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Food and Recipes Discuss cooking, your favourite foods, and share recipes here.

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Quick and easy dinners/lunches - May 31st 2018, 04:26 AM

So, I will be starting work Monday and I need some quick and easy dinners. Ideas for lunch would be cool too although I know I could take leftovers from dinner the next day.

The biggest concern I have is that I won't want to do a lot of heavy cooking when I first start working because I'll be anxious and cooking makes me anxious because of my ED tendencies. I don't want to rely on fast food due to money and because of the anxiety it will cause.

Does anyone have any suggestions? I will probably be going shopping sometime this weekend such as Saturday or Sunday. I probably should have thought to post sooner but I have been anxious about other stuff.

Cheap meals would be great too but my budget will be decent for this month.

Any help would be appreciated as when I used to work or was in school I used to skip meals etc. I don't want to get into that type of habit but I would like to eat healthy and nice meals.

Open to vegetarian meals as long as they don't require a ton of prep or too expensive.

I am also open to crock pot/instapot meals although the instapot scares me a bit. I like soups and stews. I am not overly picky just don't tend to like raw cucumber or raw tomato. I can eat tomato sauce, cooked tomatoes etc. I love mushrooms.


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Re: Quick and easy dinners/lunches - June 1st 2018, 02:15 AM

I have found eating smaller portions to be helpful for me and doesnt require a lot of meal prep.

I like cutting veggies up. Like celery, peppers, mushrooms, etc. to have with dip or by itself. Some dip you could try are oil based like balsamic, or homemade oils like olive oil with garlic or lemon and lime. You can also get a wide range of different dips at the store.

I also enjoy having celery, apples and boiled eggs with peanut butter. It's simple and easy. Boiling eggs is minimal and you can keep them longer in the fridge with its shell on.

Pita bread is another option and having hummus dip. If you have a good processor you can make hummus homemade with chickpeas, olive oil and garlic (optional).

Salads are another easy meal to make. If you like the leaves itself with dip you can throw in the leaves in a container with the dip in another to mix together.

Cheese, meat, and crackers are also another option. It's small and light.

These small meals I find are healthy and satisfy me when I'm not in the mood to eat a larger meal or something heavy.

Other things you can bring are:
Organes, grapes, blueberries, nuts and seeds, trail mix, canned fruit (cheaper option), apple sause.

If you have any tortilla you can use hummus or peabutter (you can add honey or jam) and cut them or roll them.

That is what I can think of that are smaller portions and easy to have when I am not really hungry.


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Re: Quick and easy dinners/lunches - June 1st 2018, 08:00 AM

Some meal ideas, not sure about how much they will cost since everything is overpriced where I shop/live (literally, I see the different from my country to the USA whenever Iím shopping there) and I buy for 7 people buuut:

Buddha bowls: I usually do lettuce, kale I use baby since it isnít as tough but regular works as well, spinach, collard, watercress, mushrooms, cucumbers, peppers (red, yellow and orange), broccoli, carrots, tomatoes, brown rice or quinoa (depending on what I'm feeling like) and then roasted chickpeas (I make a big batch in the oven with fresh herbs and spices and a dash of coconut oil) and sometimes I will cook up some tofu.

Salads: I usually just throw in veggies and sometimes Iíll throw in some vegetarian chicken strips or ground round. Some ideas are brussels sprout and kale salad, chickpea lentil radish salad, kale edamame and quinoa, pomegranate salad, strawberry spinach and quinoa salad, ect.

Cabbage wraps are easy to make and pretty quick to make. You can use beef/beef alternative, some veggies, garlic and spices and cook them in a frying pan and blanche the cabbage (put it in for about 20 seconds in boiling water) and then spoon some of the mixture on the cabbage and roll.

Pancakes or waffles!! We make a triple or quadruple batch and freeze them (on a tray till theyíre frozen then bag them) so itís a super quick meal if needed. Not sure if youíve had pannekoeken or crepes but those are always good. You can fill them with various toppings (fresh fruits, chocolate sprinkles, or even go savoury)

Spanish rice is good. We use cauliflower to make it usually but you can use regular/white rice as well. It's pretty easy to make and takes less than an hour. You can make a bigger batch as it keeps for a bit or you could freeze it.

Enchiladas or burritos. I usually make a Spanish rice, cook up some beans (refried and black) and then cook up some faijita veggies (peppers, onions, etc) and then either make a quick sauce or just keep them as burritos and they last a few days in the fridge or you could freeze them and theyíre way healthier than the frozen options that you get a store. Wraps , I like lettuce, kale, spinach, mushrooms, watercress, alfalfa sprouts, shredded carrots, sliced tomatoes, cucumber, pickles, tofu and some dressing (we use this semi local greek dressing that has no dairy in it that I think you can buy online) or sometimes we will use one that we made or falafel wraps (we make our own falafels but you can buy them at the store prť made or as a mix), collard green wraps with sweet potato and chipotle black beans, beetroot leaf

Pizza with a cauliflower crust or normal. Itís fairly easy to make and you can top it with various veggies or other toppings. I think you can probably buy crusts from the grocery store as well.

Zoodles, spaghetti squash, ect with either homemade pesto or tomato sauce or pasta with roasted veggies (like peppers, tomatoes, brussel sprouts, ect).
Eggplant lasagna is also amazing or stuffed pepper lasagna is also good. I love making different types of ravioli/tortellini or other stuffed pasta like manicotti (I make the crepes and can give a recipe or you can buy shells) or gnocchi.

Not sure if you like peroigis but there are loads of different flavour combinations (I do roasted garlic or chive or pizza as well usually) that you can do and theyíre fairly quick to whip up!

Soup/chilis: Minestone, black eyed pea soup, butternut squash, bean, black bean and sweet potato chilli, etc. You can make a big batch when you have time and then freeze it in individual portions and take it out the night before.


Some snack/smaller meal ideas:

Chickpeas that are roasted with some herbs and a dash of coconut oil. I can literally eat these like candy lol.
Apple with lemon and cinnamon (you can do this the night before and put it in the fridge as the lemon juice will keep the apple from browning!)
Cucumber with Tzatziki (this is really easy to make, I can get my recipe that I use if you want)
Fruit salads
Apple sauce, I make my own but you can get it at a store as well. I like putting cinnamon on top.
Chips with guacamole or even a 7 layer dip. I also eat this with peppers or other veggies. Iím weird and I will make a 7 layer dip and just eat it with a spoon but 🤷*♀️
Rice cakes with fresh salsa (I make fresh pico but you can buy it from a store)
Geranola bars/protein bars, I like making them but you can buy these and they can be a good snack.
Smoothies, sounds weird but I eat them as lunches or even dinners sometimes depending what I put in them.

I thinks thereís more but Iím so sleep deprived I canít think of anything else. Iíll c9me back and look this over and edit it if i can think of anything else. I just wanted to get this down before I forgot to reply!
   
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Re: Quick and easy dinners/lunches - June 1st 2018, 09:27 PM

Thank you both for the suggestions! I will add some of these to my list of things to try. I actually came up with some things to try this month.


Stir fry
Ramen (although I am not sure of good ramen noodles to try so any suggestions would be great)
Crock pot Thai Green Curry....might do it without meat or might try it with meat...haven't decided.


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Re: Quick and easy dinners/lunches - June 1st 2018, 09:45 PM

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Originally Posted by .:Bibliophile:. View Post
Thank you both for the suggestions! I will add some of these to my list of things to try. I actually came up with some things to try this month.


Stir fry
Ramen (although I am not sure of good ramen noodles to try so any suggestions would be great)
Crock pot Thai Green Curry....might do it without meat or might try it with meat...haven't decided.
Hey, Iíve never had actual store brand ramen but I make my own with veggie and make a broth so not sure how Ďtrue to actual ramení these noodles are but my siblings love them as well! I get them from Coscto in Canada but Iíve seen them in a few of the ones in the states as well.

Theyíre called rice ramen and theyíre made by lotus foods. I get the plain type and dress them up myself with a homemade broth and veggies so itís healthier than the sodium and processed ones you get from a store
   
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Re: Quick and easy dinners/lunches - June 2nd 2018, 01:54 AM

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Originally Posted by Celestine. View Post


Hey, Iíve never had actual store brand ramen but I make my own with veggie and make a broth so not sure how Ďtrue to actual ramení these noodles are but my siblings love them as well! I get them from Coscto in Canada but Iíve seen them in a few of the ones in the states as well.

Theyíre called rice ramen and theyíre made by lotus foods. I get the plain type and dress them up myself with a homemade broth and veggies so itís healthier than the sodium and processed ones you get from a store

I've seen those and was curious about trying them. I want to make my own ramen and dress them up with veggies. How do you make the broth? I was curious in trying to make my own broth but I'm hopeless...I imagine you make a veggie broth or something like that.


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Re: Quick and easy dinners/lunches - June 2nd 2018, 06:41 PM

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Originally Posted by .:Bibliophile:. View Post
I've seen those and was curious about trying them. I want to make my own ramen and dress them up with veggies. How do you make the broth? I was curious in trying to make my own broth but I'm hopeless...I imagine you make a veggie broth or something like that.
I make this in a massive stock pot. You want to make sure that your water is higher than the vegetables though. Lol. I usually let it simmer for at least a few hours. This makes 4-5 ice cube trays and a few mason jars and lasts us around a month. After itís done simmering, I drain and then let cool to freeze. I keep the veggies because my brother devours them plain after (as in before they are even cool LOL) But you donít have to.


18-20 cups filtered water (you can use tap if thatís all you have, my tap above the cooktop is filtered so thatís what I use lol)
2 onions, roughly chopped without skin
4 large carrots peeled and then finely chopped
2 heads garlic (I crush this with a garlic press, you can use less but my family is obsessed with garlic lol)
1 stalk of celery, chopped into large pieces (this is because I hate celery and I can pick it out after 20 minutes aha)
4-5 pounds of fresh tomatoes (I use Roma or whatever I have), chopped
2-3 cups of greens (I use spinach, kale leaves [no stems since it is bitter!!], chopped
1 piece of ginger (I like ginger and usually use more but if youíre not a fan, use less)
1-2 chilli peppers, diced with seeds (use less if youíre not a fan of spice)
4 sprigs of fresh thyme and parsley, roughly chopped
30-60 g of Wakame seaweed (this is an awesome source of omega 3 and isnít very overpowering, if I add 60g of it, I donít add salt!)
1/2 teaspoon whole peppercorns (these get strained out after and I highly recommend using whole peppercorns)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (0r to taste, I add 1/8-1/4 or even none depending on what I feel like since I donít like salt)
2 bay leaves
4 tbsp of turmeric
1/2 cup of nutritional yeast (optional but it does add nice flvarour and nutrients)
2-4 cups mushrooms, roughly chopped. I use shiitakes since I like the flavour and the nutritional value
2 leek, roughly chopped
   
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Re: Quick and easy dinners/lunches - June 3rd 2018, 01:26 AM

Thanks. I'm going to save this and give it a try at some point. It sounds good.


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Re: Quick and easy dinners/lunches - June 5th 2018, 12:08 PM

I prefer to eat meat and vegetable salad for lunch. this food helps me to be in shape and gives a boost of energy.
   
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