Eating Clean, Feeling Good

Hey everyone. Hope you all had a great day! I felt pretty good today. I’ve been really focusing on getting on the road back to good health and getting my fitness back up. I think I’m off to a good start. I’ve been focusing on eating clean, getting rid of the gluten once and for all, getting those probiotics in and getting to the gym on non training days. So far so good!

Let’s check out today’s eats.

Today was the first day of the 12 Day GoodBelly Challenge. I bought the gluten free Tropical Orange flavor and holy cow is it good! It tastes exactly like you would expect it to… orange with a tropical twist. Super delicious. Can’t wait to see how I feel after the next 11 days.

For breakfast I had two slices of the Ezekiel French Toast with sliced banana and maple syrup. So. Freaking. Good. It was super filling though, next time I’ll just have one piece. I was stuffed after this!

For a snack I enjoyed some lovely fresh strawberries and grapes. I seriously think I could survive the 80 10 10 diet… I’m such a fruit fiend, especially in the summer. I’m debating trying it for like a week at some point. I think I could do well with it since it’s summertime and I’m craving fruit all day. We’ll see.

Lunch was a Hummus sandwich on a gluten free wrap with lots of veggies stuffed into it. Can’t go wrong with this!

After work I went to the gym to get in some cardio. I was sore after my workout with my trainer yesterday and it was effing hot but I went anyway and I’m so glad I did. It felt really good to get back in on my own. I’m hoping to get in there on Thursday and Friday after work and maybe on Sunday. We’ll see!

After I got cleaned up I ended the day with an absolutely delicious dinner. Roasted sweet potato wedges with some of Gabby’s Shredded Brussels Sprout Salad and some organic ketchup for the sweet potato. OMG that Brussels Sprout Salad is DELICIOUS. I was a little concerned with what the raw ┬ábrussels sprouts would taste like but they’re great! They kind of have a cabbagey taste and feel to them. This salad is definitely a must try!

And that’s all for today. Have my late start tomorrow so I’ll be able to enjoy a leisurely morning and get all of my meals ready with plenty of time in. Hope you all have a great night!

Vegan MoFo Day 11: FlavourSpot Vegan Sausage with Maple Sandwich

After deciding that I will be starting a new diet soon to work out some of the health problems I’ve been encountering, I have been trying to finish up odds and ends in my pantry and fridge that will not be allowed on this diet. It’s pretty restrictive which is kind of sad but I’ve been trying to use up what I can for now. So with that goal and my current theme of restaurant recreations, I had to think on my feet. Enter today’s recreation.

I saw my last two Van’s Gluten Free Waffles and the Gimme Lean sausage and somehow conjured up the memory of hearing about this epic sandwich you can get from Flavourspot in Portland. It’s vegan sausage sandwiched between crispy waffles and spread with a maple spread. I have wanted to try this sandwich since I heard about it but sadly have always been three time zones away. Well. today was the day my friends!

I don’t know what took me so long to do this because it was so damn simple. Toast waffles, drizzle with maple syrup, put browned sausage patty between and stuff in face.

My only advice would be to make a much thinner patty than I did. I was just trying to use mine up so I didn’t realize how thick it was. I only ate half of the sausage because it was way too much.

So easy and so yummy. It’s a great combo of flavors. You have the light and crispy waffles, the sweet gooey syrup and the savory sausage. So good! But you better believe I still want to try Flavourspot’s sandwich ;)

Hope your week has been going well! Happy Friday tomorrow! I was booked on a wedding for another company in advance for this Saturday so I’ll be doing that. I’m hoping to start this new diet on Sunday. I’m really hoping this works!

Hope you all have a great night!!

Vegan MoFo Day 4: Panera Tomato Mozzarella Panini

Why hello friends! Looks like everyone is settling into MoFo :) I’m super excited about the meal I chose to recreate today. You guys may not know this but in my pre-vegan days I worked at Panera. I’m kind of obsessed with their soups (the black bean and garden veggie [minus the pesto] are vegan) and their bread is pretty amazing. After I stopped working there and became vegan, they added a tomato mozzarella panini to their menu. YUM! They describe it as “Fresh mozzarella, roasted & fresh tomatoes, fresh basil and all-natural sun-dried tomato pesto on Ciabatta.” It sounds delicious and totally veganizable!

So, for my dinner tonight I decided to make my version of the Tomato Mozzarella Panini. The recipe I’m giving you will be for a regular panini sandwich with ciabatta bread, but I will also give you the variation I used to make mine gluten free. As a bonus, I gave you a recipe for the side I chose to enjoy with it!

Yes please!

So here is my version of the delicious sounding sandwich! Except as you can see, mine is open faced. As all of my gluten free friends out there will tell you, gluten free bread isn’t known for being soft and tender. It is dense and toasts up pretty solid and is not ideal for a sandwich. So I made mine open faced!

Panera Inspired Tomato Mozzarella Panini (serves 1)

Ingredients:

1 ciabatta roll* (see note for gluten free version)

5 Mediterranean seasoned oil packed sun dried tomatoes

2 large basil leaves, chiffonade or chopped

fresh tomato slices (2-4, enough to fit bread)

1/8 – 1/4 cup Daiya Mozzarella Cheese

Directions:

1. Cut ciabatta roll in half and preheat panini press.

2. Make sun dried tomato pesto by simply blending the sun dried tomatoes into a paste. It is important not to drain the excess oil from the tomatoes since it will be your oil that will bind your pesto into a paste. Stir in basil by hand.

3. Spread pesto onto the bread (both sides if you have enough). Top one half with fresh tomato slices and a layer of mozzarella cheese. Close the sandwich.

4. Spray your panini press with cooking spray so the sandwich won’t stick. Press your panini until the bread is crisp and the cheese is melted. Enjoy!

If you do not have a panini press you can cook on the stove top like a grilled cheese sandwich. Cook until bread is golden brown and crispy and the cheese is melted.

*Gluten Free version (open faced) – Toast one slice of your favorite gluten free bread (I used brown rice bread) until slightly toasted. Spread pesto and top with fresh tomato and Daiya mozzarella. Broil on high heat until cheese is melted and slightly browned. Enjoy!

For a GF version you can probably also use a gluten free tortilla and make it like a quesadilla! Yum!

Check out those layers!

Pretty easy huh? Now the only thing left to complete this meal is your side. Panera offers a side of bread (not really appropriate to eat with a sandwich), potato chips or an apple. Now, I don’t have potato chips and I didn’t feel like chomping into an apple, so I decided to combine the two sides into one amazing choice.

Thats right! I made myself some raw apple chips to eat as my side for my open faced tomato mozzarella sandwich!

These were SO GOOD! They take a long time but are so worth it! And they are so simple to make.

Raw Cinnamon Apple Chips

Ingredients:

2 large apples (I used organic gala apples)

Juice of 1/2 lemon

cinnamon to taste

Directions:

1. Slice the apples as thin as possible. I used a mandolin but you can slice by hand. It may take longer to dehydrate depending on the thickness if you slice by hand.

2. Toss sliced apples with the lemon juice to prevent browning.

3. Place apple slices on your dehydrator trays and sprinkle with cinnamon.*

4. Dehydrate at 104 degrees for 12-16 hours until completely dry. Enjoy!

*The lemon can leave a bit of a tart taste so if you are inclined to you can sprinkle some raw sugar on top as well to bump up the sweetness. I didn’t use sugar and I thought they were fine but it all depends on your taste!

So there you have it! Another menu inspired meal coming out of my kitchen :) I’m sure you’ve noticed by now that my recipes are for simple meals. To be honest I’m not trying to recreate big, fancy restaurant dishes at home. I think that those are the dishes you SHOULD be getting at a restaurant. My goal is to show how easy it is to recreate simple meals at home, saving those special meals for when you do go to restaurants :)

I hope you all had a great week so far! Two more days until my weekend :) Have a great night!

Sunday Fun Day

Hey friends! Hope you’ve all had a nice weekend so far. Mine has been nice and productive, which is always a good thing. I woke up at 9am which is super late for me and I definitely felt nice and relaxed and refreshed!

I went to Whole Foods as early as possible so I could avoid the massive crowds later on. I got a nice, small haul and took a few pics to show you :)

Carrots, spring mix, baby spinach, strawberry amande yogurt, stuffed grape leaves (duh) and hummus.

Brown rice tortillas, brown rice bread (they had it restocked, yay!), small container of prepared food, unsweetened shredded coconut, Larabars.

Because I know you wanted to see what was in the prepared food container ;) This is a mushroom and kale salad (I figured I’d give kale another try) and a mushroom quinoa dish.

Finished up the rest of the farmer’s market watermelon. It was sooooo good!

Comforting avocado toast with a few banana chips. Yes, it’s a weird combo but it was yummy.

Today is my brother’s birthday and the hunt for a birthday cake/pie led to the place that makes the amazing chopped salads I get when I’m in need of a meal while I’m out and about. We are going over for a birthday dinner so I got a salad in case what he wants isn’t vegan friendly. If it is vegan friendly I’ll eat the salad for lunch tomorrow. Isn’t it pretty?! Greens, carrots, cucumber, sun dried tomatoes and portobello mushrooms. Yum!

Here’s Tyler sleeping on Friday night, his last night with me :) He’s so freaking cute I can’t deal.

That’s all for today! I’ll be back tomorrow with some more yummy meals! I’m not going to lie, I’m really stoked for Vegan MoFo this year since I thought of my theme. I’ve even begun to brainstorm posts :X I’m such a nerd.

Have a great night everyone!

Monday Fun(?) Day

Hey everyone! Hope you all had a great weekend. Sorry I didn’t post at all but I just decided to take a break and just relax. My brother had a block party on Saturday so I was there for most of the day. Then yesterday I decided to just lay low and watch the Olympics. I am so inspired by all of these amazing athletes and the timing is perfect as I finally got to start training again today! Tonight was my first training session in a month and while I definitely need to get back into the flow of it, I feel so good knowing I’m doing something good for myself again. In case you missed it, I decided to take a month off from my training sessions so I could try and let my jacked up neck and shoulder heal a little. I have only been doing non impact cardio and while I’m glad I didn’t stop altogether, I felt a bit lazy. Today was pretty good though. I owned all of the ab exercises but when we got into upper body I definitely felt it in my shoulder. It’ll be a slow process but I’ll get there.

I’m still not doing impact workouts because I really don’t want to risk herniating my disk. In fact, one of our friends at the block party just had surgery on his neck for disk herniation and I just don’t want to ever have to do that. I’ve been questioning whether or not I should do Tough Mudder because I’m so afraid of falling the wrong way and I haven’t been able to run because of the impact. I still have some time to decide but I am just so weary of injuring myself even more. I’ve had to give up boxing for a while (I don’t know if I’ll be able to do it again, especially with the same skill and stamina as before. It is pretty devastating because I really love it) and it would suck to let this go as well but my health and safety come first I guess. My Dr. had also advised me not to do it…

OK, enough with the boohoo talk ;) Let’s get into some yummy eats!

My mom’s boss was nice enough to send me this beautiful zucchini that she grew in her garden. Looks good right? Nice normal zucchini.

OK or the biggest zucchini I’ve ever seen in my life! I decided to put a regular sized banana next to it so you could see the scale of it. This zucchini is literally the length of my arm from wrist to shoulder! I can’t wait to use it!!

OK so on to today’s meals :) For breakfast I enjoyed a yummy cherry chocolate smoothie. It still amuses me that it is a different color every time I make it.

For a morning snack I had unpictured clementines. So yummy!

For lunch I had some rice and beans and veggies from the deli next door. I didn’t get a photo of it but I had this one so imagine a smaller portion of this (like half of it or a little less) for $3.00. Yum!

After the gym I wanted something fresh for dinner so I made this hummus sandwich with lots of fresh veggies. I used a gluten free tortilla as my bread then crammed it full of spinach, tomato, cucumber, carrot and sun dried tomato. There is a thin layer of hummus on the tortilla and I ate the rest of the carrot that I peeled on the side. It was really yummy but very messy. It basically fell apart as I ate it but it was fine. I’m so full!

I’ve been craving sweets lately so I made myself a big bowl of watermelon and cherries to enjoy later as I’m watching the Olympics. Good stuff on tonight: swimming, diving, gymnastics… definitely going to be good! I’m still stuffed from dinner but this will be a nice treat a little later on.

OK that’s all for today! I hope you all had a great Monday and that Tuesday treats you well. This will be a good week as I am going to be getting out early all week so I’m hoping to get to the gym an extra evening or two this week :)

Have a great night!

Almost There!

Hey everyone! Hope you have all been doing well! I’ve been super busy working a whole lot so things have been pretty much the same. I went in for my training session after work and found out I’d be training with someone else today. We did mostly weights which isn’t really the kind of workout I like to do. I definitely got a good workout, but it just isn’t the kind of workout I enjoy so I was a little bummed. My shoulder was really fatigued as well so that was a little rough.

Anyway, now that I got through the longest days of my week, I just have tomorrow and Saturday and I’ll be free on Sunday. I really should try and get a massage then. I’m looking forward to relaxing for sure!

I was running low on groceries so luckily I got to Whole Foods tonight. I am a little confused on the whole acai situation. Am I supposed to get juice? Is that the most popular way to get it. I am trying to figure out the smoothie and that is the only element I need to get.

Cherry Chocolate Smoothie

Another AMAZING sandwich. Same as last time except this one has spinach instead of salad greens.
Dinner was a Whole Foods salad. Check out that moody lighting, ha!
Hope you are all well! Sorry I’m really tired so I’m gonna cut it short but I’ll be back tomorrow hopefully with something interesting ;)

Busy Tuesday!

Hey everyone! I’m going to have to try and make this quick because I have a long day ahead of me. I didn’t want to wait until later because there is a possibility I may actually have to work later than 9 because we have a late shoot so the likelihood of me wanting to post then will be slim to none :)

Just got all my meals together for this long day so check em out!

I mentioned a week or two ago that I’ve been craving cold cereal like crazy because it has been so long since I’ve had it. I’ve had a hard time finding an interesting gluten free cereal that isn’t horrible for you so you can image my surprise and delight to be scanning the cereal shelf at Trader Joe’s and finding this big gluten free stamp on a box of Puffins!! I love Puffins!
So for breakfast I had a bowl of Puffins gluten free Multigrain cereal with banana and unsweetened almond milk.
For lunch I made this gorgeous sandwich on a gluten free tortilla! It has hummus, greens, carrot, cucumber and sun dried tomatoes.

My intention for dinner is to eat this salad with stuffed grape leaves. However, I realized that we have appointments booked from 5pm until we close so that may not be a possibility. If I don’t get to it today I’ll eat it for one of my meals tomorrow. I also made the following…

An awesome homemade trail mix! This will be easy to snack on between clients, is nutritious and energizing. This one has raw almonds, raw cashews, dried apple rings and a few dried apricots. Yum!
I hope you all have a great day! Time for me to finish getting ready :) Hopefully I’ll be home before 10 and I’ll be looking forward to unwinding by catching up on your blogs!