These are a few of my favorite things!
These meals are tried + tested in the McDaniel household and, unless labeled otherwise, are good for you too! We make *mostly* clean eating meals. Ya'll, it is totally possible to eat great food at home (not out) without sacrificing your health. I did the leg work and you can reap the benefits! I'll update as I find more meals that leave us satisfied and smiling!
Mexican Haystacks: The original cook says it best herself, "It's like a party in my mouth!". If you like big taste with little time or prep, make this ASAP! The cilantro in the rice is what makes it for me. It's dairy free and can be made with all clean ingredients if you choose!
Honey Sesame Chicken: For when we need our Asian cuisine fix! There's no avoiding some sugar in this meal (unless you make your own ketchup and I'm not quite there yet). We do use organic Ketchup from Aldi (three cheers for Aldi!), but it still has sugar in it. Your taste buds will thank you if you make this meal. Did I mention it's a crockpot dinner? Winner all around! Dairy free and mostly clean. We like to pair it with long grain brown rice.
Crockpot Chicken Fajitas: If you read the About Annie section you know about my chips + salsa weakness. Well, that weakness really spreads out into anything that can be eaten with salsa, especially fajitas! These are YUMMY. Dairy free and can be made with all clean ingredients. Watch your salsa! Very few brands come without that added sugar. If you aren't utilizing your crockpot, you're really missing out! Dust that thing off and make this for dinner!
Herbed Turkey Burgers: Probably should've listed this one first since it's our #1 favorite meal around here! Matthew darling has always had a weakness for burgers and this one allows us to have our burger and eat fries too! The recipe is from The Daniel Plan, which is what kick started our healthier lifestyle. When I make these burgers, I also make Daniel Plan sweet potato fries (drool) and homemade hamburger buns that I got from the super clever lady over at Humorous Homemaking. The buns are the only thing not clean in this meal. But they are delish, so we include them.
Turkey Sausage: Had it been in the budget, we would've served Brinner at our wedding. We have always LOVED to have breakfast for dinner and didn't want to totally lose it when we made big changes in our diet. Luckily the chefs for The Daniel Plan have a terrific recipe for sausage! It's not a sacrifice. Trust me. Pair it with some scrambled eggs and toast (we like Ezekiel Bread) and brinner is served! Totally dairy free and clean!
Peanut Butter Cookies: Y'all these aren't clean (duh) but they are dairy free and so easy to make! Just 4 ingredients! Matthew loves all things peanut butter (we get the all natural stuff from Kroger, at least it's sugar free!) so these are a great treat around our house!
Homemade Bread Loaf: This is for special occasions because we try to stay away from white flour in our day-to-day life. We just realized our self control is not so good and we can't keep yummy things like this around! This one is a little time intensive (gotta let that yeast do its thing), but oh so worth it! You're going to want to eat a piece right out of the oven. We make it to go with Italian dishes and dip it in olive oil mixed with balsamic.
Pita Bread: Make these with whole wheat instead of white flour and you've got a good thing going on! Or don't. Either way they are TASTY. I tried making these on our baking stone, but they tasted better to us fresh off the pan on the stove. We eat them with lots of things! Especially with....
Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken: This is a great option for a week when you don't really know what you're in the mood for or when you are in the mood for different things! I might have some with hummus or guacamole while Matthew smothers his in BBQ sauce. Pair this chicken with those pita rounds and enjoy! It's kind of like your own personal tapas bar at home.
Green Smoothie: Even thought we have made some major adjustments to lead a healthier lifestyle, we still struggle to get those greens in! We make a green smoothie like this: 1 banana + 2 cups almond milk + handful of spinach + 7 or 8 strawberries + blueberries on occasion + 1 tsp Chia Seeds + 1 tsp flax seeds. And no lie, you can't even taste the spinach! Tried it with kale and just couldn't stomach it. What's the best green smoothie you make?
Pork Carnitas: Y'all this meal got us through a very hard 40 days of strict clean eating. We went through with the Daniel Plan fast and for the first few weeks were pretty hangry (you heard me right). But then I found THIS! So tasty. I learned to make my own corn tortillas (using organic corn meal, EVOO, salt, and water) and paired them with the pork. Top with homemade guac and FEAST away!
Balsamic Chicken: Want a big taste with few ingredients? This is the meal for you. Another no hassle crockpot dinner. You can pair it with brown rice, whole wheat spaghetti, or maybe a loaf of that homemade bread I mentioned earlier! It's a good one for company. Watch out when buying a can of diced tomatoes. Lot's of canned things include added sugar or HFCS! Seriously! I didn't know until I started paying attention! I get my diced tomatoes at Aldi. This meal is clean (unless you include that white bread, which you should at some point for sure). PS: the blog this comes from has a super neat feature that lets you adjust the serving size and they change the ingredient amount for you. How helpful is that?!