The phrase “meal prep” and the hashtag #mealprep has become so popular and probably a bit overused. However, the concept of meal prep is, in my opinion, one of the top three keys to maintaining a healthy weight and living a healthy lifestyle. This is true for several reasons, the most significant being that you are going into each day with an exact game plan, eliminating last minute lunch orders to Jimmy Johns or trips through the Chick-Fil-A drive thru. When you are prepared and equipped, you have less opportunity to fail.
As someone who has run the gamut in meal prepping, from complicated recipes with multiple ingredients to super simple recipes with minimal ingredients, I now lean towards the latter when I’m prepping for the week. And I have discovered that this base recipe is my favorite because it is modifiable, adjustable, easy and quick to make, and is also filling and delicious. I’ve had several friends ask me for the recipe and they’ve all enjoyed it, so I figured it was time to share with all of you!
I recommend using my recipe as a base and substituting or adding additional ingredients that make it most appealing to you. This formula typically lasts me 4 days’ worth of lunches. And I’m not kidding when I say it is SUPER simple.
Protein-Packed Make-Ahead Lunch Salad
This lunch takes no time to make, it tastes delicious, is filling and is visually appealing thanks to all of the colors of the bell peppers.
- 2 Organic English Cucumbers, washed and dried (Regular cucumbers are totally fine, but I prefer the seedless English variety)
- 3 Organic Bell Peppers, washed and dried (I like a medley of red, orange and yellow)
- 1.5 cans Organic, no-salt added Garbanzo Beans rinsed thoroughly and drained (I use Eden Organic, but any brand is fine)
In a big bowl, dump the drained Garbanzo Beans.
Next, chop up the cucumbers and bell peppers. Add those veggies to the bowl and mix all together.
Distribute evenly into 4 containers.
On the morning or day of, add some extra protein with grilled chicken, ground turkey, or a can of tuna. Or if you are going meatless, add some quinoa, a crumbled veggie burger or tofu. Or get in a dose of healthy fats with some sliced avocado. The possibilities are truly endless. Then drizzle with your favorite salad dressing or just some olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Then close the lid on your meal prep container and shake it all up so the toppings are evenly distributed. Open and enjoy! It’s as easy as that.
This has become my go-to lunch because it is easily transportable to my office fridge, it takes me barely any time to make, it fills me up, it tastes delicious, and it’s actually visually appealing too with all of the colors of the bell peppers.
I highly recommend you try this out and if you do, please stop by here and let me know what you think and how you customized it. Happy prepping!