Strategies for No Mess Lunch and Dinner

Cooking from scratch instead of grabbing a frozen weight watchers meal or bowl of cereal meant a lot more dishes, cooking, time, and thinking ahead. My working, homeschooling, fitness mom life does not leave a lot of room for cleaning.

I learned to plan and prep.

Planning Tips: 
  • Plan meals that use similiar ingredients so that you can prep them all at once. 
  • Look for meals at the beginning of the week that you can double and use the leftovers for lunch the rest of the week.
  • Search for recipes that can be cooked in the crockpot for busy days. 
  • Keep it simple
  • Eat the same meals 
Yes, it sounds repetitive. I know.  I used to look at food as an activity. It was a bright spot, something to break the boredom of the day or relieve the stress of the day.

 My goal now when I eat is to think about what will fuel my body to build muscle. 

You have to be willing to do what it takes to get where you want to be. That may mean some "boring meals" if you don't want to invent and cook new meals eveyr day of the week.

Remember that the goal of eating is to satisfy your hunger NOT make you want more.

Prepping Tip:
Choose one early morning or afternoon to do your prep work and cooking. Why? It eliminates a lot of work during the week. I find that I can prep and cook for 3-4 days at a time. It also means that your refrigerator will be full of tupperware. So before going grocery shopping, clean out your refrigerator.

Bake or BBQ Chicken: The goal is to create a container full of healthy protein that you can scoop out at lunch or dinner.
  • Defrost bonless, skinless chicken breasts.By soaking them in warm water, until defrosted, it helps to create a juicy product.
  • Dry completely and sprinkle with different seasonings. I make a plain batch, one with Mrs Dash Fiesta Lime Chicken (or salsa!) and one with a No Salt All Purpose Seasoning
  • Heat over to 350 or prep grill.
  • Cook until slightly underdone. (If eating immediately, cook all the way. Undercooking meats may put you at risk for Salmonella poisoning. Makes sure to copmletely cook food before consuming)
  • Cut into cubes and store in different containers
Clean,Chop, Pre Cook "Fixn's" Cut and prep these so that they are ready to go when you need them.
  • Onion
  • Carrots
  • Pinto beans (overnight these in the crockpot!)
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Bell Peppers and onions on the BBQ! These add a lot of flavor to meals
  • Lettuce and salad veges
Pre Made Chicken Meal Ideas: These may all be prepackaged and reheated at work or at dinner time.

Balsamic Chicken and Sweet Potatos: Scoop out chicken seasoned with all purpose seasoning and Precooked Sweet Potatoes. Then, sprinkle with Balsamic Vingegar. You can add pre cooked vegetables. Sub brown rice or quinoa if you do not like sweet potatoes. Adding Italian parsley will brighten it up and add flavor.
Taco Boats Place a scoop of Pinto Beans and chicken on top of Ortega Taco boats. Add lettuce, and toppngs. Eliminate the boats if you are low on yellows and have a Taco Salad instead! Add cilantro at the end to make it fresh.
Fajita Salad: Chicken, grilled peppers/onions on a bed of lettuce with vege fixings.
Stir Fry: Chicken with low sodium soy sauce, rice or quinoa, and broccoli (or your favorite veg!) Mix in an egg if you need the extra protein. Add chopped peanuts at the end for some crunch or pineapple for sweetness.

Poultry Break! Too much poultry? Break it up with lean ground beef:
Mini Meatloafs or Burgers: Mix ground beef with onions, bell pepper, and egg whites. Put into cupcake pan and cook at 350 or form into patties for burgers. You can chop and mix ahead of time and freeze the burger patties. I will smother these in leftover onions and peppers for added flavors. Add all the vegetables fixings you want.

I serve all of them with a salad or vegetables. If I have no more yellows left, I up the veges and remove the rice or sweet potato.

It doesn't have ot be messy or hard. Prep and Plan!

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