It's cold, icy, and grey here in New England, and that means we're craving comfort food. This week's meal prep includes some older favorites that my family has been enjoying for years, and they all satisfy those cravings for hearty dishes. As always, we'll be supplementing these meals with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables for snacks and side dishes.
These banana pancakes are an old favorite in our house. I make a double batch to get us through the week, and leftovers reheat perfectly in under a minute. I'm serving these for breakfast this week with a side of chicken sausage (my current favorite) and some freshly sliced bananas.
This minestrone recipe is great because it's easy to make and has plenty of veggies. You can adjust the amount of pasta or eliminate it altogether if you want to take it easy on the carbs after the pancakes. The soup is great served alone, with a side salad, or with a dairy free grilled cheese or quesadilla.
This Tropical Yogurt Bowl can be made using your favorite dairy free yogurt, and the recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, etc. to serve your whole family. It's bursting with bright, fresh flavors and can be packed in a thermos for school or work.
Big Mac Bowls are such a fun way to get all that naughty cheeseburger flavor in to a healthier option that the whole family will love. This reheats really well, and it can be packed in a thermos to bring with you. I pre-chop all of the fresh lettuce, tomato, and onion and store those separately in the refrigerator, then pack them in a small container in our lunch boxes. I don't pack the veggies in with the hot food, otherwise they got hot and soggy. Be sure to leave some space at the top of the container to add in the fresh vegetables. When you're ready to eat, just dump the cold veggies in to the container with the hot food and mix it up a bit.
Here are my favorite containers to pack these recipes in our lunch boxes:
We've been using Lunchbots since my twelve-year-old was in preschool, and they do a great job of keeping food warm. I get them from Amazon, and they come in a variety of colors. I find that these do keep food warm for 6 hours as they claim, and I even pack soup in these without any leaking. I also pack my yogurt bowls in these, and they do a great job of keeping everything cold for hours.
U-Konserve is another stainless container that I love. They're great for packing small side salads, muffins, fresh fruit, or pasta salad. This is how we pack all of our school snacks. The lids are easy for younger kids to pop off, and it's a great option to prevent school snacks from being squished in the backpack.
Need dairy-free snack ideas?
Check out my list of 100 Dairy-Free Snacks!