Here’s the second version of my delicious, protein-packed snack bars – get excited, y’all! ^_^
Here’s the second version of my delicious, protein-packed snack bars – get excited, y’all! ^_^
If there’s one snack I’m constantly in need of, it’s protein on-the-go. It took a few weeks of tinkering, but I finally perfected these no-bake protein bars that come together in less than 10 minutes.
In case you weren’t already aware, blueberry and lemon are best buds. They should always hang out together, because they are a dynamic duo. Sweet blueberries against the tart freshness of lemon – it just doesn’t get any better in my book.
I call this a breakfast cake, because I more often than not eat this at breakfast or lunch. Really, you can eat it anytime. No one’s going to stop you!
For the dry base of the cake, combine almond flour, oat fiber (not oat flour – there is a difference), whey protein isolate (for a protein kick), baking powder, salt, and Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet. I used both oat fiber and whey for two reasons: 1) I wanted to give the cake a sturdy texture and 2) I wanted to tone down the sometimes aggressive flavor of the whey.
For the wet base, combine the almond milk, vanilla, melted coconut oil, zest of 1 lemon, and juice of 1/2 the lemon.
Combine the two bowls of ingredients, whisking until there are no lumps.
Next, prepare the blueberries. I used frozen berries, because it’s what I had on hand but you could use fresh if you like. Combine the frozen berries with 1 Tbsp of coconut flour and toss them together.
This helps create a little flotation device for the berries that helps them to stick in the cake batter without sinking to the bottom once the cake bakes. [It is so annoying when that happens!]
Prepare an 8×8 baking dish with coconut oil spray and a square of parchment paper in the bottom.
Pour the batter in, and bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.
As you can see, the top of the cake doesn’t brown as much as the sides. Make sure you look there for doneness first, and check the middle with a toothpick start around 30 minutes of bake time. It’s OK if it puffs a little, it will reduce as it cools and you can (gently) press it back down if needed.
Let the cake cool completely, then prepare the glaze.
Beat together the cream cheese, Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet, lemon juice, and vanilla until the mixture is slightly fluffy. One tablespoon at a time, add the almond milk until the mixture is thick, yet pourable. Pour it right over the top of the cake, letting it go down the sides and wherever it pleases. Just gently spread it with a spatula so that all sides are evenly coated.
Serve immediately, or refrigerate for future use.
The cake is perfectly moist with tiny bursts of blueberry throughout. The glaze is smooth, velvety, and zesty with the fresh lemon. It’s the perfect breakfast or snack time pick-me-up.
This is your go-to guide for fueling your workouts on the Trim Healthy Mama (THM) plan.
The journey to where I am today began first with my passion for fitness. I joined my local YMCA when my daughter (now 4.5) was about 6 months old. I started going to swim as my workout, and soon got into group fitness classes. Strength training, Zumba, yoga, cycling, TRX – you name it, I was trying it. At first, I was losing weight consistently, but a few months later I plateaued even when I was working out more.
After being frustrated and stuck at the same place for months, I began my journey with THM. Around that same time, I became a fitness instructor (AKA working out a LOT more). It took a few months, but I finally hit my stride with being a fit, trim, AND healthy mama.
1. Timing is everything. We all know we’re supposed to be eating every 3 hours, and with fitness that rule is even more important. You should have a meal 1-2 hours prior to working out, and have a replenishing meal or snack within an hour of working out.
My go-to post workout snack is a Vega Sport Protein smoothie. Vega is a vegan protein, and its flavors are stevia based. The stats for a half scoop are 1.5g fat, 1g net carbs, and 15g protein. I place a half scoop into a Blender Bottle with water after my workout and shake it right up. [*NOTE: I believe Vega is still considered a personal choice because the peas are not sprouted. In this instance, I take it because I believe it will do more good than not in my case.]
2. Match your fuel to your workout. This one is really important – in order to perform your best during your workout, you need to know what type of fuel will be best.
For cardio-heavy workouts such as cycling, running, tabata, etc. an E meal will give you the most energy during your workout. You don’t want to feel weighed down while doing cardio, the heavier carb ratio helps fuel your muscles and increase endurance during your workout.
Oatmeal is FANTASTIC for cardio workouts. I have multiple recipes for overnight oats, which are all E’s and easy to throw together with a little prep. If you’re OK with dairy before cardio, then cottage cheese, yogurt, or a kefir smoothie are also great E options with lots of protein. I like to mix a Tbsp of fat free cottage cheese into an Oikos 000 yogurt and have sprouted toast with jelly and fruit on the side with coffee or green tea.
For more strength-based or low impact workouts (such as weight lifting, yoga, barre, pilates, or similar), go for a Deep S meal prior to your sweat session. Dairy-heavy S’s can cause bloat during a workout, so try to avoid them.
My go-to meal prior to low impact exercise is eggs, bacon, avocados with nutritional yeast, and coffee with collagen. I do have half and half in my coffee, but it’s not enough to weigh me down during my workout (and I usually consume this over an hour before my workout).
For a combination of strength and cardio, I find it best to go with a FP protein shake. It’s light, but filling, and keeps my energy levels up while I get my sweat going. This meal type is also good if you’re someone who wakes up early and goes to workout first thing in the morning. My rule is not to workout on an empty stomach, but there are a few days during the week where I’m up early to sweat and my stomach hasn’t quite caught up with me. On those days, a shake is just enough to get me going.
My basic skeleton recipe is 1 scoop of whey protein isolate, 2 Tbsp fat free cottage cheese, fresh or frozen fruit of choice, vanilla, 1 scoop of collagen, water and/or unsweetened almond milk (I usually do about 1/2 c of each), and sweetener of choice to taste. It’s the perfect pre-workout energizer for early mornings!
3. Know how to recover. Just like fueling prior to your workout is important, recovering and re-fueling post-workout is equally important.
Carbs fuel your muscles for hard work, and they also help your muscles recover while boosting your energy. After a tough cardio and/or strength workout, I go for a big E meal with lots of protein. The protein helps you recover, while the carbs build your muscles and give you an overall boost of energy (after you come down from that post-workout endorphin and adrenaline rush).
Like I said – pack. in. that. protein. What many people miss with E meals is the protein, then they end up feeling hungry an hour later. My post-workout lunch is a sandwich on sourdough packed with turkey, Dijon mustard, lettuce or sprouts, tomato and onion with a pickle wedge, fruit, veggies or other on-plan sides (pictured is 1 c of salted Skinny Pop and 2 Tbsp of my FP Everything Bagel Dip with grape tomato dippers), and a big Good Girl Moonshine (pg. 397 of the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook). Hydrating is important for muscle recovery as well, so make sure you get those fluids in to prevent soreness tomorrow.
If the end of your workout is an hour or more until your next meal, go for an S meal to fill you up. There are many ideas you can go with for an S meal, and the same basic rules apply: pack in the protein, get a mix of fruit and veggies, and sip that water/GGMS.
There you have it! My guide for fueling your fitness with THM. These make seem like small tweaks, but trust me when I say they will make all the difference in your routine.
Matcha is one of my favorite, refreshing flavors. It’s also a power-packed superfood! Matcha contains vitamins, antioxidants, is naturally detoxifying, and boosts metabolism. Hot or cold, a good matcha latte at the start of your day is sure to please.
Matcha gives you that morning (hot or cold) caffeine boost needed to jump start your day, and this FP latte goes with any meal.
I used to love the matcha latte at Starbuck’s, but I think I love this at-home version even more. Plus, it takes less than 10 minutes to make (which is definitely less than the wait time at a busy coffee shop).
Matcha powder is incredibly versatile. You can use it for baking, smoothies, and even ice cream.
Simply place all of the ingredients into a high-powered blender – I love my Ninja single cups for this, because it’s fast and effective. Serve over ice (or blend with ice for a frappé) and enjoy!
This recipe made me so happy! Not only did it work on the first try, which can be rare for baking, it was easy to throw together before Sunday morning breakfast. This was my first gluten/sugar free coffee cake, and I could not be more pleased with the result.
If you have all the ingredients, this cake is quick and simple to throw together. I liked using protein as a big part of the base here for 2 reasons: it makes the cake texture more like coffee cake (sturdy and slightly dry) and it adds more protein to the cake (making it a great snack or finishing complement to an S breakfast or lunch).
Next is your wet ingredients: eggs, unsweetened vanilla almond milk, melted coconut oil, vanilla bean paste, and vanilla extract (yes, I like both because I like vanilla, however you can leave out the paste if you want.) Stir it up.
Then whisk the wet into the dry. The consistency is pretty wet, like runny pancake batter.
Get your pan ready, and make sure your oven is preheated to 350. I prepped my 8×8 baking dish with coconut oil spray and a square of parchment paper. I did it this way because I wanted to make certain the cake would slide right out of the dish. With the parchment in there, each piece came out perfectly, and the dish was easy to clean.
Prepare your topping by combining softened butter, cinnamon, Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet, and nuts. I chose to use sliced almonds but you could use pecans, hazelnuts, walnuts, whatever you fancy. It’s going to look like a paste, that’s OK.
Pour half of your cake batter into your prepared dish, dot it with half of the nut topping, then pour on the other half of cake batter and dot the top with the rest of the nut mixture.
If you want more of a streusel-like topping, you can add some coconut flour to the mix to dry it out and make it more crumbly but I do like how this turned out. The butter melts, making the cake moist and you still get the crunch of the nuts with the cinnamon sweetness.
Bake the cake at 350 for about 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown delicious on top.
All of that topping sits just under the golden brown surface.
Gorgeous! Let it cool slightly before cutting.
Slice it into 9 pieces, and have you a piece, girl.
See? All that cinnamon, sweet goodness floating throughout the cake. The cake has flecks of vanilla bean and a crunch factor from the nuts. The cake is fluffy, sturdy, and slightly dry – making it the perfect partner with your coffee or tea.
This is a perfect make-ahead snack for the week. I’ve sent pieces with my husband to work, and heated it up as a snack. Just store the pieces in a large gallon zip-top bag in the fridge.
These Brownie Batter oats are so rich and chocolatey, you won’t believe they’re an E!
I’m a chocoholic, I admit it. If I have a dessert choice, it will almost always include chocolate in some form. Honestly, chocolate is good any time – breakfast, lunch, snacks, or dessert. These oats are so decadent, you could enjoy them as a filling E dessert and not feel like you’re missing any richness.
The prep for overnight oats could not be easier – combine the oats, unsweetened vanilla almond milk, whey protein isolate, Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet, vanilla, Lily’s chocolate chips, unsweetened cocoa powder, and salt in a wide mouth mason jar with a small spatula. Pop a lid on it, then set it in the fridge for at least one hour, or overnight. You could even make this up to 5 days in advance, if you’re looking for a grab-and-go snack, breakfast, or dessert. I prefer the wide mouth jars for these overnight oatmeals because it’s a little easier to get the ingredients into the jar and really get them combined, however you could use anything that will hold the ingredients and has a lid.
Once the oats have a chance to soak and become soft, the chocolate chips actually break down slightly and almost create this pudding-like thickness. I enjoyed these as an afternoon snack, and I really felt like I was eating a completely rich pudding or sinful chocolate dessert.
These oats are so versatile, they could pass for breakfast, an afternoon snack, or a protein-packed E dessert. And, really, who doesn’t want a decadent chocolate grab-and-go meal?
Another fresh, flavorful overnight oats recipe is coming your way!
Blueberries are one of my favorite fruits to have in the morning. However, blueberries by themselves day after day can feel a little redundant. So, in my efforts to welcome Spring (back) to Georgia (because the weather this week has not been Spring-y, AT ALL) I combined my favored blueberries with fresh, zesty lemon.
The blueberry-lemon combo is incredibly refreshing and light – it’s almost like blueberries with a splash of sunshine. Just the thing to get you energized for the day ahead!
The preparation is exceedingly quick and easy – assemble the oats, unsweetened vanilla almond milk, whey protein isolate, vanilla, Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet, salt, chia seeds, frozen blueberries, and the zest (plus a small squeeze of juice, if you like) of 1 small lemon in a wide mouth mason jar and stir it together with a small spatula. Pop a lid on it and place it in the fridge, then forget about it for at least an hour or overnight. You can even prep multiple versions of these using my other overnight oats recipes days in advance for your weekday mornings. With a full scoop of whey protein isolate, these oats are a meal unto themselves. However, if you need some help feeling full you could enjoy them with some egg whites or other E-friendly proteins.
I used chia seeds in this recipe because it had virtually zero fat (which is great for an E), and I wanted to add a superfood element. Chia seeds are rich in omega-3s, and get slightly gelatinous when they’re soaked. I used a scant Tablespoon in this recipe, which only added about 3-3.5g of fat. Of course, they aren’t vital, so you could leave them out if you don’t have them on hand. You could also add a dollop of fat free Greek yogurt or cottage cheese for a little creaminess.
In the morning, you have these beautifully creamy oats with soft blueberries and a little pop of freshness from the lemon and chia seeds. If you need a recipe to get your rear in gear in the mornings, this is the one!
I am so excited to share these overnight oats recipes with you! They’re a fantastic (and EASY) make-ahead E breakfast. It’s perfect for those rushed mornings on-the-go.
Chunky Monkey is my favorite ice cream flavor combination of all time. If you’re unfamiliar with it, it’s banana ice cream with dark chocolate chunks and walnut pieces. Can’t really have the walnut pieces with this, unless you want to make it a crossover, but with the help of Lily’s chocolate chips I can have the chocolate-banana combo. [Side note: I will make a low carb chunky monkey ice cream one day – count on it.] A serving size of Lily’s chocolate chips is about 60 chips, which I figured out (through counting tiny chips) is roughly 2 Tablespoons (and has only 4.5g of fat at the full serving, perfect for an E). I only used one Tablespoon in this recipe, and it was plenty chocolatey.
These oats took me just 5 minutes to prep (and I prepped 4 at once!), and they use simple ingredients – nothing crazy here. The only prep involved is to place all of the ingredients into a wide mouth mason jar, or something similar, and stir until combined. I like the wide mouth jars for this, because it’s easier to get down into the jar with a small spatula to stir everything together. Of course, the jars all come with their own lids making storage a breeze.
The oats have to be in the fridge for at least an hour, but you can prep a few days worth at a time, up to about 5 days.
Place the oats into the jar, then follow with vanilla, salt, whey protein isolate, unsweetened vanilla almond milk, Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet, mashed banana, and Lily’s chocolate chips. Stir to combine, then set in the fridge for at least one hour.
Then in the morning, you have these perfectly softened, creamy oats with chunks of banana and rich chocolate chips. These oats, coupled with a big cup of collagen green tea, were the perfect light, yet filling breakfast before heading off to the gym.
Last week, I scored some new baking toys at one of my local stores, and I was itching to make doughnuts. I looked up a few recipes, and finally decided to go with one that has some apple flavor.
Apples are almost exclusively in E territory for THMers, so it can be difficult to get the decadence you want from apple pie without going into crossover territory (which isn’t a bad thing, of course!).
Using whey as a base, you get a doughnut that’s both flavorful and filling. This is a recipe I adapted from Andrea’s Protein Cakery.
Apple Pie Protein Doughnuts (THM FP or E, with an S option)
Serves 6 (full size doughnuts)
Preheat oven to 325.
Whisk together all ingredients for the cakes in a medium-sized bowl. How much almond milk you use depends on your batter. This was the last thing I added, as the batter was looking dry. I glugged (technical term ^_~) in just enough to get everything to come together. The batter was about the consistency of waffle batter, maybe a hair thicker.
Spray your doughnut form pan lightly with coconut oil, and spoon or pipe the batter into each mold, smoothing it over as you go.
Bake for approximately 10-12 minutes. *NOTE: Watch them carefully while baking, you do NOT want to over bake. Mine went for about 12-13 minutes. After the 10 minute mark, I was checking them every minute until I pulled them out.
Remove from the oven and cool until they’re OK to touch.
In a small blender, combine 1 teaspoon of cinnamon with 1-2 packets Truvia or Gentle Sweet (each packet is about 1 tsp).Grind 1-2 minutes until the sweetener is ground.
Spray each doughnut lightly with coconut oil on all sides, then roll in the sweet cinnamon mixture.
NOTE* As is (sprayed with coconut oil), up to 3 of these doughnuts are FP, not accounting anything else in your meal. If you’re having more than one in S mode, just watch the carb count of the other items in your meal.
MORE NOTES* Baking with whey can be very dry. If you want to make these doughnuts more into S mode, you can brush them with melted butter or coconut oil before rolling them in the sweet cinnamon dust. This may help lend some moisture to the doughnuts, but that will change their territory to S, and no more than three (because of the carbs from the applesauce – each doughnut has about 2.67g carbs).