Farmer’s Market Potato Hash

Last week I made a trip to a new-to-me farmer’s market that was opening for it’s first week of the season. I wasn’t sure what to expect since it’s a smaller market, so I tried not to get too excited…but to my delight, I came home with two bags stuffed full of goodies.

First up, my absolute favorite peaches. It was their first pick of the season and I immediately grabbed a bag.

Next up, potatoes. The hubby and I absolutely love roasted potatoes and when I was these tiny little butter potatoes I knew I just had to have them.

At the next stall there were some beautiful green onions. Since I was fresh out at home, I snagged a bundle:

Finally, I picked out some sweet corn and tomatoes…then I hit the road. My mind was racing the whole way home about what I could make with all of these delicious goodies.

Here’s what I did:

I washed the potatoes, then halved or quartered them depending on their size. I put them on a pan with a couple strips of turkey bacon. (You could definitely pick up some great bacon at the Farmer’s Market, but I happened to have some at home already from last week!). Turkey bacon doesn’t produce a lot of grease, but it does make some, and I knew the potatoes would be delicious if they took a little tumble in some of that grease after the bacon was done cooking 🙂

Next I chopped the green onions and set them aside:

Next up, corn. I love grilling corn in the summer to give it a deeper flavor so I prepped three of the ears for the grill by pulling the husks back carefully and removing as much silk as possible. Then I grilled them for about 10 minutes, turning often.


 Once the corn had cooled enough, I sliced it off the cob and into a big bowl. I chopped up the bacon and added it to the bowl, along with some black beans that I defrosted from the freezer and the green onions. When the potatoes finished roasting, I added them as well.

If you want, you can add a little of your favorite Parmesan-type cheese. Stir to combine and serve while still warm.


Farmer’s Market Potato Hash

by Lindsay L

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 25 min

Keywords: bake roast stovetop saute side healthy black beans potato fall spring summer

Ingredients (Serves 4-6)

  • 3 strips bacon
  • 2 cups diced potatoes (red potatoes or fingerlings would work well)
  • 1 cup black beans, cooked
  • 1/2 c green onion, diced
  • 2 ears of corn
  • Parmesan cheese, to taste


1. Dice potatoes and place in a jellyroll pan. Place bacon in the same pan. Roast at 425 degrees (removing bacon after it’s cooked) until potatoes and brown and crispy, stirring every 10 minutes.

2. Peel back the husks of the corn and remove silk. Replace husks and grill over medium heat for about 10 minutes.

3. Slice corn off the cob and place in a large bowl with the black beans, diced green onion and bacon.

4. Add the potatoes and top with cheese if desired.

5. Stir to combine and serve warm.

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We ate ours for dinner with some BBQ Babyback Ribs, and then enjoyed the leftovers for breakfast!

For dessert, I suggest you throw some of those peaches on the grill. Top with ice cream or yogurt and enjoy 🙂

What’s the best thing you’ve created with your farmer’s market finds?



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Baked Rigatoni Stuffed Peppers

Last night’s recipe was another that just kinda popped into my head randomly. I have no idea where it came from! I pulled some meatballs out of the freezer on Sunday without giving any real thought to how I would use them…and when I woke up Monday morning, I had a plan.

Baked ziti was one of my FAVORITE dishes as a kid. I ordered it every single time we went out to eat at in Italian restaurant. This time I decided to put a bit of a non-traditional healthy twist on an old fav!

I started by sauteing some onion and garlic in a large pan. I chopped up some previously cooked turkey meatballs that I made a couple months ago and added them to the pan. Then I added some crushed tomatoes, basil and oregano and lots of fresh baby spinach.

Next I added some rigatoni (I cut the noodles in half to help them fit into the peppers better) and a little bit of low-fat cheese.

Finally, I prepped some red peppers. I cut just enough off the bottom to let them sit level in the pan, and then I cut out the stem and seeds. I stood them in a small pan side by side and scooped in the filling.

I baked the peppers at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes.

This was an easy way to sneak an extra serving or two of veggies into one of my favorite pasta dishes! Using low-fat cheese and adding spinach also help boost the nutritional value!

Having a bite of red pepper in every bite was a great addition!

What’s your favorite way to stuff a pepper?



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Graduation Round 2

This past weekend I graduated from college for the second time. I’m now one step closer to becoming a Registered Dietitian. Only one year left!

I was the valedictorian of my class of 770 students. I had to sit on stage during the graduation ceremony.

I gave a speech in front of 2,000 people.

I got a medal to wear.

My family sent me flowers.

My hubby was by my side.

We had a party. It was a good day 🙂

Now it’s time to enjoy my week off before summer classes start. The hubby is on vacation too! And my parents come to visit on Thursday. Yippeee!!!!!



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Grilled Thick-Crust Pizza


So remember yesterday when I posted about all the dough I made for my homemade lean pockets? Well, since that was just a test recipe, I had plenty of dough left over to make my first attempt at grilled thick-crust pizza!

I’m happy to report it went well!

I split the dough in half and used my hands to form it into two rectangles. Since I knew we’d be using indirect heat on the grill, I thought a rectangular shape would fit best after we pushed the coals to both sides. I brushed the top with olive oil and then threw it on the grill oil side down.

Lesson #1: Don’t freak out if the dough bunches weirdly or becomes a big mis-shapen when you throw it on the grill. It will still taste good.

Lesson #2: The dough will quickly puff up a bit. Don’t leave it on the grill too long because it will get brown very quickly.

I like my crust this way, but if you prefer it more lightly browned, just check it a minute or two before you think it should be ready to flip over.

Next, remove the crust from the grill to put the toppings on. If you want, you can try to top it while still on the grill…but it gets pretty hot reaching over this coals and the hubby and I found it was easier to just take it off and put it back on.

Add your toppings on the grilled side. Then return to the grill and put the cover on for a few minutes to help melt the cheese.

Remove, slice, enjoy!

Somebody enjoyed it with some ice cold home brew 🙂

And now for the most important lesson:

Lesson #3: Don’t take the dough out of the fridge until the grill is ready to go. If you form your crust before you light the grill, it will warm up and be much harder to transfer to the grill when the time comes!

While I do enjoy a good slice of thick crust every once and a while…I must say, thin crust is my favorite and i’ll probably be turning to my grilled flatbread pizzas more often this summer.



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Grilled Flatbread Pizzas

Last week, I finished up my classes for Spring Quarter! To celebrate, the hubby grilled a delicious dinner for me 🙂

I wasn’t home to take pictures, but he did remember to snap a few of his own!

He grilled stuffed mushrooms, potatoes, meatloaf and flatbread pizzas! We recently acquired a second little grill and it’s perfect for veggies 🙂

Check out this setup the hubby had going on:

Clearly these two characters were a big help!

Everything was delicious and we enjoyed the leftovers for lunch the next day. Then we decided to recreate the pizzas for dinner the following night!

Flatout wraps are the best for making pizzas! We made some with tomato sauce and some with garlic and olive oil and it couldn’t be easier! First get your toppings ready:

Then hopefully it won’t start pouring down rain for you like it did for us!

The key is indirect heat on the grill! Move the charcoal to either side, leaving room in the middle.

The bottom crisps up nicely and the cheese melts but nothing burns.

Our next challenge is thick crust pizza on the grill! Have you ever done it? Any tips??



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Loaded Brownies

Recently, my father-in-law found a new job after being out of work for a while. We went out to dinner to celebrate but I wanted to bring him some dessert. He’s a big brownie fan, so that’s where I started…but I knew I wanted to take it up a notch.

He’s also a big of Reese’s peanut butter cups so I decided to go with some sort of peanut butter brownies. After some googling, I found this recipe. I don’t make brownies from scratch all that often so I don’t really have a go to recipe.

I made a special trip to the store to track down some mini Reese’s pb cups. In addition, I decided I didn’t want to put peanuts in the brownies. I was planning to chop up some Snickers and use those instead. However, when I got to the store, Butterfingers were on sale and Snickers weren’t. Annnnnnnd my mind was made up.

I started by making the brownies.

Two things:
1. I crushed up about 8 fun size Butterfingers and mixed those in just before putting the batter in the pan.
2. Lining your pan with foil when making brownies is pretty much the best idea ever. I’m ashamed to say I’ve never tried it before.

After the brownies cooked, I put them in the freezer to cool. Then I got to work on the peanut butter frosting.

One thing:
This made A LOT of peanut butter frosting. I ended up only putting about half of it on. Then I threw the rest away. (Remember that…we’ll revisit it later).

Then I started on the chocolate frosting. I spread the chocolate frosting over the pb frosting, topped the brownies with chopped Reese’s and photographed away….

Now let me let you in on a little secret. I hate tasting things while I’m cooking/baking them. I never eat raw cookie dough. I don’t lick the extra frosting off the mixer beaters. Until recently, I never tasted my sauces while cooking. I just threw everything together and hoped for the best. I can’t really explain why I don’t like tasting things, other than to say that I think I’m so afraid they won’t taste good, that I want to prolong that discovery as long as possible. Weird. I know.

Anyways, as you may have guessed, I didn’t try these brownies, or either frosting, until they were completely assembled. The result? Brownies- great! PB frosting- AMAZING. Chocolate frosting- BARF. The chocolate frosting, if you could call it that, was essentially just butter and cocoa powder, with a little bit of powdered sugar. And let me just tell you…it tasted like straight butter. I gagged a little bit while eating it. Then I went outside and pouted for about an hour.

I was angry with myself for not tasting the frosting earlier. After I regrouped, I came up with a new plan. Remove the chocolate frosting. You’re probably thinking I’m a little bit crazy at this point…and I’d be inclined to agree with you. But I really wanted these brownies to work out. So I plucked all of the chopped Reese’s off the brownies and set them aside. Then I carefully scraped off as much of the chocolate frosting as I could without removing the peanut butter frosting.

Obviously I couldn’t get it all off….but I did my best. I removed enough that I knew I could just mix the rest into the pb frosting and that would overpower the butter taste. Don’t you think a little of that extra pb frosting that I THREW AWAY would have come in handy right about now? sigh….

Anyways, I wanted to add a little something extra to the top to take away from the fact that it was now kind of a weird light brown color from the mix of tan and brown frostings….so I crushed up a couple more Butterfingers and after putting the Reese’s pieces back on, I sprinkled the whole thing with Butterfingers and voila! Good as new.

Loaded Brownies

by Lindsay L

Prep Time: 15 min

Cook Time: 30 min

Keywords: bake dessert chocolate peanut butter bars

Ingredients (9×9 pan)

Brownie Layer

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 8 fun size Butterfingers, crushed

Peanut Butter Layer

  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • 1 cup Peanut Butter Cups, cut into quarters
  • 2 fun size Butterfingers, crushed.
  • your fav chocolate frosting


Brownie Layer

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 X 9 inch baking pan with foil and butter the foil.

2. Melt butter and chocolate in the microwave. Then beat in the sugar, eggs, vanilla and salt

3. Add the flour and stir until combined. Then stir in the Butterfingers.

4. Spread the batter in the prepared pan

5. Bake until tester inserted into center comes out with moist crumbs attached, about 30 minutes.

6. Cool the brownies to room temperature.

Peanut Butter Layer

1. Using an electric mixer, beat together the peanut butter and 1/4 cup softened butter in medium bowl.

2. Beat in the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla. The mixture should be very spreadable.

3. Spread over the brownies.


At this point, either use your favorite chocolate frosting recipe and add a chocolate layer before sprinkling with chopped Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, or add the pb cups and sprinkle with crushed Butterfingers.

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My father-in-law texted me the following the next day:

“The brownies are unbelievable!!! Should call them death by peanut butter/chocolate brownies. Too good :)”

And the day after that, he texted me this:

“Your brownies are the best I have ever had ever!”

You get the idea.

Go make these now.




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Curried Turkey & Lentil Burgers

Ever since Kerstin posted these Indian Saag Naanburgers about a month ago, they’ve been lurking in the back of my mind. I had some ground turkey in the fridge that was ready to be used today, so I started brainstorming.

I thought about an Indian Turkey & Lentils dish that I made a few weeks ago and thought it might be fun to use 1/2 the package of turkey and then add some lentils to the burgers.

Then I remembered these Sweet Potato & Pecan Burgers that I also had bookmarked from Cooking Light. I pulled them up to refresh my memory and realized that they actually got pretty bad reviews, especially for a Cooking Light recipe! But still, I believed I could incorporate some sweet potatoes into my burgers. I mean, curried roasted sweet potatoes are one of my favorite things after all!

So off I went to the kitchen to attempt to combine those three recipes!

I started by cooking the lentils. While they were simmering, I put the turkey in a large bowl with some garlic. I microwaved a large sweet potato and scooped half of it into the bowl. I added some spices,  panko, onion and some Chobani. Finally, I threw in the lentils. Then I dug in, mixed everything together and formed some patties!

I stuck them in the freezer for about 45 minutes, pan seared them on both sides and popped them in the oven. See my handy dandy thermometer?!

I topped the burgers with some pepperjack cheese and a tomato slice.

The results?! Good!  After reading the reviews of the sweet potato burgers, I was worried that these would be soft and mushy. If you’re comparing them to straight meat burgers they are definitely softer, but considering the ingredients, they turned out better than I expected. The pan searing gave them a nice brown outside. I baked them because I was worried they would fall apart if I flipped them too often in the pan, but I think they would have been fine. Next time I’m going to try pan searing them the whole way….or maybe grilling them if I get brave!

I thought about making the saag topping, but got lazy. However, I told the hubby about it and he thought he would enjoy it so I’ll definitely add that next time! You could also add more spices to the burgers, perhaps some paprika or  even some bbq sauce?!

Curried Turkey & Lentil Burgers

by Lindsay L

Prep Time: 45 min

Cook Time: 20 min

Keywords: bake pan sear sandwich entree burger healthy lentils turkey Indian

Ingredients (6-8 burgers)

  • 1/2 lb ground turkey
  • 1/2 large sweet potato
  • 1/2 c cooked lentils
  • 1/4 c onion, diced
  • 1/2 c panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 c Chobani non-fat Greek yogurt
  • 3 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • black pepper, to taste


1. Stab sweet potato with a fork all over. Microwave on high for 5-6 minutes. Cut in half length-wise and let cool.

2. Add turkey, lentils, onion, garlic & half the sweet potato to a large bowl.

3. Add spices, panko and yogurt.

4. Using your hands, mix everything together and form into patties.

5. Place in the freezer for 30-45 minutes.

6. Choose desired cooking method. Pan sear or grill until turkey is cooked through, or pan sear on both sides and bake at 400 degrees for approximately 20 minutes, or until cooked through.

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Best part? Leftovers for lunch!

What’s the most creative burger you’ve ever made?!



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Lindsay’s Lunchbox: Part 1

Happy Friday, friends! Today I’m going to start something new.

One of the biggest requests I got when I asked readers what they wanted to see on The Lean Green Bean in 2011 was suggestions for packed lunches. (**Sidenote, my new lunch box for this year is a Fit N Fresh and has all of those cool containers pictured above in it…it’s awesome!) As many of you know, I’m currently a student. I have class every day of the week. I’m taking classes at two schools. Most days I’m gone 7-5, just like a normal work day. While I don’t exactly get a lunch break, unless you count sitting in my car, cramming food in my mouth in the school parking lot, all the while looking over my shoulder to make sure I don’t miss the bus a lunch break. But I do pack my lunch….and I eat it when I can 🙂

SO, from now on I’m going to use Fridays to share some lunch ideas with you! Many of them will be cold lunches, since I don’t have access to a microwave most days, but some will be hot (I do get to eat lunch at home a couple days a week)! And many can be altered or added to if you want to heat them up.

Are you ready? Here we go!

The best advice I can give my fellow lunch-packers is to start early. I usually start getting my lunch components ready on Sunday.

For example, this past Sunday I:

-made a batch of Sweet Potato Hummus
-threw some chicken breasts in the crockpot when I woke up with some broth and let them cook all day. When they were done, I shredded them and made a big batch of chicken salad
-washed a bunch of spinach and sliced some red onions to be used for spinach salad
-made a batch of roasted chickpeas

This makes it a lot easier when you actually get ready to pack your lunch each night. (Please do it at night. You’re WAY more likely to actually pack it. If you wait until morning, before you know it you’ll wake up late and find yourself running out the door with no lunch!

Here are my suggestions for this week:

1) Hummus.
Easy to make, keeps well in the fridge and the lunch box, cheap! And it’s versatile. Eat it with crackers, pita chips, bagel chips (my new favorite-lower sodium than pita chips) or fresh veggies. Currently loving sweet potato hummus.


2) Chicken Salad.
Shredding your own chicken cuts down on the sodium vs. canned. You can make a big batch of plain chicken, turn some into salad and freeze some for another week. Or, turn half into salad and store the other half in the fridge. After a few days, decide whether or not you’re sick of it. If you are, put the rest in the freezer. If not, make another batch of chicken salad. I like to eat mine using crackers as a scoop. You can also put it on a sandwich.

All I do when I make chicken salad is add a little (emphasis on little) bit of light mayo OR some plain greek yogurt to the chicken, top with lots of curry powder and cayenne pepper, toss in some green onions and stir to combine. Super easy and super tasty!

3) Spinach salad.
You can buy big bags of baby spinach at the grocery store for pretty cheap. Prep a big tupperware of the staples (for me, spinach and red onion), then just take some out each day to pack in your lunch. You’re more likely to eat it if it’s already ready to go.

 Add the other toppings the night before. This week I liked sliced apples and pomegranate…deeeelicious!

If you want to add dressing, put it on the bottom of your tupperware so all the spinach doesn’t get soggy, then mix it around before eating. Just don’t forget your fork, or you’ll be eating with your fingers like I did. Don’t judge me!

4) Fruit and yogurt.
This is my go-to lunch. I could eat it every day. Put some chopped fruit in a container, pack some yogurt and then mix it all together at lunch time. More apples and pomegranate arils!

With Chobani. YUM! Speaking of Chobani…i just may have a little Chobani giveaway going on next week for you guys!!! You’ll have to stay tuned 🙂 Greek yogurt is a GREAT way to get some protein at lunch time!

5) Oatmeal bowls
If you have access to a microwave then this one’s for you! Make a packet of plain instant oatmeal. Push the oatmeal to one side. Put half a container of greek yogurt (I had some Peach Chobani) on the other side. Top with some fruit (you guessed it, apples and pomegranates) and a bunch of cinnamon. Mix it all together and get some of everything in each bite! Other add-in suggestions include raisins, bananas, peanut butter, chocolate chips, granola, cereal, grapes….the list goes on!

What’s your favorite packed lunch? Send me your ideas and I can include them on future Fridays!



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