Hey everyone, sorry for the delayed post! Between the weather (we had a fantastic blizzard!) and some other craziness I got a little behind on my posting. I did successfully meal prep Sunday for this week. I always struggle to find the time to do this with my LO running around. I swear the second I try to do anything in the kitchen he wants to be in the middle of it, and a 20 month olds help is not always super helpful. I would love any advice for letting him help – as I’m writing this it just occurred to me that I could just give him something to mix up and play with. My mom – all-star thrifter and finder of amazing things for cheap – recently found one of those counter stand helper things. You know the wooden box that allows your child to safely stand at the counter without falling off the back of it like a chair? Maybe I’ll try that next week. Anyway, I got it done for this week, next week will be a new adventure!My meal prep for the week for me is only focused on breakfast and lunch. Dinners are always a bit of a whim. The hubs and I are very fortunate to have a freezer full of beef and we buy chicken in bulk from BJs to also have stocked up. We kinda go with what we are feeling like that day. I’m also pretty lucky that my husband does pretty much all of the cooking. It’s always sort of been that way because of my work schedule and we eat relatively simply – meat on the grill, salad (I do make the salad!), and a starch of some sort.
The first thing I made for the week is something for my LO and I to share – Banana Apple Muffins from the 21 Day Fix program. I’ve posted the recipe before so you can find it on the blog under the category Recipes. The next thing are Egg Muffins. These are so easy and if you love eggs such a great way to enjoy them when you don’t have time to cook them each morning. There are about a million ways to make these and you can really add what you like to them. Below is my standard recipe:
1 Dozen Eggs
½ to 1 Cup Milk (optional)
1 to 2 Cups Fresh Spinach – chopped
1 Large Green or Red Pepper – chopped
1 small yellow onion – chopped
1 Cup Shredded Cheese (optional)
12 Cup Muffin Tin – I prefer silicon because it’s so much easier to clean
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray your muffin tin with Cooking Spray – if you’re using metal coat them well to avoid sticking. Divvy your chopped veggies into the muffin tins. The order doesn’t really matter, but I typically go spinach first, then peppers, then onions. Crack your eggs into a bowl. Tip: I usually crack them one at a time into a smaller bowl or cup then dump them into a large bowl – if you get a shell into a bowl of more than a couple of eggs it can be a nightmare to retrieve! Mix your eggs and milk and then pour evenly into your egg cups. It helps to put less in as you start so you make it all the way around and add more to them after each cup has some egg. Top with a sprinkle of cheese.
Bake for 30 minutes at 350, then remove and cool.
I typically make and freeze them, two per sandwich bag. You don’t have to freeze them, but I find that way if for some reason I don’t eat them one day I won’t have to worry about wasting them. I was a little concerned that I wouldn’t care for them reheated but I find they taste just as good! To reheat I put them in the microwave for 1 minute covered with a paper towel. Take them out break them up and reheat for 1 more minute still covered. You may find after freezing there is a fair amount of moisture that comes out, I just dump it in the sink.
For Lunch I make Mason Jar Salads. I’m not going to provide an actual recipe for this, just a picture and some basic advice. Essentially you want to make the same salad you would at home – but put it in a jar! Put your more moist (sorry can’t come up with a better word) ingredients at the bottom and stack things in just the way you like. These will last a week or more in the fridge, but use your judgement on quality after a few days, I generally won’t eat one that is more than five days old.
In my jars from bottom to top:
Cheddar Cheese Chunks
I keep a bottle of balsamic vinegar at work on my desk to dress it with. This week I also made up some chicken salad to top with to get the extra protein. I just divvy this into small containers of appropriate portion.
And that friends is my plan for the week! All in all it took me about three hours to get all this done. Between interruptions and chopping, baking, and clean up. But not having to think about it in the morning, and not having to spend money on lunch makes it all worth it!
Happy Meal Prepping!
Have ideas for other quick make ahead meals? Comment below! I’m always looking for new things to try.