We all lead very hectic lives and let’s face it there are not enough hours in the day to do all the things that we need to do. With this lack of time it can be a very daunting task to make healthy food choices when there is a McDonald’s on every other corner. Who really wants to come home after a long day at work and cook a full meal? Not me! Eating out every night can become very expensive and very unhealthy. I had to figure out a way to make life easier and also make me less likely to make poor food choices. I follow tons of personal trainers & healthy eating pages on Instagram, and the consensus among these pages was “meal prepping” was the way to go!
So I figured why not try it out? Scrolling through some the hits that come up when you search “meal prepping” can be a bit intimidating, but don’t let that deter you. I am not a nutritionist nor do I claim to know it all, I am just going to run down what has been working for me. I am all about making life easier and less complicated, especially with my lack of time. I will run down my typical shopping list/meal prep.
My Shopping List:
- Unsweetened vanilla almond milk(cashew milk is an alternative)
- Liquid egg whites
- Protein powder(I prefer Syntha 6)
- Fresh Fruit/Vegetables(frozen fruit is also and option)(bagged mixed vegetables are handy)
- Ground lean turkey
- Boneless skinless chicken breasts
- Brown Rice
- Plain almonds
- Greek yogurt
- Lara Bars
- Kind Bars
- Raw nuts
- Mrs. Dash Seasonings
- Canned crushes tomatoes
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Red pepper
- Black pepper
- Braggs liquid aminos
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Coconut oil
- Raw organic honey
This a typical shopping list for my meal prep for the week. You can choose between the proteins that you like the best. I eat red meat sparingly so I prefer fish and poultry. To get the meal prep started I normally use my rice cooker(great investment)to make a large pot of brown rice. The rice cooker is a life saver because brown rice is tricky to cook, it’s either too done or not done enough. The rice cooker cuts out the guess-work, you set it and go! On some weeks I will make a large pot of quinoa(I need to figure out how to make it the rice cooker) or I will make several sweet potatoes just to provide some variation. Now that we have carbohydrates out-of-the-way let’s get to the protein.
For the protein I normally season boneless skinless chicken breasts/fish with different combinations of the seasoning mentioned in the above shopping list. This provides a variety of flavors so that I don’t get bored with eating clean. With the lean ground turkey I will normally chop up onions, garlic, zucchini,and squash and cook it with extra virgin olive oil(or coconut oil) and different combinations of the seasoning mentioned in the shopping list. After the lean ground turkey is browned and the veggies are slightly cooked I pour in a large can of crushed tomatoes. I bring the contents of the pan to a boil, once contents have come to a boil I reduce the heat, and it simmer for 10-15 minutes.
Now one thing I really dislike is a dry chicken breast. I Googled the best way to cook chicken breasts to not to dry them out. All signs pointed to preheating the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and cooking chicken breasts for 20 mins. Once oven has preheated I place the seasoned chicken breast into an oven safe pan and cover with aluminum foil. Bake the chicken breasts for 20 minutes, and not a minute more, be careful not to puncture(use tongs) your chicken breasts as this will make the natural juices run out. Remove the pan from the oven and leave covered on counter or stove top. The chicken breasts will continue to cook and juices will be reabsorbed making for a juicy tasty chicken breasts. The seasoned fish can be cooked at the same time, but keep in mind fish takes less time to cook. Now your proteins are done! You are half way there!
I try to eat 6 small meals a day, but sometimes it doesn’t work out like that. Now I will run down a typical day of eating below:
I normally make an egg white omelet with veggies and some of the chicken breast that I already cooked. I will also eat oatmeal with fruit, nuts, and raw honey. Additionally I will make a Nutriblast with my Nutribullet consisting of fruits, veggies,water, and raw organic honey.
I normally will eat a lara/kind bar or a handful of almonds with some type of fruit
I will eat the ground turkey stir fry on top of the brown rice(quinoa is alternative) with steamed veggies another option would be a grilled chicken salad with homemade dressing(vinegar & oil)
Protein shake or yogurt & granola
A fish fillet with brown rice(sweet potato is alternative) and steamed veggies
Humus with either carrot, celery, or sliced cucumbers
As I stately previously I sometimes don’t get all these meal in for whatever reason, but I try my best to get them all. Meal prepping may seem like a daunting task, but I promise you it makes my life easier. It also doesn’t leave room for poor food choices because all your food is already prepared. Search “meal prep” and you can find several other shopping lists and plans that will get you on your way. Try out meal prepping for yourself and share with me how it works for you. Share your experiences with meal prepping with me I am always open to new ideas and recipes.
Whut say you?