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Perfect Meal Preparation Step by Step

One less thing to worry about during busy weeks.

I personally love food, but sometimes figuring out what to cook can frustrate me.  Yes I do cook contrary to my close friends jokes.

In order to help with the choices I created a simple and shortened five step method you can also use and hopefully it will help avoid tormenting brain power to figure out what to eat!

I love to prepare my meals especially during busy weeks and now it’s so nice to not have to think about what I’m going to eat each day, and to have it already to go. So, if you need meal preparation ideas, I’m sure you’ve come to the right place.

Here’s my successful and efficient meal preparation method to help you come up with tons of meal preparation ideas:

Step 1. Choice of Grain



Depending on what you’re feeling, your choice of grains will be the base of your dish that fills you up!

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Pasta:

  • Macaroni, spaghetti, fettuccine, penne
  • Read Article: Health Benefits of Pasta.
  • White, whole-grain, buckwheat (gluten-free)

Rice:

  • Long-grain, medium-grain, short-grain
  • White, brown, multi-grain, purple rice

Grains:

Bread:

  • French, pita, white, whole-wheat, bagels

Tortillas:

  • Corn, flour
  • soft shell, hard shell

Potatoes:

*Although potatoes aren’t part of the “grain” category, they do make a great base for your dish.

Step 2. Pick a Vegetable



The next portion of your plate should be filled with vegetables!

Your choices are endless but make sure to include some dark leafy greens in your dish for vitamins, minerals, and fiber.

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Broccoli:

  • Source of vitamin K, C, B6, E, B1, calcium, fiber
  • For broccoli, a simple recipe would be to just stir fry with minced garlic and soy sauce. Easy and delicious.
  • Read more about Broccoli here.

Cauliflower:

  • Source of Vitamin C, K, B6, magnesium as well being antioxidant-rich and anti-inflammatory
  • Instead of a stir-fry, I recommend roasting in the oven (at 400 degrees for 15-30 minutes) with olive oil and garlic!

Asparagus:

  • Source of vitamin A, C, E K, B6, folic acid, fiber
  • Again, roasting is a great way to eat these.

Spinach:

  • Source of vitamin K, A, magnesium, potassium (improves glucose control and lowers blood pressure)
  • Steam and add minced garlic and salt, maybe some lemon.

Okra:

  • Source of thiamin, vitamin B2/B6, folic acid, also prevents calcium and magnesium deficiency.
  • Okra is great for you, very nutritious and I recommend boiling it for the most classic preparation. There are some people who don’t like the slimy texture. However, if you don’t mind that then enjoy!

Green Beans:

  • Source of copper, vitamin B1, and A, potassium, calcium, iron while boosting the immune system and bone health.
  • I never liked the taste of green beans so when I do cook them I make them spicy; that way all I taste is the spice! If you like spicy.

*Instead of choosing just one vegetable, mix it up! Mix your broccoli dish with some okra or green beans, for instance.

Step 3. Choose your Protein



Next up, choose your source of protein! If you’re a vegetarian, there is always the choice of substituting your meats for tofu or beans.

Chicken:

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Beef:

  • Stir-fry beef and broccoli is always a time-saver. Just mix sliced beef, broccoli, and onions in a pan; add some flavor with soy sauce, ginger, and brown sugar and you’ve got yourself a meal.

Tofu/meat substitutes:

  • For all the vegetarians reading this, you probably already know tofu is a great alternative for protein.

Fish:

  • From salmon to tilapia, the options are endless. As a bonus, having fish once a week to switch up your protein options will help you reduce your carbon footprint. You can buy frozen fish fillets for convenience.
  • Try Nourish the Brain Soup

Step 4. Additional Items to Add Flavor



The following are optional, but it’s always nice to add some extras to spice up your meal:

Mushrooms:

  • Adding some mushroom to your pasta or rice with beef always increases the flavor in your dish, while adding nutrients.
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Green Onions or Cilantro:

  • Green onions and cilantro always taste great — you don’t need much, just a few sprinkles. Add some to your potatoes or your tacos.

Bell Peppers:

  • Rather than putting them in the vegetable section, I thought they belonged here. Bell peppers add flavor and color rather than filling you up.

Garlic/Onions:

  • If you are going to make some stir-fry adding chopped garlic and onions will bring a wonderful aroma and some healthy flavor to your meal.

Step 5. On the Side: Fruits



To finish your meal, fruits are a great alternative to sugary desserts. Pack some on the side and you’ve got the perfect meal.

Cantaloupe:

  • Source of Vitamin A which benefits your hair; also high in fiber and moisture to help with digestion.

Strawberry:

  • Source of antioxidants (polyphenols), manganese and potassium. Strawberries are also fat-free, cholesterol-free, and a low-calorie fruit.

Oranges:

  • Source of vitamin C, fiber, and potassium. If you ever need to fulfill your vitamin C intake, one orange will provide 130 percent of the amount you need in a day.

Watermelon:

  • Source of hydration and vitamins C and A. Since summer is coming, keeping hydrated with this low-calorie fruit is the way to go! As a tip, I usually sprinkle a pinch of salt on the watermelon to make it sweeter if it wasn’t already ripe.

What do you think?

Do you have a formula to prepare your meals? What are your go-to meals if you didn’t know what to cook? Let us know in the comment below!

Organic Food or Not?

Wondering if Organics is a better choice (Find out here)



James O’Sullivan from Galway is a credible and engaging speaker, a people friendly practitioner and lecturer of Integrated Medicine, serving his patients, his students and the public with the positive benefits of both Conventional Western Medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine. He is a respected author and has appeared on many public media.


Disclaimer

This article is not intended to diagnose or assess. The information provided is not to be considered a substitute for consultation with a qualified health care practitioner.


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