Finding time to cook during the busy work week can be hard, but eating homemade meals can be healthier and more cost efficient than eating out or having dinner delivered. With that in mind, we present to you the meal planning life hack that helps you plan and prep weekly meals on the weekend, saving time and money.
Avocados are an ideal food to include in your weekly meal prep. Besides the fact that they’re creamy and delicious, they add nearly 20 vitamins and minerals per 50g serving, good fats and fiber (11% of your daily recommended value!) that will leave you satisfied and feeling full for a longer period of time. When buying avocados for the week, you can choose them at different stages of ripeness so you’ll have some to eat that day or the next day and some that will reach peak ripeness later in the week. Avocados with dark green or even black, bumpy skins that give a little when squeezed in your hand are ready to go! Lighter green avocados that are smoother and hard to the touch need a few days.
When meal prepping with avocados, squeeze some lemon or lime juice over the avocado to keep it from turning brown, or prepare the rest of the dish beforehand and add the avocado just before you eat. If you have cut avocado that you want to save for later, you can submerge it in water, cover it with plastic wrap or a plastic lid, and keep it in the fridge – it will stay fresh and green for up to three days. Also, if you need to ripen your avocados quicker, you can simply put them in direct sunlight or submerged in a bowl of rice or in brown paper bag along with a banana or apple. These helpful tips and more at Avocados From Mexico’s “How-To” page.
Here are some recipe ideas that are great for weekly meal prep:
For a perfectly balanced breakfast that will give you lots of energy to last through the day, sauté some spinach or kale with garlic and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes, and layer it over a bed of brown rice or quinoa. Prepare two eggs how you like them and place them on the greens, then top with half of a sliced avocado.
Bell pepper can serve as a container for any combination of fillings, it’s low carb and won’t get soggy. You can leave the bell peppers raw if you like them crunchy or boil them for just a few minutes to soften. Fill with avocado egg salad, tuna salad, or a mixture of rice and beans. Top your pepper with some fresh vegetables and diced avocado or a dollop of guacamole.
Brush a salmon fillet with a mixture of lemon juice, olive oil, and seasonings, then bake for 40 minutes. During the last 20 minutes, pop a pan of vegetables in the oven to roast. While waiting for the timer to go off, prepare a dressing by placing a handful of fresh cilantro in the blender along with lime juice, a clove of garlic, olive oil, and salt and pepper. When you’re ready to eat, serve your salmon and roasted veggies on a bed of fresh greens with sliced avocado and a drizzle of cilantro and lime dressing for a quick and delicious lunch or dinner.