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Time management - please offer suggestions

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  • Time management - please offer suggestions

    Hello, everyone.

    I am newly single and new to paleo eating. For some reason I don't seem to be able to get into a routine.

    Having been used to cook for a family, I am still trying to figure out how to buy/cook for one. The fact that I now cook paleo makes it both easy (no arguments) and difficult (lots of prep).

    I am also allergic to pork, eggs and to a much lesser extent beef, and slightly intolerant of nuts, which somewhat limits my options.

    I am trying to organize my time so that paleo cooking doesn’t overtake my very limited free time. Would you please share your schedule with me?

    Do you shop weekly? Do you cook daily or weekly? I seem to be doing constant prep – lunch for tomorrow, dinner for today, day in and day out….I love to cook but hate to be chained to the kitchen. Please help with suggestions and tricks you learned while on this diet.

  • #2



    • #3


      • #4

        Why not? You obviously must have it down pat.


        • #5

          Cook in BIG batches. I only cook for 2, but usually make at least enough food for 6. I shop on Friday evening after work (Whole Foods and Costco are near my office) and Saturday morning (farmer's market is near the house!), and usually cook about 4 big meals per week. Then we have eggs/salads in addition to leftovers for lunch and breakfasts, and the other dinner nights. Sometimes I'll cook more meals in a week, but mainly it's cooking something big, then using the meat in different ways. Roast chicken one night, then chicken salad the next day, etc.

          That is the one biggest time saver I have, is just to learn to love leftovers! I can eat "dinner" food any time of day now

          You are what you eat,
          and what you eat eats too - Michael Pollan


          • #6


            Try a traditional mealplan, e.g. roast a hunk of meat on Sunday, have it cold with veggies Monday, curry it Wednesday, Shepherd / Cottage Pie Thursday....!

            Or, cook up big batches, divide into tupperware, and freeze.

            Oooor you can find bags of frozen meat / lamb chops / fish fillets that you can bake from frozen, throw in some veggies to roast at the same time.

            I generally shop once a week if that - so I eat the most perishable veg first (eg salad) and have the sturdier stuff later on.


            • #7

              1. I shop weekly usually. I throw in a "use stuff in the freezer day" a couple times a month too.

              2. Also, I leave a free form meal plan a couple days a week so I can use the leftovers/stuff in the fridge/cabinets up.

              3. When I shop Ill spend an hour or so doing prep on everything. Clean and chop the veg/fruit. Chop the meat and stivk it in the fridge so its ready. Chop a couple onions for use in a couple days.

              4. I eat leftovers ALL the time! For lunch its super easy. Ill cook maybe 3x a week but be fed the whole week (granted Im cooking for 1).

              5. I do a lot of "pot meals". Ill make stews, braises, roasts and such. If I do make something like a steak... its rare so not too long of a cook time. If I make something that takes a while (stuffed peppers, cabbage rolls, chili, roast, burgers...) make a lot and freeze them!

              6. I spend the most time on brekkie. I make an omlette evey day with veggies and a cup of tea.

              For meal ideas I would reccomend checking out FlyNavyWife's Journal and HannahC's. I would do shameless self promotion but I haven beed posting too regularly in my journal.

              Life on Earth may be punishing, but it includes an annual free trip around the sun!


              • #8

                Oooo I forgot - cabbage!

                Chop the whole darn thing when you buy it, boil for a few minutes, then rinse in cold water, bag it up in portions, and freeze.

                Lots of veg can be blanched and frozen like this. I also like pre-packed frozen veg for individual portions and less waste

                Hope you have a big freezer!


                • #9


                  I also get our organic fruit and veges delivered each week to save an hour and half round trip to the closest organic markets. Then we (4 of us) go to the markets once a month and buy a massive amount of meat/fish/chicken, etc. Like Tara tootie we prep most stuff as soon as it's home and package the meats into the meal sized portions before freezing.

                  Also, cooking casseroles and stuff in the slow cooker overnight is awesome. Wake up and breakfast is there plus heaps of left overs for the freezer.



                  • #10

                    What happens to you when you eat pork and eggs and beef?

                    You lousy kids! Get off my savannah!


                    • #11

                      nausea and itching....i have been tested for allergy, and, strangely enough, I am allergic to meats and milk but not to wheat or corn...don't know what gives...


                      • #12

                        Thank you, everyone, this has been quite helpful.


                        • #13

                          @MrB: What do you mean? I think the OP posted a viable question. I had to go through this too when starting out primal.

                          I'm similar to hannah & Tara, basically:

                          - I usually shop once a week, Thurs or Saturday.

                          - When I get home, I wash/prep veggies and make salad or soup in a big batch.

                          - Boiled eggs are a nice snack. I usually hardboil 4 or so, so that I can pair it with fruit and have a breakfast or snack on the go.

                          - Meat: I cook a big batch of it and combine with various meals. I freeze what I'm not going to use to avoid wastage. Meat is also something good to buy in bulk and freeze if it's on special. Some weeks I don't buy meat at all because it's already in the freezer.

                          - Roast a whole chicken for yourself! It's awesome! You can use the whole bird in various meals, make stock etc.

                          - I think the real time-saver is to prepare in bulk. While I do cook a fresh omelette or stir fry here and there, a lot of my week is spent grabbing meals that have already been prepped and heating it up.

                          @allergies: there's still other options... varieties of fish, poultry. With nuts, have you tried soaking them? I believe that helps with digestion.


                          • #14

                            'Light - it's all been said, but I sympathize with ya in a different way. I have a large family and multiple responsibilities. I use evenings or Sunday afternoons to make a batch of said recipe and then it's ready for me the next day for lunch, supper, etc.

                            The fun part here is experimentation - don't fight the prep time; embrace it. Find recipes that appear to interest you, put on some music and use it to de-stress from the week. Then you'll find recipes that agree with your lifestyle and the more you fix them, the more efficient your prep becomes and you then can compile a virtual grocery list which also makes the grocery trip more efficient when you know where the things you want are located.

                            Pre-prep your snacks by sandwich-bagging them and placing them in a small bin in your pantry or refrigerator also.

                            Most of the recipes on here will feed you for multiple meals - making Primal Meatballs and Primal Jambalaya on here are my faves. If I prepped them today, they'd last me most of the week and I could alternate eating them to shake it up.

                            Lunches are the easiest - have pre-heated and refrigerated chicken or cold shrimp along with pre-cut veggies ready to go - making the salad then is a snap.

                            Everyone has added some great ideas; I'm simply re-emphasizing this is much easier than it gets credit. With the renewal in energy you'll find from eating Primal, it only gets easier as well.


                            • #15

                              Not trying to be jackass or honestly, maybe I shouldn't have commented at all, looking back.

                              But, c'mon: OP's an obvious adult, shopped/cooked for a family, knows what foods illicit an allergic response.

                              Take that knowledge and add to it that this "diet" at the very basic level is primarily meat/fruit/vegetables...

                              Is it really far fetched to wonder why someone has to come on here and ask how to do something as basic as "shoppping and cooking for one"?