By signing up for the annual plan, I received a year's worth of Individual and Family Meal Plans. The meal plans are all no oil whole foods plant based and can be customized to be Gluten Free, Soy Free, or even Lower Fat (no nuts, avocados or high fat plant foods). All of the calorie analysis and nutrition facts are done for you. You get a detailed grocery list and detailed prep sheets for what to batch cook ahead of time (rice, beans, lentils, etc.) and what to prep on your big meal prep day. You don't have to cook everything in one day, but Lindsay shows you how if you want to try it. She has some great videos showing her cooking a week's worth of meals in 1-1.5 hours. You also get lots of free downloads and membership in a great community forum and Facebook page so you can learn and share with others cooking and following the meal plans.
I was getting a little burned out being in the kitchen so much, it felt like we were chopping and cooking and washing dishes like crazy almost every day. I loved the idea of doing one big organized grocery shop, one big day of cooking, then having all of your meals ready to just pull out of the fridge and reheat during the week. I am not as efficient as Lindsay yet and I cook more recipes for my husband's big portions, so my cooking day takes more like 3-4 hours, but it has been SO WORTH IT!
We use the Family Plan where each recipe is designed to make about 4 portions. We sometimes get a little more or a little less, it depends on the recipe and our appetites. These meal plans are designed as a baseline 1200 calorie per day diet with add-on options available. Simon doesn't need to lose any weight and he is used to large portions of our healthy vegan food, so I make sure he is eating as much as he wants. I am trying to see if I can refine my portions, follow the 1200 calorie plan, and maybe lose a few more pounds to get really lean.
I will do a different blog post on losing "the last 10 pounds" and why I am watching calories right now. Look for that post soon. I was hugely inspired by Lindsay, The Happy Herbivore. I am even doing a daily yoga challenge for over 3 weeks to kick start my last 10 pounds plan. I will be doing a yoga video right after I post this. I will post about my yoga challenge as well.
The picture at the top of this post is my lunch today, an Indian curry served over a roasted potato with fresh chopped cilantro. It was delicious and filling. Potatoes are so great for filling you up. Behind my lunch is a glimpse of part of the produce from my big grocery shop today. We are going to do our weekly cooking blitz tomorrow. I love all of the beautiful fruits and vegetables that we eat. The picture at the bottom is my dinner last night - leftover Enchilada Pasta with some added chopped fresh tomato and cilantro. Even following a 1200 calorie plan, I get large portions that fill me up, I am just not mindlessly eating all day. I stick to a healthy, filling Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner. That is the beauty of eating a low fat whole foods plant based diet, you get a lot of food for your calories.
Simon likes the new variety of recipes and really enjoys not having to chop and wash tons of dishes every day. We make enough recipes to have leftovers for his lunches at work, so he is getting more variety there too. He was in a bit of a rut with soup or stew over brown rice probably 3-4 times per week.
We are just getting started with the meal plans and batch cooking, this is our third round of it. The meals last us around 10 days, so we don't even need to do it every week. I am sure we will get even more efficient with it over time. So far, we are loving it and it frees up so much more time for me to work on my business. I have been doing a lot of research and background work which you can't see, but look for great new coaching packages and freebies from Jennifer Parsley Nutritional Healing this year. I hope to start filming videos as well. Lots of great stuff coming, I am very excited about growing my business. Rome wasn't built in a day, but I keep working on it and I am excited about where I will take it in the future.
Do any of you batch cook like this? Let me know your experiences with it and share any tips or tricks that you have. Have a great weekend!