April 26, 2016

How To Be An Adult: 5 Minute Meals

I suggested some meal plan ideas in the very first How To Be An Adult post I did....but then realized I never told you how to actual make them! All of the meals I eat during the week are simple and easy enough to make in under 15 minutes (even if I'm not actually the one doing the cooking the majority of the time...) These meals are intended to be mostly healthy, quick, and not expensive. Here are some of the recipes I find myself using almost on a weekly basis: 

These are super super easy to make. Take a can of refried beans (I use the vegetarian kind but you can find ones with beef or pork in them as well I think) and spread it on a whole wheat tortilla. Sprinkle either cheddar or mozzarella shredded cheese on top and place another tortilla on top. Fry in a frying pan with a touch of olive oil and voila! I usually have broccoli or green beans on the side--easy to steam and 1-2-3 you have dinner all ready! Make 2 tortillas for dinner and leave 2 for lunch tomorrow. (I usually use frozen broccoli just because I've bitten into too much fresh broccoli with bugs in it and am thoroughly freaked out)
Tuna Steaks
Get some frozen tuna steaks at the store (fresh spoils too quickly and usually more expensive) and when you're ready, sprinkle black pepper and salt on both sides (you can also use a pre-made marinade or teriyaki sauce--anything really on it) before searing in a pan with some olive oil. Cook it to your preference: rare, medium, medium rare, or well done. Make some green beans and you're done!

Veggie Burgers
This one is a bit of a cheat because you can just buy pre-made veggie burgers (my favorites are Amy's and Boca Burgers), cook them in the microwave usually, stick on some bread and you're done! Put some lettuce, tomato, pickles, cheese, all your favorite condiments, and you have your vegetables and dinner all in one! Serve with some pre-made potato salad or coleslaw and you've got an easy peasy dinner for nights when you don't even have 15 minutes to spend cooking. I like to get specialty bread for the buns--like emek, a Turkish bread roll that is the perfect size and consistency for my liking. Makes it a bit more fancy, and has fewer calories than regular hamburger buns.

Fish Tacos
A bit more work, but worth it! Get a white fish at the store (frozen, again) like cream dory or tilapia is my favorite. Marinate the fish in a bowl with a bit of olive oil, salt, pepper, and whatever other spices you want to add like cayenne pepper....I usually squeeze some lime over my fish. After this, cook your fish in a pan on the stovetop until it's done to your liking. Cooking a white, flaky fish there isn't much variation in terms of rare/well-done but cook however long you're comfortable. Shred the fish after it's cooked into small pieces and sprinkle in a whole wheat tortilla. Add some shredded lettuce, diced tomato, onion, peppers, salsa, cheese and enjoy!

Shrimp Scampi
Sear some frozen shrimp in a pan with olive oil, some lime, salt + pepper, toss in some lightly-buttered spaghetti pasta and you've got yourself a protein & carb yum fest! Serve with a salad (if you use pre-made salads, make sure to wash everything even if the package promises "washed four times") or some green beans. 
All photos courtesy of my Instagram

Treat Night!
Usually on a Wednesday night, in the middle of the work/school week, I have a little pick-me-up dinner. 99% of the time it's mac n cheese, either homemade or the boxed version, but it can also be a pierogi lasagna (try it, it's really really yummy), regular lasagna, a frozen food item from Amy's (their bean and cheese bites or even one of their pizzas). Anything that makes you smile when you bite into it (which usually includes starch + cheese). Even when trying to stay healthy, one night of eating something you don't eat all the time won't hurt you. Don't forget your vegetables!

These are my favorite recipes that I use the most during the week....what are some of your favorite healthy, quick, and cheap meals?


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