Prep work pays off

Yesterday I got serious about prep work. Well, about as serious as one can get about meal planning for the week. And I have to say it was a bit difficult prepping meals I didn’t plan on eating until today. Patience is a virtue, but I often have a limited supply.

My first order of business was prepping the chicken for a honey chipotle chicken bowl. I marinaded the chicken first thing in the morning (quite the smell with coffee, let me tell you) then put together the salad fixings later in the afternoon. 

It was my intention to put the salads into perfectly portioned out containers for the week. Then I said screw it. Instead I opted to just bring it all into work so I can mix it fresh for lunch each day. In part it’s because I’m always a little hesitant about mixing salads beforehand. Will the cut-up tomatoes make the lettuce soggy? Will the green onions go soft and lose their crunch? I wasn’t about to risk it when the salad already looked like it was going to be fabulous.

salad

I will confess I tried the lime quinoa yesterday, and holy cow! I’m absolutely going to make that again for a burrito bowl. So much flavor (although I used margarine instead of the coconut oil). I also cheated and tried the chicken as well. De-licious! I may even make it again just to pair with rice (although I substituted the adobe peppers with just crushed red peppers).

chicken

I have a sneaky suspicion that the lack of color and flavor in my risotto had me craving something with a bang. This more than delivered. To say this is a fabulous salad is an understatement. And that’s saying something come from the salad guru.

salad

As a filling snack for Tuesday (and subsequently Wednesday and Thursday — and probably after that, but the initial post said they only stay good for about three days), I whipped up some¬†make-ahead fruit and yogurt breakfast parfaits. I love, love, love a great fruit and yogurt parfait. These also seemed like a great way to make use of the countless mason jars I’ve acquired.

I didn’t have chia seeds, and instead I used flax seeds (though it probably doesn’t make much of a difference). Other than that, I followed the recipe pretty closely. I was surprised it filled the whole mason jar (which was slightly difficult to eat out of, but I like the convenience of it). I’d recommend going with the frozen fruit, too. The initial blogger was right — the juices that mix in with the yogurt while it melts make it all the more enjoyable.

yogurt

The other item I prepped yesterday was something I got to enjoy mere hours later. The little got me a fruit infusion pitcher for Christmas and I’m obsessed with it! I figured it was time to branch out a bit from just strawberries and oranges I’d been using, so I did a bit of searching. Since sage was on sale, I went with a blackberry and sage water. I can’t say that I’ve ever had sage before, and the scent made me a little nervous.

I can’t say I’m over the moon about it, but it was a nice change of pace. It didn’t have as much blackberry taste as I anticipated. I’m thinking about some of the sage out and using fresh berries instead. The frozen didn’t seem to work as well as the fresh, though even then I’m not sure how much flavor blackberries would add.

blackberry sage water

The great part is that none of these feel like “leftovers” to me. I’ve got a feeling I’m going to be looking forward to lunch and snacks at work all week. These are absolutely going to make it into my regular rotation of meals (and that’s really saying something!).

About dakotalizzie

I'm a twentysomething young professional living in Nebraska. My blog centers on the things I love - my family, dogs, friends, crafting, cooking, life chats and health. All these things help me lead the good life, and isn't that really what it's all about?

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