Whether you're heading to a tailgate or hosting the big game, it's not a party without a delicious spread. I'm not talking about the crafty cheese boards & bruschetta you whip up for girls night - I'm talking cheesy, creamy, occasionally fried, buffalo-smothered appetizers that you attempt to avoid, but always end up giving into after a couple of beers.
For me, beer is unavoidable. I've never been a "vodka-soda girl" and never will be. Fortunately, my favorite game-day foods have plenty of substitutes that even the heartiest man at your party will devour! So for the sake of a season lasting more than 17 weeks, I've whipped up my favorite game-day snacks to make sure your jersey still fits come Super Bowl time!
Score big with these game-day goodies:
Additional tips for a lighter game-day:
Make your own Ranch dressing with 0% Plain Greek Yogurt & Ranch Seasoning packets.
Use carrots and celery in place of tortilla chips when dipping.
Swap the sour cream & cream cheese for 0% Plain Greek Yogurt.
Go light on the cheese.
Bake, don't fry.
Get creative with veggie and fruit combos.
Swap the chips for a Trader Joe's Soy & Flaxseed Chips, packed with protein!
Throw out the peanut butter, PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter only!
Between juggling an adoring boyfriend, their energetic Rotty, her Master's at USC, and an amazing PR career at Taco Bell Corporate - she still finds the time to eat the most delicious meals & rock her hot bod. If she's not inspiration, I don't know who is.
Since bouncing back, I've had a few girls ask how I was able to restore the balance. I quickly realized I wasn't the only girl experiencing the post-college effect and because my methods aren't revolutionary, I looked to a valuable source that could provide inspiration where we all need it most - the kitchen. So thank you Miss Alec Boyle for sharing your simple life hacks - you are the BEST!
First off, kudos to Jen and her beautiful blog! I mean how cute is she?
Jen and I go back to good ole college days at Arizona State University, which is actually where I grew into my foodie persona and began playing around (and often failing) in the kitchen. Over the years, I have embraced a ‘clean eating’ lifestyle and make nutrition a priority. I am not paleo. I am not gluten-free either. I am just a fit foodie who likes whippin’ up & eatin’ up good-for-you dishes and yummy concoctions. Inspiring others along the way gives me just as much satisfaction as a spoonful of peanut butter. That’s why I started a food Instagram earlier this year – using some healthy #foodporn to show people eating healthy can taste great & actually be quite simple and fun.
Because let’s face, anything that’s too time intrusive, messes with your social life and is too expensive is not going to turn into a lifestyle. I could write a book on all my tips, but I’ll give you some baby steps – actually my two biggest tips!
to prep your vegetables as little time in advance as possible, I recommend it. But hey, a microwaved vegetable is still a better (and quicker) option than puling through a drive-thru and picking up fast food on the way home. Yes, you’re going to have to give up a couple hours on a Sunday, but if you’re passionate about fueling your body with the right stuff then you’ve got to do what you’ve got do, right?
Everyone’s got a food weakness – a guilty pleasure. My weak spot is sweets. Denying myself of sweets would be sinful, which is exactly why I don’t deny my cravings. Instead, I get creative in thinking how I can feed my sweet tooth sans the guilt. Lately it’s been with Quest Bars. Quest bars are literally everything. The trick is cutting the bars up into little cookie pieces and baking them (at about 350 degrees for 5-8 minutes, depending on how brown it is getting).
Vegetables can also be your best friend by swapping them in for carb-heavy recipes. For example, I often swap carrots for potatoes in making fries. When I’m craving pasta, I made noodles out of zucchini (‘zoodles’). Cauliflower is another wonderful option for making faux-mash potatoes or faux-rice.
For some more swap-out inspiration and recipes, you can check out my Instagram page @whataleceats.
I pretty much live by these rules during the week. But, I also do follow an 80/20 rule, where I do “cheat,” and I enjoy it thoroughly! I will always have a weak spot for regular ice cream, and let me tell you, I can make some mean swirls at Yogurtland. I am also usually never one to turn down a crispy wood-fired oven pizza. I am only human by the way, and while I have trained my taste buds to crave “healthy” things – I seriously drool over a good salad – I have learned a truly healthy lifestyle is one where food doesn’t control your every thought, but one where you can find a happy balance that works for you.
It was after my second PSL of the season that I realized I was having a strange reaction to the overly decadent beverage. I thought of every excuse in the book: "I drank it on an empty stomach..." "My body's not used to that much caffeine..." The list went on.
Eventually, I put my pride aside for the sake of my headache and spike in energy levels and went straight for Google. Sure enough, my Grande, non-fat, no whip, Pumpkin Spice Latte was served up with 38g of sugar! Holy sugar high... and type 2 diabetes.
According to Authority Nutrition, a healthy male should consume < 37.5 grams (9 teaspoons) & women should consume < 25 grams (6 teaspoons) per day. No wonder my body was freaking out! One Pumpkin Spice Latte contains more sugar than both male or female should consume in an entire day!
Needless to say, this "basic b!t$h" was heart-broken... but not hopeless.
At last, the gracious sliding doors at Trader Joe's glided open and presented me with the answer to all of my "basic" problems: The Pumpkin Spice Chai Tea Latte mix!
Growing up, my all time favorite dinner was my mom’s creamy, green chile enchiladas. They were so rich you just knew they couldn’t be good for you, but at that age, who’s really counting calories?
It wasn’t until my sophomore year of college when she finally shared the recipe with me that I actually knew what went in to them… cream cheese, sour cream - no wonder I loved them. I whipped up that batch savoring every bite as if they’d be the last for the sake of my health.
That was until recently when I remade the recipe replacing all the heavy creams with 0% Plain Greek Yogurt. To my surprise, this recipe might just trump the original - they are so good! (and MUCH lighter!)
A collection of memories and experiences, featuring home staging and decor, lifestyle trends, travel tips, and DIY projects. Hoping to leave things a little more beautiful than I found them.