Southwest Quinoa with Avocado Cilantro Dressing


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Are you looking for a recipe that is really easy? Very Tasty? Healthy and Fresh? This is it. I don’t even know where I got this recipe but over the years I have made it my own.  I was raised in a faith that was vegetarian so a lot of our meals were plant based protein.  One of my favorite meals from childhood is called Haystacks which is very similar to this but no quinoa and refried beans instead of black beans. I think one day playing around in the kitchen as you know I often do, this recipe was born.  I started bringing it to functions for my potluck and everyone ask me the recipe. So, one day I sat down and wrote out exactly what I do but there are so many things that you can do with it, add to it.

This is a great meal to take for  Potlucks because it’s great for people with food allergies, or preferences. Swap a few ingredients and it can be Vegan or Vegetarian. Quinoa is gluten free friendly too and it taste so good.  Got lots of protein and iron too. I love making this all year long and it is really simple and easy. Everyone loves my Southwest Quinoa.  Another great thing is it freezes AWESOME! Can’t go wrong.  Top your salad, eat it with Tortilla chips, in corn or flour tortillas,casserole and even in Wontons with some cheese baked or fried its the best appetizer.  Its also one of those recipes you can adapt. Sometimes I add green enchilada sauce or red enchilada sauce instead of the avocado cilantro dressing and it takes on another flavor.  I am sure there are other ways I serve it but just can’t think of them at the moment but those are a few ideas. Its one of my families favorites. Let me know what your family thinks of it and other ways you end up serving it.

Southwest Quinoa with Avocado Cilantro Dressing

Southwest Quinoa with Avocado Cilantro Dressing


  • Southwest Quinoa with Avocado Cilantro Dressing
  • 1c. Dry black beans
  • 1c of Tri colored quinoa
  • 1 packet Goya Sazon
  • 6 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1/2 large onion or 1 medium diced
  • 2 tbsp. Ground Cumin
  • 1/2c. Sweet Corn (Cut from the cob or frozen)
  • 1/2 Large Red Pepper diced
  • 1/2 Large green pepper diced
  • 1c. Cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 tomatillo diced
  • 1c Cherry or Grape tomatoes Diced
  • 1 Serrano Pepper ribbed (unless you like spice) and minced
  • 1/4c. Green onions chopped
  • 4c. Chicken or Turkey Broth (Vegetable Stock or Water for Vegan Option)


  1. Directions
  2. Place Black Beans, 2c. Broth, 1/4 onion, 3 garlic cloves, Sazon packet , Ground Cumin in pot. Bring to boil and reduce to simmer until beans are soft. Or, place beans in crock pot on hi for 4 hours.
  3. Place 2c. Of Broth and Quinoa to boil then simmer until soft
  4. Once beans are done place remaining ingredients in mixing bowl.
  5. Add Corn, Peppers (Red, Green and Serrano), Cherry Tomatoes, Cilantro, Green Onion, and Quinoa
  6. Mix and Serve (best if refrigerated overnight) in tortilla (corn/flour), on salad or with tortilla chips (great for potlucks)


Avocado Cilantro Dressing

1 Avocado 1 1/2c Cilantro chopped 1/4c White Wine Vinegar 1/2 lime 2 tbsp Ground Cumin 4 cloves garlic 5 oz. Greek Plain Yogurt (My favorite Latta Russian Kefir or Vegan Option Soy or Almond Greek Yogurt) 2 tbsp Olive oil Salt & Pepper

Directions 1. Cut Avocado and pit, juice lime 2. Place all ingredients in food processor and pulse till smooth and creamy 3. DONE!!

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Feeling Stuck


Rocky Foundation

For those of you who have been following me the last 6 months. I have been on a serious weight loss journey. I have changed every aspect of my lifestyle.  I have never had to try so hard to lose weight. I was always a “skinny” girl.  I could eat whatever I wanted. not workout and not even gain a pound. I was only 118 pounds but completely out of shape.   My eating habits were poor, I was a fast food, soda addicted junkie and didn’t care because it didn’t show.  Then, I began to have the diva’s and all of those bad habits caught up to me.

With my first daughter, I gained 95 pounds. I know that is unheard of, I think mothers of multiples don’t even gain that much weight. I wasn’t pregnant with several children I was only carrying one little 6 pound 12 ounce baby girl.  Needless, to say the bag of size 4 jeans I packed to go home in did not even come up one of my thighs. I went home wearing my maternity pants. But I worked it off, I made it a full time job to lose the baby weight. I worked out 6 days a week for 3-4 hours a day and survived off of wheat grass and dew (just kidding).  I really don’t recommend that weight loss plan but it worked and 9 months later I had lost all of the pregnancy weight and was comfortably zipping up my size 4 and back to my drive thru hopping.



Another Weight loss Round

Then came my next little diva. I played it smart this time at least I thought I did. I went to a nutritionist twice a week and worked out until I was 7 and a half months pregnant.  Tallying in at a whopping 85 pounds weight gain when I went into the delivery room. Giving birth to my 9 pound, sweet little “Boo Bear.” Again, I went fast and furious into the weight loss but this time I breast fed so it made it a little easier. I had two little ones so that made working out a little harder.  So I bought the newest (at the time) Beach body workout series and got my “Slim in 6” tail in gear.  I couldn’t live off of wheat grass and dew this time because I was nursing so I did eat fairly healthy. It took a little longer to lose the weight because I didn’t have the ability to workout 6 days a week 3-4 hours a day and eat nothing so I was zipping up my size 4’s in about a year and half. (Still not a recommended weight loss plan).  Maintained my figure by running but I still had horrible eating habits. Toxic after toxic processed meals in my body daily.  I had also acquired a lethal sweet tooth and cupcakes had become a girls’ best friend.


Getting my Mojo Back

Then came diva number 3, six years later.  This time around I was unable to exercise because I was severely sick in my first trimester. Unknowingly it was the result of being pregnant with twins.  At 11 weeks (almost made it to my second trimester) I lost one of my twins and carried out the rest of my pregnancy in a depressed state. I was also bed ridden till I was 17 weeks and filled the void with any and every craving my heart desired.  I did do a little better on the weight gain this time around, weighing in at a 75 pound weight gain (I know not better at all). I added 20 pound to that in the first two months of my little ones’ life and began a different weight loss journey.

There was no sprint to the finish line this time go round. I didn’t have time, energy or resources with three little divas’. As the number on the scale grew my determination decreased. I thought I would be content with living the rest of my life heavier (clinically obese at this point). The thing that really was disheartening that when my baby girls was born I had changed our entire families lifestyle to clean eating but I did not change my portions and I did not add to my activity so it was all in vain.  It wasn’t until after my baby was one year old and a complete stranger asked me “when I was due” that I got a spark of determination to get my body back.  This time I vowed that I would not go back to my toxic ways, I would not work myself to exhaustion and stress.

This weight loss was going to be the old fashioned way, great nutrition and a great workout routine.  I am a very determined person so when I started on the journey I had a goal in mind. I hit the ground running losing 6 pounds in my first week. I think my body was just shocked that things were changing.  I had continued the clean eating journey but I had to cut the portion sizes and the way I was eating.  The workouts were something that I never did before. High, Intensity, Interval, Training had me huffing, puffing and sweating in as little as 20 minutes.  I began taking brisk walks and really doing more efficient workout. Then I did a 30 day cleanse. Its not the type of cleanse that you are thinking. This cleanse allowed me to eat but just on a lower level. I did not consume alcohol or sugar for 30 days and I fasted 1 day a week for the four weeks.  I also for the first time intentionally prayed everyday for 5-10 minutes for my body during this 30 days. I literally was getting all the toxins out of my mind, body and soul and my body was screaming the praises of all this goodness and I lost 10 pounds and 31 inches in a month.  I had never felt better and I was ready to take this weight loss to the next level. Then it happened. I got stuck!


What does stuck mean?

What does stuck mean? When I came back to reality-not cleansing, still clean eating, still working out world. My body just didn’t budge.  There were no more inch loss, no more weight loss, all the work none of the glory!  At first, I thought I have reached a plateau that happens just push through.  Then one month went by and only 2 pounds loss. Then the next month went by and no pounds no inches. Then I thought okay, maybe I am not doing what I was doing maybe I am consuming too many calories.  So, I kept food diaries, added another workout day but nothing other than a new full time job; Managing my weight loss. Tracking everything I put in my mouth, increasing my weight and giving every workout every bit of energy I possibly can. But still nothing. A plateau that I thought would last for a week or so is now carrying on to four months.  What do I do now? What have I done wrong?

Again, I brought it to God!  Intentionally praying for 30 days. Instead of a weight loss freedom something different has been happening I have been assessing and checking my mental “baggage” or weight. I think I am heavier mentally than I am physically more so than I thought.  My weight loss has not progressed but I know the last 30 days I have been growing stronger and stronger in the Lord.  I know that this plateau-(which at this point I am not sure if you can call it that) is for a growth in other aspects of my life.  In the last few months I have desperately wanted God to change my physical situations but it wasn’t until the last few days that I realized that God wants this situation to change me. Alot, of my problem is my body image- I have the image of a “skinny”girl body in my mind so when I look in the mirror its is honestly sometimes shocking what is looking back at me.


What am I doing wrong?

I was thinking the other day, “I wonder how mountain climbers get through the steepest part of the climb?” The part where you are like, “why did I decide to climb this high of a mountain? Or, is this the part I turn back and go the way I came? Or, if I would have known then what I know now would I have still climbed this mountain?” Can you imagine being on a mountain working really hard to get to a certain spot and looking up and realizing you’re still not at the top of that mountain? And you think you worked hard before? Well then you really need to dig in deep to finish. That’s where I am, digging in deep, trying to find the strength within myself to keep moving forward.

Then I woke up yesterday morning with the song by Chris Tomlin, “I will follow” in my head. The thing is I don’t often listen to that song. I usually listen to Spotify it was never in my playlist (until now). I opened up my daily devotional and the topic for the day was “releasing our destinations,” and the prayer was:

“Lord, where do you want me to be? What plans do You have for my family and loved ones? Let me be in the places and situations that You ordain. Oh Lord, my life is in Your hands. You have a purpose for everything, I rest in Your guidance and provision. Amen.” 

None of these were coincidental but definitely God trying to get my attention. And then the definitive voice that I always hear just when I need it, told me to “Be still.” If you haven’t read my post before, when God tells me to “Be still” he wants me to reflect take a self assessment on how I am trying to do things my way and getting in His way.  When I am trying to follow my own plan and not His; I feel stuck. But I won’t be there much longer or maybe a little longer who knows. I am not going to worry about what my role in this is any longer. I am going to go back to following His lead and try to stay there. The journey is just a lot easier and I am so much stronger when He has all my burdens.  I guess this is one of those stay tuned…..

Have you ever felt stuck? How’d you get unstuck?

Changing My Story

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Honor Your Temple

Finding a better way

Behind every picture is a story; We all know that and looking at the last few years of my life pictures I definitely have one to tell.  August 1, I woke up and decided that I had enough with my current health. I was eating well enough, but I still was over indulging on sugar, my portions were ridiculous and using my boredom as an excuse to nibble on snacks.  I didn’t feel content in the body I was in, it didn’t match the image in my head. So, I decided to do something. I posted about how I found Beyond Fit Mom, and how I was making changes in my life. Well here I am 60 days later and I have totally created a new lifetime habit. I wanted to blog about this because there are a lot of mom’s who have shown the before and after but not a lot that shows the during. Its hard to relate to someone who has already found the results that you seek. I am here (at least for now) everyday doing the work to get the body that I will help me live a healthy lifestyle.

Total Weight Loss So far

Before, I had my third daughter I was visually in good shape but I had horrible eating habits. I also worked out several hours a day, which was great when you have two school age children but when you have a new baby its not that simple. BFM, was essential in my life because it allowed my workouts to be efficient. I was  about 60 pounds overweight and I have a goal to lose it by Christmas. I am very goal driven and it was the only way that I was going to get my life back in order. So, the first 30 days I did the workout followed the nutrition and lost a little less than 14 pounds, my husband was a great motivator and accountability partner. The second 30 days, my husband who is a school teacher and wouldn’t be there to cheer me on so after prayer, I had the God idea to Honor My Temple through a prayer challenge. I partnered with a Fitness Specialist and together we prayed and through social media involved others to help us honor our temple through prayer. It was life changing for me. When I went to God with my issues not only was I stronger and achieved more I grew my relationship in Christ too.

30 Day Isagenix Cleanse

Cleansing my temple

Another, life changing experience I had this month was a 30 day cleanse. I have never cleansed before and after speaking with my friend I was convinced that a 30 day cleanse would be a great way to jump start this change in eating and exercising. I totally thought I was ready, I was not ready at all. The first two weeks, I had a wedding and 2 birthday parties to attend which I was pretty strong willed and did very well I didn’t eat any of the no no foods and only drank water the entire time. Now, I would like to say this was my own strong will but in all actuality it was through prayer that I was able to achieve this feat. Now, the last two weeks were probably the hardest. I was over this restricted lifestyle change, I was ready to indulge, fall is here and all the smells and food were enticing me to quit. It was only through my strength in the Lord that I was able to continue and not submit to temptation. It seems cheeky but I really did pray my way through and I had amazing results.

How did I get here?

In 18 days I lost 6 pounds and 24.75 inches all over my body.  I lost all of this through eating correctly, working out 3 days a week and daily prayer. I want to emphasize there were no wraps, no magic pills, I ate non processed protein and produced and sweated three days a week for 20-30 minutes each day without fail. Even when I weighed 128 pound I did not feel this good. I have so much energy, my memory has improved, I just feel so much better about myself. The best part through this entire journey is that my faith and trust in God has multiplied and I am now living a completely aligned life. I have always sought balance and now I have achieved it and will probably continue down this road for a lifetime.

What have you done in your life to change your story?


My journey so far and still have 40 pounds to lose, please check back with me next month or follow my blog to see my continued progress.
Jouney 1

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