I love this time of year. The lights, the cheer – everyone seems so happy! And I can’t forget the constant stream of sweet treats. I don’t know about your office, but between the gift sweets and homemade sweets, it’s hard to stay away from the kitchen. And then there’s my own kitchen…which has seen its own constant stream of sweet treats lately. Dessert > Wine. (Only while pregnant.)
But with all of the extra treats, it’s also a time of year when cutting back elsewhere needs to happen. Cookies > Other Carbs.
It’s not something that I actively keep track of, or even stress out about, but I make sure that salads are a staple for lunch and dinners are built around protein and vegetables. For me, it feels easy (and honestly, salads at lunch are the norm) but painless. I still get to enjoy the treats and while I’ll be gaining weight this year no matter what, at a minimum, I can feel good about fitting in some nutritious foods into each day.
But it’s not the time to cut-back too much – meals still need to be filling! This salad, though pretty light in calories, still packs a protein and fiber punch, and it will keep you satisfied until your cookie snack!
Need more convincing? This salad is:
- high in protein (32 grams!)
- full of fresh produce (crunchy romaine and celery + sweet apples!)
- healthy fats from almonds
- light and tasty yogurt-based dressing
Enjoy every cookie. And every salad!
- 1-lb chicken breasts
- juice from 1 lemon
- ½ cup plain yogurt (not greek)
- 2 Tbsp light mayonnaise
- salt & pepper
- 2-3 heads of romaine lettuce, chopped
- 2 cups thinly sliced celery
- 2 apples, chopped
- ½ cup chopped almonds
- Grill or broil chicken until cooked through.
- Let cool and thinly slice. Set aside.
- Whisk together lemon juice, yogurt and mayonnaise.
- Season with salt and pepper and refrigerate.
- Layer lettuce, celery, chicken, apples and almonds on each plate.
- Drizzle with dressing.
How do you balance things this time of year?