It feels like I’ve been living in the kitchen this past week!  I have made a commitment to eat more fruits and veggies and cut out some of the processed stuff that had been making its way into the house and into my mouth.  In order to be successful at this I realize I need to get organized, eat out less and get my tushie back in the kitchen to make some good-for-you foods!

Step 1 – Plan

So in order to make these great healthy meals I need to figure out what to make and what to buy.  I’m a big fan of large pots and bowls of stuff.  Soups, stews, casseroles, salads and roasted chickens are great ways to stretch your food $$ and provide meals that can be eaten multiple times during the week.

Once I made my shopping list, I was ready to go.

Step 2 – Shop

My grocery basket was brimming with fruits, veggies, cans of beans, tomato sauces and pastes, lean cuts of poultry, meats as well as salsas, Greek yogurt (plain for cooking and vanilla for breakfast and snacks), almond milk and frozen berries of all kinds for smoothies.

Some treats for the kids and husband made the cut and I also threw in some really good dark chocolate for me because honestly, you gotta live!

Step 3 – Chop

Sadly, food doesn’t cook itself so I had to get chopping.  I made some soup, making my own broth with chicken breasts, thighs, legs and wings for some delicious deep flavor that a soup made with packaged broth just can’t match.  I also made a huge pot of chili with lots of kidney beans and extra lean ground turkey.  These foods are hearty and you can sneak in a lot of healthy stuff without freaking out your family.

Then I worked on chopping veggies for salads and snacks.  I love red and orange bell peppers and carrot sticks so I chopped up a bunch of those for a quick snack with hummus or on their own.  I made a ginormous salad with almost everything in my crisper.  I also tossed in a can of drained garbanzo beans and artichoke hearts (canned in water).  These items provide fiber and it feels like you are eating something substantial instead of a bowl of grass.

Note:  These days we can buy pre-chopped, pre-shredded and prepared veggie mixes at any supermarket so even if you’re a butter-fingers in the slicing and dicing department, you can still get your 5-9 servings of veggies.

Step 4 – Cook

Surprisingly, once you have the right ingredients and have things planned out, cooking is the easy part.  Make a few big pots of soup or stew on a Sunday or use the crockpot and you can have a homemade meal without much sweat.

My husband was a little weirded out with all the food in the fridge.  He was afraid it would all go to waste but I assured him that when we got down to a bowl or two of something (like from the cauldron of chili I made), I would put it in the freezer for a lunch to be determined later!

So wish me luck as I continue my quest in the kitchen.  I’m hoping that once I get in the swing of things my prep time will shorten, my cooking speed will increase and my family will reap the benefits!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

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