This was the temperature in my air conditionless living room this week, which meant there was no way the oven was going on.
Well, let’s be honest.
The oven doesn’t go on the often anyway. If something requires more than five ingredients, I’ll usually pass and default to my usual rotation of several different plant-based meals and snacks.
My criteria? It has to be easy and healthy(ish.)
Fittingly, the Studio 30 Plus prompt this week was “A Taste of Summer,” so even though I can’t take good pictures, I figured I would share a few of the things I whip up when it’s warm—and even when it’s not.*
When it’s too hot for a warm bowl of oatmeal, take it to the fridge/freezer and your problem is solved. This also makes an easy take-along breakfast for those of us who eat at work.
Simply use the same ratio of oats and liquid (water, milk, Vodka—I won’t judge) that you would use for stovetops oats and combine them in a container. Stick it in the fridge for a couple hours or the freezer for 10 minutes. When you’re ready to eat them, add in your fat (tahini, nut butters, etc.) and whatever else you prefer—fruit, spices, etc. and you’re good to go.
I did not post a picture of these because a) you know what a bowl of oatmeal looks like and b) mine are never pretty.
If you’ve read this blog for more than a week or skimmed over my “About” page, you know that a majority of my favorite foods are green. This quick lunch combines a couple of them and requires only two or three ingredients as a base, but feel free to improvise and pile on the goodies.
All I do is take a whole avocado and smash it up, toast two pieces of bread, add the avocado and some spinach to the bread and put it all together. Because of the magnitude of this sandwich, I usually cut it in half and then eat it open-faced with a fork and knife (because I’m fancy.)
Great additions include a mild cheese, hummus and various spices.
Rice is a staple for me and I always have a batch in my fridge to use throughout the week.
This little number comes together by sautéing vegetables in a pan until softened, adding chickpeas until slightly toasted and then adding in the rice and spices. Once it all comes together, I dump it in a bowl, add in butter and proceed to inhale it with digestive delight.
I put this under “dinner,” but I take variations of this one to work for my lunch just about every day. You could sub in tofu or meat for the chickpeas, swap the rice for pasta or even throw it all into a big salad.
Unlike my culinary creativity and preferences, the possibilities are endless.
Banana Soft Serve
This isn’t ice cream, but it is a healthy frozen treat that can hit the spot when you’re too lazy or cheap to actually go to Dairy Queen.
Take 2-3 frozen bananas and toss them into a food processor. Let it process for about five minutes, stopping every so often to scrape down the sides. As each minute passes, the bananas will get light, fluffy and take on a creamy texture–sort of like soft serve ice cream.
I pimp it out with Sunbutter or a few Newman’s Own Oreo-like cookies, but you can throw anything into the mix. After all, it’s bananas—healthy fruit!—so that completely negates any candy you might add.
If anyone questions this logic, that just means more for you.
*This list is not conclusive by any stretch of the imagination—even mine. While the items below are nothing new or revolutionary and can be found anywhere on the Interwebs—or in your pantry/fridge—they are easy and healthy and make me happy.
What are your favorite easy tastes of summer?
I like (gasp) real soft serve. No banana or wannabe-oreo can compare. Its pretty easy too.
1) Go to the soft serve shop (I personally like TCBY but Carvel and the ones sold in trucks work)
Best part, minimal clean-up.
Oh, I much prefer real soft serve as well. But you missed the “if you’re too cheap or lazy to go to Dairy Queen” part of the post. Sometimes at 9pm when you’re comfy on the couch molesting your box fan to stay cool, the last thing you want to do is get in the car and face the pimpled face teenager working the cone machine. 😉
I have some frozen bananas in my fridge for smoothies, but the soft serve idea is genius!
And I eat the same thing for lunch everyday too. Afterall, what’s a little more monotony on a day chock full of it?
Wow. All of that food is far too healthy for me. I feel guilty. I may need to rethink my diet.
Nah, guilt should never be associated with food. Eat what you love, love what you eat. Just add in a few green things now and then that come from the ground 😉
Also, sorry about the wonky formatting. I don’t know what’s up with the spacing and headings and technical stuff, as usual.
I usually steer clear of green things (shock.), but I DO love avocados. Mmmm- stick a slice of Swiss on that avocado sandwich. It’s making my mouth water as I type.
I don’t blame you for not turning the oven on-everything looks great. I keep hearing about the banana soft serve but have never had it. I just need to spill the $20 and buy a food processor, my died last year and my creations have been as fun.
I an never find tahini at the supermarket which makes my hummus that I used to make, less than stellar. And I’ve definitely never heard of it in oatmeal-very interesting.
I don’t know how it would go over with regular milk, but it pairs nicely with the slight sweetness of plain almond milk. Also, I buy my hummus (shock and awe, I know,) but I was told the key to perfect hummus is to take the skin off the chickpeas. I don’t know that I really want to spend time taking the skin of chickpeas, but that’s the rumor…
Taking the skin off CHICKPEAS? How do you even DO THAT?
I get teased all the time for peeling mushrooms, tomatoes and cucumbers but THIS surprises me! 🙂 (p.s.. my mom peels asparagus. weird?)
Yeah, I have no idea. That would be why I just buy hummus instead.
I have done the banana trick for my son. Told him it was banana ice cream. he luuuurved it.
Finally my secret shame of eating my oatmeal with Vodka is laid bare to the world. Thank you!
I do what I can…
The banana soft serve looks really good! I never would have thought to do that and, since I’m lactose-intolerant (which doesn’t usually stop me from eating ice cream), I think I’m going to try this!
I also like to eat a few of the same “healthy” things, on rotation. I don’t have the patience to constantly come up with something new, but I’ve been making a little bit more effort lately (mostly because I am getting bored of everything after eating it for about three years every week). My staples are: oatmeal with water and berries/cinnamon, spinach shakes with berries/banana/oats/flax (I’ve been freezing them into “pops” lately), chicken & veggie skewers, tuna salad in a wrap (tuna, dill, avocado, cucumber, radishes, little tomatoes), “summer salsa” with fish (basil, yellow pepper, grape tomatoes, avocado, lemon juice, salt)..and grilled polish sausage with tomatoes/onions. OH and I have a similar version of avocado sandwiches (avocados + radishes instead of spinach). They are soooo good! Okay, so now it’s 7:35 am and I’ve had one egg for breakfast and after writing this post I am effing going to eat my arm. HUNGRY!
You had me at vodka for breakfast 🙂
I am a huge fan of the tomato sandwich. Nothing better in the summer.
that avocado sandwich looks terrific.
How weird! I was just thinking of posting about summer foods, and here you are. I’ll have to do a little linky-live when I do. So rather than blow my blog-wad, I’ll just say we could totally do lunch. Everyone thinks I’m crazy to eat avocados for breakfast, but I love ’em!
One of my favorite breakfasts is this smoothie. It requires minimal morning prep, can be drunk at work, and is vegan. PLUS you can easily add vodka- which would actually be really yummy and might make the day go more quickly.
Yum! But I never really jumped on the smoothie bandwagon, partly because they make me too full and then I don’t feel like eating every couple hours (which I do,) but mostly because I don’t even own a blender. I know, I know…weirdo 😉
I am going to try the bananas tomorrow!
The avocado sandwich looks delicious:) My own summer treats are even easier – fresh berries, Greek yogurt, & cold wine 🙂
Unlike other times when I comment just to see myself in print I am completely on topic here- you need to purchase the July issue of Real Simple. The cover story is 3 Ingredient Meals. Hello- that’s 2 under your limit which I believe gives you an extra alcohol credit. I almost bought it to send to you but remembered I have no idea where you live and it would probably be creepy if I did.
Oh, I’ve been a subscriber for years 🙂
I made a banana soft serve concoction one time that included instant coffee and canned pumpkin with a bit of maple syrup….may sound gross to some, but I thought it was amazing.
In my neck of the woods the warmth from the oven is welcomed. It hasn’t exactly been summer here. The avocado sammie looks yummy.
I might be weird, but I like your combination of food, especially the avocado sandwich. Add some cucumber slices and tomato and we’re good to go! Who wants to cook in the summer anyway?
Great post and now it made me hungry. Not sure about the banana fake ice cream though, but anything is worth a try to quiet the sweet craving. Too bad it wasn’t you who invented that new thing they advertise on TV for banana ice cream. Or, hmm, was it you . . .
Thanks for sharing. I found you through the Red Dress Club.
Grilled asparagus. YUM.
And grilled peppers.
And grilled chicken.
Basically, anything grilled.
OMG- that was awesome. I am visiting from over at red dress. Love the title. I can totally relate except that I am a self-diagnosed supertaster and hate most vegetables. I also hate cooking, and have never turned my oven on. Ever.
LOVED the avocado sandwhich. Hilarious.
Yum! I have a whole bunch of bananas needing to be pureed. Sadly, the Oreos have managed to disappear.
Ha, I love that most of your readers/commenters are not from the food blog world so they are pleasantly surprised by the banana soft serve and tahini in oats 🙂 Cute! Now you just need to get them up to speed with green monsters, chia seeds, breakfast cookies, protein muffins, amazeballs, socca and they’ll pretty much be up to speed. Kidding. Let’s let their brains not explode from overload.
My summer go-to breakfast is a smoothie for the same reason you avoid them: they are filling. Lunch is often a sandwich of sorts, there will be popcorn and some frozen item (like a fro- yo or something) and some chocolate in there. Dinner can be a huge salad with 465 types of chopped veggies with some protein. Or even a huge greek yogurt mess with berries, nuts, nut butters etc. I’m a protein freak (and I still don’t get as much as I’m ‘supposed to’) so I must have some protein with every meal. I could never go veggie.
Thanks for sharing your days’ eats.
This wasn’t exactly a day of eats, but rather randomness I remembered and eat throughout the week. I would normally never post food stuff, but as you said, most of my readers aren’t familiar with these things. Yay! On that note, I have never had a green monster, chia seeds, breakfast cookies, protein muffins or socca, so that’s probably why I like these people 🙂
However, seeing as you are the Smoothie Girl, I will SO default to you if I ever buy a blender.