Chicken Salad Sushi

There’s a sushi place near my house that’s All You Can Eat everyday. It’s actually the best restaurant in the area and not just because you can stuff your face with sushi, sashimi and all the accompaniments (seaweed salad and edamame, please) but because everything is fresh, beautiful and absolutely delicious.

The only thing about eating there is that you have to be hungry enough to make it worth it. While reasonably priced for lots of special rolls, it’s not exactly cheap for an all-the-time kind of thing. Also, the magical experience doesn’t happen if you don’t eat a few appetizers, eat a few rolls, then maybe decide you’re feelin’ some more miso soup.

I was craving sushi the other day but didn’t have anyone to dine with at the time and I wasn’t quite hungry enough anyway. My practical side also reminded me that I had prepped chicken for the week and I needed to save money and eat it.

This isn’t so much a recipe as it is a “throw everything together” kind of thing but it works, and it’s delicious so it’s happening.
IMG_3972Chicken Salad Sushi (makes 2 sushi rolls):

1 piece grilled/baked chicken (this week, I prepped my chicken by rubbing it with a tiny bit of mayonnaise, seasoned with Mrs. Dash salt free seasoning and baked in the oven for about 25 minutes)
1 stalk celery
1/2 slice onion
1 tsp. mayonnaise (I used Hellman’s Canola Mayonnaise)
1/2 TBL. Franks Hot Sauce Ketchup*
1/4 of a cucumber, sliced into thin sticks
1/2 cup baby spinach
2 sheets nori
Small bowl of water

Begin by cutting chicken, onion and celery into small chunks. Place in food processor with mayo and ketchup and process until ground and sticking together (add more mayo/ketchup to taste/consistency if needed).

On one sheet of nori, arrange spinach leaves across the sheet about 1 inch from the bottom. Using your fingers or a fork, gently spread chicken salad on top of spinach.

Place cucumber sticks on top of chicken salad and press down lightly.

Beginning from the bottom, tightly roll nori over the filling and wipe across the sheet with a little water on your finger tip.

Continue rolling to the top and seal with a bit of water.

Repeat with second sheet of nori.

Slice using a sharp, wet knife.

*If you cannot find/don’t have hot sauce ketchup, you could probably use a little more mayonnaise and regular hot sauce.

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What I Ate Wednesday: Trick Your Mind

I get bored easily. Or, at least when it comes to food I do. Sometimes I just don’t feel like a salad for lunch or a protein/veg/carb plate at dinner. This week, I haven’t even felt like eating oatmeal (gasp!). So, I’ve made it my mission these last few days to simply follow what my mind is telling me and try something new. If eating the same thing every single day gets tiring, trick your mind by just mixing it up! 

Exhibit A: Make What You Crave

IMG_3972I’ve been dreaming of sushi lately but haven’t gone.  Who said that chicken can’t be sushi? This immediately crushed my craving and was a fun way to eat the chicken I prepped this week. 

Exhibit B: Go For Variety

 

 

IMG_3959I couldn’t figure out exactly what I wanted for breakfast so I decided to have a bit of everything. Spinach and tomato omelette, peach, and a piece of low carb toast with half-peanut butter, half coconut oil spread.

Exhibit C: Same Ingredients, Different Presentation

IMG_3939Sometimes I eat a Greek yogurt bowl for breakfast or a snack with a bunch of mix-ins. Instead, I took all the ingredients, tweaked the ratios a little and made a giant pancake. This made me feel like I was eating something different and kind of extravagant even though it was the same items.

 

*Thanks to Jenn from Peas and Crayons for hosting the weekly linkup! 

Have you made anything different recently?

 

 

 

 

Tuesday Thoughts

Loving this quick article about being happy with gaining weight. Not about scale progress, about mental progress.

This Buzzfeed article on Instagram Food vs. Real Food is perfect. Love it.

I don’t think any dessert could be any more perfect than these s’mores cakelettes. Now in my bookmarks bar.

Obsessed with this song lately. The lyrics are perfection.

Two words. Pumpkin. Push-pops.

 

Primal Coconut Flour Pancakes

I never used to consider myself a pancake person. For some reason, the whole pancake-thing never really did it for me. I was always left unsatisfied, always wanting more, not because I was still hungry, just not thrilled.

As I’ve become more of a “foodie,” the idea of different pancakes has intrigued me. You can do almost anything with them–sweet or savory, thick or thin. Big stacks or one big cake. While I never enjoyed drenching my plate in maple syrup, the idea of special sauces on top or in between each fluffy layer is something I think about when planning a new recipe.

These pancakes are simple, healthy and filling with only a few ingredients and minimal effort. If you follow a dairy-free diet, I would think that the yogurt could be replaced with applesauce or mashed banana–other types of pancakes on their own and definitely worth a try!

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Ingredients:

1.5 TBL plain Greek yogurt
2 TBL coconut flour
1 flax egg (1 TBL flax+2 TBL water, mix and let sit for 2 minutes)
1 egg
1/2 TBL chia seeds (optional)
1/4 cup coconut milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Sprinkle of cinnamon
Blueberries

To Top:
Remainder of plain Greek yogurt container or 1/3 of a cup or so if using a larger tub
1/2 TBL peanut flour (or peanut butter/almond butter)
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
Blueberries

To Prepare:

In a small bowl, make your flax egg and put aside. In another bowl, combine coconut flour, chia seeds, yogurt, egg, vanilla and cinnamon. Mix to combine using a fork. Add coconut milk a little at a time until the batter is thick but can easily be mixed and spooned onto a pan. Ensure all lumps are mixed out. Fold in blueberries and let sit for 2 minutes.

While waiting, mix together yogurt, vanilla and peanut flour in a bowl and put to the side.

Grease a skillet and place over medium heat. When up to temperature, check consistency of batter. If it has thickened, add a little more coconut milk to get it back to the original consistency. Spoon batter into the pan and spread evenly into a circle. It will not expand or rise.

Do not turn until the sides and top begin to cook, then flip. When pancake is cooked completely through, remove from pan. Spoon a dollop (about 1/2 a tablespoon) of peanut butter yogurt onto the top. Repeat with remainder of the batter.

Spoon all leftover yogurt over the top of the pancakes and sprinkle with additional berries.

 

What I Ate Wednesday

It’s Wednesday which means it’s time for another What I Ate Wednesday with Jenn from Peas and Crayons

What I Ate Wednesday: Short Sentence Addition

This past weeks eats started with this. What is this? Homemade coffee Oreo ice cream. Yes. I went to work, was talking about how I planned to buy an ice cream maker and lo and behold, we had one in the back. I’ve made about 6 batches of ice cream so far including 2 batches of this coffee Oreo, chocolate coconut, blueberry brown sugar graham cracker, chocolate chip and a few failed attempts at almond milk ice cream.

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My newest obsession: Carrot Cake Oatmeal. It’s creamy, delicious and tastes like a carrot cake. I’ve had it for breakfast, lunch and dinner all on different days. I’m all about vegetables in my oatmeal normally so this is just a vitamin and nutrient win.

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The perfect pick-me-up. Find this chocolate bar–it is perfection.

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Not working consistently has left me plenty of time to bake. This Pumpkin Protein Cake was the first thing I attempted this week and it came out delicious. I’ll be sharing this recipe soon.

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I also made these protein brownies–not ready yet but not terrible.

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Cucumber rolls–not a baked good of course but harder than they look!

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and these sweet potato cupcakes of course.

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Healthy Foods to Always Have on Hand

I eat a lot of the same foods. I consume different variations of the same thing for breakfast, lunch is usually protein and veggies and dinner is usually something similar. Until recently, I never found the need to meal prep, but lately, I’ve figured out how handy having things ready to eat truly is. Besides having food already in the fridge, I also make sure to keep a fully stocked cabinet of foods for snacks, condiments and additions to every meal.

My Top 5 Staples:

1. An Orange Carb Source: Butternut Squash/Sweet Potatoes/Kabocha Squash (when I can find it)
Even though it’s a little more expensive, I always buy the pre-cut butternut squash at the store. Peeling a butternut squash is more hassle than it’s worth and makes my meal prep a lot more difficult. I simply buy a package of squash, throw it on a baking sheet and roast it in the oven for about 40 minutes or until it’s soft. Sometimes I sprinkle half with cinnamon for something different. Having plain roasted squash is perfect for adding to salads, lunches, dinners or even mashing for something like pancakes.

As for sweet potatoes, I buy a few and cut each one into differently so I can identify one potato. Usually I’ll do fries, wedges, rounds and chunks. I usually peel the chunks but not anything else. Like the squash, I simply throw them on a baking sheet and cook until soft. I LOVE cold sweet potatoes but they are also easy to just warm up.

2. Lean Ground Turkey (or chicken)
I usually buy a package of 99% (or 97%) lean ground turkey and put the whole thing in a pan right when I get home. I add a little water, a ton of chili powder, cayenne and paprika and cook it through like taco meat. Having ground meat in the fridge is an easy way to throw protein into stir-frys, wraps, omelette’s or anything else.

3. Mustard
I might be weird, but I love mustard on everything. In my opinion, it’s the perfect condiment. I put mustard on my salad as a dressing, put it on meat and dip my sweet potato fries in it. I use it like this because I simply love mustard but a plus is that it’s essentially a “free” food–only about 5 calories per serving.

4. Peanut Butter
I have so many jars of peanut butter that it’s a little ridiculous although I personally believe you can never have too much. Peanut butter is an easy way to add satiating fat to any meal. Peanut butter goes great on oatmeal and tastes delicious drizzled over squash or sweet potatoes. Not only that it’s easy to find little squeeze packets of PB to keep in your bag in case you’re starving with nothing around.

5. Rice Cakes
I eat rice cakes as my pre-workout snack almost everyday. They also go hand in hand with the peanut butter. When you need a quick breakfast before a workout, a couple rice cakes with peanut butter and a banana works great. They are perfect as a snack and as a post workout meal, I’ll occasionally break one up with almond milk and eat it like cereal. Although I usually buy plain ones, I love the apple caramel ones for something sweet and cheddar for something more savory.


Of course I always have other things in my pantry but these are all constant and they make grabbing something to eat a lot easier when time is tight or when I don’t feel like making anything.

 

What are your staples?

What I Ate Wednesday

Thanks Jenn for hosting What I Ate Wednesday! 

The alternate title to this post is: In the week of Valentines Day, consume lots of chocolate.

I was on a chocolate roll this week.

First, I finished my chocolate bread from last week.

I added cocoa powder to my oats almost every day (and sprinkles for Valentine’s Day)

chocooats

I made this little chocolate cake for a Valentines Day treat (with peanut butter, chocolate peanut butter and whipped cream). Which I ate while watching The Notebook. Totally cliche.

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It was so good, I decided to make another one the next day. Fun fact: I don’t have a microwave so these mug cakes are more than just 1 minute cakes.

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Besides my love for chocolate, I have a deep love for anything graham cracker or s’mores, although I’m not the biggest marshmallow eater. The idea of a s’mores lava cake came to me the other night while I was sleeping and I HAD to make it that next day.

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oh yea.

lava cake

I baked it a little too long so the lava didn’t ooze as much as it should have but it was my first lava cake so I’m cutting myself some slack.

Luckily for you, after I make this again, tweak a few things and make sure it does in fact erupt properly (ha lame lava joke…) I will share the recipe. Even a bit overcooked, I ate the whole thing.

I also found a ginger Chocolove bar this week. I wish I didn’t because I keep eating it.

I’m thinking I should probably cut back a little on chocolate this week to compensate buttttt, dark chocolate is good for you, right?

What did you eat this week?