Quick and Easy Breakfasts at Work

Since I’ve started working full-time at my internship this summer, I’ve had to learn how to work around my workout, work schedule as far as eating goes. No, it’s not as easy as it was at school because I can’t whip something up fresh whenever I feel like it. This is especially true if I workout before work, which I usually do since I often am too tired to want to workout afterwards. But this means that breakfast is at my desk, and it needs to be big and filling in order to refuel my workout and fuel me for my day. (Read here for why breakfast is so important)

Because I didn’t want to get bored with food, and too much oatmeal hurts my stomach, I came up with a few creative solutions to make for breakfast at work. I make all of these the night before as I am packing my lunch and snacks for the next day, and just reheat it (if need be) at work. Now, I know not everyone’s work is the same so maybe you can’t eat at your desk/work or you don’t have a kitchen close to use and if so, some of these ideas will work and some won’t. But for the most part, I bet everyone has the access to some type of kitchen area and can make these meals work for their next breakfast at the desk! I have included my meals/recipes and occasional pictures (not the best quality since taken on my iPhone, but they work!) Also, if you don’t workout before work or need to eat at your desk, here are some other great healthier breakfast alternatives to fast food for your morning!

Let’s get to it!

1. Savory Egg/Egg White Stuffed Crepe

I found inspiration for this on Instagram, and then confirmed it to fit my needs. Also, note that my pan I cook the eggs/whites in wasn’t big enough to make it thin and crepe like, so after trying to the first time, I just made it the bottom layer of my dish.

Ingredients

  • 1 egg and 2-3 egg whites
  • Oatmeal/Cream of rice (amount of choice)
  • Peanut butter/Powdered Peanut Butter  (I use PB2)
  • Fruit to top (I use strawberries and bananas)

First, cook the beaten eggs/egg whites in a pan on medium heat. Cover the pan to let it cook the top too (bubbles may form, you can pop them). Check on it every minute or so and when it is cooked enough on top and bottom (usually 3-4 minutes), flip it then take off the heat. Add the egg crepe to the bottom of a tupperware.

Next, cooked oatmeal/cream of rice as says on package. I personally mix the two because I need to keep my fiber lower (I get way too much) so I do 20-30 g oatmeal and 1-1.3 servings cream of rice. While that is cooking in the microwave, cut up and prepare your fruit toppings and  seal in a plastic bag or small tupperware. Once the cream of rice/oatmeal is done, add it to the top of the crepe in the tupperware (you can also mix in protein powder before putting it onto the crepe). As far as toppings go, I add peanut butter to the tupperware meal. I have PB2 also in a small container to mix with water in the morning and then after heating up the breakfast, I add the PB2 and fruit!

2. Egg Scramble

Eggs are super easy to whip up the night before, store in a container and heat up the next morning! Add in veggies, meats, potatoes, etc! To get more carbs, I usually add hashbrowns, potatoes, and/or a tortilla to the eggs (tortilla and hashbrowns pictured). I also will toast an english muffin or bagel the MORNING OF–before leaving for my workout/work–and then just reheat at work. No, it doesn’t stay crispy, but it tastes delicious and works perfectly for me. you could also pack a packet of oatmeal or pre-made oatmeal as well to add carbs. I will also top my eggs with cheese, salsa, reduced-sugar ketchup, avocado, etc. the night before and it works well heated up still.

3. Overnight Oats

These are a classic for anyone who needs a quick, easy, and convenient breakfast in the morning! I either eat My very Berry Overnight Oats or Peanut Butter and Jelly ones (recipe below).

Ingredients

  • Rolled oats
  • 1 cup of Milk of choice (I use cashew milk)
  • Protein Powder (optional)
  • 1 tbsp. Peanut Butter (I use natural only; Krema/Crazy Richards is my favorite)
  • Banana, sliced
  • Strawberries (other berries/fruit could be substituted here as well)

In a tupperware or container, add desired amount of rolled oats (I use 50-70 g). Add 1 cup of milk and stir around. Next, mix in desired amounts protein powder (I use 15-20g and PEScience Snickerdoodle is my go-to). Swirl/stir in the peanut butter and stick in the fridge for the next day. I add in the cut up fruit the morning of, but you could add it in the night before as well. Also, crumpling up a rice cake and mixing it in before you eat it tastes great, gives it a nice crunch, and adds extra carbs if you need them.

So there are my go-to breakfast at work! They’re all super simple, easy and delicious–just what I need for my day! If you want other suggestions and tips for staying healthy while working, check out my blog post here! Also, if you have any ideas I would love to hear them below!

Healthy Dessert Recipes/Ideas

I’ve never been a die-hard sweet tooth, but I still like to have a little sweet-treat, dessert every night to cap off my day. Sometimes this means ice-cream and such, but a lot of times I like to find healthier alternatives to make for dessert because A) it’s fun and B) I like filling my diet with mostly wholesome, nutritious foods. So, since I’ve found a few of those, I thought I would share them with you to give you some ideas and inspiration for your next dessert. Some of these will just be blanket ideas that you can then create to fit your own likes, wants, needs, etc. while some will be more recipe-type–but again, you are able to mix it up with things that you have or flavors you like. None of these are super fancy because I like to keep it simple and delicious…so let’s get started.

1. Mug Cake (218 Calories; 6.5 F, 16.5 C, 26 P)

There are tons of recipes out there for mug cakes, but this is one that I have found to be easy and delicious, and successful for once. Here are the ingredients:

  • 1 scoop protein powder
  • 50-60 grams of banana, mashed (or an egg)
  • 1/2 cup of milk of choice
  • 1 tbsp. almond flour
  • Baking powder

In a mug mix together the protein powder (I use PEScience snickerdoodle), mashed banana, milk (I use unsweetened cashew milk), almond flour and a dash of baking powder. Microwave on high for 1 minute. **Keep an eye on it as it can sometimes overflow or “explode and make a mess** After 1 minute, check the consistency and continue microwaving for 30 second intervals, checking periodically until it is done to your liking. I like to add scoops of Enlightened or Halo Top ice cream to the top of mine…especially oatmeal cookie crunch on top of this cinnamon mug cake….straight fire!

2. Yogurt Bowls

These are probably my favorite healthy dessert and I have it almost every night. I love it because it’s so versatile so that I can always switch it up and never get bored–plus it packs in a protein-punch from the greek yogurt. You’re going to start off with a base of plain greek yogurt. (You can use flavored or just regular yogurt, but those often have tons of added sugars to them so I prefer the plain greek so that I can add my own flavors and keep it healthier.) Then, from there you literally add whatever you want to it. Here are some of my go-tos combinations:

  • Fruit and granola (pictured left)
  • Cereal (rice chex and lucky charms) with peanut butter
  • Fruit and peanut butter
  • Fruit, nut butter, and protein bar (pictured right)
  • Birthday cake muscle butter and vanilla cupcake goldfish grahams

3. Pancake Bowl

I got this inspiration from Lexi Deyoung on YouTube. Instead of making pancakes on the stove or griddle, you make a giant one in a bowl. Here’s the ingredients, although the amounts are up to you.

  • 1/2-1 serving Pancake Mix (I use Kodiak Cakes Protein Mix)
  • Protein powder (any desired amount, I used 10 grams)
  • 1/3-1/2 cup cashew milk (any milk will work)
  • 50-60 g banana, mashed (or 1 egg)

In a microwave-safe bowl, mix together the pancake mix, protein powder, milk, and bananas. Then, add water as needed for consistency (should be like normal pancake batter consistency). Microwave for 1-1.5 minutes (time could vary so check on it) until you have the consistency you like. I did it for 1 minute because I like  mine to be gooey in the middle still. Then, top with whatever you like. I did 2 tbsp. whipped cream cheese, 1 crumbled caramel rice cake, and Walden Farms sugar-free syrup. I also think I may add fruit next time. But, seriously, it’s so delicious, and versatile so try it out!

4. Dessert Pancakes

This was one of my best dessert discoveries yet! It’s so simple, but you may have never thought to put these things together…but you should! Just make pancakes how you normally would. I use Kodiak Cakes protein mix along with protein powder and water. Then, I add either Enlightened or Halo Top ice cream to the top. (wondering which one you should choose? Check out my ice cream review post!). My favorite combinations so far have been Enlightened cookie dough or oatmeal cookie crunch (pictured), but really any flavor would be delicious on top of the pancakes. I mean c’mon, pancakes for dessert…who doesn’t want that?

So there you have it-healthy dessert recipes and ideas! If you have any suggestions of your favorites or variations, I would love to hear them!

My Favorite Protein Products and Supplements

Last week I talked about easy ways to get more protein. And like I said, I do believe in getting the majority of your protein from whole sources such as meat, eggs, yogurt, etc. However, working full time, being an athlete, and always on the go means that sometimes I need more-convenient and quick options to get my protein in. In this post, I want to review some of my favorite protein supplements–bars and powders–that I take. I know there a ton more out there that others take, so do your research and try out what works best for you.

Bars

These are my new absolute favorite bars!! I heard about them on instagram and bought myself the same pack that came with 4 flavors: cookies n’ cream, cookie dough, peanut butter chocolate chip, and trashcan cookie. I haven’t had the cookie dough yet (saving my assumed favorite for last), but the other 3 so far so STRAIGHT FIRE. They legit look and taste like cookie dough, relatively low sugars (9), and made from healthy ingredients. And because they have 90 mg of caffeine, they are the perfect pre-workout snack! I recently found them, but I am so glad I did because they hands down rose to the top.

I still love these bars and they are my next favorite. They don’t taste like protein bars (like some bars you know have that aftertaste you can tell what you’re eating) and their flavors are spot on delicious.I haven’t tried all the flavors, but I’ll rank the ones that I have right here from top to bottom: Chocolate Mint, Chocolate Coconut, Chocolate Peanut, Chocolate Brownie, Vanilla Almond. These bars are also low sugar (5 g) and have omega-3s which are healthy fats that the body needs–don’t worry you can’t taste them at all! The taste and texture are just perfect on these bars.

First, I want to say for the nutrition facts, each bar is different in fats and carbs so I just did an average for this post’s sake. You may have heard of RXBar because on the front of their wrappers it lists the ingredients and then No B.S. at the bottom, meaning exactly what you think. RXBar prides themselves on using all wholesome ingredients with no added sugar and no crap ingredients. I will say the texture of this bar is different from most, it’s chewier and less “bar-ish” which makes sense considering their ingredients. Again, I have not tried all the flavors especially since they just came out with 3 new ones, but I will rank the ones I have tried here from top to bottom: Maple Sea Salt, Blueberry, Chocolate Coconut, Chocolate Sea Salt, Peanut Butter (did not like at all). Definitely  give these bars a try!

Powders

I switched to this protein about 3 months ago after disliking what I was previously using (it wasn’t bad tasting overall, but not as many flavors and tasted bad just drinking with water). I had heard great things about PEScience Select Protein and wanted to test them out with their snickerdoodle flavor. Yes you read that right, SNICKERDOODLE!! It is now my favorite protein powder and I have it usually once a day because it is so good and versatile. It tastes delicious just mixed in water if you need a quick, on-the-go shake, but also in yogurt bowls, oatmeal, pancake mix, etc. I am so glad I tried PEScience out because I fell in love!! They also have tons of other flavors that I’ve heard are amazing and I want to try, but it is hard to give-up on my snickerdoodle, even for a short time. If you’ve been looking for a new protein powder, this is it!

This is a brand that lately that I have heard AMAZING things about from the people I follow on instagram. When they came out with their new Apollo Pure flavor, birthday cake cupcake, and after a stressful day at work, I decided to treat myself to buying a tub of it. And it did not disappoint. I put some in my pancake mix this morning and there are legit sprinkles in the protein powder!!! It tasted exactly like birthday cake cupcake and was freakin’ delicious. I have also heard it  makes amazing ice cream bowls and shakes, but have yet to try. They have other flavors that I have heard are to die for such as Cookies n’ Cream, Cinnamon Roll, and Vanilla Milkshake–and I can’t wait to try them.

 

Easy Ways to Get More Protein

In the health and fitness world, and just in general life, protein can be a big topic of controversy. One minute we aren’t getting enough, the next TOO MUCH. While everyone’s protein amount is going to differ, I do believe that a lot of people are lacking good amounts of quality sources of protein in their diet. Whether or not you’re trying to build muscle, lose weight, or just stay the same, protein is an important building block and essential to making certain things in your body. It also helps keep your feeling fuller! For more information, check out this article.

1. Eggs/Egg Whites

Just to clarify first, EGGS ARE NOT BAD FOR YOU. Okay, there I said it. There was some belief that started that egg yolks are bad for you and you should only eat the whites, not true. Anyway, both eggs and egg whites are great sources of protein, for any meal! Add hardboiled eggs to a salad, make scrambled egg/egg whites for breakfast or dinner, add egg whites to your oatmeal, etc. I typically do a mix of 1 egg and 3-4 egg whites. They’re also great for adding to pancake or waffle batter to increase the protein content!

2. Greek Yogurt

If you follow me on social media, then you know I love my greek yogurt! I use it in oatmeal, yogurt bowls for breakfast or dessert, fruit dip, smoothies, healthy chicken salad…you name it! I love getting plain because A) It has no added sugars in it, and B) I get to add the toppings and flavorings of my own. But, I also do love Dannon Light and Fit Greek yogurts too when I’m feeling more of a sweet treat! The great thing about greek yogurt too is that it’s portable and an easy snack to eat while being so versatile!

3. Lean Meats

This one is the obvious choice. Any source of meat gives you protein, but look for the lean choices when possible. Lean ground turkey or beef, chicken, shrimp, fish, lunch meat, turkey or lean beef burgers, etc. are all great options!

4. Cheese

While cheese can have a lot of fat, it can also provide a healthy source of protein. Look for reduced fat cheeses like mozzarella, feta, goat, provolone, and swiss. These are going to be your healthiest options. Sprinkle some on your eggs or salad, or mix into pasta. String cheese  is also a great snack on-the-go. One of my favorites that I’ve recently found is laughing cow wedges. They come in about 6-8 different flavors (favorites: light swiss and mozzarella sun-dried tomato and basil) and are great to add to eggs or pasta, spread on sandwiches or wraps, or dip crackers in!

5. Powders/Bars

On the market, there are thousands of different protein powders and bars, all claiming they are the next best thing, which can be good considering everyone’s tastes and preferences are different. I personally am not one of those people who say you should never use or eat powders or bars because being an athlete and always busy, I know how convenient and easy sources of protein these can be. When looking for a bar, make sure it has a good amount of protein and carbs, quality ingredients, and limited added sugar. Same goes for powders: limited added sugar and quality ingredients. From there whether you choose egg, whey, isolate, etc. is up to you. So yes I do believe that these are okay to add to your diet. However, they should not constitute the main sources of your daily protein. What I mean is if you have a protein shake, don’t have two bars later to get your protein needs in (unless you’re some big bodybuilder who has insanely high macros for protein and then you do you). I limit myself to one a day, either protein powder or a bar so that I can ensure I’m getting the rest of my protein from quality sources like lean meats, dairy, etc.

6. Other

Other include items that have protein, but aren’t a main component. A lot of these are what vegetarians and vegans get their protein from. This would include beans (garbanzo, black, kidney, etc.), lentils, quinoa, some healthy breads, edamame, and hummus. If you aren’t vegan or vegetarian, I would suggest you use these to supplement your protein intake, but not have them be your main source.

Hopefully now you have a better idea of some good ways to get in your protein! Like I mentioned before, each person’s amount is going to be different based on a variety of factors; however, every person needs quality sources of protein in their diet! These are some of my favorites  and go-tos!