It looks like it may be time for more people to start cutting out cold turkey, cold turkey.
Breaking My Addiction to Peanut Butter.
For as long as I can remember, I have been addicted to peanut butter. In a cookie, on a sandwich, covered in chocolate, in ice-cream, or from the jar… I didn’t discriminate. As my diet evolved, so did the types of peanut butter I consumed. I moved away from the artificial crud with added sugar, oils, and preservatives and moved towards the simple and organic, dry-roasted varieties with zero added oils and sugar. Due to my love and devotion, as well as the daily use of it, I still had a hard time with the large amounts of fat that I was consuming.
Browsing online, I came across several people talking about peanuts in powdered form. I did some research and found several companies that offer peanut flour or “powdered peanut butter,” and I instantly became intrigued.
The first company I came across was PB2. It is marketed as a powdered peanut butter that has the same consistency as full fat peanut butter with nearly 85% less fat calories. When I finally found it at Whole Foods, I bought a jar to try out. (This was quite a while ago…years to be more accurate, before it was as easily found as it is now.)
2 Tablespoons, only 45 calories, 1.5 grams of fat, 5 grams of protein.
It seemed too good to be true! I mixed it with water and had a taste. I resembled peanut butter, but the consistency was lacking the mouthfeel of regular PB due to the removal of the peanut oil. I also had an issue with how sweet it was. After some deep thought, I came to the conclusion that the addition of sugar and the change in consistency wasn’t worth loosing the fat and calories, and more importantly taste, of traditional peanut butter.
Giving up on powdered peanuts and trying to detox myself from “the real stuff,” I tried to use less, focused more on almond butter, and just recently replaced my daily, peanut butter topped oatmeal with protein shakes. I missed my warm, comforting bowl of oats in the morning, but I knew if I made it sans PB, it just wouldn’t be the same.
About a month or two ago, I heard talk about a peanut flour, Protein Plus Peanut Flour to be exact, and my interests had surfaced once again. A little research unveiled pretty much an exact match to PB2, but the only ingredients were roasted peanuts. No sugar, no salt. I ordered a bag and gave it another go.
I first tasted it straight from the package. It had a nice and roasted, pure peanut taste. Oh how I missed it! I mixed it with a bit of water… delicious. Maybe it was because of my protein shake induced PB detox, but I was satisfied; taste, mouthfeel, and all. I tried it out on oatmeal the next morning… wonderful! It created a creamy, peanut butter sauce that accompanied my oats perfectly. I added it to my protein shake… tasty peanut flavor, extra protein, little added fats/calories. I also tried adding it to a simple quick-bread recipe I have been fooling around with… even better! It made it taste like a giant and soft, peanut butter cookie with little fat and extra protein!
I am officially hooked. I have been keeping a steady stream of Protein Plus Peanut Flour delivered to my door and I keep looking for new ways to incorporate it into my favorite foods. Who knows, once I perfect my peanut butter cookie quick bread recipe… I might be kind enough to share it!
PROTEIN PLUS PEANUT FLOUR:
2 Tablespoons = 55 calories, 2 grams of fat, 4 carbs, & 8 grams protein
TRADITIONAL ORGANIC PEANUT BUTTER:
2 Tablespoons = 190 calories, 17 grams of fat, 6 carbs, & 8 grams protein
Reason #24,362 Why I Love a Plant Based Diet: Two Salads for Lunch!
Today I had a dilemma: I couldn’t decide what I wanted to eat for lunch. I was torn with a fridge filled with delicious foods and an appetite that wanted to eat some of each and every one of them. Then I thought to myself, "Why the hell not?" So instead of one, I made two wonderful salads for lunch and soon after, realized how great of a decision that was.
Salad 1- a massaged kale salad with chickpeas and a homemade low-fat, no-oil lemon mint dip turned dressing. It was simple and filled with flavor and texture. Creamy lemony mint dressing, crunchy kale... oh my.
Salad 2- an heirloom tomato, pressed garlic, and zucchini noodle salad with hemp seeds and fresh basil. Vibrant and raw, this salad is just like eating cold leftover spaghetti from the fridge, but much, much better for you and much more tasty.
Besides being hands-down, damn good delicious, I have no regrets. This meal consisted of: 14 grams of fat, 481 calories, and 43 grams of protein!
Here’s to eating what you want!
NEW VEGAN PROTEIN BAR FLAVORS FROM CLIF!
The ever so delicious Builder’s Bar by CLIF officially released 3 new flavors today! These flavors include:
- Crunchy Peanut Butter
- Chocolate Chip
Why I am excited: Builder’s Bars are a tasty vegan-friendly option in a dairy based world of protein bars. They contain 20g of non-animal sourced protein & are easily available in grocery stores, health food stores, even in some gas stations and mega-marts! However, where I am currently living, new products tend to arrive later compared to the rest of the world, so when I find these new flavors you will be sure to hear my thoughts!
Why I am disappointed: Although all three of these flavors sound amazingly-good, today I also realized that my favorite flavor, Lemon, is officially discontinued. It has been harder and harder for me to find lemon Builder’s Bars lately , but just I thought that my local suppliers just decided not to offer that flavor.
R.I.P Lemon. I loved you so much because your sweet and tart, citrus flavor provided diversity in the overpopulated chocolate-based protein bar line-up. You will be greatly missed.
What’s your favorite flavor protein bar?
A Welcomed Accident: Healthy PB&J Ice Cream!
I recently returned from the gym and wanted to make a protein shake. I grabbed couple of frozen bananas, some un-sweetend almond milk, & my VEGA Sport Performance Protein powder. My previous smoothie I made was a bit too thin for my liking, so I decided to be extra careful when adding the almond milk this time. What I soon discovered was that by reducing the amount of liquid, the bananas and powder blended so beautifully, it resulted in a silky smooth, ice cream-like texture. I sampled it and woah…
It was delicious, but it was missing something. Peanut butter.
I grabbed a spoonful of PB and plopped it in the blender. After a second taste, it was
ready perfect. The berry flavor of the protein powder, the smooth roasted taste of the peanut butter, and the subtle sweetness of the frozen bananas melded into a beautiful symphony reminiscent of the beloved PB&J sandwich. The best part? NO GUILT! This protein packed frozen treat contains no artificial flavors, colors, or sweeteners & has a whopping 29 grams of protein. Dare I say it? You could even eat this for breakfast.
Protein Packed PB&J Ice Cream
- 2 frozen bananas, chopped
- 1 tablespoon of smooth natural peanut butter
- 1 scoop of your favorite berry flavored protein powder (VEGA Sport)
- unsweetened almond milk, to thin.
Place the frozen bananas into a high-powered blender and drizzle in a small amount of almond milk.
Blend on a low speed until the bananas start to break down and become smooth. (You may need the assistance of the blender’s agitator, or a spatula, to help the banana chunks get to the blade.)
Add the protein powder and peanut butter and blend (now on a medium speed) to incorporate, scraping down the sides often.
Carefully drizzle a little more almond milk (if necessary) to reach a desired, ice cream-like consistency.
EAT & NEVER SHARE.
Now I wonder… what other flavors could be used to create a healthy protein-packed ice cream?
PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT: Hassle Free Dinner Edition.
I bought these on a whim. I worked a 9 hour shift, completed 1.5 hours at the gym, and had to go grocery shopping. I walked past the frozen health foods and caught of glimpse of Gardein’s Classic Style Buffalo Wings. They were on promotion, easy to prepare, & I was hungry. Perfect. I went home and made myself an enormous salad while preparing the “chicken” according to the directions on the package.
After browning like suggested, I added the sauce. Woah, I thought, That smells rather spicy. This excited me because I absolutely love spicy food… I mean eyes watering, clammy feeling, sides-of-your-mouth-burning spicy food. My problem is that I can’t find foods that satisfy my need for spice. Half the time, I will order or purchase foods that claim to be “super spicy,” “extra hot,” or “contain extreme heat,” only to be disappointed with the lackluster flavor and absence of this sought after warmth. So I dipped my finger in the sauce to try it. (Cue the harps) SWEET AMAZING HEAT! My palate rejoiced in all things spicy & everything that is wonderful with the world. I wanted to confess my new found love by screaming from the mountaintops, but my mouth was too busy watering in anticipation for them to finish cooking.
I originally planned to top my salad with these beautifully spiced wings, but I was so excited about the flavor, I opted to eat them alone. Now don’t be scared. The sauce is not unapproachable, but it is hot. The “chicken” too, was great. Mildly seasoned, with a meat-like texture and a slightly browned outer skin. But the sauce, OH THE SAUCE! This flavorful, heaven sent, blissful marinade was indeed, the deal breaker.
I ended up eating the entire bag, no regrets.
I usually prefer making dinner for myself from scratch, but there are days (we all have them) where you just don’t feel like giving a damn. Gardein’s Classic Style Buffalo Wings are my by far my favorite goto on nights where my only desire is for dinner to be easy. The best part is, Gardein doesn’t suck at life either. This company has one of the most impressive ingredient lists that I have ever seen on mock-meats and contains no preservatives or artificial flavors, 0 trans fat, is high in protein, & freaking delicious.
If you are a lover of spice and a friend of all animals… try these NOW. I highly doubt that you will be disappointed.
Hemp seeds are amazingly amazing. Really, I am in love. They contain all 9 essential amino acids & are easily digestible, making them one of the highest plant-based complete protein sources out there. One serving (or 3 tablespoons) of hemp powder contains 16 grams of the muscle building, growth encouraging, immunity strengthening good stuff. Pretty awesome, right? Besides the protein, hemp seeds contain omega fatty acids, dietary fiber, and are a great source of iron.
Hemp is available in seed or powder form, in both raw & organic varieties too. You can incorporate hemp into salads, granolas, yogurts, smoothies & soups. My favorite way to enjoy this superfood is by partially substituting flour with hemp powder when baking. Right now, I am obsessed with a protein-packed, gluten-free, vegan flat bread. I can’t wait to try making a superfood “cookie” with it. If you are looking to incorporate more protein into your diet, skip the complex smoothie mixes & go straight to the more dependable (& more versatile) source.
I am ever so loyal to this brand and I have found the best prices on Amazon.com.