I think everyone has at least one go-to meal. When the day is busy, you are stressed, it is cold out, you just trained hard or you are about to watch a movie, here is always something that you can rely on to keep your tummy happy and it is also quick and easy to prepare.
And no, cereal doesn't count.
The meal should take at least 5 minutes to make :)
I love cooked veggies. Not the kind that are loaded in oil and/or butter from a restaurant but veggies that are cooked by me in my house. I have a few staple veggies in my diet and in no particular order; mushrooms (I only like them cooked), onions, corn, peppers, chickpeas, romaine lettuce and tomatoes. I enjoy almost all veggies, but those veggies are always in my refrigerator. *Tip: cook veggies in a little bit of olive rather than always using just spray pam. The fat from the olive oil will help absorb the water-soluble vitamins in the veggies (fat soluble vitamins include A,D,E and K. All other vitamins are water-soluble) to give you more nutrients. Also, heating certain veggies (ex. tomatoes, even though it is really a fruit) will release more nutrients than not cooking the veggies.
As far as my go-to meal, I love cooking veggies for dinner. But unless I "spice" it up somehow, a plain bowl of veggies is something that I can easily get bored with. Also, Karel would not be a fan of cooked veggies every night for dinner. My go-to meal is not only simple but it is healthy and yummy.
If you have trouble including veggies in your diet, I find that if you can include one or two foods that you really enjoy you won't dread preparing and eating a healthy meal. Ex. If you don't really like broccoli (like me), make an omelet and add lean/veggie meat and then add in the steamed broccoli. This way, it won't seem like you are a eating a serving or two of broccoli because you look forward to the other foods.
There are three reasons why I call this meal my go-to meal:
1) I can go to this meal because it is easy and quick to prepare. Including chopping (which is my favorite part), this meal maybe takes 15 min. max to make.
2) I can go to my pantry, fridge and freezer and find every veggie I need to make this meal.
3) If I need to go to the store, I know exactly what veggies I want to cook with and I know I will enjoy eating them.
Chickpeas (canned-rinse before using due to high sodium content in canned foods)
Veggie sausage (you can use lean meat)
3 egg whites, 1 whole egg and a little skim milk
Seasonings: Pepper, paprika
The first thing I do is cook my veggies.
I spray my pan with olive oil spray pam and let the pan heat up. While it is heating to medium heat, I chop my veggies (onions and green peppers) and veggie sausage. If you have frozen food (ex. corn, green peppers, etc.) you will want to cook anything frozen first.
I added about 1 tbsp. of olive oil to the pan before adding my mushrooms, onions and green peppers. You can't go wrong with preparing too many veggies so don't be afraid to cut 1/2 onion or a whole pepper. The more the better with veggies and leftovers are great!
After letting the veggies brown a bit and soak up the healthy oil I added my rinsed chickpeas (about 1/2 can). I love chickpeas because they are high in fiber and protein. A lot of people don't know that chickpeas are the base of hummus and you can't go wrong with hummus!
After all my veggies were cooked I sprayed a little more pam and poured in my egg mixture. My egg mixture consisted of 3 egg whites and 1 whole egg, mixed with a little skim milk and a dash of hot sauce. I mixed that all with a fork and then poured it into my veggie-filled pan.
I scrambled the mixture until the eggs were fully cooked. At this point, you can also make an omelet by removing the veggies and then cooking the eggs before adding the veggies back into the pan.
Once everything was cooked, I added a few spoonfuls of the marinara sauce and salsa.
Both salsa and marina sauce are staples in our house and as you can see, we need to buy more!
I love these low-carb wraps.
I buy mine at Wal-mart but they are found at various grocery stores. They are not only low in calories (90-100 calories for the whole wrap!) but they are high in protein and fiber and come in different types of wraps (tomato, italian and whole wheat).
After I stirred together the veggie and egg mixture with the sauces, I topped it with a little cheese and I was ready to eat my go-to meal! I served my veggies with 1/2 wrap and roasted pepper hummus.
Here are some options to make my go-to meal a lot less boring...
1) Serve w/ a wrap (or 1/2 wrap) and hummus (as I did last night)
2) Serve with a piece of toast (you could spread a little marinara sauce on the bread/wrap and with a little Parmesan or mozzarella cheese you almost have a pizza!)
3) You can eat the veggie and egg mixture just like I prepared but top with some fresh mozzarella chunks.
4) You can serve the veggie mixture with a bowl of spinach or romaine lettuce.
5) You can serve the mixture with any meat or fish.
6) You can add any type of veggies that you like.
7) Take your favorite type of cuisine (ex. Mexican, Italian, vegetarian) and add rice, noodles and/or tofu (respectively).
It's really important that you find a way to incorporate healthy food into your diet by enjoying what you eat and taking pride in how it is prepared. :)