with the blended mixture, using your hands (evenly) as possible distribute the mixture. Lay the leaves onto a dehydrator racks, crowding them but not stacking them. Dehydrate at 105° F for 12-16 hours, until very crisp. Store in sealed zip bags. If you don’t get them dry enough they will soften in the bag.If you don’t have a dehydrator they can be laid out on a rack or over a pan in the oven with the temperature set as low as possible. The time to dehydrate will be greatly reduced, probably to about an hour or even less.

The chips will be a tasty snack!

For more information on Paulding & Co. recipes, please visit http://pauldingandco.com/recipes.
 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

How To Order Healthy When Dining Out



It's day five of your diet and you are finally realizing that you have been doing a great job with your cleanse/diet because you have been HIDING OUT. Yeah, YOU! In order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, it is not healthy (or realistic) to stay at home in order to avoid that juicy McDonald's burger or tasty Wendy's french fries. It's okay to eat out with your friends or family; you just need to know how to pick the right things on the menu. Here are some healthy eats and tips that you can use that won't sabotage your diet:



Every menu has a salad option so instead of that juicy, 3,000+ calorie burger, opt for a decent salad. If a plain salad seems too light include some protein with your salad by asking your server to add some grilled chicken or even salmon. Include light dressing and vegetable toppings and you will surely be feeling both satisfied and guilt-free.







Is that loaf of bread and butter really needed before your meal? Often times when food is placed in front of us, we have the tendency to munch on it. Bread can be carb overkill so politely ask your server to remove the bread and butter from the table. If you really can't help yourself, munching on the wheat bread as opposed to the French bread is a healthier option.



Rice, bread, and pasta is major carb overkill. Greens and lean proteins like grilled chicken, fish, shrimp, and calamari are your friend!




While sodas, juices, and adult beverages might wash your food down better (we're not so sure it makes a difference haha) it sure does add a lot of calories to your meal. Water is your best friend when dining out--you can do no wrong gulping it down. If you're looking for an extra punch of flavor, ask to add a lemon, lime, or strawberry to your water.

If it is becoming difficult to sift through the menu, ask the server for the separate healthy menu if they have one. If not, ask the server to list the food choices that are the healthiest. There are also lots of apps out there that can count the calories in food for you so you can make a better decision on what you would like to eat.

Any way you slice it, having a healthy attitude towards food is what's most important.  If you're craving something like pizza, it's totally okay to indulge once in a while.  Everything in moderation is key!

Happy {healthy} eating!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

All American Apple Pie Crust Recipe

[Picture Source: Pinterest]

We're all about the patriotic spirit!  In honor of one of our favorite holidays, the 4th of July, we decided to get a head start on the festivities by whipping up some All American Apple Pie.  Instead of getting a store bought crust, we decided to go the homemade route for something extra good. Former TSS It Girl Avery shared her favorite apple pie crust recipe with us, and boy is it ever delicious.  The best part?  It's buttery and flakey... melt in your mouth good!  The secret?  A secret ingredient-- vodka!  (For our readers under 21, please be responsible and ask someone of age to help out.)

Foolproof Pie Dough for a Single-Crust Pie (from Cooks Illustrated)

Recipe yields one 9-inch single crust pie

*Vodka is essential to the texture of the crust and imparts no flavor- do not substitute.  The dough will be moister and more supple than most standard pie doughs, and will require more flour to roll out (up to 1/4 cup).

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (6 1/4 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter (3/4 stick), cut into 1/4 inch slices
  • 1/4 cup chilled solid vegetable shortening, cut into 2 pieces
  • 2 tablespoons vodka, cold
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
Instructions:
  1. Process 3/4 cups flour, salt, and sugar together in food processor until combined-- about 2 one second pulses.  Add butter and shortening and process until homogenous dough just starts to collect in uneven clumps, about 10 seconds (dough will resemble cottage cheese curds with some very small pieces of butter remaining, but there should be no uncoated flour).  Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl with rubber spatula, and redistribute dough evenly around processor blade.  Add remaining 1/2 cup flour and pulse until mixture is evenly distributed around bowl and mass of dough has been broken up (4-6 quick pulses).  Empty mixture into medium bowl.
  2. Sprinkle water and vodka over mixture.  With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and and sticks together.  Flatten dough into 4-inch disk.  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.  
  3. Adjust oven rack to lowest position, place in rimmed baking sheet on oven rack, and heat oven to 425 degrees.  Remove dough from refrigerator and roll out on generously floured (up to 1/4 cup) work surface to a 12-inch circle about 1/8 inch thick.  Roll dough loosely around rolling pin and unroll into pie plate, leaving at least 1-inch overhang on each side.  Working around circumference, ease dough into plate by gently lifting edge of dough with one hand while pressing into plate bottom with other hand.  Leave overhanging dough in place; refrigerate until dough is firm, about 30 minutes.
  4. Trim overhang to 1/2 inch beyond lip of pie plate.  Fold overhang under itself; folded edge should be flush with edge of pie plate.  Flute dough or press the tines of a fork against dough to flatten it against rim of pie plate.  Refrigerate dough-lined plate until firm, about 15 minutes.
  5. Remove pie pan from refrigerator, line crust with foil, and fill with pie weights or pennies.  Bake for 15 minutes.  Remove foil and weights, rotate plate, and bake for 5-10 minutes additional until crust is golden brown and crisp.
Now for the other yummy part-- the filling!  This filling will help to cut the time in half when making the rest of the pie, plus it tastes just like homemade!
Enjoy your All American Apple Pie!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

A Girl's Guide To A Gluten-Free Lifestyle


[Picture Source: Pinterest]
Okay, so we have all heard of the word "gluten" and even Jimmy Kimmel joked around here when he interviewed people and they really didn't know what it meant {haha}. But, in all seriousness, gluten has been something that negatively affects many, including Co-Founder, Karen. The affects can include IBS or extreme bloating that can last days or even weeks. According to WebMD, gluten is a protein found in anything made from wheat, rye, or barley. It can also be found in products less obvious like soy sauce and lunch meat. The best way to avoid gluten is to start by reading the labels of all the food you encounter. Look for trigger ingredients such as barley, wheat flour, rye bread or flour, oatmeal, semolina, malt flavoring and the list goes on. Check out a full list here! "Gluten-free" shouldn't sound daunting and a lot of grocery stores have many gluten-free and tasty selections. Karen reached out to some of her friends to get some tips on great foods to consume that are gluten free so here are some of the suggestions:
  • Corn based pasta from Trader Joe's 
  • Trader Joe's gluten free oatmeal 
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables (especially green and dark green veggies)
  • Lean meats (like grilled chicken, fish, pork tenderloin and beef tenderloin)
  • Ezekiel bread or sprouted grain bread
  • Pure, plain Greek yogurt
Special tip from TSS Reader, Brynn: "Be careful with food labeled "gluten free" because for the gluten they've taken out, they've also added 5 crappy ingredients in it! It's definitely all carb based products too!!"

Stores like Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, and Udis have great gluten-free products. One suggestion that Karen received is to avoid Maltodextrin and Dextrose. Those are terrible preservatives that are in spices and a lot of foods. Again, LOOK AT THE LABELS.

At the end of the day, cooking at home is the best way to avoid processed food that can contain gluten so that is the best option when trying to live a gluten-free lifestyle. Above all else, consult with your doctor or nutritionist before you adopt any new change in food lifestyle. All of this is new to us so we want to hear from you! What are some of your favorite foods to eat that are gluten-free? Please share them below!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Chia Seed Pudding


Healthy meals can often times come easy for us, but it's the healthy snacks part that has been hard lately. While baby carrots, apples with peanut butter, and strawberries are all tasty snacks, we have been looking for different unique and healthy snacks to try that are easy to make at home. One of our friends introduced us to Chia Seed Pudding and we are now hooked. Chia seeds have been the latest health craze as chia seeds are like super seeds! They stop food cravings as Chia seeds absorb 9 times their weight which creates a gel as they expand. When it is in your stomach, it makes your stomach feel like it has had all the food it needs according to Dr. Oz.

So what do you need: 
  1. Almond Milk or Hazelnut Milk
  2. Two tablespoons of chia seeds (whole or raw)
The directions are pretty simple...

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and stir them together
 for a couple of seconds . Chill the mixture for about 2 to 4 hours or until the mixture has a tapioca-like pudding consistency. That's it! For a better taste, eat it with some sliced almonds, pistachios, berries, bananas or cinnamon.

Enjoy!

Monday, April 14, 2014

S'mores Peeps' Recipe


If you haven't figured it out already, we absolutely love Pinterest {are you following our boards yet?}.  While adding pins to our Bunny Love board, we came across the absolute cutest way to enjoy your Easter Peeps this year: Peeps S'mores! All you need are your choice of graham crackers, a pack of Easter marshmallow Peeps, and a pack of Hershey's. Crack the graham crackers into two and place a peep on one side of the graham cracker and a Hershey's bar on the other. On a small plate, place the graham cracker filled with the Peeps and Hershey's bar into the microwave and heat it up for 10-15 seconds. Last, sandwich the two pieces together and walla, you have a delicious Easter dessert!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Benefits of Plant Based Diet!


Recently health and wellness has been trending.  And thank goodness, as it is high time that healthy eating habits and exercise replace fast food chains and quick fix diet fads.  Among the trending health topics is the plant based diet.  As a nutritionist, this is how I personally choose to eat.  Instead of cutting certain foods out entirely like the vegetarian or vegan diets, this is simply making the majority of what you eat whole, unprocessed, plant based foods.  The benefits of eating in such a way are numerous, and it is incredibly easy to do.
Research has shown that by simply incorporating more vegetables, fruits, beans, peas, lentils, whole grains, nuts, and seeds into your diet can help you prevent and even reverse many of the top health issues people are facing today.  Adding in more of these whole natural foods in your diet will mean more nutrients, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, healthy fats, and fiber.  It also will also mean less room for damaging fat, preservatives, chemicals, and refined sugars, all of which are linked to serious health problems.
Your body needs the nutrients and vitamins found in food to survive, it uses them as fuel for every single function it performs.  Chemicals, preservatives, and damaging fats only serve to bog down your system, and add unnecessary work for your body as it tries to detoxify itself from these foreign substances.  Eliminating these things from your diet will free up much of your body's energy for daily use, rather than detoxifying.  On top of that, every single one of your cells are being replaced over time, and the food you eat is what those new cells are made of.  That Big Mac doesn't sound so good now, does it?
And contrary to common misconception, on a whole, vegans actually have healthier bones, higher blood protein levels, and less nutritional deficiencies than omnivores.  It is possible to get all the protein and calcium you need from a vegan or plant based diet.
In case you need more reasons to consider a plant based diet:
Lose excess fat
Reduce cholesterol
Reduce risk or help treat diabetes
Reduce inflammation
Healthier gut flora
More energy
Improve cognition
Control weight
Slow aging
Gain muscle
Reduce risk for cancer
Natural detoxification
Better sleep
Healthier intestinal transit
Clearer skin
Boost immune system
Reduce risk for heart disease

Just remember that you put into your body directly translates into your health.  You are what you eat, literally.  Food can either be the best form of medicine, or the slowest form of poison.  Bon appetite!


Thursday, March 13, 2014

Spring Break Cleanse with Pressed Juicery! {Giveaway!}




There's nothing better than a juice cleanse before AND after Spring Break!  You want to feel great and cleansed before you slip into that bikini and a cleanse is definitely necessary after Spring Break with all that junk food- cause really, who eats healthy during Spring Break?

Back in November, we tried out our first Pressed Juicery cleanse (read here) and we loved it- but because we were juice cleanse newbies, we did the 1-day cleanse! This time we thought we would step up our game and try out the 3-day cleanse! 

 Check out what we all had to say about it below and don't forget to enter for a chance to win the giveaway! 



"I was really excited to try Pressed Juicery since the cleanse I did before (read here) went so well. The 1 Day Cleanse left me feeling refreshed and the 3 Day Cleanse was no different. I did Cleanse #2 and it had the best flavored juices. My favorite juice was Citrus 2 which combined apple, lemon, pineapple, and mint together. Their flavors are so yummy that it made the Cleanse #2 enjoyable. Tip: To get through a cleanse, go to sleep early! Sleeping earlier at night after taking your last bottle of juice keeps you from being tempted by food!"


"Cleansing for 3 days was a little scary at first, but I was up for the challenge!  Day 1 was the hardest day for me.  After getting over the first day, the last two days were much easier!  I got into the routine of juicing, and I didn't have to think about it as much.  I kept reminding myself to chug that water throughout the day as well!  I did get a little tired on Day 2 in the afternoon, but having my next juice helped to give me energy.  In the mornings when I woke up, I found that I felt especially great!  I felt light and well rested.

I feel lean and fresh for spring break!  Doing the Pressed 3-day cleanse is like a spring cleaning for your body.  Simply put, I feel refreshed.  I also feel very hydrated, and ready to take on the day!  Thank you Pressed Juicery!!"

"I've juiced quite a few times in the past so I thought I'd give Cleanse #3 a try!  I've only done a 2-day juice cleanse so I was excited to do a 3-day cleanse!  Cleanse #3 is more for "experienced cleansers," and contains only one almond milk and more green juices.  I was a bit nervous at first, but it ended up going really well!  I always had a big bottle of water next to me at all times to chug and I think the most important thing to do is to space out your juices throughout the day! I tend to get hungry and want to snack at night, so I made sure that I had plenty of juice to drink in the evening and went to bed early!

By the end of my cleanse, I felt great and energized!  From being so hydrated for 3 days, I felt really detoxed. By far my favorite cleanse I've done and saw the most results!"


How to Enter the Giveaway:
Step 1: Like The Sorority Secrets on Facebook (click here)
Step 2: Like Pressed Juicery on Facebook (click here)
Step 3: Email us at giveaway@thesororitysecrets.com by March 21, 2014 and tell us about a time you've done a juice cleanse before and your experience! If you haven't done a juice cleanse yet, say why you'd like to win this giveaway and try out a juice cleanse!  

A special thank you to Pressed Juicery for an amazing cleanse!  Make sure to visit their website at www.pressedjuicery.com for more information on their juice cleanses!

Live happy & healthy!


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Guilt-Free Movie Treats!


Going to the movies and snacking on yummy treats is probably our favorite part about going to the movies!  From the buttery popcorn to all of the sugary candies, they're all so good, but there's actually a healthier way to do it! The list of treats above are all under 75 calories, but the most important part is that you have to portion control! What are some other yummy & healthy snacks that you like to snack on during the movies??

Friday, February 14, 2014

No-Bake Cookie Dough Truffle Balls


Yay, it's Valentine’s Day! For some, that means receiving flowers and lovey-dovey notes. For me, this day usually involves copious amounts of candy, chocolate, and sappy rom-coms. I stumbled across the absolute perfect Valentine’s Day treat: no-bake cookie dough truffle balls. Doesn’t that sound amazing? Now, I’ve always been the one that asks to lick the spoon when my mom bakes cookies. I know there’s the risk of salmonella, but I just can’t resist the temptation of delicious, creamy, cookie dough. Luckily, these little marvelous truffle balls are egg-free, so I promise they are safe to eat! I’m not a good cook, so the best part about this recipe is that it’s incredibly easy and fast. Coat them with white chocolate with pink food dye or just pink colored candy to fit the Valentine’s Day theme (or just stick to plain ol’ chocolate because….it’s chocolate). 

I mainly used the recipe from Food Network’s website as my guide – tweaking it just a little bit.

Ingredients

1/2 cup softened butter
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 (14oz) can of sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (I didn’t have any mini ones when I made this, so I used regular sized chips)
(optional) 1 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 bag of Ghirardelli chocolate chips
1 bag of Hershey’s Candy Cane Kisses

Instructions

Mix butter and brown sugar in a large bowl on medium. When creamy, add vanilla. When thoroughly integrated, gradually add flour and milk – alternating between the two. Mix on medium. Finally, add chocolate chips (and walnuts if desired). With a melon baller or spoon, scoop dough into 1-inch balls and place on wax paper. Put them into the fridge to chill for 1.5 hours. After 1.5 hours, place candy for coating into a microwave safe bowl and heat until fully melted. Every 30 seconds, stir. Roll the balls into the melted candy and then place back on wax paper. Let them sit in the fridge for 1 hour or until candy coating has hardened.

***Tip: After the balls have chilled in the fridge and before dipping them into the melted candy, roll them in your palms to make them perfect balls.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

10 Kitchen Must-Haves For Every Woman


Ugh. Have you ever been in the middle of baking or cooking something when you realize that you don't have the right kitchen utensil/s to make it? Often times our friends come over to our places and say, "I can tell you don't cook". The lack of kitchen utensils was the dead giveaway {haha}. Well, it is time to beef up your kitchen with the right kitchen utensils, especially if you plan on cooking for that special someone on Valentine's Day. You definitely don't want any interruptions when you're whipping up your scrumptious dish. Above we have compiled a list of the Top 10 Kitchen Must-Haves--check them out and feel free to add to the list by leaving a comment below! 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Yummy & Healthy Banana Nut Muffins!


These cold winter days have me pining for a warm, comforting breakfast… Without tons of added sugar and butter.  Anyone who has met me knows I want it all, in all aspects of my life.  Why can’t I have a warm, filling, and healthy breakfast?  Oh, that’s right, I can!  These muffins prove it.  So bake these up, eat them cold or warm them up, either way they are sure to satisfy your wintery sweet tooth and your grumbling tummy, without adding extra lbs to your waistline.  So enjoy a batch of homemade healthy, without any guilt.  



Ingredients:
½ C quinoa flakes or rolled oats
¾ C protein powder
¼ C gluten free flour or preferred flour
½ Tsp salt
½ Tsp baking soda
2 large bananas
2 Tsp vanilla extract
½ C preferred milk
1/3 C sugar (I used brown)
½ C Chopped walnuts

Optional add ins:
¼ C Chocolate chips
¼ C blueberries

Directions:
1.     Preheat oven to 355 degrees.
2.     Prepare muffin or cupcake pan with preferred oil or butter.
3.     Mix all ingredients together, spoon into prepared pan.
4.     Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until edges are starting to pull from the sides, allow to cool for a few minutes before serving.

Super easy & super healthy!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Easy & Healthy Shakes


I love having shakes after I work out, as a snack, or even as a healthy dessert. These are my two favorite recipes that were developed by a Whole Foods nutritionist. They are super easy to make, and they taste amazing! You can add protein powder to either of these!

The Berry Vanilla Smoothie is thick enough to be eaten like an acai bowl with granola and bananas, but you can always drink it too! This recipe makes 2 servings, each at 110 calories. Save some for later, or enjoy with a friend!

Recipe: Berry Vanilla Smoothie
1 cup Almond Milk (I use Vanilla flavored)
1 tbsp vanilla (I use organic non-alcohol vanilla)
½ to 1 cup frozen mixed berries (a raspberry+blackberry+blueberry mix tastes best)
½ banana
1-2 cups ice
about 1 tbsp agave nectar to sweeten, but you can always add more!
(I don’t usually do this, but you can add ½ cup of raw dehydrated almonds as well)
Just put them all together and blend! I love the berry-vanilla combo.

Bonus Recipe: Pumpkin Shake
1 cup almond milk
½ teaspoon of vanilla
2 squirts of stevia
½ can pumpkin
1/8 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon of cloves
2 cups shaved ice
Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.

Enjoy! 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Top 13 Favorite Posts of 2013!


2013 was an amazing year for us! We got to share our best kept sorority secrets with you all as we launched our site January 22nd. The attention and support we have received from you all has been nothing short of amazing. We wanted to take this time to sincerely thank you for being loyal readers of The Sorority Secrets. In lieu of that, we compiled your favorite thirteen posts of 2013. From beauty, to fashion, to tips and advice, you loved and read these posts. Thanks for making us your go-to site; we appreciate you!
  1. My Favorite Online Boutiques-Serena Kamlani
  2. Flawless {Makeup} Finish
  3. Contrast
  4. 5 Things You Need to Know When Purchasing Plane Tickets
  5. TSS Master List of Bid Day Themes
  6. DIY: Glitter Starbucks Cup
  7. Pumpkin Carving 101
  8. Our Favorite Recruitment Videos
  9. Meet Lauryn Evarts
  10. Birthday Cake Protein Shake {Recipe from Dashing Dish}
  11. Coo Coo for Coconut Oil
  12. 20 Powerful Words to Use In a Resume
  13. Recruitment Wardrobe Do's!
Have a favorite blog post that didn't make the Top 13? Well, we would love to hear which post of 2013 was your favorite so leave a comment below!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Energy Bites Recipe


Every time I make these bad boys I am hounded by everyone who bites into one until I send the recipe over. Every ingredient serves a purpose (besides making them taste amazing) and is uber healthy (would I post anything that wasn’t?). Bonus: They are crazy portable! So next time you need a quick pick me up before a hike, yoga, gym class, or if you just want a little bite (or two or three) of yumminess, whip some of these tasty little balls of health.

Ingredients
1 C dates
1/2 C honey
1 tbsp of chia seeds
1 tbsp of ground flax seeds pinch of sea salt

1 C old fashioned oats
1 C shelled pistachios
1 C dried cranberries
1⁄2 C unsweetened coconut shreds

Optional: Add 1/2 C of chocolate chips, or white chocolate chips... I’m already drooling.

Directions:
1. Combine the dates, honey, chia seeds, ground flax seeds, and salt into a food processor. If you don’t have a high powered motor, soak your dates in water for about an hour first to soften them up. Blend until smooth.

2. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, pistachios, coconut, and cranberries, add the blended ingredients and mix until evenly distributed. This might will definitely get sticky. That’s ok. I just ditch the spoon and get in there with clean hands. It is also pretty much a requirement that you eat the portions that are relentlessly sticking to your spoon and hands. For me, this is a pivotal step in creating these tasty little nuggets.





3. Put mixture in the fridge for about 20 minutes to cool (if there is any left). This will make it easier to shape into bars, balls (come on now, grow up), or whatever geometrical or non-geometrical shape you so desire. Another tip: coat hands in coconut oil before shaping.



Whole Grain Oats: Can help lower cholesterol and improve heart health. They are full of good dietary fiber, antioxidants, phytochemicals, and are a great source of energy. Whole grain oats are good for regulating blood sugar levels, and have been shown in scientific studies to help enhance athletic performance when ingested 45 minutes to 1 hour before exercise of moderate intensity.
Dates: Dates are chock full of vitamins and minerals, fiber, and are often used for a quick energy boost. Their high potassium content makes them a great addition to this snack, especially when eaten pre or post work out!

Pistachios: Are a great source of healthy fats. They are loaded with essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that nourish your body. Pistachios are especially great for eye, skin, and immune health.

Honey: Raw honey is a natural way to sweeten your food, and your health. It is anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal, has an array of essential vitamins and minerals, and natural probiotics. Bonus: It actually works better to soothe and heal sore throats and coughs than over the counter medicine. Honey is always my sweetener of choice!

Chia Seeds: They don’t call chia seeds a superfood for nothing. These babies are extremely high in omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, minerals, fiber, and protein, while also low in calories. They help to reduce inflammation, enhance cognitive function, improve cholesterol levels, and help regulate blood sugar. Bam.

Ground Flax Seeds: These low calorie seeds are packed with omega- 3’s, fiber, antioxidants, and B vitamins to help boost your immune system and keep you feeling full for hours. You can eat flax seeds in their whole form, but they are not as easily digested and absorbed as when they are ground, so make sure to either buy them ground or grind them up yourself in a coffee grinder!

Coconut Shreds: Besides providing a boost of energy, shredded coconut will provide you with an array of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, fiber, protein, and healthy fat. While some may worry about it’s fat content, the medium chain fatty acids in coconut are amazing for your health. These fatty acids can actually help you to burn more fat for a whole day after consumption, and help to reduce your appetite, helping you to stay on track more easily, as well as immediately improving cognitive function. 




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