21 Day Fix Extreme Meal Plan Week Three

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So if I had to grade myself on nutrition/workouts for last week it would be about a C-. I do not even have a good reason. I thought about just throwing in the towel, but I think I have it in me to finish well. I decided to take some time today and tomorrow to plan and prep meals and schedule in my workouts. So here I am being real and I am just going to go for it!

Click HERE for a downloadable PDF of this weeks meal plan and see below for some of the recipes!

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Egg Cups – Chop vegetables for the Sautéed Kale and Red Bell Pepper Egg Cups (¾ onion, 1½ cup kale, 1½ red bell peppers). Add 1 Tbsp. olive oil to a pan over medium heat. Add all veggies to the pan and stir, cooking until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Crack six eggs into a bowl and whisk. Coat a large muffin tin with nonstick spray. Fill nine of the muffin cups with vegetables. Use a large spoon to cover the vegetables with eggs, adding a little bit at a time, until each cup is almost full. Top each with 1 Tbsp. crumbled feta (optional). Place in the oven and cook for about 15 to 20 minutes, until eggs are just set. Remove from oven and allow to cool; when cool, gently remove the egg muffins from the pan. Divide the egg muffins between three food containers, and place in the fridge. To reheat, microwave for 1 to 2 minutes or warm in a toaster over for 5 minutes


Greek Yogurt Bowls –  To each, add ¾ cup 2% Greek yogurt, 1 cup mixed fresh berries, and ¼ tsp. cinnamon

Herbed Yogurt Dip – In a small bowl mix 9 oz. (a little more than 1 cup) of  2% plain greek yogurt, 2 tsp. dried oregano (or salt-free Italian seasoning), 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil, and any other dried spices you want, like ½ tsp. dried thyme or dill, garlic powder, onion powder, a dash of paprika. Add salt and pepper to taste. Chop ½ red bell pepper and one yellow bell pepper. Serve 3 oz. of dip with one cup of chopped bell peppers and baby carrots


Seasoned Turkey and Black Bean Burrito Bowls – Add 1 Tbsp. olive oil to a pan over medium heat, place 12 oz. ground turkey in the pan, and stir frequently until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, 1 tsp. ground cumin and 1 tsp. chili powder (or salt-free taco seasoning mix). Remove from heat and set aside to cool. Divide turkey mixture evenly between three food containers. Add ½ cup black beans (drained and rinsed), ½ cup quinoa, ½ cup salsa or pico de gallo, and top with 1 Tbsp. cilantro and 1/4 avocado (optional) I put mine over butter lettuce.



Spaghetti Squash with Meat Sauce and Parmesan Cheese – Set out three food storage containers. Use a fork to scrape the spaghetti squash out of its skin (see note on a suggestion on how to cook spaghetti squash) Add 1 cup of squash to each container. Freeze any remaining squash for a future week. Wash the pan used for the Seasoned Turkey meat and place it over medium heat; coat it with nonstick spray. Add 6 oz. ground beef and three cloves of chopped garlic to the pan and season with salt and pepper; stir frequently until the meat is no longer pink. Add 1½ cup tomato sauce and 1 tsp. dried oregano (or salt-free Italian seasoning), and cook two minutes more. Top each serving of spaghetti squash with equal amounts of sauce (about ¾ cup), 2 Tbsp. shredded Parmesan, and 1 tsp. fresh basil. Place in refrigerator. When ready to eat, heat in a microwave or in a pan on the stovetop for two minutes.

Note: Heat oven to 400° F. Carefully cut the spaghetti squash in half and scrape out and discard the seeds. Arrange the spaghetti squash face down in a glass baking dish. Fill the dish with just enough water to cover the bottom. Place in oven for 30-45 minutes, or until squash is tender and the skin can be easily pierced with a fork. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.


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Instant Pot Chicken Taco Bowls

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This is one of my favorite Crock Pot Recipes that I adapted to make in the Instant Pot one day because I forgot to make it in the crockpot that morning!

Ingredients:
1½ lbs. chicken breasts (I used four)
1 (16 oz.) jar salsa (look for one without sugar)
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained
½ lb. (8 oz.) frozen corn
1 Tbsp chili powder
½ Tbsp cumin
½ Tbsp minced garlic
½ tsp dried oregano
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
¼ tsp salt and cracked pepper to taste
2 cups dry rice or quinoa
8 oz. shredded cheddar or pepperjack
½ bunch cilantro (optional)

Instructions:
1. Add everything except the rice, cheese, and cilantro to the slow cooker along with
¼ cup of water (for good measure). Give everything a good stir and make sure the
chicken is covered in the mixture. Secure the lid on your slow cooker and cook on
low for 8 hrs. (Near the end of the cooking time, cook the two cups of rice or
quinoa according to the package directions)

FOR THE INSTANT POT FOLLOW THE SAME DIRECTIONS EXCEPT SET ON MANUAL FOR 15 MINUTES and let natural pressure release for 5-10 minutes

2. After 8 hours of cooking, carefully remove the lid of the slow cooker. Stir with a
fork to shred the chicken (it should be super tender and will shred easily).

Serving Suggestions:
Place rice on the bottom, then the taco chicken mix, shredded cheese and fresh cilantro.
Serve over chopped romaine, if desired.

Adapted and image credit to Budget Bytes

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Paleo Meal Prep 101

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In a perfect world I would spend my Sunday afternoons meal planning, grocery shopping, and prepping for the week. In reality I am learning that I am just too worn out from fun weekends to do all of that in one afternoon.  So this week I planned and shopped on Sunday night ~ made a crockpot meal for Monday night and decided to prep a few meals then.

  I picked up these cute containers off of Amazon HERE (I have never tried them before so I will update after I get some use out of them.) I also found cauliflower crumbles at Super Target that you can STEAM IN THE BAG so my plan was just to make some simple chicken and Spanish cauliflower rice meals. I steamed the cauliflower and then added a few Tablespoons of tomato paste along with southwest seasoning (cumin, paprika, onion, etc.) The chicken I seasoned with salt, pepper and chipotle powder and baked at 350 degrees until cooked through (about 30 minutes)
  I also found a few zucchini in my fridge that I spiralized and sauteed in olive oil and garlic.  Here are a few of the meals I assembled.
  I also made these muffin cups quickly.  I sauteed some veggies (1/4 onion, tomato, 1/3 of the bag of spinach) then placed in the bottom of a muffin pan that had been sprayed with coconut oil. Then I whisked the eggs with salt and pepper and poured over veggies and baked at 350 for about 15 minutes or until set. I wanted to also prep my salads for the week but ran out of time before it was time to help the kids get bathed and put to bed.  I just decided to make them really quick while I was making my lunch the next day.

So many times I get caught up into trying to do a marathon meal prep that I end up doing NOTHING which hurts me more in the long run.  I am learning that done is better than perfect!

For more healthy tips check out my Facebook Page HERE.

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Simple Tips for a Healthy Fourth

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Here are some tips from 21 Day Fix creator Autumn Calabrese on how to enjoy the fourth without sabotaging your nutrition.

1. Hydrate: drink plenty of water our bodies often mistake dehydration for hunger.

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2. Skip the mixers: if your going to drink alcohol skip the sugary mixes like soda and fruit juice. Stick to soda water as a mixer. Click HERE for some healthy 4th of July Cocktail RecipesIMG_6116_1-1024x980

3. Skip the chips: enjoy your favorite dips with veggies. You will consume a lot less sodium and fat.bell-pepper-veggies

4. Leaf the bun: yes pun intended. Use a lettuce leaf as a bun instead of bread. Here is Pioneer Woman’s Version

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5. Bring the sweet treat: if you’re worries it will be all junk food at the BBQ bring something healthy that can be your go like this No-Bake Watermelon Cake

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6. Get sweaty: Burn some calories. Play pool or beach volleyball or any other game that gets your heart pumping.

Most important is to enjoy this wonderful holiday with family and friends but don’t use as as an excuse to overindulge

So what are your plans for the 4th?