Clean eats for Monday
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How to Avoid a Manic Monday (Brain Food Included)

 

Chicken and broccoli Monday morning, you gave me no warning of what was to be….

Ok, so no one really likes  Mondays, especially when you have a fun-filled weekend. It’s not like we can’t tolerate them, though, with a little brain food.

I like to prepare my meals to bring to work (most days) because it not only saves me money, but it also makes me feel healthier, knowing what exactly I’m eating.

That being said, I don’t really like spending my weeknights cooking for the week, so I’ll try and make food for the first few days of my work-week on Sunday, when I have free time. I have a few go-to favorites, but I really love incorporating chicken in most dishes. It’s a great lean protein with vitamins and minerals (which is super necessary to stay focused). I don’t know about you, but I feel beyond sluggish after eating foods with few nutrients and lots of oil, like fries.

I also love eating pasta, but who doesn’t? One of my favorite recipes is sautéed pasta with broccoli, but I love adding a protein and swapping the white pasta for whole wheat pasta.

Chicken, broccoli and whole what pasta (with marinara sauce) is one of my favorite foods because it’s not only easy to make but it’s nutritious and satisfying. It’s packed with protein, a vegetable (with nearly as much vitamin C as an orange), and a satisfying whole grain carb. In fact, I make this meal too often, and I may have mentioned it before on social media before, *cough Instagram cough.*

I like to cook my chicken on a George Foreman 2 serving classic plate grill because it takes about 1/4th of the time that it takes if I were to cook it in the oven (plus it tastes smoky and flavorful), but if you have another ninja way of cooking, then go for it!

Recipe for Chicken, Broccoli and Bowtie Pasta 

(Serves 4, or maybe less, depending on how hungry you are)

Ingredients 

-4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (I’ll buy Perdue or whatever I can find that is organic!)

-2 cups of baby broccoli florets (I just frozen Birds Eye because I can buy in bulk and save it)

-8 ounces of whole wheat bowtie pasta (I use Delallo)

-Grated Parmesan Cheese

-Salt and pepper to taste

-Spices to taste (I like using McCormick’s Southwest “Sweet and Smoky“)

-Pasta sauce (I usually just eye-ball the amount, but I always make sure to buy the sugar-free sauces. Yes, some sauces have added sugar in them.)

Directions

-In one pot, boil water on the stove, and cook the pasta accordingly

-In a separate pot, boil water for the broccoli and cook for 5-6 minutes

-Spray your George Foreman grill with non-stick cooking spray

-Preheat the grill for several minutes, and season your chicken breasts with spices and salt and pepper

-Place chicken breasts on the grill, cover it, and cook for 3-5 minutes (until the juices run clear)

-Heat up pasta sauce in a pan for several minutes (just before it boils)

-Combine your cooked pasta, broccoli and chicken, pasta sauce, and serve with garnished Parmesan cheese and additional spices. Enjoy!

I’ll get about three tupperware containers out of the above portions since I’ll eat it for dinner as well.

After I eat this as my Sunday meal, I’ll put some in a tupperware container to be my savior come Monday at noon. When my stomach starts to growl, I won’t have to reach for the first fast food meal I can find!

Have any cooking suggestions? Leave me a comment!

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