December is a tough time to worry about your diet – holiday parties, dinners with friends, and a busy schedule preparing for the holidays can make it tough to focus on diet. My first rule at this time of year is: don’t beat yourself up for loosening up the diet a little! Make the best choices you can at the time and move on.
That said, there are a few ways I keep some semblance of control in my and Mr. Coach’s diet:
- Use an Instant Pot or pressure cooker to make meal prep quicker. A meal that could take hours on the stove or in the crockpot can be done in 20-30 minutes with the Instant Pot’s pressure function. It also makes cleanup easier because anything that needs to be pre-browned or sautéed can be done in the same pot before other ingredients are added. Michelle Tam is a huge fan, and her Nom Nom Paleo site has a ton of great recipes for the Instant Pot at: http://nomnompaleo.net/recipeindex/#_=_
- Let your crockpot do the cooking. I use the crockpot regularly-the house smells great when you get home and it’s great knowing dinner will be ready and waiting when you get home. Some of my favorite recipes for the slow cooker are beef or pork stews, as well as the occasional Sunday roast. Here are the recipes for these standbys:
- Beef stew, from the Paleo Newbie: http://bit.ly/2gDV8ld
- Pork and green chile stew, from Kalyn’s Kitchen: http://bit.ly/2fIS8UA
- Crockpot beef chuck roast, from I Eat Mostly Meat: http://bit.ly/2hJxfoF
- Make a few meals ahead of busy days. We’ve recently started cooking for the early part of the week on Sunday, especially soups or stews that taste even better after a day or two. With only two of us in the house, we also make large batches of these and freeze half. For example. Mr. Coach made a wonderful pureed root vegetable soup last weekend and I’m looking forward to having the rest soon! We also made extra meat on the smoker this fall and have a few packages of pulled pork tucked away for easy meals.
I wish you all a wonderful holiday season!