Playing with Recipes
With any diet, the biggest problem you’re going to have it keeping to it, as it can get boring very easily, and very quickly. Also, it can be easy to miss meals and replace them with shit due to not having the time, being too tired or any other excuse you can manage to get away with to yourself.
The easiest and best way to keep these sort of pitfalls from affecting you is first and foremost is to set a day each week and use that day for food preparation. Take me as an example: I use a Sunday to do all my meal preparation and cooking, as well as going to the shops to get all the ingredients in.
It doesn't have to be Sunday, just use a day which is easy for you to get all this done. My Sunday –every Sunday – is more or less cooking and shopping for most of the day, but it’s more than worth it through the week, because it means more time that I get to spend with my family through the week.
I get up on a Sunday morning, sit and write down what my meals will be for the week and what ingredients I will need to get them all cooked up later in the day. Then, it’s off to the shops to pick them all up. Sometimes I get them all in one place or sometimes it takes a couple of supermarket trips to get everything I need. When I get home I get started straight away. I start cooking up a storm in the kitchen and more or less make up my post workout meals and dinners to about 90% complete, so that all I need to do is heat them up when I finally eat them. It couldn’t be easier.
If you can take some time as and when, you can to do a quick google search for recipes that you can use as a base to work from, and make a healthy version but on your own budget.
Now, I love a good lasagne but unless you’re using it as a post workout meal (where you can get away with the sugar and high GI carbs), then you’re going to have to mess about with it to make it nice and healthy for you.
So, write the recipe down for that one you liked the sound of online, and then look to see what you can switch out with new, healthier ingredients. An easy one would be to replace the starchy lasagne sheets with thinly sliced sweet potato and the sugary sauce with plain tinned tomatoes – or a low salt pasta sauce.
Below, I have itemised a recipe for a healthy bodybuilding lasagne, and broken it down with costs, too, so give it a go and see how cheap and easy it is to come up with your own healthy meals – that will keep you on the diet and stop it becoming boring!
- 23% Fat Mince 750g – £2.69 @ Aldi
- Sweet Potato 1kg – 79p @ Aldi
- Eggs x2 – 25p @ Aldi
- Fat Free Cottage Cheese 600g – £1.90 @ Tesco
- Low Fat Cheese 350g – £1.55 @ Aldi
- Tinned tomatoes 800g – 90p @ Aldi
- Broccoli 1kg – 89p @Aldi
- Red Onion 1kg – 69p @ Aldi
- Italian Seasoning 10g – 5p @ Aldi
- Garlic Seasoning 10g – 5p @ Aldi
- Set oven to 200 degrees Celsius
- Slice sweet potato into thin slices or use a mandolin
- Dice broccoli and onions into small pieces
- Mix eggs with cottage cheese and set aside
- Put the broccoli into a part sealed Tupperware dish with 2 tablespoons of water and microwave for 8 mins then set aside
- Set the hob to medium to high heat then slightly brown the mince releasing the fats and then put into sieve and pour 3 cups of cold water slowly over it at the sink, this will wash most of the fat away and brings the fat content down by as much as 66%
- Sautee the diced onion in the pan with a little olive oil
- Add the mince to pan with onions and brown the mince with garlic and Italian seasoning
- Add the chopped tomatoes and the part cooked broccoli to the pan and set to medium to low heat and allow to cook for 5 mins
- Build the lasagne now in a large tray or single individual trays
- Add thee sweet potato base then the meat mixture and top with the cream cheese mixture and sprinkle with cheese then repeat until up to top
- Put the large or individual trays into the oven and bake for 30 mins
The macros and costs for this meal spit into 8 separate meals are as follows:
Cost per serving £1.22
Fats per serving 23.2
Protein per serving 53.2
You can play about with this to get the fat content even lower like using low fat cheese or fat free cheese but that will push the budget up!