Easy, cheap, healthy, AND versatile meal prep!? Finally!

Meal prep is a time consuming and necessary bother.  It takes a few hours that could otherwise finally be that rest you swore you were going to get on a Sunday afternoon.  The benefits make it a non-negotiable for me… I save money and calories by not indulging on convenient breakfast and lunch sammis, and I save time through out the week when my meals are all ready to simply be portioned and dropped into my adorable polka dot lunch pail.

I generally carve out 3 or so hours in a week.  Often Sunday afternoon or Monday evening.  Things that are ‘healthy’ are a challenge because either they require extreme amounts of prep (read: peeling, chopping, sautéing, etc) OR you have the concern of it turning rather quickly (i.e.-produce for a salad).  The best compromise we have found is : egg bakes full of proteins and veggies for breakfast and soups for lunch.

Well, I’m nearing our second year of those exact same meals every. Single. week.  Every week it’s the same breakfast or the same soup for five days straight.  Although we do our best to change the soup from week to week- it never fails – by Friday I just can’t force myself to bring the spoon to my mouth one more time.  Sometimes I just skip lunch to avoid the soup for the fifth time!

I realize this is ridiculous and thought hard on a meal prep that I could tweek from day to day.  It dawned on me- pulled chicken!

Easier than any soup : I threw a few herbs and aromatics in a pot with 3 full chicken breasts and poached for ten minutes! Done.


One tablespoon of butter

3 smashed garlic cloves

one quarters onion

two branches of basil leaves

a few celery hearts with leaves

one lemon

whole peppercorns

two bay leaves

four or five pieces of corriander!

After I pulled this chicken out I continued to cook down the liquid to make a vegetable flavored stock, awaiting within a mason

jar for my next crazy concoction!


Let the chicken cool- and then the fun part! Pull it with fingers or forks.  That’s it!

This week I plan to have BBQ chicken, a salad topped with chicken, some brown rice and chicken tossed in teriyaki sauce, the options are endless… And all so DIFFERENT !!


It took ten minutes, it cost around $6.00 bucks, and it offers a variety of options for the week!

The moral of the story : Sometimes if you don’t make things so complicated you’ll find things then won’t be so complicated ! 😏😉


Mediterranean for Dinner: 5lb Chicken and Falafel recipe

In my family we tell this story:

Many moons ago 😉 my great grand father moved from Greece to the states to create a better life for his family.  Upon arrival he dredged through registration at Ellis Island.  Approaching his turn he -like many others – had his name Americanized.   “It’s too long!”  “American’s can not pronounce this!”

Whoever is telling the story at the time generally makes up the ORIGINAL Greek family name.   Though our story all ends the same.

On that day they told my family, their new name is “Marris“.

Eventually like all men his age he joined the armed forces.   They say there must have been a typo upon registering and again his name was changed.  Morris.   (The story always goes … “He just assumed those dang lazy Americans were just changing his name once again).

Now what is true is I have family members that go by Marris and family members that go by Morris.

I do not know how much of that story holds true after generations and variations of re-telling.  I do know that I love it!  It creates a sense of family history and pride.  My father passed while I was young, and so there is little background that gets to us of his side of the family.

My siblings and I have been proud to say there is some Greek.  Somewhere in there.


(Looking at my brothers, you would not second guess it!)


And so – I like to try my hand at Mediterranean fairs every blue moon.  Although this meal is not necessarily traditionally Greek … it is loaded with lemon and oregano – and that IS very Greek.


Here is what is for Dinner:  Marinated Chicken Thighs, Tomato and Cucumber Salad, Falafel with Tzatziki.

For this post I will give a quick synopsis of the chicken, salad, and tzatziki … the recipe will be for the falafel.  This was new to me.  Something to try.  It is on the lighter side of fried and heck … who doesn’t love falafel!?  It was easy as well.


WARNING:  Dough must rest for an hour!  (I hate when I only figure that out halfway through buying ingredients because I did not read far enough).


This made about 8-10 2″ Falafel



  • 1.5 Cups chopped Onion
  • 4 Cloves Garlic
  • 1.5 Cups cooked Chick Peas
  • 1 Cup lightly packed Parsley Leaves
  • 3/4 Cup lightly packed Cilantro Leaves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Avocado Oil (or any high heat point oil for sauteing)

The Steps:

Add Onions and Garlic to food processor: Pulse until MincedSet aside.


Add Chick Peas, Parsley, Cilantro, Salt, Chili Powder, and Cumin to food processor: Pulse until Rough Blend.



Add Onion Mixture and Baking Powder and a 1/4 Cup flour:  Pulse until mixture begins to take a shape.

NOTE:  Do not over pulse.  Your Dough will turn to a paste.   You can still make the falafel despite, but the texture will be less favorable.

At this point I removed my Dough from the food processor and moved to the bowl.  I added and slowly folded more Flour (1/4 cup at a time)until my mixture was less sticky.


As you can see – my trial did get slightly pasty

Cover with plastic.  Set in refrigerator for one hour.

After one hour, heat your oil choice over Medium heat. Enough oil to cover the pan! Be generous here.


Very affordable at Costco : much healthier than vegetable or canola oils.

I used my hands to ball about 3 tablespoons of mixture.  Drop in oil.  Pat down to a shape you enjoy. Fry 3 minutes per side.


Set on towel lined cooling rack.  Salt immediately.


That’s it!  So simple, so tasty!  Something different from our normal weeknight dinner.

The Rest:

Marinate Chicken thighs over night:  Lemon Juice, Extra Virgina Olive Oil, Salt, Pepper, 1 clove Garlic, tablespoon oregano.  I also added 2 tablespoons of a Cajun seasoning.    Fry for 5 minutes a side (avocado oil) under a 5lb weight !  Then bake for another 20 – 30 Minutes until temps reach 160.


We did not have a brick – so we had to get creative!


hot hot hot! (talkin ’bout that man!)


Salad – Cube cucumber, tomato, slice onion.  Add Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Lemon Juice, Oregano, White Vinegar, and Agave.  Salt and Pepper.  Toss. Let set for one hour.

Tzatziki – 1 cup Greek yogurt, 1 clove garlic.  Clean cucumber (peel and remove seeds), Grate Cucumber, Squeeze out water with cheese cloth.  Salt, pepper, lemon juice.  Stir.


A meal fit for a Grecian Princess !

Please comment if you need further details on any recipe! ENJOY!