My apologies on the delay of this—looks like I’m going to need to get a new computer sooner rather than later. Anyway, as promised, I’ve decided to share some recipes along with some daily staples of my own diet.
Thanks to Rachael Ray and her 30-minutes of fabulous creations, I love to cook. That woman really taught me wonders. While I don’t follow her recipes, I do get inspired by them and I have adapted her techniques to cook everything in 30 minutes or less. Now I can transform all of my favorite dishes and make them healthy with minimal time and effort – It really is genius.
Here is my daily breakdown:
Breakfast: I never ate breakfast growing up. I was never hungry and would give my mom a really hard time each morning before school. As an adult, I realize how important breakfast is and it’s become my favorite meal of the day. Weekday mornings there isn’t a lot of time to prepare amazing things so I eat oatmeal. I portion the oats out by scooping a ½ cup into a Tupperware container. I then sprinkle about a ½ tsp of cinnamon on top. For variety, I like to add a half banana (which I slice), some blueberries, flax seeds, or some almonds. This is a healthy, fast breakfast on-the-go for work days. On weekends, there’s no time constraint so I get creative. I almost always incorporate egg whites but what I do with them varies. Sometimes it’s just egg whites scrambled, sometimes it’s a frittata. If I feel like having oatmeal on a weekend, I will sometimes add in a scoop of protein powder to make a sweeter variety on my every day breakfast.
Coffee: This gets its own category. Anyone who knows me knows just how important coffee is and how seriously I take it. I drink iced coffee and I typically make a whole pot and have that ready for each morning. Now I’m not lactose-intolerant as I can consume dairy products such as cheese, ice cream, yogurt and others without a hitch but I cannot have straight milk in anything—especially not in coffee. That’s just a recipe for a really bad day in stomach land. So I opt to use coffee creamer. I know some people use almond milk or coconut milk but to me it just doesn’t taste as good in coffee and then I have to add sweeteners to the mix. I prefer the creamer, which may not be so great but I don’t have to add anything else to the coffee. Weekends I tend to get my coffee outside. I was treating myself to turbo iced coffees at Dunkin (which are loaded with tons of unnecessary sugar and calories thanks to the flavors I add) until I discovered the beauty and magic that is a “blendicano” from Starbucks. So my weekends now begin with a venti double blended Americano. I read that people add sugar free flavors to it. Most of the time those have a weird taste to me but the sugar free mocha is amazing and doesn’t have that chemical taste to it. I still have the turbo iced coffee from time to time but I prefer the blendicano.
My lunch and dinner varies each day. As a rule for myself, I try to not eat any carbs after I leave work. Occasionally I may have a banana post-workout or something like that but my dinner almost always only consists of protein and vegetables. This helps in reducing bloating and keeps your stomach flat.
Here is one of my favorite dinner ideas. I got the initial idea from my mom, as she used to make this for me years ago. My own version is slightly modified, eliminating onions and cutting down the serving size to just feed one. I use frozen zucchini and frozen pepper strips and fresh mushrooms. This dish is super easy to make and typically takes no more than 30 minutes to prepare.
- 1 chicken breast
- Olive Oil (approx. 1 tbsp)
- Diced tomatoes (about ½ 14 oz. can)
- Pepper strips
- Crushed red pepper flakes
- Garlic powder
- Italian seasoning
- Salt and black pepper (to taste)
- Begin by lightly coating the bottom of your pan with olive oil. Season chicken with salt and pepper; Heat the oil on medium heat then place the chicken into the pan. Season the other side of your chicken and flip.
- Remove cooked chicken from heat and let rest.
- Using the same pan, lightly coat that with more olive oil. Place zucchini, peppers, and diced tomatoes in pan; Season with garlic powder, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper, and salt/black pepper.
- Cover and simmer until vegetables soften.
- Slice rested chicken; add chicken and mushrooms into vegetable mixture.
- Cook together for another 5 minutes, serve (by itself or over brown rice) and enjoy!
If you have any questions about this recipe or suggestions for others you would like to see in future posts, feel free to email me. A healthy lifestyle can be difficult to maintain but being able to transform some of your favorite dishes into a healthier version, it becomes a little less stressful. Always remember: nothing worth having comes easy.
Stay strong & stay in the fight!