At one point or another, most clients will request some meal and snack ideas.  I’m not one to give meal plans to follow, but I do love brainstorming together for what you may find satisfying.  This request is understandable; for someone who’s been stuck in disordered eating or used food rules to make food decisions, you could have no idea what normal, flexible eating really is.  I see this request as asking for permission – you may be having a hard time truly accepting all foods and may want validation that it’s truly OK to include a wide variety of foods any time of the day.

I like to help you find that sweet spot between honoring your body’s need for nourishment with it’s need for satisfaction.  That’s where variety, flexibility and self-moderating live.  No good or bad foods, no right or wrong way to eat – just what YOU have found to best meet your needs.

Too often individuals run scared of feeling satisfied because they equate it with overeating.  In reality, lack of satisfaction often leads to overeating.  Feeling full and satisfied from your meals and snacks is your solution, not feeling satisfied is what leads to problematic behaviors.

So today I’m offering some meal inspiration.  These have been some of my favorite recent meals.  You don’t have to like what I like, but I hope these examples get you thinking about what you might like.

There are sandwiches and then there are BAGEL SANDWICHES.  This is an everything bagel topped with sliced apples, melty swiss, guacamole, lettuce and tomato.  If you haven’t tried apples on sandwiches, you really need to!

This is my quick and easy french toast.  Two slices of bread (this is the one I used here) soaked in a mixture of egg (I usually use 1 egg and 1 egg white) and cinnamon and then cooked on a hot griddle.  I topped it with PB and frozen (defrosted) blueberries with a glass of coconut almond milk on the side.

This is one of the fastest and easiest dinners I make.  Fish cooks quickly, making it perfect for a busy weeknight.  I have to think ahead to bake the potatoes, but other than that I can get this ready in about 20 minutes.  You can find the method I use for the salmon HERE.  Sometimes I add a vegetable but most of the time it’s just salmon and potatoes, topped with butter and S & P.  Perfection.

Speaking of easy weeknight dinners, you just can’t beat frozen lasagna.  I pair it with a side salad, this one has romaine, shredded carrots, craisins and walnuts.  Randomly, the dressing we used was leftover from Durango’s take out and I need to find a copy cat recipe (it’s like a spicy ranch – who says Italian food can’t be combined with Mexican food flavors, haha).

Next up could be a lunch or dinner idea I suppose, and uses one of my favorite quick fixes.  I love these salad kits from Earthbound Farms.  This was the BBQ Ranch flavor with defrosted shrimp from the freezer and Mary’s Gone Crackers.

I LOVE these Amy’s Bean and Cheese Burritos.  However, that on it’s own would not be enough to fill me up.  I added scrambled eggs, chopped lettuce and tomatoes here, and some salsa after I took the picture.

Cranberry sauce isn’t just for Thanksgiving, it’s also for breakfast spread on PB toast.  You can find my recipe HERE.  I paired that with butter sautéed spinach mixed with scrambled eggs, salt and pepper.  And a side of almond milk!

Speaking of scrambled eggs, here’s some that I added shredded parmesan cheese to and paired with grapes and Whole Grain Maple and Brown Sugar Muffins.  I have probably made at least 10 batches of these muffins – we LOVE them.

Here are those same muffins for dinner with rotisserie chicken and roasted carrots and parsnips (just chopped and roasted them in the oven with olive oil, salt and pepper for about 20-30 minutes).  The best part of this meal by far is the fry sauce you see there – 2 parts mayo to 1 part ketchup with a tbsp or so of pickle juice and salt and pepper to taste.  For. Real.

This may be a no brainer but it should definitely be mentioned.  PB, banana and honey sandwich with a glass of milk.

I’m starting to realize how many eggs I eat… This one’s a winner.  I’ve done this for breakfast or lunch or dinner if I’m on my own (my kids would never).  Butter sauteed spinach mixed with scrambled eggs on top of a sweet potato smothered in marinara sauce.  So delicious and keeps me well fueled.

I think eggs and swiss cheese were MFEO.  Here’s an english muffin toasted with melty swiss cheese and topped with cooked kale and scrambled eggs.

OK, one more egg dish.  I love this one for lunch – leftover brown rice and black beans with scrambled eggs, lettuce, tomato, avocado and salsa.

This plate screams summer.  I like to do build your own salad bars for dinner, my kids love it.  If I made a salad and set it in front of them they would probably lose their minds but when they take ownership, they really enjoy them.  Here was my plate: mixed greens with tomatoes, cucumbers, feta cheese and lentils (topped with some random store bought greek dressing) with mixed berries and Food Should Taste Good chips.

This was a packed dinner at work – leftover beef taco meat (cook the ground beef then add a can of tomato sauce with a package of taco seasoning) with rice, avocado, tomato, lettuce, salsa, salt and pepper.

This was an open-face salmon salad: canned salmon, mayo, mustard, craisins, carrots, lettuce, celery and pickles served open face (because I was feeling it, other times I feel like 2 slices of bread).  FYI, I think any salad tastes better with a little dried fruit.

I lurrrrve yogurt bowls.  This was vanilla whole milk yogurt topped with a chopped plum, PB, a crumbled fig bar and a crumbled Super Charge Me Cookie.  Just one example – basically just top yogurt with a bunch of different flavors and textures.  I’ve used cereal, all kinds of fruit, granola, trail mix, nuts, chocolate chips, etc.

If tofu is your thing, here’s an idea.  Chopped bell pepper, celery, crumbled extra firm tofu (THIS brand is the only one I can stand – could also cook it!), chow mein noodles all tossed in my Cheezy Walnut Sauce (which is what makes it so good).  That gets wrapped in a tortilla (I would highly recommend these tortillas that you cook yourself, they are the best!).

When I find a dinner that all 5 us look forward to it’s like GOLD.  This is one – PF Chang’s Chicken Lettuce Wraps (I usually use ground turkey and add rice).  Build your own style dinners are one of my biggest secrets to feeding my family.

Here’s another easy dinner, I call it Lazy Jambalaya.  I put chopped celery and bell pepper in a small crockpot with a can of diced tomatoes and Creole seasoning (maybe 1/2 tbsp or so).  I cook rice and chicken separately and then combine them all together.  Not at all traditional, but definitely tasty.

And, there’s ALWAYS hamburger and fries.

Happy Eating <3

Emily Fonnesbeck RD, CD