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Easy Meal Prepping Ideas

April 2, 2020

Easy Meal Prepping Ideas

Written By Tanner Hoffarth, Marketing Employee

Being cooped up inside practicing our social distancing is something we dove into last week that we never thought would be a reality. On top of staying active, it is also important that we practice good eating habits. This includes not just filling our bodies with substance for our “three meals a day,” but filling it with food that makes us feel good.

I have put together some of my favorite recipes that anyone can make for a quick tasty meal. Each meal was also designed to be completely customizable based on your dietary needs or taste bud preference.  On top of that, each of these meals are portioned to feed an army! What does that mean? That means your dinner tonight can make an easy lunch tomorrow.

In this time of uncertainty, being able to cook or know what you will cook for dinner this week brings a little certainty back in order.

With this meal plan, a shopping list is provided for everything you need through the week—that’s if you don’t already have it in your pantry. A shopping list for the week will eliminate the need to continually run back and forth from the grocery store.

Screenshot the shopping list and get cooking!

Day 1: Chicken and Asparagus (Creme de la Crumb)

    INGREDIENTS

    • 3-6 chicken thighs or boneless skinless chicken breasts (breasts pounded to even 1/2-inch thickness)
    • salt and pepper, to taste
    • 1-pound asparagus, ends trimmed
    • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
    • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
    • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
    • salt and pepper, to taste
    • fresh herbs for garnish (optional)

    DIRECTIONS

    1. Season chicken with salt and pepper on both sides. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large pan/skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in garlic and herbs and cook another minute or so until the garlic is fragrant.
    2. Reduce heat to medium, add chicken to pan, and cook for 5-7 minutes, then flip and cook another 5-7 minutes. (Chicken should be nearly, but not completely cooked through by this point)
    3. Scoot the chicken over the sides and add remaining 1 tablespoon butter to the empty portion of the pan. Once the butter is melted, add asparagus. Season asparagus with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook, rotating throughout, for 4-6 minutes until tender and chicken is completely cooked through.
    4. Serve immediately garnished with freshly cracked black pepper and fresh herbs if desired.


    Day 2: Pasta al Limone (Bon Appetit)

    INGREDIENTS

    • 1 lemon
    • 12 oz. spaghetti or other long pasta
    • Kosher salt
    • ¾ cup heavy cream
    • 6 Tbsp. unsalted butter
    • 3 oz. finely grated Parmesan (about ¾ cup)
    • Freshly ground black pepper

    DIRECTIONS

    1. Using a vegetable peeler, remove two 2″-long strips of lemon zest. Thinly slice each strip lengthwise into thin strands; set aside for serving. Finely grate remaining zest into a large pot (like a Dutch oven). Cut lemon in half and squeeze out enough juice to yield 2 Tbsp. into a small bowl; set aside.
    2. Cook pasta in another large pot of boiling heavily salted water, stirring occasionally, until very al dente (pasta will finish cooking in the sauce).
    3. Meanwhile, add cream to pot with lemon zest and cook over medium heat, whisking often, until liquid is just beginning to simmer, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low. Whisk in butter 1 Tbsp. at a time until melted and sauce is creamy and emulsified. Remove from heat.
    4. Just before pasta is al dente, scoop out 1½ cups pasta cooking liquid. Add ¾ cup pasta cooking liquid to cream sauce and return to medium heat. Using tongs, transfer spaghetti to pot with sauce (it’s okay if a little water comes along with it). Cook, tossing often and adding Parmesan little by little, until cheese is melted, and sauce is creamy, about 3 minutes. If sauce looks tight, add 1–2 Tbsp. pasta cooking liquid. (Cream sauces tighten up very quickly as they cool, so it’s better to lean on the saucier side of things.) Stir in reserved lemon juice; season with more salt, if needed.
    5. Divide pasta among bowls. Season with pepper, then top with reserved lemon zest strips.


    Day 3: Salmon Soy & Citrusy Charred Scallions (Alison Roman)

    INGREDIENTS

    • 2 bunches scallions or spring onions, white and green parts, trimmed
    • 2 to 3 lbs skin-on salmon fillet
    • 1⁄4 cup plus 3 tbsp olive oil, divided
    • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • 1⁄4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
    • 1 tbsp finely grated lemon or lime zest plus 1⁄4 cup fresh lemon or lime juice (from about 2 lemons or 4 limes)
    • 2 tbsp fresh orange juice (from about 1 orange)
    • Crushed red pepper flakes

    DIRECTIONS

    1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Thinly slice 4 scallions and place in a medium bowl; set aside.
    2. Place the salmon skin side down in a large baking dish and drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and lots of pepper. Place in the oven and roast until the center begins to turn from deep sunset orange to salmon-y pink, but still remains pretty medium-rare toward the top, 10 to 12 minutes.
    3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium-high heat in a medium cast-iron skillet. Add the remaining scallions and season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing occasionally, until deeply charred in spots, 4 to 6 minutes.
    4. Transfer the scallions to a cutting board and coarsely chop. Add to the bowl with raw scallions along with the soy sauce, lemon zest and juice, orange juice, and remaining ¼ cup olive oil; season with salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes.
    5. Using a large spatula, transfer the salmon to a large serving platter, leaving any skin behind. Spoon a bit of the charred scallion mixture over, serving any extra alongside.


    Day 4: Never Fail Chicken Tacos (Delish)

    INGREDIENTS

    • 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
    • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1″ strips
    • Kosher salt
    • Freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 tsp. chili powder
    • 2 tsp. cumin
    • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    • 1/4 tsp. paprika
    • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
    • 8 corn tortillas, warmed
    • Thinly sliced red onion
    • Diced tomatoes
    • Shredded Monterey Jack
    • Diced avocados
    • Fresh cilantro
    • Lime wedges

    DIRECTIONS

    1. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Season chicken with salt and pepper and add to skillet. Cook until golden, 6 minutes. Add spices and stir until coated, 1 minute more.
    2. Build tacos: In tortillas, layer chicken and desired toppings. Serve with lime wedges.


    Day 5:
    Avocado Toast w/ Jammy Sunny Side Up Eggs and Roasted Baby Tomatoes (Closet Cooking)

    INGREDIENTS

    • 1 avocado
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (or lime juice)
    • pinch salt
    • 4 eggs
    • 4 slices toast (can sub for GF if needed)
    • salt and pepper to taste

    DIRECTIONS

    1. Mash the avocado, lemon juice and salt.
    2. Fry the eggs in a pan over medium heat.
    3. Spread the mashed avocado mixture on the toast, top with the fried eggs, season with salt and pepper and enjoy!

    Shopping List

    PROTEIN

    • 8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
    • 2 to 3 lbs skin-on salmon fillet

    SPICES

    • Kosher salt
    • Freshly ground black pepper
    • Crushed red pepper flakes
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
    • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
    • 2 tsp. chili powder
    • 2 tsp. cumin
    • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    • 1/4 tsp. paprika
    • 1/4 tsp. cayenne

    OILS & SAUCES

    • Extra-virgin olive oil
    • Low-sodium soy sauce

    PANTRY

    • 12 oz. Spaghetti or other long pasta
    • 8 6”-diameter corn tortillas
    • Bread of choice

    FRIDGE

    • Eggs
    • Heavy cream
    • Unsalted/salted butter
    • Parmesan
    • Shredded Monterey Jack

    PRODUCE

    • Garlic
    • 4 Lemons
    • 3 Limes
    • 1 Orange
    • 2 bunches scallions
    • 1-pound asparagus
    • 1 Fresh bunch cilantro
    • 1 Red onion
    • Diced tomatoes
    • 3 Avocados