Tag Archives: healthy eats

This Vegetarian’s Wednesday Eats

Good morning!

I’m switching up my day a little and blogging on this Thursday morning, instead of my usual nighttime blog action.

First off, in the past couple of days I’ve made some blog changes I’d like to point out. For one thing, I’ve updated my recipe page. My recipe list was getting too extensive to be on one page, so the recipe tab you see on my menu bar above is now a drop down list, so you can check out whatever category of recipes you want to look at in separate pages. I think this makes it easier to view.

I also have added a “work it out” tab in the menu, which contains links to workout related posts I’ve written. Feel free to browse. 🙂

Lastly, I also added access to my Instagram on the blog, and it’s now on my sidebar under my Twitter feed. I haven’t really been too active on Instagram thus far, but I’m now starting to get into Instagram mode and post pictures on a daily basis. If you use Instagram, let’s follow each other!

Now onto food…

WIAWLet’s talk about what a day in the eats of this vegetarian looked like yesterday:

Breakfast was a colorful one – a huge bowl of yummy fruit!

fruit-bowl

For lunch, I made pumpkin cinnamon pancakes:

Pumpkin-Pancakes

I doubled my recipe, and the batter turned out looking a bit runny, so I added an extra TBSP of wheat flour – this did the trick! I topped the pancake with a Laughing Cow cinnamon cream cheese wedge and crumbs from the bottom of my Kashi Go Lean! cereal box.

pumpkin-pancakes-2

A couple of hours later, my pre-workout meal was an English muffin with mashed avocado, a slice of provolone cheese, and a few tofurky deli slices:

eng-muffin-sandwichAfter a nice gym session, a few hours later I made a simple healthy dinner – asparagus drizzled with a touch of balsamic glaze + olive oil, and a serving of quinoa brown rice mix:

Quinoa-Asparagus

quinoa-2

A little while later, the munchies hit me and I had a piece of dark chocolate + a peanut butter oats bar from TJs.

PB-bars

dark-choc

And that’s what my 1,400 calorie day looked like yesterday. I could have gotten more veggies in my eats, but overall it was a pretty healthy day. I’m planning on eating a big salad this afternoon to get more veggies in today though!

I’m off to get some work done. Have a wonderful rest of your day!

 

Today’s Eats: Keepin’ it Simple

Some days my eats are awesome meals & snacks that I put an artistic flair into. Other days, the food I eat is not quite as exciting. It may be because I was just too busy to spend time or energy getting creative, or perhaps I just wasn’t in the mood to be. Today is a good example of a pretty boring yet healthy day of eats:

What-I-Ate-Today

My breakfast was a bowl of Kashi Go Lean cereal with sliced banana + almond milk:

kashi-cereal

For lunch I reheated some leftover veggie chili. I crunched up some multigrain crackers with sea salt from Crunchmasters on top. It was a little snack bag I got in my KLUTCHclub box shipment. The verdict? Light, yummy, and the mini bag was the perfect amount for adding some crunchiness to my soup.

Veg-Chili

Late in the afternoon, I took Harley for a hike. After experiencing toasty weather in the mid 90s last week, the lows 70s and cloudy today felt cool. It was nice, plus Harley doesn’t get tired out quickly when it’s cooler out.

 park-1

park-2

park-3

Harley despises posing for pictures. She pretty much looks everywhere except the camera 99% of the time! But how cute is she in this shot?

park-4

I think she is one happy puppy when she’s hiking around outside!

When we got back from our 90 minute hike, I made my beloved chocolate peanut butter protein shake to hold my hunger over for a couple of hours so that I could hold out to have dinner with my hubby (which didn’t wind up happening anyways – by 7:30 I was too hungry to wait any longer!).

Choc-PB-Shake

In the mix:

  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 scoop chocolate protein powder
  • 1 cup unsweetened chocolate almond milk
  • 1 packet of Stevia sweetener
  • 1 TBSP cocoa powder
  • 2 TBSP of PB 2
  • Ice

I’m already getting to the bottom of my PB 2 — I’m officially obsessed with this stuff and have been eating some every day since I bought it!

For dinner, I threw together some whole grain rotini with a touch of butter and grated pecorino romano with string beans.

Dinner

And then a little while ago, I snacked on a mango.

mango

After a couple of kind of easy peazy food days, I usually get in a recipe creation/cooking kind of mood… and that’s exactly how I’m feeling right now. I have a few recipe ideas floating around in my head that I’m going to experiment with in the next few days. Good night!

Ways to Feel Happier

”C’mon, Get Happy!”

Last night I was reading the latest issue of Shape magazine, and as usual when I’m enjoying a magazine, I tore a few articles out for future reference. One of the articles I liked was called ”C’mon, Get Happy!” and discussed a blueprint to help one feel more joyful. The author’s strategies to feeling happier resonated with me, and I thought I’d share them with you:

  • Embrace ”Good Enough” – The idea here is to resist the urge to be a perfectionist. Wanting everything to be flawless all the time stresses you out and isn’t attainable. Strive to do things well and your best, but don’t go so far that you make yourself nuts.
  • Talk Yourself Up – According to new findings, sharing accomplishments and good news with others multiples the joy factor. In other words, don’t be afraid to brag a little and be vocal about positive things happening in your life.
  • Pay it Forward – Doing a random act of kindness is an easy way to boost your spirits (and also make someone else’s day!). According to the article, researchers have found that people who perform daily acts of kindness feel more satisfied with their lives than those who don’t. It makes sense – so aim to do someone a favor more often. 😉
  • Go Back in Time – Looking at old photos is a nice way to remind you of good times and brighten your mood. This one’s my favorite, since I’m a total picture nerd who has photos up everywhere in my house!

My Eats for the Day 

Moving onto food, here are all of my eats from yesterday:

For breakfast I had a cup of Cheerios with 1/2 scoop of chocolate protein powder, a nectarine and almond milk:

My lunch was a Tofurky, mozzarella, & tomato sandwich on whole wheat bread + an apple sprinkled with cinnamon:

For a snack before the gym, I ate one of my homemade trail bars.

For dinner, I whipped up a Mexican-themed salad that included red leaf lettuce, cherry tomatoes, avocado, cheddar cheese, crushed multigrain tortilla chips, & a dressing made of salsa, sour cream, and mashed avocado:

I make a salad like this when I’m craving something salty and filling, and I just throw in whatever I have in the house that fits the Mexican theme. Sometimes I’ll add black beans and corn into the mix. Last night’s salad filled me up and weighed in as a 400 calorie dinner.

Lastly, for a nighttime snack I ate a chocolate yogurt from TJ’s:

Off to relax and veg out with my little family, good night!

Harvest-Stuffed Acorn Squash

Sometimes when I’m food shopping, I decide to nab something new to play around with. Rather than always grabbing the same foods to make the same meals, I think it’s fun to experiment with food and try out different dishes. At times, I pick out something not really being sure how I’m make it, or what I’ll prepare it with. This was the case last week when I grabbed these guys at the farmers’ market:

I’ve eaten acorn squash here and there, but can’t really remember a time when I made them myself. I checked out a few of my cookbooks to see if a recipe with acorn squash looked appealing to me. Here is what I wound up making:

I found this recipe in a cookbook called The Vegan Table and altered a few of the ingredients. From the start, I was doubtful that my hubby would be a fan of it. He isn’t a big fan of celery, dried fruit, or many kinds of nuts, which were all included in the dish. I found out while we ate this dinner that he apparently hates cloves. It reminds him of something bad he ate as a kid, though I have no idea what! If you enjoy all of these ingredients as I do, then this dish is worth trying:

Harvest-Stuffed Acorn Squash
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 2 acorn squash, halved lengthwise, seeds and membranes removed
  • ½ TBSP olive oil
  • ¼ onion, minced
  • 2 large celery stalks, diced
  • 4 oz long grain & wild rice mix (or any other kind of rice), cooked
  • 1 oz toasted pecan pieces
  • ½ cup golden raisins
  • ½ TSP ground cinnamon
  • ¼ TSP ground cloves
  • ¼ TSP salt
  • Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Place squash halves, cut side down, on a baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, then remove from heat.
  3. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a saute pan. Cook onions over medium heat until lightly browned. Add celery and saute for several more minutes.
  4. Remove onion/celery mixture from heat and add to a large bowl. Add the rice, pecans, raisins, cinnamon, cloves, salt and pepper. Mix well.
  5. Spoon out the cooked squash, leaving some squash in the shells. Press rice mixture evenly into each squash cavity.
  6. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 squash half, Calories: 300, Fat: 7 g, Carbohydrates: 58 g, Protein: 5 g

My New Favorite Salad Combo

Hello, hello!

I realized that I haven’t posted my day’s eats in awhile, so to answer the question, ”What the hell does this vegetarian eat all day?” here goes my rundown from yesterday’s meals & snacks:

Wednesday is a bit of a different day for me food-wise than any other day. I volunteer at The Humane Society in the evenings, so I eat a quick early dinner and eat 1 snack instead of 2 for the day. Because of this, I usually make my breakfast or lunch heavier than usual.

For breakfast, I ate some oatmeal with sliced banana, a pack of Justin’s honey peanut butter, and sprinkled cinnamon:

For lunch, I ate my new favorite salad. I’ve eaten it 3 times in the past week and am really diggin’ it. It’s a chickpea feta salad with sliced almonds:

To make the salad, I combine:

  • A few cups of chopped red leaf lettuce
  • 1/2 cup chickpeas, drained & rinsed
  • 1 oz crumbled feta cheese
  • 2 TBSP sliced almonds
  • 1/2 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 TBSP red wine vinegar
  • Sprinkle of sea salt

It takes 2 minutes to throw together and is such a nice, balanced lunch: lettuce & beans provides a few servings of veggies; almonds, feta, and oil for some healthy fats; and chickpeas and feta for a good amount of protein.  Yum! Nutrition facts for the salad: 315 calories, 25 g carbs, 18 g fat, 17 g protein

For dinner, I ate brown rice with sauteed red bell pepper and Gardein 7 Grain Crispy Tenders:

When I got home from volunteering, I needed a good snack. I threw together a frozen berry bowl and added banana to the mix as well:

My eats for the day totaled 1,200 calories and were packed with goodness, adhering to the ”tone it up” goal of mine that I discussed yesterday.

Good night!

A Fall Feelin’

Happy 10/11/12 blog friends!

It’s starting to feel a bit like fall around San Diego (well, ya know, we do experience minor season changes!). We’ve had a few months of pretty hot weather, but today there was a bit of chill in the air and it was actually rainy. I felt strangely happy to wear a sweatshirt this morning while talking Harley for a walk. Even though I grew up in the Northeast, I’m not a person who loves to live in a place with 4 seasons. I definitely don’t mind it being warm and sunny most of the time here (actually, I LOVE it!), but it is nice to have a bit of a change of pace!

Before I get to my ‘What This Vegetarian Ate Today’ rundown, I wanted to note a blog update. I’ve had multiple people tell me that they’ve had issues with subscribing to my blog, and I’ve been trying to find a solution for a couple of weeks. You’d think this would be an easy, but not so much! However, I have implemented a new subscriber tool that you can find on my sidebar. Once subscribed, you should be getting an email every time I publish a blog post. If anyone is having problems with this still, please email me to let me know!

Due to the fact that I need to go food shopping, my eats today were more random than usual. I know that everyone out there can relate! I must make up a food list and get to the farmer’s market and grocery store ASAP, but until then, I will continue to be random with my meals and snacks…

Breakfast was my recent favorite yogurt combo – an apple cinnamon Greek yogurt + a small chopped apple sprinkled with cinnamon + 1/2 serving of cashews:

Lunch was an oatmeal bowl: old fashioned oats with warmed frozen strawberries & Dark Chocolate Dreams peanut butter:

Ick,  my apologies for the unattractive oatmeal photo. It was kinda tasty though!

Post-workout, I had to refuel quickly while running out the door to a doctor’s appointment. I grabbed a cheese stick, a Tiger’s Milk bar, and a handful of almonds:

For dinner I whipped up whole wheat penne with my favorite marinara sauce (Newman’s Own) & string beans:

Now I’m snacking on mango as I blog, and that’s all for my Thursday eats!

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quotes: ”The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude to me is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill. It will make or  break a company.. a church.. a home. The remarkable thing is, we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past. We cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is plan on the one thing we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you, we are in charge of our attitudes.” – Charles R. Swindoll

 

A Boozy Monopoly Night

Happy Saturday!

Look who we’re babysitting for the weekend:

Adam’s friend recently got this 10-week old Bulldog and had to go out of town this weekend, so we are watching him for a few days. I can’t even deal with the way Hogan wiggles his cute little body around!

Hanging in his little bed

We were interested to see how Harley would act with Hogan here. She’s gotten a little territorial with him, but last night they were rough housing with each other like old buddies. Harley is typically really submissive and kept rolling over and letting him get on top of her to play. He is just this little goofball who was flopping around and doing his miniature bark and it was pretty entertaining!

Moving onto food, check out what I baked this morning:


Banana cinnamon muffins from the Skinny Bitch cookbook. One of my first blog posts talked about this recipe (here) – they are SO yummy!

Now for this week’s edition of “What this Vegetarian Eats in a Day,” here is a rundown of my Friday eats –

Breakfast was a cinnamon apple sandwich: a Granny Smith apple cut into thick chunks with cinnamon peanut butter, Kashi Go Lean Crisp Cinnamon Crumble cereal, and sprinkled cinnamon in the middle.

When my stomach started growling for lunch, I whipped up some homemade hummus

…and spread some on whole wheat toast with sliced avocado, lettuce, tomato, and a slice of cheddar cheese, along with some strawberries:

I liked this lunch so much I just might repeat the same exact combo this afternoon.

Later on in the day, I snacked on a Chobani apple cinnamon yogurt. I’m kind of obsessed with Greek yogurt. It’s high in protein, low in fat and calories and delicious. I think this may be my new favorite flavor!

For dinner last night, Adam and I used a Groupon we had for a restaurant in Hillcrest called Fig Tree Cafe. First we share an appetizer of roasted tomato, onion, basil, and goat cheese bruschetta:

And then my entree was a mixed greens salad with goat cheese, walnuts, dried cranberries and lemon-poppyseed dressing:

[Easy healthy living tip: always order your dressing on the side. I usually don’t wind up using all the dressing and save myself some unwanted calories by doing this!]

San Diego has so many great areas and things to do and see, and I love getting deals for places I’ve never been to and trying them out. Sure, some deals wind up working out better than others (I got a pretty weird massage recently with one), but I adore exploring our city. And who doesn’t like to save some bucks?!

After dinner, for a reason I’m not sure of, Adam decided that he really wanted to play Monopoly. Once we picked up the game at the store and returned home to hang with the dogs, it turned into a boozy game night at our place.

It became my “cheat” night and I enjoyed a bottle couple glasses of Gewurztraminer wine and some pretzel crisps while Adam and I got into our game of Monopoly. Hey, we all deserve to indulge sometimes right? 😉

We were laughing at how we used to play this game as kids, but probably had little concept of what it was all about. Mortgages? Rent? Utility bills? I’m pretty sure as a 10-year old I wasn’t too in the know on these things, but I distinctly remember having drawn-out games of Monopoly with my older brother. They lasted for days, and we would take our money and pieces to our rooms when we were done playing for the night, in fear that the other person would cheat and steal some of the other’s assets.

It was also pretty comical because at the start of the game I said, “One of the biggest things I remember about Monopoly is that whoever lands on (and buys) Park Park and the Boardwalk first always wins in the end.” I was right, and unfortunately, that person was Adam! No worries though, I have plans to coax him into playing cards sometime in the near future and redeeming myself (…but we aren’t competitive with each other!).

Question: What were your favorite games to play growing up? 

Besides Monopoly, I also remember loving Life, Uno, Candy Land and Sorry.

Balsamic Portobello & Goat Cheese Panini

I think I’ve found a new favorite way to eat portobello mushrooms:

As soon as I whipped up this panini, before I even tasted it, I knew I’d love it. I definitely will be making this deliciousness again very soon!

Balsamic Portobello & Goat Cheese Panini

Serves 2 

Ingredients:

  • 2 panini rolls (Trader Joe’s)
  • 2 large portobello mushroom caps
  • 2 vine ripe tomatoes, sliced
  • 2 oz creamy goat cheese
  • 1/2 c balsamic vinegar
  • 1 TBSP light brown sugar
  • 1/2 TBSP soy sauce
  • 1/4 onion
  • 1 TSP olive oil
  • Sea salt

In a large saucepan, bring the balsamic vinegar, light brown sugar, and soy sauce to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes until it begins to become thick and syrupy.

Meanwhile, cut the portobello mushrooms and onions into thin slices. Once the balsamic mixture thickens a bit, add the veggies to the saucepan. Simmer the mix over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes.

Heat your grill up. Slice the panini rolls in half, then spread 1/2 of the goat cheese onto each roll. Layer the tomatoes over the goat cheese, and sprinkle sea salt on top.

Once the mushroom mixture is done cooking, spoon evenly onto each panini. Brush each top and bottom of the panini bread with olive oil, then cook on the grill until browned.

Nutrition stats per panini: 350 calories, 10 g fat, 12 g protein, 63 g carbs

I’m All About the Produce

Growing up a vegetarian, I’ve always eaten a lot of fruits and veggies, but recently, I decided to be even more conscious of what I’m eating on a daily basis. I made it a rule to make sure to eat at least one fruit or veggie every time I ate. The exception to this is snacks, as I’ll have a protein bar, dessert, or other nosh that sometimes won’t involve any produce.

I’m constantly throwing a piece of fruit into or on the side of everything and anything, and I definitely feel like incorporating as much produce as I can to my meals fills me up more and provides me with an ample amount of vitamins and antioxidants. In this week’s installment of “what this vegetarian ate today,” my Monday eats are a typical example of this rule:

Breakfast: A frozen berry bowl

Lunch: Kashi 7 grain waffles + a Justin’s maple almond butter squeeze pack + sliced strawberries

This was the first time I’ve tried the maple almond butter flavor. I also recently tried Justin’s chocolate hazelnut butter, and I’m a big fan of both. YUM!

Pre-Workout Snack: TJ’s chocolate yogurt + blueberries + a Special K protein snack bar

Dinner: A mega salad of romaine lettuce + avocado + goat cheese + Lightline roast turkey veggie protein slices + sea salt + balsamic vinegar, with a TJ’s baby baguette on the side

When I was younger, I used to eat soy meat products all the time. In recent years, I’ve shied away from eating processed soy products all that often, but I do still incorporate products like these veggie slices into my diet occasionally. They’re a good source of protein and low in calories and fat – 1 serving has 100 calories, 4 g fat, and 14 g protein:

 Nighttime snack: a few dried peaches

And lookie what I got today…

My five-months-down-in-this-deployment-sneakers! After trying on a bunch of pairs, I went with the same brand as my last pair (Brooks) with a very similar style because they’re just so damn comfy. For anyone living in the San Diego area, I highly recommend going to Road Runner Sports   to get assessed for your next pair of sneakers. Last year when I went there for the first time, I found the assessment to be very interesting. They have you run on a treadmill to determine what kind of runner you are, measure your feet, and mold you a custom sole. I tore my calf muscle a few years ago and found out that I unconsciously compensate and run differently on my injured side, landing a lot more on the ball of my foot. This explains why running makes my calf so sore still and sometimes gives me blisters.

I have a sneaker rotation method that goes like this:

1.) My newest pair that I use for my regular workouts

2.) My second newest pair that I use for hiking or other activities where I need decent traction, but that might get dirty

3.) The last pair that I often wear in situations where I don’t care if they get ruined (i.e. a walk on a super muddy trail after it rained)

My hiking pair is getting old and is starting to not feel so great (I’m blaming them for my constant tripping over rocks lately… not my clumsiness!), so I’m happy to knock them back in the rotation. When I told Adam about my sneaker usage, he thought I was a little nuts, but when I was talking to my mom about it, she knew exactly what I was saying because she does the same thing. Guess I know where I get it from!

The pair getting knocked down to spot #2

Question: Do you typically have multiple pairs of sneakers at any given time for different activities, or do you tend to have 1 pair that you use for everything? 

Eating Pizza Before Noon

Today I ate breakfast early due to a conference call first thing this AM. Because of this, I found my stomach growling around 11 AM for lunch. I had pizza on my brain… and not just any pizza, leftovers from a new pizza recipe I came up with last weekend!

Instead of using tomato sauce as I usually do, I came up with a healthy pesto to spread onto the dough. Though I’m a big cheese lover, I let veggies take the center stage with this tasty pizza.

Veggie, Goat Cheese & Arugula Pesto Pizza

Makes 8 slices

Ingredients:

  • 1 ready to bake whole wheat pizza dough (I use Trader Joe’s)
  • 2 c arugula
  • 1/4 c fresh basil
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • 3 oz goat cheese
  • 1 c zucchini, sliced
  • 1/2 c cherry tomatoes, sliced
  • 1/2 c purple cabbage, shredded
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 TBSP water
  • salt & pepper

Preheat oven to 400. Roll out your dough on a flour-dusted surface with a rolling pan. Place on a pizza pan (I lightly spray mine with cooking spray beforehand).

In a food processor, combine arugula, basil, garlic cloves, lemon juice, oil, the water, and a pinch of salt & pepper. Pulse until a thin paste forms, then spread onto the pizza crust using a butter knife or spoon.

Evenly place zucchini, tomatoes, and cabbage onto the pizza. If you’re using creamy goat cheese as I did, spoon bite-sized chunks onto the pizza. If you’re using crumbles, simply sprinkle them evenly on top.

Lightly season salt & pepper on top, then pop into the oven until lightly browned, around 15 minutes.

Per slice: 190 calories, 8 g fat, 7 g protein, 27 g carbs

Where I was on this day… 

Sometimes when I realize the date, I start thinking about what I was doing on that day in past years. Today is the wedding anniversary of my brother and sister-in-law. Here are a few pictures from 3 years ago today:

with the lovely bride

Adam (my then boyfriend) and me

with my family

with my mama

The biggest changes since then: Adam and I were just dating. I obviously didn’t know it at the time, but he had already bought a ring and was just waiting for the right time to pop the question. 🙂 I had just finished my degree, and was still living in Jersey. I’m now a military wife, public relations professional, and mother to a very spoiled dog living in California. Plus we welcomed a new addition to my family last year, and I now have a little munchkin of a nephew. So much can happen in 3 years!!

Question: Do you ever think of what you were doing on that date in past years? 

Off to volunteer at the Humane Society!