Yesterday was food prep day in the Harrelson kitchen.
I try to spend a couple of hours each week prepping foods that will keep me on plan. It’s so easy to just grab the wrong thing when you are famished and nothing is prepared.
I tend to forget to plan my between meal snacks, then when hunger hits, I’m famished! Plus as a diabetic, if my sugar drops I’m in trouble if there is nothing in the fridge ready to go that’s on plan. So I always try to have several things prepped for quick snacks, lunches and dinners. I don’t always prep them all on the same day, but that’s what I did yesterday.
Honestly, I got a little heavy handed when writing my prep to do list. I wore myself out but I got it all done! I usually just do a couple of things at a time, but I was feeling very ambitious because I had taken an Edge, plus I wanted to post about it so I went all out.
Here’s my food prep plan…
It doesn’t matter if you are following the Trim Healthy Mama plan like I am, a diet plan or just trying to eat healthier, if you don’t have anything prepped, sometimes you are going to make bad choices. These are some of the go-to foods I often make that keep well and make it easy to grab for snacks or the fixins for a quick meal.
What I Prep Probably Isn’t Going To Be What You Prep
These just happen to be foods both my hubby and I like. Your family may not like the same things we do. Use your imagination. Before you start prepping, answer these questions:
- What can you prep to make a couple of quick lunches and dinners?
- What do you like that’s versatile enough to use for more than one meal?
- Will it keep in the fridge for 5 or 6 days?
- What grab and go snacks can you have on hand so you won’t be tempted to make a bad choice?
I’m telling on myself here, but when my blood sugar gets low or I feel really hungry between meals it’s not unusual for me to stand over the sink and nosh. Yeah, I know, not cool. But don’t you ever feel like that guy in the Snicker’s commercial that’s “just not himself when he’s hungry”? Or is it just him and me?
OK, here’s were I give full disclosure…I am not a food blogger. I don’t make my own detailed recipes, take gorgeous food photos, as you can plainly see for yourself. While I like to cook (but not bake) and often make up my own recipes as I go, having to weigh and measure takes all the joy out of it for me. I am like my grandma, a pinch of this, a couple of handfuls of that, taste and adjust. When my daughter was little she would come into the kitchen where I was stirring something on the stove and ask “Mommy what’s for dinner?” Sometimes my reply would be “I don’t know, it’s not done yet.” I’m a fly by the seat of my pants kinda gal in the kitchen. Honestly, I’m a darned good cook, just don’t ask me how much of anything I put into something. Heck, I don’t know… eyeball it! (Now you see why I’m not a baker!)
So, now with that out of the way, we can proceed with the poor quality photos of my handy work.
I love and do most of my shopping at Aldi’s and fill in at Walmart. Those are about my only two choices living here in rural Illinois. It’s still a 20 mile drive. I prefer my veggies from Aldi’s, they seem fresher and last longer.
On To The Food Prep!
This wasn’t on the prep list, but I’ll share my special house seasoning with you. I normally tell people if I tell them what’s in it, I’ll have to kill them, so it’ll just be our little secret, ‘k?
Celene’s All-Purpose House Seasoning
I literally use this in everything I cook. I can’t live without it. Try it, you’ll be hooked!
- 1 bottle of your favorite brand course (chunky) steak seasoning. I use Aldi’s of course 🙂 Don’t use one with excessive salt or it could get too salty when you add other things with salt in your dishes.
- 1/4 cup onion powder (I’m guessing as I never measure, surprise surprise!)
- 1/8 cup garlic powder
- Grind all together in a spice/coffee grinder until fairly fine. I have a smoothie maker with a chopper blade too so I use that too.
I store this in a shaker container from Tupperware but any shaker will do.
Celene’s Creamy Chicken Veggie Chowder. (THM FP)
Somewhere out there on the world wide web I saw a high calorie recipe with lots of fats and carbs and revamped it.
I make this in my big 6 qt. pot.
1 small head or 1/2 lg. head of cauliflower
1/2 bunch of celery (I use the leaves too for great flavor)
3-4 carrots chopped or one can drained and chopped
2-3 cups of frozen chopped kale
2 cans of 98% fat free chunked chicken breast (don’t drain the liquid)
3/4 cup of oat flour, I just use my smoothie maker again to grind rolled or old fashioned oats into flour
1/3 cup heavy cream or half and half. Use this just to make it the broth white.
4 Knorr brand chicken bullion cubes
A good palm full of dehydrated onion flakes
Celene’s House Seasoning to taste
1/2 tsp poultry seasoning
Guessing about 2 tsp of chives (I palm it of course)
About the same amt. of dried parsley.
In my Cuisinart (lovingly named Cuisie, we’ve been through a lot together in 11 years and she works as well today as day one! I use this one) I put half the cauliflower and pulverize it to oblivion. I use the half with all the stems and save the florets to cut up the into little pieces.
Add everything else but the chicken and the oat flour into your soup pot and cover with water about 2/3 up the pot. Save room for the cream, chicken and the broth it’s packed in.
Bring to a boil then turn down to a simmer. Taste and adjust seasonings. When you are satisfied with the flavor and the veggies are soft, (20 minutes?) mix the oat flour with a little water and stir in as the thickening agent. Stir well or it could stick to the bottom. Add cream, chicken and broth. Stir well then simmer for another 15 minutes.
Feeds an army. My hubby and I chow on this several times throughout the week.
Baking Mix (THM S)
I found this on Pinterest. I’m determined to not buy a bunch of specialty ingredients for this plan. There may be a few things I have to order like Glucomannon (I don’t even know what that is!) and Collagen but I am sticking to what I can buy at my local stores whenever I can for now. I don’t want this to become a weird and wacky food plan. Since I could care less about baking, I should be able to do it.
OK, I got this baking mix from Taryn over at her Joy Filled Eats blog. She tested 3 different baking mixes. This is her #3 Local. I wanted to be able to buy the ingredients at Walmart. I may try one of the others at some point but I am happy with this one. Worked great for my cinnamon bun in a mug this morning! YUM!!
Breakfast Casserole (THM S)
I forgot to take a photo of this. All I do is break 1 dozen eggs in a bowl, about 1/3 cup or so of cream or half and half, add a little house seasoning and whisk them well. In a 9×13 baking pan, spread a light layer of breakfast sausage ( I use 4 precooked patties, crumble them up), some real bacon bits, some chopped fresh mushrooms and green peppers, and chopped (in a bag) frozen spinach. Sometimes I throw in some sun-dried tomatoes or halved cherry tomatoes. Get creative and use whatever you like! Then pour the eggs over all of these goodies. Top with a shredded cheddar. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Cut into squares.
You know what baked chicken breasts, browned ground meat and chicken salad looks like and there’s nothing special about how I make them, so let’s move on.
Vanilla Cake In A Mug (THM S)
I got this recipe from Arman over at The Big Man’s World blog.
As a matter of fact, I swirled some cinnamon in it and slathered it in cream cheese icing and had cinnamon rolls for breakfast!
Now for the boom-crack-a-lacka!!!
Caramel Skinny Chocolate
Whaaaaa!!!!??? Chocolate when we are trying to eat right and lose weight? Heyll yeah!! You can’t see me but I had to jump up and do a little dance. I’m OK now. Just a little outa breath.
I made a version of this several years ago when I first tried low carb. It wasn’t this good. This is like heaven with nuts! I got this recipe from Renee over at If Spoons Could Talk.
Don’t tell her, but I just might have a girl crush after trying this delicious delightful chunk of decadence! I didn’t use a candy mold like Renee does, I simply lined a baking dish with non-stick foil and poured onto the foil, then topped with nuts, put it in the freezer, then paced back and forth for an hour til it was solid. The just popped it off the foil and broke it up like bark. To die for!
OK, there you have it, my food prep day. I have already enjoyed the cake in a mug, the chowder, and some chocolate. Oh yeah, I came home late last night and needed a little bite so I had 2 no carb lavash crackers (60 seconds to make – that’s for another time) with chicken salad on them. Just right.
Don’t get caught with your hand in the cookie jar! Preparing and planning is key to staying on any food plan.
Til next time God bless,
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