Healthy Eats: Snack Platter

So as I sit and write this, we are smack dab in the middle of Covid-19 stay at home orders. Even if you are reading this 20 years from now, you’ll likely remember this pandemic and the endless all-day snacking that most people couldn’t refrain from. We have some tricks to make your snacking a little more guilt-free and balanced for your macro needs. Give our snack platter a try – complete with protein, carbs, a bit of fat, and tons of nutrients.

We love fresh veggies dipped in ranch dressing or dip. While you can find low fat/low cal dips they aren’t always wholesome. We do our best to avoid too many “chemical” creations throughout the day. Wholesome is always best for us. So we like to make our own dip.

Ranch Greek Yogurt Dip

  • 1 cup plain, nonfat greek yogurt
  • 1/2-1 whole ranch dressing seasoning package (any brand is fine)

Stir the ingredients vigorously to remove any lumps and clumps from the seasoning packet. Greek yogurt is high in protein, moderate in carbs, and is a good base for many things that use mayonnaise like tuna salad or egg salad. Trick of the trade, replace your mayo with Greek yogurt and a little mustard – very satisfying!

Veggies are largely fair game. Of course there are vegetables with more nutrients than others, less carbs than others, but let’s be REAL, no one gets fat from eating carrots. So wash and slice your favorite veggies – radishes, peppers, grape tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers – these are all really yummy with the ranch dip.

I love chips! The crunch, the salty seasoning, the happiness that spreads through me when I eat them – half kidding half serious! So here comes my find of the century – FLEX chips. They come in 3 different flavors and it is hard to believe they are pretty good for you. Made from plant based protein, they are low in carbs and calories and pack a decent amount of protein in them.

This snack platter has a balanced macronutrient breakdown. You can eat a lot of this and not feel bad! You’ll be having a “meal plan approved” snack. I bet you’ll feel so much better about your eating habits by replacing today’s snacks with the healthier version!

We have tons of recipes and healthy EATS to satisfy your palate!

*The exact portions will vary per person. Contact us for more details on your portions and macronutrient breakdown per meal/per day!

Healthy Eats: Grilled Tofu & Vegetables

Well I’ll just come right out and say it, I used to be very anti-tofu. I’m not sure why. I guess in my head I determined I had eaten it and disliked it. I’m not sure I had even tried it, and now that it has become a weekly staple in our house. Typically, I use extra firm tofu and slice it into equal portions. I then season it and either grill it or broil it. The result is grilled tofu with a texture mixed between chicken and feta cheese. It tastes great the next day as a protein topper on a cold salad or warm with a plant-based (or regular) pasta dish. I was surprised how much I actually like tofu and I think if you give it a try you might be too!

Again, I think the variety of tofu matters. For us, the extra firm has the right texture, moisture, and macronutrient breakdown (see picture of label below). It’s easy to slice it into 5 equal (as equal as possible) chunks then season with some yummy spices (we like Penzey’ and pop on the grill or under the broiler. We do the same to our vegetables. Season generously and grill or broil.

Since I’m on the topic of seasoning, we get asked a lot about SALT. “I know I shouldn’t have much salt” is something I hear almost daily. The truth is the body needs sodium and as long as you aren’t adding excessive amounts to your food you are probably well within the recommendations for daily intake. If you have a heart condition or high blood pressure, then regulating your salt intake is a bit more critical. If you do not have these ailments, then adding a bit of salt or seasoning that has salt to your veggies should be fine. Make the healthy food taste good so you’ll want to eat the healthy food! One thing we do avoid is adding salt to regular grocery store meat (chicken, pork, steak, etc.). These meats are preserved with a sodium solution that already has plenty of salt in it. So just add salt-free seasoning to your meats.

So if you’re looking for the recipe here, sorry there really isn’t one. Just slice the tofu (extra firm) into proportion depending on what the label says, then season and grill or broil. It doesn’t take long…give it a few minutes on each side. You can also squeeze a bit of fresh lemon on it while its cooking – yum! Pair it with your favorite vegetables and if you’re macros allow for it, add a bean pasta to it. We’ve tried many, the spaghetti varieties have the best numbers, lower on carbs, higher on protein. Here is a picture of the black bean box and label. They have several flavors and several different brands make this pasta now.

There’s more where this recipe came from! Click here to check out additional health EATS!

*The exact portions will vary per person. If you’re wondering how much tofu you get and whether you can add pasta to it, contact us for more details on your portions and macronutrient breakdown per meal/per day!

Healthy Eats: Plant based sausage, egg & rice bake

Part of shifting our eating to “partially plant-based” is redoing some of our favorite meals to utilize less (or no) animal proteins and more plant based proteins. My husband, Justin, has a few favorites that needed to be adjusted. First things first, BREAKFAST, the very most important meal of the day. In our regular egg and rice bake there is 3 whole eggs and 1 1/4 cups of egg whites. There’s also cheesy goodness too. In general there is a lot of animal proteins and fats. A quick redo and our plant-based sausage, egg & rice bake is not only healthier and more sustainable for the environment but it also TASTES better!

Here’s how to put it together. You’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup of cooked white or brown rice
  • 2 TBSP rice flour (or regular white flour)
  • 2 whole egg
  • 1/3 cup liquid egg whites
  • 2 plant based sausage links (see pictures – Aldi brand) ** These are the best plant-based sausage links! If you can’t find them, try to find an alternative with similar numbers on the nutrition panel! **
  • 1 tsp hot sauce

Stir together cooked rice, rice flour, and 2 whole eggs. Spread into the bottom of a loaf pan. Cut up your frozen sausage (lightly cooked in the microwave first) and place on top of the rice crust. Whisk together egg whites and hot sauce and evenly pour on top of the crust and sausage. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes depending on your oven. There should be no jiggle left when you shake the pan!

Each egg bake should be 1-2 meals depending on your macronutrient needs. *The exact portions will vary per person. Contact us for more details on your portions and macronutrient breakdown per meal/per day! There is no need to guess at how much or how often you should eat – let us help you eat right for your body type and goals!

All of the Check Total Health “Healthy Eats” are created and tested by us! Try our other recipes here.