dips

Easy Taco Dip | 3 Ingredients |

7:00 AM

I don't know about you, but chips and dip is my favorite part of any Superbowl party. You can never go wrong with a good dip. This recipe is one of my favorites because it is so simple. Just 3 main ingredients and your favorite taco toppings!

Ingredients

8 ounces StonyField Double Cream yogurt*
8 ounces organic cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons of Taco Seasoning, to taste**

Topping(s)

1 cup shredded lettuce
1 cup chopped tomato
1 cup of organic shredded cheddar cheese

After making this I realized you could also put some re-fried beans on the bottom of the dish to add some extra depth! Also, I think some roasted corn would taste amazing on top.

*You may also use sour cream but for a more healthy organic alternative, I used StonyField Double Cream yogurt.

** I've learned less is more when it come to the taco seasoning. Start with 1/2 tablespoon and go from there. See my homemade taco seasoning recipe below.

Directions

  • In a bowl, mix double cream and cream cheese till well blended. You can use a stand mixer or I've even used a hand mixer. The softer the cream cheese the better time you'll have blending both.
  • Slowly add in the taco seasoning to your taste.
  • Once mixed, place lettuce, tomato, and cheddar cheese on top. Place in the fridge for at least an hour to let it set and then serve!

Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe

I love Simply Organic's Cumin. Its so flavorful and one of my favorite seasonings to add to any Mexican recipes. You can never go wrong with some smoked paprika!

Here is my recipe for homemade taco seasoning to make your own.

Using Stonyfield Double Cream Yogurt Instead of Sour Cream

I was a little scared to sub Stonyfields new Double Cream Yogurt for sour cream but I was so surprised how similar it tasted. Definitely a perfect substitute.

It even passed my husband, the taste tester. This dip is one of his favorites that I make and he said it tasted just as good without the sour cream.

You made one great product StonyField!

Ball Mason Jar

5 EASY Ways to Be More Eco-Friendly in 2017

9:23 AM

Well, here we are friends. Already 3 weeks into the new year and life is in full swing. Like I said in my previous post, I don't typically do resolutions. But I do reset and look towards being better than the year before.
One of my goals in the past couple of years is to be more "eco-friendly" every year. I feel I made good progress last year and I want to make more this year!

Want to join me?? Here are 5 EASY ways to be more eco-friendly in 2017!


1.Glass, Glass, Glass.
I've written about the benefits of glass before (click the photo to the post). But really its the best way to not only be eco-friendly but also get ugly BPA's and chemicals off and out of your body. Some easy ways to switch to glass is to use Mason Jars (such as Ball Canning) for drinking and storage. They are inexpensive for a set and can be used for many purposes. Also, keep an eye out for good glass pyrex sets. You can find good deals at stores like TJ Maxx and Big Lots. Don't forget about amazon too!

2. Recycle
This is a no brainer. But it isn't hard and is the best way to always be eco-friendly.

3. Shop more consciously
We have a say in what get's made and what is put on the grocery store shelves by what we buy. Next time you buy that conventional bag of rice. Look around, is there a better choice? Maybe an organic or non-gmo label is being hidden beneath the other products on the shelves. Stores get new products all the time, so keep an eye out and make the better/healthier choice!

4. Switch your cooking tools
Now this may be the most expensive of the 5 but if you do it right, you can do it! First off, use cast iron. Its pretty inexpensive to buy these pans if you find a good deal. I suggest following All Natural Savings, she posts deals on cast iron's from time to time. Cast iron pans have less chemicals than many non-stick pans. Here is a list of more reasons to use cast iron 
Next, is start swapping out old non-stick pans for ceramic. I got a set from my wonderful aunt for christmas. I LOVE them. So easy to clean and I know their aren't any harsh chemicals coming from the pans when I cook.

5. Check your beauty cabinet, and while your at it, check your cleaning cabinet too!
Now this is one I am constantly working on. But take a look in your cabinets. Put your products into EWG database, are they really eco-friendly and good for you??
 You'd be surprised how many brands say they are eco-friendly but are not. I wrote a post about this before and highly suggest starting to switch up bad products to better ones! Check that post out by clicking the photo below...

How are you being more eco-friendly this year! I'd love to hear your thoughts! 

gluten free

Easy Mexican Rice

7:30 AM

I've tried A LOT of rice recipes. Some have turned out well, others... not so much. This is by far my favorite rice recipe I've found and perfected. It's a perfect addition to that weekly Mexican meal!




INGREDIENTS
3TBS of Olive Oil
1 cup of brown rice (long grain)
1tsp of minced garlic
1/2tsp of kosher salt
1/2tsp cumin
1/2cup of tomato sauce
14oz of chicken broth

HOW TO MAKE IT
In a decent sized deep pot. Heat olive oil.
Add rice and cook till slightly brown. Stirring every so often so not to burn the rice to the pan.
Next, add garlic, salt, and cumin and cook till fragrant (about 2-3minutes).
Then add the tomato sauce and chicken broth. Bring to a boil.
Stir and cover and cook till the liquid is absorbed. Check on it and stir from time to time.


beyond meat

Black Bean Taco Skillet | Dairy and Gluten Free |

7:30 AM

I've become less and less of someone who makes resolutions every new year. Instead I use the new year to reset and strive to living and eating better. This year I think I am going to strive more to eat more vegan/plant based meals during the week. More then I already do. We will see how it goes but I'm hopeing for the best!


What You'll Need
1 Onion chopped
1 can Black Beans drained
2 cups Chicken Broth (while I haven't tried it I suppose you could use veggie broth as well for a vegan meal)
1 cup Tomato Sauce
1 cup Salsa
1 tbsp taco seasoning, I used my homemade recipe, add more if you want more spice
2 cups Uncooked Traditional or Gluten Free Pasta - any small type, I find shells to be the best -
Salt to Taste
How to Make It
In a very deep pan or pot, saute onion in a good amount of olive oil.
After about a minute or two add the Beef Crumbles and cook till warm
Mix in Black Beans, Mexican Seasoning, Chicken Broth, Tomato Sauce, and Salsa. Bring mixture to a boil.
Once the mixture is boiling add uncooked pasta, mix well, and cover.
Cook for 10 minutes stirring occasionally. After 10 minutes check the tenderness of pasta. If pasta is not tender cook for a couple more minutes.
Serve with whatever taco toppings you typically enjoy. Such as DF cheese, sour cream, lettuce, and chips.

about

About

1:22 PM

Hello!
My name is Samantha and welcome to my blog!

What is Simply Samantha!? 
Simply Samantha started out as just a fun little blog that I ran and used to interact with other bloggers. Around the time I started blogging I was having digestive and food intake issues. About a year after I started blogging and after many doctors appointments, Gluten Free living had to become a part of my life. 
In late 2013 I was getting married and also learning how to deal with living/eating in this new gluten-free lifestyle. That led to me creating gluten-free recipes that I wanted to share, and the start of that is what the blog has turned into today. 

What do you blog about?
Gluten free living isn't easy. It's easier then it used to be but sometimes finding recipes and ideas is hard. Trust me, I've spent countless hours scrolling through Pinterest and the numerous recipes on there. 
My goal with this blog is to share recipes that are simple and easy to make for those living a gluten-free lifestyle. I've even started incorporating not only gluten free but also dairy free recipes. I've found most people that have issues with gluten also have to limit their dairy intake (like myself). 
I also like to share easy tips and tricks for healthy and Eco friendly living. Keeping a healthy and even Eco-friendly lifestyle can be difficult but the more people share their ideas the easier it gets.
Did I also mention I love food? Because I do. 

Who's the tall man on your Instagram? 
That would be my husband. We've been together since 2012 and married since 2013. He is my taste tester (even when it includes dairy-free cheese he doesn't like ;) ), my support system, and the inspiration for some of my recipes. I am a Maryland born Floridan and he is Florida born and raised. His love for southern food inspires me to create better and healthier recipes with a southern flare. 

And that adorable dog on your instastories? 
That's Bruno Quill Riley (Quill as in Peter Quill from GOTG... yes #nerdalert). He's our fur baby. Rhodesian built, with Shepard alertness, and Lab playfulness. He is my vegan cheese lover and personal vacuum cleaner in the kitchen. Unless it's green and leafy, he won't touch that.

You love Social Media too?
Oh Lordy yes! So much so I've personally concentrated my Telecommunication degree in social media management and marketing. If you want to learn more or need some help ( I offer SMM services) you can click here or the Social Media Management link above! 

You say you love food, what kind of food do you eat? 
I say my diet is 80/20 - 80% vegetarian/vegan/plant-based and 20% Meat (chicken or fish).
Here is my stance on meat - I am not against meat as long as they are humanely raised and fed properly (aka grass fed/organic/no hormones). I grew up on a farm and we raised meat cows so I know what it takes for them to be raised and raised correctly. I don't like the industrial aspect of the U.S meat industry so I just don't support it.
-I don't eat or cook pork ever. It is just a preference.
-I RARELY eat beef. Only at Christmas when we get a roast from our old local butcher do I eat beef (and usually not that much). I grew up eating from that butcher shop and know the cows come from the field behind it so I know they are treated well.
-When it comes to chicken I really try to buy organic, humanely raised, antibiotic and hormone free chicken. Though my local grocery only has limited amounts of that so I usually can only get local antibiotic and hormone free. Which is better than nothing. But since that's all I can get we only eat it once a week at most.
-Any fish or shellfish I buy is wild caught. I never by farmed. It's usually Mahi Mahi, Tuna, or Salmon (on RARE occasions cause salmon is expensive wild caught)

I hope this gave you a little peek into who I am, how I eat, and why I blog. If you want some fun facts, head over to this blog post and see me answer some of your burning questions! - http://www.justsimplysamantha.com/2017/11/questions-and-answers.html

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Contact

10:26 AM

Hello! Thanks for clicking on that little contact tab above! 

Interested in promoting your product on my blog? 


I would be more than happy to review products from companies or anyone wishing to promote their products and services here on the Simply Samantha blog. I also love to host giveaways for products so that my readers can experience the product for themselves and share the product and company to their friends and fellow blog readers.
In many cases, I would like a free, non-returnable sample be provided in order to provide an honest and complete review.
My blog is a family friendly atmosphere and I only blog and or review products that are appropriate for my readers.

Why I'm qualified to promote your product...

I want to assure any future collaborators that I am confident in my social media skills in promoting your products.

My qualifications include -

  • Blogger for 5 years
  • Hootsuite Certified
  • Studies Telecommunication with a concentration in Social Media Management at the University of Florida
  • completed a Social Media Management course covering all aspects of social media.
If you are interested in letting me review your products you can contact me at

SimplySamanthaC@gmail.com

I can provide other information, such as analytics and data if needed.



If you would like to see some of the Reviews I've done please click the Reviews tab above.
Also below is my media kit with prices. 
I'm very flexible so please feel free to email me with any questions! 



Thank you so much and I look forward to working with you.