I’ve been eating clean for a little over three weeks now. There have been many scrambled egg whites, bowls of oatmeal, protein supplements, fruits and veggies. I’ve had more almond butter than I probably should and more quest bars than I will admit, but for the most part my meals are 100% natural ingredients.
So I thought I would share some of my more appealing looking meals & snacks today! Because even though it may seem like I’m “limiting” or restricting my diet, there really are countless options, tons of ingredients to play with and I am able to get plenty of calories (not too mention all the necessary nutrients) without getting bored of the same ol’ things.
Steel Cut Oats with blueberries, banana slices, toasted coconut, goji berries, cinnamon and almond milk. Coffee of course, with almond milk and 1/2 packet of stevia in the raw.
Stuffed Bell Pepper with brown rice, lean ground turkey, onion, zucchini, more bell pepper and a splash of liquid aminos.
Snack bowl with raw almonds, fresh blueberries & a drizzle of blue agave.
Egg white omelette loaded with diced yellow & green zucchini, red bell pepper, sweet onion, spinach & topped with avocado.
Picnic snacks for a day trip. Clementines, apple slices, blackberries, protein bar & green juice. *These Nugo Slim bars are the most “processed” thing in my diet now but the ingredients list 17 grams of plant protein, nuts, cocoa, and stevia. The best option next to Quest bars if you ask me*
And roasted baby brussel sprouts!
This is just a tiny snapshot of what I eat. There are many more protein bars/protein shakes/fruits/baked sweet potatoes and spoons of almond butter.Even though my diet is “clean” I can still do a better job of eating more greens and natural proteins and less bars/powders/butters. But I’m getting there!
I actually have a few “clean” recipes up on the blog already:
- Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal
- Protein-Packed Pancake Parfait
- Cinnamon Spice Roasted Nuts (if you replace the sugar with stevia or honey!)
- Sweet Pear Salsa (obvi the pita chips are out if you are nixing the processed goods.)
- Summer Citrus Shrimp Salad
- Detox Salad (replace dried cranberries with fresh berries)
- My personal favorite: Strawberry Banana Oat cookies. Vegan, clean, and gluten-free!
Quesadillas are one of the only Mexican foods I would eat as a kid. To this day, I still don’t care for corn tortillas, Spanish rice, tamales, or chiles. And beans? Refried, black, pinto or any other variety is on my Top 10 Most-Hated Food Items list. Tears were involved whenever I was forced to eat them at family dinners as a toddler. Now I just avoid them completely. I used to cringe at avocados but I have grown to LOVE them and use them generously. My parents are convinced this 180 will happen with beans too; I am sure it won’t. Anyhow, this all limits my choices when it comes to Mexican food so a good ol’ flour tortilla stuffed with cheese (and usually dipped in ketchup) was my go-to.
I haven’t had a quesadilla in a long time. As a health-conscious person, that amount of melted cheese is no longer appealing. But I’ve seen some pretty amazing quesadillas recently using more than just cheese. Spinach. Sweet Potato. Goat Cheese. Pesto. I had to try it myself. After all, we have a Quesadilla Maker just sitting in our cupboards! (I know what you’re thinking: isn’t a frying pan a quesadilla maker? Well yes, this particular kitchen gadget is a little excessive and a regular frying pan is totally fine too.) I decided to make a Pesto Shrimp Quesadilla.
For our Saturday night dinner, we bought Tomato & Basil whole grain tortillas (100 cal. each) and a brick of Colby Jack cheese. I still had some shrimp from last weekend’s Shrimp Burgers. I had whipped up some homemade pesto and guacamole earlier in the day.
For the pesto: In a food processor, blend 1 cup of fresh basil, a drizzle of olive oil, a tsp of garlic, a few drops of lemon juice and a dash of salt and pepper. You only need to spread a thin layer over the bottom tortilla; this pesto is potent! Top with shredded cheese, pan-fried shrimp and second tortilla and cook until it’s crispy and brown! It was so flavorful with the pesto and shrimp.
I had half of a quesadilla (with a scoop of guacamole!) and a salad, which was perfect. Half of one of these quesadillas is around 450 calories because of the cheese, so it’s best eaten in moderation with some veggies on the side. After dinner my mom and I went on a 50 minute walk around our neighborhood in the great summer night weather. Tonight I think I’ll take the night off and let my dad do the cooking ;)