As National Nutrition Month comes to an end, it is important to incorporate the positive changes you have made into your routine lifestyle. My main goal this month was to focus on The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ third key message: “Buy only the amount that can be eaten or frozen within a few days and plan ways to use leftovers later in the week.”. This is a goal that I personally have struggled with for a long time, and I know I’m not the only one. It can be very difficult to come home at the end of a long and busy day to select a recipe, gather all necessary ingredients, and take one hour to prepare a meal. To save time, I rely heavily on pre-cut and pre-washed lettuce bags, easy to make 7-minute pasta, minute rice, and pre-made tomato sauces. This not only costs more, but depending on the item, can have a high quantity of sodium and additives. That is why this month, I wanted to venture out and do something I have never done before - make a slow cooker recipe! It’s a simple way to make a large quantity of healthy food.
The benefits of bulk cooking
You will have many servings that can be eaten throughout the week.
It reduces chances of going out to pick up fast food.
You will save money due to buying large quantities, as bulk items cost less.
It’s a great opportunity to combine several food groups into one dish.
The entire family can help make the meal.
As I am the only one who will be consuming this meal in my household, I will need to freeze a large quantity of this meal. I will not be able to eat the entire dish on my own in 3 days.
The benefits of freezing
It reduces food waste.
You can save part of the dish for next month if you get bored after three days of eating the portion you did not freeze.
You can take a frozen portion to a party that may not cater to your food preferences/allergies (I occasionally take my own food to parties for my vegan diet).
The dish can stay in the freezer for many months. For infomation on length of freezing, please click here.
Below, you will find the recipe I used to make a simple, no hassle, yet delicious meal!
Easiest Lasagna Slower Cooker Recipe
Ingredients - adjust according to your food preferences, I used all vegan products for my lasagna
1/2 box of whole wheat lasagna noodles
1 large can of tomato sauce
1 bunch of spinach
1 package of fat-free cheese
1 package of lean protein
Gather slow cooker and all ingredients
Wash & chop vegetables
Layer each ingredient one over the other until you reach the top.
Set the slow cooker to ‘high’ for a three hour cooking time.
5. Come back in three hours and enjoy your meal!