Here goes day 9…
DAY 9 BREAKFAST: 2 Roasted Pepper, Cheddar Cheese, and Spinach Egg Muffins (men, 3 egg muffins) (recipe below) & 4 large strawberries
To reheat the muffins, microwave them on high for 30 seconds.
Roasted Pepper, Cheddar Cheese, and Spinach Egg Muffins:
Makes 5 muffins
1 teaspoon olive oil
5 large eggs*
⅓ cup roasted red peppers, drained and roughly chopped
2.5 ounces (half a 5 ounce bag; about 2 cups loosely packed) baby spinach, roughly chopped
2 ounces sharp yellow cheddar, grated
*Men use 8 large eggs make 8 muffins
PREPARATION: Preheat the oven to 375°F and use the olive oil to grease 5 muffin tins (men, you’ll fill 8 muffin cups, so use 1 ½ tablespoons of oil). You can use a pastry brush or your fingers, just make sure the insides of the cups are covered with a thin layer of oil. In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs and egg whites until thoroughly mixed. Add the red peppers, spinach, and cheddar cheese, and stir everything together to combine. Divide the mixture among the greased muffin cups (5 cups for women; 8 cups for men), filling each cup ¾ of the way. Bake in the preheated oven until the egg is cooked through and the middle of each muffin doesn’t jiggle when you shake the muffin tin, 18-20 minutes. Let the muffins sit in the muffin tins for 5 minutes to cool, then flip them out of the muffin tin and let them cool completely at room temperature before storing them in an airtight container in the fridge.
DAY 9 LUNCH: Kale Salad with Butternut Squash, White Beans, and Cider Vinaigrette (I added ground turkey to this recipe as I felt I needed a bit more protein)
Makes 1 serving
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
½ teaspoon honey
⅛ teaspoon kosher salt freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ bunch kale, stems and ribs removed, leaves sliced in ¼ inch ribbons (about 2 cups)
½ a 15 ounce can (about ⅔ cup) white beans, rinsed and drained (the rest of the can from lunch yesterday)
⅓ recipe (about 1 cup) roasted butternut squash cubes (leftover from Sunday’s dinner)
PREPARATION: In a large mixing bowl, combine apple cider vinegar, honey, kosher salt and some freshly ground pepper. Whisk everything together until it’s mixed (there should be no bits of honey floating around), then slowly pour in the olive oil, still whisking vigorously. Continue to whisk until the vinaigrette is thoroughly combined. Add kale ribbons to the mixing bowl with the vinaigrette. Use your hands to massage the vinaigrette into the kale for about a minute, until kale starts to soften just slightly. Add white beans and butternut squash and toss just to combine. If you’re packing lunch togo:Prep the salad in the morning, then store it in a tupperware container in the fridge until you’re ready to eat it. Kale is super resilient and it won’t wilt, so it’s fine to dress this ahead of time.
DAY 9 SNACK: ½ English cucumber, cut in 1/2 inch slices and drizzled with 12 teaspoons ginger lemon juice (leftover from Sunday) with ¼ cup hummus If you’re packing this snack togo: Slice the cucumber and drizzle it with 12 teaspoons infused lemon juice. Pack the slices in a small tupperware container and ziploc bag, and pack the hummus in a separate tupperware container. Refrigerate until you’re ready to eat
DAY 9 DINNER: Single Skillet Chicken Thighs with Asparagus and Red Pepper
Makes 1 serving plus leftover chicken and asparagus. You’ll save half of the chicken for Wednesday’s lunch and half of the asparagus for tomorrow’s lunch.
2 medium chicken thighs, bone in, skinless** (½ pound, total)
¼ teaspoon kosher salt, divided freshly ground pepper
2 teaspoons canola oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
½ teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 bunch asparagus, woody ends trimmed
1 red bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced
Men, cook 3 large chicken thighs, ¾ pound total.
*You can buy bone in, skin on chicken thighs, then peel the skin off and throw it away. Or, you can buy boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Cooking them with the bone just makes them taste a little bit better.
PREPARATION: Preheat the oven to 425°F. Use paper towels to thoroughly dry the chicken thighs, then season them all over with ⅛ teaspoon salt and pepper. Heat canola oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. When the skillet is hot, add the seasoned chicken thighs, and cook just until the underside is lightly browned, about 3 minutes. While the chicken browns, combine the remaining ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt, vinegar, paprika, and mustard in a large mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Add the asparagus and sliced bell pepper to the mixing bowl, and toss to coat the vegetables in the vinegar mixture. After the chicken has been cooking for about 3 minutes, add the vegetables to the skillet, scattered around the chicken thighs. You just want the chicken to stay in contact with the bottom of the pan so that it keeps browning. Put the skillet in the oven and roast everything for 10 minutes. Take the skillet out, stir the vegetables, and flip the chicken thighs. Put the skillet back in the oven until the thighs are cooked through (a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh should read 165°F, and there should be no pink when you cut into the meat), about 10 more minutes. When the chicken is cooked, take the skillet out of the oven and use a spoon or spatula to remove the chicken and vegetables from the skillet. Put one chicken thigh (1 ½ for men, but wait at least 5 minutes to cut the chicken) on a plate with half of the asparagus and all of the red pepper. Let the leftover chicken thigh (1 ½ for men), and asparagus and cool completely. Cut the asparagus into 2 inch pieces. Remove the bone from the chicken thigh and cut it into ½ inch cubes. Store leftovers in three separate airtight containers in the fridge.
DAY 9 NIGHT SNACK: Broiled Grapefruit with Shredded Coconut
Makes 1 serving
½ large grapefruit
½ teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon shredded coconut
PREPARATION: Preheat the broiler of your oven, and put an oven rack on the to rung of the oven. Use a knife to slice all the way around the grapefruit flesh where it meets the pith, to loosen it. Then, make little slices on both sides of each segment to loosen them. This will make the grapefruit easier to eat. Place the grapefruit half on a baking sheet or in a skillet and spread the honey over the surface of the grapefruit. Broil for 35 minutes, or until the top of the grapefruit is beginning to brown and caramelize. Take the grapefruit out of the oven and immediately sprinkle it with the shredded coconut. Let the grapefruit cool for a minute, then eat.
DAY 9 (MONDAY) TOTAL NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION: 1,310 calories, 69.6 g fat (18.8 g saturated fat), 117.4 g carbohydrate (29.3 g dietary fiber, 27.2 g sugars), 70.2 g protein, 509.3 mg cholesterol, 1361 mg sodium