If you’re looking for healthy, easy eats that don’t compromise on taste or flavour, then you’re in the right little corner of the internet. Welcome, fellow healthy foodies!
Hey there and welcome to my food blog! 🙋🏼
I’m Taylor – a fun-loving, 20-something busy city girl who’s been living in downtown Toronto on Bloor Street for over six years. My blog aims to help other super busy people like me eat more wholesome, homemade foods.
Basically, if you’re looking for healthy, easy recipes that are above all delicious, then you’ve come to the right place!
You’ll find a lot of the following here:
- Fun, healthy bowl recipes
- One pot meals
- Low-calorie snacks
- Mason jar salads
- Freezer-friendly food
- Meal prep ideas
- Make-ahead meals
- Grab-and-go breakfasts
- Delicious lunch wraps
In my opinion, the key to eating right and getting everything on your lengthy to-do list done is definitely all in how you shape your menu for the week, and I can help! Meal prep doesn’t have to be complicated, I promise.
THE BACK STORY
I initially started The Girl on Bloor as a way to share my own meal planning strategies and capture some of the meals I was making as a busy full-time graduate student and freelance writer. When I moved out from my parents’ home at 18, I immediately realized how tricky it was to buy groceries as a single person on a budget and create delicious meals that were both fast and healthy to keep up with my crazy schedule.
For 7 years I somehow balanced being in school full-time, working part-time, volunteering and working on some sort of extra-curricular project all at once. (this blog was once one of those projects!) I had such a weird schedule, and it was hard to eat well.
Like lots of other university students, I gained more than the Freshman 15 my first couple years away from home. Like, I’m talkin’ 25lbs here for a petite, 5’2” girl who had always been the “small, skinny one”. But living away from home was hard – and in one of the most diverse cities in Canada at that!
Downtown Toronto is filled with all kinds of crazy amazing, delicious food. I mean, our restaurant scene here is INSANE (not that I’m bragging or anything🙈). I was like a kid in a candy store, eating my way through the city!
I’d get Thai takeout one night in between classes, then I would head on over to my favourite burger joint a couple days later. Whether it was comfort food on nights away from my family, or celebrations and nights out with new friends at trendy restaurants, I ate out a whole heck of a lot and it really made me miss cooking – for both fun and health. And wanting to lose a bit of the weight I’d gained also motivated me, just a bit…😆
MY FOOD PHILOSOPHY
I had always grown up around good home cooking and knew how to eat healthy, but I found it so difficult to make single servings for myself, or use leftovers in creative ways, or plan out a whole week’s worth of meals based around my insane schedule. Isn’t that the case these days – we’re all passionate foodies with little time to actually do any cooking?
I missed cooking because it’s always been in my blood – I’d just like to think it’s gotten a bit more sophisticated as we move through each generation. My great grandmother, for instance, raised four kids in the Great Depression, and used to create a hearty soup for the family from a five-cent dog bone. Talk about creative!!!
She didn’t exactly pass that ingenuity onto her daughter (my grandmother), however, because my mom said she ended up eating a lot of liver and onions and tomato soup masquerading as spaghetti sauce as a kid.😳
But, my grandma DID teach me me everything I need to know about baking (thank god for recipes, right?), which sparked my interest in cooking. By the time I was a teenager, I was occasionally forcing my family to try new types of food. I can still remember the first thing I made on my own: a Kung Pao Shrimp recipe that I had cut out of the newspaper!
I’ve since become more adventurous, and I definitely have my love of dining out to thank for that. I became exposed to so many different types of cuisine, and now I’d like to think I use my, ahem, sophisticated😂 palate to try different spins on traditional dishes and find healthier ways to elevate my favourites.
Ultimately though, my goal has been to cut down on the amount of processed food I used to eat and find the cosmopolitan side of eating in. It’s possible, believe me!
LET’S GET TO THE GOOD STUFF
If you’re still reading, all I have to say is you’re a champ! I’m almost done, I swear – you just gotta check out the food first!
You see, I’ve experimented more than ever with food through developing recipes for my blog, and I also put together recipe videos once a week so you can see step-by-step how I make it all!
Here are just a few of my most favourite recipes on the blog:
- Bang Bang Shrimp Bibimbap Noodle Bowls
- Tahini Coconut Energy Bites
- Homemade Chicken Shawarma
- Loaded Buffalo Chicken Fries
- Homemade Alphabet Vegetable Soup
- Open-Faced Steak Caprese Sandwiches
- Salted Iced Coconut Milk Caramel Macchiatos
- Calamari Takeout Boxes
- Shrimp Dynamite Sushi Bowls
- Healthy Chicken Tikka Masala Rice Bowls
And if you’re wondering what I’m up to nowadays, I’ve given up the freelance writing thing (unless this blog counts?) and am focusing on my food photography/styling business! I’ve even got a super fancy portfolio if you want to check out more of what I’m doing professionally.
And I also finally finished my Master’s degree in Journalism at Ryerson University – after almost seven years of school I’m so done with academics!!!😂😂😂
Alongside my photography hustle, I’m also lucky enough to be able to work on this blog full time! Yes, I literally cook, photograph and eat food all day long. What can I say? I’m livin’ the dream😎
For more of a look into my life as a full-time blogger, you can check out my income reports – they detail what I have learned through building the blog from scratch and they show my growing income as a freelancer and business owner!
THE TAKE AWAY
Though I’ve had different relationships with food over the years, it’s becoming more important to me than ever to eat what’s seasonally available in Canada, and I try to incorporate as many veggies as possible into each of my recipes. I eat local when my budget allows it, and it’s important to me that what I eat and feature on my blog is wholesome, seasonal and mostly homemade.
When you have a busy lifestyle, it can be hard to commit to whatever diet or food fad is out there, so I say it’s time to forget about the complications of cooking. We’re only human, and food should be about enjoyment and social connection.
Rather than restrict ourselves, I think it’s time for all of us to just get back in the kitchen, and start cooking again! Find your groove and your style, what you like and dislike.
Be adventurous, or be simple.
But most of all, be authentic to what your own food philosophy is and what your time constraints are.
I’ll be along for the ride! ❤️
*Sidenote: my good friend Kennedy Robinson took these headshots of me – aren’t they fab?!