Friday, April 11, 2014

Our Daily Vittles to help Battle the Bulge Week 1 Menu Planning

Hi there. I am so thrilled to be doing this weekly feature on my blog. I'm excited because it means I am doing what I need to do (food-wise) to shed those LBs, while teaching my kids abut healthy food choices. After I wrote all those words below, and I promise not to do that every week), I stumbled across this new documentary that might have you thinking more and more "am I eating what I really think I am eating or is it loaded with all sorts of sugars and preservatives.

This comes from the movie trailer article in the Huffington Post this week:

Here are some of the sobering facts about the state of health in America revealed in "Fed Up," a new documentary from producers Katie Couric and Laurie David about the country's food industry: (1) "Over 95 percent of all Americans will be overweight or obese in two decades"; (2) "By 2050, one out of every three Americans will have diabetes"; (3) 80 percent of food items sold in America have added sugar.

What are we going to do about that????? Here's a link to the documentary movie trailer to get you thinking even more.

Okay, back to what I wrote earlier.

I'm planning and sharing my family's menu plans with you to help take the guess-work out of what's for dinner tonight. And maybe, just maybe I'll have you eating a bit healthier too, without necessarily sacrificing taste.

I think that's the biggest concern I had was healthy meant it wouldn't taste good. Well, I sure have learned my lesson.  I have spent hours upon hours scouring every skinny food blog, Pinterest, recipe book, inspecting the ingredients lists for non processed, clean, organic foods to find these so I hope you enjoy them. I will continue to do this for my family and share here as long as there is interest.

Oh and before I go any further, I am doing a Cleanse Program during this first 30 days. So you'll see 2 days that aren't planned for, which are good days for leftovers. Between the healthy eating and doing the weekly cleanse I have lost 7.5 pounds in 10 days and not only that, but I feel awesome and I have more energy. If you want details on what cleanse I am doing, just shoot me an email (heather at heatherleopard dot com).

Anyway, here's our weekly dinner menu. We actually didn't start the healthy eating until Tuesday because I wanted to start this off on April 1. Next week will go Sunday through Saturday. I will also include my photos starting next week (this week will include the original source recipe photos).

Daily Vittles: April 1 - 5

Recipes below…

Chicken & Avocado Tacos - my “recipe”, no photos but it was delish!
Calories: 452
  • Leftover Rotisserie Chicken from the grocery store
  • Corn torillas instead of flour. Look at the nurtition label and check the carbs. Some have higher carbs than others. Also, look for GMO free ones (genetically modified) and get the purest ones you can.
  • Avocado - 1/2 of a ripe avocado was more than enough for 2 tacos
  • Spring mix salad for the topping
  • Picante Sauce - I chose to go without but it was a bit dry. I may add this next time, or maybe just some lime. Yeah, I’ll save the salsa calories and add lime.
  • Cheese - my family ate the cheese; I did not and I didn't miss it.
Spinach and Feta Stuffed Chicken Breasts with side of Basmati Rice
Modified recipe; original recipe can be found on skinnytaste 
Servings: 8 • Size: 1 roll 
Calories: 207 • Weight Watcher Points+: 4 pt 

  • cooking spray or oil mister
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions
  • 4 - 5 cups fresh spinach (subbed for 10 oz package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and juice squeezed out)
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill
  • 1/2 cup (2.5 oz) crumbled Feta cheese
  • 1/3 cup fat free ricotta
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt and pepper, plus more to taste
  • 8 thin skinless chicken breast cutlets (1.5 lbs total)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1/2 cup ground almonds (subbed for whole wheat seasoned breadcrumbs)
Modifications include:
  • Ground almonds instead of the breadcrumbs. I simply used ground almonds that I grounded up myself in the food processor.
  • I also chose to leave the ricotta out of my chicken

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a large baking sheet with spray.

Heat the oil a medium sauté pan. Add onions, garlic and scallions and sauté about 1 minute. Add spinach, parsley, dill, 1/4 tsp kosher salt and pepper and cook another minute or until Spinach is wilted. Remove from  heat and mix in the feta and ricotta cheese (I waited to add the ricotta until after I prepared 2 chicken rolls for me; then added it in for the family)

Season chicken lightly with more kosher salt and pepper to taste.

Place about 1/4 cup of spinach mixture in the center of the chicken and roll, then lay the chicken seam side down on a platter or piece of parchment paper. Repeat with the remaining chicken.

Note: this made a lot of leftovers!

Rachel Ray recipe
Servings: 4 • Size: 1 filet 
Calories: not provided; I calculated 312 


  • 3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 tilapia fillets (about 1 pound total)
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a shallow dish, combine the cheese with the paprika and parsley and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle the fish with olive oil and dredge in the cheese mixture. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake until the fish is opaque in the thickest part, 10 to 12 minutes. Serve the fish with the lemon wedges.
Servings: 6 • Serving Size: 2/3 cup
Calories: 119 •
Weight Watcher Points+: 3 pts

  •     1 1/2 pounds peeled and deveined jumbo shrimp
  •     1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  •     Kosher Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  •     2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  •     5 garlic cloves, crushed
  •     2 tablespoons lime juice (from 1 medium lime)
  •     3 to 4 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
Directions: visit Cilantro Lime Shrimp on

Okay, this was a major hit with most of my family. They had no idea that it wasn’t really rice. To me, it’s more like couscous but that doesn’t matter. I thought it had the perfect amount of lime but my husband said it was too much. Next time, I will let people add their own amount of lime and everyone will be happy. My littlest didn’t care for the rice but she’s extremely picky and everyone else had seconds so this is a HIT
Servings: 5 • Size: 1 cup  
Calories: 61 • Weight Watchers Points+: 2 pts

  • 1 medium head (about 24 oz) cauliflower, rinsed
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 scallions, diced
  • kosher salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1-1/2 limes
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro
Directions: visit Cilantro Lime Cauliflower "Rice" on

I hope you enjoy these healthier recipes, which are a mix of Paleo, Gluten Free, Clean recipes. If you are leary of those words, just stick with me and give them a try. I really think you will find that they are oh so tasty and oh so good for your body and mind.

Please let me know if these weekly menus are helpful to you. This is how I’ll judge whether or not to continue sharing them here. Also, if you try these come back and tell me what you think about them.

Check in next Saturday for a new dose of Daily Vittles. Up on the menu is a Picadillo Tacos, Balsamic Pork recipe, Pasta with Chicken sausage, Homemade pizza, Crab cakes…

In the meantime, get FED UP with me and take a stance for your health


Cynthia Baldwin said...

I really appreciate your sharing your meal planning and recipes! My family has whole 'nother level of challenges with eating (their "will not eat" list is long, and each person has different requirements - argh!)...but I see things here I know I'll enjoy, even better that they're good for my body, too!

Melissa D. said...

I'm really looking forward to seeing your menus! Thanks for sharing!