Recipes I Love
This has got to be the easiest breakfast! There is no cooking involved and it's great to grab and go if you're in a rush. Plus, it fills you up and gives you the energy you need to get the day going!
1/3 cup Raw Rolled Oats
1/3 - 1/2 cup Milk
1/3 cup Greek Yoghurt
Fruits e.g. blueberries, banana
Nuts e.g. almond, walnut
Anything you like! (Just don't go overboard 😉)
1. Put all your ingredients in a bowl or jar and place in fridge overnight.
2. Add the toppings the night before or the next morning and that's it! Yum!
See how I make my Overnight Oats here!
Smoked Salmon Egg Stuffed Avocados
Recipe from Fresh Planet Flavor
Photo Credit: Fresh Planet Flavor
Have a taste of the fancy brunchy cafes in your very own home with this easy, creamy and yummy breakfast packed with healthy fats!
- 4 avocados
- 4 oz smoked salmon
- 8 eggs
- Black pepper
- Chili flakes
- Fresh dill
- Preheat oven to 425°F.
- Halve the avocados remove the seed. If the hole looks small, scoop out a small bit at a time until it can hold an egg.
- Arrange the avocado halves on a cookie sheet, and line the hollows with strips of smoked salmon. Crack each of the eggs into a small bowl, then spoon the yolks and however much white the avocado will hold.
- Add salt and fresh cracked black pepper on top of the eggs, to taste.
- Gently place the cookie sheet in the oven and bake for about 15-20 minutes.
- Sprinkle chili flakes and fresh dill on top.
- Serve warm.
Photo Credit: epicurious, Chelsea Kyle
This is another super easy and quick breakfast that takes us to those weekend brunch feels. It’s one of the most flexible dishes and can be made, just how you like it!
2 eggs (or 3 eggs whites)
Salt and pepper, to taste
Vegetables e.g. spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes
1. Combine salt, pepper, two eggs (or three egg whites) and any extra veggies you'd like in a bowl. Stir well.
2. Heat pan over medium heat. Melt 1/2 tsp of olive oil in pan and add the mixture to pan. Cook 60 seconds or until eggs look the way you like.
3. Once cooked, plate it up and add a side of greens!
Healthy-fied Peanut Butter & Jelly
Credit: Amanda Meixner, @meowmeix
Healthi-fying the PB&J! How good is this?
Some tips from Amanda:
1. Not all brands are created equal - make sure to check nutrition facts & ingredients. There are definitely healthy versions of peanut butter or even strawberry preserves if you prefer that over strawberries but steer clear of jams with high fructose corn syrup and peanut butter with vegetable oils and added sugar.
2. Usually, the longer the list of ingredients, the more unnecessary they are to you. Ezekiel bread, for example, has the following ingredients: Organic Sprouted Wheat, Filtered Water, Organic Sprouted Barley, Organic Sprouted Millet, Organic Malted Barley, Organic Sprouted Lentils, Organic Sprouted Soybeans, Organic Sprouted Spelt, Fresh Yeast, Organic Wheat Gluten. Simple and minimally processed. That's what you want!
So remember to read the labels and make sure you know what you're putting into your body!
LUNCH AND DINNER
Woohooo! I recently discovered this super yummy and super diet-friendly pizza and I am so excited to share it with you! One slice is only 300 kcal, with 53g of Protein, 10g of Fat, and 1.4g of Carbs. This high-fat, high-protein and low-carb diet might even help with mood swings. Here's how you can make it for lunch, dinner or even a quick snack:
150g of Chicken Breast
20g of Mozzarella Cheese
4g of Tomato Sauce
I use the Ozganics Pasta Sauce!
Assuming 86g of chicken & 67g of fries
My version of popcorn chicken set compared to KFC's
I made my own version of KFC popcorn chicken and fries! I'm taking same portion of both, which comes to 86g of chicken breast and 67g of sweet potatoes fries. Check out the difference!
Salt and Pepper (to taste)
1. Season the chicken breast with garlic powder, basil leaves, pepper and salt, to taste.
2. Pan fry the chicken with cooking spray (0 kcal for 1 spray only).
3. While for the sweet potato fries, cut it and bake it naked with a bit of black pepper and one spray of cooking oil. That's it! Enjoy guilt-free deliciousness!
I love fries and I used to get mad because I had to eat clean and watch my bf eat fries. So, I did a little Googling and found this super easy recipe!
Salt and Pepper (to taste)
1. Slice your sweet potato into the shape of fries (or maybe you'd like to play around with other shapes!)
2. Spray some cooking oil, add black pepper and salt (to taste) and bake them.
Yay, you're done!
The above picture shows the same weight of both healthy and unhealthy fries. As you can see, one large sweet potato fries has 3.8 times less calories than one large McDonald's fries! BUT, if both were baked and cooked in the same way, are sweet potatoes really healthier than white potatoes? And should we avoid eating white potatoes? Here's some real useful information from Elizabeth of @lizhwangbo on Instagram.
THE BATTLE OF THE POTATOES
Ever wonder why sweet potatoes are deemed "healthier" than regular potatoes and if this is indeed true? Find out why they both deserve a place in our daily nutrition.
🔸GLYCEMIC INDEX & LOAD: When comparing the GI & GL of the two, white potatoes are higher, which means they digest quickly and can send insulin levels skyrocketing -
(GI is a measure of how quickly a food converts to glucose.
GL is a measure of how much a food converts to glucose.) -
This is one of the main reasons why we are told to avoid food high in GI such as white potatoes. However GI & GL shouldn't be the deciding factor when judging the “healthiness” of the two, because:
1️⃣GI changes with food type (floury vs. waxy potatoes).
2️⃣GI changes when other foods are introduced. (We usually eat both potatoes & sweet potatoes as part of meals.)
3️⃣GI changes with food preparation. (Boiling = a lower GI, since starch can bind with water. The dry heat of baking, = lowers moisture and concentrates sugars. Cutting up potatoes and sweet potatoes helps preserve their starchiness, while cooking them whole results in more sugariness.)
🔸SUGAR: Naturally, sweet potatoes have 7 x the sugar content of regular potatoes, which is why I personally love sweet potatoes more.
🔸VITAMINS & MINERALS: In general, both are roughly similar in their vitamin and mineral content. Sweet potatoes are richer in Vitamin A & Beta-carotene, aiding growth and repair of the body’s tissues, muscles. While potatoes contain more than 3x the folate and have more potassium, which is important for post-workout recovery!
🔺In conclusion, it's a TIE! Overall, they're pretty evenly matched: both contain strikingly similar amounts of calories, protein, carbs and fat. Both white and sweet potatoes, when eaten as part of a balanced and intentional diet, provide an amazing variety of nutrients while keeping us full and energized. - Elizabeth, @lizhwangbo
So go ahead, ladies! Sweet potato or white potatoes, they have both earned a place in your diet!
Chicken Breast + Tofu Quinoa
This protein-packed meal is super yum and easy to make! It's also filling so you don't feel hungry and get off track. Quinoa's a great substitute for rice and is high in protein but it can take a while to get used to. Try it out and you'll learn to love it!
Tofu (1 piece is around 80 kcal only but it's packed with protein) - To
Salt and Pepper
1. Season the chicken breast with garlic powder, basil leaves, pepper and a pinch of salt and pan fry it with cooking spray (1 spray is 0 calories!)
2. Leave the tofu raw or heat it up.
3. Steam the broccoli.
4. Cook the quinoa! You can use a rice cooker or combine the quinoa and water in a medium saucepan. Then, bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the quinoa is tender.
5. Combine it all in a bowl or if you're leaving it for later, store in a glass container and in the fridge. When you want to eat it, just heat it up!
Protein Tuna Egg Muffin (Healthy Otak-Otak)
Credit: @dorissdd and @tammykhoo
This was a recipe given by our Twenty3 Unicorn, Jenni! It's so yummy, like eating otak-otak, but healthy! Seven pieces are only 410 kcal and they're perfect for lunch and dinner on the go too!
3 egg whites + 1 full egg
1 can of Tuna in water
1/2 tablespoon of coconut oil
A bit of Basil + Garlic powder
1. Remove excess water from the tuna can
2. Mix the tuna with the eggs
3. Put in the rest of the ingredients, mix it and put it into any trays or molds you have at home.
4. Bake it for 6 minutes at 250°C! Everyone’s oven is different so check on your muffins from time to time. Enjoy!
Prawn + Capsicum Quinoa
Feel like something other than chicken? Try prawns! This super yummy combo will sure add some colour to your lunch!
14 medium prawns, shelled and deveined
Salt and pepper, to taste
Paprika powder, to taste
1 tablespoon oil
2 teaspoons diced garlic
1 tablespoon red chilli, finely diced
1 medium onion, sliced
1 red capsicum, sliced
1 yellow capsicum, sliced
1 green capsicum, sliced
1. Marinate the prawns with salt, pepper and paprika powder and keep aside in fridge for at least 15mins.
2. Heat pan over medium heat and add 1 tbs olive oil to stir fry prawn. Keep aside once cooked.
4. Time to cook the veges! Heat pan over medium heat and add 1 tbs olive oil. Start with the onion. 30 seconds later, add in the garlic. Another 30 seconds later, add in the capsicums and chilli. Add salt and pepper to taste.
5. To finish, add in prawns and quinoa 2 minutes later and mix.
6. You can also add in fresh veggies like cherry tomatoes or cucumber on the side for an extra crunchy texture.
Stuffed Sweet Potato
It's been called a superfood because of its health benefits but this sweet potato recipe is also super quick, easy, and yummy!
1 medium sweet potato
Any topping you have on hand (e.g. tuna, black beans, quinoa, chickpeas)
Any sauces (e.g. greek yogurt, cottage cheese, guacamole, salsa, hummus)
1. Place the sweet potato on a microwavable plate and pierce it about 5-6 times with a knife or a fork.
2. Place it in the microwave, and set the timer to 15 minutes. Let it cook until soft.
3. While waiting for it to be cooked, prepare the toppings with what you have on hand. Some of our favourites that go really well together are tuna, black beans, quinoa, chickpeas and spinach.
4. Once cooked, the sweet potato’s thin skin would puff to a crisp finish and you’ll discover a sweet, pillowy flesh! (This depends on the size of the potato)
5. Slice the sweet potato down the middle lengthwise and generously ‘stuff’ in your toppings.
6. Dress it up with sauces, like greek yogurt, guacamole and salsa, that are packed with more nutrients and protein than regular mayo and bottled sauces. But keep in mind not to go overboard!
7. To finish, serve it with a side salad and say ‘Hello’ to your scrumptious meal!
These are some of my favourite snacks to munch on when I need that extra energy. Baby carrots, cucumber and almonds are all great and packed with nutrients, but as with all things, don't go overboard! 😉
You can also try QuestBars or other protein bars. They're packed with protein to keep you fuller for longer and are super easy to bring around as a treat or an emergency snack when you're hungry! But be sure to check their nutritional content to make sure they are actually good for you.
Do you have any recipes to share? Please let me know in the comments below!
*Vegans and vegetarians can opt to use tofu or any protein to substitute meat.
Guide To Eating Out
Eating out when you’re trying to eat healthy can be a BIG challenge with all the temptations. This is especially so with all the Nasi Goreng, Hokkien Noodles and 24/7 mamak stalls that are so readily available in Malaysia!
I've learned some ways to cope over the year and I'm sharing it with you here! Now we can all enjoy eating out with family and friends, without sacrificing our health and fitness goals!
Ask for chicken breast and eat without skin! Look at the difference there!
CHICKEN RICE (KAI FAN)
Eat only 1/4 of the rice and ask for steamed chicken breast. Fill up on vegetables, eggs & tofu if they have.
ECONOMY RICE (CHAP FAN)
Similarly, take only 1/4 of the white rice or opt for brown rice, if they have. Get lots of greens on your plate with chicken breast, tofu and eggs for protein.
You can still have Ayam Goreng or tandoori chicken! Just ask for chicken breast and peel off the skin! You can also order hard-boiled eggs, some vegetables like chickpeas if they have and finish off the meal with Limau Ais (without sugar, of course).
YONG TAU FU/STEAMBOAT
Photo Credit: Wong Sze Yuen / www.123rf.com
What's better than a warm hearty meal with family and friends? Get in lots of vegetables here like white cabbage, spinach and mushrooms and fill up on protein, like chicken and fish. The trick here is to try and avoid the fishballs, noodles and fried, processed foods and don't go overboard on the sauces! Try to restrict to 1 tablespoon only.
Photo Credit: Refined Guy
Sometimes we just want a nice cup of drink when we're on the go or sitting at the coffee shop. Black coffee's a great substitute for those sugary frappes we're used to. Plus, black coffee can actually boost your metabolic rate to help with fat burning! Make it a snack with an almond pack (eaten in moderation), or a complete meal with Starbucks' chicken tortilla wrap. Opt for wholemeal if they have!
Salad's an easy go-to with plenty of greens and protein to fill you up! Try to avoid hidden sources of calories like croutons and candied nuts and ask for dressing on the side so you have more control over how much you are eating.
The above are all healthier options and most are budgeted, and also very easy to get! Eating healthy doesn't mean staying at home and meal prepping all the time. It starts with the little changes. Do you have any other tips and tricks to share? Let me know in the comments below!
5 Local Healthy Eateries To Try
It is no secret that food is one of the biggest things Malaysia is known for. With our 24-hour mamak stalls, fast food drive-thrus and hawker stalls, food is available in every corner and around the clock, but the same can’t be said for healthy food. Once ruled by carb and fat-loaded (though delicious when eaten in moderation) Nasi Lemaks and Roti Canais, it’s amazing how Malaysia is slowly venturing out into healthy lifestyle eateries. Here are 6 that you should definitely try:
1. Medifoods (Several branches in the Klang Valley, including one at the Sime Darby Medical Centre)
An organic eatery suitable for all health enthusiasts to dine in. Nowadays, many who are experiencing illness are worried about what they consume, leaving them with only a few options of food to choose from. Medifoods believes in healing in a holistic manner by serving tasty and healthy foods inspired by the West and the East. With a qualified in-house nutritionist, you can find soups, salads, noodles, rice, pastas, mains, snacks and more, all cooked with unprocessed, natural organic products that taste just as sinful but without a helping of guilt! Their website also has a calorie counter - key in your details, and it returns your recommended daily calorie intake, as well as suggestions from their menu that match your results! Aside from food, they sell organic products as well as provide catering services.
2. Chai Bar (Ara Damansara and Bangsar)
This is the salad bar for you gym bunnies who love eating clean but can’t fit in kitchen time. Their ingredients are prepared and cooked with proper care to ensure all your healthy living efforts aren’t going to waste by deceivingly “healthy” food. Take their tuna for example. Most tunas are drenched in a sea of mayo while Chai Bar’s tuna is prepared cleanly with lemon juice and curry powder. As for their chicken breast, you can either have it poached or grilled! (Not fried, please!) Not to forget, their salad dressings are low in calories and definitely high in flavor!
This welcoming place serves a good range of healthy nutrient-dense foods on their menu, from salads to buddha bowls, pastas, smoothie bowls, vegan soups and their famous juices and smoothies. There’s also an option where you can make your own salad! To get your dose of good carbs in, try their Buddha Bowl, which consists of brown rice, roasted pumpkin, bell peppers, tofu, lotus root chips, french beans and oyster mushrooms topped with bean sprouts and dressed with a Thai coconut curry sauce. Yum!
4. Raisin’ The Roof (Damansara Heights)
If you are a vegan, this is the perfect place for you! Raisin' The Roof offers a wide variety of plant-based foods on their menu, from wholesome smoothie bowls, juices, smoothies, sandwiches, salads and wraps to desserts! Most people are worried about not getting enough protein in their vegan diet but hey, no worries! Their Miso Maple Tempeh wrap and Pistachio Falafel wrap pack a punch of protein that will leave you satisfied and wanting more! Not to forget their “moo-less” nut milk which are raw, cold-pressed & dairy-free!
Have a favourite healthy go-to that is not on the list? Let me know in the comments below!