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Cauliflower Rice

7 Tips to Prep & Plan for Healthier Eating

Cooking well-balanced, nutritious meals that satisfy everyone at the dinner table can be a daunting prospect given our busy lives and the time crunch we experience during the week. But Pampered Chef can help you keep dinner on track with a little planning and prep. Here’s how:

1. Swap Salt for Herb Appeal

Chop fresh herbs in advance and then freeze them in our herb freezer tray for easy access when you’re ready to make dinner. Heat up what you’ll need and save the rest for later in the week.

Get the Tray

Herb Freezing Tray

2. Get a Little Saucy

Make pasta sauces ahead of time and freeze them in leakproof containers. Thaw them the day you’ll use them and cook your favorite noodles. It’s an Italian feast in no time. Serve with a side dish of steamed vegetables or a fresh, tossed salad to balance out the carbs.

Get Leakproof Containers

Cauliflower Rice

3. Lighten up the Carbs

Swap regular white rice for a vegetable, such as cauliflower. Hawaiian Fried Cauliflower “Rice” works as a side dish or a meal. It’s easy to make the vegetable rice using the Veggie Strip Maker.

Get the Veggie Strip Maker

Herb Freezing Tray

4. Stock up on Homemade Stock

Chicken stock from the store is loaded with salt. And you won’t believe what a difference making your own can have on all your soups and stews.

Freeze chicken bones and then use them to make stock in our Rockcrok® Dutch Oven by adding water and ingredients like celery, carrots, onions, and parsley. Cool the broth, skim the fat off the top, then strain the liquid and use it in soups like our Hearty Tuscan Soup with Parmesan Croutons.

Get this Dutch Oven

Homemade Stock

5. Let Off Some Steam

Easily steam vegetables or rice using the Small or Large Micro-Cookers. Make these Buttery Dill Carrots for a savory side dish in no time.

See the Large Micro-Cooker®

Buttery Dill Carrots

6. Get to the Root of Easy Meals

Parboil root vegetables and then freeze them. Toss them with olive oil and put them under a broiler on a sheet pan. They’ll be ready to serve alongside your chicken or fish.

Buy a Sheet Pan

Roasted Vegetables

7. Jar Your Own Garlic

Chop garlic using our food chopper, put it in a glass jar, and cover it with olive oil to store in the fridge. Use it when you’re ready to make recipes such as our Tilapia with Garlic Sauce & Pasta.

Get a Food Chopper

garlic bulbs

What do you do in your kitchen to cut down on prep time, eat healthier, or save money? Share in the comments below!

18 Responses to 7 Tips to Prep & Plan for Healthier Eating

  1. Deborah L Bryner January 4, 2017 at 5:59 am #

    I make the BEST marinara sauce ever created, using my Pampered Chef 8-quart Stainless Steel Stockpot. I freeze my sauce in small containers and either use regular pasta or steamed spaghetti squash…but when I get my new Vegetable Strip maker, I will be able to substitute carrots or sweet potatoes for pasta.

    • Janet Heath January 8, 2017 at 3:49 pm #

      I would love to start making my own sauce, any tips?

      • Sandee Lykens January 10, 2017 at 7:04 am #

        Try this recipe featured on The Today Show:

        http://www.today.com/recipes/rao-s-meatballs-marinara-sauce-t68306

        RAO’S MARINARA SAUCE
        Four 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes with basil, preferably from San Marzano
        1/2 cup olive oil
        6 tablespoons minced onion
        4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
        Coarse salt
        12 leaves fresh basil, torn (optional) Can be Replaced with dried Basil or PC Italian Seasoning Mix
        Pinch of dried oregano
        Freshly ground pepper

        For Rao’s Marinara Sauce:

        Remove tomatoes from cans and place in a large bowl, reserving juices. Using your hands, crush the tomatoes. Remove and discard the hard core from stem end and any skin and tough membrane. Set aside.

        Place the oil in a large, nonreactive saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and cook until soft and just beginning to brown, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until softened, about 30 seconds. Stir in the tomatoes and the reserved juices. Season with salt. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce heat to low and simmer until slightly thickened, about 1 hour.

        Stir in basil, if using, oregano, and season with pepper. Continue cooking 1 minute more. Remove from heat and serve.

        Get other great recipes on my Pinterest Board: https://www.pinterest.com/lykenit88/

        • girljoey August 11, 2017 at 9:35 am #

          I pretty much use this very same recipe with a few changes: I just cut the onion in half and let it cook in the sauce. I also add raw carrot to address the acidity. These are removed at the end. I use more garlic but that’s a personal preference. My biggest difference is that after I take out 1.5 cups of tomato sauce for later, I then cook it in a 300 degree oven for 6 hours! It carmelizes and is sooooo yummy. At the end I add back the remaining tomato sauce and correct spices. For a non-meat sauce, this is the best I’ve had yet. I got this recipe from Serious Eats.

    • Liz January 9, 2017 at 10:55 am #

      Can you share your recipe for marinara sauce….? I’ve been looking for a great homemade recipe. 🙂

    • Rita lovejoy February 5, 2017 at 11:46 am #

      Would you email me ur marinara recipe?

    • Therese Blair August 11, 2017 at 12:47 pm #

      Watch out…carrots have alot of natural sugar, but still better than regular pasta. I use my spiralizer to do zucchini noodles

  2. BJ Whiteman January 4, 2017 at 1:23 pm #

    Great suggestions!

  3. Joan Stachow January 5, 2017 at 11:02 am #

    I luv these ideas, going back to order some of them.

  4. Jay January 6, 2017 at 3:29 pm #

    Ty for adding me to this blog! Im always searching for “tricks of the trade” for my hubby and I!

  5. Kristi January 16, 2017 at 2:15 pm #

    In response to the Homemade Soup Stock suggestion above, I freeze not only my chicken bones but also my veggie trims: onion skins, celery leaves, parsley stems, carrot peels. That way when I make my stock, I’m not using up the parts of the veggies that I want to keep. It feels good to use up the otherwise wasted bits.

    • Mandi Sylvester January 21, 2017 at 11:11 am #

      Ohhh great idea about the leftovers! 🙂 To be completely honest… I’ve been with Pampered Chef for over 7 years now… and I’m just NOW starting to WANT to learn how to cook — because my family and I are on an incredible health journey! So I’m LOVING these tips here! And yes, you read that right… I’ve been with PC for that long and not a fan of cooking lol! I just love entertaining! 😀

      With the leftovers though… I do this with my homemade salsa as well. (Just type in salsa recipes in the search box on the PC website.) And one of the dishes I make at my cooking classes is the chicken fajitas with fresh salsa… Well the peppers I use in the fajitas are always left with the top or bottom… so I use those in the salsa! Taking the stem & ribs out with the Scoop Loop or Core & More tool. Happy Cooking!

      • J. Abbott January 23, 2017 at 9:28 am #

        Thank you for great idea

    • Vanessa January 21, 2017 at 11:27 am #

      Great tip! Thanks for sharing!

    • Lucia Bell March 1, 2017 at 4:30 pm #

      Hi, new to this blog, but 40+ years PC , and previous consultant. I love PC products!! My whole kitchen is stocked with them. My Executive pots and pans are well over 10 yrs old and still going stron, as are my Knives. I got those with one of my last parties. The complete set plus block, and sharperner. They are about 5 year old.
      I wanted to add to the conversation, that I save my boiled ” potato stock” as well as my chicken stock. I always season my potatoes when boiling, and the ” stock” left over I freeze. I use it to make soups, gravies, casseroles, etc. the other night I used it along with some chicken stock, to make a great chicken pot pie. I bake my b/s chicken breasts, so not much drippings, and so the potato and chicken sticks became my ” base” for the filling. It was great!

  6. Phyllis Hudson January 23, 2017 at 6:09 pm #

    I love the tips & ideas given on here. A great help !

  7. Phyllis Hudson January 23, 2017 at 6:12 pm #

    Thanks for these tips ! Great ideas !

  8. Marjorie Cuthbertson August 9, 2017 at 3:52 pm #

    I never thought to save potato water for soup or anything else. thanks for the tip.

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