Category Archives: Costco Hack

Chicken Meatballs + Veggies (easy one pan meal!) Gluten free + Paleo + Whole30 + Costco Hack

Sooooo…. What do all kids like?  Never mind, what does everyone like?


I frequently use meatballs to hide a ton of veggies in a meal, when I don’t really want to make a seperate salad.

We were down the teenage boy for this meal, so I went with a one pot meal with no extra carbs.Ingredients

  • 2 packages of Coleman Organic Chicken and Basil Meatballs
  • 1 White Onion
  • Olive Oil (or oil of choice) I just drizzle, but maybe 2 Tablespoons.
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger (I cheat and use this)
  • 1 teaspoon crushed garlic (I use this, but woah…go to the store! It’s a fraction of the cost)
  • 8 Organic Bella Mushrooms
  • 3 organic Rainbow Carrots (regular are just as good-not as pretty though ;))
  • 1 Jar of Pasta Sauce
  • 4-5 handfuls of Power Green Mix which is spinach, baby chard, and kale)


  • Use a pretty large non stick pan, and add in the garlic, ginger, and oil of choise
  • Dice up the onion and add it in.
  • While the onion is sauteing dice up your other veggies.  I honestly just use whatever I have on hand.  I’ve subbed in various sweet peppers or even broccoli.  Add whatever you have in.
  • Once they are almost al dente add in your meatballs.  I like to get them cooking with the veggies to impart their flavor a little bit.
  • Once everything is almost ready, add in the hand fulls of greens.  It doesn’t have to be mixed.  Just spinach would be good!  If it’s all kale, I would add it in sooner due to the toughness of kale.
  • Top it all off with a jar of your fav spaghetti sauce and your good!
  • Frequently I’ll add in these gluten free noodles (can be bought in smaller quantities at Thrive Market or in bulk at Costco.  We LOVE them not only for their flavor but QUICKNESS to cook!) . Or you could easily add zoodles to keep it dietary compliant!

None of this is sponsored.  We just live by the easy shopping of Costco, Trader Joe’s, and Thrive Market.  And are happy to share the easy cooking to be had from there!


Thai Chicken, Broccoli, and Peppers with Healthy Noodles

This is one of those recipes that I repeat A LOT!!  In it’s most basic form, I posted it here, but I mix it up all the time with what I add to it.  The sauce is just so good!!  And SO EASY!Blog Healthy Thai Broccoli Pepper Chicken with Noodles-1

For Sauce

    • 1/2 cup Almond Butter (use Sun Butter for Nut free or any nut butter if you don’t have any dietary restrictions!)
    • 1/2 Cup Coconut Milk (I used Light, but full fat would be amazing too!)
    • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
    • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
    • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
    • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger (I cheat and use this)
    • 1 Cup Water

For the rest of the dish…

    • 2-3 bags of Healthy Noodles (or can use any noodle, quinoa, or skip it!)
    • 4-6 Chicken Breasts.  Depends on how many people you have and how soupy you want it.  I use 6 and grill them on our grill.  Less clean up and the flavor is so good!
    • 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
    • Salt and Pepper to taste
    • 1 head of Broccoli
    • 1/2 of each of a yellow, red, and orange pepper
    • 1 small onion diced


  • Marinate chicken breasts in olive oil, salt, and pepper and cook on BBQ 8-10 minutes each side (depending on size) or cube the chicken breasts and cook in a large pan with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper.
  • While Chicken is cooking outside, chop all your veggies.Blog Healthy Thai Broccoli Pepper Chicken with Noodles-3
  • Add a couple Tablespoons of olive oil (I add garlic too!) and cook onions til soft (5-8 minutes)
  • Add in broccoli and peppers and cover to steam cook for 2 minutes.  Just THIS is delicious, so you could stop right here 🙂Blog Healthy Thai Broccoli Pepper Chicken with Noodles-4
  • In a blender, combine 1 cup water with the whatever nut butter you choose, rice vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, and ginger. Blend until smooth.
  • Rinse out the noodles with water (that’s IT!!  NO COOKING THEM!!)Blog Healthy Thai Broccoli Pepper Chicken with Noodles-5
  • Add the sauce and noodles to the pan, stir, and let sit for 2 minutes to soak in all the flavor of the sauce.  Again…you could stop here if you wanted to keep it vegetarian.  SO yummy!Blog Healthy Thai Broccoli Pepper Chicken with Noodles-6
  • Once Chicken is cooked, dice and add on top.  I added Sriracha to mine for a little kick, and it was SO good!!  Blog Healthy Thai Broccoli Pepper Chicken with Noodles-2Enjoy!

4 Ingredient Quinoa + Sun Butter + Maple Syrup + Hemp Seed Protein Balls

I may be alone here, but I don’t think I am.  As a busy mom, granola bars/protein bars are kind of a must to survive.  Both for us and our kids!!  Grab on the go.  Or in between snack that you want to feel ok giving them, BUT…so many have a LOT of ingredients that you may or may not be ok with, but you do it anyways, because….SURVIVAL.  And…they can be really expensive if you don’t buy them in bulk.  I’ve been dying to make my own, but it seemed like a LOT of work.  SO….I abbreviated my efforts and went simple.  As I do… 😉

One day, I’ll blog about a simple, inexpensive, healthy protein bar, but until then… 😉

These are not a dessert, although, I convinced Maya they were for a few nights haha.  More like a healthy snack to tide you over 🙂Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-1 Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-2Ingredients (Made 34 Balls)

  • 1 Cup uncooked Quinoa
  • 6 Tablespoons Sun Butter
  • 1/4 Cup Organic Pure Maple Syrup
  • 6 Tablespoons Hemp Seeds (for rolling-btw, OBSESSED with Hemp Seeds right now!!  If you’re interested in the health benefits, read here.  Oh, and they’re yummy!)

(All these ingredients I found at Costco.  NOT in any way sponsored, but just an easy “Mama cooking for the masses” FYI ;))


  • Cook Quinoa as directed (I did mine in my rice cooker and it took me 30 seconds of prep, but about 30-45 minutes to wait :))
  • Stir in Sun Butter and Maple SyrupBlog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-3 The reward of licking the measuring cup…who could deny such a thing??!!Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-4 Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-5 Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-6
  • Take 1 Tablespoon amounts and form into balls
  • Roll the balls in hemp seeds.Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-7
  • Refrigerate for an hour in a air tight container and store for future snacking 🙂



Healthy Bake at Home Pizza

Some nights pizza just sounds good.  Ok, most nights pizza sounds good haha, but that’s not going to happen… I love trying to make healthy options that our teenage boys will still like.  Do they like it as good as our favorite delivery?  No…but they still chow it down, and I feel good.  Oh, and it’s pretty easy too!blog Costco Healthy Cheese Pizza Aidells Chicken Sausage Peppers Avocado Basil-1Ingredients

  • Pizza crust or ready made frozen cheese pizza of your choice (you can find gluten free options easily now!)  I used Costco’s Frozen Cheese pizza-not greasy at ALL!
  • Aidell’s Chicken Sausage (I used apple), diced.  Amount varies on how many you are feeding.
  • Red, Yellow, and Orange Bell Peppers (diced) Amound varies on how many you are feeding.
  • 1 Avocado diced
  • Handful of Basilblog Costco Healthy Cheese Pizza Aidells Chicken Sausage Peppers Avocado Basil-2What to do
  • LOAD the pizza up with the chicken sausage and peppers.  That way, everyone is filling up on healthy stuff!  Cook as per directions.
  • Once cooked, top with avocado and basil and serve it up!

blog Costco Healthy Cheese Pizza Aidells Chicken Sausage Peppers Avocado Basil-3 blog Costco Healthy Cheese Pizza Aidells Chicken Sausage Peppers Avocado Basil-4Enjoy!dit-elle-Lauren

Costco’s Garlic Pepper Pacific Cod with Mango and Avocado Salsa

I seriously could eat this salsa on everything!  And…when mangos are in season, we do haha.

I cheated and used Costco’s already marinated cod.  Didn’t feel guilty about it at all, because it’s so yummy!  You could easily grill up any kind of fish with a little oil of choice, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste!Blog Whole 30 Costco Garlic Cod with Paleo Mango Avocado Salsa-1Ingredients (for Salsa)

  • 2 Mangos cut into 1/2 inch cubes.
  • 1 1/2 medium avocados
  • 20 Cherry tomatoes diced
  • 1/4 cup Walla Walla sweet onions diced
  • Juice from 1/2 a lime
  • 5 leaves of fresh Basil diced
  • Sea Salt and Pepper to taste
  • As many filets as you need.


  • Cut everything up and toss in a bowl!
  • Or….if you are short on time, toss everything into a Cuisinart and pulse a few times.
  • Bake fish according to directions and top with salsa.   EASY PEASEY!!Blog Whole 30 Costco Garlic Cod with Paleo Mango Avocado Salsa-2 Blog Whole 30 Costco Garlic Cod with Paleo Mango Avocado Salsa-3


Costco Hack- Grilled Chicken and Onion Salad with Kale, Broccoli, and Avocado

As a working mother of 2 teenage stepsons and a toddler, dinners aren’t always what I imagine or want them to be.  If I can make them reasonably healthy, easy, and edible I count it as a major win!  So, you know who gets a lot of our grocery business?  Costco!  I don’t have the time, patience or wallet to go to all the various grocery stores, and if you have a bigger family-Costco is a home run.  So, I do a lot of what I like to call “Costco Hacks”.  The term “Ikea Hack” has become pretty well known as a term of making something inexpensive into something that doesn’t look inexpensive at all, and I think that the same can be made of food!

You can totally do that with Costco/Trader Joe’s too!  Especially if you have a family.  Gather a bunch of ingredients, and then make them into meals that are healthy, relatively easy, and enjoyable across the board!  And above all…share with the rest of us!!!

So…for my first official “Costco Hack” installment… Everything in this salad is from Costco.

And sadly, I know I could have made it look better, but I got the idea to take pictures after I had tossed it all together.  Which jumbled it all and made it look messy.  I guarantee it tasted a LOT better than it looked 🙂

There’s something about the grilled onion diced up into the salad.  It added such a yummy flavor, that I do it almost every time we grill for dinner!Blog Costco Grilled Chicken and Onion Kale Avocado Brussel Sprout Salad-3 Blog Costco Grilled Chicken and Onion Kale Avocado Brussel Sprout Salad-2 Blog Costco Grilled Chicken and Onion Kale Avocado Brussel Sprout Salad-1Ingredients

  • 4 Individual Chicken Breasts (frozen then defrosted)
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • Olive oil and salt and pepper to coat both chicken and onions (to taste)
  • 1 Avocado
  • Handful of Cherry Tomatos
  • 2 Handfuls of Mixed Greens
  • 2 Handfuls of the “Sweet Kale Frise Chou Doux” Mix
  • One pouch of the Poppyseed Dressing.
  • Cheese of your choice.  I was going to do some goat cheese, but I had some Parmesan on hand and that was yummy too.  A little goes a long way with all the other flavors, so use sparingly and it will still be delicious!


  • Heat your grill to medium heat.
  • Marinate defrosted chicken in olive oil and salt and pepper
  • Slice your onion to 1/2 inch thickness and coat with olive oil and salt and pepper
  • Place Chicken Breasts and Onions slices on grill for 8-10 minutes (depending on size) then flip and cook again for 8-10 minutes (depending on size)
  • Toss the various greens together.
  • Add Avocado and tomatoes.
  • Once chicken and onions are done, dice them up and add them to the mix.
  • Sprinkle with cheese of your choice, add dressing and toss to ENJOY!