Lightened Pumpkin Spice Crumb Cake (gluten free option)

Autumn means ALL the pumpkin-spiced things! It’s a seasonal craze I can support  — and, by support, I mean “hold up to my mouth and shove in!”Lightened Pumpkin Crumb Cake - gluten-free

So, with the hubby’s birthday right in the smack of pumpkin month, I don’t even ask him what flavor cake he wants. He’d normally say “chocolate,” but in September, October and November, the only option is pumpkin spice. Check out my Lightened Pumpkin Spice Crumb Cake (gluten-free), get the recipe and find out what yumminess I served it with. Continue reading

Chai-Spiced Potato Muffin Bars are Spuds for Speed!

This post is sponsored by Potatoes USA  however all opinions, comments, recipes and enthusiasm are my own!

Potatoes are a healthy source of energy-providing carbs for the athlete.

Ever heard the expression “all meat and no potatoes”?

Ironically, this old-school insult means, “Dude, you’re fat!” But, many would probably assume the opposite in this high-protein diet world where we’re all freaking out over carbs. Yes, while protein is good, so are carbohydrates. I’m not talking about sugary or highly-processed carbs that are stripped of their inherent wholesomeness, I’m talking about complex carbohydrates – like the very healthy potato.

Can I get a virtual high-five for the potato?!

As a lifelong athlete, I’ve used potatoes as part of my training diet year after year. Potatoes are an on point food choice to help fuel an active lifestyle. Spuds for speed, that’s what I’ve always told people! Potatoes are packed with complex carbs to provide the energy my body and brain needs to train, compete and recover optimally. Because they are unearthed from the ground, potatoes are also a great source of minerals including potassium, iron and magnesium. Athletes need these things in abundance and that’s why potatoes are actually a common sight along the courses of ultra-marathons, Ironmans and century rides.Pull ups with a 10 lb bag of potatoes!Oh, and you can use a 10-lb. bag of potatoes for a pull-up challenge!

Other potato perks — they come in their own wrappers, are simple to cook, extremely versatile in recipes and are inexpensive – I just love the cleverness of Mother Nature! If you need a healthy,             balanced meal on the quick and cheap, it’s a loaded baked potato piled high with all the leftovers in your fridge for the win.

Pull up with 10 pound bag of potatoes

Another way I love to eat potatoes, just roasted in a pan with some olive oil.

If you’re getting bored with potatoes, think creatively. There are so many other ways to enjoy them than the traditional baked potato. Plus, there is a rainbow array of varieties including white, red, russet, yellow, purples, fingerlings and petite potatoes. While my go-to side dish the night before an endurance event is a simple baked potato with salt, I am way more potato crazy in the weeks leading up to a marathon or long beastly obstacle race. Mashed, minced, toasted, riced, pureed, grilled, spiralized, oven-fried … whew, I’m the Bubba Gump of potatoes.

Chai Spice Potato Muffin Bars

Today I’m sharing a unique and family-approved way to eat your potatoes that includes a healthy balance of protein – and, by the way, a medium (5.3 ounce) potato has more than 3g of protein on its own! My recipe for Chai-Spiced Potato Muffin Bars uses the fluffy innards of a baked potato along with Greek yogurt, eggs and a scoop of protein powder to create a marvelously moist “bar” that has the texture of a muffin. Each muffin bar has only 70 calories and no sugar, but 10 grams of energy-boosting carbs and more than 6 grams of protein. Plus, between the potato and protein powder, there’s no need to use any type of flour, other grain or filler, meaning these muffin bars are gluten-free.

Chai Spice Potato Muffin Bars are gluten-free, sugar-free and a smart way for runners, obstacle course racers, triathletes and other endurance athletes to fuel up and recover optimally.

I devour these Chai-Spiced Potato Muffin Bars for pretty much any occasion – breakfast, pre-workout fuel, post-workout recovery snack, and dolloped with fruity yogurt for a healthy dessert. I betcha these special spud snacks won’t last long at your house. That’s why I always bake two batches and freeze bars from the second batch individually in zip-top bags for grab-and-go munching – they are always thawed out after my workout!

Get spud smart and get more information about how potatoes power performance at PotatoGoodness.com/performance!

How are you putting potatoes on your plate? Favorite recipe? What’s the last endurance event  you tanked at? tanked at? Do you think you needed more carbs?! Please share in the comments – XOXO, Jennifer

Chai Spice Potato Muffin Bars
Chai-Spiced Potato Muffin Bars
Print Recipe
Fuel your next run or workout with this nutritionally balanced energy bar that will optimize performance -- the potatoes provide healthy carbs for energy plus potassium for hydration.
Servings Prep Time
8 bars 10 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 bars 10 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Chai Spice Potato Muffin Bars
Chai-Spiced Potato Muffin Bars
Print Recipe
Fuel your next run or workout with this nutritionally balanced energy bar that will optimize performance -- the potatoes provide healthy carbs for energy plus potassium for hydration.
Servings Prep Time
8 bars 10 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
8 bars 10 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: bars
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 375 F degrees.
  2. Wash and dry potatoes and pierce around sides with fork. Place in center of microwave and cook on high for approximately 4 minutes, or until yielding when squeezed and soft and fluffy inside. Cut in half, and allow to cool to room temperature.
  3. Using a tablespoon, scoop pulp of potato and place in blend, discarding skins. Add eggs, Greek yogurt and ¼ cup of the milk and blend until smooth. Next, pulse in vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, cloves, and white pepper until just combined.
  4. In small bowl, mix together baking soda, salt, white pepper, and protein powder. Pulse this mixture into the blender in batches until smooth, adding the additional milk if batter seems to thick.
  5. Prepare 9” x 9” rimmed baking pan with cooking spray. Pour in batter and bake for approximately 14 to 16 minutes or until turning lightly golden brown and toothpick pulls clean from the center. Let cool for 30 minutes and cut into 8 bars.
  6. Dust with additional cinnamon and a bit of powdered sugar, if desired.
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Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle

Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle

It’s treat time! I’ve been caught with my hand in the cookie jar again, but this time it’s a Paleo-diet friendly cookie that is inherently gluten-free and also table sugar free!  Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle is very easy to make and will fill up your home with the wonderful spice-and-all-things-nice scent of the season. Crunchy, buttery and so delcious!

Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle is a grain-free, gluten-free and refined sugar free holiday treat for Christmas or any time of the year! Great to give as an edible gift!

Almond and coconut flour are the foundation of this cookie brittle recipe, along with all the traditional gingerbread spices including ginger, cinnamon and cloves. To sweeten, there is a touch of blackstrap molasses and Ellyndale Naturals™ Sugarless Sugar™ . This sugar substitute has just 1/3 the calories of table sugar but tastes like sugar and bakes like sugar, cup for cap. It’s has a low Glycemic Impact and is made with natural ingredients include erythritol, organic inulin, organic stevia, and guar gum – the first three sweetener ingredients I mentioned are considered Paleo while Guar Gum, a legume extract used as a thickening agent, is technically not Paleo because it comes from the legume. Strict Paleo devotees may choose to swap for another sweetener – coconut (palm sugar) would be my suggestion, it just has a higher calorie count.

Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle

A couple tricks to making this cookie brittle. First, be mindful that you are pressing the dough down evenly and thinly, about a 1/4” to 1/3” inch thickness gives the best crunch experience. Second, if you want to have uniform pieces of brittle (rather than a charming jumble of broken off pieces), you need to immediately use a brownie cutter or pizza wheel to cut into the warm, soft cookie brittle before it hardens up. After cutting, don’t move the pieces until completely cooled. Third, eat “naked” or top as you please – I drizzled with chocolate melted with a dash of coconut oil but you could also do a lemon glaze or press in nuts before baking.

If you’re a Paleo cookie monster, you’ll also like my Salted Pistachio Chocolate Cookie

jennifer fisher - thefitfork.com - salted pistachio chocolate cookies

What is your favorite holiday cookie? What is your favorite holiday song? Are you running any holiday-themed races? Let’s chat, please comment below – XOXO, Jennifer

Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle
Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle
Print Recipe
Treat a holiday sweet tooth to a crunchy, crispy bite of this gluten-free, refined sugar-free, paleo cookie brittle flavored with the spices of gingerbread.
Servings Prep Time
48 "cookies" 10 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
48 "cookies" 10 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle
Paleo Gingerbread Cookie Brittle
Print Recipe
Treat a holiday sweet tooth to a crunchy, crispy bite of this gluten-free, refined sugar-free, paleo cookie brittle flavored with the spices of gingerbread.
Servings Prep Time
48 "cookies" 10 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
48 "cookies" 10 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: "cookies"
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl mix, together almond flour, coconut flour, sugar alternative, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt until combined.
  3. Next, stir in softened butter and molasses until everything incorporated.
  4. Dump out onto the parchment-lined 13 ” x 18” pan and form into rectangle approximately the size of the pan and ¼” deep. Press with palms of hand or bottom of glass to spread out and keep a uniform consistency.
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Fig Cardamom Protein Mug Cake (Stevia-Honey Blend) #UseNectar

I make no excuses, I have a sweet tooth. Almost daily I eat chocolate, coated on almond for balance. Ha ha! I love fruit just as much as chocolate, and in my dream life would have a personal chef at my beckoned call to serve me sliced watermelon and pineapple drizzled with passion fruit. Oh, and figs. Give me all the figs, especially figs with honey. Fresh Figs with Truvia Nectar - a stevia-honey blend that is a great replacement for whole honey, sugar and agave.

Truvia NectarHowever, even too much of Mother Nature’s “candy” can start to rack up the calorie and carb count and that’s why I have fallen in love with a new product from a brand we all know, Truvia® .  Truvia® Nectar is a blend of stevia and honey that makes a great substitute agave, sugar, and honey – and it only has 10 calories and 2g carbs per serving.

Since I love having my “sweet” protein things for breakfast – protein shakes, mug cakes, fruit-speckled oatmeal and such, decided to make a protein mug cake using Truvia® Nectar – I’m calling it ‘Stevia-Honey Blend’ Fig Cardamom Protein Mug Cake and it works equally well for a healthy dessert as it does a protein-packed, lower-carb breakfast.

(Stevia Honey Blend) Fig Cardamom Protein Mug Cake makes a great breakfast or healthy dessert.

This recipe is as simple as lining a 16-ounce coffee mug with sliced fresh figs, adding a drizzle of the stevia-honey blend and then topping with my go-to recipe for a vanilla protein mug muffin (that has been sweetened with Truvia® Nectar and spiked with cardamom, cloves and cinnamon). You can use the protein powder of your choice and a regular flour or gluten free mix. The, just pop in the microwave for about 90 seconds and get your figgy jig on! Figs in Mug

Fig Protein Mug Muffin using Truvia NectarAfter “baking” in the microwave, you can enjoy this sweet treat right out of the mug with a spoon, but I prefer to serve it upside-down cake style and invert it only a dessert plate so that I can see the beautiful figs on top.  A dollop of Greek yogurt, extra slice of fig and drizzle of Truvia® Nectar make this mug cake recipe extra special.  Truvia Nectar on Fig Cake

Truvia® Nectar reasonably priced at about $6 per 300 gram bottle (120 servings!), I found mine at Target. You’ll also find all of the other stevia-based sugar alternatives that Truvia sells.

Honey and Lemongrass Broiled Grapefruit - TheFitFork.comI thought the taste was fantastic and have also used it to sweeten my coffee,  stirred into plain Greek yogurt topped with nuts, and in other recipes like this Salted “Honey” and Ginger Broiled Grapefruit. Truvia® Nectar is truly a sensible way to replace honey’s calorie content without sacrificing sweetness. Truvia Nectar

So, sweeeeeeeeeet! Truvia is offering a free sample of Truvia® Nectar, make sure to get your free sample today!

Are you a sweet or savory person in the morning? Are you getting your 25 to 30 grams of protein for breakfast? How would you use Truvia Nectar? Please share in the comments below – XOXO, Jennifer

(Stevia-Honey Blend) Fig Cardamom Protein Mug Cake
Print Recipe
Keep breakfast or dessert lower carb & higher protein with my sweet, succulent & super quick recipe for Fig Cardamom Mug Cake that uses stevia-honey blend.
Servings Prep Time
1 serving 3 mintues
Cook Time
2 mintues
Servings Prep Time
1 serving 3 mintues
Cook Time
2 mintues
(Stevia-Honey Blend) Fig Cardamom Protein Mug Cake
Print Recipe
Keep breakfast or dessert lower carb & higher protein with my sweet, succulent & super quick recipe for Fig Cardamom Mug Cake that uses stevia-honey blend.
Servings Prep Time
1 serving 3 mintues
Cook Time
2 mintues
Servings Prep Time
1 serving 3 mintues
Cook Time
2 mintues
Ingredients
Servings: serving
Instructions
  1. Spray a large microwave-safe 16-ounce coffee mug with cooking spray. Line figs in bottom of mug and halfway up sides, drizzle figs with 1 teaspoon of Truvia Nectar. Set aside.
  2. In small bowl, combine protein powder, gluten-free baking mix, baking soda, cardamom, cloves and cinnamon. Stir together until combined well.
  3. Whisk in egg, almond milk and remaining Truvia Nectar until combined.
  4. Pour into sprayed coffee mug, over figs, and microwave 1 minute 30 seconds, or until cooked through. Microwave times may vary depending on your appliance. Cake will rise above rim and then “fall” once removed from microwave.
  5. Remove mug and invert onto plate, gently slide out cake. Let cool for 2 minutes. Top with Greek yogurt, additional figs and Truvia Nectar drizzle, if desired.
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Jerk Halibut with Tipsy Tropical Fruit Salad

Jerk Halibut on Tipsy Tropical Fruit Salad

jennifer fisher yoga beachAhhh, wouldn’t a tropical vacation be wonderful about now?! You won’t actually feel the sand beneath your toes, but my recipe for Jerk Halibut with TipsyTropical Fruit Salad will whisk you away on a transcendental taste adventure thanks to plenty of Caribbean-inspired flavors. You can use any fish you like for blacking with my jerk seasoning blend, but meaty halibut really satisfies and holds up well in a skillet or on the grill. All the spicy heat of jerk is offset by a cool chopped fruit salad that has been macerating in a tasty tequila dressing.

Jerk Halibut on Tipsy Tropical Fruit Salad

Now, as you may already know, Halibut is not caught in tropical waters. It’s a cold water fish and Sizzlefish.com does a great job with their Alaskan-sourced halibut. But, boy oh boy, how I do love this elegant, steak-like fish that cooks up so light and flaky. Halibut isn’t part of the Paleo Prime fish collection I typically order from Sizzlefish.com (includes a variety of items from Gulf Shrimp to Coho Salmon), but their Halibut is sold in 14 4-ounce pieces that ships flash-frozen on dry ice straight to your door — it would make a nice stash in the freezer!

Are you a fish fan? What’s your favorite catch? What’s the last island you’ve visited? Please share in the comments below – XOXO, Jennifer

Jerk Halibut on Tipsy Tropical Fruit Salad
Jerk Halibut with Tipsy Tropical Fruit Salad
Print Recipe
Take your taste buds on a vacation with this easy 30 minute spicy halibut fish recipe served with a cool tropical fruit salad.
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
10 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
10 minutes
Jerk Halibut on Tipsy Tropical Fruit Salad
Jerk Halibut with Tipsy Tropical Fruit Salad
Print Recipe
Take your taste buds on a vacation with this easy 30 minute spicy halibut fish recipe served with a cool tropical fruit salad.
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
10 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time
10 minutes
Ingredients
For Fish
for Fruit Salad
for dressing
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. To prepare fish, unwrap and pat dry with paper towels. Leave skin on underside of halibut if attached.
  2. In small bowl, toss together allspice, cinnamon, brown sugar, red pepper, cloves, cumin, salt and black pepper until combined. Add 2 tablespoons of avocado oil and mix until a paste is formed.
  3. Rub paste over all sides of fish. Add remaining 2 tablespoons of avocado oil (or other high smoke point oil) to large skillet and bring to medium-high heat. Add halibut and sear on each side (front and back or all 4 sides if cut think and long) for several minutes each until spices have formed crust and fish is no longer translucent.
  4. Add all ingredients for fruit salad, except avocado, to bowl. Prepare dressing by whisking together all dressing ingredients in small bowl until combined. Pour dressing over fruit salad. Gently stir in avocados.
  5. To serve, place mount of fruit salad on plate and top with halibut. Season with Sriracha or hot sauce if desired.
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