September 23, 2016

One thing that this new stage of our life has taught me is that no two tours in the military will ever be the same. With moving around all the time also comes new jobs, schools, and training for Nick. Some jobs are harder than others. Some jobs require more hours than others. Sometimes Nick and I have a lot of time to spend together, other times he’s stressed and overworked. Sometimes Nick has time to cook (one of his favorite things to do), sometimes it’s all up to me. I like how everything’s always changing, and I especially like when Nick’s job is lighter.

But right now, Nick has a job now where he works long, stressful hours. I never know what time he will get home, and sometimes he’s so tired that he doesn’t want to eat dinner. This has been an adjustment for me because Nick loves to cook. He loves it so much that before he enlisted in the military, he worked as a cook. Because he loves cooking and because he was basically a professional, Nick has always cooked about 50% of the time. Any time we have guests over, Nick is the one to cook. If you’re invited to our house, make sure Nick is the one cooking.

Nick just hasn’t had the time and energy lately to cook, although yesterday he told me he misses cooking and hopes to get back into it once he gets better adjusted to his new job. I hope so too, because his food is way better than mine.

Being able to give more of yourself to your partner when they need you most is something I always want us to do for each other. So, I don’t mind taking over the cooking and the household things for now, because I know that Nick’s working hard, and because I know that when he has a free minute, the first thing he’s going to do is make the most epic food. There is talk of homemade croissants and french macaroons.

The last few months have taught me a lot about marriage and compromise. We are getting into a new groove — for now, at least! We each contribute in different ways, and to me that is what makes us an awesome team.

So anyway, back to the point of today’s post. If Nick is working late, sometimes I eat without him. The last thing I want to do after I have already eaten is start cooking an elaborate meal just for Nick. It’s not happening. Having food on hand that can be reheated easily is also good in case Nick doesn’t feel like eating dinner. He can just eat it the next day, and nothing goes to waste. Here’s what I’ve been cooking lately:

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1. Thomas Keller’s Roast Chicken with Root Vegetables from The Amateur Gourmet

This is my number 1 favorite meal. It’s also ridiculously easy, and a whole chicken lasts a few days. Because it’s hard for me to find rutabagas and turnips in Hawaii, I have been substituting the root vegetables in the recipe for whatever I can find. Carrots, sweet potatoes, and potatoes have been working great.

2. Healthy Chipotle Chicken Sweet Potato Skins from Half Baked Harvest

This recipe seems a bit more involved because it takes a while, but it’s mostly hands off and pretty simple. And once you’re done, you have a lot of food that you can reheat the next day. You can use chipotle in adobe or just straight up chipotle powder for the marinade. Put some roasted veggies on the side and you’re good to go.

3. Paleo Twice Baked Breakfast Sweet Potatoes from Plaid & Paleo.

I like to make a bunch of these at once because they make an awesome breakfast. Sadly, we can’t eat bacon every day, so I omit the bacon and put in whatever vegetables I had on hand – mushrooms, broccoli, etc. All you have to do in the morning is heat it up and add an egg. And I like to put some sriracha. Easiest breakfast ever. We have both eaten this for dinner, too.

4. Sir fry.

The recipe I use for my favorite stir fry is from The Whole30 Cookbook, and I can’t find the recipe online. But stir fry is basically the easiest, healthiest meal ever. You cook some chicken or shrimp or tofu and add in whatever vegetables you want. Or you can just use veggies. This recipe from All Recipes is awesome   because it shows you all the things you can do with stir fry. The possibilities are endless so I never get bored of stir fry.

5. Power Muffins: Blueberry+Oatmeal+Yogurt from Finger Prickin’ Good.

We don’t eat muffins a lot, but I always make these when people come over or when we have guests staying with us. I guess this isn’t technically a meal, but they have Greek yogurt, oats, and fruit, so they hold you over for a while. And you can always eat two!

6. Crustless Spinach Quiche from All Recipes

A dear friend from back home shared this recipe with me years ago. What I love about it is that it can be used as a basis to make any kind of quiche you want. You can change up the cheese and add in any vegetables or meats. There is also no shame in eating a quiche for lunch or dinner.

What are your go-to recipes? I need some new ideas. Bonus points if they are simple and reheat easily!

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14 responses to “6 healthy & simple meals that reheat easily”

  1. Jen says:

    I love easy meals!!! We have finally gone through the meals of froze before the baby was born and I’m so glad I did that. Made life that much easier haha.

    • Carolann says:

      What a genius idea. I will have to remember to do that when I have a baby! I love to eat but I don’t like spending an hour to make one meal! Simple is always better.

  2. carly says:

    I love this post so much. We don’t have the same situation, but similar in the sense that my husband is the better cook, but I currently have more time to take care of the meals. I LOVE root vegetables, so that first meal sounds amazing, but I don’t know if I trust myself with an entire chicken, haha.

    • Carolann says:

      It was hard for me to start taking over all of the cooking because I don’t know as many recipes and because I know I am not as good as Nick at cooking, so I have been trying to keep it simple. The whole chicken recipe is something that Nick used to make all the time. I was so scared to try it out but I figured the worst that would happen would be that I would mess it up and we would order pizza. I got a meat thermometer which helps me know when the chicken is done cooking and I just try to be really careful when the chicken is raw. I think you can do it – let me know if you try it!!

  3. Emma says:

    And, so often food tastes better the next day!

  4. Julie says:

    Ooh, will check these recipes out! I usually make a batch of chili or bolognese sauce. I’m so lame! Haha

    • Carolann says:

      The simpler the recipe, the better, I think! Those sound like awesome go-tos. I am getting to the point with a few of these meals where I don’t even need to look at the recipes so making them over and over is just easier. Let me know if you try any of these meals, I would be interested to see how you like them!

  5. Audrey says:

    I’ve never roasted a chicken before… That might be something I have to try this winter! Stir fry is always a go-to in our house.

  6. I’m a big fan of sweet potato and there are always some in my weekly shop but I don’t know why I’d never thought about making sweet potato skins – they sound so delicious! How lucky you are that one day, when Nick has a bit more time, you will get homemade croissants and macarons – the one time I tried to make them at honme, they came out looking like whoopie pies!!

    • Carolann says:

      Yesterday I googled “is it okay to eat sweet potatoes every day” because I love them so much. I try not to eat them every day but they make a great meal with an egg or some chicken inside them! The first year that Nick and I were married, he made me macarons for Christmas and it was just the sweetest thing — pun intended! I had no idea how hard they are to make. I don’t think I could do it myself but he’s very patient and meticulous! When you come to Hawaii I’ll ask Nick to make them for you ;)))

  7. Amanda says:

    Thanks for these! Saving for later. I love meals that reheat easily. Leftovers are the life blood of our house. ha! That’s so great of you to step up and take over the cooking while he is tired from his job. I love that you are compromising and working as a team!

    • Carolann says:

      Leftovers are everything! Nothing tastes better than a meal you just had to reheat. It took me a while to realize that working as a team doesn’t necessarily mean splitting everything 50-50. But before when we got married, we went to marriage counseling with our priest. Our priest had us answer a bunch of questions about how we wanted our marriage to be. One of those questions was “whose career will take priority?” Because Nick is in the military it is obviously his. We could have skimmed over that question because it was so obvious but it made me think about what teamwork really would look like. It doesn’t have to be you splitting everything evenly, it is being strong where your partner can’t be.

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