WIAW: Dinner Lately

Hey there, how are you doing this Wednesday? Feels weird that we’re already halfway through the week (I had off Monday) but I’ll take it!

It’s been over a week since I returned to school and I’m mostly back in the swing of cooking for myself. I’ve had bouts of “I want to experiment with a new recipe” and times of “I’m tired, I want Whole Foods.” As long as it balances out, right?

While breakfasts and lunches have been the same, dinners have been delicious. They took me longer than my normal time length in the kitchen (30 minutes) but were worth the extra work and mess. Not gourmet by any means, but pretty good for a college student living in a small apartment. Fish or other non-chicken protein will happen this week. I need a change!

*Visit Jenn’s link-up for more food ideas!


Coconut chicken + baked sweet potato + roasted cauliflower. I coated the chicken in coconut oil, breaded it in coconut flour, sprinkled it with shredded coconut and cooked in the pan. Yeah, I went coconut crazy but it was so good!

Inspiralized’s Basil Pomodoro Zucchini Pasta with Chicken + a sweet potato (unpictured because it didn’t look pretty on the plate and I wanted some sort of carbs). This is the second time I’ve made this meal and it’s so easy and flavorful. My mom treated me to my very own spiralizer so now I can experiment more while I’m in Miami. I’ve only spiralized zucchini, cucumbers and carrots. Any suggestions for other easy vegetables?

Baked lemon chicken breasts (this recipe) + roasted sweet potatoes + broccoli. This meal was big win for me because I can never bake chicken breasts perfectly. FINALLY. Perfectly cooked, juicy and tender. I proudly went back for seconds. This is completely a “baby recipe” that most people can make but I’m glad to have had a successful experience.

And, because I always need to include this in my WIAW posts…my nightly apple + peanut butter. Never gets old.

What’s your favorite nighttime snack?
How many times do you cook per week?

WIAW: I Actually Cooked

Yes, you read that title right…I finally cooked. I took a “hiatus” from cooking for myself over break but I got a very random urge to make dinner for my family last week. It was nice having more supplies, space and ingredients than I’m used to in my apartment kitchen. I might have said I actually enjoyed cooking…but don’t hold me accountable for that.

I made Inspiralized’s Basil Pomodoro Zucchini Pasta with Chicken. It was delicious and very easy to make (two things that are mandatory about the recipes I use).

I followed the recipe almost exactly, but I added some homemade pesto and topped it with avocado. This is definitely something I will make when I return to school and I’m excited to try out more of her recipes.

Spiralized pasta dinner

And for a more of the WIAW party, here are other food highlights from the last week.


Another spiralized bowl inspired by this recipe! This one I’ll give the credit to my mom (although I did make the quinoa).
Carrot noodles + cucumber noodles + quinoa + avocado + salmon sashimi 

I substituted the carrot noodles for zucchini noodles for a delicious lunch the following day.

My parents got a gift card to a fancy and $$$ restaurant in Tampa called Bern’s Steakhouse so we went there for a special dinner. The picture is horrible quality but it’s a somewhat famous restaurant so I wanted proof that I was there. The steak was incredible.

Filet mignon + broccoli +carrots + onion rings

Bern's steakhouse

And just because this made my night…

Nothing like finishing a jar of peanut butter (*knowing there is a backup in the pantry).

Have you spiralized vegetables?
What’s the fanciest restaurant you’ve been to?

Gluten Free Friday: Living With Roommates

In a perfect world, gluten would never enter my apartment. I would have my own kitchen and a special detector at the front door that would alert me any time gluten entered the door. Can someone please invent that? Until that happens, I’ve learned how to live peacefully with gluten eaters.

My kitchen has never been 100% gluten-free, even at home with my family. They take all necessary precautions and I consider them fully trained in gluten-free living, so I’ve never had a problem there. But living with other college students who don’t even know what gluten is, has presented new challenges. Thankfully, I’m well into my second year of sharing kitchen and my third year of sharing a living space (dorm), so I’ve gotten a handle on how to ensure my safety without annoying my roommates.

gluten free roommates

1. Explain your situation…but ensure it won’t affect them. I’ve found that it’s helpful if my roommates understand the basics of what it means to be gluten-free, however, I don’t want to scare them into thinking they can never cook pasta in the apartment. Explaining why you can’t share food or cooking utensils and why you use Lysol wipes and paper towels like they’re going out of style can help prevent future arguments or misunderstandings.

Which leads to my next tip…

2. Stock up on Lysol wipes and paper towels. No, this isn’t the most environmentally friendly piece of advice, but I find both items helpful. For example, I will place silverware on a paper towel and not a bare surface. Also, I always Lysol the counter before and after I cook to get rid of/clean up crumbs.

3. Claim your territory. Come in with a plan of how you want to store your food and cookware but, of course, be flexible.

Here is my storage situation:

My two roommates and I each have our own shelf in the pantry, mine being the one with the green box. We all have an understanding to not randomly eat each other’s food, since we pay for it individually. But the KIND bars are up for grabs :)


In the fridge, I have one produce drawer and one shelf.

I store all of my cookware and oils in my own cabinet.


My sautéing pan and baking sheet were in use at the time :)

Lastly, I keep spices, cooking utensils (tongs, large spoons) and baking supplies in, ironically, a bread box. This way my stuff is easy to reach but doesn’t risk getting accidentally touched by gluten.


4. Don’t freak out when you see gluten on the counter. Easier said than done, but when my roommates are cooking or baking something I try to just walk away. There have been many times when I’ve seen flour or a piece of bread on the counter and my anxiety spikes. But that’s what Lysol wipes are for. The next time I’m in the kitchen I do a thorough cleaning and that tends to ease my worries.

I think a lot of these tips are applicable to sharing a kitchen in general. It’s a learning process but for me right now, having roommates has proved to be beneficial to the alternative.

Celiacs: Do you share a kitchen with non-celiacs? How do you manage it?

People with roommates: Do you share food with your roommates?