I go in spurts with food. I think that’s fairly common. When I’m being smart, there are staples I tend to rely on. Those shift and change as I get tired of them, but here are the current contenders:

Cold oats. I saw these on pinterest and thought, “who would eat that?” Turns out, I would. A delicious, creamy breakfast, cold for summer, easily adaptable to what I have on hand. Perfection. I had to play with proportions a bit to make it work in my eating plan, but I made it happen. If only I were as successful remembering to put it together the night before.

Mix 1/3 c oats and a 1/2 c yogurt. (I use plain, fat free greek.) Stir in 1/4 c milk. (I use an unsweetened vanilla almond.) Cover and refrigerate overnight. The next morning, add sweetener, if desired (stevia for me), and about a 1/2 c fruit, nuts, whatever makes your morning happy. Enjoy.

Lean Cuisine Artichoke Spinach dip with pita. I know. Processed. Ugh. I’m still working on perfecting a light version of this dip, but so far it’s been a bust. For now, I’ll keep enjoying this 200 calorie lunch. Add a salad, or some cut up veggies for dipping, and it’s satisfying. Better yet, it feels like a treat.

Protein Powder. Chocolate protein powder from Trader Joe’s. This has been spectacular. In all truth, my Vitamix should be listed beside the powder. Because that little baby has been all kinds of awesome. I use it every single day.

Homemade hummus. Again, from the Vitamix. I don’t need tahini, I just throw in the sesame seeds. MUCH cheaper that way. My current batch is jalapeno-cilantro and you better believe it’s as good as it sounds. I use it as a spread for sandwiches, dip for veggies, even a topping for baked potatoes. The only downside is that it makes a HUGE batch. Anyone willing to share a batch with me?

Bean and Corn salsa salad. The ultimate twist on cowboy caviar. I love it. If you’re nice, I will share the recipe in an upcoming post. It’s 60 calories for a cup of the stuff and it’s so good, I eat it as a salad, even though it’s meant to be a salsa.

Hebrew National 97% less fat beef franks. I adore hot dogs. They are one of my favorite cheat meals. And while nothing beats a juicy grilled brat, these help me steer clear (for the most part). They aren’t as grainy as other brands, not as sweet as some and still relatively legal. WIth a little turkey chili and cheese? Heaven.

Fun-sized candy. My sweet tooth is the stuff of legend. Right now, any type of candy you like comes in small servings. The trick for me is limiting to one a day. It’s a tricky trick. (or treat) I’ve heard of people freezing the chocolate varieties, but that doesn’t tend to slow me down much. If anything, I eat more. I leave one out to thaw, then eat another one right away because I can’t wait. Willpower: it’s not my strong suit. But the sour types are good for me because I can’t eat as much.

What are some of your tried and trues?

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