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.
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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Featured image by Westend61/Getty Images
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The beauty industry has seen significant shifts that have taken the limitations off of the Black haircare experience.
In just the last decade alone, hair aisles dedicated to curly and kinky customers have expanded far beyond a singular section filled with heritage brands and products with harsh chemicals. Now, with the changing of guards from transitional haircare lines to new, diverse, and full-range options that cater to all textures and colors, breakthrough brands are taking their stake in the beauty industry like never before. And leading the pack is the Australian-born founder of BREAD Beauty, Maeva Heim.
Since its launch in 2020, Heim’s groundbreaking hair brand, BREAD, has taken the beauty industry by storm with a “carefree and easy” hair lifestyle at the core of its brand. With traditional messaging around textured hair being “anti-frizz” and seeking “tame” the way our hair naturally grows, BREAD aims to create products that redefine those existing stereotypes and remove the challenge from our haircare routine.
“Our main goal has always been to demystify and simplify textured haircare, eliminating extra time and products from our routines,” Heim tells xoNecole. “We also speak from a place of kindness and understanding when it comes to textured hair; ‘tame’ is not in our vocabulary, but frizz is — in the best way possible!”
Launching her brand in the midst of the pandemic was no small feat. Faced with supply chain challenges and an uncertain future, Heim shares that three years into her entrepreneurial journey, her success is due in part to her ability to embrace change and adapt quickly. “Even when things feel out of your control, most things are controllable,” she reflects. “And if you take charge of what you know, you can change yourself and your business, you can overcome anything."
Courtesy of BREAD
Today, BREAD celebrates its third anniversary in the beauty industry and is commemorating its dedication to fostering diversity and inclusivity within the beauty and wellness sectors with a new partnership with Fearless Fund, a venture capital fund focused on empowering women of color entrepreneurs.
Fearless Fund is reshaping the entrepreneurial landscape by creating opportunities for women of color and fostering a more inclusive business environment. By supporting BREAD, they aim to bring about positive change and empower individuals to embrace their natural beauty, and sustainable packaging has resonated globally with consumers.
“We’re so happy to be supported by Fearless Fund – and the fact that it’s a venture capital firm that specializes in early-stage, women-of-color-led businesses makes it hit home even more,” Heim says. “We’re utilizing the funding for research and development, especially in the textured and afro hair fields, and bringing even more products for overlooked hair types to the table.”
xoNecole: How has Black and Australian hair culture influenced your outlook on beauty and hair care?
Maeva Heim: For Black hair culture, I grew up in my mum’s African braiding salon in Perth – so I was surrounded by Black hair trends, imported products, and community. Being in such a concentrated environment of Black hair, then realizing how uncatered to it is in the hair industry as a whole was the catalyst to creating BREAD.
Australian hair culture has always favored the ‘Aussie beach babe’ aesthetic — that being blonde, surfy, effortless. Growing up here, I obviously never fit that mold, and so much of what you see expressed in BREAD’s branding is about creating a new ideal or new norm of what it means to have ‘effortless’ hair. We’re really on a mission to make it feel accessible to everyone — not just people with straight hair.
xoN: Your participation in the Sephora Accelerant Program and placement in Ulta are significant milestones. What impact have these opportunities had on BREAD’s growth?
MH: The Sephora Accelerate program was really the initial door that opened for BREAD. It allowed them to go full-steam ahead and really plant a stake in the ground in prestige hair with a brand that hero’s textured hair with premium ingredients that are more accessible.
Launching into Ulta online last year and in 250 stores this year (recently expanding into a total of 470 doors) is nothing short of huge, especially as Ulta has one of the most renowned haircare sections in the industry. We get to reach even more current and future 'breadheads' both in real life and online, and partnering up with Ulta means plenty of fun events and happenings down the line too.
Courtesy of BREAD
xoN: Elaine Welteroth played a pivotal role in the early days of BREAD Beauty, and her support led to several key opportunities for the brand. How did that initial meeting with Elaine in Australia shape your vision for BREAD and the importance of mentorship as a founder?
MH: Elaine really helped to pave the way for our very first Sephora meeting, which ultimately landed us a partnership. She invited me to the very first Teen Vogue conference as a guest, where I was able to connect with a senior Sephora merchant who set up the meeting for me.
I think that relationship with Elaine and the opening of that door really is a testament to how important it is to be in the room - but even more so, how important it is to be invited into the room by someone who is ahead of you. That’s how you equal the playing field, and as a founder a few steps ahead of others, I definitely feel a duty to open doors and invite people into the room so that doors can open for them too. Visibility is everything.
xoN: What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs who want to enter the hair industry or start their own beauty-related businesses?
MH: I think in the current climate, where oversaturation is really at its peak, I would definitely implore new founders to think really carefully about what differentiates their brand from everything else. That differentiation can come from lots of different things - whether it’s product formula and positioning, price point, distribution, etc. As long as it’s super clear, and there is a real need, then the sky's the limit, and there’s room for everyone to succeed.
Courtesy of BREAD
xoN: Looking ahead, what are your future aspirations for BREAD as you continue to evolve and grow in the hair industry?
MH: I just want to continue building this company into a powerhouse beauty brand that makes people feel good — about their hair, their bodies, and the skin they're in. That has always been the ultimate goal — giving people their time and energy back so they can spend less time worrying about ‘beauty’ and more time doing anything else their hearts desire.
Featured image courtesy of BREAD