Every year at my CrossFit gym we do a food challenge of some type. This year’s one was quite a bit different from the last couple of years and I have learnt quite a bit about how to best fuel my body to support the level of physical activity I undertake.
I chose a performance goal for the 12 weeks, meaning I wanted to see improvements in my lifting, running and recovery. In terms of that the challenge has been a success.
It was also a success because it helped me to improve even further on the meal preparation I do for myself on the weekends. To ensure I was getting the right macronutrient mix for my meals (protein, fat and carbs) I actually made up full meals.
This is something I will continue doing even after the challenge finishes. The better prepared I am with my food, the better I will eat. The better I eat, the better I will perform. I am also a much happier and nicer person to be around when I am well fed!
Working out what type of meals lend themselves best to being reheated has been trial and error for me. Personally, I have found the meat component of my meals reheats better in mince form. So each week I will usually make some time of beef style mince, most often using my homemade taco seasoning and a chicken based mince.
This chicken mince recipe not only reheats well but with key ingredients of turmeric, ginger and garlic means it has great anti inflammatory properties. It is important to note that black pepper enhances the bioavailability of turmeric, so make sure you add some black pepper to get the most out of the curcumin and other curcuminoids in turmeric. You can read more about this here and here.
When I am making my meals for the week, I try to make sure my process is as efficient as possible to limit the time I am in the kitchen. I will shred veggies first in the food processor before I mince the chicken so I don’t have to wash in between uses.
You could use store bought mince, but I prefer to mince my own chicken.
I use my fab little Tupperware mini chopper to finely chop the herbs and spices.
I fry up the herbs and spices first then add the chicken.
I will then cook the veggies for a couple of minutes in the pan straight after, no need to wash the pan, as the extra flavours enhance the taste of the veggies.
I then portion out the chicken mince for four meals with basmati rice and the veggies (limited by glass containers and room in the fridge). I will then freeze the remaining chicken mince to use for another time.
- 6 - 8 cms fresh ginger
- 8 - 10 cms fresh turmeric
- 2 - 3 cloves fresh garlic
- ½ - 1 tsp cracked black pepper
- 1 large red chilli
- 1 - 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 kg chicken breasts
- Add chicken breasts to the food processor and pulse until completely minced.
- Peel ginger, turmeric and garlic, then chop into chunks and add to the mini chopper.
- Chop chilli (de-seed if you don't like things spicy) and add it and the black pepper to the mini chopper. Mince until it is finely chopped.
- Heat oil in a large pan on a medium high heat. Add the herbs and spices and stir for a minute or two or until fragrant.
- Add in the chicken mince and stir as it cooks, breaking up any chunks.
- Continue with this until the chicken has been cooked all the way through.
- Remove from heat and you can either eat it straight away in lettuce cups or with a combo of rice and veggies like I do.
Our family menu plan for the week
Week Commencing 25th July and 8th August
|Mon||Chicken, cashew and ginger stir fry|
|Wed||Sang choy bow|
|Thu||Sausages, veg and crispy mashed potato mounds|
|Fri||Chicken wings, baked potatoes and steamed corn|
|Sat||Slow cooker chicken satay (gluten free)
Sautéed baby spinach
|Sun||Home made hamburgers and salad
Egg and bacon tarts
Sesame seed slice
|Shopping List||Weekly menu plan shopping list 160725|
More family friendly recipes
If you are looking for further recipe inspiration, check out my complete list of Family Friendly Recipes.