As a teacher, September tends to be a crazy month! There is so much to be done for the new school year that often times I find myself working 10-12 hour days! The last thing I want to do when I come home is cook, let alone make it a healthy meal! It was so much simpler to have a bowl a cereal, but definitely not good for the waistline.
From all the health blogs I read, many of them say that meal prep is key to stay on track! So last week, I gave it a try and let me tell you; I'm hooked! Granted, I only have to cook for myself, so I was able to make my breakfast, lunches, and dinners; I still found it beneficial. Even if I had a family to feed, what I made could at least make breakfast and dinner for the week!
I love breakfast!!! I love it so much that I can have breakfast foods anytime of day (even cereal for dinner :( ). So I started my meal prep with making a batch of protein pancakes. They are so easy to make! The Tone It Up girls have this recipe! I use half of a banana, mash it up with some almond milk, a scoop of my favorite protein powder (Perfect Fit Protein in Vanilla is my favorite for this recipe), a quarter cup of egg whites and a couple of dashes of cinnamon! That makes one pancake and will leave you full throughout the morning! I cook it on low heat and I add some fresh fruit to the top or in the batter. These aren't the perfect pics but I made about six ahead of time and freeze them with a piece of wax paper between them in a Ziploc bag.
I also made my favorite TIU recipe, true banana chia seed muffins! To get the recipe, go to Toneitup.com search for recipes and this recipe will be under the breakfast tab! I have sent so many of my fitness to this site because so many of them have tried and loved these delicious muffins! I can make about 20 muffins with this recipe! I keep them in the fridge. They are great for breakfast or a snack. I just hear them in the microwave for 30 seconds and they feel like they have just come out of the oven!
Moving onto lunch and/or dinner! I started by getting spaghetti squash! The hardest part of this recipe was cutting the darn thing open in half. Afterwards, I ripped out some of the seeds.
My next recipe was quinoa stuffed peppers! The funny part of all of this is I was supposed to use 3 cups of cooked quinoa, and on accident I made 6 cups, because it basically doubles in size when you cook it (duh, Katie)! Oh well, I'll just freeze the extra for another week of meal prep... LOL! I got about a bag of 8 peppers from the produce market and was able to use all 8 because they were fairly small! This recipe would normally fill 6 large peppers! I placed the quinoa in a bowl, added some black beans, cut grape tomatoes, 2 jalapeño peppers, some corn, cilantro, Mexican blend cheeses (1/2 cup) and some taco seasoning. Mix it together and place mixture into the peppers. I use parchment paper to line a 9x13 baking dish, especially for the overflowing goodness! Bake on 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
I also had some fresh watermelon and grapes to snack on too throughout the week! It took a little bit of time, but well worth it; knowing I'd be eating healthy morning, noon, and night!
Next time, I'll be making homemade Lara bars.... Can't wait to see how those turn out and maybe save myself some mulla in the long run!