Healthy eating is the cornerstone of living a long, healthy, fit life.
Unfortunately, healthy/clean eating has gotten a bad rap over the years as being time-consuming, boring, and bland.
Nothing could be further from the truth, though!
Up next, we’re going to show you four easy ways to transform the utterly mundane and otherwise ordinary “clean”, healthy food into meals that are delicious and nutritious!
4 Easy Ways to Fix Bland Food
#1 Use Spices
Spices are the ultimate low/no-calorie way to amp up the flavor of your food without significantly altering its macro or calorie content.
Even better, there are an endless number of variations and permutations you can do with spices.
As an added bonus, spices of all kinds have fun little bioactives inside of them (like piperine) which can aid fat burning and appetite control, in addition to making your home cooked meals more tasty.
Here are a couple of our favorite spice blends:
This rub is great on grilled or roasted meat and veggies. It can also be mixed into a tomato sauce to make the ultimate homemade marinara sauce for pasta or spaghetti squash.
- 1-½ teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
Note: if you don’t have one or two of the spices on hand, that’s OK. Even mixing just 2-4 of these spices and herbs together makes a wonderfully flavorful combination!
This blend also works great spread across grilled or roasted meats and veggies. It also works well mixed into rice and/or beans.
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 tablespoons ground cumin
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons dried oregano
- 1 tablespoons garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
This blend is outstanding on burgers, steaks, chicken, pork chops, and even baked potatoes!
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon celery salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1-½ teaspoon salt
Cajun seasoning (like all the other seasonings on this list) are great on grilled meats, but that’s just the beginning. Sprinkle it on vegetables, stir it into homemade gumbo, jambalaya, or etouffee. You can even sprinkle it on your eggs!
- 2-½ tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon white pepper
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
#2 Get Zesty!
In addition to spices, another great way to amp up the flavor and “punch” of your dishes, without adding a ton of calories from fat or sugar, is to add some acidity to your dishes from the zest and juice of citrus fruits.
Citrus juice is acidic, yet slightly sweet, which helps brighten dishes that would otherwise be heavy and/or bland.
A squeeze of lemon or lime over grilled fish is a transformative experience.
Additionally, you can also experiment with adding dashes of different vinegars to your cooked dishes. Sure, vinegar is a staple ingredient in making a salad dressing, but that’s not all it’s good for.
A drizzle of good quality balsamic vinegar over grilled chicken or steak seriously elevated the dish to something you’d get at a fine-dining establishment.
#3 Go Nuts
Nuts are micronutrient powerhouses.
They’re rich in fiber, good carbs, protein, and healthy fats.
Nuts also add a pleasant (and much needed) crunch to salads. You can also use them as a coating on baked proteins, like chicken or fish.
Pecans work exceptionally well as a coating, especially on flaky white fish like tilapia, redfish, or cod.
Experiment with a few different combinations and see just how much a small sprinkle can transform your food from boring to bodacious!
#4 Change Cooking Method
We all get into routines (ruts) with diet, training, and life in general.
While there’s a lot of good that comes from routine, at times, it gets tiresome.
So, if you always cook and eat your chicken, eggs, fish, oatmeal, etc the same way day in and day out.
Try changing how you prepare your staple foods.
You’d be surprised at how tweaking the cooking method on your “staple foods” can inject new flavor and excitement into the dishes.
For instance, if you always bake your chicken, try grilling it on the BBQ pit or tossing it in the airfryer.
For oatmeal, instead of fixing it in the microwave, try overnight oats or baked oatmeal.
Little tweaks can go a long way to helping you find your love of familiar foods again.