Meal Prep #1
If you know me, you know I'm obsessed with meal prepping...I swear I can't get through my weeks with school and work without having things already prepared in the fridge! It seriously saves you so much time and money. I don't necessarily always do this, but I know it can be super helpful to plan out/brainstorm what meals you want for the week so that you know to grab everything at the grocery store when you go. I typically will have a general idea of what I want to make, but then once I'm home I'll pick other things from what I already have in my fridge or from random things I bought for the week; this can make things a bit more time consuming though. The most important thing for meal prepping in my opinion is to make sure you have a protein, starch, and vegetable; then you can explore different flavors and combinations from what you have!
This week I prepped a bunch of veggies, quinoa, potatoes, chicken, and a cashew sauce. I had a lot to do while I was cooking for school, so I decided to make my life easier and cook everything at the same temperature in the oven, and then the quinoa on the stove! This whole prep took abut 1.5 hours from start to finish, and it made 4 large servings, or up to 6 little ones!
FOR THE VEGGIES:
I chopped 1/2 a small yellow onion, 2 zucchini, and 2 eggplant. I added about 2 tbsp of avocado oil, 1/2 tsp of garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp of salt evenly to everything. I lined baking trays with parchment paper and then baked the zucchini and onions for 45 minutes as is, and the eggplant for 45 minutes (flipping half way), at 375 F.
FOR THE CHICKEN: I chopped 3 chicken breast into cubes, and added 1 tbsp of avocado oil, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp onion powder, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp paprika, and a crack of black pepper. I mixed it all in a bowl and then added it to another parchment lined baking sheet. I cooked the chicken for 25 minutes at 375 F.
FOR THE STARCH: I baked 2 sweet potatoes and 2 regular potatoes for 1 hour at 375 F, wrapped in foil. Then I took 2 cups of dry red quinoa, and 4 cups of water and cooked it according to the box! It takes roughly 20-25 minutes on the stove. I like to leave the lid on the pan for about 5 minutes after I turn the heat off, because it helps to make it fluffier!
FOR THE CASHEW SAUCE:
I remembered that I had raw cashews in the cupboard, so I decided to make a little sauce out of it! The cashews can easily be swapped out for yogurt (regular or dairy free).
I used: 1 cup raw soaked cashews
1/2 cup water
pinch of salt, crack of black pepper
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp chili powder
juice of 1 lime
I put everything in the blender and blended until it was smooth! If you don't have time to soak the cashews overnight, you can add them to boiling water for about 10 minutes to soften them! That's what I did :)
THE RESULT: I combined all of the ingredients into one delicious bowl, and topped it off with green onions!