Quick Healthy Meals for Busy Peeps

It’s a wonder I have enough hours in the day to even sleep, but I make sure it happens because it’s very important to me (I’ll be blogging about the importance of a good night’s sleep sometime in the near future.)

Something else that’s very important to me, which I mentioned in my One-Pot Lentil Soup post last week, is the ability to make quick healthy meals.

I’ve become somewhat of a master at the “tossing together” various ingredients to come up with something tasty. I encourage you to do the same! My philosophy on just about all everyday-tasks is that it’s gotta be easy. There are a lot of things that are challenging, difficult and down right hard, which is okay and often worthwhile, but the everyday process of meal making and household organization has got to be simple to counter-balance all of the challenging and hard things.

Here are a couple of meals that I’ve posted pics on Instagram, which I thought might be interesting for you to have the entire recipe!

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Quinoa Salad (I’m sure I could come up with a better name and if you’ve got a suggestion, please post below)

I’ve come to love quinoa. It’s a gluten-free grain and a solid alternative to white rice. It contains all eight amino acids to make it a complete protein. So for those who ask the question if they discover you’re vegetarian, “where do you get your protein?” Quinoa is one source.

Ingredients: 

Quinoa
Soaking your grains overnight (6-8 hours) softens them and makes them easier to digest.

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa for those like me who had been butchering the pronunciation of that word)

1 can Garbanzo beans rinsed (another source of protein)

1 can Black beans rinsed (yet another source of protein)

1/2 a bag of frozen Peas

1/1 a bag of frozen Corn

1 Avocado cubed (and more protein)

salt & pepper to taste

I soaked the quinoa for about one hour (you can soak longer for different and varied results, including easier digestion), discarded the soaking water, and then proceeded to cook in my handy-dandy rice cooker with fresh water. I steamed the peas and corn together to save time. Opened and rinsed the canned beans. Sliced open the avocado and cubed it. Mixed everything together and enjoyed!

You could add lemon juice and olive oil or some spices. I had enough for leftovers and a tasty lunch.

 

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Butternut Squash Tacos

I had leftover Lentil Soup and cabbage. Lately I’ve had a thing for cabbage. And who doesn’t love tacos! So this meal was born out of natural cravings. The bagged squash I picked up at Trader Joe’s. I roast a lot of veggie because it’s simple and they taste yummy. Generally, I’ll roast the squash (Brussels sprouts and/or cauliflower) on a baking sheet sprinkled with olive oil and Kosher salt for about 15 minutes at 350 degrees. But I wanted something a bit hardier, so here are the ingredients I used.

Ingredients: 

Roasted butternut squash

Shredded cabbage

Leftover Lentil Soup

Flour Tortillas

salt & pepper

Place butternut squash on a baking sheet sprinkled with Kosher Salt (or sea salt) and olive oil. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes on the bottom rack.

Place olive oil in a warmed-up pan on the stove top. Lightly brown a flour tortilla on each side.image3

Heat (or not) the leftover Lentil soup (it had very little juices left so it acted like a meat might if you were making beef tacos, for example) and place in the tortilla. Sprinkle cabbage over top and add butternut squash, salt & pepper. I also added sauerkraut (not pictured) for added taste.

Get creative and add some spices or other topping. Next time I may add some of my favorite mustard from Trader Joe’s: Aioli Garlic Mustard Sauce.

What’s great about both of these recipes is that you could essentially prepare everything in advance, including the {did I mention} One-pot Lentil Soup. Take a couple of hours on a Sunday and you’ve got the makings of several meals for the week.

So, let me know what you think. Is this something you could see yourself trying? What would you change up to add different tastes and textures?

 

Recipe Disclaimer: I’m always experimenting. My recipes are NOT tested outside of my kitchen, only with my family and some brave friends! Wink, wink. I encourage you to do the same and maybe take these recipes as a starting point. Add different spices or veggies, or not. I’ve found that the key to eating healthier is to enjoy the process of shopping, preparing, cooking…then eating! It’s a joyful experience that can be shared with people you care about. Create memories in the kitchen!

Note: Use organic ingredients whenever possible.

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