I thought it would be helpful to provide some meal ideas that are easy and don’t take a ton of time to prep. You don’t have to be eating the same thing everyday! I know the same old roasted veggies and chicken breast can get boring. Let me give you some examples on how to switch a few simple meals up;
Overnight oats. I was on an oat kick for months. If you’ve never heard of this great creation, well let me tell you what it is. All you do is take 1/2 cup rolled or quick oats (I find both work great), 1 cup of nut milk (or whichever milk you choose), 1 tsp cinnamon (this helps blood sugar balance), and 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds. This is my base. I put everything into a mason jar, shake, and put in the fridge overnight. Now for add-ins, you can add in whatever you like. Sometimes I’ll do nut butter and homemade chia jam, chopped cooked apples, mashed banana and walnuts, blueberries and almonds. You could even sprinkle in some hemp or flax seeds. The possibilities are endless! If you have to rush out the door in the mornings, I would suggest putting these add-ins in your jar with everything else at night, so you just have to grab and go in the morning. Oats are a complex carb, which means they digest in the body slower and don’t cause a blood sugar spike. They’ll keep you full and energized all morning!
Another favourite is chia seed pudding. This is just as easy as the overnight oats. What I do is take 1/4 cup of chia seeds with 1 cup of non-dairy milk. I add in 1-2 tsp of cinnamon and sometimes a splash of vanilla. This can also be put into a mason jar. Shake well, and then 10 minutes later you want to shake it well again. The chia seeds will begin to soak up the milk and start to turn into a pudding consistency. You want to let this sit in the fridge for a minimum of 2 hours, but ideally overnight. Sometimes I find it’s still pretty runny in the morning, so I’ll add in another tbsp of chia seeds, shake, and by the time I get to work, it’s nice and thick. Toppings for this can be anything. I love adding fresh fruit. Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries are all really good. Sometimes I cook apples and add that in. My favourite combination is using full fat coconut milk as my liquid and then chopped mango as my topping. So good!
Smoothies are also a really great quick and easy choice. You can even prep smoothie bags. Put all your ingredients into a bag, pop in the freezer and all you have to do is throw it into a blender with liquid of your choice and voila! Breakfast. One thing I want to mention is that you don’t want to load your smoothie up with just fruit. I suggest adding in a couple handfuls of greens, half an avocado, a tbsp of hemp seeds, or even some roasted sweet potato or cauliflower. I know, call me crazy, but it makes it super thick and creamy and the fruit masks the flavour. The reason for adding fats and extra fibre in is to prevent the sugar in the fruit from going straight into your blood stream. It’s also going to keep you full longer.
I like to have a few different options just so I’m not eating the same thing everyday. Some of my favourite quick and simple meals are;
Stir fry’s. You can add basically anything into one and it’ll be great. I take this opportunity to throw in 4–5 different veggies so I’m getting a nice variety. Sometimes I will use chicken breast but more times than not I’ll just use lots of veggies and put it over some brown rice.
Anything that can go into a slow cooker. Soups, stews, sauces, roasts, if it can be done in a slow cooker, that’s where it’s going. The whole idea of being able to throw everything into a pot, set it for 8 hours and be able to come home to dinner ready is a magical feeling. Plus, your house smells ah-mazing when you walk through the front door.
I do love a simple sheet pan meal of roasted veggies and chicken breast but understand how that can become boring. Some ways I like to switch it up are by using different veggies each time. Also, using different spices and seasonings help a ton. You’re not going to enjoy your meal if you don’t like how it tastes and dread eating it!
The amount of stress that gets taken off when you have meals ready to do is crazy. You don’t have to worry all day about what’s for dinner or stop at the grocery store on the way home and just grab whatever looks quick and easy. Make life simple and “naked” and prep your meals ahead of time!