Rushing out to the office in the morning or coming home from a long day of work when you are tired of running low on time might make the temptation of stopping by a fast food restaurant too great to resist (guilty). But if you are on a health journey don’t let that temptation throw you off track! There are plenty of quick and easy well rounded meals that you can cook regardless of the time or energy levels you have. Read on to get the tips.
Cook in Large(r) Quantities
You can think of this as meal prepping but with less planning and intention. Instead of cooking 1-2 servings for yourself or your family cook 5 or 6 servings with the purpose of having leftovers. I know it seems obvious but a lot of people forget at the moment that leftovers are your friend and will make your life that much easier over the next few days, and save you tons of time.
To make it even easier on yourself pick one day in the week (think meal prep Sunday) and spend that time going to the store, cooking, and preparing your meals/leftovers! Saturdays are also a good choice if you don’t work weekends. If you don’t want to leave your leftovers in the dish you cooked them in then you should consider picking up some meal prep containers from Target, Walmart, or Amazon. There are plenty of options out there that are cheap, washable, and oftentimes compartmentalized.
Buy Frozen Or Canned Foods
Stock up on frozen and canned foods to make your life easier on those pinch days. There are plenty of scenarios where just buying something already prepared or partially prepared from the grocery store and paying the extra 1-2 dollars is worth it. Remember the point is making sure that you get a nutrient dense meal when you don’t have the energy or time.
Try some of these items:
- Legumes or canned beans
- Vegetables, canned or frozen
- Partially cooked/microwaveable rice
- Hard boiled eggs
- Sushi 🙂
You walk in after a long day, throw some partially cooked rice in the microwave, add some of the above listed ingredients into that after and that’s it, a decently well rounded meal that took almost no time at all to put together. Don’t forget the sauces!
Keep Good Snacks And Quick Breakfast Foods on Deck
There are so many insanely delicious, healthy, and easy snack items that can be mixed and matched to get you to where you’re going. If you’re like me you most likely don’t plan far enough ahead in the morning and need to just grab some snacks and head on your way. If so, you need to stock up on to-go snacks like nuts (almonds), fruits (bananas, apples, a variety of dried), and healthier oats/grain-based cereals and bars.
Some options include:
- Seeds (hemp, chia, flax)
- Oats or whole grain
- Nuts (almond, cashews, walnuts)
- Low-fat Greek yogurt premade cups
- Fresh fruit
Cooking stirfry is going to be the solution to most all of your kitchen problems. They are perfect for family cooking or just yourself. Pick a protein, throw in your rice or noodles, toss some of those frozen items we talked about before and top with sauces, spices, and seasonings of your choice.
There are so many variations of stirfry that you can go with but the process is often times the same. Start with your protein, add your vegetables with a splash of what, let it cook for a few minutes, add in your precooked rice, top with your sauce and that’s it!
Check out this stir fry recipe which can also be found on the Meta Nutrition mobile apps.
We can’t stress enough how important we think meal prepping or batch cooking is, which we hope is obvious since we started a meal prepping company! It makes your life easier, reduces the time you need to spend cooking, ensures you hit your calorie and macro targets and so much more.
Cooking healthy meals doesn’t need to be scary or require you to spend the entire day on it. Everyone can get what they need out of their food to accomplish their goals with just a little preparation and time.