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5 Four-Ingredient Smoothie Recipes

Here are the 5 smoothies that you’ll need for the 5-Day Smoothie Challenge.  Be sure to check out the official challenge page for all the details as well as the complete grocery list!

Again, the purpose is to increase our consumption of raw veggies and fruits, as well as give us ideas/inspiration for new flavor combinations that we can use to enrich our own diet.

GOLDEN YELLOW SMOOTHIE RECIPE

Berry Oatmeal Bake

Despite the title, making this delicious berry oatmeal bake is something that can be done year-round to help you stay on track.  It’s a meal prep recipe that can be enjoyed hot or cold, by itself as a quick snack, or with some delicious Greek yogurt or whey protein shake.

No matter how you “slice” this oatmeal bake, it wins every time.

Remember to check out the substitutions below so you can adapt for your specific needs and wellness goals.

HEALTHY BERRY OATMEAL BAKE RECIPE

berry oatmeal bake recipe

Southwest Smoked White Fish

Using a grill to meal prep is not only adds flavor/personality to your meals throughout the week, but also it’s pretty efficient.  Grills are generally large enough to cook multiple items at once.  When it comes to seafood for me, it can be a hit or miss on whether or not I’ll be in the mood to eat it later in the week.  I’ve been known to come up with an excuse or two as to why I can’t eat the fish I prepped. Lol

But I can honestly say I’ve never turned it away when it was smoked on the grill.   Here’s a super easy smoked white fish recipe using orange roughy.  I like using orange roughy because it’s buttery and waxy and is less likely to dry out after smoking on a grill f0r a few hours.

4-Ingredient Butternut Squash Spaghetti

Whether you’re pressed for time or cash, eating healthy doesn’t have to be a chore.  All you need is a little creativity.  Spiralizing vegetables is a great way to “trick” yourself or your family into eating more vegetables.  Plus, they’re gluten-free and in the raw form, very hearty and filling.

All you need is a quality spiralizer.  I’ve used handheld spiralizers, Julienne peelers, mandolins and the newer countertop spiralizers with multi-attachments, like the one used here.  In terms of accuracy, I think the countertop spiralizers are more versatile and accurate, allowing you to create noodles of different thickness AND providing a wider range of veggies and fruits to spiralize.

I purchased this OXO Tabletop Spiralizer from Kohl’s. I’ve been impressed with both the handheld and countertop spiralizers by OXO.  But hands down, I prefer this one. Aside from the blades, it’s plastic so it’s very easy to clean and wipe down.  Also, it’s lightweight BUT it has a suction cup underneath so it holds the unit in place while cutting.

Korean-Inspired Chicken & Pineapple Kabobs

When the sun’s out this summer, your grill should be fired up and ready too!  Cooking on the grill is not only tasty, but it’s pretty efficient when it comes to meal prep.  You can place all of your meal prep foods on the grill and monitor them as needed. Think of the grill like a “giant pot” whereby all food is a one pot recipe.

4-ingredient Keto Coconut Chicken Curry

If you’re following the ketogenic diet – or a lower carbohydrate diet – try these tasty coconut curry chicken thighs.  It only takes about 20 minutes and four ingredients from your local grocery store.

Fish in Bulk – 4 Quick & Easy Recipes

Seafood plays an important role in having a balanced, healthOKy diet. It provides a host of vitamins and minerals, lean protein and healthy fats, such as omega-3 fatty acids.

In the following video I also answer some FAQs when it comes to purchasing, preparing, cooking and storing seafood, including the hot debate right now – wild vs farmed seafood.

Watch the video, then check out the full recipes below.

Here are four tips to consider when preparing seafood for meal prep:

Here are 4 easy and quick seafood recipes to cook in bulk!

HEALTHY SALMON RECIPES

When preparing salmon for meal prep, cook on high heat (around 420F/) for a shorter period of time, around 8 – 12 minutes.  You want the salmon pink and moist in the center, medium rare is the best.

Citrus Soy Salmon Fillet Recipe

Crunchy Quinoa Chicken Nuggets

Made too much quinoa and don’t know what to do it with it?  Don’t toss it out – bake it and turn it into “crisps” for faux-fried treats.

Crunchy Asian Orange Chicken Salad

Got leftover chicken? Don’t toss it out! Pull it apart, then toss it in this easy, flavorful salad.

Miso Eggplant, Tofu & Butternut Squash Kabobs

Meat doesn’t have all the fun! Try these tasty, miso-inspired vegan kabobs for your next grilling adventure.  The hardest part is not eating all the sauce before you use it.

Keto BBQ Bacon-Wrapped Scallops

Even though grilling is a year round activity here in Texas, I realize that it’s not the case in other parts of the US, or world for that matter. To that end, I’m officially kicking off summer grilling here in the FMC Kitchen.

Here’s a fail proof recipe that will make you a backyard neighborhood grilling hero at the next cookout.  It combines hearty “meat” of the sea, with hearty “meat” of the land, creating the ultimate surf & turf – beef wrapped scallops!

Texas is known for beef – this is cattle country after all.  For that reason, I’m paying homage to my home state – but really here in Texas we function and think of ourselves as a separate country – by using beef bacon.  Beef bacon is pretty darn tasty, with salty, crispy edges just like the popular pork bacon that everyone loves.

But not to worry if you cannot find beef bacon in your local grocery store.  This recipe works well with turkey bacon and regular pork bacon as well.

Just make sure that whatever bacon you purchase to wrap these juicy creatures of the sea, that it is uncured, nitrate free and natural – from leg/thigh meat.

I paired this summer treat with a delicious mighty green salad. Since this recipe was a little higher in fat than normal, I opted for a hearty lower carbohydrate compliment, a green salad full of asparagus, peas, arugula and mache rosettes just sounded (and tasted) like a winner!

Asparagus, Arugula, Avocado, Mâche & Peas Green Salad

This salad packs quite a punch when it comes to flavor – it’s pungent, yet mild, and peppery and spicy yet still sweet.  It’s essentially all of the things that I love about Texas cuisine.

One of my (ongoing) personal food challenges is to create recipes based off of seasonal and regional ingredients.  That’s why I love the beginning of summer here in Dallas – there’s a great mix of late spring and early summer vegetables and fruits to choose from.

But sometimes recipes are best when you don’t have to choose – you essentially select them all, then toss them in a bowl to bring everything together. The following green salad ingredients are based off what grows here in Texas, so feel free to change up the recipe based off your location in the world!

Sweet Red Juice & Juice Pulp Muffins

The summer is coming and so is the heat!

Staying hydrated helps you function at your best and keeps you on the regular. 🙂  Also, hydration helps you know the difference between thirst and hunger, making it easier to “smarter” and wiser eating choices.

Juicing is a proven and delicious way to stay hydrated! As part of my ongoing partnership with my friends from Kohl’s where I get to independently test the latest kitchen gadgets from their large suite of products, I wanted to share this amazing masticating slow juicer by Kuvings.

Kitchen products are an investment.  Think of them less as a financial investment and more so as investments in your health and wellness.  To that end, you need to be wise and purchase high quality products.

I’ve purchased several regular juicers at the $50-$100 price point.  While they minimally did the job, they would end up breaking after about 6 to 7 months…and they were very loud!  If you add up the repeat investment in the same product, you essentially arrive at (and often surpass) what it would have cost you for the higher quality product.

When I made the investment in a slow juicer like this Kuvings, the experience was night and day.  Not only was the quality of juice better – very little (to no) separation of juice water and the pulp, but also the pulp itself was richer and thicker, inspiring other ways to use leftovers in my diet.  Plus, in my experience, high quality products last MUCH longer and often come with extended warranties so you can make the investment with some comfort in the back of your mind that you’ll be taken care of should something happen.

sweet red juice & juice pulp muffins

Purchase this Kuvings Masticating Slow Juicer now from Kohl’s.

OVERALL THOUGHTS

 

 

 

 

SWEET RED JUICE RECIPE

Benefits:

  1. Rich in antioxidants and a host of vitamins for skin and overall health
  2. Improved blood flow
  3. Increase in nitric oxide molecules which help allow more oxygen flow and lower blood pressure, great for exercising
  4. Immune defense
  5. Combating inflammation

 

Chicken Teriyaki Meatballs

Whether you’re preparing this for meal prep or for snacking, these meatballs are a tasty and calorie-conscious treat!

Stuffed Tuna Melt Patties

I love delicious, relatively cheap eats!  Here’s one that’s sure to “spice up” dinner or your lunch this week.

 

STUFFED TUNA MELT RECIPE

Vegan BBQ Beans with Tahini Sauce – Vegan Meal Prep

Today’s meal prep was inspired by an experience I had when traveling in Israel.  This chef made an amazing farm-to-table spread for us and included these stone oven roasted/charred sweet potatoes, topped with slow cooked lentils, tahini and some feta.  Delicious!

Got me thinking that it would be an incredible meal prep recipe, particularly a good lunch or post-workout meal. So, I had to create my own version, but of course with some southern mojo.

 

VEGAN BBQ BAKED BEANS RECIPE

Healthy Colombian Coconut Rice with Salmon & Salad

Tonight’s dinner was inspired by my recent trip to Colombia. After spending a few days in Cali, I headed to San Andres Island where I had the most flavorful rice I’ve ever tasted – arroz con coco! It’s both sweet and savory.

In some dishes, coconut rice is so sweet it’s like a dessert, and in other dishes, it’s much more salty and savory (with a hint of sweet).  It’s often or best paired with seafood.

Suffice to say, I’ve been craving it ever since I touched back down in the United States, so I got cooking in the kitchen to make my own calorie conscious version which is actually a pretty darn good meal prep recipe.

Here’s my delicious journey below!

HEALTHY COLOMBIAN COCONUT RICE RECIPE (VEGAN)

Spicy Shrimp Stuffed Avocado Salad

One thing I’ve learned from my recent travel is that I do not incorporate enough raw fruits into recipes or my daily diet. It occurred to me when I was in Nigeria and Colombia, where I was readily enjoying fresh fruits.  Incorporating fruits into recipes add both flavor and the hint of sweetness to take your palate on wild adventures.

Here’s a super easy shrimp salad I made that is sweet, salty and spicy!

Shrimp Stuffed Avocado Salad Recipe

Sweet Potato Risotto

It’s no secret that one of my favorite foods is sweet potato. It’s up there with rice and bread for me – I just have to have it (in some way) in my diet.  On a recent flight from Nigeria to the States, I was served a creamy rice dish that got me craving risotto…

I immediately started thinking about a calorie-conscious way to makeover the dish with complex carbohydrates and heart healthier fats.  Then, I realized that done correctly, risotto could make for a pretty satisfying post-workout meal…so, sweet potato to the rescue!

The baked sweet potato acts as an additional thickener to the recipe, making it creamier while boosting the flavors, not compromising them.  The sweetness of both the potato and the coconut cream/milk balances out the savoriness of the risotto and gives your body a dose of complex carbohydrates for lasting energy and muscle rebuilding.  I really like this meal after a workout, but it also makes for a satisfying lunch or comfort food makeover.

Smoky Spicy Trout

With the summer weather upon us, I’ve been getting the urge more than usual to fire up the grill to smoke and cook some food. Yesterday I returned from a trip to Nigeria and came home to an empty fridge (with intense “hanger” pains).

For some reason or another, I was craving seafood – something fatty and flavorful – so I headed to Kroger.   Of course, I scooped up some salmon but I noticed that rainbow trout was on sale so I bought some too.

What I really like about trout is that it pretty much has the same texture of salmon (and even look of salmon) but with a slightly different taste. In my opinion, it tastes less “fishy” than salmon does which is a common complaint I hear about people’s aversion to salmon.

Also, it’s packed with omega-3 fatty acids and is fairly high in protein with over 20g at just 3 oz.  While it does have some fat, it’s still considered low-fat so it’s a good, heart-healthy substitute for beef and lamb.  Oh yeah – it’s low in mercury so it’s one of those fish you can comfortably enjoy on a weekly basis.

BAKED TROUT RECIPE

smoked spicy trout

Chicken Pasta Low-Carb Meal Prep

Now, more than ever, I’ve been racking up the frequent flyer miles, working with brands and other influencers on various food projects.  While I’m grateful for the opportunities, I cannot deny that a part of me misses my weekly routine of gym, meal prep and laundry.  There’s nothing quite like working out in your home gym and whipping up a meal in your kitchen.

It’s not always possible, but whenever I can, I like to prep a meal or two to take with me – I’ll either enjoy it on the plane, or when I arrive at my final destination.  Makes me “feel” like I’m in control (especially when there are so many other variables out of my control when traveling – flight delays, access to “healthy” food, customer service, etc).

Here’s a quick meal prep that I made that came out to under $4 per meal for 5 meals/servings.  It’s based off common items in the fridge and pantry so it shouldn’t cause you to break the bank (of course depending on where you are in the world).

Freezable Lunch Bag mentioned in the video:
Packit Social Lunch Bag from Kohl’s – http://bit.ly/2or0Rii

PEANUT CHICKEN PASTA RECIPE

Chips & Poke

Like every other honest person in the world, I get cravings…and I have to admit that sometimes I cave and enjoy a non-scheduled indulgent treat, or two…or three.  And yes, I try to plan when I’m going to eat something that is less calorie-conscious because if I actually plan for it, then it’s not really “cheating.”  Rather, it’s a part of my well-balanced diet and lifestyle.

All that to say, today I was craving both salty potato chips and sushi.  I had dreams of a deep fried sushi roll that was somehow crusted with kettle chips. Yeah, it was one of those days.

Instead of heading out to the nearest gas station for chips and then swinging by my favorite sushi spot for tempura-fried rolls (with Sriracha mayo drizzle), I started thinking about a way I could satisfy both cravings in a much more calorie-conscious way.

I stopped by my favorite seafood market in Dallas and fired up the air-fryer I got from Kohl’s last month (aside: if you haven’t checked out my review on the Philipps Air-Fryer, you should.)

If you do not have an air-fryer, no worries! You can still make the chips but it will take a bit longer.  Check out my video here on making baked sweet potato chips.

Protein in Bulk – Beef & Chicken Meal Prep

With all of the writing I’ve been doing for my upcoming book on meal prep and meal prep recipes, I wanted to do a deeper dive on an article I wrote a while back on cooking chicken in bulk and having variety.  Besides over cooking the protein, I often hear complaints about the lack of variety.

So, here’s a video showing how I cook protein – beef (or ground meats) and chicken (poultry) – in bulk.  Regardless of your diet, there’s a lot of key learnings in this video for everyone, even vegans.  It talks about how to do exact meal prep or calorie counting so that you better arrive at the intended calories and macronutrients for each meal.

Sweet Potato & Chicken Patties

Continuing with my recent article on avoiding food waste – in honor of Earth Day on April 22, 2017 – I wanted to share another way to use overly dry chicken breasts and leftover baked sweet potatoes or red potatoes. And that’s to create delicious patties that you can enjoy with mixed green salad or your favorite grilled vegetables.

It’s amazing what you can do with 1 chicken breast and 1 sweet potato. Think twice about tossing away food – just transform it! Team #nowaste.

 

SWEET POTATO & CHICKEN PATTIES RECIPE

Video from FitMenCook Instagram Story

Healthy Spanish Rice

If you’ve never had homemade Spanish rice before, then you need to add it to your list of things to try right away.  You need this kind of food in your life.  Growing up in Texas, I’ve met a lot of people who have decadent family recipes for Spanish rice and their version is always the best…and quite frankly it likely is at the time until you try someone else’s.

So, I’m “throwing my hat in the ring” to give y’all my version of a delicious Spanish rice.  This is a vegan-friendly base recipe.  Make it your own and add your choice of protein such as chicken, tofu, beef or even a white fish.