When I first started eating clean I began to eat more salads. For the first week or two I literally ate salads for both lunch and dinner. To the salads I added some cut up chicken, cubed sweet potato, nuts, seeds etc. Basically I made a whole meal, just in a salad. The problem was, after eating it the only taste I ended up with was…lettuce. I didn’t feel that I actually ate anything, even though there was really a lot in it.
That is when I got a great idea to put my protein and grain on the side! Sounds so simple, I know, but for some reason it made me feel like I was really eating food. Sometimes I put maybe half in the salad, but usually most is on the side and having it there I can actually taste the food, like brown rice. When you mix rice or any small grain into a salad you really lose out on tasting the whole thing and it falls into the background. Therefore the main thing you think you are eating is lettuce and veggies. As much as I love my veggies, I also really like to have some more substantial food to go with it so I feel like I ate an actual meal.
Here are some pictures of the meals I have.
Below is a salad with lettuce, cucumbers, and peppers with some dressing. On the side is sweet potato topped with a 1 egg and 2 egg white omelette. I love this combo!
As you see sometime I put the main on the side and sometimes I do put it straight into the salad just when I am in the mood for a salad with toppings, like below.
|Lettuce, avocado, pumpkin seeds and chickpeas|
In general, the key is to fill at least 1/2 your plate with lettuce and veggies. Sprinkle with a little dressing, maybe my Maple Vinaigrette, or just some olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Then put your protein and grain or other side dish, on the side!
Below I have a salad with lettuce, cucumbers, red peppers, some avocado and a little dressing. On the side is some mashed and spiced sweet potato and a homemade veggie burger (recipe coming…I’m still perfecting it).