WIAW – Recipes I’ve Been Loving Lately

Cooking is one of my favorite hobbies. I love finding recipes, planning, grocery shopping and putting it all together. Sitting down to delicious home-cooked meal is just the cherry on top of a process I love.

With a few big job changes, moving and dealing with a long commute I fell out of the habit of cooking “real” dinners during the week. I usually spent some time on the weekend roasting and preparing veggies, making some sort of grain and a few different proteins but didn’t have much of a plan for the week ahead. Most weeknights consisted of throwing together the stuff I had already prepared on the weekend. All of this was fine, I was eating healthy and it was easy however I found that I wasn’t enjoying my food as much as I used to. I was always eating the same things and was less satisfied after meals. 

A few weeks ago I was determined to get back in the cooking game. While there are still days where I throw together a hodge lodge of leftovers, I have been consistently trying 3-4 new recipes a week/revisiting some of my favorites. Taking the time to make “real” dinners has definitely improved my dinner enjoyment and reminded me just how fun this cooking thing is. 

Here are some of the recipes I have been loving lately:  

Lentil and Butternut Squash Chili 


Soups and stews are one of my favorite things about cooler weather. I especially love how easy it is to make and re-eat throughout the week or freeze and store for longer. Add in some squash and I am sold. The lentils, beans and squash in this vegetarian chili make it very filling. I made about half the recipe and got 4-5 meals out of it. 

Clean Eating Creamy Sun-dried Tomato Chicken img_2765

Guys, this recipe is so good! It is rare that I get excited about chicken but this has been my favorite recipe from the last couple weeks. SO GOOD (you really don’t need to know much else). I am already planning on when I can make it next. If you are looking to spruce up your usual chicken, this is a delicious way to do so. I made the chicken with roasted brussels sprouts and barley. 

High-Altitude Bison Meatballs from Run Fast. Eat Slow

I received the Run Fast. Eat Slow. cookbook for my birthday in October and have made at least one recipe from the book every week since. While all the recipes have been great, this is by far my favorite. I served the meatballs with roasted veggies and sweet potato. 

Maple Soy Glazed Salmon from Skinny Tasteimg_2840

Skinny Taste is one of the blogs I can always count on for recipes. I know that if the recipe sounds like something I would like, I end up loving it. This Maple Soy Glazed Salmon recipe is super easy and doesn’t lack flavor in the least. I served mine over a kale salad with roasted brussels sprouts and carrots (Yes, every dinner consists of some sort of roasted veggie). 


Healthy Regards,


Let’s chat!

What is one good recipe you have been loving lately? I am always looking for more!



How to Eat Squash… for dinner and dessert

Squash is my favorite food in the whole entire universe. I eat a ridiculous amount of gourds this time of year. If I ever see squash on the menu somewhere in pretty much anything, I have to have it. When a friend had me over for dinner this past weekend and made pumpkin gnocchi I had to restrain myself from eating all the squash pasta. 

I get asked rather frequently how I prepare, what I do with and generally how to eat squash. People, it is easy! So easy that I usually devour a whole squash in one night, without even making some fancy squash cupcakes.

Ready for me to rock your world?

Here is how to eat squash: 

1.Pick your favorite squash. If you don’t know which squash is your favorite yet I highly recommend buying every squash in the store and trying each one out. My absolute favorite is kabocha squash.

How to eat squash

2. Pre-heat your oven to 415 degrees fahrenheit. 

3. Cut that squash up! how-to-eat-sqaush-2

Don’t forget to scoop the seeds out! 

P.S. I roast my kabocha squash with the skin on. It may sound strange but you can eat the skin, and it is delightful. If you are working with a butternut, spaghetti, acorn etc. you can either roast with the skin on and then scoop out or try your luck at peeling the skin off pre-roasting. If you stick the whole, uncut squash in the microwave for about 5 minutes it will soften it up and make it easier to peel and cut your squash. how to eat squash 4

4. Season your squash.  

Ok this where things get fun.

When I roast my kabocha squash I do half of it savory: olive oil, salt. I know, how easy is that!? I even just spray the baking sheet with olive oil spray, plop those squash bits on, spray them with the olive oil spray and then sprinkle sea salt on top. Easy peasy.eat-squash season-squash

For my sweet squash, that I plan to eat for dessert because there is no way any of this squash is making it into a tupperware for another day, I use coconut oil, cinnamon and more sea salt. I heat up about 1tbsp coconut oil in the microwave, toss my squash bits in the coconut oil along with some cinnamon and salt before putting them on a baking sheet. My baking sheet is probably already sprayed with olive oil spray so there is no sticking. 

5. Roast Squash. Since you already pre-heated your oven to 415, it should be ready to go. Roasting times will vary with the size you cut your squash bits. I usually roast for about an hour or until my squash starts to get brown, I like a little crisp!kabochasquash

6. Make your squash into a meal. 

If I am roasting squash most of my meal is squash. I am not very creative because really I just want to eat my roasted squash. But since I know I need some sort of protein and maybe even some greens I add that stuff in. For dinner I top greens (either spinach or kale) with a whole-lotta squash and whatever protein sounds good. That could be some eggs, chicken, tempeh, tofu, etc.

Really whatever is on hand will taste good with the squash. eatsquash

Squash dessert is literally one of the best things ever. This is where the coconut oil, cinnamon squash comes in. Again, this changes with what I have on hand but one of my favorite combos is said squash with almond butter, honey and some Truvia. Ohhhhh man guys it.is.good. squashfordessert squashfordessert2

It is a sad moment when I finish my nightly squash but usually by this point (since I have had a whole squash) my belly is pretty full… and happy. 

And that is how to eat squash. You’re welcome. 

Healthy Regards,



What is your favorite squash? 

How do you like to prepare it? 



Chunky Cauliflower Butternut Squash Soup

This Chunky Cauliflower Butternut Squash Soup is an easy, seriously healthy and warm meal for those cold autumn days. butternutsquashsoup

Sometimes, the best recipes come together when I am hungry, cold and have a fridge full of things I need to use up. 

Yesterday was one of those times. I do really enjoy the process of planning a recipe, grocery shopping, testing it multiple times, altering and perfecting the dish, but I actually feel the most creative when I just whip things together in the moment. I am also still living the poor college kid life, so when I can use up the food I have on hand to create something tasty I am a happy-poor-college-kid-who-graduated-almost-2-years-ago. 

Let’s go back to the cold thing. It has been cold. Colorado is crazy. For the whole first month I was here it was warmer than it had been in California. Almost too warm sometimes, and then suddenly it was freezing. There was never a middle kinda getting cold month, week or day. Add in some rain, thunder, lighting and permanent cloud cover and all I can think about is soup (and the fact that I hate being cold)IMG_0434

via snapchat

Last little rant about the cold and me being “miserable”… I was checking out at Whole Foods, which by the way is not the greatest idea when you’re a poor-no-longer-college-kid who should actually be eating everything she has at home and not spending all her money at Whole Foods, and I was crying to the check out clerk about how cold and rainy and cloudy it is. A few Whole Foods workers joined in on our conversation to tell me that it won’t be getting any better. They continued to kill all my dreams by telling me it is going to be a bad winter. I trust my Whole Food’s peeps so I am a little concerned for what is to come. 

After leaving Whole Foods even more depressed than when I walked in, this Chunky Cauliflower Butternut Squash Soup was born. I used the #1 handy dandy trick to make peeling and cutting my butternut squash possible. I also cut it into super small cubes because I was hungry and wanted it to cook as fast as possible. I LOVE greens in soup. There is something about having a bunch of wilty warm greens, which I realize may sound gross to some of you, that makes any soup 10x better. butternutsquashsoupbutternutsquashsoup2

Piled high and topped with Sriracha. This is real life, folks. 

Butternut Squash Soup

Chunky Cauliflower Butternut Squash Soup
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  1. 1/2 large butternut squash cut into small cubes or about 4 cups
  2. 1 small head cauliflower cut into small pieces
  3. 1/2 yellow onion diced
  4. 1.5 cups dry green lentils
  5. 4 large stalks of kale leaves with stems removed
  6. 3 cups vegetable broth
  7. 3 cups water
  8. 2-3 cloves garlic minced
  9. 1 tbsp cumin
  10. Salt, pepper and chili pepper to taste
  1. In a saucepan or pot bring all ingredients to a boil
  2. Simmer for 30 minutes
  3. Add in kale leaves and stir to wilt
  4. Enjoy!
Healthy Regards, Hayley http://www.healthyregardshayley.com/

1 serving is approximately 2 cups of soup.


 Healthy Regards,



Is it soup eating weather where you are?

Any cold weather tips for me? This California girl doesn’t function well in anything colder than 70 degrees. 




Pumpkin Kale Pesto

A healthy, Italian inspired fall dish. This vegan Pumpkin Kale Pesto goes perfectly with roasted spaghetti squash but would also be a great addition to paninis and homemade pizza. 

Pumpkin Kale Pesto

Incase you haven’t noticed, I am full force fall over here. Pumpkin Pesto

I got the idea for this recipe a few weeks ago when I had dinner at Root Down. Everything about this restaurant was awesome. To start I got the roasted beets with beet seed pesto. It was delicious and so creative! With fall around the corner I instantly started dreaming of pumpkin seed pesto. Since I had Kale on hand I decided a kale pumpkin pesto would do the trick.  Kale makes everything healthier, right?

Pumpkin Kale Pesto

You can pair this with whatever your heart desires. Preferably squash though. To keep with the italian theme I chose spaghetti squash. It would also go great as a sandwich spread or on pizza. 


EDIT: after eating a whole batch of the pumpkin kale pesto with spaghetti squash, unless you are allergic to spaghetti squash you NEED to have the pesto with it. 

So how do you make a spaghetti squash? It is really simple. You may find recipes that call for baking the squash in water. That is not necessary. Here is what you do:

  • Preheat oven to 415 degrees
  • Cut squash in half (Squash hack alert: microwave your squash whole for about 3-4 minutes before you cut it, it is much easier after a quick nuke) 
  • Scoop seeds out (also easier if you do the above hack)
  • Place squash flesh side down on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray, I use olive oil cooking spray for this.
  • Roasting times will vary depending on how big your squash is. Roast for an hour and then check it. If it is fork tender and the strands separate easily with a fork it is good to go. Scrape out flesh and separate your “pasta” strands. 

Pumpkin Kale Pesto

Pumpkin Kale Pesto
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  1. 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  2. 1/4 cup olive oil
  3. 3 cups loosely packed kale
  4. 3 cloves garlic
  5. Juice of one lemon
  6. 1 tsp salt
  1. Add all ingredients to high powered blender or food processor and blend/process to desired consistency.
Healthy Regards, Hayley http://www.healthyregardshayley.com/
 Mix you pesto up with your roasted spaghetti squash, garnish with extra pumpkin seeds and enjoy!



[Tweet “Pumpkin Kale Pesto and spaghetti squash for an American fall goes Italiano win! #pumpkin #recipe “]

Healthy Regards,



Lets chat!

Favorite squash? Kabocha squash has my heart but I really don’t discriminate. 

Anything fun going on this weekend? Lauren is going to be in town so I look forward to seeing her! Hopefully having a more successful bike ride than last weekendAnd enjoying whatever else the weekend has in store!