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Fast, healthy, easy meals

Yep – that’s the criteria I’m looking for these days with meal prep. I want me and my family to eat healthy, but I also want it to take about 30 minutes or less to prepare and not require a bazillion rare ingredients or techniques that will make my kitchen explode into a disaster zone.

I’m going to be honest and admit that I don’t really enjoy cooking. I like baking, but cooking, not so much. Fortunately, I’m in a relationship were my husband loves to cook. Unfortunately, said husband is in medical school and he doesn’t have much (i.e. any) time to help with cooking. In order to eat well and save some moolah, I end up planning the meals, shopping for groceries, and preparing the food. With somewhat of a smile of my face.

Even though cooking is not my fave, eating healthy is very important to me. I care about things like sustainability and how clean the food is. I truly believe that in The States, we vote with how we spend our money, and food is a REALLY important way to vote. I want food that is not full of harmful chemicals and I want to support companies that care about animal and worker welfare.

I’d also like to save money and not spend a ridiculous amount on groceries every month. I also don’t want to end up eating out all week because I didn’t get around to planning the meals, or the meals took too long to prepare.

So, this post is going to introduce my “Fast, Healthy, and Easy Meals.” I feel like I need about 30 good recipes/meal ideas to rotate through, so what better way to get myself started? Blog it! Plus, I want to share them all with you, so you have instant meals planned or you can choose your own meal plans from the recipes I share.

I’m going to start by listing the meals I gathered together for last week. Most of these are focused around vegetables and protein, with little to no grain. I’ll add in a bit of grain (usually jasmine rice, brown rice, or quinoa) for me and Pookie. Pookie doesn’t need to be on the slow-carb diet! We adapt for her as necessary.

I’ll link to the recipes I got online or from books, and provide notes for the other meals. These won’t be full recipes yet, just a basic guideline. I need a bit of time to put them in full recipe format! Once I do, I’ll post the whole recipe.

So here it goes! Week 1:

Week 1

Monday – Jude’s slow cooker pot roast (found in “The 4-hour Chef”)

Notes: We added onions, carrots, celery, and mushrooms in the crock pot as well. This made lunch leftovers for days!

Tuesday – Stir-fry with miso soup and edamame (my own creation)

Notes: I make a stir-fry out of tofu and whatever asian-style vegetables I have on hand or purchased for the stir-fry such as carrots, snap peas, bok choy, mushrooms, and broccoli. Cook it with soy sauce, sesame seed oil, and ginger (fresh or powdered). For the miso soup, I buy pre-made packets from the store (just add hot water), and the edamame is found in the frozen section at the grocery store.

stirfry

 

Wednesday – Paleo pesto pasta (my own creation)

Notes: I used our new spiralizer to make “noodles” out of the zucchini and yellow squash. Sometimes the spiralizer doesn’t work, so if that’s the case (or you don’t have one), we just slice the squash up. Then I steam frozen broccoli florets and peas, and add prosciutto for the topping. Mix together when everything is cooked and add a jar of pesto sauce. We had a small salad on the side. 

Thursday – Paleo Shepherd’s pie from Health-Bent.com

Notes: This one is stretching it on the “fast” part, but it’s delicious and gives us lunches for several days.

paleopie

Friday – Black Bean Tacos (my own creation)

Notes: For the black beans, I soak overnight in the crock pot and in the morning, add salt and garlic, and turn it on to cook all day. I cook it in the water it soaked in. I believe this aids the flavor. I serve the cooked beans on top of corn tortillas, and top with cheese, avocado or guacamole, and shredded lettuce. Rob loves to add all sorts of hot sauce. I usually serve them with a side of cooked mixed veggies from the freezer (corn, carrots, green beans). 

Saturday – Lemon-Herb Baked Cod with asparagus from Sarah’s Cucina Bella

Notes: This is my favorite cod recipe. It’s so easy, quick, and delicious!! I always make sure to get wild cod that is sustainable. Fish can be pricy, but it’s really worth paying a bit more to make sure you’re helping sustain the fish populations for the future, and not consuming all the bacteria and chemicals in farmed-fish.

codrecipe

Sunday – Leftovers

Notes: It’s very typical for us that one evening during the week there will be an event where dinner is provided, or we’re eating out with friends. This will push our meals back a day, so I don’t plan a meal to cook everyday. Plus, if I don’t feel like eating leftovers for lunch the next day, I’ll eat something else and have the leftovers for dinner the next day. 

 

There you have it! Again, I know some of these are not complete “recipes” but hopefully it will get you started until I post the specifics. Enjoy!!!

P.S. Make sure to drink lots of water my friends! I went to the ER this past weekend for a kidney stone. I’m still working to pass it and holy crow, it is painful!! I already drink a lot of water, but I guess I need a bit more. Take care of yourselves! 🙂

{ 6 comments… add one }
  • Sara K. June 9, 2015, 8:57 am

    These look good! I’m always looking for some new, quick and healthy recipes! My picky eater makes this extra complicated, but we manage 🙂

    • Amy June 11, 2015, 9:25 am

      Yeah, little ones can make things complicated! I just keep offering things, even though I know she currently doesn’t like them. I figure that maybe one day she’ll surprise me, and decide she likes it! 🙂

  • Z.D. June 9, 2015, 3:54 pm

    Ah, the constant struggle in the kitchen…it shall vex us to our dying days….
    In the winter I rely heavily on my slow cooker to assist with this very dilemma. In the summer, however, I don’t like the extra heat source on for eight hours at a time. Allow me to recommend this marvelously flavorful skirt steak by Alton Brown: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/skirt-steak-recipe.html I cook it under the broiler and it comes out just fine. Slice it thin, and it makes good sandwiches, tacos, stir-fries, and stands on its own just fine.

    • Amy June 11, 2015, 9:23 am

      Great point about the slow cooker in the summer! Extra air conditioning is not ideal! I’ll definitely check out this recipe. Looks delicious. Thanks for sharing!

  • Rina June 16, 2015, 8:45 am

    These recipes are great and such a motivator as I get back on track myself! I’m re-reading It Starts with Food. Have you heard? Very similar to paleo, but more of an elimination and then reintroduction process (referred to as the Whole 30) to learn how certain foods affect your body. I highly recommend it. It includes some easy recipes too! Let’s swap recipes!

    • Anonymous June 20, 2015, 9:49 pm

      Thanks, Rina! I haven’t heard of that book – I’ll look into it!

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