Whole30 Shopping and Week 1 Meal Prep

I’m sure there are some people who can succeed on the Whole30 without meal planning or meal prepping, but not me. Unless I spent $$$ at Whole Foods every day? Despite wanting to clean up my diet I’m still on an extremely tight budget (about $125 per week for everything for my family of three) and just can’t afford not to cook at home and buy all the things. Wouldn’t it be great if organic/additive free/sugar free food was the norm and the conventional extra processed stuff was the exception? Yes, yes it would!

That’s not to say I didn’t buy anything for my Whole30, I need bacon after all! So here’s what I’ve got stocked up:

  1. My organic csa basket: this baby has netted me a lot of produce to get through. I’ve got two bunches of asparagus, two bags of spinach, two bags of grape tomatoes, 2lbs of yellow onions, two spaghetti squashes, one butternut squash, two heads of cauliflower, 1lb of broccoli, three green peppers, 1lb Brussels sprouts, two sweet potatoes, avocados, and 1lb of snow peas. (Yes, we can and will eat ALL the veggies)IMG_3050
  2. Costco: I get my non-perishables at Costco as much as possible so that includes coconut flour, almond flour, avocado oil, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, and canned tuna (nothing added in there). I also buy canned chicken but this will be out for Whole30 since they add “Food Starch” which can be from anything. Eggs in my house are practically non-perishable since we can easily go through three dozen in a week which means those are a Costco food as well. Since nut butters, nuts, and dried fruit are out for emergency food I needed meat. Thankfully Costco has some great options with 0 junk that I stocked up on included Aidells chicken and apple sausages, smoked pulled pork, and chicken basil meatballs. Once home, I repacked all of these into smaller servings so that I could stash the extras in the freezer for later.IMG_3065
  3. Sprouts: Sprouts is the store where I fill in the gaps… and shop like I don’t know what I’m doing. This time around I picked up sugar-free Pederson’s bacon, a bag of kraut, some cashews, lemons, green onions, cilantro, and shallots. I usually buy my coconut milk, coconut aminos, tapioca starch, and arrowroot powder here too but I’m all stocked up on these essentials already so I didn’t need more.

Now to the meal prep! I can’t follow a strict meal plan because on Saturday I have no idea what I want to eat each day for the entire week. Instead, I make a checklist of meals I have the ingredients for and am interested in and then as I cook them I check them off the list. Often, I add things to the list that weren’t already there (for example there is nothing Mexican/Latin on my checklist this week and I already can tell I want some taco-meat in my near future so that’ll have to be corrected)

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This meal plan really should be called a “dinner plan”. When prepping only for myself I generally make a jar salad to take to work for lunch and egg muffins to take for breakfast. However, I’ve been meal prepping for family and friends the past month and got way fancier. My lunches this week were made on Sunday (when I made 96 meals in total) and include:

  1. Cuban pork lettuce wraps with mustard dipping sauce and cilantro-lime slaw
  2. Buffalo chicken cobb salad with avocado ranch
  3. Chicken shawarma with cauliflower tabouleh and tahini dipping sauceIMG_3066I’m about as prepared as I can be… now let’s just hope I can survive the ups and downs during the first two weeks and stay strong.
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CSA Pickup and Meal Prep 1/27/17

It’s another beautiful week and my last basket of January. I’m so excited for next month because the seasonal produce will be shifting to include asparagus! Not that this month wasn’t great, but who doesn’t love asparagus?

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This week we got cauliflower, 2lbs of apples, spinach, cilantro, 1lb broccoli, tomatoes on the vine, three jalapeños, three limes, 3 avocados, 1lb of Brussels sprouts and a butternut squash.

I’m calling this week’s bag the “salsa pack” because it included almost everything my husband uses to make his favorite green-but-not-green salsa. He gets the tomatoes, jalapeños, cilantro, and lime plus one of the jumbo onions from last week. The trick to his salsa is so much cilantro that it looks more green than red and blending it until super smooth.

What are my plans for the rest? Glad you asked! That cauliflower gets to be a cauli mash side dish, the broccoli is going in crispy orange beef, the butternut will be both noodles and a butternut Lasagna for the toddlers, the Brussels will get roasted and served as a side, the avocados go in my lunch and possible with some tacos if they make it that far and last but not least the spinach and some of the apples go in my salad.

Here’s what prep looked like this weekend:

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I’ve got Spanish rice and sliced grapes for the toddlers in the bottom left. Diced mangos, sliced Brussels sprouts, cauliflower mash and butternut noodles for dinners in the bottom middle. Along the right side is a chicken teriyaki bowl (sauce separate) for the Husband. In the middle are my jar salads, chorizo egg muffins, and plain egg muffins as well as the orange sauce for dinner later in the week. Top is a huge butternut Lasagna for the toddlers (and probably the husband) to devour this week.

Heres a close up of my salad. This week I’ve got an orange vinaigrette, apples, tomatoes, bacon, chicken and spinach and I’ll be topping the whole thing with half an avocado.

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Meal prep makes me so happy! I would do it all the time if I could…