60 Healthier Toaster Oven Recipes

freaking YUM2

If you can deny that this looks delicious, you are not human. Or hungry.

I thought I would share a link to 60 Healthier Toaster Oven Recipes for everyone to begin their week. I knew it would be a bad idea to look at Food Porn on a Monday morning after a measly bowl of Life cereal, but I did it anyways. Currently living with the consequences. Excuse me while I shop for ramekins on Amazon.com…

Enjoy!

~Jess

Advertisements

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein No Bake Cookies

 

cookiecollage2

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a recipe! Hell it’s been a while sine I posted a workout too. ‘Fitness, Health & Everything Else’ pretty much insinuates anything, with emphasis on fitness and health…. time to get back in touch with that ‘fitness and health’ part.

Today I had the overwhelming urge to ‘bake’ some no-bake cookies. I perused the internet and found one that looked pretty basic. No oven required, and minimal ingredients. The recipe claims it makes 20 cookies, haha, maybe if they were the size of quarters! I managed to get 14 cookies out of this batch.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein No Bake Cookies:

Ingredients
  • 2 cups old fashioned oatmeal
  • 1 scoop (21 grams) protein powder – I used Muscle Pharm Cookies n’ Cream
  • ½ cup creamy natural peanut butter
  • ½ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
Instructions
  1. Combine oatmeal and protein powder in a medium sized mixing bowl. Stir until there’s a nice dusting of protein powder over all the oatmeal.
  2. Place almond milk, peanut butter, maple syrup, cocoa powder and sea salt in a saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring often until cocoa powder is completely dissolved and the sauce has thickened. Take the pan off the heat and stir in vanilla.
  3. Pour peanut butter chocolate mixture over oats/protein powder and mix until all pieces of the oatmeal are covered.
  4. Place batter in the fridge for 10-15 minutes to let the batter set up – this step is optional, but the cookies will be much easier to shape if you do it.
  5. Drop chilled dough by spoonfuls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, using hands to work cookies into desired shape – I made these into little round cookies.
  6. Place baking sheet in fridge or freezer until cookies are set, then serve. Store any left over cookies in the fridge or freezer for later.

Calories: 123 Carbs: 14g Protein: 5g Fats: 6g

I hope you enjoy! These definitely taste healthy and whole, you will feel good about eating them. I wish I added a little bit of brown sugar to the sauce pan with the peanut butter and cocoa powder, that would have given it the extra sweetness it needed.

I hope everyone has a wonderful week! It’s my first week of school, wish me luck 🙂

~Jess

 

7 Weeks Out!

Holy crap! 7 weeks out! Gettin’ SERIOUS!

Last week was tough. I worked almost 50 hours, had a crazy busy event Friday night that put us back an hour, and my workouts were extremely exhausted ON TOP of the madness.The weekend made up for it though, 100% 🙂

We started the weekend off going to hot yoga Hatha class together at Hot Yoga Inc. in Bellevue. It had been over a year since I had gone, and longer since Derek had been. It felt really great to sweat! I miss going to hot yoga and relaxing, as well as the physical and mental benefits, but I DON’T miss the people that go; fake tans, fake boobs, superficial ya-da-ya. Derek’s hamstrings still hurt! The teacher kept re-adjusting him to stretch deeeeeper, he sounded like he was in pain from across the room, haha! 🙂

Afterwards we had my photo shoot with Amir at the Vo2 Performance Center, it was extremely successful! I can’t wait to get the photos back, he did an AMAZING job. I was super nervous for about 2 weeks beforehand, but it was helpful to have him and Derek direct me through the poses. I even had a couple really cool ideas that ended up being Amir’s favorite photos! He did a couple shots with Derek as well, and we got some really cool ones together. Super fun, I would LOVE to do it again! We weren’t able to the bikini shots since we were using a gym facility, so we are gonna do another one in the near future once I’m closer to competition date and in my best condition. Now I know I shouldn’t be so nervous for next time, it felt so natural.

IMG_20140301_161353

After the photo shoot we rushed over to Seattle for Derek’s surprise date with me 🙂 He kept it a secret for a long time! First we picked Robert up from Von Trapp’s after he got off work. That was the first surprise! I haven’t seen Robert in forever, I really missed him, in fact I miss a lot of my friends. We all went to the Theo Chocolate Factory in Fremont and O – MY – GOD! Best chocolate ever, it was delectable. The factory was awesome as well! Unfortunately we didn’t have enough time to do the tour, but we bought a few chocolate bars each, yummmm! My favorite’s were the Milk Chocolate Salted Almond and Chai Milk Chocolate, super delicious, I savored every square, every bite!

theochai

 

We went to Robert’s new crib in Downtown Seattle, Capital Hill. It’s a pretty big place, super vintage, wood floors, huge windows, plenty of space and prime location. I’m so proud of my lil’ Robert, he’s so grown up! We’ve known each other FOREVER, we met when he was 14 and now he’s 19, about to turn 20 on the day of my competition. You would never be able to guess he’s so young! He’s super mature, has traveled so many places, is an excellent cook, has been on his own for a few years, and is one of the head Chef’s getting paid salary at the famous Seattle restaurant Von Trapps! Pretty impressive kid, he’s done very well for himself 🙂 Not to mention last night’s date was on HIM!

He took Derek and I to a delicious upscale Indian restaurant named ‘Poppy’ in Capital Hill. Amazing food, half of which I could NOT pronounce and had to look up what they were on my phone. We each ordered our own Thali and shared dishes. A Thali is a plate comprised of a main entree with several different side dishes. I ordered the below Thali, it was sooooo good, I’m getting so hungry thinking about it!

jessthali

 

My favorite side dishes were the ‘Brussels Sprouts with Caraway and Shallot’ as well as the ‘Cauliflower-Almond Soup with Chinese Black Bean and Toasted Garlic’…. TO – DIE – FOR! Scrumptious! We also ordered the Thali dessert which topped the evening off perfectly. Sooooo good! Robert definitely opens our eyes to delicious food every time we hang out with him, I miss our Cooking Nights. We used to have Cooking Nights all the time before both of our lives got so crazy! We would have all our friends come, bring food, pitch in for ingredients, make awesome food like; Thai food, Sushi, Thanksgiving Dinner, Honey Glazed Ham, etc. We plan on doing it again once I can eat ‘Human Food’ (har har) and start the opening shift at work.

Great night, we all definitely needed it. It’s so strange being all grown up and responsible, seems like just yesterday we were youngens’ partying it up without anybody or anything to answer to.

Today Derek and I went to Costco and Grocery Outlet for our bi-monthly shopping excursion! We scored some pretty sweet stuff too! We did awesome on spending too, freakin’ LOVE Costco! First of all, I scored more of that Maranatha Spread at Grocery Outlet, only THIS time I scored ‘Almond Caramel’ and it’s absolutely delicious! I made a Coconut Cashew Mug Cake today and spread some of that almond caramel spread over it and it was to die for, scrumptious!

maranathaalmond

Next on the list would be the Nutiva Coconut Flour, only $6.99 for a HUUUUGE bag at Costco! Much better in Mug Cakes than the blended oats I’ve been using. Super thick and delicious, just like cake. Derek scored a pack of 5 car washes at Brown Bear as well, something he’s been eyeballing every time we go shopping. We got so much food! The usual turkey, chicken, bagels (for Derek ;)), cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, etc. We also picked up a lot more spices including a monstrous jar of minced garlic…. you can never have too much garlic. So much food, yum yum.

This week I am re-adjusting my calorie intake and macros, as well as laying off the Quest bars and minimizing my nut butters…. sad day 😦 I’ve been getting experimental in the kitchen with alternative baking ideas, but I want quicker results! Time for more restriction! I’m relieved that I don’t have to work 48 hours this week though so I can put 110% into my workouts this week!

Whewwww! Sorry for the long post! I better run off to prep my meals for the week, have an awesome week! Stay tuned for pictures from my photo shoot 🙂

~Jess

 

 

Killing this Week!

Thank god it’s Thursday!

This week has been pretty intense so far, but I’ve been smashin’ it regardless. I’ve been stickin’ with my new training plan, torching calories, killing workouts, staying on point with my diet, and seeing RESULTS. The results you see when you put in the work are totally worth the early mornings workouts, two-a-days, running home after work in the dark and rain, and stickin’ to your macros like a Nazi. Having a photo shoot this weekend is extra extra motivation to get shit done right.

Tonight I for REAL this time have my first posing practice at David Barton Gym with Natalie! For real this time! Weekends are hard to plan since she has them off and I don’t want to make her come into work just to help me out for free. Thankfully, I’m working 6am to 6pm, so by the time I get off, I can fit in a workout before she’s off at 8pm and we get started 🙂 Speaking of insane 12 hour shifts, I WON’T be doing overtime anymore. My poor pup has been neglected, I’ve been exhausted, and it’s really not worth the money to run myself down and have half-ass workouts. Not this close to comp date! No thank you! I’m very relieved with my decision, and I should be on the opening shift in about 3 weeks, so that’s good news!

8 weeks out, close to 7 weeks! I technically don’t count peak week, otherwise it would be 9 weeks out, hehe 🙂 I like to think that I’m closer, it pushes me to work HARDER and convinces me that I’m that much closer to endless Samoas and peanut butter, yummmmm! I’ve been so desperate for more peanut butter that I’ve created a Wish List on my Amazon account and have added a zillion different kinds of peanut butters! Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter, PB Crave Cookie Nookie, Nuts ‘N More Toffee Peanut Butter, and let’s not forget P28 White Chocolate Peanut Butter!

pbcollage2

I just got my shipment of Coconut Cashew and the new Cookies ‘N Cream Quest bars! So freakin’ STOKED outta my mind! Cookies ‘N Cream….. OUT – OF – THIS – WORLD……. Kid you not, so delicious. Every time I finish one I want to immediately scarf down another one. I feel great about eating them too 🙂 This morning I made a delicious Mug Cake out of one! I don’t have a picture, but I’ll post the recipe:

Cookies N’ Cream Mug Cake:

Ingredients:

-2 Tablespoons Oat Flour (I just used a magic bullet to create my own oat flour)
-3 Tablespoons Egg White Liquid
-1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
-1/4 Teaspoon Almond Extract
-1/2 Packet of Truvia
-2 Tablespoons Greek Yogurt
-1 Cookie ‘N Cream Quest Bar!

Icing:

-2 Tablespoons Greek Yogurt
-1/2 Scoop Optimum Nutrition French Vanilla Whey Protein
-1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
-1/2 Packet of Truvia

Directions:

-Mix all the ‘Mug Cake’ ingredients together, break Quest bar into tiny bits!
-Cook in the microwave for 2 1/2 minutes

-Mix the icing together and top off your mug cake! VOILA! Magnifico 🙂

Try it out, that shit is the BOMB! I’m stoked to go to Costco this weekend so we can stock up on baking goods and more FOOD! Our cupboards are so empty right now, I have no peanut butter, apples, or rice cakes…. my go-to snacks in times of trouble!

Anywho, I better bounce! I’ll try to get some posing photos from tonight posted, as well as some sneak peek photos from this weekend 😉 O, did I mention I am going on a surprise date with the hubby this Saturday?! So excited, I actually DESERVE this meal! I’ve gone 2 weeks without a cheat meal, holy hell!

Well happy Thursday folks, end the week STRONG!

~Jess

11 Weeks Out – Booty Progress

Booty Progress

Booty, booty, booty, booty, BOOTY! Everyone knows how obsessed I am with growing a nice ass, so here’s some progress shots I took on Sunday.

I’m not where I want to be, but I feel like I’ve been making slow progress! I see the ‘lift’ action going on! This week marks the beginning of my ‘two-a-days’ as you may know. I’m doing 3 ‘two-a-days’ a week for February, running home from work on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. For the first two weeks I will be doing 4 miles those days, the last two weeks I will be doing 5-7 miles those days. I really like the results I get from outdoor running! Not only does the outdoor terrain shock my muscles and challenge my body, but it really helps clear my mind as well. I need to buy running gloves, my hands were FROZEN last night! Cardio is really gonna help shed the ‘softness’ around my curves and display that lean muscle I’ve been building underneath. POLAR

My Polar FT4 came in from Amazon.com yesterday! I was so amped to use it this morning! I’ve always wondered the ACCURATE number of calories I burn during my workouts….. it looks like I’ve been underestimating them this whole time, by a couple hundred! No wonder I’ve been eating ‘second breakfast’ everyday! secondbreakfast

This heart rate monitor is also a great awareness tool. Instead of dilly-dallying up the stairs to do my heavy lifting supersets in between sprint intervals, I RUN up the stairs to keep my heart rate up and ultimately *TORCH MORE CALORIES!* I’ve also noticed that lifting really heavy (well, heavy for me, workin’ on packin’ more weight around) keeps my heart rate up as well. Upper body and certain ab movements are on the lower side. Ironic because I read two articles correlating with this topic yesterday! Check ’em out:

Rev Up You Metabolism by Tracey Greenwood with FitnessRx

8 Reasons Women Should Lift by Kellie Davis with Bodybuilding.com

Now I can eat more Quest bars riiiiiiighhht?! Haha, NOPE. I will be giving those up March 1st, which is a bummer since I have 2 more boxes on the way: Strawberry Cheesecake and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough….. YUMMMM! I’m sort of obsessed with them, you have no idea. They are especially bomb when you heat them up in the microwave for 15 seconds! OOoooey goooooey delicious-ness! I want to try this gem out soon: PEANUTBUTTER

Yummmmm! Magnifico! I have PB2 now so I can actually make the frosting…… *DROOOOOOL*

INGREDIENTS

– ½ Peanut Butter Supreme Quest Bar

– ½ Chocolate Peanut Butter Quest Bar, cut in half (making two ¼ Quest Bar squares)

– 4g sugar free butterscotch pudding mix

– 2 Tbsp PB2 (may also use powdered peanut butter)

INSTRUCTIONS

1.) Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

2.) Place a silicone cupcake liner in a cupcake pan (You’ll want to do this step so you can mold the Questbars to the cupcake liner)

3.) Place Quest Bars on plate and microwave for 8-10 seconds.

4.) Press one of the Chocolate Peanut Butter Quest Bar squares to bottom of cupcake liner, molding it to fit the entire bottom/sides of cupcake liner.

5.) Place the Peanut Butter supreme Quest Bar on top of the chocolate peanut butter Quest Bar, molding it to fit the middle/sides of the cupcake liner.

6.) Take the last Chocolate Peanut butter Quest Bar square and flatten with your finger to about ¼ inch thick. Place it on top of the peanut butter supreme layer, molding it to fit the top/sides of the cupcake liner.

7.) Place Quest Bar cupcake in oven for 5 minutes.

8.) To make the icing, mix together pudding mix and PB2 with water until desired consistency is reached.

9.) When Quest Bar cupcake is done, top with icing.

Nutritionals:

243 calories, 25g protein, 11g active carbs, (19g fiber, 2.5g sugar), 9g fat

Sorry my blogs are all over the place! That’s just how my mind works, happy Tuesday 🙂

~Jess

Bored…. outta… my…. MIND!

*Le siiiiiiigh*

I absolutely DETEST sitting at a desk. I’m itching to move, absolutely bored out of my mind, I have exhausted all of my projects. I have been reduced to staring blankly out the Lower Lobby EBC doors, wishing I could be running home already.

Such a beautiful overcast day, perfect running conditions.

3 1/2 more hours….. you got this, Jess!

I’ve had an ongoing headache for the past week. I thought it was because I ran out of coffee at home, but I think the true underlying reason is due to sitting at a desk. I have been skating by the past month setting all of our meeting spaces. I WAAAAAY rather be moving around setting rooms even if it means dealing with the huge ridiculous, dangerous metal cart we use to store support. Sitting so low (so my midget feet can touch the floor) but raising my arms so high to reach the keyboard puts so much strain on my neck and shoulders. Get me outtaaaaa’ here!

On another note, I had a decent Monday morning. I woke up, got outta bed, and went to the gym! I did 3 ZSHRED workouts that involved jump roping, weights, HIIT, and cardio to shock the muscles and keep my body guessing. 3 ZSHRED’s took me about an hour, so I finished off with 20 minutes on the Spin Bike and 15 minutes on the Stairmaster. My hamstrings and glutes are killing me!

BADDOG2I went home to practice posing and get ready for work, today I work the 10am to 6:30pm shift. My dog was so amped to see me when I got home, naturally I was super amped to see her! I was playing with her when I walked through the door when I got a big whiff of delicious peanut butter. What the eff? Why do you smell like peanut butter?! I noticed the cabinet I keep my peanut butter in was open…. and my jar of peanut butter was laying on the living room floor…. clearly busted open. *SERIOUSLY?!* I really don’t want to punish youuuu, whyyyy?! Not something I look forward to on a Monday morning: punching my dog in the face and a wasted jar of peanut butter.

Poor thing. I punished her and threw her in the bathroom on time-out 😦

I was able to fit in a wee bit of posing though, caught one DECENT video and uploaded it to my YouTube. Really gotta figure out how to make better use of my YouTube account, definitely unorganized. This new video was much better than my first, need to work on smiling and trying to keep my ‘hanging arm’ relaxed during my poses. I added a lot more sass, but kept it classy. Lemme know what you think! Feedback much appreciated!

 

This weekend I plan on setting up some time with Natalie to help me out with my posing, as well as FINALLY getting my BF%! I’m surprised I haven’t found this out yet! I measured my waist and hips this weekend and was pretty happy with a 2cm decrease in both areas. Yippee, shedding fat, maintaining muscle, and getting stronger! Very, very happy with the leg results. They are definitely toning up and my butt is slooooowly but surely lifting! Whoop whoop for cardio! I’m so glad I actually ENJOY cardio!

COSTCOPOP2I’ve actually been contemplating what my next race should be. I really want to compete in another Half Marathon this Summer. I would LOVE to do Oktoberfest again, mainly for the brews and dank ass pizza, but I want to try a different course. Seriously can’t wait to eat like an endurance athlete again! I’m gonna stock up on Costco muffins and log miles like a maniac! I miss actually NEEDING to stuff my face with carbs, Mac n’ Cheese, pasta, sandwiches, potato chips, and SALT! Costco shopping will be a whole new level of awesome…..

That’s not for a loooooong while though….

In the mean time, I am finding healthy alternatives for sweet treats that I enjoy! Yesterday during meal prep I decided to make Oatmeal Peanut Butter Protein No Bake Cookies. They turned out DELICIOUS! My very own recipe!

cookierecipe

Very yummy recipe! Makes 20 small cookies with 120 calories each, 10 grams of carbs, 7 grams of fat, 6 grams of protein, and 6 grams of sugars. Not bad, definitely satisfies the sweet tooth craving!

Anywho, I better go back to being a good employee. 2 1/2 more hours until I’m outta here! Can’t wait to run home and eat some delicious spicy garlic chicken, cinnamon sweet potatoes, and baked brussel sprouts! Yummmm! Seriously though….. YUM. $3.99 for a big bag of brussel sprouts at Costco?! Hell yeah!

MMMmmmk bye! Happy Monday, hope you guys have a super week 🙂

~Jess

Meal Plan

Hey guys! I’ve been getting a TON of questions about how I achieve my abs and I always like to remind people that ‘ABS ARE MADE IN THE KITCHEN!’ I know, I know, it sucks that there isn’t some magical exercise that you can do ‘X’ amount of repetitions to achieve a rockin’ 6-pack. Sadly we have to sacrifice the refined sugars, pastries, cookies, candies, sweets, and all the junk.

So I’m going to take you through a rough daily break down of what I eat on a daily basis. I aim to eat every 2-3 hours, so approximately 4-6 meals a day depending on when I wake up and how high my activity level is that day. I shoot to stay within 1,200 calories a day as well as a personalized macronutrient ratio. I either workout early in the morning or I run 4-7 miles home at night after work. Here’s a sample of what my day today looks like:

1) 6:00am ‘fasted’ workout at the gym going heavy, hard, and incorporating jump rope intervals for cardio. Total Time: 1 hour and 40 minutes

When I get home I immediately throw on the coffee pot, shower, and get ready for the day! I eat my first meal at 9:00am right before I walk my dog. Today I ate: oatmeal2

-1/2 cup oats
-1/2 cup unsweetened Almond Milk
-2 Tablespoons Peanut Butter
Cinnamon sprinkled on top!

On days where I don’t workout early in the morning and don’t require something so heavy to keep me full, I’ll have a protein smoothie with the following:

-1 cup frozen fruit
-1/4 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt
-1/2 cup unsweetened Almond milk
-1 scoop Optimum Whey protein powder (24 grams protein!)

2) Today my second meal was at 12:00pm. This meal was decently sized, so I can probably wait 4 hours for my next meal. I enjoyed: lunch

-2 Turkey Muffins (packed with protein and less than 100 cal each!)
-1/2 cup steamed broccoli
-1/2 cubed sweet potatoes with cinnamon

I usually will have a chicken salad at work, since I am fortunate enough to get free lunch with my job! I use about 4oz of chicken (size of your palm), cottage cheese instead of dressing, incorporate plenty of DARK greens, walnuts for healthy fats, and a couple craisins for sweetness. I will either have 1/2 cup of quinoa or 1/2 cup of brown rice on the side for my carbs.

3) Throughout the day I might snack on a couple of items every few hours. My ‘snack time’ time slots are usually: 11:00am, 4:00pm, and 6:00pm My snacks usually consist of:

snackoptions


-Plain Quaker rice cake with 1 tablespoon peanut butter

-Apples
-4 hard boiled egg whites
-1 scoop protein powder mixed with water (milk has a surprising amount of sugar)
-Protein Cookies!

My snack time changes daily depending on when I woke up, how hard I worked out, WHEN I worked out, and when my first meal of the day was. I try to be as consistent as possible. The first week of proteindieting was extremely difficult (mainly cause I was PMS-ing…. oooops, TMI?) and because I wasn’t used to eating 1,200 calories a day. I am coming up on the end of week 3 and can honestly say that I am barely hungry anymore. In fact, I feel more satisfied on this diet than when I wasn’t keeping track of what I ate and when I ate! It’s the greatest!

4) DINNER TIME! Finally, when I get home (whenever that is! Usually 8:00pm) first thing I do is heat up a plate of whatever I meal prepped on Sunday! dinnerThis week I threw in 6 chicken breasts in the crock pot, cooked up some sweet potatoes, steamed broccoli, made turkey muffins, you name it! My fridge is FULL! Last night (and most likely tonight) I will eat 4 oz. of shredded chicken, 1/2 cup steamed broccoli, and 1/2 cup MASHED sweet potatoes (that’s right, switchin’ it up!).

I stay well fed throughout the day on this diet, and it doesn’t have to be boring at all! In fact, I’m cooking more now than I ever have and I’m finding cool new recipes and healthy alternatives to food that I really enjoy. One of my co-workers, Lazaro, was nice enough to bring in healthy cookies for me! Such a sweet heart! He made them with oats, bananas, yogurt, egg whites, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and honey to sweeten. I’m not sure if he baked them, but they were absolutely SCRUMPTUOUS! I’m going to try them at home this weekend. I looked up the nutritional value on myfitnesspal by plugging in the ingredients he used and each cookie has less than 50 calories, 10 grams of carbs, 1 gram of fat, 2 grams of protein, and 4 grams of sugar! Yummmm!

Anyways, there’s the jist of it! Hope this answers a lot of questions. If anyone has a myfitnesspal account you should definitely add me, see what I eat, AND hold me accountable! I record absolutely everything that I eat…. what’s the point in cheating anyways? “What you eat in private, you wear in public.”

Good vibes are still goin’ this week! Last night I ran 6.57 miles after work! I love running, it felt really really good. I always thought running after work would suck, but I must say, I like the late night cardio craze. If you have a mapmyrun app, you should also add me there and hold me accountable for my goal of running 20 miles a week! Tomorrow I have plans to run home after work as well, maybe not 6 miles since I will also be working out in the morning. Who knows though!

I also wanted to thank everybody for the wonderful comments and support for my progress post yesterday. It feels amazing that everybody has my back and are just as excited as I am to see progress! Also, thanks for voting during my ‘Cheat Meal’ poll, looks like Azteca wins HANDS DOWN! Anywho, hope you all have a lovely day, comment or message if you have questions or overall feedback! Please and thank you 🙂

~Jess