Carrot-Ginger Chicken Soup a la Trader Joe’s

Today’s culinary adventure was inspired by the left over groceries from last week’s Trader Joe’s run. It was one of those days when you look in the fridge and wonder what you can throw together before everything goes bad. I have the  tendency to spend $100 on groceries and then let half, if not more go bad and to waste. It’s frustrating, especially with food prices these days, but sometimes I just get to lazy to cook and opt for a quick chicken salad or burrito bowl after a long day of work. Sound familiar? I know the food in my fridge is healthier for me and that cooking for myself is one of the best health habits one can create, but I honestly just don’t enjoy cooking. So knowing this about myself, I try to create quick hacks to make sure I eat my groceries and cook more often than not. For me, this comes down to being efficient with food prep and cooking times. Here’s how I hack my food prep time…

Carrot Cream over a Wood Background

Try this; instead of buying whole mushrooms, broccoli or onions, buy the pre-chopped options. They may be a little more expensive but the amount of time and effort they save you is well worth it. I opt for mixed stir-fry options which have a full range of veggies like carrots, onions, broccoli, peppers and mushrooms already chopped up. This help me make sure I get a full-range of veggies and vitamins in my diet and saves a ton of time. Another hack is to buy multiple sorts of pre-chopped veggies and the throw them into a big sealed bowl. When it’s time to cook or make a salad, all you have to do is open the bowl, grab a hand-full and throw it in the skillet with some healthy oils. In five-minutes you’ve got your veggies made and exerted very little effort. Try it, it’s a great move.

 

Vegetables

Using these hacks, today’s recipe literally took 1-minute of prep time and about 10-15 minutes of cooking time. This recipe will also last you 3-5 meals depending on your appetite and only cost about $15.00 total. It”s also Paleo, grain-free, gluten-free and dairy-free friendly!

All items are organic and  the pre-chopped versions from Trader Joe’s

 

Prep time: 1min.

Ingredients:

1lb. Chicken breast

1tbs. grass-fed butter

1 carton Carrot-Ginger soup

1 bag Butternut squash

1 bowl Asian stir-fry veggies

1 bag Mushrooms

1 bag Carrot-broccoli slaw

1 cup Coconut milk

1tbs. Coconut oil

1tbs. Hot sauce

1tsp. Cayenne pepper

1tbs. Black pepper

1tbs. Basil

Directions:

1) Pour Carrot-ginger soup mix into a big pot and throw in all of your ingredients (except for chicken and butter) and place on medium-heat gently warming.

2) Turn separate burner on to medium-high heat and melt butter into frying pan. Throw your chicken into the pan, searing both sides then slightly lowering the heat. Cover the chicken and let it cook on both sides for about 5-min each.

3) Once chicken is about 80% cooked, take it out of the pan and cut it up into cubes. Throw the chicken cubes into the soup mix.

4) Turn up the chicken/soup pot  to medium-high heat and bring to a simmer and cover (about 5min.)

5) Cook until veggies are at your desired softness and remove from heat.

6) Serve and store the rest in the fridge, now you’ve got lunch and dinner for the next 2 days ready to go. Simply re-heat and enjoy as you like!

Let me know your thoughts below and feel free to add ways to make this even better and more efficient.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nick Palladino-King teaches students and clients how to reduce stress, to increase happiness and to elevate health through yoga, wellness coaching and strength training.

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