We all know that having a tasty and nutritious meal can boost your mood and strengthen your mind and body so you can stay on top of your game. In fact, experts have urged professionals not to skip lunch breaks in order to stay energized and to help you avoid issues like low blood sugar and irritability.
Well, oftentimes, it's easy to get into a bit of a mid-day meal rut, especially if you're tired of eating the same salads and sandwiches every day or you've found that your lunch simply isn't helping you in the productivity and motivation department.
Y'all know TikTok always has a good recipe or two (or three.. thousand) for all of us to try to master and savor, and here are a few TikTok lunch recipes from our favorite food baes that should help with that mid-day mood boost you need:
@nutritionbyshantel I had some leftover steak from dinner last night, and thought I'd make a steak sandwich with it. This is one of those recipes I just made up as I went along but it turned out AMAZING! I made a cucumber salad on the side and it hit all the spots. On your weight loss journey, don't be afraid to experiment during the week. Leftover proteins are one of the best and easiest ways to try new recipes and add things to your "like" list. WHAT YOU NEED FOR 2 SANDWICHES ✨ 4 slices thick cut bread (we had a leftover brioche loaf I used, feel free to use any bread you like though) 6 oz. steak (already cooked and sliced) 1/4 yellow bell pepper (sliced thin) 1/4 orange bell pepper (sliced thin) 1/2 small sweet onion (sliced onion) 1 green onion (chopped) For Sauce 1 tsp sesame oil 3 tbsp soy sauce (reduced sodium) 1 (heaping) tbsp light brown sugar 2 garlic cloves (minced) 1 tsp chili oil (or 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes) 1 tbsp filtered water WHAT YOU'LL DO ⬇️ -Heat a small cast iron or nonstick pan over medium heat. Add sesame oil, heat slightly, then add soy sauce, water and brown sugar. Mix well. Then add garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes (until fragrant), add chili oil, mix again, then add leftover steak. Toss for 1 minute (you don't want it to cook, just warm up). Remove. - In the same pan, add bell peppers and onions in the leftover sauce. Cook for 2-3 minutes until soft. If your sauce is thickening up add a touch of soy sauce. - Remove. Pour in any leftover sauce with the steak/peppers. Add green onions. Toss. - Toast your bread, add 1/2 steak mixture, and enjoy hot! Will you try this? (~524 calories per sandwich) ____ This recipe is under “Asian Style Steak Sandwich” in SHEtrition’s meal planner. It’s ready for you to add to your weekly meal plan. And if you’re ready to up level your nutrition and your weight loss this spring and finally lose weight without all the rules and overwhelm, I’d absolutely love to have you in my program, SHEtrition ❤️✨ Click the link in my bio to learn more or join today! #nutritiontips#weightlosstips#weightlossjourney#healthylifestyle#healthylunch#highproteinmeals♬ What It Is (Block Boy) - Doechii
This steak sandwich, made by the nutritionist behind Nutrition by Shantel, just screams yummy and makes use of leftovers and pantry items you probably already have. Steak is a good source of protein and iron and, when eaten in moderation, has B12 nutrients that have been found to be beneficial to energy levels.
@flyeatsshow Top Tier Summer Salad = Cilantro Honey Lime Shrimp !! #saladoftheday#saladoftheweek#fyp#healthymeals#tiktokfoodie♬ BREAK MY SOUL - Beyoncé
If you missed the boat on that viral cucumber salad, this one, prepped by Jessica of Fly Eats Show, takes things much further in the veggie and protein department and is packed with leafy greens (which is rich in nutrients like fiber, which helps balance blood sugar), tangy Argentinian red shrimp and a fermented element by way of pickled onions that add a bit of crunchy zest. Veggies are always a plus in any diet, and fermented foods have been found to balance gut activity, producing "feel-good brain chemicals, including serotonin.
@shakaylafelice more details in the comments #easyveganrecipes#lunchideas#plantbasedtiktok♬ Massive - Drake
Shakayla of Sweet Greens Vegan offers something special for all our plant-based baes (or those who just want to incorporate a Meatless Monday lunch in your routine). This one is a delish lunch hit, with the main draw being sweet and sour tofu, a plant-based protein filled with "mood-boosting magnesium." The avocado also adds its own perks, offering a nutritious fat to the mix.
@kimmyskreations And thats on pur! #kimmyskreations#friedcabbage#porkfree♬ original sound - Kimmy’s Kreations
With this quick dish by a TikTok fave, Kimmy of Kimmy's Kreations is a feel-good Southern dinner classic that you can certainly have for lunch. Made with turkey sausage and bell peppers, which are also said to be amazing mood-boosting veggies, you can certainly be sure to get all the feels.
@tishwonders CHESTNUT, BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND ORZO LENTIL SALAD (3-4 servings) ½ butternut squash 1 cup orzo 150g beluga or puy lentils 200g cooked chestnuts 2 red onions 3 roasted red peppers (jarred) 30g parsley 2 tbsp. olive oil 2 tbsp. lemon juice extra virgin olive oil sea salt black pepper #fyp#tishwonders♬ original sound - Tish Wonders
This salad, via Tish Wonders, features fresh and not-so-traditional ingredients like orzo, lentils, chestnuts, and butternut squash. If you want something that's savory, has the vitamins you need, and just breaks the monotony of traditional salads, this is one to try. (Bonus: Add the protein of your choice to make this a bit more filling.) She chose salmon, which is a fatty fish that is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids that are known to be anti-inflammatory and ideal for brain and nervous system development.
@orchidsnsweettea_ This velvety, smooth Creamy Roasted Garlic Tomato Soup is completely rich and comforting in flavor! 🍅 👉🏾For recipe, search ‘Creamy Roasted Garlic Tomato Soup’ on site. Link in bio. #tomatosoup#souplover#foodietiktok#foodtiktok#dinner#easydinner#grilledcheese#tomatoes#food♬ Cal it a thing - noxz
Soups don't have to be reserved for sick days, and this one, by Shanika of Orchids + Sweet Tea, is hearty and full of flavor. The star here is tomatoes, which have gratifying nutrients like folate, iron, tryptophan, and B6 to positively impact your frame of mind.
@ebswc SPICY FRIED OYSTER MUSHROOM BURGER 🌶️ Back with another banging recipe using @lesleyssauces! This time we’re focusing on the hot pepper sauce 😍 INGREDIENTS: (makes 4 burgers/ half ingredients for less) For oyster mushrooms: 2 packs oyster mushrooms 1 tsp garlic powder 1 1/2 tsp chicken seasoning 1 tsp chilli powder Wet mix: 1/2 cup plain flour 1 tbsp all purpose 1/2 tbsp mixed herbs 100ml plant based milk 2 tbsp Lesley’s hot pepper sauce Dry mix: 1 cup plain flour 1 tbsp paprika 1/2 tbsp mixed herbs 1 tsp garlic powder 1 tsp black pepper 1 tsp mild curry powder 3 tbsp golden bread crumbs Spicy mayo: Mayo of choice Lesley’s Sauces hot pepper sauce 1 tsp dried parsley MEHTOD: 1. Prep oyster mushrooms and season them with garlic powder, chicken seasoning and chilli powder and set aside (the longer the better minimum 30 minutes). 2. Grab a bowl and mix all the batter/wet ingredients together and set aside. 3. Grab another bowl and mix all the dry mix ingredients together. 4. Add oil to a pan and heat up on a medium to high hear. 5. Whilst the pan is heating up, cover your mushrooms in the wet batter, the dry batter the wet and then the dry again (optional to repeat process but it makes it EXTRA crispy). 6. Once oyster mushrooms are fried. Set on some paper towel to soak up excess oil. 7. To make the spicy mayo add all the mayo ingredients listed above until mixed well. 8. Now build your burger! You can do this exactly how I have and add lettuce and tomatoes or any veg you prefer. ENJOY 🍴 Who’s feeling this burger? Show me in the comments 👇🏾 #friedoystermushrooms#lesleyssauces#veganburger#mushrooms#veganrecipe#veganmeals#mushrooms#blackveganrecipes#caribbeaninspired#eatwithebs#plantbasedrecipes#oystermushrooms#vegantiktok#vegansoftiktok#veganburgerrecipe#veganburgers#veganburger#kfc♬ SAD GIRLZ LUV MONEY - Remix - Amaarae & Kali Uchis
Ebony, of Eat With Ebs, offers this spin on your usual burger, using oyster mushrooms, another cultivated option that has powerful compounds said to be a great source of antioxidants. They have also been found to---you guessed it---regulate blood sugar, which has a major impact on how you feel.
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From Monogamy To Polyamory: 'I'm In An Asexual Poly Marriage With My Husband Of 7 Years'
Have you ever wondered what it's like to be asexual and in an open marriage? Relationship Coach Mikki Bey shared her first-hand experience with us as well as answered some of our burning questions.
Like a lot of people, Mikki met her now husband, Raheem Ali, online. As soon as they met, they instantly fell in love and got engaged on their first date. Just 90 days after they met, the couple tied the knot and have now been married for seven years. Raheem and Mikki aren’t your typical married couple, and despite being married for almost a decade, their marriage is anything but traditional. Mikki and Raheem have what she calls an "asexual polyamorous marriage."
Defining Her Sexuality
It wasn't until last summer that Mikki found the language to define her sexuality. "I didn't have the language for it until last summer," she explained to xoNecole. "Looking back, I just thought sex wasn't my thing. It was never enjoyable for me, and I'd go years without even noticing.”
Mikki always thought she was broken because she had no interest in sex. Mikki noticed after her friends came to visit and started discussing their sexual fantasies that she realized something was different about her. “At that point, I knew something was definitely different about me since I do not have sexual fantasies at all. It was truly news to me that people are at work thinking about sex! That was not my experience.” This led to Mikki researching asexuality, which she soon realized fit her to a T. “It felt like breathing new air when I was able to call it by name," said Mikki.
"Looking back, I just thought sex wasn't my thing. It was never enjoyable for me, and I'd go years without even noticing it."
Asexuality refers to people who experience little or no sexual attraction, experience attraction without acting on it sexually, or experience sexual attraction differently based on other factors. Like most things, asexuality falls on a spectrum and encompasses many other identities. It's important to remember, however, that attraction and action are not always synonymous: some asexuals may reject the idea of sexual contact, but others may be sex-neutral and engage in sexual activity.
It's possible that some asexuals will have sex with someone else despite not having a libido or masturbating, but others will have sex with a partner because it brings a sense of connection.
From a Traditional Marriage to Kitchen Table Polyamory
Although Mikki never really had a high sex drive, it wasn’t until after the birth of her son, that she noticed her sex drive took a real nosedive. “I never had a high sex drive, but about a year after my son was born, I realized I had zero desire. My husband has a high sex drive, and I knew that it would not be sustainable to not have sex in our marriage at that time.”
She was determined to find an alternative to divorce and stumbled upon a polyamory conversation on Clubhouse. Upon doing her own research, she brought up the idea to their husband, who was receptive. “It’s so interesting to me that people weigh sex so heavily in relationships when even if you are having a ton of sex, it’s still a very small percentage of the relationship activity," Mikki shared.
They chose polyamory because Mikki still wanted to be married, but she also wanted to make sure that Raheem was getting his individual needs and desires met, even if that meant meeting them with someone else. “I think that we have been programmed to think that our spouses need to be our 'everything.' We do not operate like that. There is no one way that fits all when it comes to relationships, despite what society may try to tell you. Their path to doing this thing called life together may be different from yours, but they found what works for them. We have chosen to design a marriage that works for us,” Mikki explained.
"We have chosen to design a marriage that works for us. We both consent to each of us having everything from casual sex partners to lifetime partners if it should go there. We believe love is abundant and do not limit ourselves or each other on how we express it."
She continued, “We both consent to each of us having everything from casual sexual partners to lifetime partners if it should get there. We believe love is abundant and do not limit ourselves or each other on how we express it. Our dynamic is parallel with kitchen table poly aspirations.”
Kitchen table polyamory (KTP) is a polyamorous relationship in which all participants are on friendly terms enough to share a meal at the kitchen table. Basically, it means you have some form of relationship with your partner’s other partner, whether as a group or individually. A lot of times, KTP relationships are highly personal and rooted in mutual respect, communication, and friendship.
Intimacy in an Asexual Polyamorous Marriage
Mikki says she and her husband, Raheem, still share intimate moments despite being in a polyamorous marriage. “Our intimacy is emotional, intellectual, spiritual, and physical, although non-sexual. We are intentional about date nights weekly, surprising and delighting each other daily, and most of all, we communicate our needs regularly. In my opinion, our intimacy is top-tier! I give my husband full-body massages, mani-pedis and make sure I am giving him small physical touches/kisses throughout the day. He is also very intentional about showing me his love and affection.”
Raheem and Mikki now use their lives as examples for others. On their website, thepolycouplenextdoor.com, they coach people interested in learning how to be consensually non-monogamous. “We are both relationship coaches. I specialized in emotional regulation, and Raheem specializes in communication and conflict resolution. The same tools we use in our marriage help our clients succeed in polyamory."
Mikki advises people who may be asexual or seeking non-monogamy to communicate their needs openly and to consider seeking sex therapy or intimacy coaching. Building a strong relationship with a non-sexual partner requires both empathy and compassion.
For more of Mikki, follow her on Instagram @getmikkibey. Follow the couple's platform on Instagram @thepolycouplenextdoor.
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