Favorite Lunch EVER

Thank you guys SO much for having a couple of those recipes saved that I can repost!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you! I plan to work on the recipe site later on and I will be retyping the granola recipe as well as the Shrimp Scampi (tomorrow IS Valentine’s Day after all!!!!).

So, yesterday when I posted dinner I was sort of in a grumpy mood..I really don’t feel like I gave this “chicken” salad the respect it deserves! It’s like (seriously) the BEST vegetarian/vegan food (this is technically not vegan because Quorn products do say on the back “may have traces of dairy and eggs”–you could easily make it vegan though by substituting another “chicken” product instead) I have EVER (!!!) made! I don’t know if its because I used Quorn cutlets (which rock by the way!) or because of the juicy grapes…but it was freakin amazing and I’m so sad I just ate the last of it for lunch! I will def. make this again really soon. The funny thing is that I never even really liked regular chicken salad that much…I don’t like things doused with mayo. This, however, is gently tossed in a soy-based dijon flavored “nayo”, which contributed to its wonderful-ness. I might even make this again this weekend so my mom can try it because she actually wants to make the vegetarian-turn as well but doesn’t know what to eat!!! The salad is filling, yet remarkably light and low in calories, and has wonderful crunch from celery. My new favorite lunch. Hands down. I also had a juicy red pear as well!
I’m off to run errands now….actually headed over to Winter Park (the area of Orlando that I travel religiously to for Whole Foods) because there’s some sort of health food “superstore” over there. Yeah, yeah, yeah……I know I shouldn’t go because I have absolutely NO money to spend! But I love just “looking” at everything and I need some inspiration for dinner tonight! Here’s what I have in my kitchn: tofu (well thats in the fridge), chickpeas, soba noodles, peanut butter, ginger root, cilantro…..a variety of random other thing. I want to come up with a really yummy dinner with it all tonight!


An open-faced mountain of joy… in the world did I ever manage to close this thing??!!


A little messy, but totally worth it. This would even be better stuffed into a large whole wheat pita so none of the yummy salad would fall out!!

This morning on my way to class I had 1/2 of a banana-nut Clif bar. Held me over perfectly!

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  • Danielle
    February 13, 2008 at 5:33 pm

    Hi Jenna,
    Glad to hear you’re feeling better! I had a question regarding dairy in my own diet. I know you’ve just read Skinny Bitch which condemns the “unnecessary” food group but I could never let it go, I love milk and yogurt and cheese way too much! Is it alright to still incorporate it? It may not always be the best choice health-wise but I do enjoy it. I’d be interested to hear anyone else’s thoughts as well. Thanks so much!

  • VeggieGirl
    February 13, 2008 at 5:35 pm

    That lunch DOES look quite impeccable – to make it “fully vegan,” you could probably substitute seitan; or there are Lightlife® “chik’n strips” as well!!

    Have a lovely time in Winter Park!!

  • arimcg
    February 13, 2008 at 5:42 pm

    I use those lightlife chik’n strips all the time – they’re pretty good once you brown them a little.

  • Katie
    February 13, 2008 at 5:47 pm

    Hey Jenna/ frozen burger eaters,
    These Morningstar burgers look great and I’m already a Boca fan. My problem is, I’m a poor college student who doesn’t have a freezer. Do you think that if I bought frozen burgers and put them in the coldest section of my fridge, they’d be OK for a week or so? Thanks!
    Also–your sandwich looks delicious! The name “Quorn” freaks me out a little but I’ve heard good things. Maybe I’ll give it a try.

  • Becky
    February 13, 2008 at 5:49 pm

    Jenna-Use those ingredients, mix in some soy sauce, and you would have a wonderful Thai inspired dish! Sounds great to me!

  • rivermomx3
    February 13, 2008 at 6:26 pm

    Hi Jenna,
    Just wanted to follow up and let you know how SAD I am! After deciding to get certified like you, my husband told me to make sure that the State of Ohio will recognize it. So after some searching I found out that I would need to be licensed with the state to do anything like that.
    In the State of Ohio, the term ‘nutrionist’ or even using the word ‘nutrition’ insinuates that I am giving dietetic counseling and that is a no-no. There are ways around it as far as what I can and cannot give advice about. So, I am now going to search for some sort of program that is for ‘wellness’. I don’t know how successful I will be, if anyone happens to know of anything, I would appreciate it!
    One of my friends is an RD, but she’s never seemed particularly enthusiastic about it, but I may ask her if she would like to team up and start some sort of consultation service. Then she could do the actual nutrition counseling.
    I’m just sort of discouraged now. Becoming an RD is not an option at this point in my life. But I really hope to come up with some solution!

  • Katherine
    February 13, 2008 at 6:28 pm

    Veggie girl,

    I went on the food for life website to look at their breads. There breads seem to be made with soybeans. I thought you avoided soy for medical reasons? So do I.


  • SDF
    February 13, 2008 at 6:34 pm

    Hey ladies,

    I figured I might as well post my morning question on here, since I asked it about 2 minutes for this post was up

    I have a question about “ideal weights”. Where do they grab their numbers from? I’m 5?11 and I weigh 135 pounds…and according to ideal weights I should weigh 20 more pounds!! I have a small bone structure, and I don’t think this would look good at all. Does anybody know where they get that information from?

  • SDF
    February 13, 2008 at 6:36 pm

    Hey ladies,

    I figured I might as well post my morning question on here, since I asked it about 2 minutes for this post was up.

    I have a question about “ideal weights”. Where do they grab their numbers from? I’m 5?11 and I weigh 135 pounds…and according to ideal weights I should weigh 20 more pounds!! I have a small bone structure, and I don’t think this would look good at all. Does anybody know where they get that information from?

  • linds
    February 13, 2008 at 6:41 pm

    There has been so much talk about diet and lifestyle choices lately I thought I’d post this article on inter-dietary relationships.. It’s pretty interesting- it’s called “I Love You, but You Love Meat”

  • Serena
    February 13, 2008 at 6:48 pm

    Hi Jenna!

    I read an issue of Body + Soul in a hotel this weekend and saw a recipe that looked so good that I actually tore the page out of the magazine (don’t tell!). It was for Soba, Tofu and Vegetable Stir Fry. Sounds perfect for your dinner. Here’s the recipe for anyone interested:

    serves 4.
    8 oz sob noodles
    coarse salt
    2 tbs grapeseed oil
    1 pkg/14 oz extra-firm tofu, drained, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
    2 red bell peppers, chopped
    1 1/2 lbs broccoli, chopped
    1 lb bok choy, sliced
    4 garlic cloves minced
    1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
    3 tbs almond butter
    3 tbs rice vinegar
    2 tbs soy sauce

    cook soba noodles until al dente, drain, rinse with cold water, set aside. heat 1 tbs oil, add tofu, season w/ salt, cook 12-15 min or until golden, set aside. heat remaining oil, saute peppers, broc, bok choy, garlic, red pepper on med-high heat, 8-10 min, covering to cook down. while veggies cook, make sauce: whisk almond butter, 2 tbs water, vinegar and soy sauce. add reserved noodles, tofu and sauce to pan with veggies and cook 2-3 minutes until combined and heated through.

    i haven’t made it yet but hope to soon! would love to know if anyone tries it and what they think.

  • Serena
    February 13, 2008 at 6:55 pm

    that’s soba noodles as the first ingredient, not sob noodles!! 🙂

  • Serena
    February 13, 2008 at 6:57 pm

    and one more thing – there was nutrition info for the recipe. one fourth of the whole recipe is 543 calories, 33 g protein, 23 g fat, 63 g carb and 9 g fiber. i bet you could cut down the oil to 1 tbs to lower those numbers a bit if you wanted to.

  • Tina
    February 13, 2008 at 7:17 pm

    Hi Jenna,

    I’m making your Turkey Walnut Loaf tonight! It sounds wonderful! I’ll let you know how it turns out. 🙂

  • Annie
    February 13, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    Hi Jenna, Just wanted to say that I got the Apples for Jam cookbook from my mom for is absolutly adorable and everything sounds so good. I cant wait to make something, Im picking something out right now. Thanks for such a good recomendation!

  • Kristin
    February 13, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    Coincidence; I ate 1/2 a banana nut clif this morning as well! They’re fabulous!
    I’m trying that recipe asap, by the way… looks amazing! =)

  • Heather
    February 13, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    Im new to this blog and i just wanted to say im a huge fan of it already. I do have a question for you(or any one that wants to chime in) im interested in the vegetarian lifestyle and like your mom im not sure what to eat or even how to begin. Does any one have any tips, books or thoughts on how i can learn more about this life style change? Thanks for all your help in advance!!

  • Brianne
    February 13, 2008 at 7:49 pm

    Jenna, I bought skinny bitch!! =D

  • jenn
    February 13, 2008 at 7:51 pm

    Katie, maybe you could try cooking off the whole box (there are usually only 4 in there anyway) all at once, and then reheating it? I think you are supposed to thaw frozen products immediately before use (and not re-freeze if it has been thawed) for food safety reasons.

  • jenn
    February 13, 2008 at 8:05 pm

    SDF, outdated metropolitan life insurance tables, I believe…!

  • LittleTresa
    February 13, 2008 at 8:10 pm

    I just wanted to say I love your blog. I found it through kath’s. I also wanted to say I’m so glad you are not counting calories anymore. Unless for a recipe or something. Anyone who feels they don’t know the nutritional value/calories on something, just google it. I think that if you are eating healthy food in realistic portions there is no need to count calories or weigh yourself all the time. It personally makes me crazy! I wish you lived close to me I need a nice friend like you! Have a great day. : )

  • Katherine
    February 13, 2008 at 8:16 pm

    Jenna, just curious, if you are becoming a vegetarian to not harm animals, why do you make an exception for fish?

  • linds
    February 13, 2008 at 8:46 pm

    SDF- I don’t pay attention to those ideal weight things at allllll. I’m 5’1 and have a very small frame and often a suggested weight for someone my height is given as 110-115. Well, I weighed 110 once and I looked chubby, it was definitely too much for my frame! I agree with jenn, its just for insurance policies or its a very vague average value.

  • Kelly
    February 13, 2008 at 9:00 pm

    VEGGIE ROASTERS! Attention Please!!

    I bought a bag of cauliflower and was thinking of making some “cauliflower popcorn” I was going to season it and roast it up. So this is crazy to me because I have never had cauliflower (but I hear it’s pretty mild). Anyone done this before? If so, how did it turn out?

    Also, I have seen various recipes for doing the same thing with garbanzo beans (chickpeas).

    Any feedback?

  • Lisa
    February 13, 2008 at 9:56 pm

    Hi Jenna!

    I’ve been reading your blog and I’ve enjoyed it thus far. I tried your olive oil cake recipe last night, and it turned out great! I shared it with my co-workers today, and they loved it.

    I tried it myself last night, and thought it had a very familiar taste. I realized that it tasted like these little breakfast muffins I used to eat when I lived in Spain. I looked up the recipe for the muffins (called magdalenas) and saw that the recipe for the muffins also called for olive oil! It makes sense, since you adapted it from a Mediterranean cooking book. Thanks to you, I was brought back to a very happy time in my life, while eating the cake.

    Hope today is better than yesterday!


  • Jen
    February 13, 2008 at 9:58 pm

    Will you (or anyone else who copied it) please post your mom’s slow cooked pulled bbq chicken recipe? I was going to try it this weekend and got all the ingredients, but I never printed out the recipe. Thanks so much!!!!!

  • BethT
    February 13, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    Hey Jenna – do you cook the Quorn cutlets for this salad, then chop them, or just thaw them out and chop? I eat them often but have never tried them like this…

  • BethT
    February 13, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    And hey, Kelly –

    I roast cauliflower all the time – doesn’t taste like popcorn to me but tastes nice and nutty. I love it.

    I also LOOOOOOOVE roasted chickpeas – toss them with a little oil and minced garlic and roast, then cover in salt. YUMM

  • Regan
    February 13, 2008 at 10:24 pm

    Hey Jenna I was just wondering is you could maybe post your biscotti recipe? I know you are extremely busy right now but if you get a chance I would really appreciate it. Thanks!

  • jess
    February 13, 2008 at 10:43 pm

    re: ideal weights

    sdf and linds- I don’t buy into the height/weight charts at all, either. I’m almost 5’1 (5 feet and a 1/2 inch! 🙂 ), weigh 120, and wear a size 1 or 2. I’ve always been quite active and though I’m tiny, I’m very muscular. For YEARS I obsessed over “number” being too “high” for my height–to the point where I got my weight down to 108. Let me tell you, I looked and felt sooo sick…I was gaunt-looking, my bones were poking out (ouch!), and I stopped getting my period. So 120 seems to be my personal “ideal weight.” I think as long as your other numbers (like blood pressure, cholesterol, etc.) are in the “healthy range,” and you take care of youself by eating right and staying active, you don’t need to pay attention to what the charts deem is “average” or “ideal.”

  • jess
    February 13, 2008 at 10:50 pm

    p.s. Jenna, I made the olive oil cake last weekend and wanted to tell you it was a HUGE hit with my family! I actually served it plain (no powdered sugar on top) and it was great on its own. We’re Italian and we put olive oil in EVERYTHING, but this was the first time I’ve seen a cake made with it, so I was intrigued. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!

  • Mom
    February 13, 2008 at 10:52 pm

    SDF ~ Thank you so much for sharing that article! It really enlightened me and was very interesting. The sharing of food is definately an important part of our culture, starting from the breaking of bread to everyday celebrations. I love the idea of even sharing a side dish that you enjoy and respecting each other enough to offer options on the entree.

  • L.P.
    February 13, 2008 at 11:10 pm

    The rational part of my mind knows that I should seek professional help for this issue, but since this website boasts such an amazingly friendly, supportive, and knowledgeable readership I just have to ask, has anyone struggled with binge eating? Any tips? I do not binge and purge. Only the binge part. I eat very healthy, and then go on intense binges where if I literally put one more bite of food in my mouth then I might throw up. I get terrible side cramps and I mentally spiral. I sheepishly confess that I always thought eating disorders were a bit bullshit, and I privately considered people struggling with them to be vain and weak. I now feel nothing but compassion for those who have struggled with EDs, and I feel feel doubly guilty for my own behavior. I get angry with myself because I physically and mentally feel awful. I’ve tallied up calorie counts for my binges before and they have actually gotten up to 7,500 in one sitting. I am not overweight, however (yet). I have this terrible mentality where I’ll just think “well, just binge and enjoy it and you can always lose a few pounds in the next couple of weeks.” And this is basically what I do. I gain 1-3 pounds in about 48 hours (literal weight, not water or bloat weight), and then spend about a week and a half or so eating super healthy and working out intensely. This is so not healthy. I am sorry for this absurdly long post but this was extremely thereaputic for me to write! Thank you and thank you, and thank you.

  • jenna
    February 13, 2008 at 11:17 pm


    I cooked the Quorn cutlets in the micro for 2 minutes, let them cool, then chopped them up! Super yummy!!!

  • nat
    February 13, 2008 at 11:29 pm

    about the whole ideal weight. i think charts are ridiculous. I am 5’4″ and when i am weighing about 130 or 125 i look great. there is no way i could be 108 and be living healthy. It depends on ur body and if you are truely living healthy. If ur 5′ 11″ and 135 and your eating enough, working out and you feel great then who cares about the charts!! 🙂

    p.s. Jenna… i LOVE your blog!! thank u thank u thank u for doing this.!

  • Kerry
    February 13, 2008 at 11:29 pm

    Okay, Jenna! This is my first time posting, though I’ve been reading for awhile. Like everyone else here, I just adore your aproach to eating. I actually chose to read your blog only, for awhile, as I found it to be the most “healthful” for me. Though I’m a bit older than the demographic here (mostly college-age, I presume), I truly enjoy reading your blog for meal ideas, tips, and quite frankly, just for fun!

    What brought me out of lurkdom, however, is a plea for your mother’s shrimp recipe. I promised my daughter that I would make it for V-Day tomorrow night. Is there anyway you could get that reposted ASAP?

    Oh yes, I must give props to someone whose love is words. I teach Language Arts, and nothing beats opening children’s eyes to the world of rich, descriptive language. Go, Writer’s Workshop!

  • BethT
    February 13, 2008 at 11:35 pm

    Thanks Jenna – I really miss chicken salad since going veg and this looks awesome!!!

  • mags
    February 13, 2008 at 11:36 pm


    i struggle with binge eating as well, but not to that extent. i find it very helpful to portion things out. put things in a dish, on a plate, etc. and BEFORE you start eating put everything away so that you brain knows that you are done after your portion. it may help to turn off all of the lights in the kitchen and go eat somewhere else. also, after you finish eating your portion, try brushing your teeth or chewing a piece of gum. these are just little tricks i use, but like i said i have never binged THAT heavily, but feel your pain and the out-of-control-ness… there may be deeper reasons for your binging that maybe some informal therapy could help out with… or try journaling, write down how you feel after a binge and read that when you feel a binge coming on. also, make sure you are getting enough to eat throughout the day… i used to starve myself all day and then binge at night thinking i had “saved up” all of my calories. in reality i probably had, but that’s not a good mindset…. hope that helped 🙂 hang in there

  • Amanda M
    February 14, 2008 at 12:15 am

    Although we differ a little, I have suffered from binging and purging. I am currently in therapy dealing with it and have learned that often people binge or “stuff themselves” with food as a way of stuffing emotions. At first I thought this sounded crazy, but I started journaling and that has really helped! I also saw that you wrote that commenting on this blog was therapeutic for you so that may be a good idea! There are also websites specifically for people dealing with binge issues, which really helps to explore and know that you’re not alone! I find that restricting during the day REALLY leads to the binge behavior at night and this website along with KathEats has really helped to show me healthy ways to feel satisfied by planning out meals during the day. Don’t be afraid to ask for help because the longer the problem goes on, the harder it is to fix! 🙂

  • Kate
    February 14, 2008 at 12:28 am

    VeggieGirl- i would love a meal plan as well if you don’t mind!
    my email is
    thank you so much!

  • Serena
    February 14, 2008 at 12:33 am


    I think the advice Mags gave is really good. I used to binge eat periodically and I don’t do it as much anymore but every now and then (usually when I’m really stressed or emotional or overtired or hormonal), I will find myself eating waaay too much at night, and last night was actually one of those nights. I have tried the lights out and tooth brushing strategies, and it just doesn’t always work. I agree it’s probably not about food but about other things, and I also believe therapy can help but I totally understand that it’s hard to make that move. I also think it’s important to make sure you’re eating enough during the day – it sounds like you already have figured out that the cycle you’re in doesn’t help things. Can you try leaving the house when you think you’re starting to binge? Take a walk or get in the car and go for a drive? Or call a friend and talk to her – about how you’re feeling or just about something to get your mind off food. Also, what types of food do you over-eat? I’ve read that you can learn a lot from them. I tend to eat bread toasted with butter or jam. It’s like I need to alternate between salty and sweet. Anyway, good luck and know that people are out here who understand and are there to talk to if you need it!

  • l.e.m
    February 14, 2008 at 12:36 am

    L.P, Hi .. hunny.. you need to breathe.
    I have dealt with binge eating before and it isnt the place you want to be in your life. and it doesnt have to be either.

    when i went through this, I thought things would never ever change.. but they do. you need to realize that not eating perfectly all the time is completely and utterly normal..and HUMAN.

    you need to remember that working out and eating healthy is not just for “looks”. it is also for the health of it. this is what truly changed my situation around. i realized that I want to live a long life and
    I dont like how I feel or look after I eat bad, so I just dont do it…

    last night I had a bowl of chocolate ice cream with my friend..and it was delicious. and i didnt think about the 400 calories it probably had in it..thats the best thing about getting binge eating out of your that you can splurge every once in a while and feel like “damn that was good” rather than guilty.

    You said that after writing that post it was extremely therapeutic. do you think a journal would help??

    I know that some people binge eat when they are super stressed. maybe if you take out a journal and write why youre super stressed instead of heading for the kitchen.

    anyways, I HOPED THIS HELPS.. in the smallest way possible . atleast. i got over my binge eating alone, and i hope that if you dont decide to get professional help YOU DO TOO.

  • Kate
    February 14, 2008 at 12:46 am

    sorry VeggieGirl, I just found it in my inbox! thank you so much, it’s very appreciated.

  • Sydnie
    February 14, 2008 at 12:59 am

    Does anyone have Jenna’s granola recipe they could post? Thanks!

  • jenna
    February 14, 2008 at 2:39 am


    You can totally still eat those things and be healthy. The authors of skinny bitch are proposing a very radical diet and you can still be healthy if you don’t follow it!! Studies have shown that our bodies don’t NEED dairy…that doesn’t mean its the devil though and if you enjoy dairy there’s no need for you to stop. Of course, I wouldn’t advise full-fat dairy products, but skim milk can be healthy. Everyone’s diet varies and centers around their lifestyle choices and there will always be something that one person considers “bad” but other people praise. You just have to figure out what works for you!

  • jenna
    February 14, 2008 at 2:40 am

    I just re-wrote it for you!!! Its on the recipes page. I hope you and your daughter enjoy it! Let me know how it turns out 🙂

  • jenna
    February 14, 2008 at 2:40 am

    As is the granola recipe 🙂

  • Anou
    February 14, 2008 at 12:10 pm

    Jenna I wanted to say THANK YOU !! I ve been logging my food intake on the since october ( i dont need to lose any weight I am maintaining a 30 pound weight loss. ) and I ve thought it became kinda obsessive and tiring. THanks to your blog, its been a week since I decided to adopt intuitive eating and i feel so good and so happy and I ve stopped stuffing myself just because I could manage my calories in consequent. Instead i feel great all the time and i know i end up eating the amount of calories that is perfect for me at the end of the day eitherways. I also stopped feeling guilty about food in that last week. And i automatically eat healthier since I am still careful with my portions but i focus on getting the right foods and nutrients. Its really your layed back attitude about food that made me realise and I am just so happy i stopped counting calories. THanks again ! keep up the great job !