15 Day Challenge

Eat This Not That: Holiday Edition

Hey, it’s coach Kaytlin! When I’m not training for fights or helping people with their fitness, I’m typically eating. I love some good food but I also love reaching my goals…tough predicament I know.

Now that the holidays are upon us, guess what so are all the amazing treats that come with them. Seriously it’s like the freshman 15 all over again, except that it happens every year….haha someone help. ?

So you may be thinking what the heck is a girl to do during this time? Before you swan dive into the dessert table as if you’re an Olympic athlete, let’s just have a chat about how you can avoid all that holiday weight gain.

Okay so here’s the thing. The holidays can still be delicious and healthy. Seems like an oxymoron but it’s the real deal.

All you gotta do is make those holiday classics just a bit healthier.

To help you see the light (Get it? Because these foods are lighter ?). I put together a great list of recipes that you can use to “checkity check yourself before you wreck yourself”.

Don’t let the holidays ruin your goals! Let’s get to it I’m already hungry.

1. Try these cookies instead of your typical oatmeal raisin.

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INGREDIENTS

  • 3/4 c blanched almond flour
  • 1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 scoop French Vanilla IdealLean Protein
  • 2 tbsp. honey
  • 3 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 tsp. orange zest
  • 2 tbsp. dried unsweetened cranberries
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease baking sheet and set aside.
  2. Mix almond flour, shredded coconut, French Vanilla IdealLean Protein, Orange zest, honey, and coconut oil. Fold in cranberries. Chill in the fridge for half an hour. Using a cookie scoop, scoop cookies onto baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.

Serves 14. Serving size: 1. Calories 90/Protein: 3g/ Carbs: 5g/ Fat: 7g

2. Get more protein in your pumpkin pie.

Protein Pumpkin Pie

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 c pumpkin puree
  • 2 tbsp. non-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 scoop IdealLean French Vanilla Protein
  • 1/4 c organic coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp. unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 9-inch graham cracker crust

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients until combined and pour into 9-inch prepared graham cracker crust. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool and cut into 8 slices. Enjoy!

Serves 8. Serving size: 1 slice.

3. Instead of having that calorie-packed sweet potato casserole try this recipe instead.

maple pecan sweet potatoes

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 2 tbsp. coconut sugar
  • 1 scoop IdealLean French Vanilla Protein

TOPPING:

  • 1/2 c chopped pecans
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp. coconut oil

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash and peel sweet potatoes, then chop into cubes and boil 5-10 minutes, or until tender.
  2. Drain sweet potatoes, then add to a blender or food processor along with coconut oil, cinnamon, nutmeg, and coconut sugar. Blend to desired consistency, then let cool for a couple of minutes and add IdealLean French Vanilla Protein.
  3. Pour mixture into a medium oven safe dish. Mix topping ingredients and pour onto sweet potatoes. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until topping browns. Enjoy!

Serves 6. Serving size: 1/2 c. 

4. Get your veggies with these mashed “potatoes”.

NOV_CAULIPOTATOES (1)

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 medium head of cauliflower
  • 2 tbsp. Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread
  • 3 tbsp. low-fat milk
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Wash and cut cauliflower into florets. Bring pot of water to boil and add cauliflower. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until soft.
  2. Drain cauliflower and add to a blender or food processor along with butter, milk, garlic, salt, and pepper. Blend until smooth and creamy. If desired, garnish with chives and enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1. 

5. Instead of chowing down on cake, have this smoothie!

Carrot Cake Protein Smoothie Recipe

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/3 medium banana, peeled, frozen
  • 1/2 c diced carrots, peeled
  • 1 scoop French Vanilla IdealLean Protein
  • 1/2 c unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 tbsp. sugar-free cheesecake pudding powder
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • liquid stevia to taste
  • ice, the desired amount

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Blend all ingredients and enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1. 

6. Apple Pie is delicious, but you can get that same taste for a fraction of the calories with this parfait.

APPLE PIE PARFAIT

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 c non-fat, plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 scoop French Vanilla IdealLean Protein
  • 1/2 tsp. apple pie spice
  • 1/4 c sugar-free apple pie filling
  • 2 tbsp. granola

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Stir together the yogurt and protein powder until combined. Layer the yogurt mixture, apple pie filling, and granola into a glass. Enjoy!!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1.

7. Apple cider is the perfect drink for cold nights, but choose this healthy version over the high-calorie kind.

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INGREDIENTS

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Over medium heat, mix water, caramel syrup, and IdealLean Green Apple BCAAs. Stir until the powder has dissolved and cider is hot. Enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1. 

8. Use that turkey breast for a wrap instead of the typical high cal sandwich.

NOV_CRANTURKEY

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 large whole wheat tortilla
  • 1 Light Laughing Cow cheese wedge
  • 3 oz carved turkey, cubed
  • 1 c leafy greens
  • 1 tbsp. unsweetened dried cranberries

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix turkey, cheese, and cranberries until combined. Add to the middle of the tortilla and layer with greens. Fold in sides of tortilla and roll into a wrap. Slice down the middle diagonally and enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1. 

9. Eat some light salads for a homey, fall taste without the calories.

apple pecan cran salad

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 c leafy greens
  • 1/4 apple, cubed
  • 2 tbsp. pecans
  • 2 tbsp. cranberries
  • 2 tbsp. crumbled feta cheese

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Toss all ingredients together and enjoy with your choice of dressing. Enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1

10. Ditch the pies for this chocolate mousse.

Caramel Mocha Mousse

INGREDIENTS

  • 7 oz extra firm tofu
  • 1 scoop Caramel Mocha IdealLean Protein
  • 2 tbsp. dark chocolate chips
  • 1 tbsp. cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp. almond milk

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Blend all ingredients until smooth and creamy. Pour equally into 2 separate bowls. Chill in the fridge for 20 minutes or until serving and enjoy!

Serves 2. Serving size: 1. Calories 217/ Protein: 22g/ Carbs: 14g/ Fat: 10g

11. Say no to store bought eggnog.

peppermint eggnog

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 c Silk Almond Nog
  • ¼ tsp peppermint extract
  • 1 scoop French Vanilla IdealLean Protein

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Add ice, blend, and enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1

12. Save the Gingerbread cookies for decorating and try this smoothy.

gingerbread cookie smoothie

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 medium banana
  • 1 scoop French Vanilla IdealLean Protein
  • 2 tbsp. old fashioned oats
  • 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • Pinch of cloves
  • 2 tsp. molasses
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Add ice, blend, and enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1

13. Stick with healthy, protein-packed hot chocolate.

mint hot chocolate float

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 sugar-free hot chocolate packet
  • 1 c hot water
  • 1 scoop Chocolate Brownie IdealLean Protein
  • 1/4 tsp. peppermint extract
  • 1/2 c Halo Top Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix hot water, hot chocolate packet, and mint extract. Add Chocolate Brownie IdealLean Protein and stir until powder has fully dissolved. Add ice cream and enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1

14. Instead of loading cream and sugar into your coffee pick this.

salted caramel mocha coffee

INGREDIENTS

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Over stovetop or in microwave, heat almond milk and espresso. Let cool for a couple of minutes and blend with IdealLean Caramel Mocha Protein and salt and mix until frothy. Enjoy!

Serves 1. Serving size: 1

15. Put down the peppermint bark and try this healthy chocolate holiday bark.  

holiday chocolate bark

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 scoop Chocolate Brownie IdealLean Protein
  • 2 tsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tbsp. water
  • 1/8 c dried cranberries (optional)
  • 1/8 c chopped pistachios (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix first four ingredients until smooth; protein powder should be absorbed.
  2. Spread mixture in a small pan lined with baking parchment.
  3. Sprinkle with optional cranberries and pistachios, or fruits and nuts of your choice.
  4. Freeze for 1 hour until hardened, then thaw for 10 minutes before cutting into squares and serving.

Serves 1. Serving size: 1

Final Thoughts

Okay so now you know the recipes to get you through those holiday cravings.

I know the holidays seem like a great time to just say, “Forget being healthy let’s just have fun!”, but the regret that comes after can really put a damper on your holiday cheer.

Seriously you can really have healthy food taste amazing and not feel like you’re missing out.

Oh, and if you need a challenge that’s going to keep you on track with your workouts and keep you having fun, then try my FREE 15-day challenge!

I started the 15-Day Fight the Fat Challenge with Kaytlin Neil because I enjoyed her workouts in the trainer Lindsey’s 15-day challenge. They did the workout videos together and I really enjoyed Kaytlin, I loved the challenge, I lost 2 inches in my waist, and gained muscle where I wanted to. I enjoyed the ‘fighter’ style workouts and how Kaytlin works your abs in almost every exercise. I really enjoyed the warm up and cool down parts of the workout. I also found her meal plan really easy to stick to. You didn’t have to go and buy all this fancy stuff…Which, I am a mom of three, I don’t have a whole lot of time to plan separate meals from my kids, so I found one of her snacks is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on whole wheat – the kids and I can do that! I also learned about properly fueling your body AFTER a workout. I am feeling like I have more energy and just feeling better overall. I enjoy the IdealLean Protein. I really enjoyed this challenge and would recommend it to others.

-Mellissa J.



Alyson McDonald

Alyson McDonald

Writer and expert


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