Tosca Reno


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A Father’s Guide to Conquering Mealtime

Well, if Jason doesn't have you convinced that Eating Clean is the way to go, then I don't know who will. He has a compelling story to share about the importance of taking care of oneself so as to be the best father possible. It might just bring a little tear to your eye. Thanks Jason. P.S. Don't miss his tasty Chili Relleno Casserole recipe below...
Jason & his beautiful baby girl. 
Becoming a father changes a man like nothing else in your lifetime.  It is a single event that is a prerequisite for almost every other story you will share as you grow older and wiser.  But it also does ‘something’ to you, or at least it did to me; it causes you to take inventory of yourself, your habits, hobbies, vices, and motivations.  And of course, it just plain and simple takes a boatload of time.  Being a present father, participating in all that you can, while still doing your thing at work, in the gym, and around the house shortens the days like you never thought possible.

You put all of this together and realize three important things: 1) You want to be around to live those stories.  2) You want to be a good role model and have more good habits, less vices, and leverage the motivation of living “for” another. 3) Finally, you want to make the most of the shorter and shorter days.

Eating Clean is something that absolutely can help you achieve all three, but I want to focus on the latter... time.  In much of the Western world, we live in a food environment of convenience.  Everything is pre-packaged, pre-mixed, ready-to-eat, and “just like” homemade.  Because of this, eating right, what's truly right, seems too time consuming and in the middle or at the end of a busy day, reaching for something that can be heated and ready in five minutes just seems to make more sense.

The “secret sauce” however to Eating Clean, especially for guys, is to make the clean food the convenient choice.  In our house preparing and preserving the core of a week’s worth of food over an afternoon makes Eating Clean so easy that come mealtime it literally makes eating the pre-packaged, pre-mixed junk food harder to do.  When pressed for time, reheating your clean meal is actually easier than fiddling around with that frozen dinner, figuring out which part of the cellophane to cut out, which to prick holes in, what needs to be stirred, etc...

It’s chile harvest season and in the spirit of making clean food ahead, here is a chile relleno casserole that can last a whole work week for you and your significant other.

Clean Chili Relleno Casserole

1.5 lbs (about 20) whole green chiles, roasted, peeled, and seeded
2 lbs ground turkey breast or chicken breast
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tbsp red chile powder (not premixed, just dried pulverized red chile peppers)
1 tsp each of onion powder, cumin, oregano
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/3 cup water
1 can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup oat flour
6 egg whites
1 cup skim milk
1 cup each of shredded cheddar and monterey jack cheese (ingredients should start and end with milk and enzymes)

1. Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Over med-high heat brown meat with garlic in a large pan.  Once brown, drain if needed and add the chile powder, spices, salt and water and cook on medium until thickened up slightly, about 5 minutes.  Set aside.
3. Spray a 9x13 casserole dish with a little olive oil.
4. Split green chiles in half lengthwise and line the bottom of the casserole dish with about half of the chiles.
5. Stir uncooked beans into prepared meat and pour into the chile lined casserole dish, evening the surface flat.  Top with half of the cheese.
6. Split the remaining green chiles in half and cover the casserole. Top with remaining cheese.
7. Whisk together oat flour, egg whites, and milk and pour evenly over casserole.
8. Cover with foil and bake for 40 minutes.  Remove foil and bake for another 10 minutes to allow the cheese to brown.

If preserving for the week, remove from the oven and re-cover with foil and allow to rest for about 20 minutes (just enough so the casserole dish is not red hot).  Place covered casserole in freezer (preferably a deep freezer) for 60-90 minutes and then into the refrigerator.

We cut this into 24 squares and reheat as needed. 3 squares for men, 2 squares for women per serving.


  1. yum, that looks delicious! I will try it. Thanks for sharing your story Jason.

  2. Wonderful article and the recipe sounds great. Thanks for sharing!


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