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Best of February 2016: Food, Travel & Fun!

The best of February all right here! Check out the most popular recipes on Ambitious Kitchen, my latest travel adventures, and more.

Hello, it’s me. I was wondering if all these years…

Oh sorry.

Anyway I thought I’d take a page from my friend Dana’s book and do a round up on all things February. Sometimes it’s nice to play catch up and see it all in one post, right? Here we go!

Most viewed recipe:

healthy turkey chili in two bowls

My best healthy turkey chili recipe came in as the number 1 most viewed recipe. That’s out of ALL my posts. This one is a favorite and I’ve seen plenty of you making it over on Instagram! I love how delicious, hearty and filling it is.

Bonus points if you put guac and tortilla chips on top like me.

New Ambitious Kitchen Recipes from February:

Feb Recipes Ambitious Kitchen

February was all about those SWEET treats. Or maybe that’s every month? Looking back I realize I didn’t post as many savory recipes as I would have liked, so look for more of those in March. After I post that carrot cake I’ve been DYING to show you…

February recipes from left to right…

best paleo chocolate chunk cookies

vegan whole wheat chocolate hazelnut cinnamon rolls with orange icing + pistachios

peanut butter and jelly oatmeal bake

whole wheat coconut oil sugar cookies with natural strawberry icing

julie’s stuffed eggplant boats

5 minute no bake peanut butter protein energy bites

flax almond meal chocolate chunk banana muffins (paleo, gluten free)

healthy baked french fries with parmesan & truffle oil

layered banana split protein smoothies

Wellness Wednesday posts:

avocado toast and peanut butter toast on a plate with an avocado

I wrote a post on Getting Back on Track After Overeating. I’m trying to keep on track with writing Wellness Wednesdays, but can only manage to do them about once a month because they take so much dang time. In the meantime, I’ve started a Wellness Wednesday snapchat series where each week we chat about different health and fitness topics. Last week we chatted about unrefined sweeteners and the week before that was comparing chocolate chunks to chocolate chips. If you want to see the videos, I’ve uploaded them to Facebook, so check them out!

Recipe roundups you’ll love:

healthy lunch ideas collage

Healthy Lunch Ideas to Pack for Work

Healthy Peanut Butter Recipes to Fall in Love With

My favorite recipe from February:

Paleo Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Hands down my paleo chocolate chunk cookies! All you need is one bowl and they take about 20 minutes to make from start to finish. Jessica from How Sweet Eats even made them and fell in love!

Where I traveled in February:

monique and tony

We went to the Mariah Carey concert in Vegas and it was one of the best experiences of my life. We stayed at the Wynn and loved every second of gambling, eating and treating ourselves like royals.

Also, I cried for most of Mariah’s songs because it made me SO happy. I just love that diva.

cornbread in a skillet with butter

While in Vegas, we had the pleasure of dining at a few great restaurants including Yardbird, which boasts major comfort food with a great atmosphere.

monique with chicken and waffles

I ordered chicken and waffles with watermelon (BEST FRIED CHICKEN EVER) and Tony got the short ribs. We also shared some of their lovely skillet cornbread and peach cobbler. Serious food coma afterward, but as always I made sure that we walked around 20,000 steps a day.

monique at a restaurant

Another restaurant we loved was F. Pigalle, a mostly fondue based restaurant. The vibe was amazing and when you order fondue, you get unlimited wine served in baby bottles. Tony and I had a blast noshing on bread, apples, cheese and meat. They offer both steak and shrimp fondues that you cook yourself at the table, along with an amazing dessert fondue.

We also got to go to Mon Ami Gabi, which I wasn’t too in love, especially since we waited an hour. For me, it was overrated. Although they do give you a french baguette at the beginning of your meal with homemade butter and ridiculously good jam. I might go back to the one in Chicago sometime solely for that reason.

Other things I’m loving right now:

salad on a plate with slivered almonds

The amazing Inspiralized menu at Houlihan’s! I was able to attend a tasting with Ali from Inspiralized and a few blogging friends this past month. It was incredible to just get together and celebrate Ali’s success. She’s such an incredibly talented, hard-working woman. All of us got to sample the new Inspiralized menu and it was KILLER, especially the thai zucchini noodle salad (pictures above). I highly recommend heading to Houlihan’s to try it out!

coffee and cocoa from trader joes

Trader Joe’s cocoa coffee (pictured above). It’s ridiculously good with almond milk and a little coconut syrup or honey.

Chocolate. I’m in the middle of doing a dark chocolate bar review (coming soon) and eat it almost every night. Tony and I discovered this coconut chocolate version which tastes like a Mounds bar on crack.

monique and sarah

When Sarah and I are together every month, we do BBG workouts and I LOVE THEM. I don’t do them all the time because I really enjoy the variety of group fitness classes, but it’s great when you don’t feel like leaving the house to head to the gym.

The show Vikings. It is beyond addicting and has gotten me a little obsessed with Nordic and Scandinavian culture.

Popcorn. Specifically this popcorn. It is the best you will ever taste in your life. Especially if you love popcorn.

Crackers with pepper jack cheese and guava paste. I grew up on this as a snack and having it again was like heaven. I found guava at the Mexican market but apparently they sell it on Amazon too.

Peapod. Lately I’ve been pretty busy getting organized, so having my groceries delivered to my door is the best.

Meal planning. Every Sunday I plan our meals for Monday-Friday and then grocery shop accordingly. We usually spent around $80 per week, which is pretty great for two people. I also really enjoy making dinner every night and find it therapeutic and a great way to unwind. Tony usually comes home around 6pm, then we hang out in the kitchen together and cook. Are you into meal planning?

a waffle topped with peanut butter and blueberries

Pancakes: I make these cottage cheese banana pancakes at least once a week! So good topped with peanut butter and they make outrageously good waffles too.

Billions on Showtime. Another addicting show.

I’d love to hear from you:

What flavors are you craving for March?

What do you typically make or eat for Easter?

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