Sunday, July 26, 2015

Meal Planning - It Is All About the Prep

So I have been having difficulty losing weight, even on a diet.  I am getting some tests done just to see if it is hormonal or something, but I also am looking to refocus my diet and cut out even more sugars and carbs and work on portion control.

To help with this I will be starting the 21 Day Fix in a week!!  Am I suppose to be excited about that?!?!  So I decided to prepare for that this week by getting back into the more strict lunches and meal prep (the last few weeks I haven't planned as much).  I haven't received my 21 Day Fix yet, so not sure what my portions will be, but either way I planned a healthy and lower carb meals for *most* of the week, at least during the day!

Meal prep in full force for breakfast and lunches for the week!!  I need a bigger kitchen for sure...

Breakfast will be spinach and feta Egg Muffins for the week.  Approximately 105 calories each.

Spray large muffin tin with Pam.  Crack one egg in each and stir to break the yolk.  Add 1/8-1/4 cup chopped fresh spinach and 1 tbsp feta to each egg.  Add pepper to taste.  Stir to combine.  Bake at 350 for about 18 minutes or until set.  I will probably eat with a piece of toast, Lovi'n fresh aldi bread, that is 70 calories a slice!!  And of course coffee.

Easy peasy, lemon squeezy!! Breakfast DONE!

On to lunches.  This week I have two different sets of lunches.

Three days I am having salad, hard boiled egg, 2 oz rotisserie chicken, cucumbers and yogurt ranch. Calories approximately 245 calories.

The other two days lunch will be buffalo chicken lettuce wraps. 4oz rotisserie chicken with franks red hot and celery mixed in.  Four romaine leafs, cucumber and carrots with yogurt ranch dressing.  Calories approximately 250 calories.

Snacks will be a heaping cup of strawberries and 1/4 cup almonds.  (50 and 170 calories respectively)

 (Henry loves helping to put together my lunches!!)

So when it is all said and done I have lunches and breakfasts done for the week with extras leftover to eat during the week.

Bottom shelf is ALL mine!!

What I bought for breakfast & lunches:
1 rotisserie chicken
1 large container strawberries 
1 english cucumber
1-3 pack romaine lettuce 
1 small bag of spinach 
Bolthouse Yogurt ranch dressing (already had)
Baby carrots 
Celery (already had)
Small container of feta

We have a bunch of stuff going on this week in the evenings.  We have stuff with friends a couple evenings and family in town Friday - Sunday and a cookout with friends Saturday!!  Meals in the evening will be a little heavier, but I feel I have balanced them well with my low carb, high protein and low calorie days!!


Sunday - Pasta casserole
Monday - Pizza and Salad
Tuesday - Fajitas
Wednesday - Leftovers
Thursday - Breakfast
Friday - OUT - Family
Saturday - Cookout
Sunday - Grilled Chicken and Grilled Veggies

I also have 100 calorie fudge bars from aldi's fit & active line for some of those evenings I need a chocolate fix. YUM!!!

I forgot to track just my food expenses because we needed so many non-food items at the store.  But I estimate about $100 was spent on food for the week (excluding the cookout food).

What are YOU eating this week?!?!

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Weekly Meal Planning

Here is a look at this weeks meals, prep from last weeks meals and more meal planning ideas!!  If you missed my last post, check it out HERE.

This weeks groceries, $89.  (sparklers and glow bracelets not included!) Eating out one night (approx $40) plus about $10 at a different store. Total for the week $139.

A large portion of my groceries for the week also included 4th of July items.  Cookies, snacks, and three sides for a cookout.  Because I knew about half my budget this week would be for just this weekend, I planned my meals next week to be some of my lower cost items that I can stretch a dollar, as well as really utilizing pantry items!!

Tip: On the Meal List you keep for meal planning, note which ones are on the lower end of the budget and which one always provide leftovers.  This helps to stretch your money and food.

Meals for Friday - Thursday

Friday - Out (cookies and goldfish for fireworks)

Saturday - Cookout (Taking homemade pasta salad, corn and avocado salsa, watermelon, and "cheesecake" filled strawberries.

Sunday - Pasta with "burst" tomatoes and basil.  Garlic knots & salad on the side.

Lunch prep: I will eat hard boiled eggs, almonds, lunchmeat, cheese cubes and yogurt for lunches.  Will prep on Sunday.

Monday - Portabella Mushroom pizzas (Henry hot dog & mac and cheese) and salad

Tuesday - Stuffed baked potatoes (make extra for lunches for Terry)

Wednesday - Breakfast (veggie omelet)

Thursday - Grilled Cheese and Soup (most items from pantry - easy night)

The meals that I choose this week are very low cost.  Again, I am utilizing my pantry to help from buying more at the store and by planning meals without meat, I have saved additional money.

Tip: If you need to save money on food for the week, make it a meat free (or nearly meat free) week! Eggs or tuna in place are a great source of protein and a fraction of the cost.

Now, I am dieting and when on a diet it is not always good to turn to the more cost effect meals like potatoes and pasta.  However, I make plain baked potatoes to eat instead of the stuffed ones and add my own toppings separately so I can control them.  And the pasta just has roasted tomatoes with basil and a little olive oil.  It is light and when you eat a small amount with a salad it works out greta!

I try to eat real foods, just try to find ways to incorporate them into my calorie count and daily life.

Example on meal prep.

This was last weeks meal prep.  I got all my vegetables ready, I packaged and seasoned fajita mixture for dinner that night, prepped kabobs for later that week, and made soup for my lunches for the week.  All done on Sunday by 11am!!

Ready to prep!!

Shrimp kabobs, prepped for one meal during the week.

Look at the Shrimp kabobs later in the week.  
Had over a little bit of leftover rice pilaf from earlier in the week.

Henry wanted to help...though help turned to eating!!!

When you have extra, use it!!  I had a bag of extra snacking green peppers in the fridge 
that a cut up and used in the soup.

Soup for the lunches, done on sunday!

Rice for soup (if wanted) and burrito bowls. Done!

Fajitas...prepped and seasoned!

Example: Easy pantry meal one night 
Used left over asparagus from earlier night and made an omelet.  Toast, 2 slices 100 calories, asparagus 30 calories, 2 egg & 2 egg white omelet 182 calories = awesome and filing dinner 312 calories!!  Cost, no idea because it is so low...a couple bucks, maybe?!

So what did you eat this week?!  Did you try any meal planning?  Please share!!