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Finding the balance of physical and mental health through adventures and fitness

Tag Archives: homemade

It wasn’t until after college that I ate seafood other than canned tuna as tuna salad. However, it wasn’t until a former student of mine and I met for sushi a few years ago that I started to really get adventurous with my seafood. There are still things I don’t like such as lobster – I know, blasphemous to many who are from New England. I had a bad batch of scallops that made me sick so I stay away from those too.

We will make seafood dishes every now and then, but as many people say financial barriers can make it hard to make healthier choices and that’s a huge reason why we limit the diversity in the seafood we have at home. When shrimp go on sale we will buy them and same with salmon burgers, fresh white fish and squid, but canned tuna is probably always going to be my go-to lean protein because it is more reasonably priced.

To help prevent meal burn out I try to keep diversity in my meal planning, but sometimes you can only have chicken so many ways before you decide it’s not what you want for lunch. Last week, while I was trying to figure out what I wanted for lunch that wasn’t chicken, I decide I could go for tuna, but I didn’t want a tuna sandwich or a tuna melt. I’ve had salmon burgers at a few restaurants in the area, not steaks, but a formed patty with spices and binding ingredients. I figured I could probably make a tuna burger if I looked hard enough.

tuna burger blog post

 

What You’ll Need

  • 1 can of tuna
  • 1 egg
  • 2T of flour
  • 1 tsp of seasoning blend of choice
  • Baking sheet
  • Cooking spray

Directions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Prep your baking sheet with a little cooking spray. You could also use olive oil.
  3. Drain a can of tuna and add to a small bowl. Break up tuna into smaller chunks.
  4. Add an egg and flour to tuna. Mix well. You may want to add the flour a little bit at a time so that it doesn’t poof out of the bowl.
  5. Add seasoning blend to tuna mixture. If you want want to use a seasoning blend, you can add salt, pepper and individual spices to your taste.
  6. Once mixed, take a flat spatula and move mixture to the middle of the bowl forming a circle. Slowly dump mixture to baking sheet and shape to a circular patty about half an inch thick. You can make one patty or two 2 ounce patties.
  7. Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes. Patty will be crispy on the outside and cooked through on the inside.

I served mine on top of lettuce with onions, tomatoes and sriracha mayo. You can serve it on a bun or in a salad. There’s a place in town that makes an excellent broccoli slaw.

Well, damn, Now I’m hungry.

Macros for a 4 ounce patty: 4.5f | 10c | 28p

❤ Cristina

 

 

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My schedule this fall is pretty steady because I know which days are busy and which days I have down time. The days I have down time vary in what they’re filled with, but are pretty spread out. Tuesdays are pretty light: I eat, I workout, I do homework and sometimes when my Wednesday client can’t talk on Wednesday, we talk on Tuesday.

Last Tuesday, I had a pretty light day and while it’s nice to not have to be “go-go” all the time, the down fall of being a “go-go” person is that you can’t decide what to do with yourself when you do have down time.

I thought I would go out and read with a cup of coffee, but I didn’t really want to spend the money on coffee knowing we have a solid collection in the pantry. I figured I just wanted to get outside, it didn’t necessarily need to be physically out near other people. So I went for a run outside and looped the area.

Later in the day I still wanted a drink, but I didn’t want to go out for it. After some searching on Pinterest and knowing what I do about lattes, I made one for myself at home on the stove.

latte blog post photo

So if you have about 10 minutes and don’t want to leave the house this fall, or worse, get snowed in this winter – this may be a fun pick-me-up. It’ll also save you some money and calories as we head into pumpkin, maple, gingerbread season!

Here’s some variations we’ve tried and how to make them.

Blueberry Caramel Latte

This was the first one I made to see if I could even make these stove top. I looked at a few recipes and played with the ratios, so here’s what worked.

What you’ll need 

  • Blueberry coffee
  • Caramel topping
  • Milk or milk alternative
  • Small pot

Directions

  1. Brew your coffee a little stronger than normal. I filled my coffee pot to the 4 cup line and used 1/4 cup of grounds.
  2. While your coffee is brewing measure out 2/3 cup of milk or milk alternative and warm up on stove top using low to medium heat. I used unsweetened cashew milk for my milk because that’s what I had on hand.
  3. While the milk is warming up whisk in 2 teaspoons of caramel sauce.
  4. When milk is up to temperature add half of the coffee and whisk together.
  5. Pour in your favorite mug, top with whip cream if you want and drink.

Nutrition for Blueberry Caramel Latte: 1.5f | 13c | 1p or 70 calories

*nutrition varies based on milk/alternative and flavor add-ins

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Variations

Hazelnut and Honey: Substitute blueberry coffee for hazelnut and caramel topping for 1tsp of honey.

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Pumpkin Spice: Substitute flavored grounds for unflavored, cinnamon or pumpkin and use pumpkin pie spice blend to taste, 2T of canned pureed pumpkin and either 1tsp honey or caramel sauce.

I’m still playing with combinations, but check out Pinterest for other ideas!

❤ Cristina


I eat a lot of chicken. I mostly bake it, sometimes I pan fry it. I own a million spices and seasoning blends so it’s never boring to me. However, that doesn’t stop my boyfriend from asking if the “chicken is going to be exciting for dinner.” Well, yes dear the chicken will be exciting and I promise I won’t feed you sometime I wouldn’t want to eat myself. So because he asked again tonight how exciting the chicken would be tonight, I decided to make something a little different for us tonight – homemade chicken nuggets.

These are better than any store brand, frozen bag not just because the chicken is fresh and there’s less additives, but you get to play with flavors. To me, flavor is important. It makes food interesting and can really change the dynamic of a meal. So tonight’s flavor of choice was Kickin’ Chicken blend.

This recipe is broken down for 1 serving to keep it simple.

What You’ll Need

  • 5 ounces of chicken
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon Kickin’ Chicken blend by Weber (or other flavor blend of your choice)
  • 1 egg *
  • 2 tablespoons cold water*

*egg mixture is good for 2 servings

Directions

  1. In bowl combine all dry ingredients thoroughly
  2. In a separate bowl combine egg and water
  3. Using tenders or chicken breast, trim off any excess fat and cut meat into bite size pieces
  4. Add chicken to egg wash, then dip each piece into the dry mix until coated
  5. Place chicken pieces on a greased baking sheet, spray chicken lightly with cooking spray and bake for about 7-10 minutes at 350 degrees

I served my nuggets with 15g of honey mustard and 100g of broccoli. The macros for just the nuggets were 6F, 17C, 31P. Definitely an improvement over the macros from the dinosaur shaped nuggets you see in the frozen food aisle. These were also a winner with my boyfriend. When I started prepping them, he asked if they would be fried. I laughed and said “do I ever fry anything?” He replied, “well, no. Ha, well why did you ask then? For being baked, these little guys had a little crunch because of the cooking spray applied before they went into the oven.

Overall, it probably took my 15 minutes to get dinner together and it was a home cooked meal that I don’t feel guilty eating and since I know it was a hit with my guy, I may need to make them more often so he doesn’t feel consumed by chicken breast and “burrito bowls”.

I hope you enjoy making your own nuggets,  with spices the possibilities are endless!

 

❤ Cristina