The Magic of Meal Prep Recipes
BY DANFE |
We’ve all heard of the concept of meal prepping; planning out your meals and preparing different dishes in batches to last through the week. It is an extremely efficient way to prepare your meals, especially if you are working and find it difficult to maintain a healthy diet with all your meals in a day, every day.
One approach to meal prep is to prepare large batches of different parts of your meals and then combine them together at the time of consumption in different ways. For example, you can prepare lentils for your protein, rice for your carbohydrates, veggies for nutrients, and some kind of fat/dairy to prepare a balanced meal. This process makes for nutritious and delicious meals. To help you with your meal prep journey, here are a few meal prep ideas:
This recipe for lentil salad is easy to put together and extremely nutritious. You can prepare the lentils and dressing in batches and use them over a few days’ time for multiple meals.
- 1 ½ cups Masoor Dal
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup raw apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp ground mustard
- 2 small cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tsp sea salt
- Black pepper, to taste
- 1 ½ cups chopped greens
- ½ stalk of green onion
- 1 ½ cups halved cherry tomatoes
- 1 cup black olives
- 3 celery stalks, diced
- To cook the lentils, combine the masoor dal with 4 cups of water. Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan and once boiling, lower the heat to a simmer and cook until the lentils are tender, but still firm, about 15-20 minutes.
- While the masoor dal is cooking, prepare the dressing. In a large bowl, combine the oil, vinegar, maple syrup, mustard, garlic, salt, and black pepper, then whisk well to combine.
- When the dal is tender, drain excess liquid and rinse the dal under cold water to stop the cooking process and help them cool down faster. You can prepare multiple batches of this dal and store it in the refrigerator for later use.
- While the dal cools, add the chopped vegetables and greens to the large bowl of dressing and toss to combine. Add in the cooked dal, and stir again.
- Serve chilled, over a bed of arugula, if desired.
Sesame Noodle Bowl
This recipe for sesame noodles is one of the easy to prepare healthy meals, is delicious, and keeps well in the refrigerator for many days. Simply combine the noodles and the sesame sauce to get the easiest healthy meal. The noodles and sauce can be prepared in batches.
Ingredients (for the sauce):
- ¼ cup sesame paste
- ¼ cup warm water
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 clove garlic, grated
- Sriracha and sugar to taste
Ingredients (for the noodles):
- 200g noodles (any type)
- 2 cups edamame, cooked
- 2 cucumbers, diced
- 1 tbsp Black Sesame Seeds
- Whisk all the sauce ingredients together until you get a smooth and creamy consistency.
- Cook the noodles according to the requirements of the noodle type. Adjust water quantity as needed. Drain and set aside.
- In a bowl, combine the noodles and sauce. Add the edamame and cucumbers, and top with sesame seeds. Enjoy!
Quinoa Burrito Bowl
Any meal with quinoa is sure to be filling and nutritious. It is one of the easiest meal prep ingredients to prepare and store. This recipe for a quinoa burrito bowl is one of the easy meal prep ideas that is not only nutritious but also healthy.
- 3 cups cooked quinoa
- 1 can black beans, drained & rinsed
- 1 cup corn
- ½ cup chopped cilantro
- 1 tsp Cumin, powdered
- ½ tsp salt
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 head of romaine, chopped
- ½ cup salsa
- 3 avocados halved
- Combine the cooked quinoa with the cumin powder, salt, black beans, corn, cilantro, and lime. Mix well.
- In a bowl add the quinoa mixture, chopped romaine lettuce, slices of avocado, and 1 portion of salsa. The remaining ingredients can be stored in the refrigerator for later use. Enjoy!
Classic Dal Chawal
Dal chawal is a classic Indian meal that is nutritious, filling, and delicious. It is the easiest way to get your protein and fiber content and can give you a boost of energy that lasts through the day. The dal and rice can be prepared in batches and stored in the refrigerator for many days.
- 1 cup Masoor Dal, soaked
- 1 cup chopped tomatoes
- 1 cup chopped onions
- 3-4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 tsp Garam masala
- ½ tsp Turmeric Powder
- 2 tbsp oil
- 2 cups rice
- Juice of half a lime
- Boil the 2 cups of rice with 4 cups of water and set aside to cool.
- In a saucepan, heat the oil and add the chopped garlic, onions, and tomatoes. Saute for 5 minutes then add the soaked dal, turmeric powder, garam masala, and mix well. Let it cook for 15 minutes until the dal becomes tender.
- Add salt as needed. Take the pan off heat and top with some lime juice.
- In a container, add 2 spoonfuls of rice and 1 serving of the dal. Enjoy!
Meal prepping is a simple and efficient task that can help you plan your meals out much better, and maintain a balanced diet without compromising on taste. As long you meal prep keeping in mind the key components of a balanced meal – protein, carbohydrates, fat, veggies, and flavor, you can easily prepare a meal prep plan that works for you based on your busy schedule. Try out some of these meal prep ideas as you start your journey in meal prepping!