Meal Prep Meal Ideas

So I know I have written about meal planning/prepping tips before, but I wanted to do a little post on some of my favorite “fun meals” that I create from my meal prep. I want to give you some ideas of how to make leftovers or big batches of meal prep fun, quick and easy, healthy, and most importantly, delicious!! I don’t ever usually have specific recipes, but I have some basic meal ideas that you can then take and create using what you have/like. Hope you enjoy these and that it helps make your healthy lifestyle a little easier, and, of course, tastier.

1. Sweet Potato Mexican Bowl

I love sweet potatoes and mexican flavors…so this works perfectly! I typically use ground turkey or rotisserie/baked chicken, but you could also use ground beef, ground chicken, or even lunch meat! For the sweet potatoes, you can bake/steam those ahead of time in your meal prep, or if you have time, cook them as you are making your meal. I try to buy express bake sweet potatOH because they come wrapped in a seal that steams it for you, or just steam your potato in the microwave in about 6-7 minutes. Then, you start assembling. I scoop out the potato into a bowl, add the meat, and then lots of toppings. My go-tos are: bell pepper, tomato, romaine lettuce, red onion, sprinkle of cheese, avocado, and salsa. In the bowl pictured, I also added white rice (I needed more carbs for the day), so you could also add beans or rice to your bowl too. Play around and find what works for you!

2. Asian Stir-Fry

Again, this is a pretty basic meal (we all know stir-fry), but it’s super delicious! The main things you’ll need for this are rice (I typically choose brown), a protein (I use frozen shrimp or ground turkey), and veggies (I use birds eye frozen). Frozen foods are a big help in making these quick meals and just as nutritious, so don’t be afraid to invest in those. I just cook everything up (or have it prepped) and then top it off with a little soy sauce and sesame seeds. Occasionally I’ll also add toppings like avocado or an over-easy egg–super delicious!!

3. Quinoa Bowls

If you follow me on instagram, it’s no secret that I love quinoa and eat it often. It’s so easy to cook up a batch of it on Sunday and have it for the week to use in many different meals. My quinoa bowls are a jumble of foods, usually different every time. I start with a base of quinoa and then add some type of protein (ground turkey, chicken, lunch meat, etc.) and then veggies! I go with PictSweet frozen steamable veggies for convenience, but you could add fresh, raw or cooked veggies–whatever you like. Then, on top of the bowl I add things like avocado oil, avocado, cheese, etc. I don’t have a picture of this one (there’s one on my instagram), but it is so versatile that you could make any variation of it to fit you, your needs, and your tastes.

4. Pizza

You heard me right…pizza! The thing that tops this whole thing off is using FlatOut wraps as the base!! These are by far the best I’ve found and make the pizza great. Again, after you have the base, it’s pretty much up to you for the toppings. In the picture, I used marinara sauce, laughing cow cheese wedge, mushrooms, spinach, chicken and red onion. I’ve also used basil before too! Make the pizza however you like, and the great thing is since each wrap is one pizza, you and anyone you’re eating with can have the pizza they want!

5. Banza Pasta Delight

As you may have seen or read before, I absolutely  LOVE Banza Chickpea Pasta–it tastes great, texture is perfect, and for me, it’s a better option than normal pasta. But of course, you could sub in another pasta into this recipe. While I am cooking the pasta (or if you pre-made a batch, reheating it), I cook veggies in a pan and then add in my meat at the end to warm it up. You could use any veggies or meat (shrimp, ground turkey, chicken, etc.), but some of my favorite veggies to use (depending on what I have) are spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, broccoli, or zucchini. Then I add this mixture to the top of the pasta and add any cheese, pesto, or sauce you want! Absolutely delicious, healthy and easy!

So there are just a few of my meals I make with meal prep. I also sometimes I just throw random stuff together to make “bulk bowls” which helps make food fun and interesting not to mention allowing me to eat a lot. Try being creative and prepping a bunch of carb and protein sources at the beginning (and even veggies) and play around making different recipes. Healthy cooking is meant to be fun, quick, easy, and delicious!!

Pre and Post Workout Snacks

When working on your fitness journey, most people think of the actual workout/exercising as the sole focus and most important thing. And while yes it is important to have your workout routine set and be getting in your exercise and movement, there is a second very important aspect that often gets overlooked: Nutrition. What you eat is just as important as what you do! You can’t out-train a bad diet, and if you aren’t fueling yourself properly, you can’t train your hardest and become stronger.

Although all meals are important, I want to focus on 2 specifically in this post–the pre-workout and post-workout snack/meal. These are important because the pre gives your body the fuel to power through your workout and the post helps your body recover and refuel your muscles used.

There are so many guidelines and rules out there for what to eat, but I’m here to say it mostly is going to depend on the person, their body and how their body digests and uses certain foods and nutrients. Generally, you want to focus on more carbs and proteins in the pre and post meal and less on fat; however, again, everybody is different. Take some time experimenting and trying out some of these snack ideas to find what works best for you, your body, and your lifestyle. One of the things I like to try to do is make my pre-workout or post-workout (mostly my post-workout) meal be one of my main meals–either breakfast, lunch, or dinner. But if it works to have a snack at each time and your meals at other times–then do it! Find what works for you! With that being said, here are some of my ideas!

1. Toast with Peanut Butter and Banana

The toast and banana are good sources of carbs for fuel either pre or post workout. You could sub the toast for whole-wheat waffles, english muffins, bagels etc. You could also use any nut butter or fruit!

2. Greek yogurt with fruit, nuts, granola, etc.

This packs in the protein and the carbs from the fruit and granola!

3. Eggs/Omelet

Great source of protein, especially post workout! Try adding some veggies to the eggs (great way to get them in!) along with a side of fruit or toast to get more carbs in post workout to refuel!

4. Protein Shake

This is one of the classics–the protein shake. Either mix the powder with water or milk, or blend it into a shake with other ingredients for a quick snack!

5. Protein Cereal

This is one of my newfound favorites either pre or post workout! Mix your protein powder with milk in a shaker cup like you would for a shake. Then, pour the “shake” over cereal (rice chex works really good here) and you have a bowl of deliciousness! Make sure to even drink the milk after!

6. Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a great source of carbs to fuel you! Instead of adding sugary toppings to it or buying the flavored packages, use plain oatmeal and top with fruit (fresh, frozen, or dried), nuts, nut butter, granola, seeds, etc…the options are endless!

7. Rice Cakes

Rice cakes with peanut butter and fruit is one of my FAVORITE snacks ever–pre, post, or just midday (picture at the top). Rice cakes are so versatile too. Try them my way or top them with avocado, tomatoes, laughing cow wedge, eggs/egg whites, jam, etc.

8. Sandwich

Whether you use meat or a class PB&J, this is a perfect mix of protein and carbs! Try adding things like veggies or avocado too to really build a great sandwich!

Hopefully this list gave you some ideas to try out for your next workout fuel! If you have any other ideas, I would love to hear them! Comment below and let me know what you love to eat pre or post workout!!

Healthy Lunch Ideas

In order to keep on track with your nutrition and healthy eating during the day, it is important to be prepared for all meals! I know I’ve talked a lot about breakfast and snacks on here, but lunch is very important too–especially because many people seem to skip it because they find themselves “too busy” or running “too late” to make or buy healthy lunch. Or instead of skipping it they pick up fast food every day. So I thought I would share  some of my super easy go-to lunches that take about 10 minutes or less to prepare–either the night before or the morning of. Don’t sacrifice your hard work and progress by skipping meals or opting for the “convenient yet unhealthier option”!!


Avocado Egg Salad

Ingredients

1 Hard-boiled egg (or more if desired)*

Avocado

Lemon juice

Seasoning of choice (Garlic/Onion salt, Nature’s, etc.)

Instructions

Mash the egg(s) in a bowl. Add the avocado, lemon juice and seasoning, and stir/mix together.

Serve and eat it in whatever way you want: on a salad, in lettuce cups, on a sandwich or toasted bread, in a wrap, etc.

*If making only one serving, use 1 egg. Use 2 eggs for 2 servings.

**You can make ahead of time and store in the fridge in tightly sealed container for 1 day. The avocado may turn a little brown, but it is still good to eat.

Avocado Chicken Salad

Ingredients

Shredded chicken pieces

Avocado

Lemon juice

Seasoning of choice (Nature’s, Onion/Garlic salt, etc.)

Instructions

Add the chicken and avocado together and mix. Add in lemon juice and seasonings and stir together.

*Same suggestions as with the avocado egg salad

Healthy Chicken Salad

Ingredients

1 6oz. container plain Greek-yogurt

Shredded Chicken pieces

Lemon Juice

Celery, cut into pieces

Craisins/Raisins

Any additional add-ins: grapes, nuts, apples, etc.

Instructions

Put desired amount of chicken into a bowl. Add the Greek Yogurt and stir to combine. Add in a few drops of lemon juice until thickness is what you want. Mix together again.

Add in desired amount of Craisins, celery, grapes, etc. into the mix and stir together.

*Good in a sandwich, pita pocket, lettuce cups, on salad greens, by itself

**This can make as many servings as you want. 1 container of yogurt will only get you 1 or 2 servings, but to make more just add more yogurt and more of the rest of the ingredients. Can be stored for 1-2 days in the fridge in Tupperware or in the bowl with plastic wrap on

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

Yields: 2 servings

Ingredients

½ cup uncooked quinoa*

½ cup black olives sliced

1/3 cup red bell pepper, diced

¼ cup red onion diced

1/3 cup feta cheese crumbles

For the dressing:

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 tsp. balsamic vinegar

½ tsp. dried oregano

Salt, pepper

Instructions

Cook quinoa according to package. Once cooked, drain and set aside to let it cool.

Prepare the dressing by whisking all the ingredients together.

In a medium bowl, combine quinoa and the rest of the salad ingredient. Pour the dressing on to. Mix everything gently and enjoy!

*Meal prepping a batch of quinoa at the beginning of the week will make preparing this meal much quicker!!

**Only pour dressing on amounts you are going to eat. If you want to store it, wait to pour the dressing on until before serving and eating.


There you have it! If you have any other suggestions, I would love to hear them in the comment section below!

Breakfast for Dinner

As a kid, the idea that I could eat pancakes for dinner was awesome and mind-blowing (I mean c’mon I was little here). Not that it happened often, but there were quite a few times where it was decided that instead of cooking “dinner food” my parents would make breakfast for dinner–these nights always got my sister and I very excited. Our breakfast for dinner usually consisted of scrambled eggs, bacon or sausage, and pancakes (Bisquick + my dad’s secret additive ingredients he would never tell us). Oh, and of course the mounds of butter and syrup I would pile on. My parents made it seem so easy to whip up these delicious meal for the family, and it always hit the spot!

Now, that I’m living on my own in my apartment, and cooking for myself, I have realized that whipping up pancakes isn’t so quick anymore and it usually makes a ton of leftovers. Not to mention that now that I am trying to live a healthy lifestyle, Bisquick pancakes aren’t exactly the healthiest for you. Delicious: of course times a million…but currently, I’m looking for something a little healthier for my meals. I had tried “healthy pancake recipes” before, but they all either turned out tasteless or super thick and not moist at all. Plus a lot of them seemed to take a long time to make–and when it’s 8:30 am and my stomach is growling, time is not my friend. (hangry anyone?)

About a month ago, I stumbled across a pancake recipe on Instagram that seemed a) healthy, b) quick and easy, and c) delicious! It called for a ripe banana which I just so happened to have and I decided that I would make the pancakes for dinner that night–bringing me back to my childhood memories! And let me just tell you…those pancakes were freakin’ AMAZING. Some of the best pancakes (healthy and not-so-healthy) I had ever had and they were so simple too. It was incredible!! The banana gave them the right amount of sweetness and they were the perfect amount of soft and moist. This meant that I didn’t have to pile on the butter and syrup to make them bearable, which is something I do not like to do. (Side not: everything is okay in moderation, but I personally choose to limit my butter and syrup intake. That being said, butter that has low saturated fat and 100% pure maple syrup are your best options for when you do use them). In fact, I didn’t even use either, I just topped mine with fresh fruit!

I really liked these pancakes too because there were only a couple of ingredients and they are added-sugar free, flour free, and super macro friendly. (Flour isn’t bad if it is wheat, but all the wheat ones I’ve tried have not turned out good and I just feel better when I eat less flour.) I paired mine with egg white veggie scramble and a piece of uncured bacon to round out my delicious breakfast for dinner meal! Whether it’s for breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack, I highly encourage you to try these pancakes!!

I’ve included the recipe below, but I originally got it from @kaypfitness on Instagram!


Banana Oat Pancakes

Yields: 2 pancakes

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup oats (ground into flour)
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • Sprinkle cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp. almond flour
  • ½ banana, mashed
  • 1 egg
  • Water

Instructions

  1. Mix ground oats with baking powder, cinnamon, almond flour, banana and egg.
  2. Add water until you get the consistency you want.
  3. Cook in a pan on medium heat for 3-4 minutes each side.