steak

Perfect Prepping

I did some prepping this past weekend. Took the trip to Whole Foods, spent my Saturday chopping and dicing and organizing, and then got to enjoy my week without all the food hassle that comes along with packing lunches and scrambling for snacks. It’s been smooth sailing and I wanted to share some of the methods to my prepping madness. Here’s what I did:

  • Made a salad mix:
    • I bought mixed greens (I make my own blend of romaine, mixed, and spinach), a variety of colored peppers, carrots, red cabbage, and cucumbers. I chop them all up and put them in a big container together.IMG_5413
  • Made brown rice & quinoa:
    • Nothing fancy here, just bought some no-gmo basmati brown rice and tri-color quinoa, cooked some of each, and stored them in two separate containers in the fridge to grab whenever I need some healthy carbs in a pinch. They are perfect for salad toppers too!IMG_5410
  • Made snack baggies
    • I put together little snack baggies that I could grab in the morning and stuff in my lunch box so I’m never too hungry during the day. I made carb baggies: few with mixed berries (fresh strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries) and a few with some fresh cherries. I made healthy fat baggies: a few trail mix baggies (roasted unsalted nuts, unsweetened coconut flakes, and a little dried fruit). And a few protein baggies: two hardboiled eggs in a some baggies.IMG_5414
  • Roasted sweet potatoes
    • Having some diced or whole roasted sweet potatoes in the fridge is another essential grab for me. I can take a hunk smothered in cinnamon and almond butter to have with my snack or throw some on my salad. They taste just as good in a cold salad as they do when you make them hot!IMG_5411
  • Got my meats.
    • At the Whole Foods deli, they had thin sliced skirt steak they wrap up like deli meat that I bought for my first few lunches. You can also get chicken like that here!
  • Other ideas include portioning out nut butters or hummus into small containers to grab and go with, make a batch of chicken or tuna salad, grill up some chicken breasts for high quality protein in your lunches, make your own dressing (I like to keep it simple with some olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, oregano, and some chia seeds)

Now that you’re all prepped, here are two killer salads you can make for lunch or dinner using leftovers and the stuff you’ve got in your fridge that take under 10 minutes to throw together on your way out the door.

Steak and Roasted Red Pepper SaladIMG_5447

Ingredients

  • 1.5 – 2 cups salad & veggie base mix
  • 4 oz sliced and diced skirt steak
  • 1/4 cup quinoa (or sub brown rice)
  • 1/6 of an avocado, diced
  • handful roasted red peppers, chef’s cut
  • 1 Tablespoon roasted unsalted peanuts
  • 1 Tablespoon craisins
  • Dressing (I used roughly 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar, pinch salt and pepper and oregano, 1/4 tsp chia seeds all shaken together)

Directions:

Throw all the ingredients except for the dressing into your to-go container or a large bowl. You can layer it pretty or mix everything all up so it’s more evenly distributed. Top with your dressing and eat immediately or close it up and bring your dressing to top it when it’s time to chow down.

 

Go-To Salmon SaladIMG_5444

Ingredients

  • 1.5 – 2 cups salad and veggie base mix
  • 4 oz leftover salmon filet
  • 1/4 cup quinoa (or brown rice)
  • 1 Tbsp craisins
  • 1/6 avocado, diced
  • almonds & cashews
  • Dressing (I used roughly 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar, pinch salt and pepper and oregano, 1/4 tsp chia seeds all shaken together)

Directions: 

Throw all the ingredients except for the dressing into your to-go container or a large bowl. You can layer it pretty or mix everything all up so it’s more evenly distributed. Top with your dressing and eat immediately or close it up and bring your dressing to top it when it’s time to chow down.

fajita salad

Posted by Corie

The fajita. A beautiful union of sizzling hot peppers and onions, with tender, juicy chicken or steak, slathered in guacamole and covered in a mound of fresh tomato salsa. Ditch the tortillas and add a bed of crisp lettuce… ayup, fajitas just became your new best friend.

stepbro

This shit I’m about to drop on you all is super easy. You can make everything from scratch or you can buy some of your favorite brand salsa or guacamole, it’s all up to you. These have tons of muscle building protein from the chicken, vitamins and minerals in all your veggie toppings and healthy fats from avocado. The brown rice is optional, but it definitely gives the dish a faux-chipotle feel and satisfied my complex carb craving. Sometimes, the body wants what the body wants, and it’s important to listen. But if gluten bothers you or you’re going all full-scale paleo, then by all means leave it out. Last note, you can definitely make this with steak or shrimp or a mix. Have fun with it.

friggen’ fresh fajita saladIMG_3629

serves 4-5 w/ leftovers

For the Chicken:

(Feel free to use your own marinade instead)

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1/4 cup olive oil

1.5 tbsp honey

1 tbsp dijon mustard

1 tbsp grainy mustard

2 tbsp chopped, fresh cilantro

4 cloves garlic, minced

Throw the chicken in a gallon zip lock bag. Season with the salt and pepper. Whisk together the rest of the ingredients in a small bowl, when combined, pour over the chicken. Seal the bag and let that stuff sit in the refrigerator for one to a few hours. If you’re pressed for time, a half hour will do, but you won’t get all the flavor. Also… some adobo sauce would be bangin’ in there, but I didn’t have any.

Take the chicken out and cook over medium high heat on the stove in a sauté pan. Get a nice deep golden brown color on the outsides and then let them cook on low until done throughout. Make sure they are cooked all the way through because we don’t need any cases of salmonella round here. Then slice then and set aside.

For the Rice:

1.5 cups brown rice

pinch of salt

1 tsp coconut oil

juice of 1 lime

chopped, fresh cilantro

put your brown rice and 4 cups water in a pot over high heat. Throw in a pinch of salt and let that come to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer until all the water has been absorbed by your rice. Fluff with a fork and then stir in the coconut oil, lime juice, and fresh cilantro.

For the Peppers: 

3/4 medium yellow onion, sliced into strips

2 red, 1 orange, and 1 yellow bell peppers, sliced into thin strips

In a large saute pan, heat the onions and some coconut oil over medium-high. Cook these, stirring occasionally, until they start to brown and caramelize. Throw in the peppers and continue to cook and stir until the same thing happens to them. You want to get a real good color and flavor on these so taste often if needed. Season with salt and pepper.

For the Salsa: 

I made a fresh avocado salsa, but feel free to sub here.

2 large tomatoes, small chopped

1/2 small red onion, small chopped

1.5 avocados, chopped

juice of 1 lime wedge

pinch of salt

fresh cilantro

Just throw it all together and let sit in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes to let all those flavors mesh.

Put it all together: 

Over a bed of thin chopped romaine and mixed greens, pile high a small scoop of rice, a healthy handful of those peppers and onions, slices of the chicken, and then the salsa. You can put all the salads together ahead of time or make it like a fajita salad bar where everyone makes their own. Get a good simple dressing, I used a chili-lime vinaigrette my mom picked up at whole foods, and drizzle that all over your salad. DIG IN. Gainz galore.

 

 

pass the grass… fed beef

Posted by Corie

If you’re like me and you love a big juicy steak, there can be a whole lot of information to digest when perusing [pronounced perooozing] your local grocery store or butcher’s counter for the perfect cut of beef.  You have to think about the different cuts of meat that require different cooking techniques, which pieces are more expensive and which are a lot easier on the wallet, do you want the bone in or do you want to go boneless.  But before you even get to all that shit you might want to think about a quality of beef that’s often overlooked.

That is, what your cow was fed and how it was treated before it was anywhere near the butcher’s knife.

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Ugh, who cares? Does it really matter? Yup. Yup it does and I’ll tell you why.

Cramming beef cattle into feedlots and feeding them grain to fatten them up is probably one of the dumbest ideas… ever. Cows are meant to eat grass and that is what they most efficiently turn into the meat on their bones. Instead, on feedlots, they are being fed enormous quantities of corn, soy-based protein supplements, antibiotics, and growth hormones to go from 80 pounds at birth to 1,200 pounds in just over a year. It’s not efficient, it’s not good for the cows, and it’s definitely not good for anyone eating the cows.

Grain fed cows bloat, they get acidosis, ulcers, diarrhea, a weakened immune system. The cows are sick and essentially dying. Then they slaughter them and package them, and put their sick meat on all the grocery store shelves for us to pick up. Hello mad cow disease. Hello E.Coli. Hello superbugs able to withstand every antibiotic known to man. I know it sounds like I’m being dramatic, but it’s all true and very well hidden from an uninformed public.

Hands-down, grass-fed is more nutritious. These cows are getting the nutrients they need from grass, without all the added stress and abuse cattle encounters on a feedlot. According to the Journal of Animal Science, meat from grass-fed cows has less total fat and saturated fat, and almost twice as much healthy Omega-3 fats (one of those essential fatty acids your body loves). It also has up to 4x the amount of Vitamin E that grain fed beef does, and more conjugated linoleic acid, associated with lower cancer risk.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way…

images

Remember:

Organic does not mean grass-fed. They are different. Look for grass-fed, ask for grass-fed, inquire about grass-fed. The more we say it, the more grocery stores, butchers, restaurants, and farmers will realize that’s what we want. We drive the market. Our dollars make all the difference. [I’m real fired up about this if you can’t tell.]

On that note, grass fed is more expensive, but we should be okay with that. You’re paying more for better quality beef. That good quality directly transfers to your good health. So, buy a little less.  You shouldn’t be shelling out tons of money for grass-fed beef every night because you shouldn’t be eating beef every night. You can’t eat the same foods day in and day out. Variety is key to a healthy diet.

Woah. Your brain is full of knowledge now. Can you feel it? We can see it. There’s probably no room to think for a few hours so here is the simplest, most delicious seared skirt steak recipe for ya. Soak it all in and eat some grass-fed beef.

Rosemary Skirt SteakIMG_1867

1 skirt steak, sliced into 3 or 4 strips

salt and pepper

olive oil

3 sprigs fresh rosemary

Heat a tablespoon or two over medium heat in your pan. Add roughly chopped rosemary sprigs and cook until fragrant. Add in skirt steak and cook until browned and beautiful. BOOM, easy as that.

Keep it simple and keep it real. Serve with some sweet potatoes or acorn squash and a healthy heaping of garlicky spinach.