It’s practically impossible to maintain a healthful diet without planning. Before I started The Fresh 20, I wasted pounds and pounds of farmer’s market bounty because I didn’t plan to eat; I only planned to stock the fridge.
If standing in front of the fridge with a blank stare on your face sounds faintly familiar, you are not alone. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to keep on track, cook fresh food and eliminate produce waste.
1. Create a plan
Half the battle of using fresh ingredients is knowing what’s on the menu. For me, the biggest pitfall is ambiguity. I’m much more likely to stray to take out food if there is nothing on the calendar. A simple weekly, meal plan worksheet is often the only motivation needed to stay on track.
2. Limit ingredients
Instead of having a vegetable drawer full of too many vegetables, decide on a few that you will prepare several different ways. Keeping it simple on the shopping list encourages a more efficient use of produce and in most cases eliminates waste. Add Monday’s roasted broccoli to Wednesdays stir fry or roast carrots once to use in two meals.
3. Sunday prep
A half-hour on Sunday to prepare basic ingredients for the week can save time on busy days. Roast meat, cook brown rice, chop vegetables.