03 Dec Inside the Fridge welcomes athlete/author/recipe developer Kristina LaRue of Love
Love and Zest’s Kristina LaRue joins us today on Inside the Fridge. Author, recipe developer, athlete, blogger, Orlando, FL media personality and registered dietitian nutritionist, Kristina is a force to be reckoned with-and I say that with the best of intentions.
I recently spent time with Kristina during a shared Uber ride in Atlanta, GA. (let me stop here and say that you must realize she’s a pretty avid runner and fitness enthusiast. I, on the other hand, am not.) The group conversation in the car turned to running. For the first time EVER, I actually sat up and listened to what was being said because the idea of signing up for a 5K had begun floating around in my head. What struck me about her the most was the “yes, you can” pep talk she delivered while I was trying to talk myself
out of into signing up for the race. I peppered her with questions and hemmed and hawed about why I couldn’t do it.
Then she told me something that remains in my head today. She told me I could walk part of the race.
Of course I knew I could WALK if I needed to–it’s over 3 miles for God’s sake. The difference in having Kristina say it-an accomplished athlete and competitive runner- made it truly OK to walk. The goal became just to finish.
The switch flipped and I made the commitment to run (jog/walk-let’s be real) the Santa Claws and Paws 5K on December 15th. Thanks for our little talk, Kristina.
And now, our interview…
ITF: Do you love food shopping or dread it? Why?
KL: I typically look forward to grocery shopping, especially if I have time to explore the isles. Sometimes my husband goes with me and other times I’m on a mission and go really quick.
ITF: What is the single most important thing on your mind when you are shopping for food?
KL: I’m a multi-tasker so I can’t just pick one. Taste, Quality, Price.
ITF: How many do you shop for? Ages?
KL: Me and the hubs; we’re 27 and 28.
ITF: What is your weekly food budget?
KL: Well, this is a funny one and not so funny when trying to manage the budget. We are very focused about managing our allocating our money in the budget but the food department is always the hardest to stay on track. We typically budget $100 per week in groceries and then $50 for eating out. It never quite works out as we had planned…. why is this so difficult??
ITF: How do you plan your weekly meals? Create a spreadsheet or fly by the seat of your pants?
KL: Old fashioned pen to paper. I get lots of joy out of creating our weekly menus.
ITF: What is the most coveted food in the fridge right now for each member of the household? Why?
KL: My eggnog—the husband doesn’t really like eggnog so I get it all to myself. Him probably the Minty Mallows from Trader Joes,.. he’s got a real big sweet tooth.
Kristina’s Eggnog Frappucino
ITF: What convenience product can you not live without?
KL: Tortilla chips—we’re big chips and salsa, chips and guac and nachos lovers.
ITF: What brands do you swear by?
KL: Udi’s gluten free breads, Cabot cheese, Garden of Eatin’ Blue Corn Chips, I also like The Fresh Market and Trader Joe’s store brands.
ITF: What food/s are important when recalling food memories?
KL: Hmm— mom used a lot of canned veg and cream cheese, must be a southern thing?
ITF: How have your cooking/shopping habits changed over the last 10 years?
KL: Gosh. Well, I’ve been shopping on my own for almost 10 years. WOW. In college, I didn’t cook much (I didn’t really learn to cook until we got married), so I would buy more convenience and snacky foods.
ITF: What was the last meal you cooked from convenience products? What was the menu?
KL: Last night, precooked rotisserie chicken, roasted green beans, and Tuscan Bean & Kale Soup, and this amazing 3 Cheese Sourdough Bread from The Fresh Market.
Kristina’s Healthy White Chicken Chili with Kale …made with rotisserie chicken
ITF: If one person could cook for you tonight, who would it be?
KL: Jamie Oliver. Love that guy, and so does my husband. I don’t know who would be more excited.
ITF: What words of wisdom or advice do you have for other folks who are doing their best every day to fill the fridge?
KL: Just keep working at it, keep a list of your family favorite recipes on hand so that you’re not reinventing the wheel every week trying to figure out what to cook. Prep 1-2 meals in advance on the weekends if possible so that you can make weeknight dinners easier.
ITF: What are you working on these days that you’d like to tell us about?
KL: Definitely working on getting our budget in line in the food category. Cooking more and eating out less. Anyone have any tips?
Help a sista out! Please leave your tips budgeting tips for Kristina in the comments section below.