Caprese Salsa

By now, you likely know I love all things that begin or end with the word “caprese.”  And, today’s salsa is a new love…

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

This weekend, I had some ladies over for a CAbi Party!  If you’ve never seen CAbi’s clothing line, you should definitely check it out.  Unique high quality pieces for the ladies… and I love the whole line!

My CAbi consultant Teri encouraged me to keep the food simple for the party, since most people don’t like to try on clothes when they are feeling full.  Well, I tried Teri, but I just can’t resist putting out delicious food for folks coming over to my place.  Of course, I put together a spread including this tasty salsa.

I have to tell you though, this salsa is INCREDIBLY easy to make and made with simple, simple ingredients.  I found the idea on Pinterest, and the recipe linked back to my blog designer Cassie over at Back to Her Roots.  I scaled down the recipe a bit, and wow… so delicious!

Caprese Salsa

Adapted from Back to Her Roots

Serves 16

INGREDIENTS

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

3 cups diced ripe tomatoes, seeded

1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped

1 cup mozzarella balls, in water

1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp. balsamic vinegar

salt

pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

1.  Dice your tomatoes.  Note:  I find that removing the seeds makes for the best salsa/pico de gallo.

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

2.  Prepare your basil.  Note:  I always like to dice my basil into ribbons, chiffonade style.

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

3.  Combine tomatoes, cheese, and basil in a large bowl.  Note:  I sliced each perillini ball into quarters.

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

4.  Add olive oil and vinegar.

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

5.  Toss to combine.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Store in the refrigerator before serving.  Note:  My suggestion is to make and serve the salsa within a few hours for the best flavor.  

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

6.  Enjoy with pita chips, 34 degrees crackers, or a healthy tortilla chip.  Note:  I served mine with Trader Joe’s Reduced Guilt Wholegrain Pita Chips.

Caprese Salsa | No Thanks to Cake

Per 1/4 cup serving (not including chips):
CAL 43; CARB 1g; FAT 3g; PROT 3g; FIB 0g; WW Points Plus: 1

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Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars

I can’t believe how much I’m loving pumpkin season.  And, it’s incredibly hard to believe that I wasn’t really into pumpkin this time a few years ago…

Sparkly Pumpkins Hobby Lobby | No Thanks to Cake

Self-proclaiming myself “the pickiest human”, by now you shouldn’t be too surprised that I wouldn’t touch that orange fruit until I began my healthy journey.  Now, I’m all over it. And, I think this is the THIRD pumpkin recipe of the season here on NTTC.  Scroll all the way to the bottom of this post to see my pumpkin posts!

And… while you’re at it, take a look at these bad boys!

Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake

I’m sad to report…. there’s nothing healthy about this dessert.  Wait… I did use a can of pumpkin which is rich in Vitamin A, and the condensed milk is fat-free… but nope, not exactly a healthy recipe, friends.  But I promise they are DELICIOUS!!

I made them for a co-worker’s birthday, after he confirmed he liked pumpkin… and the whole team loved them!  PS… You will too!

Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars

From Inside Bru Crew Life

INGREDIENTS

Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake

1 spice cake mix
1 cup pumpkin puree, divided
1 egg
8 oz. mini Oreos
1 (14-oz) can fat-free sweetened condensed milk
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup mini chocolate chips
INSTRUCTIONS
1.  Combine together the cake mix, 1/2 cup pumpkin, and the egg until a soft, sticky dough forms.
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
2.  Spray your hands with non stick spray and press the dough into a 9×13 baking dish that has been sprayed with the spray too.
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
3.  Top the dough with the mini Oreos.  Note:  I couldn’t find a small bag, only the family sized box.  I only used one layer of Oreos, and discarded the rest.
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
4.  Stir together the sweetened condensed milk, the remaining 1/2 cup pumpkin, and cinnamon.
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
5.  Drizzle all over the top of the cake.
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
6.   Sprinkle the chocolate chips on top.
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
7.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Let cool completely before cutting into 24 squares. Store in a sealed container on the counter.
Gooey Pumpkin Oreo Bars | No Thanks to Cake
Per 1/24th recipe serving:
CAL 205; CARB 29g; FAT 5g; PROT 3g; FIB 1g; WW Points Plus: 5
Divider
Here’s a few more ways to enjoy pumpkin this season!  Click the picture you want to try!
Healthy Pumpkin Pancakes | No Thanks to Cake
Pumpkin Spice Chocolate Chip Muffins | No Thanks to Cake
Whole Wheat Pumpkin Waffles | No Thanks to Cake

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Spiralized Tzatziki Cucumber Salad

Last weekend, my friends Deb and Matt had us over for a Huskers watching party!  When the weather gets cooler and football season begins, it gives us yet another reason to get together… and who doesn’t love watching the Huskers play while sitting outside on their fabulous patio?  Such a great night!

I always try to bring something on the healthier side to bashes like this.  And, actually, unless it’s dessert, I really don’t make anything that I don’t consider to be healthy.  The group as a whole tends to be very pro-cucumber, so I knew this would be a hit… and an excuse to get out that new spiralizer of mine (still in love, y’all!)

Spiralized Tzatziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

This salad comes together quite quickly, with the help of a good spiralizer (this is the one I bought)… I even spiralized the red onions, just to see what would happen.  I think it made the dish even more perfect.  I call it my “tzatziki” salad because it tastes like that crazy good Greek cucumber sauce you get with gyros… you know, the one you want to eat with a spoon?  Well, grab a fork, this salad will fix your craving… 

Spiralized Tzatziki Cucumber Salad

Adapted from First Home Life Love

Makes 5 cups

INGREDIENTS

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

2 English cucumbers + 1 regular cucumber

1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced

1 cup light sour cream

1/4 cup fresh dill, minced

3 Tbsp. white wine vinegar

2-3 garlic cloves, finely minced

1 tsp. sugar, salt and fresh black pepper (more to taste)

INSTRUCTIONS

1.  Peel your cucumbers and cut them in half to prepare them to be spiralized.  If you don’t have a spiralizer, you can always simply thinly slice by hand or with a mandolin.

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

2.  Use the blade that creates noodle-like cuts, and spiralize your cucumbers, catching them in a large bowl.

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

3. Use the same blade to cut your onion, and great ready to see pretty pretty spirals…

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

4.  Place the onion and cucumber spirals in a large bowl.  Toss them, and break them up every once in a while (so as to make sure that it’s not just one big cucumber noodle.)

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

5.  In a medium bowl, make your sauce.  Mix to combine the sour cream, vinegar, salt, pepper, sugar, and dill.  Whisk until combined well.  Note:  I added the full 1/4 cup dill, but tested it along the way… for some reason, I was nervous about all that fresh dill.  It was amazing in the end, don’t be afraid! 

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

6.  Add the dressing to the vegetables.  Note:  Do not mix the veggies and dressing more than 1 hour before you want to serve it.  Also, the dressing will thin out significantly due to the cucumbers having such a high water content.  You’ll have tons of dressing leftover, but it’s all good… I actually saved it and added it to another batch of cucumbers for a second round of salad!

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

7.  Refrigerate until you’re ready to serve (no more than 1 hour for best results.)  Note:  I ate the leftovers the next day and they were completely soupy and marinated and tasted amazing!  

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

Spiralized Tzaziki Cucumber Salad | No Thanks to Cake

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Jenny Volumizing: Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico

I’ve been raving about the new Jenny Craig foods for the past few weeks on Instagram and here on the ol’ blog.  They’re just THAT good!

The dish I’ve grown the most attached to is the new pizza.  Just when I thought I couldn’t love a pizza more than the former Rising Crust Pizza, Jenny introduced the new Pepperoni and Margherita lunch pizzas.

In true NTTC fashion, I’ve figured out a way to transform this awesome pizza into an even more amazing version of itself.

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico | No Thanks to Cake

I’ve always believed in baking frozen pizzas over nuking them in the microwave.  Seriously, take the extra time and dirty a baking pan… it’s worth it every time.  The “FANTASTICO” comes from the fact that this pizza is so delicious, it doesn’t taste as thought it’s a healthier version of anything…

Note:  I’ll also add that this recipe can be applied any of your favorite frozen pizzas, adjusting the baking time as needed to melt all the cheese and brown the crust.  

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico

Serves 1

INGREDIENTS

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico | No Thanks to Cake

1 package Jenny Craig Pepperoni Pizza

1 wedge Laughing Cow Cheese – Garlic & Herb flavor

diced onions

shredded spinach

banana peppers

diced tomatoes

Williams-Sonoma Pizza Seasoning

INSTRUCTIONS

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2.  Remove pizza from the packaging and place on a pizza pan.  Spread with one wedge Laughing Cow Cheese.

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico | No Thanks to Cake

3.  Layer with your favorite toppings: diced onions, banana peppers, diced tomatoes, and shredded spinach.

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico | No Thanks to Cake

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico | No Thanks to Cake

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico | No Thanks to Cake

4.  Bake at 400 degrees for 14 minutes until pizza is golden brown along the edges.

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico | No Thanks to Cake

5.  Remove to a cutting board to cool.  Slice and serve!

Pepperoni Pizza Fantastico | No Thanks to Cake

Enjoy!!!

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