How often do we start the week with good intentions to cook healthy and homemade meals every day, but then lose momentum in the middle of the week? Here is a quick and easy 5 step meal prep recipe to get you through lunch on Friday. All you need is a baking sheet, aluminum foil, a couple of ingredients, and less than 30 minutes of time!
Time: 30 Minutes
Price: Under $25 (for 5 meals!)
2-3 medium chicken breasts, boneless
2 cups broccoli florets
2 cups grape tomatoes
2 medium zucchini, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons italian seasoning, sprinkled
1 teaspoon salt, sprinkled
3 cups uncooked rice or quinoa, your choice
5 meal prep containers
- Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil. Prepare meal prep containers by rinsing, drying, and ensuring that each container has a properly fitting lid. Set aside.
- Rinse, dry, and chop all vegetables and place them onto baking dish. Clean chicken and cup into 1/2 inch pieces. Evenly season vegetables and chicken. Drizzle with olive oil. Slice and squeeze lemon evenly over vegetables and chicken.
- Place in over and bake for 20 minutes, or until chicken is tender.
- Combine 2.5 cups rice or quinoa with 5 cups water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover pan and let simmer for 12-15 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- When grain is finished cooking, turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Divide grain evenly among 5 containers. Take vegetables and chicken out of the oven. Let sit for 5 minutes, mix together with a wooden spoon, and divide evenly over the grain. Seal meal prep containers shut and keep refrigerated until ready to eat.
Additional Notes – How to Mix ‘n Match
This recipe yields 5 meals. Vegetables can be swapped; and it’s up to you to choose what you would like to include. As a rule of thumb, ChooseMyPlate recommends that men and women between the ages of 19-50 consume 3 cups and 2.5 cups of vegetables a day, respectively. Over a week, a variety of vegetables should be eaten from the five vegetable subgroups, including dark-green vegetables, starchy vegetables, red and orange vegetables, beans and peas, and other vegetables. (ChooseMyPlate, 2017). So since this recipe is designed to make 5 meals over 2 1/2 days (Wednesday Lunch and Dinner, Thursday Lunch and Dinner, and Friday Lunch) then you should plan for 6-8 cups of vegetables. The more the merrier, am I right?
So if you are mix ‘n matching in the kitchen, do not overthink the 5 vegetable subgroups. As long as you have a variety of colors and are eating at least 2.5-3 cups of vegetables a day, you are doing the right thing. However, if you are interested in learning more about the vegetable subgroups and appropriate serving sizes for your demographic, click here.
*More information on how to track your weekly intake of fruits and vegetable to see what you are missing will be coming soon!
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Consuming raw or under cooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish, or eggs may increase your risk of food borne illness. When cooking, make sure your ingredients are fresh and are being properly stored in the refrigerator or freezer. For information on proper storage times, visit https://www.foodsafety.gov/keep/charts/storagetimes.html.