Sunday, January 11, 2015

Veggies on Veggies on Veggies :: Just add Paleo Jalapeno Ranch.

I posted a photo recently on my Instagram (@designerlisa) professing my desire to include more raw veggies in my meals.
Hopefully the reasoning is somewhat common sense to most. Anything in it's truest form is going to be the most beneficial to your body. That is, afterall, the overriding point of eating in a "clean" or "paleo" style lifestyle. We were intended to consume real, true food and it was intended to fuel our bodies in a medicinal way...and any time the food is morphed or modified or manipulated into something processed and different, it becomes just the opposite of medicine...harmful to the body. Now, don't hear me saying that we can't cook and create beautiful culinary delishness in the kitchen...I'm simply referring to using real, whole foods in the way that we create the concoctions.

While that may seem a bit of a rabbit trail, it is true that the more you cook, steam, bake, fry your beautifully healthy and fresh produce, the more your nutrients are forced out of the food. It is not reasonable to assume you can just simply eat raw veggies all the time and not go a little insane. Cooking and making fun variety out of real foods is still HEALTHY and good for your body. BUT, the point of this post is to encourage mixing in plenty of RAW veggies. The raw, pure forms of vegetables and fruit are so full of wonderful vitamins and minerals, natural anti-inflammatorys and anti-oxidants, that you'd be crazy to not want to feed your body with these natural medicines.

This past week, I decided to start adding in more salads in my meal preps, in effort to get more raw produce in my daily intake. But salads don't have to be flavorless, mundane or boring...

No way that's a "healthy" salad, right? WRONG. This colorful beautiful salad is full of real, fresh, raw ingredients, and...incidentally, has been the object of much desire in the office kitchen too! Fresh veggies, clean meat, and a delicious home-made dressing to top make this a healthy and flavorful lunch.
So here's what I tossed in here to keep it simple, from bottom to top:
  • Cherry Tomatoes 
  • pre-chopped Veggie Mix from Trader Joe's (cabage, celery, radishes, jicama, carrots...all kinds of goodies)
  • Broccoli Slaw also from Trader Joe's
  • Arugula, and/or other power greens (spinach, kale, chard...)
Notice the name of the game is pre-done...while it is great to have time to prep, chop and dice all the veggies, I also have to admit that I find HUGE value in the ready-to-go various veggie options at Trader Joe's. This makes this meal so fast and easy...

With the base of the salad easily done, I just cook up some meat to put with the salad. In this instance, I cooked up some ground turkey doused in some Flavor God seasoning. I store separately to either heat or mix in cold when I dump it at work. Any kind of good quality meat you like with your salads will do from tuna and chicken to turkey, beef or bison. Pick your poison!

The other element of prep is the salad dressing. I go through phases of liking just some olive oil and lime juice or vinegar...but lately (as seen in a lot of my posts) I've become addicted to a tasty homemade concoction that I came across on the Living Loving Paleo blog! She has a wonderful variety of delicious recipes. And her jalapeno ranch has rocked my world! I've included a link the the recipe HERE! It is truly delicious and adds great flavor to anything instantly! With an avocado oil base, it is a great source of healthy fat and a small bit goes a long way.
For the purpose of my salads on the go, I have divided mine into small 2oz containers. I also bring a little container with some Frank's Red Hot Sauce as I have a sudden obsession with a lil kick and love the mix of a little Frank's in my salad too.
I bring my mason jar, my meat, and my little condiments to work. I keep a large mixing bowl there which I use and wash each time I bring a salad so I can easily just dump everything together, mix it well, and ENJOY!

It's a seriously wonderful way to change up the ole salad and bring in lots of nutrients and LIFE to your meal prep!

Mix and dump yall!
Finding Fit,

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