Weekly Recap

This week was fun.  Busy and not busy in perfect amounts.  One thing I’ve noticed about working part time is there’s a big (HUGE) difference between 2 shifts and 3 shifts.  It may not sound like it, but I feel like the time off allows me to get so much more done.  And rather than fill it with errands and chores, I can actually hang out and relax and enjoy myself.  It’s lovely. 

Here are some of the things I ate this week.



Baked oatmeal bars with blueberries [sorry about the crappy pic] and peanut butter.

I failed to take a photo of the huge dish I made, but it was bomb.  Initially I was going to try and make granola bars, but I scraped that plan half way through and just made a really thick oatmeal bar instead.  I didn’t write down the recipe but I will next time.  It had all kinds of yummy stuff in it – chia seeds, blueberries, goji berries, almond flour, oats, and coconut oil.  I ate it before work on Saturday, and then made another serious dent in it on Sunday morning, and then finished the whole thing off on Tuesday morning. 

Monday morning was a savory one though.


Two fried eggs with roasted potatoes and ketchup. 

I’m on a mega pepper kick.  Not usually my thing, but hey, I’m just gonna roll with it.  Don’t worry I’m still a salt fiend through and through.


After Tuesday’s breakfast I was out of fresh baked goodies, so I made a loaf of banana bread for the next few mornings. 


I had a slice before swim lessons on Wednesday morning.

And then another afterwards.  With nut butter.  Always with nut butter.


Another slice with an egg.

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For work breakfasts I have been doing hack versions of the classic PB&J.  [Meaning I ran out of jam and have been using fresh fruit.  And almond butter instead of peanut butter.]  Blueberries on Thursday and banana slices on Friday.  Both on Udi’s GF millet chia bread.

I like sandos only because they are easy to eat one handed while pumping at work.

I pump before my shifts too, but since I’m at home I have a table and can sit and eat like a proper human at the same time.  Multi tasking for the win.


Here’s the 6 am scene.  Banana bread and coffee.  Hands free thanks to the nursing bra!


Admittedly I suck at remembering to photograph mid-day meals.  I’m just too busy doing other stuff.  I make a lot of snack plates though so you aren’t missing much.


See? Snack plate with leftover roasted potatoes, carrots, daiya cheddar, and hard boiled eggs.  I probably had nuts on the side too because it’s rare that I don’t have nuts at a meal. 

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This may sound crazy but this was my first time having tamales. 


Impulse buy from Whole Foods. 


I really liked them!  I didn’t know what to expect, but they were yummy.  The outside corn layer is thick so there wasn’t a ton of inside stuffing – I’m not sure if that’s how tamales normally are.  I thought the ratio was good.  Just enough tofu and veg.  Without the guacamole it has the potential to be a bit dry, but maybe not.  I will for sure buy again.


I had one for lunch with Sabra’s classic guacamole.  Truth: I had WAY MORE guac than as pictured. 


Salad with greens, celery, cucumbers, tomatoes, hard boiled eggs, and Beyond Meat.  No dressing.  Just olive oil and salt.


Snack plate.  The amount of peanut butter in the bowl is deceiving.  There’s at least 1/2 cup.  No shame.


Work lunch: brown rice pasta with parsley, basil, and kale tossed in olive oil, lemon juice, sesame seeds, salt & pepper. [Greens/herbs from my garden, lemon from my neighbor]

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Work lunch: salad with greens, tomato, roasted potatoes, smoked cheddar goat cheese, and quinoa.  The quinoa was an afterthought once I realized the salad probably wouldn’t hold me over.  I also added some organic miso ginger dressing


I have a few recent repeat offenders in the snack department, so here they are.

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I never liked (okay, I hated) banana chips growing up, but for some reason I felt compelled to buy them this week.  It was my healthy compromise since I really wanted chocolate covering everything from the bulk bins.  Ummm, so yeah, they’re really good!!!  I’ve been enjoying them as a dessert too.

Oh and Kombucha has reared it’s expensive head back into my life as well.  On the daily.  Budget fail.


One thing that has saved a little cash flow is making our own trail mix.  As you can see above, it has raisins, cashews, peanuts, dark chocolate chips, and gluten free cereal puffs.  Not terribly innovative but definitely cheaper than the pre-made stuff.  The most important thing is that the nuts are salty so they cover the raisins in salt too.  Mmmmm.  We POUND through trail mix like nobody business so this is huge for the bank account.


Between my breakfasts and snacks, I’m going to make another loaf of banana bread tonight since this one is almost gone.


Always always always.  All day long.  Nuts for nuts.


Work snacks: buckwheat granola (meh), carrots and celery, banana, Hail Merry vanilla maple almonds (love!!!), quinoa granola bar (didn’t try yet).


Work snacks: buckwheat granola, carrots & celery, trail mix.



Baked tofu, Mary’s Gone crackers, raw goat cheddar, grapes, Milton’s crackers, and salty roasted almonds. 

A typical al fresco meal, but indoors (because it was so hot!). 


Seitan & quinoa bowl with sriracha vegan aioli.  There’s chard from our garden under there somewhere.


Vegan and gluten free tamales. 

This was round two of the aforementioned tamales (even though the pics are from the first serving).  I had the rest of the guacamole (yup, the entire tub just for meeee) and two more tamales.  Can I get a pat on the back for stopping (when I was full) after eating 3 tamales, rather than just finishing off the 4th one just because it was there!?!  So unlike me!


Quinoa with salmon and tomato slices.

Those tomatoes were some of the most flavorful ones ever.  Thank you home-grown produce


Imitation WF fumi salad.


Post work assorted mish mash.  [I had the same thing the following night of work too, so no photo]

Holler if you want recipes to any of these and I’ll try to eventually share!

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Comments (55)

  1. Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl

    I never even knew that they made tofu tamales! Those sound awesome!

    And that sriracha vegan aioli sounds amaaazing! Recipe?? 😉

  2. Ozlemn

    I have to check out those tamales. They sound yummy. Can you post your banana bread recipe? Or is this the same one that is posted on your recipage? Thanks in advance!

  3. Katie

    Hi Elise! I’ve been reading your blog for awhile, but don’t usually comment. I wanted to tell you thanks for all the great meal and snack ideas-me and my husband are about to move from a pretty small town to a really big city-we’re going to be in walking distance of a Whole Foods! I was thinking about your blog last night and that I want to look through some old posts to get some ideas of what to try. Thanks so much for having such a healthy mindset and sharing with all of us!!

  4. Melissa C

    Is the banana bread recipe new, or is it on your blog? I would love to make this! How do you cook your salmon? Thank you for sharing your eats! I am looking forward to using some of your eats this week.

  5. Melissa

    I LOVE banana bread, it’s the best! Also, those vegan tamales look very good!

  6. Adrian

    I need a lesson on how to cook eggs! Both your fried & hard boiled always look perfect!

  7. Beth

    Thanks for another wonderful post filled with yummy foods to try. I would love the recipe for banana bread, the baked oatmeal bars with blueberries (when you write it down next time!), the roasted potatoes, and the quinoa granola bars (or is there a brand name if bought)! Everything looks wonderful, Elise. Are your carrots and celery raw? And you do okay with grapes? I wish I could eat bananas…they don’t make your Constipation worse? They do to me! I love them too. 🙁 Take care and if I asked to many questions, sorry. Truly! Tell me to shut up…but nicely! 🙂

  8. Aimee

    Kombucha is my favorite! (weakness). It makes me want to cry when I add up how much I spend a week on it but it’s just so good! Gingerade is my favorite. yummmm.
    Your snack plates are amazing and those tamales look delicious! I’m definitely scoping them out on my next WF visit. The nutrition label is strange though (0g cholesterol is 13% DV?)

  9. Beth

    of course the celery is raw! loL

  10. Kinsey

    Fumi salad, please! It looks like it has tons of yummy crunch.

  11. Suzan

    Ah, Kombucha $$$$. I try to limit myself to two bottles a week, but would love to drink it daily. Have you ever tried making your own? I’m starting to seriously consider it.

    Also, I would love the recipe for the baked oatmeal blueberry bars. I just bought a ton of blueberries at the farmer’s market and now I need to use them up.

  12. The Valley Vegan

    The earth must’ve pivoted on its axis because I have always hated banana chips! Last week, though, I spotted organic banana chips at Fresh & Easy and couldn’t resist. OMG! They were incredible! And as always, you meal photos are helpful in planning my husbands meals!!

  13. Beth

    I would love the recipe for the banana bread. I presume it’s gluten free? Also, the imitation WF fumi salad looks delish so I’d like that recipe too. Finally, what brand of dark chocolate chips do you use in your trail mix?

  14. Courtney

    Do you have Veganomicon? Along with making your own trail mix, you can make your own tamales! There is a tamale recipe in there that is super easy! Time consuming, but easy. But (as you know) tamales freeze really well, so you can make a big batch and freeze them and have them whenever you want!


  15. kr

    In the last photo what on earth is that olive colored ball?

  16. BroccoliHut

    Yum! Great collection of eats! I love adding cereal to my trail mixes–adds a different texture and flavor.

  17. Emily

    I’m working two jobs now and I have to say that the inspiration I’ve gotten from your meal/snack posts has saved my butt. I was never good at prepping food ahead of time until recently and it’s making such a big difference. Thank you!
    Oh, and your not the only nut/trail mix fiend. I go through that stuff like nobodies business. No shame. (:

  18. Ttrockwood

    I thought you grew up in cali! Seriously you never had a tamale??
    Find a taco truck- like the ones parked by the fields, with mexican food actually made by mexicans. Vegetarian options are usually cheese, but also ask for the sweet corn. They will be 1000xs better than anything packaged.
    I love to make my own trail mix! I am also a salt maniac and always have mini pretzels, various dried fruit, dry roasted edamame, puffins and dk choco covered raisins 🙂
    The salad with ramen noodles has me curious…..

  19. Liz

    It’s the yolk from the hard boiled egg.

  20. sunnygrrlSB

    I am also interested in the Imitation WF fumi salad – recipe when you have a moment? Thanks for sharing, even though you are nursing and I’m not, it is still nice to see other women with healthy appetites!

  21. chilled onions

    loving your posts:) its my morning treat at work, with a cup of tea;) And I just have to visit the USA to try daiya cheddar and other yummy food which are yet to make their way across the Atlantic;)

  22. k

    Ohh haha I never would have figured that out!

  23. k

    If this was a restaurant I’d order the entire menu!! ;D

  24. liz

    Can you post the banana bread recipe?? I am looking for a good GF one and could not find it (only the berry one) on your site…


  25. Nicole @ FruitnFitness

    Your meals and snacks always look so good! I love taking veggies and nuts to work to snack on.

  26. Sami

    Am I inhuman or something that I’ve never tried a tamale?!? I need to change that. You make it look yummyyy!

  27. Lisa @ The Valley Vegan

    Nope! I tried my first one when I was 32 years old! I didn’t like it… it wasn’t well made at all (the masa was so thick it was like cement). My husband, who is Mexican, assures me that they are actually quite good, but trying to find a fresh vegan version in the US or Mexico is almost impossible. I believe him though, they must be out there because obviously Elise found one!! I’m putting it on my to-do list!

  28. Stephanie H.

    Fumi salad recipe please!!

  29. H

    I found your lovely – upbeat website after being diagnosed with IBS and started searching for food ideas. Congratulations on your new baby! I love being a mom. All your postings are encouraging and provoking. I was wondering what your opinion is regarding soy. I noticed that it is in some of your dishes. I’ve heard that most soybean production is GMO. Do you think that’s hoopla because eating those items would sure open up some menu options for me. Just so much info out there and I’m new to this – thanks.

  30. Sami

    Awesome, Lisa! I am totally on a mission, now. Must.try.delicious.tamales 🙂

  31. Elise (Post author)

    im on it! recipe coming…

  32. Elise (Post author)

    not the same recipe! ill post this one soon (its gluten free whereas my other banana bread recipe is not). 🙂

  33. Elise (Post author)

    thats so nice of you to say, katie. and super awesome that youll be near WF! enjoy!!

  34. Elise (Post author)

    its a new one. ill post the recipe soon – ive remade it 2 times already!!

  35. Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl

    Yay! I am looking forward to it! 🙂

  36. Elise (Post author)

    ill try to answer some of these quickly…

    -carrots and celery are raw.
    -i said i dont have a recipe for the baked oatmeal bars so i cant share anything, sorry.
    -ill post the banana bread recipe soon
    -i cant recall the name of the quinoa bars bc i got it on a vacation, never seen em since
    -i have posted how to roast potatoes before on the blog so youll have to search

  37. Elise (Post author)

    how bizarre about the cholesterol! i have never looked at the labels for anything besides the ingreds, but for 0 g to be any portion of your DV is super weird. right??

  38. Elise (Post author)

    kyle has been very good about letting me do my hippie thing in the kitchen but he kinda puts his foot down when it comes to fermenting huge brews of tea. but we will see…itd be a $$$$ saver!

  39. Elise (Post author)

    whoa! the banana chip gods are pleased 🙂

  40. Elise (Post author)

    -the banana bread recipe is GF
    -ill post the imitation fumi salad but its not GF and has cabbage (just as an FYI)
    -dark chocolate chips are from the bulk bins at the co-op, so i dont know the brand, they are gluten/wheat/dairy free, but have soy lecithin

  41. Elise (Post author)

    ooo, ill have to check out v’con, although i cant say im into anything “time consuming” in the kitchen right now so maybe once p is a few months…or years older…or a teenager…

  42. Elise (Post author)

    yup! hard boiled egg yolk indeed!

  43. Elise (Post author)

    aw, thanks emily! youre a stud for keeping up with pursuing your dreams, so you inspire me!

  44. Elise (Post author)

    i know right?!?!? its criminal!!
    this one was pretty good, but ill have to get the real deal soon. although im not huge on food truck stuff if i found a veggie one, i may have to try it!!
    mini pretz are SUCH a good trail mix add but kyle doesnt like pretzels (i know, wtf is wrong w him!?!?!). mmmm salt…

  45. Ozlemn

    Great! Thanks! It looks like everyone is waiting for this recipe. 🙂

  46. Courtney

    I know! I thought of that as I was typing up the comment. Maybe you can convince someone to make them for you…you are a new mom and just went back to work. That is what people are supposed to do, right?! Stock your freezer with quick and easy things? Someone make Elise tamales!! 🙂


  47. Elise (Post author)

    you got it!
    high five for appetites that we honor w yummy (mostly) healthy eats!

  48. Elise (Post author)

    for your taste buds’ sake, i hope they make it. for your budget’s sake i hope they dont!!

  49. Elise (Post author)

    yup! will do 🙂

  50. Elise (Post author)

    seriously i thought i was alone. glad to know theres another tamale virgin out there sami!
    seriously, they’re pretty awesome 🙂

  51. Elise (Post author)

    thanks H!
    i have mixed feelings on the whole gmo thing.
    i do try to buy exclusively non-gm foods, especially when it comes to corn and soy. i only buy gmo free tofu and tempeh. and to be honest, i dont do much soy beyond that nowadays (as opposed to my initial meatless years and vegan days).
    however, there is soy in just about everything you eat out – so im guessing i eat more in hidden things when i dont prepare my own food and eat out or eat pre-made things (which i bet is all made w cheaper GMO soy/corn, like soy based cooking oils, soy lecithin, etc). while i certainly dont want to eat genetically modified things, theres only so much i can do to avoid it. rather, theres only so much i want to do to avoid it. i am sure i could go to great lengths to dodge gm stuff altogether (not dine out, not buy anything pre-made, make my own everything w certified organic and non gm corn and soy). but i am not convinced that the benefits of removing it entirely, as opposed to just removing 99% of it, are worth that effort. that may sound lazy, but i think its just realistic for me at this point.
    so basically i dont know. ha. my opinion isnt that soy is bad, its that gm food is bad. so if you can do your best to eat non GMO soy in moderation i think its fine. just my 2 cents.

  52. Elise (Post author)

    on its way!

  53. Aimee

    I try not to pay too much attention to labels, but I like to take a glance and keep things like cholesterol in check, which is why I noticed! It is super weird! Kinda makes you wonder how accurate labels are anyway…

  54. Beth

    Thanks for the concise reply. Can’t wait for the banana bread and imitation fumi salad recipes. I appreciate you having mentioned the soy lecithin being an ingredient in the dark chocolate chips as that is one ingredient I look to avoid. You read my mind. My search for the perfect store bought dark chocolate chip continues (sans much sugar and soy lecithin).

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