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Superfood

One of my favorite dishes that I learned at Rouxbe was their Cauliflower Steak Au Poivre – baked and seared cauliflower served with a hearty mushroom peppercorn gravy – a plant-based spin on the traditional French steak au poivre or “pepper steak”. Not only is the presentation quite impressive, it’s got this creamy umami from the mushrooms and a wonderful punch from the peppercorns. I just think it’s so perfect for a fancy Valentine’s Day dinner in. (And frankly, with the price of cauliflower right now, it really IS fancy!).
cauliflower_final2There isn’t much I’ve changed from the original recipe. I’ve switched out the brandy for whiskey. And added fresh rosemary along with the original bay leaves. The real secret to this recipe is the stock – use a quality stock (homemade or otherwise) to really build the flavor of this dish! Cauliflower Steak au Poivre | SPIRITPLATE I love the tenderness of the cauliflower with the caramelized crisp edges and the spicy crunch of the course pepper. Cauliflower Steak au Poivre | SPIRITPLATEThis gravy is one of my favorite go-tos. I even serve it for Thanksgiving. You can serve this Cauliflower Steak with butternut squash soup and massaged kale salad, or a side of fresh green beans. Happy Valentine’s Day!Cauliflower Steak au Poivre | SPIRITPLATE

Cauliflower Steak Au Poivre with Mushroom Gravy
Serves 4
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
218 calories
20 g
6 g
6 g
6 g
2 g
563 g
1328 g
8 g
0 g
4 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
563g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 218
Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6g
9%
Saturated Fat 2g
9%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 6mg
2%
Sodium 1328mg
55%
Total Carbohydrates 20g
7%
Dietary Fiber 5g
20%
Sugars 8g
Protein 6g
Vitamin A
12%
Vitamin C
124%
Calcium
7%
Iron
10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the cauliflower
  1. 1 head cauliflower, leaves and stem trimmed*
  2. 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  3. 2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
  4. 1 cup vermouth or dry white wine
  5. 2 bay leaves
  6. 1 sprig rosemary
  7. 1/2 tsp sea salt**
  8. 2 tbsp black peppercorns, crushed
  9. 1 tsp oil
  10. 1 tsp non­dairy butter
For the sauce
  1. 1/2 tbsp oil
  2. 1/2 tbsp non­dairy butter
  3. 1/4 cup shallots, minced
  4. 3/4 lb mushrooms, thinly sliced
  5. 1/4 cup good scotch or whiskey
  6. 2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
  7. sea salt, to taste
  8. 2 tbsp slurry, or as needed***
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. With the cauliflower sitting on its stem, cut in half through the middle. Trim the outer edge of each half to form a thick steak­-like piece of cauliflower. Each piece should be approximately 1 1/2-inch thick.
  2. In a 9x11 baking dish, mix together the garlic, stock, vermouth, bay leaves, rosemary and salt.
  3. Place the cauliflower into the liquid and cover tightly with foil. Carefully transfer to the oven and let bake for approximately 30 to 45 minutes. Test the 'steaks' periodically. When a knife goes in somewhat easily the cauliflower is done. (The cauliflower should be cooked through, but still a bit firm. If it's too soft, it will fall apart during frying.)
  4. While the cauliflower is baking, prepare the sauce: Heat a large stainless steel fry pan over medium­-high heat. Once hot, add the oil and butter, followed by the shallots. Let the shallots cook until they just start to brown, about 2 or 3 minutes. Then, add the mushrooms and a pinch of salt. Cook the mushrooms until they start to release their juices and start to brown, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Carefully deglaze with the whiskey and let cook for a minute or so, or until most of the scotch has evaporated.
  6. Add the stock, turn down the heat and let simmer while you pan­-fry the cauliflower 'steaks'.
  7. Once the cauliflower is ready, remove the 'steaks' from the liquid and place onto a plate lined
  8. with paper towel. Blot the top of the cauliflower with paper towel as well. This helps ensure you get a nice golden crust.
  9. Next, crush the peppercorns on a cutting board—a heavy fry pan works well for this. Then, carefully place the cauliflower into the crushed peppercorns and gently press to ensure some of the peppercorns stick to the cauliflower. Flip and repeat on the other side.
  10. Heat a large a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the oil and butter, followed by the cauliflower. Let the cauliflower cook for about 4 to 6 minutes, or until golden brown on each side. Try not to fiddle with the pieces too much, otherwise the 'steaks' will start to fall apart. Once done, set aside while you finish the sauce.
  11. To finish the sauce, taste for seasoning, adding salt as needed. Next, add the slurry. For the slurry, either cornstarch or flour can be used. Slowly add the slurry until you reach a nice sauce­-like consistency.
  12. To serve, place a 'steak' onto a plate and spoon over the hot sauce—drizzling a bit of the sauce around the plate if desired. Serve with your favorite sides and enjoy!
Notes
  1. * - Do NOT core the cauliflower. The stem is needed to keep the 'steaks' intact.
  2. ** - The amount of salt you add will depend on how salty your stock is to begin with. Taste for seasoning and adjust as necessary.
  3. *** - A slurry is a spoonful of flour or cornstarch mixed with water or stock to create a runny paste. This runny paste is added to a sauce to thicken it. Directly adding flour or cornstarch to a large pot results in clumping, thus a slurry is used instead.
beta
calories
218
fat
6g
protein
6g
carbs
20g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

Hot and hearty, generously spiced with a light sweetness and a delicate crunch — perfect for a rainy autumn afternoon. Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATEThis is one of those amazing dishes that is so easy, you just have to let it sit and let the heat do it’s own thing. It’s also extremely versatile; you can use whatever flavor profile you like!Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATEHere, I’ve used Indian flavors, with curry powder, cumin, coriander, and ginger. I’ve made this several times, all with different flavors – lemongrass, galangal, with cilantro and basil for Thai, or jalapeno, oregano, and paprika for a Mexican spin, or even added tomato paste, rosemary and basil for an Italian flair. The flavors are entirely up to you.
Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATE
Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATE
Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATEDoesn’t this just look so cozy?!Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash | SPIRITPLATE

Hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash
Serves 4
Filling and flavorful stuffed acorn squash is an elegant addition to your holiday table.
Print
Cook Time
1 hr 15 min
Cook Time
1 hr 15 min
314 calories
48 g
0 g
11 g
12 g
4 g
416 g
204 g
4 g
0 g
7 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
416g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 314
Calories from Fat 96
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 11g
17%
Saturated Fat 4g
19%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 204mg
9%
Total Carbohydrates 48g
16%
Dietary Fiber 11g
42%
Sugars 4g
Protein 12g
Vitamin A
112%
Vitamin C
56%
Calcium
18%
Iron
25%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 tsp coconut oil, divided
  2. 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  3. 1 small thumb ginger, minced (optional)
  4. 1 cup onions, diced
  5. 1 cup frozen spinach, thawed*
  6. 1 cup mushrooms, diced
  7. 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, sliced
  8. 1-1 1/2 cup red kidney beans**
  9. 2 small acorn squash
  10. 2 sprigs parsley or cilantro
  11. 1 1/2 tablespoon spices of your choice***
  12. 1/2 cup cashews****
  13. salt, to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Wash the outsides of the two acorn squashes and using a sharp knife, divide each squash into two equal halves. Scrape out the seeds and score the inner flesh with shallow cuts.
  3. Take 1 tsp of coconut oil in your hands and rub the oil generously all over each half. Sprinkle each half with salt and place open side down on a dark baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 1 hour or more until very tender.
  5. While the squash is baking, heat a large pan over medium heat. Once hot, add 1 tsp coconut oil. Add the onions, a pinch of salt, and sweat for 10 minutes or until soft and translucent - careful not to brown at all.
  6. Add the garlic and sweat for another 2 minutes. Then add your choice spices, mushrooms, and sundried tomatoes. Keep sweating for 15 minutes, until everything has softened and the mixture is fragrant.
  7. While the mixture is sweating, toast the cashews in a separate small pan set to medium high heat. Toss the cashews in your choice seasoning then add them to the hot pan. Keep moving them around to prevent burning and ensure even toasting. Once golden brown and fragrant remove from heat, and set aside.
  8. Back in your main pan, add the spinach and toss in the onion tomato mixture to coat evenly. Cook until heated through. Fold in the kidney beans and let heat through. Taste for salt.
  9. Crush your toasted cashews and chop up your cilantro, parsley, or other herb.
  10. Check your squash. If it is fork tender, carefully remove from pan and set open face up on a plate. Fill each crevice generously with your pan mixture.
  11. Top each squash half with crushed cashews and chopped herbs. Serve piping hot.
Notes
  1. * - I like using frozen spinach here, because I know it is more fresh and I don't mind the texture as it will be cooked down anyway. If using fresh, triple the amount.
  2. ** - For more flavor, make your own beans! Soak the beans overnight, and then boil the next day over medium high heat for 45 minutes or until tender with your choice seasonings. The beans will absorb whatever flavors you put into the boiling liquid. Here I used salt, ginger, bay leaf, and fenugreek seeds.
  3. *** - This recipe is extremely versatile. I have made the squash Thai style with lemongrass, galangal, and cilantro, Mexican style with jalapeno, oregano and paprika, and Italian style with more tomato, rosemary, and basil. Here I've made curried squash, using curry powder, paprika, cumin, coriander, and ginger.
  4. **** - When toasting the cashews, use whatever seasoning you have chosen for the squash. Here I tossed them with salt and curry powder.
beta
calories
314
fat
11g
protein
12g
carbs
48g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

I’ve been meaning to write this post for a while now, but was quite unsure how well it would be received. Talking about fitness, diet, and even weight loss is always such a touchy subject, and even I’m feeling nervous posting my progress photos for the world to see! I truly believe, though, that our struggles are often more similar than they are different, and if even one person can benefit from seeing my struggles laid out, then I think I can feel pretty good about that. SO. Here goes nothing.

MY BACKGROUND

My goal has always been to get stronger. I’ve always been a terrible dieter – I can never keep to any kind of short term regimen! And my spine history meant I always lived a sedentary lifestyle, never truly being an active person.

Until recently. After college, I decided I wanted to get fit. I wanted to aggressively rehab my spine, and superficially, I was always insecure about my “back fat” – which probably isn’t so much back fat as it’s just so much excess skin built up from being hunched over all my life. 

Gosh, this is hard to talk about. *Deep breath!*

I’m 5 foot nothing and quite curvy. I’ve never been massively overweight, but no one could ever call me thin either. I’ve always been…squishy.  My arms and legs are narrow, but my torso, hips, and bum always carry the majority of my weight much like the rest of my family. I’ve been about 103-5 pounds since I was 12, which I’ve come to realize is my comfort weight; I return to this weight naturally, no matter how active I am or how my food choices vary throughout the year. 103-105 is what I call my equilibrium weight.

So, I decided I wanted to get stronger, more flexible. I wanted more energy and I wanted to tone up enough to tighten the skin around my torso.  I enlisted the help of a private physical trainer. I went to Fitness Together (now Infinity Personal Training) and worked 1-on-1 with a trainer for a year before I got married. I didn’t gain or lose any weight at this time, though my body fat percentage went from over 26% to about 23%, and I felt SO MUCH stronger.

Until I got married.

At my wedding I was still the usual 103. One year later I was 111!

Now, some people say you should not to look at the scale, to measure your health and weight in other ways like from the way clothes feel, or how much body fat percentage you have, or by measuring to the inch the circumference of your arms, legs, belly, etc. Some people are right!

On its own, the number on a scale gives you nothing, no relevant information, unless you pair it with other information: your height, for instance, or other bodily measurements, your energy levels, your digestion, your ability or inability to do certain exercises, your flexibility, and a lot more.

So considering the way clothes fit me, the circumference of my belly (and other places), my height, and my weight overtime, I knew I had gained weight that was over my equilibrium state. According to the Body Mass Index chart, I was still considered within a healthy weight range for my height, but boy did I feel the difference! My joints felt the added pressure and my spine health began deteriorating again. I knew for my medical history, my self-knowledge about my body, that this weight was going to be detrimental to my health in terms of increased back pain and low energy – unless, of course, this added weight were pure muscle, which it wasn’t. 

A year later, about 10 months into actively trying to return to my equilibrium weight, I am now 104 lbs and just under 23% BF, and I feel incredibly better. My energy is back, I feel I can stand or sit or be active for hours before feeling any joint fatigue. And finally, finally, I can see a small difference in the skin of my back. 

My Fitness Journey | SPIRITPLATEBut what caused this weight gain, and shift in lifestyle? For one, hormones. Aly and I were now married, and our relationship *ahem* had changed, so my hormones were now behaving differently, thus regulating the way I processed nutrients differently. I was also taking the chef course at Rouxbe at this time; I was making lots of food and trying not to waste it by eating more leftovers than maybe I could have handled. And then I got a desk job; I was sitting all day, completely killing my metabolism.

So after feeling more and more miserable inside and out, from looking at recent photos and thinking ‘when did my face get so round?’ to feeling fatigued and achy all the time, I decided I needed to change something. 

EXERCISE

At the start of this year I started eating better. I reduced my fried foods and sweets. I took lunch to work, made sure I parked my car far, went for evening walks with Aly (my chiropractor had said no running or jumping) and increased my water intake. I began recording my weight and body fat percentage using our FitBit Aria Scale. By February I lost 2 lbs. Great! But I didn’t feel much better and I hit a plateau going into spring.

In May, I decided to do Kayla Itsines’ Bikini Body Guide (BBG). It’s a 12-week training program that uses predominantly your own body weight as part of high-intensity interval training (HIIT). I highly, highly recommend it. I’ve never been active in this way: really devoting 30-45 minutes every day 5x a week. My spine improved dramatically. I felt stronger and leaner everyday. The community built around the BBG is incredible, with women all over the world supporting each other and cheering each other on.  Unfortunately, I also managed to injure myself after completing only 8 weeks. I landed wrong on a split lunge and completely threw out my right hip. This was exactly what my chiropractor had told me not to do (jumping). I was just too eager and excited to continue the guide after seeing results in just a few short weeks. I’ve now resolved to listen to her when she tells me to take it slow!

A week after I hurt my hip, I was going to leave for international travel for a whole month. So while I did not continue to workout aggressively through July and August, I did walk a lot and stretch, trying to keep my muscles healthy with magnesium supplements and electronic pulse massage therapy. This helped immensely.

When I returned, around mid-August, I wasn’t allowed to return to Kayla’s guide. I took up mild yoga instead, stretching about 2-3x a day, and just walked whenever I had the opportunity, never pushing too hard. This seemed to set me up in a good rhythm, and that’s where I’m at now.

My Fitness Journey | SPIRITPLATE

(I have never been able to do a backbend in my life. I finally managed to do Wheel Pose this summer!)

DIET AND NUTRITION

As far as diet goes, I’ve eaten the same since the New Year:

  • I eat plant-based whole foods, as in no processed foods, except the occasional vegan cheese or tofu-based proteins. Once or twice a month I may eat something like oreos or cookies or chips. 
  • I eat three large meals, with minimal snacking in between, and I never skip breakfast.
  • I don’t drink sodas (never been a fan) and I don’t eat fast food. I will eat out occasionally (once every week and a half to two weeks).
  • My only caffeine consists of one cup of coffee every morning, black with a little agave. No caffeine after 2PM.
  • Most days, I eat dinner between 5-7PM, and sleep by 11PM. Before bed, I have a glass of hot water with turmeric and honey mixed in. If I’m hungry by bedtime, I’ve taken to mixing the turmeric and honey in hot almond milk instead of water. This usually satisfies me enough to fall asleep.
  • I generally have a large serving (or three!) of a dark leafy green or colorful vegetable with every meal.
  • I usually don’t have fruit after noon, I don’t drink alcohol regularly, and if I crave sweets I typically satisfy myself with a couple squares of dark chocolate. 
  • I never eat salad with a dressing; I use only salt, pepper, and lemon juice.

A typical day’s worth of food looks something like this:

After Waking:
Water + Black Coffee + Vitamins
Breakfast:
Homemade Banana Nut Muffin + Green Smoothie
OR
Soy or Coconut Yogurt, Banana & Granola/Muesli
OR
Mashed Avocado on Toast with Sauteed Mushrooms
Lunch:
Grain + Green + Bean
(i.e. Daal, Roti, Pickled Carrots or Kidney Beans, Rice, Spinach)
OR
Soup + Salad
OR
Tofurky Sandwich with Arugula
Dinner:
Sweet Potato, Kale Salad, Beans
OR
Grain + Green + Bean
(i.e. Pasta with Arugula and Chickpeas or Bean Tacos + Spring Mix)
OR
Veggie Curry with Rice/Roti
Before Bed:
Turmeric and Honey in Hot Milk or Water

This system seems to be working for me. The probiotics in the vitamins and occasional yogurt have helped stabilize my stomach and reduce bloating. The turmeric honey mixture has been helping with my allergies and daily aches and pains resulting from my spine. The grain+green+bean idea ensures I get nutritionally dense foods, am balanced in my carb-protein-veggie intake, and avoid fried foods or high-fat sauces/dips. And of course the green smoothies – usually coconut water, banana, kale or spinach, and whatever fruit I’m craving, plus this protein powder – help to ensure I’m getting important vitamins and minerals. 

To see more examples of what I eat daily, you can follow me on Snapchat: ndjuma.

MY PROGRESS

I mentioned earlier that I kept a record of my weight, body fat, measurements, etc as the year went on. I weighed myself once every month or so on our Aria scale which sends electrical pulses through your feet to determine your body fat percentage. I wrote all this down in a note on my iPhone that I could access easily.

(**Keep in mind, I am 5′ tall. so 100-110 lbs is within normal Body Mass Index for me. I could be completely ripped at 120 lbs and 15% body fat. Or I could be 25% body fat at 105 lbs. Dipping below 100 lbs is not an option for me, as either way you slice it, I’d be underweight. Be sure to look up your BMI (here) to ensure you’re at a healthy weight for your height. I do NOT recommend someone who is 5’6 for example attempting to get to 100-105 lbs. There is no way, no matter what BF percentage, that that is a healthy option!**)

You can see my recordings below:

Date – Pounds – %BodyFat – Clothing Size || Activity or Diet Changes

Dec 31 – 111.1 – 26.0% – S/4 || New Year 
Feb 04 – 109.5 – 25.4% – S/4 || Walking, reduced fat and sweets, eating early dinner.
May 01 – 108.7 – 24.4% – S/4 || Start of Kayla Itsine’s BBG. 
May 25 – 108.1 – 24.1% – S/2 || BBG Week 4
Jun 08 – 107.4 – 23.7% – S/2 || BBG Week 6
Jun 25 – 105.9 – 23.4% – XS/0 || BBG Week 8
Jul 20 – 105.8 – 23.6% – XS/0 || Traveling; walking, stretching. 
Aug 20 – 105.0 – 23.7% – XS/0 || Mild yoga, stretching.
Sep 15 – 105.7 – 23.2% – XS/00 || Mild yoga, walking, stretching, no desk job. Increased greens.
Oct 10 – 104.3 – 22.9% – XS/00 || Mild yoga, smoothie challenge in October.

And now for my progress shots.

Please understand that showing these images takes a lot of courage. I am very proud of my progress, but it’s also highly nerve-racking to show it!

Be kind, haha. 

My Fitness Journey | SPIRITPLATEDetails on these images:

  • I took these pictures in the mornings, after a glass of water, a glass of coffee (a natural diuretic), and a bathroom break. (Always go #2 in the morning to get the least bloated image of yourself when taking progress photos!) 
  • There are variations in the images based on phone and lighting quality and the height of my hand taking the picture. I have not photoshopped my stomach; you can see my terrible photoshop skills on where I’ve tried to erase the overlapping pictures to make space for my bum, haha.
  • You’ll also notice that my lack of physical exertion (no squats or lunges) recently has reduced my glutes mass from July to October, and my back is not as straight now as it was the May and July shots (less cardio).

The biggest change I see is not in my figure. It’s in my confidence. My lack of fear if someone says, “Let’s go for a hike!” or “Meet me at the gym!” is something I’ve never experienced before. My daily excruciating back pain has reduced significantly. You don’t know how significantly your demeanor changes when you’re no longer in pain. I am happier than I’ve ever been. 

MY FUTURE GOALS

So, how do I feel having made it to this point?

Well, to be honest I felt better in July, before my hip injury. I miss working out; the energy it brings is just so addictive. Being on a regular workout schedule, I felt unstoppable. It was something I never knew I could do before. While I have to take it slower and easier now, I’m not deterred in the slightest. I want to challenge myself to maintain my progress and get even more toned as we get into the holiday season, when I know eating healthy will be more of a challenge, and I’ll just want to hibernate, haha. I am hoping to return to the BBG workouts, and do more advanced yoga in the coming months.

I am so very proud of everything I’ve learned so far about my body and how remarkable it truly is – how quickly it can heal, how much it can really do!

I’ve learned that there isn’t anything that I can’t do if I set my mind to it, that hard work and discipline will get me anywhere I want to go. This is such a massive life lesson.

There is so much more I want to accomplish and the journey doesn’t stop here!

I realize this post didn’t have much ‘educational value’ in terms of cooking, nutrition, or fitness, but I hope this serves as an example that eating clean and exercising regularly can change your life, not just physically, but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. And that, well, that’s priceless.

Please leave comments and questions below, I’d love to know your thoughts and how you’re doing on your journey to a happier, healthier you!

Love,
Nabila

I‘ve been globetrotting recently, and boy does it feel good to be back home! I’ve missed my nest: my couch, my favorite coffee mug, my baby bird Ari sitting on my shoulder, and most of all my kitchen. 

Traveling just seems to throw off your groove – you’re just thrown here and there, willy-nilly, and are expected to keep up your usual habits on an unpredictable schedule. I, for one, couldn’t wait to get back into the kitchen and finally be able to control what I put in my belly! 

This Soba Noodle Salad is just what the doctor ordered: cold, fresh, chock full of herbs and healthy goodness.

If you’ve never had soba noodles, this is a great way to dive in and try ’em out. Soba is essentially a Japanese noodle made entirely from buckwheat, a gluten-free seed that’s rich in protein(8g/serving), fiber(18% DV), magnesium(21% DV), manganese (34% DV), copper (27% DV), and phosphorous(17% DV). Buckwheat is in no way related to wheat, it isn’t even a grain, but rather a fruit seed, and thus great for those with wheat or gluten sensitivities. You can find soba noodles at any local supermarket in the Asian foods section. 

The other rockstar in this dish is the black sesame seeds. Sesame is a nutritional powerhouse with a whopping 163% DV of copper, 35% calcium, 30% iron, and 23% each of Vitamin B1 and selenium. Black sesame is easily found in any health food store, or Asian/Indian supermarkets.

Refreshing Soba Salad | SPIRITPLATE

This dish is also Salt|Oil|Sugar-free, so combined with all it’s other benefits, it is simply great for cardiovascular health. The attraction for me though is that it’s fresh and flavorful – just the right sort of TLC I’ve been craving. 

Soba Noodle Salad
Serves 6
A refreshing and herbal soba noodle salad perfect for a hot summer day!
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
15 min
238 calories
48 g
0 g
2 g
8 g
0 g
181 g
521 g
12 g
0 g
2 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
181g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 238
Calories from Fat 19
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2g
4%
Saturated Fat 0g
2%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 521mg
22%
Total Carbohydrates 48g
16%
Dietary Fiber 3g
13%
Sugars 12g
Protein 8g
Vitamin A
57%
Vitamin C
12%
Calcium
7%
Iron
11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the salad
  1. 1 9 oz. package soba noodles, cooked and chilled
  2. 1-2 carrots, thinly sliced
  3. 1-2 Chinese or Persian Cucumbers, thinly sliced
  4. handful shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
  5. 1/4 cup green onions, minced
  6. 3 tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped
  7. 3 tbsp fresh thai basil, finely chopped
  8. 3 tbsp fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  9. 2 tbsp black sesame seeds
  10. 1/2 lime, sliced, for garnish
For the vinaigrette
  1. 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  2. 3 tbsp tamari, soy sauce, or liquid aminos
  3. 3 tbsp honey, agave, or maple syrup
  4. 1/2-1 tsp red or green chile, minced
  5. 1 large clove garlic, finely minced
Instructions
  1. Gather and prep salad ingredients.
  2. Toss together in a large bowl.
  3. In a small bowl or jar, whisk together vinaigrette ingredients.
  4. Pour vinaigrette over salad and toss.
  5. Garnish with a sprig of choice herb and squeeze of lime.
Notes
  1. This salad is so versatile. Adjust the spice to your liking by adding more or less chili, or subbing sriracha for an acidic kick.
  2. Don't have all the herbs? Use what you have - a combo of one or two would work just fine.
  3. Some fresh sliced avocado, or shredded red cabbage would be great additions.
Adapted from Chad Sarno
beta
calories
238
fat
2g
protein
8g
carbs
48g
more
Adapted from Chad Sarno
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

Hello lovelies! 

Last week I began my coursework for Rouxbe Online Cooking School’s Plant-Based Professional Certification Course. It’s absolutely thrilling to learn from the best in the industry, including Chef Chad Sarno of Crazy, Sexy Kitchen by Kris Carr fame who also served as the Culinary Educator for Whole Foods and Chef Dr. Ken Rubin who is renowned chef educator and food anthropologist. I already feel like I’ve gained so much, and it’s only been a little over a week and a half! 

Spicy Summer Rolls | SPIRITPLATE

Truth be told, I was a little hesitant about an online cooking course until I did my research into the instructors and the platform Rouxbe uses for eLearning. The set up is incredibly efficient and well-organized with a refined, sleek design that allows you to learn quickly and in-depth about everything from how to properly boil, parboil, blanch, and sweat veggies, to how to create your own pasta or gluten-free menu. I love that they provide not only hard-to-find articles and incredibly detailed instructional videos, but also ample time and space to interact with instructors, fellow students, and professional industry heavyweights who do live events with presentations and a thorough Q&A.

Spicy Summer Rolls | SPIRITPLATE

Of course, there’s also a lot of cooking! Our very first assignment was to create our personal “Go-to Dish” in which we provide images of its set-up, process, and final result. Following that we created a Avocado, Kale, and Radish salad in which we learned how fats and acids can affect cruciferous vegetables. Most recently, we did an entire “Kitchen Re-Set” that had us clean out and organize our fridge and pantry; something that was super cool to do. I can’t wait to post about it later this week!

For my go-to dish, I made my Spicy Summer Rolls which I make at least once a week with variations; in fact, this is probably my most-requested recipe from friends and family that follow me on Instagram. Minus the chopping of the veggies, this recipe probably takes me about 3 minutes to put together. How’s that for quick and easy! 

Spicy Summer Rolls | SPIRITPLATE

All in all, I am super excited about the path ahead and can’t rave enough about Rouxbe’s Plant-Based Cooking Course.  I highly recommend checking out their Free Trial (which includes all manner of cooking, not just plant-based), if you’re interested. 

Also I’d love to see pictures of what you’re cooking up that’s plant-based, whether it’s from my site or not. Use the hashtag #spiritplate on Instagram to show me what you’ve made! 

Spicy Summer Rolls | SPIRITPLATE

Happy Memorial Day to all my U.S. folks – have a wonderful weekend and happy cooking! 

Spicy Summer Rolls
Serves 2
Super fresh and nutrient-rich lunch or snack roll in under ten minutes!
Print
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
3 min
Total Time
8 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
3 min
Total Time
8 min
493 calories
93 g
0 g
10 g
10 g
2 g
350 g
97 g
7 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
350g
Servings
2
Amount Per Serving
Calories 493
Calories from Fat 80
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10g
15%
Saturated Fat 2g
10%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 97mg
4%
Total Carbohydrates 93g
31%
Dietary Fiber 7g
27%
Sugars 7g
Protein 10g
Vitamin A
91%
Vitamin C
121%
Calcium
6%
Iron
11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 4 sheets rice paper
  2. 1-2 cups baby super greens OR 4 large swiss chard/spinach leaves
  3. 1/4 cup shredded carrots
  4. 1/4 cup shredded red cabbage
  5. 1/2 cup finely sliced cucumber
  6. 1/2 cup finely sliced capsicum or bell pepper
  7. 1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  8. 1/2 avocado
  9. 1 tsp fresh ginger, finely chopped
  10. 1/2 tsp black sesame seeds
  11. 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  12. 1/4 lime
  13. 1 Tbsp coconut aminos, liquid aminos OR soy sauce
  14. hot sauce of choice, to taste
Instructions
  1. Place one rice paper sheet on a wide flat plate. Fill plate with hot water, allowing it to flow over and under the paper, which will immediately begin to soften.
  2. Gently massage and move the rice paper around in the water, careful not to cause any wrinkles or folds.
  3. Once paper is fully softened and pliable, drain all the water by carefully tilting the plate whilst anchoring the paper with your thumbs. The paper wrap is now ready to fill.
  4. Working quickly, layer the next six ingredients onto the paper, about halfway between the center and the edge closest to you. Place the leafy greens down first and everything else on top. (You can pack in as much or as little filling as you'd like for a thicker or thinner roll.)
  5. Sprinkle some ginger, red pepper, and sesame seeds on top with a squeeze of lime. Place a few leafy greens on top to cover your fillings. This will ensure a smooth surface for your roll and will prevent the harder incredients like the carrots from poking out of the paper and creating holes.
  6. Roll the wrap up burrito-style, folding the edge closest to you up over the filling, then folding in the left and right ends, and finally rolling the whole thing tightly away from you. It is essential that you roll the paper as tight as possible to ensure a sturdy roll that won't fall apart when you take a bite.
  7. Repeat all previous steps with the next three sheets of rice paper.
  8. Mix together aminos/soy sauce with hot sauce in a small dipping bowl.
  9. Enjoy your rolls chilled, dipping them in the spicy sauce!
Notes
  1. You can replace any or all of the filling ingredients with your choice of veggies. I recommend that the first layer be soft greens to create a roll with a smooth surface, and ensure no ingredients poke out of it and create holes. I also love the avocado for added creaminess.
  2. I've tried this roll Tex-Mex style with beans and salsa as well as Mediterranean style with hummus and olives - they are all awesome, though this is by far my favorite version.
  3. Have all your ingredients ready to go. If you don't work fast enough, the rice paper will begin to dry out and go very tacky and sticky, ripping when you attempt to roll it.
  4. Add a teaspoon of nut or seed butter to your dipping sauce for a twist!
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calories
493
fat
10g
protein
10g
carbs
93g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

 

Bloody Berry Juice | SPIRITPLATE On Wednesday, I woke up and decided I needed to do a juice cleanse. That’s just the type of person I am. Today is the day! I said, and got started. It’s funny because for all my pseudo-preachy health-nuttiness, I haven’t actually done a cleanse before, despite it being all the rage in the health and nutrition community. Oh, I’ve had juices. I’ve had several juices in one day – all homemade. But I’ve never done a cleanse. The discipline and time it requires is daunting and I just felt too overwhelmed to try it. I guess you reach a point where you just throw your hands up, and say “Darn it all, I’m gonna do it!”  Of course, I know my own faults. Three days of juicing was downright intimidating. Baby steps, I say. How about starting off with one day? A One-Day Juice Cleanse to give my digestive system a break and learn the ins-and-outs was perfect. Anyone can do it, I thought, even me!  So, I decided to start the day off right. I put on the kettle. Downed a glass of water and did my morning yoga stretches. I made myself some mint tea and began: I wrote down exactly what I wanted to consume, listing produce I already had (incidentally, I had gone grocery shopping the afternoon before) on our ever-efficient white board that we’ve conveniently placed between the kitchen (my office) and living room (Aly’s office).  My logic as to what juice to have and when was simple. I wanted a filling, generally healthy juice to get started. I always have a rather large breakfast and I wanted to feel satiated. The apples and kale provided this easily, along with the water content of the romaine and cucumber. 

The Hulk Green Juice
Serves 1
A nutritionally dense green-powered juice to jumpstart your day.
Print
701 calories
160 g
0 g
6 g
33 g
1 g
2722 g
700 g
89 g
0 g
3 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
2722g
Servings
1
Amount Per Serving
Calories 701
Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6g
10%
Saturated Fat 1g
5%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 700mg
29%
Total Carbohydrates 160g
53%
Dietary Fiber 50g
200%
Sugars 89g
Protein 33g
Vitamin A
2397%
Vitamin C
515%
Calcium
105%
Iron
151%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 large pink lady apple
  2. 6 small sprigs of kale
  3. 2 handfuls supergreens mix (baby spinach, baby arugula, etc)
  4. 1 small to medium cucumber
  5. 1 small head romaine
  6. 4 sprigs parsley
  7. 3 celery stalks
  8. 1 lemon
  9. 3 small green apples
  10. 1 cup filtered water
Instructions
  1. Add ingredients to juicer in the order listed. Alternating fibrous greens with fruit gives the juicer a break and washes through any green debris.
Notes
  1. Swap out parsley for any other herb (cilantro, basil, dill) for an alternate palette.
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calories
701
fat
6g
protein
33g
carbs
160g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/
The Hulk Green Juice | SPIRITPLATE This one tasted like herby apple juice, just about how you’d expect a pretty standard green juice to taste. Of course, Ari kept trying to steal all my parsley. Then I wanted to include a lemon-turmeric-cayenne concoction for mid-day to clean my digestive system. I’ve noticed a LOT of bloating and heartburn recently and haven’t been able to pinpoint what’s causing it. I figure something to clear my stomach and intestines could be nothing but helpful.

Spicy Lemon Detox Tea
Serves 1
This alkaline juice is great for digestive detox; the lemon, aloe vera, cayenne, and turmeric all have antibacterial, antisceptic properties.
Print
322 calories
78 g
0 g
1 g
2 g
0 g
1065 g
67 g
32 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
1065g
Servings
1
Amount Per Serving
Calories 322
Calories from Fat 7
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g
1%
Saturated Fat 0g
0%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 67mg
3%
Total Carbohydrates 78g
26%
Dietary Fiber 21g
82%
Sugars 32g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
4%
Vitamin C
26%
Calcium
129%
Iron
33%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 12 oz hot water + 6 oz filtered water, divided
  2. Juice of half a lemon
  3. 1/8 teaspoon turmeric
  4. 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  5. one squeeze agave or honey
  6. splash of raw aloe vera juice or gel
Instructions
  1. Boil 12 oz of hot water and add to glass.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and stir well to incorporate.
  3. Add filtered water and stir.
Notes
  1. Juice and add a pinky-sized knob of ginger or add an 1/8 teaspoon of ginger powder for more spice!
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calories
322
fat
1g
protein
2g
carbs
78g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/
This one I absolutely loved. Spicy? Check. Sour? Check. Warming me down to my very bones? Double check! For dinner, I wanted to include the only fat of the day in the form of nut milk. Rather than juicing this one, I simply soaked some cashews at the beginning of the day, drained them, added some fresh filtered water and blended them with the remaining ingredients.

Sweet Cashew Milk
A creamy spiced milk great for lowering blood sugar.
Print
920 calories
81 g
0 g
64 g
22 g
13 g
644 g
22 g
39 g
0 g
48 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
644g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 920
Calories from Fat 532
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 64g
98%
Saturated Fat 13g
63%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 11g
Monounsaturated Fat 37g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 22mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 81g
27%
Dietary Fiber 7g
30%
Sugars 39g
Protein 22g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
11%
Iron
48%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup raw cashews
  2. 2 medjool dates
  3. 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  4. dash of all spice
  5. 1/2 inch length of whole vanilla bean
  6. 16 oz filtered water
Instructions
  1. Cover cashews and dates in filtered water and soak for 2-4 hours. This is optional but creates a creamier, more milk-like base.
  2. Drain cashews and dates and add to high-speed blender with 16 oz fresh filtered water and remaining ingredients.
  3. Blend on high until smooth and frothy - this may take a couple minutes.
Notes
  1. You can sub half the filtered water with coconut water.
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calories
920
fat
64g
protein
22g
carbs
81g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/
For snacks, I chose juices that I wanted: I had strawberries and blood oranges that I couldn’t wait to see what they tasted like together!  Bloody Berry Juice | SPIRITPLATE

Bloody Berry Juice
Deliciously fruity juice that will have you feeling like you're in the tropics!
Print
362 calories
88 g
0 g
2 g
8 g
0 g
766 g
7 g
57 g
0 g
1 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
766g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 362
Calories from Fat 20
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2g
4%
Saturated Fat 0g
1%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 7mg
0%
Total Carbohydrates 88g
29%
Dietary Fiber 26g
104%
Sugars 57g
Protein 8g
Vitamin A
21%
Vitamin C
659%
Calcium
29%
Iron
23%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 10-12 strawberries
  2. 1 6 oz carton raspberries
  3. 3 blood oranges
  4. 1 kiwi
  5. 1-2 basil leaves
Instructions
  1. Wash fruit and remove orange rind.
  2. Place all fruit through juicer, leaving the tops on the strawberries.
  3. Garnish with fresh basil for a savory treat!
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calories
362
fat
2g
protein
8g
carbs
88g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/
Bloody Berry Juice | SPIRITPLATE For my second snack I had a chilled, tomato based juice that tasted like a fresh garden salad. Remember V8? If you’re a fan, you’ll love this. 

Secret Garden Juice
This chilled juice with it's tomato base tastes like gazpacho!
Print
496 calories
99 g
0 g
5 g
38 g
1 g
1634 g
515 g
31 g
0 g
1 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
1634g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 496
Calories from Fat 46
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5g
8%
Saturated Fat 1g
3%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 515mg
21%
Total Carbohydrates 99g
33%
Dietary Fiber 38g
154%
Sugars 31g
Protein 38g
Vitamin A
222%
Vitamin C
1912%
Calcium
66%
Iron
57%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 3 celery stalks
  2. 2 ripe tomatoes
  3. 2 thick broccoli stalks
  4. 4 large handfuls supergreens mix (baby kale, spinach, arugula, etc)
  5. 3-4 springs cilantro
  6. 1/2 lemon
  7. 3 dried red chilies or 1/8 tsp cayenne
  8. 1/8 tsp cracked black pepper
Instructions
  1. Juice first 6 ingredients alternating between greens and the other veggies.
  2. Add chili and black pepper to juice and stir.
  3. Add a couple ice cubes to chill.
Notes
  1. Add carrot and/or bell pepper for a heartier juice.
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calories
496
fat
5g
protein
38g
carbs
99g
more
SPIRITPLATE http://spiritplate.com/

Secret Garden Juice | SPIRITPLATE

So basically I gave myself about two and a half hours between each juice. The Hulk, followed by the Bloody Berry, the Sweet Lemon Detox Tea, the Secret Garden Juice, and finally the Spiced Cashew Milk. I felt slightly hungry throughout the day, I think mostly because I didn’t feel I had eaten because I hadn’t chewed anything, but my energy was great! In fact I couldn’t fall asleep right away at night and ended up working an hour later than usual. The next day I experienced some detox symptoms, including a headache. I’ve noticed that since then, I haven’t experienced any bloating or heartburn at all and I’m craving a lot more raw foods. Overall, I feel great! 

Ultimately, what I learned was this:

  1. MAKE RULES, THEN FOLLOW THEM. My rule was that I would only consume raw organic fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and spices. No added salt or sugar, nothing processed, no caffeine or alcohol, and no grains or legumes. Whether they were juices, blended into a smoothie, or eaten solid wasn’t as important to me as flushing my system with raw produce. It is very easy to give up and give in to cravings, or bending the rules slightly to create a more comfortable experience. Be conscious and know what your body and mind’s limits are. Make your rules and goals attainable and then stick to them.
  2. BE PREPARED. Plan out what and how much you’ll need for each juice and do your grocery shopping before hand. Always, always buy organic. I highly recommend mason jars to carry your juices throughout the day – their airtight lids keep them from leaking, and as they are made of glass, they do not contain the BPA toxin used to make plastic. Know that cleaning your juicer is probably the most annoying thing EVER and you’ll probably want to chuck it across the room by the end of your cleanse 😉 If you are doing a 3-day cleanse, I recommend starting on Saturday morning after prepping Friday night. This allows you Saturday, Sunday, and Monday (having prepped the night before) to do your cleanse. 
  3. MAKE ENOUGH. If you are doing it right, you should be consuming about 16-32 ounces per juice. If you don’t make enough, you will be hungry throughout the day as you aren’t getting enough calories. I split my first morning juice with Aly, thinking 12 oz. each would be enough. Within an hour, we were both hungry again and eagerly looking forward to the next juice.
  4. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. While I had a lot of energy mentally, I also felt slightly out of breath and knew I couldn’t do heavy exercise. I did however feel the need to stretch and keep moving throughout the day. Everyone responds differently. If you feel you need solid food, eat solid food, but keeping with the same ingredients you would’ve juiced anyway.
  5. DRINK LOTS OF WATER. You’ll be surprised how thirsty you get, despite drinking fluids all day. Drink at least a glass of water in between each juice or smoothie.
  6. ALLOW YOURSELF TO REST. I already eat fairly clean, about 60% raw, and vegan and I still had detox symptoms in the form of a massive headache and a constant need to go to the bathroom the next day. Some people feel no detox symptoms, whilst others experience wildly uncomfortable ones. Be ready and flexible for these sensations.
  7. BE MINDFUL. Focus on your body, your mindset. Keep a journal if need be. Meditate. Be mindful of how you feel, what you’re consuming, and how it came to be. Your spiritual and mental state of being as you cleanse is just as important as your body’s.

HAPPY JUICING!!

Secret Garden Juice | SPIRITPLATE

I hear it all the time: “I want to eat healthier but I just don’t have the time! And I can’t give up snacking! And I get confused – is non-fat, low-fat, full-fat, low-carb, high-carb, carb-cycling, high-protein, low-protein, good for you?!”

Here’s my philosophy: if it was made with dirt, water, and sunshine, just the way Mama Nature intended – it’s good for you! Sometimes we get so caught up in calorie counting and label reading we forget that Earth’s bounty is perfectly constructed to sustain human life. We are in a symbiotic relationship and a box, can, or tin shouldn’t necessarily get in the way. In between meals we tend to reach for that canned energy drink or packaged energy bar at convenience stores and vending machines, both of which are 99.9% of the time highly-laden with chemicals and toxins our body should never even come into contact with!

Snacking is perfectly healthy and keeps our metabolism going, but we usually snack because 1) we’re spacing our meals too far apart and are hungry, 2) we are in fact thirsty and simply need to drink more water, or, more often than not, 3) we like to simply munch mindlessly on something, whilst focusing on a given task. So why use snack time to fill our bodies with detrimental toxins and caffeine crashes that leave us feeling burnt out? Why not use it to build a healthier body – one that can rebuild itself more efficiently, function at top speed and vitality, and keep us energized throughout the day?

Reach, instead, for clean snacks that take little or no time to prepare, are essentially Earth to Table, and are very handy on the go to not only boost our energy, but keep us feeling full until the next meal. Here are some of my favorites:

Almond Butter Stuffed Dates

Almond Butter Stuffed Dates | SPIRITPLATEHomemade almond butter. Pitted Medjool Dates. Sweet and salty, the perfect mixture of carb, protein, and fat. These guys are like candy, so ooey gooey and decadent! It’s hard to resist; I can usually have an ungodly amount in one sitting! I also love that they don’t need to be refrigerated, just pack a few in a small bag or container and you’re set! For almond butter: toss almonds in a food processor or high-speed blender with a pinch of sea salt. Blend away until it goes from crumbled to powdery, the oils are released and the almonds start to clump back together. Add agave or honey for sweetness. Scrape down the sides with a spatula, and keep blending until a desired consistency is reached. Store in an airtight jar in the fridge. 

Fruit and Veggie Sticks and Dip 

Perhaps the most popular snack at fast food restaurants, cafes, and gas stations: it’s so simple! Just slice up apples, pears, carrots, celery – any firm, starchy fruit or veggie, and bag them. Ditch fatty and chemical laden ranch dressing or sugar-filled flavored yogurt for a healthy alternative: nut butter, tahini (essentially sesame seed butter, now widely available at any grocery store), hummus, or guacamole. My favorite is tahini mixed with agave and lime juice. Don’t have a sweet tooth? Try Aly’s favorite: slice up a tart raw green mango and dip into a cayenne-salt mixture. 

Agua Fresca

Agua Fresca Chia Water | SPIRITPLATEIf you’re not an avid water drinker like me, try an agua fresca. It’s essentially chia water – regular water, coconut water, or home squeezed juice with chia seeds. Be sure to soak your chia seeds first – about a 1/4 cup of filtered water to 1 Tbsp chia seeds. Then add your base liquid. Try lemon, cucumbers, mint, or basil to flavor it. A friend of mine uses rose water! If you’re trying to kick your soda addiction, use a SodaStream to carbonate it or add a carbonated water beverage like La Croix to the mix. Make ahead, bottle, and refrigerate for a grab-and-go beverage! 

Protein-Packed Powerballs

I don’t think I need to harp on about how amazing Powerballs are. I can go for hours on just two Powerballs. Try our recipe here

Chips

Homemade Apple Chips | SPIRITPLATEKale, Sweet Potato, Brussel Sprouts, Pear, or Apple Chips – Add some cayenne or cinnamon, and pop them in the dehydrator or oven on the lowest setting – between 190°F and 220°F for two-three hours flipping them over once half way through. Turn the oven off and let the chips sit in the oven as it cools – approximately another hour. Store in an airtight container to maintain their crispness.

Green Smoothie

 Tropical Green Smoothie | SPIRITPLATEA liquid, a green, and a fruit. That’s all you need. Add a spoonful of chia, flax, or hemp seeds for extra protein. Here’s one of my favorites: 1 cup nut milk, 1 banana, 1 scoop protein powder, two heaping handfuls of spinach or kale, 1/4 beet (red or golden), and two large handfuls frozen berries. (If you’re using fresh berries, just add a few cubes of ice on top.) Add to blender in order listed and blend away until smooth! Fill up your to-go cup or mason jar for a speedy breakfast or pre-lunch snack. 

Bananas

It doesn’t get more fast food than this. Toss a couple bananas in your bag and head out the door. Bananas also function really well as a mono-meal – have 4-6 for a filling meal or 2-3 for a mid-day snack to hold you over. Not a banana fan? Any fruit with thicker skin will do! 

Power Trail Mix

Homemade Power Trail Mix | SPIRITPLATESubstitute cacao nibs or carob for chocolate chips, add coconut shavings, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, nuts, dried fruit, etc. for a truly powerful mix. I love to add this to my granola or oats with hemp milk in the morning for an energizing breakfast. 

Mixed Berry Jar

Mixed Berry Jar | SPIRITPLATESuper simple! Just layer a mason jar with fresh organic blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries.  Make sure they’re washed and patted dry to prevent sogginess. Throw the jar in your bag to enjoy anytime throughout the day. 

These are just my favorites. There are plenty of other clean, wholesome foods you can snack on throughout the day. I’d love to hear from you! What are your favorite go-to snacks? Comment below! 

Love and light, 

N