Life hacks for fall meals

By Taylor Sutton, MS, RD

United Supermarkets’ Lifestyle Desk

We hear it time and time again, we “don’t have enough time to ‘fill in the blank.’” So, how does one create time? Well we can’t create more, but there are a few things we can do instead.

Some of the things we encourage our guests to look at when they are focused on time are: determine what is a priority; determine what you can delegate; avoid interruptions; avoid technology i.e. put down the phone; and finally, learn to say no.

For purposes of this article, let’s use meal prepping as an example of a priority as our schedules start shifting for fall.

It’s a great idea and can save so much time and money throughout the week. However, when it comes down to actual execution, it might be overwhelming with cooking multiple things from scratch. So let’s reframe this idea. It’s not that the idea of “healthy” needs to be all from scratch or fresh foods. So since we determined the priority let’s “delegate” tasks with a few products that can be big time savers:

Rotisserie Chicken: We’ve heard this time and time again, but did you know you can find it already pulled for you in our deli section?

Fresh-cut Fruit and veggies: Our fresh-cut section is the biggest time saver not only because you don’t have to cut them, but you don’t have to clean the cutting board and knife that you would have used.

Freezer veggies and fruits: There are so many things you can do with these but the main point is that since they are already frozen leave these to use towards the end of the week so you can re-use any leftovers first and you can add where you need to help decrease food waste.

Freezer Garlic, Ginger, Basil, Cilantro: Look for these little cubes the next time you are in-store to help add a burst of flavor to your dish without having to put in the work of chopping/zesting/grating.

Stock up on citrus: Lemons, limes, oranges can be used for so many things! A quick vinaigrette with some added oil, a flavor punch to your marinades, flavored waters, a snack, a garnish, you name it!

Proteins: Did you know our seafood department will steam and season for free? Did you know you can buy hard-boiled eggs already done and peeled? Did you know cottage cheese also comes in individual servings?

Grab seasoned/marinated chicken thighs from our meat case, and both a starchy and non-starchy vegetable that can be roasted: a bundle of asparagus and little potatoes, Brussels sprouts and butternut squash

Sauces and Salad Dressings: look for the ‘Dietitian Top Pick’ tags on these items as they deliver delicious flavor and a better for your nutrition label compared to other products in the same category.

Here is one quick recipe to get you started — Herb Mini Quiches!

Herb Mini Quiches

What You Need

1/4 c. Half and half

4 Eggs

1/2 small Onion

1/2 bunch Kale

2 oz Asiago cheese

5 fresh Sage leaves

6 fresh Thyme sprigs

2 fresh Rosemary sprigs

1/2 lb. Hot breakfast sausage

How It’s Made

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2. Grease a jumbo muffin pan

3. Crack eggs into a bowl with half and half and whisk

4. In a medium pan, brown the sausage

5. Dice onion

6. Mince kale and herbs

7. Add vegetables and herbs to the sausage mixture and cook for 5 minutes

8. Evenly distribute mixture to the 6 muffin tins

9. Evenly distribute the egg mixture between the 6 muffin tins

10. Sprinkle the asiago cheese on top

11. Bake for 20 minutes

Serves 6