Beast to end all beasts

Hi friends! Hope your day has been as lovely as these flowers 😉


Lunch plans with a friend were re-scheduled, so I adjusted the day’s plan as necessary:


(Be lazy? Done and done)

After BodyPump (which was killerrrrrr. My biceps hate me), I munched a mahi burger over greens with mustard, and started to tackle to-dos.


Bell and I took a walk, then picked up the madre to run errands (she’s a fun errand buddy), stopped by to see my nana, tata and cousin who were at lunch, and then came back to make some lunch.

It ended up being the most legendary salad beast of 2011 😉

The base:


Greens and hummus

I knew I’d be using quinoa for the topping (which I lurve), but on its lonesome it leaves something to be desired.


(2 servings- I saved half for tomorrow’s lunch)

A little chopping action:



quinoa (2)

A beast to end all beasts:

salad (2)

Greens, hummus, topped with quinoa, red bell pepper, grape tomatoes, kalamata olives, crumbled goat cheese, oregano, sea salt, cayenne, drizzled with balsamic.

Please try hummus and balsamic together. Holy foodgasm face.

foodgasm-new-10 Source

Speaking of foodgasms, I also made some amazeballz to enjoy the next couple of days- they’ve been perfect little snacks!


I’m out- I hope you have a great night! <3



Today’s tip: Beef up your grains! Grains are fine and dandy on their own, but adding mix-ins can make them more voluminous and filling, and give a fun texture variety.

Some favorite combos:

-Greek style (above)- adding in cucumber, mint and parsley is delicious too

-Brown rice with saffron and peas

-Wheatberries with dried cranberries, goat cheese, orange zest and chopped fresh spinach

-Whole wheat couscous with raisins, slivered almonds, fresh parsley

-Millet with a little curry powder (or sauce), chopped cauliflower, cilantro

-Brown rice with nana shoyu, scallions, carrots, red bell pepper and chopped snap peas

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  1. Sana on January 19, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    Bahahaha! That is exactly what a foodgasm looks like 🙂 And it sounds like yummmm!

  2. MMiller on January 19, 2011 at 7:45 pm

    Still haven’t been able to perfect my quinoa! Just tastes “funny”!

    Your food always looks so good!

  3. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) on January 19, 2011 at 7:48 pm

    I agree that quinoa on it’s own is…a little lackluster. But it’s such an “adaptable” food…you can make it adapt to whatever you need. I have even gone sweet with it, i.e. mix it with fruit and maple syrup.

    Your tomatoes and quinoa action looks delish.

    I love that Giada face. lol.

    And I love your little dish of amazaballs. I have a few dish(es) like that. I keep all my ball flavors in the freezer and have a smorgasboard of choices in there 🙂

  4. Deborah on January 19, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    OMG….. Now THATS a salad! That looks fabulous!

  5. Ashley @ the fit academic on January 19, 2011 at 8:03 pm

    salad “beasts” are the best! I love salads and could eat them 100 different ways!

  6. BIOCHEMISTA on January 19, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    I make quinoa, veggies, beans(!), w/ balsamic all.the.time but neverrr thought to use hummus too! I bet it adds a nice creamy texture. Next salad monster I made you bet that’s what I’m having 😉

  7. Kristina @ Life as Kristina on January 19, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    You quinoa dish killed mine tonight (i’m such a slacker, haha). Love your combos! I started combining tahini and balsamic (i’ve been rocking red pepper hummus…as soon as I make some garlic i’ll be combining that!)

  8. Jessica @ How Sweet It Is on January 19, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    Perfect face for a foodgasm!

  9. maddie on January 19, 2011 at 8:38 pm

    your salad beast looks delicious! i like adding a little tahini and soy sauce to my quinoa then mixing in steamed veggies and slivered almonds!

  10. Joelle (The Pancake Girl) on January 19, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    OMG hahhah I’m dying. That face is amaze! Gotta love Giada.. PS love those flowers! My fav!

  11. Mer on January 19, 2011 at 8:57 pm

    Oh my gosh, your salad beast is positively mouthwatering!!!

  12. Tamara on January 19, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    I hope you do a little G’izzle video magic and show us how you make quinoa. Mine always ends up tasting like the pot I cook it in. *gross face*

    • Fitnessista on January 19, 2011 at 11:45 pm

      hahaha! maybe i’ll do a video on it 🙂

  13. Barbara on January 19, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    what is a tata?

    • Fitnessista on January 19, 2011 at 11:44 pm


  14. Alyssa @ fashion fitness foodie on January 19, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    Orange Gerbera Daisies are my FAVORITE! Did the pilot send you those? Lucky girl 🙂

    You can always count on Giada for a good foodgasm face!

  15. Courtney @ The Granola Chronicles on January 19, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    Hahaha! Love the picture from Food Network Humor – I love that site!

  16. Jill on January 19, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    When I want something quick and salty and reminiscent of my love for Chinese food, I boil some quinoa in a little chicken or veg broth and add a little squirt of soya sauce and it’s sooo goooood. Hits the spot. Even better with some red peppers thrown in.

  17. Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat on January 19, 2011 at 9:24 pm

    I’m with ya on the grains! I’m posting a kamut recipe tomorrow that I made this weekend and it as amazing –> think Whole Foods re-creation! Your mahi burger sounds delicious. I can’t say I’ve ever had one but I’m going to keep an eye out for them next time I’m shopping. Oh, and the Pilot has excellent taste in flowers! 😉

  18. Elizabeth on January 19, 2011 at 9:24 pm

    What brand of balsamic do you use/recommend? Thanks!

    • Fitnessista on January 19, 2011 at 11:43 pm

      i use trader joe’s 🙂

  19. Ashley on January 19, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    I love quinoa, and salads, and being lazy, and this post! 😀

  20. Jackie @ Baking Charms on January 19, 2011 at 9:30 pm

    I am obsessed with red quinoa in my salad! It is delicious

  21. Whitney on January 19, 2011 at 9:34 pm

    Haha! I was watching “Best Thing I Ever Ate” last night and Giada did like 4 of those faces over hot chocolate! Love it!

  22. Ilana on January 19, 2011 at 9:35 pm

    dy-ing over that quinoa mix. anything with olives is a win in my book.

  23. Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter on January 19, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    I did this a lot when I was on winter break, except would do it with leftover couscous! With basalmic + hummus + evoo as dressing. It was too perfect.

  24. Emily Eats Clean on January 19, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    Lazy time…I like it!! And I’m totally on a hummus kick right now.

  25. Jenna @ Eating Green, Staying Lean on January 19, 2011 at 10:02 pm

    That salad looks great! I never used to like salads before I started realizing how many different things you can actually put in them 🙂

  26. Devan on January 19, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    i felt like I was craving…needing something.. then I read “brown rice with saffron and peas” and i drooled a little bit.. sounds sooo good!!

  27. ashley@quasichick on January 19, 2011 at 10:12 pm

    I love all the grain combos, thanks for the tip! The Giada face made me spit out my water!! Freakin’ hilarious!! I’ve gotta make some balls!!

  28. Mary @ Bites and Bliss on January 19, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    hahaha! That picture made me laugh. Yeah..that’s a total foodgasm going on there.

  29. Heather on January 19, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    I just made some Amazeballs and they are amazing!! My lil-brother, who is super serious about weightlifting and being fit (he plays Division I college football), tried one and asked me to make some for him for tomorrow. He says it’ll be a perfect snack while he’s doing his workout. I am definitely looking forward to having one before I workout tomorrow. Thank you for the recipe, it has inspired me to start experimenting more in the kitchen!!

    • Fitnessista on January 19, 2011 at 10:51 pm

      whoo hoo!! thank you for letting m know 🙂

    • Fitnessista on January 19, 2011 at 11:28 pm

      yaaaay! i’m so glad you guys are fans 🙂

  30. Melissa (MelissaLikesToEat) on January 19, 2011 at 10:48 pm

    That picture of Giada is fan-freakin-tastic!!!!
    You wish is my command….I shall try balsamic and hummus!

  31. Molly on January 19, 2011 at 10:48 pm

    Oh Giada….I secretly want to be her. Fake accent and all.

  32. Running Betty on January 19, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    I like mixing brown mustard & rosemary in quinoa.

    • Fitnessista on January 19, 2011 at 11:28 pm

      oh YUM!

  33. Allison @ Food For Healing on January 19, 2011 at 10:51 pm

    that salad looks awesome! i’m starting to miss salads, so i think i will start re-introducing the greens back in my life, and making them exciting like that. yum.

  34. Namaste Gurl on January 19, 2011 at 11:17 pm

    I am all over your salad- hummus topped salads are indeed my favorite, especially with garlic gold oil and balsamic! I could eat that salad every meal:)

  35. Sarah (Sarah Learns) on January 20, 2011 at 12:12 am

    i love you grain combos! i have so many grains in ball jars that i want to use up before i move in a couple months. these combos will be great to beef up the grains into yummy meals! 🙂

  36. Christin@purplebirdblog on January 20, 2011 at 2:08 am

    That foodgasm face is perrrrfect!! lol 😀

  37. Gill (snaxandthecity) on January 20, 2011 at 3:24 am

    Great ideas on the grains Gina! I am always looking for ways to beef up my grains.

    And lol at the foodgasm face!

  38. Sabine @ thefruitpursuit on January 20, 2011 at 4:01 am

    i LOVE adding raisins & nuts to my grains!

    whole grain rice (rice & other grains combined) + baked chickpeas + raisins + nuts (pecans, cashews, walnuts)

    oh. em. gee


  39. bojana on January 20, 2011 at 5:03 am

    Love all of the combos!
    Sometimes, when I’m in hurry, or there’s “be lazy” on my schedule, i just cook the quinoa, warm up some good tomato sauce (with basil,feta or vegetarian bolognese) and mix them together. If I have some legumes, like lentils maybe, they get to be in it too 🙂

  40. Cara Craves... on January 20, 2011 at 7:50 am

    The wheat berry/cranberry/goat’s cheese combo sounds lovely!

  41. LisaG on January 20, 2011 at 7:51 am

    Love that salad & grain combos. I started reading CSD last night; very funny & informative. What do you think?

    • Fitnessista on January 20, 2011 at 10:00 am

      i LOVE it so far 🙂

  42. Erin @ The Grass Skirt on January 20, 2011 at 7:53 am

    I love adding quinoa to my salads. Yours looked so good!

  43. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on January 20, 2011 at 7:54 am

    Major lol at the foodgasm face!

    I love your grain salad ideas. The wheatberries with dried cranberries and orange sounds delicious!

  44. Ashley- Fit Food Lover on January 20, 2011 at 8:33 am

    I will be making these ballz ASAP. They look amazing. I may have issues with eating only one at a time…

  45. Mo on January 20, 2011 at 8:57 am

    That picture of Giada is actually embarrassing! I blushed!

    • Fitnessista on January 20, 2011 at 10:00 am


  46. Kristin (Cook, Bake, Nibble) on January 20, 2011 at 8:58 am

    I love bulking up my grains, that looks like an epic salad beast!!


  47. Kathie @ Frugal, Fit and Fabulous on January 20, 2011 at 9:04 am

    Mmmm that salad looks so yummy!!!

  48. Joanna@ Drizzle of Sunshine on January 20, 2011 at 10:32 am

    Haha! I love Giada and her face is priceless in this pic!! What the heck did you have to google for that picture!? hahah

  49. Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine on January 20, 2011 at 10:46 am

    Hahaha that picture is AMAZING. I love it- foodgasm, defined. I’ve actually been craving quinoa, so maybe I’ll give this a go for lunch!

  50. zoe (and the beatles) on January 20, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    my favorite thing about this post is just how happy you sound through your writing! it seems like all your life changes are really, truly doing you some good 🙂

    oh, and that beast of a salad looks deliciiiiiouuuss!!!

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