Welcome to Week 12 of the Eat the Rainbow Fruit and Veggie Challenge!
You made it! We are in the final week of our challenge. It has gone by so fast! Hopefully, you have learned a lot of great information about fruits and vegetables: why they’re beneficial, new ways to eat them, and the truth about some common produce myths.
Here are 3 things we need from you:
- After you read this email, please Complete the End of Program Growth Level Quiz Here!
- Also, don’t forget to REPORT LAST WEEK’S FRUIT & VEGGIE INTAKE HERE!
- Are you wondering “What’s Next??” – I have the answer! Join our Move More Stress Less 8 week Wellness Program, which starts March 6th! Find out more information here!
- Join my next webinar – Protein – Everything You Need to Know on March 15th at 8pm ET. Find out more information here!
- Join my virtual cooking class at 12noon on Tuesdays in March! Find out more information here!
Have a great week!!
– Julie & The Interns
WEEK 12 TOPIC: LET’S TALK ABOUT ORGANIZATION!
How many times have you purchased something at the grocery store, only to come home and find you already had it in your pantry?
How about those times when you buy produce with the intent to use it, only to place it in your fridge and find it a week later once it has gone bad?
Inefficient and unorganized food storage can often lead to food waste and a lack of inspiration in the kitchen. Here are some tips to reorganize your pantry and refrigerator for optimal function!
TIPS TO REORGANIZE YOUR PANTRY:
- Throw away expired items that are creating clutter
- Use clear storage containers – this way you can see everything
- Group like items together. Categories can include:
- Dried food: pasta, rice, dry beans, flour, sugar, baking items, etc.
- Canned/jarred food: beans, tomato sauce, vegetables, etc.
- Keep things you use often in easy to reach places
- Incorporate shelves or turntables for easy viewing
- Consider purchasing jars or well-sealed containers: taking pantry items out of their packing and placing them into containers instead can keep things better organized and extend shelf life
TIPS TO REORGANIZE YOUR FRIDGE:
- Place produce where you can see it! Hiding it away in drawers can lead to forgotten and spoiled fruits/veggies
- Clean it out weekly – throw away old leftovers and spoiled food – this will prevent the fridge from getting too full
- Only refrigerate what you need to! Many fruits and vegetables actually do not need to be refrigerated – leaving these items out of the fridge can clear up space. Some examples are: lemons, garlic, onions, tomatoes, and peaches.
One last tip: Take stock of your fridge and pantry before you grocery shop – this helps avoid purchasing duplicates of an item that you may already have. You can also take pictures of your fridge and pantry before you leave, that way if you aren’t sure if you already have something, you can check what’s there.
Make a dessert using a fruit or vegetable! Try out one of the recipes linked above, the pumpkin pie recipe below, or find another recipe that sounds yummy. Take a picture of your creation and post it to our Facebook group!
Take one actionable step to rehab your pantry or fridge this week! Try out one of the tips above or use a tried-and-true method. Take a picture of your newly organized pantry/fridge and share it on our Facebook page!
PRODUCE HIGHLIGHT OF THE WEEK: BEANS
Technically not produce, but beans are a vegetable and an essential component of a healthy plant-centered diet. Beans are a great source of plant protein, are packed full of fiber, and contain polyphenols and flavonoids (antioxidants) that can protect your cells from free radicals.
HOW TO USE
Beans can be bought canned or dried and can be incorporated into many different dishes. They are a great cost-effective way to add extra protein and fiber to your meals. Put them on top of salads, cook them in soups or stews, blend them into dips, or even make them into veggie burgers! There are endless options.
10 Minute Black Bean Tacos
This is one of my favorite recipes because it uses ingredients I usually have on hand, comes together in 10 minutes, is super nutrient-dense, and can be totally customized based on who is eating!
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 10 minutes
- Yield: 6 tacos 1x
- 2– 15 ounce cans of black beans
- ⅔ cup medium salsa
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- 6 soft taco-size tortillas
- 1 cup shredded cheddar (or any other melty cheese you like)
- Sour cream for topping if you like it
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Rinse and drain the beans
- Put beans in a medium bowl and mash to make a paste. You can use a fork to do this but I find that a dough blender makes it much faster and easier.
- Add in the salsa, garlic powder, and cumin, stir to combine.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet or grill pan over medium heat.
- Place a tortilla down on the pan and spread ⅓ cup of the bean mixture over the bottom half of the tortilla.
- Sprinkle cheese and a dash of cayenne pepper if desired.
- Use a spatula to fold the tortilla in half to cover the filling.
- Cook for 2 minutes, then flip so that both sides get crispy.
- Remove from the pan and top with avocado, sour cream, and anything else you like!
If everyone eating likes things a little spicy, you can mix the cayenne pepper in directly to the filling. For me, the salsa has plenty of heat so I just add it to the tacos for my husband.