Batch and Freeze (aka leftovers)

One of the obstacles to healthy eating is not planning ahead, not having the right foods on hands and enough "ready to eat" items nearby. It's so easy to set good intentions. I know I do. I plan on packing a lunch or some healthy snacks to take with me as I head out the door, but somedays I find I'm rushed and don't take the time or  I don't have the necessary food in the house.

So, instead, I end up stopping at the nearby market, grabbing a coconut water, some "healthy" energy bar (okay, not really healthy, but I at least pick the one with the least sugar) and maybe an already prepared fruit salad or watermelon, if it's in season.  Not a balanced lunch at all.

So like the good ole' Boy Scouts, that "Be Prepared" motto of theirs is really good advice. There are many things that can help with this, like meal planning, for instance.  But sometimes it's not always practical or we might not want to figure out what were going to eat for the next week.

I have found one easy solution for this problem is to do what some people refer to as "batching" or as it was probably referred to in the "old days," making enough to have leftovers. Cooking once and eating twice (or many times). It takes approximately the same amount of time to bake one potato as it does to bake six, right? And now, with the fall and winter season upon us, we tend to spend more time in the kitchen anyway.

So many things lend themselves to "batch" cooking. All forms of potatoes, soups, stews, breakfast bars, oatmeal, roasted vegetables, rice, to name a few. Next time you steam some broccoli, cook a chicken breast and make some rice, double that recipe or plan on making enough for leftovers. Or find some batch and freeze friendly recipes here. Having all of these cooked and ready to eat items in the refrigerator makes it much easier to put something together for the next days lunch or tomorrow nights dinner.

And if you're like a lot of people that get bored eating the same thing day after day, go ahead and cook like you're cooking for a small army and then freeze it. There are so many different kinds of food that do well frozen, any kind of batter, mashed potatoes, mashed cauliflower (one of my favorites) soups, stews and cooked vegetables  (if you're not sure a food item will freeze well, just Google it and you'll find the answer.)  Such a great time saver, great for your wallet and let's not forget, a real plus for your good health.

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