It’s Superbowl weekend and everyone seems to be posting their favorite Superbowl snacks.

Mind you I have zero interest in football. Maybe less than zero (if that’s possible). I wasn’t even sure who’s playing until I looked it up 5 minutes ago.

That being said, I am interested in the snacks. So whether I watch the game or not, I’ll be eating guacamole on Sunday.

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I make guacamole all the time. I love it with raw carrots, cucumber slices and celery sticks, as well as with baked rice crackers or organic tortilla chips.

Sometimes I make “lazy guacamole” by mixing mashed avocados with a few tablespoons of store-bought pico de gallo/fresh salsa, but generally I use the following basic guacamole recipe. This recipe will feed about 4 people; if you are providing snacks (Superbowl or otherwise) for a crowd; double or triple the recipe.

Recipe for Guacamole

Ingredients:

*flesh from 2 medium-large ripe avocados
*1 small tomato, diced
*1 large clove garlic, peeled and minced
*2 Tb. minced green, red, or white onion (or more to taste)
*2 Tb. minced cilantro (or more to taste)
*1/2-1 jalapeño pepper, seeds removed and minced
*1-2 Tb. fresh lime juice (or to taste)
*1/4 tsp. Himalayan or sea salt

Directions:

1. Mash avocados (not too much; you want your guacamole to be a little chunky) and mix with garlic, onion, cilantro, and jalapeno. Squeeze lime juice over the guacamole and mix again. Sprinkle with the salt, taste, and adjust seasonings, if necessary.

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If you are doing a big Superbowl spread, guacamole is awesome with chili. You can find my chili recipes here and here. I’ve also got some more dip recipes here, and additional healthy snack ideas here.

p.s. If you’re like me and you’re way more interested in the food than the football, make sure to head over to Food52 and check out the beautiful Superbowl Feast they’ve put together. Can you say “Superyum”?

I’m a huge fan of kale. If you follow this blog, you know that I include kale in my recipes, from soups to smoothies, all the time. It’s so very good for you, with all those bone building minerals in particular, that I just can’t help loving it.

So it’s no surprise to see kale here again.

But this recipe is a little different- it’s a kale recipe for those of you who might still be on the fence about eating kale. And it’s for kids, too. I am not promising that every child will like this, but my 10 year old and I fought over who got to finish off this plate of spicy crispy kale with lime…

My first experience with baked kale came when I made Lauren Ulm’s recipe from her book Vegan Yum Yum for my Foodbuzz 24,24,24 post in December. Lauren’s recipe uses just a touch of sesame oil and very little salt. It was so simple…yet it was also a revelation. Who knew baking kale could result in such “deliciousness”?

Soon I noticed that I was clearly not the only one to succumb to the charms of baked kale. Across the blogosphere, I saw many of my colleagues singing the praises of crispy kale, too:

Jaden’s Crispy Kale
Monica Bhide’s Chaat Masala Kale Chips
Not Derby Pie’s Kale Chips
The Kitchn’s Crispy Kale
Vegan Visitor’s Roasted Kale

So I made more. And lots of it (I’ve now made this baked kale recipe three days in a row). It’s so easy and so good! What I love most is that you can vary this recipe in so many ways. Keep it super plain, or spice it up a little with a seasoned salt, as I’ve done here.

To make the seasoned salt, I mixed 1 teaspoon of course sea salt with a pinch of ground chipotle pepper (I used Spice Islands brand). You won’t use all of this to season the kale (it would be way too salty), so you’ll have a some left over for next time. If you don’t really want your kale to be spicy, but you enjoy a smoky flavor, then you could make your salt with smoked paprika instead.

Spicy Kale Chips

Ingredients:

*1/2-1 bunch of clean and dry organic kale, chopped into bite-sized pieces (remove any tough stems)
*1-2 Tb. olive oil
*1-2 large pinches of spicy seasoned course salt- see above
*juice from 1/2 lime (or to taste)- optional

Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 325°F.

2. Drizzle some oil over the kale and "massage" it into the leaves. The kale I used for this post was an unusually large bunch. I'd say I used half the bunch and 1-2 tablespoons of oil.

3. I'd like to point out here that you should go ahead and taste the raw oiled kale. It is actually pretty yummy just like this (at least I think so). Sometimes I make a salad with raw kale that's been oiled and allowed to sit for a few hours. But I'll save that for another post.

4. Next, you'll want to spread your oiled kale onto a sheet pan...And then bake in your preheated oven for about 20 minutes. Bake until the edges are just crispy, but the kale is still quite bright green. Do not overcook!

5. As soon as you take your kale chips out of the oven, sprinkle with a few pinches of the spicy salt and then squeeze on the optional lime. Enjoy your kale crispies...and remember to share with your children!

kaleinfinger

This raw chocolate banana smoothie is so sweet, creamy and rich, it’s almost hard to believe it’s good for you.

raw chocolate smoothie | healthy green kitchen

Before I get to the smoothie recipe, though, I want to tell you about my Garden of Life Giveaway!

The great people at Garden of Life are going to give one bottle of their awesome organic coconut oil and one bottle of their delicious Hawaiian raw honey to one of my lucky readers. All you have to do to enter the giveaway is leave a comment below, and I’d love it if you tell me about your favorite smoothie recipe.

If you want an extra entry into the giveaway, mention this post on twitter or facebook and then leave me another comment telling me you did so…

You can enter the giveaway between now and midnight of February 15th. I’ll pick a winner at random on the 16th. Make sure I have your email address so I can notify you if you win! Good luck!

Back to the smoothie…

This one is very different from the green smoothie recipe I posted the other day- both are very nourishing, but in completely different ways.

This is a higher protein smoothie. It makes a great breakfast; I also like it as a pre/post-workout snack, and I sometimes make a version of this for dessert, as well.

I’m not generally a fan of protein powders, but I did add some Garden of Life Raw Protein Powder to this smoothie. I received a jar of this as a complementary gift from the company (I told you they were great people!) and I’m very impressed with it.

Raw Protein is derived from raw organic sprouts. It’s vegan, gluten-free, soy-free and dairy-free. It does not contain any artificial ingredients and it doesn’t change the flavor of the smoothie. I give it a definite “thumbs up”. If you can’t find this product or a very similar one, though, I’d probably skip the protein powder: I find most of them to be very processed and I don’t really trust what’s in them to be good for you.

If you’re not using the protein powder, though, you can still load this smoothie up with healthy protein by adding raw milk or organic plain yogurt or kefir and/or 1-2 raw eggs; if you use fresh, local, organic free-range eggs, there is very, very little risk of salmonella. I’ve been adding raw eggs to my smoothies for years and I’ve never had a problem.

This smoothie also contains organic coconut oil, a healthy fat that I love (more about organic coconut oil)…

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…as well as raw cacao (aka raw chocolate) powder.

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I can not say enough good things about raw cacao/chocolate powder. It’s high in magnesium, iron, fiber, and anti-oxidants and I absolutely love it. I used Divine Organics Sacred Cacao this time, which I found at my local natural foods store (unfortunately I don’t it see available online). I’ve also used and love Navitas Naturals Dark Chocolate Powder/Organic Cacao Power, which might be easier to find (more about healthy chocolate).

Healthy Chocolate Smoothie Recipe

Healthy Chocolate Smoothie Recipe
Adapted from the Garden of Life Mochacchino Smoothie Recipe

Ingredients:

*1 cup organic plain yogurt or Greek yogurt (or 1/2 cup yogurt and 1/2 cup organic coconut milk or 1 cup coconut milk for a dairy-free smoothie)
*1 cup filtered water (or use more liquid(s) above)
*1 1/2 organic bananas, previously peeled, cut into chunks, and frozen
*1-2 Tb. Garden of Life or similar organic raw protein powder
*1-2 organic, free-range eggs- optional
*1-2 Tb. organic raw cacao powder (use the larger amount if you really like chocolate)
*1-2 tsp. organic freeze-dried coffee (regular or decaf; I use Mount Hagen brand)- optional, for a mocha flavor
*1 Tb. organic coconut oil
*1 Tb. organic flax oil or ground flax seeds- optional
*1 Tb. raw honey or stevia to taste- optional
*pinch of Himalayan or sea salt- optional

Directions:

Blend all ingredients well, adding ice or additional water to produce desired consistency. Serves 1.

This post is linked to the February 5th edition of Fight Back Friday. Head over to Food Renegade to see all the other Real Food submissions this week!

p.s. I’d like to take the opportunity to thank everyone who linked to my healthy breakfast recipe carnival to help Haiti. I think I was just short of a combined 50 links/comments, but I’ll round up and send $50 to Haiti. I am also donating my January ad revenue to Haiti. If you are interested in doing the same in the coming months, contact Marc Matsumoto of No Recipes at Blog Away Hunger/Help Haiti.

Blog Away Hunger