Spanish Brown Rice and Beans with Sausage - Juggling With JuliaLooking for some warm comfort food to snuggle your insides? I got you, babe. Here comes Spanish Brown Rice and Beans.  It’s exactly the kind of one-pot dish you need to kick off your week. Zippy and filling, it’s an absolute cinch to make. Better yet, it got the double-thumbs up from the boys and the hubs. They loved the bit of spice from the chili powder and cayenne, which complimented the rice, beans, and sausage perfectly.

What do I love about it, besides everything? The nerdy dietitian in me loves that you got fiber coming at you from all directions – brown rice AND beans, not to mention truckloads of B vitamins, protein, and minerals. And tons of energy in the form of carbohydrates. It’s literally a bowlful of POWER flanked by armies of antioxidant, disease-fighting nutrient ninjas just waiting on you to activate its abilities.

And three EASY steps is all it takes. Saute the onions and sausage. Pour in the rest of the ingredients. Simmer while you check Instagram.


How’s that possible? We’re going with the KISS principle, once again.


In a KISS kitchen, you use convenience items that won’t require you to give up your good health principles.
–>frozen brown rice (best invention ever).
–>frozen chopped onions if you like (no tears? nailed it.)
–>canned tomato sauce (making your own is so last decade)

So….there’s really no excuse. Make this!
Spanish Brown Rice and Beans with Sausage - Juggling With JuliaSpanish Brown Rice and Beans
Serves 6

Prep time:     15 minutes         Cook time: 20 minutes

1 pound sausage, bulk (or removed from casings)
1/2 cup onion, diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
1 15-ounce can small red beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups cooked brown rice
1 and 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
plain Greek yogurt* optional topping
sliced jalapeno* optional topping
hot sauce* optional topping

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and saute 1-2 minutes, then add sausage and cook until browned, stirring occasionally (about 5 minutes more). Add the tomato sauce, beans, rice, and spices. Cover and simmer on low for 10-15 minutes. Serve warm topped with plain Greek yogurt, sliced jalapeno, and/or hot sauce.



Simple Cold-Brewed Coffee for Summer -- Juggling with JuliaLet’s talk about coffee, shall we? Specifically, how my ‘here and there’ caffeine habit – delivered nowadays via homemade cold-brewed iced coffee – has transformed into a daily necessity.
Simple Cold-Brewed Coffee for Summer -- Juggling with JuliaI do it for you, really. And for my family, and the cat, and anyone else who depends on me to be coherent, alert, reliable, or even entertaining. And certainly for anybody who happens to be driving the streets at the same time as me. Trust me, most days I shouldn’t be operating a hairbrush, never mind a minivan, without my daily dose of liquid lightening.

See? My daily coffee habit really is for the Greater Good.
Simple Cold-Brewed Coffee for Summer -- Juggling with JuliaWhen exactly did I become this person? I can’t quite pin it down. I’ve always loved a little jolt of caffeine. But, I never required it. Now, in my late 40′s and scrambling down that slippery slope to the big 5-0, it is clear that  I’m more alert, more productive, and, honestly, more ME with my daily dose of of everybody’s favorite psychoactive compound. I dare say I’m bolder and more confident, too, not to mention better looking and a wee bit taller :)

So, while I don’t know exactly when I became this person, I am totally OK with it.

Why? Coffee and caffeine are some of the most studied foodstuffs out there. In addition to caffeine, coffee is chock-full of antioxidants. After decades of research it seems that, for the generally healthy population, regular coffee-drinking is likely not only safe, but may actually be beneficial to your health, decreasing your risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and depression.

Is there a down side? For some, the caffeine in coffee can make them jittery, increase anxiety, or affect sleep (try decaf and/or limiting caffeine intake to early in the day). For others, that grande double-pump vanilla latte with whipped cream is a 400-calorie calamity (keep it simple, use lower fat dairy, and limit added sugar).

For me, I’m happy with my simple half caff over lots of crushed ice with just a touch of half-and-half. It’s my daily beauty treatment/mood elevator/attitude adjuster/brain waker upper with just a dash of kick-assery I pretty much can’t live without.

And I do it all for you :)


Pumpkin Spice Cookies with Dark Chocolate

October 18, 2015 Appetizers & Snacks
Pumpkin Spice Cookies with Dark Chocolate -- Juggling With Julia

It’s hard to know what to say about these Pumpkin Spice Cookies with Dark Chocolate. It’s hard to say because they were gone in a flash. I did manage to get my mouth around one of them, the notorious and ornery cookie known as Grumpy Pumpy: All I remember is a drive-by assault of cinnamon, […]

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Apple Cabbage Slaw with Greek Yogurt Dressing

September 30, 2015 Salads/Sides
Apple Cabbage Slaw with Greek Yogurt Dressing -- Juggling With Julia

Howdy, friends! Hasn’t this been one killer September? Cool mornings, warm and sunny days, and a gorgeous blue sky – I just can’t get enough. Just to clear, I’m still a HUGE fan of the lazy days of summer. I’m certainly not putting my flip flops away until I have to. But, there is no […]

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Southwestern BLT with Avocado Salsa

September 20, 2015 Bacon
Southwestern BLT with Avocado Salsa -- Juggling With Julia

There are few things I love more than a BLT that is stuffed with veggies. A little yin to go with the yang. Crisp, savory bacon with an abundance of lettuce and deep red tomatoes. And Lord knows I’m an avocado addict. Today’s palate-pleaser – a Southwestern BLT with Avocado Salsa – combines these two […]

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7 Pumpkin Treats to Pump You Up for Autumn

September 7, 2015 Appetizers & Snacks
Pretzels Stuffed with Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting -- Juggling With Julia

It’s coming and we can’t stop it…cooler night, shorter days, and crisp leaves under our feet. WAHHHHH! We could grump around and mourn the loss of summer all month long. But, I thought – this year – maybe we could try to make the best of it with some pumpkin-powered treats. Whaddya say, who’s with […]

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Creamy Corn and Potato Chowder

August 27, 2015 Chili/Soup/Stew
Creamy Corn and Potato Chowder -- Juggling with Julia

Purple potatoes. I saw them while browsing around the local farmer’s market yesterday and on the spot decided “That’s what for dinner.” But in exactly what way would they delight my palate? On the drive home I contemplated my options. Roasted alongside pork? Pan-fried with onion? Filling for a frittata? Nope, nothing seem to be […]

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Simple Cold-Brewed Coffee for Summer

August 22, 2015 Beverages
Simple Cold-Brewed Coffee for Summer -- Juggling with Julia

The coffeemaker broke about a month ago. Considering my recent tumble into a love affair with iced coffee, this was a potentially devastating event. Discovering cold-brewed coffee saved me. Without it, in fact, I would not have survived to tell this tale. Overly dramatic? Of course. But consider this: I love iced coffee with the […]

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Whole Grain Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins

July 26, 2015 Breads/Quick Breads
Whole Grain Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins -- Juggling With Julia

Hello all and happy mid-summer! I’m back from two weeks in northern New England – first in coastal Maine, and then lakeside in Western Maine. Super relaxing with bits of fun here and there fit in. A hike up Bald Rock Trail in Camden, Maine led to some beautiful views: Later in the week, the […]

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Coffee on the Porch

July 5, 2015 Food tours
Coffee on the Porch visit -- Juggling With Julia

I swoon at the smell of freshly brewing coffee. I love to put my face right into a bag of freshly roasted beans and breathe it in. I love coffee ice cream, mocha drinks (like my beloved-yet-expensive ‘adult chocolate milk’ at Starbucks), and meat rubs with robust  coffee flavors (like my favorite barbecued pork tenderloin […]

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