06-28-2013

My Favorite Healthy Recipes

Happy Friday everyone! One more week until 4th of July weekend! Who’s got any exciting/fun plans?

Today, I wanted to write about my favorite recipes that I have blogged about individually before, but you may have missed. A lot of recipes I have posted are things I make on a regular basis and love to eat…so why not share? :)

Let’s jump right into it!

{Protein Pancakes}

As you know, I made this recently and LOVE it. SO fluffy and delicious.

{Taco Salad}

This is a weekly staple for us and so quick & easy to make. You can add so many different toppings and try to make your own Chipotle burrito bowl ;)

{Chicken Mozzarella with Spinach & Chickpeas}

Another staple…and another quick one to make. It’s delicious with the cheese melted on top and with spinach or mixed greens. I had this yesterday actually, but had cannelini beans instead of chickpeas…you could use whatever you want as toppings!

{Green Smoothie}

This is my go-to smoothie recipe. I use water or almond milk, spinach or kale, whatever fruit I have, and almond butter. Soooo delicious and creamy!

{Buffalo Chicken Meatloaf}

I actually haven’t made this in a while but I need to start again! A great, healthy variation to normal meatloaf.

Do you have a favorite recipe? A go-to? Please share, I love trying new recipes!

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02-28-2013

Whole30 Update

As I mentioned on Monday, I wanted to try the Whole30 challenge, and I’m still kind of doing that.

What do I mean? Well after 3 days I was hungry a lot! So I have modified it a little to allow for snacking. You’re technically not supposed to snack, you’re supposed to eat meals but I am still hungry all the time. Yesterday I had 4 meals before 4 pm and was still hungry! I have no idea why…

So I’m letting myself have small snacks if I am really hungry. I am always on the go during the week so I need to have snacks ready just in case. Such as fruit (bananas, strawberries, apples) and nuts. Also, I will be eating hummus occasionally because before I started this I bought a huge thing of hummus that expires on March 10. So it’s a small rule I am breaking (eating legumes) but I think in the grand scheme of things will that really effect me? I am all about eating whole, clean, nutritious foods. And organic hummus is that! Other than that, I will follow all of the rules (no grains, no other legumes, no dairy).

March 27 will be 30 days…so we’ll see how it goes! It’s been hard this week to stay motivated to not eat certain things (cereal, chocolate) mainly because I’ve been eating not that great for the past few weeks, but I know it will get better.

Has anyone successfully finished Whole30 or a Paleo challenge? How did you feel?

01-16-2013

Collard Green Turkey Wrap + A Workout Challenge

I had the best lunch today…and it was something new for me to try.

I had never tried collard greens before but had always meant to try them in wraps. But I’m always hesitant trying new foods. Well, I finally got around to trying it today and it was delicious! What a great way to get in a serving of vegetables. Here’s how I made my wrap:

Ingredients:

  • 1 leaf of collard
  • honey dijon mustard
  • hummus of your choice
  • all-natural turkey breast
  • 1 slice of cheese of your choice
  • alfalfa sprouts

Directions:

  1. Spread 1 tablespoon of hummus on the leaf. You can use more or less. Then drizzle some honey dijon mustard.
  2. Place 4-5 pieces of turkey breast on the hummus, then your slice of cheese. I split my cheese in half to distribute evenly.
  3. Add a heaping amount of alfalfa sprouts (or you can chose another veggie of your choice such as mixed greens, cole slaw, tomatoes, etc).
  4. Wrap, cut in half and enjoy!

You can obviously make many types of wraps, and I definitely plan on experimenting with this more. Here’s the finished product (after I had already eaten half because I forgot to take a picture initially):

Anyway, today in NJ it’s a cold, dreary, rainy day. I posted on my Facebook page earlier about how this shouldn’t deter you from getting to the gym. If you don’t feel like driving in certain conditions, just work out at home! You don’t even need equipment.

Here’s my workout challenge for you today…if you complete it, let me know what you think! As usual, warm up before exercise (perhaps by doing my warm-up video?) and repeat the whole thing 3-5x through.

Good luck!

01-14-2013

This Week’s Grocery Haul

I ate really well last week and want to keep it up this week! Therefore, I got a lot of healthy stuff at the grocery store yesterday that I’m excited about.

A few days ago my mom and I went to Whole Foods first but only picked up a few items, such as Ezekiel bread (which I have been dying to try), organic turkey breast slices, and almond milk (which I could get anywhere but needed it that day), and natural peanut butter.

Yesterday we went to the normal grocery store and picked up a ton of stuff too! Here’s everything we brought home:

allstuffI’ll go through each section so you can get a closer look:

1Above, starting with the beets and going clockwise, we have the beets for a baked chicken and veggies dish, grapes, crushed tomatoes, sweet potatoes, avocados, and hummus.

2

Clockwise again, we got lentils to make a lentil and veggies dish (trying to do a no-meat dinner once a week), organic blueberry jam for my mom, roasted garlic tomato sauce, mixed greens for salads, couscous (because I’ve never tried it), chicken sausage, and apples.

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Lastly, acorn squash, baby carrots, collard greens to make wraps, plum tomatoes, limes, and oranges.

I can’t wait to make some delicious meals this week!

Do you enjoy grocery shopping as much as I do? What meals do you already have planned for this week?

01-12-2013

My Weekly Meals

Since Monday, my two friends and I have been doing an “eating healthy challenge.” The main challenge is just to eat clean and avoid any processed foods (bread, pasta, cereals, candy, etc). I’ve been focusing on natural foods where the ingredient list is either literally 1 ingredient, or all natural ingredients.

We allow ourselves 1 small “cheat” of our choice per day, whether it’s a piece of chocolate, bowl of cereal (my favorite), a cookie…whatever. Once a week, if we want we can have a meal of our choice. Surprisingly, it hasn’t been hard to maintain this! The best part about it is that it’s not a diet. It’s a healthy lifestyle. Eating whole, unprocessed foods is never a diet. It’s a natural, healthy way to lose weight and body fat, feel less bloated, feel more energized, and much more.

I wanted to share with you all my past week of eating because I get questions asking me what I eat on a daily basis. Even off the challenge, this is pretty much how I eat. As you can see, I pretty much eat the same things over and over. That’s usually the case when you are eating clean! Plus, I just love eggs and chicken sausage =)

Also, while most days say no snack after breakfast, that’s only because I’ve been on break and waking up later. On normal work weeks I always snack between breakfast and lunch.

weeklyfood

What are your favorite healthy foods you can’t live without? Do you snack regularly throughout the day?

01-10-2013

Delicious Green Smoothie Recipe

Yes…a green smoothie. Sounds not so appetizing right? Wrong. This recipe is so good!

I have been all about green smoothies for a while. My boyfriend thinks I’m crazy for drinking them and refuses to even try a little sip because the color weirds him out. But once you get past that, it’s deliciousness. My usual recipes were just a mix of greens and a fruit or two plus water. Then, I found this smoothie recipe on Iowa Girl Eats that’s perfect as a meal or pre-workout shake. My recipes aren’t sufficient enough for me to have as a meal, but this one totally is.

I made this in my magic bullet, not a blender like she did, so my serving sizes were smaller. Magic Bullets are just way easier to clean than blenders.

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Recipe

Serves 1

Ingredients:
1 frozen sliced banana (my banana wasn’t frozen, but the kale I used was. You can also use ice cubes)
1 Tablespoon peanut butter
1/2 cup 0% Vanilla Chobani Greek yogurt (I didn’t use greek yogurt, just the almond milk. For a thicker and even more filling smoothie definitely try using greek yogurt!)
1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze (or other kind of milk)
4 cups baby spinach (or more, or less) (Didn’t use 4 cups because of the size of the Magic Bullet, but just filled it to the brim with kale)

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Here’s how I did it using my magic bullet:

First, put in the sliced banana and peanut butter.

IMG_3303Then, add in the almond milk, and greek yogurt if you use that.

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Lastly, just fill to the top with kale or spinach!

IMG_3305Blend and enjoy the frothy deliciousness.

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Nutritional stats:

350 calories, 10g fiber, 21g protein

Verdict

So good! I swear, you can really only taste the banana and peanut butter. It literally just tastes like a banana + PB smoothie. What a great way to get in a serving of veggies! I have been using this either for breakfast (plus I usually have some eggs) or mainly as a pre-workout shake to get in some protein before a run or lifting. You can use it as a post-workout shake for the same reasons as well (hello, 21g of protein?!).

Do you drink green smoothies? Do you have a favorite recipe? Please share! I’m always looking for new ideas =)

 

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01-04-2013

Protein Pancake Recipe

TGIF! Happy Friday everyone! Have any exciting plans for the weekend? Working out? Maybe trying out my new Ab Attack video? ;)

Anyways, a few days ago I wanted something different for breakfast. I usually just have eggs and chicken sausage. I didn’t have many ingredients on hand, so I searched for an easy protein pancake recipe and found this one by Jonathon’s Fitness. So simple and easy! Here is his recipe with my modifications in bold.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup dry oatmeal
  • 2 tbs of peanut butter
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 medium sized egg (I didn’t see this for some reason, and only used egg whites. Maybe that’s why they ended up so dry??)
  • 2 scoops of protein powder
  • pinch of cinnamon

Instructions

  1. 1. Grease and preheat skillet
  2. 2. Blend ingredients (used a Magic Bullet to blend and it worked great)
  3. 3. Pour in skillet until golden brown

It was delicious! Since I forgot an egg, I think it came out too dry, so I just added some organic orange marmalade on top. I made 2 and could only get through 1 before being stuffed! Definitely plan on making these again when I feel like switching up my breakfast.

Do you have a go-to breakfast you have almost daily? Or do you eat something different every day?

12-18-2012

Chicken cheeseburger and cauliflower recipe

This meal was so good that I forgot to take a picture of it for this post!

We got chicken breast and then ground it up ourselves. You can obviously just buy already ground up chicken but it creeps me out. You never know what’s in it!

I made chicken patties like you would normal burgers and added some cheese. We wanted a side dish that wasn’t carbs like rice or pasta. I had cauliflower so I decided to try something new. I cut the cauliflower up into really small pieces, then put them in a skillet with onions, peppers and whatever spices I had available. I sauteed everything, but the cauliflower was still a little crunchy, so I added some chicken broth to help make it softer, and add more flavor. It turned out delicious! I’m all about new ways to get your vegetables in.

Here’s the full recipe:

Ingredients

  • chicken
  • cheese of your choice
  • 1 head of cauliflower (this was enough for 4 people)
  • 1/2 red onion
  • pepper (green or red, your choice)
  • your choice of spices (I used basil, parsley, garlic powder and thyme)
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth

Directions for Cauliflower Sautee

  1. Cut or rip up the cauliflower into small pieces.
  2. Throw the onions in the skillet first. Brown them.
  3. Put the cauliflower, peppers in. Then add spices.
  4. Wait until everything is browned, add chicken broth.
  5. Cover it and leave it there for a few minutes until you feel it has reached your desired crunchiness level.
  6. Enjoy!

 

11-27-2012

Honey garlic chicken crockpot recipe

I made my first crock-pot dish…and it was awesome! It was great to come home from work, go to the gym, and know dinner would be ready once I got back. Usually my mom and I start cooking after the gym around 7.

For my first crock-pot dinner, I decided to try this honey garlic chicken recipe from Crockpot 365. It looked simple enough and I liked that you could also use it as freezer dinner. The recipe is below, and my modifications are in bold:

Ingredients

1 1/2 to 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs (I used chicken breasts)
3 garlic cloves, smashed and chopped (I used 2 teaspoons of pre-minced garlic you can buy)
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 cup  soy sauce (La Choy or Tamari wheat-free are gluten free)
1/2 cup ketchup (I didn’t want a ton of ketchup for nutritional reasons, so I just squirted a good amount in there)
1/3 cup honey (Again, I just squirted some in there)

The Directions

Use a 4-quart slow cooker (if using a 6-quart, this will cook faster. Check after 3 hours on high, 5 hours on low).
Put the chicken into your cooker. In a small bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients, then pour evenly over the top.
Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 3-4 (I’d go with low—).
Serve with basmati rice and steamed or roasted vegetables. I put all ingredients in a bag and let it marinate overnight, then poured it into the pot in the morning.

My opinion: it was delicious! I like how the chicken got really soft and shredded. It was perfect over rice because it had a little sauce to it. It would go well with roasted veggies as well. My mom is making a beef & vegetable stew in the crock-pot today, so I’ll keep you posted on that. Let me know if you decide to try this!

11-26-2012

This week’s grocery list + salad in a jar!

Food-wise, I am really excited for this upcoming week.

I got a crock pot, which I have wanted for a while. My mom and I found a few recipes and went grocery shopping Sunday to pick up a bunch of veggies and ingredients. Currently, we have “honey-garlic chicken” cooking in the pot. Can’t wait to get home later and see how it tastes!

Here’s what we picked up this week:

  • chicken breasts
  • celery, red peppers, carrots (for hummus dipping, and for cooking)
  • onions
  • soy sauce (for marinating chicken before using the crock pot)
  • apples
  • bananas (a must for me!)
  • strawberries (for salads and snacking)
  • mixed greens (again, I have a salad for lunch almost every day)
  • more tea
  • cherry tomatoes (snacking and for salads)
  • eggs
  • avocados
  • feta cheese (for salads)
  • almonds (for salads)
  • chickpeas, pinto beans (for cooking and I love beans in my salads)
  • organic crushed tomatoes (for cooking)

I can’t wait to try out the recipes I found, and I will definitely share them once I do!

My mom and I also decided to cut up everything we could in advance, so prep time for cooking is much less. I also decided to try to prepare my lunch salads in advance as well. I saw the idea for jarred salads on Pinterest, and I finally got around to trying it!

 

 

Top photo is my cut up fruits and veggies in the fridge, bottom is my salads!

You would think your salads would get soggy, but I had one today and it was perfect. You put the “wet” ingredients on the bottom, such as dressings (I use olive oil and balsamic), cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, etc. The middle layer is other ingredients, such as chickpeas, any fruits, etc. The top layer is the lettuce, which won’t get soggy since it’s not touching the dressing. I also put my almonds and cheese at the top. Today, I mixed it all up in the jar, poured it in my lunch container and was ready to go!

I’ll keep you posted on how the other salads end up…supposedly they can last a week.

Do you prepare your foods for the week in advance?