Pineapple Chicken Mexican Bake For One with a secret…

Just popping in quickly to share with you all my first single-girl ready recipe of the week!

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A Secret

Here’s my secret for the odd sizes of this meal.  I stopped by Whole Foods over my lunch break today and hit up the hot and salad bars.  I am VERY familiar with Whole Food bars with how often I visit for meals. . . but today was a little different.

I struggled in the produce section trying to find reasonably sized and priced veggies, meat, and random produce for meals this week.   I HATE wasting food and money and know that I won’t eat enough of one thing before it goes bad myself unless I eat the same meal all week.  No fun.

As I was walking through the store I got a brilliant idea.  Hit up the bars and get individual portion of different produce in the sizes I need.  In the produce bar I got:

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The chicken and pineapple salsa I picked up

  • 8 oz of chicken prepared
  • One large spoonful of grapes
  • Two tablespoons of dried cranberries
  • One small container of greens
  • 2 tablespoons of corn kernels

all in two containers keeping the produce section.  I did put the meat separately in it’s own little plastic container from the produce, just for cross contamination purposes.

Easy, cheap and a way to reduce waste!   And without further adu, here is the recipe from the first bit of my secret Whole Foods trip!

Pineapple Chicken Mexican Bake

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  • 1/2 large sweet potato
  • 2 tablespoons of corn
  • 1/2 a red jalepeno
  • 4 oz of chicken, pre cooked
  • Pineapple salsa to taste
  • 1 oz colby jack cheese
  • Pinch of cinnamon

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  • Prepare the sweet potatoes (I chopped them into cubes and steamed them with a little cinnamon for 20 minutes)
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  • Layer the pineapple salsa to create a wet base
  • Layer half of the sweet potatoes, corn, and jalepeno
  • Add a layer of chicken
  • Layer the second half of the sweet potatoes, corn and jalepeno with some more salsa to taste
  • Top with cheese and cover with foil for baking
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes or until cheese is melted and enjoy!


You know I did 🙂

I had my bake with a very small side of greens and my FAVORITE Whole Foods tortilla chips.  The perfect ending to a Monday!

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Seems like cooking for one doesn’t have to be that difficult or wasteful 🙂

If anyone can tell me how I can add a pin it button to my recipes, I’d love you forever!  Leave it in the comments or email me 🙂

Honeymoon Recap — Activities and Exercise

Today’s recap of our AMAZING Austrian honeymoon is going to be all about our activities and exercise in the mountains.

If you missed my first recap, be sure it check it out!

Let’s start with the nitty-gritty here.  Zach and I were gone for 2 weeks (Saturday-Sunday…with a day added in London due to missing out connection).  There were 3 days fully dedicated in there to travel, but the rest of the days Zach and I tried to make the most of our time in the mountains and enjoy outdoor activities.  Hello 2 weeks of no gym?

Here’s how the activities looked:

  • 4 days of skiing
  • 2 days of running
  • 2 winter hikes
  • 1 day of snow shoeing
  • 2 yoga practices
  • 1 day of walking all over Munich (and exercising my liver with the great bier!)

4 days of skiing

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The skiing in Europe is VERY different than what I’m accustomed to here in the West.   They have been having a tough season so their snow pack is minimal, to put it lightly.  This was challenging for me because it was basically like skiing on a big plate of ice…very crowded plate of ice.

So yes, the conditions were tough.  But the views?  Out of this world.  The Alps are SO unique and provide breathtaking moments that literally catch you off guard.   I am hopeful that Zach will do a guest post and include a bunch of his photos from the SLR, because it was honestly like we were in heaven.

My favorite part of European skiing is just how large and vast the ski areas are.  We stayed in St Anton, but skied basically all of the neighboring towns on the same one lift ticket.  Skiing is really affordable in Europe in comparison to US, and you have SO much more terrain open to you.

Of all the areas we skied, I think we would both agree that Lech was our favorite but I wouldn’t complain any of them.   Sure, skiing was a bit more stressful than I am used to, but I do wish I hadn’t gotten sick and was able to get a few more days under my legs.

2 days of running


You know my heart has been with running for a long time — and of course that didn’t change while I was on my honeymoon. 🙂  I made a promise to myself to TAKE IT EASY ON THE RUNNING while I was gone after a long streak, but of course brought along my shoes in hopes that I’d at least get one or two runs while I was out there.

And that’s exactly what I did.  Two days that Zach went skiing and I stayed behind, I laced up my shoes and hit the (very icy) roads.  This was definitely a different experience for me. . . the first day I went about 6.3 miles and the second day I did about half that.

Now let’s get things straight here.  St Anton is HILLY (like 300+ meters elevation change in less than a mile.  That’s almost 1000 ft).  This provided some GREAT downhill running, but some serious uphill WALKING.  On these runs, I’d run as much as I could, but walk the drastic uphills.  For example: my 6.3 mile run day ended up being a little over 80 minutes.  My 3 mile run day was closer to 35 I believe. . . context.

I was also moving a lot slower thanks to melting snow and ice.  But to be honest, I wasn’t concerned about my times.  I was just enjoying being outdoors and exploring this amazing town.  I was running on my own in an area I wasn’t familiar with, so unfortunately I wasn’t able to explore very much, but the area that I was able to go and feel comfortable in was beautiful non-the-less.

You know running makes me a happy lady — and that was absolutely the case with these two runs.  I finished feeling strong and full of beautiful mountain air.  Nothing like it. . .

Never travel without my running kicks

2 Winter Hikes

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The only other time I have ever really hiked in winter conditions was 4 years ago, also with Zach and also in Europe. . . go figure ;).  You all know I love hiking, but there was something about all the snow and the cool air that made it that much more enjoyable.

Our first hike was actually more like a snowy hilly walk.  We walked through town and then followed a cross country trail for probably 6-7 miles.  It wasn’t rocky or too strenuous, but it was our first full day and figured we didn’t want to tackle too much on exhausted bodies.

Our second hike was a short but good one.   The town of Lech that I mentioned in the skiing section was our favorite for more than one reason.  One really unique element of the town was that it was actually two towns on top of each other.  There’s Lech, and then Oberlech (or over lech) that is just a few hundred meters directly up the mountain.

You can easily ski between the towns, but they also offer a hiking trail that takes you directly from one to the other.  At the end of the trip Zach and I took a bus out to Lech (instead of skiing and busing like we had been), and hiked between the towns.  It was honestly one of my favorite days and included a lot of more relaxed outdoor time and good food :).

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The winter hikes aren’t rock scrambling, and this trip it wasn’t through feet of snow (like it was in Zermatt in 2010). . . but the snow definitely added a fun new element to hiking!

One Day of Snow Shoeing

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Zach and I are goobers and got each other snow shoes at the end of the year last year (for his birthday and for me at Christmas).   Zach’s are pretty high tech and can easily be taken out in the back country, which he plans to do.

We knew right away that we wanted to break them out while we were in Austria, so they made the hike overseas with us!  We tackled an 8k course for our first day of show shoeing, and I don’t know if it was because I was fighting getting sick or what, but MAN I was exhausted after.

There wasn’t too much snow on the trail, so Zach and I would jump up on the side of the road and hike in the 4 or 5 foot snow walls.  That was challenging, but it at least made the snow shoes work like they were supposed to.

Yes it was tough, but I look forward to breaking them out again in the Spring on early season hikes here in Colorado!

2 Yoga Practices

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Man oh man.  To say Zach and I were sore during all these activities is an understatement.  To help balance this, I made sure to take some time and dedicate it to yoga and stretching.  I did a couple of my favorite at home practices and both times felt like a new woman after!  Now if only we had found a studio to try in town, how cool would that have been?

One Day Walking All Over Munich

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It was important to Zach and I that we had one, settled home base the entire time that we were on our honeymoon — but that doesn’t mean we didn’t want to explore.  We both agreed that we wanted to do at least one day trip, and Munich was an easy winner for both of us!

We had plans to take the first train out, but that was when we both started getting sick so we took one out 2 hours later and ended up getting in about 1 hour later right about lunch time.  Zach, being the smart traveler that he is, immediately picked up an English travel guide of Munich and headed out on a walking tour of the city!

We were only there for 6 or 7 hours and the weather was kind of crappy but boy did we have a blast! Good thing we both wore our comfy shoes for that walking tour 🙂

I absolutely loved all of my activities in Austria and just wish I could have done more.   I absolutely believe that the best way to explore a new place is on foot (or ski, or show shoe).  I mean come on, you’ve gotta balance the German beir and sausage somehow, right? 😉


I Love Sunshine

Good Morning and Happy Monday everyone.   I have a feeling this week is going to be a tad bit odd, considering I haven’t had a real week of work in 3 weeks. . .but we’ll get through it together, right?

Last Night

After my parents made their way back to St Louis, I spent the rest of the afternoon curled up on the couch with my furballs watching bad On Demand TV.

Yesterday’s choices were:

  • Come Date With Me (Canadian Cooking Channel food/dating show. . . hello my two favorite things)
  • Property Virgins

Yesterday’s brunch kept me pretty full for the early afternoon, so it wasn’t until about 4ish that I started getting snacky.

Snack of the day

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Stacy’s Cinnamon Sugar pita chips and lemon water.   The name of the game was relaxing and rehydrating for this lady :).

By 7 my stomach was telling me I needed real food, even if my brain wasn’t necessarily ready for it yet.

Fav Meal of the Day

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On the menu was a new-to-me Taste of the Mediterranean dish from Falafel King.  It was surpringly delicious and really hit all my dinner buttons.  Lots of variety, different textures and fresh flavors, and took me a awhile to finish.

Is anyone else enjoying the longer, sunshine-y days we’re getting here?  I was so excited to get my food shots in the sunshine that I didn’t know what to do with myself!  Come on Spring!

In true Ashley fashion, I ended the day on a sweet note.

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Sweet of the day:  Double tree cookie from the rents

If you haven’t ever had a Double Tree cookie, you should book a vacation now and get one.  Or just go to your closest double tree with a suitcase and look like you’re staying there. . . worth the shot.

It was a quiet and relaxing evening that had me in bed and asleep by 1030.

Monday Morning

I woke up this morning and was surprised to find that I felt better than I have since Europe.  I felt rested, energetic and relieved.   I decided to harness that energy and go for a quick little run on the ol’ treadmill.

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3 miles and then I walked it out to finish 30 minutes.  Nothing to crazy, I’m still working on finding the right balance for my body…but unlike Saturday’s run I felt good and strong after this run.  It could have been that Zach called me from Singapore (it’s Monday EVENING for him at 6 AM for me. . . so weird) and helped pass the time.  It was nice to get to run with the hubbie from overseas :).  Before I knew it the run was done and I was in the shower getting ready!

I gotta say . . . I think a big part of finding this new balance will be trying NOT to run back-to-back days.  Giving my body a break from the high impact will hopefully have a long term benefit to my speed and form!

And now — it’s time to get to work!  Be sure to check out my pinterest for updated boards and my weekly food and workout inspiration along with some fun quotes and random pins!  If we aren’t friends yet, you better just go ahead and click on that little P on the side of my page and change that for me 🙂

Question of the Morning:  What is your favorite chocolate chip cookie?  Where do I NEED to try?