Crunchy Coconut Tofu

I used to be so witty.

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I actually glanced through old posts to see what I used to write about to see if it would inspire a spark of wittiness. Nothing. How was I so witty back then?

I think that these days there is so much running through my brain AT ALL TIMES that there isn’t enough room for wittiness. Maybe once I get settled into my new job, I will be able to relax a little and the wittiness will start flowing.

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I feel like I want to spit nutrition facts at you. How boring am I?! The boringest. Yes, that’s a word.

Okay, let’s steer away from the wittiness and onto tofu. For the next post, I’ll try to jot down some material so I can post something more interesting than blabbing about how my brain never stops. Well, except when I binge watched Army Wives. I think it might’ve turned off a couple times. Also, Claudia Joy? Life goals. She’s perfect.

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Tofu. Let’s go. So there’s this magical thing called thai food. Combine peanut butter and coconut and it passes as thai. Right? I don’t actually know but it feels thai to me. Are you supposed to capitalize Thai? All the time or just sometimes? [See, there goes my brain again…]

This recipe is neat because it’s four ingredients. FOUR. That is beautiful. I hate those recipes that drone on and on about a million ingredients, most of which you don’t have and have to substitute and then who the heck knows if your recipe will turn out.

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This one will. Four: tofu, peanut butter, oil, coconut. BAM: meal. Well, protein. Maybe add some veggies next to it.

Crunchy Coconut Tofu
Inspired by Tone It Up’s Nutrition Plan

1 package tofu, cubed
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
2 tablespoons finely chopped coconut flakes (the hard kind, not the sweetened kind)

  1. Cut tofu into medium-sized cubes and press between paper towels and with something heavy on top (like a cutting board and textbook) or a tofu press for 30 minutes.
  2. Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat. Once oil has heated, sauté tofu, turning over every few minutes, until tofu is lightly brownish-tan and slightly crunchy. This may take 10 minutes or so.
  3. Add peanut butter and stir in until melted and the tofu is covered.
  4. Take the tofu off the heat and mix in the coconut flakes.

 

5 Ingredient Peanut Butter Muffins

Where have these been all my life? These are delicious. And easy. Muffins in a blender?! Yes.

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I was actually planning on making some other muffins – I will not say from what source – and they were a TOTAL AND COMPLETE FAIL. I hate failed recipes. They make me discouraged. They make me frustrated and angry. So. I calmly left these failed muffins, grossly molded to the muffin tin, there to deal with later.. and made these.

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And oh holy moly was I excited. 5 ingredients. 1 blender. Unlimited future options.

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Since these are all healthy ingredients (besides the sprinkles; and the honey is optional), these are basically like.. a fruit. Or a healthy bread. Or totally acceptable for breakfast, snacks, AND dessert. Did I mention they only make about 5 muffins? Aka all for you and no fears of overeating or worrying about them going bad before you finish them.

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5 Ingredient Peanut Butter Muffins
Adapted slightly from Thirty Handmade Days

1/2 c creamy peanut butter
1 egg
1 very ripe banana
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp honey [optional]
Optional add ins: almonds, chocolate sprinkles [obviously, I chose these]

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. BLEND ALL INGREDIENTS. For the win.
3. Pour batter into greased muffin tins, and sprinkle almonds and chocolate sprinkles on top.
4. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Protein Waffles

Let’s talk leg day.

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Now, I’m sure you’ve seen all the funny leg day pictures and if you workout, you’ve probably experienced them. Simple tasks like driving (switching from gas to brake – OUCH), walking up stairs, putting on pants… you know. It’s painful.

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Well, I am seriously trying to get my booty in shape, literally, as well as my triceps and my abs. I mean, less than 30 days until spring, people! I go to Planet Fitness, and even though they don’t have yoga classes, they DO have Smith Machines, which are those fancy little machines that have the bar and the free weights and the automatic lock. Aka. Squats without assistance. Or benching or whatever you want to do – Smith Machine has your back. Unless you drop it and it doesn’t catch immediately – then you’re a lunk. But that’s another story [that luckily hasn’t happened to me].

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So I had been doing the norm – leg extensions, hamstring curls, calf raises, adductors, abductors, squats… but now I am adding lunges with the Smith Machine. And MAN OH MAN are my gluteals sore. For real, though. If you don’t know what a Smith Machine is, check it out. That bad boy is your friend when it comes to bikinis. I’ve started doing higher reps/lower weight to try to “tone” rather than “bulk,” and those last few reps are tough.

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THE POINT is – do your leg day. Do your squats. Earn your protein. That was literally what I was repeating to myself (“Earn your protein, earn your protein.”) as I cycled ridiculously fast and was panting like a 100-year-old sedentary person. I’ve started in on the whole protein powder thing (chocolate, of course) and I like to earn it. Deserve it, if you will.

You deserve these waffles. You do 4 sets of 15-20 reps on squats AND lunges on the Smith Machine ( + the other leg machines + cycling or some cardio), you definitely earn your chocolate protein.

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These waffles are actually not chocolate… the boyfriend prefers his fancy protein over my cheap protein (I’m still having to be persuaded into this whole protein thing), so he added his to the waffles. So, in the end, all I’m driving at is – earn your protein. Earn your waffles.

Protein Waffles
From Tone It Up; makes 2 waffles

1 banana
4 egg whites + 1 egg
2 scoops vanilla (or chocolate!) protein (about 20g each, so 40g protein)
1 tbsp milk
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp peanut butter
Toppings (optional): sliced bananas and strawberries, maple syrup

1. Mash banana, then blend all ingredients.
2. Make waffles in a waffle maker.

Thai Quinoa Bowl

Now, I don’t meant to brag, but this is good.

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Seriously, Ambitious Kitchen. You really did it this time. My boyfriend was drooling and if we weren’t so full from the deliciousness the first time, we would have been going back for seconds.

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I guess I have been afraid of slaws. I don’t know why but they just seem… intimidating. But have no fear, people. I’m sure you don’t, but just in case… Just buy a bag of broccoli slaw! I couldn’t find cabbage, but I feel like broccoli is more nutritious than cabbage (I should probably actually know that since I’ll be a dietitian in a few years…), and it worked out perfectly.

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Gotta love Thai food. Spicy meets nutty meets delicious. I see lots of Asian food in my future. Spring rolls and lettuce wraps and who knows what else.

Thai Quinoa Bowl
Adapted from Ambitious Kitchen

3/4 c uncooked quinoa
2 c broccoli slaw
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/4 c red onion, diced
1/2 c carrots, shredded or diced (use more if broccoli slaw doesn’t include carrots)
1/4 c chopped cilantro
1/2 c cashew calves

Dressing:
1/4 c crunchy all natural peanut butter
1/4 tsp ginger
3 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp water
1 tsp sesame oil

1. Cook quinoa according to directions.
2. Combine dressing ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 1 minute, then stir to combine once peanut butter is melty.
3. Combine quinoa, dressing, and remaining ingredients. Sprinkle fresh cilantro on top for garnish.

Peanut Butter Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

Yesterday I met a fellow blogger.

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She and I both agreed that we felt a little creepy when we decided to be blog friends. It started with a couple comments, then following each other on Instagram, then some emails. Finally, she took the courage to ask me to brunch. On a blog-friend-date.

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It was great. Pancake Princess meets Skinny Muffin. Texas meets North Carolina. Vegetarian meets vegetarian. We could’ve talked for hours. About food and blogs we love and cameras and blog photography backgrounds.

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Meeting her was like these muffins. You never know until you try it, but you have a good feeling it will work out. And afterwards, you realize it was a great decision. Warm, comfortable, and just what you needed.

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I changed this recipe up a little. Less sugar, full egg to reap the total benefits, and chocolate chips instead of nuts. Well, the peanut butter was crunchy, so that will satisfy your nut craving. But you can’t have peanut butter and bananas without chocolate. It’s a rule.

Peanut Butter Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
Adapted from the Skinny Chef

2 tbsp sugar
2/3 c natural crunchy peanut butter
1 egg
2 bananas, mashed
1/3 c plain Greek yogurt
1 2/3 c white whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 c plain soymilk
1/4 c chocolate chips

1. Whip together sugar and peanut butter with a mixer.
2. Slowly add in the egg, then the bananas and yogurt.
3. Add the flour, baking soda and powder, and milk, and mix until just combined.
4. Stir in the chocolate chips.
5. Spray a muffin tin and spoon batter into tin.
6. Bake for 15 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean, for regular-sized muffins, and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.