food buys

Currently: Top Five Food Buys

Instead of listing a day’s worth of eats, let’s talk about the products I’ve been eating a lot of lately. I’ve been loving the following for a variety of reasons — whether it be for my health, because my taste buds jump for joy when I eat them, or because they are the lesser of other evils that could be lurking in my pantry. Regardless, these guys have become staples in the IHABL household.

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Quaker Steel Cut Oats

In what can only be described as the weirdest turn of events, I’ve started craving oatmeal now that the temps are climbing. Didn’t have a single bowl all winter, no, but these days it’s a different story. I’m pretty high-maintenance about my oatmeal, however. I can make an easy single-serving bowl with quick oats, but for the most part, I don’t really like steel cut oats. I haven’t had any luck with them. I typically make my oatmeal in the microwave, and that doesn’t cut it for the steel cut type. At the beginning of the week I decided to give them one last shot and threw¬†them in the slow cooker. What a WORLD of a difference. It tasted like that oatmeal you get from the hotel buffet because god knows what’s actually in those “egg patties.” I made a big batch of it to have on hand all week and I’ve been loving it — I cooked them in water with chia seeds, millet, cinnamon, and some sea salt, so that each day I have a blank canvas to add whatever toppings I feel like having. Today was brown sugar and banana, and I’m not sure if I’ll be switching it up. Why mess with perfection?

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Coconut La Croix

Let me tell you a little story about my water intake — it’s virtually non-existant. I ran seven miles last night before dinner just to walk in the door and realize that I hadn’t had a single drop of water all day. How I manage to run on those fumes is beyond me. So, while I know that pure H2O is what’s best, at the end of the day I rely on La Croix and my good friend Crystal Light to keep me from my inevitable death by dehydration. And none of that phony fruit-flavored stuff. Coconut is where it’s at.

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Trader Joe’s Chile Lime Chicken Burgers

They’re thin, they cook in under ten minutes, and they’re just 150 calories with 19 grams of protein. Paired with a whole wheat burger bun, some classic burger fixins’ (including the high fructose corn syrup-laden Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce — sorry there just isn’t any competition there), and a side of veggies that I pull out of my freezer last minute, this has been my go-to healthy dinner option as of late. And I’m not stopping anytime soon.

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Chobani Greek Yogurt

I usually only eat plain greek yogurt — but¬†while I know that that’s the better choice for 90% of my snacks, sometimes, at the end of the day, you want something more dessert-like. That’s where these guys come in. The vanilla isn’t even my favorite…it’s, you guessed it, coconut, but I don’t have any left right now. Mixed with some slivered almonds or chocolate chips, sweetened yogurt is a perfectly pre-portioned dessert.

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Kodiak Cakes

These hearty little guys are like breakfast gold. They make you feel like you’re indulging in a giant pancake breakfast, when really you’re making a pretty decent choice, as they’re 100% whole grain. The best part is that they’re so easy to make and taste great! I’ve even gotten my family turned on to them, and they usually scoff at my healthy purchases (in their defense, though, I go through phases — so one healthy product can be 75% used up but then the remaining 25% will be left in our pantry for the better half of a decade….) I always add lots of mixins to my pancake batter, usually bananas, cinnamon, millet, nuts, or chia seeds (or all of it!) My brother has made them quite a few times with chocolate chips and I never refuse those either. You really can’t mess this one up: one cup batter, one cup water, mix, cook, done. And they actually keep me full for more than an hour, unlike most pancakes.

Questions:

  • What’s been your favorite food buy lately?
  • Do you go through food phases, or do you have a few stand-bys that you’ve loved forever?
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