Video: Healthy Meal Prep | Menu 1
Happy New Year everyone! I hope you had a marvellous holiday season. If you're anything like me, maybe you did a little bit of indulging but that is totally fine because today, we are all going to get back on track together. I'm really excited to be launching my brand new Meal Prep Made Easy series. So every Thursday this month, I'm going to be sharing a brand new meal prep menu. These are recipes that can all be prepared on Sunday night to help you eat well all week long. I've also compiled all of these menus into my brand new Meal Prep Made Easy eBook.
It contains all of the recipes, shopping lists and lots of tips and tricks for simplifying your Sunday meal prep. So I hope you'll check it out, all of the details are in the description box below. Now let's kick things off with today's menu. Most of the recipes in this menu are inspired by the delicious flavours of the Mediterranean. So today, I'm going to be making some Hearty Vegetable Soup, a Healthy Chicken Piccata, some Roasted Red Skin Potatoes with Garlic and Parsley, I'm also going to be making some beautiful Steamed Greens, some Tuscan Bean Salads In A Jar, some easy Caprese Frittatas and some really easy Cottage Cheese Fruit Cups that are perfect for that 2pm snack attack. We're kicking things off today with my Hearty Vegetable Soup. I love this soup because it's loaded with veggies which means it's also loaded with nutrients.
Now I'm making this recipe in my slow cooker but if you don't have a slow cooker, don't sweat it. You can definitely do this in a large soup pot instead. The best part about this recipe is that you can throw all of your ingredients in, set it and forget it. So as with most great soups this recipe starts with the trifecta of flavour. We've got some beautiful onion, some carrot and some celery. To that I'm going to add a whole lot of greens. So I've got sliced green cabbage, some beautiful green beans that I've just trimmed and chopped and some chopped zucchini. I'll also be adding some frozen green peas but I won't add them until the very end of cooking because you don't want them to get too mushy. And of course, what would any healthy soup be without some minced garlic? Come on, garlic is really great for you. And we've got some gorgeous cannellini beans. I'm using canned beans because I'm lazy. By all means, cook your beans if that's how you roll. Next up, it's time to add our liquid.
I've got some diced tomatoes and some vegetable broth. You could also do this with chicken broth if you wanted to. Finally, we're just going to season this up with some dried oregano, some fresh thyme leaves and a whole lot of salt and pepper. I'm going to set my slow cooker on high and let this simmer away for between 3 and 4 hours. About 15 minutes before your soup is done, all you're doing to do is add your frozen peas and a good handful of freshly chopped parsley. It's so rich and so hearty. Perfect for the winter. We're just going to put this lid on, let those peas cook through, ten minutes and it is all good and ready to rock. You can store it in the refrigerator for between 4 and 5 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months.
That's why I like to make a huge batch, it's great for those nights where you don't feel like cooking. Next up on today's menu, we've got our Healthy Chicken Piccata. Now, chicken piccata is traditionally made with breaded chicken but today, we are going to leave breading out and just use some boneless, skinless chicken breast. So I've got a skillet heating up on the stove and to that, I'm just going to add a really good drizzle of olive oil. I've got some beautiful chicken breast standing by and I'm simply going to season them with some salt and some pepper and then I'm going to brown them on both sides. We're going to do them top down first. We're just trying to give them a quick brown on both sides. You'll know they're ready to flip when they release easily from the pan. Trust me, do not try to flip them before because you'll end up ruining your chicken and it's just not pretty.
Alright, now that these are beautifully browned on both sides, we are just going to set them aside and then we're going to get to work on our beautiful sauce. To the same skillet, we are going to add another drizzle of olive oil and some minced garlic and capers. Capers have a ton of flavour so a little can go a long way. You're going to cook your garlic and capers for about 30 seconds before it's time to add your white wine, your chicken broth and some freshly squeezed lemon juice. Now if you didn't want to cook with alcohol, you can definitely leave the white wine out and just add a little more chicken broth, that is totally fine. I'm going to give this all a stir, get up all those beautiful brown bits, that's all that chicken flavour that's been left behind in the pan. You're going to let this tasty mixture come to a boil and then we're going to return our chicken back into the pan, turn our heat down to medium-low, cover them and let them simmer for about 10 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F.
Once the chicken is cooked through, we can remove from our skillet and then create a really simple pan gravy using all the delicious juices left behind. All I'm going to do is whisk some cornstarch and some water together and then whisk it back into the juices. We're going to simmer it for about a minute, until it thickens up, and it's really as simple as that. If you're eating this right away, you can drizzle it all over your chicken and if you're not, you can just store it for when you're ready to serve it. I'm going to finish all of this chicken awesomeness off with a little bit of freshly chopped parsley. I love this recipe because it's fresh and citrusy and oh so easy to make. It can be served immediately or stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. I like it best when partnered with these beautiful Roasted Red Potatoes I'm going to show you now.
So for this recipe I'm starting with some beautiful red potatoes that I've scrubbed really well and then cut into cubes. I like leaving the skin on these potatoes because A) I think they look beautiful and B) they have a ton of nutrition. So, I've got these beautiful potatoes in a bowl and I'm going to season them simply with some olive oil, some garlic powder and some salt and pepper. When I'm roasting potatoes, I prefer to use powdered garlic as opposed to regular garlic because I find that regular garlic burns in the oven. So I've got my oven preheated to 400°F, I'm going to pop my potatoes in and I'm going to flip them after about 15 minutes. After another 10 to 15 minutes they should be golden and ready to rock. I like to finish them off with a little freshly chopped parsley because let's be honest, freshly chopped parsley makes everything better. Most things better. Breakfast cereal, probably not but most things better. It can served immediately or stored in the refrigerator for 3 or 4 days. Next up, it's time to talk about steaming some green veggies.
Now, I'm going to be completely honest with you, the fact is there is never going to be a weeknight where I feel like cooking vegetables. So I like to cook all of my veggies during my meal prep and then I have them ready all week long. For these beautiful steamed veggies, I'm going to be steaming some broccoli, some green beans and some beautiful asparagus. So you have the option, when it comes to greens, to steam them all separately OR you can go rogue like I do and steam them all at once. We are going to put our toughest vegetables on the bottom, in this case that's broccoli so those are going to cook the most slowly. And then we are going to add our green beans. And then our asparagus. I've got a pot on the stove with about an inch of water heating up and to that I'm going to add my steamer pot. Once my veggies are prepped, I'm simply going to steam them for 5 to 7 minutes or until they become bright green. You'll want to give them a few shakes during cooking to make sure everything in the steamer cooks evenly.
To finish them off, I'm just going to run them under cold water to stop the cooking process and then what you have are these beautiful steamed veggies. These can be eaten on their own, or added to things like pastas, stir fries or salads. I can store them in my refrigerator for 3 or 4 days. Now it's time to talk lunches, for me, that means salads in a jar. For today's menu, I'm making my beautiful Mediterranean inspired Bean Salad. I love this recipe because it's loaded with flavour, protein-packed and also happens to be completely vegan. So we are getting started with some cannelloni beans. I'm using canned beans that I've just rinsed and drained but by all means, if you feel like cooking your own beans go right ahead. To that I'm going to add some awesome Meditteranean flavours.
So I've chopped up some marinated artichokes, some sundried tomatoes, some roasted red peppers and I've got a good helping of Kalamata olives which pack a nice salty flavour. All of these items can either be found fresh in your deli or jarred in the aisle with all of the pickles and the olives. Then I'm going to add some beautiful fresh parsley and then we are going to create the simplest dressing ever. I'm going to add a good plug of olive oil, a couple tablespoons of white wine vinegar, some freshly squeezed lemon juice. We're going to season this with some salt and pepper and we're going to toss it up my friends. And then I'm going to divide my bean mixture into 5 jars. To each jar, I'm actually going to add some baby spinach. The concept here is very simple, we're going to keep the spinach on the top of the jars so that it doesn't get wilty and overdressed and then when we're ready to eat the salads we're just going to give everything a really good shake and then everything will be evenly dressed.
These babies will last in the refrigerator for between 4 and 5 days. They really do make the perfect lunch on the go. Now, it's time to talk breakfast for the week and for me, that means my beautiful Caprese Frittatas. For these yummy frittatas I'm going to get started by whipping up my egg mixture. So all I'm going to do is whisk some eggs, some milk, some salt and some pepper. For this recipe I'm using a muffin tin lined with some silicon baking cups. If you don't have silicon baking cups it's not a problem but you will want to grease your pan really, really well because these frittatas LOVE to stick. Next, I'm going to build in all of my beautiful caprese flavours. We're simply going to add a handful of beautiful cherry tomatoes that I've cut in half, a little bit of mozzarella cheese and some freshly chopped basil. We're going to finish off each cup with a little bit of our egg mixture.
And then into the oven these go at 375°F for between 10 and 15 minutes. These lovely frittatas can be stored in the refrigerator for between 4 and 5 days. They can be eaten cold or reheated in the microwave. For snack this week, we are making some Cottage Cheese Fruit Cups. I know there are some cottage cheese haters out there. If you're not loving the cottage cheese by all means, you can replace it in this recipe with some plain Greek yogurt. So I've got 5 containers and all I'm going to do is place about a third of a cup of cottage cheese in each one. Next, I'm going to drizzle in a little bit of honey and add some beautiful fruit. In this case, I'm using some finely diced cantaloupe, some diced honeydew and some red grapes that I've just cut in half but you can use any kind of fruit you like. You don't have to be as fussy as I am. You could just mix them all together; you don't have to layer them but I've said it before and I'll say it again: you eat with your eyes first. Reach for this during your 2 o'clock slump and you are off to the races my friend.
These will last in the refrigerator for between 4 and 5 days. They are the perfect mid-afternoon snack to help get you through to dinner. Speaking of snacks, in my house I always like to have some fresh veggies on hand for when I'm feeling peckish. For today's menu, I've got some cherry tomatoes, celery sticks and some fresh red bell pepper. That is the single best way to ensure you are getting enough veggies in your diet and you're making healthier choices. Perfect for guilt-free munching on the go. I really hope you guys love today's menu as much as I do and if you give any of these recipes a try be sure to Tweet or Instagram me photo because you know I love seeing what you're coming up with in your very own kitchens. And don't forget that today's menu and a whole lot more can be found in my brand new Meal Prep Made Easy eBook.
It's got all of the recipes, shopping lists and lots of tips and tricks for making Sunday meal prep a total cinch. And if you haven't already be sure to SUBSCRIBE because there is lots more meal prep where this came from..