You made it to day five! Congratulations. Hopefully you have noticed that eating cleanly and resetting your system does not have to boring, bland, or limiting. Making vegetables and whole grains the primarily focus of your plate is simple and an incredibly nourishing way to lead a clean and balanced diet. Day five closes out with a completely vegan menu and features dishes that should be in your back pocket all year long.
Overnight oats are a super simple breakfast that you make the night before and should become a "go-to" for people who "don't have time" for breakfast.
Zesty Overnight Oats
- 2 tbsps chia seeds
- 1/2 cup extra thick rolled oats
- 2 tsps maple syrup
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 1 tbsps apple juice sweetened cranberries, chopped apricots, or raisins
- 2 tsps ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla bean powder or vanilla extract
- 1 cup nut milk of your choice
- 1 tbsp fresh or frozen berries
Combine all ingredients, except berries in a mason jar, bowl, or glass container and stir vigorously until well combined. Cover and refrigerate overnight. In the morning, top with fresh or frozen berries and enjoy!
For lunch enjoy leftover veggie stir-fry from day four.
To curb your 3pm slump, reach for protein and healthy fat-filled hummus with fresh veggies.
Hummus + fresh vegetables
Aim for 2 tbsps of dip for your ideally portioned snack attack.
Control the oil, salt, and preservatives and make hummus at home. In a food processor, combine 2 cups cooked chickpeas (switch in white beans if you prefer), 1 clove garlic (swap in a head of roasted garlic for a sweet and flavorful alternative), 2 tbsps unsalted tahini, juice of 1 lemon, a few dashes of hot sauce, 1/4 cup olive oil, and a pinch of salt. Finish with paprika and olive oil. (This recipe will keep you snacking all week long. Store in an airtight container after blending and portion out your snack serving to prevent overeating.)
Lentil salad, like lentil soup, is a fantastic option for vegans or for those trying to lead a more plant forward lifestyle. Lentils are a fantastic, economical plant-based protein, are simple to cook, and are loaded with numerous nutritional benefits. Lentils are high in dietary fiber which helps with digestion, satiety, and cardiovascular health. Lentils are also a good source of vegetarian iron, an essential mineral needed for oxygen transportation in the blood and for proper metabolism. Pairing an iron containing food with Vitamin C (which is found in greens and citrus) assists with optimizing iron absorption.
- 2 cups cooked lentils, I used yellow, but green, brown, or red would work well too.
- 2 tsps lemon zest
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
- 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 avocado, thinly sliced
- Salt and black pepper
- handful of microgreens or baby spinach
In a bowl, whisk together the lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, maple syrup, Dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, scallions, and parsley. In another bowl, add the red onions and 1/2 of the dressing and toss to coat. Add in lentils and a pinch of salt and black pepper. Fluff together with a fork. Taste and add more dressing as needed. Top with avocado and microgreens, if your wish.
Enjoy your leftovers over the weekend or go have a meal out! You deserve it. Check back Monday for my tips on how to sustain clean and mindful eating all year long.