A highly requested blog coming at you here! Not much science or knowledge in this one – just a whole lot of quick and healthy meals for the family, and a few tips to make it a little easier on you!
I know nutrition is the hardest piece of the puzzle, but it is also the most important. I will say this over and over again, but if you find yourself struggling to eat healthy…you have to keep it simple! Think about including all macronutrients (carbs, fats and protein) along with vegetables and you are good to go! You don’t need recipes with a million ingredients to make food delicious, you just have to have the right ingredients.
Tips for Healthy Eating
The biggest thing that is going to help you navigate this “healthy eating” is making a plan. I cannot stress enough how important it is to write down all the meals you plan to have for the week and a grocery list. This allows you to..
1. know exactly what you need to make
2. save you money at the grocery store so you aren’t just grabbing random items and spending nonsense money.
After making a plan, you then want to meal prep whatever you can! I like to just dice up a bunch of sweet potatoes and throw them on sheet pans in the oven at 400 for 40-50 minutes (with olive oil, sea salt, and smoked paprika). I also roast some vegetables in the oven the same way (just less time) and then thaw and cook some meat for protein sources! I would also suggest cutting up any fruits and veggies you want to eat fresh because that way they are easy to grab and go rather than needing time to cut them up!
So lets get to what you are actually here for, the quick and healthy meals for the family!
Healthy Meals for the Family
One thing I will recommend when you are feeding multiple people is…make something big! This allows you to only need 1 main course that has everything in it, and then you don’t have to deal with a bunch of side dishes. You can slo take the leftovers for lunch then if needed!
*Recipes are on a per serving basis, so add ingredients to double or triple the batch!
*Included are the carb, fat and protein part of each dish so you can start to see how things are put together!
• 4oz round Turkey (protein)
• 1/4 c refried or black beans (carb and protein)
• handful spinach or shredded romaine
• 1/4c jasmine rice (carb)
• 1/3 avocado (fat)
1. Cook the ground turkey on the stovetop with taco seasoning.
2. Cook rice over the stovetop as well.
3. Add cooked meat, rice and toppings to a bowl…stir it together and voila!
Avocado Egg Salad
• 2 hard boiled eggs (fat and protein)
• 1/3 avocado (fat)
• 2tbsp green onion, chopped
• 1tsp spicy brown mustard
• Red pepper flakes, sea salt, pepper
• Ezekiel (or another great bread), crackers or wrap (whatever vehicle you want) (carb)
1. Dice eggs and add to a bowl with mashed avocado.
2. Add all ingredients to bowl and mix.
3. Lightly toast bread or tortilla – layer with spinach, cucumber and egg salad!
Everyone knows how to make tacos, but you could make this fun with kids! Create a “taco bar” and have all the fixin’s like lettuce, cheese, tomato, onion, beans, avocado, meat, tortillas and let them make their own! Makes it fun for them and less work for you!
Protein – meat
Carb – tortilla and beans
Fat – avocado, or red meat with more fat content like 85/15
• 1/2 c banza Pasta (chickpea pasta that is more nutritious than just a whole wheat, and has tons of fiber)! (carb and protein)
• 4oz ground beef (protein and fat)
Can omit this next part and just use a store bought pasta sauce, just make sure the ingredients are good and there is no added sugar!
• 4 beef steak tomatoes
1/2 cup onion
• 1 garlic clove
• 1/2 cup mushrooms (optional)
• Salt, pepper, parsley, oregano, basil and thyme (or just an Italian seasoning blend)
1. Dice onion and tomatoes and add to sauce pan. Cook on medium until soft.
2. Add garlic to sauce and cover on low for 10 minutes.
3. Boil pasta
4. While pasta cooks, add beef to skillet and brown.
5. Add beef to red sauce – add optional mushrooms and season to taste.
6. Add pasta to bowl and top with red sauce!
I have a whole blog post on different kinds, but this can also be fun with kids! Grab some pizza crusts from any local store (cauliflower is best because it is low in carb and you get veggies in) and then get some toppings! You want a meat for protein, and veggies for #health and then your kids can make their own!
Here is the post with all my favorite healthy pizza recipes, and yes, we still have pizza Sunday every week!
Chicken, Bacon Ranch Bowl
• 4oz chicken breast (protein)
• 2 slices bacon (protein and fat)
• 1/2c sweet potato (carb)
• 1/2 c brussel sprouts
• 2tbsp ranch dressing (but a good one like Primal Kitchens or Chosen foods) (fat)
1. Dice up sweet potato and roast in oven on 400 for 40 minutes (or meal prep the beginning of the week).
2. Cut the ends off brussel sprouts, halve them and place in with sweet potatoes for about 30 minutes.
3. Cook chicken breasts on stove – I like to cut them in small pieces and sear in my cast iron skillet, then shred it.
4. Cook bacon on stovetop until crispy!
4. Put it all in a bowl, top with ranch dressing! Super easy and the flavors all mesh well!
*I am a large advocate for sh*t in a bowl!
Chicken Stir fry
• 4oz chicken thighs (more flavorful for this dish) (protein and fat)
• 1c stir fry vegetables (most stores have a bag that is frozen and includes everything you would want, sometimes even the steamfresh version)
If making fresh, I would add: zucchini, bell pepper, onion, snow peas, and water chestnuts
• 2tbsp coconut aminos (carb)
• handful cashews (fat) – be careful, these calories add up quick.
• 1tbsp olive Oil (fat)
• 1/2c jasmine rice (carb) – use cauliflower rice for more volume and less calories
• Salt and pepper
1. Dice up chicken thighs and add them to a skillet with olive oil.
2. Cook rice on stovetop
3. Cook vegetables, if fresh sauté them, if steam fresh/frozen cook them and then add to skillet with chicken once cooked.
4. Add in coconut aminos, salt, pepper
5. Add rice to bowl, top with stir fry and cashews!
• 2tbsp olive oil (fat)
• 1/2 red onion, diced
• 1lb ground beef (or turkey) (protein)
• 1, 15oz can fire roasted tomatoes (carb)
• 1, 15oz can tomato sauce (carb)
• 1 sweet potato, diced (carb)
• 1 green pepper, diced
• 1 zucchini, diced
• 1/2tsp chili powder, cumin, oregano
• 1/4tsp garlic powder, paprika, sea salt
1. Brown meat in a skillet.
2. Dice all vegetables and sweet potato.
3. Add all ingredients to crockpot, and season.
4. Let cook for 3 hours on high or 7 hours on low – or you can always add everything to a pot and cook on the stovetop (just make sure you cook sweet potatoes first)
• 4oz ground beef/turkey (protein)
• 1 medium bell pepper (I always grab different colors)
• 1/2c jasmine rice (carb)
• 1 small tomato, diced
• 1 small zucchini, diced
• 1tbsp olive oil (fat)
• 1/4tsp cumin
• 1/4tsp paprika
1/4tsp garlic powder
• handful cheese
1. Preheat oven to 400 and halve peppers. Place on a nonstick cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes.
2. Brown beef/turkey and season with a little taco seasoning and olive oil.
3. Cook rice over stovetop.
4. Add tomato and zucchini to ground meat mixture and season with cumin, paprika, garlic. Add salt and pepper to taste.
5. Take peppers out of oven and add in rice, meat mixture and top with cheese.
6. Place back in oven for 10-15 minutes and then enjoy!
• 1/2c sweet potato, diced (carb)
• 2 whole egg (protein and fat)
• 1 egg white (protein)
• 1 chicken sausage link (I love Applegate) (protein and fat)
• 1/4c bell pepper, diced
• 1/4c onion, diced
• 1/2c broccoli, cut and steamed
• 1oz goat cheese
• Salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder to taste
1. Cook sweet potatoes in skillet with small bit of olive oil.
2. Add in peppers, onion and chicken sausage and continue cooking until onions are browned.
3. Add in broccoli and egg whites. And season!
4. Place that pan in the oven (I use a cast iron skillet) and then cook your eggs. I cook over medium heat and cover, so that the yolk is still runny!
5. Top with goat cheese and enjoy!
Sloppy Joe Nachos
• 4oz ground beef (protein and fat)
• 1 sweet potato, sliced (carb)
• 1 zucchini, sliced
• 1/2c green pepper, diced
• 1/2c sweet onion, diced
• 1 cup ketchup (I use Primal kitchens, I recommend one WITHOUT added sugar or high fructose corn syrup (Heinz has this)
• 1tbsp spicy mustard
• 1tsp bbq sauce
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• Salt, pepper and smoked paprika to taste
1. Place all but the sweet potatoes and zucchini into the crockpot (or a deep pot if making on the stove top).
2. Cook on high for 3 hours or low for 7 hours.
3. Slice zucchini and potato very thing and place on baking sheet. (1 sheet for zucchini and 1 for potatoes) Spray with olive oil!
4. Cook potatoes at 425 for 20 minutes and then flip.
5. When you flip sweet potatoes, place zucchini in the oven. Cook both until crispy (watch the zucchini)
6. When they are done, top them with your sloppy joe mix and a few green onions!
Plain and Simple: Meat, Carb, Veggie
This is what I tend to eat most nights because it is cheap, doesn’t take a lot of thought and can be variable! We eat a lot of salmon/brussel sprouts/rice and of course grilled chicken/red skin potatoes/asparagus!
I think a lot of people assume that eating healthy means always having a plan or a recipe. 9 times out of 10 we never have a recipe, we just start throwing ingredients together. The more recipes you find that cause you to sit and read it while cooking, the more turned off you will be from cooking. You don’t NEED a recipe or something intricate to be healthy. You just need whole foods, foods that are NOT coming from a box or pre-made in the freezer!
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