Glow Eat! Get it? ;) I’m starting a new series to show you that creating healthy meals does not have to be complicated or take a lot of time. You don’t have to use recipes or tons of ingredients. I’m a huge proponent of experimenting with seasonal produce and finding fun combos that you enjoy!
Have you ever told someone you’re gluten-free and/or dairy-free and gotten a blank look, like ‘well, what do you eat then?’ Or maybe you’re thinking this yourself! Well, do not worry. You don’t have to feel deprived at all. Not only can you enjoy foods that are naturally free of gluten and dairy like vegetables, greens, fruits, legumes, nuts, seeds, meat, fish, poultry (and dairy, if you can eat it), but now there are so many substitutions for your old favorites. Every once in awhile, I’ll get in a rut and kind of forget that there really are endless choices of foods and that eating healthy can be SO simple. I find that when I see other people making yummy looking eats, I get inspired too!
It just takes a little planning and prepping at the beginning of the week to set yourself up for success. If I prep my food at the beginning of each week – buy, wash, cut, and store – I can throw these meals together in 5-10 minutes (15-20 tops, if I happen to be using the stove or oven). Yes, it takes time to prep, but a little bit of time spent on a Sunday means a TON of time (and money that would be spent on takeout) saved throughout the week! It means that my husband and I can have a healthy meal at any time, regardless of whether we’re working late, running low on time, and so forth.
With each Made to Eat post, I’ll show you a few pictures and descriptions of quick meals or snacks that I recently threw together as well as tips to save you time in the kitchen. My hope is that these posts will:
1. Show you that eating gluten-free and dairy-free is easy and that you don’t have to be the next Top Chef to create nutritious, tasty meals.
2. Inspire you to create your own easy, quick meals using your favorite ingredients that you have on hand.
Remember: this is not about comparison (do what is right for you and don’t compare yourself to anyone else) or to show you what you ‘should be doing’ — it’s about inspiring and motivating you to find our what works for you.
My favorite breakfasts right now are gluten-free, dairy-free pancakes topped with fruit and nut butter or dairy-free yogurt. Lately, I’ve been topping them with my Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl or Chocolate Frosting, ground flax seed, and frozen berries. To make it easy in the mornings, make a huge batch of your breakfast of choice (pancakes, waffles, oatmeal, egg muffins, etc) at one time and then freeze them in individual portions. I wrap my pancakes in parchment paper and put them all in a large plastic bag in the freezer. Each morning, I simply grab a portion out of the freezer, heat, and top! I also love smoothies, so I make a big batch at night and then store them in individual glass jars in the fridge. They’re a great grab-and-go breakfast.
Although I tend to top all my meals with greens of some sort (herbs are my fave!), don’t be fooled – these are more than solely salads! Good lunch ideas include filling wraps, sandwiches, or salads that are stuffed to the brim with tasty goodies. I keep my fridge stocked with brown rice wraps, gluten-free bread, bagged greens (although I’d rather buy fresh greens from the market, bagged, pre-washed greens simply work better in my current lifestyle – do what works best for you), cut-up veggies and fruits (washed and prepped at the beginning of the week – this is pretty necessary for easy, quick meals), and a few choices of proteins (lentils, eggs, and roasted chicken are my current favorites). Recently, I’ve been using black beans noodles and mung bean noodles as a salad add-on and loving it. They blend in well as they have a neutral taste and provide tons of protein (25 grams/serving) and fiber (12 grams/serving).
If I’ve already done my food prep for the week, I can throw together (or pack the night before) a healthy gluten-free, dairy-free lunch in 5 minutes. Just figure out your staples and then have some fun add-ons to make you look forward to your meals. For example, I use a base of gluten-free bread, wrap, or greens and top them with vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and proteins. I keep a several different dressings and sauces, fresh herbs, and spices in the fridge to spice things up quickly. Add a piece of fruit, some crackers and hummus, and you’re good to go!
My recent dinners are similar to lunches in that I have my staples and work from there. Fresh fruits and vegetables as well as crackers or dips make for the perfect easy sides. Take advantage of your freezer, so if you cook one night, make enough for leftovers during the week and freeze individual portions for later in the season (like here).
SNACKS and DESSERTS:
Recently, I’ve been using goat yogurt or coconut butter as a base and then topping with fruit, nuts, and seeds. I add a little cacao or unsweetened cocoa powder if I’m wanting something chocolate or add vanilla stevia if I want something sweet. Plan and prep ingredients for a few snacks during the week and you’ll be good to go!
Please leave a comment with what your staples are, what you like to prep, or what your go-to meals are each week!
This post has been linked to Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, Gluten-free Wednesdays, Tasty Traditions, Simple Lives Thursdays, and Wellness Wednesdays, Waste Not Want Not Wednesday, Whole Food Fridays, Wellness Weekend, Real Food Fridays, Foodie Friday, Gluten-free Fridays, Pin Junkie’s Blogiversary, Weekend Re-treat.
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