Post-Debate Special: More Uses for Plain Greek Yogurt!

Yes, yes, I’m sure we all enjoyed watched that exciting, never-a-dull-moment debate last night!!

The debate, in a nutshell! nyuk nyuk!

and we’re all ready for more excitement this morning, so with that thought in mind, let’s get right to the Rhymin’ Weekly Weigh-In!

Today’s weigh-in:

Hey, that’s okay, I’ll take “same” instead of “gain” any day of the week!

Sure, or even Tuesday Weld, who was wayyyy before your time, but y’know, anything for a laugh, right?

And since that’s as political as I really want to get today, let’s focus on something REALLY important: more uses for plain Greek yogurt!

Obi Wan is right — there’s TONS (or ‘tonnes’ for my British/Canadian/lousy speller friends!) of uses for that weird tasting plain yogurt besides dumping Ranch Dressing powder in it, like I suggested last week! Here’s just a few, just off the top of my head:

  1. Use instead of mayonnaise or sour cream in pretty much ANYTHING. I love to make tuna salad with mayo or sour cream, but the calories, eek! So just use a couple of spoonfuls of plain yogurt instead, then sprinkle on your onion salt, celery salt, and/or whatever you like to put in your tuna salad.
  2. Mix in some raisins. I get those big bags of cute little 45-calorie boxes of raisins, and dump them into salads, yogurts, etc. An 80-calorie yogurt with a 45-calorie box of raisins is, er, let’s see …

… well, anyway, it’s less than 150 calories, that’s for sure! Which is pretty sweet for a breakfast treat!

3. Mix in pretty much any other kind of fruit! Blueberries, strawberries, etc. – whatever you like!

4. Add a little sugar. Yes, real sugar! One teaspoon is 15 calories, so sprinkle that in, add a dab of vanilla extract, and voila, you’ve got a yummy vanilla yogurt for less than 100 calories!

Oh all right, enough with the math! Listen, if you want more ideas for plain Yogurt, here’s a great article at Today.com with way more (and better) suggestions for you to peruse: Yogurt is not just for breakfast! 53 ways to use this magical ingredients

Enjoy — and let me know what you think, in the comments! Did author Karen B. Gibbs cover your favorite idea, or do you want to add a #54?? Go for it, and I’ll highlight your ideas in NEXT week’s post!

Have a great week!

Friday Five: 4 things I’m looking forward to, plus 1 yogurt recipe!

Well, good morning, one and all! You know, summer’s on its way, and although it may be a bit premature, here are a few things I’m really looking forward. Plus, a fun Chobani yogurt tweak! Ready? Here we go!

  1. Swimming pool! I know, I know, I keep yammering about the awesome pool at my 24 Hour Fitness. But c’mon, isn’t it gorgeous? I’m really looking forward to that first 100-degree-plus day I can dip my tootsies in that cool blue water (and blithely ignore all the grunting and tire flipping from the CrossFit area next door). Mmm, pool!
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  2. Train trip! My husband and I like to take train trips. (Well, he IS an engineer!) And this year is no exception. This August, we’re taking the Amtrak Coast Starlight up to Olympia, Washington, where we’ll meet lots of friends we haven’t seen for a while at a special event our church sponsors every year. I always love that moment when the train starts moving slowly, slowly, sloowwwllyyy* out of the station. (*well, it IS Amtrak, after all!)
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  3. Beach Walks! Once the weather starts warming up, I hop in my rusty but trusty ol’ 2005 Toyota and head down to the best beach in Southern California, with the most awesome parking you can imagine, with trails and bike paths and all sorts of places to get that outdoorsy, fun in the sun exercise we all crave so much. Yes, I’m heading to the fabulous Beacha del Incognito! (Heh — you didn’t really think I was gonna TELL you where it is, now did you?? It’s MINE!!)
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  4. Hittin’ the Gym — in Multiple Locations! Yeah, as I’ve yammered on about ad infinitum these past couple of weeks, I joined the fabulous Anytime Fitness Chatsworth. I’m very happy with it so far, especially the treadmills with video screens and the studios where I can work out in complete privacy, most of the time (except when some hapless newbie stumbles in by mistake looking for the restroom). Anyway, in a couple of weeks I’ll have hit my 30-day mark so I can visit some of the other locations! And you’ll get to hear about it! Aren’t you just thrilled?

     

  5. YOGURT TWEAK!! And now, as promised, here’s an idea I came up with totally on my own, which you may want to incorporate into your breakfast routine!

See, earlier this year, I became enamored with Chobani Yogurts, specifically their Vanilla Blended version. I still like the Yoplait Lights at 90 calories, but the Chobani’s only 20 calories more (you do the math, I still haven’t had my coffee), and has a more substantial feel to it.

Well, NOW they have a flavor called Vanilla Chocolate Chunk blended. Which, I mean … uh … chocolate AND vanilla? That’s almost overkill, dude!

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And it’s 170 calories, which isn’t TOO bad. About the same as an egg (70 calories) and a slice of bacon (90 calories), give or take a few. (Again, math / coffee.) But there are two problems with it: 1) it’s really hard to find, at least in my area, and 2) that is a bit higher in calories that I normally want in a yogurt.

Well, never fear – I’ve got your lower-calorie Vanilla Chocolate Chunk yogurt idea right here! Just get a little container of chocolate sprinkles at the grocery store (they’re in the baking aisle, with all the cake decorating stuff), and add a little to your plain or vanilla yogurt. Even if it’s not on the label, I looked it up: one teaspoon is 20 calories.

So, let’s say you start with unflavored yogurt, which is @ 70 or 80 calories. Add the sprinkles (20 calories) and a little vanilla extract, et voila! Your own Vanilla Chocolate Chunk yogurt, at or near 100 calories! Mmm!! You’re welcome!!
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So there ya go — your Friday Five with some yummy summertime ideas. I’ll be back Monday when I’m hoping all that extra vacation weight will be gone gone gone! Have a great weekend, everyone!