CCK’s Eat The Rainbow Directory

Smart Smoothie Recipes

When we advocate eating more plants and all five colors everyday, often our clients jump right to the blender to boost health, shed pounds and increase energy. And while well put together smoothie recipes can be delicious, satisfying, excellent exercise recovery and a great ways to pack in the micro, macro and phytochemical nutrition, not all smoothie recipes are created equal.

Heed our smart smoothie recipe tips when you’re looking to maximize your efforts and avoid the most common pitfall. This is a three part post where we’ll start by addressing the largest smoothie pitfall, share our 5 rules to making smart smoothie recipes and then give you a list of our favorite protein, produce and super food mix-ins!

Or better (and easier) yet, you can start a Smoothie Subscription for Prepared Detox Kit from our San Diego Meal Prep company and we’ll do all the work for you. You just pick your flavors, drop the goodies in a blender with ice, your liquid of choice, blend and go!

Part 1: Common Smoothie Recipe Pitfalls

Can you say sugar BOMB? Nothing is more frustrating to health practitioners than sneaky marketing gimmicks that literally trick healthy hopeful consumers into drinking every form of fruit sugar blended up in a giant 32 oz cup with a enough greens to change the color and hide the nutritional atrocity.

Take Jamba Juice’s Apple ‘N Greens smoothie (pictured below). Encouraging consumers who are struggling to eat enough greens into drinking them is a great idea. But sneaking in 78 grams of sugar into it is just plain evil. A worse offender is the Greens ‘n Ginger with 87g sugar but the marketing language in the description is not quite as offensive. True, that is for a large serving which is twice as large as the small, but when you’re peddling better health, can’t the consumer assume more greens are more better?

Note: For comparison purposes, 32 oz of regular coca-cola has 104 g sugar, and it’s all added. But at least they aren’t leading consumers to believe they are achieving their health goals with their sugar laden beverage.

What’s worse is that these types of smoothie recipes have little protein, fiber or fat to curb the blood sugar spike and insulin roller coaster to follow. While it might be yummy, make you feel like you’re doing something good and temporarily boost your energy level, these types of smoothie recipes are not an effective way to boost long term health or shed pounds. Instead, they can lead you on a blood sugar roller coaster, leave you hungry very quickly after drinking and most definitely go straight to your waistline.

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Part 2: Smart Smoothie Rules

Every so often, we teach a Smart Smoothie workshop where we cover the in’s and outs of our Smart Smoothie Rules, provide all the right ingredients and have our clients build their own smoothie bags so they have their healthy treats ready to blend and go! Below is the flyer we use to cover the bases. Feel free to pin, print or bookmark it for easy access in the future!

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Part 3: Smart Smoothie Recipes Ingredients

The actual recipe you follow can be based on your preferences and what you happen to have on hand. But make sure it includes these types of ingredients. We’ve included a little blurb about just how they help set you up for sustainable better health.

Protein Sources:

Pro Tip: Adding protein to your smoothie makes it an excellent exercise recovery as well as better meal replacement in general.

Greek Yogurt: for those who want a creamier texture and want to avoid powder for any reason. Look for unsweetened and low-fat to control calories if weight loss is important. Greek yogurt has 130 calories and 23 g protein 9g sugar. Regular plain yogurt has ~143 calories, 12g protein and 16g sugar

Protein Powder: While protein powders are processed products, they can be a very efficient way to meet nutrition needs while on the go and are typically far more effacing than your grab-and-go protein bar. Look for something that is about 130 calories per serving with 20+g protein. Depending on sugar content, they are typically low on the glycemic index.

  • Plant Based: generally blends of soy, pea, hemp, chia, rice, mushroom. We like Pure Protein superfood for its superior flavor.
  • Whey: Dairy based, generally tastier, higher bioavailability and less expensive.

Superfood Mix-ins

Pro Tip: Super food mix ins maximize nutrition and provide more plant based protein, healthy fat and fiber to help you feel fuller, longer.

Flax: Good source fiber, lignin, omega-3 fatty acid, alphalinolenic acid and a phytoestrogent to help regulate hormones. They are also low on the glycemic index and slightly alkaline forming in your body helping to regulate PH and blood sugar.

Chia: Good source of minerals calcium, iron, manganese and zinc and also helps with the absorption of other B vitamins. They are a plant-based protein that is high in fiber and omega-3 fatty acids.

Raw Oats: Good source of minerals manganese, selenium, phosphorus, magnesium and zinc. Strong antioxidant and immunity-boosting properties. Contains beta-glucan, which helps regulate blood sugar and lower cholesterol. Good source of fiber and lignin. Old fashion oats are also low on the glycemic index and slightly alkaline forming helping to regulate blood sugar and PH.

Cinnamon: Has anti-fungal and antibacterial properties and has been known to have an anti-clotting affect in blood. Cinnamon is also being researched to understand its blood glucose lowering Great way to add flavor to baked goods and coffee to reduce or eliminate unnecessary sugars.

Cacao: Contains the mood improvers and protective polyphenols and antioxidants to protect against heart disease, skin cancer, and fight aging. Also helps control appetite and can help you naturally shed weight.

Nut Butter: Contain monounsaturated fat, vitamin E, calcium, phosphorous, iron, magnesium, zinc, selenium, copper and niacin. They are also low on the glycemic index and slightly alkaline forming in your body helping to regulate PH and blood sugar.

Coconut Flakes: A good source of satisfying fat and fiber. Contains some plant based protein and critical minerals like iron and zinc. The fat is saturated, so good to enjoy in moderation.

Produce: Fresh Greens and Some Fruit

Pro Tip: Don’t overload your smoothies with more than 2 servings of fruit. And use them whole, not in puree or juice form to maximize fiber. And trust us, you can add a full cup of greens and they will completely “blend-in” the smoothie and you’ll never notice the flavor!

Kale: Good source of vitamins A, C and K as well as minerals iron, calcium and manganese. Strong antioxidant with carotenoids like lutein and flavonoids. Has anti-inflammatory properties from omega-3 fatty acids and will help lower cholesterol and detoxify the body. Kale is very alkaline forming in your body helping to regulate PH.

Spinach: Good source of vitamins A, B, C, E, and K as well as minerals manganese, zinc, and selenium. Strong anti-inflammatory benefits and a good source of flavonoids and the carotenoids beta-carotene, lutein, and zaexanthin. Cooking spinach improves bioavailability of nutrients, but juicing is said to be the best. Spinach is low on the glycemic index helping to regulate blood sugar.

Pumpkin: Good source of vitamins A, B, C, E, K, minerals potassium, calcium, iron and fiber. Has anti-inflammatory properties and is a good source of beta-carotene and zaexanthin. Also an excellent oil replacer in your baked goods. Pumpkins are also alkaline forming in the body, helping to regulate PH.

Strawberries: Good source vitamin C, manganese and fiber. Potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits with over 20 phytochemicals including flavonols, anthocyanin, resveratrol and lignin (in the seeds). Currently being researched to understand their ability to help regulate blood sugar and decrease risk of diabetes. Strawberries are also low on the glycemic index and very alkaline forming in your body helping to regulate PH and blood sugar.

Blueberries: Good source of vitamin A, B, C and E, minerals copper, selenium, zinc, iron and fiber. They are known to have the most potent antioxidant capacity of all fresh fruit due to vitamin, mineral and phytochemical profile. Strong anti-cancer benefits from the polyphenol, phenolic acid and the flavonoid anthocyanin. Blueberries are also low on the glycemic index and alkaline forming in your body helping to regulate PH and blood sugar.

Orange Citrus: Good source of folate, vitamin C, the mineral potassium and fiber. Full of phytochemicals but specifically a variety of flavonoids and carotenoids. Orange citrus is low on the glycemic index and very alkaline forming in your body helping to regulate PH and blood sugar.

Pineapple: Good source of vitamins A, C and beta-carotene, as well as minerals calcium, copper, manganese and fiber. Pineapples contain bromeline, an enzyme that helps digest protein, aiding in digestion and supporting a healthy digestive track. They are also low on the glycemic index and alkaline forming in your body helping to regulate PH and blood sugar.

Banana: Good source of vitamins A, B and C, minerals potassium, iron, phosphorous, manganese and fiber. Bananas are versatile snacks and add richness to smoothies similar to full-dairy ice cream. They are also alkaline forming in the body, helping to regulate PH and are known to soothe ulcers.

Smart Smoothie Recipes in Summary

While the pitfalls can be alarming, you can see the rules are quite simple. And if you’re not in the mood to figure it out yourself, we’re more than happy to do it for you! Click below to see our smoothie recipes for inspiration or save yourself all the trouble and let us assemble the bags for you. The order minimum is just 5 and you can can pick them up for free in our kitchen in Mission Hills. Because they live in the freezer, they can last months so stock up or you can pick up new ones each week!

2018 Black Friday & Cyber Monday: Save Up to 30% OFF Prepared Meals and Detox Kits!

Black Friday Savings: save up to 30% off Gift Cards! Use them yourself or gift to someone who needs more veggies (and less cooking) in their life!

Do not miss our largest discounts of the year! Invest in healthy food now and save up to 30% on your weekly subscription orders or even our signature detox kits! We are on a mission to make it easier for you to eat healthy this holiday season and/or help you stock up on holiday gifts.

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Invest in Yourself

The holidays can be tough. There are more treats and parties and less time to chill out and exercise. Staying healthy this time of hear is just harder. Our Black Friday sale is designed to make it easier for you to invest in your self, protect your immunity and stay slim all at the same time.

Start Your Holiday Shopping

Give the gift of better health and more time! We know that our meals are are designed to support the human body by improving longevity and quality of life. But more simply stated, we save our clients time TODAY!
If you have friends or family members struggling to balance their healthy lifestyle with everyday demands, buy them a CCK gift card this holiday season!

Signature CCK Holiday Sides are Back!

Let us save you hours this holiday season and prep some of your sides so you can spend more time with your family and friends and less time in the grocery store and your kitchen!

Share the gift of CCK with your friends and family this holiday season (and save yourself some time in the kitchen)! The week of Thanksgiving and Christmas we’ll make a special batch of our signature CCK Holiday Stuffing, Green Bean Casserole and our Sweet Potato Medley.

All of our holiday side dishes come in a 28oz family portion and are all vegan, naturally gluten free and of course free from any processed or funky ingredients. Each dish is fully cooked and can easily be popped in the microwave to heat up or transferred into a glass tray and headed in the oven and be ready go for your holiday festivities.

Ingredient and Recipe Details: 

Quinoa Stuffing: Quinoa, mushrooms, walnuts, carrots, apples, celery, onion, garlic, olive oil, garlic salt, fresh thyme. 10 servings: 157 calories, 4g protein, 9g fat, 3g fiber, 5g sugar.

Sweet Potato Medley: Sweet potatoes, apples, red onion, garlic, maple syrup, olive oil, dried cranberries, garlic salt, fresh rosemary.  10 servings: 157 calories, 1g protein, 5g fat, 4g fiber, 14g sugar

Green Bean Casserole: Green beans, mushrooms, onions, almond milk, GF bread crumbs, salt, vegan butter, garlic, vegetable broth, salt and pepper.  10 Servings: 171 calories, 8g protein, 2g fat, 6g fiber, 8g sugar.

Thanksgiving Order Details: 

Last Call for Thanksgiving is THIS WEEK!  Order this Friday and we’ll have your sides will be ready for pick up Wednesday 11/21 at our kitchen in Mission Hills.

Christmas Order Details: 

You can order them for Christmas too! Christmas sides can be ordered anytime between now and December 21st and will be ready for pick up or delivery with Sunday the 23rd orders.

Bonus Tip: Use your CCK Trays to store Thanksgiving leftovers or pack them up and send them home with family and friends!

(Scroll to the bottom of the menu and look under the section “sides.”)

More People Eating More Plants:
That is #theveggiemovement! 

It’s Client Appreciation Week in our Kitchen! 

Eating healthy isn’t inherently easy. It takes time, a commitment, an investment and in some cases, it does not even always taste that good. Especially when you compare it to the vast amount of cheap, grab-and-go convenience “foods” we are up against every minute of every day.

Building a company on the front lines of the healthy food movement isn’t all that easy either. Our Veggie Ninjas have been cranking away in our kitchen for 85 weeks, shopping, washing, chopping, cooking, plating, packing and delivering our Sexy Veggies all over San Diego.

As we begin planning for our 100th week celebration in January, we realized it was time for a little CCK Client love!

As hard as we work for you, we simply couldn’t do it without you! We know you have a lot of choices when it comes to what you eat Monday – Friday for breakfast, lunch and dinner. We know you put a lot of trust in us and we want to take this week to say thank you!!

Words alone can’t express our gratitude for our loyal, past and future clients. This week, we’d like to say thank you by offering you a free menu upgrade ($5 value). Enjoy a muffin, snack, salad, soup, smoothie … or just take a $5 savings on the CCK House!
To redeem your savings just enter discount code CCKLOVE at checkout and $5 will be deducted from your weekly order.

**And as a bonus, you CAN use this discount with any other existing discounts! This means new clients can redeem the standard 15% welcome discount (CCK15NEW) AND get a free menu upgrade ($5 value).

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Dieting Made Easy with San Diego Healthy Meal Delivery

Did you cringe just a little when you read the word “dieting?” That’s ok, that’s a natural reaction because dieting is traditionally a terrible process to go through and nothing we suggest you subject yourself to. This article will show you how you can easily lose weight, improve health and enjoy delicious food with San Diego healthy meal delivery from the Clean & Colorful Kitchen.

It’s no secrete that most of us can stand to lose a few pounds and setting out on a journey to do so is likely a good idea. Carrying excess weight around is a risk factor for many degenerative diseases like diabetes, heart disease, stroke and certain types of cancer. Not to mention, extra weight physically weighs us down causing joint pain, making average daily living more difficult.  But with a 96% failure rate, we’re left to wonder if we’re better off doing nothing at all?

The secret is that setting out to lose weight isn’t a bad idea, it’s the traditional dieting approach that is continuing to leave us frustrated, confused and with a lack of will to try anything “healthy” ever again.

Where most dieters go wrong

While a “diet” is simply a word to describe the type of food you eat, “dieting” implies restriction of calories or certain food in an effort to lose weight. And if we know one thing to be true about dieting in the traditional sense, it simply does not work. Exactly why most diets fail is different from person to person and from story to story, most stem from one of these three root causes of failure.

1. Dieting and weight loss are not a one-sized fit’s all approach

While we are all human with the same basic anatomy, we are all extremely different beings with varying nutritional needs and lifestyle habits. Just because your office mate is happily shedding pounds by chowing down bacon on her new “keto” diet, does not mean you should dive down that diet hole. Just because your best friend lost all her weight on a juice cleanse, does not mean you should ditch food all-together. Not only because your body may respond differently, but because your lifestyle may not support those patterns. It’s important to consider the foods that fuel you the best and what is realistic for your lifestyle.

2. Dieters tend to focus on the wrong things

Dieting in the traditional sense generally involves restricting calories or certain food groups. The more restrictive you can be, the more weight loss you will see. This is a dangerous and unsustainable pattern. It’s terribly unsatisfying to focus on what you can’t eat and using weight loss as a measurement of success is a risky habit. Weight loss isn’t as predictable as one might hope and results can be inconsistent and frustrating. When you’re measuring your success by pounds lost, it can be easy to get frustrated, lose motivation and completely give up. In short focusing on restriction and the scale is a losing strategy.

3. Dieting is not a long term solution.

Diets do work, for as long as you can follow them. The problem is, most don’t involve an abundance of your favorite foods that you can easily eat on a daily basis. Before you commit to any change in your daily diet, it’s important to consider: What do you enjoy eating, what can you not live without (forever), what food makes you feel the best? If the diet you are looking at includes restrictions of the foods you truly enjoy, it likely will not work in the long term. Worse, it can lead to a pattern of unsatisfying and unhealthy yo-yo dieting which can wreck havoc on your metabolism.

Dieting Made Easy with San Diego Healthy Meal Delivery

It’s not all doom and gloom in the world of weight loss! We’re here to help you discover a plan that works for you, full of delicious flavor that will satisfy you for the long term.

Our Dieting Made Easy Philosophy

We are sustainable healthy eating made … easy! We know not everybody is the same, which is why we offer such variety on our menu and rotate it weekly. We don’t believe in elimination of life’s pleasures, we believe in upgrading them! Our focus isn’t on what you can’t have, but on how you CAN add color to your favorite meals to add flavor and nutrition.We cook from scratch and with love. And we do it all, so you don’t have to. One 5-minute order can save you 5 hours per week in the kitchen.

Our Healthy Meal Delivery Service and Product

We cook balanced, healthy, veggie-centric, perfectly portioned and delicious food. We cook free of refined grains and added sugars and stuff nearly a pound of vegetables into each meal we cook. We offer entree’s perfect for lunch and/or dinner, breakfasts, soups, salads, smoothies, snacks and sweets. It’s easy to build full days of food or simply fill your pain-points with a simple solution. We also offer detox kits at a low and reasonable price.

Isn’t a relief to know that dieting can be easy with our San Diego healthy meal delivery? Start your order now, and have you focused on the right things next week so the weight can just start falling off.

CCK Client Testimonial Promotion: How to Win $100 Free Food!

Calling all past and present CCK clients: We’re running a client testimonial promotion for the month of July!  We want to trade your story with our kitchen for a chance to win one of two, $100 CCK Gift Cards! Or at the very least, earn a $5 account credit off your next order from our kitchen!

Why Are We Doing This?

We are a 100% passion based business. At the core of what we do is a mission to truly improve human health by providing access to higher quality food. Working in the San Diego meal prep industry and being on the front lines the healthy food movement is no easy task. It is not for the faint of heart or anybody with a poor work ethic.

We call ourselves Veggie Ninja’s, not just because we sneak nearly a pound of veggies into every delicious meal we cook, but because we SLAY veggies! Every. Single. Weekend! Our dedicated team picks up hundreds of pounds of local produce and we spend up to 50 cumulative hours washing, peeling, chopping, roasting, boiling, sautéing, plating, packing and delivering meals, snacks, soups, smoothies and salads to our loyal and awesome clients.

Launching and operating a local meal prep company is anything but a get rich quick scheme, but it can be one of the most personally rewarding jobs when we know we’re doing it right. We can assume from our steady growth and longer than expected client retention that we’re achieving our mission of making sustainable healthy eating … easy! But we don’t really know for sure unless we hear directly from you!

We want to collect stories from past and current CCK clients to learn from our success and also share your stories with our team and future clients. The Veggie Movement is not a one (wo)man job. It will take a community to thrive together and share the message that “hot dang — veggies can be sexy and healthy eating can be easy (and delicious)!”

How to WIN a $100 Clean & Colorful Kitchen Gift Card:

It’s simple, just submit your testimonial! But to make it a little more fun and interesting, how and where you submit your story impacts how many entries you earn. Earning more entries (and being creative), increases your chances of winning!

  • Written testimonial = 1 entry
  • Written testimonial + photo of you and CCK product = 2 entries
  • Video testimonial = 5 entries
  • Video testimonial with CCK product = 6 entries
  • Submit your story via FB, IG or IG story and tag @cleanandcolorfulkitchen = 5 entries each
  • Share your written testimonial to YELP = 5 entries
  • Share your written testimonial to Facebook = 5 entries
  • Share your written testimonial to Google = 5 entries

Yes, yes you can do them all and earn a max of 38 entries! We’re a pretty small company, your chances of winning $100 in free food are pretty good if you put just a tiny bit of effort into it. And everybody who earns at least one entry automatically earns a $5 account credit for their next order! PLUS, you’ll be fueling Team CCK with the motivation to keep on slaying veggies for you … Every. Single. Weekend!

Sample Simple Testimonial Submission

You can submit your testimonial literally, in ANY format you want, using any words that resonate with you and help us understand your experience with our kitchen and our sexy veggies. However, if you’re looking for a little guidance to get your creative juices flowing, try this simple format on for size…

I started ordering from the Clean & Colorful Kitchen (insert date ordered) because (insert why you decided to order from us). I still order from CCK because (insert why you still order or plan to order in the future).

–First Name, Last Initial

Simple right? Here’s sample (real life) testimonial:

I started ordering from the Clean & Colorful Kitchen in March 2018 because I wanted to incorporate more healthy meal choices and veggies into my lifestyle. I still order from CCK because Teresa makes it so easy and convenient- plus she’s awesome to boot!

–Cory S

How to Submit Your Testimonial

Easy peasy, send a simple email to teresa@cleanandcolorfulkitchen.com with your text testimonial, and/or any attached media like photos or video. We’ll respond to confirm your number of entries.

If you share your testimonial on Social Media and tag @cleanandcolorfulkitchen and use hashtag #theveggiemovement, you’re done! We’ll snag it there and automatically assign the correct number of entries for you to win. We will confirm with a text message from our main customer service line: 858-264-2872.

How the Winners Will be Selected:

The first week of August we will:

  1. Select one winner via a random number generator to win $100 CCK Gift Card.
  2. Select one winner based on the most entertaining, touching or hysterical to win $100 Gift Card.

Yes. yes you could potentially win both! Why not? I mean, if you put the effort in, we want to reward you. Winners will be announced the first week of August and all stories may be shared on our website or social media.

There is no way you can understand how much your words and experience with our company means to us. We thank you in advance for taking the time to share your story with us and are so very eager to receive them!

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Detox Your Retox: Summer Detox Special

Summer is a time to enjoy yourself! The sun shines, the fireworks sparkle and smiles are abundant. As are the snacks, treats, drinks, vacations and disrupted routines! And trust us, it’s fiiiiine!

Being healthy does not need to be boring. Teresa, CCK founder, has devoted her life to discovering how to maximize fun, all the while staying in shape. After decades (and more decades) of research, the Clean & Colorful Kitchen and her detox kits provide a realistic solution.

This Summer Detox Special is no exception. In addition to our traditional liquid and hybrid detox kits, we have a new, lighter version perfect for Summer and an added incentive to keep you on track well beyond your Summer detox.

CCK Summer Detox Kit

Each day you’ll get three protein rich, frothy, fruity and satisfying smoothies and two savory, fiber rich soups! A full day has about 1200 caloires, 80 g plant powered protein, 30g fat, 45g fiber and is free from any processed or refined grains or added sugars. You can order as many days as you want, from one to seven per week for just $25 per day!

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Added CCK Summer Detox Bonus:

Detox-Your-Retox Healthy Meal Prep San Diego

For each day you purchase, you’ll automatically receive a $5 account credit to use towards a standard meal subscription the following week!

Why? Because we don’t want you to just detox your retox and get back to old habits. We want to encourage you to eat veggie-centric all the time. Our weekly subscription programs are the best ways to stack the deck in your favor with fresh, locally prepared, health boosting meals in your fridge — just ready to heat, eat and enjoy!

What are you waiting for? Get your Summer Detox kit ordered now! All orders received by Friday at 1pm are ready Sunday night and you’ll be feeling great in a matter of hours!

Vegetarian Meal Prep: Your Guide to Simple Roasted Veggies!

At the core of the Clean & Colorful Kitchen is a passion deeply rooted in improving human health by providing access to higher quality food. So whether you order your meals from us or prepare for yourself, this post will help make vegetarian meal prep easier for you!

Perks of Eating by Color

Shifting your eating philosophy from restricting carbs or calories to adding more color to your diet can be a simple and life changing strategy. Gone are the days of thinking about what you CAN’T eat and welcome the days of wondering through the produce aisle thinking “how can I cook this beautiful veggie?”

Not only is a freeing mentality, it can break you out of a dietary rut and encourage you to try new foods. And potentially the best perk of eating by color is that these plants aren’t just pretty — colorful fruits and veggies are loaded with fiber, vitamins, minerals and potent phytochemicals that help you build and preserve a strong, healthy body.

Barriers to Vegetarian Meal Prep

Meal prepping is the best way to set yourself up for success. When you eliminate the guesswork and have a plan in place, it’s much more difficult to stray the course. But meal prepping tons of veggies is more difficult than the standard 6oz portion of animal protein, 3oz cooked starch and then a side of a single veggie. Good vegetarian Meal Prep involves:

  • Access to a wide variety of vegetables
  • Knowledge of how to cook them properly
  • Experience flavoring, seasoning and cooking to make sure they are delicous
  • Time to shop, wash, peel, chop and cook … and clean.

Simply stated, vegetarian meal prep can be more difficult than traditional, but that does not have to be the reason why you don’t do it!

The rest of this post gives you the quick 411 on some good veggies to look for, simple roasting instructions and creative ways to add them to your diet to add variety, nutrition, flavor and of course COLOR!

The Best Veggies to Roast

When roasting veggies, you want to think not only of the color, but the density. Root vegetables tend to be harder, hence they will take longer to cook. The smaller you cut them up, the quicker they will cook. Naturally softer veggies don’t take quite as long, but that does not mean you can’t include them in the same process.

Harder, slower cooking veggies:

  • Red: Red potatoes
  • Orange: Sweet potatoes, Golden beets, Butternut Squash, Carrots
  • Yellow: Parsnips, Cauliflower, Garlic
  • Green: Brussles Sprouts, Broccoli
  • Indigo: Turnip, Beets

Softer, quicker cooking veggies:

  • Red: Red peppers, Tomatoes
  • Orange: Orange Peppers
  • Yellow:  Yellow Peppers, Summer Squash, Onions, Mushrooms
  • Green: Zucchini
  • Indigo: Eggplant, Red Onion
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The farmers’ market can be a great place to find veggie inspiration!

How to Roast Veggies for Vegetarian Meal Prep

The trickiest part of roasting veggies is finding the time. The rest is really quite simple…

  1. Pick your veggies from the list above or whatever you can find at the market. Shoot for 3-4 different varieties (colors).
  2. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  3. Chop up your selected veggies into 1/2-1″ pieces. Remember, the smaller they are, the faster they will cook.
  4. Toss them in olive or avocado oil (about 1 tsp to 1 cup veggies), salt and pepper and any other herbs or spices you like. (pro-tip: Garlic salt is always a winner!)
  5. Pop the harder veggies in the oven and roast for about 10 minutes. Add any softer veggies and cook for an additional 10-15. It will depend mostly on the size of your veggies and your and how crunchy you like them.
  6. Now, voila. You are a colorful, vegetarian meal prep expert!

Best Ways to Use Your Roasted Veggies

You don’t just have to have them solo! You can wrap them up, mix them up, dress then up, or have them for breakfast. You’ll be amazed at how versatile veggies can be! Here are a few of our favorite ways to incorporate simple roasted veggies to mix up your vegetarian meal prep plan.

1. Make them the MAIN dish!

Veggies like cauliflower and mushrooms pack as much or more protein per calorie than chicken! Use the list in this Vegan Meal Prep post for a list of the plants with the most protein.

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These Cauliflower Steaks are one of our most popular dishes and pack 18g of plant based protein per serving!

2. Swap out processed pasta with roasted squash!

You can cut carbs like a ninja and eliminate refined grains and add phytochemical power all at the same time. Top with a primavera sauce or in our kitchen, we make a mean organic ground turkey version (yup, we do more than vegetarian meal prep in our kitchen — we do use high quality animal protein responsibly.)

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Swapping 1 cup of roasted spaghetti squash for 1 cup of traditional spaghetti can save you 76% of the calories and 73% of the carbs!

3. Make the Salad of the Century.

Salads don’t need to be raw! You can top a bed of greens with a collection of roasted veggies for more flavor and a different texture! This is a great way to create a tasty and satisfying meal.

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Our Spicy Sunset Bowl has Roasted Squash, Red Onions and Zucchini with a spicy chipotle ranch dressing.

4. Make a Bad A** Vegan Bowl!

Just toss your 3-4 roasted veggies with a high quality grain like quinoa or farrow and top with a delicious sauce and you’ve got yourself a winner of a meal!

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Our seasonal harvest bowl is always a combo of 4 seasonal veggies, quinoa and topped with our harvest tahini sauce. So good!

5. Have them for breakfast!

Roasted veggies don’t need to be saved for the afternoon or evening, toss them with eggs in the morning and make an amazing scramble in minutes. Or make them in bulk in advance in muffin cups. Bake a dozen at once and have healthy breakfast on hand all week long!

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Any veggie in the muffin tray with eggs and top with a little cheese (optional) is a great way to start your day with color!

Pssst: I just pulled all these images from our Instagram account, yes, we are vegetarian meal prep experts!!

We hope you found this post valuable and inspirational! Remember, we’re always here to help you with your vegetarian meal prep needs (and more!) when you’ve run out of time, or just don’t feel like cooking. Our vegetarian entrees start as low as $8!

The 41 Best Protein Sources for Vegan Meal Prep

As a Vegan or Vegetarian, it’s likely you’re tired of answering the question “But, where do you get your protein from?!” As one of San Diego’s Best Vegetarian and Vegan Meal Prep companies, we’re happy to answer that one for you!

Feel free to bookmark this one and pass it on the next time you’re not in the mood to answer that question. You an also use this post to help with your own vegetarian and vegan meal prep needs when considering protein content. We’ll start by addressing some basic nutrition principles to lay the foundation. By the end, everybody will understand how some plants are not only equivalent to, but can actually be superior sources of protein.

What is Protein

We’re going to keep this really simple. Protein is an essential macronutrient that must be consumed through food.  When they say “you are what you eat,” that’s actually a very literal statement. Your body breaks down the protein you consume through digestion into individual amino acids. Then, through a series of a billion-ish different metabolic transactions, it builds new tissue to support and sustain all aspects of your body’s basic and mechanical functions.

Does Eating Protein Help You Build Muscle?

There are many who believe that you must consume massive amounts of protein to build muscle. This is not entirely true. Some also believe that if you eat protein, you’ll inherently grow larger muscles. That is not at all true. In fact, protein utilization is not even about how much protein you consume, it’s about how much your body will absorb. Absorption is contingent on your activity level and lifestyle.

If you’re consuming more protein than your body is asking for, it will be broken down and discarded. This is a terribly wasteful thing to have happen. Protein is the universe’s most expensive macronutrient (in terms of cost and also sustainability).

How Much Protein Does Your Body Need?

This is a very HOT topic! Current guidelines indicate you should consume .8g/kg of body weight. You can push that closer to one gram or 1.25 grams if your an athlete and extremely active. If you’re trying to lose weight, slightly increasing your protein consumption can also help preserve lean mass, which is often eroded through dieting.

This means the average woman weighing 166 pounds should shoot for 60 to 90 grams of protein per day.  The average man, weighing 191 pounds should shoot for 70 to 110 grams per day. It works out to about 15-20% of total calories consumed.

Comparing Protein Sources

Comparing protein sources can be like comparing apples and oranges. You can’t necessarily look at the total grams of protein on a nutrition label and deem one source a better source than another simply because it has more grams of protein. You need to also consider which other macronutrients come with that protein and the total calorie package it delivers.

Animal products will certainly carry a higher concentration of protein, but they can also contain more fat and no fiber compared to plants. This can make them inferior sources from a total nutrition perspective.  This is also true when comparing plant sources of protein. For example, one might think peanuts are a better source of protein than kale. When you’re finished with this post, you’ll understand why they aren’t.

How Do You Know Which Protein Sources Are “The Best”

As a vegetarian and vegan meal prep company striving to hit certain nutrient profiles, we needed to level the playing field to know which sources of protein would be best for our meals.

To do this …

  1. We started with a list of nearly 100 foods, mostly plants and 5 of the most common sources of lean animal protein: tuna, beef, chicken, turkey and 2% cows milk.
  2. We established a serving size then recorded total calories, fat, protein, fiber and sugar.
  3. Then with a simple calculation, we figured out how many total grams of protein were delivered per 100 calories.
  4. Then we ranked them highest to lowest and kept only the 41 densest plant based sources.

Clever right? We’re still patting ourselves on the back for this one.

The 41 Best Sources of Protein for Vegan Meal Prep

With our focus being vegetarian and vegan meal prep, we strive to include about 15-22 grams of protein in each of our regular sized entrees. We also like to make sure that our meals are consistent in portion deliver about 400 calories and 8-12 grams of fiber with less than 20 grams of fat and sugar. Our smoothies contain at least 20g plant based protein with about 300 calories. These 41 plants were selected because they are the ones that deliver 3.7 grams or more of protein per 100 calories. That would be enough to allow us to hit our vegan meal prep minimum protein requirement.

Chart: Best Sources of Protein for Vegan Meal Prep

plant-protein-vegan-meal-prep-3 Healthy Meal Prep San Diego

 

5 Fun Facts about Sources of Plant Protein

  1. Chlorella (Algae) is actually a better source of protein than 80% of the animal sources we used as benchmarks!
  2. Kale does have more protein than peanuts (and also cows milk!)
  3. Mushrooms have more protein than turkey and beef.
  4. There are 8 plants that are better sources of protein than beef (top sirloin, trimmed to 1/8″ fat).
  5. Asparagus is the most protein dense vegetable, delivering nearly 11g protein per 100 calories (more than beef — lol).

Getting Started with Vegan Meal Prep

Now that you know the best sources of protein for vegan meal prep, it’s time to get started! You can create your own recipes with this list and get cooking and plating your own veggie heavy culinary creations! Or, you can check out our  Complete Menu and let us do all the planning, shopping, prepping, cooking, plating and cleaning for you! Remember, while we are a predominantly vegetarian and vegan meal prep company, we do also use high quality animal protein responsibly.

Note: All nutrition data was pulled from the Fat Secretes USDA Nutrition Database.