A lot of the questions I get asked are about portion sizes, cooking for smaller groups like 2 or 3, and time involved in making/preparing foods. For all of these things, I offer a single answer… Planning Ahead!
I have found that eating healthy (without it costing an arm or a leg), cooking for a family of any size, and enjoying your food is far more difficult to do in the spur of the moment. You have to know ahead of time what kind of things you’re interested in doing, and plan for them. Sometimes even making very large batches of your favorite meals and snacks can be a huge help.
- A great many of my Sundays are spent with a crock pot full of soups or beans. They are really easy, and you can cater to nearly anyone’s tastes just by switching seasonings. Plus, with a crock pot you have the benefit of not having to stand over it while you cook. I’m most often (these days) cooking for two. So a great big batch like that gets served once, and divided up. That makes for a simple, healthy meal later. Easy enough to pop in the microwave or drop into a pan for a few minutes. Saves time, money and energy.
- Prepping your veggies ahead of time makes throwing them into nearly any meal a snap! Plus they last longer, so you can buy them in bigger batches saving money. Here’s a post I did all about prepping techniques: Prepping Your Veggies
- Another one of my favorites to make in batches is meatballs! I love meatballs, but they take a little time and effort to make well. So, I make a batch of 30 or 40 at a time, then put them in freezer bags and VIOLA! You have a super handy grab and go snack that is healthy if you make them right. plus it makes dinner time easy-peasy of you just boil some noodles and throw a little sauce on.
- Speaking of snacks. That’s the easiest time to lose your way on the track to healthy eating. So, make some simple things way ahead of time. That way when you are searching and growling for something you are more likely to grab something good for you. I usually make a batch of jell-o with fruit in it and portion it into 4 servings for later. Another good one is cottage cheese, I like the Fiber One brand, but almost all low-fat cottage cheese makes a good snack. Portion it off right when you bring it home so you’re sure not to overindulge in your moment of hunger. You can also have some veggies cut up with cheese in little bags.
Making these little changes will go a long way to helping you stay on track. Eating healthy and feeling your best is a full-time job, but planning ahead can definitely help.
What’s your favorite snack or meal to make easier? Share them in the comments section below, I always love hearing what you guys are enjoying!