TAILGATE BY CHRISTY BARONI • PHOTO BY ROB KAUFMAN
While chips, beer, and pizza may be typical tailgating fare, your health takes a personal foul during this season of endless snacking. Consider an upgrade to your pre-game with some delicious and satisfying alternatives to the traditional junk food fest. Lean Buffalo Chicken Meatballs Your average meatball recipe gets sacked by this alternative. Chocked full of veggies and formed around lean chicken meat, these meatballs are full of flavor and provide 17g of protein per serving with only 11g of carbohydrates. They are a crowd pleaser along with being waistline friendly. • 8 ounces mushrooms, chopped • 1 small onion, chopped • 1 stalk celery, sliced • 4 cloves garlic • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil • ½ cup fine dry breadcrumbs • ½ cup very finely chopped carrot • ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese • 2 tablespoons hot sauce, such as Frank’s RedHot • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar • ½ teaspoon salt • ½ teaspoon ground pepper • 1 pound lean ground chicken Preheat oven to 450. Heat oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Throw mushrooms, onion, garlic, and celery in the food processor to finely chop. Add chopped veggies to oil and stir until the liquid has evaporated. Transfer to a large bowl to let cool. Add breadcrumbs, carrots, cheese, hot sauce, vinegar, salt and pepper to the cooled veggie mix and stir until combined. Add chicken and mix gently, do not overmix the meat. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray. Form mixture in to 30 meatballs using 2 tablespoons of the mixture per meatball and line them up on the baking sheet. Bake for 15 mins (or until internal temp is 165 degrees). Serving: 5 meatballs Calories: 207 Protein: 17g Carbs: 11g Fat: 11g 26
Grown Up Cherry Lemonade Generally speaking, alcohol is a 10-yard penalty to your weight loss goals. This cocktail keeps sugar intake at a minimum while still giving you a chance to clink glasses with your favorite teammates. I usually don’t name brand recommend ingredients, but for this recipe in particular these name brands make the cocktail not only delicious, but also low in sugar and calories. • 2 tablespoons of Honest lemonade • 3 oz Skinny Girl Cherry Vodka • 1.5 cups of water • 2 cups ice Blend and enjoy! Makes 2 servings. Touchdown Pizza Pizza is an easy choice for a lazy Sunday afternoon, but like anything else making your own can save you tons of calories and give you higher quality food without sacrificing taste. Score! Cover 1 whole wheat flatbread or naan with ½ cup of mozzeralla cheese. Top with: • one 1 boneless skinless chicken breast, cooked and chopped • ½ an avocado, chopped • 1 tsp chipotle seasoning • ½ tsp red pepper flakes • 1 tbsp fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped Grill for 30 minutes, and share with a friend. Christy Baroni is a Nutrition Specialist, CrossFit L1 Trainer, and a certified Personal Trainer. She is a military spouse, a mother of two, and is dedicated to helping people cultivate the daily habits to build the body and life of their dreams. For more healthy living ideas or to create your own fitness and nutrition plan contact her today at 843-290-5803 or Christy@ ThriveFitnessAndNutrition.com.