Broccoli Foil Packets


Hello everyone! Today, WordPress let me know that the blog turned 3. I have loved sharing my nutrition journey with all of you and I hope to share more recipes and adventures with you for many more years๐Ÿ™‚

Earlier this summer we attempted broccoli foil packets with broccoli from our garden. They ended up being pretty good and easy to make. They only take a few ingredients that you most likely already have in your kitchen. You also need a grill, but could make them in the oven too if you wanted.

Ingredients: (amounts depend on how much you want to make and personal taste)

Parmesan cheese
Olive Oil


  1. Rinse broccoli.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, mix broccoli, parmesan cheese, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
  3. Wrap seasoned broccoli in aluminum foil (make sure to leave room for steam).
  4. Grill on low heat for about 15 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle with more parmesan cheese right before serving.
  6. Enjoy๐Ÿ™‚


Hope that you enjoy the broccoli! Stay tuned for more from the Picky Girl.

New York, New York

I’m back!! I know, I know I haven’t written in awhile, but my life has been pretty busy lately. I made the smart decision to start a brand new job (my first big kid job, yay!) and start a grad school course all within the same week. And they both started the week after I passed my RD exam. Smart right?!?! But, I made it through! Got an A and love my new job, so I say it’s a win, win! Now lets get to the food…

Today, I am going to introduce a new Picky Girl series – 50 by 50. Have you ever heard of this challenge? If you haven’t, it basically is that you do 50 things by the time you turn 50. My 50 by 50 challenge to myself is to visit all 50 states (I have always wanted to do this)! However, of course I have to put a foodie twist into this challenge…in each of these states I plan to visit a farmer’s market (you all know how much I love my farmer’s markets!) or visit some famous food establishment in that state. I just turned 23, so I have about 27 more years to complete my goal. Hopefully, I can accomplish my goal within that time period! And along the way, I plan to share my journey on my blog with all of you. Not sure if when I’m 50 I’ll still have this blog (I hope so, but who knows where the world will take me?), but I’ll share all of my journeys for as long as I can๐Ÿ™‚

So, without further ado my first state is…New York! A few weekends ago my mom, sister, aunt, some other friends, and I took the ultimate “Foodie” bus trip to NYC. It was an absolute blast!!! Definitely one of the highlights of the summer. And I think I may still be full from everything that I ate!

First stop was Carlo’s Bake Shop for cannolis, cupcakes, and lobster tails:


Next stop Chelsea Market, which was the cutest indoor market I’ve ever seen. There was a spice store, bakeries, flowers, homemade pasta, tacos, seafood, wine, and a number of other things. We didn’t get to spend too much time here unfortunately, but I did get to try ย bone broth and cactus tacos! Both were pretty good, however I think that the broth would definitely be better in colder weather and the tacos were a bit spicy! But, both were good and at least I tried them right? The homemade pasta that we brought home was AMAZING!!!

C Market



Next stop the Pickle Guys, where they had the most pickled things that I have ever seen:


Last stop of the day was Little Italy, which I think was by far my favorite! Delicious๐Ÿ™‚



We finished the day with a fantastically fun Italian dinner in Little Italy. We all ordered different foods and then passed them all around so that we could try everything. All of it was amazing!!!


I enjoyed the day with these ladies! It was a lot of fun and I highly recommend it.

Also, taking suggestions on where to go in each state๐Ÿ™‚


Hope that you enjoyed the post, stay tuned for more foodie trips and recipes๐Ÿ™‚

How I passed the RD Exam!

Hello everyone! So, last week something pretty exciting happened…I passed my RD exam!! Now, I am officially a Registered Dietitian and could not be happier! It took a long time and a lot of hard work, but it finally all paid off๐Ÿ™‚

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I know that I had a lot of questions before taking my exam, so I thought that writing this post would help all of the future RDs out there hopefully be a little less stressed about the exam. I can’t talk about my exam specifically, but I thought that I would share some tips and tricks about what helped me pass on the first time! So here they are:

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1. RELAX!!:

This is a really hard thing to do (trust me I know!), but honestly it is the most important piece of advice that I have. I got myself so stressed out before this exam! I lost 7 lbs, I had a constant stomach ache the week leading up to my exam, I couldn’t sleep, my face broke out, I almost threw up my breakfast the morning of, and I may have shed a few tears here and there. I know, I know I sound like a crazy person, but I really let myself get inside my own head until the moment I started the exam. I clicked the start button and said to myself “I got this,” took a deep breath, and away I went. I didn’t think about what the test meant, I just took it question by question, and suddenly it was over and the screen was telling me that I was a Registered Dietitian๐Ÿ™‚ So, just relax, you have been studying and preparing for this for about 5 years (for most people), so you’ve got this!!

2.ย Set up a study timeline:

You know the best way that you study. Set up a timeline for yourself and decide which information you want to cover on which day. Schedule some time for yourself too, or else your brain will start to hurt!ย ย I work best in the morning and when I have a checklist, so that is exactly what I did. I made a list of everything I needed to cover that day and slowly checked it off, then I had “me time” and/or “family time” in the afternoons and evenings.

3.ย Study materials:

Jean Inman: She is amazing and totally worth the money! You receive a binder that goes over every domain in great detail and a packet of practice study questions. I highly recommend it!

Visual Veggies: It is a computer program with tons of sample RD questions. The best part about it is that it explains the thought process for each question and why the answer is the right answer. Which is nice because with other programs you may not always know why the right answer is the right one. It also keeps track of your progress as you go.

4.ย The Night Before:

Someone told me to go out to dinner and drink some wine (but not too much, you do have a test in the morning!) the night before my exam and that is exactly what I did. It helped me relax a little bit after a long month of studying.

5.ย Celebrate!!:

Celebrate, because trust me nothing is going to feel better than seeing congratulations on that screen๐Ÿ™‚

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This advice may not work for everyone and I know that everyone studies differently, so just be true to yourself (you know you best!) and study the way that you know how too. Good luck and happy studying!!๐Ÿ™‚


Kristen Vander Woude, RDN


I did notย receive any form of compensation for my thoughts and opinions of the study programs.

Kale Pesto Pasta

Hello everyone! Lately I have been craving pesto pasta, even though I thought pesto was pretty gross when I was younger I happen to love it paired with pasta now!๐Ÿ™‚ ย While researching on Pinterest I came across a “Kale Pesto” recipe. We grew kale again in our garden this year and our crop was looking very plentiful, so I thought I would give the kale pesto a try.


I followed A Spicy Perspective’s Kale Pesto Recipe. However, I did change a few ingredients: ย I used pine nuts instead of walnuts and added a few basil leaves just because they needed to be used. I also added about 1 tablespoon more of parmesan cheese just because I thought it needed a little bit more and you all know how much I love my dairy products!!


The pasta turned out delicious and this recipe is definitely a keeper. It is fresh, light and the perfect summer dish!


Stay tuned for more from the Picky Girl๐Ÿ™‚

Cherry Focaccia

Happy weekend everyone! No small talk today because I am SO excited to share my newest recipe with all of you. This “Cherry Focaccia” has earned a top spot in my list of all time favorite recipes. It is super easy to make and absolutely delicious! The sea salt and rosemary pair well with the cherries and really bring out their flavor.



And to think that I didn’t even know I liked cherries until a couple of days ago. I remember trying one cherry when I was younger and I hated it! I am not sure if the pit turned me off or maybe I just got a really sour one, but I have turned my nose up at them ever since. However, recently I went cherry picking for the first time and tried one again and absolutely loved it!


We ended up picking a lot of cherries so I started researching on Pinterest for a non-dessert cherry recipe and found A Cozy Kitchen’s Cherry Rosemary Sea Salt Focaccia. I followed her recipe exactly except I used Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day’s Olive Oil Dough. I do recommend a cherry pitter if pressed for time, I didn’t use one and my hands turned bright red and it took awhile but it was actually kind of fun!



(It’s the perfect happy hour appetizer to go along with a little wine too๐Ÿ˜‰ )

Grilled Strawberry Skewers

Hello everyone! Sorry about my long hiatus from the blogging world, but a lot of things have been happening lately. I graduated from my dietetic internship (yay!), went on a much needed beach vacation, and have of course been busy studying for the upcoming RD exam! Although I have been a bit busy I do have a few new plans for the blog that I will start later this summer, so please stay tuned๐Ÿ™‚


This weekend I took a little break from studying and went strawberry picking for the first time this season. Lately, I have seen a few recipes on Pinterest involving people grilling strawberries and I thought why not give it a try?!? However, I did put my own Picky Girl twist on them!!


-olive oil cooking spray
-balsamic glaze


1. Clean strawberries and cut off stems.
2. Slide strawberries onto skewers (**Leave about a 1/4 inch space between the skewers for easier rotating on the grill).
3. Spray both sides of strawberries with olive oil.
4. Place skewers on grill, cook for about 2 minutes on each side.
5. Remove skewers from grill and place on a serving platter.
6. Drizzle strawberries with balsamic glaze.
7. Enjoy!


Picky Girl Goes Egyptian

Hello everyone, happy weekend! To kickoff this weekend the “fam squad” (that’s what we call ourselves) and I went to “Third in the Burg”. In Harrisburg, every third Friday of the month throughout the summer local businesses, artists, and food trucks come together for what is like a big party. It’s a whole lot of fun and a great way to support local places!

Tonight, there was an Egyptian Cuisine food truck and you know I had to try it! Five years ago, I would have headed straight for the Italian food truck and ordered myself some buttered noodles (mmm mmm good!). However, I have been feeling more adventurous every since I started this blog and became a nutrition major so I went for the Egyptian tonight.


I tried the “Egyptian Kushari,” which is seasoned lentils, rice, elbow pasta, topped with a tangy red sauce, chickpeas, and caramelized onions. I have to conclude that it was pretty darn good, a little spicy but it was a good spicy! I think next time I will have to try the Falafel!

Check out their website ( and see if the truck is coming to a spot near you. I highly recommend it!


Stay tuned for more adventures from the Picky Girl!