‘Lunch’ Category

  1. Turkey Oatmeal Veggie Balls

    February 24, 2015 by Melanie Faris

    Turkey Oatmeal Veggie Balls

    When I was doing the Jamie Eason Livefit Program, I was always in search of clean meals that had lean meats & healthy carbs. I ate a lot of turkey, chicken, fish and eggs. Many of the recipes I used were actually from Jamie’s program, and they helped me to stay on track with my diet. Now that cooking is part of my job as a personal chef, I love using my favourite clean eating recipes as a base and build on them to make new recipes & flavours.

    This recipe was one that I  adapted from Jamie Eason’s Meatloaf Muffin recipe. It has always been one of my favourite’s, because it is SO easy to make, So delicious, and it FREEZES GREAT. With my due date being only 6 weeks away, it’s time to start stocking up the freezer with quick meals for when baby arrives. I changed up some of the measurements and added my own spices so that it has the texture and taste that I like best. I like to eat these with Franks red hot & a side of steamed veggies. Yum! Clean eating can be really easy & super fast. I hope you love these as much as I do. 

    Turkey Oatmeal Veggie Balls
    Yields 6
    A quick main dish that freezes great! Steam up some veggies on the side and you're all set. This will feed a family of 4 or 5, but I usually make a double batch so I have extra to freeze. It takes almost the same amount of time to make, so why not?!
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    Prep Time
    10 min
    Cook Time
    35 min
    Total Time
    45 min
    Prep Time
    10 min
    Cook Time
    35 min
    Total Time
    45 min
    1. 1 package ground turkey, or chicken (450g)
    2. 3/4 cup large flake oats
    3. 2 eggs
    4. 1 bell pepper, chopped finely
    5. 1 small onion, chopped finely
    6. 1 celery stalk, chopped finely
    7. 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic powder
    8. 1 tsp cumin
    9. 1 tsp oregano
    10. *optional spices - pinch of cayenne & red pepper flakes
    11. Salt & pepper, to taste
    12. 2 tsp olive oil
    1. Preheat the oven to 370 degrees.
    2. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper (for easy clean up) and drizzle a small amount of oil on the bottom.
    3. Chop the vegetables into small pieces & mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl.
    4. Form the mixture with your hands into 6 balls (approx. the size of a tennis ball).
    5. Place the turkey balls onto the baking sheet and drizzle them with a bit more oil.
    6. Bake in the oven for 35 minutes (or until cooked through at 165 degrees fahrenheit).
    1. Optional - turn the turkey balls half way through. This isn't necessary, but will give it a nice crust on both sides.
    2. You can add other vegetables to this recipe that you have in the fridge. Carrots, mushrooms, zucchini...etc.
    3. If you have leftovers, I like to put them in a bowl with chicken broth in the fridge. This way they are super moist when you reheat them again.
    Adapted from Jamie Eason's Turkey Meatloaf Muffins
    Melanie Faris' Blog http://melaniefaris.com/

  2. Warming Beef and Barley Stew

    October 27, 2014 by Melanie Faris

    warming beef and barley stew

    The other day I was stuck for what to make for dinner. Usually our dinners are not anything too extravagant. My go-to meals consist of cod (our favourite fish), or chicken, rice & veggies. We eat this often and it’s easy to make. I think people get the idea that I am always cooking incredible meals for Thomas and I. Sure there are days where I feel inspired, but to be honest, after a day full of cooking for others, I often just want to come home and throw a quick meal together, or order takeout if I’m really lazy lol.

    So as I was driving home from a day of cooking, a craving suddenly hit this pregnant lady. Stew. I wanted a big bowl of beef and barley stew (inspired by my Dad who made this occasionally for us growing up, even though he doesn’t like stew as much as Mom and I). I headed straight for the grocery store to get some key ingredients.

    Beef and Barley Stew Grocery List

    Fresh Produce Meat Packaged Goods
    Carrots Stewing Beef (0.5kg) Flour (Quinoa or W.Wheat)
    Celery   Package of Pearl Barley
    Small Package White Mushrooms   Olive Oil
    1 Onion   1 Can Tomato Paste
    Garlic   2 Cartons Beef Stock
    6 Small Potatoes (any)   1 Can Beans in Tomato Sauce
        1 Can Kidney Beans
        14 oz Diced Tomatoes
        Salt + Pepper
        Dry Thyme & Rosemary
        Bay Leaves
        Garlic & Onion Powder

    Most of these items you may already have in stock. Now that we have everything we need, let’s make our stew!


    Warming Beef and Barley Stew
    Serves 8
    A delicious stew that will fill your body with warmth and goodness.
    Write a review
    Prep Time
    15 min
    Cook Time
    1 hr 15 min
    Total Time
    1 hr 30 min
    Prep Time
    15 min
    Cook Time
    1 hr 15 min
    Total Time
    1 hr 30 min
    1. 3 celery stalks
    2. 2 carrots
    3. 1 small package of white mushrooms
    4. 1 onion
    5. 3 cloves of garlic, minced
    6. 6 small potatoes
    7. 0.5 kg of stewing beef
    8. 1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons quinoa or whole wheat flour
    9. 3/4 cup pearled barley, rinsed
    10. 2 cartons beef stock (or replace one carton with mushroom broth)
    11. 1 can beans in tomato sauce
    12. 1 can kidney beans (large or small, your choice), rinsed and drained
    13. 1 can (14oz.) diced tomatoes
    14. 1 can tomato paste
    15. splash of olive oil
    16. 1 tsp thyme
    17. 1 tsp rosemary
    18. 1 tsp onion powder
    19. 2 tsp garlic powder
    20. 2 bay leaves
    21. salt and pepper, to taste
    1. Begin by chopping all vegetables.
    2. Wash and peel the potatoes, chopping into bite size pieces.
    3. Heat a splash of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.
    4. Cut the stewing beef into smaller pieces if needed and place in a ziplock bag with 1/4 cup of flour. Seal and shake the beef so all pieces are coated.
    5. Add the beef to the pot with a bit of salt and pepper and brown all sides. Once browned, remove beef and set aside.
    6. Add a bit more oil to the pot and add all vegetables (except potatoes). Add salt + pepper, and remaining spices. Let them cook until soft (approx. 10 minutes).
    7. Add potatoes, barley, broth, beans, diced tomatoes and paste to the pot and turn heat on high. Stir.
    8. Throw in 2 bay leaves and let it come to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer for 1 hour.
    9. Once stew has cooked, you can whisk in the remaining flour to thicken if needed.
    1. Optional: serve with buttered bread to dip
    2. Hint: freeze leftovers for another day when you don't feel like cooking!
    Melanie Faris' Blog http://melaniefaris.com/

  3. Garden Green Energy Wrap

    April 3, 2014 by Melanie Faris

    I keep talking about the amount of energy I have from this raw food cleanse. I simply am amazed. If you want a little taste of what real energy feels like (not from caffeine), start to eat your greens! Don’t know where to start? Find it hard to add flavor and variety with greens? Well then you have to try my favourite raw lunch recipe below, packed with plant based protein and healthy fats. You will have sustaining energy to get you through until your next meal, with extra energy to spare!


    Day 11 Raw


    Today I went to the gym bright and early with Thomas. We started off our workout with a quick warm up on the elliptical and then went over to the scale. We were a bit nervous (mostly me since the last time I weighed myself I was 10lbs heavier than I thought). I have never been into weighing myself much, but since I have been slacking a bit on my workout routine and eating lots of food, I wanted to know where I was at. Jamaica did not help the waistline either. I was pretty excited to see my weight has dropped 5 pounds since my first weight-in 11 days ago – Yippee! I would like to lose 5 more pounds, which should be enough to get me back into my old jeans. I miss them oh so much.

    I was a bit worried about gaining weight from all the avocados (my current favourite food), and nuts I have been eating daily. I’m not used to eating such a high-fat diet, but it is the only food that keeps me feeling full for a long period of time on this “diet.” I generally have 1 avocado/day and a handful of nuts, plus I have been using tahini paste like it is going out of style. Yum! But like I said before, I’m not doing this to lose weight, but if it gets me back into my jeans, I’m really going to be happy. So far, I guess I haven’t overdone it on the avocado and tahini! I just so happen to use both of these in my recipe below…

    So you want to be raw…even for only 1 meal? That’s awesome! You will feel so much better after eating this wrap than you would after having a regular sandwich or wrap from the store. You can also use an Ezekiel or whole grain wrap with cooked quinoa for a quicker vegan version – that works great too! Let me know what you think in the comments below, or on my Facebook Page!


    Garden Green Energy Wrap


      Garden Green Energy Wrap

    Click here for the printable Recipe

    Recipe by: Melanie Faris

    Servings: 1

    Preparation: 5-15 minutes (plus sprouting/cooking time)


    1 raw or sprouted wrap (I use Live organic raw super green wraps)

    ½ ripe avocado

    1 handful of mixed sprouts or dark leafy green lettuce mix (or both!)

    2 tablespoons of quinoa, sprouted (or cooked for vegan option)

    1 handful of fresh herbs (cilantro and parsley are great in this wrap)

    1 tablespoon of raw hemp seeds

    1 tablespoons of tahini

    ½ clove of garlic

    1-2 small lemon or lime wedges

    Sprinkle of dulse flakes (or sea salt)

    Freshly cracked pepper



    Sprouting Quinoa

    To make this wrap 100% raw, sprouting the quinoa is a great alternative to cooking it. To sprout quinoa, rinse the quinoa and cover with water. Let it soak overnight in a mason jar or sprouting container. After soaking, drain and rinse the quinoa. Place a sprouting lid or mesh screen over the lid and turn the jar upside-down to allow the liquid to drain from the container. For the next 3-5 days, rinse the quinoa daily (twice if you can), leaving the jar upside down with a sprouting lid or mesh screen on the jar. You will begin to see sprouts popping out of the quinoa within a day or two. In approximately 3-5 days, your sprouts are ready to eat!

    If you are not eating a raw diet and would like to use cooked quinoa instead, follow the cooking directions on the package.

    To begin making the wrap, mice the garlic and mix it with the tahini paste plus the juice from the lemon and/or lime wedge. Spread the garlic tahini sauce onto the wrap. Cut an avocado in half and spoon out the flesh onto the wrap. Roughly chop the fresh herbs and sprinkle on top of the avocado. Add the remaining ingredients to the wrap (plus an extra squeeze of lemon or lime juice for added flavor). Don’t forget to add your dusle (or sea salt) and freshly cracked pepper!


    This wrap has lots of healthy fats and plant based protein to give you sustaining energy!



  4. 6 Days Raw and counting

    March 29, 2014 by Melanie Faris

    Well, I’ve made it to day 6! Only 24 days to go. That sounds like a long time, but I’m quite surprised by how I feel so far…

    Day 5


    I woke up this morning not feeling so great. No headache, but I really wanted food. By food, I mean over easy eggs, two thick slices of rye bread and a side of fruit. It wasn’t happening though. I pulled out my juicer and began making a green juice to start my day. I was feeling a bit dizzy and not “normal” so I decided to lie down for a bit. Around 15 minutes or so, the juice must have digested because I felt energized and ready to take on the day! I guess I didn’t eat enough the night before so I was in need of nutrition to get me going again…

    I had another large green drink for lunch from Natures Emporium and headed off to “work”, although cooking never feels like work at all. I had a ton of energy and focus the entire day. With a big list of things to cook, I often get a bit flustered and can’t seem to time things properly. Well today – I was on the ball! I couldn’t believe it. I was able to think clearly and get everything done in perfect timing without feeling flustered or stressed at all. Coincidence? I think not.

    You might be wondering if cooking is difficult for me on the Raw Diet. Surprisingly…no! Although certain things I need to have a taste of, but I haven’t had any cravings or strong desire to eat the food I am cooking. I had WAY more cravings when I wasn’t eating raw compared to now. I think it comes down to mind over matter – since I know I’m not allowed cooked foods, I automatically don’t make it an option for myself. Since coffee isn’t an option for me in the morning, I don’t even think about it anymore. Although, now that I mention it, a nice cup of hot coffee would be pretty good right now – Hehe, but I’m totally fine without it! This morning’s craving for eggs went away right after my fresh juice. I may think about a food I want to eat that’s not raw, but it’s not a desire that controls my body. I simply say no and the craving goes away. I also don’t have the urge to “sneak” bites here and there because I just don’t want to. That right there is a miracle.

    Day 6


    I’ll keep this short because I don’t have much to say besides:

    I feel gggggrrrrrreat

    without the frosted flakes…

    Today I have the most energy yet. I woke up at 4:30 am for personal training, pulled out my greens and started juicing. Although going back to bed was tempting because it is warm and cozy, and who doesn’t like sleep?!…But I certainly had tons of energy, and it just kept on comin’! I had one juice for breakfast, a raw green wrap for snack with avocado, and a delicious Green & Glowing Salad (recipe posted below) for lunch. I am going out for dinner with the family tonight and plan on making a green drink before. I will order a salad for dinner and bring my own dressing with me (weird? maybe, but I’m ok with it). Check out the juicer I use and salad recipe below!


    Omega NC800


    nc800hds_1 <—–There is my new baby. The Omega NC800. I have to say, she purrs like a kitten. Thomas stays snoozing even when I am juicing at 4:30 am! It is incredible how quiet it is. I also love how easy it is to clean. It is not a “big ordeal” to juice anymore, which is why I think most juicers stay in cupboards…this baby is sitting on my counter, and she is there to stay. This is one of the best investments I have made for my health yet. If you could preserve years of your life and relieve any sickness, pain and disease from your body for only a small cost under $400 would you not do it?! I think I spent almost that on my prom dress, which I wore once and is still hanging in my closet…hmph.


     Green and Glowing Salad

    with Creamy Ginger Dressing



    green and glowing


    Click Here for the Printable Recipe


    Recipe By: Melanie Faris

    Servings: I eat this all to myself, but it is probably big enough to share!

    Preparation: 5-10 minutes


    1 big handful of dark green lettuce mix (I like spring mix)

    3-4 purple kale leaves, chopped (hard stems removed)

    1 handful of sprouts (I like to use a mix – sunflower, broccoli, radish…etc)

    Fresh parsley and cilantro leaves picked off the stem (however much you desire)

    ½ ripe avocado

    ¼ large cucumber

    Slice of lime

    *Optional – pinch of dulse flakes



    Rinse all lettuce and vegetables. Chop, cut and place salad in a large bowl or plate. Sprinkle with dulse flakes and squeeze lime to add a burst of citrus. Top with creamy ginger dressing and enjoy.


    Creamy Ginger Dressing


    DSC_0135 (1)  


    ¼ cup cold-pressed olive oil

    ½ of each lemon & lime (juice only)

    2 tbl raw tahini paste

    1 tbl raw unpasteurized apple cider vinegar

    ½ inch of fresh ginger, peeled

    1 clove of garlic

    pinch of sea salt and pepper

    1-2 tablespoons of water



    Place all ingredients in a blender (or food processor) and combine until smooth. Add water until it reaches desired consistency (you may want to add more or less than suggested). Keep leftover dressing in a sealed container in the fridge. The dressing will thicken as it sits so you will need to add a bit more water again.


    Fill your body with greens that nourish your cells and give you glowing skin!



  5. I don’t feel like cookin’ kind of lunch

    February 9, 2014 by Melanie Faris

    Today was a clean the house, sit on the couch, don’t feel like cookin’ kind of day. I was rummaging through the fridge for something quick to eat for lunch when it hit me – there’s a little lazy lunch ingredient hiding in our cupboard. It’s probably hiding in yours too. It aint PB & J (although this is a great lazy lunch too), I’m talkin’ bout tuna! Who hasn’t enjoyed a good ol’ tuna sandwich smothered in mayonnaise & squeezed between two big buns?! Unfortunately, this way of eating tuna will probably give you some big buns too.

    I wasn’t planning on eating it the typical way with big globs of mayonnaise mixed in to cover up the fishy taste. I wasn’t about to eat it right out of the can either…I’m not a huge fan of eating canned tuna all the time, especially because of the mercury in it, but I definitely am not opposed to this easy source of protein every once in a while.

    Here’s my lazy lunch tuna wrap. Great for packing as a lunch or eating at home when you just don’t feel like cooking. We’ve all been there, you aren’t alone. Forget about loading it with unhealthy ingredients, instead, try it my healthy way!


    Packed Tuna Wrap

    The Healthy Way


    packed tuna wrap

    Recipe By: Melanie Faris

    Prep Time: 5 Minutes


    1 Can of Tuna (Packed in Water), Drained and Rinsed

    1 Ezekiel Brand Sprouted Whole Grain Tortilla

    Mayonnaise Replacement

    1/4 Cup of 0% Plain Greek Yogurt +2 Tablespoons of Fresh Lemon Juice +

    Pinch of Sea Salt & Pepper

    Optional Toppings

    2 Teaspoons of Hot Sauce

    2 Teaspoons of Dijon Mustard

    1/2 Avocado, Sliced

    Sprouts (I used my own grown mung bean sprouts)

    Handful of Spinach

    Sliced Tomato

    Banana Peppers


    This is pretty self-explanatory. Follow the steps in the picture below. Step 6 is the best one! Although, the picture doesn’t explain how to do this part…

    tuna steps