When life gets busy, whipping up a delicious, well-balanced dinner that the whole family will enjoy can seem like a big task. Follow these tips from some of our Registered Dietitian Nutritionists to make dinner time more manageable.
Plan and prep ahead
Spreading the work of meal prep to less hectic days can be a big time saver. CulinArt’s Director of Wellness, Kimberly Hoban, does just that. “When it comes to throwing together a quick, healthy dinner, I suggest taking a few hours on the weekend or one weeknight to prep and cook healthy ‘components.’ I like to roast a few types of veggies, cook some grains (barley and farro are my favorites) and prep one or two proteins like hardboiled eggs or tempeh. Then during the week, I can mix and match these pieces of a meal, add a dressing or avocado and have a complete healthy dinner in a snap.”
Smart time savers
Weekdays don’t always lend themselves to spending a lot of time in the kitchen, but that doesn’t mean that the healthfulness of your meals has to suffer. Michelle Sadlowski, Eurest’s Eastern Division Wellness Director, keeps low-sodium microwavable bags of whole grains on hand that cook up in 90 seconds and are a perfect portion for two. She also makes a super-fast dinner by microwaving a large sweet potato and topping it with black beans, sautéed veggies, and a sprinkle of cheese. Jill Woodward, Eurest Central Division Wellness Director looks for vegetables that don’t require a lot of prep, like Delicata squash that has tender skin and does not require peeling.
Quick sustainability tips
Being short on time doesn’t mean we forget about sustainability. Eurest’s Senior Director of Wellness and Sustainably, Suzanne Landry, uses the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch® app when shopping to quickly identify seafood that’s fished or farmed in sustainable ways. Michelle Sadlowski cuts down on food waste by using up veggies she has on hand in a stir fry before they can go bad. She also freezes extra fresh herbs in ice cube trays with a little water to add flavor for dishes later.
This post was co-authored by Michelle Sadlowski MS, RD, Eurest Eastern Division Wellness Director; Jill Woodward, MS, RD, CD, Eurest Central Division Wellness Director and Suzanne Landry, MS, RD, LDN, Eurest Senior Director of Wellness and Sustainability.