How to Prep for a big family dinner

In the words of Clark Griswold, “I did it”…. Lol now if you don’t know what Im talking about then I suggest you watch my all time favourite Christmas classic- National Lampoons Christmas vacation and you’ll get it ! HA!

Bring you up to speed my hubby and I hosted a huge Thanksgiving dinner for 48 people. Are closest family and friends attended and man it was awesome! So if you wondering why would I want to do this or how much would that cost, then i’ll explain 🙂

First off I love Thanksgiving it has to be one of my favourite holidays! I love bringing my closest family and friends together over FOOD, my love in life 🙂

Why would I want to do that is simple I love family and togetherness, Im an only child so being around family has always been super important to me since I had no brothers and sisters growing up my cousins and aunts became like a second family to me.  So I’m thankful!

Ok So just like meal prepping for the week,planning a big dinner is no different. Lists and planning what to make and what you can make in advance is key. Now I know that turkeys here in Canada usually go on sale the beginning of October, so this is when I call up every save on food grocery store near by and ask for the biggest turkey they have.

I picked up two turkeys, one a 32 pound bird the other a 15 pound bird (feeding that many I needed a second) and at 99 cents a pound I bought them both for just under $50 bucks !

The rest of my shop was done the Monday prior where I picked up most of the dinner items : Potatoes(4 pound bag ) , 3 loafs of bread , 1 bag of carrots, 3 packs of sausage, 2 heads of cauliflower, 2 heads of Broccoli , 2 packs of eggs, 1 large Ham for roast (on sale as well, 99 cents a pound) 2 bags of cranberry’s (No I don’t use canned and I never will, and to be perfectly honest I use the recipe on the bag its so easy, I do sub in for brown organic sugar instead of white sugar ) I also bought cups and dishes for the dinner I know that sucks with paper plates but honesty I don’t own that many dishes nor would I want to clean that! So my total for that bill was $246.

I picked up the reminder of my fresh veggies such as brussel sprouts and veggies for my vegetable platter on the Thursday prior, which was another $28 bucks. Each night from Tuesday until Sunday Thanksgiving dinner I prepped ! Making broccoli bakes one night , peeling carrots and potatoes, making the cranberries , even making my stuffing for the turkeys in advance. I cooked my smaller bird on the Saturday and the big bird on the Sunday , which I was up at 4am to do .. Brutal lol

The more you can make ahead of the big day the better!  Another bonus I asked my family members if they could bring an appie, salad or desert to dinner. In my family we have always brought a dish of some sort to a family event, it helps the host and its a way to be creative and make your favourite dish.

We did shell out $150 on wine, beer, juice and pop for everyone as well. So in total the dinner and party cost around $500 bucks which works out to an average of $11 bucks a person. Im not trying to be cheep in any way I just wanted to give you guys some ideas and how to be helpful in planning to host a big dinner 🙂

Again having each family member bring a dish helps tremendously! So plan, shop for the deals, make lists and ask for help 🙂 Happy Thanksgiving everyone!




Why do I love pumpkin let me tell you the ways lol

when you think of pumpkins you think of pumpkin spice lattes and jack-o-lanters, or maybe even a costco pumpkin pie hahah come September I swear there all over the place !

But did you know the endless health benefits that pumpkins have? Your love the jelly, belly stupid round things even more after you read this 😛

1.Pumpkins are rich in fibre , one cup of puree pumpkin is more than two slices of whole grain bread , plus it keeps you filling fuller longer

2. Pumpkin is a low cal super star as well with less than 50 calories per serving

3. They come in all shapes and sizes just like people the reason why I love em the most !  That’s  Mrs. cannon’s Kitchen fact lol

4.Pumpkins are packed in beta Carotene which converts to vitamin A in the body,perfect for Skin & optical health! One cup of pumpkin contains over 200 percent of most peoples recommended daily vitamin A intake!

5.Better Immunity ! A large dose or the P is a large dose of Vitamin A again which can help fight and ward off bacterial and fungal infections . Plus pumpkin is packed with 20 percent of the recommend vitamin C intake thus fighting off cold season have your pumpkin in hand

6. Don’t throw out the seeds! The seeds are packed with a variety of magnisum, protein, help fight free radicals , Zinc for immune support, Omega -3’s theses little babies have it all!



Now don’t even get me started on baking and cooking with pumpkin!!! So easy and non drying!!! No to forget flavor town city ! If you follow me you’ll know I love to create less guilt free treats with just as much flavor and taste as the original ones … Thus why I created the ever so popular


  • 1  1/2 scoop Salted caramel Quattro protein
  • 1/2 Cup vanilla Almond milk
  • 1/3 Cup Pumpkin Puree
  • 1 tbs. Cinnamon
  • 1/3 Cup water
  • 1 Starbucks instant coffee packs (original pike place flavor)


Makes a grande size latte, feel free to double the recipe for two 🙂 In small sauce pot bring water, almond milk and pumpkin to a simmer. Add in Quattro and cinnamon whisk everything together until blended. Serve with coconut whip cream if desired 🙂

For Grande size (including 4 tbsp. of coconut whip!! ) –

Cals -263 Carbs-21  Fats-6.2 Protein 31.1


Traditional Starbucks Grande PSL- Cals -380 Carbs- 52g Fats-14g Protein -14g!!!



Exp mine is full of protein and packed with everything good for you ! So keep the spice save on the calories!

Now there are some items that I would choose to leave the pumpkin out of …. Really this is a thing ??? Like WOoooooooW


Go Bananas for Gluten free!

Little over two weeks to go until Olympia with team Magnum! So excited !! My prep for this has been going really well too, even with cutting my macros down,  my energy levels are still high! I’m lifting like a boss and feeling over all pretty fantastic!

Sooo another note, my lovely hubby has come home for a few weeks (he works out of town alot) which is tough but its what we have been doing for a long time so it works for us. When he is home my grocery bills and baking doubles even triples lol

His all time favourite treat have to be carrot cake & banana bread so since I’m cutting and even not eating my healthy baking for the next few weeks, I have my bottomless pit of a husband I can feed ;p

I recently teamed up with a Vancouver based company Called “Sweet Monk sweetener. Too add to my stellar Quattro baked goods, I used this in today’s recipe and man is it tasty! Even just on a rice cake with almond butter is amazing! And you don’t need much at all in fact its such a small amount that goes along ways. Check it out below



What is inside a bottle of SweetMonk?

Monk fruit extract.

What exactly is monk fruit?

It is a small round fruit native to Southern China and Northern Thailand. It’s traditional name is “luo han guo”. Luo han translates to “monk” and guo is “fruit” in Chinese. Thought to be named after the Buddhist monks who first cultivated the fruit some 800 years ago. It has been used for centuries in these countries to treat diabetes, digestion issues and obesity. 

How is SweetMonk sweetener created?

We choose to use pure monk fruit extract.

It is created by removing the seeds and skin of the fruit and using a hot water extracting method to extract the “mogrosides”. They contain no sugar but are up to 200 times sweeter than sugar. 

Does SweetMonk contain any artificial ingredients?

No. SweetMonk does not contain any artificial ingredients.

Does SweetMonk contain fructose/sugars?

No. You might be wondering how this is possible because it is derived from a fruit. It is because the “mogrosides” are extracted and they contain the sweetness as well as antioxidants but no fructose / glucose.

How does monk fruit compare to other natural sweeteners?

Monk fruit has some similarities to other natural sweeteners but also some key differences. Monk fruit and stevia both come from natural sources, monk fruit from a fruit and stevia from a leaf. The main difference is in the aftertaste, many people cannot tolerate the aftertaste of stevia but find monk fruit does not have an aftertaste. Sugar alcohols ex: xylitol & erythritol are not always calorie free and some have an impact on glycemic index and are not always digested well. Agave is also becoming more popular as a sugar alternative. It contains sugar and calories and due to the high amount of fructose it contains it can cause digestion issues and bloating for some people. 

Who is using monk fruit?

You might be surprised to learn that many household names are starting to use monk fruit into their products. Brands such as Starbucks, Nestle, Dole and Zevia are using monk fruit to reduce sugar content while maintaining great taste!

Why would I use SweetMonk sweetener?

If you are trying to reduce the amount of sugar and/or artificial foods in your diet.

It is an all natural, zero calorie and delicious way to sweeten food and beverages. The extract is 200 times sweeter than sugar and also contains antioxidants! It has no impact on blood glucose levels which makes it a great option for diabetics. What more could you ask for. 

Because monk fruit is so sweet, just a little is needed so sweeten your favourite foods and beverages.

Try it in: coffee, tea, plain yogurt, smoothies, protein shakes, oatmeal and homemade popsicles.

SweetMonk is vegan, kosher and gluten free.

Too good to be true?

This is what we thought too. A zero calorie, all natural sweetener that tastes great, is easy to digest and even contains antioxidants! New to us but it has been used  for centuries in Asian countries. Due to increasing consumer demands for sugar alternatives and healthier options, companies are searching for something to satisfy today’s modern consumer. Monk fruit is an obvious choice. 

Check em out on Instagram or on there site

Tell them Heidi sent you ;p


So Today’s super chocolatey Banana loaf !

  • 1 Scoop Vanilla Quattro protein
  • 1 Tbs Sweet Monk
  • 1/4 Cup chocolate chips
  • 2 Ripe bananas
  • 3 tsp. Natural peanut butter
  • 1/3 Cup coconut flour
  • 1/3 Cup apple sauce
  • 1 Tsp baking soda
  • 1 Cup oatmeal

Mash banana and mix all wet ingredients together . Slowly fold in dry ingredients, pour into a lined baking tin (I use parchment paper). Sprinkle extra chocolate chips on top (optional )

Bake at 400 for 30 -35  Minutes

Recipes makes 8 slices each slice contains

Cals- 99 Carbs- 10g Fats-3.2g Protein -4.75g

Summer Go to guilt free snacks

Who doesn’t get snacky at times ? Lol especially in summer! I find mid day to be the worst for me I crave salty things for sure!! As much a I enjoy baking and sweet  things I love a good salty snack! If you follow me you’ll know that im prepping for Olympia and photo shoots. Im sticking to my allotted macros per day but I have also come up with a way to incorporate some snacks that I down right LOVE!!


My go to salty treat – Special K crackers Original (you can buy them at most Walmart or grocery stores ) OMG they are sooo good there so crunchy and salty AHHh I love them ! Best part they are 80 Cals per 19 chips ! Ruffly works out to be one cup 🙂 I love to dip them in salsa ! Which there are so many low cal salsa on the market Old El Paso is 30 cals for 6 tbsp.

Throw out the RANCH dressing this is the worst! Swap it for this Mrs. Cannon’s veggie dip

  • 1 cup of Greek yogurt Plain
  • 4 tbsp. Oh My Spice garlic lovers spice
  • 4 Tbsp. OH My spice Lemon & pepper spice

Great for dipping cucumbers carrots and any veg 🙂 The beauty of OH My Spice is there are no preservatives or sodium

This entire dip has-200 cals / 34 G of protein / 14 g carbs /0 fat


Finally since I wont be enjoying a glass of wine until Sep 24 when my best friend and I head to the Okangan for our yearly wine bestie weekend , im drinking good old non alcoholic drinks lol

My Summer go to that still feels like your drinking something knotty but your actually getting in your BCAA’s lol Magnum High 5 Strawberry flavor ,Club soda on ice 🙂 OOOO so good !


Hope everyone is enjoying summer ! Stay on track and have fun ! Hugs Heidi