7 Quick Grab and Go Meals that are ACTUALLY healthy

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Bottom Line: Life is busy.

I know I’m not the only one here to swing through the fast food line because I don’t have time to cook something healthy…. or just don’t have have anything in my house that’s quick and easy! Riiight?

Can I be honest with you?

Sometimes healthy cooking can be a drag.

Many of us put a lot of pressure on making nice meals and thinking they have to be a production (raising my hand here). This alone can make you not want to spend the time on it.

BUT. When we keep things simple (or at least have a simpler option) eating a balanced diet can get so much EASIER.

Sometimes simple is associated with lazy, but the easier we can make healthy eating, the more consistent we’ll be!

Agreed? Awesome.

I’ve compiled a list of my FAVORITE grab and go meals that are rich in nutrients and energy, but low on time commitment!

Let’s get to it.

Disclaimer: I am not a Registered Dietitian and this is should not be taken as medical advice.

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Salad Kits

Simplicity in a bag. You can find these suckers in the produce section of the grocery store! I love these as a quick dinner option and usually have 1 or 2 on hand. As a matter of fact, I swung by the grocery store on my way home from work last week JUST to get these. I knew we didn’t have much time to cook, and really didn’t want to order pizza in the middle of the week.

I suggest adding in some protein (black beans, chickpeas, or grilled chicken) to make it more of a fulfilling meal along with your favorite dressing! (Sometimes they come with their own dressing, but I prefer to know what’s in mine).

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Frozen Stir fry Veggies

These can be a lifesaver, especially if you have a taste for Asian food. Keep a bag of frozen stir fry vegetables in the freezer so you can pop them in a skillet, add a little teriyaki sauce and some leftover grilled chicken. Bada-bing-bada-boom!

Note - With anything frozen, ALWAYS check the ingredient list, not just the calories. Be sure there isn’t a bunch of added sodium, chemicals, and sugars.

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Freezer Meals

This is where it gets VERY IMPORTANT to read the labels. Again, remember to read the INGREDIENTS list at the bottom of the nutrition facts. The less ingredients, and more whole foods in the product, the better.

That being said, I try to keep 2-3 bags of freezer meals on hand at all times simply for that grab and go option. Literally just pop it in the microwave and call it a day.

My favorite brands include: Evol, most things from Trader Joes, and Green Giant. (Not affiliated).

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Protein Bars

I literally always have a protein bar with me. In my lunch box, in my purse, in my carry on travel bag… you get it!

When hunger strikes, I’d rather have SOMETHING than starve and overeat later.

With protein bars, the ingredients can get a little sketchy. My main tips are to read the ingredient list and the nutrition facts so you’re eating REAL FOOD. This is key for not feeling like poop later.

Specifically, take note of any added sugar (try to keep below 8-10g), any saturated or trans fats (non heart-healthy), or any additional sodium (under 200g is a good ballpark). Look for clean ingredients that are REAL foods and not just additives. Protein content of 10g or higher is great for making you feel full and satisfied!

My favorite bars: Rx bar, Lara Bar, Luna Bar, Clean Bar, and Quest Bar. (Not affiliated).

I’m sure there are so many other great bars out there! Tell me your favorite in the comments at the bottom of this post!

Smoothies

Can I tell you a secret?

Smoothies used to be daunting to me, until I learned how CRAZY simple they are to make. My morning smoothie takes LESS than 5 MINUTES and is packed with good nutrition. I’ve even made them the night before to make it even more quick!

Here’s my simple 1 serving recipe you can adapt any way you like:

  • 1/2 cup frozen berries or fruit of choice

  • 1 Handful of greens (spinach or kale work best)

  • 1 tablespoon of nut butter (almond is my fave!)

  • 1/2-1 cup unsweetened almond milk (adjust to get the right consistency)

  • 1/2 scoop protein powder

  • 1-2 tablespoons ground flaxseed

Throw these ingredients in a blender until smooth and DONE!

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Egg Cups

One of my all time FAVORITE prep-ahead options. If you spend 30 minutes at the beginning of the week, you will reap the benefits of having breakfast ALL WEEK LONG.

These little egg muffins pack in protein, vegetables/micronutrients, and healthy carbohydrates… if you so choose. I usually eat 2 in a serving, paired with a piece of fruit!

Keep them in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Here’s my recipe!

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Overnight Oats

Alright, the last one on my list is another prep-ahead breakfast recipe (love me some breakfast, can you tell??)

The beauty is you can prep a few of these on a Sunday, and have them ALL WEEK. It’s quite magical.

Sometimes I find that people hate the texture of oatmeal and find it weird that it’s cold. I’ll leave that up to you to experiment with!

Here’s the link to my recipe for Overnight Oats and Smoothies!

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At that, my friend, rounds out the quick grab and go meals that I absolutely LOVE and RELY on weekly.

Remember, eating healthy doesn’t always make it a production. While I’m a big proponent of cooking my own food when I can, I think it’s also necessary to make things simple on ourselves at times!

Comment below with your biggest takeaway from this post!

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Hey! I’m Nicole.

Exercise Physiologist and Health Coach

I help busy women simplify healthy living and get strong so they can live their most confident, happy life.

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