What I Ate Wednesday #132: Time For a Change

Heyooo! Look at me posting twice this week! Pretty exciting, huh? I’ve recently starting making a couple changes to my diet, so I figured a good WIAW post was in order.

I mentioned recently that I’ve had a bit of weight gain. Frustrating? You betcha! So I decided that I was going to make some changes to my workouts. I set a goal for myself; I wanted to lose 5 lbs by my anniversary. I know it’s not all about the number, but sometimes I find it helpful to have that goal.

I tried increasing my cardio, as that was what worked for me a couple years ago, but unfortunately, not this time. My next attempt was to go in the complete opposite direction. I started the 30 Day Kettlebell Challenge and while I’ve loved these workouts, I still haven’t seen the change I’m searching for.

30 Day Kettlebell Challenge Purely Twins

Next change is diet. I reached out to my good blogger friend, Lindsay Cotter, who happens to be a fitness nutrition specialist. She’s been so helpful and I’m looking forward to seeing how her suggestions work out for me.

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Pre-Workout]
Half of a banana with almond butter and a cup of coffee is the perfect fuel for me these days. The workouts I’ve been doing are less than 30 minutes and this snack is just enough to tide me over.

[Breakfast]
Microwave Grain Free English Muffin Eggs Almond Butter Banana
Dude. Dude. You have to try these microwave grain-free english muffins! I don’t have any raisins, but these have been so good with some almond butter schmeer and have proven to be a great vessel for my sweet eggs. I also tried replacing half of the almond flour with protein powder on Tuesday and it turned out wonderfully!

[Morning Snack]
I had a busy morning so I wasn’t able to snap a picture of my smoothie, but it was lean, green, and protein-packed.. err mean? I used 1 scoop whey protein, 1 scoop Skoop Sweetgreens A Game, 10 cherries, 1 tbsp coconut oil, cucumber, ice, and a little almond milk to get things moving. The coconut oil in a smoothie was new for me but Lindsay said more fats, so I gave it a go and it was DEELISH.

[Lunch]
Kale Butternut Squash Avocado Chicken Heinz Ketchup Cherry Kombucha
I was starved by the time I got home from work so I threw some kale, chicken, frozen butternut squash, and sugar snap peas into a pan with a little buffalo sauce and topped with avocado and ketchup.

[Afternoon Snack]
More fats? You got it. I went for an over-medium egg, a few almonds, and a carrot. A little #StrangeButGood action. And definitely not photo-worthy. You’re welcome.

[Dinner]
Coconut Honey Lime Filipino Chicken Half Baked Harvest
Coconut honey lime Filipino chicken with roasted red pepper and zucchini. All the protein and nice and light. I devoured it in between my evening clients.

[Evening Snack]
Fuji Apple Almond Butter
Oh heyyy, almond butter! I was happy to see it multiple times throughout the day. And apples and nut butters go together like.. well, nut butters go with everything.

The biggest changes I have here are breakfast and snacks. I definitely thought I’d miss my daily bowl of oats a little more than I do. I’m still getting used to the snacks, though; I’ve never been a big smoothie drinker and tend to grab a bar for convenience, but you have to make changes to see changes, yes? So far, so good this week; I’ll report back!

Food for Thought

What are your favorite protein-packed, grain-free breakfasts and snacks?

Almond Butter STUFFED Brownie Bites {Recipe ReDux}

Happy Mother’s Day!

I have a chocolate-y treat for you today that you won’t want to pass up. They’re gluten-free, paleo, and sweetened with fruit! Dried plums, to be specific. But don’t go running!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosted Brownie Bites | Barr & Table

When was the last time you tried a dried plum? They’re delicious! A little sweet, a little tart, and chewy like candy. Not to mention, each serving is just 100 calories, provides 3g of fiber, 293mg of potassium, 16mg of magnesium, and more vitamin K than any other fresh or dried fruit. And in honor of May’s National Osteoporosis Month, why not give them a try?

Almond Butter STUFFED Brownie Bites

Makes 16 brownie bites
Almond Butter Stuffed Brownie Bites | Barr & Table

Ingredients

  • 3oz. California Dried Plums [about 12-15 dried plums]
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp milk [I used cashew milk]
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil; melted
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp almomd butter; divided
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt

For the Frosting

  • 1/4 cup chocolate nut butter*
  • 2-4 tbsp milk

*If you don’t have chocolate nut butter, you can sub regular nut butter and add cocoa powder. You will need to increase the amount of milk if you do this.

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Place the dried plums in a food processor and process into a paste. You may need to stop and scrape the sides down a few times.
  3. Add the vanilla, milk, applesauce, coconut oil, and 1/4 cup almond butter to the bowl and process until smooth.
  4. Add in the egg and pulse a few times until just incorporated.
  5. Add the remaining dry ingredients to the bowl, pulse a few times to get it started, and finish incorporating completely by hand.
  6. Using a 1/2 tbsp, scoop the mix into 16 mini muffin tins.
  7. With a 1/2 tsp, scoop almond butter on top of the brownie bite base.
  8. Finish off with another 1/2 tbsp of the mix to cover the almond butter and place in the oven for 8-9 minutes.
  9. While baking, make your frosting. Add the ingredients to a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 30 seconds. Stir together until smooth.
  10. Remove the bites from the oven and let cool completely before frosting.

Nutritional Information
75 Calories / 5g Fat / 6g Carbs / 2g Fiber / 3g Sugar / 2g Protein

Now who wouldn’t want to snack on that today?! And because I can’t make these for my mom today, you should!

Don’t miss out an all of the California Dried Plum recipes from all of the other ReDux-ers!

And, of course, happy mother’s day to my mom! I wish I could be with you today to celebrate how awesome you’ve always been and always are for me. But hey, if you want to come out here again, I have some brownie bites waiting for you!
Mom Brittany Barre

Mom Dad Brittany Baker Beach Golden Gate Bridge

Food for Thought

Are you a dried plum fan?
How are you celebrating your mother’s day?

Disclosure: I received free samples of California Dried Plums mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by California Dried Plum Board and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.

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?

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?

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?

What I Ate Wednesday #128: MealEnders Review & Giveaway

Lordy, how is it already Wednesday? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining that we’re already halfway to the weekend! Today is a long one for me; I’ll be opening Athleta at 9 a.m. and closing the gym at 9 p.m. But at least I have an hour break in between, right? Silver lining, my friend. And a silver lining for you is another giveaway today! Lets get to it, shall we?

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Pre-Workout]
Chocolate Berry Super Power Bites | Barr & Table
Super power bites save the day! You should really make them if you haven’t yet.

[Breakfast]
Oatmeal Protein Egg White Oats Almond Coconut Peanut Butter Coffee Califia Farms Milk
Standard oatmeal, nut butters, and iced coffee. It totally gets me through my workouts 😉

[Snack Time]
Balance Caramel Nut Blast
I was in serious need of a snack at work and luckily I never leave home without a bar. A caramel nut blast Balance Bar held me over until I got home. Unfortunately, I had to go to the store before I could have lunch so I threw some yogurt, chocolate peanut butter protein powder, and peanuts into a bowl. Deeelish!

[Lunch]
Vietnamese Pork Bowl Salad Broccoli Avocado Sriracha
FINALLY lunch time! We’re still going through the pork and it made another awesome salad!

[Afternoon Snack]
MealEnders Signaling Lozenge
I got some awesome strawberries from the store so I grabbed a couple of those to snack on and followed it up with a MealEnders Lozenge. Taken directly from their website..

MealEnders Signaling Lozenges are a weight management product designed to help people avoid overeating and master portion control by clearing cravings from the mouth and mind. Each Signaling Lozenge consists of two flavorful layers, each playing a strategic role in weight loss. The sweet, outer coating provides a measured dose of “dessert”, habitually associated with the end of a meal. Avoiding the “no dessert” mindset prevents a sense of deprivation, which can thwart even the most earnest weight loss efforts. The tingling/cooling inner layer engages the trigeminal nerve, clears the palate and creates a 20-minute eating pause, enabling the brain to recognize the body’s natural transition from hungry to full. By the time the MealEnders experience is finished, the body’s natural signaling process of satiation has begun. With repeated use, users accept MealEnders’ sensations as a cue to stop eating, resulting in sustainable and healthy eating habits.

Sound interesting? When I first was presented the opportunity to review them, I was a bit skeptical. That said, I’m a big fan of the post-meal mint because I feel like it helps curb my sweet tooth, so why not give them a shot? First things first, the flavors are delicious! If I’m craving chocolate, I’ll reach for a Chocolate Mint or Mocha. The Mocha and Citrus are definitely my favorites, though. Once you get through the initial sweet layer, the extra tingly lozenge inside acts as my mint. I’ve definitely noticed that these little guys have helped to curb my sweet tooth after meals!

Want to give them a try for yourself? Click here to enter my giveaway!

Don’t worry if your name isn’t chosen. MealEnders wants to put an end to overeating and believes the more people its 15-calorie signaling lozenges can help, the better! So for two weeks, all “runners up” for the giveaway will be able to buy MealEnders at 30% off. Just enter coupon code WINNER-TOO at checkout. To place your order and learn more about the product, visit www.mealenders.com.

Giveaway Update:
Due to popular demand, the Chocolate Mint flavor is currently on back order. Because MealEnders wants to be sure to deliver the products as promised, the giveaway prize will be set to go out around mid-April when Chocolate Mint is back in stock.

[Dinner]
Crunchy Buffalo Chicken Roasted Ranch Potatoes Brussels Sprouts
Buffalo chicken is always a favorite in this house, so crunchy buffalo chicken is even better! And then adding roasted potatoes and brussels? We were quite happy.

[Evening Snack]
Apple + dark chocolate covered salted cashews = happy tummy.

Food for Thought

What tricks do you use to curb your sweet tooth?

What I Ate Wednesday #127: The Calm Before the Storm

Have you entered my giveaways? Enter my Peanut Butter & Co. giveaway here and my Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts giveaway here!

Yesterday was our last day of eating in before Nathan’s mom gets into town and we start all over again! I can’t complain, really. It is nice to have another few days off of cooking. Remind me I said that when I can’t wait for a home-cooked meal again! I’ve been killing it in the kitchen this week, though. Those restaurants will have a lot to compete with 😉

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Pre-Workout]
Cotter Crunch Cranberry White Chocolate Pumpkin Bars
I’ve rationed these babies out pretty darn well! Once I sliced them up, I put them in the freezer and they’re the perfect size for a little pre-workout snack.

[Breakfast]
Protein Oatmeal Egg White Oats Banana Almond Cashew Butter Coffee Silk CashewMilk
It really doesn’t get any better in my eyes. And I’m finally back to having a minimum of 2 jars of homemade nut butters. That’s clutch.

[Lunch]
Vietnamese Pork Salad Bowl
Monday night I made 4 lbs worth of Vietnamese grilled pork butt. Most of the time when I’m cooking dinner, I’ll make enough for about 4 servings so we can have it for dinner and then lunches/leftover dinner. This pork, however, is one of Nathan’s favorite things that I make so now, I’m always making huge batches of it for all kinds of leftovers! Another item to go in the freezer for future snackage.

This salad was special though. I had to figure out a way to carefully scarf it down after getting 2 fillings. The entire right side of my face was still numb so I definitely considered eating to be a rather difficult [and messy] skill at the time. Ha!

[Afternoon Snack]
Chocolate Berry Super Power Bites | Barr & Table
Like I said, these super power bites aren’t going to last long in this house! I only grabbed one [this time] and supplemented the rest of my snack with some roasted russets and sweet potatoes that I cooked up early for dinner.

[Dinner]
Chicken Souvlaki Sweet Potato Roasted Brussels Sprouts Onions

Roasted Brussels Sprouts
I’m 3 for 3 with dinners this week! I’m always excited when Nathan takes a couple of bites and says “add this one to the list!” The chicken souvlaki was light and flavorful and if you ask me, brussels and sweet potatoes are the best sides of all time. Am I right?

And the brussels deserved their own picture. You bet your butt I snacked on those before and after dinner. None made it out alive.. that’s pretty normal over here though.

[Evening Snack]
The daily apple. Nuf said.

Food for Thought

Do you make lots of extra servings with dinner to have leftovers throughout the week?

What I Ate Wednesday #115: Happy Hannuka!

Or Chanukah.. Chanukkah.. Hanukkah? I don’t know, you choose your favorite. Regardless of how it’s spelled, last night it began and I had fun making a traditional-style dinner and lighting the menorah. It was actually the first time using our new menorah that we got as an engagement gift!

Hannuka Menorah

But before we get to our Hannuka dinner, there was a lot more food!

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Pre-Workout & Breakfast]
Oatmeal Protein Egg White Oats Almond Coconut Peanut Butter Coffee Califia Farms Milk
Skoop bites, oatmeal, and nut butters. All day, everyday.

[Mid-Morning Snack]
Mamma Chia Energy Blackberry Blast
I was running out the door but wanted a little snack so I decided to give this chia energy drink from Mamma Chia a try. I received 4 flavors to try as part of a FitFluential campaign and the blackberry sounded the best to me. I loved that it wasn’t overly sweet at all. If it were just based on flavor, I’d definitely get it again; unfortunately, as I’m not a big fan of chia pudding because of the texture, this drink didn’t quite do it for me. I’m thinking it would be pretty tasty added to a smoothie though! More on this later.. wheels are turning!

[Lunch]
Roasted Butternut Squash Sweet Potato Soup Smokey Chicken Wing Chili
I was pretty hungry when I got home, despite a couple samples I tried at the grocery store, so I grabbed some leftovers from the fridge and threw ’em all in a bowl. Butternut squash soup with smokey chicken wing chili and toasted pine nuts on top.

[Afternoon Snack]
Sugar Snap Peas Almond Butter
I think I was craving a crunch after soup for lunch so I attacked that bag of sugar snap peas! A celery stalk also made its way into the almond butter too 😉

[Dinner]
Sweet Potato Latkes Eating Bird Food Baked Chicken Tenders Crockpot Applesauce Brussels Sprouts
If you know the Hannuka story, you know that there is a lot of frying going on [oh hey, 8 days of oil!] I opted for a healthier option with crispy baked chicken tenders, regular & sweet potato latkes [made with a fraction of the oil!], crockpot applesauce, and some leftover brussels. It was awesome. Even husband-approved and he’s picky when it comes to baked tenders! Not to mention I’d never made latkes or applesauce before. Success!

[Evening Snack]
I’m on a cottage cheese kick lately [you’re welcome for sparing you that picture.] I mixed in a little NuStevia cocoa syrup and cinnamon. Delish.

Food for Thought

What holiday do you celebrate?
What’s your favorite holiday meal?

What I Ate Wednesday #114: The True “Normal”

Have you entered my Peanut Butter & Co. giveaway?

I may have gotten back to my pretty “normal” eating last week after Thanksgiving, but the truth is I was still on vacation. It might have just been at my parents’ house, but that still means a little extra snackage, a little bit bigger meals, going out for dinner and drinks with friends more often.. it all adds up. I was ready to get back to normal, normal and yesterday was the first day of that.

Peas and Crayons

[Pre-Workout]
Skoop Superfood Blueberry Bite
I missed these little bites!

[Breakfast]
Protein Egg White Oatmeal Oats Almond Coconut Peanut Butter Coffee
I don’t even know how many months I’m going on now with this breakfast but there’s just nothing better.

[Mid-Morning Snack]
I had to run to Berkeley Bowl and Trader Joe’s so of course I had to grab a couple samples! A bite of cheese, truffle salami, a bite of a cookie, and some coffee. The new truffle salami from TJ’s is fabulous! I rarely buy the sampled items but I couldn’t resist.

[Lunch]
Sesame Kale Bibimbop Ocean Spray PACt
Nathan didn’t finish his bibimbop the other night for dinner so I added it to sesame-marinated kale and topped it with an egg. The egg made it, obviously. On the side, I had a bottle of Cranberry Blood Orange PACt from Ocean Spray. It’s a cranberry extract drink with only 10 calories and 2g sugar per bottle; we all know the benefits of cranberries and cranberry juice, but there’s just so much added sugar. This drink tastes great—though I didn’t get a ton of blood orange flavor—and I’d definitely get it again.

[Afternoon Snack]
Love Grown Foods Power Os Daisy Cottage Cheese
I was so excited when I got a LOVE drop yesterday from Lindsay. It actually came the day after we got to Baltimore but I had no idea what it was! I’d been wanting to try the Power O’s for so long and had yet to come across them. They’re made from beans, you know. Clearly I needed to fit these into my snack today and they’re delish! I mixed a little NuStevia chocolate syrup into some cottage cheese and topped it with these crunchy bites. I can’t wait to try the other flavors!

[Dinner]
Roasted Butternut Squash & Sweet Potato Soup
I wasn’t going to do squash this week, but when I saw butternut for $.39/lb at the store, I couldn’t resist! I decided to make my butternut squash soup for dinner tonight and also worked in some Thai basil turkey with carrots and green beans. This was such a good combo and I totally added more turkey to the top after I took some [much needed] replacement pictures for my original recipe post!

[Evening Snack]
The apple and nut butter prevail! I’m a creature of habit.. clearly I like my days to start and end the same way.

Food for Thought

Have you ever had a bean-based cereal?
What’s your favorite soup?

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary shipment of PACt from Ocean Spray. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

What I Ate Wednesday #113: Back to Normal

How many times have you heard the word “detox” over the past week? Every time the holidays come around, everyone scrambles to find the best ways to not gain weight and not over-indulge. And when we all give in to the holiday treats, we all want the quick-fix to lose the bloat and get back to where we were pre-holiday, right? Personally, I’m not one to say no to pumpkin roll and peanut butter cups.

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups

I’m also not a fan of detoxing. In theory, the idea of cutting out all of the sugar, alcohol, and excess snacking sounds like a good idea. But when I go from all to nothing, I’m not the most fun person to be around. [Don’t ask Nathan.] I prefer to just go back to my regular way of eating.

[Breakfast]
Protein Egg White Oatmeal Oats Fresh Almond Butter Coffee
How could I possibly give up my most favorite breakfast?

[Lunch]
Whole Foods Salad Bar Garlicky Kale
I’ve been going salad bar crazy! This is an old picture, but just imagine all of the delicious salad bar toppings you could possibly get from Whole Foods, Wegmans, etc. It’s the best.

[Dinner]
Lemon Feta Chicken Israeli Couscous Salad

Chicken Shawarma Cabbage Salad Saurkraut Hummus Baba Ghanoush
Nice, light dinners. The other night I made feta chicken, Israeli couscous salad, and a green salad. Last night we went to dinner at a new Mediterranean place that was setup like a Chipotle-style way of ordering. I loaded up on all the veggies and the delicious chicken shawarma, hummus, and baba ghanoush.

[Snacks]
Don’t be fooled by the pictures above. Along with my healthy bars that I’ve been snacking on, I’ve also been popping into the fridge to grab some bites of leftover sausage stuffing, all of the squash and sweet potato, and there have been many spoon dips into the almond butter jar! Obviously, I could be stuffing my face with worse food but there has still been a bit more snacking than a normal day.

So it may not be totally back to normal, but we’re getting there! There’s no quick fix for anything so rather than torturing myself [and everyone around me] with food I don’t want, I’d much rather enjoy what I’m eating and take my good old time.

Food for Thought

Are you a detoxer or do you just got back to your norm?