Sometimes Healthy Kitchen Staples

When I first moved to the country from the city, every grocery shopping experience was an exciting adventure.

Finally, I was in stores with room in the aisles to roam around, and I didn’t need to go to 8 different stores to find everything on my list (as I had done in the city).

But, eventually the shiny new experience of shopping at a suburban grocery store wore off just a bit, and then was when I noticed I had a problem…a food shopping problem. Yep, some women spend their hard-earned dough on shoes and purses, but not me. I spend mine on Goldfish and coffee creamers.

To curb my “addiction,” I try to hit up the grocery store with a list and stick to it. The problems arise when I decide to make something for dinner and notice that I don’t have all the ingredients. This gives me another excuse to go to the grocery store, and while there, I usually do a great job of convincing myself there are a couple of extra items that I need.

There are certain items, however, that I allow myself to purchase at any time. These are my kitchen staples, and since each product generally gets a lot of usage, it never feel like a waste when I purchase them.

Kitchen Staples

You never know what you’re going to find in a Sometimes Healthy Kitchen, but I guarantee you each of these items will be there.

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Double Dark Chocolate Avocado Cookies and a Sometimes Healthy Workout

There is nothing a healthy living blogger enjoys more than substitution. We’re always in search of the next “big thing” in the world of healthy cooking substitutions. Sometimes, I actually wake up in the middle of the night with wacky ideas of potential food replacements for my next recipe. 

So, when I saw this infographic on Pinterest a few days ago, the mad cooking scientist in me literally giggled with glee:

Healthy Baking Substitutions-1

Source: Greatist

Not only does this handy-dandy substitution cheat sheet provide an exhaustive list of options, but also it tells you what recipes to use the replacements foods in and how they will help improve the health factor of your sweet treats. 

Since I’m always on the hunt for these types of things, I was pretty familiar with most of them, but my eyes zeroed in on one: avocados. I’ve written about my love for avocados before and have never been afraid to experiment with them. But replace butter with avocados…in a sweet dish. Now, that’s just crazy right?

Let me get this straight...you want me to add this to my cookie?

Let me get this straight…you want me to add this to my cookie?

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WIAW: A Day in the Life of a Sometimes Healthy Girl Part 3

IMG_5165

Am I the only person that struggles with writing an opener every single time I sit down to type a post? I know that blogging is supposed to be more casual, but as a (former) trained writer, my brain is trained to put a lot of emphasis into the whole “intro/conclusion” thing.

Here are my typical “go-to’s”:

I usually belabor the opening sentence for a good 30 minutes, and yet, it always ends up being one of the above. Since blogging is supposed to be “conversational,” maybe I should create you all the way I normally greet my friends, with an exceedingly large, loud and drawn out “Helllloooooo,” just to ensure my presence is known. The BF can tell you all about it. He gets it every time I enter our house and just LOVES it.

So, there you have it, a 180 word look into the over-analytical brain of a Sometimes Healthy Girl. But, you didn’t come here to read about my rambling thoughts. It’s “What I Ate Wednesday” (WIAW), and you’re here to check out my eats from the previous day. Tuesday was a bit hectic, so there were a few Sometimes Healthy Snacks on-to-go, plus a dinner full of veggie substitutions and finally a drool-worthy dessert.


You may be wondering how my life is so hectic…considering the whole job thing. I always enjoy reading blogger day-in-the-lifes (and have written some of my own in the past), so for your reading pleasure, here is WIAW: Day in the Life of Sometimes Healthy Girl

5:30 AM: Wake up for no reason at all, so get up to quickly use the restroom.

Dog notices that I am up and decided to take advantage of my early potty break by whining until I let him out for a potty break of his own. Feed him and can’t get back to bed.

6:00 AM: Brew up a cup of coffee and use up the last of my Girl Scout Cookies Coffee-Mate creamer. Feel an unreasonable pang of sadness as I throw away the bottle. Consider mixing some water with the last drop to make it last longer.

Say it 'aint so!

Say it ‘aint so!

I noticed it was no longer in the grocery store last time I checked so that means just a week after I discovered this “special edition” creamer, it appears to be off the shelves. How did I miss the boat on this amazing creation? Our time together was short, but oh so sweet. Oh well, I guess I’ll just have to drown my sorrows in their seasonal Pumpkin Spice flavor. Continue Reading →

Six Sometimes Healthy Snacks-on-the-Go

In the spirit of healthy starts on the glorious fall Monday, I’m going to share with you some of my favorite healthy snacks. Let’s kick off the week on the right foot!

I’ve mentioned before on this blog that I’m a huge snacker. They sometimes replace my meals, so it’s important for me to get a lot of nutrition from my snacks. In general, most of my snacks will have 250 calories and contain at least one important dietary requirement, like protein or fiber. Another requirement is that they don’t involve a lot of preparation and are easy to bring with me everywhere (especially since I’m no longer sitting in an office these days).

1. SOMETIMES HEALTHY STAPLE: VEGGIES + DIP

Gotta get my veggies yo!

Gotta get my veggies yo!

Perfect For: Pretty much any occasion. I nibble on these babies whenever I want, with one important exception: before workouts. If I eat them before i workout, I feel them jumbling around the entire time. 

How to Make It: Every Sunday, I chop up a whole bunch of vegetables, which I then throw in a plastic bag and take with my everywhere, along with some dips in small Tupperware. Favorite veggies include tomatoes, cucumbers, celery, carrots, snap peas and green beans.

Combinations: I try to add more nutrition with the dips, and here are some of my favorites:

  • Greek Yogurt + Honey Mustard (protein bonus)
  • Greek Yogurt + Avocado (healthy fats, protein bonus)
  • Cottage Cheese (protein bonus)
  • Peanut Butter (vitamin, protein bonus)
  • Laughing Cow Cheese

 

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A Sinfully Sweet Sugar Cereal Recipe

 Boy, do I have a treat for you today!

Fruity Pebble Feature

I mentioned on Monday that my friend Molly and I cooked up some delicious Fruity Pebble Pancakes while she was in town, and today, as promised, I have the pancake AND glaze recipe for you.

Prepare to be indulged.

But first, let’s stir up a little controversy on the beautiful Friday morning with this question: Why is sugar cereal food enemy #1 for most mothers of young children.

I present to you public enemy #1.

I present to you public enemy #1.

Moms, please help me understand. You see, when I compare the number of sugar grams per serving of cereals like Cinnamon Toast Crunch and Fruity Pebbles (two of my favorites) to, say, everyone’s preferred brand of greek yogurt, guess what food has more per serving…You guessed it: greek yogurt! 5 more grams in fact.

Granted, greek yogurt packs a mean protein punch alongside the extra sugar, but still. Why is there such a movement against feeding children sugar cereal?

I won’t argue that there are more nutritious items to serve your child for breakfast every day, but still, do these cereals really need to be avoided like the plague?

Perhaps I’m so “emotionally charged” on this particular issue is because of my personal experience with it…

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WIAW: Protein with a Touch of Honesty

Delicious and nutritious!


Happy Wednesday everyone! I hope you’re enjoying the fall weather as much as me. 

You may notice a bit of a change to the design of my blog today. I was aiming for a clean look, with more white space and an emphasis on the pictures. Please let me know what you think – always looking for constructive criticism!

Anyway, it’s What I Ate Wednesday (WIAW) again, and today’s post features a reoccurrence of one very important part of my diet: protein. I’ve been slacking in the protein category these days, so I’ve been making a conscious effort to up the daily intake. I’m going to finish off this post of mouthwatering eats by sharing with you something that happened to me recently that has affected my life in a pretty major way. Protein with a touch of honesty ya’ll.


 

My day started a 4:15 AM, because my jet-setting BF needed a ride to the airport. He has been traveling a lot these days, but his schedule should calm down soon. I miss him…but I love having the chance to indulge in foods he hates, like spaghetti squash and tofu.

Getting up at such a crazy hour requires a large caffeine buzz. Enter Dunkin Donuts.

Oh, no you didn't Coffee-Mate!

Oh, no you didn’t Coffee-Mate!

Nope, your eyes are not deceiving you. That right there is Girl Scout Cookie Creamer from Nestle. I saw it in the store the other day and literally almost jumped for joy. And guess what? It’s also available in Thin Mint.

The flavor was on-point, evoking the nostalgic Samoa cookie (my favorite) with every sip.

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Fruity Pebble Pancakes and High School Rivalries Reignited

Strike a pose!

Happy Monday to all! It’s a Happy Monday for this blogger girl because I’m finally self-hosted! Did you notice the Bluehost logo in the URL bar today? Yep, I finally did it! More on the process in another post, but suffice it to say, moving to self-hosting wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. Bare with me the next couple of days as I explore new layouts/fonts/color schemes/etc. I should have everything finalized by the end of the week.

But, in the meantime, there’s not reason to stop talking to you, my reader friends!

This past weekend was one of my favorite weekends in recent memory. It was the first time I had an official houseguest in the Hudson Valley, and since the BF was in China for work, I got to squeeze in a lot of quality girl time with an old friend. If you read some of my old posts, it will become pretty apparent that I absolutely love being a host. I had plenty of guests when I lived in NYC, and nothing brought me more joy than making their experience at my apartment fun and exciting.

I welcome houseguests with mini donuts

I welcome houseguests with mini donuts

Since moving to the Hudson Valley in February, I have not yet had a friend stay with me, so I was very excited when my friend Molly texted me and asked if she could come spend the weekend in the Valley. Whenever I hang out with my friend Molly, it’s a guaranteed adventure, so I eagerly said “YES!” and texted her daily to check in and ensure she was still coming.

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Kitchen Adventures: Houseguests Must Work For Food!

In case last Wednesday’s post didn’t show you, I LOVE having houseguests. Anytime we have visitors, I go crazy in the kitchen baking delicious items like donuts and scones.

After living in apartments for years, it’s fun playing host in a REAL house. And, I take my duties very, very seriously. I even offer up Cole as a cuddle buddy for my guests.

Life is "Ruff"

Life is “Ruff”

He doesn’t seem to mind his “extra duties.”

Anyway, I mentioned on Wednesday that my friend Molly would be staying with us this week. What I didn’t mention is that Molly happens to be a very talented photographer and offered to help me out with improving my food photography. In case you didn’t notice, there’s a lot of room for improvement in that area!

Unfortunately, Molly’s camera needed to charge last night, so she’ll be teaching me a few things on today’s hike…but that didn’t mean I let her get off easy!

She was pretty excited to learn that I would be making her my “famous” Cheesy Spaghetti Squash and Cucumber Tomato Summer Salad for dinner last night. But, I wasn’t about to let her get off easy and sit on the couch with Cole as I worked away. Nope, since both were recipes for the blog, I put her to work taking pictures of me cooking in the kitchen.

Three guesses on who took this pic. Hint? Not me!

Three guesses on who took this pic. Hint? Not me!

Houseguests must work for food!

Relaxing and taking in the Hudson Valley...this won't last too long, Molly!

Relaxing and taking in the Hudson Valley…this won’t last too long, Molly!

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WIAW: Veggie Packed + Cheese

Oh, hello everyone! Notice anything different about the blog? Nope, probably not.

I spent about 10 hours between yesterday and today trying to navigate the murky waters of moving to self-hosting, and I’m still not there. Basically, most of my issues are coming from not being able to export everything from WordPress.com. In case anyone is interested or wants to help me (PRETTY PLEASE), I’m using Bluehost. I’ve done a lot of research at this point, but if you’ve experienced similar issues, I’m all ears! I’ve heard that this process is easy….so far, I’d have to disagree!

But, let’s move on from the frustrating technology issues in my world. After all, it’s What I ate Wednesday (WIAW)! Talking about food is MUCH more fun. The BF was out of town yesterday, and as I’ve said before, whenever the cat’s away, the mice will play. For me, that means eating lots of veggies, since the BF is more of a meat n’ potatoes kind of guy.

I know, I’m such a rebel.

Let’s start with my ultra-gourmet breakfast.

Breakfast of a Sometimes Healthy Champ?

Breakfast of a Sometimes Healthy Champ?

A Fiber One Wrap filled with honey and a couple of dark chocolate chips + Chobani. This breakfast clearly contained the most important food groups for an active Sometimes Healthy Girl: carbs, protein and chocolate.

I’m currently obsessed with both of these products. The Chobani Mint with Dark Chocolate Chips is delicious and tastes like a healthy Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookie. The Fiber One Wraps are light, but carby and filling at the same time. We usually run out of these in less than a week because the BF likes them too.

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A Tale of Two Cities: From Couture to Cookies and Spaghetti Squash

Hello from the Hudson Valley! I’m back from NYC and very excited to jump back into the routine of my less exciting, but very fulfilling daily life.

I've missed these pretty skies and mountains!

I’ve missed these pretty skies and mountains!

Every time I go back to NYC, there are small moments that remind me of why I moved there in the first place: the glitz, the glam and the overall “grandness” of NYC can truly make person feel like she can accomplish anything. It’s this giant, beautiful melting pot, and everyone is working their butts off to achieve some sort of dream, whether it’s making millions in investment banking or becoming the next Carrie Bradshaw.

But, inevitably, by the end I am relieved to get back to my lowkey lifestyle in the Hudson Valley. This time around, my experience can probably best be described as “a tale of two cities.” During the day on Friday, I was mingling with the rich and famous at Fashion Week, but by nighttime, I was sitting in Michelle’s apartment eating spaghetti squash pad thai (our favorite), gossiping and watching reality tv. Let’s recap it all.

I started off Friday morning with a run on the track and then quickly dolled myself up for fashion week.

Strike a post: Vogue.

Strike a post: Vogue.

This country girl doesn’t dress up much these days, so it was quite a treat to get glammed up. In case you’re wondering, the dress is from Theory and the shoes are Ivanka Trump. With my most capable looking outfit and a bit of extra eye liner, I felt confident and ready to take on Mercedes Benz Fashion Week!

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