Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Easy Steak Dinner

Many of you have been asking about my parents and how they are doing with their new clean eating lifestyle, so I wanted to give a quick update... they're doing great!! My dad is living just fine without his granola bars and even my little sister is trying new foods and liking them, which is a huge, huge deal. I was at their house over the weekend and can honestly say all the food in both the pantry and fridge was clean. My mom came up with a compromise with my little sister so she is eating clean most of the time, while still being a kid which I think is really important. In addition to my family, two of my moms best friends also started eating clean in January and they are both doing amazing too, in fact, one of them has lost 16 pounds! It really goes to show that anyone can do this, you just have to get your bearings and you'll be just fine.

Speaking of getting your bearings one of the important things to do is figure out staple meals that can be your 'go-to' meals if you're short on time. This is definitely one to put on that list because it literally takes less than 15 minutes to make from start to finish.

Ingredients
Boneless Top Round Steak, thin sliced
Tomato, sliced (You can use as many as you would like, I used 4)
1/2 red onion, sliced
Paprika
Pepper
Evoo spray
Garlic powder
Spicy brown rice- just brown rice with a chopped jalapeno and the juice of one lime. Thank you to Monika for this idea!

Directions for steak and veggies:
1. Season steak with paprika and pepper on both sides, to taste.
2. Place sliced veggies on a large piece of tinfoil and mist with evoo spray. Add pepper and garlic powder to taste.
3. Place everything on the grill- Since the steak is so thin it really only need about 2-3 minutes on each side. The veggies are done in about 7 minutes.

What are some of your quick and easy go-to meals?

Monday, January 30, 2012

Blueberry Lemon Protein Loaf

So... does someone want to give Mother Nature a ring and ask her what the heck is going on!? This weather is insane! I'm in no way complaining, my cold blooded body is absolutely loving 75 degree days and flip flops in January, but I do love me some hoodies and Ugg boots and they have not been worn nearly enough this winter. On Saturday we had the back door open as I was daydreaming about being on the beach, and I noticed the neighbors lemon tree was big, beautiful, and full of lemons. I'm no gardener/ tree connoisseur but I don't think that is normal for January. Anyway, the sunshine and lemon tree inspired me to put a spin on one of my favorites- lemon protein bars. You can thank the beautiful Arizona weather for this recipe, oh and Pinterest which is where I saw a picture that led me to this awesome blog. I didn't follow her recipe, but just wanted to give credit for the photo inspiration :)


Ingredients
1 1/4 cup oat flour + 1/4 cup oat flour
1/2 cup non fat greek yogurt
2 scoops vanilla protein powder
1/4 cup Stevia in the raw
Juice from 2 lemons*
Zest of one lemon*
1 tsp baking soda
4 egg whites
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup blueberries
* I didn't use True Lemon (because I didn't have any), you can if you want to though just remove the lemon juice and zest*

Glaze: 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder, 1 packet Truvia, 1 tbsp almond milk

Directions
1. Combine all ingredients except blueberries and additional 1/4c oat flour in mixing bowl and mix well.
2. Pour batter into a prepared loaf pan.
3. Sprinkle blueberries with water then roll in 1/4 cup oat flour until coated. Gently drop blueberries into batter.
4. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
5. In a small bowl mix protein powder and Truvia for glaze. SLOWLY begin to pour in almond milk and mix well until you have a frosting type consistency.
6. Coat top of loaf with glaze while still warm.

This loaf is SO moist, I actually really like the consistency of this with using the greek yogurt and leaving out applesauce and almond milk. I just might have to play around with the other protein bar recipes.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Clean Snickerdoodles [!]

Obsessed. Love. Amazing. Do these words sound familiar?

Yes, they do and this is because I use them often. I just can't help that I "like" a lot of stuff, okay?! And, you guessed it I'm totally in love and obsessed with these amazing cookies that I created all on my own. 

You know how much I LOVE (again, I know... can't help it) cinnamon and I realized today I needed to make a clean version of my second favorite cookie. Snickerdoodles. 

Ingredients
1 cup oat flour
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/3 cup Stevia 
1/2 tsp vanilla extract 
1 egg
1 tsp cinnamon
1tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Did I mention these are the easiest cookies ever? Oh, well they are. 

Topping: 1 tbsp cinnamon 2 packets truvia


Directions
1. Combine all ingredients in mixing bowl and mix well.
2. Drop dough by the tablespoon onto prepared baking sheet.
3. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar topping onto each cookie and flatten with a fork.
4. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes ( if you like your cookies crunchy I would do 15-18 min)
5. LOVE them. :)
*Note: this only made 5 cookies, next time I will double the recipe but probably keep Stevia the same.*


By the way, my Instagram obsession has resurfaced if you can't tell. My username is bldavila if you want to follow me... good way to get a sneak peak at what's to come on the blog! 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Clean Chicken and Dumplings

Introducing the ultimate clean comfort food. Nothing sounds less healthy than chicken and dumplings, but I'm here to save the day! Actually, Tiffany at the Gracious Panty is the true brains behind this recipe, I just made a few alterations to make this recipe "lean and clean". Original recipe can be found here.

Ingredients:

For Dumplings:
2 cups oat flour
1 tbsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp evoo
1 cup unsweetened almond milk 

For Stew:
3 large carrot sticks, chopped
4 large celery stalks, chopped
1 onion, chopped
5 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 cup water
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp marjoram
4 chicken breasts, chopped into squares
2 tsp olive oil 


Directions:

1. Add chicken broth, water, marjoram, and garlic powder to a large pot and bring to a slow boil.
2. In a saute pan, add celery, carrots, onion, and olive oil and cook until onions are translucent
3. While veggies are sauteing, combine all dumpling ingredients in large mixing bowl and mix with wooden spoon.
4. With broth boiling, add chicken, veggies, and dumplings and cook until chicken and dumplings are cooked through, or about 15 minutes. [To create dumplings form balls by using two spoons, and then carefully drop them in the boiling broth. You don't want to use your hands because the raw dumplings are very sticky] 

I thought I was going to have to hide this from B he liked it so much. He has been asking for a chicken pot pie recipe, and this is as close as it has come.. so far. When I was eating this I actually had to stop and ask myself if this is really clean, but sure enough it is! Let me know if you try it :)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

WIAW #11

Have I ever talked about how much I hate being alone? Well, let's discuss. I don't know where this came from or when it started but I just can't stand being at home alone. I'm not sure if it's a safety issue or just that I get bored without others around, but I do not like it. This becomes a problem when the boyfriend who also happens to be your roommate is going out of town for a couple of days. B is headed to Seattle for work and I'm stuck at home by myself! Luckily my sister is nearby and she is going to come hang out with me {right Bree?} and it's only for 2 days so I suppose I will survive. I know, I know you can say it.. grow up Britt! I will try my best to get over my fear, but in the meantime, I will likely spend my alone time cooking and baking like a crazy woman. Alright enough about my issues on to the fun stuff.





The day started off with some overnight pumpkin oats. Oldie but goodie. 

I also had the standard green protein shake after my workout, but was so exhausted and feigning for food that I forgot to take a pic.




Chocolate protein bar with cottage cheese for mid morning snack. 



Turkey meatballs with spaghetti squash (it's under there, just hiding from the camera) and broccoli. I was SO excited to finally make the meatballs with fresh basil and it made a huge difference. I highly recommend it! 


Salsa chicken salad with greek yogurt, tomatoes, and a couple dashes of hot sauce.


B conveniently asked me to bake some peanut butter cookies and it just so happened to be National Peanut Butter day yesterday, so I treated myself to this gem after work. If you missed the celebration you have permission to dip your spoon in the jar! [Only one dip though!]



Chicken and dumplings for dinner! This is actually dumpling-less because I cut carbs after 3, but I did try a dumpling and it was.so.good. I will be posting the recipe for this tomorrow! 

Casein pudding before bed. I keep meaning to try a different pre-bed snack, but I just love my Casein so much that I just can't give it up! Maybe one day... 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Another Arm Workout!

It seemed like many of you enjoyed my last workout post, so I decided to share another killer arm workout with you! Last time I was also asked to make videos and although I was slightly self conscious while doing it, I had B record me doing my favorite bicep triple set. When I say self conscious I really mean completely and totally self conscious... even when I have him take photos of me I tell him "Okay stand over there, turn off the flash, don't hold the camera up too high because then people will know what you're doing...." haha I'm a dork. Anyway, here is the workout we did this morning. 

Preacher curls 8 reps x 3 sets (40lb barbell)
Triple set (video): dumbbell curls, barbell curls, hammer curls with rope attachment 8 reps x 3 sets
Overhead cable curl: 8 reps x 3 sets (20 lbs) 
Tricep pushdown: 8-10 reps x 3 sets (30lbs & 40 lbs)
Dips: 3 sets to failure
Close hand pushups: 3 sets to failure


This was my last set and my muscles were screaming! I highly suggest you have your gym partner take a video of you sometime because it really helps seeing yourself from another perspective. I noticed by the time I got to the rope hammer curls my form wasn't perfect-- my elbows should have stayed a little closer to my sides. I hope you give this workout a try and let me know what you think! Have a great Tuesday! 

Friday, January 20, 2012

Spicy Red Bell Pepper Soup

I think I'm generally a pretty easily pleased person. When I get a good parking spot a work- makes my day. When B unloads the dishwasher without me even asking- ecstatic. Jame Eason responds to my post on her wall- HOLY! Talk about making my day! 

Sorry it's kinda blurry

She is someone that I look up to and admire and I can only dream of helping as many people as she has. She's so humble yet is always confident and educated in all of her responses... I just love her! Okay, enough about my girl crush on Jamie- on to an easy savory soup. This recipe was modified from skinnytaste.com .

Ingredients 
1 package extra lean ground turkey
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
2 stalks chopped celery 
1 cup finely diced onion
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 can low sodium petite diced tomatoes
1 can low sodium stewed tomatoes
1 can low sodium tomato sauce
2 cups reduced sodium, fat-free chicken broth
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp cayenne pepper (you can increase or decrease depending on how spicy you want it)
pepper to taste


Directions
1. Brown turkey in large pan. 
2. When turkey is nearly cooked through, add in red bell pepper, onion, celery, and garlic and cook until veggies turn soft, or about 10 minutes.
3. While veggies are cooking, add remaining ingredients in a large pot and mix well. 
4. Add meat and veggies to pot, mix well, cover and simmer on low heat for 30 minutes. 



Easy and delicious and now that I think about it, you could easily do this in the crock pot too- I would reccommend browning your meat first then adding it all to the crock pot. If you need to add carbs to this, simply cook up some brown rice and mix it in with the soup. 

Enjoy and Happy, Happy Friday!! :)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

A Clean Eating Kitchen

I think I've mentioned before how supportive my family has been in my switch to clean eating these last 8 months and they probably don't understand just how much I appreciate it. Getting B on board really made this possible for me in the first place, but the encouragement from my family (and some friends) made it so much easier to stick with and really helped me turn clean eating into a lifestyle. This was taken to a whole new level this weekend when my parents decided they were going to completely clean out their kitchen and start new with only clean foods.

I'm at the point now that I realize there are always going to be people who don't appreciate or understand eating clean and I'm totally okay with that. I never have and never will try to force my opinions on anyone, but when my mom came to me asking for help in cleaning up my family's diet I was ecstatic!

We started the day off at a farmers market out by my parents house. It was pretty small but definitely had some great locally grown produce.






The biggest cabbage I've ever seen. 


The teeny tiniest onions ever.

After the farmers market we headed to Whole Foods to do the rest of her shopping. She picked out 3 clean meals to make for the week to get started, so we got those ingredients in addition to all of the basics and the ingredients for protein bars. 


It's definitely worth noting you do not need to shop at a specialty health food store like Whole Foods for all of your groceries. I typically get almost everything from the regular grocery store and pick up a few things like oat flour, almonds and oats in bulk, and almond cheese from Whole Foods. We decided to just get everything there to cut down on the running around. 

And then it began. Here is where we started with the pantry. 


Yes, their pantry is as large as my bathroom... not fair at all! Anyway, as you can see, with a 10 year old living at home who is constantly running around with (many) other 10 year old's, the pantry was full of grab and go packaged foods. Everything from chips to cookies, crackers and baking items. I thought I was going to have to wrestle the granola bars out of my dad's arms but instead I sprinted to the trashcan when I heard him coming downstairs ;) 



Here is the fridge. Nothing too crazy in here; milk, OJ, coffee creamer, butter, cream cheese, salad dressing, whipped cream, and sauces.

Are you ready for the afters?




BAM!! How great is that!? 

I talked to my mom yesterday and she was back at the grocery store. For any of you that have gone through   the clean eating switch over you already know how many grocery store trips are involved. I think I was at the grocery store a few times a week for a few weeks before I actually had all the basics. As you start perusing for recipes you need this spice, or that veggie and well, you get to know the cashier at the grocery store by name. Other than that she said things are going pretty smoothly. My sister has been cooperative in trying new things (which I am very surprised at... limited palate is an understatement) and my dad is surviving without his granola bars. Only issue they are facing is not caring for Almond milk and Truvia in their coffee, and since I'm not really a coffee drinker they would appreciate any tips!

Thank you mom and dad for letting me share this with everyone! I hope that this helps you understand that everyone has to start somewhere, but in my opinion getting all the bad food out of the house is the first and most important step. If we would have left a couple things here and there, it would have defeated the purpose. Not to say you have to be 100% clean or nothing at all, but I do think that this is the best way to set yourself up for success. 



Wednesday, January 18, 2012

WIAW #10!

Wow! Can't believe it's been 10 weeks since starting WIAW... Time flies when you're having fun ;)






Egg white scramble (4 whites one yolk) with onion, mushroom, and jalapeno and 2 pieces of Ezekiel bread with a little coconut oil, cinnamon, and truvia. 



Green protein shake post workout 



Cottage cheese with 1 1/2 blackberry protein muffins was eaten while trying really hard not to throw my laptop across my office. We won't go there.



Meatballs and spaghetti squash for lunch. YUMM. 



I was having a lazy weekend so I didn't do much food prep other than the protein muffins. This means I didn't have anything prepared for my afternoon snack. Shame on me, I know. So, I packed zucchini and hummus and called down to the deli that's in my building and prefaced my question with "Okay, I have a weird question...." I asked if they could make me hard boiled eggs, and they said yes! Ah, I'm so resourceful. :)




I was SUPER hungry when dinner came, so I loaded up on the veggies. If you're thinking that my Tilapia looks a little undercooked that's because it is. You see, I was busy watching Pretty Little Liars while cooking and forgot to set the timer on my oven. So, when I thought it had been about 20 minutes I pulled out the fish and got my plate ready. Took the picture and took my first bite (all while still glued to the TV of course) before I realized that my Tilapia was clearly still pink. Don't worry, I stuck it back in the oven.

Stop by tomorrow to see how my parents kitchen clean up went! 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Bicep blaster

I do my best to try to incorporate fitness into my blog as much as possbile, but it is pretty clear that FOOD and recipes consume the majority of posts. So, I thought I would show some love to my workout tab today and share my workout from Saturday with you which by the way I had to come up with on my own since somebody (B) ditched the gym to play golf with the guys. How dare he. 


Cable curls- 3 sets of 8 (40lbs)

Cable Hammer Curls - Rope Attachment               Cable Hammer Curls - Rope Attachment

Super set with reverse curls- 3 sets of 8 (30lbs)

Reverse Barbell Curl             Reverse Barbell Curl

Alternating Hammer curl 3 sets of 10 (15lbs)

Alternate Hammer Curl            Alternate Hammer Curl

Barbell Preacher curl 3 sets of 10, only 8 on the last set (40 lbs)

Preacher Curl           Preacher Curl

I also did triceps which was skullcrushers 3 sets of 10 (40 lbs), dumbbell kick backs 3 sets of 8 (10lbs), overhead tricep extention 3 sets of 8 (30lbs), and tricep push down with rope 3 sets of 8 (30lbs). The bicep workout doesn't seem like a whole lot, but I went as heavy as possible on everything and my biceps were feeling it the next day two days. Give it a try and let me know what you think! 

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