My favorite breakfast !!
I get questions/comments pretty frequently about what I eat, how I exercise, etc. since I’m pretty open here about my struggle with weight and wellness, so I thought it would be interesting to share what I eat a typical day.
Generally, I try to avoid all inflammatory foods like dairy, animal proteins, gluten, added sugar (I do use coconut sugar, which has a minimal impact on blood sugar levels), and corn products, but they sneak in sometimes. I feel good eating some grass fed beef once a week, and I’ll eat a little cheese once a week too.
I rely heavily on the Clean blog for “clean” recipes, and sometimes find good recipes at goop.com, and typically eat the same things every day.
5:30 get up, take Dagny for a walk, foam roll, prepare coffee, sit down to work by 6:30.
7:45 apple (it takes me a long time to get “hungry” in the morning)
9:00 TB of organic superfood trail mix on the way to class
9:30 Pure Barre Platform (cardio) class – I go to Pure Barre 5x a week, and try to do the platform class 3x a week
11:00 Breakfast/Brunch??: chia seed pudding with 1 cup of blueberries and 1/3 cup Purely Elizabeth Granola (you can get it at Target now for $4.99, yay!)
My chia seed pudding recipe, adapted from others, and tweaked after lots of trial and error:
3/4 cup coconut milk (unsweetened)
1TB almond butter
TONS of cinnamon
two giant handfuls of Spinach (basically one of those pre-washed bags)
1/3 frozen bananas
a little less than a 1/4 cup of chia seeds
I blend up the liquid/frozen ingredients and pour them into a jar with the chia seeds (don’t blend the chia seeds), shake it up really well and refrigerate it overnight. If I forget the night before, I do it first thing in the AM so it has time to set by the time I get back from PB.
More trail mix – I basically ate 1/4 to 1/2 cup of this throughout the day
12:30 Walk Dagny again:
what our walks look like – Dagny stopped, dug in, me trying to entice her to keep walking with a treat 🙂
2:30 Lunch – leftover grass fed beef & chia seed meatballs and lentil pasta with sauce, then a chocolate/cashew butter cookie (maybe two..) for dessert
A handful of Pirate’s Booty while I was making dinner (this is a bad habit/vice I have, I need something crunchy in the late afternoon…)
4:30 Walk Dagny again
6:40 Dinner :
I make a version of a buddha bowl from the Eating Purely cookbook, which is basically just a little of the following:
steamed kale & broccoli (since I forgot my broccoli with lunch)
steamed sweet potatoes
Tahini sauce (organic tahini, garlic, tamari, rice vinegar, garlic, sriracha, water)
8:30 vodka tonic with ginger kombucha (instead of tonic water) & lime 🙂
I buy most of my organic ingredients in bulk at Costco – since I eat so many blueberries when they’re in season, I buy several large containers of organic blueberries a week and at least one large container of organic spinach. I buy the Nutiva Chia seeds there, and organic quinoa, organic tahini, the trail mix, almond butter, coconut milk, and lentil pasta.
The best thing I ever bought is this “produce keeper” that I keep a couple bunches of washed kale in so I don’t have to prepare it every time I want to use it. (otherwise, I’d never eat it…). I also have a smaller, different version that I keep washed, cut-up broccoli in.
I do a lot of prep work for the week for my buddha bowl: I prepare enough quinoa for a week using a rice cooker. I buy the largest sweet potato I can find and prepare it by boiling, and then eat it during the week. If it’s HUGE, I freeze some of the cooked sweet potato to use later (then I just add it to my steamer basket with kale or broccoli when I’m ready to use it. So easy!!). I make a lot of tahini sauce so it’s always available.
Something else I’ve been making once a week lately is cauliflower pizza – this has taken a lot of trial too, but here’s my recipe:
I use one bag of riced cauliflower from Trader Joe’s, roast it at 400 degrees with a little olive oil & salt for 10-15 minutes. Then I mix it with 1-2 eggs + a TB or so of gluten-free flour (or whatever flour you have), a little parmesan cheese, shape it into a “pizza” and bake it at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes (until it looks “set”). After it’s set, I add toppings (usually a little mozzarella cheese, sundried tomatoes, mushrooms, spinach, goat cheese…) and cook a little longer, broiling it at the end. This makes enough for 4 people as a side or two if you’re eating it as the main meal…I think 1/4 of the pizza is a serving, that’s about all I can eat at a time. It’s SOOO good. If my husband loves it, it’s good. Trust me.
What are your favorite things to eat in the summer? do you typically eat the same things every day? Any favorite recipes to share??
**edited to add:
Lest you think I am perfect (I hope no one thinks so!!!!), here’s a shot from today of my Nada Moo indulgence (I have tried several coconut milk ice creams and there is none better than Nada Moo in my opinion. Sadly, it’s hard to find outside of TX). And more Dagny 🙂 I took this a little bit after our walk – it’s almost 100 degrees here, we were both wiped out and I needed something cold & creamy.
Wow, your eating habits are inspiring. I just finished a big handful of tortilla chips, which is pretty typical for me. I have never been able to deal with the texture of chia seeds, but may try to make your pudding. How do you like that produce keeper? I might consider buying a couple of those if they work.
This is awesome, Grechen! Thanks so much for sharing. No wonder you have that glowy look all the time. 🙂 I’ve recently cut out sugar (which was a monuMENtal challenge for me) and have been hoping to make more and more healthy choices in my diet, so reading this was very inspiring. Keep up the wonderful work!!
And btw P.S. You cannot post enough pictures of Dagney, as far as I’m concerned. She’s sooo cute, – I LOVE seeing her in your shots, so please include her as much as possible.
Grechen Reiter says
That produce keeper has changed my life. I love it. You just have to make sure the vents are open or the contents will get gross really fast!!
Thanks for sharing your meal planning – I’m always interested to learn how others plan as it helps give me ideas for healthy variety. Also, apologies for how long this comment is. During the summer I can’t get enough of fresh blueberries, asparagus, leafy greens, and cherries. We tend to do a shopping combo of Whole Foods and our local Mariano’s store. Breakfast and lunch tend to be the same M-F. For breakfast it’s dairy free or full fat Greek yogurt with blueberries or a soft boiled egg with Ezekiel toast and some avocado and lots of coffee with Kalifa almond milk creamer. Lunches usually consist of stuffed grape leaves and hummus with fresh veggies, leafy greens with some farro or frekkeh, nuts, avocado, kimchi, and whatever else I can find in the fridge, or good quality turkey lunch meat with some cheese, apples, and fresh veggies. I like to eat my lunch slowly so that I don’t feel too stuffed or bloated, so these types of foods are OK if they sit out at my desk for a little bit while I snack on them. I also almost always have an apple around 3 or 4 everyday to help ward off afternoon hungry headaches. We’ve been doing Blue Apron for several months now, and while I love the convenience, quality proteins, and variety, I think that BA’s meals are really lacking in fiber and roughage, so I’ve trying to get more fiber in my other meals. Luckily, I am not a big sweets person (except for good chocolate) so I don’t really ever crave dessert or over processed sweet snacks, but I do have a habit of snacking on popcorn or salty tortilla chips in that really difficult time between getting home from work and sitting down for dinner. Weekend eating is a bit different – living in Chicago you can find amazing food everywhere, so we like to use the weekend to eat out and enjoy food we’d never make at home. Not the healthiest thing to do, but we both enjoy eating out and trying new food and craft beer, so it is what it is. Lastly, this is one of my most favorite salad recipes: http://chubbysoul.com/2014/10/05/green-couscous/. To make the salad gluten free I’m sure you could substitute the couscous for a grain and it would still be delicious. I am also an egg and kimchi lover, so this recipe is always a tasty and easy go-to: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/kimchi-fried-rice-with-fried-egg-recipe.html. I haven’t been able to find riced cauliflower at Trader Joe’s lately, but it’s on my list to try this recipe with that instead of regular rice. Excited to read others’ responses too!
Thank you for sharing, this was so helpful. The chia pudding and buddha bowl sound delicious and I like that you can do some prep ahead of time. You are a very healthy eater, I’m inspired. I’ve been a bit lazy (& busy) lately. I am single so I’ve gotten into a rut. A few times per week I fill up the large container at Whole Foods salad bar with kale, shredded carrots, red onion, red cabbage, beets, radishes & hearts of palm (if they have it). Then I grab some chicken salad from their deli. At home I mix with a little bolthouse blue cheese greek yogurt dressing & cholula (tastes like buffalo wings). It’s a quick and fairly easy healthy dinner but I’m wanting to put a bit more effort in.
I’ve been trying to minimize my variety (studies show same meals every day = fewer calories, but as someone who LOVES to cook, it’s a challenge for me). For breakfast, I typically make a spinach egg casserole on Sunday and eat it at work during the week (sometimes I add turkey sausage or veggie crumbles, sometimes I use sweet potatoes, this week it’s zucchini!) Lunch is dinner leftovers or a huge bowl of spinach with some lean protein on top (smoked turkey leftovers from the freezer, for example). Then I make dinner every night. I do eat meat, but rarely beef. Have a lot of venison on hand now (husband & FIL hunt occasionally so I tell them they can only hunt stuff I’ll eat – pig or deer, no more alligator!) Love seafood, eat a fair amount of tofu as well. Snacks = fruit + greek yogurt in the morning, carrots & homemade hummus or celery w/ peanut or almond butter in the afternoon – I need the crunch too! And most of the time I prefer savory to sweet, for any meal.
Weekends – wine & craft beer my downfall!!! And experimental cooking….
I just got a bag of chia seeds as part of an Amazon pantry experiment (fail for me – Costco infinitely better for our needs) but I’ll try a chia pudding recipe. I finally tried some overnight oat & flax recipes – eh. Most seem to be too sweet for me so I need to play with ideas more…..
Grechen Reiter says
oh, sugar is VERY hard for me, still. i don’t miss it as much now, but it was a super-tough habit to break. i have a sweet/sour tooth 🙂
Grechen Reiter says
yay! i love your long comment 🙂 and going to check out your links right now… i LOVE kimchi so much but what i’ve found at my local whole foods is too spicy for me, there was a brand I loved that i bought in austin and i can’t remember what it was.
i will post my weekend food another time, it’s not nearly as healthy as my weekday menu! that’s when i allow myself to cut loose a little 🙂 i usually devour a pint of nada moo and enjoy nachos at my favorite tex/mex place. this is texas. you have to eat tex/mex at least once a week!!
Grechen Reiter says
i’m sort of a healthy eater to a fault sometimes, i wish i could lighten up a little on occasion – i mean, i do, i indulge a little on the weekends, but i’m so ridiculous about ALWAYS having something healthy in my bag to snack on in case i get hangry, so i don’t have to buy something unhealthy. it gets a little crazy sometimes. i wish i could not WORRY so much about food, but i do. like i worry about what i’m wearing i guess…not worry so much, just over analyze. it’s in my DNA i suppose!!
Grechen Reiter says
i made overnight oats for a while, but they really didn’t do anything for me. and i ate chia seed pudding a little last summer too, but i was sort of meh about it. somehow, what i’ve settled on is just right for me. i think the key is the cinnamon and almond butter. and adding a little granola on top for some texture. otherwise, it’s just gooey and soft, which i don’t really like for breakfast. chia seed pudding is really a trial and error thing – you have to play around with proportions to get it just the way you want it…
i wish i was better at “cooking” – i’m good at putting things together following a precise recipe LOL
Grechen Reiter says
thanks holly 🙂
are you on instagram? i post more pictures of dagny there – i’m “grechen”
I love making granola! Right now what I’m eating is a cracklin’ oat bran clone 🙂 But much less sugar and who knows what else. There are lots of gluten free (I’m not – I just try to limit my simple carbs) or paleo options, but you know – sometimes I need chocolate too 🙂 Peanut or almond butter & chocolate granola? Yes please! Though I think my next attempt might be a Cinnamon Toast Crunch (yes, I’m regressing to my teenage cravings 😉 But I think the flavors will go nicely with the blueberries I’m picking like crazy in my garden!
Jess | Rose & Fig says
I’m glad you recommended a Clean-approved granola. I’ve recently adopted many of the Clean principles and have such a soft spot for granola that I was hoping I wouldn’t have to forfeit.
What’s helped me is finding a local co-op with weekly vegetable bags until November. That makes morning smoothies much easier.
I’m so impressed and envious of what you eat but also your routine. Did it take a long time to develop? I crave routine so much but have yet to find the right one that includes exercise, time to prep healthy food like you, and work. Love all the healthy suggestions in the comments too!
Aww, Thank YOU!!! I just checked this and saw the sweet picture you added of Dagney all plum tuckered out. (Adorbs). I’m kind of a Luddite when it comes to social media, but I’ll find a way to see Dagney on Instagram. She is such a special little creature 🙂 ???????? and I love, love love that you rescued her.
P.s. Oops. Those question marks were supposed to be hearts and paw prints, but I guess they didn’t translate.
I am the exact same way! I have so much anxiety about being out of the house and getting hungry without having a healthy snack with me. It’s kind of ridiculous, but I think it comes from the fear I have of putting weight back on. I lost 90-ish lbs about 5 years ago and still struggle with my relationship with food sometimes. I’m glad to know I’m not alone!
Grechen Reiter says
yes! that’s my issue also. i lost weight several years ago, although not 90 pounds, that’s amazing!! – and i’m really afraid of gaining it back. i definitely indulge sometimes, and try not to feel too bad about it, but for just random snacking, and to avoid getting hangry, i need to have snacks…
Great post! I love that Eating Purely cook book. I also really like Clean Start https://www.amazon.com/Clean-Start-Inspiring-Live-Recipes/dp/1402779054/ref=sr_1_12?ie=UTF8&qid=1466282447&sr=8-12&keywords=clean+start, Deliciously Ella https://www.amazon.com/Deliciously-Ella-Delicious-Plant-Based-Gluten-Free/dp/1501138197/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1466282483&sr=8-1&keywords=deliciously+ella and Oh She Glows https://www.amazon.com/Oh-She-Glows-Cookbook-Recipes/dp/1583335277/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1466282515&sr=8-1&keywords=oh+she+glows. Deliciously Ella and Oh She Glows are two of my favorite blogs. I try to limit my processed foods and sugar and definitely feel better when I do. No question, this is a work in progress.