This is how to store vegetables

A few years ago, I always bought a big batch of veggies on the market on a Saturday. I got vegetables for the whole week: ideal and very beneficial! However, my cheap shopping spree became expensive very quickly as I threw away veggies such as broccoli after a few days because it got completely yellow. Shame! So, what was the problem? I kept all my vegetables out of the fridge while they stay fresh much longer when they are in the fridge. Thats why I went to look for a lot of different vegetables and their best storage advice.

Potatoes

Store: in a dry, dark place

How long: about 3 to 4 weeks

Endive

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: a few days

Artichoke

Store: in the refrigerator (wrapped in a damp tea towel)

How long: a few days

Asparagus

Store: in the refrigerator (in a damp tea towel)

How long: about 1 to 3 days

Eggplant

Store: in a dark, cool place (outside of the refrigerator)

How long: about a week

Beetroot

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: a few weeks (if you have raw beets)

Cauliflower

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: about 4 days

Kale

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: a few days

Spring onion

Store: in a cool, dry place (outside the refrigerator)

How long: up to a week

Broccoli

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: about 1 week

Chinese cabbage

Store: in the refrigerator (in an open plastic bag)

How long: one week

Zucchini

Store: in a cool place (outside the refrigerator)

How long: one week

Garlic

Store: in a dry, dark place

How long: a few weeks

store vegetables

Cucumber

Store: in a dark, cool place (outside of the refrigerator)

How long: about a week (cucumbers in plastic wrap have a longer shelf life)

Corn

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: about 3 days (with plastic wrap)

Mushrooms

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: about 2 to 3 days

Bell pepper

Store: in a cool place (outside the fridge!)

How long: one week

Snow peas

Store: in the refrigerator (in a plastic bag with holes in it)

How long: a few days

Pumpkin

Store: a cool place

How long: several months (if the pumpkin is uncut. Cut pumpkin can be stored in the refrigerator for one week.)

Leek

Store: in the refrigerator or in a cool dry place

How long: about 2 to 3 weeks

Radish

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: about a week

Lettuce

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: about 1 day

store vegetables

Green beans

Store: in the refrigerator (in a plastic bag)

How long: a few days

Spinach

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: 1 to 2 days

Cabbage

Store: a cool place (outside the fridge)

How long: a few days

Brussel sprouts

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: about 2 to 5 days

Tomatoes

Store: In a cool place (outside of the refrigerator)

How long: about a week

Onions

Store: in a dry, dark place

How long: a few weeks

Chicory

Store: in the fridge (in the dark it will stays beautifully white)

How long: about 5 days

Carrots

Store: in the refrigerator

How long: If you remove the leaves, the carrots can stay fresh for about a week

Sweet potato

Store: in a dry, dark place

How long: about a week

So, now you’re well prepared and you’ll never throw away so many vegetables again! Is a particular vegetable missing from the list? Let me know in the comments! I’ll look for the correct storage advice and add it to the list! 🙂

Source (images): Half Baked Harvest (header), Good Dinner Mom (cucumber), Bon Appetit (beans)

Chocolate cake with hidden vegetables

This is a very easy way to get all the vegetables you need 😉 Personally, I love to throw in vegetables in a cake because you often don’t taste any of it and it is super healthy! This cake contains vegetables, fruit and chocolate, what more does someone want?

chocolate cake

Recipe: Chocolate cake with pumpkin

Ingredients:

  • 10½ ounces pumpkin
  • ½ cup blueberries
  • 1 ounce dark chocolate
  • 3/8 cup coconut (shredded)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups spelt flour
  • 2½ tablespoons stevia sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • Toppings: almonds & coconut

Preparations:

  • Cook the pumpkin and blend it until it becomes a purée.
  • Cook the blueberries and mash them with a spoon until a dark red liquid is formed, add this to the pumpkin puree.
  • Cut the chocolate into small pieces and place in a clean bowl together with the coconut.
  • Put the eggs in the pumpkin/blueberry purée and mix until smooth.
  • Add the spelt flour, cocoa powder and stevia sugar to the mixture.
  • Finally, add the chocolate and coconut to the mixture and put everything in a greased cake mold.
  • Place the mold in a preheated oven (356 ºF) for 45 minutes.
  • Garnish with some almonds and coconut.

Tip: cook the pumpkin with some cinnamon to get a delicious flavor!

Love, 

Maartje 

Instagram: @gezonderecptjes
Facebook: Gezonderecptjes

Need to know hacks to keep your food from spoiling

One of the hardest parts about trying to eat healthy, to me, is trying to eat all the healthy food before it starts spoiling. Instead of making my own salads at home, I tend to get prepackaged ones at grocery stores. There’s just no way I can finish a whole bag of lettuce or rocket all by myself before it gets all soggy and sad. Not even if I ate a salad every day, which would be pretty depressing anyway..So, if you’re like me, then you’re in dire need of some hacks to keep your food from spoiling. Because no one deserves to throw out spoiled bananas and veggies that you spent your money on. 

Keep your veggies from spoiling

  • Leafy greens: these are the bases of your salads, or ingredients for your wraps and sandwiches. Overall, they’re pretty important. Instead of letting your lettuce, spinach or kale go bad before you can eat them, use a paper towel! Moisture in the fridge is actually the biggest culprit when it comes to making your greens lose their crisp texture. All you have to do is place the washed greens in a zip bag along with a couple of clean and dry paper towels. The paper towels will absorb the excess moisture which will keep them fresher for a longer period of time.
  • Mushrooms: these are notorious for spoiling quickly, which makes me wonder very hard before I buy them. Can I eat all these mushrooms in the next 4 days before they start drying up, going bad or getting that weird slimy texture? Thankfully, the hack is pretty simple to do, so I don’t need to keep asking myself this.  You want to keep excess moisture out of the mushrooms, while retaining the moisture it already has. So place your mushrooms in a brown paper bag and store them in the fridge.  Another trick is placing them in paper towel and then into a perforated plastic bag (just poke some holes into it).
  • Celery: to keep your celery nice and crunchy, separate them into individual stalks. Next, wash them and dry them before you wrap each individual piece tightly in aluminum foil. Place them in the fridge. This will slow down the ripening process because it will keep the celery unexposed to air, but also keep the moisture in.

Keep that dairy fresh

  • Milk: to prolong the freshness of milk, you can add a pinch of table salt to the carton and shake it well. It will not affect the taste, but will do it’s job to stop it from spoiling so quickly!
  • Cheese: have you ever gone for some cheese, only to find that it’s a hard un-eatable block? There’s a hack for that. To keep the cheese on the side from drying out and hardening, add on a little butter to that edge. This will prevent it from happening. 🙂

Help your fruits last longer

  • Bananas: this fruit produces ethylene gas naturally, which allows them to continue ripening after they’ve been picked. This gas is released mostly around the stem, so one way to keep bananas from spoiling too quickly is to separate them and wrap the stems of the bananas tightly in plastic wrap/cling film. If your bananas are too ripe, peel them and freeze them individually wrapped in plastic. They are still usable for ice cream or banana bread!
  • Apples: like bananas, these also produce ethylene gas. The same principle applies. If one apple is rotten, it will actually spoil the bunch, so set it apart from the rest, to not expose them too much from the gas. If one apple is spoiled, the surrounding fruit will start producing more ethylene as well.

Above all, make sure that you clean out your fridge regularly. If food spoils in your fridge, it can leave behind mold. This mold can get to your other food and cause them to spoil, so hygiene is key! Keep a clean fridge, and ensure all your food stays fresher longer. Do you have any tips you’d like to share? Comment below. 

Sources: Survival At HomeReader’s Digest, Everyday Health

Two-in-one vegetable lasagna

In my experience and those of my clients, I noticed that it is sometimes pretty difficult to cook for your whole family, boyfriend or friends if you want to watch what you’re eating. 9 out of 10 times, I am eating something different than my boyfriend does at night. Despite that, I always cook with fresh ingredients, even though he doesn’t have to watch what he’s eating. For example, cheese as a topping for a lasagna is possible for him but not for me. 

Therefore, it can sometimes be pretty difficult to cook something that is good and nice for the both of us! Making two meals isn’t quite handy, is it? So that’s why I try to combine my meals by cooking some extra rice or having another sauce. This happened today as well… Two different lasagnas in one casserole. They had the same sauce but a different composition. One lasagna with tomato sauce, vegetables, lasagna leafs, minced meat and cheese, and one healthy version with tomato sauce, cottage cheese and vegetables. A good recommendation!

What do you need for 4 portions (2 portions of normal lasagna – 2 portions of vegetable lasagna)

  • 3 cans of tomatoes (preferably organic)
  • 4 tomatoes
  • 200 gr tomato purée
  • 1 onion
  • 300 gr minced meat
  • Spelt lasagna leafs
  • 2 zucchinis
  • 250 gr cottage cheese
  • Grated cheese
  • Oregano, garlic, salt and pepper spices

How to make it

  • Pre-heat the oven at 190 degrees Celsius.
  • Fry the minced meat with some salt and pepper. Put the meat away in a bin and set it aside.
  • Put the pan back on the fire and put a bit of olive oil in it. Cut the onion in pieces and put them in the pan.
  • Fry the onions and add the tomatoes together with the oregano, garlic, salt and pepper spices.
  • Add the canned tomatoes and leave the mix for 5 minutes.
  • Cut the courgette into thick horizontal stripes so that it has the form of a lasagna leaf.
  • Grab a casserole and grease it with some olive oil.
  • We start with the normal lasagna. Put 2 lasagna leafs on the first half of the casserole.
  • Put 1/2 minced meat on it and 2 slices of courgette. Add 1/4 of the sauce.
  • Again, put two lasagna leafs on the mix with the rest of the minced meat and again add two slices of courgette. Add 1/4 of the sauce. (you now have used half of the tomato sauce.)
  • Add some grated cheese on top of the lasagna.
  • Now it’s the vegetable lasagna’s turn. Add the cottage cheese to the tomato sauce and mix it up.
  • Add 3 courgette leafs on the bottom of the other half of the casserole. Add 1/3 of the sauce.
  • Repeat this 2 more times until there’s no more sauce.
  • Add some oregano spices and put the casserole in the oven for 40 minutes.

Good luck!

Spinach vs Kale: the battle of the greens

Spinach has been proven to give you superpowers by Popeye the sailor, and kale is the trendiest leafy green out there. Which is the greatest green? Let the nutrition battle begin!

What’s so great about them?

Both veggies are extremely versatile as they are easy to use as a base for a salad, to cook up for a stir-fry, or to throw in a smoothie. Kale is usually crunchier, coming from the same plant family as cabbage, and has a distinct slightly bitter taste. Spinach, however, is lusciously supple and boasts a less aggressive taste than kale. Both have been shown to help fight off many different types of cancers. In terms of nutritional value, the table below shows what 28 grams (or one loosely packed cup) of each leafy green contains. The parentheses indicate the percentage of the recommended daily intake (%RDI) of each nutrient.

Breakdown: how do the leaves help my body?

So what do all these letters and numbers mean? Here’s a super-speedy breakdown of what some of these powerful nutrients do for your body.

• Vitamin K helps prevent blood clots and the proper functioning of bone-dependent proteins. Both spinach and kale are packed with this, but as you can see kale takes the cake for the K.

• Vitamin A is essential for general growth, maintenance of visual function, regulation of tissue, and embryonic development. Sounds fancy and important (and it is).

• Calcium and magnesium are both bone-supportive nutrients, and a deficiency in magnesium can lead to headaches, muscle cramps, and chronic fatigue ; grab some spinach for your magnesium fix, and it’s a toss-up for the calcium content of the two greens.

• Spinach is a slightly richer than kale in manganese, which aids in the reduction of the risk of health problems related to oxidative stress (means that spinach is a great source of antioxidants)

• Folate is a nutrient necessary for pregnant or nursing moms, and iron is crucial in enabling your body to carry oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. Spinach has more of both than kale.

Which green to go for?

Clearly both are very beneficial to your health. Choose the one that fits your vitamin and mineral needs! Load up on spinach if you are pregnant or have high blood pressure, and kale is great if you feel like you might be getting a cold. If you aren’t sure which one your body needs most, choose the one you like best!

My favorite is definitely spinach because you can easily incorporate it into any meal and I find the taste to be fresher and more subtle. I use spinach daily in wraps, omelettes, smoothies, and salads (which means pretty much every meal I eat). You can find many recipes full of spinach and kale goodness on the website! Check out this Popeye spinach smoothie and this white bean and kale salad.

Yumyum, now that the debate between spinach and kale is (kind of) settled, you can start working these wildly nutritious foods into your meals!  

sources:PopSugar & One Green Planet

Vegetarian stir fry with an insane amount of veggies

I always find it really odd when people say that they find it difficult to cook. I mean, it’s not like it’s rocket science or anything? Of course there are different levels to how ‘culinary’ or fancy a dish is, but everyone should still be able to put together an easy supper for themselves. I’m not exactly a kitchen princess, but usually I just throw everything together that I like. Sometimes the combination ends up being  magical, other times I would not even feed it to my cat. Anyway, recently I once again had a magical combination, which I wanna share with you. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did!

The recipe for this vegetarian stir fry is for six people, but if you make it with someone else (partner or BFFF), you’ll both also have two prepped dinners for upcoming days.

Ingredients

  • 75 grams quinoa
  • 75 grams brown rice
  • 200 grams pumpkin cubes (I recommend frozen pumpkin cubes)
  • 160 grams lentils (can)
  • 160 grams corn (can)
  • 150 grams cherry tomatoes
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 bag of stir fried vegetables with mushrooms
  • 360 grams spicy seasoned tofu (cubes)
  • 100 grams feta cheese
  • fresh spinach leaves (amount to taste)
  • hand full of pumpkin and sunflower seeds
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • pepper, salt, garlic (2 cloves), pepper powder

Instructions

  1. Cut all ingredients in small chunks / pieces so that they are easy to stir-fry
  2. Cook the quinoa as directed on the package and add a vegetable stock cube for flavor.
  3. Fry the diced zucchini along with the cloves of garlic. After about two minutes, add the stir fry vegetables with mushrooms.
  4. Add the (frozen) pumpkin cubes to the ingredients above, as soon as these have shrunken a bit in the wok.
  5. Add the lentils and corn to the vegetables once the pumpkin is a little softer. Season with pepper, salt and paprika.
  6. Bake the tofu in a separate pan and add the rice / quinoa once it’s cooked.
  7. Add the halved cherry tomatoes to the vegetables in the wok.
  8. Now take a big salad bowl and add the vegetables, rice with tofu and stir everything together well.
  9. Cut the feta into small pieces and mix it together with the fresh spinach into the rice and vegetables.
  10. Garnish with sunflower and pumpkin seeds.

If this isn’t a royal meal, I don’t know what is! At least you don’t have to think about food prepping the next two days. Plus, your body will probably get a vitamin overdose because of all the veggies in this meal. If you have a magical combination that exceeds the one above, please share it in the comments below. I’m not afraid of a little healthy competition;)

FYI: If you feel like soup this week, this creamy carrot pumpkin soup is highly recommended! 

Healthy soy sauce noodles

As you all know, I’d prefer not to talk about calories. Today, I am going to do this since I want to make clear how you can easily change your meals into a much healthier dish. The most used and standard version are the wheat noodles of 650 kcal. The identical dish that I made for you today (and tastes just as good) contains only 400 kcal and I’ve only changed one product! Yep, it’s as easy as that to get some healthy soy sauce noodles.

Nowadays, this meal is my number one dish since it is very easy to variate with vegetables and all kinds of meat! For example, slices of beef, shrimps and even pieces of egg (for a vegetarian meal). Well, how to make this delicious, but especially easy recipe?

What do you need for 1 portion?

– 400 gr of wok vegetables
– 150 gr of chicken
– 1 tbsp of soy sauce
– 1 tbsp of sweet soy sauce
– 1 clove garlic
– Lime juice
– Salt & pepper
– 100 gr calorie free noodles

How to make it?

–  Cut the chicken and bake it for 5 minutes in a wok together with 1 squeezed clove of garlic and salt and pepper.
–  Add the wok vegetables to the sliced chicken and wok for another 5 minutes until both are overly cooked.
–  Add the noodles together with the ketjap, soy and lime juice.

Enjoy your delicious Asian meal!

Sushi Salad

I know very little people who don’t like sushi. Whenever you say ‘sushi’ everyone around you instantly drops what they’re doing and starts staring at you with puppy eyes. Yep, sushi is definitely one of the most popular kids in foodland. Unfortunately one sushi roll is already 110 calories, and that’s only the one with cucumber 😉 I’m not saying you should never eat sushi again (that would be a disaster) but there are healthier ways for you to eat sushi. Say whut?!

Last weekend me and Fit Girl Roos made this super delicious and easy Sushi Salad. It’s only 500 calories so it makes a perfect lunch as well.

sushi salad

This is what you need for two servings:

  • 100 gram brown rice
  • 100 gram quinoa
  • 125 seawead salad
  • a few nori leaves (this is normally wrapped around maki sushi)
  • 150 gram surimi sticks
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 avocado
  • seasame seed
  • soy sauce

Directions:

  • Mix some quinoa and brown rice and cook for approx. 8 minutes. In the meanwhile cut all the other ingredients into little pieces and mix them in a bowl.
  • Let the quinoa and rice cool down and add it to the other ingredients in the bowl. Sprinkle the seasme seeds and pieces nouri over the salad, add some soy sauce and you’re ready to go!

Do you wanna go for ‘All You Can Eat Sushi’ anytime soon? Be sure to check out Aranka’s Guilt Free Sushi Guide.

Delicious chicken celery salad

We all know the famous Waldorf salad… Traditionally made with chicken, walnuts, apple, celery and mayonnaise. Mmmm, it’s one of my favorites! Since I don’t eat mayonnaise anymore, (as always) I’ve chosen to make an alternative… A healthy and delicious chicken celery salad! And I hope you guys will believe me when I say that this salad tastes even better than the original Waldorf salad!

Tip: I always bake enough chicken for 2 days. That way, I can enjoy this salad again the next day!

Delicious chicken celery salad for 2 portions:

  • 300 gr. chicken filet
  • 1 banana
  • 5 celery stalks
  • Roughly crushed walnuts
  • 2 tbsp quark
  • Salt, pepper and garlic spices
  • Optional: pieces of pineapple

kipsalade21

How to do it:

  • Bake the chicken with some garlic, salt and pepper spices
  • Cut the celery and the banana into pieces
  • Cut the chicken into slices and add the celery and the banana
  • Add the walnuts and quark and mix
  • Taste if the dish needs some more spices like salt, pepper and garlic
  • Serve and enjoy!

This delicious chicken celery salad can also be served as a appetizer, a small bite or a sidedish with a BBQ.

See you next week!

Lisa (Inlovewithhealth)

Healthy Pumpkin Pizza

This recipe is a big success for all the fast-food lovers among us! From now on this healthy and delicious pizza is your new friend. Although I love cooking, it’s sometimes nice to be able  to make a quick easy dish and not have to to spend hours in the kitchen.  Especially when I’m very busy and there’s still a pile of work to do I prefer to make an easy but delicious dish. That’s why this dish is a real winner! 

I chose pumpkin for the topping of this specific recipe but you can choose absolutely any topping that you like! You can use carrot, broccoli, tuna, chicken… anything is possible. Be creative!

healthy pumpkin pizza

HOW TO MAKE THIS HEALTHY PUMPKIN PIZZA

Ingredients

  • 50 gr oatmeal
  • 50 ml water
  • 200 gr pumpkin
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 slice of ham
  • oregano
  • onion powder

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Put the oatmeal, water, herbs, salt and pepper in a bowl and mix until you have a sticky dough. If it is still too thick then add a little bit more water.
  3. Divide the dough on the baking tray and flatten until you get a nice round crust of about ½ cm thick.
  4. Put in the oven for 30 minutes.
  5. Bring a pan of water to the boil. Peel the pumpkin (if necessary) and cut into cubes of about 3 cm.
  6. Cook the pumpkin with salt for about 25 minutes until cooked through then drain and mash.
  7. Bake in another pan the ham until crispy.
  8. If the crust is done, divide the mashed pumpkin over it. Finish it with some finely sliced tomato, ham and salt and pepper.

What is your favourite healthy pizza topping? For more healthy recipes go to my blog www.inlovewithhealth.com and follow me on my social media to see more pictures of my delicious dishes!

Happy foods – part 5

For the next couple of weeks, I’ll be writing about foods that can make you a lot happier if you make them a part of your daily diet. Studies have shown that each of these six happy foods can positively contribute to your well being. You are what you eat right?! Mushrooms are on our happy foods menu today! You might also want to read ‘Happy foods – part 2part 3 and part 4‘.

As I explained in ‘Happy foods – part 1‘, I have a curious mind that craves to learn about new things. I’m kind of a nerd, so whenever I get the chance to, I love to read about science. There are always certain subjects that spike my interest a bit more than others; happiness (combined with science) is one of those for me. Back to our happy food!

Could mushrooms make you happier?

Unfortunately for me mushrooms don’t really seem to make me happy because I’m not a fan of eating them. This made me realize that a big part of why a person considers food a happy food is because people have a very personal taste. If you love to eat certain foods they will bring a smile on your face (unless you overate and you’ve created a food baby).

For people like myself, there is a reason to start loving mushrooms. Mushrooms are the only plant source of natural vitamin D. Vitamin D is essential for healthy bones, we get most of our vitamin D from exposure to sunlight (this makes vitamin D my favorite vitamin haha). In a study scientists found that people with seasonal affective disorder who upped their vitamin D intake experienced better moods. A great way to do this is to eat your mushrooms (even if you don’t like them that much, like myself)!

I’m wondering if there are Fit Girls who love eating mushrooms? Do you notice a happier mood? What’s your favorite recipe to make them more tasty? Please let me know! I’m willing to give this happy food a try!

Join the innocent #PinkChallenge

In everyday life, us Fit Girls hold on to certain eating habits and workout routines. Just because it’s easy or it might seem a bit scary to try out new things. That’s why #FITGIRLCODE and innocent drinks challenge you to step out of your comfort zone and join the #PinkChallenge.

The Challenge

Pink? Say whut? Yeah, you heard it correct. From the 1st August onwards, we provide you with a entire month of recipes and workouts. No worries if you haven’t start the challenge yet, you can still hop on the pink train. The aim of this challenge is to live healthy and active and try out new things together. So not to create a sixpack within 31 days!

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PINK

Why pink? Life is just more fun if you look through rose-tinted glasses. When we think pink, we often think of candy, which is not particular good for your health. You might not believe it at first, but pink stuff can also be really healthy. The newest, super tasty smoothie of innocent, the ‘Perfectly Pink’, is a great example: 100% natural and no added sugars. Just fruit and veggies! A combination of beetroot juice with apples and pears. Doesn’t that sound delicious? Since the pink makes everything look (and taste) pretty, this month’s challenge is completely covered by this fantastic colour! Therefore the motto is: think pink, do pink and drink pink.

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EASY PEASY

To make it as easy as possible we made you an entire food schedule. You don’t need to live by this schedule. We made it to inspire you! As for the schedules, these are written in Dutch. Sorry for the non-Dutch Fit Girls!

Besides giving you guidelines on what to eat, we’ll provide you with a different workout video each week. We did not just focus on strength training, but also on yoga and stretching.

Do you want to join the #PinkChallenge? Download your food schedule here. You can print it and stick it on your fridge so you’ll know what to eat every day. It’s as easy as that! Make sure to check out www.fitgirlcode.nl each Saturday to get a new workout video and update for that week!

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Win Limited Edition #FITGIRLCODE top and Jogha Racerback Bra

Show us just how pink you really are and tag your photos with #PinkChallenge. The 4 pinkest pictures win a Limited Edition #FITGIRLCODE top and Jogha Racerback bra. What are you waiting for?!

White Bean Salad with Peas and Mint

Do you have a busy week coming up? This is the perfect recipe: very easy to make and supertasty! And you can find all the ingredients in every supermarket.

White Bean Salad with Peas and Mint

I like this salad best served alongside grilled chicken breast. But if you wanna go veggie, just leave the meat out. The peas and beans are fullfilling enough. This dish makes a great lunch or light main course on hot summer days.  Prepare it the night before, take it to work/school and hurry to the beach/park to catch the last sunrays.

Say NO to unhealthy prepackaged fast food; this salad is perfect for a healthy picnic!

4 servings

  • 300 gram or 1 ½  cup white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 300 gram or 1 ½  cup peas (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint
  • 1 scallion, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • zest and juice from half a lemon
  • 50 gram or 1/2 cup crumbled feta
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • grilled chicken breast (optional)

How to:

Combine everything in a bowl. Add a splash of olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. If you are making this ahead combine everything except the mint, as fresh mint tends to turn black once cut it. Add the fresh mint leaves just before serving.

Special thanks to: http://notwithoutsalt.com

7 top tips to eat healthy on a budget

Doing your grocery shopping at the local whole food supermarket might feel intimidating with minimally stocked shelves and witty brand names on bio degradable packages. In this setting, clean eating might also feel beyond your pay cheque but that’s no reason to give up on your desire to eat healthy, nutritious food. So here we have 7 top tips to eat healthy on a budget. That’s right you can eat healthy, clean food consistently, without breaking the bank. 

It’s safe to assume that the price of food can have in impact on the choices you make as you walk around the supermarket doing your groceries. And sadly it’s not your imagination that healthier food is more expensive as a recent Cambridge University study found healthy foods to be three times as expensive per calorie as unhealthy foods. But that’s no reason to run through the sweets and junk food isles filling your trolley to the brim, because it is probably easier than you think to eat clean on a small budget. You just have to get savvy, and here’s how.

1.  Eat according to the season.

During the harvest when there’s plenty of a product, the price goes down. The best part of eating seasonally is that fruit and vegetables taste so much better and they are more nutritious  because they have been grown and picked in their prime, with less need for any artificial assistance. Eating the same food week in, week out, also gets boring fast. This can sometimes be a factor as to why people’s diet yo yo’s from being healthy to unhealthy so eating seasonally will encourage you to be more creative and increase the diversity of your meals. If you’re unsure what’s in season, as we have become so used to being able to eat any food all year round, ask someone in the store.

2. Not everything has to be organic

That organic label obviously adds a little more to the price of each item and although it’s for a good cause, it’s not always necessary. There are a group of foods that are deemed the “dirty dozen” and another known as the “clean 15” the former are notorious for containing pesticides, and the latter are awesome foods that have thick skin so they manage to protect themselves from those pesky chemicals! Check out the list that will help you to decide when you can skip on the organic option.

3.  Buy in bulk

This is possible with online shopping and in store. Expensive flour or oils are worth checking out online and can make a real difference, especially if it’s a product you know that you will use often. In stores, some supermarkets have ‘bulk bins’. These are kind of like the pic n mix sweets stands you find at the cinema, but with loose whole foods such as chickpeas, lentils, nuts and rice. By filling up a bag with exactly what you need it cuts out some of the packaging costs for the store and you get the benefit of the savings! Bonus!

4. Shop store brands

It’s possible that store brands of products like tinned tomatoes or beans contain less sugar than other brands and the super value options are extremely cheap. It’s also possible that they have an organic range that are cheaper than the better known brands but are just as sustainable. However this requires a little bit of time and consideration because you’ll need to check the labels and compare ingredients. But once you know the products that don’t sacrifice quality for the price then you can easily make these regulars on you shopping list.

5. Don’t be afraid of freezer convenience.

The frozen food isle doesn’t purely contain breaded finger food, desserts and pizza, you also find an abundance of veggies and fruit. Although fresh produce is great, generally the vegetables and fruit are harvested when it’s in season and then frozen so you still get the benefit of tasty produce while being super convenient! If you find yourself throwing out fresh veggies because you didn’t manage to use them up before they went bad, then this is also a good option for you and means you’ll always have healthy things on hand to add to your meals to bulk them up. 

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7 foods to freeze for a healthier week

You can do your best to be a ‘fresh, make-everything-from-scratch foodie’ 100% of the time but sometimes the pizza in the freezer seems like the easier option in the middle of a busy week. But frozen food doesn’t have to mean breaded chicken or other processed products that you find in the freezer aisle. Try freezing these 7 foods for a healthier week that will make the most of your leftovers and give you fast food of the healthy sort.

You can start off well, buying a load of veggies in your grocery shopping but too often they go bad before you get the chance to use them all. Let’s be honest, frozen food can make your life so much easier! But frozen food isn’t the source of all evil and freezing these 7 foods is a convenient way to save time, money and make healthy choices.

1. Fruit

It’s summer and that means smoothies, ice cream and all other refreshing treats. Chop up a selection of fruit for smoothies and freeze in them in labelled bags so all you have to do is pull out your favourite combo. For more snack ideas, place fresh grapes or berries on a baking tray into the freezer and then place in a bag once they are frozen so that you can take a handful out a time, for the perfect snack on a sunny day..

2. Diced veggies

When the recipe you’re using leaves you with half an onion, don’t put it in the back of the fridge to be forgotten about until it makes the rest of your food onion-scented. Instead, dice it up and put straight into the freezer. Likewise, before you see the peppers or courgette you bought for a fresh stir fry going bad, chop it all up, bag it and freeze it. You can always do with extra vegetables, so add them straight to the pot to cook and to bulk up any meal.

3. Herbs

This method is the best to preserve your fresh herbs without getting freezer burn. Fill an ice cube tray 2/3 full with roughly or finely chopped herbs then pour olive oil, white wine or liquid stock into each cube. Leave a little bit of space in the cube for the liquid to expand if you’re using oil. Pop them right out of the tray and straight into the saucepan to sauté vegetables or add to soup or casseroles!

4. Potato chips

If you buy the ‘share size’ bag of potato chips for a treat to yourself, you are faced with two dilemmas. You either eat the whole bag of chips in one sitting or you leave them so long that they go stale. Put a whole bag or mini portions into the freezer knowing they will remain crisp once they have ‘thawed’, around 20 minutes after you take them out. A genius way to keep on top of your snack portions and it even makes the flavour pop.

5. Rice

We all know whole grain rice is the most nutritious but it can be a pain to cook because it feels like it takes forever before it’s ready. Quick-cook or already prepared versions are faster, however they are often a more expensive option. Make a large portion and store it in a sealed air tight container straight after cooking. Moisture will collect in the tub but leave to cool and then freeze. You can reheat it from frozen; first lift the lid for ventilation and place the container into the microwave for around 2 1/2 minutes.

6. Pasta

Most people have no clue how much dry pasta to place in the pot for one or two people. No, you are not the only one who is left with heaps that you don’t know what to do with once it’s cooked! Unless you want to keep adding cold pasta to your salad for a month, its likely you throw it away. Pasta might be cheap, but why waste it? When you place portions into a container or bag keep it flat to minimize how much it sticks together. And to reheat, all you have to do is run hot water over it or into the microwave topped with a sauce.

7. Leftovers

After you have cooked and plated up your meal, put any leftovers straight into a container. Although it has to be left to cool before you can put it into the freezer, putting it into a tub before you’ve taken your seat at the table to eat might make you less likely to go back for seconds. If you are cooking for one then getting into this habit means that you can enjoy the same great meal even more next week, rather than letting it become repetitive for lunch and dinner the next two days!

Make freezer food healthy by freezing any of these to help time and even money! Tell us what other foods you freeze that make healthy meals more convenient?

 

10 Foods to stock up on

A healthy lifestyle requires you to do your groceries a bit differently,  but getting used to this new routine takes some time. This can results in pure frustration when you’re all set and ready to bake that awesome bananabread or those healthy brownies and you discover that you miss that one tiny, but essential ingredient. Grr! Because I know how it feels to have to go back to the supermarket again (been there, done that – a dozen times), I’ve made a list of 10 foods which you, as a healthy fit girl, should have lying around at all times. 

1. Oats

If you’re not already having oatmeal for breakfast, you should. I’m not going to argue you on this one but trust me – oatmeal is the most awesome breakfast there is. But there is more! You can use oats in a lot of baking recipes, such as for cookiesmuffins, and delicious oatmeal bars (recipe coming soon). Another pluspoint: oats are quite cheap.

2. Chia seeds

Chia seeds are full of anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals and more. It is also the richest plantbased source of omega-3 and it will make your tummy fuller for a longer period of time because they absorb a big amount of fluids. You can basically put them in everything, such as smoothies and oatmeal. 

3. Almond flour

You need almond flour for so many baking recipes, that you should just have it lying around at all times to save yourself the extra trip to the supermarket. Again, think of the banana bread, the brownies, but also of healthy cocochoco almond muffins (if that doesn’t sound good then I don’t know what does).

4. Superfood & nuts

It’s always good to have superfoods and nuts around to spice up a boring yogurt or just to eat when you’re in a snacking mood. Body & Fit Shop has made a mix which I especially love and often put into a bowl with yogurt after my workout, but sometimes I also just eat a handful of it.

5. Frozen fruit

I don’t think there’s any fit girl who doesn’t have fruit in her kitchen, but what about frozen fruit? Naturally, fruit goes bad after some days and the best way to keep something lying around just in case is to buy frozen fruits! For example, you can buy frozen blueberries, frozen raspberries or frozen cherries. They are just as good in terms of nutrition and don’t lose their health benefits. You can put them in your yogurt, oatmeal, smoothie, in your baking recipes, or just eat them separately. The same goes for frozen veggies!

6. Cacao powder

We are all crazy about chocolate, although some a little bit less than others. I have to admit that I am utterly addicted to chocolate and therefore really need to have cocoa powder in my house at all times. When I’m craving chocolate, I either take a small piece of dark chocolate, or I make a smoothie or bake something (like banana bread) with cocoa powder in it. You can also make this superdelicious strawberry-chocolate oatmeal with it if you want to start your day luxuriously. And don’t even get me started on the health benefits of raw cocoa powder.

7. Ricecakes

When you just want to snack something or are a bit hungry, have a ricecake! Ricecakes are cheap, a crunchy snack and they taste good. You can eat them plain, but if you’re up for more variation, check out Anna’s article about toppings for your ricecake.

8. Peanut butter

Do I really need to explain why you should have peanut butter? I don’t think so, right? Check out my favorite one from the Body & Fit Shop – it’s a 100% natural.

9. Canned chickpeas

I keep chickpeas around for those days when I’m craving a snack like potato chips, so I have a healthy and similar alternative. If you roll them around in a little bit of oil and herbs such as pepper powder and/or curry powder and put them in the oven for a while, then you have a delicious and healthy snack which doesn’t take much effort and time to prepare.

10. Pizza

Because it’s ok to have a cheatmeal and to give in to your cravings. As Anna wrote in her blogpost, your willpower and self-control are not unlimited and need to be replenished sometimes. Allow yourself your cheat- and restdays and enjoy them to the fullest. So keep that pizza in the freezer for those kind of days 😉

What foods do you always have lying around?

 

Lazy foodie tries the HelloFresh box

I’m a food lover, I could literally eat all day long. Sweet and savoury, food is my friend. Nowadays of course the healthy, homemade dishes are my favorite. BUT: I’m a bit of a lazy cook. Recipes have to be simple and must not contain more than 6 ingredients, or I lose my focus. And I’m always indecisive of what to eat.. So last week I tried a HelloFresh box for the first time.

IMG_5644In one box, you find the ingredients for 3 healthy meals for 2 people and it gets delivered right at your doorstep. If you are on your own, the box is enough for one whole week. If you want to make dinner for 3 or 4 people you can add extra vegetables or make a simple salad on the side.
Since I am a vegetarian I chose the Veggiebox. When it arrived I immediately started smiling: opening a box full of fresh, delicious, colorful goodies is a joy in itself! There were different kinds of vegetables, cheeses, a bag filled with herbs and a great how-to-do-this-recipe booklet in the box.
I read the recipes and got excited to try these yummie things. The three meals I got were very different, which I liked. The booklet had beautiful pictures and simple steps so nothing could go wrong in the making of these dinners.
I decided to still have my Sunday cheat-meal and start working with this box on Monday. Literally a ‘fresh’ start of the busy week I had.
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Pasta Salad Galore: 7 Spring Picks

Fit Girls know how important food prep is to be able to keep up leading a healthy lifestyle with a balanced nutrition! Pasta salads are a great, refreshing spring meal choice that don’t take up a lot of time, just a little inspiration. Because we all have a moment when we just don’t know ” What the hell am I gonna cook today?” here’s a top 7 of pasta salads galore to brighten up your day!

Tip: Go for the whole wheat pasta as a healthier choice!

Pasta Salad Galore: 7 Spring Picks

Because I’m a big fan of the Greek cuisine, first on the list is a fluffy pasta pick involved in a lovely affair with feta cheese! Yum!

1. Greek pasta salad with crab & feta cheese 

Greek Pasta Salad with Crab and Feta

You’ll basically need some pasta, canned crab flakes, broccoli, red and orange bell peppers, zucchinis, cherry tomatoes, a spring onion as well as some spices like oregano and basil to flavour up the dressing.  Delicious!

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Popeye Spinach Smoothie

Since I have the ambition to become the sexy woman version of Popeye, I need my weekly dose of spinach. Spinach has a high nutritional value, especially when fresh, frozen, steamed, or quickly boiled. It is a rich source of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, manganese, folate and iron. Beside combining this edible flowering plant in your salad, turkey sandwich or lasagne, you can mix it up in a healthy smoothie. YEAH! 

My dear friend Lotte Oosterom first introduced me with this green monster and ever sinc then I am hooked and even made it my after workout recovery drink. I added whey protein to this recipe to make sure that my muscles would get enough “fuel” to recover from my insane workouts in the gym. 😉

INGREDIENTS FOR YOU AND YOU BFFF 2p:

  • 1 banana
  • 1 apple
  • 2 peeled oranges
  • 2 hands of fresh spinach
  • 1 glass of almond/ soya milk – unsweetened- or water (what ever your preference is)

HOW TO PREPARE YOUR POPEYE SPINACH SMOOTHIE: 

Blend all these ingredients together into a green smooth monster 😉 but make sure you add the whey protein and ice cubes into your blender on top of the other ingredients. So that you don’t break your blender 😉 with the ice cubes. And that the whey protein doesn’t stick at the bottom of your blender. Add more almond/soya milk or water until you like the consistency, if you found the smoothie too thick. You can also leave the whey protein out if you don’t use it as a recovery work-out drink but just for a healthy booster drink in the morning.

Hopefully you will enjoy this smoothie as much as me and my Mr. Handsome do 😉 If you have another recovery work-out smoothie recipes, please tag me on Instagram (@stephanie_fgc) if you post them online. I love to get inspired by you and try out new smoothies 🙂 

ENJOY! 😀

5 main reasons to consider becoming a vegetarian

Today is the official start of “Meat Free Week”. This is a global campaign to get you thinking about how much meat you eat, and the impact that eating too much of it has on your health, animals and the environment. We challenge you to join us in not eating meat this week, which includes poultries and fish as well. Throughout the week, we will be posting a series of articles related to this and some nice vegetarian recipes to keep you satisfied! 

As someone who has been eating meat since I can remember, I never really even thought of breaking this habit; until now. In the last few months, I have noticed a growing skepticism and queasiness in my stomach when it came to buying meats or poultry. I don’t know if this shift is a product of the scandalous reports that seem to be released every now and then, or if I understood this while becoming a student.

By making my own meals, I’ve had first-hand experience with handling raw. industrial. slimy. chicken. Ever since, I am either avoiding it by making my roommate cut it, buying it sliced, or eliminating it completely from my meal! After doing my research, I understood what processes MOST meats and poultry undergo. There are countless amounts of additives, pesticides, and other toxic production methods that do not fall into the range of what any person in their right mind would want to put in their bodies… For this reason, I write this article more in the hopes to inform you in a simple way and encourage you to decrease your meat usage or even convert to a vegetarian lifestyle.

Here are 5 main reasons why we should all consider becoming vegetarians one day or another —

    1. “Two words: meat extenders + fillers”

      These two techniques are what make your choice of meat affordable and pretty. What they are, basically, is non-meat substances with altered protein content and high carbohydrate levels, lots of it.

       

    2. “The almighty chicken hormone cocktail”

      From the time they are in the egg, chickens are vaccinated with an abusive cocktail of antibiotics and growth hormones to survive the drastic living conditions they are about to go through. However, not even all of these chemicals are protecting us from the rising fear that there are new parasites that are becoming “scarily” resistant to all of our human efforts. #justsaying

      PS; Not-so-fun fact: chickens are now grown so quickly that if humans grew as fast, we’d weigh around 160 kilos by our second birthday…

       

    3. “Liar liar pants on fire, I spot an untruthful label!”

      I always wonder about the labels I see on packages, and there is a common belief that they are often deceptive. It is not the exception when it comes to meats — if there is neither an ingredients list nor any information listed on the front label, don’t assume it’s additive-free. Most words used to make claims on the front of packaging are not regulated (e.g., “natural”), so they really aren’t meaningful.

       

    4. “A beautiful veggie-full diet pleases your inner goddess”

      Not only does it provide your inner goddess with all of the right vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytonutrients, but it also boosts your energy levels and increases your sexual libido. The saying that “vegetarians make better lovers” didn’t just come form nowhere!

    5. “But at the end of the day, we should reconsider our choices because we are emotional beings, and we should treat other creatures as such too.”

      Over the years, overproduction has led to the most inhumane procedures to kill animals faster and in bigger quantities. So how about we stop for a second and really think about what it is we are encouraging?

As a fit girl who is currently trying to jump off the meat wagon, nothing would make me happier than having some tricks and tips on how to get the best balanced nutrition! So this is a call to all of our vegetarian ladies (and all of the other fit girls too) to share your thoughts, tips, and any opinion you have on this topic!

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