Recipes from our 21-Day Health Challenge

 

During the past three weeks, a group of dedicated Beantown Bootcampers rallied together for a 21 day health challenge. This program pushed everyone to clean up their nutrition, create consistency in their workout regimen, and add a new emphasis on mindfulness to their daily routine. All of the goals were tied to a point system that created accountability for everyone involved.
 
The biggest takeaway from the past three weeks? Eating right goes a long way. After transforming their diets for just three weeks, participants were already reporting increased energy levels, weight loss, and improved performance in the gym.
 
Now that the challenge is over, we want to share the nutrition principles we’ve learned with the world. Abs may start in the gym, but they are ultimately made in the kitchen.
 
Luckily for you, eating healthy doesn’t have to be a chore. In many cases, it can actually be pretty delicious. Some of our members shared their favorite clean eating recipes from the challenge, which we’ve compiled to share with you. They’re tasty enough to stand the test of time, & nutritious enough to take your training to the next level.

 


Spinach-stuffed Chicken Breast in Tomato Sauce

Ingredients

3-4 ckn breasts
5 cloves garlic (or fewer!), sliced or crushed
1/2 med onion, chopped
1 lb bag spinach
1 large can crushed tomatoes (no sugar)
Feta (or goat cheese) -- sliced, not crumbles
1-2 T capers (optional)
3/4 c chopped olives (optional)
Crushed red pepper
Thyme
Bay leaf
Olive Oil
Spinach

Directions
Heat large skillet, add 1-2T olive oil. When that's hot (med heat), add garlic (sliced or crushed) and red pepper (1/2 t). After a minute, add onions, thyme and salt. When that's translucent, add the spinach and cook until wilted, but still green. Remove from pan and set aside to cool a bit while you prep the chicken.

Butterfly the chicken breasts to create a pocket. Put ~1 1/2 T feta on each breast. Divide the spinach mixture among each breast. If necessary, use a toothpick to pin it together for cooking.


Heat large skillet, add 1-2T olive oil. Add more red pepper (if you can take it!). When the pan and oil are hot, place each chicken breast in the pan, thick side down. Cook 5-6 min, then flip carefully so the spinach and cheese don't fall out. Cook second side 5-6 min, then flip back over.


With the chicken still in the pan, add the can of crushed tomatoes, and a bay leaf. Simmer for ~20 min, stirring occasionally, At the 10 min mark, flip the chicken and add olives or capers (or both) as desired.


Addictive & Healthy Paleo Nachos

 

Source:Paleo Grubs

Ingredients

2 medium tomatoes, diced and seeded

2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped

1-2 tbsp lime juice

2 cups guacamole

2 tbsp green onions, chopped

3 large sweet potatoes

3 tbsp melted coconut oil

1 tsp salt

1 medium yellow onion, finely diced

1 tbsp coconut oil

1 green chili, diced

1 lb. ground beef

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp smoked paprika

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1 tbsp tomato paste

12 oz. canned diced tomatoes

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

 

Instructions

To make the sweet potato chips, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Peel the sweet potatoes and slice thinly, using either a mandolin or sharp knife. In a large bowl, toss them with coconut oil and salt. Place the chips in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes, then flip the chips over and bake for another 10 minutes. For the last ten minutes, watch the chips closely and pull off any chips that start to brown, until all of the chips are cooked.

While the potato chips are baking, start preparing the beef. Melt the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and chili to the pan and sauté for 3-4 minutes until softened. Add the ground beef and cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the garlic, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and remaining spices and stir well to combine. Bring the mixture to a simmer and then turn the heat down to medium-low. Cook, covered, for 20-25 minutes, stirring regularly.

Stir the chopped tomatoes, lime juice, and cilantro into the beef mixture. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.

To assemble the nachos, form a large circle with the sweet potato chips on a platter. Add the beef mixture into the middle of the circle, and then top with guacamole and green onions.

Notes

  • Servings: 4-6

  • Difficulty: Medium

 


Salmon with Mango & Avocado Salsa

 

Ingredients

2 cups diced ripe mango (about 2 mangos)

½ cup finely diced red onion

1 cup diced Hass avocado (1 medium avocado)

¼ cup minced fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

freshly ground black pepper

big pinch of kosher salt

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

Juice from 1 lime

Directions

Prepare salmon as you normally would. Mix all together and have ready for when your salmon is done to top!


Zucchini and Sweet Potato Frittata 

Ingredients

2 tbsp coconut oil

8 eggs

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut in slices

2 sliced zucchinis

1 sliced red bell pepper

2 tbsp fresh parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions
1. Heat a pan over a medium-low heat;
2. Add the oil and sweet potato slices and cook until soft, about 8 minutes;
3. Add the zucchini and red bell pepper slices and cook for another 4 minutes;
4. While it cooks, whisk the eggs in a bowl, making sure to incorporate a lot of air in the mixture;
5. Season the egg mixture with salt and pepper and add to the cooking veggies;
6. Cook on low heat until just set, about 10 minutes;
7. Finish the frittata until golden under a heated broiler.
8. Cut the finished frittata into wedges and serve with fresh parsley.

 
DietChristopher Santoro