Friday, November 11, 2011

How to Satisfy the Foodie With Healthy Meals for GF Diets

Hello, I'm so happy to have Carolyn Knight from Atlanta as a guest writer today on Apple Menu. She is a runner and avid health nut with some tasty ideas to share. Enjoy!

Eating healthy is the goal, but healthy meals are all too often boring, bland, and repetitive. Indulging in fatty foods may hit the spot in the moment, but will eventually take a huge toll on your body with blocked arteries and a closet full of clothes into which you can no longer fit. But does it have to be unhealthy to be tasty? Of course not! Get creative in the kitchen and have the best of both worlds.Even if you have dietary restrictions, the right combination of fresh ingredients, fun textures and interesting spices can excite the palate and satisfy any appetite.
1. Cover All the Bases
If you balance your meals with food from all of the different nutritional categories: fruits, veggies, nuts,protein, and complex carbohydrates, the body will regulate hormone levels to calm cravings, satisfy hunger, and maintain energy for optimal performance. Spikes and crashes are caused by unbalanced sugar levels. Incorporating good fats from nuts, lean proteins and veggies high in fiber helps ward off those ups and downs. But how do you do that AND make it taste good when all you want is a steak and fries? Try grilling up a little flank steak and slicing 2-3 ounces over a bed of leafy greens with sliced mushrooms and avocado, shredded carrots and beets, toasted walnuts, dried cranberries, artichoke hearts, and drizzle with a nice homemade shallot vinaigrette. Mouth-watering goodness!
2. Have a Little Treat
When you have been doing well with your healthy meals, and you run into temptation at the office or a party, arm yourself with portion control. Let’s say somebody in your office decided to bring a bucket of fudge to work and leave it unattended. What do you do? You grab one piece, put it on a napkin and head back to your desk. You are going to splurge from time to time, and that is ok, just practice good portioning habits; for example, 3 oz. of meat is about the size of a deck of cards. To enjoy yourself, you do not have to devour the whole cow!
3. Cook Your Way to Healthy Flavor
The best way to control what goes in your body and how great it tastes is to prepare it yourself. Yellow fruits and veggies contain beta-carotene and vitamin C, and blue and purple produce is full of zeaxanthin and fiber. Add color and spice to every dish by experimenting with fresh, bright ingredients and lots of herbs and spices. Slow cook a hearty stew with stew meat, carrots, green beans, potatoes, onion,tomatoes, peas, and dried herbs.
Whatever you make, your decisions should not be about denial, but rather about packing as many nutrient-rich ingredients into one sitting as possible. Go easy on the bad stuff, and pile on the fruits and veggies for a long, healthy life with exciting meals every day!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Apple Crisp

One of my favorite things of fall would have to be APPLES!! But you probably guessed that ;)
This weekend we made Apple Crisp. If you have not discovered yet, Bob's Red Mill has gluten free oats.

You will need*:

4 cups sliced, pared, cored apples.

3/4 cups brown sugar packed

1/2 cup Gluten Free Flour (I use Bob's Red Mill All purpose Flour)

1/2 cup Oats

1/2 tablespoon Cinnamon

1 Teaspoon Nutmeg

Pinch of Ginger

1/3 cup of softened butter (we use soy based butter and it works beautifully).

(*I double everything for extra crumb toppings)


Preheat the oven to 375. Core, pare and slice apples. Set aside the apples and combine all the other ingredients in a bowl. Cut the butter into the mixture until everything is crumbly. Put the apples in a large rectangular cake pan and sprinkle them with the crumb mixture. Bake for 30 to 50 minutes.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Caveman Diet Fail!

I haven't been keeping up with the Caveman Diet posts because I've been sick.
I'm happy to report that we've ended this experiment. The food was good and I lost some more weight. The problem was that it got boring and there were many times that I just did not want to eat because we had the same thing already 400 times that week. Also I felt 'off' most of the time. I was forgetful and just did not feel well. On top of that I had several sugar crashes. Bell peppers, eggs and blueberries are not something to eat everyday with little to no variance. So to the caveman diet I give you a HUGE fail! I'm happy we tried it but wont look back. Enjoy!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Caveman Diet: Day 11

I lost the picture of breakfast, but it was comparable to Wednesday's breakfast.
It consists of fried peppers, a strawberry, blueberries, sausage, scrambled egg, pumpkin seeds, and almonds.

Sausage, black and green olives, scrambled egg whites, blue berries, snap peas, green peppers, zucchini, and 1 1/2 almonds (really, that's what it was).

I needed a snack. A creamy yummy sweet snack and this is what I found. No dairy, no grains, it fit with the diet and was delicious.

Chicken and Vegetables.


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Caveman Diet: Day 9

Vegetables, Strawberry, blueberries, and inch of smoked turkey sausage, pumpkin seeds, almonds.

GF Green Olives, Baby dill pickles, chicken, two turkey meatballs, strawberries, blue berries, green peppers, snap peas.

One small red potato topped with veggie shred soy based cheese, tofu sour cream, guacamole, and black olives.

Zucchini and yellow squash layered in a pan with herbs, spaghetti sauce, and soy based cheese, with Canary Mellon on the side. I will have to post a more detailed recipe for this after our experiment is over. It tasted for all the world like lasagna. A definite repeat. Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Caveman Diet: Day 8

Vegetables, blueberries, strawberries, an inch of smoked turkey sausage, almonds, scrambled egg, and pumpkin seeds.

GF Green olives, baby dill pickles, turkey, strawberries, blueberries, snap peas, and green pepper strips.

Lettuce with tofu sour cream, black olives, guacamole, and a shredded turkey meatball.

Bear's famous chicken stir fry

Blended frozen bananas and strawberries. It tastes like Ice cream.


Monday, August 8, 2011

Caveman Diet: Day 7

Fresh green peppers, scrambled egg, and inch of smoked turkey sausage, and almonds.

Progresso Vegetable Classics: Lentil. It was ok but not great. It tasted like the soup was having a hard time decided if it wanted to be spicy of sweet and so decided to be neither.

Oh goodness this was delicious. Fried eggplant topped with soy based cheese, fried zucchini, and turkey meatballs.

Bear made this for me because we were out of plantains. He fried regular bananas and topped them with just a smidgen of sugar and cinnamon. They tasted like buttery cinnamon and the house still smells good this morning.


Caveman Diet: Day 6

Vegetables, Strawberries, an inch of smoked turkey sausage, pumpkin seeds, scrambled egg, and some almonds.

Ratatouille topped with dairy free, tofu based sour cream.

Ok, I'm embarrassed to post this but it's what I ate. Because lunch was veggies, and there was no afternoon snack, by the time dinner rolled around my sugar was crashing. Bear drove us straight to the grocery store and bought a pre-made chicken and mashed potatoes. It tasted great and brought me back, but there were no veggies and I think the potatoes set us back a bit.

Snack: The last of the plantain. Mmmm


Caveman Diet: Day 5

Pumpkin seeds, Strawberries, almonds, and and egg scrambled with vegetables.

Peanut butter and celery, lettuce, snap peas (under the lettuce) strawberries, scrambled egg white, baby dill pickles, and GF green olives.

Broccoli spears with melted soy based cheese on top.

This is a picture of the whole casserole dish but it is Ratatouille (kind of). The peppers and eggplant were to big to fit right and there were no red peppers at the farmers market.
It was quite delicious though, and we served it with chicken on the side. mmm


Friday, August 5, 2011

Caveman Diet: Day 4


Scrambled egg with vegetables, an inch of smoked turkey sausage halved, strawberries, almonds, pumpkin seeds.


GF green olives (still can't get over finding these), baby dill pickles, chicken, strawberries, lettuce, snap peas (under the lettuce) cauliflower, almonds, celery with natural peanut butter.

2 inches of smoked turkey sausage and mustard (I was in a hurry, needed protein, and was not feeling creative)


Bear's amazing vegetable and chicken stir fry. Mmmmm I love his stir fry. Enjoy!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Caveman Diet: Day 3


An inch of smoked turkey sausage halved, strawberries, an egg scrambled with vegetables (peppers, mushrooms, water chestnuts, and onions), almonds and roasted pumpkin seeds.


Celery with natural peanut butter, cauliflower, snap peas, lettuce, Strawberries, Chicken, baby dill pickles, and GF GREEN OLIVES!!! yum yum yum.


Lettuce with chicken, veggie shreds (soy based cheese), guacamole, soy based sour cream, and black olives.


Chicken vegetable Kabobs and fried plantain. It's not pictured but I also had a cup of almond milk. mmmm Nice cold unsweetened almond milk. It's the best dessert in the world. For me at least. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Caveman Diet: Day 2

Scrambled egg whites with stir fry vegetables, half an orange, an inch of smoked turkey sausage halved, almonds, and roasted pumpkin seeds.

Baby Dill pickles, fried zucchini, peanut butter on celery sticks, salad with black olives and soy based cheese, a hard boiled egg, strawberries, and snap peas.

Chicken on lettuce with tofu sour cream, guacamole, soy based cheese, and black olives.

Cauliflower, Tilapia, and orange slices.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Caveman Diet: Day 1

Not the most attractive arrangement, but quite tasty. I had a scrambled egg with vegetables, roasted pumpkin seeds, almonds, orange smiles, strawberries, and about an inch of smoked turkey sausage.
Three celery sticks with natural peanut butter, zucchini slices, strawberries, snap peas, green olives, black olives, baby dill pickles, and chicken. Quite filling and still protein packed.
About 3 inches of smoked turkey sausage, snap peas, baby dill pickles, and strawberries.
1/2 of a Fried plantain.
Taco salad. We used the lettuce leaves as wraps for the taco meat, soy based cheese, soy based sour cream, guacamole, olives, and chives.

First impressions. Yeah, we can do this.

New Challenge

Last week Bear decided we were going to try a new challenge. Very much like The Caveman Diet. We will be eating nuts, fruits, vegetables, and lean meats only. No processed foods, no dairy, no cow or pig, and no grains (that means no riceballs for me). I'm a bit nervous about this one. Our last challenge was only 4 months ago and has been working wonderfully. We are both down about 34 lbs. However, challenges like this make us watch our diets more carefully and help keep us on track. The meals should look like this; half of the meal is vegetable, a quarter will be protein, and a quarter will be fruit. We might switch it up so our snack might be fruit and our meal might only have protein and vegetables, but we will figure it out as we go along. Starting today and for the rest of the month I will be posting our daily meals. I'll let you know how we are feeling and if there is any additional weight loss. Wish us luck and Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


mmmmm, Yet another yummy lunch made by my Dear Bear. In the top left corner there is a scrambled egg with mushrooms and pepper and baby dill pickles. In the top right pocket there are strawberries and blue berries. In the bottom left pocket is our family's favorite peanut butter quesadillas, and in the bottom right pockets there are snap peas and a small inch long chunk of smoked turkey sausage. Mmmmm. I think that because there is such a large variety of things in the lunch I fill up faster. This lunch is approximately 275 to 300 calories. Lunch is our biggest meal. Also we've switched to buying medium eggs. Size wise we really can't tell the difference between a medium egg and an extra large egg now that we made the switch but it cuts 17 calories and 59.2 mg of cholesterol. Well worth it. With all of the changes we've made to our diet, Bear and I have each lost over 30 lbs. I am almost to my first mini goal. Wish me luck and Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Bento Lunches (Kind of)

I keep meaning to post these lunches. Bear and I are loving our Bento lunch boxes. The compartments help in planning what and how much to pack. From the top left: snap peas, rice balls, tiny yellow pepper, blue berries, turkey sausage, and tamagoyaki.
This is today's lunch. From the top left corner: Brussels sprouts, turkey sausage, rice ball and egg, blue berries and strawberries, more rice balls and some green olives. The green olives are Lindsey brand. Their website says that they are gluten free and so far I have had no problems with them. Enjoy!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Biaggi's and 30lb Marker

Yum, another wonderful trip too Biaggi's. This time I tried the Cesar Salad (no croutons).
Filling and sooo yummy. I missed the dairy, but still wont bring it home. Even though I indulged in this creamy salad I've still managed to loose more weight. I've now lost 30 lbs!!

This is kind of tacked on the end, but I had to share our home grown strawberries. 100% organic and so beautiful. In the past our strawberries have never grown so big and juicy.
Aren't they lovely? Enjoy!