You might be surprised to hear this, but when I was asked by a reporter if I did meal preparation for the week ahead, I immediately said, “No.” Yet when I gave that question some more thought, I realized that I actually did make some meals ahead — but I never thought of it as being meal preparation. I was actually just creating “make-overs”, in other words, making over the amount I needed so that I could repurpose that meal another way, on another day.
With the warmer weather arriving, meal prep is even easier thanks to my outdoor grill. Welcoming the spring season always reminds me of my first trip to the avocado groves of California. Seeing the beautiful groves and hearing about the care that the growers put into their trees to keep the land sustainable for generations to come, then tasting the creamy flavor of a ripe fresh California Avocado from that grove is an experience that is hard to describe. But you can enjoy its deliciousness by shopping for avocados with California on the label and making my recipe below!
For me, meal prepping on Sunday makes it easier to prepare homemade nutritious dishes throughout the week. My new meal-prep Sunday creation is something that I hope you and your family will love as much as my family does. The best part… you’ll have leftovers to “make over” on Monday and perhaps Tuesday, and maybe even Wednesday, too.
One of my family’s favorite recipes is Stuffed California Avocado with Mediterranean Salmon. This recipe shines a light on heart-healthy superfood California Avocados and heart-healthy salmon — it’s a perfect example of how you can cook once and eat thrice. You just have to increase certain portion sizes and make enough to stretch into your week to bring you the same delicious flavors you enjoyed that first night, just with a different flair.
Here are the steps to help you enjoy my recipe on day one and continue savoring the flavors and nutrition benefits for a couple more days:
For the first night, follow the Stuffed California Avocado with Mediterranean Salad recipe but double the amount of salmon and quinoa. After it’s fully cooked, store half the salmon and half the quinoa in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator for easy meals later in the week.
- Cut four California Avocados in half, instead of the two called for in the recipe, and grill per the instructions
- Squeeze lemon juice on the exposed surface, place two grilled halves together
- Wrap tightly with clear plastic wrap and refrigerate for use tomorrow and the next day
For the second day, toss together a simple salad using two of the grilled avocado halves (that you prepped from yesterday), sliced. Then add the following:
- Grape tomatoes, sliced in half
- Cut cucumbers topped with a teaspoon of citrus infused avocado oil and a squeeze of balsamic glaze
- Top with half of the leftover salmon and half of the quinoa for a satisfying lunch or dinner
- And if you want to boost your veggie intake further, serve on a bed of mixed salad greens
For day three, quick and easy salmon patties can be put together for a delicious weekday dinner:
- Coarsely chop two cups of fresh mixed veggies (or frozen veggies
- In a large bowl, combine chopped veggies, remaining salmon, quinoa, two remaining grilled California Avocado halves (mashed), add two eggs, half cup panko breadcrumbs and your favorite seasoning
- When well combined, form the mixture into patties and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for around 20-30 minutes. These tasty patties can be served with a side salad or soup
My meal-prep Sunday recipe has the flexibility to swap in other ingredients you might have in your pantry, like rice or barley instead of quinoa. The only ingredient that can’t be swapped is the California Avocado… there’s no replacement for that incredible fruit! You’ll find them during California Avocado season, spring through summer… just in time to get your grill going!