I’m so pleased to have a great guest post this week from LeAnn at Real Fit, Real Food Mom! As my regular readers know, in addition to eating and blogging about real food, I am also a runner. So I can definitely attest to the connection between eating real food and being really fit. I hope you enjoy LeAnn’s story and amazing recipe. Be sure to stop by to check out her blog and Facebook page too!
Hi everyone! My name is LeAnn and I’m extremely excited to be guest blogging for April on My Real Food Family. I write my own ‘real food’ blog over at Real Fit, Real Food Mom. I’m a stay at home mom with three little kids (a 4 year old girl and twin 2 year old boys). As you might imagine, they keep me extremely busy! In January of this year, my husband and I decided to take our usual workout routines and kick them up a few notches by adding P90X workouts. If you’re not familiar with P90X, it’s a lot of free weights, push-ups, pull-ups, plyometrics and ab work. We absolutely LOVE it! I’ve also been a runner since I was 12 years old and have run every distance up to a full marathon. In fact, my next half marathon is coming up in just two weeks and I’m so excited to show off how hard I’ve trained!
As my husband and I started getting in better physical shape, we decided that we wanted to eat healthier as well so we would be around to watch our kids, grandkids, and even great grandkids grow up. What we eat is something we CAN control. So, we decided to eliminate all processed foods and instead eat only REAL, whole foods. (And, shortly after, I decided to start a blog about the transition!) I’m absolutely convinced that this is a MUCH better long-term approach to eating and I’m thrilled that my kids have adapted so easily to all of the changes. I love inspiring and encouraging other people to adapt to this lifestyle as well. Once you get the hang of what you should and should not eat, it’s quite easy and very satisfying!
Before we made the transition to real foods, I had a nice supply of store-bought salad dressings in my fridge. We probably had four bottles open at all times. Kraft ranch dressing, zesty Italian, thousand island, you name it! Of course, these bottles were filled with fake-food ingredients (like sodium lactate, disodium guanylate, polysorbate 60…what??? Why?) Reading labels on packaged foods has been extremely eye-opening for me! As we went through our last bottle of store bought dressing, I was nervous about eating salad after that because I had no idea what I was going to do. I had NEVER made my own salad dressing before. Well, my first attempt to make homemade ranch dressing was only so-so, but when I came up with this apple cider honey mustard dressing, everything changed. I was no longer nervous! The combination of the four simple ingredients in the salad with my own dressing is just superb. I absolutely love this salad and could eat it every day!
Spinach Salad with Apple Cider Honey Mustard Dressing
For the salad, combine:
- Organic baby spinach leaves (I like to tear mine into smaller pieces)
- Sliced raw almonds
- Raw sunflower seeds
- Organic cherry tomatoes, halved (I grew mine in my garden!)
For the dressing, combine:
- 3 tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp honey
- 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard (I like Annie’s Natural’s Organic)
- 4 shakes of garlic powder
Whisk together or shake up. Pour over salad immediately or put in the fridge until ready to use. This makes one serving, but I’ve doubled, tripled, and even quadrupled it before and it tastes great!
The almonds and sunflower seeds really help to fill me up and I’m always so satisfied after eating this salad. Even my four year old daughter loves it! After I gave her a bite of mine, she said, “Mmm…this is the best. salad. ever! Can you make this tonight??” I always love to hear that! (I must note… That statement needs to come with a warning. She declares that “this is the best day EVER” just about as often as “this is the WORST DAY EVER” and many times within just a few minutes of each other! Oh my… Gotta love 4 year old girls, right?!?!)
Making your own dressing is quick, easy, and inexpensive. And it sure beats throwing away bottles of salad dressing that didn’t get used up before the expiration date!!
I would LOVE to have you visit my blog at www.realfitrealfoodmom.com or “like” my Facebook Page: Real Fit, Real Food Mom. I post all sorts of delicious, KID-APPROVED, real-food recipes (smoothies, granola bars, main entrees, and more) as well as other important information on WHY eliminating processed foods is so important for your long-term health. Come check it out!
Thanks again to My Real Food Family for allowing me to guest blog on her website! Who knew eating nutritious food and then writing about it could be so much fun??!