Saturday, September 29, 2012

Milkshakes for breakfast? Yes, please!

I am sure you know how important eating breakfast is.  It kicks off your metabolism, helps you wake up, gives you energy, and keeps you from overeating later in the day.  My ideal breakfast would be fried eggs with turkey franks or an omelet, but in order to eat that every day, I would have to wake up 30 minutes earlier.  Even though I love eating, it is still not enough to make me get up at 5:40 am every day.  And what about those of you who have kids?  There is even less time in the morning to take care of yourself.  I guess I could go with oatmeal for breakfast, but my husband is really against carbs (unless it is sweet potato chips we are talking about).  Moreover, I like having my breakfast on the way to work, and eating oatmeal while driving on the highway would be quite dangerous.  When I started thinking about what could be fast to make and easy to consume on the way to work, protein shakes came to mind.  Protein satisfies hunger and keeps you full longer than carbs, so it was an easy and convenient option.  

My usual shakes consisted of chocolate protein powder, peanut butter, water, and ice, all mixed in a blender.  They tasted very good, and I did not get tired of them.  However, there is always room for improvement, and I was looking for ways to change it up a little.  I was looking mainly on Pinterest and found something that was actually worth trying (unlike many other Pinterest things).  I found a blog called Dashing Dish that had amazing recipes for protein shakes that would taste pretty much like milkshakes.  It is hard to express my excitement in words!!!  I was truly inspired to find the best combinations of flavors and experimented throughout the last two weeks.  Even if you do not plan to drink these wonderful creamy milkshakes for breakfast, you should definitely give them a try to satisfy sugar cravings!

The Base of Any Shake
- 1/2 cup of low fat cottage cheese (about 80 cal)
- 1 scoop of protein powder (about 120 cal)
- 0-2 pkts of low-calorie sweeteners
- 1/2 cup water
- 15 ice cubes

Just a couple of notes about the base:
- Cottage cheese gives the shakes creamy consistency, adds calcium and protein, but not its flavor! Do not worry!
- Vanilla protein powder is the best neutral base to add flavors to, but you can get flavored protein powder to cut calories (i.e., if you absolutely love bananas, just get banana-flavored protein powder and do not add real bananas to the base)
- Add sweeteners at the very end after you try your shake, if you still want it to be sweeter
- Add more water and less ice if you want your shake to be thinner
- The base would be about 200 cal

And now to the best part: you can add anything you want to your shakes to make them taste delicious! Below are my 6 favorite shakes, but you can be as creative as you want to.

Peanut Butter Nutty Shake (these ingredients are added to the base)
- 1 tbsp peanut butter
- 2 tbsp sugar free butterscotch pudding mix (optional)
- 1 tbsp Vanilla Butter and Nut extract (optional, can be found in the baking aisle)

Pistachio Shake (this ingredient is added to the base)
- 2 tbsp sugar free pistachio pudding mix

Snicker-doodle Shake (these ingredients are added to the base)
- 1 tbsp sugar free hazelnut extract or 2 tbsp sugar free hazelnut dry creamer
- dash of cinnamon
- 2 tbsp sugar free vanilla pudding mix (optional if you are using vanilla protein powder)

Peanut Butter Java Shake (these ingredients are added to the base)
- 1 tbsp peanut butter
- 1 tbsp instant coffee
- 1 tbsp chocolate chips (optional)

Banana Cream Pie Shake (these ingredients are added to the base)
- 1 banana
- 2 tbsp sugar free vanilla pudding mix (optional)

Oatmeal Cookie Shake (these ingredients are added to the base)
- 2 tbs oats
- dash of cinnamon 
- 1 tbsp chocolate chips (optional)

Be creative, let your imagination take you as far as you want to!  Bananas, strawberries, pineapple, and different extracts can bring flavor to your protein shakes.  You will love your mornings!  And do not forget to take good care of yourself.  As it is said in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, "19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?  You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price.  Therefore, honor God with your body."  If you feel like you do not have enough motivation to treat your body nicely, realization that by taking care of yourself you are honoring God should be quite a boost!  

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