Once upon a time, I worked full time across town, while riding Calgary Transit – although reliable, not the fastest or most direct method of getting anywhere. Calgary is a sprawling city. Downtown is quite closed in but very small compared to many other major cities, however the suburbs are massive. There are trains that take you from one side to another and there are, now that I drive, buses with limited stops – express buses, but regardless, transit is slow.
At the time I worked across town, my kids were not quite teens and I was a newly single mom….and I still managed to get dinner on the table every night before 7 pm. Now? With a car, leaving half an hour earlier and with no kids simply dying of starvation? Can’t get supper on the table before 8:30pm. What the hell?
I know I used to use my slow cooker a whole lot more than I do now, so that’s probably a lot of my issue, but c’mon, this is ridiculous.
I also am having trouble getting a lunch together daily. I don’t want to heat things up in the microwave at work – just not feeling it – so I want foods that don’t have to be heated, but not just plain salad.
So here I go, meal prepping lunches and perhaps breakfasts for the week as well as going back to meal planning for the weeks’ suppers, as well.
Today’s is pretty basic. It is salad but includes chicken with it.
In the interest of making the chicken cook from frozen faster, I’m cooking it, and some beans for another recipe in the instant pot. Whoever invented that thing should be knighted.
Ingredients for 4 days or 4 people:
- 2 chicken breasts, cooked in the instant pot, from frozen, because I can. You can thaw and grill, or bake or pan fry or cook ’em however you want to. It’s Sunday evening and I want hands off.
- 8 cups chopped romaine lettuce (I know it isn’t traditional, but it tastes good)
- ½ cup olives – I just use pickled olives stuffed with pimentos – again, they taste good
- 1/2 English cucumber, sliced
- 1 bell pepper, sliced
- 2 cups of cherry tomatoes, sliced or not, cooks choice
- 1 small red onion, sliced then soaked in cold water to reduce the “onion-y” bite – I opted out because I’m eating this at work
- Banana peppers (if you like them)
- 3-4 TB feta, crumbled
- 2 TB olive oil
- ½ tsp minced garlic
- 1 TB lemon juice
- Some parsley for fun, if you have it
- 1 tsp Greek seasoning if you have it. If you don’t add 1 tsp of oregano, for some extra flavour.
Cook the chicken however you are going to. Spice it if you’re so inclined (more oregano, some garlic, some olive oil or some Greek seasoning with the olive oil will do the job quite nicely).
Let it cool down and then chop into pieces – however you want them presented.
Toss the vegetables together with the feta cheese, if you’re using it.
If you are serving this for a meal, mix the oil, garlic, oregano and vinegar together and pour over the salad. If you are prepping for the week, mix together and put into small containers if you wish – this will help keep the vegetables a little crisper until they are ready to be eaten.
If this is a prep, split the salad into 4 containers fairly evenly. Add a quarter of the chicken pieces to each container and add the small containers of dressing if you left it separate.
Put lids on the containers and place in the fridge. Grab one every day and don’t forget your fork.