1. Pick one day each week to plan your meals for the week.
2. Choose 2 breakfast recipes, 1-2 snack recipes, and 4 dinner recipes to prepare.
3. Make your grocery shopping list from those recipes.
Seems easy enough, yet we find ourselves roaming down the grocery aisles tossing random food items into our cart without thinking the meal through (example: grabbing lean ground beef and spaghetti pasta not realizing there is no more pasta sauce in the cupboard). Or we confront our daily nemesis, “What’s for dinner?” with the perfect response, “Take Out!” Which I’m sure the kids just love to hear!
Unfortunately these habits create STRESS, cost MONEY, take TIME away from your family, and increase your risk for CHRONIC DISEASE such as hypertension and heart disease. I bet you didn’t realize that was HOW IMPORTANT MEAL PLANNING is.
What is stopping you from doing this already? Is it your low confidence in picking meals your family will enjoy? Do you really dislike cooking? Do you need ideas to get you started? Do you not feel comfortable cooking and preparing meals?
This may sound silly, but it is important to know and acknowledge what is holding you back from this. If you are reading this, then I’m guessing one of your main core values is providing healthful foods to your family and for yourself. Do you see how this perceived barrier is preventing you from reaching your healthy eating goals?
Weekly Challenge: It’s time to take your first step towards meal planning!
Step 1: Identify your Nemesis! What is holding you back from doing this each week?
Step 2: Challenge the Nemesis! Is it true that you really can’t cook? Ask your family/friends what was the last dish that you made which they enjoyed eating.
Step 3: Re-think the thought! What can you tell yourself so that you will be able to get through this perceived barrier and begin meal planning?
Step 4: Post It! Write down this new thought and post it in a highly visible place so you will be able to remember it.
I’m looking forward to seeing you hear next week when we dive more into the meal planning process. We will define what a balanced plate looks like at meals and snacks as well as chat about portions sizes and meal timing. See you then!
Zen Recipe Corner:
5 minute Mexican Pizza (GREAT AFTERNOON SNACK IDEA)
Serves 4-8 (2 each with meal, 1 each as snack)
8 tostada shells
1 cup chile verde sauce
2 cups fat free refried beans
½ cup chopped fresh basil leaves or fresh cilantro leaves
1 tomato diced
½ cup black pitted olives, diced
Hot sauce-as desired
Place tostada shells on baking sheet. Pre-heat oven to 275 degrees. Spread ¼ cup of refried beans on each tostada shell. Sprinkle each pizza with the chopped basil, diced tomatoes and black olives. Heat in oven for 5 minutes.
Serving suggestion at a meal: add grilled chicken for more protein and serve with a tossed green salad.
Kid Helpers? This is an extremely kid friendly recipe. They can sprinkle on toppings and line the tostadas on the pan. 2 years and up may be able to help spread the refried beans with your help-using a butter knife or plastic knife.