How to Plan Family Dinners with the Power Foods Lifestyle (Episode #180)
Are you ready to be #PowerMom this Fall by making Power Foods Lifestyle family dinners?
Written by Guest Contributor, L. Peterson in coordination with Kristy Jo.
In Body Buddies Podcast #180, Kristy Jo explains how to make family dinners doable while still staying in line with the Power Foods Lifestyle. Many times, moms wonder how they can make the PFL work for them when they are responsible for feeding the rest of their family as well.
Should you continue making two meals, one for yourself, and another for the picky eaters of your family?
After some time, this approach can get tedious and exhausting, so Kristy Jo gives a plan and strategy for making one meal a night that everyone in the family will enjoy.
There are a few main steps to planning your #PFL meal:
1) Make a Strategic Shopping List
Every Sunday, Kristy Jo sets aside time for her meal prep for the upcoming week. She recommends planning out your meals and shopping list on a weekly basis.
“It’s important to plan ahead because at some point in the day,” she says, “everyone reaches a point of exhaustion where over-processing what to eat feels like too much. If you haven’t planned ahead, these moments will result in you returning to repeated behaviors (like ordering a pizza), rather than keeping on track for the PFL.
On the other hand, if you have planned ahead, you will hit that point of tiredness and are still able to eat your strategic meal because you don’t have to put any thought into it at that moment.”
Along with sticking to your goals, you are also creating new repeated behaviors and improving the way you respond to situations.
If you are familiar with the Power Foods Lifestyle, you know that each meal should have a protein and a vegetable base along with a either a carb, a fat, or both. Kristy Jo gives examples of foods in each food group that are family-friendly. She says that it is best to simplify and pick foods that could be used in many different ways for multiple meals throughout the week.
- For proteins she recommends chicken (organic and hormone free), salmon, and ground turkey.
- For veggies she said broccoli, green beans, and spinach/romaine.
- For fats she lists avocado, olives, and oils such as avocado oil, olive oil, coconut oil, and flaxseed oil.
- Lastly, she suggests red potatoes, quinoa, and pasta as the carbs.
If you would like to expand beyond this list, you can find her full list of Power Foods here for FREE.
2) Choose Your Meal Type
Now that you have your shopping list, it’s time to figure out you’re going to do with it. Kristy Jo explains that once you have all of your ingredients, you can start to think of the kinds of meals you want to make with them.
The four types of meals that she talks about are
- and casseroles.
For every day of the week, plan out a way to put your foods into one of the meal types.
Now all you need are some seasonings.
Seasonings are a game changer! Some basic seasonings that can completely transform your meal are sea salt, pepper, garlic salt, seasoning salt, oregano, and basil. Kristy Jo says that “with just some of these basics, you will be amazed. When you cook things properly, you can completely magnify the taste.”
3) Cooking Your #PFL Meals
Once she went over these basic principles of planning, she gave specific examples of strategic meals to make with the given shopping list. She urges her listeners to not stress the small stuff.
“So many people think ‘well, I don’t have the exact recipe and I don’t know how to cook it.’ Well, my friend, set that oven to 350 degrees, make sure it’s mixed really well, and cover it with tinfoil. Set the timer for 12 minutes. I guarantee that you’re not going to have it cook for less than 12 minutes at 350 degrees. Then check on it. Does it look done? If not, add 3-5 minutes.”
She made it clear that cooking your own food can be simple, but also mentioned that her Body Buddies recipe book is available if that is easier for the listener (all three volumes can be found for purchase at this link).
Kristy Jo’s main goal of this episode was to show that you absolutely have the ability to craft strategic meals on your own.
This is important because “half the battle of cooking and becoming the master of your own food is just getting in the trenches and making it happen.” So whichever route you feel is most doable, go with it!
Here’s an example of a weekly meal plan using these ingredients:
- Protein – Cubed Chicken
- Vegetable – Green Beans
- Fat – Oil for the broth. Any oil works, but Kristy Jo prefers the taste of olive oil in soups.
- Carb – Red Potatoes
- Seasoning – Chicken Bouillon, Garlic Salt, and a dash of basil and pepper. Taste it out.
- If your meal plan is PVF, fish out the red potatoes and give them to the kids! No need to overcomplicate it.
Tuesday: Stir Fry
- Protein – Ground Turkey
- Vegetable – Spinach Romaine and Broccoli
- Fat – Avocado Oil to cook in and Chopped Olives
- Carb – Boiled Quinoa. It will double in size when cooked.
- If you are on a PVF lifestyle, it is okay to have half a cup of quinoa! It is a small enough amount of carbs.
- Protein – Chicken. It can be made ahead of time by boiling and shredding. Lasts 4 days.
- Vegetable – Chopped Green Beans and Chopped Leafy Greens
- Fat – Full Fat Whipping Cream. It’s far better than Cream of Mushroom! Also sliced avocado after its done cooking.
- Carb – Bow-Tie Pasta (cooked beforehand)
- Set the Oven to 350 degrees, mix well, cover with tin foil, and start with 12 minutes! Add 3-5 minutes as needed.
- Protein – Baked Salmon w/ Lemon Pepper and some melted butter.
- Vegetable – Leafy Greens
- Fats – Olives, Avocado, and Olive Oil drizzled on top.
- Carbs – Roasted Red Potatoes for the family
From this example meal plan, it’s obvious that making the #PFL work for your whole family is possible!
Kristy Jo ends the episode by saying,
“What I really want for each and everyone of you, whether we get the opportunity to work together one-on-one or whether you just know me and my voice and I don’t really get to know you, I just need you to be on a trajectory. No matter how slow you go, you need to optimize and keep going because it is the sustainable approach that will win the day.”
Not everyone has the same peak ranges, so she wants to lay the groundwork for you to then adapt it for you personally. Her goal is to make the #PFL work for you so that you can feel your best!