Top 10 Recipes of 2015 + A Giveaway
It’s hard to believe 2015 is already coming to a close, isn’t it?
This was a big year for me, as I left my full-time job in June to pursue working on the blog part-time. Part of me felt crazy for doing such a thing, considering that I still have student loans left to pay, but I knew it was now or never if I wanted to keep the blog alive and kicking.
My goal in doing so was to improve things around here while also trying to find a work-life balance and let’s just say the latter definitely did not happen. I ended up spending nearly all of my “free time” working and perpetually feeling behind. What I’ve come to realize is that running a successful blog is more than a full-time job. Even if I were putting in 40 hours a week, there would still be SO much left to do.
That said, I love every second that I’ve spent working on this site and connecting with all of you. I can’t begin to explain the joy it brings me when I read your comments or your emails and hear that I’ve been able to touch your life in some small way. It gives me the motivation to work even harder in 2016!
One of my main goals for the new year is to offer more value to you. But it in order to do that I need your help!
If you have the time, I would greatly appreciate if you would fill out a short survey that I put together. It will hopefully help give me a better idea of who you are and what you like (and don’t like) so that I know how to improve your experience on the site in the coming year. It will also give you a chance to win a $100 Amazon gift card as my way of saying thank you!
Please fill out this survey by 11:59pm Pacific Standard time Wednesday, January 7th to be entered to win!
If I haven’t lost you yet, here the top 10 recipes of 2015. Thank you so much for your love and support. I wish you all a happy and healthy 2016!!
10. Vegan Mediterranean Chickpea Burgers
9. Broccoli Cheddar Spaghetti Squash Casserole
“I made a few changes based on what I had on hand, but I LOVED this recipe! I had frozen broccoli that I steamed first, then baked off some of the moisture in the oven like recommended in the recipe. I didn’t have gruyere cheese, so I just added more of what I had on hand (mozz and cheddar)! I just had a sleeve gastrostomy and I’m a vegetarian, so finding high protein food that tastes this good and sits well in my tummy is very hard to do. What’s even more amazing about this dish is that I was eating it for lunch and dinner every day for SEVERAL days – tiny tummy means leftovers last a LONG time – and I was SAD when this was gone!”
8. Crunchy Quinoa Power Bowl with Almond Ginger Dressing
7. Flourless Peanut Butter Banana Muffins
“Feel a bit out of place in this all girls comment thread, but I have to say these are a game changer! I didn’t have any maple syrup so I used palm sugar and also used regular milk which I upped just a tad do to less moisture leaving out the maple syrup. They came out perfect, I really shouldn’t be this excited about a muffin but for someone that doesn’t like cereals or any breakfast food that isn’t fried, these are perfect. Bonus our 2yr old loves them.”
6. Vegan Slow Cooker Black Bean Soup
5. Five Ingredient No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars
“I made them yesterday. They are delicious! Already ate two, but this time I don’t regret I had them! Even my boyfriend loves them, perfect snack after the gym. Thank you!!”
4. One Skillet Mexican Rice Casserole
“I just made it and the whole familly loved it. Thanks!”
“I just made this last night and it was FABULOUS!!! Leftovers were great for lunch, too!! Thank you!”
2. Healthy Flourless Pumpkin Muffins
“Thank you thank you for this recipe. I made them tonight so my hubby can have them as a grab and go breakfast tomorrow. Of course I had 1 (or 2 ) tonight for a snack. Um.. Yum. Usually the gluten free muffins that are oatmeal based tend to be dense and gummy. These were perfect. I’ll be trying the banana blueberry ones as well.”
1. Mexican Zucchini Burrito Boats
“Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…. Made these yesterday; they were delicious!! I’m not into spicy food so I swapped the spicy pepper for sweet green pepper and just put a little bit of chilli pepper in. Delicious!”
Wishing you a very happy and healthy New Year and all the best for you and yours in 2016!! :)
Thank you for being such a loyal reader, Melissa! Your comments always brighten my day. I wish you and your family all the best as well! HAPPY NEW YEAR! :)
I’ve made your pumpkin chocolate chip muffins at least 6x in the past few months — my absolute favorite!
This was my year for more healthy eating and lo and behold, I found you and your website. What a joy! I’ve enjoyed many of your recipes. And, I always enjoy the photos and writing. I’m looking forward to 2016 for even more fun, healthy and very yummy recipes.
Thanks for all your hard work!
Wishing you a very happy and blessed 2016.
I am so happy you found me, Nancy! Thank you so much for taking the time to comment and offer me your encouragement. It means more than you know.
I hope 2016 is full of wonderful memories for you. Happy New Year! :)
Both of the Mexican dishes look amazing. I totally need to add those to my list of things to make this year.
Have a happy new year!
Out of tem recipes, I’ve tried the mexican rice casserole and the black bean soup. Both were absolutely delicious and I will make them again for sure! Thank you and happy new year!
I’m so happy to hear that, Gabi! I wish you all the best in 2016! :)
Oh lady… I can totally relate to blogging being more than a full-time job, and how there’s always something we -could- be doing for it. But one of my biggest goals for 2016 is to figure out how to work smarter and not harder. I mean, there are always things to do, but which ones are the most effective and which ones are essentially just time sinks? When I figure that out, I’ll let you know ;)
Happy New Year’s!! Sending you ALL THE BEST for 2016 <3
I love that mantra! One of my goals is to try and develop a routine for working on the blog in 2016. I have been all of the place with my schedule and I think that causes me to waste time focusing on things that aren’t as important. So yes, please let me know when you figure it out, haha!
I wish you all the best too! Happy New Year! xo
I seriously don’t know how you part/full time bloggers do it! Since starting my full time job in March, I’ve had such a hard time keeping up with blogging. Even if I just had part time hours like you, I think I would still have trouble keeping up. You’ve been doing such an awesome job with your blog this year! :)
Aw, thanks so much Chelsea! It has been really hard but I love it so that gives me the motivation to keep going. Don’t be hard on yourself for not blogging as much. It sounds like you have a great job (that you love) and that’s definitely worth missing out on blogging for! ;)
I went part time at my regular job this year to work more on the blog and I totally get what you are saying! Even with having more time to spend on it, it is still seems to take up so much time! I keep telling myself there will be a big payoff one of these days, haha! I hope you can find more of a personal time/blog balance because that personal time is so important! Now, would you please come over and cook me all these delicious recipes?!
Oh yes, more personal time is definitely on the goal list for this year! Hopefully I do better this time. ;)
I would love to try those chicpea burgers and the flourless peanut butter banana muffins♥
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