Complete Clean Eating Thanksgiving Feast

It’s the week of Thanksgiving and I’m doing things a bit different this year and getting a jump start on the holiday before it takes over my life, come Thursday 🙂

I’ve been learning how to slow down some and take time each day to relax and spend valuable time with my family…imagine that!!  🙂

Today’s tasks included getting my morning workout in…it was BRUTAL!! Leg day with some circuits and heavy weights thrown in. I must have been kicking some butt today cuz someone asked me “what are you training for” and I consider that a complete successful day already! Ran home to get in my Shakeology and then time to hit my “to-do” list.

First off was to make my lemon jam.  We recently moved into a new home and there’s a lemon tree just oozing with ripened lemons and since I love my tea and jams in the “colder” weather (ya, you really can’t call So Cal “cold” but I figured saying “colder” would suffice), I could put those lemons to good use. Made a ginormous batch of jam and then went crazy baking some lemon pastries to freeze and save for Thursday. I’ve got a bakers heart at my core.

Now, to plan out the entire meal for Thursday so I can get a jump start on it tomorrow. Here is what will be served at our home and feel free to copy some of the recipes if you would like to.

First of all, the turkey!  I usually roast mine in the oven, after I’ve cleaned it, rinsed and dried it well. I then put a whole apple in the cavity of the turkey (if not cooking the stuffing directly in the turkey) and coat with olive oil and herbs to season. I follow the baking directions for the size of the bird.

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Next, the sides 🙂 I found this recipe for mashed squash and feel it would make me happy to enjoy as I would mashed potatoes! (my daughter will be making scalloped potatoes for the rest of the crew who want something a bit more naughty!) And grandma is bringing the stuffing so that takes care of my “side” dishes for sure! (who else loves simplistic?)

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 large butternut squashes, trimmed, peeled, seeded, and cut into 3/4-inch chunks
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 cup water
  • Pepper

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DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add squashes and salt. Cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until partially tender, about 8 minutes (reduce heat if squash begins to brown). Add water, cover, and simmer over medium-high heat until completely tender and water has mostly evaporated, about 15 minutes. Mash with a potato masher. Season with pepper.

Next up, some Roasted Green bean casserole to keep the general food choices as “fun” as usual but with some clean “twists” 😉

Roasted Green Beans with Mushrooms, Balsamic, and Parmesan
(Makes 4-6 servings)

Ingredients:
8 oz. mushrooms, sliced in 1/2 inch slices (I will use brown crimini mushrooms, but any mushrooms will work)
1 lb. fresh green beans, preferably thin French style beans
1 1/2 T olive oil
1 T balsamic vinegar
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
2 T finely grated parmesan cheese

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 450F/230C. Wash mushrooms and let drain. While mushrooms are drying, trim ends of beans and cut beans in half so you have bite-sized pieces. (An easy way to trim them is to gather a small handful of beans, stand them up on cutting board, holding loosely so they will fall down and have ends ends aligned, then trim. Repeat with other end.) Cut mushrooms into slices 1/2 inch thick.
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Put cut beans and mushrooms into a Ziploc bag or plastic bowl. Whisk together olive oil and balsamic vinegar and pour over, then squeeze bag or stir so all the beans and mushrooms are lightly coated with the mixture. Arrange on large cookie sheet, spreading them out well so beans and mushrooms are not crowded. Roast 20-30 minutes, starting to check for doneness after 20 minutes. Cook until beans are tender-crisp, mushrooms are cooked, and all liquid on the pan from mushrooms has evaporated. Season beans to taste with salt and fresh ground pepper, then sprinkle with finely grated Parmesan. Serve hot.
Of course, you’ll need a green salad, right? But no recipe needed for that 😉 and as for “rolls” here’s a clean version if you so choose to create.
Clean Eating Dinner Rolls (Makes 12 rolls)
Ingredients: 3-1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 packet rapid-rise, highly active yeast
1 tablespoon honey
3/4 cups warm water (105-115 degrees F.)
1 teaspoon. sea salt
2 teaspoons onion powder
3/4 cup almond milk (or soy, hemp, cow or rice will work too)
2 tablespoon olive oil + extra for coating dough
1roll= 152 calories

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DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the honey and water and stir until honey is dissolved.
  3. Add yeast to water/honey mixture and let stand until foamy (about 10 minutes)
  4. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the flour, onion powder and salt.
  5. Once the yeast mixture is foamy, add the oil and milk and stir briefly.
  6. Add the flour to the liquid mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until it gets thick enough to knead with your hands (if you have a mixer, you can do this all in one bowl with a dough hook).
  7. Knead for about 5 minutes. The dough should be slightly sticky, but firm and smooth. If it’s too sticky, add a bit more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  8. Coat the ball of dough in olive oil, cover the bowl with a towel and allow the dough to rise for 1 hour.
  9. Now break the dough into 12 equal pieces and roll into balls.
  10. Place on an oiled cookie sheet, cover with a towel and let rise for 1 more hour.
  11. Brush the rolls with a small amount of milk (whichever type you used), using a basting brush.
  12. Bake rolls for approximately 40-50 minutes. They should have a nice golden brown crust when done.
  13. Remove from oven and cool on a cooling rack (if you can wait that long. Mine were half gone before they got cool enough to put in storage).

Now time for DESSERT!!!! I know it can’t be a true Thanksgiving without a “pumpkin” pie style dessert. So here you go 😉

Ingredients

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For the cupcakes:
    • 1 can pumpkin or 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
    • 2 very ripe bananas
    • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
    • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
    • 1/4 tsp ginger
    • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
    • 1/4 tsp sea salt
    • For the whip topping:
  • 1 can full fat coconut milk
  • 2 T maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla beans

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • In a food processor, combine all the cupcake ingredients and blend until smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides a few times.
  • Spoon the mixture into lined muffin pan. I used silicone liners for mine. They don’t stick like paper liners can.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes.
  • Let these cool completely before removing from the muffin liners. Since they are soft like pumpkin pie, I highly recommend putting these in the fridge after baking. It should firm them up more.
  • To make the whip topping, open up your can of coconut milk that has been in the fridge overnight. Scoop the fatty white part off and place in a mixing bowl with the vanilla and maple syrup. Use the whipping attachment and whip the coconut into a cream. Scoop a little on top of each muffin. Enjoy!

That makes my heart happy and of course, the family time will only be the highlight of the day! Hope these recipes help you find what you need for the special day! Don’t miss my rundown of how I will handle the big day…workout and meal plan all laid out for you!

Still on track with my foods this week and not allowing any small setbacks to continue. Success means you get back up when you fall…not that you never falter. Happy meal planning!!

 

 

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Who Wants ABS? (or maybe I should just ask who doesn’t to weed out the non-committed folks!) :)

IMG_0953This is for all the beautiful people who have been dreaming and wishing and hoping to one day have a sexy midsection! Is that YOU?? I am pretty sure it’s most of the population! LOL

When it comes to creating incredible abs, even the most effective workout programs can only bring you so far. That’s because you can’t get a flat, hard midsection without losing body fat. No matter how much effort you put into creating a six-pack, no one’s going to see it if it’s covered by a layer of flab.

Seriously, I know! I’ve worked out so intensely and so often that if this was a proven method, I’d have had a six pack for most of you reading this today! 😉  But, alas, foods are the KEY to getting those abs to POP!

If you’re following the dietary guidelines of a fitness program, you’ll automatically be eating the right foods to lose fat as you get in shape. But the following seven principles can give you an extra edge, and will help ensure that the effort you’re putting into your abs will bring you the results you want.

1. Get plenty of protein
Eating enough lean protein promotes fat loss and muscle gain, the two most important elements for developing great abs. It also helps keep you from getting hungry while you’re eating right. You don’t have to gobble down 12-ounce steaks—just eat a normal portion of lean meat, fish, low-fat dairy, or vegetarian protein with every meal, and make sure your snacks contain some protein, too. If you still have a hard time getting enough in your diet, a daily Shakeology shake can be a perfect addition.

By the way, protein is especially important in the morning, when a lot of people don’t get as much as they should. A protein-rich breakfast will help keep your blood sugar steady for hours, preventing the dips that can lead to cravings later in the day. (Try some low-fat chicken sausage, or an omelet with one whole egg and three egg whites, along with fruit or whole-grain toast.) Tell me how much protein do YOU get each day? I see and talk with so many women who DON’T bcuz they think it will “bulk” them up….

NOT! Get that protein in yo face asap! 😉

2.Reconsider your carbs.
Despite the popularity of low-carbohydrate diets, the average American meal is still too high in sugar and fast-burning starches to bring body fat down to ab-baring levels. It’s time to say goodbye to sweetened soda, ditch the Doritos, and save the cake for your birthday. DUH!  If your fitness plan calls for a sports drink before a long cardio workout, or a carb-and-protein recovery drink after resistance training, that’s fine. But the rest of the time, stick with foods that are on the low end of the glycemic index (refer to GlycemicIndex.com for more information)—these foods burn more slowly, so they won’t spike your blood sugar and insulin levels.

3. Have fun with fiber.
Something about the word “fiber” just doesn’t sound appetizing. But high-fiber foods can actually be quite delicious: fresh berries and other fruits, salads loaded with colorful produce, your favorite steamed vegetables or vegetable soup, stews or chili made with beans, chewy whole-grain breads and cereals…You get the picture. (These foods just happen to be loaded with nutrients as well.) High-fiber foods keep you fuller with fewer calories, and they help keep your digestive system working at its best—a double-whammy for getting rid of belly bulge. And “double-whammy” is such a fun word to use that I encourage you to try it out a few times this week!

4. Enjoy some yogurt.
Probiotics, the healthful bacteria found in yogurt and other fermented foods, have been proven to help reduce belly fat. In a recent study in Finland, new mothers who took probiotic supplements averaged smaller waist circumferences—and lower body fat in general—than those who didn’t take probiotic supplements. And while the topic is still controversial, studies have found that eating lots of calcium-rich dairy foods like yogurt may increase overall weight loss. It’s why I eat Greek yogurt and drink my Shakeology DAILY!!

5. Don’t forget to eat.
Tempted to lower your daily calorie count by skipping meals? Don’t. Seriously, I cannot tell you how many women tell me that they don’t know why they aren’t losing weight; since they only eat maybe 1 time a day!!! EXCUSE MOI??????

Going hungry can raise your levels of the stress-related hormone cortisol, which research has found can increase belly fat even in otherwise thin women. And eating too infrequently can lower your metabolism and energy levels, while increasing the chance that you’ll get too hungry and decide to chuck your meal plan entirely. If you’re eating the right foods, regular meals and snacks will keep your body fueled while you’re working toward that strong core. You MUST eat!!! It’s the ONLY way! 😉

6. Drink more fluids. Hydration is important when you’re on a fitness plan, but drinking plenty of water has particular benefits for your midsection. It helps keep your stomach full, so you don’t overeat, and it helps flush out excess sodium to prevent belly bloating. (Eating more potassium-rich foods, such as tomatoes and bananas, will also help in this area.) Plain ol’ H20 can’t be beat, but you can also switch it up with flavored waters, iced tea, and anything else you like to drink that isn’t full of sweeteners. How much do you need? The old rule of 8 glasses a day is a good start, but everyone is different: drink more if you’re exercising or it’s hot out, and drink less if you’re running to the bathroom every 5 minutes.  I will challenge you to drink the recommended amount for fit individuals; 1/2 your body weight in ounces!! So for someone who is 150 lbs; they would need to drink at least 75 oz of water every day! Or a gallon if you are really up to the challenge!

7. …With two exceptions.
It’s time to cut down on those mood-altering substances, coffee and alcohol. Too much caffeine raises your cortisol levels and can impair your sleep, which can lower the production of fitness-promoting hormones. Meanwhile, the proverbial “beer belly” isn’t just the result of extra calories—alcohol actually makes it more difficult for your body to metabolize carbs and fat. Booze also stimulates your appetite and lowers your inhibitions, which can lead to bingeing. The best road to flat abs is no alcohol at all, but if you really like a drink now and then, just have one at a time (and no more than a few a week), and stay away from higher-calorie beers and sugary mixed drinks. Something to seriously consider especially over the weekends, am I right or am I right? (you are SO smart! lol)

If you add these rules to your fitness plan, you’re sure to see faster improvements in your midsection. Of course, there’s an added bonus to eating this way: it’ll keep you healthier, too. That may not be as big an inducement as great abs, but that’s just  for free.

Do you need an added incentive? I have a BUSY MOM’S support group starting first of the month and welcome you to message me today for info on joining. You can succeed and have time for your family AND save money along the way! All thrown in for extra bonus!! 😉

Email me at: http://www.spazzykay@gmail.com

Clean Coconut Cookies

 

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup hemp seeds or flax seed (i used flax!)
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. Stevia or liquid stevia drops to taste
  • 1 can full fat coconut milk (14oz / 400ml)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 4 eggs
  • I added some shredded coconut on top of each cookie but feel free to add carob or chocolate chips if you want to.  :) I’m sure it would be amaze balls!

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F ( 177 degrees C). Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet or coat it with coconut oil.
  2. Add all the dry ingredients to the food processor or blender (coconut flour, hemp seeds, stevia, and salt. Mix together, then add the rest of the ingredients. Pulse until it reaches an even consistency.
  3. Use a tablespoon to drop the cookie dough on the baking sheet. Use your hand to shape each cookie as they won’t spread on their own.
  4. Bake for 12-14 minutes, until edges are brown.

    Serves 12

Calories: 170

Total fat: 14 grams–this is SUPER healthy fat–do not be afraid of healthy fats!

Total carbs: 8

Fiber: 2 grams

Protein: 4.5 grams

Also, if you are looking for healthier options for meals….I will be adding more recipes here to my blog. One of my favorite meals of the day is my shake and you can apply to try it for 7 days here–I provide a 7 day clean eating meal plan with it as well so you will have everything that you need to jump start a new healthy lifestyle. It’s my secret weapon and has made the biggest difference in my energy levels and just in the way I feel daily!  :)

https://kathyprofitness.wufoo.com/forms/shakeology-7-day-challenge-application/

Did Someone Say, “Special Brownies”?

Happy Mother’s Day weekend to me!! Haha!

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Seriously, I have been following my Clean Eating plan religiously after completing my Body Beast program and now starting up with P90X2.  I have started this program once before but wasn’t quite excited about the stability training it started off with, since I was hoping for a more challenging and crazy workout.

Do you ever go through phases like these?  It’s interesting how I chalked it up to needing more “burn” for the hour of fitness at that time.

Now? Like I mentioned earlier, following my 90 days of Body Beast and building some major muscle definition and mass in my body; I’m quite excited and eager to take on X2 this time around.  For starters, I get to rebalance my focus to my core, primarily, at this time in the plan.  That wasn’t the main focus in the Beast; although don’t let that fool you into thinking he doesn’t focus on the core enough!  Contrary, my friend!

Anyway, I have somehow lost my original focus in this post.  I wanted to share about how committed I’ve been to my Clean Eating and portions.  Not as easy to do again; after getting used to bulk up eating!

I saw a recipe post for these amazing, gooey, chocolatey brownie-like treats.  I had to have them!

In reading the first ingredient; I was a bit thrown off.

Yams.

In brownies?  I guess…

So, off I went to the store to purchase the items that I didn’t have on hand and on the top of my list was a bag full of yams.  (My current stock was depleted!)

Since I’ve now made them (and enjoyed my portion for today, thank you, very much!); I thought it’d only be kind to share with you and hope you can enjoy them just as much as I.

In honor of Mothers’ Day and mothers everywhere; here’s a healthy and clean version of our most sinful foods in chocolate form!

Put 1 medium-large sweet potato in the oven at 400*
Cook it for 30-40 minutes. Remove the skin and place it in a blender.

Then add: 3 eggs
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
2 tbsp rice malt syrup or raw honey
1/2 tsp organic vanilla extract

Mix in a separate bowl:
2tbsp coconut flour (for a more fudgy feel, use less)
5 tbsp cocoa powder or cacao
1/4 tsp baking soda
A pinch of salt

Combine the sweet potato mixture to the dry ingrients and then add 3 tbsp cacao nibs if you like a bit of a bitter crunch.
Pour into a lined 8×8 baking tray and put into a 350* oven for 30-35 minutes.

Simply delish!!! Even if I have to say so myself!

Now, note to my family; I don’t need chocolates as gifts, but I’ll gladly accept gifts in all other forms!

Happy Mother’s Day!!!