Food Prep Tips

I am a huge advocate for prepping meals ahead of time. It makes life so much easier and will help you avoid eating cereal out of the box for dinner because you’re too tired to cook something. This has happened to me–I work all day, go to the gym, come home and I feel so lazy and tired. The last thing I want to do is cook, so I end up eating handfuls of cereal because it’s easy.

My husband is a good cook and creates masterpieces in the kitchen from time to time, but he works nights (12-hour shifts from 6:00pm-6:00am, so he only works half of the days of each month), so it’s hard for him to cook on a regular basis. I’ve figured out that a lazy Sunday is perfect for prepping healthy meals and snacks. The time spent doing this is well worth it because during the week, all you have to do is reheat and eat!

I don’t do this every Sunday because sometimes I’m not home, but I try to a couple times a month. It really makes a difference.

What you have to do is prepare all of your meals/snacks for the week and refrigerate or freeze them. It just depends on how soon you’re going to eat them. Here are a few things that I make that freeze/refrigerate easily.

*Chicken & Veggie Lasagna*
photo (12)
-whole wheat lasagna noodles
-any veggies you want (zucchini, squash, tomato, spinach, mushrooms, etc.)
-red pasta sauce
-LIGHT white pasta sauce (optional, but it makes the dish so yummy)
-1 pound ground chicken (turkey or beef)
-1 to 2 links of all natural sweet Italian chicken sausage
-Italian seasoning (dried basil, oregano, thyme, etc.)
-cheese (grated parmesan and shredded Italian blend)

*Grilled Or Baked Marinated Chicken Breasts*
Grilled Chicken BreastsSource

-boneless skinless chicken breasts or tenderloins
-your favorite spice rub or marinade

All you have to do here is grill, sautee or bake several chicken breasts or tenderloins and keep them in the refrigerator all week. They’ll be easy to grab and chop for salads, sandwiches or even in a yummy Mexican taco or fajita dinner. You can do this with ground beef, turkey or chicken as well. The ground meat is also perfect for taco night, lasagna or stroganoff. The possibilities are endless.

*Lazy Day Casserole*Lazy-Day-Casserole-sausage-potatoes-carrots-peppers-onions-herbsSource

-1 package of all natural chicken sausage
-2 sweet onions
-2 bell peppers
-2 sweet potatoes

Place all chopped ingredients in a baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil and your favorite seasonings (salt, pepper, garlic powder, etc.). Bake at 350 degrees until the veggies are cooked. Refrigerate or freeze until you’re ready to pull this out for a mid-week meal.

*Homemade Protein Balls*kidsnackSource

-2 cups natural crunchy peanut or almond butter
-2 scoops protein powder (chocolate or vanilla)
-2 ripe bananas, mashed
-2 tablespoons freshly ground flax seeds
-a small handful of chocolate chips

These are way healthier than snacking on candy or sugary granola bars. They are also delicious and keep well in the freezer.

*Apple Peanut Butter Snack Bars*
applepbsnackbar-946x1024

Source

-2 cups rolled oats
-1 cup unsweetened applesauce
-1/4 cup peanut butter
-1/2 cup honey
-2 eggs
-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
-1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 9×9 baking dish and set aside. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well.  Transfer the mixture to the baking dish and use the back of a wooden spoon or a spatula to press it down evenly. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until the edges are just barely browned.  Allow to cool before cutting into squares. These keep well in the freezer or refrigerator.

Enjoy and happy food prepping!

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