We all want to make our meals just a little bit healthier, but sometimes we need a little bit of help to break bad habits. Sometimes, finding a new kitchen hack can get us out of an unhealthy funk — here are five tips to keep you on the right track:
- Keep your salad greens fresher longer
Fresh greens are healthy and delicious — but if you go to make a salad and your greens have already become slimy or wilted, they’re not going to do you much good. Greens wilt more quickly if they’re sitting in a moist bag. To get around this, bring your greens home and then turn the plastic bag from the store inside-out (the inside will be much drier than the outside) or carefully dry the inside of the bag with a paper towel. Put the greens back in the bag and then blow in a puff of air and quickly seal the bag so that it’s puffy from the air. The carbon dioxide from your breath and the dry surface will keep your lettuce nice and crisp.
- Frozen smoothie packs
Smoothies make for a quick and healthy breakfast, but keeping on top of always having a variety of fresh fruit available for your morning smoothie can be a hassle. Buy a bunch of fruit and portion out what you’ll need for your favourite smoothie (strawberries, chunks of mango, halved bananas, etc) and freeze them in individual freezer bags. In the morning all you’ll have to do is dump a bag into the blender with yogurt, juice, or whatever else you like to put in your smoothie and you have an instant healthy breakfast.
- Mason jar salads
Mason jar salads were all the rage online a couple of years ago, mainly because they’re so cute, but the concept is actually a really smart way to pack a healthy lunch. Layer your salad with the dressing on the bottom and the salad greens at the top end of the jar (heavier items like chickpeas, pasta and chopped veggies go in between) and then dump the whole thing into a bowl at lunchtime. Packing a salad this way is not only portable, but it keeps the greens from getting soggy before you’re ready to eat them.
4. Use smaller plates
If you’re aiming to eat smaller portions, swap your dinner plates out for salad plates. Most of us feel compelled to fill our plates when serving ourselves and then eat everything that we dish out. If you’re starting with a smaller surface area, you’re likely to eat less and feel satisfied with smaller portions.
- Bake your hard boiled eggs
Hard boiled eggs can add some healthy heft to salads, sandwiches, and other meals, so it’s nice to have a big batch on hand. Make foolproof hard “boiled” eggs by baking them — fill a muffin tin with raw (uncracked!) eggs, placing one egg in each hole. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes and immediately transfer the eggs to an ice bath. Eggs should keep in your fridge for up to a week. Be sure to store them in a clear container near the front of the fridge so you remember to eat them.