Guest Post: Sweet Tater of My Dreams

Hi friends!

Iโ€™m here chilling at the Phoenix airport ๐Ÿ™‚


A little later than usual posting todayโ€”I had to wake up early as ballz, took the shuttle to Phoenix โ€“roomies ended up going late last night, so I waited until this morning to go- and met my nana and madre at the โ€œloveโ€ Starbucks before catching the shuttle ๐Ÿ˜€

me and bell

(J Crew denim blazer, wunder under crops, white tee = comfy travel outfit)


Iโ€™m about to eat a little sumthinโ€™ sumthinโ€™ and board the plane, but just wanted to say hi and post this very special [foodgasmic] guest post from my friend Mara.

**Craniums up: my blog schedule is going to be a little unique over the new few days with some very exciting re-caps thrown in ๐Ÿ˜‰ It will be similar to our honeymoon posting schedule– so you can expect one awesome guest post and one post from myself each day ๐Ÿ˜€

See ya in Georgia!




Hi Fitnessista readers! I’m Mara, and I write a little blog called What’s For Dinner? which follows my adventures in cooking and baking. I’ve been a visitor here at The Fitnessista a couple other times, and I’m always so excited when Gina asks me to to post for her.

See, my husband isn’t exactly the most adventurous of eaters. Generally, I "play it safe" with a lot of my recipes, and leave out the things he won’t eat. Among the things he won’t eat are:

  • mushrooms
  • onions
  • zucchini
  • eggplant
  • large pieces of tomato
  • pickles
  • squash
  • dark chocolate

What’s really fun about doing a post for Gina is that it’s an excuse to cook something that I wouldn’t ordinarily make for just my hubby and I. I know that all of us Fitnessista readers have a love for food combinations that are not only healthy, but delicious. So, I told my husband that while our main dinner meal would be something I knew he’d like, the side dish? The side dish was going to be something more interesting because it was for Gina’s blog.

I put together a few of my favorite (and Gina’s favorite) ingredients:

sweet potato2 goat cheese2 onion2

And, I put them together in a most unexpected way. Usually, people associate "twice baked potatoes" with the rich and cheesy football-sized spuds that come with a meal at a fancy steak house. I took the twice baked potato into a whole new realm: meal-sized, Gina-fied eats.


Fun-Filled Fitnessista Spuds


  • 3 large sweet potatoes (or 4-5 smaller ones)
  • 4 ounces soft goat cheese
  • 2 large onions
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper


Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Pierce the skin of the sweet potatoes, place them on a baking sheet, and bake until soft, about an hour. (Another option is to microwave the potatoes until cooked, but make sure to pop them in the oven so the skins get crispy.) While the potatoes are baking, peel the onions and slice very thinly. Slowly caramelize them in a pan in the oil. Salt the onions, and keep the heat low until the onions are very soft and browned. This may take up to about 30 minutes.

Remove the potatoes from the oven and slice about 1/2" off the longer side of the potato. Using a spoon, scoop the flesh into a mixing bowl, making sure to leave about 1/4" of the potato in the peel so it holds its shape. Set the skins aside. Using a hand blender or food processor, gently puree the potato flesh until smooth. Mix in the goat cheese and spices. Stir in the onions and pepper, and then fill the empty potato skins. Bake a second time on a baking sheet at 375 until the top of the potatoes are lightly browned and very hot.

Avoid eating directly off the baking sheet as you will burn your tongue.


Not that I tried or anything.

The best part about these? The husband ate them… onions and all.

Have you ever made a traditional dish "your own"?

Post Navigation:


  1. Laury @ thefitnessdish on March 16, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    Have a safe flight!!! Love the travel outfit. I am all about the comfort when I fly ๐Ÿ™‚

    Great guest post. One after my own heart…sweet potatoes, goats cheese, carmelized onion. Seriously 3 of my favorite things in the world!

  2. Jill@southbychic on March 16, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    Girl, you couldn’t have picked a better travel outfit if you tried! The structure of a blazer plus the comfort of demin?! Be still my little JCrew heart ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Katie @ Nourishing Flourishing on March 16, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    Nice! Love the recipe. Have a great trip Gina! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat on March 16, 2011 at 1:32 pm

    These sweet potatos sound amazing Mara! And very Gina-like too! I’m bookmarking this recipe for sure.

    Safe travels Gina! I can’t wait for the exciting recaps! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Holly @ Couch Potato Athlete on March 16, 2011 at 1:35 pm

    Have a safe trip Gina!

    Mara I love the idea of twice baked sweet potatoes — and the addition of caramelized onions? Holy cow. That sounds amazing!

  6. mi-an on March 16, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    that looks lovely mara!!! can’t wait to make it!

  7. Allison @ Food For Healing on March 16, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    have a safe trip, have lots of fun!
    its official, i’m having sweet potatoes for supper tonight again.

  8. Ashley on March 16, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    cute outfit – MUST have been early – the sun isn’t even up yet! Have a safe trip!

  9. Casey on March 16, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    Hey Gina–have a fun, safe trip! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Is the Lulu auction going to be this Thurs (tomorrow) or next Thurs? I def wanna bid on something!

    • Fitnessista on March 16, 2011 at 2:03 pm

      Next thurs ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Katie on March 16, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    Safe travels Gina!!!!!!

    Mara this looks amazing!! Yummy!!! Thanks for sharing!!!

  11. Heather (heathers dish) on March 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    I’m going to be traveling soon and totally copying your style! Where do you get wunder unders?

  12. Sable @ SquatLikeALady on March 16, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    Fab travel outfit! I always look like a slob haha — sweatpants, tee shirt, sweatshirt that can be removed once you get on the plane and it’s 902 degrees. You pull off comfort way better than I do ๐Ÿ˜‰

  13. Ashley @ Feeding Ashley on March 16, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    Have a safe flight Gina! Mara, you’re a genius! Those look amazing, and I might have to make a veganized version in the near future.

  14. Courtney @ The Granola Chronicles on March 16, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    Oooooh man, that looks amazing. Thanks for sharing, Mara! ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Laura @ prettylittlewords on March 16, 2011 at 2:56 pm

    No onions, eggplant or tomatoes?? My will to live would suffer!

    • Mara @ What's For Dinner? on March 16, 2011 at 2:57 pm

      It’s difficult, let me tell you. I make Ratatouille when I want him out of the house ๐Ÿ™‚

  16. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) on March 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    Mara these look great and just *seconds ago* I published a Potato Themed Recipes Post. Nearly two years worth of my recipes that use potatoes..and then click here and bam, your beautiful tater recipe is staring at me. It looks great!

    Gina, have fun in Phoenix!!!!!!!


  17. jen @ taste life on March 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    Those sweet potatoes look wicked good.

  18. Amy R on March 16, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    Those potatoes look super yummy, Mara! Have a safe trip, Gina! ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. Dana Marie on March 16, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    Hi Gina! I love early morning trips even though it sucks to get up early —something exciting about the need to get up b4 the sun. Have fun for us!
    and sweet potatoes are THE BOMB in my book, and I scored a free rice cooker hand me down on craigslist and I can make em now again!
    I make a wicked Irish Soda Bread that won an award! but it’s a hand me down recipe and wont be getting made by me this year in the rice cooker :p
    Thanks for the guesting Mara

  20. Lisa on March 16, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    Have a safe trip, Gina. These taters look tasty. I haven’t met one I didn’t like.

  21. michele on March 16, 2011 at 3:44 pm

    OH MY…i have all the ingredients at home too! Yay…guess what’s for dinner?!?!?!? ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Fitnessista on March 16, 2011 at 7:37 pm

      can i come over?

  22. Mary @ Bites and Bliss on March 16, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    Those look awesome!! Like as mix between potatoe skins and double baked. Yum!

    Have a safe trip, Gina!

  23. Carolyn (Life in the postcard) on March 16, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    Hold up, a shuttle? Like shuttle from Tucson to Phx? Crying inside now for missing DT last week, I might forget all the dances by next week ๐Ÿ™ Hurry back but happy travels Gina!!

    • Fitnessista on March 16, 2011 at 7:36 pm

      yep, it was $37!! amazing!
      we’ll have NEW dances next week for you to learn, too ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Maria on March 16, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    Cute outfit Gina! Mara-these look absolutely amazing!!! I will definitely be fitting these into next week’s meal plan.

  25. Sana on March 16, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    I really hope this is an extra *special* trip for youuu!

  26. Laura on March 16, 2011 at 6:27 pm

    Is that love Starbucks where you met your pilot!? ๐Ÿ˜€

    I’ll be waiting on the edge of my seat for your exciting posts!!! I have a feeling you’re going to have a crazy awesome trip. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Fitnessista on March 16, 2011 at 7:36 pm


  27. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on March 16, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    These look amazing! My family sounds a lot like your hubby, so it’s always hard to come up with family dinners when I’m home from university. I bet they’d love these though! ๐Ÿ˜€

  28. Laura on March 16, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    I hope your recap is that the pilot is back and you are REUNITED!! ๐Ÿ˜‰ am I the only one thinking it’s time? You did just get your hair did last week haha

  29. Brittany (Eating Bird Food) on March 16, 2011 at 9:53 pm

    These sweet potatoes look delicious Mara!

    Have a safe trip Gina – can’t wait to hear all about it. And, if you need any other guest posts, I’d be happy to help out. ๐Ÿ™‚

  30. Danielle on March 17, 2011 at 12:02 am

    So I made this recipe tonight and can i just say holy. foodgasm. They were super delicious and super filling (I had to save half of mine for my lunch tomorrow). I definitely added Mara’s blog to my google reader too after this post!

    Thanks for being so awesome Gina! Have a good trip! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Fitnessista on March 17, 2011 at 7:18 am

      amazing- i’m even more excited to try them now!

    • Mara @ What's For Dinner? on March 17, 2011 at 9:13 am

      So glad you liked them!! I swear, next time they’ll just be dinner ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. Mary (A Merry Life) on March 17, 2011 at 2:51 am

    Yum! Great recipe!

  32. Greg on March 17, 2011 at 7:00 am

    Looks delicious!

  33. Nicole @ Fresh & Fit on March 17, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    And I though my Fiancรฉ was a picky eater. You have your work cut out for you there! I love sweet potatoes, and fortunately I can persuade my fiancรฉ to eat them. This recipe looks amazing! I can’t wait to try it!

  34. Christin@purplebirdblog on March 20, 2011 at 12:44 am

    I knew they were twice baked sweet potatoes! I love it!

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.