I am a HUGE fan of Everything Bagels and cream cheese, it is just not a food inline with my goals. So, of course, I had to come up with a more nutritious alternative—Everything Quinoa Biscuit. No bagel is complete without cream cheese, Cucumber-Dill Cheese cheese to go with our plate. So while dreaming up this re-vamp I immediately thought of Lox and Bagels. Typically lox is smoked-cured salmon, but I didn’t have any. Instead I did a “Lox” Baked Salmon, seasoned it to mimic some “lox” flavor combinations, and DANG this was so yummy. To make this even more lox-a-licious, I threw in some quick sides with Quick Pickled Red Onion slices and Warm Spinach with Capers.
Below are the recipes that make up this entire plate. Make all or just a few, but I guarantee you will keep these in heavy rotation. In true CK fashion, these are simple and fast!
This year, I turned 35 years old. I was at the lowest point I had been in my life in terms of my health. I knew something had to change, but I didn’t know what to do. In the depths of despair, I went to see a doctor for weight loss. Eat this, don’t eat that, take this pill, and come back in a month. I KNEW there had to be a better way.
I have struggled with weight most of my adult life. I have tried a little bit of everything in the past – calorie counting, counting points, fad “diets.” I would have some success with these methods, but it was nothing that I could stick with long term.
I have friends at work that have done the Clean Kitchen 12 Week Challenge and live the CK way of life. They encouraged me to sign up for Clean Kitchen and just do it. Without giving myself time to think too much about it or talk myself out of it, I enrolled for the Winter 2018 challenge.
The past 12 weeks have gone by so fast for me. This program is designed for anyone to be successful. I’m not sure how they’ve done it, but the daily lessons are timed perfectly. You get what you need when you need it. I also had a great coach who guided me, coached me, encouraged me, and helped me see the positive – even when I didn’t want to.
As a result of my CK experience, I lost a total of 18 pounds and 23.75 inches. It has been amazing to see the changes that happen simply from changing what goes in my body. I went from feeding my body garbage to feeding my body the things that it needs to function better. I have a whole new perspective on food. And the best part was that I didn’t go hungry at all. As a matter of fact, I have been eating more food than I used to. It’s just wholesome, healthy food. No gimmicks, no pills, no counting anything – just simple habits that are easy to integrate in to day to day life.
In addition to the physical changes on the outside, my blood pressure is lower, my lipid panel has improved greatly, and my glucose levels are better than what they were.
Although the 12 weeks are over, I’m already enrolled in the Clean Kitchen 2.0 program and I have signed up for a Versus boot camp. I lost a lot during the 12 week program, but gained so much more! I am excited to see where the next phase leads. I like to tell people that if I can do this, anyone can! It has been life changing.
My family and I are starting a new tradition, Christmas Eve Brunch, and I think it is a fantastic idea! And though we will have some not-so-CK-food items, there is still a way to sneak some CK Recipes in there that are just as tasty! So if you are trying to lessen the damage done by the holidays without sacrificing taste, here are some ideas you can use for your Christmas morning breakfast — or brunch! Find more brunch ideas in Clean Kitchen: The Cookbook!
THREE SPICES is all you need to make this! I am often asked what makes CK Recipes different from other healthy recipes?
My answer…”we keep our pantry simple.” By that I mean we use a lot of the same spices in all of our recipes, but each yields different tastes. So once you buy a handful of pantry staples, you literally have the ingredients on hand to whip up anything with just a quick trip to the store to buy some fresh meat or produce. Which makes for quick store trips, less brain work and you end up looking like super mom. And as a working mom, I know we all need as many “brain breaks” as we can get.
Real food, really easy, for real mommas.
Some nights you need to please the fam and they want real deal pasta and cheese. But do not let that derail you. Here is recipe you can cook super fast and please EVERYONE. Even those who are not a fan of the spaghetti squash substitute.
I made spaghetti squash for me and elbow macaroni for my son and husband. We both used the Chili Mac meat mix . Because I was only making one version tonight I kept the meat sauce separate until serving. You could totally add more veggies to this mix and create Chili-Veggie-Mac!
When it comes to holiday meals, we all know the true stars of the show are the sides. The turkey or meat option is really just an after thought. We have you covered with a CK Holiday Menu that, even if you don’t control your portion sizes, at least there is not too much damage done with these recipe re-vamps of holiday classics!
About mid-way through the Clean Kitchen 12 week challenge, it hit me. I realized at that point in time, that Clean Kitchen didn’t just “change” my life in so many positive ways, I began looking at CK as “saving” my life. I began to realize how much this program was going to positively affect the quality of my life and actually help lead to a longer life as well. And by living a longer, healthier life, I thought about how many more great memories I will have now have spending time with my family and doing all the things I love to do. I realized that the nutritional habits we create today not only affect us in the short-term, but they most likely have even greater long-term affects.
“I came to a point where I wanted to make sustainable changes, but I didn’t know how. There are too many “diets” out there promising “this and that” which made the change I desired and needed way too confusing. So for years, I chose to do nothing.”
A good sauce is everything to me…really. This combo created a sauce that is so versatile! The J. Olive Co. Cranberry Pear Balsamic and Persian Lime Olive Oil is one combo you will get so much use out of. I made a sweet and sticky hot sauce, a divine Dijon Balsamic Vinaigrette with a chicken salad, a sweet potato mash, even a Strawberry Compote with oatmeal! I went all over the place with different ideas. Let’s dig in!
“Bibimbap” is a typical Korean dish that literally came from throwing any leftover food in a bowl and mixing it together. Sounds like a CK kind of meal! We hate wasting food around here so it fits with the CK philosophy. Leftovers will save you. This dish is usually on top of a bowl of rice, but if you are looking to watch your carb intake, just use more veggies and less rice!
For the sauce I combine Espresso vinegar, Harissa Olive oil and soy sauce. Instead of using a chili sauce for heat, I used the Harissa Olive oil. Instead of typical rice vinegar I used the Espresso Balsamic to give a richer, sweet taste. I think it turned out phenomenal! Best part, its so fast to put together. This being a “leftover” dish, you can use any combination of veggies and protein that you have. The plants I used were just because I had them, so use what you have.