How I January Meal Prep

This is written in collaboration with Whole Foods Market. All opinions are my own.

By the end of every semester, I resent my slow cooker. I loathe it. It stares at me menacingly from the pantry, nearly whispering that it’ll dry out my chicken yet again if I use it. So with this new year, I want to step out of both my crockpot and my comfort zone and play with fresh, fun and fanciful flavors in the kitchen. Because I want my food choices to echo my mood and persona – colorful, bold, and feel good. I also want to make it an easy-to-do to maintain a whole foods, better eating lifestyle with my hectic schedule. I’ve collaborated with Whole Foods to show you that THIS is how I January. And hopefully how I February – December, too. I’m always inspired by the seasonal produce and fun flavors I can find in the aisles at my local Whole Foods store, but if I’m too tired to go – next best thing – I can check out their website for inspiration, tips, products, and so many recipes. I can search by dietary preference and see what’s on sale all at the click of my finger.

Find the meal plan, grocery list, recipes, and step-by-step meal plan guide inspired by my new year intentions to add more fresh flavors into my day-to-day below!

Breakfast:

  • Persimmon oat bake
  • Smoothie: mango, banana, pineapple, spinach, chia seeds, coconut water
  • Chia seed pudding

Lunch:

  • Spaghetti squash, kale, tomatoes, lemon, garlic, shrimp stir fry

Dinner:

  • Tropical lettuce wraps
  • Eggs with leftover veggies
  • Salad with leftover veggies + hummus + avocado + kraut

Snacks:

  • Carrots, peppers, or celery with hummus
  • cacao coconut snack bites
  • chia seed pudding
  • celery with almond butter
  • hot chocolate
  • few bites of dark chocolate bar + cashews
  • banana with almond butter

Grocery list:

You can check out what brands and products are available at your local Whole Foods Market here

Produce:

  • spaghetti squash
  • kale
  • tomatoes
  • lemon (1)
  • lime (1)
  • peppers (3)
  • onions (2)
  • avocado (2)
  • celery
  • carrots
  • fresh ginger
  • fresh garlic
  • 2 persimmons
  • Bundle of bananas

Protein:

  • ground turkey
  • hummus
  • frozen shrimp
  • almond butter
  • coconut butter
  • chia seeds
  • dozen eggs

Grains:

  • oats

Frozen:

  • spinach
  • mango
  • pineapple
  • banana

Misc:

  • coconut aminos
  • maple syrup
  • coconut water
  • vanilla extract
  • cashews
  • cacao powder
  • dark chocolate bar
  • olive oil / avocado oil / spray
  • sauerkraut

Recipes:

Persimmon Oat Bake:

Ingredients

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 persimmons, chopped
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • Dab of butter

Recipe

  • Preheat oven to 350F
  • Saute 1 persimmon on stovetop with pinch of cinnamon, nutmeg, and dab of butter.
  • Mix wet ingredients together: cashew milk, eggs, maple syrup
  • Mix dry ingredients: oats, chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, sea salt, baking soda, baking powder
  • Combine wet and dry
  • Fold sautéed persimmon into the mixture
  • Pour mixture into 8×8 baking pan
  • Bake on 350F for 35-40 min, until golden brown on top
  • Top with other persimmon

Chia seed pudding:

Ingredients

  • ½ cup chia seeds
  • 2 cups homemade cashew milk
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup (optional)
  • Few pinches of cinnamon

Recipe

  • Mix all together and let sit in refrigerator overnight

Cashew milk

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cashews
  • 6 cups water
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of sea salt

Recipe

  • Let 1 cup cashews + enough water to cover sit overnight. In the morning, drain cashews, add 6 cups fresh water + salt and vanilla extract, and blend.
  • Use for: persimmon oat bake, chia seed pudding, hot chocolate

Hot Chocolate:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cashew milk
  • 2 tbsp cacao powder
  • Few pinches of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp coconut butter
  • 1-2 tbsp maple syrup (optional)

Recipe

  • Mix all together and heat on stove top

Lemon, garlic spaghetti squash with shrimp, kale, and tomatoes:

Ingredients:

  • Spaghetti squash
  • Package of shrimp
  • ½ package of kale
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tbsp garlic, chopped
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • Zest from 1 lemon

Recipe

  • Bake spaghetti squash – halved, seeded and face down in 350F oven for 40-45 min or poke holes in squash, microwave until done (about 12 minutes, 6 min each side)
  • Use a fork to rake the strands of squash from shells
  • Saute remainder of ingredients on stove top, adding shrimp last – cook until shrimp is light pink
  • Add spaghetti squash at the end

Tropical Lettuce Wraps

Ingredients

  • 1 package ground turkey
  • ¼ cup coconut aminos
  • 1/2 cup frozen pineapple
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp ginger, chopped
  • 1 tbsp garlic, chopped
  • Lettuce leaves
  • Avocado
  • 1/2 cup cashews 

Recipe

  • Saute onions on stove, until translucent. Add pepper sand saute until soft. Add ground turkey, garlic, ginger, cashews, and coconut aminos and saute until ground turkey is cooked throughout.
  • Place in lettuce cups, add avocado and serve with almond butter sauce drizzle and top with sauerkraut

Almond butter sauce (use for drizzle on lettuce wraps or for salad dressing)

  • ¼ cup almond butter 
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • 2 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 tsp ginger, chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • Hot water to thin
  • Combine in bowl and whisk until smooth

Tropical Smoothie:

  • 1 cup frozen spinach
  • ¼ cup frozen mango
  • ¼ cup frozen pineapple
  • 1 banana
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1-2 cups coconut water
  • Combine in blender and blend until smooth

Cashew Cacao Bites

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cashews
  • ¼ cup coconut butter
  • ¼ cup cacao powder
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • 1-2 tbsp cashew milk

Recipe

  • Pulse all together in food processor until dough forms
  • Form into balls
  • Roll in cacao powder and/or desiccated coconut if available
  • Store in refrigerator or freezer

With leftovers:

I had 1 pepper, carrots, celery, half bag of kale, and some eggs left over. Perfect for a big salad or egg bake!

The step-by-step guide.

Because we should really learn how to meal prep in middle school, but we just don’t. Instead we learn the ins and outs of triangles and their associated angles. Useful stuff. I personally don’t love doing meal prep all in one day, so I typically try to do even a little the night before. In this case, I made the cashew milk, chia seed pudding, spaghetti squash, and cacao coconut snack bites the night before. BUT I will provide directions as if doing it all in one go.

  1. Pour boiling water over 1 cup cashews.
  2. Set spaghetti squash in microwave for 6 min.
  3. Make Lettuce Wraps – chop onions and garlic and place in a large saute pan, saute until translucent. Add ground turkey.
  4. Turn spaghetti squash over. Microwave additional 6 min.
  5. Stir ground turkey. Chop 2 peppers and 1 tbsp ginger. Add peppers, coconut aminos,  juice of 1 lime, and continue stirring until fully brown and cooked. Turn stove top off.
  6. Take spaghetti squash out of microwave, cut into quarters and let cool. It will be hot!! Wear an oven glove! You could also have chosen to make the spaghetti squash the night before.
  7. Make almond butter sauce.
  8. Set oven to 350 F. Clean up from first mess.
  9. Make persimmon oat bake. Place in oven for 35-40 min.
  10. While oat bake is moving and grooving in the oven, make the lemon, garlic spaghetti squash with shrimp, kale, and tomatoes.
  11. Take oat bake out of oven.
  12. At this point, shrimp dish should also be finished.
  13. Put both in Tupperware, and clean both pans.
  14. Make cashew milk.
  15. When cashew milk is finished, make chia seed pudding and store in Tupperware.
  16. Clean up blender / bowls and utensils.
  17. Make cashew cacao bites.
  18. Store bites in refrigerator or freezer and clean remainder of used plates.
  19. Exhale
  20. Enjoy your week without fretting about what you’ll eat!!

I am so entirely grateful to have had the opportunity to partner with Whole Foods for this post. Even just typing it – collaborating with Whole Foods (!!!!) – puts me in a hybrid feeling of disbelief and joy. As a shopper, I am always inspired when I am in that store and I know I am getting high quality food to put into my body to energize me and keep me thriving during rotations and general life things. I hope this post was helpful, and leads to lots of bold, colorful, and feel good experiences both in and out of your kitchen in this new year.
You can see the new Whole Foods Market January inspiration page here and shop by dietary preference and discover new products here!

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