2 Ways to add variety to your meals!
written by Coach Elijah Christie
We all know we should be eating healthy and when we do, we feel better, our energy increases and we perform better. One of the biggest misconceptions I see most from of my nutrition clients and those that are looking to up their nutrition game is the belief that healthy food is boring and/or takes a lot of work to prepare. You don’t need to eat plain chicken, rice and broccoli to be healthy. You also don’t need elaborate recipes and ingredients to make meals taste delicious. You can make simple food, that tastes great and requires minimal work. I’m going to give you three tips to make that happen.
TIP 1 – Prep the right way.
Find out what you like and cook that stuff in bulk to be kept in separate containers. These bulk items should be healthy carbs; think rice, potatoes, whole wheat pasta etc… and lean proteins like; ground turkey, chicken, lean ground beef etc…I usually avoid buying or cooking veggies and produce in bulk because they have a tendency to go bad. Plus, veggies take very little time to prepare and taste way better fresh. Prepare a few days worth of these healthy carbs and lean meats then, keep them in separate containers. Personally, I don’t want to eat ground turkey, rice and the same vegetable everyday. But—I can simply change the flavor by using different seasonings, sauces and combinations to create something new whenever I want.
TIP 2 – Now that you have your bulk items ready, each meal can be different!
Don’t be afraid to make your food have flavor! As long as you are mindfully adding seasoning and not over doing it you can use salt, pepper, garlic and whatever else you desire. One day I can have a rice bowl with white rice, ground turkey and sautéed zucchini with a dash of salt, pepper and garlic. The next day I could do the same bowl with a chili lime seasoning, (Trader Joe’s) red pepper flakes and oregano. The third day I could add a little bit of turmeric, coconut oil and pepper to the rice! The list of combinations go on and on but I can simply change the entire taste of the meal by using different seasonings.
Sauces and oils may be my favorite way of completely changing the dynamic of my meal. I can take the same rice, ground turkey and zucchini bowl and use a serving of soy sauce, coconut aminos and virgin coconut oil to give it asian inspired flavor. The next day I could use a turmeric, almond butter sauce (Trader Joe’s) and sesame oil for a different flavor. After that gets old I can make an avocado cream sauce using greek yogurt, avocados, cilantro and garlic, pureed in a blender. Keep your kitchen stocked with sauces and your meal options are endless.
Get Creative with your Combos!
You have access to a variety of flavors. You can add different seasonings with different sauces. You can swap out veggies, add fruits, seeds and nuts! With one batch of a healthy carb and lean protein I can make 10+ different tasting meals. The cooking is almost entirely done, simply add your desired flavors. Avoid cooking in bulk an entire recipe that your stuck with for the whole week. Thats how food gets boring and old. Keep your food ingredients separate, then at each meal you can mix and match for whatever you are feeling. This takes minimal effort and keeps things fresh! Healthy food should be simple, and it should taste great!