Quick and Healthy Meals

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Question: I’m heading back to college but I’m moving into an apartment. That means I have to cook which I don’t know how to do. Do you have any healthy recipes or tips for eating healthy?

Answer: Everyone needs to learn to cook and then have the self-discipline to do it more often instead of relying on fast food or take-out on a regular basis.

Sunday afternoon is the best time to cook in bulk and prepare for the week. For us a grill is essential. It doesn’t have to be an expensive gas grill, although that speeds things up a bit. A small charcoal version works well. Use a charcoal chimney starter or arrange you briquettes in a pyramid and light them. When the coals are glowing spread them out and put your grill rack in place. Buy a family pack of boneless chicken breasts. For quickest cooking it’s beneficial to filet them by removing the rib meat, slicing the filet horizontally in half so it’s thinner and then cutting the larger of the filet pieces in half. They cook faster. Place the chicken in a gallon zip-loc bag with BBQ sauce or Italian dressing and let marinate for 30 minutes or so. Place them on the grill and turn about every four minutes. Typical cook time is 20 minutes or so.

Having whatever meat prepared for a few days in advance makes dinner happen more quickly. All you need to do is prepare veggies. Chop broccoli and place into a Pyrex dish. Add half and inch of water, cover and microwave for 5-7 minutes. Remove from microwave and let sit for a few minutes while still covered. Baked potatoes can be done in 6 minutes. Wash a baking potato and wrap in a paper towel. Thoroughly wet the paper towel after covering the potato. Place on a microwave safe plate and add a bit more water on the plate. Microwave on high for three minutes. Turn the potato over and microwave another three minutes.

A crock pot is another handy kitchen tool. You can cook a variety of meats like roasts, London broil, eye of round or chicken ( although the boneless breasts tends to dry out more ). Simply put a can of consume’ beef soup, French onion, mushroom or golden mushroom soups into the pot. Add the meat and you can add potatoes and carrots for a more complete meal. Cook on high for an hour, reduce to low and cook another 4 hours or so.

Keep fruits handy for snacks and on-the-go foods and you’ll be able to eat healthy meals. Try to avoid eating only carbs for breakfast such as a bagel, cold cereals, toaster waffles or pastries or simply toast.

It only takes a few minutes to have an egg or two with a carb or have yogurt and fruit. A carb only breakfast leaves you feeling hungry very quickly. A little food prep goes a long way in stretching your dollars and not your waistline.

God bless and keep training,
Daryl

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