Author Archives: Chelsea

5 Ways to Add Protein to Your Oatmeal

Protein. How often have you heard nutrition professionals talking about getting enough protein? It’s really not much of a concern for most people, especially at lunch and dinner. The meal where it’s harder to get enough is breakfast because a lot of your typical breakfasts don’t contain that much protein.

So today I want to talk a bit about how to amp up the protein in one of my favourite breakfasts: oatmeal. Oatmeal is not typically seen as a high protein food, but with my tips you can make a bowl that contains just as much protein as a food guide serving of chicken! Here’s how:

Ditch the protein powder and boost the protein in your oatmeal with these 5 easy tips to add protein to your oatmeal!

1. Cook your oatmeal in high protein milk

If you want to add protein to your oatmeal, skim milk or soy milk (if you avoid dairy) are your best bets. Skim cow’s milk has 8-9 g and soy milk has 6-7 g of protein per cup, whereas other non-dairy milks like almond, hemp, rice, coconut, flax, and quinoa milk only have 0-2 g per cup.

However some dairy alternative companies have started selling protein-fortified versions of their products, such as flax milk and almond milk, each with 5 g of protein per cup.

Ditch the protein powder and boost the protein in your oatmeal with these 5 easy tips!

2. Add egg whites

I was skeptical when I first heard that people put egg whites in their oatmeal, but after trying it I was pleasantly surprised. It adds a nice French toasty flavour to your oatmeal as well as 3.5 g of protein for just 2 tbsp. I usually add 2-3 tbsp so that it’s not too overpowering, like in my recipe for my favourite banana oatmeal. Just stir in the egg whites during the last 1-2 minutes of cooking, which is enough time to cook the egg whites without making them overcooked.

Ditch the protein powder and boost the protein in your oatmeal with these 5 easy tips!

3. Stir in cottage cheese when it is done cooking

Cottage cheese is an awesome source of protein with about 8 g per 1/4 cup! Like egg whites, it can blend right into your oatmeal without being too noticeable. It just adds a bit of a creamy texture to it.

Ditch the protein powder and boost the protein in your oatmeal with these 5 easy tips!

4. Add ground flax, chia seeds, or hemp seeds

All three are a good source of protein. Flax and chia seeds have about 1.5 g of protein per tablespoon. Hemp seeds have double that! These seeds can be added in during cooking or sprinkled on top afterwards. But keep in mind that flax and chia seeds will absorb water to give your oatmeal a more gelatinous texture, so you need to add more water than usual. Also, be sure to use ground flax rather than whole flax seeds, since the nutrients are better absorbed when it’s ground.

Ditch the protein powder and boost the protein in your oatmeal with these 5 easy tips!

5. Add a scoop of nut or seed butter on top

1 tablespoon of your average nut/seed butter will give you about 3 g of protein. It’s also insanely delicious! Most people love peanut butter on their oatmeal, but I’m allergic so I use almond butter. If you’re allergic to all nuts, there are plenty of nut butter alternatives you can try!

Ditch the protein powder and boost the protein in your oatmeal with these 5 easy tips!

You may have noticed I didn’t include protein powder on this list. It’s always an option, but as I’ve shown here, it’s entirely possible to make a high protein bowl of oatmeal with just whole foods. Take a look at this example:

1/2 cup dry oats = 6 g protein
1/2 a cup skim milk = 4 g protein
4 tbsp egg whites = 7 g protein
1 tbsp hemp hearts = 3 g protein
1 tablespoon of almond butter = 3 g protein

Total protein = 23 g

Not too shabby, right? That’s about the same amount of protein as a food guide serving of chicken. And I don’t know about you guys, but I’d much rather have oatmeal than chicken for breakfast!

Ditch the protein powder and boost the protein in your oatmeal with these 5 easy tips!

How do you add protein to your oatmeal?

Looking for more ways to add protein to breakfast? Check out this post! –> 7 Ways to Get More Protein at Breakfast

Read this post to learn ways to get more protein at breakfast!


Filed under food and cooking, nutrition

Cookbook review: Veganomicon

With a huge daily list of blogs I read, Tastespotting, and Pinterest, I have pretty much unlimited access to recipes online. Sometimes I feel like I never need a cookbook again. But I think there’s something special about cookbooks – the hundred of hours of work that goes into them, the vigorous recipe testing, the author’s passion… these are things that you don’t always get with online recipes.

So to encourage myself to use my cookbooks more often, and try out new ones, I’ve decided to start doing cookbook review posts.

Veganomicon review

First up is a review of Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. This book is sometimes referred to as the “vegan cooking bible” and I can see why – it is packed with recipes! But before the recipes there are some informational sections to help the reader get started on cooking the recipes:

– Stocking the Veganomicon pantry
– Kitchen equipment
– Cooking and prepping terminology
– Lower fat cooking
– How to cook a vegetable, grain, and beans

Some of this is pretty basic and can be skipped over if you have cooking experience, but I found the cooking guides to be pretty helpful since I can never remember things like water to grain ratios and how to cook beans from scratch!

What I liked about Veganomicon:

  • It contains a lot of recipes
  • It has a variety of recipes, from salads to soups to sauces to desserts
  • The authors’ personalities really shine through
  • There is an index at the back that separates recipes into soy free, low fat, ready in under 45 minutes, and grocery store friendly recipes

What I didn’t like about Veganomicon:

  • There aren’t pictures for every recipe
  • It sometimes uses obscure ingredients like vital wheat gluten, agar powder, and arrowroot powder
  • The recipes may not appeal to everyone, especially people who are wary of eating vegan foods

Recipes I’ve tried from Veganomicon:

1. Cheater baked beans

Veganomicon recipe: Cheater baked beans

These are a faster version of baked beans made using canned beans and natural ingredients like tomato sauce and molasses. I absolutely love baked beans (I have my own version posted here), but I was a bit disappointed by these. The baked bean flavour was a bit off (probably because the flavours don’t have the usual 3-4 hours to develop) and I found them too sweet.

2. Silken mayo dressing

Veganomicon recipe: Vegan mayo with tofu

This is a multifunctional recipe that can be used as a vegan mayo or jazzed up to create other dressings like thousand island dressing or aioli. It’s thinner than real mayo and slightly sweeter, but it still made a decent substitution for mayo on my sandwiches.

3. Lentil salad

Veganomicon recipe: lentil salad

I loved this one! It’s made with French lentils, tomatoes, red onion, carrots and radishes with a Dijon balsamic dressing, which gives it fantastic flavour. I’ll definitely make this one again to use for weekday lunches.

4. Applesauce oat bran muffins

Veganomicon recipe: Applesauce oat bran muffins

These turned out really nice and moist. And I liked the unique spiced flavour that the cardamom added. Even my mom liked them – she couldn’t believe they were vegan!

Overall I think Veganomicon is a great cookbook for someone starting a vegan diet, especially someone who needs some cooking pointers. I liked most of the recipes I tried and will probably cook from it again!

Have you ever tried a recipe from Veganomicon?

Do you find that the explosion of blogs and internet recipe resources means you don’t cook from cookbooks as often?


Filed under cookbook

Three dinners out

Hi guys! This is the post I meant to put up on Friday but then my blog went down because Jenny was transferring me over to a self hosted blog with Bluehost (I highly recommend her if you’re ever looking for blog services). I’m still working on getting set up, so bear with me over the next few days!

So I’ve been doing a really bad job living up to the name “Chelsea’s Healthy Kitchen” lately. I mean, when was the last time I actually posted a recipe? Instead of cooking I’ve just been doing a lot of eating out this summer! This week I ate out 3 times, which is pretty much the norm for me lately. I’m okay with that though, especially when good food is involved.

Tuesday was supposed to be my sister’s last day at home (however she’s now staying until Sunday), so we got take out sushi and spent the evening watching old episodes of Good Eats (Dear Food Network: please bring back this show). I got some of my favourites: wakame salad, a salmon avocado roll, and tuna sushi. Plus I tried out a new-to-me roll: the futo maki roll, which had egg, crab, marinated pumpkin skin, pickled radish and cucumber in it. I liked it!

Ichiban sushi

Then on Wednesday my friend Allyson and I met up for dinner at The Naked Sprout, which we both love but haven’t been to lately because we always go to Kindfood. They have a new menu, so we were pumped to check it out!

To drink I had a blueberry Tonica kombucha, which is a local company from Toronto. It was okay, but it’s not as good as GTs, Rise, and Cathy’s kombucha.

Tonica kombucha blueberry

For an appetizer I got a half order of the kickin’ kale salad which was massaged with avocado and had red cabbage, carrots, goji berries, and hemp seeds in it. It was really good – but it would have been made even better by a pinch of salt to bring out the flavours.

Naked Sprout kickin' kale salad

They have both raw and cooked main dishes at The Naked Sprout, but I couldn’t have any of the raw ones because they all contain nuts. The cooked ones all sounded amazing though, so I wasn’t too upset. It took me an embarrassingly long time to decide, but I eventually ordered the BBQ pulled tofu sandwich with greens, avocado, and melted jalapeno havarti vegan cheese.

The Naked Sprout BBQ pulled tofu sandwich

I was seriously blown away by this sandwich. You all know I love my meat and real cheese, but this vegan version was actually just as tasty and satisfying. I was so impressed!

The vegan eats continued on Thursday when my friend Shannon came to visit for the day. She’s listened to me yammer on about my love for Lettuce Love Cafe for the past year, so she really wanted to try it. It didn’t take much convincing me to go!

Kelly's Bake Shoppe - Chelsea and Shannon

And guess what? I actually didn’t get the Buddha Bowl or QuinWow Bowl! Are you shocked? I am. I decided to switch things up for once and get the Huevos Rancheros bowl which has scrambled tofu, black beans, salsa, tomatoes, avocado, and cilantro on a bed of brown rice. I love the Mexican flavours in it!

Lettuce Love Cafe Huevos Rancheros

It’s been a week of great food! But as much as I love eating out, I’m ready to get back into the habit of meal planning and cooking again… after Sunday, that is, because I’m meeting up with Sam for lunch!

Have you eaten out at a restaurant this week? Where did you go and what did you order?


Filed under Burlington, restaurant