Sunny Side Up Avocado Toast


This simple and healthy breakfast recipe is so easy, it doesn’t even require a recipe. But, I’ll attach one anyway.

This morning, Dennis and I took our German Shepard, Remington for a nice walk. It’s a beautiful, sunny day here in San Diego … as compared to yesterday morning when we woke up to pouring rain. I feel great when I’m able to start my week out with exercise and walking is the workout I enjoy. I love the peacefulness of being out in nature, alone with my thoughts … a lot of times, that is where I come up with my recipes for Sunshine and Savory. This morning, however, it was nice to have company and show Dennis one of the routes I enjoy the most.

When we got back from our walk, I was hungry and looking forward to a healthy breakfast. I have a few avocados I need to use, so decided I’d use one for my breakfast today. I toasted a couple slices of Rustica bread from Trader Joe’s. I love that bread and I love that it isn’t too high in calories. I sliced a small avocado to place on the toast and cooked a couple slices of turkey bacon in the microwave. I then cooked two eggs on the stove top in nothing but non-stick cooking spray. I did not add margarine or butter to my toast, my avocado would serve as the spread on my bread.

Most mornings, Dennis and I can be found at Einstein Bros. Bagels getting a bagel and coffee … Diet Coke for Dennis. They have recently added avocado as a bagel topping, which I really like. On top of the avocado, they sprinkle the seeds that they use for the Everything bagel. It is so good! Trader Joe’s now sells a seasoning called “Everything but the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend”. It is just that, the seasoning you find on an everything bagel.


I sprinkled this on the avocado for flavoring.


I then added one slices of turkey bacon to each piece of toast before adding my sunny side up eggs.

What a healthy way to start my day!



  • 2 slices of bread, toasted
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 small avocado
  • 2 slices turkey bacon
  • Everything but the Bagel Sesame Seasoning
  • Kosher salt and pepper for eggs


  1. Toast bread.
  2. Cook eggs in small skillet in non-stick cooking spray with salt and pepper. While eggs are cooking, cut avocado into slices, or chunks and set aside. Cook turkey bacon.
  3. Spread cut avocado on toast and sprinkle Bagel seasoning on avocado. Top avocado with cooked bacon and egg.


Until next time, Kris





Balsamic Chicken and Sweet Potato Sheet Pan Dinner Recipe


My husband, Dennis, works out every morning and eats healthy. He’s been a runner most of his life and has added the Sealfit (developed a former Navy Seal commander) workout to his morning routine. Dennis has been committed to this workout for the last several months and it shows. During the holiday season, on one of our many trips to Barnes and Noble, he found an exercise book by Donald Driver who used to play football for the Green Bay Packers. Dennis was intrigued by this book for many reasons. First – he loves a good workout plan, second – he is interested in eating healthy and third – he has been a Green Bay Packer fan since he was a young boy. We grew up in Wisconsin and if you live in Wisconsin, you really support your team. Donald Driver has some recipes in his book and one of them in particular caught his eye. Dennis saw a picture of a dish Mr. Driver recommends with sweet potatoes and chicken. He asked me if I could make something like that for dinner. I, of course, said “yes”. I couldn’t tell you what Donald’s recipe was, I only glanced at the picture.

I started by marinating thinly sliced chicken breasts in kosher salt, pepper, dried thyme, lemon zest, garlic and a bottle of Skinny Girl Balsamic Salad Dressing.  I once thought Skinny Girl only made margarita mix. Who knew?

I sprinkled both sides of the chicken with salt, pepper and dried thyme. I then spooned minced garlic (from the jar) over the chicken and the zest of one lemon. I let the chicken marinate for an hour. I sliced the zested lemon and set it aside to add to the pan.

Meanwhile, I peeled and cut three sweet potatoes. I’ll be honest and tell you, that only 2-1/2 of those potatoes went onto my sheet pan. I was eating them raw as I was cutting them. They are so tasty raw, even without any seasoning. It’s OK, it’s a healthy snack. 🙂 Sweet potatoes are so good for us. They have more fiber than a white potato and they are lower on the glycemic index than a white potato.

Once I peeled and sliced my sweet potatoes into 1/4 inch thick pieces, I placed them in a bowl. I then added two tablespoons of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper and mixed it all together with my hands.


I sliced a red onion into thick slices to add to the sheet pan with the potatoes.


I placed the chicken onto bed of sweet potatoes and onions knowing that the wonderful marinade would also season the potatoes and onions. I made sure to pour any extra marinade from the dish onto the pan.


I roasted this dish in a preheated 425 degree oven for 30 minutes. Just look at the wonderful color in this dinner. It looks so healthy and tasted really healthy! This dish was full of flavor. The juice from the lemons roasting on the pan, gave just the right hint of citrus and freshness to this dinner.


I told Dennis this might be my new favorite chicken dish. It ranks right up there with the spatchcocked chicken I made a couple weeks ago.



  • 1 package thin sliced chicken breasts
  • kosher salt
  • pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • zest of one lemon, plus slices
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 12 bottle Skinny Girl Balsamic Salad Dressing (if you don’t have Skinny Girl, any balsamic dressing will do)
  • 3 sweet potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


  1. Place chicken in a dish large enough to marinate. Sprinkle both sides of chicken with salt, pepper and dried thyme. Pour balsamic dressing over chicken and spoon mined garlic onto chicken. Add lemon zest. Let marinate for 45-60 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  3. Peel and cut sweet potatoes into 1/4 inch thick slices. Place in a dish and add olive oil, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Mix with hands. Lay on a large baking sheet.
  4. Cut large red onion into thick slices. Add to pan with potatoes.
  5. Place chicken on top of potato and onion “bed” and tuck lemon slices onto pan. Roast in preheated 425 degree oven for 30 minutes.


Until next time, Kris


Guacamole Recipe


I’m heading to a birthday party for a friend this evening and tortilla soup is the main course … yum!! Everyone was asked to bring something and I decided to make guacamole. Guacamole is a dip that will please most everyone at a gathering. I don’t think I’ve ever been to a party where there is leftover guacamole.  That being said, if you do have leftover guacamole at your next gathering, you can use it as a spread on your turkey sandwich for lunch the next day.

I started with 6 large Haas avocados.


When I cut the avocados, I always save a couple of the nuts. Someone once told me that if you make your guacamole a couple hours in advance, put the nut on top of the dip before wrapping it in plastic and it helps to keep the guacamole from going brown.  You definitely want to squeeze fresh lime or lemon juice on your cut avocado as well, but I always make sure to keep those nuts on top of the guacamole until I’m ready to serve it.

Once I had the avocados out of their shell and cut into chunks, I placed them in a bowl.

Just look at that bright green color! The avocados I picked up at the store today were perfect.

Once the avocados were in the bowl, I squeezed the juice of three limes over the top. I also added 2 teaspoons of kosher salt.


I then added 1/2 cup of diced red onion (this was about 1/2 an onion), 3 diced jalapeños (seeds mostly removed … I did add a few to the bowl for a little kick), 3 cloves of minced garlic, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes chopped cilantro, and 4 diced and seeded Roma tomatoes that I chopped and seeded.



  • 6 large avocados
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • juice of 3 limes
  • 1/2 cup diced red onion
  • 3 jalapeños, diced and seeded (feel free to add a few seeds to the guacamole if you’d like)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced


  1. Cut avocados in half, remove from shell, chop and place in large bowl.
  2. Squeeze lime juice over avocados.
  3. Sprinkle with kosher salt, cumin and red pepper flakes.
  4. Add red onion, jalapeños, garlic cloves and cilantro and mix together. Combine tomatoes and stir.
  5. If not serving immediately, place one or two of the nuts onto the top of the guacamole before wrapping the bowl with plastic wrap. When wrapping your guacamole, make sure to press the plastic wrap onto the guacamole, leaving no air. This will prevent your dip from turning brown.


Until next time, Kris


Ground Turkey Sloppy Joes


Kylie and her best friend, Kendra, are at our house working on homework this afternoon.


Both in college, they have so much to do, and study together often. Sometimes it’s at the local Starbucks, sometimes at Kendra’s house, and today they are studying at our house. Kylie and Kendra met freshman year in high school and have been wonderful friends. I adore Kendra as well and think her parents are the coolest. Neil and Marcina, I bet you wish you were here tonight for sloppy joe’s! I’ll think of something fabulous to make for dinner when we finally get together for our game night.

Kendra is a singer and a fabulous one at that! She has one of the most beautiful voices I’ve heard. If you’d like to hear Kendra sing, feel free to check her out on iTunes and Spotify. You can find her under Kendra Checketts. You, too, will be mesmerized when you hear Kendra’s beautiful voice. Just a few minutes ago, Kylie and Kendra were listening to music and Kylie mentioned that was Kendra singing her new, unreleased song. I was blown away. She has quite the talent! I can’t wait to see her in concert one day. I already asked if I could sit in the front row … front and center. I told her I’d be the crazy lady cheering like mad. We actually did watch Kendra perform at a local establishment in San Diego several months ago. It was such a fun night and Kylie was extremely proud of her friend, singing beautifully in front of so many people.

I asked Kylie if Kendra would like to have dinner with us. I know it can be boring as an only child sitting at the dinner table with just your parents, so knew Kylie would love to have Kendra stay for supper. Figuring I should make something a couple college kids would enjoy, as well as Dennis and I, I decided on ground turkey sloppy joes.

To make the sloppy joes, I started by sautéing onion, celery and carrots in olive oil until they were starting to soften. (I did add a pinch of kosher salt and a pinch of pepper to the onion mixture for flavor.) Then, I added the minced garlic and let it cook for 45 seconds.

Next, the ground turkey was added to the skillet, along with a teaspoon of kosher salt and a half teaspoon of pepper. I cooked the turkey until it was browned and crumbly, stirring often. Once the meat was cooked, I added the tomato paste, ketchup, yellow mustard and brown sugar. A secret ingredient I learned to add from my mom, was a jar of chopped pimientos, drained. It is a fabulous ingredient to add to the sloppy joes, giving just the right hint of unexpected flavor.

Trader Joe’s sells White Truffle Potato Chips. If you like truffle flavoring, definitely buy these. They are really good! I served our sloppy joes with these chips and a pickle spear. Simple, but so good.


  • 1-1/2 pounds ground turkey
  • 3/4 cup onion, diced
  • 3/4 cup celery, diced
  • 3/4 cup carrots, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • small jar pimientos
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
  • 4 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil


  1. Sauté onion, celery and carrots in olive oil until softened. Add garlic and cook 45 seconds.
  2. Add ground turkey and cook until browned and crumbly, stirring often. Stir pimientos into turkey and add ketchup, mustard, tomato paste and brown sugar. Combine and let simmer for 15-20 minutes, until sauce has thickened.
  3. To serve, spoon onto bun.


Until next time, Kris



National Chili Day Calls for Chicken Chili


Today, February 22rd, is National Chili Day. It is always the fourth Thursday in February.  Chilly is exactly what it’s been in San Diego this week, which gave me two good reasons to make chili for dinner tonight. I decided to make a chicken chili.

I bought a rotisserie chicken from my local grocery store to use in my chili. I started by sautéing a large yellow onion in a couple tablespoons of olive oil. Once the onions started to soften, after about 5 minutes, I added 6 cloves of minced garlic and let it cook along with the onions for 45 seconds. Next, I added three cans of drained and rinsed canellini beans to my pot. Once the beans were added to my slow cooker, I added kosher salt, cumin, oregano and chili powder before stirring together.


I removed the skin from the rotisserie chicken and cut the meat into bite size chunks and added it to the pot. I then added five cups of reduced sodium chicken stock, along with a 28 ounce can of whole plum tomatoes – I did make sure to cut the tomatoes into bite size pieces. Since I use no salt added tomatoes, I added another teaspoon and a half of kosher salt to season the tomatoes. Passila peppers were my pepper of choice for this chili. I cut two of them into 1 inch size pieces, removing most of the seeds, but keeping some.

I used my slow cooker, but you could definitely use a Dutch oven. My slow cooker has an insert that you can place directly on the stove for browning or sautéing purposes. I did sauté my onion in the slow cooker insert before combining all my ingredients and placing the insert back into the slow cooker and setting it to high for four hours.

A dollop of sour cream, shredded Monterey Jack cheese, minced green onion, and sliced jalapeños were my toppings of choice for tonight’s chili.


I served this chili with corn bread and a salad for dinner tonight. Dennis is definitely looking forward to leftovers for lunch this weekend.


  • 1 rotisserie chicken, skin removed and meat cut into bite sized pieces
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Pasilla peppers, cut into one inch chunks (remove most of the seeds, keep a small amount)
  • 3 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 3 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 3 teaspoons chili powder
  • 3 cans Canellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 5 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 1 28-ounce can whole plum tomatoes (juice and tomatoes, cut tomatoes into pieces)


  1. Heat olive oil in crock pot insert on stove. Add onion and sauté until onion starts to soften and become translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 45 seconds.
  2. Add beans, 1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, cumin, oregano, and chili powder and stir together.
  3. Add chicken, pasilla peppers, chicken stock, tomatoes, and 1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt. Stir.
  4. Set crock pot insert back into base and set to high for four hours or low for 6-8 hours.


Until next time, Kris





Roasted Garlic Olive Oil and White Wine Bucatini


Tonight, I made a dinner without chopping, mincing or grating a single thing. This was about the easiest dinner I’ve yet to make. Some night’s it’s nice to enjoy a home cooked meal that doesn’t take much in the way of preparation, but still feels like you put some time and effort in.

I was at the Temecula Olive Oil Company today where I purchased their Roasted Garlic Olive Oil and a jar of their Herbs de Provence seasoning. That, along with a little white wine left over from a couple nights ago was all I needed to prepare tonight’s dinner. I, of course, needed the noodles to make this pasta dish come together, along with a little kosher salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, but those are always in my pantry.

I enjoy going into the Temecula Olive Oil Company to look around and always leave having purchased something. They have a great selection of soaps made of olive oil, body creams, room sprays, seasonings, salts, peppers, and of course, many different olive oils and vinegars to choose from. Today, I tried several olive oils and balsamic vinegars. One that really stuck out to me was their jalapeño olive oil, wow! The staff at Temecula Olive Oil Company is amazing and are always more than willing to answer any questions you may have and provide you with a little background of each of their oils and vinegars. They also encourage you to try the different olive oils and vinegars at the tasting bar.

The olive oils that they sell are beyond organic. They use no pesticides and no chemicals. Temecula Olive Oil is the grower of the olives and they are family owned and operated, and have over 250 acres across Southern California. This wonderful company is happy to ship to you, wherever you are – they do ship worldwide. I encourage you to check out their website at Their hashtag is #awesomeoil.

Below I have a picture of the back of their brochure which lists their locations in Southern California. I highly recommend stopping in to one of their locations if you happen to live here, or if you are here for a visit and would like to check them out, they would welcome you. When I was in the store today, I was tasting olive oils with a woman who was visiting from Oregon.


I found out today, while chatting with Leisha, that they offer an olive oil club. There are two to choose from. One is an Olive Oil/Balsamic Club and the other is an Olive Oil/Olive Oil Club. With the first, you receive one olive oil and one balsamic vinegar and the second, you receive two bottles of olive oil. If you sign up (you can do so on-line or  in the store), you will receive your product every three months. Temecula Olive Oil Company will charge your credit card when it’s time to send out your shipment and you will receive a fabulous package of the oil and vinegar or oil and oil. I am actually going to sign up for this club tomorrow. I’m heading back to the store to do just that.

For tonight’s dinner, I made a pasta using Temecula Olive Oil’s Roasted Garlic Olive Oil, white wine, fresh lemon juice and Temecula Olive Oil’s Herbs de Provence. It was super easy and as I said earlier, no chopping or mincing involved.

Into a large skillet, I poured 3/4 cup of Pinot Grigio white wine, 3/4 cup of roasted olive oil, 3 tablespoons Herbs de Provence, kosher salt, pepper, red pepper flakes and the juice of two lemons. I zested the lemons before juicing them because I wanted to be able to use the zest as a garnish on my pasta dish.


Once the noodles were done cooking, I transferred them directly into my skillet and tossed them together with the olive oil, wine and herbs de Provence. After they were tossed together with the sauce, I added about 6 tablespoons of grated parmesan/romano cheese blend and tossed again.


The pasta was garnished with a sprinkling of grated parmesan/romano blend and a little lemon zest.


This dish is easy enough for a busy weeknight, but also impressive enough to serve to guests with a simple arugula salad on the side and a loaf of crusty bread.


  • 1 pound box of bucatini
  • 3/4 cup white wine
  • 3/4 cup roasted garlic olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons Herbs de Provence
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • juice and zest of 2 lemons
  • 6 tablespoons grated parmesan/roman cheese blend


  1. Cook noodles per package instructions.
  2. While noodles are cooking, pour wine and olive oil, and lemon juice into large skillet. Add Herbs de Provence, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes into large skillet and heat over medium. Let sauce simmer while noodles cook.
  3. Add cooked noodles directly to the sauce and toss together. Add parmesan and toss again.
  4. Garnish each dish with a little lemon zest and another sprinkling of the parmesan/romano cheese.


Until next time, Kris




Fennel, Date and Lemon Spatchcock Chicken


I did it! I spatchcocked a chicken. I’ve cooked a spatchcock chicken once before, but today was the first time I actually took a whole chicken and spatchcocked it myself. It wasn’t hard at all. You just need a sharp pair of kitchen shears. Mine are by the Pioneer Woman. I have a couple of her knives, as well as her kitchen shears. They are not expensive at all and they stay sharp. I buy them at Walmart. Her Nakiri Knife is my favorite, I’ve recommended it for several people because it is the one I go to most often.

To spatchcock a chicken, you cut out the backbone. If you google this, you will find excellent instructions that are really easy to follow. I used my kitchen shears to cut on both sides of the backbone out of the chicken.


Once the backbone was out, I turned the chicken over and pressed down to break the wishbone and make sure my chicken was flat.


I sprinkled the underside of the chicken with kosher salt and pepper and turned it over. Once it was turned over, as you see in the above picture, I patted the chicken dry with a paper towel. Next, I drizzled olive oil over the skin and rubbed it all over, before sprinkling the skin with kosher salt and pepper.


I then minced the leaves of four stems of fresh rosemary and removed the leaves from four sprigs of fresh thyme and sprinkled it over the chicken.


I let my chicken sit for a minute while I sliced and sautéd one onion and two bulbs of fennel in olive oil, salt and pepper. While the onion and fennel were sautéing, I removed the pits from 16 ounces of dates and sliced three lemons. When I felt the onion and fennel were softened and starting to caramelize, I poured a half cup of white wine (I chose Pinot Grigio) into the cast iron skillet and then added the dates and lemons. Oh my gosh, the wine smelled so good when it hit the heat, wow!

Next, I placed my chicken on top of the vegetables and fruits and placed it in a preheated 450 degree oven for an hour. Depending on the size of your chicken, this could take just 45 minutes. I had a pretty good size chicken, however, so mine took a little longer. You want to make sure the dark meat reaches 165 degrees. That’s when you know your chicken is done. The great thing about spatchcocking your chicken vs. cooking it whole, is that it cooks much faster.

I have to say that the sweetness of the dates provided a great flavoring for the “sauce”. I was very pleased with how much flavor there was in this dish. I’m totally patting myself on the back on this one … can you tell?

I served the chicken over the fennel, onion and dates, and spooned some of the juices over my chicken. Nothing but a piece of crusty bread was needed to complete this meal. I sopped up my bread with the juices from the sauce, no butter needed for that bread!


Oh wow! Please try this recipe, I promise you will love it! I would definitely make this for my Dinner Club, it was that good.


1 whole chicken, spatchcocked

1 medium onion, sliced in half rounds

2 fennel bulbs, sliced

16 ounces fresh dates, pits removed

3 lemons, sliced thin

1/2 cup white wine

3 tablespoons olive oil, plus a drizzle

1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for sprinkling on the chicken

1/2 teaspoon pepper, plus more for sprinkling on the chicken

4 sprigs rosemary, leaves removed from stems and minced

4 sprigs thyme, leaves removed (no need to mince)


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Sprinkle under side of spatchcocked chicken with salt and pepper and turn over. Pat chicken skin dry with paper towel and rub with a drizzle of olive oil. Sprinkle salt and pepper over skin. Add rosemary and thyme to chicken and set aside.
  3. Remove pits from dates and slice lemons. Set aside.
  4. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in cast iron skillet. Add onions and fennel and cook until they start to caramelize.
  5. Add wine to skillet. Next add dates and lemon slices.
  6. Place chicken on top of vegetables and fruit, sticking a few lemon slices on top of chicken.
  7. Place in oven for 45-60 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken. Start checking the temperature of the meat after 45 minutes.


Until next time, Kris