by Lauren Baker, PULSE
Green Eggs and Guacamole
This breakfast was loaded with protein, healthy fats, and carbohydrates to give my body the proper fuel it needed to start the day. The green eggs turned out even greener than I originally thought, but they were perfect for St. Patrick’s Day because of the high broccoli/spinach/basil to egg ratio. By adding broccoli, spinach, and fresh basil to your scrambled eggs, you can enjoy the festive look without extra food coloring. Now, I realize the crackers I ate with the guacamole aren’t exactly green, but the package was! Raincoast Crisps are my absolute favorite type of cracker with really any kind of spread. I would highly suggest trying them (so I included them in my breakfast and the picture above for both of our benefit)!
Mean Green Fighting Machine Smoothie
I’m a huge fan of smoothies — they are perfect after the gym and they satisfy my sweet tooth craving. Since the blender I use at school isn’t as good as the awesome and powerful Vitamix blender we have at home, I always blend the softer items together first to get a liquid base before adding the frozen fruit or ice. This time I started with a handful of spinach, handful of kale, Fage Total Greek Yogurt, and coconut milk (although I use skim milk sometimes too). The green color is solely from the spinach and kale. So to keep that bright green color, I just added the most neutral colored frozen fruits I could find, like banana, peaches, and pineapple (instead of the colorful berries I usually love to use). Not only will the smoothie be a stronger green color with every bit more spinach or kale you add to the mix, but you will be stronger as well, and no one will want to mess with you when they see you sipping on this!
Iced Mint Green Tea and Fruit Salad
I made the iced tea by making regular green tea, adding mint leaves and some honey, chilling it in the fridge, then adding ice when I was ready to enjoy! The fruit salad (green grapes, green apple slices, green pear slices, and kiwi) was great for two reasons: not only was it something new since I don’t get a chance to eat kiwi or pear that often, but I really enjoyed the pleasure of cutting it all up and enjoying it as a fruit salad dish instead of a “to go” snack like I usually do.
KaleChips, Baked Asparagus, and Quinoa/Cucumber Salad
This was my first time making kale chips and I (surprisingly to myself) really enjoyed them and cannot wait to make them more often now! The process could not have been easier so I challenge you to try them also J All you do is lightly coat the fresh kale (rinsed, dried, and broken into chip-sized pieces) with olive oil, place on a rimmed baking sheet, lightly sprinkle with salt or another seasoning you’d like, and bake at about 400°F for 10 minutes. I love asparagus so it was an obvious choice when deciding what I would put on the day’s menu and also very easy to make (just lightly coated with olive oil and a garlic and herb seasoning, then baked in oven). I then decided I needed a little more nutritional balance in this dinner so I just added cucumber (to stay true to the green festivities) with a package of quinoa, corn, and black beans.
Not only have I decided to make it tradition in my life to make a Green Menu every St. Patrick’s Day, but through my research on the health benefits and wide variety of green foods, I am going to make an effort to include more into my lifestyle. If you can, try choosing something green at every meal. It was definitely a deliciously rewarding challenge I took on this St. Patty’s Day!