Kale and Quinoa Power Salad!

Happy Thursday everybody! This morning I got in a nice 3 mile run, and I’ve noticed I’m running faster than I have in the last couple weeks. Yaaaay for progress! Plus this morning’s temperature of 36 actually felt warm compared to my runs lately.

Today for my lunch at work I didn’t have a whole lot of options in my fridge of already prepared food (which is what I usually eat) so I had to get a little creative, and I’m so glad I did! I made this amazing salad, full of superfoods that kept me full for hours, and gave me tons of vitamins!

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This salad has: kale, carrots, blueberries, almonds, and quinoa. I can’t even BEGIN to list all the health benefits of each of those. Together they made a delicious and quick lunch that is very portable, and easy to take to work or school for lunch!

Kale and Quinoa Power Salad

  • 1/2 cup prepared quinoa (just follow directions on box, and cool)
  • about 2 cups kale, torn into small pieces with stems removed
  • 1/4 cup shredded carrot
  • 2 tbsp slivered almonds
  • 1/4 cup blueberries

Dressing

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp water

To make dressing, combine all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a jar and keep in the fridge- this makes enough for several salads so you have leftovers! Pour about 1 tbsp of dressing on kale and massage it for a couple of minutes, this will break down the kale and make it more tender. Place in fridge for about 15 minutes and allow to marinate. Then put the rest of your salad ingredients together and add more dressing if desired. Enjoy! πŸ™‚

This salad was very filling for me, and when I eat things like kale I feel like I have superpowers because I know it’s so good for my body. This is not, however, a low calorie salad. Mine came to about 500, but it’s calories filled with nutrients my body needs to keep going!

Asian Quinoa Salad

Yesterday I was not terribly happy with my food choices. I made some good choices, and some not-so-good ones. Let’s just say I DEFINITELY went over my calorie count for the day. When I woke up this morning, I was in a foul mood and did NOT want to work out. I wanted to stay in bed and take a rest day.

But, I didn’t! I woke up early and got in a 21 Day Fix workout, and followed that up with a Ruby Red Smoothie! My workout instantly lifted my spirits, and my smoothie left me feeling nourished and ready to take on the day. πŸ™‚ Stumbling is perfectly human, the important thing is to get back up and keep going!

Last night I made this super easy quinoa salad. I got the recipe here. It’s so filling, and full of veggies and flavor! Plus it’s pretty- look at all those colors!

Asian Quinoa Salad

I usually like to eat salads for lunch at work because they’re quick to make and keep me full until dinner time (or at least snack time, haha). So I thoroughly enjoyed this one for lunch today!

Asian Quinoa Salad

  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup grated carrot
  • 1/4 cup chopped red cabbage
  • 1/4 cup corn
  • 1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chow mein noodles (for serving)

Sesame Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp ground ginger

Cook quinoa according to package directions, set aside. To make vinaigrette, whisk all ingredients together and set aside. Toss vegetables, vinaigrette, and quinoa together and enjoy! This makes 2 servings. One serving is 501 calories!

Have a healthy happy day y’all! πŸ™‚

Adventures in Quinoa: Clementine Quinoa Salad

So, last night I decided to join the masses of healthy eating junkies and make quinoa. I had only eaten it once, and never cooked it myself. I was even one of those losers that called it “kwin-oh-ah” instead of “keen-wah”. But I am trendy now, I promise!! I thought “Well, this salad I’m making is really not much of an undertaking so I should be done in like 30 minutes!” SO not true.

Apparently you can overcook quinoa. Overcook it awfully, to the point it tastes like water! Just for reference, this is what it looks like when it’s over cooked.

Ick

Ughhhh. Thankfully the package I bought of quinoa had 2 servings, so hooray! I just made it again using the rice cooker, ending inΒ muchΒ better (and faster) results. After trying this Clementine Quinoa Salad, I can totally see why people love it. Plus the dressing from this salad is so good, I will be using it on salads next week for sure!

Clementine Quinoa Salad

I think I am completely hooked! It has TONS of health benefits, and keeps you full for hours. Plus it’s very versatile. You guys can definitely expect more quinoa recipes to come!

Clementine Quinoa Salad (adapted from damn delicious)

  • 1 cup quinoa (any kind, I just happened to use red)
  • 2-1/2 clementines, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and diced (leave seeds in if you want some heat)
  • 1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 cup corn

Orange Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup orange juice (I just juiced a couple clementines)
  • zest of 1 clementine
  • 1 tbsp sugar

Prepare quinoa according to package directions and set aside (I use a rice cooker). To make vinaigrette, whisk all ingredients together and set aside. In a large bowl, combine all salad ingredients and pour vinaigrette on top. Give it a toss, and enjoy! I prefer this hot, but I think it would be delicious cold as well. Makes 4 servings at about 400 calories a piece. Yum!

I omitted a few things from the original recipe for personal preference. I’m one of those people that thinks cilantro tastes like soap… according to my husband it’s a genetic trait?! He might be making that one up though, haha!

Amazing Dill Chicken Sandwich and a New Program!

This week I have been trying a variety of different recipes! Not all of them make it on the blog, because of course I only put the awesome ones up. But I have a pretty great one for today! Earlier this week I got a huge package of chicken that I got on sale at the grocery store, so on Sunday I prepped for several meals making buffalo chicken (to use on salads and sandwiches, etc) and Amazing Dill Chicken Sandwiches!! For me, prepping meals before I need them helps me to make healthier choices when I don’t have time to prepare a meal. Since Garrett works nights it provides him something healthy to eat when I’m not home to cook it too! Also sometimes I don’t get home from work until 8 and by then I am HANGRY and will eat whatever is close at hand!

Now, I know these sandwiches need to be pretty freaking good to be able to have “amazing” in the name, but trust me these are good. I found the original recipe here.

Amazing Dill Chicken Sandwich

Plus these are husband approved, not to mention extremely easy!

Amazing Dill Chicken Sandwich

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • ciabatta rolls (or some really good bread)
  • olive oil
  • 4 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese
  • garlic powder
  • 2 tsp fresh chopped dill
  • crushed red pepper
  • italian seasoning
  • salt & pepper
  • sliced veggies like: lettuce, avocado, and green pepper
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

Preheat oven to 375 and spray a cookie sheet. Slice chicken breasts into smaller pieces (otherwise they will never fit on a roll!). Brush each side with olive oil, and season with desired amount of garlic powder, salt & pepper, italian seasoning, and crushed red pepper. Place on cookie sheet and bake until lightly browned on the bottom, about 15-20 minutes.

While chicken is cooking, make your cream cheese spread. Mix cream cheese (soften for easier mixing), dill, 2 tsp garlic powder and lemon juice until combined. Place in the fridge. Slice up your veggies, and toast your ciabatta rolls. When chicken is done, assemble your sandwich with ciabatta roll, cream cheese spread, veggies and chicken. Voila! A super tasty meal that makes lots of leftovers. I served mine with grapes, because I think something sweet really balances out the savoriness of the sandwich. Yum!!

Amazing Dill Chicken Sandwiches

Also lately, my favorite workday snack has been:

Workday snack

1/2 cup greek yogurt flavored with vanilla and truvia, with sliced strawberries and 2 tbsp bare naked granola. So tasty and filling!

I have done 21 Day Fix videos off and on with other workout programs over the last few months, and haven’t done them too terribly often. I have decided since my sister’s wedding is coming up, that I want to do the 21 Day Fix workout schedule starting today so I can be feeling awesome for the wedding! So wish me luck- I have never gone 21 days straight working out every single day. I have always had rest days, but often those days turn into cheat days for me. I’m hoping maybe trying something new may help my mindset to eat healthy and mindfully every day of the week!

Have a healthy happy day y’all! πŸ™‚