I am so excited for What I Ate Wednesday this week because I wanted to share a breakthrough that I had in the kitchen. For the last two weeks I’ve been struggling through my second Whole30. I say struggling, because I felt like my original excitement is gone.  In fact, I had lost my excitement about food in general. Cooking and meal planning started to feel like a chore and I noticed that I got really irritable (sorry Jake) whenever I had to cook dinner.

And then I had an idea. I’ve been following a number of fitness bloggers who are in the middle of competition prep. These ladies need to eat enough to fuel their workouts, but also need to keep their meals simple enough to prevent gaining any weight before they come on stage. After some online googling, it seems like the typical things they eat are: chicken, fish, veggies and some sort of starch (sweet potatoes if you’re paleo, brown rice if you’re not). 

But the most important part of this, is that they do ALL of their cooking on Sunday, weigh out each serving into individual Tupperware containers, and stack them up in the fridge. Then for every meal, you just grab a container, put the food on a plate, heat it up and you’re done in less than 2 minutes.

Step 1

I went to Costco for the first time. A friend of mine has a membership (and a car) so I got to tag along with her. I spent a little more than I usually do ($84) but I cannot believe how much I got!

4lbs of ground turkey
6 fillets of catfish
3 red peppers
1 lb of fresh spinach
2 lbs of onions
3 lbs of walnuts
2 lbs of brussle sprouts
4 lbs of frozen berries

Step 2

Prep as soon as you get home. As I was putting stuff away, I grabbed the red peppers and two of the onions. I cut both up and placed them in Tupperware containers. It saves so much time later if all of your chopping is done. 

Step 3

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (F). If you want, put foil down on a cookie sheet. Some people say that it isn’t the healthiest to cook in foil (something about the foil transferring to the food), but it just makes clean up so much easier for me. I then covered the cookie sheet in cut up red peppers and onions.

Season the onions and red peppers with italian seasoning, basil and cumin. 

Pop in the oven for 20 minutes. Then I increased the oven temp to about 410 degrees (F) and cooked for another 10 minutes. This gives them a nice roastedness (I think I just made up that word…).

Divide it up among your Tupperware containers. I had enough for 3 days.

Step 4

I removed the foil from the red peppers and onions and put on a clean sheet. Set your oven to 350 degrees (F). Place your catfish fillets on the cookie sheet.

In a small bowl mix:

1 tsp paprika
1 tsp italian seasoning
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Then coat the top of your fish in the mixture. As you can see, I didn’t do that great of a job spreading it around. Still turned out yummy.

In another small bowl mix:

3 T of lemon juice
2 T melted butter (or ghee if you’re paleo)
1/2 tsp garlic powder

Again, coat the fish in this mixture. Then pop the fish in the oven for about 30 minutes. It should be white and flaky when it’s done. Depending on the size of your fish, it could be done in as little as 20 minutes, but I have a history of undercooking my fish, so I left it in for a bit longer than 30.

Then I put one fish fillet in each container.

Step 5

Every day this week, I pulled out a container from the fridge and popped it in my bag for work. Not only have I really been enjoying this dish, but I am loving the fact that I have all my lunches ready to go. For now I only pre-made lunch, but this weekend I am tempted to try pre-making dinner as well. 

11 thoughts on “WIAW: Cook a Week’s Worth of Lunches in Under Two Hours”

  1. Every sunday late afternoon/evening i do something similar- i roast two batches of veggies, chop lots of raw veggies and make a bunch of quinia/whatever plus bean/edamame mix- for lunches most of the prep is done and dinner is more assembly and add one or two things (like veggie quinoa tacos, salad and nuke my veggiebburger patty)
    Not sure about five days later fish but im vegetarian so what do i know!
    I big batch of chili and/or a few baked sweet potatoes are great to have around

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