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Tired of spending your days in the kitchen while trying to stay on plan? Cooking on Trim Healthy Mama can be simplified with a few easy tips and tricks.
Letter “C” of the Trim Healthy Mama A to Z series is all about cooking. Anytime that you try to move away from processed foods to a whole foods centered diet, there is usually more cooking and prep involved. What doesn’t have to happen is that you spend all your days in the kitchen!
With a few tips and tricks, you can eat on plan even if you hate to cook. Work full time? You can do THM. Have a bunch of toddlers running around consuming most of your free time? You can do THM! Pregnant and tired all the time? You can do THM!
We will explore lots of ways to make cooking on THM faster, easier and less stressful.
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Cooking On Trim Healthy Mama Simplified
Planning ahead can save you a lot of time cooking on Trim Healthy Mama. You can take the traditional meal prep method of preparing several items to eat on for the week. I personally do not take this approach because it just doesn’t really appeal to me (to each their own right).
However, there are many other ways to prep for the week. When I come home from the grocery, I prep several things to make the week of cooking go smoother.
Here are some things that I do:
- Brown a big package of ground beef and package it into 1 lb bags. Freeze for easy tacos/quesadillas, spaghetti, chili or casseroles later in the week.
- Place a package of chicken breasts in the crock pot. Shred and freeze in bags for easy meals.
- Remove the meat from a rotisserie chicken and store in the fridge or freezer.
- Wash and prep fruits and raw veggies.
Eat Simple Meals
It is easy to complicate things on THM really quickly. If you try and eat simple meals it will make cooking on Trim Healthy Mama much easier.
Instead of trying to cook 5 new casseroles and a 3 tier stevia/almond flour chocolate cake in one week, make easy meals. Find a protein and then pick a carb or a fat. Don’t over complicate the plan.
Find recipes that only require a few whole ingredients and try those out. Chicken Sausage and Veggies is a favorite summer meal of ours because it is simple and cheap.
Another simple meal is a sandwich on an on plan bread or wrap option. It is not fancy but it will get you full and you won’t be cooking all day long.
Protein packed salads are also easy/low prep meals that come together quickly. And let’s not forget breakfast for dinner. It is a family favorite around here and requires little effort on my part.
Eat Out If You Need To
If you do burn out on cooking and your budget will allow it, eat out a meal. Eating out or grabbing take out can allow you a much needed break. Sometimes you just need someone else to make your food and not have to think about it.
The beauty of THM is that you can find ways to eat out without going off plan. Eating out at a sit down restaurant is pretty easy in an S setting. Grilled Steak, pork chop or Chicken with veggies in butter make for an S meal. You can eat fajitas without the shells or a taco salad (no shell).
Most people don’t try to do an E meal out since lots of restaurants will use oils or butters when preparing dishes. I’m sure it can be done but you are safer with an S meal.
If you are eating out at a fast food spot, this guide will make it easy for you to choose on plan options.
Cook Like You Used To
No, you should not slip back into your old ways. But making meals that you are comfortable can make cooking much easier than trying to make 7 brand new meals in a week.
A few simple tweaks can make many meals THM compliant without completely reinventing the wheel. This also helps to ease family members into THM that may not be 100% on board (like kids and husbands). If you start making a ton of things they have never seen before they may object before even trying the new item. Familiar foods help to make everyone feel a bit more comfortable in the process.
Make tacos into a taco salad with sour cream, cheese and guac for an simple S meal.
Sub in lean ground turkey into a bean chili for an easy E meal.
Grill a chicken breast and add a sweet potato for an E or add some mac and cheese zoodles for an S.
Take Advantage of Convenience Items
Just because you are on THM doesn’t mean that you can’t find on plan convenience items to make cooking on Trim Healthy Mama easier.
One of my favorite items at the grocery is a Rotisserie chicken. It cuts down on cooking time and saves me from the drive thru about once a week! If you want some easy rotisserie chicken meal ideas try these 5 simple lunches using one chicken or this easy chicken and creamy baked cauli rice for one.
Other easy items to take advantage of our Triple 000 yogurts, jerky, boiled eggs, smoked salmon, tuna pouches, skinny pop, sprouted pretzels, baked tostitos, steam bags of veggies. These items all help to make easier snacks or meals for your THM journey.
If you can’t find it at your local store, here are some of the on plan or personal choice items that can make cooking on Trim Healthy Mama easier than ever.
Use A Slow Cooker Or Instant Pot
Even if you are not cooking on Trim Healthy Mama, these kitchen appliances can save your sanity in the kitchen. Use these items to help cook your proteins or entire meals without standing over the stove for hours.
You can also save money on THM by purchasing cheaper and tougher pieces of meat that will be tenderized during these cooking methods.
Zevia Pulled Pork is a favorite crock pot recipe at our house.
I hope these ideas help to make cooking on Trim Healthy Mama easier. Join us next week for letter “D” in our THM A to Z series! You can see the entire A to Z series here for answers to all your THM plan quesitons.