Friday, May 24, 2013

Memorial Day Party Recipes

The holiday weekend is upon us and I know that many of my customers are FREAKIN out to say the least about how they are going to stay on track this weekend. So I decided that this would be a perfect time to give you some great picnic recipes that would compliment any backyard BBQ. 

My #1 Motto is BE PROACTIVE NOT REACTIVE in your planning.
So what that means is sit down each week and plan out your meals. I literally get a word document and write down each meal, while having a piece of paper and pen beside me to mark down all of the grocery items that I will need to get. Then, I do my shopping. I am set up for success with a plan in place and there is no standing in front of the fridge wondering whats for dinner. Then, I am not in a position to say, I have nothing for dinner let's go out to eat!
Then, on that calendar I always look at what events or obligations I have for the week. I always ask myself, how is that going to affect my meal plan, exercise and ultimate goal! Then, I decide what meal that I am going to allow myself to splurge and eat what I want. Once I figure that out, I have a goal in mind and the rest of the week I am spot on so that I can enjoy that day without feeling guilty! So if that meal is this weekend then by all means have a great time! But if you are like me and have already been out for dinner this week then this weekend is time to stay on track! I don't feel guilty and I certainly don't feel like I am missing out on life. I have allowed myself the chance to enjoy life and I also know how good it feels when I feed my body good food! So no guilt because when I look in the mirror and feel confident that is so much more to me than feeling bloated and gross because I overindulged on dessert!

Tips for going to events:
1. If I am going to a party and I don't know what foods will be served I will have my Shakeology or a small meal before going to the party. That way when I walk in the door I am not ravenous and eat everything in sight.

2. I make the focus on my get together's on socializing and not the food. So I get a glass of water and talk to old friends, family and just keep busy. I offer to set up, get the kids meals prepared and then do the dishes afterwards. Just the act of keeping my mind busy helps me to not munch.

3. Avoid standing over the food table to talk. So take yourself away from the food area. When you sit around a table and talk with appetizers and munchies in the middle you are more likely to mindlessly eat. Instead, take your discussions outside or to a couch away from the food!

4. If you decide to have a drink or two my rule of thumb is that for every drink you have drink one full glass of water. It keeps you hydrated and full!

5. If this is your scheduled indulgence meal then DON'T feel guilty about it! You have earned it! But I do recommend that you are mindful of your portion sizes. So indulging doesn't mean you eat 2 pieces of cake, fried chicken, potato salad, a couple of margaritas and appetizers! It means that you follow the guidelines for portion control and choose the things that you want to splurge the most on! Then, go from there. Remember to eat slowly and when you are 80% full STOP! Don't stuff yourself!

6. Get up and do your workout that day! If you know that you are going to have a busy weekend then make sure you get in your workout! Get up early and squeeze in a quick HIIT workout before your busy day starts. When you workout you are more likely to make better decisions throughout the day!

Now that I have given you some of my tips I want to also share with you some of my recipes that I will be taking to BBQ's this weekend! I always offer to bring a clean appetizer or side dish, that way if nothing else is what I call healthy then at least I had my shake and I can eat my own food I brought!

White bean burgers
Great Northern White Bean Burgers
  • 1 yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 1 cup loosely packed parsley
  • 1 cup loosely packed basil
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp celery seed
  • 1/2 tbsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 14/5 oz can great Northern White beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1/2 c oat bran
  • 2 tbsp flaxseed meal
  • 1 cup whole grain breadcrumbs ( I just put 2 slices of Ezekiel break in the food processor and viola my own bread crumbs)
  • 6 whole grain hamburger buns (optional) I just served mine on a bed of lettuce
  • Add onion, garlic, parsley and basil to a food processor and pulse to combine. Add mustard, egg white, garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder, celery seed, salt and pepper, and pulse until finely chopped. Add white beans and pulse until combined, but still chunky.
  • Transfer mixture to a bowl and add brown rice, oat bran, flaxseed meal and breadcrumbs. If mixture is too moist and doesn't easily hold the shape of a patty, add more breadcrumbs until desired consistency is achieved. Shape mixture into six patties, each four inches in diameter.
  • You can either grill the burgers or heat a nonstick skillet over medium low heat and coat with cooking spray. Cook patties three to five minutes on each side until browned. For a crispier burger, cook an additional 5 minutes in a preheated oven 400 degrees.
  • Serve with whole grain buns or on a bed of lettuce with tomato, red onion and mustard. I put a slice of red onion, avocado, tomato, and salsa on top of my burger and served with some home made sweet potato fries. Even my kids ate their burgers!
Sweet Potato Fries
Seriously this couldn't be an easier side dish to make! I literally took some sweet potatoes and sliced them down like steak fries. Then I put them in a Ziploc bag with some olive oil and taco seasoning. Shake the bag until well coated and then pour onto a baking sheet. Place fries in the oven on 400 degrees until crispy and tender in the middle.

7 Citrus Salad
This recipe is perfect for any outdoor BBQ. It's light refreshing and CLEAN!
Literally you just cut up a bunch of citrus fruit and throw it in a bowel.
What I use is:
Mandarin Oranges with juice drained
Blood Orange
Kumquat, peeled, washed, remove seeds,cut in half lengthwise
Ugli Fruit
2 tbsp fresh mint, chopped.

Toss all fruit together in a bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve!

Guacamole dip
My favorite appetizer and it's perfect served with Food Should Taste Good Tortilla Chips.
  • 3 ripe avocados
  • Juice of 1/2 fresh lime
  • 1 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 red or purple onion, minced well
  • 1 clove garlic, passed through a garlic press
  • Sea salt and fresh black pepper.
Cut avocados in half. Discard pits and scoop flesh medium bowl. Add remaining ingredients to bowl and mix until just combined. Don't overmix!

Quinoa Salad
This is a perfect side dish or even as a meal for those that are vegetarian at the gathering. I had this for dinner one night and fell in love instantly! As an appetizer or side dish put in a large serving bowel with smaller bowels of cheese, tortilla chips and lettuce to make your own salad.

Have a safe and happy holiday weekend!


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