Do you struggle with getting enough protein in your diet? Most Americans get enough, but when you have food intolerances and other restrictions, it can be tricky. I haven’t eaten beef or pork in almost twenty years, and most plant sources of protein aggravate my IBS if eaten in large amounts, so for the most part of the last two decades, I have struggled with getting enough protein my diet.
Protein is important because it keeps you feeling full longer, it stabilizes your blood sugar levels, it supports your muscles and bones and it helps the body absorb other important nutrients from other foods you consume. All of this is extremely important if you are trying to lose weight, but it is also important to those of us with fibromyalgia. In addition to the above benefits, it can also boost your energy levels and reduce brain fog.
At this point last year, I was only getting about half the daily recommended 65 grams for an adult woman. I started making 65g a day, a daily goal. I’ve since learned that you should actually shoot for 1/2 gram of protein to every pound you weigh and children should get a whole gram for every pound they weigh. It might sound easy for some, but for me it was an effort and I had to spend time finding the best high protein snacks and lunches that I actually enjoyed and weren’t full of added junk.
Today, I still have days where I don’t hit my mark, but most days I do. I keep things like plain greek yogurt, natural peanut butter, eggs, tuna and salmon around and have the occasional plant based protein shake when I know I am not going to hit my goal. But my favorite discovery is pickled eggs.
I was eating hard boiled eggs regularly enough to be tired of them. When we went apple picking last September, they were selling spicy pickled eggs at the market. We bought a jar, thinking we all might like them…but I ate every single one…no one else even got a chance to try them! They had a silky texture and tons of flavor. I had eaten pink/beet pickled eggs before, but I don’t remember them tasting that good and I didn’t know where to buy them. So I went on a mission to find out how I could make them at home. Maybe then I could actually share them with my family. 🙂
It turns out, they are super simple! All you need is a glass jar, some vinegar, eggs and some seasoning to your liking. I have experimented with a few recipes, and I like this one the best:
12 hard boiled eggs – peeled
1 1/4 cups of white vinegar
3/4 cup of water
1 half of a red onion (sliced)
4 cloves garlic (cut in half)
1 TBS salt
1 tsp. dry mustard powder
1-2 tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
- Place the peeled eggs in a clean jar (or two, see note below).
- In a saucepan, bring the remaining ingredients to a simmer and let it cool.
- Pour the vinegar mixture over the eggs. Make sure that all the eggs are covered. If there isn’t enough, just top off the jar with vinegar.
- Put them in your fridge and let them marinate for at least one week, two weeks if you can stand the wait.
In my opinion, they are best if they are eaten within two months, but that is just me. According to the National Center for Home Food Preservation, they can be stored in the refrigerator for up to four months. Here is a LINK to their website that also has some recipe ideas.
Note on Jars:
You can use any type of jar that can be closed and sealed tightly. In the picture, I am using two jars and there are actually 13 eggs in there. I have a giant jar that came from pickles that I thought would be perfect, but it was difficult to to get the eggs out, so now I divide them into two smaller jars. If you use two jars, just make sure you divide up the onions and garlic evenly between the two.
If you like eggs, you should give it a try. So easy and so tasty. A nutrient dense, low calorie snack with protein. And as an added bonus, the onions and garlic are really good on salads!