Good Friday morning!
So, lately, I’ve found myself craving less sweet, fluffy carbs and more light veggies and protein. Since I’m not running 30+ miles a week or fighting the winter SADs, this makes sense. And since sugar makes you hungry and carbs hold water weight, I’m not too upset about this shift. Yesterday at snack time I wanted a protein snack that was still filling. I wasn’t sure what to have and then I realized: I should make a salad!
I mean, a typical healthy snack has 150-200 calories and contains protein, fat, and fiber. A healthy salad has all those things; I just needed to downsize a bit!
I decided that shrimp would be the perfect centerpiece for my salad snack. I could stand to eat more fish and shrimp is a light and filling protein. I defrosted about two ounces of shrimp for five minutes while I assembled about two cups of greens, mushrooms, carrots, onions, green pepper, and some cold roasted veggies. Then I sauteed the shrimp in a half-tablespoon of butter (for some fat and staying power) and then topped the salad with the shrimp, a teaspoon of pine nuts for crunch, and a healthy dose of straight balsamic vinegar.
Not only did it take me a good 15 minutes to eat the salad (as opposed to the five it takes to eat a granola bar, no matter how hard I try) but it also enabled me to get an extra serving of veggies and skip added ingredients I didn’t need. Eating real food for a snack is the way to go.
Protein snacks have serious staying power, but on their own, they can be a little blah. This is a great way to use leftovers, like that little bit of chicken you didn’t finish last night. It’s also a good way to sneak in foods with a lot of health value like fish or eggs. A scoop of tuna or a hard boiled egg on top of greens with a little fat (dressing, nuts, cheese) is a great way to get extra nutrition in your day.
When it’s snack time do you want this…?
Go for the good stuff. It’s hard to get multiple foodgasms from a granola bar.