What I Ate Wednesday #131: White Chocolate Raspberry Protein Bars {Recipe ReDux}

Thank you all for your wonderful comments on Monday’s post. As I said, I’m working on figuring out my balance with jobs and life and blogging. I had to post today to share my new protein bar recipe. It’s just too good to keep to myself. So why not jump back on the What I Ate Wednesday bandwagon?

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Pre-Workout]
It was 2 for Tuesday yesterday so rather than my usual energy bites, I whipped up a quick protein pancake with 1 scoop protein powder, 1/4 cup egg whites, and 1/4 cup cashew milk and spread a little almond butter on top. While it held me over pretty well for barre, I decided to pop 1/2 banana before I went over to the gym for some cardio.

[Breakfast]
Protein Oatmeal Egg White Oats Peanut Almond Butter Cinnamon Banana
I KNOW I said you don’t need to see another bowl of oatmeal. But this might have just been the best bowl of oatmeal ever. Or maybe I was just so hungry. Yep. Let’s go with the latter.

[Lunch]
Kale Carrots Beets Avocado Sugar Snap Peas Turkey Ketchup
I got the hugest bunches of kale and bag of carrots from the farmers’ market on Saturday. I sauteed a bunch of them up with some sugar snaps, turkey meatballs, and buffalo sauce, topped with avocado, quick-pickled beets, and ketchup. Legit. And so filling.

[Afternoon Snack]
No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Protein Bars -- Barr & Table
HOLY YUM! I’ve been trying to figure out a good recipe to replace my favorite Quest bars and this month’s Recipe ReDux helped to inspire my bars.

Go through your pantry, cupboards, freezer, or fridge; what ‘treasures’ have you found? Pick an ingredient/spice/condiment that’s been hanging out for a while and give it the attention it needs. Share a healthy recipe made using your new-found pantry prize.

We’re pretty much the worst at ever finishing a jar of preserves so why not throw it into a bar? These are just the right amount of sweet and the best part? No baking! That said, if you do decide to broil or bake these babies, they are pretty reminiscent of a Quest bar. Success!

No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Protein Bars

Makes 6 bars

Ingredients
– 1/4 cup nut butter [I used Peanut Butter Co. The Bee’s Knees]
– 4 scoops vanilla protein powder [I used Optimum Nutrition]
– 1/4 cup coconut flour
– 4-6 tbsp water
– 2 tbsp white chocolate chips
– 1-2 tbsp raspberry preserves

Directions
In a medium bowl, melt the nut butter. Mix in the protein powder, coconut flour, and water. The amount of water used will depend on your other ingredients so add slowly. Mix these ingredients until everything comes together and is slightly sticky. Add in the white chocolate chips and 1 tbsp raspberry preserves.

Line a loaf pan with saran wrap and press the mixture into the pan. Top the mix with a little more raspberry preserves and place in the freezer for about an hour. Remove from the freezer and cut into 6 equal bars. Wrap each bar separately in saran wrap and store in the freezer.

Nutritional Information
Per 1 bar
208 Calories / 9g Fat / 15g Carbs / 3g Fiber / 10g Sugar / 20g Protein

[Dinner]
Baked Buffalo Falafel Potatoes Ranch Tzatziki Half Baked Harvest
We can pretend that my dinner looked half as good as the real deal. In reality, I decided to not toss the balls in buffalo, skip the naan, and used cheddar instead of blue cheese. I think it would have turned out better if the falafel had been tossed in buffalo.. or if they were fried. Oh well. You win some, you lose some.

[Evening Snack]
The apple and nut butter still live strong.

Sprint 2 the Table

Food for Thought

What treasure do you have in your pantry or fridge?

Let’s Chat.

I’m back!

After a 2 week blogging hiatus, I wanted to break the silence. Grab a cup of coffee; this could be a bit lengthy!

The break was totally unintentional, but absolutely needed. As you may recall, I had friends in town a couple weeks ago and while they were here, I decided I just didn’t feel like breaking out the computer.

Cornerstone Napa Erin Brittany

Mt Tamalpais Tam Nathan Brittany Erin Don

Passing up on a few blog posts during their trip made me realize I was just going through the motions. Monday? Gotta get a weekend recap up. Tuesday? Link love. Wednesday? Pictures of food. There really wasn’t much behind it. And how many times can you look at a bowl of my oatmeal? I get it.

I’ve mentioned before that I’ve been working on figuring out a good balance with all of my jobs and as things continue be thrown up in the air, I just didn’t need the extra stress of needing to get a blog post up. Other aspects of my life were suffering; I was constantly exhausted from trying to juggle 3 different jobs, working some crazy hours, wracking my brain at different ways to get more personal training clients, cooking, cleaning, and somehow fitting in my workouts.

Thankfully, some changes have been made. Nathan is helping out with cooking and cleaning more [who knew all I needed to do was ask for help?!] and last week I gave my 2 weeks at Athleta. I’m swapping Athleta for another training gig, so while I’ll still be working at 3 different places, ideally, I’ll be cutting back on hours and make more dough. That would be lovely, yes? Good changes to start.

Roli Roti Pork Knuckle Roasted Fennel Potato Onion Carrots

A Nathan-style dinner.. chopped rotisserie pork knuckle with roasted veggies.

But as I’ve been going through the motions with blogging, it seems I’ve also been doing the same with my workouts. That’s not a good look for me. I told Nathan the other day that I’m a rare breedone that consistently works out and eats healthy [with the exception of when we have visitors..] and yet still continues to gain weight. It’s true. My friend told me I just look “a bit thicker.”

Let’s get really real here, shall we? I mean, we’re all friends.. Since moving to California, I’ve mostly ditched the scale. It was a good thing for me and I would occasionally break it out just to check in. Recently, I was feeling like my clothes were just fitting a little tighter and in general, I was uncomfortable. Well, when I say a couple extra lbs found their way back to me over the past 6 or so months, I actually mean 15. Ouch. That’s not a pretty number. So yes, thicker it is. And it sucks. But I’ve decided that the old saying rings trueyou really can’t continue to do something the same way and expect different results.

So now it’s time for me to get back on the wagon, really put the effort back into my workouts, and figure out how to find the balance that’s right for me. The blog with fall into its place in time, but right now I know I need to put most of my focus on finding balance in my jobs and at home.

Rose Garden Oakland California CA

Mountain View Cemetary Oakland San Francisco California CA

Thanks for sticking with me today; I’ve been looking for the words to write this post and it’s nice to finally hit “publish.”

No questions today, just thoughts.

Pin It Party #6

I mayyy be running on fumes [and some serious caffeine] today, but it’s a good day because my college roomie and her hubs are here! They got in late last night and will be staying with us until next Wednesday. We have so much planned over the next week from wine country [obviously] and hiking to bars and baseball. It’s going to be a ton of fun and super exhausting but I’m ready for it.

In the meantime, Lindsay is hosting another Pin It Party today so, of course, I’m playing along! If you missed the last parties, check them out!

Pin It Party #1
Pin It Party #2
Pin It Party #3
Pin It Party #4
Pin It Party #5

And if you’re not following me on Pinterest yet, get to it!

Food for Thought

What kind of posts do you want to see more of on the blog?

What I Ate Wednesday #130: Greens & Grains

It’s amazing how much I love eating at home when I know we have company coming into town. Especially company that has yet to experience all of the incredible food and drink the bay area has to offer! I’m making sure to get in all of my greens, whole grains, and lean proteins while I can because it’s not long until our craziness starts again. I even had the opportunity to eat most of my meals at home yesterday. Dinner was the only exception but hey, at least I had time to throw it all together before heading to work.

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Breakfast]
Protein Oats Egg White Oatmeal Cashew Almond Peanut Butter Banana
I finally made sure I’m fully stocked on nut butters again! It’s practically torture only having 1 nut butter at my disposal [my life is so hard!], but now I’m back to cashew, almond, and peanut. Thank goodness!

[Morning Snack]
Food Faith Fitness Microwave Peanut Butter Protein Pancakes White Chocolate Chips
More of a breakfast #2.. post-barre I was pretty hungry and Taylor’s microwave peanut butter protein pancakes that I shared yesterday were just screaming my name! It was the right call, for sure.

[Lunch]
Lemon Moroccan Chicken Za'atar Roasted Cauliflower Salad Asparagus
Leftover Moroccan chicken, za’atar cauliflower, and asparagus from Monday’s dinner graced my salad. I think I could’ve just eaten a big bowl of the cauliflower and been perfectly happy! If only I roasted 2 heads of cauliflower..

[Dinner]
Cashew Chicken Ground Turkey Broccoli Sriracha
A late lunch held me over for a good while until I had dinner standing outside of the gym. When you’re working the evening shift, you do what you gotta do! Luckily I had time to throw together cashew chicken and broccoli.. except with ground turkey. I guess you’d call that cashew turkey?

[Evening Snack]
Pure Organic Ancient Grains Vanilla Almond Bar
I just won some of these Vanilla Almond Pure bars and they’re so good! It definitely helped to nip my sweet tooth in the bud after dinner and I love the chewy + crunchy texture from the nuts and grains. I’ve gotta get my hands on the Peanut Butter Chocolate and Chocolate Chunk Nut bars soon!

Food for Thought

Have you tried the new Pure Ancient Grains bars?

Link Love #80

Just like that our quiet couple of weeks without company is about to end. My college roommate and her husband are getting in late Wednesday night and staying with us for a week! They’ve never been out to San Francisco before so they’re definitely in for a treat. Do you remember how crazy we went when my parents came out last year? Yea.. there will be plenty of eating, drinking, and hiking! Get ready for some more delicious pictures ;)

Health

The Naked Truth When Is Our Body Finally Good Enough Lifting Revolution

The Naked Truth: When Is Our Body Finally Good Enough? – Lifting Revolution


The Naked Truth: When Is Our Body Finally Good Enough? – Lifting Revolution
Why it is okay to gain a few happiness lbs – Darwinian Fail
So you want to study nutrition? Dietitian, Nutritionist, or Nutritional Therapist? – Gluten Free Rosie
Eat to Beat the Common Cold? Part One: Review of Vitamin C – Food & Nonsense
Using the stages of change model to adopt new fitness and nutrition habits – FitKnitChick

Fitness

Rock Your Body Workout Fit Foodie Finds Ambitious Kitchen

Rock Your Body Workout – Fit Foodie Finds & Ambitious Kitchen


Rock Your Body Workout – Fit Foodie Finds & Ambitious Kitchen
Why Kettlebell Swings Aren’t a Good Exercise for Cardio – Trainer Paige
Don’t Skip a Beat: How To Train Using Heart Rate Monitoring – FitFluential
3 Creative Core Moves that Work Balance and Strength – Cotter Crunch
Stay on Track Workout – Coconuts & Kettlebells

Food

Green Goddess Hummus Cookie + Kate

Green Goddess Hummus – Cookie + Kate


Green Goddess Hummus – Cookie + Kate
Microwave Peanut Protein Pancakes with Chocolate Chips {Gluten/Grain Free, Super Simple, Low Fat + Low Calorie} – Food Faith Fitness
Bahn Mi Spring Rolls – Minimalist Baker
Healthy Bananas Foster Donuts – The Almond Eater
Meyer Lemon Poppy Seed Morning Buns with Blueberry Passionfruit Glaze – Half Baked Harvest
Almond Butter Fudgy Chocolate Eggs – Peachy Palate

Food for Thought

What’s one of your favorite posts from the past week?

Big Day Off & Paying Rent

Well what do you know, looks like it’s Monday again! I hope you all had a quiet, relaxing weekend. Or maybe it was wild and crazy.. whichever you prefer! I [and Nathan] made every attempt to make our weekend as relaxing as possible. Work has been running me ragged lately so when I have a full day off, I take full advantage.

Saturday, I slept in till about 7:30 [hey, no alarm is a wonderful thing, even at that hour!], had a leisurely breakfast on the couch in my jammies, and got myself together to go to the farmers’ market. We’ve been loving all of the fruit from the market; the strawberries and oranges, in particular, have been outrageous! We loaded up on produce and a special porcini salami from Boccalone, and headed home to pack up a picnic.

The weather has been perfect lately; practically 70 and sunny everyday. A couple miles of sunshine later, we reached the top of the hill and unpacked the goodies.

Mountain View Cemetary

Boccalone Salami Cabot Cheddar Cheese Strawberries La Farine Medjool Dates Charles Shaw Chardonnay Blue Diamond Almonds

There’s nothing a jar full of chardonnay can’t fix, am I right? ;) That and a post-hike nap and Chinese food for dinner. It was the perfect Saturday.

Yesterday was back to work opening the gym. As I said, working 3 jobs has been running me into the ground. Multiple 10-12 hour days, sometimes between all 3 places, has been tough. I’ve been working on balancing the jobs with the rest of my life; figuring out how to find time to eat, cook, spend time with Nathan, and get in my own workouts has been a bit of a struggle at times. Sometimes I have the opportunity to cook dinner in the middle of the day to take to work with me in the evening. And sometimes by the time I get home to see Nathan, all I can do is brush my teeth and pass out.

As I attempt to figure out my workouts, I find that letting somethings go by the wayside are coming back to bite me in the butt. I totally burned myself out on cardio and almost stopped running all together. I’ve been trying to slowly get back into it, even just once a week. Rather than saying my run yesterday was frustrating, I’d like to call it humbling. After expressing my feelings to Nathan, he shared this quote with me.

Success isnt owned, its leased and rent is due everyday. JJ Watt

Of course, I would be naive to think I can stop running and pick right back up where I left off. But just as I’m learning to find balance in my life, I’m learning to re-balance my workouts and sometimes that just means taking more days like Saturday when I can. And sometimes weekends like this have to end in brinner because that’s just the darn best.

Weekly Meal Plan

Sunday – Brinner! Roasted sweet potatoes and brussels topped with an egg.
Sweet Potato Brussels Sprouts Eggs Heinz Ketchup
MondayLemon Moroccan chicken with za’atar roasted cauliflower
TuesdayCashew chicken
WednesdayThai basil turkey rice bowls
Thursday – Saturday – Friends in town!

Food for Thought

What’s your favorite way to spend a day off?
What kind of “paying rent” lessons have you learned lately?

What I Ate Wednesday #129: Snacking the Day Away

Congrats to Danielle C. for winning my MealEnders giveaway!

Phew! These past few days have been exhausting and I am so looking forward to the weekend. Though, I said that on Sunday, too! Monday was a crazy bit of running around and when I went to pack up a lunch on Sunday, I realized I really didn’t have time to eat anything other than snacks. Luckily, we’re always stocked up on snacks and that was just what I did.

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Breakfast]
Protein Oatmeal Egg White Oats Coconut Peanut Butter Coffee
The trusty egg white oatmeal breakfast. I knew I’d need something to hold me over and I can always count on my oats.

[Snack #1]
Love Grown Foods Power Os Daisy Cottage Cheese
An old picture, but essentially the idea. I mixed some Greek yogurt with a little chocolate peanut butter protein powder and chia seed, then topped it with Honey Power O’s. The honey is quite tasty but I really need to get my hands on some chocolate Power O’s again!

[Snack #2]
S'mores Quest Protein Bar
They just keep getting better! I’m in love with Quest bars and this was my first time trying the S’mores. I expected it to be similar to the Cookies N Cream bar but the little bits of graham cracker are SO good! And this bar was nice and chunky. MMMMM! I had limited time to get from Athleta to the train and get my butt into the city so this was the perfect treat.

[Snack #3]
Tender Green San Francisco Roasted Vegetables Quinoa
Once I got into SF, I had just enough time to stop at Tender Greens and get this delicious bowl of roasted veggies and quinoa. Literally just enough time to get it. And then throw it into my bag because I had no time to eat it until after my appointment. Well worth the wait, though.

[Snack #4]
Chicken Thigh Heinz Ketchup
Somehow I convinced myself to hit the gym after all of my running around. Probably because I knew it was best for my sanity this week! But after the rest of the snacks from earlier, I wasn’t too hungry post-workout so I ended up grabbing the last small chicken thigh and topping it with a little ketchup. I’ll call this one #strangebutgood. I also ended up having a few baby carrots while I was prepping dinner.

[Dinner]
Apricot Sage Lemon Pork Loin Cauliflower Kale
An actual meal! And a really tasty one at that. I used this sticky baked chicken recipe as a guide but made it with pork loin instead. I seared the pork in a skillet and tossed it into the oven, glazed it a few times, and then sliced and served. The side dish was inspired by this roasted cauliflower meuniere recipe but I decided to be lazy and nixed the egg and breadcrumbs. Oh yea, and the butter sauce. Sooo it was really roasted cauliflower with lemon-garlic sauteed kale with shallots. And it was something I’ll definitely make again!

[Snack #5]
Almond Butter
My apple was soon followed up with some almond butter scrapings. I left just enough to top my oatmeal yesterday but it was tough to leave that much in the jar!

Life might slow down at some point in the future, but in the meantime, I’m working on getting used to being a little more prepared to be less prepared.

Food for Thought

What’s your favorite snack?

Link Love #79

Today is the last day to enter my MealEnders giveaway!

It’s my favorite day of the [blogging] week. Time for some link love.. catch up on all the goodies you might have missed! Enjoy :)

Health

The Perfect Snack When You Are Feeling... The Nutty Nutritionist

The Perfect Snack When You Are Feeling… – The Nutty Nutritionist

The Perfect Snack When You Are Feeling… – The Nutty Nutritionist
Why Saying No Matter for Your Well-being – Crop Tops & Kale
4 “Healthy” Hidden Sources of Sugar – The Fit Cookie
‘But I Don’t Want to Look Like You’ – Gabby’s Gluten-Free
A Plant-Based Nutrition Q&A – Hummusapien

Fitness

The Gym is Everywhere FitFluential

The Gym is Everywhere – FitFluential

The Gym is Everywhere – FitFluential
7-minute barre squat burner – Fitnessista
Move It Monday: 10 Variations Of Kettlebell Squats – Lifting Revolution
5 Side Plank Variations to Try – Pumps & Iron
Another Super Sweaty 7-Minute HIIT Workout Video – To Live & Diet in L.A.

Food

Korean Style Fried Shrimp Rice Bowls with Kimchi + Crunchy Noodles Half Baked Harvest

Korean Style Fried Shrimp Rice Bowls with Kimchi + Crunchy Noodles – Half Baked Harvest

Korean Style Fried Shrimp Rice Bowls with Kimchi + Crunchy Noodles – Half Baked Harvest
Beet and Black Rice Seafood Salad with Lemon Lime Vinaigrette – Cotter Crunch
Bacon Asparagus Potato Frittata – Reluctant Entertainer
Fried Avocado Tacos with Creamy Jalapeno Sauce – Avocado a Day Nutrition
Slow Cooker Quinoa Energy Bar Recipe – Food Faith Fitness

Food for Thought

What’s one of your favorite posts from the past week?

Vegging Out

Have you entered my MealEnders giveaway yet?

Happy Monday, friends! I hope you had a great weekend. We stayed local and pretty low-key but definitely enjoyed the beautiful weather that we had.

Friday night, we kicked off the weekend with a trip to the gym…
Nathan Brittany Post Workout

…immediately followed by beer and delicious food at Cato’s, our favorite bar down the street.
Catos Ale House Beer

Catos Ale House Beet Salad Feta Chicken

The beet and feta salad with grilled chicken is my go-to. Extra beets, please!

 

Such a wild and crazy Friday! Which lead to an even wilder Saturday.
Cafe Trieste White Wine Margherita Salad Chicken

Funny Dog

We saw this super cute dog in a hilarious onesie at lunch!

Saturday was the best. After lunch, we took a nice walk and then came home and totally vegged on the couch for the rest of the day. Dinner in and a movie was the perfect ending.

Sunday, I was making my way over to work around 7:45 when I saw the first Oakland marathoner running down the road. The race started at 7:30 and I was between miles 3 and 4. Holy hell, he’s fast!
Oakland Marathon First Runner

And he was followed by lots more runners! It was so cool to watch everyone go by and cheer for them.
Oakland Marathon

After work, it was time for lunch and groceries. Lunch was awesome! One of my favorite things about this restaurant, Southie, is that they will happily make any sandwich into a salad. So rather than the sandwich, I asked for the chilaquiles as a salad. BOOM! They made it happen.
Southie Oakland Deconstruced Chilaquiles

The black bean mash was way more delicious than it looks ;) And Nathan’s corned beef hash with poached eggs was equally as delicious.
Southie Oakland Corned Beef Hash Poached Eggs

How have we missed out on their brunch for so long? Aside from that whole work thing yesterday, it was quite a nice weekend. And now I’m looking forward to powering through this week. It’s a doozy but I think I’ll make it out alive!

Weekly Meal Plan

Sunday – Seared skirt steak with roasted potatoes and broccolini
MondaySticky Baked Chicken Pork with Apricot, Sage and Lemon Zest and Roasted Cauliflower Meuniere
Tuesday – Leftovers
WednesdayFennel-Garlic Pork Roast with roasted brussels sprouts and fennel
Thursday – Grilled chicken over Pear and Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Maple Sesame Vinaigrette
Friday – Out!
Saturday – Leftovers

Food for Thought

How did you celebrate the weekend?
Have you or would you ever run a marathon?

Thai Chicken Thigh Stuffed Sweet Potatoes {Recipe ReDux}

Don’t forget to enter my MealEnders giveaway!

It’s no secret that leftovers are this girl’s best friend. Every night for dinner, I try to make enough to have at least enough leftovers for 2 additional meals, whether those are used for lunch the next day or another dinner. And while I could happily eat the same thing over and over again [hellooo oatmeal for breakfast!], I have a husband that feels differently. Enter this month’s Recipe ReDux that basically describes the way we live.

We’re all about cooking once and eating twice. In short, double dinners are better. Show us how you take a favorite recipe already on your blog – and ReDux the leftovers into a new dish. Or, whip up a new healthy recipe and give suggestions on how to make it a second meal. For example, slow cooker pot roast could become shredded beef tacos; or grilled chicken breasts might morph into chicken salad.

Chicken is on the menu usually at least 5 nights so we have to get creative around here! Our fridge is full of different sauces to easily change things up on a day-to-day basis. Sometimes meals are as simple as grilled chicken, lettuce, tomato, onion, and buffalo sauce on a roll. Other times I like to dress it up.

Thai Chicken Thigh Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

Serves 2
Thai Chicken Thigh Stuffed Sweet Potatoes | Barr & Table

Ingredients
– 3 or 4 leftover grilled boneless, skinless chicken thighs; sliced
– 1/2 bell pepper; sliced
– 1/4 english cucumber; sliced
– 1 small head broccoli; steamed
– 1/2 cup shredded red cabbage
– 2 medium sweet potatoes
– Chopped peanuts [optional for topping]

For the Sauce
Adapted from my Spicy Sriracha Peanut Sauce

– 1/4 cup crunchy peanut butter
– 1/2 cup lite coconut milk
– 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
– 1 tbsp lite soy sauce
– 1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
– 1-2 tbsp sriracha

Directions
Prepare your sweet potatoes by either baking them in the oven at 400°F for about 45 minutes or microwave them in a damp papertowel for 3-5 minutes until soft.

Place all of the ingredients for the sauce in a medium bowl and mix well. Place the sweet potato on a plate and mash in 1-2 tbsp of the sauce. Layer up the bell pepper, cucumber, broccoli, cabbage, and chicken on top. Drizzle over more sauce and top with chopped peanuts.

Food for Thought

What’s your favorite way to use leftovers?
Have you tried stuffed sweet potatoes?