All posts by Amy Chastain

Butternut Squash Soup

Cozy up with this delicious winter soup!

Butternut Squash Soup
Recipe type: Soup
Serves: 5-6
  • 1 medium to large butternut or other winter squash (between 3 and 4 pounds)
  • 3 tablespoons butter, unsalted (Kerrygold recommended)
  • 2 large leeks, white part only cleaned thoroughly and chopped (you could substitute one onion for the leeks if you prefer)
  • 4 teaspoons fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 5 cups chicken stock or broth
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (if using salted store-bought chicken broth then taste the soup before adding any salt)
  • Optional: Chopped pistachio nuts and/or fresh sage leaves for garnish
  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Slice the squash in half long ways and scoop out the seeds. Place the squash cut side down on a baking sheet. If you line the baking sheet with foil or parchment paper the clean up will be easier.
  3. Bake for 30 – 45 minutes or until the thick part of the squash can easily be pierced with a fork. Let cool then scoop out the pulp and discard the skin. (Note: This step can be done in advance)
  4. In a large soup pot over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Add the chopped leeks and ginger. Cook for 5 – 8 minutes until tender, but not browned.
  5. Add the squash pulp to the pot along with the 5 cups of chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring and breaking up the squash with the back of your spoon, for 10 – 15 minutes.
  6. Puree the soup either with a hand immersion blender or in a counter top blender. I highly recommend a hand immersion blender if you like to make soups because you’ll end up with a lot fewer dirty dishes.
  7. After the soup has been pureed, stir in the cream and salt (to taste).
  8. Ladle into soup bowls and serve warm topped with chopped sage and pistachios.
  9. Refrigerate or freeze the leftovers.



Brocolli Gratin

Its November which means time to think about Thanksgiving Recipes. Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be a holiday where you “fall off the wagon” with your food choices. There are great ways to make classic dishes that are delicious without packing on the carbs and sugar. Here is one of my favs:

Brocolli Gratin
A great recipe for a classic thanksgiving side!
Recipe type: Thanksgiving Side dish
  • 5-6 cups bite-size broccoli flowerets (about 1 lb.)
  • 1 cup finely grated swiss cheese (about 2 oz.)
  • 6 T mayo
  • 1 T fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • ½ tsp. Dijon mustard
  • fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 T finely chopped green onions
  • 3 T finely grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. Bring large pot of water to a boil while you trim broccoli and cut into small flowerets. When water starts to boil, put broccoli in and cook not more than 1-2 minutes (just until the broccoli turns bright green.) Immediately dump broccoli into a colander placed in the sink and let drain well.
  3. Spray a low-sided glass or crockery casserole dish with non-stick spray or olive oil. Put broccoli in casserole dish, spreading out into close to a single layer.
  4. Stir together mayo, lemon juice, Dijon mustard and black pepper, then mix in finely chopped green onion and finely grated swiss cheese. Spread mayo-cheese mixture over the top of broccoli. Sprinkle parmesan cheese over mayo-cheese mixture.
  5. (On Thanksgiving Day, this could be made ahead up to this point and kept in the refrigerator. Let come to room temperature before baking.)
  6. Bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes, until cheese is melted and slightly browned on top. Serve hot.





Mexican Chicken Soup

Mexican Chicken Soup
As the air turns crisp, its time for soup! Here's a spicy recipe that will warm you up and satisfy while at the same time being a great choice for all our "low carb" friends! Enjoy! Recipe credit: Rachel Ray
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 6
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 6 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 2 canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, finely chopped, plus 2 tablespoons adobo sauce
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 hass avocado, thinly sliced lengthwise into 12 pieces
  1. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Stir in the onion and garlic, lower the heat to medium and cook until the onion begins to brown, about 7 minutes. Increase the heat to high, push the vegetables to the side of the pan, add the chicken and cook, stirring, until golden, about 5 minutes. Stir in the chipotles and adobo sauce, then stir in the chicken broth. Lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, skimming any foam. Stir in the cilantro and lime juice; season with salt and pepper.
  2. Place 2 avocado slices in each of 6 soup bowls and pour in the soup.



Low Carb Pizza Bites!

Low Carb Pizza Bites!
Yall, this recipe is sooo easy and soooo good! Football Saturdays lend themselves to some awesome appetizers and many of them require just 1 or 2 minor switches & they become a GREAT option for those who are trying to make lifestyle changes while also still enjoying the flavors of some of their favorite things. Here's all you need:
Recipe type: Tailgate Appetizer
  • Muffin tin
  • Olive oil cooking spray
  • 1 package pepperonis
  • Mozarella cheese
  • Sugar free pizza sauce
  • Any other "toppings" of your choice-- green peppers, onions, sausage, etc.
  1. All you have to do is set the oven to 400.
  2. Spray the Muffin Tin.
  3. Place 1-2 pepperoni's in each muffin tin (lining the bottom & sides to form a "cup" for filling)
  4. Place 1-2 Tbsp of sauce
  5. Top with cheese & favorite pizza toppings.
  6. Bake for roughly 10 mins.

Enjoy! And Go Big Orange!