Fast Food

Posted by on Sep 17, 2014 in Nutrition | Comments Off on Fast Food

My Version of Fast Food

Fast Food

Fast Food

When you hear the words “fast food” you likely conjure up images of the golden arches, a giant bell luring you to “run for the border” or “think outside the bun” or perhaps Colonel Sanders or a freckled, red-headed girl with braids pops into your mind. Decades ago I was a sucker for the junior bacon cheeseburger, but oh how things have changed.

New Meaning

“Fast food” has such a different meaning for me now. As a working mother of three busy children, it is a challenge to come up with healthy meals in a flash, and the vegetables seem to pose the biggest challenge.


For many, the story goes as follows: You feel inspired in the produce section at the grocery store, you buy a ton of vegetables, you end up with no time to prepare them as your busy afternoons and evenings take over, the vegetables get forgotten and rot in the fridge. Sound familiar? It happens to the best of us.

Prepare and Conquer

I am always looking for ways to make my life easier AND to provide the most nutrition for my family and myself. Sometimes it takes a bit of work on the front end, but we are talking about maybe 30 minutes on a Sunday afternoon for—BAM—a whole week’s worth of super nutrient-dense, antioxidant-rich, cancer-fighting veggies, ready to be used in several different ways!

Secret Weapon

Pre-cut veggies in a bag can be convenient, and frozen vegetables can also work, BUT NOTHING BEATS FRESH, so here is my secret fast food weapon to have in the fridge at the ready. It’s up for anything—I’m telling you!!!! I am talking about a cabbage salad mix so versatile, you will be shocked and amazed. Cabbage is the heart and soul of this veggie mix because it stays perfectly good in the fridge for a LONG time, it’s crunchy and delicious when it’s raw, and it’s delightful when cooked or sautéed as well! This ain’t your average coleslaw in a bag, folks, and you can customize it to your liking. A typical recipe for me might look like this:

Super Versatile Vegetable Mix

This recipe is my go-to mix that really works well. You can try adding whatever you like—thinly sliced snow peas? Shredded kohlrabi? Try and see! Now…as for why this mix is so special and versatile… Once this powerhouse veggie mix is in the fridge it can be used in SO many ways. Here are a few of my favorites:


    Consume the mix as a fresh, raw salad! Sprinkle with raw hemp hearts (excellent plant protein and Omega-3 source), raw or toasted pumpkin seeds (crunchy, magnesium-rich, and full of vitamins, minerals and protein) or you can top with a shredded chicken breast! ANY DRESSING WILL DO, but this ginger-miso dressing is an old favorite that pairs well with the mix Lay a handful of the mixture on a warmed corn tortilla. Top with seasoned grilled fish (hey—even trans-fat free frozen fish sticks will work in a pinch!) and a dab of guacamole for the perfect fish tacos!


    Cook mix in a large skillet in about ½ T. coconut oil for a quick and easy cooked veggie side to grilled meat.
    Add sliced, fully-cooked bison sausages or turkey/chicken sausages (Applegate Farms Roasted Red Pepper is good) to the skillet about halfway through to create a satisfying meat and vegetable bowl.
    Toss sautéed mix with cooked cous cous (only takes 5 minutes) or cooked quinoa (only takes 15 minutes) to create a hearty bowl of grain and veggie goodness.
    Crumble super firm tofu (I like Wildwood Organic Sprouted Tofu) into skillet with sautéed mix, add ½-1 teaspoon turmeric, ½ t. smoked salt (or sea salt to taste) and black pepper for a delicious tofu scramble.


    Toss steamed mix with a delicious “peanut” sauce and kelp noodles (or any noodles) for an easy comfort dish. Sprinkle with hemp seeds and sesame seeds for an extra nutrient boost. Kelp noodles need only to be rinsed. They are extremely low in calories, very high in minerals, have a great texture and take on the flavor of whatever sauce you put on them. After you make the peanut sauce, pour desired amount over noodles and steamed veggie mix, and toss together.


    Bake this magic mix into a delicious, savory frittata!


Fast Food

No, it’s not food that comes already prepared through a drive-thru window. Nobody thrives on that kind of “fast food”. But, THIS is fast food you can get excited about. Again, take a few minutes on a Sunday afternoon, get the kids involved if you trust them with knives, and knock out a batch of this magical mix. YOU WON’T HAVE TO THINK ABOUT WHICH VEGETABLES YOU ARE SERVING FOR THE REST OF THE WEEK! Be sure to comment below if you have any more fantastic ways to use this mix!

Heather McDonough – Nutrition Coach and Cooking Instructor Instagram Facebook