Meal prep and ideas in case of COVID-19 quarantine

You want to feel safe and secure for the looming weeks or months ahead. Panic is everywhere and you may feel obligated to run out and stock up ‘cause everyone else seems to be doing it.

While it’s important we all stay proactive in the face of COVID-19, let’s not ignore the reality of what’s happening in super markets across the world. We’re hoarding up items that don’t need to be stockpiled. Read a New York Time’s article here.

Basic necessity products like toilet paper, diapers and hand sanitizer have been swooped up off the shelves.

So while the lunatics are out there buying a years worth of TP, you can shop mindfully for things that would matter if things in the U.S got worse.

What you’d really need in a food shortage

If a food shortage were to occur in the upcoming days/weeks, you should consider stocking up now on nutrient-dense food.

Obviously canned veggies, rices, pastas and a protein source go a long way. However, I saw a post online saying that most fresh produce is still fully stocked in stores.

Since all the canned food shelves seem to have been ransacked, try freezing some fruit and vegetables at home instead.

There’s a myth that frozen and canned fruit/veg don’t have the same nutritional value as fresh. However, freezing your own fresh produce can have more nutrients that supermarket prepackaged items.

Please note I’m not a professional dietician or chef and these are just recipes I like to make and no, I’m not adding cup measurements. All these meals & more can be found on good ole Google.

Life span of produce:

Some items go bad fast. Things to freeze: Berries, grapes, mangos (ripe & peeled only), bananas, leafy greens, meat, milk, & corn (cook and take off rind first)

Here are some produce that last pretty long, if kept in the back of the fridge and in plastic for optimal freshness:

2-4 months: Apples, beets, cabbage, carrots, cheese, garlic, melon, onion, radish, rutabaga, squash & potato

1-2 months: Broccoli, celery, eggplant, ginger, mushroom, pomegrantes, string beans, plantains (if green when bought), peppers & turmeric

Other things to get

Grains: Chia seeds, oats, flaxseed, wheat germ, hemp hearts, rice, quinoa, pasta, couscous & beans

Other: Butter, mayonnaise & other condiments, protein powder, nuts, tea, sugar, coffee, oils, fermented foods like yogurt, pickles, kombucha & kimchi

Buy some planted herbs like basil, cilantro, parsley & scallions.

Vitamin C is everything right now so stock up on oranges, grapefruit, lemons, parsley, bell peppers, broccoli & papaya!

Juice!

Be preventative and precautious and start juicing! You can buy juicers relatively cheap on Amazon.

⁃ For the innocent: Carrot, ginger, lemon, apple, orange, spinach, kale

⁃ For the bold: Beet, carrot, ginger, garlic, turmeric, lemon, spinach, kale, celery, parsley, orange

Quick meals:

For breakfast/lunch

Smoothies: Frozen berries, banana, leafy greens like kale or spinach, ice cubes, milk, some form of fiber like flaxseed or chia & a scoop of protein powder

Oatmeal or cereal with yogurt: You can add wheat germ or flax seed for an extra source of nutrition

For lunch/dinner

BBQ: You can literally put barbecue sauce on anything! Spruce it up with brown sugar and onions. My personal favorite is BBQ fried tofu cutlets, but you can pick your protein. Then make mac&cheese, collard greens with soy sauce & brown sugar, roasted sweet potatoes or corn, and beet and carrot cole slaw

Beet and Carrot Cole Slaw: Mayonnaise, vinegar, carrots, beets, cabbage, lemon, garlic, paprika, cayenne pepper, salt & pepper

(Also goes good with fried fish tacos and on sandwiches)

Tuna mac: Butter, pasta, mayonnaise, tuna, canned mushrooms, peas, parsley, salt & pepper

*Make it a casserole by putting it in the oven with parsley and bread crumbs on top

Bean and corn soup: Super easy to make and you can add chips or make your own by pan frying tortilla wraps

Sausage and pasta: Sausage lasts forever and this dish can be made in a million different ways. My current favorite is Italian chicken sausage with pesto linguini

These were just some tips off the top of my head. All information was sourced from credible websites.

Please also consider those around you suffering from food scarcity and donate to food pantries. Stay safe out there!

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Twitter: @katherinehoey