Cooking a nice meal every night is no easy feat! You can save time by prepping some food on the weekend. Here are a few sides you can easily make ahead of time!
Pasta is a weeknight lifesaver. Thanks to its texture, it can keep in the fridge several days. With basil pesto or sundried tomatoes, there are so many delicious pasta salad recipes to choose from. Try our avocado pesto recipe. It’s nutritious, delicious, and so easy to make!
Quick pesto salad
In a food processor, purée a ripe avocado, one garlic clove, 1 cup of fresh basil and the juice from half of a lemon. Add 3 tbsp. of olive oil. Next, add a little water, until you reach a smooth yet thick consistency. Season with salt and pepper, and pour over cooked macaroni. This salad keeps a few days in the fridge, in an airtight container. When serving, simply add halved cherry tomatoes, chopped basil, and Parmesan shavings.
Tip: Turn this side into a meal by adding chicken strips and roasted pine nuts for a well-balanced lunch the next day!
There are 1,001 ways to eat coleslaw. The creamy version is a classic, of course, but it’s just as good with vinegar and pepper. The crunchy texture of the cabbage keeps especially well in the fridge. Try our Asian-style slaw—perfect with maple-ginger salmon.
This delicious coleslaw is a fun way to change things up! For the vinaigrette, in a jar, mix ½ cup of sunflower oil, 2 tbsp. of rice vinegar, 1 tbsp. of grilled sesame oil, 2 tsp. of soya sauce, the same quantity of sambal oelek, and a drizzle of maple syrup. Also prepare your veggies ahead of time—finely chopped cabbage and julienned red peppers, carrots, and cucumbers. Keep the vinaigrette in the jar and pour it onto your salad approximately 30 minutes before serving to give the cabbage time to soften.
Tip: If you’re really short on time, you can chop your cabbage in the food processor!
Quinoa has really gained in popularity in the last few years, particularly for its nutritional value and great versatility. Here is a delicious recipe for a Mexican salad that is sure to add sunshine to your day!
Sunny quinoa salad
Mix ¾ cups of olive oil, 1/3 cup of white wine vinegar, 1 tbsp. of chili powder, a pinch of paprika, a chopped garlic clove, and salt and pepper. Pour over 3 cups of cooked quinoa and add kernel corn, a diced red pepper, sliced red onion, and a can of black beans. This salad keeps in the fridge a few days. Simply sprinkle some fresh cilantro over top before serving.
Tip: Keep in mind that quinoa triples in size when cooked. One cup of raw quinoa gives three cups once cooked.
YUMMY EXPRESS VEGGIES
Got root veggies in the fridge? Great! They can really save the day on those busy weeknights. Cut them evenly, coat them with a little olive oil, season with dried herbs, such as rosemary, thyme, tarragon, and a pinch of salt and pepper, and cook in the oven at 350°F on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Tips: If you’re cooking your veggies on the weekend for the week, take them out of the oven 10 minutes early. They’ll finish cooking when you reheat them in the oven, and they’ll keep their crunchiness.