The holiday season means lots of baking, cooking, grocery shopping and menu planning for all of those epic charcuterie boards and holiday classic recipes, but that doesn’t leave much time for meal planning for everyday meals. Here are seven tips that can help make your holiday meal planning and prepping easier so you can still eat mindfully during the most wonderful time of the year.
#1 Bake Up Breakfast
During the holiday season, it’s easy to become busy, but don’t skip out on the most important meal of the day - breakfast. Bake up a homemade batch of Breakfast Egg Cups to enjoy all week long or get creative and make a favorite frittata so you can grab a slice or two and get to work on all of your holiday planning. Some of our favorite frittata recipes include this Caramelized Onion and Pork Sausage Frittata, Chipotle Chicken Frittata or this Chipotle Chicken Taco Frittata.
#2 Fill Up the Freezer
During the cold winter months, no one wants to head outdoors to go to the grocery store or endure the crowds as everyone shops for the holidays. Instead, fill up the freezer before the winter weather settles in. A stocked kitchen filled with quick-meals is the best way to ensure you are always prepared for your weekly winter meal prepping. Some freezer staples include:
Tip: Can’t decide which freezer staples to stock up on? Try a sample pack.
#3 Fuel Up on Quality Fats
During the winter months, the days grow shorter, the temperatures become colder and we naturally want to slow down and hibernate. If you find yourself using less energy, cut back on excessive carbohydrate consumption and instead, fuel up on quality fats like avocados, ghee, grass-fed butter and nut or seed butters. Quality fats, like those found on the Keto Diet, provide energy that can fuel you for longer periods of time so you won’t have to worry about that late afternoon snack attack. Some of our favorite high quality packed meals include:
#4 Grab Some Grains
Make holiday meal planning easy by batch cooking ingredients like grains. Choose one or two grains and cook a large batch so you have enough servings to enjoy throughout the entire week. Some great grain options include buckwheat, brown rice, farro and quinoa, all of which can be enjoyed on their own or as a delicious addition to any entree. If you usually skip the grains, get creative with vegetables are recreate them into unique recipes like:
#5 Make Some Snacks
Snacks are always good to have on hand, especially when you are busy holiday planning, so always keep easy grab and go options readily available. Some great go-tos include fresh fruit, nuts, seeds and vegetable sticks. You can even whip up an easy recipe, like these Mini Mushroom Sliders for a savory and simple snack.
#6 Roast Vegetables
As you batch cook grains, consider batch cooking roasted vegetables too. Each week, choose one or two hearty winter vegetables like broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, sweet potatoes or winter squash so you always have cooked vegetables on hand ready to enjoy. Simply preheat the oven to 350 degrees then wash and chop your vegetables of choice. Drizzle with oil, salt, pepper or your favorite seasonings then arrange vegetables in a single layer on a baking sheet. Roast until vegetables are tender to the touch and slightly golden browned. Store in glass containers and place in the fridge then enjoy throughout the entire week.
#7 Stock Up on Soups and Stews
Winter is the quintessential season for chilis, homemade soups and stews. Select your favorite recipe and then double it so you have leftovers to enjoy for lunch and dinner for the entire week. Be sure to freeze a few servings so you can enjoy your savory soup or stew throughout the entire holiday season when days get busy and you are short on time.
The holiday season is the most wonderful time of the year, but it is also one of the busiest times of year. Use these seven tips to adjust your weekly meal planning, and prepping, so you can enjoy all the holiday season has to offer.
Happy holidays everyone!