After my 60 mile bike ride, I spent the rest of the afternoon working on a freelance article.   I was very pleased when an e-mail from the Glam Newlywed broke my concentration – she has an almost-new pair of cycling shoes in my size that she isn’t using and wants to donate to CaitlinHTP!  Yaaaay!  Three cheers for blends (blog friends).


In other news, I discovered Puffins cereal today.


There are no words.  Seriously.  I ate this gluten-free cereal like popcorn and it was so-freaking-delicious.  I always eyed Puffins in the cereal aisle, but the price scared me away.  Mambo Sprouts sent them over to try, and now I am HOOKED.  Worth the money!  Will buy when I run out (which may be in… oh, a day).


For dinner, I was craving some sort of peanut-sauce Thai-inspired noodle dish, but I wasn’t really sure what to do (and I was too lazy to google).


The result:


In the mix:


  • 1.5 – 2 servings of whole wheat pasta
  • Stir-fried mushrooms, corn, snap peas
  • Peanut Sauce (2 tablespoons peanut butter, water, and mustard blended together over very low heat)
  • Bed of spinach


Originally, I wasn’t planning on the bed of spinach, but when I began to mix in the stir fried veggies, it didn’t seem like enough VEGGIE POWER for one bowl.  Isn’t it funny how veggies always shrink when you cook them, and then it feels like there’s never enough?


So, I added raw spinach, which was great:


The peanut sauce was a little… different… but good.  Husband gave it two thumbs up!  It was a nice change from pasta sauce.


Off to munch on more Puffins!  And get into bed early.


What’s your favorite way to sneak in fruit and veg?



  • Cynthia (It All Changes) May 10, 2010, 8:52 pm

    I always add spinach to everything. And I eat at least 1 apple a day.

    • Wei-Wei May 10, 2010, 11:35 pm

      Hahaha apple obsession HIGH FIVE! I’ve probably eaten at least 1.5 apples/day for my lifetime. They’re yuuuummy 😀

      (Spinach is awesome too, but I like it wilted.)


  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing May 10, 2010, 8:52 pm

    For sure, smoothies and GM’s!! I mean, you can sneak TONS of servings of fruits and veggies in a GM.. and it tastes amazing! Can’t go wrong there!
    That sauce sounds great but I bet it could’ve used a bit of soy sauce maybe?

  • Evan Thomas May 10, 2010, 8:52 pm

    Pumpkin in oatmeal is great to get that bit of extra fruit, except it feels so heavy during the Summer. Otherwise, I’ll add ketchup to a burger and fries. Ketchup’s a vegetable, right 😉

  • Jessica @ How Sweet It Is May 10, 2010, 8:53 pm

    You had never had Puffins before?!? Ohmigosh did you try the peanut butter ones?! They are incredible.

  • Anna @ Doing Good & Living Well May 10, 2010, 8:58 pm

    OMG, I LOVE Puffins! One of my favorites — the peanut butter flavor is featured in my dreams occasionally.

    For fruits and veggies — I love smoothies. I try to have two servings (at least) of fruit with breakfast. Lunch usually involves a large “side” salad. But smoothies are the best way to “enjoy” my fruits and veggies!

  • Jaimers May 10, 2010, 8:59 pm

    Puffins is one of my favorite cereals ever. The PB ones are TO DIE FOR.

  • Caitlin@TheTwentyFifthYear May 10, 2010, 8:59 pm

    This post is the single greatest post ever simply because you used the term “blends.”

    That is all.

  • Heather ( May 10, 2010, 9:03 pm

    GM’s are my fav way to add in veggies!

  • Allie (Live Laugh Eat) May 10, 2010, 9:03 pm

    I’ve picked up Puffins 3924834 times at the store but have never ever tried it. I NEED TO and everyone has told me so but I know for sure it will be destroyed in a day….slash an hour

  • Bethany (@ NotUnlessI'mBeingChased) May 10, 2010, 9:05 pm

    I love mixing it in to the actual meal. I add cooked spinach to spaghetti sauce to give it a little more bulk, and chopped veggies to my turkey meatloaf. Tonight was another “deceptive veggie” night — the Real Simple recipe Macaroni and Cheese with Cauliflower. Perfect!

  • Jenny May 10, 2010, 9:05 pm

    I don’t need to sneak, I love ’em! But if I cook spinach I could eat an entire bag 🙂

  • Raya @ Raya Runs May 10, 2010, 9:10 pm

    Green monsters for sure, and also I have a juicer so I just all kinds of fruits and vegetables in that. Sooo fresh and delicious.

  • Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin May 10, 2010, 9:10 pm

    I love mashing bananas into oatmeal or yogurt… it makes such a difference with texture and sweetness. Yum!

  • Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) May 10, 2010, 9:12 pm

    Spinach is so magical–it’s absolutely my favorite to eat raw, although I hate how much it shrinks when you cook it.

  • emptynutjar May 10, 2010, 9:22 pm

    There are different flavors too: original, cinnamon, and PB Puffins. Try them out!
    Can add fruits and veggies in everywhere really. Easy to be sneaky!

  • Maura May 10, 2010, 9:24 pm

    It’s funny to watch you look at a meal and think it doesn’t have enough veggie power. I remember the days of reading when you HATED veggies! Oh how times change 🙂

    I love sneaking spinach into everything, especially green monsters. Just drinking the bright green concoction makes me feel healthy.

  • Lisa May 10, 2010, 9:27 pm

    I have no problem eating fruits. But veggies I have to remind myself to eat. One trick is to take some veggies with lunch instead of chips or crackers.

  • Megan @ The Oatmeal Diaries May 10, 2010, 9:28 pm

    Puffins are so yummy! And I think GMs are a great way to sneak in fruit and veg.

  • Julie @savvyeats May 10, 2010, 9:28 pm

    Stir fries, spaghetti squash, and ‘monster pasta sauce’ (one of my fave creations) are my favorite ways to ‘sneak’ in veggies!

    If you thought your peanut sauce was too “different,” you could try PB + vinegar + soy sauce! Though if you got thumbs-up from husband, maybe just keep with the one you have. 😉

  • Danielle (Coffee Run) May 10, 2010, 9:30 pm

    You should try the PB puffins! They’re my favorite 😀

  • Jordan @ Live a Little Better May 10, 2010, 9:45 pm

    I’ve yet to try Puffins, because we usually let cereal go stale before we eat it all. I don’t want to waste the money!

  • Heather (Heather's Dish) May 10, 2010, 9:50 pm

    adding spinach is a HUGE trick that i use! it’s great in soups, salads, pasta dishes, or whatever!

  • Allie May 10, 2010, 9:51 pm

    Puffins are like crack for sure. i think the longest i have kept a box of PB in my apartment is three days. i only buy them on sale or at trader joes though becuase they can be pricey!

  • Krystina May 10, 2010, 9:57 pm

    Puffins is a dangerous cereal for me because I can easily eat an entire box in one sitting. Mmm, peanut butter puffins.

  • Amy B (Second City Randomness) May 10, 2010, 10:01 pm

    I wasn’t always the biggest fan of spinach. But I started to like it and now I’m buying a bag a week because I can seriously sneak it into everything!!!

  • Matt May 10, 2010, 10:01 pm

    Puffins are like crack! They are one of my favorite cereals 🙂

  • Carolyn @ May 10, 2010, 10:07 pm

    I add fresh baby spinach to just about everything!! Why not!?

  • Charlsie May 10, 2010, 10:08 pm

    I love puffins! They are pricey so I usually only buy on sale. Its hard for me to get veggies in because I live on campus, I also don’t LOVE raw veggies except for like, cucumbers! I try to have one big salad for lunch usually helps!

  • Run Sarah May 10, 2010, 10:12 pm

    I love puffins, they are awesome – especially the peanut butter ones. I hate how veggies shrink too, I thought I chopped up SO many today but after stirfrying the portion seemed so small.

  • Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter May 10, 2010, 10:18 pm

    I’ve always wanted to try puffins. Glad they get the Caitlin seal of approval 🙂

  • Jennifer May 10, 2010, 10:22 pm

    I bought Puffins today! Haha I love them! They are absolutely addicting! They are always a staple for me at school when the study munchies attack!

  • Emily Eats and Exercises May 10, 2010, 10:24 pm

    Those PB Puffins are the best – I have definitely had to remove those from my house at times to avoid eating the whole box… I think a 60 mile bike ride justifies eating as many puffins as you want though. 🙂
    I love adding spinach to dishes – adds volume and nutrition easily.

  • Megan May 10, 2010, 10:35 pm

    I can’t believe you just discovered Puffins! So awesome. I agree that Peanut Butter are the best 🙂

    These are way cheaper at Trader Joe’s than other places I have found– specifically Woodman’s or Jewel if you are in the Chicagoland area!

  • Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg May 10, 2010, 10:41 pm

    Yes! I add spinach to everything!! Pasta, smoothies, soups– it’s the easiest way to get in some extra veggies!

  • Mary May 10, 2010, 10:45 pm

    puffins cereal is the best!!

  • Amber K @ sparkpeople May 10, 2010, 10:51 pm

    Thank you so much for telling me about green monsters (and Anglea, Oh She Glows of course). That is exactly how I sneak in extra veggies now!

  • Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman May 10, 2010, 10:57 pm

    Puffins are so awesome. I like them with milk, but they’re best as a snack–straight from the box. I get a lot of veggies in my pasta. I saute just about everything then mix it with the pasta to add bulk and tons of nutrients.

  • Ilana May 10, 2010, 11:27 pm

    I tried puffins for the first time, ate the whole box within two days, and banned them from my household (aka til the next time I get an insane craving)
    I love to add a banana and another kind of fruit to my oatmeal every morning, and also eat another fruit on the side. At breakfast most days I get 3 servings of fruit! I’m a happy girl.

  • katelyn May 10, 2010, 11:35 pm

    I hope you have the PEANUT BUTTER puffins! Best flavor, by far!

  • Molly May 10, 2010, 11:37 pm

    oh I love Puffins! I went through a serious Puffins addiction when I was a freshman in college. Forgot about that cereal.. thanks for reminding me :o)

  • Jolene ( May 10, 2010, 11:39 pm

    Green monsters or fresh juice are my favourite ways to sneak in fresh fruits and veggies!

  • Annie@stronghealthyfit May 10, 2010, 11:49 pm

    Green monsters, or carrot/zucchini muffins!

  • Sarah for Real May 11, 2010, 12:20 am

    That’s so funny! I totally “sneaked” veggies into my dinner tonight. I called it “sarah style” tortellini salad. My husband didn’t bat an eyelash it blended in so well 😀

  • Lizz @ leadingthegoodlife May 11, 2010, 12:24 am

    I use spinach instead of lettuce on sandwiches and veggie burgers. Kind of obvious, I suppose. I also like to eat spaghetti squash like pasta. I was worried it’d be mushy, but it’s still got bite to it.

    And, of course, the good ol’ GM.

  • Evelyn @ cheers2healthy May 11, 2010, 12:28 am

    Did you get the peanut butter puffins?!?! Those are ADDICTING. My friend and I killed a box within 24 hours. I’m pretty sure I won’t buy them again for a while because I can’t be held liable when they’re around.

  • Jackie May 11, 2010, 12:34 am

    Green smoothies of course!! I also like to make veggie soup where I seriously put in every vegetable under the sun. You don’t even need to use broth because there’s so much flavor!

  • Vaala May 11, 2010, 12:42 am

    For some reason when I’m making thick smoothies, which are basically just fruit, it feels like I’m eating ice cream so it’s definitely like sneaking in extra fruit (throw in some spinach and it’s like you’re sneaking in veggies too). Weird.

  • Marina May 11, 2010, 1:30 am

    I like green smoothies, and green oats too. Or pumpkin oats. It’s always nice to have veggies early in the morning, makes me feel fresh 😀

  • jenny (green food diaries) May 11, 2010, 1:35 am

    i definitely like green smoothies.

    it’s too bad i missed on the puffins thing. i am following a raw vegan diet for now (until my health more or less recovers), but the cinnamon puffins always sounded so delicious to me.

  • Natalie @ Keep It Sassy May 11, 2010, 2:50 am

    I love love love Puffins! My vegan roommate introduced them to me at the beginning of the school year. She’s moved on, but we still keep Puffins in stock! So good.

    I’m trying to work on green smoothies. I know that they’re amazingly healthy, but I haven’t found a combination of fruits and greens that works for me. So far they’ve been too ‘earthy’. But I’m working on it!

  • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs May 11, 2010, 3:11 am

    I hate how veg shrinks when you cook it!!It’s so frustrating – I always cut up more than I think I’ll need, then I have enough:)
    Caitlin, I was wondering, as you’re vegetarian – do you take any supplements, like omega-3s or anything? And what would you say is the best brand of natural protein powder? 🙂

    • Deborah May 11, 2010, 5:05 am

      Ooh I’d be interested in finding that out as I’m slowly phasing out my meat eating and don’t want to rely on Quorn products.

      Very curious about the protein powder too..

    • caitlin May 11, 2010, 9:34 am

      Deb: I get enough protein from things like beans, tofu, whole grains, and dairy. It’s really not hard to get your protein sources… I easily eat 70 grams or so a day.

      Freya: I do try to eat ground flax (mix it in yogurt, oatmeal, or smoothies). I take a Chinese supplement for my PMS and I take some B vitamins. But that’s it!

  • Deborah May 11, 2010, 5:06 am

    SUCH a hillarious post title, and scarily close to my life philosophy! I get through spinach like nobodies business, that and brocolli!

  • Becky May 11, 2010, 5:32 am

    Yum. I love peanut sauce. If you want to try a different one, I LOVE the sauce from this Rachael Ray recipe. I put it on all sorts of things! (And it’s totally adaptable. I never measure anything (RR style!) so you can add as much or as little of the ingredients as you like). Also, I usually sub EVOO for the veg oil because it’s healthier.

  • Julia @ May 11, 2010, 5:38 am

    I eat a sweet potato and a side salad with almost every main meal, plus apples and fruit to snack on throughout the day. Its 10am here and I have already had a peach and an apple. Nom nom nom

  • Kristin (Cook, Bake and Nibble) May 11, 2010, 7:01 am

    Aww, blog friends are great!

    I love adding spinach to everything! Yum! 🙂


  • Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) May 11, 2010, 7:12 am

    Honestly, I have to stop myself from eating more fruit. I would eat it with every snack and meal if given the chance. Thank goodness for cheap bananas. 😉

    Veggies are great in a lot of things too. Spinach and broccoli go in almost anything with a sauce or cheese. And I’ve never met a roasted veggie that I haven’t liked. 😀

  • Joanne May 11, 2010, 8:34 am

    I love Puffins! It has been ages since I had them though.

    I don’t need to sneak in veggies and fruits, I prefer eating them over anything else. It seems I have to sneak in protein and fat if anything. 🙂

  • Paige (Running Around Normal) May 11, 2010, 8:39 am

    Love Puffins! But yes the price is a little scurry.
    Glad the sauce turned out all right! I love experimenting with new and creative sauces. Sometimes it’s a success and sometimes it’s an “epic” fail 😉

  • AJ May 11, 2010, 8:46 am

    I love fruit smoothies – but I am soooo skeptical of this GM y’all talk about. The thought of putting spinach in a smoothis sounds so yucky! I love raw baby spinach for a salad…but a drink? Really?!

    • caitlin May 11, 2010, 9:35 am

      yes REALLY. it taste good. i promise!!! 🙂

  • Daniel May 11, 2010, 8:58 am

    Sneaking in veggies? I actually overdo on the veggies (if that’s possible) for most recipes! I can always accept some spinach tossed into a dish and when I make stir-fries they tend to be 4-5 cups of vegetables and 1 cup of rice, so you can barely even taste or feel the grains!

  • Diana (Mymarblerye) May 11, 2010, 8:59 am

    I love PUFFFINSSSS. And yes, everytime I say Puffin i think of holly from E!’s Girls next door!!

  • Beth @ DiningAndDishing May 11, 2010, 9:03 am

    I totally agree, adding spinach is a great way to add some veg to a meal. You can literally put half a bag in one dish and it wilts into nothing!! I added it to some spaghetti I made last night and could hardly tell it was there.

  • Amy May 11, 2010, 9:05 am

    Hey Caitlin! there is a $1 off coupon for Puffins cereal on the Mambo Sprouts website…click on the Coupons link at the top of the page. LOVE THEM – and coupons too!

    • caitlin May 11, 2010, 9:35 am

      ooo thank you!

  • Laura May 11, 2010, 2:25 pm

    The peanut butter puffins are the best- I eat them as dessert!

  • Ashley May 11, 2010, 6:16 pm

    OMG, loooove puffins!!! The vanilla almond is amazing! I have many favorite ways to sneak in veggies but the other day I frosted a cake with whipping cream + pureed spinach and a little bit of sucanat. I wanted to die the frosting naturally and make a very simple frosting. It was BRIGHT green, filled with spinach, and tasted like fresh whipped cream! SO fun =)

  • Ashley May 11, 2010, 8:16 pm

    Ooooh…I was wrong..There aren’t vanilla almond Puffins. That is the Barbara’s Shredded Wheat I was thinking of, which you should also try if you haven’t yet 😉

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