I am a food lover at heart and I look forward to every meal! But I don’t have time to cook everyday and while I love to eat out, it is too high calorie and too expensive to do everyday. When I started residency I immediately knew I needed to find a way to get healthy, delicious meals made in advance. I tried making several crockpot meals and freezing them in advance, but I felt the prep took to long and I sometimes forgot to start the crockpot in the morning, oops!
Next I tried food prepping for the week, and honestly, I didn’t think it would last because how could I eat the same thing every day?! Turns out this worked for me! I usually aim for 4-5 dinners and 5 lunches per week for both me and my husband. This leaves me two days that I can eat out and mix it up. The key is choosing meals that are easy to prep, last a whole week, and are delicious enough that you will eat it several times. Here are my 5 go to recipes that are easy and fast, and I can stand to eat everyday.
Top 5 Food Prep Recipes
- Fried Rice
- This is one of the easiest recipes for food prep. I usually grab the Trader Joes chopped veggies pack and just add it to a pan with sesame oil. You can also just chop up some carrots, onion, cabbage, and peas or edamame for your own mix.
- Once the veggies are cooked but still firm, I move them to the side of the pan and scramble some eggs. I account for one egg per person per meal.
- Once scrambled, mix them with the cooked veggies and then add either soy sauce or coconut aminos to taste.
- Next add either 2 bags of Trader Jose brown rice or one bag of rice with one cup (dry) quinoa. Cook the one cup quinoa in 2 cups of water in your rice cooker or on the stovetop.
- The Trader Joes rice is found in the freezer section and microwaves in 3 minutes. You also could just cook 2 cups of rice per instructions.
- With this recipe, I can change out the soy sauce for hoisin, or most any other asian style sauce, and it is always good!
- This recipe sounds bland, but it is packed full of flavor and nutrients.
- For 5 meals: Cook one cup of lentils in 2.5 cups of vegetable broth. Bring lentils and broth to a boil and then simmer on low until fluid is almost completely absorbed, usually 30-45 minutes.
- At the same time, cook 1 cup of quinoa or brown rice with 2 cups of water and a teaspoon of minced garlic, in a rice cooker, usually about 30 mins.
- Next, thinly slice 3-4 large onions and place in pan heated on high with vegetable oil. Cook for about 5 minutes, until onions are starting to brown. Then turn temp down to low to let caramelize, about 45 minutes.
- Mix quinoa and lentils together, top with onions and add a dash of paprika. Super easy!
- Thai Basil Eggplant
- I just discovered this recipe and it instantly became one of our favorite dishes!
- I doubled the recipe to make it last for the week.
- Lasagna Zucchini Boats
- This is my comfort food fix!
- One zucchini, which is 2 boats is good for one meal per person.
- I used fat-free ricotta and low-fat mozzarella. I also skipped the meat all together and just used a good marinara sauce.