5 Days Of Meal Prep | Try Living With Lucie | Refinery29
I’m Lucie Fink and this is five days of meal prep.
Hey guys, it’s me.
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It’s 2018 and I know that a new year
always seems to bring that urge to start taking
control of your life.
And in my case, to start really being an adult…
because I am one.
So I need to be one.
And for me, a major New Years resolution
was to start meal prepping.
Before this week, meal prep looked kinda like this to me:
I love pizza.
So this weekend I spent a ton of time
planning and organizing,
and then I went out to buy the ingredients
for five days of five servings of food.
So for each of the days this week
I’ve made breakfast, lunch, a snack, dinner and dessert.
Yesterday, on Sunday, was my full meal prep day,
so I spent three hours right there in my kitchen
preparing everything for the week ahead.
And here is what I made:
Chia seed pudding for breakfast;
burrito bowls with a ton of fresh veggies for lunch;
roasted and seasoned sweet potato fries
and chickpeas as a snack;
vegetable noodles with basil pesto, cherry tomatoes
and shrimp for dinner;
and chocolate chip peanut butter
chickpea bars for dessert.
Don’t worry because each day in this video
as I go through five days of eating the meal prep foods
I am going to focus on one of the meals.
So either breakfast, lunch, the snack, dinner or dessert
so that I can break down the full recipe for you,
and then also breakdown
my strategy behind everything.
I got all of my meal ideas this week from
chef and cooking instructor Alyssa Gagarin,
who is a meal prepping goddess.
Through my experience I have learned all the
do’s and don’ts of meal prep
and have gathered my top tips for Lucie’s meal prep.
So, tip number one is it’s all about strategy.
The total cost of meal prep to cook for one person
for a week’s worth of food is approximately $100,
depending on what you choose.
I spend $107 total on all of the ingredients yesterday,
which if you divide by five days
and five servings of food a day,
comes to $4.28 per dish.
Overall, my first day of eating the meal prep foods
went quite swimmingly, if I do say so myself.
I ate my first breakfast chia seed pudding this morning,
which was delicious.
I brought all of my lunch bowls to the office,
and I stored them in the Refinery29 fridge.
Dinner was so easy to compile because all of the
individual pieces were in their own containers.
And dessert was obviously delicious,
because it’s dessert.
So as I said, because I’m focusing on one meal a day,
today on Monday I’m focusing on my breakfast.
Here is how I made that chia seed pudding.
I mixed four cups of coconut milk
with one cup of chia seeds,
added a teaspoon of vanilla extract,
and a drizzle of maple syrup.
And then I cut up different types of fruits
to make different toppings
so that each day would have a bit of a different flavor.
Then I poured them into individual mason jars,
and lined them up in my fridge for the week.
Andrew, my camera man,
gave the pudding his final stamp of approval
by actually licking the remainders of it from the bowl.
Stamp of approval!
It was good.
Today, I’m sharing the recipe
from my lunch burrito bowls.
If you’ve chosen any recipes with avocados,
here’s a pro tip for you.
Buy avocados of different ripeness.
One that’s ripe to use now,
one that will ripen in a couple days
and one that has the entire week to be ripe so that by
Friday or Saturday it’s perfect for a bowl of guac.
Following Alyssa’s recipe, I made a giant pot of rice,
seasoned up the raw chicken with salt, pepper, paprika
and other spices.
Chopped up some vegetables like romaine,
purple cabbage and fresh tomatoes.
And then popped open a can of black beans and corn.
Once everything was done cooking I assembled
the burrito bowls into five separate lunch boxes,
with rice on the bottom and
then the vegetables lined up on top in rainbow order.
I know that what’s most important is the way it tastes,
but the fact that it was so beautiful
and looked like a rainbow on my plate, didn’t hurt at all.
I am loving these little boxes that I got for lunch
this week because they seal really tight
to lock in the freshness.
And it’s only Day Two,
but I am already starting to notice how meal prep is
drastically reducing the amount of waste
that I’m creating throughout the day.
And to make this week even more zero waste friendly,
I’m using a set of bamboo kitchen utensils that I got
from Lauren Singer’s package free shop in Brooklyn.
I’m one of those people who cannot go between lunch
and dinner without munching on something,
so I decided to make a really healthy snack idea this week,
but to turn it very delicious by
adding spices and seasoning to it.
I got pre cut sweet potato fries
and a couple of cans of chickpeas,
and I seasoned them both up with olive oil, salt,
garlic powder, paprika and more.
I put them onto separate trays because they needed to
cook for different amounts of time
at different temperatures.
That was really tough for me and it was difficult for me
to balance the different temperatures
with the different cook times,
so at some point I just put them both into the oven
together and decided to eyeball it.
Now this is a very important thing
to know about meal prep.
From the footage you’ve seen so far, it probably looks
like first I whipped up my chia seed pudding,
and then I made all the ingredients for my lunch
and then I moved onto seasoning my snack…
you get the drill.
But the truth is, that is not how I did this at all.
Sunday in my kitchen was a complete and utter
whirlwind of chaos.
I feel like I’m on Chopped.
How do we want to cook the chicken?
How’s that rice doing?
These chickpeas are roasting.
Out of space!
Racing against the clock.
I was running around, doing six things at once.
I had the rice on the stove while I seasoned the chicken
and the shrimp.
I was roasting up my snacks
while I put my chickpea and peanut butter brownies
into the food processor.
A lot of things, a lot of moving parts.
Tip number three:
When you are choosing your recipes for the week,
think of using multiple cooking methods that
utilize various different tools,
so that you make the most of your time.
As I was planning my meals for the week, actually,
I took Alyssa’s advice to heart
and I realized how silly it would be
if I chose meals that all use the oven,
or all needed the stove top
because that would just not be strategic with my time
and with my kitchen space.
My proteins for lunch and dinner
were cooked on the stovetop,
the snacks were roasted in the oven,
the vegetables didn’t need to be cooked at all
and my dessert was the only thing that needed
a food processor.
So, you see what I did there.
Just had my fourth chia seed pudding cup of the week
and they never get old.
They are so good.
But I was a little bit extra hungry this morning
so I woke up and popped in a waffle.
It was tough picking a dinner recipe for this week
because if I know anything about myself
it’s that I really like diversifying the meals I’m having
from one day to the next.
And the only exception to this rule is pizza
because I could literally eat pizza every meal, every day,
But sadly I wasn’t making pizza this week,
so that was tough.
I needed a dinner idea that allowed me to pick
and choose different pieces
so I could make it differently each night.
I got a vegetable noodle medley,
made of sweet potato noodles, squash noodles,
zoodles and more.
I kept them raw so they didn’t get soggy.
I cooked the shrimp with salt, pepper and olive oil.
I made a basil pesto,
and I halved the cherry tomatoes.
The first night I made this I just tossed all the
ingredients into a pan with olive oil, salt, and pepper
and I sautéed it up.
On the second night, I changed up the flavor a bit by
trying out some different seasoning and spices on top.
And tonight I was really not in the mood
for a hot noodle dish.
Instead, I want something cold and refreshing,
like a salad.
So I kept the noodles raw and crunchy.
And then instead of the basil pesto
I just squeezed some lemon juice on top.
And it’s not just my dinner that I’m doing this with.
Actually, yesterday at lunch,
I wanted to spice up the burrito bowl a little bit,
so I bought a tortilla and I turned the burrito bowl
into an actual burrito.
And if I learned anything about myself
from the experience
it’s that I cannot roll a burrito for the life of me.
But I do have to say that turning the bowl
into a burrito made the lunch look, feel, and taste
So that was good.
Happy Friday everyone!
Today I’m sharing the recipe for these incredible
chocolate chip peanut butter chickpea bars.
Y’all ready for this?
If you’re one of those people who looks at a dessert
made of chickpeas and seriously judges it for what it is,
And don’t even try to imagine what this tastes like,
because you just can’t until you try it.
And when you do try it you’ll see that it tastes like
dessert, not chickpeas.
This is Alyssa’s recipe and
it was epic.
I preheat the oven to 350 and then I mixed
half a cup of natural peanut butter with
one 15-ounce can of drained and rinsed chickpeas.
I added two tablespoons of maple syrup,
two tablespoons of honey,
one tablespoon of vanilla extract,
half a teaspoon of salt,
a quarter teaspoon of baking soda,
and a quarter teaspoon of baking powder.
I blended this all up in a food processor
until it was smooth and shiny and delicious looking.
And then I spread it into a baking dish
and added chocolate chips on top.
They baked for 18 minutes exactly
and came out perfectly.
I put them in a tupperware and I had two rows
with a piece of parchment paper in between.
And then I stored them in the fridge to give
them a fudge-like consistency.
And in a few hours I am going to have my
final serving of dinner and dessert
and after that I will have officially eaten
all of the meal prep foods that I bought and made
Actually taking the plunge and doing this challenge
calmed my fears about:
a) how long it would take to meal prep everything and
b) how expensive this would be.
I actually think I saved money this week.
Now I want to know some of your
favorite meal prep recipes
and if you’ve never done this before,
comment below and let me know if this is something
you can see yourself trying.
I would highly recommend it.
As always, let me know what you would like to see next
time on Try Living With Lucie.
Go Lucie, go Lucie.
If you’re looking for more meal prep recipes, inspiration,
or tips, find me on Instagram, subscribe on YouTube,
all at Alyssa Gagarin
or my website at alyssagagarin.com
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