What We’re Eating

What do we eat on a daily basis? Are you curious? I’m endlessly fascinated by what y’all eat every day.  I read quite a few blogs where people document their daily meals.  And I love them.  So, I thought I’d share an overview of what we eat.

Granola-Recipe

Breakfast:  Twice a month, I bake a double or triple batch of granola for my husband.  My go-to recipe is by Pam, and it’s a light version:  it uses a few tablespoons of oil, water and maple syrup.

Oat-Cakes

Me?  I don’t eat granola for breakfast.  I like HOT food in the morning; cold milk over granola makes me crabby.  Every morning, I make myself a cup of green tea, and I grab something on my way out the door.  I bake on the weekends to have things on hand.  My favorites are: Lauren’s no-bake granola bars, Heidi’s oatcakes with flax and walnuts (above), and also Heidi’s bran muffins (below).  I simply must fill my belly with whole grains and nuts in the morning, or I’ll be hungry  30 minutes later.

Bran-Muffins

On days when I don’t feel like going to work, I bribe myself with an Earl Grey Latte.  This used to only happen on Fridays, but it’s becoming more of a daily thing lately…

Earl-Grey-Latte

Mid-morning:  I try to eat a snack before lunch.  I’m not the best at it.  If I eat anything, it’s usually a small piece of cheese, a cup of yogurt or a piece of seasonal fruit (lately it’s red grapefruit).

Lunch:  I pack our lunches each morning.  For him, I always pack a sandwich on whole-grain bread.  I use avocado or hummus as the ‘glue’, and I layer on meat, cheese and greens for him.  If he’s lucky, I grilled some portobellos the night before, and I’ll make him a sandwich with roasted red peppers, olive oil, basil, balsamic and fresh mozzarella.  Sometimes, I pack him parsley-egg salad.  I pack him a handful of baby carrots (or cucumber slices or celery sticks), and I’ll add a few pieces of seasonal fruit or yogurt.  Once a week, I’ll add a package of pistachios or banana chips.  He loves those.  I take leftovers from dinner for my lunch ( again, I have to have HOT food).  I add a handful of baby carrots and a piece of fruit to round out my lunch.

Black-Eyed-Pea-Salsa

After-work:  This is my weakness. I come home famished and grab anything salty in sight:  mostly pita chips, pretzels, or chips with Texas caviar (black eyed pea salsa, if you don’t know).  I’ve been trying to eat smarter this time of day.  I tell myself I’ll make a small green smoothie, or I’ll try to eat my mid-morning snack that I neglected, but most often, it’s something crunchy and salty.  Brian rarely snacks after work. He usually pours himself a beer or a splash of whiskey while I cook.

Dinner:  Dinner is the highlight of my day.  I put a lot of effort into healthy dinners.  I meal-plan, I grocery shop, and I prep ahead of time.  I try to pack as many vegetables into dinner as possible.  The truth is,  we don’t eat a lot of meat.  No real reason. I’m not trying to save the planet or tell you meat is bad, honestly!  If I have to see meat raw, chances are I don’t want to eat it cooked.  Plus, I hate how many times I have to wash my hands when I’m cooking with meat.  I definitely eat meat at restaurants, but we’ll get to that later.  I rely on beans, lentils, tofu, cheese (mainly ricotta or feta), eggs, soba noodles and quinoa for our protein.  One night each week, I’ll try to work in some chicken or ground turkey.  Once or twice a month, I’ll force the beef.  It’s hard, though.

VegetarianMeals1

From top left: Otsu (by 101 Cookbooks), Roasted Vegetable Risotto over beef broth, Millet Stir-fry, Fried Polenta over Salad, and Quinoa Patties (by 101 Cookbooks).

Certain dinners make excellent lunch leftovers:

Vegetarian Meals 2

From top left: Spinach Crockpot Lasagna (recipe by Eat, Live, Run), ricotta gnocchi, Curry Noodle Pot (by 101 Cookbooks), and Taco Salad (adapted from How Sweet Eats).

 

Dessert:  We have to have dessert.  Have to.  I’ve read that craving sweets is due to a lack of protein (because your body craves cheap, easy energy from sugar), and we’re probably walking examples of this problem.  Brian will snack on whatever Dessert For Two we have laying around, and I’ll munch of those fleur-de-sel caramels from Trader Joe’s.  I’ll end my night with a cup of herbal tea.  

I also have one little rule:  I eat dessert or  a glass of wine—never both.  It’s a good rule to live by, and it has served me well.

I learned a lot writing this out.  I learned that I’m slightly more inclined to make sure Brian eats healthy than myself.  I focus on his healthy snacks, but not my own.  I’ve got to fix that.  I should tell you that I will eat meat at restaurants (because I didn’t have to see it raw or wash my hands 10 times during cooking).  Don’t be mistaken:  I love a good In n Out or Smashburger, and hot dogs are my personal weakness and cross to bear.  I’m not a role model when it comes to eating.  Most likely, I’m not getting enough protein or calories throughout the day.  I am working on this, I promise.  But, lately, I’ve had high acid stomach issues due to life stress.  When your stomach hurts after every time you eat, it kinda makes you not want to eat, ya know?

Goals: I’m going to work on adding frozen seafood to our meals.  It’s easy, quick and I hardly have to touch it with my hands, hah!  Brian loves juicing, so I’m going  to recommit to green drinks for snacks.  I adore pineapple + kale + strawberries.

If you’re curious about exercise, well, not much to report.  We both have jobs that require us to be active throughout the day.  I lift heavy stuff and I’m on my feet all day.  Brian essentially farms during the day.  I try to go to yoga at least once a week (yoga is my drug and I’ll pass you a hit anytime).  I know we need to set fitness goals.  I’d like to learn to lift small weights and do some strength exercises.

I know lots of you are going to have comments and opinions on this, so feel free to express yourselves!

Do y’all have any tips on how to work in more protein?

Comments

  1. says

    You definitely need more protein. :-) Up until a year ago, we were a military family, and now we are a retired military family, and part of our retirement preparations was to move to a farm. The more you read about feeding your family healthy food, the more disgusting grocery store meat and dairy foods become, and we just couldn’t afford to buy clean, healthy, grass-fed food from somebody else. So we bought a Jersey cow and learned how to milk her, and we bought some chickens and learned how to turn them into pot pies, and THIS year, we’re learning how to weed a garden. Not our strong suit. ;-) We’ve managed to get all our animals on a soybean-free diet, too, which should be excellent for these growing children, and might be something for you to research. Soybeans (like that protein-rich tofu) do funny things in our bodies.

    • says

      We’re a retired military family, too, Jennie! It seems our similarities just keep growing, right?! :) Is your husband a former Marine too? Because that would be the icing on the cake!

      I know you’re right about protein. I needed to hear it from someone else. I thought if someone read this they would say “no, you eat great!” even though I know we do not.

      We definitely have plans for our own animals some day. Right now, we have a little over half an acre, and aren’t sure what to do with it. Gardening is definitely something we do because it’s essentially our day jobs in agriculture, too–hah!

  2. says

    I definitely need whole grains in the morning, too! I’m a coffee girl, but the thought of an Earl Grey latte is very appealing :)

  3. says

    I’m not really in a position to comment on anyone’s diet but I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed reading this post. I love seeing how people eat (it’s that nosy thing again!) and I get some much inspiration from it. I can also totally relate to the after-work snack…I normally get home a couple of hours before my boyfriend and I’m starving by that point so it’s really hard not resist snacking especially on something crunchy and salty! Also, really like your dessert or wine rule. Such a good way to keep things balanced.

  4. says

    I used to have the same problem worrying about what my husband would eat and then I’d get home and realized I hadn’t gotten anything for myself. I definitely have changed that and eat SO much better as a result. Oh and washing my hands to deal with raw meat, definitely a pain!

    Hope the stress in your life gets better! I have the opposite issue and eat more when I’m feeling like that.

  5. says

    I love a sneaky peak into other peoples’ food lives! I agree with the comment at the top, it would definitely be good for you to get more protein in your diet. Do you like eggs? Scrambled for breakfast they’re perfect for hot food lovers and I sometimes pack little frittatas for my lunch. Yoghurt is also good protein – or have you tried hot quinoa? Like porridge but quinoa based so extra protein and totally yummy!

  6. says

    Ditto Kathryn…I love hearing what all my foodie friends eat. Mostly because I’m convinced you’re all gourmands as I’m over here eating scrambled eggs and toast for dinner half the time. ;) I’m with you on the protein thing. It’s my constant struggle. Red meat and I are on the outs, and I’ve been having similar achy tummy problems to yours–difficult for someone who loves food to not want to eat. :( Sigh! Thanks for the fun sneak peek!

  7. says

    I’m the same when it comes to hot breakfastsesessss. Give me my toasted whole grain English muffin with melted cheese, an egg and wilted arugula, thaaaaankyaaaa.

    I love your dinners! And your face.

  8. says

    I absolutely loved this post Christina and can relate to so much of what you said! I feel the exact same way about cooking meat too! I like it (and Ben wishes I made more of it), but I simply don’t own enough cutting boards not to be continually santizing them (and my knife, and my sink, and then there is the pesky question of what to do w/ the sponge after I wash) the whole time I’m cooking, and I get freaked out thinking I’m leaving raw chicken everywhere, lol.
    Whole grains + nuts in the morning are a MUST for me too (I even put almonds in my cereal). Totally admire your commitments here and you are inspiring me to make a few of my own. Thanks for this window into your world!

  9. says

    I know I don’t eat enough calories or get enough protein either. I have acid reflux disease and it’s triggered by the weirdest things (green peppers can lead to vomiting but roasted red peppers are perfectly fine??) and overeating. I’m always worried about overeating and being miserable for the rest of the day/night.

    I have found that posting my weekly menu plan on my blog often leads me to eating better. A lot of times I don’t want to post that I’m eating crackers and cheese or cereal two nights a week, so I’m more likely to plan a better meal. And if I plan it, I buy the ingredients, and because I don’t do food waste, I cook what I buy. Something about posting your menu plan for the whole world (or at least your corner of the internet) makes you strangely accountable…

  10. says

    I loved this post! We definitely have similar eating habits and styles, including our hatred of dealing with raw meat. I won’t eat chicken out because I know what I do to dissect it the way I want and I know there’s not a single restaurant that would go to that much time or trouble. I hadn’t heard that about the lack of protein causing you to crave sweets. Makes total sense though and could be a huge contributing factor to my insatiable sweet tooth :) Thanks for sharing!

    • Christina says

      Thanks for your comment, Danielle! I’ve resorted to buying individually frozen & cleaned chicken breasts. They’re so expensive, but it’s the only way I’ll eat it!

  11. says

    I don’t think it will surprise you that my biggest concern is your tummy issues!! (Ya know, given my own.) I know what it is like to have your stomach hurt after every meal, it’s not fun. :-/ The only thing I can tell you is to go get it checked out – that’s not something you want to fool around with.

    Loved seeing what you eat! Fun post. :-)

    • Christina says

      Thanks for the concern, Stephie. I have been to the doctor about my tummy troubles. She said it’s stress and put me on an acid-reducer. She asked what’s new in my life, and I told her my laundry list of new job, new state, wedding planning, new house, etc and she about flipped!

  12. says

    All this looks great!

    I plan out all my meals in advance for the week and make sure that I’m getting enough protein that way. It helps to see it all laid out in one place and see how much (or how little!) I’m getting.

  13. says

    thanks for sharing your eats – its always interesting, or nosy :P i have issues with evening snack, mainly after work too and thats when I settle with bag of chips :( from what I saw and you also have realized that – maybe try adding more protein – maybe eggs or fish more if meat is not your thing. you guys are expending alot of calories at work and if you are little curious on to know- try myfitnesspal app i try that every one in a while for about 3 days to see how my meals, calories, proteins are like and it gives me sense of direction on where i am at and where i need to do

  14. says

    I love your eating habits! I need to incorporate all of your healthy habits into my diet. Dinner is honestly my least favorite meal to make. I always feel like were in a rut with the dinners we eat. I cook more for lunch than for dinner (so weird!), and I need to change that. I love that you make mostly vegetarian meals, because it makes you eat more veggies (I need to think about that!!) I really wish we were neighbors so I could eat all this delicious food you are talking about!!! :) Thanks for sharing all this Christina! And I hope your life stressers go away soon! Keeping you in my prayers. Xoxo

  15. says

    Hej, hej!

    Try to get some protein in with EVERY meal… Women, I think, need from 50-70 grams of USABLE protein every day… Usable referring to the 7 (9?) amino acids needed to make a complete protein – it’s kinda hard to get all those from a single vegetable protein so try to mix ‘n’ match (eg. rice and beans)!

    Otherwise hot breakfasts, to me scream EGGS!! Have an egg or two for breakfast? 2 70g eggs and that’s 14g of protein right there! Serve it with whole grain toast, wilted (or fresh spinach) and you’ve covered your whole grain and greens requirements – top the whole lot of with a little hollandaise for a little more eggy protein/luxury and you’re away! It’ll taste pretty good with just salt and pepper, no hollandaise too… ;)

    Also – you could try adding spirulina (seaweed) powder to your green smoothies? You can’t really taste it and it’s >50% protein!

    I hope this helps! I loved the sneaky peak into your daily eating habits!

    Kat xx

    • says

      Thanks for the tips! The only type of eggs I like are hard-boiled. And they have to be hot. Well, when you reheat a hard-boiled egg, it explodes! It was short lived. Hah. Thanks for the tip about spirulina!

  16. says

    This was so interesting! I know what you mean about seeing raw meat. It’s such an appetite killer.
    I would definitely live off veggies and grains if I lived alone. :) I like the summers because my hubs makes things on the grill (salmon, burgers, ribs, etc.) and I just have to make yummy veggies and sides. Win win! I really enjoy Trader Joe’s frozen fish selection and incorporating eggs into my diet for protein.

    I hope your stress load lightens up soon. I know what it’s like to get stomach aches after eating due to stress. It’s no fun and really makes eating more like a chore! Hang in there, friend! :)

  17. Desiree says

    Hi Christina,
    I just found your blog a few weeks ago and have been enjoying reading through older posts. I have a huge sweet tooth so plan to make some of your “smaller” recipes so I can have a sweet treat but not over due it. Thanks for sharing your daily eating plan. Now my husband is a meat and potatoes guy and I struggle with him to eat healthy. But I’m not giving up!!! My children and I do pretty well with a balanced diet for the most part. I also have tummy troubles (GERD and h. pylori) and know all to well how food plays a huge role in that. I would recommend maybe adding a protein shake (loaded with tons of greens and fruit) to help up your protein intake. Oh and I also have a dessert OR wine rule however it’s been more wine lately. Ooops. Thanks again for sharing and I look forward to future posts and trying some of your recipes.
    Desiree (from Atlanta) :)

  18. Stacey says

    I’m so nosy and I love knowing what other people eat! I recently had surgery and was working from home full time so it was so much easier to make healthy, filling dinners. I too have to have a hot lunch, so I always plan for leftovers. I love sandwiches, but not cold-packed-ahead sandwiches. I just started back at the office and getting a good dinner cooked after work is so much harder when you’re dealing with coworkers all day, commuting, and sitting in traffic. It’s made me super grumpy and want to take as many shortcuts as possible! So I’ve started buying giant bags of frozen deveined frozen Gulf shrimp from HEB and I use it as our protein almost every night. Love the stuff! Low cal and so versatile.

  19. says

    I enjoyed reading this! It’s funny, I never would have thought I’d care to read about what other people eat until I started food blogging and now I’m always curious. Love the idea of making huge batches of granola. I’m a hot food in the morning kinda gal myself but love snacking on granola. Fun post, my dear!

  20. says

    Am I way behind on the new look? ‘Cause it’s AMAAAAAZING – I love it! I really enjoy reading what people eat and do from time to time – makes me feel like we’re in the same city and hanging out for lunch or something ;)

  21. says

    So funny, I was just debating tonight if I wanted a glass of wine OR an ice cream. I went for the ice cream. I loved reading this! I’m with you on cooking meat, although I end up making it a few times a week somehow. Tuna is a great way to sneak it in without having to get your hands messy.

  22. says

    I loved reading this, Christina. It’s somehow so interesting to read about what other people eat on any given day.! I had a salty-snack thing going after work as well, but I discovered that a small spoonful of peanut butter does the trick. You make me think that maybe I too need the extra protein (not a big fan of cooking with meat either), so that’s why the PB is so satisfying? Or maybe it’s just because it’s so good. ;)

  23. says

    I love love loved reading this!! It’s always so fun to hear what other people eat. Honestly, I’m not super sure that you need more protein. I find that most people think you need a TON more than you actually do. And as a vegetarian, I will say as long as you’re cooking dinners with some protein source in it – beans, tofu, cheese, nuts, eggs – then you’re probably fine!

  24. Becca - Cookie Jar Treats says

    Besides me not eating fruit or vegetables, I’m a pretty healthy eater. I do have binge days though. But at least I get my whole grains in, some dairy every once in a while with my cereal, my protein, and of course my sugar by the end of the night, sometimes two helpings of that ;)

  25. Natasha says

    Do you really lack proteine? Your meals sound pretty complete and healthy to me.
    I hope your acid reflux eases off – that is no fun!
    Oh and I must say your hubby is a very lucky guy, you really look after him.

  26. says

    I LOVE this post. Like you, I’ve been really into reading what other people eat out of curiosity and maybe a little comparison, too? Ha! But I think you are a little too hard on yourself in regards to how you guys eat. If you are going through the effort of grilling mushrooms for your hubby’s sandwiches the night before I think that is pretty darn good. :)

    Anyway, love these little glimpses into your daily life. The more Christina that is infused into the pages of this blog, the better as far as I’m concerned!

  27. Mert says

    Just a tip about exercise, well, a few actually. One issue of Women’s Health magazine with one 15 minute workout got me back into exercising. It was so quick and easy — I could do it at home– and actually saw results in a few weeks so that kept me pretty motivated. Also, Pinterest has helped me find all sorts of helpful exercise stuff. Youtube is a great place to find quick workouts too. Blogilates/POP pilates has some great vids.

  28. says

    My tip on protein…think of non-meat items. I get my protein fix from yogurts, tempeh, nuts, peanut butter [in moderation], soy beans…these things are easier for me to fit in to my daily eats than loads of chicken breast LOL

  29. says

    I have the same thing with hot food and making sure my husband eats healthy. I always pack a healthy lunch for him and then I’ll go out to eat for lunch myself. Or now that my work caters lunch everyday I eat that, which is not a healthy way of living. I love meat, as you probably know from my blog, and I think it is really what gives me energy and fills me up. Make your hubby do the meat cooking. Steak – grill it. Chicken breasts – grill ‘em.

  30. says

    Hot breakfast-yes! I’ve recently been juicing & making smoothies for breakfast to try to get in more veggies and it’s just not the same. And dessert after dinner-duh!

    Also, couldn’t agree more on the meat thing. Whenever I cook with it I swear I spend more time washing my hands than actually cooking! Ugh!!

  31. Betsy says

    It’s always fun to peek into someone’s meal time! As someone who has had to eat a ton of eggs during pregnancy, there are some sneaky ways to get them in at breakfast – clafoutis is yummy as is egg custard, and both can be eaten hot and don’t taste like eggs. Good luck with upping your protein, and I imagine your stomach acid would be reduced if you had more small snacks throughout the day. You may also want to look into gallbladder health…enough advice, I love your blog and hope you feel better soon!

  32. says

    Growing up in a big Italian family, proteins always been low on the totem pole behind pasta and bread-heavy meals, so I struggle w incorporating protein into my meals as an adult too… Plus I also hat reason my hands 12 times to cool one chicken breast. ;-) I have actually tried the Paleo diet a few times to make protein more of a priority, and I have def seen a corration between low protein and high sugar in my personal diet… I think it all comes down to smarter meal planning though (least for me)!

    Ps. Just found your blog and love it! I actually work w the military and have a number of friends who are currently serving or recently separated.

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