Week 5 of Transform20 means the beginning of the last and final chapter of this workout. I want to do better these next 2 weeks, not because we’re rounding closer to the end but because I believe I CAN do better. I’ve had a “cheat meal” here and there due to celebrations or unplanned events but have done well for the most part overall. I haven’t missed a workout (!!) and finally am to the point where I’m looking forward to being active each day.
This week I’ve added in this flavorful Stuffed Pepper Soup to my menu for lunch. We’ve had some pretty gross weather lately and I’m always craving something that resembles warm comfort food because so. This recipes makes a HUGE serving amount, 10 servings huge, a perfect opportunity to freeze some as well!
21 Day Fix = 1 red, 1 green, 0.5 yellow per 2 cup serving.
1lb ground turkey
2 cups cooked quinoa
1 medium red bell pepper, deseeded and diced
1 medium yellow bell pepper, deseeded and diced
1 medium orange bell pepper, deseeded and diced
1 medium yellow onion, diced
3 tbsp minced garlic
10oz can of diced tomatoes, juice included
15oz can of tomato sauce
2 cups beef broth
2 tbsp honey
1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp italian seasoning
salt and pepper, for taste
Heat a large deep skillet over medium heat. Add ground turkey and cook until browned. Drain if needed. Re-add turkey to pan followed by peppers, onion and garlic. Allow to saute for 5 minutes.
Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, beef broth, honey and worcestershire sauce. Reduce heat to low, cover and allow to simmer for 45 minutes.
Lastly, add cooked quinoa and stir well; dividing into 10 plates/containers, 2 cups each.
I just finished the Commit Chapter for Transform 20 and I’m pretty excited about the transformation that I’ve had these past 15 days; both physically and mentally. By having discipline in the food department, I have dramatically cut down on my “craving sweets” moments and have been able to have an intake of 80oz of water per day. Both of these are huge milestones simply considering the fact that when you live with teenagers you’re likely to have a pantry full of snacks.
Each Friday I begin meal-planning for the upcoming week so that I can spend my Saturday grocery shopping and my Sunday meal-prepping. Because I am still learning how to perfect the container equivalents, I get a good amount of recipes to try from Pinterest searches. Last week I prepared the 2-bean Vegetarian Chili recipe that was inside the Transform20 nutrition guide, which was suuuper yum, but this week I’m having this Skinny Burrito Bowl recipe that I found via Emily J Goodman
I thought this particular meal was an especially good idea because this week we’re supposed to have incredibly cold wind chills. Cold enough that I am not so sure that I am going to want to go outside. So, I prepared 6 dishes of it; I’ll split half for me, half for my sister. That way it meets the 3-day fridge rule since I won’t be freezing any and gives me an opportunity to be lazy and not have to tweak the original recipes ingredients 🙂
Note: If you want to add extra toppings to your bowl, you may. Just make sure you add them accordingly to whichever container they’re categorized to while meal-planning.
1 serving is 1 red, 1 yellow, 0.5 purple, 0.5 green.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup onion, diced finely
1lb lean ground turkey
1½ cups brown rice, cooked accordingly
2 cups mild salsa (no sugar)
2 cups cherry tomatoes, quartered
¾ cups frozen corn
¼ cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 tsp taco seasoning
salt and pepper, for taste
Add olive oil to a large skillet over medium heat, followed by onions and ground turkey. Cook until ground turkey is browned and onions appear softened. Remove from heat to drain, return to skillet.
Add cooked rice, salsa, tomatoes, corn, chicken broth and taco seasoning to skillet. Lower heat to simmer and allow to cook for about 5 minutes before serving.
Trying to incorporate more avocado into my diet. I remember there was a time when I didn’t even like avocado and now I’m searching high and low for more recipes that use them. Of course, the standard spreading some over a piece of whole-wheat toast for breakfast never gets old. Or 2 used for a batch of guac. But avocados have endless possibilities; just like how they’re used to add an extra flavor, texture and look to your regular egg salad recipe.
6 hard-boiled eggs, diced
1 large avocado, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
2 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons lite mayonnaise
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Using a medium size bowl add eggs, avocado and celery.
In a small bowl, add yogurt, mayonnaise, vinegar, salt and pepper. Mix well and add to the medium bowl with eggs, avocado and celery. Combine well.
Serve immediately or refrigerate in a tight-lid container.
Monday is here and I just started Prep Week for Beachbody’s Transform20. I’m sure most of you have heard of Shaun T, and if you haven’t – do a quick search. He has the most exhilarating workout programs (Insanity!) and is such a motivator. The new Transform20 program only calls for 20 minutes of your day, perfect if you’re the type of person who loses interests after a half hour of hearing a trainer yell instructions and moves. Plus you can lose up to 20lbs in just 6 weeks! If that’s not convincing enough to give it a try, I’m not sure what is.
(Check out the program here if I’ve sparked your interest. We start in a week!)
I’m not in my best shape. My eating may be OK and I have lost 5lbs in the past 3 weeks, but I’m not IN shape. We’re in the middle of having our home gym area remodeled and so I can’t use any of my go-to equipment. So every pound I’ve lost lately has been due to eating clean and cutting down on snacks and sweets. This week is especially an exception because while I will be doing quick prep workouts, I also will need to focus on remaining on my clean-eats path!
Starting the week off right with this salad.This particular salad is packed with plenty of vegetables and protein! I don’t like fish myself, but I love a good can of tuna with some light mayonnaise. Add it into a salad and you’ve got even more of my attention. But I feel as though I see a lack of tuna recipes on the internet. I guess maybe there are only so many ways that you can incorporate it into a meal other than just the by using it in staple recipes.
It’s awfully colorful too, and I know that can be appealing to some. I like pretty food. It’s more photogenic and it also meal-preps wonderfully which should always be the exception. We don’t necessarily have the time to prepare our foods daily and in order to stay on track, you’re guaranteed to succeed with your personal goals if you’re preprepared.
½ cup whole wheat pasta
1 can of tuna, drained
2 cups Romaine lettuce
1 stick of celery, diced
1 can of tuna, drained
8 cherry tomatoes, quartered
½ red onion, chopped
¼ cup sweet corn
¼ cup cucumber, peeled and diced
2 Tbsp reduced fat mayonnaise
2 tsp white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp water
pinch of salt and pepper
Cook pasta accordingly and drain. Set aside.
Using a small bowl, add all dressing ingredients; whisk well. Set aside.
Divide ingredients between 2 plates, lettuce and pasta first followed by vegetables. Lastly add tuna and drizzle dressing onto.
Bento boxes are a easy and colorful way to get a variety into your lunch. They’re also great for lunches on the go, especially during the summer! I tried to make mine as clean-eating and fun as possible by adding in a mixture of protein, fruit and veggies. For this particular ‘box,’ I added in some homemade peanut butter hummus to dip in. It tastes great with both the veggies and apple slices
Clean-Eating Bento Box with Peanut Butter Hummus
- 4 large hard-boiled eggs
- 4 celery stalks, cut into thin strips
- 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into thin strips
- 4-ounces cheddar cheese, cubed
- 2 cups grapes
- 1 apple, cut into wedges
- 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 3 tablespoons water
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Divide all ingredients evenly into 4 containers.
- Add all ingredients into a food processor and pulse until smooth; about 1 minute. Store in 4 small airtight containers.
With this Bento Box, I went with Spinach Turkey Pinwheels with a side of grapes, carrots and cucumber slices. The wrap itself is spinach and tastes delicious paired with slices of low-sodium deli turkey, cheddar cheese and baby spinach. Another easy and clean-eating lunch that you can throw together in 5 minutes and take on-the-go!
Spinach Turkey Pinwheels Bento Box
- 1 large spinach tortilla
- 2-ounces thinly sliced low-sodium deli turkey
- handful of baby spinach
- 1 slice cheddar cheese
- ¼ cup red grapes
- 8 baby carrots
- 6 cucumber slices
- Lay out spinach tortilla and spread baby spinach in the middle as evenly as possible. Add turkey slices and cheese. Tightly roll tortilla until you reach edge and using a knife, cut into 6 slices.
- Add to a container withy grapes, carrots and cucumber slices.
- Adapted recipe from Damn Delicious.
Adapted from Damn Delicious
I don’t know anyone else who loves egg salad more than me. It can be made so healthy-ish, it’s simple to make and it tastes great in a variety of ways. Plus it’s loaded in protein! This particular recipe is 2 eggs per serving equaling up to 12g of protein! That’s great for a pre or post-workout meal.
Since I’m still getting the hang of this container counting, I’ve been getting quite a bit of help from some blogs that I’ve found on Pinterest, (thank goodness for Pinterest, by the way) – it can be a little overwhelming at first, so finding food ideas via others who have done it before is a tremendous stress-reliever and makes nutrition blocks seem much more do-able. I’m on week 2 and I’m starting to get the hang of it. You can eat “outside of the box.” You don’t have to eat strictly meat and a vegetable and a teaspoon for each meal. There are some great resources out there that are much more creative, like this egg salad recipe that I found via Carrie Elle.
- 2 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and cut into small pieces
- 1½ tsp lite mayo
- ½ tsp dijon mustard
- ¼ tsp paprika
- pinch of himalayan salt and pepper, for taste
- Add all ingredients into a medium size bowl. Chill for approximately 1+ hour, if possible before serving.
- 1 red, 1.5 tsp for 21DayFix.
Tuna is a good source of protein if you’re looking to temporarily ditch the chicken. I’m always interested in anything that ends with the word salad; chicken and tuna both, but I’m especially interested when you can cut the calories in half by using yogurt. And while yogurt is ideal, it can also lack a little bit of flavor. This is where apple and celery come in. The sweetness of diced apple pieces and the crunch of celery make this meal an easy repeat offender.
Apple and Yogurt Tuna Salad
A healthy spin on tuna salad, fruit and veggies included.
- 1 small apple, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- ¼ cup plain non-fat greek yogurt
- 5-ounce can of tuna, drained
- 1 tablespoon lite mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon onion, chopped
- ¼ teaspoon garlic salt
- squeeze of lemon juice
- salt, for taste
- pepper, for taste
- Add all ingredients into a medium size bowl. Serve over whole-wheat bread, a bed of lettuce or in a pita.
I spent the middle of my March Madness-on-a-Saturday afternoon online looking for some new healthy recipes for the week that I could give a try. Pinterest never fails, I found this easy (and super delicious) recipe from Gimme Some Oven that I just had to prepare for my lunches. Not only does it include just a few simple ingredients – the dressing is extremely tasty and blends well with the pasta and vegetables.
Meal prep keeps me on my toes. I’ve always believed that if you don’t plan accordingly, you’re setting yourself up to potentially slide off the path.
Luckily – this pasta salad holds well for several days. Prep away.
Mediterranean Pasta Salad
Quick take on a Mediterranean style pasta dish that's best served cold.
- 12-ounce box of farfalle pasta
- 1 English cucumber, diced
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, cut into halves
- 4-ounces crumbled fat-free feta cheese
- half of a medium size red onion, sliced thin
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (fresh is best!)
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon organic honey
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- small pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
- Cook pasta accordingly. Drain and rinse with cold water until pasta can be handled.
- Meanwhile, prepare lemon-herb vinaigrette dressing by whisking all ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Using a large bowl, add your pasta, cucumbers, tomatoes, and onion slices. Mix well. Carefully fold feta cheese into mixture, followed by drizzling the lemon-herb vinaigrette dressing overtop. Toss salad well so that dressing is evenly spread.
- Divide between 4 bowls and serve with additional feta cheese if desired.
- The original recipe calls for olives. I don't care much for them, but if you do, feel free to add a handful to the ingredients.
If you’re like me, you’ve gone through your Pinterest feed for what feels like a gazillion times looking for some sort of “different” kind of lunch to prepare for the week. I often like to base my mid-day meals around salads or something close to, as lunch is when I like to get the majority of my greens and vegetables intake.
With today being Labor Day, the kids being home from school and a local Arts Festival going on; I wanted to get my grocery shopping done early yesterday so that I could successfully complete all my Sunday chores today and not having some spill over into the first of the week and delay any fun or relaxation for today. I started my meal-plan planning extra early because so. (Remember… fail to plan, plan to fail!) – and while things didn’t go as planned (one child is sick), my food was still ready today so I didn’t have to worry about screwing up on my new dietary!
I don’t feel like I get my share of enough egg-protein, or at least I don’t feel like I have lately. So when I opened my laptop this morning I made sure to search for a recipe that would require at least one egg or more. I can always make the staple recipe for egg salad; I could prepare it blind-folded, but I wanted something that had a little more taste to it. One where by Tuesday afternoon, I’m already sure that come Wednesday’s lunch time I will be wanting anything BUT what I’ve already got prepared. And so I ran across this recipe for a Cobb Egg Salad from Lemon Tree Dwelling that had one key ingredient that won me over – dry ranch dressing mix. I like to use my dry ranch with yogurt for a healthier take on ranch dressing for dipping some veggie sticks in. If you love ranch, you can’t really go wrong with this dressing mix.
Another great thing about egg salad is how quickly you can prep it. Sure, if you’re not much of an hard-boiled egg peeler it can take *some* time, but I promise with practice and correct technique you’ll get the knack of doing it. Afterall, it took me months but I finally got it and I can proudly say that today I peeled 6 eggs in under 10 minutes. That’s an accomplishment! The rest of the ingredients though – super easy to assemble and throw into a bowl. Almost too easy.
Ranch-Style Cobb Salad
If egg salad and cobb salad were to meet in an alley, and egg happened to have brought ranch with him and cobb, arugula lettuce - this would be the outcome. Enjoy this recipe with rye crackers, as a salad or on a sandwich. Perfect for both parties and for meal-prepped lunches for the week.
- 6 large eggs, hard boiled and peeled
- 4 pieces cooked turkey bacon, crumbled into small pieces
- 4 tablespoons lite mayonnaise
- ½ dry ranch dressing mix
- ¼ cup grape tomatoes, diced
- ¼ cup celery, diced small
- ¼ teaspoon green onions, sliced thin
- ¼ cup chopped arugula lettuce
- ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Hard-boil your eggs; bringing your pot of water and eggs to a raging boil over medium-high heat. When this has happened, turn off heat and cover pot with a lid allowing to sit for 12 minutes. Run cold water over eggs before attempting to peel. After eggs have been peeled, chop into small pieces.
- Using a large mixing bowl add eggs, bacon, tomatoes, arugula and cheese. Next add mayonnaise and dry ranch dressing mix, stirring gently but combining well. Serve or store in a tight-closed container for later.
- Original recipe can be found at Lemon Tree Dwelling (www.lemontreedwelling.com) - I added a few extra vegetables, etc of my own to their own delicious recipe.
Love buffalo chicken, but need a little break from the buffalo chicken dip you have at parties? I stumbled upon this recipe while searching for something simple and easy to prepare for lunch this week since I will be back and forth between two houses before we move. I was not only surprised at how almost effortless these tortilla rollups were, but how good they were! You really can’t go wrong with buffalo anything and while this is very similar in ingredients to the buffalo chicken dip; it still has it’s own unique taste.
Because we do tacos once a week, I often have an abundant amount of flour tortillas in the pantry and hate to see them go to waste. I try to come up with new and different ways to use them rather it’s just an easy microwaveable cheese rollup, or homemade cinnamon tortilla “chips” to enjoy with a side of fresh fruit. Your tortilla options are endless! This called for 4 tortillas, but let’s say you were to prepare this recipe for a game-day; you’d only need a few to make a plateful of little tortilla rolls. Best part is the prep time is 5-10 minutes max if you’re using rotisserie chicken!
Buffalo Chicken Tortillas
Simple buffalo chicken tortilla rollups using a few key ingredients and a quick assemble. Great as a game day appetizer!
- 1 cup rotisserie chicken, shredded
- 4-ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- ¼ cup frank's buffalo sauce
- 1/8 cup blue cheese crumbles
- ½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 tablespoon sour cream
- 2 6-inch flour tortillas
- Using a medium size bowl, combine cream cheese, blue cheese crumbles and sour cream. Stir so that all are mixed together well.
- In a separate medium size bowl, add rotisserie chicken and buffalo sauce. Combine so that chicken is evenly coated with sauce.
- Using parchment paper on a solid surface, lay tortillas flat. Add 2-3 tablespoons of cheese mixture to tortilla, spreading evenly to all edges. Next add 2-3 tablespoons of chicken mixture, spreading evenly on-top of cheese mixture. Roll tortilla, tightly, and remove from parchment to a plate. When all tortillas are rolled and plated, place plate in refrigerator for 20-30 minutes to allow tortillas to "cool." This makes it easier for cutting.
- When time is up, remove tortillas from fridge and place onto a cutting board. Using a large knife, slice into each tortilla to make small rollups that are not too large, but not too thin so that they fall apart.
- Serve chilled with green onions for garnishing, if desired.