Batch cooking for a week of clean meals

my story Feb 22, 2016

As a family with food sensitivities, I end up making almost all of the meals we eat each week from scratch.  After five years of eating this way, I've gotten really good at doubling portions and making ahead and turning one dinner into three meals.  Here are some of the things I made this week.

Soaked Steel-cut Oatmeal (in the InstantPot)

I like making steel-cut oats in the InstantPot because it is so quick.  I can set it up the night before to soak and in the morning just push the button while I make a cup of tea and get going.  This recipe is dairy-free and gluten-free.

2 cups steel-cut oats
3 1/3 cups water
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
pinch of salt
pat of butter or coconut oil
optional flavorings: maple syrup, cinnamon, vanilla, fresh or dried fruit, nuts

1. The night before, I put the oats in the (unplugged) InstantPot with water and vinegar to soak.
2. In the morning, add a pinch of salt and a pat of butter.  Set the InstantPot on Multigrain setting for 10 minutes.
3. When it finishes cooking, release the pressure and give it a stir.  I usually finish ours with some maple syrup and cinnamon.  But sometimes we also add dried fruit like raisins or pineapples.
4. Store the leftover oatmeal in a mason jar in the fridge.  Warm it up the next day you feel like oatmeal with a little more water or some coconut milk, to your desired consistency.



Taco Meat (with sneaky vegetables)

Forget taco Tuesday.  We eat tacos any day of the week.  It is one dinner my kids will eat without complaint where I can sneak in some veggies. This meal is gluten-free and can be dairy-free too if you omit the cheese and sour cream.  While this looks like a lot of ingredients, I usually throw in whatever spices we have around.  You can also use a taco seasoning mix to make it easier.  I suggest adding a can of chopped tomatoes if you can tolerate them and like it juicier. 

2 pounds of ground pork
1 pound of ground buffalo
1 cup of shredded carrots, cut small
1 cup of kale, bok choy, or swiss chard cut very small
2 stalks of celery, chopped small
2 T chile powder
1 T cumin
1 T oregano
2 limes
1 avocado
salt and pepper to taste
corn tortillas (optional - this makes a killer taco salad too)
taco toppings: salsa, cheese, sour cream, shredded lettuce, fajita peppers, OlyKraut smoke + kale sauerkraut

1. Brown the meat in a big skillet with the chopped veggies.  The pork renders enough fat to cook everything nicely.  
2. Add the spices and juice of one lime to the meat and veggies.  Continue to cook until meat is well done.
3. Make the guacamole: mash up the avocado with some lime juice and salt to taste.
4. Fill the tortillas (or make a salad) with the meat, guacamole, and other toppings.  Stuff your face and enjoy!
5. Store the leftover meat for tacos any day.  Or taco salad.  Or tortilla soup...




Quick Bone Broth Soups

I am convinced that bone broth has been an important part of our healing process.  Every week I make bone broth with leftover bones that I keep in the freezer.  I add seaweed and vinegar to the broth to add flavor and extract as many healthy minerals as possible.  I use up whatever leftovers we have in the fridge to make healthy soups, and then store them in mason jars in the freezer.  My husband, who eats AIP, takes them to work as an easy breakfast or lunch.   The tortilla soup pictured above includes taco meat and leftover corn, roasted butternut squash, fried red peppers, and avacado.

While I now use the InstantPot to make broth, I used to make this in your crockpot and it was just as easy.  Use this recipe if you want to try it in the crockpot.  

For the Quick AIP Broth in the InstantPot:

leftover chicken, pork, or beef bones (or soup bones from the store)
8 carrots, tops removed
8 stalks of celery, chopped in half
1 piece/sheet of kombu
1 T apple cider vinegar
bay leaf
2 T salt

For the Freezer Soups:

leftover meat (shredded chicken, ground meat, pot roast, etc.)
greens (kale, chard, spinach, bok choy, escarole, etc.)
other leftovers from the fridge (peppers, corn, rice, beans, etc.)

1. Make the broth: Put the bones, veggies, and seasoning in the InstantPot. Cover with water to the 10 cup mark. Cook on manual for 45 minutes. Strain the broth and set aside.
2. Remove the carrots and celery from the bones in the strainer.  Chop them into bite sized pieces. (They will be pretty mushy, but that doesn't bother me.  These are really easy to digest and have all of those good minerals in them.)
3. Layer the meat, cooked veggies from the broth, and greens into pint sized mason jars.
4. Poor the strained bone broth over the veggies and let everything cool down.
5. Place jars in the freezer once cool (or else you'll crack the mason jars!) for when you are ready to eat.



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