3 Overnight Oats Recipes

3 Overnight Oats Recipes

Whenever I have a really late night spent doing homework, I know I won’t be able to sit down and enjoy a long breakfast in the morning because I’ll likely wake up late. My solution used to be to make a really simple breakfast that morning to eat in the car, like an almond butter banana sandwich. But that still took too much time in the mornings. So, my solution this year has been to make overnight oats!

Most of the time, I’ll make chocolate banana oats. I love the banana chocolate combination so much!

Ingredients:

2/3 cup rolled oats

2/3 cup almond milk

1 tbsp chia seeds

1 tbsp cocoa powder

1 banana mashed

1 tsp sweetener of choice (honey, maple syrup, agave, etc.)

1 tsp cinnamon

Mix all of the ingredients in a mason jar or Tupperware and leave in the fridge overnight. The oats will soak in the almond milk, making them soft. In the morning, you can grab it and go, or you can heat it up too. Also, you can add additional toppings. Some of my favorites include  pomegranate seeds, dark chocolate, almond shavings, and blueberries.

  


Sometimes I even mix in chia seed pudding (3/4 cup almond milk with 1/4 cup chia seeds 1 tsp vanilla and sweetener of choice.

When I don’t have banana or cocoa powder at home, I  make vanilla overnight oats.

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Here I layered chia seed pudding, chocolate banana overnight oats, strawberries, vanilla overnight oats, and blueberries.

Ingredients:

2/3 cup almond milk

2/3 cup rolled oats

1 tbsp chia seeds

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp cinnamon

3 tbsp apple sauce

Procedure:

Same as above! I add applesauce to bind the oats, but they’re optional. I also add cinnamon because it’s a nutrient-packed super food! It’s filled with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, vitamins, minerals, and so much more. Even 1 tsp can have positive impacts on your body!

Finally, chocolate peanut butter overnight oats.

Ingredients:

2/3 cup rolled oats

2/3 cup almond milk

1 tbsp chia seeds

1 tbsp cocoa powder

1 tbsp peanut butter

1 tsp sweetener of choice (honey, maple syrup, agave, etc.)

1 tsp cinnamon

Procedure:

Again, same as above, so easy!!

Overnight oats are my GO-TO breakfast. They’re fast, simple, and nutritious, and they give me something to look forward to in the morning!

What is your favorite flavor of overnight oats??

Love,

Serena

Weekly Clean Eating Costco Haul

Weekly Clean Eating Costco Haul

Costco is our family’s best friend. Like seriously.

Even though we’re a family of three (or mostly a family of two since I’m away at school), we still renew our Costco membership every year because there is such a wide variety of selections and the major selling point – it’s cheap! Also, we have a pretty big appetite, so we usually have to go to Costco once a week.

Now just because things are in bulk and they are in cheap, doesn’t mean that it’s not healthy. In fact, besides the staples that we solely buy from Whole Foods, my family gets most of our foods from Costco.

And let me tell you guys, our family has changed. The family that used to buy all the types of chips and juices and ice cream and pastries sold in bulk in Costco now pulls a cart filled with healthy goodness.

So here’s my family’s “WEEKLY (CLEAN EATING) COSTCO HAUL”

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First off: fruit fruit fruit. I am always pleasantly surprised at the freshness of Costco’s fruits. Berries are delicate fruits in that they get easily rotten. However, I find that Costco’s berries are of the same quality as my local grocery store or Whole Foods.

Pictured here from left to right: strawberries, cherries, two cartons of blueberries, blackberries, tomatoes, avocado.

*Just a quick note: we get two boxes of blueberries since we found out they tend to rot the slowest while we don’t get raspberries since they rot the quickest. It’s all thinking my friends.

 

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“Deep Green Blends package – organic blend of tender baby kale, chard, and spinach”

My family has been OBSESSED with making smoothies lately. I have a cup or two at least once a day. So greens are a must. This bag is massive but with our daily smoothies and salads, we go through the bag really quickly. I’m so proud because in the past we use to throw away the small plastic Earthbound Organics boxes because they were rotten from our not eating them.

 

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Peaches and mangos.

I have a sweet tooth but not for candy but for fruit. I LOVE mango and peaches so much that my mom has to set a daily amount for me. These peaches smelled so good so we had to buy two boxes. Aren’t the colors of mangos and peaches divine?

 

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(Dave’s Killer Bread Organic – 21 Whole Grains and Seeds)

Of course – carbs. Carbs are your best friend and my family loves buying bread from Costco because they come in two loaves. We don’t have a specific preference for bread but this is what we’ve been eating.

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Coconut water. I used to HATE coconut water. When I used to live in the Philippines, I was given the chance to drink it straight from the coconut but I clearly remember me repulsing from the taste. But now I love it and my parents are hooked as well. When we all come back from the gym, it’s a race between the three of us of who can get to the coconut water first. Hehe

 

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Last but not least, Serena’s and my  first love: yogurt! I actually hated Fage plain yogurt when I was young. It was way too bitter. However, I’ve grown to love it know and now I repulse at the taste of artificially sweet flavored yogurt. Also, Greek is my favorite as the dairy part is more dense. It’s just less water and more protein!

So that’s what I have for my Costco haul! We usually buy two watermelons a week from Costco (I am a watermelon monster) but my mom already chopped them up while I was taking the photo. But I think you guys know how big Costco’s watermelons are. And also, my mom has tried several grocery stores for watermelon but we’ve learned the hard way (white colored watermelon is the worst) that Costco has the best ones.

Can’t wait to start eating these goodies or concocting meals with them this week! But most of all, I’m even more excited for a Costco trip this weekend! I swear, I’m the most happiest when I’m at Costco – entering Costco, shopping at Costco, and heading home with a trunk full of goodies.

 

What do you usually get at Costco?

 

xoxo,

Stephanie

 

 

Lettuce Wraps and Leftovers

Lettuce Wraps and Leftovers

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Now that I’m finally on summer break, I have been cooking every meal for my family. So, I’ve been able to experiment with a lot of different recipes and ways to use leftovers. It’s safe to say that my parents can’t live without meat, so I’ve been challenging them to be more adventurous with their veggies. Last night, I made this lettuce wrap “bar” complete with Romaine hearts, chickpeas, carrots, red bell pepper, and oyster mushrooms. Also, (not shown here), I used a tiny bit of tartar sauce to amp up the flavors. To appease my parents, I did sear some salmon that I seasoned with only salt and pepper. It turned out perfect, no need to season it any more. Also in the picture was soup that my dad made in bulk on the weekend, some leftover turkey, and leftover brown rice.

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Green tea ice cream mochi. So good!!

Since my mom and I went on a Trader Joe’s run earlier that day, we purchased a lot of frozen desserts, and of course, I had to have some of them after dinner!

 

We did have some leftovers after the dinner-salmon, bell peppers, carrots, and chickpeas. I simply incorporated these ingredients into my meals the next day.

 

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My breakfast omelet had bell peppers and carrots. Then, for lunch, I made a salad with a green medley (arugula, spinach, kale, romaine) with yellow bell pepper, the leftover chickpeas, and the leftover salmon. I also drizzled some Miso-Ginger Dressing (also leftover from a while ago :))

What are your favorite lettuce wrap ingredients? Lmk in the comments 🙂

With Love,

Serena

Summer Food Go-To’s

Summer Food Go-To’s

As school ends and summer break rolls in, I’ve started thinking about all the recipes I’ll bring back from last summer, and new ones that I’m excited to try.

First, I am definitely making my quinoa bowl. Last summer after my half day math camp, I would come home and make this lunch everyday. The bowl consists of quinoa with spinach, cherry tomatoes, avocado, minced garlic, and pine nuts in olive oil.

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This bowl is very filling, healthy, and bright. Perfect for a long day at camp!

Next, I will be making nice cream! I made a post about it a while back 🙂

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This isn’t my pic, but it’s so pretty!

I definitely want to make some bliss balls for an energizing snack.

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Of course, lots of FRUIT! I also love putting lemon and orange slices in my water.

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I stole this from insta 🙂

I’m also super looking forward to grilling some mangoes! This may sound weird, but mangoes develop an amazing sweetness when there are some lovely grill marks.

What are you excited to make this summer?

With Love,

Serena

Healthiness Compilation

Healthiness Compilation

I will bombard you with a bunch of healthy things because I (for once) took pictures of a lot of the things I ate! Eye-candy!

First, this beet juice that I made! It was so refreshing and delicious, and it only took a few ingredients : beets, carrots, apples, pears, ginger, water.

Next, an on-the-go breakfast that I had recently when I was running late to classes 🙂

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Chobani greek yogurt (banana+oats) and Chia seed pudding with raspberries and agave

This breakfast was healthy, satisfying, and filling, which is exactly what I needed before a long day at school!

I also had numerous bowls of healthy goodness.

First up, my go-to bowl that I made everyday for lunch last summer:

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Quinoa with cherry tomatoes, spinach, half an avocado, and pine nuts mixed with minced garlic and olive oil.

And then this one:

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I ate this for dinner and it was inspired by all the vegan Youtubers that I have been watching lately. It had potatoes, broccoli, tofu, mushrooms, and cherry tomatoes.

I hope you enjoyed those healthy pics! What is your favorite bowl combo?

With Love,

Serena

The FDA’s Fat Phobia

The FDA’s Fat Phobia

Recently, the FDA complained about the KIND brand’s use of the word “healthy” on their bars. The reason, they cited, was that the bars contained too much fat to be considered healthy. Currently, 3g per serving of fat is the maximum amount for healthy food. With nuts as the main ingredient for KIND bars, they were not considered FDA healthy. However, after reviewing their complaint, the FDA allowed KIND to use the word. They are also revising their definition of healthy foods to encompass more plant-based fats, like nuts, seeds, and avocados!

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(pic from Well and Good)

The FDA’s dietary guidelines seem to be getting better!

What is your favorite plant-based fat?

Love,

Serena

Healthy Eating “Detox”

Healthy Eating “Detox”

Do detoxes really work?

Yesterday, my family and I celebrated Mother’s Day at a pancake house for breakfast, at a fair where we drank a lot of bubble tea, and then in Philly for a midnight snack-eating congee and crepes. Today, we’ll be eating at a Chinese restaurant for dinner.

In between these heavy comfort foods, I tried to “detox”- or reverse the adverse affects of the pancakes, etc. with healthy foods. For lunch, I had a spinach salad with couscous and avocados, then for dinner we had tofu, salmon, and asparagus. Today, I had veggie scrambled eggs, raw vegan bliss balls, a pomegranate, a load of pineapple, a lot of water, and a lovely beet smoothie before dinner.

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This isn’t my picture, but the result looked the same 🙂 I blended water with a beet, a carrot, a pear, an apple, and a small knob of ginger and ran the smoothie through a sieve to result in a juice!

Eating all of these healthy foods and drinks made me wonder if this “detox” was working, or if it was just a way to make me feel better about my diet…However, I did notice that I was feeling a lot drowsier after eating the pancakes and bubble tea. The healthy foods gave me a lot more energy.

So, do “detoxes” (eating unhealthy and then trying to balance it with extremely healthy) work? I can say that the healthy made me feel a lot better-mentally and physically. What do you think?

Happy Mother’s Day to all the hardworking mothers out there!

Love,

Serena

Hiking: My Go-To Snacks

Hiking: My Go-To Snacks

A couple days ago, my entire grade went on a hiking trip at a state park. It was a fun experience, but I just wish we had more time to hike!

Anyways, I packed a couple snacks based on my prior hiking trips with my family, and here are my favorites and some tips.

  1. Trail Mix: DIY or a healthy store bought one (no M&Ms though 🙂 ) I packed a store bought one that had pecans, cranberries, yogurt balls, peanuts, and I added raw almonds and cashews
  2. Fruit: Apples, peaches, pears, anything that does not have to be peeled (eg. not kiwi or mango). Also, don’t pack bananas unless you will be eating them right away! My banana smushed in my bag and produced a terrible smell. I had to carry it down the mountain and on the bus ride back to school due to no trash cans!
  3. Dried Fruit (Mango, Banana, Apple, etc.) are perfect for snacking. They can be put in the trail mix as well.
  4. Energy Bars: KIND bars, Clif bars, Luna bars, etc.
  5. Sandwich: a boring spinach, tomato, & cheese. Spice it up with mashed avocado!
  6. Crackers if you’re into the savory like me! Just don’t binge-eat them 🙂 )

I hope this will inspire you to experience the great outdoors and not compromise your nutrition! Here are some of my favorite pics from a family hiking trip in Washington & Oregon from last summer.

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Mt. Rainier
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Multonomah Falls

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What are your go-to food tips for hiking?

Love,

Serena

My Health Journey

My Health Journey

Why do you eat what you eat? What shaped your food choices?

These were questions that I recently asked myself, and I figured that I could bring you on a trip down memory lane with me.

I was raised to eat conveniently, as healthy as fast food could be. About once every two weeks, I remember going to McDonalds with my parents, and they would always order a 6 piece Chicken McNuggets for me, with chocolate milk and apple slices.

On school nights, a typical “Chinese” dinner would include bone broth (made by my dad every Sunday for the rest of the week), white rice, meat (steamed fish or baked chicken) and sautéed veggies. Alternatively, we might have an “Italian” dinner with spaghetti with meat sauce, carrots, and peas. On weekends, my dad would cook an “American” meal, starting with the daily bone broth, and complete with mashed potatoes, ribs, and corn. We would always end meals with dessert–fresh fruit. My parents, both working, raised me on food that they felt was balanced and healthy, and that took half an hour to prepare.

However, I would always crave “healthy” snacks like sweet potato chips, string cheese, purple corn tortilla chips with guacamole, or greek yogurt. After school, I would gorge myself with these snacks, sometimes eating half a bag of veggie chips, or five cheese sticks. It was an unhealthy obsessions that would occur Monday through Friday as my self “reward” for a tiring day at school.

My mom, discovering that the family size chip bags she bought were finished in a couple days, realized that my excessive snacking was unhealthy. She encouraged me to control my portions, but I did little to change this.

Meanwhile, I was always the “healthy girl” among my friends at school, because of my sandwiches and salads for lunch, and my obsession with organics. Looking back, I realize that I was a hypocrite! While I seemed to be a healthy eater, I covered up the fact that I was binge-eating snacks, and my portion control was atrocious. My excuse was that-at least the snacks were “healthy”-they weren’t fried potato chips or brownies.

During the summer between middle school and high school, I became a full-fledged pescetarian, due to the horrors of animal slaughter that I had learned about through documentaries, Youtube videos, and research on PETA.

Admittedly, I did not change my obsessive snack habit until high school, when I would eat all my meals at school, and not have access to the bounty of snacks I had at home. Instead, after school, I would eat one KIND bar, and/or a handful or crackers. Only when the snacks were out of sight did I put them out of my mind.

At the beginning of high school, I also met my now-best friend (and other half of this blog!) Stephanie. She was “the healthy girl”, instead of me, and I could not compete with her. I couldn’t understand how she found salads -without avocados-appealing. Later, her influence rubbed off on me, and I began eating more and more salads. Now, I have noticed that I don’t binge eat on snacks as often, and I am used to eating more raw foods in meals.

What I have learned from my health journey is this:

  1. Out of sight, out of mind–if the unhealthy food is inconvenient to obtain, you will be less likely to consume them
  2. Just because other people are eating it, doesn’t mean that you have to–learn to resist!
  3. Find someone/something to motivate you–support from a friend helps a lot!

Hopefully, my journey is inspirational or relatable to you. Share your thoughts in the comments!

Love,

Serena

Dark Chocolate Almond Bliss Balls

Dark Chocolate Almond Bliss Balls

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Dark Chocolate Almond Bliss Balls. Oh, how they are blissful!

I bought a big pack of dates and a box of raw almonds a while back, thinking that I would make bliss balls because they were the trendy raw vegan snack. Just yesterday, I finally made them and I am so thankful I did.

My recipe is adapted from Food by Camilla‘s Choco, Almond & Coconut Bliss Ball recipe.

Ingredients

3/4 cup raw, unsalted almonds

1/2 cup oats

8 medjool dates

1 tbsp raw cacao powder

3 tbsp water (if necessary)

2 tbsp dark chocolate or raw cacao nibs (optional for coating)

Method

Blend almonds, oats, and cacao powder in a food processor until smooth.

Add the dates one by one.

Transfer mixture into a bowl and add as much water necessary to form a sticky consistency.

Roll the mixture into ball shapes.

Optionally place dark chocolate/cacao nibs into a food processor and blitz until small, but still chunky. Roll the bliss balls into the chocolate pieces.

Refrigerate for twenty minutes or (if you’re like me) enjoy right away!

I stored my bliss balls in a tupperware container in the fridge. They can last a couple days, and  make a healthy, satisfying, and sweet snack for any occasion.

What is your favorite raw vegan recipe? Comment below!

Love,

Serena