Chunky Chicken Meatballs

img_20161110_123248This is similar to my other chunky meatball recipe but with ground chicken..LOVE.. and lower in sodium and just so much healthier! These meatballs are so versatile. You can have them with pasta, rice, pasta sauce, white sauce, or just by themselves. I love to add mushrooms to them but my daughter wouldn’t stand for that…so I don’t have them in this recipe. Try to add them if you are a fan or for variety. And for large groups you can double or triple the recipe very easily. Enjoy! 🙂

You will need:

  • 2 lbs. Perdue ground chicken
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1- 1/3 TBS Olive Oil
  • 10 saltine crackers crushed
  • 1 medium white or yellow onion chopped a little “chunky”
  • 1/4 c fresh chopped Basil ( chop a bit more for garnish)
  • (I prefer Simply Organic or Olde Thompson herbs and spices in my recipes)
  • 1-1/2 tsp Onion powder
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 1 tsp dried Basil
  • 2-1/2 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp Red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp Italian Seasoning
  • 2 tsp dried Parsley
  • 1/2 tsp Coriander
  • 1 tsp Fresh ground pepper
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Mozzarella, Pepper Jack, or Monterey Jack cheese (optional)img_20161109_161754718   img_20161109_161706553_hdr

In a large mixing bowl add all ingredients except the cheeses. Mix well until blended. (wash hands thoroughly) Marinate in refrigerator at least 15 minutes. img_20161109_161506928

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Spray a 13×9 baking dish with cooking spray. Form meat mixture into large balls.. a little bigger than a golf ball (no need to be perfect, remember they are chunky meatballs!!)

Assemble them in dish as spread out as you can. img_20161109_162217937_hdr

**(wash hands thoroughly)

Cover with foil and bake approx. 40 minutes (ovens vary)

Uncover and bake an additional 5 minutes to an internal temp of 170 deg

Sprinkle with desired amount of parmesan cheese and/or one of the optional cheeses and bake 5 more minutes uncovered

Remove from oven and let rest 3-5 minutesimg_20161109_172943223_hdr

Serve on pasta, rice, or with any sauce you like. They can also be served just the way they are with a garnish of chopped basil, olive oil and parmesan cheese. Use your imagination!

Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂


Curry Chicken Sloppy Joes Pasta (x2 Leftover Meal)

img_20161014_171813Seems like a crazy combo right? Sloppy Joes and pasta? Well, it’s delicious!!! On the next day with your Curry Chicken Soppy Joes leftovers you can most surely have sloppy Joes again, but if you want a little change here’s a really easy leftover meal and it doesn’t seem leftover at all! And even better, remember this meal is a Healthy Selection and low in sodium..Yum! 🙂

You will need:

  • At least 1/2 of recipe leftover Curry Chicken Sloppy Joes
  • 16 oz box Ronzoni Healthy Harvest Penne Pasta (cooked according to pkg directions) or pasta of your choice
  • Parmesan, cheddar, or pepper jack cheese
  • washed & chopped green onions
  •  1-28oz can Hunts No Salt Added diced tomatoes
  • approx. 1/8 cup fresh chopped basil
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • (I prefer Simply Organic herbs and spices in my recipes)
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Curry powder
  • 1/3 tsp fresh ground pepperimg_20161010_173124565_hdr

Begin to prepare the pasta. In a Dutch oven or large pot warm on medium heat the leftover sloppy joes. Add tomatoes, 1/2 the basil, corn, oregano, Italian seasoning, onion powder, garlic powder, curry and pepper. Stir well and continue to warm on medium heat. When hot turn down to very low heat, stir and cover until pasta is ready.

Remove from heat. Serve over pasta and garnish with basil, green onions and your choice of cheese.

Serves at least 4

If you have more leftover its great on a hot dog or to make nachos!!

Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂



Curry Chicken Sloppy Joes

img_20161013_155246My daughters friend mentioned to me the other day when we were talking about chicken burgers.. ” I am in the mood for sloppy joes.” And of course my ever creating lightbulb went off full tilt! Yes!! Chicken sloppy joes! Perfect! So I went to work and created the recipe. I was very happy with it and they were yummy! And of course it is a healthy sloppy joes because its ground chicken and very low sodium.. Yeah! Enjoy!! 🙂

You will need:

  • Olive Oil
  • 2-lbs Perdue ground chicken
  • 2 cups chopped bell peppers (any color)
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 1- pkg cherry or grape tomatoes any color halved
  • 3-4 chopped garlic cloves
  • 3 tsp fresh chopped basil
  • (I prefer Simply Organic herbs and spices in my recipes)
  • 1-1/2 TBS curry powder
  • 1-1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp Turmeric
  • 3 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 3-1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 3-1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1- 29 oz can Hunts no salt added sauce
  • 2-1/2 tsp Olde Thompson Mesquite Grilling Grinder spice
  • 1 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 5 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 TBS low fat sour cream
  • chopped green onions
  • Shredded pepper jack cheese
  • Wooden spoonimg_20161009_175818699_hdr

In a Dutch oven or large pot on medium heat drizzle some olive oil approx. 3 TBS in bottom of pan and when heated add onion and bell peppers. Stir with wooden spoon until slightly softened. Add garlic, tomatoes, basil, curry, pepper flakes, Turmeric, Italian seasoning, garlic powder and onion powder. Stir until the spices coat the veggies and the tomatoes are softened. Add chicken, wash hands thoroughly, and break up and cook until no longer pink and mixed well with other ingredients. Add sauce and stir well. Add mesquite spice, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and sour cream and gently stir.

Take down to low heat for about 15 min stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat, cover and let sit 5-10 minutes.

Will be a little soupy so use a slotted spoon to serve (will be thicker next day). Put on your favorite bun and top with shredded pepper jack cheese and green onions or any topping you prefer. My husband likes to add jalapenos and hot sauce!

This recipe makes a lot so of course I have a x2 leftover recipe. Or you can eat sloppy joes twice, whatever your family prefers. 🙂

Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂



My Original Ooey-Gooey Cheerio Treats

fb_img_1476382934044Been getting lots of requests to post this oldie but goodie recipe. Not really one of my Healthy Selections but they ARE gluten free and a really good recipe for those days you just need to indulge. Kids love them and they are so easy to make. And I figure they can’t be ALL that bad…they are made with Multi Grain Cheerios! 🙂

You will need:

  • 1 stick real butter
  • 1- 10 oz bag Kraft Jet-Puffed Miniature Marshmallows
  • 7 1/2 c Multigrain Cheerios (you have to use the Multi Grain Cheerios, it makes a difference, they just taste the best 🙂
  • Cooking spray

Spray a 13×9 cake pan with cooking spray

In a non stick pot on low heat melt the stick of butter and give it a little stir. Add marshmallows and stir well until melted and mixed with butter (turn off heat right before marshmallows are melted to avoid burning)

Add Multi Grain Cheerios and fold until well blended with marshmallow mixture. (I prefer to use a wooden spoon)

Transfer mixture to cake pan. Spray wooden spoon with cooking spray and spread and gently press evenly into pan.

Let cool 30 min. (they are really good warm too.. but messy!)

Slice into squares with a butter knife sprayed with cooking spray

They are really cute and yummy with sprinkles or mini chocolate chips. You would want to put toppings on BEFORE they cool.

Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂





Char’s No Guilt Chocolate Chip Cookies

img_20161011_125609I am sure there are plenty of healthy cookie recipes out there. And over the years there have been many ideas thrown around on how to make delicious desserts that are healthy and guilt free. And I have to say we are getting better and better at it. Yes, I have plenty of sweet recipes on my blog that are NOT guilt free and I believe we should indulge in those on occasion. Life’s too short! But why not find good recipes that make us feel better about those moments we crave sweets and just HAVE to have them! I created this recipe and was pleasantly surprised at how good they turned out. These are great for kids because I doubt they could tell the difference. Adults probably can.. but all my taste testers said they were very good…too good to be no guilt. I have eliminated half the fat, most of the sugar and there is very little sodium. And with the use of good dark chocolate it makes these a smart choice for a sweet treat!  So, give them a try and see what you think 🙂

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper

You will need:

  • 2- 1/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 stick unsalted real butter (1/2 c) softened
  • 1/2 c mashed avocado
  • 1/4 c + 2 TBS Truvia Baking Blend Sugar
  • 1/4 c + 2 TBS Truvia Brown Sugar Blend
  • 1-1/2 tsp real vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 c egg substitute
  • 1- 10 oz pkg Nestle Dark Chocolate Morsels (if you like more chocolate add another 1/4 to 1/2 cup. I Did!!)
  • powdered sugarimg_20161009_134209303_hdr

In a small bowl combine flour, baking soda, and salt and set aside. In a large bowl beat butter, avocado, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla until creamy (ignore the green color it will go away eventually!) Add egg and beat well. Repeat with egg substitute. Gradually beat in dry ingredients until blended. Fold in morsels. You can add nuts if you like or even raisins or oatmeal. Chill for 5 minutes

Scoop desired amount (approx. TBS) onto cookie sheet about 2 inches apart

Bake 10-14 minutes (ovens vary) until slightly golden but do not overbake

Remove from oven let cookies sit on cookie sheet for a few minutes

Transfer cookies to cooling rack or onto paper towels laid out on counter

Let cool 5-10 minutes

Sift powdered sugar over them before serving

They are delicious cold or warm 🙂

Makes about 4 dozen

Created with love by:


Char Head

Enjoy! 🙂



Corn and Black Bean Chicken Meatloaf Avocado Burger (x2 leftover meal)

img_20160929_143338With the crazy lives we lead today getting in the kitchen and cooking every night is near impossible. So we are now seeing a trend of ahead-of-time meal prep where you cook and prep all your meals for the week on the weekend. I think it’s a great idea, IF you can find the time on the weekend to do it. I like to plan my meals by what’s on sale when I walk thru the grocery store and plan meals that can be eaten leftover. I think this prevents the way too often trips to the fast food joints. If you can get 2 to 3 meals out of a one hour visit to the stove… I’m in! Then when that volleyball game or meeting runs late and you don’t walk in the door until 8:00, you have a meal waiting in the frig that just needs thrown together and warmed up. Either way that you prefer to do it.. planning ahead always makes life easier and you will eat healthier in the process 🙂

You will need:

  • 100% Whole wheat buns (toast if you prefer)
  • Leftover Corn & Black Bean Chicken Meatloaf
  • 1 ripened avocado sliced
  • Shredded cheddar cheese (low fat or low sodium cheese is even better)
  • Mt. Olive diced jalapeno peppers (optional)
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • Fresh salsa of your choice
  • Green onions washed and sliced

Slice an approximate 3×3 piece of the meatloaf then slice it again so you have 2 3x3x1 pieces. Repeat for each burger you make.img_20160914_181151793_hdrMicrowave meatloaf on high approx. 1 min. Check for doneness (170 deg). If not hot enough microwave another 30 sec.

Time for the fun part! Place the non-cheese piece of the meatloaf on the bun. Sprinkle some cheddar cheese then put the other piece on top. Add some fresh ground pepper and a few slices of avocado. Top with salsa, jalapenos and green onions and of course some more fresh ground pepper. End with the other half of bun on top and give it a little “squish” but just a little… we don’t want it falling apart 🙂

If you don’t like the heat omit the jalapenos and use another topping of choice. If you like the heat add hot salsa and jalapeno slices.

** this meatloaf is great for sandwiches in your lunch the next day or crumble it for a plate of nachos or tacos! 🙂  WOW!!! That’s x3 and x4!! 😉

Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂



Corn and Black Bean Chicken Meatloaf

img_20160928_143655When I got this recipe where I wanted it, it quickly became one of my favorites. Having to follow a cardiac and diabetic plan in this house Mexican style food, especially in restaurants had to go. So, I have been determined to create healthy recipes of this style of food that we can eat and enjoy without the guilt and the massive amounts of sodium and fat. What’s great about this recipe is that it makes a lot and I will have an added recipe for the leftovers. So it’s delicious AND time saving! It has a bit of a kick so if you like it more mild I will tell you what to omit. ENJOY! 🙂

You will need:

  • 2 lbs. Perdue ground chicken
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 7 saltine crackers crumbled
  • 1 small yellow onion chopped
  • 15 oz can organic black beans rinsed well (you can also use reduced sodium black beans but I haven’t found organic ones that are)
  • 14.5 oz can no salt added diced tomatoes drained (Hunts or Del Monte)
  • 1- 1/2 cups crumbled tortilla chips (usually plenty at the bottom of the bag)
  • 1-1/2 cups frozen corn
  • (I prefer Simply Organic herbs and spices in all my recipes)
  • 1 TBS Dried Cilantro
  • 1-1/2 tsp Cumin
  • 1-1/2 tsp Curry
  • 1 tsp Chili powder
  • 1-1/2 tsp Red pepper flakes (2 tsp for more heat)
  • 1/2 tsp Coriander
  • 1/8 tsp Cayenne powder (1/4 tsp for more heat)
  • 1 tsp Onion powder
  • 1 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric
  • 4 tsp Olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 to 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (low fat or low sodium cheese will make it even healthier)
  • Jalapenos, salsa, green onions, etc. for garnish
  • (This dish is medium heat if you like it more mild omit the Cayenne pepper, 1/2 tsp of the red pepper flakes and don’t garnish with jalapenos and use mild salsa)img_20160913_173721420_hdr

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

In a large bowl combine all ingredients except for cheese and garnishes. Mix well until blended. I like to use my hands (clean hands) but a wooden spoon will work too. Wash hands thoroughly after mixing.

Spray a 13×9 baking dish with cooking spray. Put chicken mixture in baking dish and form into the shape of the dish leaving approx. an inch open all the way around the edges. img_20160913_180033604_hdrSprinkle a bit of fresh or dried Cilantro and ground pepper evenly over the top.

Cover with foil and bake for 50-60 min (ovens vary)

Remove foil and bake an additional 15 min to an internal temp of at least 170 degrees. img_20160913_185425102_hdrEvenly sprinkle your desired amount of cheese over the top and bake uncovered an additional 5 minutes until cheese is melted. If you really want to reduce the sodium and fat even more just omit the cheese topping. It’s still really good without it. But ya gotta look out for those cheese lovers! 🙂img_20160913_190547333_hdrLet the meatloaf sit loosely covered with foil on the stove top for 5-10 min while you prepare your sides.

Slice and serve with a drizzle of olive oil and your favorite embellishments and sides. img_20160913_192409649_hdr

**Look for my Corn & Black Bean Chicken Meatloaf Avocado Burgers for your leftover meal 🙂

Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂





Fresh and Easy Lunch

img_20151202_145229-1Always the dilemma.. in this crazy day to day life if we can even find the time.. what to eat for lunch?? You want it to be healthy AND quick… which nowadays seems to be the challenge. I have found this recipe to be a go-to favorite for me and it can be easily made the night before and conveniently packed for work or school. And btw no one ever thinks to pair bananas with cottage cheese… but it is sooo GOOD! 🙂

You will need:

  • 1/2 to 1 cup of Breakstones low fat cottage cheese
  • 1 small banana (slice right before eating)
  • 3-4 fresh strawberries washed and sliced
  • 1/4 cup Pecans whole or chopped (unsalted)
  • Dried cranberries

Start with cottage cheese on your plate. Add bananas and strawberries. Sprinkle pecans and amount of cranberries you prefer over the plate…and that’s it!!! If you like more crunch, organic granola is a good choice as well.

You can take everything in separate containers to work or school and combine before eating. It is very filling and if I must say.. just so pretty!!


Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂




Roasted Ginger Curry Autumn Medley

img_20160926_103940I can’t get enough of roasted vegetables!! Especially root vegetables and especially this time of year. They are so rustic and hearty and look beautiful on your table. The fun thing about them is that you can make them in any combination and it is ALWAYS good. So for the amateur cook it’s a no fail dish. Pick from your favorites or from what’s on hand, throw them together, roast ’em and like magic you have a dish to serve that makes you look like a pro! I have many of my own favorite combinations and I will be posting them but this one is my absolute favorites. It is perfect for the Fall and winter and holiday season and can be paired with just about anything. You can prep it ahead and roast it before serving and this is also one of my Healthy Selections recipes so it’s good for ya too! Enjoy! 🙂

You will need:

  • 6 lg organic carrots, washed and cut into 1 inch pieces (I don’t peel them)
  • 1 med butternut squash, peeled, cleaned, and cut into large chunks
  • 15-20 peeled whole garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1-1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • EV Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

Spray a metal cookie sheet with cooking spray

Mix dry ingredients in a small bowl

Spread out vegetables in a single layer on cookie sheet then drizzle a good amount of olive img_20160925_174310393oil over them (approx 2 TBS)

Sprinkle dry mix evenly over veggies

With clean hands toss and mix the vegetables until they are blended with the oil and spices and return to a single layer

Lay a piece of foil over the vegetables loosely (do not seal)img_20160925_174344612_hdr

Bake for 30 minutes

Remove foil and roast another 15 minutes

Vegetables should be soft but slightly firm when done

Take out of oven and lay foil loosely again over the veggies to keep warm

Transfer to your favorite serving dish and give them a little drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of pepper before serving

They are GREAT leftover!

Enjoy! 🙂

Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂img_20160926_103940

My Favorite Sunday Roast-Rustic Style

img_20160916_185745I have always had an obsession with a good roast and Sundays. They just seem to be the perfect fit! Smelling that roast sloooooow cooking when you come in the house after church just melts my heart. Then eating it brings me much comfort! 🙂  I have created and tried many roast recipes over the years and have just loved most of them. I can’t live without a good roast in my life and now that we have to follow a strict diet in our house I just had to come up with a healthy recipe for one. This was as healthy as I could get it using a round roast and I am actually pretty proud of myself! And it’s very rustic! Enjoy! 🙂

You will need:

  • 2 lb. Round roast (lean as you can find it)
  • 2 lb. bag organic large carrots washed and cut into large pieces (I don’t peel them, I like them rustic 🙂
  • 4-6 parsnips washed and cut into large pieces (I love them so I used 6)
  • 1 doz small red potatoes washed and halved and skin on
  • 1/2 c fresh chopped basil (chop a little extra for garnish)
  • 2 TBS EV Olive oil
  • 7 whole cloves of garlic peeled
  • 1/4 c of your favorite red wine
  • 1-1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper (I prefer Olde Thompson Pepper Supreme peppercorns, they are the BEST)
  • 1-1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (I prefer Simply Organic herbs and spices in my recipes)
  • 1 tsp Onion powder
  • 3/4 tsp Ground Ginger
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 tsp Parsley flakes
  • 1 tsp Coriander
  • 1 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1 c water
  • 2 TBS real butter
  • 1- 1/2 TBS prepared Horseradish
  • 2 TBS Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 TBS Tastefully Simple Roasted Garlic Infused Oil (Or brand of your choice)img_20160828_141351376

Preheat oven to 300 degrees

In a 7-8 quart Dutch oven sear roast 2-3 minutes on each side.

Combine all dry spices in a bowl and stir until mixed. Set aside.

Turn off heat and add carrots, parsnips, basil, olive oil, garlic, red wine, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic oil. Make sure roast is in the middle and the veggies are surrounding it.

Add water then evenly sprinkle dry spices over roast and veggies.

Carefully spread horseradish and butter over roast only. It will slowly bake the flavor into the meat.

Then drizzle a little more Olive oil over the whole thing. This is in addition to the 2 TBS you already used.

Bake with lid on for 2 hours and 20 min. DO NOT check on or remove lid. Just let it cook nice and slow! 🙂

Remove from oven and add potatoes

You will also need:

  • 2 TBS Parsley flakes
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1/4 c water
  • 1 TBS Worcestershire sauce
  • Drizzle of Olive oil

Evenly spread and drizzle parsley, pepper, water, Worcestershire sauce, and olive oil over roast and vegetables. With a turkey baster baste vegetables with juices. Put on lid and return to oven for 1 hour.

Remove from oven and check to see if potatoes are softening. Baste everything this time and return to oven with lid on for 30 more minutes if potatoes were soft if not for 45 min.

Check roast for an internal temp of  at least 170 degrees and make sure potatoes are soft.

When done, let roast sit on stove top with lid on for 20 min to rest. while you prepare your sides.

img_20160828_180600335Slice (well it will probably fall apart) and serve with an extra drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of fresh basil.. and your favorite sides or just the way it is with a good crusty bread!!!!

Great leftover!!

Created with love by:


Char Head 🙂