Easy Tuna Cakes

I try to have a protein source at every meal, but this standard can be hard to meet in a pinch. Cooking meat often takes more time and effort than I have, so I’m always looking for fast and easy protein sources that take only a few minutes to prepare. I’ve found a winner of a quick protein recipe in…

Tuna Cakes (full recipe below)

From start to finish, this takes less than 10 minutes, and there are relatively few ingredients. Plus, who doesn’t have a can of tuna sitting in their pantry?

All you need to do is beat one egg:


Add a can a tuna:


Two tablespoons flour of choice (I used whole wheat), a few shakes of your favorite seasoning, and a small squeeze of mustard (I used dark):


Stir to combine and scoop onto a pre-heated skillet as two patties:

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Let cook for 2-3 minutes, then flip:


Easy. Quick. Delicious.

Easy Tuna Cakes, serves 1
- 1 egg
- 1 can of tuna
- 2 tbsp flour
- a few healthy shakes of seasoning
- small squeeze mustard
Beat egg in a medium-sized bowl.
Add all other ingredients.
Place as two patties on a pre-heated skillet, 
cooking 2-3 minutes per side.

Cilantro Bison Tacos and Sweet Orange Carrots

I want to preface this post by saying that these two recipes do not go together. I just happened to make them on the same day. 🙂

I had some leftover cilantro in my kitchen from the fish cakes I made last weekend so something Mexican-inspired seemed appropriate. The result?

Cilantro Bison Tacos

This recipe was incredibly simple and came together in less than 20 minutes. First, chop 1/2 of an extra large onion and cook with a little bit of coconut oil. When the onion starts to become transparent, add 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro:


Add 1 tsp. each of cumin and oregano and stir to combine:


Once combined, add 1/4 cup salsa and 1/2 lb. ground bison meat:


Cook for a few more minutes until the meat is no longer pink. Serve with taco shells, tortillas, salad, etc.

Sweet Orange Carrots


I don’t have any pictures of the process for this recipe, but here’s the rundown:

Sweet Orange Carrots, serves 4
- 1 lb. carrots
- 1 orange
- 6 medjool dates
- 2 tbsp. mint
- nutmeg
- 1 tsp. cornstarch
- 2 tsp. water
1. Thinly slice carrots, pit and chop the dates, finely chop the mint 
and place in a skillet with a few shakes of nutmeg.
2. Juice the orange and pour over the carrot mixture. 
Add the zest from half the orange to the skillet.
3. Turn on the flame to medium-high. When the juice begins to boil, 
cover and simmer for approx. 8 minutes (until carrots are tender).
4. While the carrots are cooking, separate the orange flesh from the rind. 
Chop into small pieces.
5. After the carrots are tender, uncover the skillet and add the 
chopped orange.
6. Combine the cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Add to the 
skillet and cook for a minute longer to help the moisture thicken.

Pickle Egg Salad

I’ve been on a kick lately of eating foods I don’t normally eat.

Example 1: coffee

Example 2: red meat

Example 3….pickles! I used to hate the taste of pickles, but I had them on a sandwich a few weeks ago and thought, ‘hey, I might actually like these little guys.’ Since then, I decided to buy a jar of sliced pickles at the store and try incorporating them into my meals. This turned out to be a little trickier than I originally thought since – really – what goes with pickles?

Um…sandwiches? burgers? EGG SALAD!

Here’s what you do:

First, make some hard boiled eggs.


My method is to bring a pot of water to a boil, add the eggs, and cook covered for 10 minutes. Drain immediately, soak in cold water, and then peel. Also, there are 8 eggs pictured, but I only used 4 for this recipe.

While the eggs boil, chop 3 stalks of celery and add to medium mixing bowl:


Chop 10 pickles slices (you could adjust this according to your affinity for pickles):


Add the pickles plus 1 teaspoon of mustard (I used deli mustard, but honey mustard would work well too):

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Add a couple spoonfuls of full-fat plain yogurt, 4 hard-boiled eggs, and mix to combine:

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Add more yogurt if you prefer a more goopey egg salad. According to spell check, goopey is not a word, but I know better. 🙂

Yum! Super easy and delicious egg salad!

Pickle Egg Salad
- 4 hard-boiled eggs
- 3 stalks celery
- 10 pickle slices
- 1 tsp mustard
- approx. 1/4 cup of plain full-fat yogurt
Chop celery, eggs, and pickle slices. Combine with mustard and yogurt.
Stir to combine.
Enjoy on salad, bread, or any other way you fancy.

Black Bean Burgers and Good Eats

Summer seems to demand that I am constantly eating good food. Let’s be honest…all the time demands that I eat good food. But, for some reason, the summer seems to call out with rooftop happy hours, live music, and extravagant dinners.

I’m not complaining.

A couple food highlights from last week include a trip to one of my favorite Minneapolis restaurants, Broder’s Pasta Bar.


This time around I had pappardelle with steak, sundried tomatoes, and asparagus:


plus a few bites of a caprese salad appetizer:


I also visited Toby Keith’s I Love this Bar and Grill in St. Louis Park in the West End. This bar/restaurant is the premiere country music joint in the Twin Cities area, with live music almost every night. Here’s a picture of the stage (the band wasn’t out yet when we got there):


The bar is in the shape of a guitar and has no drink menu but offers pretty much everything you can think of:

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Can’t go wrong with mozz sticks:


Even though there’s been a lot of good food out and about, the real food highlights of the summer have been right in my own kitchen. This week, I made up a recipe for some black bean patties, and it turned out so well!

Recipe makes 8 black bean patties – full recipe below

First, combine 3 teaspoons minced garlic and two medium carrots in a food processor:

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Add in the contents of a 25oz. can of black beans (rinse the beans in a colander first):


In a separate bowl, mix together 2 eggs, 1 tablespoon cumin, and 1 tablespoon chili powder:


Pour into the food processor with the bean mixture and process:

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Add between 1/2 – 3/4 cup of whole wheat bread crumbs (however much until the dough is formable), and then shape into 8 patties on a baking sheet:


Cook at 400° for 11 minutes on each side.

Black Bean Patties, recipe makes 8 patties
- 25oz. can black beans
- 2 medium carrots
- 3 teaspoons minced garlic
- 2 eggs
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1/2-3/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
Combine garlic, carrots, and beans in a food processor and combine.
Separately, combine eggs, cumin, and chili powder. Add to processor. 
Add 1/2 of bread crumbs and combine. If mixture is still too wet, gradually add up to another 1/4 cup.
Form mixture into 8 patties and place on a baking sheet. 
Cook at 400° for 11 minutes on each side.

Quick Pizza for One

I saw this recipe for Toaster Oven Pizza for One on Carrots N Cake a while ago and liked the idea of a single serving pizza. I am also thinking it might be a good idea to make smaller quantity recipes. Even though I’m only cooking for one, I usually cook a full (or nearly full) recipe and end up eating the meal throughout the whole week. It’s a nice strategy in terms of minimizing the number of days I need to spend a lot of time cooking, but I usually end up getting tired of the meal by the fourth fifth sixth serving.

The original recipe used entirely almond meal, but I decided to try splitting the flour into half almond meal and half whole wheat. I’m still trying to figure out how much I want to use almond flour in baking. On the one hand, it’s higher in protein than regular flour and I like that. On the other hand, it’s also higher in fat and calories and makes for a much denser final product. The half-and-half method seemed like a good balance – at least for this instance. *There are pictures of two bowls and two pizzas because I wanted to make two single-serving pizzas. I used two separate bowls though, so all measurements are for ONE single-serving recipe.

First, I combined 1/4 cup almond flour, 1/4 whole wheat flour, and 1 tsp ground garlic:

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Next, I added half an egg and 1/2 tsp olive oil to each bowl (you could probably use a full egg each or just use one egg white):

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And 1 tsp ground flax:

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Mix it thoroughly until mixture becomes uniform. For me, everything didn’t really stick together until I got down and dirty with my hands (pre-wet your hands!!). Once the dough became uniform, I shaped it into balls, spread out with my hand on a cutting board, and transferred to a baking tray:

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Now…the best part…TOPPINGS!

Since I made this recipe right before leaving for vacation (what, Rome for a week?!), I used an assortment of whatever-I-wanted-to-use-up to top my pizza. First, some pesto:

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Then, tomato:

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Plus sauteed onions:

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Shredded gruyere cheese:

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And, last but not least, artichoke hearts:

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Bake at 350° for 18 minutes until cheese is cheesy and crust is crusty:

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Look at this goodness:

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yumyumyum. This was super easy and tasty – I will definitely keep on hand as a go-to for quick, small meals. The recipe should also work fine to increase and serve multiple people.

How many people does it take to…

I had a lovely potluck Shabbat dinner with friends this weekend. As my contribution to the meal, I prepared some cabbage that I had left in my fridge from last week’s trip to the farmer’s market. This recipe was quick, easy, and delicious – so a winner all around.

First, I chopped two small onions:

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I sauteed the onions in about 1 tablespoon of coconut oil:

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While the onions cooked, I chopped up a half head of cabbage:

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Once the onions were slightly browned…

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I added the cabbage plus 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar and cooked until the cabbage darkened and became soft:

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Right at the end, I added several shakes of thyme and a pinch of salt. Yum! Here’s the full recipe written out:

 - 2 small onions
 - 1 tablespoon coconut oil
 - 1/2 head cabbage
 - 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
 - thyme
 - salt
Chop onions and cook in a skillet with heated coconut oil until just beginning to brown.
 Add cabbage and apple cider vinegar and cook until cabbage wilts and darkens.
 Add thyme and salt to taste.

See? Sooo easy.

My friends made a delicious tomato and coconut chili with beans, corn, and rice:

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After the meal, it was down to business putting together a new bed from CB2. CB2 is a modern furniture and accessory branch of Crate and Barrel. My friend just bought the CB2 siesta bed, and it required home assembly.

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Are we up to the task?

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There was a slight hiccup with the alignment of the headboard…plus some apparent mislabeling of parts…plus we put some pieces on the wrong way….plus we had one misguided phone call to customer service…but besides that things went smoothly!

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All’s well that ends well:

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After all that hard work, we needed some reward…reward in the form of ICE CREAM. Look for my next post on the best ice cream in Minneapolis. 🙂

Teriyaki Turkey Burgers

I have a bottle of teriyaki sauce in my fridge leftover from when I made Asian Turkey Meatloaf several weeks ago. I’ve been wanting to make something else with the stuff in an attempt to use a little more of the bottle, and I thought teriyaki burgers could be a good solution. Plus, I could also use the leftover roasted garlic from the Roasted Tomato Coconut Soup! *full recipe below
First, chop one small onion:
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Combine the onion with 1.25 lbs lean ground turkey and one egg:
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Add 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce and 1/4 cup of whole wheat breadcrumbs:
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Add in the roasted garlic – I used a lot:
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The flavor of roasted garlic is much milder than raw, so you should use it in much larger quantities to get the flavor. Mix everything together:
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Divide into 6 patties on a baking sheet:
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Bake at 375° for 15 minutes on one side…
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…and then the other:
Serve with potatoes and cheesy cabbage bake:
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- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1.25 lbs ground lean turkey
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup whole wheat breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons garlic
- 2 tablespoons roasted garlic (this is an approximation of what I used)
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir until sauce is distributed.
Divide into 6 patties on a baking sheet and bake at 375° for 30 minutes, flipping after 15 minutes.

Spiced Chickpeas with Mixed Greens

When I made roasted tomato coconut soup last week, the recipe called for two tablespoons of tomato paste. Unfortunately, tomato paste comes in a 6oz jar. As a result, I’ve had 6 ounces (less 2 tablespoons) of tomato paste sitting in my fridge for the last few days. I also had about half of a 12oz bag of mixed greens, so I decided to use these two ingredients as the basis for a dish. Wanting to involve a protein, chickpeas seemed like a good fit.

On my roommate’s recommendation, I checked out a Spinach and Chickpeas recipe from Smitten Kitchen. Referencing Smitten Kitchen’s spices, I made up my own recipe. *full recipe below

Heat 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar, 1/4 cup water, and 6 ounces tomato paste (less 2 tablespoons) in a skillet:

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Stir to combine and add one can of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed:

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Add a heaping 1/4 teaspoon each of paprika and garam masala, stir to combine:

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Add 6oz mixed greens (this is an approximation as I used about half of a 12oz bag):

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Continue to mix until the greens cook down:

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This entire recipe look less than 15 minutes to come together. I divided it into two tupperwares with some roasted potatoes to bring for lunch during the week:

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- 6oz can of tomato paste
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 can of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- heaping 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- heaping 1/4 teaspoon garam masala
- 6oz mixed greens
Combine water, vinegar, and tomato paste in a skillet. Stir to combine.
Add garbanzo beans, paprika, and garam masala. Stir to combine.
Add mixed greens and cook, mixing constantly, until the greens wilt.
Serve and enjoy!

Easy Tuna Bean Salad

Sorry for the hiatus in posting – I was out of town last weekend for a work related trip. While away, I managed to get in a couple workouts at the hotel fitness room. I did one 5-mile run:

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And I also got in a 45 minute elliptical workout. I was staying at a Hilton, and the fitness center had the essentials but nothing fancy: two treadmills, two ellipticals, two bikes, and some dumbbells.

When I got home, I was very ready to return to normal eating (food on vacation is fun for a little, but I like to return to my regular routine). I decided to make some tuna bean salad for lunches during the week. This recipe was really easy, took about 10 minutes to put together, and will provide healthy and delicious lunches all week! This is all you need:

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One large can of cannellini beans, one can of tuna, plain greek yogurt, dijon mustard, and capers. I drained and rinsed the beans, drained the tuna, and combined them in a bowl. I topped them with about 1/4 cup of chobani (generously portioned), one tablespoon of dijon mustard, and approximately 1.5 tablespoons of drained capers:

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Mix it all up:

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Divide into four lunches (I put my tuna salad over spinach):

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Top with tomato:

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And eat yummy lunches all week! When I bring these to work, I’ll also bring some pita and hummus to eat with.

Oat Bran Protein Pancakes

Earlier this week, I looked outside and was sad to see that it looked like this:

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Little did I know, that only a few short days later it would look like this:

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What?!?! #Minnesota in mid-April #WTH

There is a silver lining though. While the weather gets worse, my protein powder pancakes recipe is getting better! A few days ago I posted about these protein pancakes made with rolled oats. They were good, but I wanted to keep experimenting. Today, I tried basically the same recipe but with oat bran instead of regular rolled oats.

First, mix 1/3 cup oat bran with 1 teaspoon ground flax:

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Add one egg and 1/3 cup cottage cheese:

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Add one scoop protein powder (I used Tera’s Whey chocolate):

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Mix all together:

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Cook on the skillet for about 3 minutes on each side:

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I am getting so much better at flipping the pancakes! I think that was partly because the oat bran held these pancakes together better than the rolled oats did. I topped my pancakes with walnut butter and a couple teaspoons maple syrup:

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These were very good, but I definitely want to experiment more with other pancake varieties. Anyone know some yummy, quick, and healthy pancake recipes?