Monday, August 12, 2013

Mason Jar Salads

I need to be working on a review that's due in a few days. It's going to be a really good one. I promise.

Instead, I am laid out on my bed. I have a cup of tea beside me and every intention on finishing up a library book. Or watching my favorite episode of Doctor Who. A girl's got to have her priorities straight.

Speaking of priorities. The Schools in our area start this week. Of course, we "school" all summer. It is a very light and breezy way of doing school, but we do it. I had the thought that I would start our intense (nose to the books) schooling this week as well. But then I thought, "Hey! We're Homeschoolers! Who says we have to do whatever one else is doing." I think I might even take Josiah Bevan to the zoo the day everyone else goes back to school. So there. Hah.

So this week I am preparing myself for what is ahead. In less than a  month everything gets crazier. Josiah has already started Swim Team practice again and next month he will be starting 2 of his other programs. Yikes! This girl better have her act together. So I've been cleaning, sorting, planning and sifting.

One thing I need to get a handle on has nothing to do with school. Remember when I told you that I had gained 16 pounds after our week of vacation. I only have lost 3 or 4 pounds of that. It could be because there was a day last week (or 3) that I took some of our laundry change and got an ice cream cone from Brahms. But most likely it's because I have not been utilizing one of my greatest Weight Loss Weapons. Planning Ahead.

What do I grab when I'm hungry and I've not planned? Anything that is close by. And sometimes that has included ice cream from a fast food restaurant. This week I decided to get serious with my plan..

We've all seen them. The Beautiful Mason Jar Salads. I have had my eye on them for quite some time. They are so stinkin' cute. And easy to prepare. I decided to make a few today to keep in the fridge. So when lunch rolls around and I'm up to my eyeballs in "stuff" I can just grab a jar and go.

I am going to walk you through how I did it. Just bear with me. I also made a week's worth of overnight Refrigerator Oatmeal. I took pictures so I'll write up a post about how I did that one soon.

I decided what kind of salads I wanted to eat. Which basically was determined by what I had in the fridge. I am a big fan of the Subway chopped salads, so yes. Those are chopped pickles you see on that plate. I am a big fan of sour or tangy food.

For my proteins I chose some leftover turkey breast we had leftover last week that I had put back. I also opened up a can of chick peas. I used cucumbers, onions and tomatoes I brought home from my Dad's garden. I had a little bit of bacon I fried up (cause I needed it) and used some Romaine I bought at Aldi's today. I {heart} Romaine.

I have tons of mason jars. My parents "can" every year so I always have them on hand. We use them for everything. I also got out my measuring spoons. Measure ingredients (like my Salad dressing) is good for my waist line.

This is my first salad. I follow a eating plan from the Trim Healthy Mamas. This means that I don't mix my high fats with my carbs. I initially lost a lot of weight by solely counting calories. After a 4 or 5 month plateau I tried the Trim Healthy Mama method. It took me over the hump and I can tell a world of difference in my health (in general). As long as I stay away from those ice cream cones! This salad has a little more fat in it.

I added the chick peas to this salad. Which means I nixed the ranch dressing. Instead, I used my Apple Cider Vinegar and a splash of olive oil. I have to say it's my favorite. I love tangy food! Didn't I say that already? This salad is lower in fat, but higher in carbs.

So now. How do you make one? It's obviously simple, but let me fill you in on a few tips I found while researching them ('cause you know I have to research salad making).

How you layer the salad is important. Put your dressing at the bottom and then add veggies like onions, peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers on top on that. They absorb the salad dressing and take on a whole new yummy flavor. Add any other veggies next. I did have some cauliflower and zucchini in the fridge, but I am saving both of those for some other dishes this week.

Your proteins come next. When you are losing weight it is important to have protein with every meal. I can tell you first hand that this has made a difference with me. I am diabetic which makes it even more important. You can also add cheese or eggs..whatever floats your boat.

The salad greens come after that. You may use any kind you wish. I even saw a few that threw a little bit of pasta and fruit in theirs. I love adding chopped apple to my salads. I should have done that! Now I think of it!

On the top I put the bacon (at least on the one that is higher fat). You want your bacon to stay crisp so keep it away from the soggier veggies and the salad dressing.

Not one recipe I read recommended croutons or nuts. I don't think you need croutons in your salad for good health, but I enjoy a few nuts. I am going to add them when I get ready to dump it in my bowl to eat it.

My salads all in a row! I had planned on making one or two more, but neglected to make sure I had plenty of lids on hand. No worries. I found more lids after I had made the salads. Of course!

1 comment:

  1. I'm sitting here eating a THM salad and reading your post. These things are HUGE but so good! Thanks for your tips. The protein thing is new for me. I used to stay away from it. :)


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