Grainful Eats

I was so excited when Grainful contacted me to try their savory oat meals; I do not eat a lot of oatmeal typically, but I decided to take a chance and try savory oatmeal. I received two flavors: Porcini Mushroom Chicken and Unstuffed Pepper.

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All of their oatmeal entrees are made withe gluten-free steel cut oats and healthy, real-food ingredients. They are completely free of preservatives, artificial flavors, and artificial colors. Both of my meals are high in protein and fiber–the perfect pairing for a healthy, filling meal (they each contain 17g protein and 5g fiber).

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Check out the short ingredients list!

Both of my meals included meat, but they also have plenty of vegan and vegetarian frozen meals.

As much as I love doing meal prep, there are some weekends or days that are just way too busy. And on rare occasion, some days I just don’t feel like it. On days like that, I don’t want to blow $15+ on a mediocre take-out meal (yes, I am very frugal) because I often end up disappointed.

These meals are delicious, reasonably priced, and take a few short minutes to cook in the microwave. These are great when you are craving a wholesome, filling meal ready in minutes.

Now to the nitty-gritty–the real meal reviews!

Porcini Mushroom Chicken:

Upon opening, the meal looked very fresh and was a really reasonable (big) size. I hurriedly popped it into the microwave and four minutes later…voila!

I am not a huge fan of cheese (I know, I know I’m weird), but the Romano cheese on top added a great rich flavor to the whole dish. After I stirred it up, it became a creamy mix with the abundant mushrooms and chicken. In the picture below you can see how generous the meal is with mushrooms and white meat chicken. I am exceptionally picky about my chicken, and this is one of the few frozen meals that includes fresh, delicious white meat chicken. If you look closely, you can also see a chunk of fresh garlic and flecks of basil, parsley, and oregano. 

Next up, I tried the Unstuffed Pepper entree. I was not feeling meal prep on Sunday night after a 90 minute hot yoga class so this was the perfect solution. Four minutes after I popped it in the microwave, I had a delicious, hot lunch . The entree was extra creamy, and perfectly spiced. There was some mild heat and it had a nice tang from the green bell pepper. I prefer lean meat, and the turkey was perfect.

Here is a close-up:

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Money shot 😉

Look at the creaminess? All in all, 10/10. I will definitely be trying these again; find a store that carries Grainful near you here.

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Have you tried savory oats? Which meal would you try first?

Disclaimer: Grainful sent me some of their frozen meals to review, however this post represents my honest thoughts and opinions.

Ted Talk Friday: Giving+Self-Care+Assertiveness= Success

Well this is slightly embarrassing, but I feel  like the content is still worthwhile. I created and gave this talk a little over two years ago. As I move in to the professional space, I have found this advice (backed by plenty of research) to be completely accurate.

Beyond the content of the talk, this gives me an opportunity to reflect on how much I have grown since this time. I chose to videotape this (with the generous help of my friend) because I was too nervous to give the talk in person. While I made plenty of other arguments for the choice of recording the talk–it was because of my fear. I have become so much more comfortable with public speaking since, and even feel confident when I know the subject of my talk well.

I hope you enjoy these insights on success!

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Do you agree with my formula?

ProYo High Protein Ice Cream Review

My mom and Aunt were visiting this past week and we had a great time exploring the area where I live, thrift shopping, and trying out new restaurants! We also decided to try out a new healthy ice cream–ProYo High Protein Ice Cream. After dinner we swung by a grocery store on the way home and picked out four of the six flavors: Coconut, Dutch Chocolate, Dark Chocolate Toffee, and Mint Chip.

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We got home and got settled around my new kitchen table to sample all of the flavors. We even bought adorable glass dessert bowls to use!

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First up, Coconut:

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Genuine coconut taste without any artificial aftertaste (like many health-focused products). It was amazingly rich and creamy–surprising with only a shocking 1.5g fat.

Dutch Chocolate: surprisingly delicious. I did not know to expect, but I think we were all blown away by this flavor; so blown away that I didn’t even pause to take a photo! It had a decadent, rich dutch cocoa flavor; perfectly robust like a high quality dark chocolate and it was very creamy. My mom called it “more-ish”–meaning that it makes you want more and more! When I asked my Aunt to describe it she added similar comments and also described it as “cold” 😉

(Pro-tip: Mix the Coconut and the Dutch Chocolate flavors!)

Next came Dark Chocolate Toffee:

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I think my expectations were highest for this flavor, but the chocolate base did not taste as rich as the Dutch Chocolate. It had more of a light toffee flavor in the base, but the toffee pieces (you can see a few in the photo) were tasty!

Finally, Mint Chip:

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This flavor was superb! The chocolate chips were plentiful and they stayed hard in the melty ice cream. This flavor was very refreshing and creamy!

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Look at all of those chocolate chips!!!

 

In sum, this brand is a winner in my book! My mom has the most sensitive taste buds when it comes to alternative sweeteners and she LOVED all of these flavors and detected zero aftertaste. If you are looking to try a new healthy ice cream alternative–definitely try out ProYo!

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Which flavor sounds the best to you? Have you tried ProYo yet?

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Disclaimer: I was provided free coupons of ProYo to review, however this post represents my honest thoughts and opinions.

Ted Talk Friday: This is what enduring love looks like

This is a beautiful short talk about how we portray love and the stories behind that love. As a society, we often think about young, whirlwind romance, but the true beauty really lives in the love that lasts through good times and bad. I was struck by a few of the anecdotal stories referenced in the talk and inspired by the ability to remain so in love for so long.

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Did you enjoy this talk? Did any love story stand out to you most?

Ted Talk Friday: A Better Way to Talk about Love

Mandy Len Catron does such an amazing job explaining the relationship between madness and love. For anyone who has ever been head over heels in love, so much of this talk make complete irrational sense. I love how she intertwines the importance of language and word choice into how we experience love. I hope you enjoy this talk!

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Do you see love as passive? Do you agree with Catron?

Ted Talk Friday: Healing through diet

Dr. Ornish takes such a practical approach to living a healthy lifestyle and his dry humor and informative delivery makes this a great Ted Talk. We can all use how we eat to prevent disease, and it also possible to reverse disease through diet–even if it is much more difficult than prevention. I think he adds a helpful voice to the chaos of the diet gurus; he brings a balanced approach to living well, eating well, and feeling well.

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Did you learn anything new from this talk? What’s your take on eating well to live well?

Ted Talk Friday: Cracking the Grace Code

I used to associate the word “grace” with a specific religion, but in the past few years I have realized that this is not aways true. Grace is about gratitude, spirituality, and feelings of connection and wholeness, in my opinion, and none of these have to be religious in nature. Living with grace is about gratitude and self-compassion; Anne Barry Jolles’ does an amazing job of explaining how to use grace as a tool and way of being in the world. I hope you enjoy her talk.

 

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What do you think when you hear “grace”?

Spaghetti Squash Casserole (GF)

I love coming up with new recipe ideas and I’ve recently been on a Greek yogurt kick. I had a spaghetti squash on hand and opted to make a casserole dish. The Greek yogurt added the perfect creamy, rich texture while keeping it healthy and full of protein! My dad was a huge fan too (he really loved the addition of bacon). 

Ingredients:
2 tbsp egg whites
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 small spaghetti squash
1 tsp minced garlic 
1/4c Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp bacon bits
1 bag Morningstar farms meat substitute 

1) Cook spaghetti squash in microwave; simply microwave at medium power for 4-7 minutes depending on size. I cooked our small one pound squash for about 4 minutes. 

2) Mix together Greek yogurt, egg whites, 2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese, minced garlic, and bacon bits until well combined.

3) Sautée Morningstar farms crumbles according to directions on the bag until thoroughly cooked.


4) Cut open the spaghetti squash and scoop out the inside of the squash and shred well with a fork until no big chunks of squash remain.

5) In a large bowl, combine the cooked spaghetti squash and Greek yogurt mixture. After thoroughly mixed, add in the crumbles.


6) Pour the whole mixture into a greased large casserole dish. 


7) Bake for 30-45 minutes at 325. 


Enjoy! This freezes very well so feel free to make a big batch and then freeze one meal portions for lunches or extra busy nights. 


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Have you ever used greek yogurt in a casserole?

  

Ted Talk Friday: The #1 Public Health Issue Doctors Aren’t Talking About

I am on a Lissa Rankin kick! She has such a fresh perspective on wellbeing, and her engaging speaking style makes her so relatable. She does the perfect job of mixing scientific studies, anecdotes, and her own opinion to create a cohesive story. I have recently moved from a community-centered college and my home, where I am surrounded by family, to a totally new city on the West coast. I am consciously working to combat loneliness; I am prioritizing social events and opportunities not just for fun, but also for my health.

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Do you agree? Do you live in a community?

Miraculous Summer Shrimp Alfredo

The perfect refreshing summer meal– Miracle Noodles shrimp alfredo! I was craving seafood and a light pasta recipe sounded perfect. I love the rich, nutty flavor of nutritional yeast (plus the great health benefits) and it really adds more depth to a basic alfredo sauce. If you’re not used to using nutritional yeast, I recommend you start out with a bit less to start, then add more to taste.  If you want to order Miracle Noodles, use code HANNAHJULY for a discount of 10% off!
Ingredients:

  • 1 bag of fettuccine Miracle Noodles
  • 1/4c alfredo sauce
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2tsp Amore garlic paste
  • 1/2 c eggplant, roasted
  • 1/2c cauliflower, roasted
  • 5-9 shrimp .

Directions:
1. Prepare Miracle Noodles according to directions.
2. Combine alfredo sauce, nutritional yeast, Amore garlic paste, Italian seasoning, eggplant and cauliflower on stove and heat in a shallow sauce pan until warmed.
3. Steam shrimp.
4. Combine Miracle Noodles, alfredo sauce mixture, and shrimp and enjoy. I garnished my bowl with fresh basil straight out of my mother’s garden!