Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Pantry Roll Call

It's time for a Pantry Roll Call.

If you haven't taken that extra step of 1) joining MyFitnessPal or LoseIt and 2) adding me on there, you're probably wondering what I eat, and more important, what's in my fridge and pantry. I'm here to break it down for you, as of this very moment.

How cute is this BABY Le Creuset pot? I use it just for decoration.
I snagged it at the Williams Sonoma store closing sale last month.

Feel free to add any (or none) of these things to your shopping list. I dare you.


  • Paderno Spiralizer
  •  (from Amazon)
  • Yonanas dreamscometruemaker
  • A decent blender (mine's an Oster with somewhat of a touch screen from 2009 that works wonders)
  • A colander for washing/rinsing fruits and veggies
  • Veggie Wash (to spray and adequately clean the Dirty Dozen)
  • George Foreman grill (Mine is TINY, cute, and red, but a bitch to clean. The plates don't come apart, so I have to unplug the machine, wait for it to cool down, and take the whole thing over to the sink to scrub down.)
  • Keurig K-Cup System coffee maker (Bad for the environment, since you throw out K-Cups, but it's hard to be perfect. It's cheaper than Starbucks, and I know exactly what I'm getting. Coffee can be a great dessert after dinner, with just a little half and half, and a shake of cinnamon), or alternatively, just a standard Mr. Coffee maker
  • Pots and pans
  • Utensils, to eat with, and to cook with (spatula, wooden spoon, stirrer, plastic/metal spatulas, kitchen shears, etc.)
  • Tupperware (or the equivalent, like from the GLAD brand) in a variety of sizes
Favorite Fruits

  • Blackberries (I always, always, always buy them when they're on sale)
  • Apples (Honeycrisp are the BOIMB, but hella expensive)
  • Strawberries (Again, if they're on sale, I AM BUYING THEM. Central Market has the best kind ever)
  • Bananas (to eat fresh, in the AM, or when they get cheetah-spotted, destined for the freezer to eventually be turned into a Yonanas treat)
  • Clementines (Cuties!)
  • Mango (I haven't liked mango for YEARS because my college served it when it wasn't particularly fresh. It's really high in sugar, but let's not get too into the weeds, shall we? Frozen mango chunks make for GREAT Yonanas "sorbet")
  • Grapes 
  • Kiwi
  • Blueberries
  • Figs (expensive, and I'm not sure how to pick them, but the few times I've been gifted figs, I've gone apeshit over them)
  • Apricots
  • Raspberries
  • Cantaloupe
  • Watermelon
  • Grapefruit (but they're a bitch to eat - wear a bib and arm yourself with a grapefruit spoon)
  • Frozen Fruit, like mango, strawberries, and raspberries (ONLY exclusively buy Unsweetened Frozen Fruit. Otherwise, you're getting straight-up dessert)
  • Unsweetened Applesauce
  • Canned Pumpkin

Very Veggie
  • Zucchini
  • Yellow Squash
  • Eggplant
  • Roma Tomatoes
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Cauliflower (for convenience, I like this frozen)
  • Cucumber (Goes great with a little hummus)
  • Kale (So far, only frozen kale, in smoothies, has been tolerable for me. It's tough to digest for a lot of people, so try it out, and see how it goes for you)
  • Spinach (From a bag. Did you know that microwaving a little spinach for 1 minute produces a similar end product to steamed spinach? YUMZ)
  • Mushrooms
  • Bell Peppers (I really, really, really don't like these raw, but if you wash them, wrap them in foil, and throw them in the oven on broil for about 30 minutes, you get this really mushy, delicious pepper smash)
  • Carrots (Good steamed or raw, with a little hummus, avocado, or salsa)
  • Sweet Potatoes (I like a Central Market or Whole Foods frozen bag of sweet potatoes. It's got 2 servings of 169 calories each, so I eat half, and tupperware the rest)
  • Spaghetti Squash (Check out everything there is to do with this thing on Pinterest. It's incredibly easy to prep, cook, and eat)

Healthy Fats

  • Avocado (If you're lazy, and also dumb, like me, and don't know how to whisper avocados, I recommend "WhollyAvocado" - from the WhollyGuac people! Great for adding to smoothies)
  • Hummus (Really, really, really watch the portion size on this. Before you DIP, measure out your 2 tbsp serving into a little cup, and then BACK AWAY FROM THE HUMMUS)
  • Filberts (Central Market's cousin to the hazelnut)
  • Hazelnuts (from Whole Foods)
  • Pistachios, out of the shell (Side note: I got these from Whole Foods, and they are LITERALLY tough nuts to crack. Eating them makes me feel like I have George Washington teeth, so I think from now on, I'm going to smash them up with my cocktail shaker, that I never use for its intended purpose, just so I can keep my teeth a while longer)
  • Raw California Almonds (from Central Market)

^ Measure out 1/4 cup of any of those, and limit yourself to 1 serving a day, which should be plenty.

I recommend buying tupperware (Glad brand or whatever you like) in various sizes. I've got a tiny one, perfect for 1/4 cup of almonds, or 2 tbsp PB2, and round and square ones for taking lunch to work. They're also great for storing any food/fruit/vegetables for the week that you prepped on Sunday.

Food Prep/Seasoning

  • Dried Parsley (I'm 100% sure that the fresh item would be better than dried, but's convenient, easy, and goes great on eggs or in a pot of my "ratatouille")
  • Red Pepper Flakes (CAUTION: a little goes a long way)
  • Italian Herb Seasoning
  • Paprika
  • Salsa (Buy the kind that has the least amount of ingredients. You're going to freak out when you see how low calorie salsa/pico de gallo is. You're welcome.)
  • Lemon and/or Lime (Fresh, or in a bottle, like the RealLemon brand)
  • Coconut Oil Spray (Beauty on a BUDGET. I ain't got time to spend $10 on a jar of Coconut Oil. This does the trick. Use as you would olive oil, or Pam, to coat the bottom of a pan or pot)
  • Cinnamon (Rumor has it that it revs up your metabolism. It has little to no calories, so shake away! Perfect for Yonanas, in name it!)
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder (Hershey's has just 10 calories per tablespoon)
  • Pumpkin Spice (basically, they did the hard part of mixing up cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger for you)
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Mint Extract
  • Ponzu Sauce
  • Low Sodium Soy Sauce
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Apple Cider Vinegar

Lean Proteins/Sustenance 
Whoever says that buying meals out is LESS expensive than making them at home is an absolute idiot, and is probably either not shopping at the right places, or living life on the Dollar Menu.

The first time I went out and decided to buy Salmon to cook all by my lonesome, I couldn't believe just how cheap it was, and felt like an absolute fool for being so scared of trying things in the kitchen.

  • Eggs: 60-70 calories per egg, didja know? I recommend making them hardboiled or scrambled, or if you have a little more time on Sunday, make egg "muffin" cups (Enjoy in moderation, just in case there's truth to the whole eggs : cholesterol bit).
  • Chicken (I buy chicken breasts and "tenders" - not as in fried (see below), but as in little pieces that are super manageable on my George Foreman.
  • Lean Ground Turkey: You can make Turkey Burgers, or literally just ground turkey, and make that the base of some sort of protein/veggie bowl. I did this last night with ground turkey, cooked on the stovetop with just a bit of Coconut Oil Spray, and then I layered some Cauliflower SLAM on top.
  • Salmon: Prepared the way I described in my VLOG and in other posts: Preheat oven to 400F. Get out a large baking pan, and place a piece of foil big enough for your fish in the bottom. Spray the foil with coconut oil spray. Lay salmon down on said foil. Season to your taste. I like using Ponzu sauce, and I lightly drizzle it on the salmon. Fold up the foil. Bake your foil pack for about 20-25 minutes, depending on how much trust you have in your oven. ENJOY.

When in a hurry, but not recommended
  • Frozen Turkey Burgers (look for Organic brands, like Applegate Farms)
  • Mom Made Bites Turkey Meatballs

Fancy Dranks

  • Almond Breeze unsweetened Almond Milk (My favorite flavors are Vanilla, Chocolate, and Vanilla Almond Coconut. PERFECT for smoothies, but it's not my bag to just drink this stuff straight up. I don't think it's meant for that)

Favorite Indulgences 

  • Veggie Mama Garden Pops (Agave-sweetened meant-for-baby popsicles, like the ones you remember from camp, or elementary school, or summers at the pool. There's even a Sweet Potato Pie flavor!)

  • Enjoy Life boom CHOCO boom bars (Dark Chocolate, Rice Milk Chocolate, and Rice Milk Crunch)

On my Oh-No-NO List

  • Diet or Sugar-Free (I call it SUCKA FREE...remember the MTV days?) ANYTHING. JUST. DON'T.
    • Splenda (If you're reading your labels, check for the word, "Sucralose," aka Splenda, aka the most Evil thing on the planet)
  • Baked goods (Just stay away for a little while. YOU CAN DO IT.)
  • Anything and everything dairy (aside from regular half and half that I add to coffee, or use in my Cauliflower SLAM recipe)
  • Self-serve frozen yogurt: Step away from your PAIL of yogurt with the equivalent of five King Size candy bars you crushed all up in it.
  • Protein bars, including:
    • Clif (glorified candy bar, and just really, really unnecessary)
    • QUEST bars (If you've never tried them, don't try them. They taste like candy bars, and promise to only have X amount of "active carbs," but basically, it's all utter and complete bullshit. If you're promised a "cookie dough" bar that's good for you, and you believe it, you've been duped)
    • ThinkThin bars (too much crap in there, and they've just got too many calories for what they are. Bottom line, they're processed food, and they might even trigger you to eat more and more sweets, since they come in flavors like Cookies and Cream, and Creamy Chocolate Peanut Butter)
    • Any bar that promises you everything under the sun, like Power Bars
    • Larabar or Kind Bars (They're probably some of the better ones out there, but still. Read the label, and see just how much sugar is in one of those babies. Just opt for real fruit and some almonds/nut butter to get what you think you're getting out of this expensive crap)
  • Cereal, of any kind
    • I don't care if it's gluten free, or made of cardboard. Try and skip out on this stuff for a while. Even when I would in good faith, measure out my cereal, I'd find myself wanting another serving, and felt the need to sprinkle chocolate chips on top. Suddenly, 1 perfect bowl of 1 cup of cereal turns into 2-3, plus an inordinate amount of extra calories that I didn't feel like accurately counting, c/o Nestle Tollhouse. #bye
  • Protein powder/PRE-workout
    • I'm not a guy, so I don't feel the pressure to use either of these things. Don't come after me if you're offended for me including this on the list. I just find them unnecessary, and a little scary. If a powder promises you that you'll be able to feel no pain and go past your limits (ahem, NO-XPLODE), I think there are more longterm negative consequences ahead of you. Just get like...adequate sleep, eat real food, mix up cardio/strength, and a little rest, and drink plenty of water/take regular vitamins. PROBLEMS SOLVED.
  • Food fakers
    • Just because you ordered a salad doesn't make you a Saint. What's in it? Cheese crumbles? Lots and lots of bacon? Candied nuts? Full-fat creamy dressing? Think again. Keep it simple, or just make it yourself. Always, always, always order dressing on the side, and to quote Hungry Girl (wince), Dip, Don't Pour.
    • Arctic Zero, Skinny Cow (don't trust labels, and also, don't be surprised to find yourself eating multiple Skinny Cows, thus becoming the Fat Cow, or eating an entire pint of Arctic Zero)
  • Bread, in basically all forms, and almost all carbs, aside from the ones derived from nature, like those found in fruits and vegetables
    • I'm reading Against All Grain and while my problems aren't nearly as bad as the ones the author describes, I'm starting to put almost all of her methods in practice. Things are fitting better and I look and feel a lot less bloated than normal, and I know I can attribute this almost completely to my avoidance of carbs. I know it's mainly water weight loss, but all the other changes I've made are helping solidify the step in that direction. Try it. Breads, and most fun carbs, are just vehicles for whatever you're putting on top (smoked salmon, peanut butter, sauce, etc. etc. etc.)
  • Fried food
    • I can't, not now, and not ever, because of a little thing called IBS. I also don't like feeling like a beached whale, so I just don't. Go for grilled, not crispy on menus.
  • Diet or regular soda
    • Swapportunity? Club soda with lemon or lime (juice, or real), Diet Tonic (AS LONG as it has zero fake sugar in it. Read the labels carefully!), Seltzer Water, or Perrier. Basically, sparkling water that doesn't contain any artificial sweeteners
  • Speaking of Swapportunity, Light/Fat-Free yogurts, like Yoplait. Do you see how much crap (sucralose, fake flavorings, carbs) are in those tiny, innocent containers? Don't buy into the advertising, says the advertising brand manager.

That's all I got. It's after midnight, and I got 4 hours of sleep yesterday, (team) taught 2 RPM classes (6A and 7P) and had a full day of work in between.

Basically, I'm tired, boss.

Until next time.


PS I'm on Facebook now! Like me. Thanks!

PPS I'm stressing out about my upcoming AFAA (required by Gold's, suddenly) certification day, which is a week from Sunday. It's a lot more than I ever could have hoped/dreamed of, and it's actually worse than most of my nightmares. For someone who exclusively teaches spin classes and does it for fun, and not as a primary source of income or use of time, having to learn the ins and outs of the Krebs cycle and being required to choreograph and teach cardio (NOT ON A BIKE) and stretch routines seems a littttttle unnecessary. So instead, I'm panicking, taking furious notes in a large, over-my-head textbook, and laughing so hard I cry from videos like this:

and this.

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