I feel like this all the time. Our life is busy! We run two farms. I have a full time job. We try to spend time with family. On top of that, we are committed to our health and fitness. That pretty much takes up all the hours. When meal time comes around, it really can be difficult for me to muster up the mojo to make something healthy happen. I know we are not the only ones with that problem. Time to prepare healthy meals seems to be trouble for many people. Here are my best solutions:
- Plan your meals. I plan at least 4 good dinners per week and plan on cooking double so we have enough to stretch them out to 8 meals. That works well if I can keep Jay from eating up all the food, so we will actually have leftovers! Being able to just heat up a plate of healthy food without cooking sure is nice.
- Do all your shopping, washing, slicing and dicing all on one day. Multiple trips to the store is a real time buster, as well as a money sink. I don’t know why every time I go into the store it costs at least $100.00, no matter what I went there for! I try to make my one trip on Saturday afternoon, and grab all that we need for the week, and I know what I need for the week because I planned my meals! I also hit the meat and milk venders at Atherton market for those types of things. I take it all home, sort it out and get it in the fridge. I also do a big veggie washing on Saturday as well, so that I have all I need, ready to go.
- Often on Sunday and Wednesday afternoons, I will cook the meat for several different meals. This usually involves the grill or the smoker. Then, for my meal, I just have to slice up some tomatoes and cucumbers or quickly sauté some squash or greens. This is especially easy if all my veggies are ready to toss on a plate or in a pan. I love having things mostly done, so I don’t have to think too hard, and the meal comes together quickly.
- Some weeks I make cauliflower pizza crust and use it for several meals. I make a pizza for lunch and a breakfast pizza for breakfast. It is great to have a few pieces left over from each of these, that can work for another meal.
- Recently, two of our CSA pros (Organic Eater and Tina B.), have been telling me about their “instant pot” electric pressure cooker. They both seem to love this thing. Tina says you can toss a frozen chicken in there and have it table ready in 45 minutes. She said it browns, it crocks, and it pressure cooks. It also reportedly can have fresh limas cooked into good old southern style soft beans in 6 minutes and a pot roast ready in 40. This is my type of convenience. I ordered one yesterday. I’ll report back on it later, but if it works like they say, it will be a huge help! There are plenty of times I don’t cook because nothing is thawed, or whatever is thawed, will take too long to prepare. This kind of convenience sounds great!
- Lastly, breakfast seems to be one of our bigger challenges. We often will make a huge 12 egg sausage frittata and eat that for several days. Sometimes I just scramble up sausage, greens, onions and anything else with eggs. That comes together in about 15 minutes and always tastes great.
Any way you do it, cooking nutritious food is important. The few times that we don’t eat right, we feel the effects in our sleep, joints, energy, mood, and focus. I don’t have time in my life to have any of those things go wrong. Good food seems to be key.
Eat your veggies,