by Kajs Hadžić
of KH Performance Lab
Whether you're a New Year's resolutioner who hasn't cooked in ages or just don't like spending a lot of time behind a stove, meal prep should be as painless as possible; otherwise, you're likely to backslide and wolf down junk food. The following meals won’t win any Michelin stars but are cheap, tasty, and easy to prepare. They might seem too simple to warrant recipes, but remember that there are nimrods who use their hands as cutting boards or destroy brand new blenders while making smoothies.
- 300g of chicken
- 400g of mixed vegetables
- 2 cups of white rice
- 4 cups of water
- Heat sunflower or olive oil in a deep pan or wok.
- Cook the chicken on medium heat. If you prefer to use eggs as your protein source, then cook them separately from the vegetables and rice to avoid overheating.
- Add the veggies, rice, and water to the pan. Cover the pan and cook on medium heat until the rice takes in the majority of the water, but not so much that it becomes runny.
For most people this will be more than a single meal, so split it up over the course of a day. If your goal is to gain weight, then add fewer vegetables and more meat and rice (vice versa if your goal is to lose weight). Read my food volume tips in my last blog post.
- Energy: 2161kcal
- Fat: 30g
- Carbs: 329g
- Protein: 131g
2. Greek Yogurt Snack
- 500g of yogurt
- 1 banana
- 1 tablespoon of honey
- 50g of nuts
- 2 cups of oats
- Scoop the Greek yogurt into a bowl.
- Add a banana and, optionally, some berries, whose high water content make the meal easier to eat.
- Add some nuts, like walnuts and pecans.
- Add honey to taste.
- Energy: 1812kcal
- Fat: 89g
- Carbs: 193g
- Protein: 63g
This is a big portion, but you can easily scale it down or split it. Also, you might want to use lower fat Greek yogurt if you are looking to spare some calories.
3. Couscous and Tuna
- 1 cup of dry couscous
- 2 cans of tuna (300g)
- Low-calorie condiment
- Pour some boiling water over your couscous (1 part couscous to 1.2 part water, 50g of couscous and 60ml of water).
- Add salt, then cover the pot for 6-7 minutes.
- Add olives, pickled cucumber, turmeric, salsa, or ketchup
- Energy: 925kcal
- Fat: 3.2g
- Carbs: 123g
- Protein: 98g
4. Pasta and Ground Beef
- 200g 95% lean beef
- 1 cup of dry pasta
- 1 medium onion
- 1-2 cloves of garlic
- 1.5 cans of crushed tomatoes (400g)
- Boil your favorite pasta. Whole wheat will be a lot more expensive and give you a miniscule amount of added fiber, which won’t make much difference.
- Chop and sautée the onions until they become clear
- Add the beef, break it into pieces, and cook it until it's brown. You can finely chop one or two cloves of garlic and add to the pan for additional flavor if you want.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, then season to taste.
- Cover the pan and cook for 10-15min. Take the lid off and reduce the sauce to your liking.
With a salad on the side, this is one of my favorite meals; its bulk will make you feel full, so you might even want to eat it first. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or special just slice up some cucumber, peppers, tomatoes, and onions.
- Energy: 662kcal
- Fat: 11.6g
- Carbs: 78g
- Protein: 56g
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