-Egg white, tofu bacon, galic and herb cheese burrito
-Mini protein donuts
Fiber One Tortilla (1, 80 cals) Egg whites (2, 34 cals ) Sargento Garlic and Herb Cheese Slices (1, 60 cals) Tofu bacon (1 oz, 27 cals) Ketchup (34g, 40 cals)
Mini Cookies and Cream Protein Donuts (3, 175 cals)
Total Calories: 416 Fat: 13.8g
Post Prep thoughts:
You’re probably starting to get the picture that I am a huge fan of tortillas. Burritos are the perfect vessel for so many foods, and the Fiber One 80 cal tortillas are awesome.
Breakfast for this week was an experiement to say the lease. I made pineapple and tofu stir fry for dinner last week and wanted to use up my last bit of tofu. The recipe I followed for the bacon flavor marinade can be found at the bottom of this post in the links sections.
Basically, I cut the tofu thin and let marinade in the fridge for about 3.5 hours. The marinade consists of tomato paste, maple syrup, worchestershire, and liquid smoke. My first batch I attempted to cook in a pan but decided to bake the rest (laziness). I baked the slices at 375 degrees for 35 minutes.
I will say it tastes *similar* to bacon. It’s not bad but I am glad that I don’t mind eating real bacon! Tofu is a little less calories for the amount I put in my burrito and clocks in at a few more grams of protein. All in all, tofu bacon is a success but I don’t foresee it becoming a regular occurance in my meal preps. I am glad I tried it though.
I was really excited to try protein donuts. The recipe I followed will also be in the links section at the bottom. I picked up a small 7 serving tub of Cookies and Cream protein powder by Animal. One scoop of the Animal protein is 125 cals for 25g of protein, not bad at all and as soon as I popped the lid it smelled exactly like Oreos. This is a brand of powder I’ve never tried in a shake before but I think I will once my Trutein runs out.
I doubled the recipe and excluded the nuts. I also used 55g 60% cacao Ghirardelli chocolate. One donut clocks in at 2.5g fat, 4.6g carbs, and 5g protein. Total calories for 1 donut is 58 cals! Pretty good for a little sweet treat.
Overall the mini donuts are a little on the dry side but I think the flavor is pretty good. The recipe seems to be very versatile so I’m looking forward to experimenting further with different flavors and fresh ingredients like fruit.
Buffalo Chicken Salad With Homemade Greek Yogurt Ranch Dressing
Kale and Greens (2oz, 13 cals) Black Beans (1/4 cup, 60 cals) Corn (1/4cup, 30 cals) Fat Free Cheddar Cheese (28g, 45 cals) Green Onion (25g, 7 cals)
Chicken Breast (4oz, 120 cals)
Yogurt Dressing (1 serving, 61 cals)
Total Calories: 336 Fat: 3g Carbs:30g
Post Prep thoughts:
This week I didn’t take the lazy way out and buy pre made salad dressing. The recipe for the dressing I made this week will be in the links section at the bottom.
Out of the Ranch spice recipe, I did not include the buttermilk and I used 1 and 1/4 cups of Plain Oikos Greek Yogurt and 1/2 cup of 2% milk. I think the flavor is almost spot on and I would estimate the recipe with my adjustments made about 5 servings coming in around a 1/3 of a cup, which is plenty of dressing. Next time I would use less milk as the dressing is pretty runny.
The chicken recipe I followed will also be in the links section. I baked off about 20 oz of chicken tenderloins tossed in garlic powder, paprika, chili powder, salt and pepper. When the chicken came out of the oven, I tossed it in Frank’s Red Hot sauce while still hot then let completely cool in the fridge.
Final thoughts: This weeks experiments were a success. It was fun trying something different and a litte more complex that usual. I will say that I won’t be sad going back to regular bacon…
Blueberry Waffles, Peanut Butter Protein Sludge, and a Banana
Organic Blueberry Waffles (2, 180 cals) Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup protein powder (1 scoop, 120 cals) All Natural Peanut Butter (super crunchy style!) (32g, 190 cals) Banana (90g, 68 cals)
Total Calories: 563 Protein: 36.3 Carbs: 56.4 Fat: 26.3
Post Prep thoughts:
There is no way to take a nice picture of protein sludge… I swear it tastes better than it looks. When you mix it with the peanut butter, add small amounts of water until you reach a “sludge” like consistency. This breakfast could use some light cool whip or whipped cream on top!
Spicy Shrimp Quesadilla
Fiber One Tortilla (2, 160 cals) Steamed Shrimp (2oz, 40 cals) Black Beans (32g, 30 cals) Fat Free Cheddar Cheese (40g, 64 cals) Red Onion, Red Bell Pepper, Green Bell Pepper, Jalapeno raw mix (11 cals per serving) Tostitos Mild Salsa (2 tbsp, 10 cals) Fat Free Sour Cream (2 tbsp, 30 cals) Shredded lettuce (approx 1/3 cup)
Total Calories: 337 Protein: 14.5 Carbs: 55.9 Fat: 15.1
Post Prep thoughts:
I steamed the shrimp since they were frozen (pre-cooked and deveined). I strained the shrimp, let them cool, then tossed them with some salt, pepper, and Frank’s Red Hot sauce. To cook the quesadillas, I sprayed a pan down with Olive Oil Pam, and placed the quesadilla in on Medium heat. I put a heavy cast iron skillet on top to flatten. After a few minutes on one side or until brown, flip.
I used the recipe feature on MyFitnessPal to calculate the calories per serving of veggies.
Final thoughts: Not too much to say about this week. I went with sludge and waffles for breakfast to satisfy a sweet craving I’ve had recently, and to switch up from just drinking a protein shake in the morning.
The quesadilla was really easy to make and I’m really looking foward to it this week. Love the colors of the chopped veggies.
I’m sure I’ll be messing with the format of the blog as time goes on but for now I’ll post the weights and calories next to each ingredient. I weigh everything primarily in grams and ounces, I put my meals in MyFitnessPal so that makes it easier. At the end of each meal I’ll post the total calories, macros (protein, carb, and fat count) and a picture. Last thing I want to mention is I use the Recipe feature on MyFitnessPal so much. I’ll be using it for the veggie and ricotta combo for lunch.
The menu for this week…
Spicy scrambled eggs with bacon, cheddar, and guacamole
Total Calories: 229 Protein: 32.4 Carbs: 6 Fat: 6.2
Post prep thought:
I read one way to keep guac from getting brown is to put a thin layer of water over top of it while it’s in the container, then drain when you are ready to eat it. This keeps the oxygen out. We’ll see what happens.
There isn’t too much of a difference between regular bacon and turkey bacon, I just find that it’s easier to save some calories when choosing turkey bacon and also I find that it reheats much better. If you don’t render every piece of fat on regular bacon, it just turns to rubber when reheated.
Steak burritos with veggies and ricotta, and a side salad
Sautéed Mushrooms (99g, 25 cals) Sautéed Red Onions (90g, 51 cals) Sautéed Green Peppers (118g, 24 cals) Part Skim Ricotta Cheese (3oz, 150 cals)
Baby kale and greens (1oz, 7cals) Fat Free Cranberry Balsamic (2tbsp, 35cals)
Total Calories: 266 Protein: 16.4 Carbs: 14 Fat: 6.5
Post prep thoughts:
I originally planned to have 3oz of steak in the burrito but didn’t buy quite enough. The amount of veggies came out pretty perfectly. Like I mentioned previously, the Recipe feature of MyFitnessPal is great- it allows you to make something in bulk then get a portion size. One thing that is important to realize about cutting calories and losing weight is it’s not entirely about the amount of calories you eat each day, but how long you stay in a deficit. So, I may have slightly more veggies on one burrito than another, but overall in a 5-day span I’ll be consuming the same total amount of calories.
Fat free dressing usually does have more sugar to make up for the lack of fat, I didn’t feel like making my own dressing this week or I could have gotten my carb count down. Still, not so bad.
I think this week went pretty well. Missing out on an oz. of steak gave me a little more calories left over for the day that I would have liked. I like to save 400 calories for dinner. Looking around the kitchen, I had some vanilla Greek yogurt and granola left over so I threw together some containers of that as an extra snack. I usually don’t add granola in with the yogurt but I was all out of tiny containers and didn’t want to waste a sandwich bag. I’ll just deal with the soggyness.
Besides dinner, the other thing I have during the day is a protein shake in the morning. I’ve been working out from 5am to 6am. I’ll take 2 capsules of BCAAs (branch chain amino acids) and work out while fasted (no food) and when I get home I’ll have a scoop of Trutein protein powder (chocolate peanut butter flavor, sooo good) and 8oz of unsweetened chocolate almond milk.
For my first post I’d like to go over some basics.
On Sundays, I prep 5 days worth of breakfasts, lunches, and some times snacks for the upcoming week. For now the plan is to post one entry a week, however I am considering a second weekly post for dinner meals. My meal prep post will be submitted Sunday, and if I decide to include dinners from the week, I would try to submit that post on Friday.
Tupperware is your friend. If you’re just starting out with prepping your meals, take a look at where ever you store all your Tupperware. If the first word that comes to mind when you see your inventory is “nightmare”, I highly suggest ordering a new set of containers and starting over. I do believe that places like Goodwill can accept what ever you don’t need. It’s helpful to have matching lids that fit properly to keep items fresh, and various sizes help with transport and storage.
If you don’t have any Tupperware, Amazon and Walmart are good affordable choices. A 24 piece set should be fine for one person.
I carry my breakfast, lunch, and snacks to work every day. My lunch box is a soft shell with a hard, removal lining (great for cleaning). My lunch box is capable of fitting multiple containers, plus my quite large bottle for water. It also has room for an ice pack. It’s not the prettiest but I never have to worry about space.
Currently I don’t use anything too fancy. My every day pan, a few pots, and baking sheets serve me well. I use one chef knife, basic measure cups/spoons, etc. I do suggest having a decent non-stick pan and heavy(er) duty baking sheets. Baking sheets with sides are great- when meal prepping, you’ll often find yourself roasting an oven full of veggies.
A digital food scale is a life saver when prepping with the intention of losing weight. It’s recommended to go by the actual weight of the serving size on the food package. So if it says a serving is 1/4 cup (28g), we’ll skip the measuring cup and use the scale to weigh out 28 grams. There are so many good and affordable scales out there. I suggest a scale with a “tare” option, this will allow you to add multiple ingredients to the same container. Add an ingredient, hit tare to clear the weight, add next ingredient, and so on. I use a small, glass topped digital scale that tucks nicely away.
Prep space! You know that part of your counter that doubles as a mailbox? Or car key holder? Well, it’s finally time to clear the clutter. I live in an apartment with minimal counter space. When it’s prep time, the coffee maker, paper towel holder, martini shaker set (Oh yeah!) get moved to the floor. Notice how I said the floor? Your kitchen table is valuable prep space too. Soon you’ll be standing behind a pile of ingredients with 5 tortillas laying out, or 5 multi-compartment containers ready to be filled- no room for the unnecessary.
Lastly, you’ll need enough room in the refrigerator to store your meals. If that word “nightmare” comes to mind again, time for some cleaning. My pre-prep routine is to clear out any old leftovers and make room for the new ingredients and prepped items. I also like to dedicate one entire shelf to prepped stuff. I cook for myself and my fiance so we do a his and hers side of the shelf. It gets pretty tight in there some times, so I try to avoid too many ingredients by using up what I have over a couple of weeks.
Ugh. The grocery store, a love hate relationship. I go to a regular ol’ chain, no fancy Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s. Below are some of my staple purchases:
Unsweetened chocolate or vanilla almond milk
Fat Free shredded Cheddar cheese
Reduced Fat shredded Mozzarella cheese
Grated Parmesan cheese
Part skim ricotta
Yellow or white onion
Potato medley (purple, red, and yellow)
Lean ground turkey
Top round sirloin, thinly sliced
That’s all I can think of for now. Enjoy some photos of past meal preps (I’ll try to take more appealing photos) and stay turned for my first Sunday post tomorrow!
(top left) Top round steak, steamed broccoli w grated Parmesan, baked sweet potato with sauteed red onion and shallots
(top right) Turkey, bean, and cheese burrito
(middle right) Mini turkey pepperoni and banana pepper sandwich thin pizzas
(small middle left) chicken burrito bowls (chicken, green pepper, onion, ricotta cheese, black beans, green chilies, shredded lettuce)