"Batch cook" a dish this week that can last for 4-5 days
We touched on this subject a few weeks ago with the leftover storage system. Now that you have this system set up, "batch cooking" will be a stroll in the park.
Batch cooking is simply making a huge serving, enough for several helpings of a storable, healthy dish. This strategy works great for dishes like stir fry, stew, turkey chili and gumbo. Eat a reasonably-sized meal from this batch and then divide the rest using your new storage system. You’ll have a ready-made healthy dish for the next 4-5 days.
This Action Step is a big help for three reasons:
1- You’re guaranteed 4-5 healthy meals.
2- You only cooked once, as opposed to 4 or 5 times.
3- With your storage system, it’s easy to convert healthy dinners into healthy lunches.
Batch cooking is easy to catch on to once you start. If you’re not too sure how to make your first "batch" dish, a Crock Pot is a great place to start. Throw in a bunch of veggies, a little chicken or turkey and a low-fat sauce, and you’re set. If you prepare the meal in the morning, the Crock Pot will slow-cook the meal during the day. When you return home from work, the meal is ready. Here’s an example recipe for Chicken ala King:
3 cups cooked chicken or turkey, chopped
½ cup green pepper, chopped
¼ cup onion, chopped
½ cup celery, chopped
1 jar (2 oz.) pimento (or chopped red bell pepper)
1 can (4 oz.) mushrooms pieces, drained
2 cans (10 oz.) cream of chicken soup (or cream of mushroom)
1 pkg. (10 oz.) frozen peas
Combine all ingredients except frozen peas in Crock Pot. Stir to mix well. Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours. One hour before serving, turn to high and add peas.
Don’t have a Crock Pot? No worries, there are plenty of other batch-friendly recipes and meals out there. Jambalaya, for example, is another healthy meal that is easy to prepare in large quantities. All it takes are brown rice, chopped veggies, chicken, sausage (chicken or turkey varieties for a healthier alternative) and gumbo powder or sauce, and you’re set. Other examples include spaghetti (with whole-wheat pasta) and fruit pizza. Try one of these ideas or create your own and make a big "batch" this week. Check out our recipe site, www.sparkrecipes.com for thousands of recipe ideas submitted by members like you! Remember to keep it healthy, and to make a meal that sounds good to you.