Baked Oatmeal- up with the moon, out with the sugar

Some days are perfectly lovely. This week early in the morning, we were able to enjoy the lunar eclipse.

I had zero awareness it was this week. My little two year old, however, was awake at 4am, and my husband said from under his covers, ‘there is a lunar eclipse…’ With that we turned our early morning lemons into lemonade and bundled ourselves up to go outside and watch the moon.

Before venturing out though my husband brewed some coffee over the chemex, and I thought ‘hey, there’s enough time to bake the oatmeal,’ and I set out to find a recipe that didn’t use sugar.

Here’s the thing, so many recipes say they’re ‘sugar free’ and they are quite literal about it- while there may be no sugar, there is honey, or molasses, or agave. While each is unique and precious, when my goal is to eliminate minimally nutritious carbs, those sweetners aren’t much better than sugar.

So I decided to improvise.

For mine:

1/2 mushy banana
1/3 cup unsweetned applesauce
1 egg and 3/4 cup egg whites, whisked together
1 cup oats
1/2 a medium to large apple, cubed
Pumpkin spice to taste
Dash of salt

Combine the egg mixture with the applesauce, banana, pumpkin spice and salt. Add in the oats and apple.

We baked ours at about 425 for 30 minutes. Cook as long as you need to for a golden hue.

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We watched, huddled in blankets, as the earths shadow covered the moon and turned it red. My son delighted at seeing stars, and the moon, and we stamped on the earth as he thought about it casting a shadow, just like he does.

We then enjoyed our baked oatmeal with a bit of almond butter and yogurt. Truly sugar free, since honestly life is sweet enough already.

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Did you catch the eclipse? How do you make your recipes slightly healthier, what subs do you make?

XOXO

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Quick Beef and Wild Rice bowl

Besides the magical microwave, the crockpot is my easy healthy cooking weapon of choice.

You pretty much ignore it and it does everything else!

And it does well with approximations, so you dump stuff in and cook it till you want to eat. My toddler can prep that!

So for today’s bowl I threw in:

1 cup mixed red, brown and wild rice
16oz 99% lean grass fed beef
1 onion
A bunch of water
1 can tomatoes
1 bag frozen broccoli
Garlic Salt up the wazoo
Oregano

And I let that baby roll all day. The rice just grows, so does everything else. So when you go to eat it, it feels like loads of food!

This made about 6-8 servings, depending, so plenty of happy easy left overs.

I put a handful of fresh spinach under mine to wilt, and to add just a bit more veg. Then I topped it with crumbled mushroom, some of my mean homemade salsa, and fresh avocado. And more garlic salt. Lol.

Do you use the crockpot? I love how easy it is to control the quality of ingredients and how wonderfully low maintenance this whole process is.
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You can mix all kinds of goodies in there and the crockpot will work it out for you!

Have a great day!

XOXO

Cumin Roasted Chickpeas (good as potato chips!)

Chickpeas roasted in olive oil my friends taste just as decadent as any potato chip, but do so much more for you.

Fiber, heart healthy fats, vitamins. Get the picture? Just mind the portions 😉

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1 can chickpeas

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1/4 cup olive oil

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smother in garlic salt

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and cumin

broil them in the oven for 15-20 minutes, till desired crunchyness is achieved.

My dear son loved playing with crispy crunchy balls, and oh boy, were they good.

Unfortunately I was a dork and don’t have a pic of the final product 😉

XOXO

Quick Salad

I aim to eat as nutrient dense as possible, even when bulking, aka, adding muscle 🙂

Sometimes you wanna ration your fat grams and might want to spend them on something other than the oil for your salad, as good for you as it might be to eat that oil.

The solution? A garbage salad!

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chicken, 1/4 cup chickpeas, 1/2 small avocado, tbl fresh hummus, lots of salsa, spritz of vinegar, garlic salt, over a bed of fresh spinach

mmmmmmm

Leaving me room for avocado aaaaand a Halloween trader joe joe 😉

Do you trade your calories, save here to splurge there?

Do you enjoy salads?

XOXO

What to Do, Leftover Fruit??!

My eggwhites and oats are just not complete without toppings.

I love toppings.

Yes, it’s like a thing for me. Toppings. Maybe it’s growing up in the age of self-serve frozen yogurt shops, but it just makes eating egg whites and oatmeal something fun, like making an ice cream sundae.

So what happens when our fruit gets old? Well, a quick compote of course!

And I mean quick.

My cooking took a distinct turn when I became a mom. I use the microwave all the time.

Munchie never wanted me to put him down so cooking was a challenge to say the least. I tried nursing and stirring- not great results…

So I embraced that enemy of the slow cooking foodist and microwave almost everything. 🙂

Today I had pluots and apples that were a breath away from a sour moldy death. That’s too many pennies wasted for this stay at home mom, thank you.

So I chopped them fruits up, tossed them in a bowl, and ‘sweetened’ ’em up with some raisins and dried mango.

Microwaved that baby for like 6 minutes, stirring every couple.

And here I have a lovely compote, pie like topping for my oats. And no food waste.

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I know ZERO about canning, so I can’t say how safely or longly or howeverly to preserve something like this. I know between my yogurt today and my oats tomorrow this stuff will be gone by the time you read this. 😉

Enjoy!!

XOXO

Veggie Load!

Sometimes I gotta veggie overload in order to stay the course!IMG_1043.JPG

What are some ways you keep your nutrition on target? Especially when your goals are ambitious and taxing?

Here are some of my ‘gotta get through this’ tips:

*Celery and salsa
*if I find myself at the fridge, I grab a handful of baby carrots (they’re just sweet enough!)
*high protein intake (right now between 150-160 grams!)
*a fat source at each part of the day
*teas
*gum and water
*do some burpees or high knees
*broth
*deep breathing and relaxing, lie down on the couch and relax before going back for more food
*leave the kitchen once you’re done eating
*salsa, mustard and hot sauce- load on the flavor with these low cal options that make a big statement

Anything to add?

XOXO