Sweetness and Strawberries

Posted on


Valentines Day is next week!  My sweet tooth has come to life in the past few days, so today I am sharing a recipe with you I plan on making for my husband this year.  It looks a little complicated, challenging, yet the rewards are light!

This mouth-watering dessert comes from Skinny Taste.  Let me know if you try it!  🙂


Strawberry Kiwi Pavlovas

With Valentine’s day around the corner, these sweet desserts are perfect to enjoy with that special someone in your life, or any time of the year. Pavlovas are elegant yet light, made with whipped egg whites and sugar, then topped with cream and fresh fruit. The perfect light dessert!

Use any combination of fresh fruit on top, mixed berries are a great choice. You can make the shells ahead of time and store them in an air tight container, or even freeze them.

Meringues can be tricky to make, the key to success when making meringues is to start with clean, metal mixing bowls and whisks. They should be free of all traces of grease. Egg whites should be room temperature and they say it’s best to avoid making these on a rainy day. I played around with a few different meringue recipes to get the perfect shell. So many, in fact that I forgot where I found this recipe to give the proper credit. These meringues have a tint of brown due to the dark vanilla extract I used, but if you use white vanilla extract, yours should come out looking like a soft billowy cloud.

Strawberry Kiwi Pavlovas
Servings: 6 • Size: 1 pavlova •
Calories: 221.3 • Fat: 0.4 g • Protein: 3.5 g • Carb: 51.2 g • Fiber: 2.9 g

  • 4 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 pint fresh strawberries, sliced
  • 3 kiwis, sliced
  • 1-1/2 cups fat free whipped cream

Preheat oven to 350°.

Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Draw 6 (4-inch) circles on paper, I used a plastic lid as my guide. Turn paper over; secure with masking tape.

Beat egg whites, cornstarch, and salt at high speed of a mixer until foamy. Slowly add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until thick and glossy. Add vanilla, beating well.

Divide egg white mixture evenly among the 6 drawn circles.  Shape meringues into nests with 1-inch sides using the back of a spoon. Place meringues in oven. Immediately reduce oven temperature to 300°; bake 1 hour. Turn oven off; cool meringues in closed oven at least 4 hours or until completely dry. (Meringues are done when the surface is dry and meringues can be removed from paper without sticking to fingers.) Carefully remove meringue nests from paper.

Assemble the pavlovas by topping with 1/4 cup whipped cream in each nest, then arrange fresh fruit on top.

The meringue shells can be kept frozen for up to two months. Remove them from freezer before you assemble the pavlovas, no reheating required.


Skinny Taste

Posted on Updated on

This morning when I was at the gym working out, another member told me about a site she had seen on Facebook called, “”.  She had tried a few recipes and loved them.  As soon as I got home I found the SkinnyTaste site and am elated to see so many healthy and delicious-looking recipes to try!

Because I love using my crock pot, I plan on trying quite a few of the recipes on the SkinnyTaste site, including this Crock Pot Picante Chicken and Black Bean Soup.  The pictures and ingredients have made my mouth water, so I am sharing this particular recipe for you crock pot lovers out there and will keep you up on my favorite healthy recipes in the future!

Bon appetit!


If you love a slow cooker recipe that requires no pre-cooking, then you’ll love this spicy black bean soup. Spicy black bean and chicken soup with tomatoes, chiles, peppers and spices is delicious served with cool avocado and a touch of sour cream. Top it with cilantro for freshness and your taste buds will want to do a mariachi dance!

This makes a nice amount of soup, perfect for freezing and reheating for a second night, or for lunch on the go. I love this topped with avocado and sour cream to mellow the heat, but it would also be great with a little cheese on top why not!

It’s mildly spicy, not over the top. If you want it milder you can leave the ancho chile powder out. I pureed one of the cans of beans to thicken the soup, and left the second can whole for texture. Next time I may even add some sweet corn! A filling, wholesome, high-fiber meal for only 300 calories, or Weight Watchers 6 points plus. Freezer friendly, and gluten-free.

Crock Pot Chicken and Black Bean Soup 
Servings: 7 • Size: 1 1/2 cups • Old Pts: 6 pts • Weight Watchers Points+: 6 pts
Calories: 306 • Fat: 6 g • Protein: 28 g • Carb: 37.5 g • Fiber: 13.5 g • Sugar: 3 g
Sodium: 698.4 mg (without the salt)


  • 1 red bell pepper, minced
  • 2 (15 oz) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 (10 oz) cans Rotel tomatoes with green chilies
  • 4 oz can diced green chiles
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ancho chile powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 16 oz (2) skinless chicken breast
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, divided
  • 2 medium scallions, diced
  • cut limes, for serving
  • 1 medium haas avocado, sliced
  • sour cream, for serving (optional)


Take one can of beans and place in the blender along with 2 cups of the chicken broth; puree then add to your slow cooker. Add the remainder of the beans and chicken broth into the slow cooker along with tomatoes, diced green chiles, cumin, chile powder, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, chicken breast, and 1/4 cup of the cilantro. Set slow cooker to HIGH 4 hours or LOW 6 to 8 hours.

After it’s done, remove chicken and shred with 2 forks. Place back into the slow cooker and add fresh scallions, remainder cilantro and adjust salt and cumin, to taste.

Serve hot with lime wedges, avocados, and sour cream if desired. Makes about 10 1/2 cups.