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  • Linnette Johnson

Meal Planning Made Easy!

Meal planning is a great way to ensure that you eat healthily, and get this: it doesn’t have to be hard! That’s right, despite how overwhelmed many of us become when we think of planning meals for an entire week, meal planning can save you time and money.

Without being prepared, it is easy to eat something on the go, like pastries, fast food, or prepared meals. The problem with this is that often grab-and-go options are not the most healthy, and we spend a lot of extra money that could be saved by being better prepared.

The trick to successful meal planning is, of course, all in the preparation. Follow these steps to get started:

Pick a Day When meal prepping, you want to start by choosing a day that works best for you where you will have a good couple of hours to plan, prep, and prepare your food. Sunday is often a good day because it prepares you for the week with a fresh menu.

Prepare Next, you will want to get prepped by preparing your food containers for each day and clearing out space in the refrigerator for your week of meals.

Create a Plan/Shop Meal planning is about prepping food in bulk to eat throughout the week, so you will want to choose foods with lasting power, so no light greens or foods that are likely to lose their integrity after a few days. You are preparing meals for five days, so think balanced. You want protein, healthy fat and a complex carb, and a bunch of veggies.

Get to Work Time to get going! Because you are prepared, prep should be easy.

Here are some great ideas for your meal planning:

Breakfast - Overnight Oats -Fill five jars each with ½ rolled oats -1 tablespoon chia seeds or powdered flax seeds -1 tablespoon protein powder -Enough almond milk to cover your mixture *Optional - 2 tablespoons of pumpkin puree, cinnamon, and coconut flakes.

Lunch - Turkey Taco Bowl -Sautéd 2 lbs of organic ground turkey -1 packet of low sodium taco seasoning (or make your own) -Roasted peppers and onions -Rinsed black beans -Salsa of your choice

Add each ¼ cup of black beans, ½ cup prepared ground turkey, salsa, roasted peppers, and onions to each of your five containers.

Dinner - Marinated Chicken Breasts -Mix 1 tablespoon Dijon, ¼ cup balsamic, ¼ cup olive oil, chopped fresh rosemary, garlic, and a hint of sea salt into a bowl. -Place five chicken breasts in a glass container and coat them with the marinade. -Marinate chicken for 1 hour. -Bake for 1 hour at 375 degrees.

Prepare sides, such as sweet potatoes, roasted carrots, or mashed potatoes, to include with your meal.

Snacks - Smoothie -½ banana -½ cup blueberries -1 cup chopped kale -1 teaspoon each of flaxseed, hemp seed, and chia seeds.

Put each smoothie combo in a separate freezer bag or container and freeze until you are ready to enjoy.

Simply add water, coconut water, or your favorite milk - blend and enjoy!

For more recipes, check out the monthly recipe clue- Here!!


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