TGSIIAFWEIDKWIWFLSHBISIT3AG

In case you’re completely out of the loop, TGSIIAFWEIDKWIWFLSHBISIT3AG stands for, “Thank goodness spring is in a few weeks, except I don’t know when it will feel like spring here, because it’s still in the 30’s and gloomy.” Is that not something you say where you live? I can really feel the weather getting to me. My energy is low, I’m constantly sleepy, and I just feel blah. Sometimes all of the vitamin D, B, and artificial sun just don’t cut it. I know this can’t last forever, and that’s my dangling carrot. It’s very cliche, but I like, “This too shall pass,” because, well- it will. Whatever you have going on that isn’t perfect/ideal/stress-free will be over before you know it. I like setting mini milestones to break up monotony, and to give me something to focus on. Even if it’s just, “I have a bunch of lame errands to run today, but tonight’s dinner is going to be so good…I can’t wait.” And then, boom…another Monday in the books.

Monday: Pasta with Creamy Dairy Free Vodka Sauce– vegan, gluten free if you use g-free pasta- This recipe calls for you to make your own tomato puree, but in the interest of time, just buy organic tomato puree. If you consume dairy, use whatever milk you have. If you don’t consume dairy, use whatever plant-based milk you have. If you don’t want to use vodka, replace with more milk, water, or broth…although, this changes the distinct flavor of vodka sauce…all of the alcohol will cook off, so this is kid friendly.

Tuesday: Spicy Chipotle Shredded Chicken– This can easily be made in the crockpot. If you’re gluten free, please read the label on your chipotles in adobo sauce…many contain wheat. This chicken can be used for tacos, burritos, salad…

Wednesday: Eggs Benedict on Polenta Cakes– Gluten free and vegetarian- To save time, buy polenta logs (like the recipe calls for) and pesto. You can also make your own polenta, and chill it in a pan, so it hardens. If you’re dairy free, try making this hollandaise recipe: Coconut Oil Hollandaise Sauce. If you buy a packet of hollandaise, read the ingredients. Spice and sauce packets normally contain gluten.

Thursday: Coconut Curry Shrimp with Spicy Peanut Noodles– Gluten free if you use g- free noodles and liquid aminos,wheat free  tamari, or coconut aminos instead of soy. You can use whatever protein you want, or to make vegetarian, replace the protein with lots of vegetables. You can sub almond butter for the peanut butter, if you skip peanuts. I also like to do a mix of pasta, zoodles, and/or Miracle Noodles so I can eat more 🙂

Friday: Leftovers/Go out/Try something new

Saturday: Spicy Brazilian Burrito Bowls– Gluten free and vegetarian, to make vegan replace the sour cream/yogurt with plant based yogurt or coconut cream.

Sunday: Greek Chicken Souvlaki– This is my favorite kind of recipe…perfect or a Sunday. To save time, buy Tzatziki and flatbread. Another time saver is to cut the rice, and just eat this with flatbreat/pita/naan.

You have time for all of these!!!

Every recipe this week is fast. Even if you don’t have time to cook every night, you can make a few of these recipes and have leftovers. Spring is just a month away now! Time to get serious…

Monday: Apple, Cranberry, Spinach Salad w/ Pecans and Avocado– Guess what the ingredients are!!!! At least you know what you’re getting… This fast and easy salad should help you ease into Monday. Make your own dressing, or look to buy one with minimal ingredients (no sugar, no MSG, no weirdness). But really…make your own- it’s so easy. Can you pour stuff into a container and then shake it up? Congratulations! You made dressing!!!!!! My go-to is olive oil, lemon juice, a little maple syrup, and spices. A balsamic creme is also tasty.

Tuesday: Chicken Burrito Bowls– Naturally gluten and dairy free. Skip the chicken and add more vegetables/beans for a vegan option. Lots of veggie possibilities here.

Wednesday: Vegan Korma– Naturally gluten free. So quick and easy…you could even toss this all in a slow cooker.

Thursday: California Quinoa Salad–  Nice and light…gluten free, vegan, incredibly fast, and easy. You could double the recipe and have this as a meal, or serve this with an additional protein, like roasted chicken or salmon.

Friday: Easy Baked Paleo Chicken Tenders with Honey Mustard– Gluten and dairy free. Would be delicious with oven fries. The key to good oven fries is soaking your potatoes. This helps them release starch. Cut them, and soak them in water for a couple of hours. Drain (you’ll see a white substance at the bottom of the soaking water-that’s the starch), and let dry between a couple of kitchen towels (the longer the better). Then, the only oil you’ll need is to spray your pan, and to lightly spray the tops of your potatoes. Cook at 425F for 40 minutes, flipping half way through. They get crispy and crunchy like “real” fries. This method also works with sweet potatoes.

Saturday: Vegan Gluten Free Lasagna–  You could just make “regular” lasagna if you eat meat, dairy,  and wheat. This recipe calls for zucchini to be used as noodles…try eggplant instead. Zucchini releases a ton of liquid when it’s cooked, and will make your lasagna really watery. Or, use g-free lasagna noodles. You could also use veggie crumbles to add more protein (watch for wheat as an ingredient, though!).

Sunday: Slow Cooker Kahlua Pork–  This is going to make your kitchen smell so good….naturally gluten free, dairy free, paleo, Whole 30. I’d skip the cabbage. Personal preference. Keep this low carb by  serving with salad or cauliflower rice. Also great with quinoa, basmati rice, or on a roll.

Get in my belly!!!

Sometimes I’m more excited about food than other times….the times that I’m excited are typically during waking hours. I’m feeling these meals this week, y’all.

Monday: Thai Salad– gluten free, vegetarian, leave out the egg to make it vegan- Add meat if you’d like for more protein. I’ll probably saute some of the veggies involved…easier on the ol’GI tract. Ladies amiright?

Tuesday: Chili Lime Chicken Tacos with Pineapple Salsa– To make gluten free, use corn/g-free tortillas or lettuce wraps; to make vegetarian skip the the chicken and marinate veggies in the marinade; to make vegan, do what I just said, skip the cheese, and use dairy free sour cream (or double up on the Vegenaise) and Vegenaise. This recipe calls for homemade salsa…to save time, use store bought. You can probably find one with pineapple in it ( I know Trader Joe’s has one….Trader Joe…I love you and I miss you and I can’t wait to visit you). Anywho…I’ll be making it, because, let’s face it….I’ve got nothing else going on. But, it’s cold AF, so I’ll broil the ingredients in the oven. AND I’ll buy the pre-cut pineapple. Yes, it’s more expensive. But when I get a hold of a pineapple, my kitchen looks like a crime scene when I’m through.

Wednesday: Salmon Poke– To make gluten free, use g-free soy sauce, tamari, liquid aminos, or coconut aminos. For vegetarian or vegan….sorry, pals. Hump day is not your day. Now, this calls for raw salmon. If you can not find sushi grade salmon, or the thought of this makes you want to vom….cook the salmon. Problem solved! Just follow the directions, and then pan cook the samon.

Thursday: Raw Vegan Curry Zoodles– naturally gluten free and vegan. Double or triple the recipe to serve a crowd. You could sub actual pasta for the zucchini; you could also add meat. If you don’t have a spiralizer, just shave the zucchini with a vegetable peeler.

Friday: Pizza- Pizza Fridays….just like when you were a kid. Treat yo self.

Saturday: Paleo Butter Chicken– Try this. When you look at the ingredients you might think, “WTF, lady? Could this BE any more ridic?” Awww, you think I’m a lady. Lemme break it down…it’s a lot of spices- that’s it. This is easy. Put a can of full fat coconut milk in the fridge now, and you’ll be ready. Use regular cayenne powder instead of the Kashmiri, and skip the Fenugreek leaves because….wtf is that, anyway? I’ve made this many times and never thought…,”if I only had fenugreek!” And if you don’t have Garam Masala…here’s a recipe, so you can mix up your own! Homemade Garam Masala mix

Sunday: Slow cooker Honey Mustard Pulled Chicken – A little different…naturally gluten free. Use g-free buns, or lettuce wraps. I’ll use chicken breast, because….that’s what I like. For the coleslaw, I don’t know why you’ll need honey and sugar. Start with the honey, taste, and then add Stevia if it needs more sweetness.

Have a beautiful week!!!

Y’all. I’m tired. We “had” to stay up until 0530 last night to watch the Superbowl. For us, the game began at 0030. Who do I think I am? Some kind of youth? Needless to say, my heart is not singing as I write this. I would love nothing more than to go back to sleep for a nice nap, which for Megan = 4 hours. Another great idea that will end in heartache for me. If I nap, I won’t be able to sleep tonight, and then I’ll be up late watching Dateline on YouTube while a man and a dog snore all night, then I’ll feel tired when I get up, then I’ll be tired aaaaaalllll day, and then when it’s finally time for bed I will get a surge of energy and will be up watching 48 Hours on YouTube, and you can see where this is going…

The truth is, you can not catch up on sleep. That’s not really a thing. You may sleep more or less sometimes depending on circumstances and activities, but you’re not “catching up.” You’re only disrupting you body’s natural desire to be in bed by 2200 until 0600. So, look what I’ve done: I’ve disrupted the natural order of things! Who knows what I’ve set in motion? All for a majorly boring game. Should have stuck with the Puppy Bowl.

Monday- Greek Bean Burgers– Gluten free, vegan- Add some veggies by eating this on a giant pile of greens.

Tuesday- Ranch Chicken Salad– Gluten free, paleo, Whole 30- Quick and easy recipe, without the junk. I was so happy that our local grocery now sells Vegenaise! I think we’ll eat this on a small salad with sweet potato baked fries.

Wednesday- Middle Eastern Style Vegan Bake– Vegan, can be gluten free if you sub the flour for cornstarch ***Check the meatless crumbles, because most contain wheat!!!*** Feel free to use grass fed ground beef instead of the crumbles. If you can tolerate dairy, use “regular” butter, milk, and cheese.

Thursday- Japanese Salmon Teriyaki Bowl– Can be gluten free if you use a g-free teriyaki sauce/soy sauce. There are a lot of “extras” going on here…you don’t need to make rice vinegar- buy it, or skip it! There will be enough salt and sugar in the teriyaki sauce, so just make plain rice/brown rice/quinoa/faro/millet/amaranth.

***Tip for grains: on Wednesday measure out whatever grain you plain to use, and put it in a glass bowl with a glug of apple cider vinegar or fresh lemon juice. Let it sit overnight; until you plan to cook it…up to 2 days. Then drain, rinse and cook according to it’s directions. Soaking and sprouting your grains rids them of saponin and phytic acid, which can be irritating for some stomachs. Sprouting also re-activates the life of your food. If you sprout for 1-2 days, you will probably be able to see a little “tail” coming from your grain…it’s growing!

Friday- Shepherd’s Pie– Gluten free, paleo, whole 30- This makes a big pan…if you don’t have to feed many/aren’t into leftovers- cut the recipe in half. To make vegan, use veggie crumbles, or sub eggplant for the beef. Another option is to use sweet potatoes for the topping, or mashed cauliflower for a lower carb option.

Saturday- Primal Chicken Parmesan– Gluten free, paleo, grain free, lactose free- Chicken parm reminds me of Valentine’s day growing up…my mom would make it each year, with homemade sauce, along with red velvet cake. And she would make us handmade Valentines. Your mom can suck it.

Sunday- California Surfin’ Burritos- Aww; it’s Valentine’s Day…aka my husband’s birthday… aka Meg doesn’t get Valentine’s day…my MIL clearly birthed on this day on purpose….ANYWAY. So, the guy has selected this delicious meal. I first saw this burrito on Man Vs. Food, and we had to travel to San Diego to try it for ourselves. It was one of the greatest meals I have ever had. Get a tortilla and fill it with carne asade, shrimp, pico, french fries, avocado, and a sauce that I make by combining mayo and taco seasoning. The recipe also calls for jack cheese (which I usually skip). Or, go to the Lucha Libre burrito shop in San Diego and get a real one.

 

Do as I say, not as I do

I’m practicing very poor time management skills today! No time for wit or wisdom! I’m late; I’m late; I’m late!

Monday: Dosas- Did you not begin this on Saturday??? Oh well; another time. If you didn’t, use tortillas, flatbread, or lettuce to make wraps. I’m making a big veggie saute to fill mine.

Tuesday: Salmon with Avocado Salsa– Gluten free, Dairy Free, Whole 30- This recipe is meant to be grilled, but I will definitely not be standing outside in February grilling….bake at 400 for 15 minutes, or pan fry on med-high for about 6 minutes on each side. Serve with rice, cauliflower rice, or quinoa for a more filling meal.

Wednesday: Eggplant and Tomato Tart– Depending on what crust you use: Gluten free, vegan, paleo. Feel free to buy a crust, or use your favorite savory crust recipe.

Thursday: Turmeric Pumpkin Soup– Gluten free, vegan- In the interest of saving time, use canned pumpkin.

Friday: BBQ Chicken Pizza– Gluten free, lactose free- If you can’t find a rotisserie chicken, put some chicken in your crock pot and then shred.

Saturday: Mexican Casserole– Gluten free, vegetarian, can be vegan if you use non-dairy cheese. This is a big recipe. I think I’ll cut it in half, so I don’t have tons of leftovers.

Sunday: Smoky Sweet Potato Burgers– Vegan, gluten free if you use g-free buns- We’re going to eat these on top of a big salad, since we’ll be having, “Superbowl 4th Meal.”