Meal Planning for Grazers - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 12-29-2009, 08:24 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm done fighting it. We're grazers! We just don't DO the bulk eating thing. I've tried. I even nearly succeeded, but we always slip back into grazing. We all feel better when we graze. We have more energy. We eat less. We have more productive days. When we eat meals, we get sluggish after we eat, and ds has digestive issues that flare up way more when I'm "on top" of meals even if I'm bending over backward to accommodate him.

I don't WANT to sit down to multiple meals throughout the day. I want us to spend our time and energy on other things. So, I'm going to just run with the grazing thing. We like to do one meal. A late lunch/early dinner time meal together. That I can plan easy enough.

I'd love input and ideas about healthier, less "snack" food things I can keep around for "munching" on throughout the day. We do spend a good deal of time around the house (friends tend to come here more than we go there because we have acreage smack in the middle of a condo/apt area) but we like things that work for on the go, whether that's away from home or just running around in the yard)

Right now, most of our diet is;
Fresh fruit (We live on an orchard, and I can't keep enough of this in the house! lol)
corn nuts
pickles or artichoke hearts (we have big jars that we grab from)
frozen waffles
almonds (big bag we grab handfuls from when passing through)
lettuce (the kids are big salad fans but it's usually drenched with ranch dressing)
yogurt and granola (these are pretty much inseparable)

well, it's not as unhealthy looking when I type it as it feels. lol I'd still like to see more variety, and less of the yummy "meal" type foods going bad (preferably getting eaten).

I'm thinking small containers of premade foods some, but we need more on the go kind of stuff than that.

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#2 of 8 Old 12-29-2009, 08:51 PM
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Well, what about leftovers? Obviously, to get leftovers you would have to cook in the first place, but make in big batches and freeze/leave in fridge for a couple of days. Could put into your own plate/bowl whatever (heat up if want) & eat on the go....some ideas:
quasadillas (LOVE these cold: sauteed or carmelized onions & mushrooms & cheese, YUM)- on whole wheat....
lasagana (can make healthy)
smoothies (make a jar in the morn for ppl to pour/drink through the day)
potatoes: baked, roasted, fried whatever you like. wedges, or slices, rounds, chopped, or hashbrowns, whatever.
chopped up veggies, maybe cheese & ww tortillas on hand for wraps...
ezekial bread/bagels,
or make your own, healthy bread/muffins/sweet -type bread, pancakes (my kids like these cold even--we have one that we make with oat flour and bananas which is very yum, sweet and holds together well and is yummy cold too...)
popcorn (pre popped, can do it yourself on the stove, a big bowl of it to leave out for ppl to graze on for the day)
enchiladas (yeah I am in the mood for mex-type food right now haha...)
healthy home made pizza (we also like pizza cold)
shredded carrots for carrot salad (can add chopped cukes, onions, and dressing)
hummus for grabbing with veggies or bagel or tortilla chips, whatever to dip
avocados to have on hand, make a big batch of gauc in the morning and refridgerate for the day
soups/stews (make ahead, or keep on warm in crockpot for the day), can even pour this into a mug & sip on the go if it's thin enough
cooked sweet potatoes, whole in fridge to grab (again, we like these well enough cold)
dried fruit/s
apple (or other fruit) sauce (can make home made)--have little containers the kids can put it in to enjoy..
quiche...I just found a really yummy recipe, we like this cold too if need be, YUM...
whatever else you guys like to eat: italian, mexican, greek, indian, chinese, thai: make a dinner or two dinner-sized portions and keep in fridge for a couple days while ppl graze freely
of course, we also like fruit, cut veggies, nut/seeds, cheese and crackers, those are mostly our go-to for on the go stuff.
Hope this helps,
I just realized I did not use very nice punctuation, as I was thinking too quickly over here, but have to run, so my apologizes...

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#3 of 8 Old 12-30-2009, 12:56 AM
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Wow! Paisley provided quite a list! I second the raw veg thing; it looks like if you're 'lacking' at all, it's in veg. We like carrot sticks or baby carrots, raw sugar snap peas, celery, bell pepper, cucumber...all good 'on-the-go' veggies.

Sandwiches - make ahead, or make sandwich fillings (hummus, egg salad, etc.) to carry along in containers. We like 'salad on a bun' - veggie combo, sometimes with a little cheese or mayo, sprinkled with herbs.

What about healthy 'appetizer' type foods you could assemble ahead and freeze for hot bites? Little spanakopita, mushroom puffs, etc...

That's what comes to mind w/o getting too redundant!

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#4 of 8 Old 12-30-2009, 12:50 PM
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I second the recommendation for leftovers! Make big batches of soups, casseroles, stews and freeze them in meal-sized containers.

Whenwe're on the go, we eat lots of muffins - especially these Banana Oatmeal Muffins.

1 1/2 cups/375 mL whole wheat flour

1 cup/250 mL rolled oats

2 tsp/10 mL baking powder

1 tsp/5 mL baking soda

1/2 tsp/2 mL salt

2 eggs

1/4 cup/60 mL cooking oil

1/4 cup/60 mL honey

1/4 cup/60 mL milk

3 medium bananas, mashed

1/2 cup/125 mL chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 400F/200 C.
Get out your muffin pans. (I make 12 regular sized muffins and 12 mini-muffins with this recipe.) Grease the muffin pan(s), or get out the paper cupcake liners. This recipe makes enough for 12 regular sized muffins and 12 mini muffins.
In a large bowl, put the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix. Make a well in the middle.
In a small bowl, beat the eggs until they are frothy. Add the oil, honey, milk and bananas. Mix thoroughly.
Pour the banana mixture into the well in the middle of the dry ingredients. Stir just enough to moisten it all. (Stop! Don't overmix! The secret of making perfect muffins lies in the stirring. It's okay if there are still some flecks of flour visible. The batter will be lumpy - that's fine! Resist the urge to keep stirring!)
Fill your muffin cups about 3/4 full.
Bake for about 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in a muffin comes out clean.
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#5 of 8 Old 12-30-2009, 12:55 PM
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Dips and spreads are good too for when you're out and about. This recipe for White Bean Dip is good with veggies or on crackers.

1 can (19 oz/540 mL) white kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 Tbsp/15 mL lemon juice

1 Tbsp/15 mL olive oil

1 clove garlic, pressed

1/2 tsp/2 mL dried oregano, crumbled

1/2 tsp/2 mL salt

1/4 tsp/1 mL pepper

Place all ingredients in a food processor fitted with a blade.
Blend until very smooth.
If you want to get fancy, transfer the bean dip to a nice bowl and sprinkle some finely chopped fresh parsley on top.
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#6 of 8 Old 12-30-2009, 01:22 PM
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Thank you for this thread!! We are also grazers.

Apples with peanut butter and cheese.
There are many varieties of yummy bulk trail mixes at most health food stores.
I second muffins and breads - banana, carrot, zuccinni.
Granola bars - you can make if you want. We just buy them.
Dried fruit of smooshed fruit snacks.
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#7 of 8 Old 01-02-2010, 07:01 PM - Thread Starter
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ooo....thank you so much everyone for all the supper yummy ideas! A lot of them are very similar to things we like when we're trying to do the eating in mass thing and will translate over this way VERY well. This thread will keep my busy, and our diets varied for well past the foreseeable future. lol

I think I'm finding we all have a preference for rawer foods too. It just kind of dawned on me today. Trader Joes had a great deal on Brussels sprouts still on the stock. A ton of them for super way cheaper than they would normally cost. We like them, so I grabbed a stock. I'm not even going to have a chance to cook them! The kids have decided these are just the yummiest things ever. They're eating them raw (I'd never even thought of that possibility) like they were candy or something! lol

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#8 of 8 Old 01-08-2010, 03:01 PM
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Thank you for this thread! We are totally grazers too, and I've also been fighting it all this time. We manage to have maybe 1-2 "real" meals at the "right" time and I feel bad. All 3 adults in the house also work at night too, so that complicates things further for dinner. Now I don't feel so bad knowing I'm not the only one. Maybe I should just give in to it too.

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