Eat Meat~Green Veggies~Nuts~Some Fruit~No Sugar~No Grains

Mason Jar Salads

Mason Jars

I’ve seen many mason jar salads and I thought I’d give it a try.  Well I have to say it was a huge success, even my husband took it to work.  It’s just as convenient as a crockpot, you know when it’s time to eat that you have a nice meal waiting for you.  Food prep is about making your life easier. Sure it takes a little effort and time upfront but it is worth it. It is so rewarding to open up the refrigerator door and see healthy delicious meals ready to eat.  All week I didn’t have to wonder what to make for lunch since it was already waiting for me.  For the salad I chose to go with a variety of pickled veggies, but a high carb option is to add pasta, couscous, quinoa or rice etc.  

The options are endless when in comes to preparing food ahead of time so there really is no right or wrong way to do it.  Basically, it comes down to just making time and getting it done.  I used chickpeas as my protein since that’s what I had but you can use hard boiled eggs, tuna, grilled chicken etc.

Here’s the ingredients for the jars below but I plan on changing a few ingredients for this weeks batch.  Start with dressing at the bottom of the jar and then the more sturdy ingredients go in first and work your way up to the more delicate veggies, such as lettuce.

Ingredients:
2 Tb Ranch dressing 2 g
1/2 c chickpeas 13g
1/4 c corn 8g
3 cherry tomatoes 2g
62 grams of marinated artichokes 0g
3 slices of pickled beets 2g
30 grams garlic pickle slices 1g
43 grams shredded cabbage 2g (I used the bagged coleslaw)
43 grams broccoli slaw 2g (I used the bagged broccoli slaw)
1 cup chopped  romaine lettuce

I used 1 litre mason jars.

Calories: 355
Fat: 16 g
Carbs:46 g
Fibre: 12 g
Protein: 12g
Net Carbs:  34g

***Note to self*** Omit the corn, way to high in carbs for lunch.  :-)

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Ok I know everyone probably already has one of these spiral veggie slicers, I’ve been wanting one for years but just didn’t want to spend the $70 when they hit the market, so I made due with a vegetable peeler.  Last weekend I was looking at some sales flyers and saw this on sale for $25, I jumped in my car and I got the last one in the store.  I felt like I won the lottery…LOL  OK I know I’m a nut case, like who gets that excited over an appliance…me that’s who!!  LOL :-)

Well as you can see from the pictures below I’ve been using it all week.  I have to say that my family is loving the new spiral recipes, it brings new life to veggies and fruit.  

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wpid-wp-1416617416383.jpegZucchini Alfredo…Oh Wow this was such a hit with my family, they couldn’t believe it was zucchini.

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My daughter who loves cucumber, thought this was so cool and loved the cucumber ribbons.

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For all the salads I made a simple dressing of a splash of orange juice, apple cider vinegar and extra virgin olive oil.

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Slow Cooker Baby Back Ribs

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Lately I’ve been searching ways to use my slow cooker more often since I rarely use it but when I do, it’s just a great thing. Which brings me to todays post, I made this recipe for the first time this week and my family just loved it, they’re still talking about them.  It’s a keeper and I just couldn’t wait to share with you all, hope you like it as much as we did.

Slow Cooker Baby Back Ribs

Ingredients
2 racks pork spare ribs
1 cup of your favorite bbq sauce (I used roasted garlic bbq by Sensations @ Sobey’s)
1 cup unsweetened apple sauce
½ cup water
salt and pepper to taste
Preparation
Cut the ribs into two rib portions. Season with salt and pepper.
Arrange half of the ribs in the slow cooker.
Cover with the BBQ sauce, apple sauce and water.
Secure the lid tightly on the slow cooker, turn on high heat and let cook for 4 hours, (or on low for 8 hours).
When the ribs are done, carefully remove them from and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  They will be very tender and can fall apart easily.

Discard all juice in slow cooker and wash immediately before it gets caked on and you’ll need a jack hammer to clean it. :-)

Brush bbq sauce on ribs, about 2 tbs of bbq sauce (from the bottle & not the juice from the slow cooker).

Bake at 350 for 20 mins, turning halfway through and brushing on bbq sauce on the othe side of the ribs.

Serve with green beans, mashed potatoes, salad and enjoy.

wpid-wp-1415536715472.jpegCover with the BBQ sauce, apple sauce and water.

wpid-wp-1415536905814.jpegLet cook for 4 hours, (or on low for 8 hours).

wpid-wp-1415536981469.jpegPlace on a parchment lined cookie sheet.

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Brush bbq sauce on ribs, bake at 350 for 20 mins.

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 Serve with green beans, mashed potatoes, salad and enjoy.

 

macronutrient-ratios

Hey everyone,

So lately I’ve been interested into jump starting my metabolize because I’ve been like a yo-yo on the scale with the same 3 lbs up & down I’ve decided that I want to count calories but still keep my low carb values.

Thanks to my lovely, beautiful friend, whom I call a Skinny Biatch with warm intentions, she has had great success with simple sticking to her calories for the day.  She’s such an inspiration and a great friend that I dedicate this blog post to her and all your skinny biatch friends that are there to support you and encourage you to continue on your weight loss journey or any other journey that you are on.  You all know who you are Skinny B.  :-)

So this past week I’ve been sick with the flu which always has me craving comfort food and at the same time I began to count calories and increase my carb intake but I’m not throwing in the towel on the whole low carb bandwagon, I’m simply enjoying some complex carbs as in more fruit and some forbidden low carb veggies, (potatoes, beets, squash etc) and steel cut oats etc.
Since I’m going back to counting calories and stay low carb, well I want to know my macronutrient breakdown should be for a low carb diet.

Well to make things simple I came across this awesome macronutrient calculator.
http://macronutrientcalculator.com/

You can chose from 4 different percentage breakdowns.  I chose the Low Carb  and to make it even more easier for myself I took those percentages for carbs, protein, fat and entered it in My Fitness Pal so it does all the work for me and notifies me if  I go over etc.

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Here’s what my Macros breakdown for a low carb diet with 1200 calories per day intake.

Carbs    25%    (75 grams per day)  (15 grams per meal)
Protein 45%    (135 grams per day)  (27 grams per meal)
Fat         30%   (40 grams per day)  (8 grams per meal)

I went even further and calculated what I need for 3 meals and 3 snacks for the day.

Meal 1: 300 calories  (19g carbs, 34g protein, 10g fat)
Snack 1:  120 calories (8g carbs, 14g protein, 4g fat)

Meal 2: 300 calories  (19g carbs, 34g protein, 10g fat)
Snack 2: 120 calories (8g carbs, 14g protein, 4g fat)

Meal 3: 240 calories (15g carbs, 27g protein, 8g fat)
Snack 3: 120 calories (8g carbs, 14g protein, 4g fat)

It’s a slow process since I’m carefully trying to hit my macros correctly but some days I’m spot on & others…not so much.  I guess that’s why most fitness buffs do meal prep and eat pretty much the same thing everyday.

 
***Hint Hint***  I’m also looking into meal prep for the week…Stay tuned for an upcoming post.

 

macronutrients-bodybuilding

Here’s a great link
http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/macro-math-3-keys-to-dialing-in-your-macro-ratios.html

Whether you’re trying to lose fat or gain muscle you’ll need to know what calories and macronutrients are, and how to balance them for your goals. Macronutrients are the compounds which provide us with energy.

There are three types of macronutrients which are: protein, carbohydrates, and fat. You have seen these names on the back of all nutrition labels, which also show the total calorie count. The basic caloric make up of protein and carbohydrates is 4 calories per gram, where fat is 9 calories per gram.

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Protein 1 gram of protein = 4 calories

Thin Rib Eye Steak Asparagus
Protein is the primary building block of muscle made up of amino-acids. Since our bodies can’t make all of these amino acids, the essential amino acids have to be supplied through your diet and nutrition. Protein helps for muscle growth, tissue repair, and immune function.

High protein sources include meat, fish, milk, eggs and of course whey protein.

For a muscle building diets, a high protein diet is a must. A high protein diet will allow your body to be in a constant metabolic state where it’s able to repair and rebuild muscle tissue throughout the day.

Not having enough protein in your diet will only lead to sore muscles and very little to no progress in terms of strength, size, and overall progress. For bodybuilding and gaining muscle, it’s recommended to have 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. It’s that much easier when you just supplement with whey protein into your diet.

 

Carbohydrates 1 gram of carbs = 4 calories

simple and complex carbs
The biggest myth was carbohydrates is that they make you fat. Carbs are the main source of fuel for our bodies, great for both short term and long term energy. There are exceptions, such as ketosis, where the body uses fat as a fuel source, but that’s not optimal for the long term. There are so many varieties of foods with (complex) carbs perfect for any diet, such as sweet potatoes, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat rice, and general whole wheat grains.

Carbohydrates are just as, if not more important than protein in bodybuilding and fitness. Carbohydrates are the fuel that give you energy for your workout, as well as making sure you have enough energy after your workout. If you’re just having protein without carbs post workout, your body is using protein as its main energy source.  Basically, it’s a waste of protein.

 

Fat   1 gram of fat = 9 calories

healthyfats 2People often fear fats, and think it’s bad for you or make you fat. That’s simply not true. There are diets focused on fat loss, such as the keto diet, which are primarily focused on fat and protein without carbs. 

Fat is a major source of energy, and actually the most concentrated source of energy.  Fat regulates hormone production, as well as absorbing fat soluble vitamins which are required to maintain good health. Fats also help normal growth and development, as well as testostorone.

Fat does not make you fat; eating over your daily caloric maintenance is what makes you fat.  Some good fat sources are avocados, nuts, egg yolks, medium-chain triglycerides (coconut oil), and omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, and other fish), chia seeds, tofu and edamame. peanut butter, and cheese, but be careful as the total calories for fats do add up higher than you realize.

 

 

 

Macronutrient-Chart round

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Slow Cooker Apple Cinnamon Steel Cut Oatmeal

Ingredients

2 apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (2-1/2 to 3 cups chopped)
1-1/2 cups milk (or substitute non-diary alternative like almond milk)

1-1/2 cups water
1 cup uncooked steel cut oats
2 tablespoons brown sugar (or substitute maple syrup or other desired sweetener)
1-1/2 tablespoons butter, cut into 5-6 pieces (optional)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground flax seed
1/4 teaspoon salt
Optional garnishes: chopped nuts, raisins, maple syrup, additional milk or butter

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Preparations

Coat inside of 3-1/2 quart (or larger) slow cooker with cooking spray.
Add all ingredients (except optional toppings) to slow cooker.
Stir, cover, and cook on low for approx. 7 hours (slow cooker times can vary).
Spoon oatmeal into bowls; add optional toppings, if desired.
Store leftovers in refrigerator.
Freezes well.

To reheat single servings:
Put 1-cup cooked oatmeal in microwave proof bowl.
Add 1/3 cup milk or almond milk.
Microwave on high for 1 minute; stir.
Continue cooking for another minute, or until hot.

7  (3/4-cup) servings

Nutritional Info
(per 3/4 cup serving)
149 calories
3.6g fat
27.3g carbs
3.9g fiber
4.9g protein

Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup

wpid-img_20141029_115223.jpgSlow Cooker Minestrone Soup

Ingredients
4 cups low-sodium vegetable stock or chicken stock
1 1/2 cups water
2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes
1 cup diced celery (3 stalks)
1 cup diced carrots (2 carrots)
1 cup diced yellow onion (1 small)
1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley (or 1 tsp dried)
2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried crushed rosemary
2 bay leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 1/3 cups diced zucchini (1 small)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 (15 oz) can white navy beans or cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup  French green beans, chopped
2 cups slightly packed chopped fresh spinach
Finely shredded Romano cheese or Parmesan cheese, for serving

Preparations

Add vegetable stock, water, tomatoes, celery, carrots, onion, parsley, basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary,  French green beans and bay leaves to a 6 or 7-quart slow cooker.
Season with salt and pepper to taste and cook on low heat 6 – 8 hours or high 3 – 4 hours.

Add in zucchini, garlic, white beans and cook on high heat.
Stir in spinach and cook several minutes until heated through.

Serve warm topped with Romano cheese or Parmesan cheese.

You can also boil some pasta for those who want some.

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Happy Halloween!!!

Pearl Bunny 2014 Happy Halloween

Pearl Lion 2014

ROAR!!!   I’m a lion.  :-)