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Find some tips, hints + friendly reminders on how to make easy healthy family meals everyone is going to love. If you’re stumped for meal ideas or just want someone to do the meal planning for you, check out $5 meal plan.
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Limit Processed Foods
Even though we all love boxed mac and cheese, did you know it’s so easy to make from scratch?
Just boil up some noodles, then drain. Add butter (grass fed is healthier), organic milk or half + half + some easy melting cheese like cheddar, American or even Parmesan if you want a little more tang in your mac.
Turn the heat to low + stir until everything melts together into a yummy, gooey, cheesy sauce.
There are plenty of other convenience foods, like instant oatmeal, that you can make from scratch without batting a brow. So much healthier… plus, cooking from scratch is good for the soul.
Eat Yogurt with Everything
Make plain yogurt a permanent item on your grocery shopping list. Learn how to cook with it + serve it as a side with breakfast, lunch + even dinner.
Yogurt contains active cultures which give the gut flora a healthy boost. You can eat yogurt in the morning with fruit, nuts +/or granola.
If you’re dipping cut-up veggies with lunch or as an afternoon snack, add a dollop of plain yogurt to your favorite ranch dressing.
At dinner time, sub in plain yogurt for sour cream + serve with Mexican favorites like tacos + burritos, or add a spoon or two to your favorite vegetarian soup.
Chicken tenderizes beautifully in yogurt and spices. What else can you think up to make with yogurt?
Consider Seasonal Foods
Do you enjoy gardening in the spring and summer?
Cool to warm seasons like spring + fall bring nutrition in the form of cold loving veggies like lettuce, kale, broccoli, carrots, turnips, collards + spinach.
Hot weather yields fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, peppers + eggplant, to name a few.
Even if you can’t find time for a backyard garden, you can make pit stops at the local farmer’s market on your way home from work or running errands.
Stock up for the 5-day work week + keep a mental (or physical) checklist of what veggies are in your crisper so you won’t let anything go waste.
Avoid Food Processed Powder
Avoid any food that’s been processed into a powder and can fit into a box, pouch or carton. For example, those powdered gravy mixes that come to life when heated with water.
Powdered lemonade or ice tea mixes are easy to replace by squeezing a few lemons into a pitcher of water, or brewing iced tea at home. Even those trendy designer “good for you” chips and crackers sprinkled with mysteriously addictive, flavored powders, should be minimized.
The exception would be if you read the list of ingredients + find there’s only salt, pepper, natural spices + herbs.
Don’t overcook. Red meat should be cooked medium-rare to medium to ensure that pathogens are destroyed on the surface but the nutritional content remains in tact on the inside.
Cooked vegetables should retain their color + be crisp, not flaccid. Stir-frying is better than boiling veggies, as vitamins and minerals leach into the cooking water which we usually toss instead of drink (consider drinking the cooking water next time you cook some spinach!).
Soups should be simmered slowly rather than boiled rapidly, to retain the nutrients.
Grass-fed Trumps Feed Lot
More people are becoming aware of the crowded + disease-ridden conditions that animals on feed-lot farms must endure before they become food on our table or at the drive-through window of your favorite fast-food establishment.
To get the most nourishment from meats, invest in a bulk meat share where you can freeze a large quantity of grass-fed beef, pork or free-range chicken in the name of your family’s health.
To save money, eat smaller portions of meat, subbing in healthy veggie + fish alternatives.
Make Your Own Stock + Broth
Bone broth is trending right now, because people are once again realizing something that the old timers have known for generations. Animal bones contain important minerals that help strengthen our bones, protect our immune systems + nourish our bodies overall.
Even better if the animal comes from a small local farm where it was permitted to graze on grass outside in the healing sunlight.
I’m Kristie. Mom to three girls (Yes, you read that right. And, no, we are not going to try for a boy!).
I’m the resident chaos coordinator. Sharer of recipes. Opinion giver of products + services for kids + girl moms. Content writer. Laundry doer. Boo-boo kisser.