experimentation station.

by Janetha on March 18, 2010

in meals

i have been trying a few new things out in the kitchen today!  this post is going to be full of stuff, so sit tight and stay hydrated.

first of all i just want to say that i was overwhelmed with how many people told me my poop would be green from all that food coloring.

for the record, you guys were wrong.

that was enough poop talk to last me the rest of 2010, so let’s move on to more exciting things.. FOOD.


meal 1: PB&J protein oats @ 9:30 AM


this had 1/3 cup oats, 1 scoop vanilla protein powder, 1 TB mighty maple, 1 TB smuckers sugar free and 1 TB of oikos greek yog.


i really wanted yoatgurt but the carb to protein ratio is a little off and i am trying to be as close to 40/40/20 as possible.. so i just added a dollup (1 TB) of greek yogurt to give the oats that tang.


340 calories, 10g fat, 32g carbs, 35g protein

technically, i could make yoats with a smaller portion of oats and more protein powder and it would balance out perfectly, so i guess i will have to mess around with some macros and perfect the quantities. soon.

thursday is officially the hardest day for  me to focus.  i think by the time thursday rolls around i have hit max capacity for dealing with work nonsense and i just can’t get motivated.  this thursday was no exception.

luckily lunch came around pretty quick.  it should be no surprise that food is one thing i never have trouble focusing on ;)

meal 2: spinach turkey meatloaf wrap + baby carrots


whenever i make turkey meatloaf i don’t freeze any of it because i love the leftovers so much.  i have no problem eating it for days and days in a row.  im excited to eat it again tomorrow!


baby carrots confuse me. where does the rest of the carrot go?  oh well, they were on sale so that is why they are on my plate, confusing or not.

ugh. my sweet tooth got to me again. i have found that it comes only after lunch. not after dinner. strange.. anyway~ i went with 1/3 of a chai tea luna bar.


all together: 399 calories, 11g fat, 45g carbs, 37g protein

i was reading ellie’s blog today and her sweet-but-savory egg white omelet looked insanely delicious, so i emailed her on how exactly to make it.  here is what she said:

“whisk 3 egg whites with cinnamon, vanilla and sweetener (optional), pour into frying pan sprayed with pam and cook until wee bubbles appear- chop a Laughing Cow wedge on top, add wee dollops of jam, fold in half until cheese is melty, plate up and serve :D”

i love her use of the word “wee” :)

so.. i didn’t have any vanilla or sweetener at work.. and i also didn’t have a frying pan. i really wanted to give it a shot for my pre-workout snack, so i decided to improvise.

4 egg whites + cinnamon + 2 tsp vanilla protein powder (i figured this could replace the vanilla and the sweetener… uh… ok)


since i didn’t have a frying pan, i decided to microwave the mix.  i always microwave my egg whites at work and they turn out fantastic.  i figured this method would work out just fabulously.

i popped the mix in the microwave and took a photo of the filling for my delicious sweet-but-savory egg white omelet:


oh boy, i was getting excited.

the microwave beeped and i expected to pull out a perfect egg white omelet, as usual.  uh. wrong-o, janetha b.


hahah! look at that! turns out that the protein powder made the egg whites all sorts of fluffy/rubbery/weird.. and only on the edges.. the middle was still liquid.

total fail!

oh well, pre-workout meal plans changed. i will have to give this recipe another go when i have all the proper components!

meal 3: isopure plus & mini larabar @ 3:45 PM


i picked this drink up at GNC the other day because i loved the stats:


i was hoping it tasted amazing because you can’t beat 15g’s of protein and 0g carbs for 60 calories.


the verdict?

LOVED IT! i am going to go buy more of these right away!

the mini larabar was sent to me from the lovely amie.


i usually don’t buy larabars because of the low protein/high carb content, but i LOVE how they taste.


since the protein drink had 0 carbs this actually ended up balancing out perfectly.

all together: 180 calories, 6g fat, 16g carbs, 17g protein


today was an upper body workout day and i planned to hit it hard. gotta get those arms in prime wedding dress condition, yaknowhatimean?

before i dive into the details, i want to explain how the body for life lifting workouts are laid out.  several of you have asked me about it so i figured i would just tell everyone in a post.


  • weight training occurs every other day, 3 days a week, with an upper body/lower body split.. alternating every other lift day. so, one week there will be 2 upper body workouts and 1 lower body workout and the next week it will be vice versa.
  • upper body consists of: triceps, back, biceps, shoulders & chest.  lower body consists of: quads, hamstrings, abs & calves. this is according to body for life. i like to add in glute and lower back training on my lower body days.
  • for the workouts, you do all of one muscle and then move onto the next.  for each muscle, there are 6 sets which consist of two different exercises.  you do five sets of one exercise and then one set of the second exercise.  for the five sets, you gradually increase the weight and decrease the reps (like a reverse pyramid).  you rest between each set except for the fifth. between the fifth set and the final set, there is no rest. for the final set, you switch to the second exercise. here is an example:

let’s say you are working your quads.

exercise (move) weight reps
split squat 10# dumbbells 12
split squat 12# dumbbells 10
split squat 15# dumbbells 8
split squat 20# dumbbells 6
split squat 10# dumbbells 12
leg press 100# setting 12
  • you want to base your weight setting on the RPE (rate of perceived exertion) scale.  the first set should be somewhat easy. the next should be challenging. the one after that should be fairly hard. the set with 6 reps should be very hard to complete. the fifth and sixth set should be the high point of the workout, where you really struggle to pound out the reps.  if it is too easy, you need to up the weight.

i know this is pretty confusing~ i think it is just hard to explain but once you understand, it is really simple to memorize.  i don’t ever have to write down my workouts and i always know what is coming next.  it is a really fun structure to follow!

with that said, i will now tell you the details of today’s upper body workout.  since i explained the format a bit more, i am going to change the way i type the details. please let me know if it makes sense.  instead of resting between sets, i did something to keep my heart rate up. the activity i did between sets is listed under the table, marked with an asterisk.

  • 5 min/level 10 elliptical warmup


move # rep @ weight
overhead cable extension 12 @ 35#
10 @ 40#
8   @ 45#
6   @ 50#
12 @ 35#
tricep cable pushdown 12 @ 35#

*boxing holding 3# dumbbells, 30 seconds x 4


move # rep @ weight
cable biceps curl 12 @ 25#
10 @ 30#
8   @35#
6   @ 40#
12 @ 25#
dumbbell hammer curl 12 @ 10# dumbbells

*jumping jacks holding 3# dumbbells, 30 seconds x 4


move # rep @ weight
single arm dumbbell rows 12 @ 17.5#
10 @ 20#
8   @ 22.5#
6   @ 25#
12 @ 17.5#
bent over barbell rows 12 @ 40#

*pike crunches on bench, 15 reps x 4


move # rep @ weight
incline dumbbell chest press 12 @ 17.5# each hand
10 @ 20# each hand
8   @ 22.5# each hand
6   @ 25# each hand
12 @ 17.5# each hand
incline dumbbell chest flyes 12 @ 10# each hand

*ball crunches, 25 reps x 4


move # rep @ weight
upright barbell rows 12 @ 20#
10 @ 25#
8   @ 30#
6   @ 40#
12 @ 25#
lateral dumbbell raises 12 @ 5# each hand

*15 second rest between sets



i got home from the gym and was going to make a post-workout smoothie.. but i was greeted with a package from lizzy!!!!



i decided that my post-workout nutrition (AKA meal 4) would be a mean & lean powow bar! @ 6:00 PM

80 calories, 1g fat, 4g carbs, 15g protein


awesome stats, awesome ingredients.. and most importantly~ awesome taste! thank you so much, lizzy! i will gladly be your product tester FOR LIFE!

after this, marshall & i went to the grocery store to get some essentials for the dinner i whipped up:


mmmm… can you guess what i made?

meal 5: sun dried tomato & basil & feta stuffed chicken + roasted broccoli @ 8:30 PM


270 calories, 8g fat, 12g carbs, 37g protein

super easy to make meal. here is how it went down:

step 1: chop the basil, open the feta container and the sun dried tomato pesto jar. (i know, such difficult tasks!)


step 2: butterfly the chicken, spread 1 T of pesto, 1 oz of feta and a good amount of basil inside chicken breast


step 3: coat chicken breasts in egg whites and then in bread crumbs


step 4: bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in center (check with a knife)


voila! easy as 1, 2, 3, 4!!

for marshall, i whipped up some noodles to go with the chicken:


these noodles are SO good! i need to go back to cali so i can buy more! or trader joe’s just needs to come to utah. yup. i think so.

while i was mixing the noodles (with the pesto and feta) marshall had a photo shoot with my chicken and optional side dishes:





pepper grinder..


hahah.. yes, i am marrying this goofy kid.

i think the roasted broccoli went best ;)


this chicken was amazing! toot, toot. yes, that is my own horn that you hear!!


here is marshall’s plate.


oh, how i wish i had the metabolism of this guy..


marshall declared he likes steamed broccoli better than roasted broccoli.. he is crazy! i am all about the roasted!

after dinner i decided to do some more experimenting and whipped up some peanut butter chocolate two bite protein brownies!


yes. that is what i have dubbed them. alternate name would be “healthy version of two-bite brownies” mmm.. i love those damn two-bite bits of heaven!

i was going to make susan’s apple cinnamon protein bars but all my vanilla protein powder is at work.  so i improvised.


into the bowl went:

  • 1 cup egg whites
  • 2 cups oats
  • 8 scoops (aka 4 servings) biochem chocolate fudge whey protein powder
  • 6 TB naturally more peanut butter
  • enough water to mix ingredients well (added gradually)

separated this mixture into 24 mini muffin cups:


again, i am going to express my LOVE for silicone baking pans/mats/etc!!

baked these at 350 degrees for almost 10 minutes.. and they were done!


each bite has 68 calories, 1.7g fat, 6.3g carbs and 6.4g protein! great ratios and they are fun to eat :)


i had two.


these taste really good!!


to be honest, they are a tad dry on the outsides~ but they are still delicious. i am pretty impressed that i just made these up on a whim. the recipe could use some tweaking but for the most part i am stoked!

these will come in handy for that after lunch sweet tooth i have been having lately!!

is this post long enough? yeah, probably. i have a lot more to talk about but i think i have taken up enough of your time for now. don’t worry.. i will be back. with lots more rambling. i am full of it.

tomorrow is national chocolate with caramel day so i am going to go back to the kitchen and get to work on a special treat for the office.. it may or may not be those life changing brownies that zesty posted about awhile back and susan whipped up for treat monday. wink, wink.



1. what wins: steamed or roasted?  one vote for roasted right here!

2. tell me about your recipe flops!


xo. janetha b.

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naturalnonsense March 19, 2010 at 1:10 pm

That Laughing Cow and raspberry combo is bangin! I’ve made that on a sandwich so many times and people think I’m a freak. I LOVE that Classico Pesto; we get it at Target and just dip bread and crackers in it, but stuffing chicken with it? Good call! Don’t we all wish we had a guy’s metabolism? *sigh* Have a great weekend, girl!

luckytastebuds March 19, 2010 at 1:14 pm

oh my goodness, my two loves – roasting and steaming. AHHHH if i HAD to choose, i would pick roasting, but there are some things that I prefer steamed. Here’s my list of veggies and what category they fall under. It’s short, i Promise!

Steam: Cabbage, broccoli, Bak Choy (These things don’t taste good dry and crunchy. In fact, I find that steaming makes it sweeter!)
Roast: Cauliflower, Brussels Sprouts, Potatoes, Carrots

Hmm lots of recipe flops. My first cookies baking experience involved 1 cup of SALT instead of sugar. You can imagine how that turned out huh?? But your muffins. OH MY, so cute and yummy looking…

Deb (SmoothieGirlEatsToo) March 19, 2010 at 1:21 pm

Hey Janetha Bean- I wouldn’t give up on the microwave eggs yet. I know lots of bloggers do them. I’m wondering if you need to do them on low or medium power and maybe give them a stir or a push mid-way so that all of it cooks. Also wondering what a Tsp of coconut flour or baking powder would do?? Creamier, fluffier? dunno.

Enjoyed your bfl description. I consider myself a low-ish carb eater but could never eat that low carb and not kill someone (poor Derek) in the process.

Roasted and loads of fails. Last one was the world famous avocado chocolate pudding that everyone raves about. I think I didn’t use enough cocoa because it just became brown avocado mush and I had to chuck about $7 worth of veggies and it darn near killed me!

Happy friday!

Jenna March 19, 2010 at 1:57 pm

Never tried roasted broccoli before! Sounds pretty good though :)

ksgoodeats March 19, 2010 at 3:16 pm

Haha – “wee bubbles” too cute!! Sweet and savory eggs has intrigued me for a while now. Sorry about the fail! Those two bite brownies are so damn dangerous! I LOVE your version!! I once burnt brown rice in the microwave :)

Tamizn March 19, 2010 at 3:35 pm

I loved roasted but steamed are my fav, those muffins look divine! x x

BroccoliHut March 19, 2010 at 3:38 pm

LOL I had no idea people were so vocal about poop color. Glad to hear everything was normal:)
STEAMED for me!

Kelly March 19, 2010 at 3:42 pm

What a yummy day you had!!! I am going to go with steamed! Against the grain I know!! But I love fresh steamed veggies…they taste so fresh and crisp that way! :)

Haleigh March 19, 2010 at 4:47 pm

My biggest recipe flop didn’t necessarily have to do with the recipe.. it was ME! I used to be a horrible cook when I first moved out on my own. I thought that I would attempt making a baked quiche/frittata type dish and I put the mixture into a spring form pan… Yeah, it went EVERYWHERE! It took hours to clean up the mess. I cried like a little girl.

I am definitely a roasted veggie fan.. a little olive oil, S+P is all you need.

Those brownie bites look sinful.. definitely not like a healthy treat! Yum!!

Erica March 19, 2010 at 5:04 pm

Love all of the experimentation- how truly great recipes are found! Your morning bowl or oats looks so so good! I need to start beefing up my breakfasts a bit ;) Thank you for the inspiration. The protein brownies sound yummy! I really want to make some of my own- Josh and I would both love these. Hope you have a fabulous weekend

Kelly March 19, 2010 at 5:20 pm

I have to say that I hate eggs, but I do like the egginess of french toast and this recipe was just calling to me, so tonight the hubs made it for me (since I’ve never actually made eggs) and oh my god was it freakin delicious!! I may be baking up the protein brownies tonight as a little treat too.. this post was very successful ;)

Julie March 19, 2010 at 7:32 pm

SO many things.

1. i’ve missed you dearly and i hope you spend your honeymoon avec moi ;) haha
2. sweet egg white omlettes are AMAZING. i put a honkin amount of canned pumpkin plus the laughing cow in the middle (and add protein powder to the egg white mix) and then it makes a beaut all melted up.
3. your little bites look deleeleccctable!!!!
4. its so not fair that marshall is on the pre wedding pasta diet.

Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) March 19, 2010 at 8:08 pm

first your friends are awesome sending you yummy goodies, but you are such a doll and clearly, everyone knows it :)

the peanut butter chocolate two bite protein brownies! OMG yes, life changing. But they have 1 CUP of egg whites. Crap. I dont think I can omit or tweak that.

And the silicon muffie tray, i dont have one but need one. I almost bought one 2 weeks ago but decided i dont bake enough (unbake, yes!) to justify$$ it but now i regret it.

Caramel + choc is my FAVE flavor combo in the entire world. OMG it’s my day tomorrow. How awesome is that!!! :)

Andrea@WellnessNotes March 19, 2010 at 8:14 pm

The chicken looks really good! And the protein brownies… I so want dessert right now…

I LOVE roasted veggies!

Happy Weekend! :)

crunchy granola gal March 20, 2010 at 2:46 pm

can you come to brooklyn and cook stuffed chicken (and everything else) for me? thaaaanks!

mom March 20, 2010 at 6:11 pm

Yum roasted for sure!! Please please drop off some of those yummy looking muffins too!!

Well for years I have had ultra FLAT cookies – oops, expired baking soda, not just a little expired but 15 years expired, no wonder my cookies had the flats hahaha!!!


Bekah March 21, 2010 at 6:59 am

Mean and lean! One of my favorite phrases. :) ah Janetha,I always LOVE your italian low calorie meals. I mean.. what about that meal doesn’t look absolutely delicious? Seriously. Chicken and broccoli. LOVE. And yes, roasted definitely wins in my book too! But I have to say steaming is a fast, (no wait for pre-heating) kind of method. I use it sometimes to re-heat roasted kabocha, or an uncooked sweet potato. Still pretty tasty.

Hope you are well my dear! You have no idea how excited I am that you are getting married. :) I still think about it! And even though things come out dry in the kitchen, don’t we usually eat it anyway? I know in the dorm I try many things and usually they taste pretty darn good.. so I always eat it regardless. Baha.

danica March 22, 2010 at 12:18 pm

I used to make something called an Egg White Flip when I did Cooler 1 on The Eat Clean Diet (translate that to major strict and you can’t do it for long b/c it’s what body builders do LOL). It’s the same concept but you add apple…sometimes I’d brave it and add 1/4 c of oats too. It is surprisingly tasty!

OMG ~ I LOVE your stuffed chicken! Must try! Jay always teases me when I brag about a recipe too….he will walk around going “toot, toot!” :D So funny!

Love ya,


Amanda (Two Boos Who Eat) March 23, 2010 at 4:36 pm

You guys really do need a TJ’s. I’ll send one of ours to you! haha

I loved the stuffed chicken recipe. I need to try that out! I love Marshall’s photo shoot. Adorable.

Those two bite brownies are GENIUS!!!! They look so professional too!

snackface March 23, 2010 at 6:15 pm

Hold the phuckn phone. I need those little brownie bitelettes! And seriously, guys’ metabolisms…my broskie is a twig. He has runway legs.

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