Welcome, New Chefs… And Busy Schedules Commence!

Welcome back to the Sous News! Like everyone else, our summer has been busy and wonderful, but now it’s time to get back into regular routines. This month’s newsletter is full of tips to provide healthful snacks and food options for you and your family when you are craving routine.

Before that, I wanted to welcome our two new chefs to the Ready, Set, Eat! Inc. team. Chef Tina Landfried and Chef Stephanie Archuleta will be helping both new and established clients meet their goals of having healthful meals, personally made. I welcome them both and am excited about their addition to our team. Their experience is plentiful and will help shape Ready, Set, Eat for the next 15 years! You can find out more about them on our Chef’s Bio page.

So, when a busier schedule starts (be it from kids back in school, sports or activities, a new job, etc.), what is the first things we sacrifice? Sleep… exercise… healthful eating? I am guilty of all of those on occasion! More than anything, it’s important to recommit ourselves daily to maintain healthy habits. And if we have strategies to help enable us to make healthy choices, we will be more successful in maintaining those habits.

So what are some strategies to incorporate more healthful eating, for us and our family?

MAKE AHEAD HEALTHY

If you are a grain eater, make larger batches of whole grains (brown rice, quinoa, barley, wheat berries) and refrigerate them for the week, or freeze for longer term storage. They can be used as a base for your side dishes with very little effort (add sauteed veggies and sauce if desired, use as a base for a stir-fry, or add to broth with protein and veggies for a satisfying soup). If we are pressed for time, then shorter cooking, less complex grains are often utilized. Having these whole grains already prepared will give you a step up when it comes to dinner preparation or healthful lunches. Plus it encourages all of us to try new options as well!

Of course, this strategy can be done with chicken breasts, thighs, pork or other protein sources as well. Prep them once, and use all week long.

HEALTHFUL SNACKS

Speaking of healthy, taking the time on Sunday to prepare bags of cut veggies for the week or fruits (tossed in a little lemon juice if needed to prevent browning), helps both kids and adults choose healthful lunch and snack options. Prepare a batch of hummus, which takes little to no time with a blender and a few ingredients, then portion into smaller containers for the week. Assemble our no bake energy bars/balls and have them portioned into small containers for grab and go snacks. If you are a smoothie fan, freeze individual (or family size) portions of ingredients in containers. When ready to enjoy, add to the blender, add your liquid of choice (and protein powder of choice if you wish), blend and enjoy. Or, try our frittata muffins, which can be made with what is on hand… small portions of veggies, cheese, protein, even grains. Bake a try at a time, then cool, wrap and freeze. A quick breakfast or healthful snack isn’t far away.

BATCH COOKING

We all know this one… If you are preparing chili, or enchiladas, or lasagna, or other easily freezable meals, prepare double the portion from the start. Leftovers can be frozen and pulled out on a night when you don’t have time to prep. Some are daunted by the idea of spending their entire Sunday preparing meals for the week. But even a double batch of a meal one time a week can help alleviate stress later that same week… a welcome option on those hurried nights.

ASK FOR HELP

This is what we are here for! We provide our clients with not only healthful meal options but ways to help them balance the time they have. Like these ideas but still cannot find the time to plan and prepare them? We can do it for you! Let us help plan a menu full of healthful, delicious options that you can merely pull from the refrigerator or freezer, reheat and enjoy.

Please remember that we also tailor our menus for clients with particular dietary needs, those facing medical issues or working with a particular dietary regimen.

Please reach out to us if we can help!

Bon Appetit!

Chef Shana and the Ready, Set, Eat! Team