Many times I feel like a day of no cooking. In the paleo world, this almost sounds like an oxymoron. Everyone complains that paleo is a tied-to-the-kitchen kind of existence, but I am here to say this could not be further from the truth. 

 

Spending all day prepping meals and batch cooking is not in the cards for me.

 

You Don't Have to Batch Cook

I’m saying this as someone who is not a weekly meal prep person, either. Many people I know batch cook for the week. Not me. I have lived with multiple sclerosis for almost thirty years, and as a result my hands have limited function. Although I have learned how to use the crockpot to create three different meals from one pot (you can check out those recipes here), batch cooking has never been something I could do because it requires all of my hand function for the day. 

 

"Seldom, if ever, do you open my refrigerator and not find at least some veggie that has already been cooked. It's so simple I don't even consider it batch cooking. I think of it as smart cooking."

But thirty minutes after a good sweat-fest, I need to fuel my body. And many, if not most times I do not want to cook - I just want to eat. Unfortunately, bars, protein shakes, and dried fruit are often filled with ingredients that do not support the conscious living movement.

 

The No-Cook Solution

Although they may be my favorite no-cook snack, a person can only eat so many olives. Fortunately, I've learned a few tricks to get around this problem.

 

Roasting vegetables in advance is one of those tricks. Yes, technically that's cooking, but if you do it in advance, then you don't need to cook at the time you're eating. Whatever veggie I buy, I just roast the whole pile at a time. And it's so simple to do that I don't even consider it batch cooking. I think of it as smart.

 

Below are some easy and delicious throw-together meals I find myself recreating again and again. And I'm not talking hard-boiled eggs and celery sticks, which are not the most exciting meal after a good sweat-fest. 

 

Tuna and Kraut Salad with Avocado

 

Ingredients:

  • Store or homemade kraut
  • I can of tuna (sustainably caught preferred)
  • 1 avocado
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper (pink Himalayan sea salt preferred with fresh ground pepper)

 

Directions:

  1. Mix can of tuna with kraut, adding salt and pepper to taste. Scoop onto a serving plate.
  2. Slice avocado and place on plate next to tuna mixture. Drizzle all with olive oil and another round of fresh ground pepper. Enjoy.

 

Sardine Salad With Roasted Asparagus and Avocado

 

Ingredients:

  • Can of sardines
  • Bunch of arugula or green of choice
  • Roasted asparagus (storebought or roasted yourself in advance - recipe below)
  • Avocado
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

 

Directions:

 

For the Asparagus:

  1. Roll asparagus in olive oil to lightly coat. Place on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet. 
  2. Set oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and cook until desired doneness - approximately 15 minutes, or more for crispy.
  3. Place in refrigerator and save for snacks or throw-together meals. I use this method for almost all of my veggies.

 

For the Salad:

  1. Line plate with arugula or greens of choice.
  2. Add asparagus and sardines with avocado slices.
  3. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic, topping off with fresh ground black pepper and pink Himalayan sea salt. Bam.

 

Avocado Chicken Salad With Kraut and Carrots

 

Ingredients:

  • Store-bought organic roasted chicken
  • Bunch of arugula or greens of choice
  • Organic baby carrots
  • Store-bought or homemade sauerkraut
  • Avocado
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

 

Directions:

  1. Line plate with greens, adding the remaining ingredients on top.
  2. Drizzle entire dish with olive oil and salt and pepper to desired amount. Yum.

 

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Photo 1 courtesy of Shutterstock.

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