As silly as it may sound, brainstorming daily and weekly meals used to be a huge source of stress for me. There were nights I’d come home, stand in front of the refrigerator – exhausted – and get so frustrated I’d leave the house to grab takeout – just to avoid the agony of having to prepare something.
Today, food is no longer a stressor for me. And it doesn't have to be one for you either! What changed? I plan my meals, shop with intention and prepare what I need for the entire week. Now, food (and mealtime in general) is something I look forward to!
Here's an example of what I eat in a day as a plant-based dietitian, which includes my prep and thought process behind each dish. Hopefully these meals will inspire you to create your own and to ultimately discover a routine that works for you!
What a Dietitian Eats in a Day
Breakfast: Overnight oats with soy milk mixed with blueberries, cinnamon, peanut butter powder and chia seeds.
My morning starts with an early workout followed by walking my dogs, getting dressed and preparing for clients. Needless to say, they're quite rushed. I don’t have time to cook, let alone sit down to enjoy my breakfast.
This is why I normally opt for overnight oats. I make it the night before to simplify my A.M. routine. This meal is a great blend of macronutrients. The oats and berries provide complex carbohydrates, the soymilk and peanut powder provide protein (which is especially important after my early-morning workout!) and the chia seeds provide essential omega-3 fatty acids.
Another reason why this is a great option is that it's easy to switch up the flavors. Swap blueberries and cinnamon with pumpkin and all spice for a delicious fall-inspired twist. In the mood for something more tropical? Add pineapple, mango and coconut milk. The possibilities are endless!
Lunch: Burrito bowl with black beans, cauliflower rice, peppers and avocado.
For lunches, I’m all about combining leftovers from other meals. This practice often results in having burrito bowls midday. I like to combine leftover black beans, which provide a healthy combination of carbs and protein, with cauliflower rice. I also like to toss in whatever greens I have on hand, such as kale or romaine, plus broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cabbage, peppers and sliced avocado. Sprinkle on some taco seasoning or a few dashes of cumin and you've got yourself quite the meal!
Dinner: Plant-based crab cakes with cashew sauce and chickpea salad.
When I first went plant-based, seafood was definitely the most difficult food group to remove from my diet. But now, after learning the flavors and spices, I can once again enjoy my old favorites!
This version is made with hearts of palm, a delicious veggie you can easily find in the canned foods department at Vitacost.com.
Although full of flavor, these crab cakes are not rich in protein like their crustacean-based counterparts. To make up for the lack of protein and lower carb count, I pair these savory cakes with a chickpea salad consisting of lemon juice, parsley, red onion and cucumber.
For dipping, I like to whip up a creamy cashew-based sauce, which contains nutritional yeast and a splash of lemon juice.
I prefer to take supplements in the morning, which for me includes vitamin B12 and vitamin D – this way, I don’t forget!
In additional to preparing nutritious meals on the daily, I'm also super mindful of my water intake. My daily goal is roughly 100 ounces. When I get bored of drinking water, I’ll add some pops of flavor like lime, cucumber or mint!