Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

My inner fat kid loves baked goods.

 

So does my outer fat kid.

I really could eat baked goods all day long.  Keep your Twizzlers and Sour Patch Kids, I’ll take the homemade oatmeal cookies.

Sadly, cookies aren’t exactly on my training plan.  Until now.  I strange’d it up in a storm of “use everything in my pantry.”

Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

 

I balled up a version of one of my favorite cookies because everything’s better as balls.  I also altered the ingredient list a bit so it can be eaten guilt-free.  Not that I feel guilty about eating dessert… but sometimes my abs do.

These chocolate chip-laced treats are just as good as the real thing.  Really!  My boss ate one and said “oh my god… these are good!” with a only slightly suppressed tone of  surprise.

Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

 

You could probably use any flour here – try coconut flour to make it gluten free.  They can easily be made vegan with a flax egg.  And, if you’re not ready to bring back pumpkin yet, try mashed sweet potato or banana!

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Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

Oatmeal Protein Cookie Balls

  • 1 C almond meal
  • 1 C rolled oats
  • 1/2 C spelt flour
  • 2 scoops (62 g) vanilla protein powder (I used Growing Naturals rice protein)
  • 2 T  brown sugar, packed
  • 2 T Stevia (or more brown sugar)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 C pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 C water
  • 3 T coconut oil
  • 3 T egg white (or flax egg)
  • 2 tsp NuNaturals simple syrup (or maple syrup)
  • 1/2 tsp maple pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 C sugar-free chocolate chips

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place dry ingredients in a large bowl and stir to combine.

In a small bowl mix coconut oil (softened in micro if necessary), syrup, egg white, water, and extract.  Pour wet mixture into the dry.  Stir until well-combined (you can use your CLEAN hands).

Fold in the chocolate chips.  Make balls of ~2 T of dough, place on cookie sheet and and flatten with your palm.

Bake for 10-12 mins at 350 degrees.  Remove from oven and let cool.

Makes about 30 cookies.

*See notes in post above for gluten-free, vegan, and other options!

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How have you enjoyed making co-workers, friends, or family stare with strange but good creations this week? The link up rules can be found here or by clicking on “Strange But Good” in the menu bar above. In short, I want to see what concoctions have earned you weird looks from co-workers, family and friends! Post your Strange But Good creations, grab the logo below for your blog, and link up here.

Sprint 2 the Table

 

 

Remember to use #strangebutgood in any Tweets and Instagrams of your creations. :)



***

I’m thinking I need to finally try a clean(er) cheesecake of my own next!

Baked goods or candy?

What childhood favorite would you like to health-ify?

 

Strange But Good: Pumpkin Beer Bread (or Muffins)

My mom should have been a chef.

 

Everyone says that, but this is legit.

Growing up, she used to make the best breakfasts.  Maybe that’ where I get my love of the meal?  One of my favorites was her bread.  She mad it the old-fashioned way from a starter that she had to feed.  When it baked I could smell it all the way upstairs in my room.

As soon as she removed it from the over, mom brushed salted butter over the top, creating the perfect sweet-and salty crust.  The best part was that she brought it to me with coffee as I got ready in the morning… and the next day she used it to make french toast (which she also delivered to me… how spoiled was I?!  Thanks, Mom!)

This post is not that bread.  My mother’s daughter is too lazy for starters.  My bread is baked with pumpkin beer.  Strange… but good.

Anderson Valley Pumpkin Ale Bread

 

I feel a little less ashamed about my bread-laziness because my mom did taste and love this bread.  She even had me send her the recipe the day after I brought it to Thanksgiving!  Maybe it was the beer talking?… 

Read More »

Sriracha. The New Pumpkin.

I’m ahead of the “trendy” curve.

 

This is a first.

According to this article, sriracha may be the new pumpkin.  Many of you saw the chips.  They have now gone so far as to turn it into a vodka flavor.

sriracha vodka

 

Why does EVERYTHING good need to be turned into vodka?  I like a good drink, and I admit that a sriracha Bloody Mary sounds good… but PB&J?  Really?

The point was going to be that I like sriracha before it was cool.  Before the pumpkin obsession.  Before even the bacon obsession.  So there.  Pass me a pumpkin-bacon-sriracha martini.  

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This WIAW felt like it was going to be “meh” after a rushed food prep.  Looking back it didn’t turn out too badly.  I’m pressed for time, but having quick proteins has helped – on busy weeks I rely on no-salt deli turkey and rotisserie chicken.  With a few simple flavor adds, semi-homemade tastes pretty good!   WIAWbuttonRead on for my eats, and then check out Jenn’s blog for everyone else delicious creations!… 

Read More »

Insta-Mallow + WIAW

Instagram is everywhere.

 

No judgment – I’m 100% addicted.

There is a printing company in the UK, Boomf, that has developed an app allowing Instragrammers to print their images onto marshmallows.

So you can take a picture of your food, print it onto another food, and eat it.  Would that be considered leftovers?

instagrammellow

The service isn’t available in the U.S. yet.  They’re trying to work out how to get it through customs.

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I didn’t eat any marshmallows for WIAW, but still managed some good stuff.  I’m out of town the rest of the week, so this is one of those “eat everything in the fridge” days. WIAWbutton Read on for my eats, and then check out Jenn’s blog for everyone else delicious creations!

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Breakfast:

As always, the day began with my apple cider morning cocktail.  Still searching for a new amino powder I like…

Breakfast was a little random.  A delicious banana-peanut butter fluff wrap, heated in the microwave.  The peanut butter fluff was a mix of peanut flour (from iHerb - use discount code USO924 for $5-10 off your order!), vanilla protein powder, cinnamon, vanilla, and Stevia.  With a side of turkey because it was going to go bad.

banana PB wrap

 

Mid-Morning Snack:

I am oddly addicted to this Matcha bar found at Whole Foods.  It’s almost buttery with its healthy fats!  Really good pre-workout fuel with a side of almonds.

matcha bar

 

Lunch:

Shredded rotisserie chicken (naked from Whole Paycheck) mixed with kale and a really random “dressing.”  It was the end of a cottage cheese container, mashed avocado, nutritional yeast, apple cider vinegar, cumin, smoked paprika, garlic power, and pepper.  I mixed it up the night before and used half here and half in the next snack.

I discovered the toaster at work, so I’ve been loving hot  Ezekial sesame toast.  Today’s was slathered my favorite Roots spinach hummus (also a Whole Foods find).

 

Mid-Afternoon Snack:

The other half of the afore-mentioned cottage cheese mix was used in a turkey salad with broccoli slaw.  I’m pretty surprised and how good the cottage cheese mix was, now that I think about it. I wish we had a toaster oven at work so I could crisp it up…

turkey salad

 

And then I had a pity party.  I’m getting a cold.  Extra water, green tea… and a Snickers should fix it, right?

snickers

 

Dinner:

Dinner was rotisserie chicken tossed with BBQ sauce, with a side of roasted mushrooms and crisped kale.

bbq chicken and veggies

 

I turned my roasted buttercup squash into dessert, tossing it in a sauce of peanut flour, cinnamon, Stevia, and almond milk.  And chocolate chips.

buttercup and PB sauce

 

Dessert:

Pumpkin-Zucchini Bread Batter was my midnight snack.  It was another “use all the foods” creation that turned out better than expected!  I love using protein powder in these – it really lends to the batter consistency.

Pumpkin-Zucchini Bread Batter

Pumpkin Zucchini Bread Batter

  • 1/2 C shredded zucchini
  • 1/2 C Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 C Pumpkin purée
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder (I use Growing Naturals rice protein)

 

Mix everything together and top as desired.  I went with a cocoa powder sauce, popcorn, and cacao nibs.

***

I’m headed to San Francisco for work, and then to Portland to see my sister for the weekend.  Any good Portland restaurant recs?

What would you like to print your Instagram pics on?  I want Insta-bacon!

What is the strangest clean-out-the-fridge dish you’ve ever made?

 

Creating a Life & Creating Fun Recipes

Who doesn’t love a holiday?

 

Especially one that lends itself to so many inappropriate jokes…

Step 1…

 

I know Halloween isn’t technically a holiday (i.e. we still have to work), but it one of my favorite festive events.  I won’t be party-ing it up this year, so I’d like to ask all of you benevolent ghouls to have an extra drink/Reese’s pumpkin/costume fun for me.

Not to worry, I plan to taking a nice walk through a neighborhood to scope out the trick-or-treater costumes while trying not to look like a creeper.  Watching all the kids having so much fun in pursuit of a sugar-high is the best part anyway.  Well, second only to knowing I don’t have to come home and try to put an over-stimulated child to  bed.  ;)

Kat is in the spirit too!  She has some new to share… I think you’ll agree that she deserves to celebrate a little extra tonight…

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Creating a Life & Creating Fun Recipes

by: Kat

Even when you think you have it all figured out, you still have a chance to change and create.

It just occurred to me recently how much change has happened in my life this year that I don’t even really recognize my life (Editor’s note: that happened to me a couple of years ago… crazy, isn’t it?!  Life is so good.).  With all the changes happening, it is a chance to really think about how I want to create my life, and how I want to see thing unfold.

Create a Life

 

This year, I graduated, leaving the perceived safety of an academic environment, spent a summer barely working while studying for the bar, started a new relationship, our families of animals (3 dogs and 3 cats) have come together in one home (yes, I now have pet hair-I only had two hairless cats for the longest time)…

…and I’ve OFFICIALLY PASSED the bar, so I can try to stop working just part-time and really practice law.  (Editor’s note: SO insanely proud of you.  I can’t wait to celebrate your success!)

I got SWORN IN yesterday! This is me signing my attorney’s oath.

I got SWORN IN yesterday! This is me signing my attorney’s oath.

 

Now – how do I create my life so that it feels good – so I’m doing work that inspires me, motivates me, and fills me up?  How do I navigate a home-space so different from where I was comfortable for so many years to have an even more comfortable, more happy environment?  I have options, and I’m excited (and nervous!).

All of this change has sent me right back to therapy.  (Editor’s note: you’re a smart girl – I should have done that when change was busting my balls.)  I have an awesome new creative, holistic therapist helping me use my personality strengths so they can be guiding my new life (instead of letting those not so pretty reactive parts shine through)!

 

Also, Happy Halloween!  To those of us not handing out candy…

heres some chia

 

And you can also get creative by being wickedly inappropriate.  (Editor’s note: I think it’s a boy…)

Birthing Pumpkin

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Or you can be boring like me and go about your daily life making recipes inspired by your cravings.

Lately, I have been craving EGGS.  You can only eat so many over-easy eggs with toast in one week before you really want something different (Editor’s note: blasphemy!).  I saved some sautéed peppers, onions, and mushrooms from a pizza night and used them to make this Pesto Omelette.

Omelette in Pan

 

What I love about this recipe is that it really creates a great meal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, and it’s loaded with healthy fats, protein, minerals and vitamins.  It’s also super fast, and the pesto/drunken goat cheese combo make it super special!

I have a ton of fall recipes I’m getting ready to hone in on and share.  First is my Butternut Squash with Brown Butter Sage Sauce (Editor’s note: you needed a taste-tester for that, right???).  This will be happening soon, along with a new surprise squash I’ll be getting with my next veggie delivery!  So stay tuned!

_______________________________________________________________________________________ Omelette

Pesto Omelette

  • 2 large organic eggs
  • 2 ½ T coconut milk
  • 2-3 T sautéed veggies
  • Garlic salt, to taste
  • 2 T pesto
  • 2-3 T drunken goat cheese, sliced
  • 2 T coconut oil
  • Sliced tomatoes (optional)

 

Preheat a nonstick pan over med-high heat and add coconut oil. 

Whisk the eggs in a bowl until they fluff up a bit, add the coconut milk and whip a little more (this is important for any fluff). 

Pour the mixture into preheated pan, add garlic salt evenly over the entire mixture.  Stir vigorously with a rubber spatula for 5 seconds, then add the sautéed veggies, cheese, and pesto to one half of the egg mixture. 

Let it cook until you start to see that most of the eggs on the side without the veggies is forming a solid mass.  Lift the pan so that the excess liquid/egg mixture distributes, and then use your spatula to loosen the edges from the pan. 

Shake the pan to loosen the eggs, and slide the spatula under and around the side without the veggies.  Let it cook for another 45 sec – 1:15 on each side.

Plate and serve with sliced tomatoes.

***

The thinkThin bar giveaway winner has been selected!  Check out the original post to see if YOU won this treat.

What are you doing to create your life so that it feels good to you?

What exciting fall recipes or ingredients are you playing with?

 

Strange But Good: Mexican Pumpkin Pan-lette

Pumpkin makes a great dessert.

 

Except pie.

I really love it mixed into yogurt bowls, as ice cream, or as bread.  I do not like pumpkin pie.  It’s texture thing… maybe too close to white potatoes?  I digress.

This post has nothing to do with pie.  I tried something new with my pumpkin – I made it a savory breakfast!  It’s actually just a new version of my sweet Pumpkin Pan-lette… a Mexican Pumpkin Pan-lette!  Some may consider this strange.  It also happens to be good.

 

I added Mexican-inspired spices to the pumpkin and egg mix in order to make this part omelette, part pancake creation a smoky, spicy breakfast.

Pico de gallo and some runny #yolkporn (a.k.a. syrup) topped this.  Someone on Instagram suggested bacon… which would have been brilliant.  If you make it, add bacon. ;)

Mexican Pumpkin Pan-lette

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Mexican Pumpkin Pan-lette

Mexican Pumpkin Pan-lette

  • 1/2 C egg white
  • 1/2 C pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • Topping ideas: fried egg, pico de gallo, bacon

 

Combine all pancake ingredients into a medium bowl and stir until smooth.  Pour into a prepared (I used olive oil) skillet and cook as you would a pancakes (~2-3 mins on each side).

Meanwhile, prepare toppings.  I used a fried egg and pico de gallo.

Plate your ‘cake-lette, top as desired, and enjoy!

Note: I made this as one huge pancake.  In order to avoid flipping disaster, I finished mine under the broiler and turned it over onto my breakfast plate.

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How have you enjoyed making co-workers, friends, or family stare with strange but good creations this week? The link up rules can be found here or by clicking on “Strange But Good” in the menu bar above. In short, I want to see what concoctions have earned you weird looks from co-workers, family and friends! Post your Strange But Good creations, grab the logo below for your blog, and link up here.

Sprint 2 the Table

Remember to use #strangebutgood in any Tweets and Instagrams of your creations. :)


***

Totally unrelated, but check out the new Ben & Jerry's Anchorman flavor: "Scotchy Scotch Scotch."

Are you a pumpkin pie fan?

What's been your favorite pumpkin creation this season?

 

Red Velvet Protein Mugcake + WIAW

Here comes the rooster.

 

Bonus points if you can name that song..

sriracha

 

Many of us have fallen in love with the spicy sauce, but did you know it has an interesting back story?  Yesterday I came across this article explaining  the history of “the world’s coolest hot sauce.”

It’s inventor and CEO, David Tran, came to the US from Vietnam in 1980 homeless.  Unable to find a hot sauce to satisfy him in the States, he simply made his own with hybrid red jalapeño peppers, vinegar, sugar, salt, and garlic.  He only hoped to make a sauce worthy of a traditional Vietnamese pho.  He just discovered that sushi chefs have been using it for years to make spicy rolls!  His use of a specific fresh chili is what sets him apart – and manufacturing is dictated by their 10 week, 100 million pound harvest.

Even more mind-blowing is that he has never hired a single salesman, spent any money on advertising, or used social media.  “It’s all been word of mouth,” Tran says.  As a marketing professional, this blows my mind!

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I don’t know where my brain was last week when I said 3 weeks.  THIS WIAW I am 3 weeks from my next competition!  Just a couple of diet tweaks so far, and we added 15 mins of HIIT cardio.  Anticipation of asparagus is high…

WIAWbutton

Read on for my eats, and then check out Jenn’s blog for everyone else delicious creations!

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Breakfast:

As usual, I started the day I with my Aminos and ACV morning cocktail.  I swear it’s more energizing than coffee.

My breakfast was warm and comforting one on a chilly, rainy morning.  Pumpkin pie-esque oatmeal, with a serious protein punch.  I really like adding eggs and TVP for texture as well as protein; it makes this into a custard-like bowl of oatmeal.

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Oatmeal

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Oatmeal

  • 1/4 C TVP
  • 1/4 C rolled oats
  • 1/2 C water
  • 1/2 C egg whites
  • 1/4 c pumpkin purée
  • 1.2 tsp cinnamon,
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • Stevia or other sweetener, to taste

 

In a small pot prepare oatmeal and TVP as normal.  

When just done, add remaining  ingredients, stirring rapidly to incorporate eggs before they scramble.

Pour into a bowl (or coffee mug) and enjoy!

 

Mid-Morning Snack:

Leftovers from this Sheepshead fish I prepared over the weekend, along with some roasted veggies.  And a few unpictured rice cakes.

Sheepshead fish

 

Lunch:

Cod, hummus, red pepper slices, cucumber, and sweet potato doused in cinnamon.  Standard fare for Gantt chart reviewing.

 

Mid-Afternoon Snack:

I love that I can get salmon sashimi from the massive international market here.  It’s fresh and it’s cheap.  Often I eat it plain, but I saw Jenn’s cucumber rolls and had to give it a go.

I only had 4 survivors (I need more practice), but they are so much fun to eat!  I rolled them up with red peppers and asparagus, and dipped it all (including that sweet potato) in wasabi.

salmon cucumber rolls

As delicious as it was, the best part was that my pancake-on-stick-eating coworker said it was so “pretty” that he wanted one.  I handed it over and he loved it!  Our food comparisons have become a running office joke… I love these guys.

 

Dinner:

Dinner was a super-quick saute of bok choy, green onions, sugar peas, and garlic in lime juice, coconut oil, and an Indian spice blend.  It turned out so well that the rest was just details – chicken (made during Sunday food prep) and injera (Ethiopian teff bread).

 

Dessert:

I’ve been on a giant Greek yogurt bowl kick lately.  That has to stop.  3 weeks out from my competition my trainer sad no more.  The idea is to eliminate foods that could bloat.  Dairy is one of them.  No worries.  I’ll just have Red Velvet Cake.

The deliciousness below is basically my 150 Calorie Chocolate Protein Cake, but I used Cocoa Cardio* instead of cocoa powder.  Topped with popcorn, cacao nibs, and Nuttzo.

 *Cocoa Cardio from iHerb. Use discount code USO924 for $5-10 off your order!

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Red Velvet Protein Mugcake

Red Velvet Protein Mugcake

  • 22g chocolate protein powder (I used 2/3 scoop Growing Naturals)
  • 1 scoop (7.5 g) Cocoa Cardio*
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp no sodium baking powder
  • 3 T unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 egg white (or flax egg)
  • 2 T pumpkin puree (can also use applesauce)
  • ~8 drops NuNaturals orange pure liquid stevia
  • Optional toppings: popcorn, cacao nibs, nut butter

 

Place dry ingredients in a small bowl and stir to combine.  Add wet ingredients to dry and mix until smooth.

Transfer to a large, greased (I use coconut oil) coffee mug and microwave for 1:30 mins.

Tip the cake out onto a plate and top as desired.  My cake was topped with nut butter, cacao nibs, and popcorn.

Makes 1 cake.

 *Cocoa Cardio from iHerb. Use discount code USO924 for $5-10 off your order!  You can also leave it out or use cocoa powder and 1/8 C beet puree to keep it red. 

***

Thank you all of all of the kind comment on yesterday’s post.  It’s sometimes hard for me to tap into the more emotional side – I use humor more often than not. So thank you for being empathetic and kind.

Are you a sriracha fan?  What’s your favorite thing to add it to?

Have you ever attempted a homemade Asian roll?  Oddly, I found the cucumber easier than dealing with rice paper or seaweed.

 

Peanut Butter Pumpkin Pie Eggs

This is the fall of orange.

 

My least favorite color to wear, but one of the most delicious.

Unbelievably, my palms aren’t orange.  My whole body will be orange in 3 weeks.  It’s almost competition time!  Food wise, I can’t get enough pumpkin, winter squashes, sweet potatoes, and carrots (many of you understand my addiction).  I eat one of those at almost every meal!  Including breakfast.

The orange pumpkin pie filling mix above was added to eggs.  I mixed together pumpkin puree with spices… and then decided it was missing something.  It tasted too traditional.*

Peanut butter flour!!!

Peanut Butter Pumpkin Pie Eggs

*If you’re into traditional, you can leave the PB out.

Since PB & Peggs is taken, I thought calling it pie was appropriate.  It tasted like pie.  Breakfast pie.

It also earned me some fun looks when I walked into my gym eating it Saturday morning (please note the environmentally friendly mug).  Marvelous, no?

Recipe at the bottom of this post.

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Which brings me to more marvelous – I am working on getting my personal training certification!  Even better, I am doing it though Lee Haney’s IAFS program.  I got to spend 8 hours at the gym learning from him on Saturday.

In case you don’t know Lee Haney, he’s an 8x Mr. Olympia.  This man is legit.  I love his real approach and emphasis on fueling with natural, whole foods.

Lee Haney and me

 

In case the scramble wasn’t enough pumpkin for you, check out the Peanut Butter Pumpkin Pancakes my #strangebutgood partner in crime, Heather, posted this weekend.

I made them Sunday morning.  My modifications: reduced oats and peanut flour to 2T each, increased egg whites to 1/4 C, and used cottage cheese instead of yogurt.  For syrup, I mixed sugar-free syrup, pumpkin, and cinnamon.

This weekend of pumpkin was beyond marvelous.

MMIM

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Peanut Butter Pumpkin Pie Eggs

Peanut Butter Pumpkin Pie Eggs with Pear

  • 1/4 C pumpkin puree
  • 1 T peanut flour (or peanut butter)
  • 1 T unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • Pinch of cloves
  • 4-5 drops liquid stevia
  • 1/2 C egg whites
  • 1/2 large Asian pear, diced

 

In a small bowl, combine first 7 ingredients.

Scramble the eggs until almost done.  Stir in the pumpkin mix and pear, cooking ~1 min to warm through.

Transfer to plate and tops as desired (I used additional pear and almonds).  Enjoy! 

***

I feel like I went 100 miles an hour all weekend, but in a good way.  It’s fun to look up and realize you’re exactly where you want to be.

Are you orange-obsessed?  What’s is your favorite orange food?

What was marvelous about your weekend?

 

PB & Pear Eggs + WIAW

Technology gets me excited.

 

Clearly I need to get out more.

Being a figure competitor means my food scale is my most-used kitchen tool.  I need to weigh my proteins to make sure I have enough, and I can more easily get accurate serving sizes for other items.  Even if you don’t eat like a crazy person, scales are a HUGE help in baking.  I no longer use measuring cups!

countertop and prep pad

 

I read about this Countertop + Prep Pad with glee.  This device can determine the exact nutritional content of whatever you’re making and track your eating habits.  Beyond the traditional accurate weighing of ingredients, it has a BlueTooth connection and an app which displays your data.  You place food on the scales, indicate what it is, and the app shows the nutritional data (with macros, micros, and ingredients).  It even tracks goals for you!

It’s available to pre-order now for $149.95 (delivery in November).  I’m soooooo tempted…

(I randomly ran across this… they didn’t pay me or anything.  It’s just cool.)

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This is WIAW I am back to “normal.”  I food prepped well this week, and was able to keep on track through back to back meetings.  It’s a fun busy though. :)

WIAWbutton

Read on for my 4 weeks out eats, and then check out Jenn’s blog. for some more “normal” days of food.

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Breakfast:

Ever the creature of habit, a had my Aminos and ACV morning cocktail.  Sam posted she’s been starting her day with ACV for a year… made me realize I’m at about 2 years.  Whoa.

My meal was a win.  Normally I go to bed thinking about breakfast, but last night I didn’t have an clear vision.  It came in the morning though!  Pear.  Cardamom.  Eggs.  Peanut sauce.  Totally normal.

PB & Pear Eggs to go

Cardamom is one of those “a little goes a long way” spices, but just a pinch can make a dish something spectacular.  Especially when that dish involves pear.

I plated this for a pic before pouring it into a solo cup to-go.  See bottom of post for the prettier pic and full recipe. 

 

Mid-Morning Snack:

Crab salad with arugula, cherry tomatoes, hummus, and pepper.  I love crab.  I really love crab that is 20% off.

Crab, arugula, tomato, and hummus salad

 

Lunch:

Dijon Baked Chicken (so glad I made a TON of froze it), roasted bok choy, and yuca fries with salsa.  I am newly obsessed with yucca fries.

Yuca (also known as Cassava) is a thick, starchy tuber.  It’s sort of like a potato, but a little sweeter and drier.  It’s also really hard to slice… but, like kabocha, it’s worth the effort.  I sliced mine into fries and roasted it on 425 til it was crispy (maybe 25 mins?).

Yuca fries

For a funny story about my lunch here.

 

Mid-Afternoon Snack:

I make a lot of food… which means sometimes I forget about recipes.  This week I remembered one I really loved: BBQ Cauliflower Bites.  Yesterday I ate it at work with asparagus and a veggie burger with beer mustard.  Happy girl, I was.

BBQ Cauliflower and veggie burger

 

Dinner:

Dinner was a pleasant surprise.  I was SO SORE after leg day that I decided to take a rest day and detoured to Whole Paycheck Foods on the way home for some fresh fish.  I ended up with flounder, a fish I’d never prepared at home before.

I baked my flounder for 10 mins at 425 with fresh lemon, pepper, and lemon-thyme a co-worker brought me from her garden (thanks Allison!).  Eaten with half a roasted yellow acorn squash and broccoli slaw over a bed of arugula.

Lemon flounder and acorn squash

Dessert:

It’s finally feeling like fall in Atlanta, so a warm dessert was in order.  I Made my 150 Calorie Microwave Chocolate Cake (using pumpkin puree instead of applesauce) and topped it with berries and pumpkin fluff.

Chocolate Pumpkin Mug Cake

Pumpkin fluff is amazing.  It’s just equal parts pumpkin puree, Tru Whip (cleaner cool whip from WF), cinnamon, and butter extract.  Just do it.

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PB & Peaggs

PB & Peaggs

  • 2/3 C egg whites
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • Pinch of cardamom

For the Sauce

  • 1 T peanut flour (or nut butter)
  • 1 T unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3-4 drops liquid Stevia
  • 1 small pear, chopped

 

Scramble together then first 4 ingredients.  Cook over medium heat until almost done.  Meanwhile, mix together peanut sauce.

Add the peanut sauce and pear, stirring to combine.  Cook just long enough to warm through. 

Devour.

***

Let’s revisit my leg day.  I am so sore.  So very sore.  GROW LEGS!

Do you use a food scale?  Would you buy this hard-core one?

Have you tried anything new lately that you’re loving? I’m a flounder fan now!

 

Pumpkin Pie Protein Bowl + WIAW

When you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

 

Not until I started competing did I realize how true this saying is.

My food prep is saving me this week, once again.  Starting a new job where I’m in the office every day (I used to work from home a lot) has forced me to be more structured and has tested me mentally.

Planning workouts and meals has become SO important.  Otherwise I’d never get out the door.  Preparation and constantly reminding myself of my goals and why I do this crazy thing is a necessity.

you are intense

 

I feel more like I’m going it alone during this competition prep.  I’m adjusting my workouts to meet my needs/limitations post surgery, and I have more fat to cut than I did in the past.

It’s new and it’s scary.  It’s also going to be awesome when I prove to myself that I can get out of my own way to reach a goal.

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This is WIAW is a little glimpse into how I use my prep to stay in line, despite a new routine and later workouts.  It’ not easy.  But it’s not impossible.  I think.

WIAWbutton

Read on for my San Francisco treats, and then check out Jenn’s blog. for some more “normal” days of food.

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Breakfast:

You may have seen me post on Instagram that I’m changing up my morning cocktail.  I decided to try out new aminos in my draaaank.  Why?  I still love the taste of the old one, but their customer service is so bad (read: non-existent) I can no longer use the product. Their ingredient list wasn’t the *most* clean anyway.

This new one came highly recommended by my local nutrition store.  It is pretty good.  Doesn’t mix quite as well, but I like the mild taste and it still provides good energy!

morning aminos cocktail

 

I went on a bulgur kick a while ago with this Blueberry-Green Tea Bulgur… then forgot about it.  It made a comeback in this week’s food prep!

I mixed this delicious raspberry blend up to grab as a ran out the door to an early morning meeting.  It tasted like raspberry cream.

Raspberry Overnight Bulgur

Raspberry Overnight Bulgur

  • 1/4 C bulgur (raw)
  • 1/2 C Greek yogurt
  • Water or almond milk, to mix (I think this was about 1/2 C… you can always add more in the AM)
  • 1/4 C raspberries
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 6-7 drops orange liquid stevia (or other sweetener)

 

Mix everything together in a small bowl or jar and store in the fridge overnight.

Remove from fridge in the morning, add liquid if necessary, and enjoy!

 

Mid-Morning Snack:

This was Turbot with a random (salt-free!) Indian spice blend I found at the Asian market and a side of my tabbouleh with hummus.

I had just finished re-heating my fish in the break-room when two ladies walked in. One commented: “It smells like dead fish in here.” #sorryimnotsorry

turbot and tabbouleh

You may find it weird to eat fish before noon and/or at work.  I find it #strangebutgood.  

 

Lunch:

Turkey on a bed of spinach with my new lentil hummus, Ezekial bread, and raw zucchini sticks.  This was going to be a sandwich before I realized I had more stuffing than bread.  Typical…

turkey salad and hummus

 

Mid-Afternoon Snack:

This is like a treat meal to me.  If tuna is the chicken of the sea and swordfish is the steak of the sea… sea bass must be like the pork belly of the sea.  Without the fat (or the pig).  It’s absolutely decadent!

The salad with it was broccoli slaw and radish mixed with a quick sauce: nutritional yeast, apple cider vinegar, cumin, turmeric, and smoked paprika.  And I ate it off of a Zoo Pals plate. ;)

sea bass and broccoli slaw

Dinner:

Dinner has become snack-like on my new work/workout schedule.  I now have to workout right after work, so dinner actually is at 9pm and looks like dessert most days.

This is my chocolate-beet smoothie (it’s become a serious addiction), extra spinach blended in.  I left out the coffee since it was late, and topped it with pre-roasted kabocha and granola.

Chocolate-Beet Protein Smoothie

 

Dessert:

A dessert-like dinner doesn’t stop me from doing it again!  Since declaring this pumpkin pie protein bowl The Most Amazing Bowl of Deliciousness Ever, I’ve had it 3 nights in a row.  After the first night I began freezing it for an hour or so.

Pumpkin Pie Protein Bowl

Pumpkin Pie Protein Bowl

  • 1/2 C Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 C pumpkin purée
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1/4 tsp butter extract (vanilla or almond would be good too)
  • Optional topping: cocoa sauce (cocoa powder, stevia, and almond milk), peanut butter, pumpkin seeds… etc.

 

 Place ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth.

Freeze for ~1 hour for a frozen custard, or enjoy right away for a more batter-like snack.

***

It’s oddly motivating to be really sore post-workout today.  I guess it’s like feeling the reward of hard work?!  #strangebutgood

Do you have any tips for staying focused and getting out of your own way?  Help.  Me.

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve brought to work to eat?