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healthy eating

Food

Salad of the Week: 1-26-2017

January 26, 2017
finished honey mustard chicken salad

I’m Not in the Salad Mood!

Sometimes you’re just not in the mood for a salad. And that’s OK, you don’t have to starve yourself trying to eat a salad every day. It’s just a general rule that will help you get on the healthy track and also steer you away from the grab and go fast foods that are anything but nutritional. Don’t completely deprive yourself of the “fun” foods or there is no way you will stick to this salad plan. If you are prepared to eat a salad weekly, you will be successful! And if you aren’t, you won’t. It’s as simple as that.

Salad ingredients for prepping

Break the Healthy Rules

Not only do you have to be prepared but you also have to add a salad in there every now and then that may break the healthy rules. They can’t all taste like rabbit food or there is no way I would be able to keep this up for years straight. Maybe a little more fat, maybe a little more sugar than we’d like, you know one of those salads that are more calories than our favorite dessert! Everything in moderation, right? Life would be boring if I didn’t follow this motto, or so I’ve heard!

honey mustard salad dressing ingredients

Top Notch Excuses

This week, I’m the prime example of “lack of prepping”! And instead of salads I ate whatever leftovers I could find in the fridge which were nowhere near as healthy as a salad. No school on Monday thru me a curve, instead of salad prep, we laid around and watched movies all day under the blankets. We had pb & j’s for lunch and then made popcorn and other snacks in the afternoon. No gym for me either. Well, because I didn’t start the first of the week and more things just arose, I put myself last and tended to everything else. I kept making excuses, because when it comes to healthy eating and exercise, my excuses are top notch.

Back to Preping

I kept thinking if I had only taken the time to prep Sunday, I wouldn’t be in this “non-salad eating”, “gym skipping”, “grab what I want to snack on” mindset. Lesson learned, next week is a new week to be “prepared”. My prep usually goes something like this.

Saturday:Search through my salad board on Pinterest to select my “salad of the week”.

Sunday:Grocery store run for salad ingredients and then prep ingredients that may take more time
Examples:
– roasting veggies
– toasting nuts
– grilling meats
– chopping main ingredients
– hard boiling eggs
– making salad dressing

Monday-Friday
Put together salads each morning, I like my ingredients as fresh as possible, so that would mean things like hard boiled eggs, avocado, cucumber, tomatoes, I would cut the day I am eating them. I use a piece of paper towel in my bag/tupperware of lettuce, this absorbs the moisture and keeps my lettuce fresh longer. I also have some favorite Tupperware and I have enough to accommodate my salad intakes weekly. As you eat more and more salads, you will figure out your system, and what works for you. It will get easier and easier, and you will whip these things out in no time.
salad prep

The Salad

I decided this week I also needed a heartier salad, one with lots of yumminess! A Honey Mustard Chicken Salad it was. I fixed this chicken as one of my dinners and while I was at it, grilled extra chicken for my weekly salads. Love when my dinner can double as my weekly salad protein, thus meaning I have a little less to think about. Small thought, but every little thing in my weekly routine adds up, any shortcut in my life is gladly welcomed!
grilled chicken on sunday for salad prep

Salad Journey

Keep up this salad journey, you will be amazed at what life looks like when you are eating healthy and have more energy and motivation than you ever imagined! But don’t be discouraged if one week you fall off the wagon…just start fresh the next week! Cheers to a healthier YOU!

Finished honey mustard salad

Honey Mustard Chicken Salad:

Marinade:
• ⅓ cup honey
• 3 tablespoons whole grain mustard
• 2 tablespoons smooth and mild Dijon mustard
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 teaspoon minced garlic
• Salt and pepper to season
• 2 Chicken breasts

For Salad:
• 1 package of bacon baked at 375 degrees for 20mins and then chopped when cooled
• 1 head of romaine washed and chopped/ or ready to eat bagged romaine
• Grape tomatoes
• 2 Avocados
• Bag of frozen corn, cooked and cooled
• ½ Chopped red onion

Dressing:
• 1 ½ Tbsp Dijon Mustard, whole grain
• 3 Tbsp honey
• ¼ C Olive oil
• ¼ C White wine vinegar

Instructions
1. Place marinade ingredients in a gallon Ziplock bag and mix together by massaging the bag gently. Place chicken breasts in bag for two hours if time allows. After done marinating, grill chicken breasts for 30mins (15mins each side), once chicken is cooked, set aside and allow to cool.
2. Mix dressing ingredients in a jar and shake to combine.
3. Slice chicken into strips and prepare salad with greens, tomatoes, avocado slices, corn, onion and chicken. Sprinkle bacon on top, season with pepper to taste, and drizzle with dressing. Enjoy!

*Makes about 4 salads

This post was written by Gordmans cooking extraordinaire, Lindsey.

Food Series Uncategorized

Salad of the Week: 1-17-2017

January 17, 2017
Make this easy salad to meet your 2017 goals

The New Year is off to a good start for this mama.  Mostly because I have dedicated the next five weeks to ME!  It feels oh so good and then I feel oh so guilty at the same time.  I mean, salad prep and gym time cut into the hours of my day and leave me less time to spend sitting on the floor doing puzzles and playing Legos.  BUT, I have decided I need a jump start and it’s going to take full concentration on my health and fitness.  We work so hard year round and what do we get but a bunch of “ewww I don’t want that for dinner”, LOADS of laundry (some of which isn’t even really dirty, but our kids tried it on and were too lazy to put it back in their closets so it instead goes into the dirty basket-like we don’t know?), mess after mess to deal with whether it’s food being thrown on the floor by our littles, or this and that cluttering the counters each day and just piling up because mom hasn’t put it away. Then there is helping with homework, school projects, and being an after school taxi cab.

So when is it our time?

We can keep making excuses that are a mile long, believe me, my list is never-ending as are most moms.  But hey, let’s face it, we are never really going to catch up on that list in this lifetime.  So let’s start now, by eating healthier and focusing on ourselves just a little.  We will feel so much better about ourselves.  And our kids will also see this change and want to be part of it.  My 18 month old and 3 year old love digging into my salads, mostly because what kid doesn’t want to stab little things with a fork, but then once they try them, they can’t stop.  Full blown salad eaters in my house, spinach, carrots, artichokes, brussel sprouts…they eat them and don’t complain!  Crazy, huh?

Main ingredients for this yummy salad

all the chopped ingredients you need

Let’s—as moms—put us first, leave the guilt behind, and focus on eating healthier for the next 30 days!   After that we will have our jump start and be in the mindset to care more about ourselves.  We deserve this.  I mean, we have one body and if we neglect it to take care it, who knows what health issues will arise and if we will be around to experience years and years to come.

To make the dressing for the salad you will need these ingredients

 Cheers to another salad to kick-off 2017!

This one is actually easy to prep and makes a huge Tupperware full.  You may want to share this one and help another coworker or friend get on the salad wagon! The more you practice salad making the easier it gets. Trust me, after two years of salads weekly, I can whip these things out in no time!  And you will too!

A great salad that is easy to make and healthy

 

Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Chickpeas, Kale, and Pearl Couscous

Prep time:  20 mins

Yield: 8 side dish servings, or 4 main course servings

Dressing:

4 Tbs apple cider vinegar

4 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil

2 tsp honey

2 tsp Dijon mustard

½  tsp salt

¼  tsp black pepper

 

Salad:

1 butternut squash, peeled, de-seeded, and cubed into ½-inch pieces

2 Tbs olive oil

½ tsp salt, divided

⅛ tsp black pepper

1 C cooked whole wheat pearl couscous (according to package)

1 medium sweet onion, diced

5 oz kale, washed, de-stemmed, and finely chopped

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

Combine salad ingredients, mix salad dressing and enjoy!

Share your salad

Do you have any easy salads to make? Share in the comments below!

This post was written by Gordmans cooking extraordinaire, Lindsey.

Food

Salad of the Week: 1-12-2017

January 12, 2017

A new year, a new you!  Isn’t that the most popular resolution we start a new year with?! Being a better person in our relationships, more forgiving, more accepting, more kindness. Spending more quality time with our kids. Surrounding ourselves with positive people. Exercising regularly.  Eating healthy, like a salad. Too broad, too many expectations, too many things to focus on…life is constantly changing and is crazy busy.  We must pick the things we REALLY want to focus on, or else drive ourselves crazy trying to do it all!

One thing I know is that if we keep our body eating healthy, other things will fall into place.  We will have more energy to spend that extra quality time with our kids, or stay up a little later to read that book we have been wanting to.  Making healthy food choices will lead us to feel better about ourselves and create the energy we need to feel motivated and keep us on track to meet our goals for the year.

It started when I was a working mom, and encountered catered lunches at the office daily.  I knew if I ate that stuff, I would gain 30 lbs and feel like crap.  So to stay away, I made sure I had prepped my salads on Sundays so that I had all the healthy food I needed to keep me satisfied and away from these temptations throughout the week.  Two years ago I became a stay at home mom, and although the temptations had changed, (to anything I could grab from the pantry), they were still there daily.  And in the beginning I would fall for them.  After a few months I decided I had to continue to prep for my daily salads as if I had a working mom’s schedule.  Because the truth was, I didn’t know from day to day if I would have 15 minutes to make me a healthy lunch.

So my “salad of the week” started.  I would decide what salad I would eat for the week.  It couldn’t be too complicated or I would lose motivation to make it.   I would prep the veggies by having them chopped and stored in individual Tupperware, or have nuts toasted and in baggies, or my dressings were all mixed by me (trying to avoid as much processed as possible).    If this was all done before my week started, it was easy for me to grab what I needed and throw it together.  If I didn’t have this done, I constantly found myself grabbing what was convenient which was usually processed and not a healthy option.

Tools and gadgets to create salad

I found as I ate healthy, I wanted to work out, I felt motivated, and I had the energy it took to be a mom, a wife, and run the household like a boss!  If I’d fail and grab something less healthy, I’d feel sluggish, unmotivated, and on track to just keep eating bad options for the rest of the day.  I knew that the salads had to stick as a daily routine for lunch.  And I had to keep on hand the most used ingredients so I never had an excuse to not eat a salad.  On the weekends I would allow myself to eat more freely and fun.  We can’t deprive ourselves of all fun food or life is just boring, right?

Ingredients for the salad.

So for 2017, add “eat more salads” to your New Year’s resolutions!  You will get your veggies in, you will feel healthier, and will have more motivation to achieve your other goals.  Maybe eating a salad a day will lead you to losing that 10 lbs you have been trying for, and then you will feel ready to hit the gym, give it 6 months of routine and who knows what else you will feel motivated to do!  We only have one body, and we must take care of it, but let’s still have fun while doing so!  Cheers to 2017 and more yummy salads in our futures!  Here is one of the easiest to kick off your new year! (salad recipe below)

Easy Chicken Salad. Healthy salad to get you to your goals this year.

Easy Chicken Salad

Ingredients:

Spring Mix

Chopped Red Peppers

Grape Tomatoes

Artichoke Hearts

Hard boiled egg

Shredded Carrots

Sliced Chicken breast

Pepitas

 

Balsamic Dressing:

½ C olive oil

¼ C balsamic vinegar

1 tsp honey

1 tsp Dijon mustard

1 shallot minced

1 clove garlic, minced or crushed

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine ingredients salad. Mix together dressing and enjoy!

This post was written by Gordmans cooking extraordinaire, Lindsey.