Do you ever struggle to keep produce fresh, meals adequately planned, while managing to find that exact amount that leaves you balanced for each meal without wasting at the end of the week??? Oh meal planning – its such an art!!!
It seems like we are always running out of fruits and veggies and when I do stock up I end up throwing something out by the time garbage day rolls around regardless of how much I plan – and if there’s one thing that bothers me most its wasting food! Its like practically throwing money down the drain. So in an effort to avoid multiple trips to the grocery store and maximize my time and money spent in a week I started doing this one little trick to make my produce last a little longer: soak EVERYTHING in vinegar-lemon water!!!
Did you know that soaking your produce in a mixture of lemon juice and vinegar will help keep your produce fresh longer and cleans them all at the same time??? I started doing this a few weeks ago and it really helps! I try to get to the farmers market on Saturday morning and I come home, fill my sink with 2 cups vinegar and squeeze two lemons into the water and toss in the rinds then add all my produce! The only thing I did separately this week were the blueberries…too much other stuff in there! So they were done in a separate batch. Just soak everything for about an hour, let everything air dry, then package up into containers and/or freeze! I was able to get this done while doing other things around the house and now everything is ready to be consumed later in the week!
A few other tips I’ve learned:
1) Certain fruits and veggies spoil faster than others…so that being said: Berries, Bananas, Kiwis, Avocados, Spinach/Lettuce and Grapes should be consumed first….Followed by Tomatoes, Mangoes, Peaches, Melons and Zucchini…then Cucumbers, Pineapples and Pomegrante, and save your Carrots, Oranges, Potatoes, Celery and Apples for last. So as you meal plan keep this in mind!!!
2) In addition to eating your ripest produce items first – buy some that are ready to eat and some that need to sit a while. For example, I bought two sets of peaches on Saturday – 4 of them were ready to eat and my husband and I ate them Sunday and Monday and 4 more are sitting out and should be ready by Wednesday so we can have them later in the week. Same thing goes for bananas, avocados and pears!
3) Don’t be afraid to FREEZE!!! I know berry season is almost over so I doubled up on my blueberries and strawberries for several weeks and whatever didn’t get consumed by around day 3 after I bought them got tossed into a freezer bag. I’ll use these in my Shakeology, I’ll add them to yogurt and I’ll add them to my oatmeal. I don’t like to eat frozen berries alone but mixed in with something else and they’re great!!! Same thing goes for Bananas. If I ever see bananas on sale I’ll snag a whole bunch then I let them ripen and then cut into quarters, lay flat in a ziplock bag, freeze and then they’re ready for my morning Shakeology smoothie!!! Just make sure you peel them first…I’ve told several people to freeze their ripen bananas and they toss the whole thing in the freezer and let me tell you that peel doesn’t come off too easy!!!
If you find these tips helpful and would like to get 1:1 coaching and support along with motivation and accountability as you begin and/or continue your health and fitness journey, please fill out my challenge and accountability group application below! I share tips and recipes and I will help you with the one thing I always found so difficult – MEAL PLANNING! Remember – your health and fitness success is 80% nutrition. You can get all the results and support you need right in your own home – and you don’t have to do it alone!