Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Orange Chicken Vegetable Stir-Fry

1/2 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon orange zest
2 large cloves garlic
1 teaspoon minced ginger
optional sweetener like sugar, honey, agave, etc.

1 pound chicken tender cut into cubes
salt and pepper
3 tablespoons corn starch
4 cups chopped vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, celery, mushroom, snap peas, etc.
olive oil
1/2 cup medium yellow onion, chopped

Blend all the ingredients for the sauce in a blender or food processor for 10 seconds.
Taste the sauce and add your choice of sweetener to your liking.
Blend again for a few more seconds.
Heat the sauce in a large skillet on medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Carefully transfer the sauce to a heat proof bowl.
Rinse the skillet clean.
Season the chicken with salt and pepper.
Add the corn starch and massage the chicken with your hands.
If using fresh broccoli or green beans, boil the broccoli for 3-5 minutes until soft enough to pierce with a fork yet firm.
Transfer the vegetables to a plate lined with a paper towel.
Wipe down the skillet until dry.
Heat approximately 1 tablespoon of oil in the skillet on medium-high heat.
Cook the onion and chicken until the chicken is cooked through, approximately 3-4 minutes.
Add the remaining vegetables and stir-fry them together for 2 minutes.
Slowly add a few tablespoons of sauce while stirring the vegetables and chicken.
Continue to add the sauce a few tablespoons at a time, allowing about 15 seconds between each addition to allow sauce to slightly cook down.
Spoon the stir-fry over a bowl of hot rice. Serve immediately.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Banana Split Dessert

1 stick butter, melted
1 box graham cracker crumbs
1 stick butter, softened
2 eggs
2 cups confectioners' sugar
5 bananas, sliced
1 (15 ounce) can crushed pineapple, undrained
1 (16 ounce) container Cool-Whip, thawed
1 (4 ounce) jar maraschino cherries, stemmed
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
Chocolate Syrup, optional

Cake sprinkles
In a 9x13 glass or porcelain dish, combine 1 stick of melted butter and graham cracker crumbs. With a fork, incorporate the butter until the crumbs are coated. Firmly press into a crust in the bottom of the pan.

In a medium bowl, cream together the other stick of softened butter eggs, and confectioners' sugar; beat for 15 minutes. Spread evenly on the graham cracker crust. Layer banana slices evenly on top of butter/sugar mixture; layer pineapple on top of the bananas. Evenly spread the Cool-Whip and garnish with cherries, sprinkles and pecans. Drizzle optional chocolate syrup over the top. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight. Keeps well refrigerated for about a week.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

My Go To 21 Day Fix Grocery List

Ahhh Sunday!!! For so many people, including myself. Today is a day to prep for the week. Now before i start, I am not one that gets crazy into prep. Yes, my schedule is crazy, but i do have some flexibility. Here is how i plan:

I plan around my schedule. If i know that i am going to be on the road most of the day or out of the house and busy, i prep for that day so i am not grabbing on the go or snacking along the way.
My general prep plan is washing and chopping fresh veggies to get ready to cook them on the day i plan to eat them. Washing and chopping fruit so it’s easy to grab and go. As well as baking chicken in bulk for salads, wraps or even just a meal.

Honestly, i keep my meal prep super simple. So of course, i keep my grocery list really simple as well. Every week i go shopping, this is the BASIC list i go off of. If my family requests a special meal during the week or i plan on trying a new recipe so that i can blog it (i try to do one a week) then i add to the list. — Of course, i add things for my son to snack on as well as take to school with him!

I am gearing up to start another round of 21 Day Fix this month. ** it’s JUST the right amount of time before i have to try on my wedding dress again for another fitting. If you are following my journey at all, you know i tried on my dress 9 weeks ago and it was way too small! EEEK. So i have until June 7th or else it has to be taken out. And i don’t want it taken out, i mean I HAVE UNTIL OCTOBER!!! I CAN DO IT.

If you want to join me in our private group as i do it for extra accountability and fun, Fill out the form below! I love having people to do it with for accountability!

Saturday, June 3, 2017

5-Day NO Sugar Challenge

Congrats on accepting the FitMenCook 5-Day No Sugar Challenge! I once read an article that suggested it was easier for people to give up sex than it was to give up sugar. And if you think about it, they may be right since added sugar is everywhere!


Learn how to find natural, sustainable ways to satisfy our sweet tooth. We want to equip ourselves with ideas and tools that will help us kick our daily dependence on added sugars and sweeteners that are mostly found in processed foods.


We’ll be able to see how our bodies respond – physically and mentally – to a drastic reduction in added sugar.
We’ll also understand just how much processed food we are eating that we could actually be substituting with natural foods.


No products with ADDED sugar. Yes, this may include some protein bars, protein shakes and…some nut butters. NOOOOOOOOO!!!
Remember, this is added sugar, not sugars naturally occurring in foods. Keep in mind that nearly all food has some amount of natural sugar in it – those are fine. It’s the added sugar we do not want.
TIP: Do not to look at the sugar content of food; rather, check the ingredient list and see if sugar or sweetener has been added.
Sugar is known by different names, so read the labels and avoid products with names such as:
High fructose corn syrup
Evaporated cane juice
Hydrogenated starch
Invert sugar maltose
Crystalline fructose
Brown rice syrup
Here is a list with other names for sugar

No artificial sweeteners. That means no to Truvia, Sweet One, Sweet ‘N Low, Splenda, Equal, Nutrasweet, etc.

No ADDED natural sugars or sweeteners. This includes honey, syrup, coconut sugar, Stevia in the raw, xylitol, etc.

Remember, check the ingredient label to determine if what you’re about to eat satisfies the requirements for this challenge. Nearly all food has sugar so focus on what sugars or sweeteners have been ADDED to the food.


Fresh vegetables and fruits
Naturally dried fruit ONLY IF the label does not have any added form of sugar.


Friday, June 2, 2017

19 low carb meals you can (almost) make without a recipe

I’m always looking for easy, low stress recipes to help me stay on track.  Even though I love to cook, sometimes I just wanna eat! Sound familiar?  Well, I decided to make a post with all my favorite “no recipe” meals so I would have them all in one place.  Most of these recipes require pretty basic ingredients.  Check them out and add to your grocery list the items you don’t normally keep on hand.  Then you can tackle the week with fork in hand and low carb confidence ~(insert picture of yourself on a mountain top looking superhero-like).

1.Patty Melt Wraps- cook up a pan of cheeseburgers and wrap them in lettuce leaves instead of buns.

2.Grilled Chicken Salad- grill chicken tenders and add to salad bowl of lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, low carb dressing.  Top with a few avocado chunks if desired.

3.Baked Fish and Oriental Salad- season fish filets with old bay seasoning and bake at 400 degrees until cooked -about 20 minutes.

 Add low carb Asian dressing to a bag of slaw mix- toss in a few roasted chopped peanuts and toasted crushed ramen noodles for crunch as desired.

4.Zoodles and Meatsauce- brown ground beef or ground turkey and add low carb spaghetti sauce or a can or seasoned tomatoes.  Serve over a bed of zucchini noodles.  Top with parmesan cheese as desired.

5.Flatbread Pizza- start with a low carb flatbread or tortilla and add leftover chopped meats, chopped veggies, olives and cheese.  Bake at 375 degrees until cheese melts.

6.Veggie Omelet- coat a skillet with olive oil and saute veggies such as peppers, onions, tomatoes, spinach.  When veggies are tender remove and add a few slightly beaten eggs and cook until set.  Top with veggies and cheese as desired.

7.Chef’s Salad- add chopped turkey, ham, bacon, cheese to your lettuce and tomato salad.

8.Grilled Steak & Veggie Platter- grill your favorite cut of steak alongside veggies like onions, peppers, squash, zucchini, etc.

9.BLT Wraps- Crispy bacon and sliced tomatoes rolled up in a large lettuce leaf. (Add mayo as desired.)

10.Egg Roll Bowl- lightly coat a wok with oil and heat ground pork or sausage until fully cooked.  Remove and drain excess fat from wok.  Add a bag of slaw mix to wok and sprinkle with soy sauce, ginger and sesame oil (as desired).  Cook until slightly wilted then add meat back to slaw mix and toss.

11.Kabobs- thread skewers with chunks of your favorite meat and veggies.  Season with salt and pepper or brush on your favorite low carb marinade.  Grill until meat is cooked.  (Check temp with thermometer.)

12.Chicken Cordon Bleu Bake- lightly coat an oven proof skillet with oil and cook just until chicken tenders are brown- (tenders will finish cooking in oven). Arrange tenders in skillet and top with a smear of cream cheese, some diced ham and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese. Bake at 375 degrees until chicken is fully cooked about 15-20 minutes.  Serve with a salad or steamed veggie.

13.Baked Eggs in Ham Cups- line muffin cups with a ham slice. Drop an egg in and bake at 400 degrees until egg is cooked- about 15-20 minutes.

14.Fajitas in a Flash- place chopped peppers, onions and chicken tenders in a baking pan. Sprinkle with fajita spices and a dash of olive oil and bake at 400 degrees until chicken is fully cooked and veggies are tender- about 30-35 minutes.

15.Herbed Chicken and Veggie Bake- Add chicken pieces to a baking pan and sprinkle with your favorite herbs, add veggies like carrots, peppers,etc and bake at 375 degrees until chicken is fully cooked- about 45 minutes.

16.Philly Cheesesteak Bowl- Add 1-2 teaspoons olive oil to skillet and saute chopped peppers and onions with ground beef or thin sliced leftover steak until veggies are tender.  Sprinkle with worcestershire sauce and top with your favorite white cheese.

 17.Chicken Salad (make your own or check label for carbs if prepared)- serve in lettuce cups or on sliced cucumbers.

18.Stuffed Mushroom Pizzas- stuff portabello mushrooms with low carb tomato sauce, cooked sausage, pepperoni, cheese. Place in 350 degree oven and bake until mushroom is tender- about 15-20 minutes.

19.Taco Salad Bowl- brown and crumble ground beef and sprinkle with cumin and chili powder or taco seasoning mix as desired. In large salad bowls,  layer lettuce, tomatoes, meat, cheese, avocado, sour cream, low carb salsa. Crisp a low carb tortilla in the oven and cut into strips- add a few strips to each salad if desired.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Low Carb Philly Cheesesteak Bowl

Low Carb Philly Cheese Steak Bowl uses already-in-your-pantry ingredients to make a quick and easy favorite even better.  If your family wants traditional cheese steak, just warm up a few hoagie rolls and everyone’s happy!

So you’re probably wondering when I’m going to stop with the philly cheese steak low carb recipe variations- never! (obviously)  First there was Low Carb Philly Cheesesteak Cups, next there was Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Mushrooms and now there’s Low Carb Philly Cheesesteak Bowl! (Follow up alert: I’ve since posted a chicken based version of this recipe : Low Carb Chicken Philly Cheesesteak Bowl !!)

So no, I will never give up on my pursuit of the ultimate low carb philly cheese steak experience.  Thanks to modern technology, I can share my obsession with the millions (lol) who read my blog!

In this version, we have grilled peppers, mushrooms and onions as a base- you can also roast these in the oven rather than grilling them if you prefer, but they are delicious AMAZING grilled. Just sayin’.

So let’s get started: Procure your ingredients (speaking of ingredients, we are using ground beef, how easy is that?) and meet me below in the recipe box (aka philly cheesesteak lounge).

Cook time:  25 mins Total time:  25 mins
Serves: 4

World domination one low carb philly cheesesteak recipe at a time. This one with grilled peppers and onions, the requisite provolone cheese and ground beef. Yes, it really is that easy.
1 pound lean ground beef, grass fed if available
½ cup lower sodium beef broth
1-2 Tablespoons worcestershire sauce
2 medium onions
3 green bell peppers
5-6 mushrooms, halved
1 teaspoon olive oil
4 slices provolone cheese
salt and pepper as desired

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Brown the ground beef in a nonstick skillet.
Drain excess fat from skillet and add broth and worcestershire sauce to beef. Continue to cook on medium until liquid is absorbed. Salt and pepper beef as desired.
Turn heat off and arrange cheese slices over ground beef - cover pan and allow cheese to melt.
Cut peppers and onions into large pieces and place in a medium bowl. Add mushrooms and toss with 1 teaspoon olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper as desired.
Grill veggies over medium heat until crisp tender, turning as needed. (Or roast in a 400 degree oven for 10-15 minutes until crisp tender)
Divide veggie mixture between 4 bowls. Top with beef divided equally among bowls.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: ¼ recipe Calories: 385 Fat: 23 Saturated fat: 11 Carbohydrates: 13 Sugar: 6 Sodium: 390 Fiber: 3 Protein: 32 Cholesterol: 90

Sunday, May 28, 2017

How to Live Without Sugar For A Whole Week (Yes, It's Possible!)

Let's be real: It's time for you and sugar to breakup.

Disclaimer: Consult your doctor before starting a new diet.

As a self-proclaimed sugar addict, I was the last person you'd believe could give up sugar. Yet, after watching the Fed Up documentary, a revealing film about the dangerous health effects of sugar, I decided it was time to for sugar and me to breakup.

After doing some research, I realized going cold turkey was my best option. It's commonly quoted that the effects of sugar withdrawal—headaches, cravings, crankiness—will start to subside as soon as 7 days after you stop eating sugar. So I figured I'd just stop, deal with the withdrawal symptoms, and wait for the cravings to subside.

To accomplish this plan, I put together a 7-Day Eating Blueprint. A carefully designed plan rich with whole foods, high in satiating natural fats, and full of enough protein to keep me from feeling hungry. The plan was to not just kick sugar but to kick refined carbohydrates as well. White flour, pasta, and potatoes are high in starch and calories and tend to spike blood sugar, which can kick off a cycle of hunger and cravings. So, I decided to stop all the white stuff all-together. Yes indeed, seven days of detox from refined white carbs.

A copy of my eating plan can be found in the graphic at the top of this post. I followed it for a week and found tremendous success.

After one day of intense hunger and two days of headaches, I started feeling less foggy and less obsessed about snacking. My energy levels stayed strong throughout the day and I ended up losing 4 pounds by the end of the week.

If you're thinking of trying a 7-Day Detox, the following tips may help get you through the week:

Rest. During my week of detox, I would eat dinner, then start getting ready for bed immediately. My cravings for candy always spike just after dinner, so I found it easier to just get ready and go to bed. Allowing your body to rest also helps you reset your energy levels, so your body isn't begging for food to keep it from feeling fatigued. Not to mention, a week of habit change can be emotionally difficult! Get through the week by being gentle with yourself and allowing yourself plenty of rest.
Keep snacks on hand. Raw nuts and almonds tucked inside your purse will keep you from raiding every vending machine you see. I found Larabars to be a great, portable snack because they are naturally sweet and simple to eat on the go.
Drink. No drowning your sorrows in vodka. In fact, no alcohol for this week! But keeping yourself well-hydrated with water, kombucha, and unsweetened tea will keep your belly full. Carrying a water bottle full of detox water was my saving grace during many moments of weakness.
Kicking the sugar habit isn't easy, but it's amazing what 7-days can do for those sinister cravings. If your 7-day detox goes anything like mine, you're just 7 days away from feeling more energetic, more alert ... and 4 pounds thinner!