What I Prepped Wednesday

As it seems to be the case with some of my other favorite bloggers, I’m putting my own little spin on everyone’s favorite WIAW!

wiawphotobutton What I Prepped Wednesday

Like I mentioned in my first WIAW, taking pictures of everything I eat all day long is exhausting. So instead, I thought I’d share with you a behind the scenes look at what I try to do over the weekend (usually Sunday) to help make my upcoming week a little easier. This was inspired by Andie’s Food I Prepare Ahead of Time. Turns out we do a lot of the same things. You all should jump on this bandwagon!

So here we go!

1. I cook chicken in the crockpot while simultaneously making homemade broth. Throw a package of chicken in the bottom of the pot, top with any leftover veggies you have in your veggie drawer. I always use carrots, celelry (especially the leaves), onion and then whatever else I have…this time it was a pepper. Cover the meat and veggies with water and cook on low for 4-6 hours.

DSC 9607 What I Prepped Wednesday When the chicken is cooked, remove it from the crockpot and shred or dice it. Then portion it into ziploc bags and throw it in the freezer. When you need some for a dish, just defrost and add! I usually shred some for dishes like enchiladas and cube the rest for things like stirfrys or casseroles.

DSC 9674 250x167 What I Prepped Wednesday DSC 9675 250x167 What I Prepped Wednesday

Carefully pour the broth throw a strainer to remove the veggies. Pour into containers and freeze. When you need broth, either add it frozen to your pan, or defrost in the microwave.

DSC 9677 What I Prepped Wednesday 2. Hardboil eggs. I buy my eggs in two dozen egg packages. I hardboil half of them and save the rest for scrambling and baking! During the week I add the hardboiled eggs (minus the yolks) to things like lettuce salads, tuna salads or I just eat them plain for a protein-packed snack!

DSC 9662 What I Prepped Wednesday 3. Cook brown rice. When I don’t have time to cook a big batch of rice, I use Uncle Ben’s 90 second brown rice and it works just fine. But as long as I’m doing all these other things, it’s easy to stick a pot on the stove and cook up a few cups of rice to add to burritos and stirfrys during the week or to use as a healthy side dish.

DSC 9671 What I Prepped Wednesday 4. Make a big salad. I wash a bag of spinach and chop up a bunch of veggies. Store them all in a big tupperware container and portion them out to pack in your lunch or eat with dinner throughout the week.

DSC 9670 What I Prepped Wednesday 5. Roast some chickpeas. These are one of my favorite snack so I usually roast two cans and then use them to make my own trail mix to munch on while I’m in class or driving to work.

DSC 9669 What I Prepped Wednesday 6. Cut up fruit. If you buy large fruits like watermelon, take the time to cut them up and store them in containers in the fridge for easy snacking during the week.

DSC 9666 What I Prepped Wednesday 7. Cook some beans. I always like to have cooked beans in the freezer. I cook up a whole bag of black beans, or whatever I have on hand (lentils, split peas…), portion them and put them in the freezer. Makes it a snap to add them to pretty much anything you’re making. If I have something in mind where I know I’ll use them, I put some in the fridge as well to make things even easier.

DSC 9679 What I Prepped Wednesday DSC 9676 What I Prepped Wednesday 8. Make yourself a treat. Frozen banana bites are my favorite thing to grab after dinner when I need to satisfy my sweet tooth. Make a big batch and enjoy a couple every night!

DSC 9668 What I Prepped Wednesday

The beautiful part about prep time (besides all the time it saves you during the week) is that you don’t have to do the same thing every week. Some weeks I make quinoa or wheatberries instead of rice. Sometimes I make hummus or my favorite dip to go with my veggies. Some weeks I make a batch of homemade spaghetti sauce or some homemade granola. Other ideas: homemade crackers, tuna salad, homemade lean pockets…the possibilities are endless!

The whole point is, if you have healthy options on hand, ready to go, during the week….you’re WAY more likely to actually eat them. If you know you have everything ready to come home and make a healthy dinner in 15 minutes, there’s really no reason to stop for take-out! To me, the endless benefits to your health outweigh the 2-3 hours you have to spend in the kitchen on a day when you probably don’t have anything better to do anyways!

What do you think? Are you a prepper? Or do you just cook as you go throughout the week?

Enjoy!
–Lindsay–

About Lindsay

Lindsay Livingston is a Registered Dietitian from Columbus, Ohio. On her blog, she shares simple, healthy recipes, nutrition tips, workouts and snapshots of her life. Follow her on Twitter @LeanGrnBeanBlog and Instagram @TheLeanGreenBean and be sure to subscribe via RSS or email so you never miss a post!


Comments

  1. You’re so on the ball! I do this during the week when Sean is working. Now that he is home all day, he’s my prep cook!

  2. i usually do way more prep on the weekend than i have been doing lately. i need to get back to that! usually i have a pretty similar plan to you – but recently i’ve just been cutting up a big bag of carrots and some celery.

  3. Great time saver. Thanks for the tips!

  4. Awesome post Lindsay!!! I love the idea of keeping beans in the freezer, i usually keep my black beans in the fridge and after a couple of days they smell bbaaaaaddddd :)
    I totally love that 90 second rice!

  5. I used to be SO much better about prepping, but my schedule has just been all over the place lately, so I have fallen out of my normal routine. Cutting up fruit (mmmm….melons….) is ALWAYS happening though. (Sometimes a huge melon every day!)

  6. Girl, you are SO right about having healthy food on hand = eating healthier! Love all of these tips. I have never made chicken broth that way but it is pretty much genius :) Thanks for sharing!

  7. Okay this is a great post – probably one of your favorites so far b/c it’s totally do-able and worthwhile for the week. I think the preparing the salads is a great idea. Do you have any wilting issues? How long does it last for you?

    And, I’m going to work on those banana bites asap!

    • awww thanks lady! i don’t really have wilting issues, maybe because i usually use spinach? just make sure to dry it really well after washing and mine usually lasts 4-5 days if i don’t eat it all before then :) or if worst comes to worst, some of the chopped veggies fall to the bottom and then i just add more spinach mid-week!

  8. Great tips! I do a little of both. I like to prep a few things ahead of time (like rice, cutting up fruits & veggies, pre-cooking certain meats)- but other items I think need to be cooked when you’re getting ready to eat them. Usually varies week to week depending on our menu. Those banana bites look awesome!!

  9. I love this post. Prepping ahead of time really makes it so you eat healthier, too, because last minute foods are usually processed something or others. That’s a genius idea to make broth while you are cooking your chicken.

  10. I loved this post! I am all about prepping ahead of time, but I never put the stock idea to use. I will be trying that very soon!

  11. Whoa, what a smart gal you are!!! Very creative to have that all cooked and on hand to throw together a quick meal once you get home in the evening. I’m now semi-retired, I only have to go into the office one day out of the week and only for a couple of hours, so I’m able to prepare from day to day. But I still think this is clever for working women!

  12. I prep like this on sundays too!!! Its GLORIOUS! The broths always come in handy and having chopped and portioned fruits and veggies makes my life soo easy! great post! and happy WIAW!!! <3

  13. this is such a good idea! I’ve been terrible about packing my lunch for work because I don’t have time in the morning. I could save so much money if I did this!

    • yes!!! it makes packing my lunch SO easy! i just grab all the containers and portion some of the stuff out! fabulous :) ps…i usually pack my lunch the night before too since i’m not good about it in the morning!

  14. When summer break is over, I am going to need to get this organized. Your prep work rocks! And I imagine it makes your week much simpler. Chicken in the crockpot is especially smart :)

  15. Great tips Lindsay! I find that making beans and rice ahead of time is a HUGE time saver throughout the week. I’ve been hearing a lot about roasted chic peas through the blogosphere but I have yet to try them. (GASP!) Better roll my sleeves up and get busy ;) Do you have a good recipe you use?

    • they are so good! i don’t really use a recipe. I basically just rinse two cans of chickpeas, spin them in my salad spinner and then put them in a bowl and toss them with a little olive oil, some paprika and cayenne pepper. i roast them at 375-400 degrees in a jellyroll pan with a silpat on it and i stir them around every 10 minutes or so. they usually take 40 minutes or so. some will inevitably burn so don’t worry about those!

  16. You are my kitchen idol! I love all of these tips! I think I’m going to roast some chickpeas this Sunday. :)

Trackbacks

  1. [...] 1) You do have to stir this granola….about once every half hour. That makes this a great recipe for a Sunday afternoon when you’re hanging around the house anyways…perhaps doing some food prep for the week? [...]

  2. […] -Click here for another post I did over the summer about prepping food for the week. […]

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