Last week I read an Instagram post by Green Kitchen Stories about how they balance their busy life with three kids by prepping food in advance. It has has inspired me to do the same. I know that fresh food made right before serving it is the very best option, but there are times when life is simply too busy. So a little meal prep can help make life a bit simpler and prevent calling for takeout or eating food not as healthy for you.
In the past year, my husband has been traveling for work to Texas and Ohio every other week leaving me with a homestead, a business and three kids to feed on my own. It takes a great deal of planning ahead to make this go smoothly. The first thing I have done is weekly meal planning, which has helped tremendously. The fact is that still I found myself sometimes struggling. When unexpected things would happen, suddenly there I was at dinner time with three hungry souls looking at me. So, I decided to give meal prep a chance to see if having healthy staple foods like soup, quinoa, a couple of sauces, dressings, cut-up veggies and hummus ready in the fridge would make life a bit easier, and allow us to still eat healthfully and with less stress. And the answer is a big, whopping YES!!!
So, my food prep does not include having lots of meals cooked and ready to be microwaved. No. Instead, I have a few sauces, veggies and other staple products ready so I can assemble a quick and healthy meal in a few short minutes if needed, and have something for the kids (and me) to snack on while things are cooking. This, along with my snack-in-jar-to-go, makes me a lot less stressed, and helps me feed my kids and myself only healthy food, even on the go.
So, here are the foods I like to prepare on Sunday night for the week to come:
- Tomato Sauce
- Nut butter
- Cut-up veggies like celery, jicama, bell peppers and carrots
- Lentil & mushroom patties
- Creamy Broccoli Soup
- Cooked quinoa
- Cooked Beans
- Cooked Lentils
- Bragg’s roasted seeds (great for a salty topping)
- 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
- 1 Tbsp. smooth peanut or almond butter
- 2 Tbsp. Bragg’s liquid amino
- . 1 grated garlic clove
- . 1/2 tsp. grated ginger
- . 1/2 tsp. vegan Sriracha sauce
- 1 can light coconut milk
Mix everything for the sauce in a mixer or food processor. Keep in a mason jar.
Creamy Cilantro Dressing:
- 2 Tbsp. tahini
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
- 1 Tbsp. ume plum vinegar
- 1 small garlic clove
- 1 medjool date
Mix everything in a food processor until creamy and mixed. Keep in a mason jar in fridge.