High Protein Meal Planning – Week 3

My plan for this new year is to focus on hitting my protein macro for this new weight first (I’ve found that carbs, fat & calories tend to work themselves out if I’m doing what I need to do here). My old macro was 70g a day; this new macro is 80. I think I can do it while keeping the parts of my current diet that are working for me (light breakfasts namely) if I eat decent portions of something protein rich for lunch and dinner & plan ahead with meaty snacks.

More info on what I’m doing and why.

Week 1

Week 2

The goal: 80g of protein a day; explore this brave new air fryer world.

This is my meal planner – I’m using a combination of Evernote for rough drafts, a Google spreadsheet for protein quick reference, and paper notebook for more detailed recipe writing

Breakfast

M-Sat: Green smoothie (green apple, avocado, kale, spinach, orange juice, ginger – much like this recipe) with 2 scoops of collagen powder

Sunday: Blueberry flavored protein pancake from the gas station

Lunch

Monday: Sausage & egg bowl (2 eggs scrambled with a little yogurt & spinach), 1 fake meat sausage, hot sauce, half a small avocado, bagel seasoning & the last of the leftover crispy potatoes.

Tuesday: 1/2 can chili tuna, guacamole, small diced cucumber

Wednesday: Another sausage & egg bowl – sans potatoes

Thursday: 150g leftover London broil tucked into tacos with the last of the kimchi

Friday: 200g leftover London broil (the last of it) chopped with the last of the cherry tomatoes & Choula

Saturday: Steak & kofta kebab at a friend’s house with some amazing fresh bread

Sunday: A chicken veggie bowl from Starbucks

Dinner

Monday: 150g London broil & a baked potato (baked potatoes are bomb in the air fryer)

Tuesday: A mash of 150g taco beef, avocado, Choula, cherry tomatoes, onions & peppers & 3 tortillas crisped in the air fryer for scooping

Wednesday: Vegan General Tso-Style Protein Bowl

Thursday: Crisped carrot sticks with pomegranate tahini dressing (recipe coming some day) & tandoori marinated chicken bites

Friday: 1/2 – 3/4 cup of my delivery Indian pepper chicken, about 1/4 cup of the enchanting silky eggplant I’m eventually going to have to try and recreate & a naan

Saturday: Was way too full from lunch steak

Sunday: Leftover Indian pepper chicken

Snacks

Mini kibbeh with tomato chutney on Wednesday

Baked potatoes are awesome in the air fryer – my London broil cooking evenness left something to be desired. Lunch was surprisingly good, though. Not my favorite brand of fake sausage, but it was still satisfying.
Nachos FTW. Forgot I put vegan cheddar on top. I missed the hard boiled egg in the tuna salad from last week, but even without it lunch was still delicious.
This chickpea dish turned out surprisingly well.
I’ve been craving doing something with crispy carrots, pomegranate & tahini for awhile – this was a really great combo and something I’ll play with again. The chicken turned out really good, too, and actually air fried pretty well.
I won at dinner! We ordered Indian delivery and I managed to resist my brain insisting that it needed to binge eat every bite like Cookie Monster. Go, me.
Whelp, I definitely got protein in at dinner. I’m sure I hit my goal – or close to it.
Starbucks: continuing to crush it on the protein lunches. Glad we stopped in and I gave it a shot. This was delicious.

This week’s takeaway: Man, my body loves green smoothies. I felt much better about my vegetable consumption because of them, and my GI system was much happier.

Vegan General Tso-Style Protein Bowl

This is a satisfying sweet and spicy bowl that makes great use of a pantry staple – the humble chickpea. While it’s not as high protein as a dish including meat, 100g of tofu gives you 8-10g and the chickpeas give another 5. Not too bad, and if you know of a good vegan protein powder to add you can bulk it even more.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Vegan General Tso-Style Protein Bowl

1 can chickpeas

1 block extra firm tofu

1 onion, thinly sliced

1 bunch broccolini, chopped

1 bell pepper, chopped

1 thumb ginger, minced

4 cloves garlic, minced

4 Tbsp. tamari, soy sauce or coconut aminos, divided

4 Tbsp. rice vinegar, divided

1/3 c. broth (I used mushroom onion; faux-chicken or any other stock would work just as well, you just want something with a little extra flavor to layer)

2 Tbsp. tomato paste

2 tsp. nut butter (I used peanut, but any nut butter would do)

2 Tbsp. sweetener (I had date molasses on hand but your favorite sweetener will do – if you go for something sweeter than molasses, consider halving to 2/3-ing the amount

2 tsp. heat (don’t be like me and use ghost pepper garlic sauce unless you want a punch in the mouth – go for something saner like a nice sambal olek for the same spicy garlic without the shock)

1 tsp. + sesame oil

1 tsp. grainy mustard (y’all know I love my Maille)

2 tsp. cornstarch or arrowroot powder +

Generous grinds pepper

Toppers: thinly sliced scallions, sesame seeds

Drain the chickpeas, add to a bowl and marinate in 1 Tbsp. soy + 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar for half an hour – a couple hours.

Press the tofu, chop into half-inch cubes, and add to a large bowl. Add 2 Tbsp. soy & 2 Tbsp. rice vinegar. Let marinate alongside the chickpeas.

In a small bowl, combine the remaining Tbsp. soy & Tbsp. vinegar, broth, tomato paste, nut butter, sweetener, heat, 1 tsp. of the sesame oil, grainy mustard, 2 tsp. cornstarch and a few grinds pepper.

Chop the veggies and get everything ready.

Add a couple Tablespoons cornstarch to the tofu mix and toss vigorously to coat. Air fry 7-8 minutes, tossing often to ensure even crispiness.

While the tofu is crisping, sauté the onion over medium heat in a couple teaspoons sesame oil until translucent. Add the ginger, garlic and broccolini and continue sautéing 2-3 minutes or until the broccolini looks like it’s beginning to soften a touch.

Add the peppers and let go another 2-3 minutes until those begin to soften, stirring often to avoid burning.

Add the bowl of sauce and the chickpeas. Stir well and sauté until the sauce is nice and thick and everything is well incorporated.

Add the tofu to each bowl individually (100g gives you 8g; 1c. of the chickpeas gives you 5), top with scallions and sesame seeds and serve.

Serves 3-4

High Protein Meal Planning – Week 2

My plan for this new year is to focus on hitting my protein macro for this new weight first (I’ve found that carbs, fat & calories tend to work themselves out if I’m doing what I need to do here). My old macro was 70g a day; this new macro is 80. I think I can do it while keeping the parts of my current diet that are working for me (light breakfasts namely) if I eat decent portions of something protein rich for lunch and dinner & plan ahead with meaty snacks.

More info on what I’m doing and why.

Week 1

Week 2

The goal: 80g of protein a day; explore this brave new air fryer world.

This is my meal planner – I’m using a combination of Evernote for rough drafts, a Google spreadsheet for protein quick reference, and paper notebook for more detailed recipe writing

Breakfast

M-Sat: Almond yogurt, peanut butter, raspberry jelly and collagen peptides – some days I included pepitas

Sunday: Birthday cupcake flavored Hype Bar

Lunch

Monday: 114g air fried hamburger patty, fried egg, sundried tomato

Tuesday: Leftover meat + veggies in tomato sauce from the weekend

Wednesday: Tuna salad – chili tuna, air fried hard boiled eggs, shallot, Kewpie mayo, cucumber, grainy mustard

Thursday: The second 114g hamburger patty in the pack, fried egg, sundried tomato

Friday: Leftover salmon with sesame snap peas

Saturday: Korean BBQ – beef, a little chicken, custard egg, a couple pieces spicy salmon sushi

Sunday: 6oz sirloin & baked potato from Texas Roadhouse

Dinner

Monday: 150g air fried zaatar chicken, peppers, mushrooms, barbed yogurt sauce, avocado & cherry tomatoes stuffed into a pita

Tuesday: 150g leftover chicken, leftover pepper & mushrooms, a couple Tablespoons hummus, 1/4 of a pita

Wednesday: 200g air fried citrus salmon, snow peas tossed in a little sesame oil

Thursday: 150g leftover chicken, the rest of the hummus, a little mumhmarra

Friday: Delivery keema (1 cup) with most of a parata

Saturday: Was still full from lunch

Sunday: 4 Thai spiced meatballs with tomato chutney

Snacks

Wasn’t hungry for snacks all week

The pic of my air fried chicken pita is dreadful, but it was delicious
Leftovers for the win!
This salmon really turned out well – didn’t properly crisp the skin, but the citrus marinade was 🔥
Another leftovers kind of day
I managed to be fairly well behaved with my delivery Indian – go me. I usually channel the Cookie Monster when Indian is around
Korean BBQ for lunch was a fine idea. I ate a bit too much, but it was really really good.
This bar actually wasn’t terrible – and it wasn’t coated in chocolate. 18g protein from a gas station breakfast I can get behind.

This week, I had a bit of trouble dialing in my breakfast and left lunch to too late to be really hungry for dinner. I like the amount of protein I’m getting with the collagen peptides, but should only do the added pepitas on days I’ve got yoga in the morning.

Next week I need to make sure I’m getting more veggies, and should take care to not eat too few carbs.