I shared my new (gloriously easy) trick for healthy eating the other day that I’m calling the “One Red Lid” trick. Basically, instead of doing traditional “meal prep”, your only goal is to snap down one lid on one container of healthy food everyday, and when you do this, you end up having enough to food to keep yourself eating healthy food everyday. It seems like the math wouldn’t quite work out there, but it does! Once you have your few containers of food in your fridge, you’ll be amazed at how many meals (that you’ll love) that you can make for yourself without ever spending more than a few minutes or seconds preparing for it. Treats are of course allowed every now and then, but you don’t end up eating unhealthy food just out of convenience when you know you really don’t want to. This super simple trick puts me in complete control over how healthy most of my meals are.
I wanted to share a few ideas for some different types of simple foods that I “snap a lid on” on a regular basis so you can give this trick a try without having to give it too much thought. Just prep one container of one of these foods everyday and your fridge will be stocked! Always make sure you make enough to last you 3-4 days ish. Just guestimate on the amounts when you do your prep and you’ll learn how much you really need of each item after a few days. Don’t waste too much precious time worrying about exact measurements or calculations!
Ancient Grains Type Blend (Usually a bit sticky and great for homemade sushi!)
Whole Grain Noodles and Pastas
Lentils simmered in broth and seasonings (great in a sandwich or on rice!)
Fruits and Veggies (Cooked and raw)
Simple Veggie Soups
Carrots (Sticks or shavings for topping other stuff)
Sliced Green/Red Onion
Bell Pepper Slices
Grapes (washed, removed from stems)
Berries (washed and sliced if needed)
Apple Slices in Lemon Juice
These are great to keep on hand, but don’t really require any preparation, so I don’t really count them as one of my red lids for the day. I use these to top my red lid foods or to go on the side of other things.
Mixed Baby Lettuce (Base for a salad, topping for rice and beans, mix in to soups)
Nut Butters (Peanut, Almond, etc.)
Seeds (Sesame, Sunflower, Pumpkin)
Dried Fruits (I mostly just keep raisins on hand)
Nori (Sushi seaweed wrap! You can make homemade sushi out of so many things!)
Herbs and Spices
Miso for miso soup
This list could obviously be endless, but these are some of the basic things that I find myself making the most often and that really make my life easier. It’s a good list to get started with if you’re looking to stock up on healthy food, one day and one red lid at a time!
What healthy foods do you like to keep on hand in your fridge to make healthy eating easier?
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Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.