I mentioned before in my post working full time & being a HCLF vegan one obstacle that may damage your so far successful vegan diet is not having food prepared at times when you do not have time to cook. Not having food prepared can cause you to make unhealthy, regretful, convenient food choices. And for anybody who lives a busy life, this is probably something you face daily. The only way to prevent this is to prepare and cook your food in large amounts at a time. If you have a busy lifestyle but wan to commit to being vegan then it is essential that you are prepared as you can never be 100% certain that restaurants of shops will be able to accommodate your dietary needs. Bulk cooking your food will allow you to pack lunches, dinners or snack on the go so you can either bring it with you to work or when travelling. Otherwise you can just store it in the fridge for something quick to grab when you get home after a long day.
Everyone has a different weekly schedule, so pick a day where you know you don’t have much going on. You will spend a few hours shopping and preparing your different meals. I love cooking and baking so being in the kitchen for hours doesn’t bother me. You will be thankful in a day or two when your busy at work all day and the last thing you want to do when you get home home is to go cooking for an hour or two when you’d rather throw yourself on the couch and relax. i live with my boyfriend who isn’t vegan so we just cook our food separately every day, it does make it easier for me to prepare my food since it is just me I’m catering for. if your cooking for more than yourself make sure your making food that everyone likes and will eat. You can’t go wrong with pasta salad or rice stir fry. I do my bulk cooking at the weekend as I work Monday to Friday. I usually make up my mind on a Friday what food I am going to cook and I will do my shopping on a Friday evening after work. I cook my meals on a Sunday afternoon so that they are ready for the week. I cook two sometimes three different meal types so I’m not eating the same thing everyday. I make enough to last me until about Wednesday. After that the food wouldn’t taste that great and I start craving something different anyways.
Good food to bulk cook and that hold well for a couple of days are:
- Pasta salad (can be eaten cold if mixed with a green salad, or hot if you have vegetables mixed through the pasta)
- Mixed salad or potato salad with a homemade salad dressing or hummus mixed through it. Making homemade salad dressing, hummus, or tahini at the weekend is great because you can quickly add to any salads you make during the week.
- Homemade Mixed vegetable chilli con carne
- Home vegetable curry, there are so many different curry recipes you could make so get creative and make a nice Indian curry that you know you will enjoy in a day or two
- Black bean, tomato schezuan, sweet & sour, peanut sauce, or a even a plain stir fry. There are so many different stir fry sauces you could make so again just get creative with it.
- Potatoes last for a few days after being cooked so there great to add to your curry or chilli
- Lots of rice of course. I have a rice cooker, which is without doubt the best thing in the world. And rice is the one bulk cook food me and my boyfriend actually share 🙂 we got ours in Argos, you can pick up a good one for about €40. We usually put on about 1kg of rice at a time when cooking it which lasts us a few days
- You can always make some sweet treats too like cookies, granola bars, flapjacks, cashew/peanut butter balls, muffins, protein bars, brownies to make a good snack. The options are endless here.
The most important thing when you are bulk cooking your food is to get creative and made food you know you will enjoy. Don’t make something you kind of like only because it’s convenient to make. You’ll end up not eating it any cooking something you actually WANT. important to make food that lasts well and will still taste good after being refrigerated for a day or two. Here are some of the food I made in the last week or two.
I pre-make my smoothies at night sometimes so I can just grab them and bring them to work the next morning. I’m always rushing in the morning so it makes it really easy and convenient. This smoothie was made up of oats, almond milk, maca powder, mixed frozen summer berries, a couple of frozen bananas, and fresh blueberries.
A big bowl of mixed salad with homemade sun-dried tomato hummus and tahini.
i also made about 500g wholegrain basmati rice cooked in vegetable stock and I added in some sweetcorn, peas, green beans, and spinach. It was really tasty. This lasted me about 2-3 days.
I made some sun-dried tomato and regular hummus and tahini. This was really easy actually it only took me about 20 minutes to make, I might add the recipe for them up soon 🙂 I packed them up in some small lunch boxes and sealed jars. I had to re-use some salsa jars that were empty, i couldn’t find anything else. They make good storage jars though 🙂
Chocolate chip cookies
These cookies are great snack and they last for a few days after making, if they actually last that long!! These are dairy, egg, and oil free and they are the best cookies ever! I added a video a couple of posts back to a YouTube video by Emily. Her channel is VeganVeins, try this recipe out you won’t regret it!
Cacao and maple syrup granola
I always make my cacao and maple syrup granola at the weekend too, I added the recipe for this a few weeks back so if you want to try it yourself you can get the recipe here. I can not have a smoothie with out this now. It is so tasty, it adds a nice crunch to your morning smoothie.
Hope this has helped and given you some ideas, and happy cooking.