Food to keep you fit, lean, healthy and on track.

Thai Inspired Stir Fry

Thai Inspired Stir FryLove Thai food? Me too! What I don’t love is the hidden traps of fat and sugar lurking in some of those dishes.  (Did you know there could be up to 300 calories in Pad Thai just from sugar? Some recipes call for 60g or more of sugar to create the sauce – that’s a 1/4 cup).  Here is a recipe created for those that love the flavors of Thai and not all the added calories.

  • 1 Chicken breast
  • 1/2 Red Pepper cut into strips
  • 1/2 Yellow Pepper cut into strips
  • 1/2 Orange Pepper cut into strips
  • 1 small shallot, diced
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1/2 lime
  • 1 cup spinach
  • Couple sprigs of fresh mint leaves
  • 1 Tsp low sodium soy sauce
  • Black pepper
  • Cinnamon
  • Cumin
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Drizzle of Extra virgin olive oil

Wash and pat chicken dry, and cut into smaller strips or cubes. Heat olive oil in a large skillet, add peppers, 2 squeezed slices of lime, shallots and garlic over medium heat. Let cook until peppers and shallots are starting to soften. Add chicken, soy sauce, pepper, cinnamon, cumin and cayenne pepper, stirring until evenly coated, add in any bit of lime juice left.  Add in ripped mint leaves and spinach once chicken looks close to being done and let simmer until spinach is wilted.

Makes 2 servings

Nutritional Info per serving: Calories: 219,  Carbs: 10g, Protein: 24g, Fat 10g, sodium 211

Emergency Meal Kebabs

Emergency KebabsWe’ve all done it…  busy day at work, school projects, after school activities, doctor appointments, errands. Last thing on your mind was making a wholesome dinner and you opted for something quick and easy that maybe doesn’t fit into your nutrition plan but hey – you got the family fed.  I am here to tell you that I’ve been there!  Thus, the Emergency Meal Kebab was born.  Here’s the beauty of it: There are no real rules to this.  Kebabs are purely “seat of your pants” and “whatever is in the fridge”.  It takes no time to cut up some veggies, stick them on skewers and cook.  Here’s a few ideas and pointers to get you on your way to meal salvation when time is tight.

  1. Grilling is optional.  Sure now that the weather is nicer you can toss stuff on a gas grill and be done. But for whatever reason, or if you don’t have one, kebabs works in the oven on a baking sheet at 375° too.
  2. Any protein works.  Kebabs can be whatever you want. I’ve done chicken (pictured), fish, scallops, pork, firm tofu, or any lean red meat you like. It all works.
  3. Most veggies work.  The only tricky part to this is the type of veggies you put on here and how long you cook them.  For example, cherry tomatoes take very little time to cook (and they are really delicious this way), versus peppers which take a bit longer.  Veggies I’ve used on kebabs: Peppers, onion chunks, pearl onions, small potatoes, asparagus cut into smaller pieces, eggplant cut into small triangles, brussels sprouts, and small tomatoes.
  4. Skewers matter. Okay not completely but here’s the thing.  Wood skewers require you soak them in water prior to use.  Stainless steel skewers are ready to go, hence a time saver.  Once less step in the process.

Directions:

Cut all protein and veggies to size and and load in an alternating pattern on your chosen skewers.  Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and ground black pepper.  You can be creative and use other flavors here too if you fancy.  You can also load the skewers with one item only if there  are uneven cooking issues.  All tomatoes on one, all protein on another, etc.

Line up on a baking sheet and bake at 375° until protein looks complete.

These always look pretty for guests and really aren’t that time consuming.  It’s a great meal to get kids involved with too if you have them chose the items and load them on the skewers for you.

Green Protein Smoothie Recipe

For you smoothie drinkers out there, here is a green smoothie for you that will make a great recovery shake or a replacement for those Shamrock Shakes – this one is much better for you and gives you protein to keep you full.

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Protein Pancakes

Protein Pancakes RecipeEveryone loves pancakes on the weekend, right?  Me too.  What I don’t love is the abundance of carbs that go along with it. What a way to derail your efforts. But we should be able to enjoy things like this once in a while. So here is a way to do that without all the guilt.  I like to make extra and freeze them for the kids.  An easy breakfast during the school week that will keep them full and energized in the morning.

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup skim milk
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1/3 cup plain greek yogurt (non-fat)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together until smooth and set aside.  In a large skillet, set over medium heat and put a thin coat of oil (I just use olive oil) to prevent sticking.  With either a big spoon or a 1/4 cup measureing cup, pour your cakes to about 3 inches wide, let cook until the bubbles start to pop, flip with an oiled spatula.

Makes 2 servings.

Nutrition Info: Calories: 205 | Carbohydrates 25.5 | Protein: 20g | Fat 3.25g | Fiber 4.5g – Note; This recipe was calculated with the protein powder I have at home which has 15g protein.  You may need to adjust this depending on what brand you use.

 

Easy Meal: Scallops & Sprouts

Sounds fancy, but really, this dish took all of 20 minutes total to make and only a handful of ingredients.  Let’s talk about scallops – not everyone likes scallops but if you are a seafood eater I urge you to explore them for a couple of reasons.  They are high in protein and low in calories and fat. For every 100 grams of scallops you’ll get roughly 100 calories and 20 grams of protein.  Scallops also contain vitamin A, B-12 and D, as well as a small amount of folate.  So these delicious little mollusks are a great way to bulk up a meal with protein but still eat light.

Scallops & Sprouts

Let’s move on to the Brussels sprouts. I know, I know…. you hate Brussels sprouts.  Just give this a chance and perhaps I can change your mind.  I happen to love them, and always have but they are really quite good prepared this way.  But before I show you how to make them, I do want to mention why you might want to add them to your diet once in a while.  Leafy green veggies are a known to aid in the prevention of disease and cancer, but these in particular are loaded with Vitamin C! Just 4 of these little sprouts provide you with 120% of your Daily Value.  These babies are also really high in Vitamin K which is essential for bone health and prevention of osteoporosis.  Health lesson over, let’s show you how to make this dish:

Ingredients for Scallops:

  • 3-6 Large Sea Scallops*
  • 2 Tsp Olive Oil
  • 1/4 of a lemon

Ingredients for Sprouts:

  • 2 Cups fresh Brussels sprouts (you can buy these loose at the grocery store)
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper

Ingredients for glaze:

  • 1 Tsp honey
  • 1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 1/4 Tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • Black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Rinse and pat dry all the sprouts and remove any loose leaves and stems.  Cut each one in half length-wise.  Arrange on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper.  Toss it all around so evenly coated.  Bake at 375 degrees for about 12 minutes or until they start to look crispy.  Test one to make sure they’re tender.  While they are cooking… Thaw and rinse your sea scallops and pat dry.  Heat oil in a medium pan, add a squeeze of lemon, (Or used lemon infused olive oil!), they lay each scallop in the pan to sear it.  Scallops cook quickly so keep a close eye.  As soon as they start to turn a golden brown color, flip with tongs and sear the other side. This process should only take 3-5 minutes tops.  Remove from pan and set aside.  Remove your sprouts from the oven and get ready to assemble your plate.

For the glaze, I use this really easy method for adding a sweet savory flavor to basic dishes and it pairs really nicely with the sprouts, making it feel more indulgent than it really is.  In a small bowl, whisk together honey, Dijon mustard, cayenne pepper and black pepper until blended well.  Should have the consistency of light syrup.

Assemble your plate with scallops and sprouts, drizzle glaze over sprouts and enjoy your quasi-gourmet meal. This whole dish is about 300 calories, 26 grams of protein and 12 grams of carbohydrates. (For 3-4 scallops, 1 Cup of sprouts and the glaze).

*I buy Sea Scallops frozen and they are just as good, just be sure to thaw them gently.