Fireworks & A Special Guest {Krysta @ My Life In Food}

Whoa, back to reality.

How was everyone's 4th of July weekend? Did you get to see plenty of fireworks? We had such an amazing holiday weekend on the lake with all of Billy's family and then we came back into town yesterday just in time to enjoy fireworks in my hometown with my parents. Dublin {aka hometown} always has such an awesome fireworks show and performers that play...2 years ago Boys II Men came and this year Smoky Robinson was there. I'm not his biggest fan, but girl can get down with some oldies.

I'm really thankful for the short week after such a fun but exhausting weekend. Pictures from our weekend are being pushed back until tomorrow because I haven't had time to upload but here are 2 that I took on my iPhone..

I subjected Rocky to pictures,
 even though he was half asleep.

festive nails

Besides, today I have a much better post for you. Thee amazing Krysta, from My Life in Food, is here to do a guest post for me sharing two versions of a chocolate shake. Girl KNOWS what I like ;) Krysta is such a sweet, down-to-earth mommy and wife with an amazing cooking ability and I have loved getting to know her over these past few months. Oh, and she's gorgeous too. 


yeah..see? They are so precious.

I'll let Krysta take it away!
But make sure you visit her blog afterwards - you & your taste buds won't regret it.


Before I begin, I want to say a big thank you to Katie for allowing me to take over her site today. Her blog is one of my personal favorites to read and it's fun to get to guest post today!

Hi. I'm Krysta. This all began last week when I mentioned that one of the things I enjoy is being able to take a recipe I love and tweak it to make it lighter. What's better is if I can take a recipe, tweak it and make it both healthier and lighter. This formula only works for me if the tweaked version tastes just as good as the original. It can be different, but it has to be just as good or I won't fiddle with it. I'd rather eat less of the real thing than more of something that tastes like cardboard. I told Katie that I often wonder why I don't run a food blog based on foods that are all tweaked and engineered for great flavor without all the calories and guilt. Then,  I remember that sadly, I love butter too much. And whipped cream. Really, the whole reason that I work out and watch what I eat a lot of the time is so that I can eat whatever I want, whenever I want the rest of the time.

Can I get an Amen?

My goal today is to share two versions of a chocolate shake. The first version is a typical slimmed down recipe of a classic chocolate shake. The second is actually a healthy alternative to a chocolate shake for people who are concerned with eating whole foods and getting a lot of nutrition without a lot of added sugar. I'll tell you right now that both are delicious. I am providing both recipes in hopes that there can be something for everybody based on your personal preferences and goals.

First I'll talk about version number one: the Guilt Free Chocolate Shake. This happens to be one of my new favorite low calorie treats. It meets most of the criteria from the first paragraph. I say most because while it delivers in the taste department and is low in calories, it is still not classified as "healthy" since I didn't get crazy and add spinach to it or anything. Your welcome. If I didn't tell you this was guilt free, you would never know by the taste. Seriously. I don't joke about this stuff. This shake has a deep, rich cocoa flavor like a truffle and is bittersweet and icy cold.  I make this with chocolate sorbet which has almost the same calories as a typical chocolate ice cream. The difference is when you use sorbet, there is no fat. In my testing, I originally made this with skim milk. It was very good, but I gotta say that when I tried it with unsweetened vanilla almond milk (it's right next to the regular milk in the grocery store) it was a bit creamier which made it even better with less calories! Skim milk is about 45 calories per 1/2 cup serving with 6 grams of sugar, while unsweetened vanilla almond milk is 20 calories with no added sugar. Score!


Guilt Free Chocolate Shake


1/2 cup chocolate sorbet
1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk, or skim milk
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
6 ice cubes

Blend all ingredients together until thoroughly combined. When made with the unsweetened vanilla almond milk: 150 calories per serving. When made with skim milk: 175 calories per serving

I can't take credit for this second version, although I really, really want to.

I give you without further ado, The Raw Chocolate Milkshake Miracle. The ingredients called for in this recipe might seem a bit foreign to you. Not by themselves, but just...together. If you are familiar with vegan desserts this might not seem all that nutty, but for everyone else out there, allow me to invite you to just lean in a little bit. This shake is made with the following ingredients:

Just to clarify, that's an avocado, a frozen banana, cocoa, and almonds that have been soaked a few hours in water to soften them up (if you use sliced almonds, rather than whole, you can just cover them with water and they will be soft and ready to use within a few hours. If you use whole almonds, soak them overnight). Agave nectar, water and ice cubes make up the rest. This shake comes out satisfyingly sweet and insanely silky and thick like soft serve ice cream. The first time I tried it I might have yelled "shut the front door!" I couldn't believe how much I actually liked it. This shake has a larger calorie count than the first, but it offers a huge nutritional profile that makes up for it. Not only are you only consuming whole, healthy foods but you are also getting all the fiber, protein and healthy fats that go along with it which in turn satisfies and keeps you full. Honestly, I'd swap health for calories most any day. It works out to your benefit in the long run. Because this shake is such a nutritionally dense superstar it very well could be a suitable breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert. This recipe makes two servings so feel free to half it or share with someone else. I'll bet you make this one a lot even if it's only to serve to your unassuming friends. You can scream that they are drinking blended cocoa and avocados <i>after</i> they have taken their first gulp. Admit it. You know your going to. This is the drink in all it's glory...

I'm going to write the recipe using regular old cocoa powder as the alternative chocolate agent in this drink. The original recipe uses raw cacao powder which looks, smells and tastes the same as the regular stuff but is very nutritionally different. If you buy certified organic raw cacao it contains vitamins and enzymes that the Hershey's brand just doesn't have. However, I know a lot of you don't have it in your pantry and I would hate to make you buy a specialty ingredient for this one recipe. Feel free to use either, but know that if you can get the organic raw cacao you are getting much more nutritional bang for your buck with no nasty chemicals from pesticides and irradiation that is common practice in the growing of cacao beans.

Raw Chocolate Milkshake Miracle
adapted from My new roots


1/4 cup almonds that have been soaked in water and drained
2 heaping tablespoons raw cacao powder (or regular cocoa powder)
1 avocado
1 very large frozen banana
2 tablespoons agave, raw honey, or real maple syrup
dash of sea salt
3/4 to 1 cup water (I used closer to 1 cup
4 ice cubes

Blend all the ingredients together thoroughly; add more water to thin if desired. It's a thick one, folks! The tally on this comes to just about 300 calories per serving.  I have read several times that if you can get a breakfast or dessert for around 300 calories you are doing very well for yourself. Most desserts are easily two and three times more than that which puts you in the 900 calorie range. Just some food for thought. :)


Wow..I'm really hungry now..or thirsty. whichever.

THANK YOU Krysta for sharing these recipes!
I cannot wait to try them. You are awesome :)

Go visit her blog for more rockin' recipes!!


  1. so fun! love those nails, they're festive but not over-the-top!

  2. The raw shake looks so good!!

    Love the nails! :) I didn't even notice mine WEREN'T festive yesterday until my roommate told me I wasn't patriotic for not painting them red!

  3. Love your dress! And definitely going to have to try those shakes!

  4. Ooooh, that milkshake looks delicious!! xoxo

  5. love that little dress! Too cute. Yeah ashley and I work together. Shes the one who first showed me your blog ;)

  6. Loving that pup pic and those nails are so cute! I love healthy snakes. Its the perfect meal replacement.

  7. Yay! Thanks for letting me guest post! I love your nails!

  8. your nails are so cute!! and great guest post--they sound delicious!

  9. Love your adorable little outfit (and the adorable little Rocky!) Your nails are cute, too! I'm totally in need of some nail glitter.

    Awesome guest post! I've been needing some slimmed down recipes to satisfy this sweet tooth of mine :) Can't wait to check out her blog!

  10. Already tried the avocado business and it's awesome. I halved the avocado because I don't like the after taste of an avocado plain, and that did the trick!!! Thanks krysta

  11. hi katie,
    i'm a recently new follower! i love your blog. your festive nails are so cute and what a great milkshake recipe. hope you had a great holiday weekend!

  12. First, you looked so cute in your dress! Second, I am super intrigued by this shake...looks yummy! Glad you had a great weekend! :)

  13. that shake looks every shade of amazeballs!

    and im dying over your dress and fur-baby accessory!

  14. LOVE your dress and I really can't wait to try those milk shakes. The 2nd one seems different but I'm totally willing to give it a chance. Love all those things separate so why not together.

  15. Your dress is gorg! And these shakes sound amazing, I love that the last one has a little salt in it -- salt + chocolate are such an amazing combo. Can't wait to try these!

  16. Love that raw chocolate shake recipe -- going to try that out. Agreed that I believe in nutrients before calorie counting. However, to add a point: not only will true raw chocolate add more nutrients, but you can try to find Fair Trade raw chocolate as well. Most chocolate -- including that used by Hershey's -- is grown using child labor and slavery. So I wouldn't consider a chocolate shake "guilt free" until I was using Fair Trade chocolate.


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