Prep it like Christine!
From the beginning of my time writing here in early 2016, Christine joined a couple #sundaysetup sessions in my home that were so helpful for me to learn what this Team Burgoon community was doing with food prep and what might be helpful to share with the rest of you!
You’ve seen Christine show up many times with ideas and inspiration, like her Crockpot Apple Sauce!
And her Asian Quinoa Salad, which is currently on my summer list of foods the family is asking for!
This salad is a PERFECT example of how Christine does a spin-off recipe, and you can do it too. She takes an old recipe and rethinks it for the better, or in a way that fits what healthier means to her! This salad dressing she had from a Weight Watchers recipe a few years back which included ingredients like orange marmalade. She tried it instead with naturally sweet orange juice, creating a more healthy updated version.
Here’s what I discovered when I popped in on Christine’s latest meal prepping session!
While Gracie might think Christine preps for her too, Christine rocks the meal prep for 1 and sometimes extra for company!
Christine readily admits there are weeks when life gets in the way of this meal prepping intention. Between breaking her foot early this year, friends and events bringing extra activity to her day-to-day, work projects and etc, meal prepping fell away as a priority. In hindsight, Christine says, "I have to admit this probably added to my stress, as coming home to a prepped meal at the end of a long day of work is way better than scrambling to figure out what to cook/eat.”
Don’t we all love hindsight AND don’t we all understand these phases of life? For sure. While survival mode eating can easily set in, it’s not hard to get back at it once you KNOW and remember what a difference it can make.
By the time I arrived, Christine was already going on her #sundaysetup. Who can guess what’s in this pan?
You got it, one of our Team Burgoon favorites for easy moist chicken, see here for this recipe and some meal prepping basics.
On Christine’s menu for this past week?
1. Egg Bake - with turkey sausage and sweet potatoes, see recipe below!
2. Brussels Sprouts, Cranberry, and Quinoa Salad from Gimme Some Oven
3. Chicken to shred for tacos or salad!
4. Chicken breasts for above quinoa salad!
5. Energy bites from Tiffany's recipe!
Tips, tricks, and timesavers that Christine puts into practice?
- Uses Rotisserie Chicken when time is short!
- Freezes at least 2 servings from a meal prepping session so she doesn’t get sick of eating the same thing every day and in weeks to come will have options in her freezer for more variety.
- Refreshes on Wednesdays with: - Grocery run - refreshes produce and grabs whatever else is needed! - Freezer stash - thaws meals from the freezer for variety mid-week!
- Utilizes dishwasher to hold ALL dirty dishes and pans temporarily, to keep space cleared off until the prepping is done! At the end, she'll reorganize and remove what doesn’t get washed this way. (Brilliant mind trick and space clearing strategy!)
- Picks Sunday for prepping, Saturdays sound good in theory but usually not ready until Sunday rolls around.
- Asks herself, “What activities do I have this week?” Plans food for on-the-run, like smoothies for days she has to leave early.
- Splits food into servings - done and easy to grab and go.
- Takes 4 hours or less.
Christine lists a few reasons why she bothers with the work of meal prepping:
- If there is a plan for the week to have company over, meal prepping the weekend ahead makes it doable!
- Better choices for lunch and dinner are made if food is ready to go and an in-the-moment decision has to be made when hungry.
- "Makes it EASY to eat the way I want to eat."
- "I’m not dumbfounded on what to eat when I’m not prepared, I prefer not having those ‘I’m not prepared’ moments.”
And as for those inevitable unprepared moments, here’s what’s in Christine’s survival kit:
- Grocery store prepped salads from the deli
- Pre-spiraled store bought veggie noodles and jar of sauce for dinner
- Eggs fried or scrambled.
- The cafeteria at work will cook up a plainly grilled chicken breast.
- Frozen Trader Joe’s dinners if needed.
Christine’s advice for anyone prepping:
"Pick 1 meal to prep. I started with lunch and it made it manageable to try prepping a week’s worth of lunches and not everything all at once."
Thanks, Christine, for sharing your ways! I so appreciate all you’ve shared with us on the blog and your Instagram. Please keep on posting so we can be encouraged to pick it back up when we too have taken a break for one reason or another!
Here's Christine's recipe for an easy egg bake, change up the theme every week if you like or make it into muffins as she has shared here!
- 1/2 package ground turkey browned - Italian seasoning works well!
- 1 large sweet potato sliced into 1/2 inch ovals and parbaked - 15 minutes at 350°.
- 12 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- salt and pepper
- oil or cooking spray
- Spray or oil a 9x13 inch baking dish.
- Layer meat and chopped up parbaked sweet potatoes in a baking dish.
- Whisk together eggs, milk, and salt and pepper, and pour over veggies and meat.
- Bake for 25 minutes at 400°.
Happy long weekend, everyone!