What Food Blogger Allison Day Eats In A Day
As a cookbook author and food blogger, as well as a food writer, food stylist/photographer, and nutritionist, I keep my hands in as many projects as I can fit in—all of which involve food and/or drink.
Eating whole foods (preferably in season), including plenty of whole grains, protein (pulses, eggs, whole milk yogurt, nuts, etc.), produce, and healthy fats, is a priority for me, though I’m fairly relaxed with my diet.
Nothing is off-limits, especially when I dine out, but I try to keep the majority of my food plant-focused, which I’ve found works well for my body and keeps my brain sharp.
My daily eats change dramatically with the seasons. Eating according to what’s in season not only tastes delicious but is more economical, supportive of local farmers/businesses, and inspires what I cook and write about for work.
I’m lucky to not have any food allergies (minus Brazil nuts) or intolerances, but I grew up with a sister with celiac disease, so many of my daily meals—and my new cookbook, Whole Bowls—are naturally gluten-free. And I rarely eat the same thing every day, as I want to experience everything.
Let’s get my day of eating started, shall we?
7 a.m. to 8 a.m.: Water and Coffee
Immediately upon waking up—well, after brushing my teeth—I head downstairs to my kitchen, prepare my coffee, and drink three large glasses of filtered water. Not one, not two, but three large glasses of filtered water.
I won’t go anywhere without my reusable water bottle during the day either, and starting my morning with a heck of a lot of water helps me wake up.
By the time I’m done with my water, my coffee is ready. Good coffee. Really, really delicious coffee.
I live in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, where we're saturated with excellent coffee shops, which is just golden for me. I take my coffee black but will grab a flat white or latte at a local place on weekends or when I’m out for breakfast.
With a coffee in hand, I head upstairs to my home office and begin my workday.
9 a.m.: Breakfast
Now that I’m sufficiently buzzed from caffeine, I make sure to have a solid breakfast.
In the winter, I enjoy steel-cut oats with nuts, dried and fresh fruit, and a scoop of plain yogurt or splash of kefir. Or I make this truly amazing granola (the recipe is in Whole Bowls) and will have that with fresh fruit and full-fat plain yogurt.
I’ll go on green-smoothie or smoothie-bowl kicks, too. If I have a lemon hanging around in my fridge, I’ll make a warm lemon water to go with my breakfast.
1 p.m.: Lunch
Lunchtime is also known as "stuff-on-toast" time. Avocado toast, hummus toast, stewed beans and greens on toast, beets and goat cheese on toast, fried eggs with pesto on toast—you name it, I’ve had it on a piece of toast.
I use a whole grain, sourdough bakery bread for my toast, hit it with some garlic and olive oil, and play around with the toppings. This meal never gets old.
I’m a soup fanatic as well. In the winter, I make soups with beans or pasta, tomatoes, vegetables, and greens. In the spring it's pureed soups with asparagus and peas. In the heat of summer, I make a zippy gazpacho or chilled avocado cucumber soup. And fall is all about pureed pumpkin soup.
4 p.m.: Snack
I have an itch that only a snack can scratch. If I’m testing recipes, I may have a small serving of that (which could be anything), or I’ll stick to fruit. In the summer, fresh blueberries are my jam, but year-round an apple with natural almond or peanut butter is what I crave.
If I have fresh baking around, I’ll enjoy that with a cup of tea or coffee. On weekends, I’ll likely grab a baked good at a coffee shop or bakery.
7:30 p.m.: Dinner
Bowls are always on the menu. I’ll make one of the dozens upon dozens of healthy bowl recipes from Whole Bowls or create a random “classic” bowl by arranging a mixture of leftover grains, beans, and vegetables in a bowl and hit it with a simple olive oil, tamari, and balsamic mixture.
Whatever cuisine I’m craving—Mexican, Italian, Greek, Moroccan, etc.—I can create a bowl out of. If you’re stuck on what to cook for dinner, pick a cuisine and begin from there. It works every time.
In the summer, give me a plate of grilled vegetables, a bottle of olive oil, and some flaky salt (OK, and some fresh cheese ... and more toasted sourdough bread ... and a glass of rosé), and I’m a happy camper.
A “picky” dinner like this is what I like to serve when I have guests over, as it’s less formal and everyone can take what they want, building their own meal. Bonus: it's less work for me as the host.
I make a lot of tofu curries or bean stews in the fall and winter and will enjoy those with some short-grain brown rice or quinoa and steamed greens.
If I’m dining out or it’s a weekend, I’ll probably enjoy some sort of thin-crust pizza, ramen, or tacos.
To drink, I enjoy wine with dinner and am slowly warming up to craft beers and cocktails, so I’ll have a glass (or two on weekends) a few days a week.
9 p.m.: Dessert
I don’t always have dessert, as I’m normally pretty full at this point in the day, but more often than not, something my sister calls a “dessert pocket” magically appears.
There’s a chocolate avocado pudding recipe on my blog that I go mad for.
In the summer, I’ll grab a pal and head for gelato (always pistachio, plus coconut, hazelnut, or vanilla to contrast). Or, I’ll make a crisp or crumble with summer produce, which requires very little sugar, and have that with a scoop of full-fat plain yogurt or vanilla ice cream.
In the winter, I embrace my inner Scandi and go for rice pudding.
I’ve been on quest to find the ultimate chocolate chip cookie recipe, so I have a surplus of those in my freezer right now—they hit the spot nicely, too.
So, there you have it: my day of eating in a nutshell. It’s a touch of everything and never too much at one sitting, as I’m not a fan of feeling overly full.
By the time I’m ready for bed, I’m already thinking about my cup of coffee in the morning—and I’m ready to start all over again tomorrow, with new flavors thrown in, obviously.