02.08.15 What’s Your Favorite Healthy Go-To Meal?
Let’s face it; when watching what we eat, sometimes we have to get a little creative in the kitchen. We discover foods we didn’t know existed or that we liked. Here are my Top 5 Favorite “Go-To” meal options if you are running out of ideas or want to switch it up a bit. Please share your own or I would love feedback if you try any of these!
1. Avocado & Tomato Ezekiel Toast I recently discovered last summer that I liked avocado, but it wasn’t until I did my Transformation that I got more creative with it. This bread is 80 calories per slice and usually I have something additional like a protein shake/bar or almonds or whatever you want. Toast the bread, slice up the avocado & tomato then layer on top in the amount of your liking. The bread is whole wheat and packed with fiber. Yes, avocado is a fat but it is the GOOD kind of fat that eats the bad fat and feeds your brain! If you don’t use all of the avocado, pack it up and make sure to use it within a day or so or it will oxidize like an apple. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper and you’re good to go! Ezekiel bread can be found in the freezer/health section at Kroger or your local grocery store.
2. Quest Nutrition Bars I almost feel like I’m cheating while eating these protein bars…they taste THAT amazing! With SEVENTEEN flavors such as Chocolate Chip, Cinnamon Roll (my favorite), and Strawberry Cheesecake to name a few, I still cannot believe that each bar is only 160-180 calories, sweetened with Stevia and holds a whopping 20g of protein as well. Try warming them up or looking at questnutrition.com for their “Cheat Clean” recipes using the bars. I even once baked one turning it into a donut. Find these at Vitamin Shoppe, Whole Foods (they never have every flavor,) the Quest website, or GNC. I have yet to see them at any major chain grocery stores such as Kroger or Wal-Mart. The best price I have gotten is $25 for a box of 12 on Amazon.com with 2-Day Free Shipping using my Amazon Prime account. (Here’s my secret that is not so secret, I purchase ALL of my supplements, protein, etc. through my Amazon.com Amazon Prime account. 2-Day free shipping and I don’t have to leave my apartment, go out in bad weather, fight traffic, or navigate the stores…HALLELUJAH! Check out johnjubilee.com and click the store tab, it will take you to all products we recommend that will be shipped from Amazon. To get to the full Amazon site just click the little “powered by Amazon” icon. Amazon offers great deals on everything. I’ve recently started purchasing everything on there from electronics to furniture, but I digress…)
3. Low Calorie Salad There’s a myth out there that a salad is healthy because it is a salad. It all depends on what you actually put on the salad! Load up on veggies, but you have to be careful when you start adding all the “good” stuff. I choose a handful or two of 50/50 Spring Mix & Spinach for the base, half an avocado sliced up because I love avocado (refer to #1), tomato, a tbsp. of hummus (any flavor will do, I get the kind from Whole Foods but read the nutrition label before purchasing), 1/4 cup cooked quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah…we’ll talk about that in a minute), 1 average sized cooked lean chicken breast or 1/4 lb cooked lean ground turkey (shown in the photo), whatever veggies I have in the fridge (snow peas, asparagus, carrots, etc.), and Braggs Organic Healthy Vinaigrette for the dressing. It’s not a giant creamy Caesar salad loaded with croutons, but it is DELICIOUS! Braggs is carried at Health Food stores, most Kroger locations, and Amazon (we all know I love Amazon!) Another favorite is light champagne dressing with a low sugar count. Usually salads are generally healthy until we put unhealthy dressing on them. Always read the labels! Back to quinoa, at 150 calories & 6g protein per 1/4 cup, it’s great for you. Quinoa looks like little seeds and cooks a lot like rice. If you’re unfamiliar with quinoa, it may look a little weird but you never know until you try it.
4. Cake Batter Protein Shake Yes, you read that correctly. Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard Protein comes in CAKE BATTER flavor. One scoop has 120 calories so if I am on the go and using it for a full meal, I will use more than one scoop. If I am having something else with it, I will only have one scoop. One scoop contains 24g of 100% whey isolate protein and 5.5g of BCAAs (Branch Chain Amino Acids.) It’s not too sweet and isn’t chalky. The sweetener used is sucralose. You can mix this powder with water or almond milk in a Blender Ball Protein Shaker or in your blender. I typically do not like protein shakes but can honestly say that I crave this one. Like the Quest Bars, it makes me feel like I am getting a sweet treat without indulging in all of the sugar. Much like the Quest Bars again, this protein powder comes in 17 other flavors. All reviews online say that Cake Batter is one of the best! You can pick up a 5-pound jug of this protein powder for only $58 at Vitamin Shoppe or on Amazon.com. 5 pounds will give you 73 scoops…excellent value compared to other protein powders!
5. Chick-Fil-A Grilled Chicken Sandwich I eat at Chick-Fil-A enough that I probably pay their electricity bill by now. I know the menu inside out and the staff knows me just as well. Chick-Fil-A is without a doubt the In-N-Out Burger of the eastern half of the United States. We all live busy lives and if you don’t pack meals ahead of time while you’re on the go, you get tempted to fall off the wagon and grab something on the go that doesn’t fit the plan. I travel a lot and needed to find somewhere I could grab something easy while on the go…queue the Chick-Fil-A Grilled Chicken Sandwich. It’s 320 calories and has 7g of sugar so as long as you don’t smother it in condiments; you’re good to go! It is one of the best choices while on the road.
There you have it, my Top Favorites…what are yours?
By Sasha Carandang (Executive Assistant to John Jubilee)