September always brings on a flurry of activity. High school football games, homework, after-school activities and an array of things to do before winter sets in. When we’re rushed, we gravitate toward making unhealthy food choices to save time. Making healthy meals can feel like a challenge when time is limited.
Here are a few meal ideas that can save you both time, energy and even some money:
Soups – Whether cooking for yourself or the whole family, a large pot of soup can be a meal-saver. Soups and stews can be made ahead of time and frozen, then warmed for a quick meal. Add hearty vegetables and beans for more volume and extra nutrients.
When freezing soup, give yourself at least half an inch to an inch between the soup and the lid for expansion.
Batch Cooking – You can create a week’s worth of meals in just one afternoon. Cooking in batches makes meal preparation fast and easy. Either batch cook a few staples that can be used throughout the week for a variety of meals (think: a vegetable, a whole grain, and a protein), or make extras of one main meal!
It does not need to be complicated! Cook what your family loves, but more of it. Double, triple or, depending on the size of your saucepans, quadruple it.
Salads – Who says salads can’t be the main course? Roasted turkey breast, beans, chickpeas, black beans, edamame and other legumes will add plenty of protein to a fresh green salad. Quick and easy and even a meal the kids can make.
To save time, do all of your batch cooking and prep on the same day. You’ll be amazed how little time it takes to get a whole week’s worth of healthy meals together in one afternoon.
You’ll be so thankful during the week when you’ve prepped your meals ahead of time!