Hello and Happy New Year, friends!!
I hope this year brings the happiest of moments, good health, personal and professional growth, and of course, plenty of delicious eats for you all.
2015 was a fantastic year filled with a lot of special moments, but I am entering 2016 with a list of goals I am anxious to achieve. This past year was also a year of growth for my blog. I was able to work with a few great companies, collaborate with a group of fantastic fellow dietitians, improve my photo quality (thanks to finally purchasing a DSLR camera!) and really expand my knowledge and capabilities in the kitchen.
With that said, I wanted to share my top 10 recipes of 2015 with you all. Every year, I enjoy looking back to see which recipes you guys liked the most, or which ones created the most engagement. This year, breakfast and slow cooker recipes dominated the list. A few of them were even from prior years (including a couple from my very first year blogging!).
I hope you enjoy this look back and would love to know what kind of recipes you hope to see on the blog in 2016 in the comments section of this post!
Let’s get to it!
These pancakes continue to be the top contender for hits, pins and shares on my social media forums. This recipe will always be near and dear to my heart for two reasons. The first and obvious reason being that THEY ARE DELICIOUS! But secondly, this was the very first recipe I posted on the blog (back in 2013!). Oh, sweet nostalgia.
But on a not-so-sweet note, the photo quality makes my skin crawl. The photos were taken on my iPhone 4 camera and I have been meaning to go back and re-photograph them for a solid year now. That shall be added to my ever-growing list of New Years Resolutions.
These continue to be one of my staple breakfasts. Not only are they super simple and versatile, but they are incredibly nutrient-dense with the added protein, omega-3 fats and fiber. They’re great to eat on the go and always keep me feeling full and satisfied well into my morning ventures. If you’ve been looking to add a little oomph to your oats, I would definitely recommend trying this recipe!
Let me start by saying I have never faceplanted so hard into a dish of ANYTHING as I have with these. I make this recipe multiple times every football season and they are always a crowd pleaser!
Normally the words “light” and “healthy” are not in the equation when it comes to nachos. These nachos, however, are covered with loads of veggies for less damage. Think of them as a healthified hybrid of the classic loaded nacho dish you may find at your local Mexican restaurant. But they’re way tastier and only take about 15 minutes to make. Woo!
Also another oldie (2014) but goodie! Cooking steel cut oats in the slow cooker has gained a ton more popularity the last year or so. Rightfully so! What’s not to love about the idea of waking up to a warm, hearty breakfast already prepared for you??
This recipe is nice because you can use frozen blueberries when they’re not in season and you can freeze leftovers for later use. I will make a batch at the start of the week and reheat single servings as quick breakfasts throughout the work week. Mighty tasty!
I was elated that this one made the list because it is, hands down, my favorite recipe of the year. Making cheesecake was something a tad out of my comfort zone and it took a couple tries to get it right, but wow, was it worth it!
I couldn’t believe each slice had less than 5 grams of sugar and a whopping 10 grams of protein! The best part is that you would never know it is a lightened up version. I shared this cheesecake with my family and a few close friends (without revealing it’s nutrition identity) and they were shocked when I told them how low in fat and sugar it was.
The unfortunate thing is that I was only able to enjoy two slices before I had to toss the rest of it in the trash two days later. My boyfriend accidentally left the refrigerator door open one morning before work and neither of us were home to shut it until about 6PM that night. I didn’t even care about the other 900 perishable items we had to toss, BUT WHYY THE CHEESECAKE?!?!
What do I REALLY love about this dish? The fact that it proved my theory to be true that everything tastes better with peanut butter. Everything.
This is the meal I will make when I’m craving Thai takeout but don’t feel like blowing up like a blowfish the next morning from sodium overload. It’s packed with protein and can easily be made gluten-free or vegetarian. NOM.
Another reason I love this foodie community – we all LOVE donuts!! Donuts have to be one of my favorite sweet indulgences to splurge on, but I have found a ton of satisfaction from making healthier, homemade ones this year (and saving myself from about 20 grams of fat).
The goal for this recipe was to emulate a cake donut and a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup all in one little round of love. A round of love that wouldn’t totally break the bank in the calorie department. These donuts are the perfect treat to satisfy your sweet tooth while keeping you on track with your health and fitness goals.
This recipe is what I like to call black magic. How does a mac and cheese THIS creamy, cheesy, decadent and blissful have less than 300 calories per serving? Simply by adding pureed butternut squash!
I made this recipe in preparation of Thanksgiving this year and could not have been more pleased with the results. The buttery Gouda cheese, smoked paprika, caramelized apples, garlic, sage and bacon just bring it to another level of deliciousness. I was also surprised that the addition of butternut squash didn’t make it too sweet.
It’s just the ultimate bowl of nutritious comfort food.
Anddd we’re back to the oats! If you’re new to the overnight oats phenomenon (or have yet to make a batch you truly love), this fail-proof recipe is perfect for you. It’s also very customizable and basic enough so you can get extra creative with your toppings. Clearly, I know no limit with oat toppings.
This soup is the dynamic duo: Simple and flavorful. It’s low fat, vegetarian (with the exception of the optimal crunchy bacon topping) and is high in both protein and fiber.
I heard a rumor that the temps in Florida will actually be dropping below 70 degrees this weekend, so this soup will definitely be making another appearance on our dinner table. There are few things more satisfying than a warm, hearty soup on a chilly night. If only it hadn’t been 85 degrees on Christmas day this year….. sigh.
That’s a wrap, folks!
Thank you all for your continued support throughout the year. Posting healthy recipes and interacting with you on this blog is truly therapeutic for me. I already have a ton of delicious things planned for the year ahead and I hope you all continue on this journey with me! Bon appétit!