Grocery shopping and cooking for multiple dinners can be stressful and cause frustration when trying to stay on your nutritional plan. According to a survey by TNS Global, half of Americans report throwing away both leftovers as well as unused groceries at least once a week. Go look at your total grocery and restaurant spending for the last three months. Imagine having half of that cash in your hand and flushing it straight down the toilet. It sounds crazy when you look at it that way doesn’t it?
The good news is that this can be avoided. When working on your meal plan, simple is best. Think about one dinner that can be used for several meals. If you are someone who can’t stand to eat exactly the same meal for multiple days, there are still ways to repurpose ingredients to achieve some variety without all of the extra time and expense.
One example: take the blackened chicken recipe posted here. Day one, that chicken can be served with some brown rice and steamed veggies. Day two, take some of the leftover chicken and make a wrap with a little hummus and leftover veggies or salad greens if the veggies are gone. Day three, add some chicken on top of a salad with some mandarin oranges or raspberries and maybe some slivered almonds. Right there you are able to get three different flavor combinations from one short cooking session while the fruit and almonds can be used up as snacks.
You may find that your day can get out of hand and even deciding how to mix up the ingredients you have on hand can be too much. Try writing out what you are going to eat the day before. This can help balance food throughout the day as well as mitigate the stress of having to decide what to eat.
The work is done, the decision is made, and you can focus on the other demands of your everyday life without sacrificing your nutrition in the process. You may even find that you can end up with a few extra minutes to take for yourself.