Kristi and Darlene give you plenty of options for healthy foods to ADD to your diet this month and beyond! Spoiler: we are not going to tell you what you shouldn’t eat, and no food is a “bad” food around here! 


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Show notes for episode 36 – Healthy Food Does Taste Good!

There is no “bad food” or “good food.” See our episode #20 Food is Food Episode. No need to eat perfectly all the time! 

List of delicious healthy foods: 




Nutritional yeast and brewer’s yeast (I know kristi is going to fight me on this one! lol)

Nutritional yeast is deactivated yeast and it has a really nutty/cheesy flavor so it’s a staple for vegans and plant-based diets. It is the same type of yeast that’s used to bake bread and brew beer. But the yeast has been deactivated in the process.

  • It is a complete protein: Nutritional yeast contains all nine essential amino acids that humans must get from food. One tablespoon contains 2 grams of protein, making it an easy way for vegans to add high-quality protein to meals
  • It contains many B vitamins: One tablespoon of nutritional yeast contains 30–180% of the RDI for B vitamins. When fortified, it is especially rich in thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12.
  • It contains trace minerals: One tablespoon contains 2–30% of the RDI for trace minerals, such as zinc, selenium, manganese and molybdenum.


Some of my fav things to make with nutritional yeast: cashew cheese, cheesy popcorn, and vegan parmesan and vegan pasta sauces, pesto or soup. There’s a really good vegan nacho dip I made with it and with all the fake/soy cheese out there, I prefer using Nutritional Yeast to eating other kinds of fake cheese. 


Nuts + seeds – and they don’t need to be plain. 😉 Here’s some spiced/sweet nut recipes: Cinnamon Almonds, Honey Roasted Walnuts, My Favorite Spiced Mixed Nuts.


Hummus and other things to do with beans 

Yogurt instead of sour cream

Roasted veggies are always SO good! Darlene’s Moroccan Salad with Ras El Hanout 

Fruit – Nature’s candy!!! 

Kombucha (look for the low sugar brands or brew it at home)


Coffee – antioxidants

Chocolate – dark chocolate 

Seaweed/Nori snacks

Dairy as long as you can tolerate it 

WATER!!! – Drinking enough water every day can give you an amazing pick me up. You don’t have to drink your water plain, you can do sparkling water (minus the sweeteners). Or, you can add fruit to your regular or sparkling water. It’s an instant flavor infusion. One of my favorites, using frozen fruit as ice cubes. 


Let’s not be afraid of fats!

In fact, eating fat can actually help you to feel fuller longer. Hey, hey! 

Let’s also stop being fearful of carbs!

They are not the enemy. I promise. No matter what all the latest diets tell you. Remember, they are trying to sell you a dream and that dream requires you to follow their rules. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. 

Carbs are the body’s main fuel source. We use carbs as our source of energy to walk from point A to point B. If you’ve ever been on a low carb diet and felt as though you are walking through mud with a 100# of bricks on your back, it is because your body is lacking in the main fuel source – carbs. 


Meals that make me feel like a million bucks: 

Salmon, broccoli + rice or potatoes on a sheet pan with teriyaki or some kind of simple sauce. (you could easily swap chicken for this)

Soups! Soups that are full of veggies, beans or lentils. 

Lentil salad with greens and goat cheese 

Roasted veggies of any kind. I love this roasted veggie salad on my blog (salad with no greens except flat-leaf parsley) and you can eat it room temp or hot as a side dish.

There are some great salad cookbooks out there that get really interesting with different toppings, dressings, nuts/seeds, ect. Loaded up salads in general

Veggie stir fry – minus soy sauce though. 

Soup and salad

Smoothies – minus the dairy for Kristi 

Toast with peanut butter and piece of fruit


Ways to add flavor to your food – and make pretty much anything taste good. 

  • Salsa, pico de gallo, or hot sauce
  • Seasonings – fresh or dried. There are SOOOOO many options here.
  • Here’s a great tool for pairing spices and foods! Here’s some books that talk about spices and flavor pairings: The Flavor Bible or The Flavor Thesaurus 
  • Citrus. Add lemon, lime, or orange juice to your food. 
    • You can use the zest too!
  • Garlic, onions, shallots…
  • Oil & vinegar. Balsamic vinegar is next level!
  • Roasting – makes pretty much anything taste amazing. 
  • Chimichurri sauce: Here’s a recipe from Bon Appetit
  • Hummus (or any pureed bean spread – like with black beans. YUM!)
  • Ranch! 
  • Taco sauce or enchilada sauce in a jar from Trader Joe’s 
  • A small amount of a full-fat ingredients or condiments like avocado topped on a taco, full-fat yogurt or sour cream, or a really good quality parmesan can satisfy you and you will actually feel fulfilled and full while eating less of it. 


Darlene’s Fav Healthy Cookbooks: 

Oh She Glows (Life-Affirming Nacho Dip and Tex Mex Casserole my family loves)

Meatless by Martha Stewart

Everyday Food Light

Super Natural Everyday by Heidi Swanson (yogurt biscuits and millet muffins)

Bean By Bean by Cresent Dragonwagon


Darlene – cleaned out our pantry and we have a shortlist of items to use up – so I am getting creative. We had forbidden rice in there and I made that with dinner one night and then we used it in fried rice! We had garbanzo bean flour and I used that in a veggie burger mixture instead of regular flour. SO I’m inspired to use up what I have in my pantry in creative ways! 

Kristi – Canned foods are my jam right now. So, soup, beans, tomatoes, sauces…. If it is in a can, I’m using it! And, since we are sort of on the topic, canned foods CAN (pun intended) be healthy! 😉 


Food for thought:

All foods are food. Your morality – being a good or bad person – has NOTHING to do with the foods you eat. If you eat a slice (or bite) of cake, you are not bad. Just as eating carrots as a snack does not make you a good person. 


What’s for dinner? 

Darlene – potato rounds baked in the oven topped with homemade chili – potato chili nachos?? 

Kristi – Tortellinis – pasta kick lately! 


Tough Cookie: 



Where to find Darlene

Pickle Jar Studios website
Pickle Jar Studios on Instagram


Where to find Kristi:    

kristi coughlin


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