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Low Carbing when you have Crazy Busy week

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What are your best tips, hounds? I'm looking for your quickest suppers, otherwise I might make hard boiled eggs every night this week.

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  1. I like to keep cooked chicken (or any protein) on hand so I can assemble a chicken Caesar or other salad quickly.

    1. Supermarket rotisserie chicken, omelets, Italian sausages...

      Hmm - question - can you make some stuff ahead and eat off it or do you not have time to cook at all and need pre-made supermarket stuff? And is budget a consideration? Because a week of pan fried steaks would suit me fine and take no time! :-)

      That being said, I made a TON of pulled pork a couple weeks ago and divided up into quart baggies, about a cup's worth in each bag. Popped it all in the freezer and have been taking one out to thaw in the fridge every morning. By evening, it's defrosted and I can heat up in microwave or a frying pan. Delicious on a salad, mixed with eggs, eaten plain with with hot sauce and an avocado (what I just did)...

      But, let's say this - as straight from the market as possible -

      - rotisserie chicken
      - deli carnitas
      - Italian sausages (pan fry, split in half midway through cooking and butterfly so they cook even faster)
      - steam bag vegetables
      - bagged salads and salad bar toppings
      - omelets and salad bar toppings
      - chef and cobb salads
      - pan fried steaks and burgers
      - spaghetti squash (quick cooked in microwave)
      - tuna and chicken salads
      - "burger in a bowl" where you can just brown the beef and serve with everything that would go in a burger
      - lettuce wrap sandwiches

      1. Scrambled eggs or an omelet or frittata are really fast, and if you have some vegetables prepped you can toss them in along with cheese to make it a really filling meal.

        Seafood cooks really quickly - either buy it fresh, or defrost something frozen while you're at work. Then it's just a matter of seasoning & choice of cooking method (pan-fry, grill, bake, broil). You can buy or make guacamole and shredded cabbage or slaw, and turn fish fillets into "tacos" wrapped in lettuce leaves (or low-carb tortillas).

        Canned salmon comes together with egg, seasoning & optional low-carb breadcrumbs into a salmon patty in no time.

        Meatloaf keeps well for several days - and tastes better reheated! If you have the time one day to make one, you can enjoy the leftovers later in the week.

        And obviously stir-fry is fast. Ground or cubed chicken, turkey, beef or pork, or shrimp, plus fresh or frozen veggies & your choice of seasonings.

        You might also want to consider a slow cooker if time is an issue more often than not.

        1. I always have tubs of pre washed organic arugula and mixed baby greens. Can add cold cuts, leftover steak or chicken or cold cuts, some cheese, nuts, maybe a few dried cranberries and good bottled dressing.

          Or pizzas made on large low carb wraps with sausage, onion, peppers from the freezer. Or Italian sausage with peppers and onions. Honestly, if I were working, I'd probably use pre cut veggies from the store instead of home prepped organic a lot of the time, too.

          1. Hi there--thank you for your replies, all!

            My plan (and we know how those can go amuck) is to go to the store on Sat, and do meal prep on Sunday, as much as possible for the week. One of my coworkers has to be out next week, so that work is going to trickle down/avalanche down depending on the day.

            Here's what I'm thinking so far.

            I am going to get greens (arugula, romaine if it's good), plus onions. I wish the salad things were better in my neck of NE. So disappointing this time of year.

            I am going to get a chicken (will roast, then use that sucker up)

            I *think* I have a bag of shrimp in the freezer, and will check that.

            Going to hit the deli for turkey, rb, cheeses.

            Def. Italian sausage.

            I love (as in....LOVE) salmon in all its forms but H does not (wth???) so tuna for him and salmon for me, canned.

            And yes, I'm getting a couple dozen good eggs.

            It'll come together, but you know when you have a moment of "arghhh!" when some business/busyness is coming? That's been my head the past 24 hrs.

            Maybe I should get a nice bottle of wine, too.... :-)

            I also have to remember to get celery, olives, etc and make them available for snacks. H is a good guy, but trends toward lazy about prepping food. He would rather eat something quick and carby than spend 5-10 min. fixing something good. So I try to have nothing that would "damage" him in the house....(eg if I had a box of Wheat things, he would eat the box of wheat thins for lunch). Sigh.

            5 Replies
            1. re: pinehurst

              Dipping a precut celery stick into a bowl of chicken or tuna salad is super quick! Your guy can't say no to that. :-)

              Or wrapping some deli meat around a pickle (high sodium but drink lots of water and it's all good). I love cream cheese on ham and those sandwich sliced pickles all rolled up.

              Definitely get that wine!

              1. re: Violatp

                slices of cucumber and zuchinni work well for scoops and substitute for crackers

              2. re: pinehurst

                Sounds like a great plan :)

                If you like sardines, grab a couple of tins of those too - just pop off the lid and dig in, no prep necessary!

                And consider adding some low-carb dips like baba ghannouj, guacamole, or anything with a Greek yogurt, sour cream or cheese base to the snacking repertoire. Cucumber slices or spears make great dipping alternatives to celery.

                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                  And if soy is okay on your menu, I will sometimes lunch on a cup of black soybeans with vinaigrette. That fast and easy, and Eden cans them without BPA linings.

                2. re: pinehurst

                  My husband is that way too and I keep a big supply of these in the house:

                  Pork rinds
                  Seaweed snacks
                  Precut salami, ham, turkey
                  Precut cheese -- Swiss, provolone, cheddar, pepper jack
                  1oz bags of almonds
                  Sugar free jello

                  Sometimes I'll do the cream cheese/pickle/ham thing mentioned above. Or smoked salmon on cucumbers. Or use the hard boiled eggs to make deviled eggs. I also enjoy raw veggies with blue cheese dressing as a quick snack, or radishes with butter & sea salt for something fancier.

                3. In addition to all your nice greens, go to the deli and get them to cube some of your favorite low carb things like roast turkey, ham, etc. Ditto some aged cheeses - manchego, goat cheese gryere, gouda, etc. You then have either snacks, or things you can throw into a salad. Mix and match with different greens, deli meats, etc.

                  When you do have a few minutes, you can throw some onions and wine in with a brisket, wrap it in foil and ignore it in the oven for 3 hours. Slice it and put in portions in tupperware with the gravy and onions. Have one for dinner and put the rest in the freezer. You should get 3 or 4 meals for you and hubby for one time effort.

                  Also think chops - veal, lamb, pork, etc. You can broil these up in no time and make a few extras to - you guessed it, chop up and add to salad greens for lunch the next day.

                  If you have not already done so, check ou tthe recipes on the Atkins web site. They have some winners there. We are all fond of the crustless broccoli quiche. A few minutes effort gives you 6 breakfasts or lunches, or add salad and you have a few light dinners for you and hubby.