- A dozen eggs.
- A package of your favorite bacon.
- A box of butter. (Real butter)
- A 12 pack of boneless/skinless chicken thighs. (If you can somehow find boneless thighs that still have their skin, go ahead and use them)
- 1 onion.
- 1 bell pepper (Green, red, yellow, that’s your choice.)
- Two bulbs of garlic. (Optional, but very heart healthy.)
- A bottle of water.
- A big bag of frozen vegetables, at least 12 cups worth. I buy Bird’s Eye Normandy blend: It’s a mixture of zucchini, summer squash, cauliflower, broccoli and carrots. If you don’t like those veggies, just pick something else that’s keto friendly like Frozen Broccoli.)
- Either a) a bag of pork rinds, b) a bag of almonds, c) a jar of almond butter (very expensive).
- A container of beef. Bear with me on this one: You want to find some kind of beef that meets the following criteria: A) Is in your budget. B) You can imagine cutting/dividing into 6 equal portions. C) Has some fat.
You can do this with simple tubes of ground beef if you want. Two 1 pound tubes mean’s roughly a 1/3 of a pound will be going to each portioned meal. I user carne picada. It’s a thinly sliced meat with some fat that is designed to be used in fajitas or burritos. I like the texture when it’s cooked, and if you shop when the food it marked down it always seems to be the cheapest.
This isn’t food, just stuff to help you portion it. 1. Brown lunch bags. You can get like 200 of these for a few dollars 2. Some cheap small sandwhich bags. 3. 12 ziplock “tupperware” containers. (The cheap kind that’s okay to lose.) 4. A coffee thermos. 7. A lunch pail/bag.
(End Results is 18 meals, 6 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 dinners)
- Put the 12 thighs in to the oven with all the cloves from a bulb of garlic. You should separate the cloves, but you don’t need to skin them. The heat from the oven will do that nicely, and you can peel them when you eat it. This will take about 2 hours to cook, depending on your oven, and if the chicken is frozen at all.
- While the thighs are cooking, hard boil the eggs. Then set them aside to cool.
- Take a skillet, put some butter on it, and then fry up the bacon. (Note: Some might argue that the butter isn’t needed. In my experience you can either grease up that pan somehow, or your first strips of bacon will come out burnt.) When the bacon is done, put it on some paper towels, and pad it dry a bit.
- Dice up half the onion, save the other half for next week.
- Cut up the pepper as well.
- You might need to take the chicken out at this point. If it’s done, pull it out, and let it cool.
- In the skillet (I like to use that bacon grease as a base but it isn’t needed) sauté the pepper and half onion, and another bulb’s worth of garlic cloves. (leave the skin on, just like before.)
- Add the beef and brown it.
- Wash/rinse out the 12 Ziploc containers.
- In 6 of them, put 2 chicken thighs each. Share the garlic between them, and evenly divide the fat juice.
- In the other 6 evenly spoon out the beef/pepper/onion mix.
- Take the veggie blend, evenly pour it across the 12 containers, right on top of the meat.
- Put them all in your fridge. If you have minimal fridge space you could just put some in there, and then rest in your freezer. Just pull another out when you pull from the fridge.
- Pull out six plastic bags and put 2 hard boiled eggs in each.
- Evenly divide your remaining bacon (You totally snacked on some of it, don’t deny) by 6.
- You can put this in the same bag as your eggs, or separate sandwich bags, it doesn’t matter.
- Now brown bag it, and put it in your fridge.
Conclusion & Things
At this point you now have 6 day’s worth of meals in your fridge (6 containers of Thighs/Veggies, 6 containers Beef/Veggies, and 6 bags with 2 hardboiled eggs and bacon.) This gives you 1 free day a week to cook whatever you want for each meal. (I find it best to do this on a day other than Sunday, because after all that above I’m pretty tired of cooking.)
The pork rinds/nuts/almond butter are there in case you find yourself having cravings. Between staying on top of your water intake and small snacks of these you shouldn’t be overly hungry. If you got hungry on Day One between breakfast and lunch, or lunch and supper while you’re still at work—then portion out some nuts (15 of them ) or some pork rinds to add to your brown bag.
We all should be aiming for at least 8 cups of water a day. I’ve found personally that a bottle of water helps me keep track of this. My bottle is 1 liter, formally housing “smart water”. So I know if I drink two of it, I’ve met my 8 cup mark. No more diet soda.
Make a thermos of coffee in the morning to take to work with you. It’ll help with any caffeine withdrawal headaches. Don’t make this coffee too strong. You’re making some diet changes, and coffee is a natural laxative. If you vacate your GI tract because of it’s going to offset your meals. Better 8 cups of medium to weak coffee in my thermos instead of 4 strong ones in my opinion.
Bonus: If you cleaned up your kitchen, and then take care of the dishes from the day’s cooking. That means you’ll have a clean kitchen aaaallll week except for the stack of Ziploc containers that will slowly accumulate.
Disclaimer: Some might not like that this meal plan has some onion and carrots—both of which have naturally occurring sugar in them. However, each of the beef meals has only a 6th of an onion, and the Normandy blend contains only small amount of carrots—you probably eat less than 1/3 of a carrot per meal. You can certainly not user either. On Week Four I’ve switched over to pure frozen brocoli, and I toss a ¼ cup of shredded cheddar cheese in each container with it. Cooks wonderfully with the chicken in the microwave.
- You’re using large eggs.
- You’re cooking a 500g pack of bacon (like from Costco).
- No butter used (who uses butter to make bacon?)
- You’re using 150g of medium ground beef (70% lean) per dinner.
- You’re using large boneless skinless chicken thighs (~90g each).
- You’re putting in one cup of the Kirkland Signature Normandy vegetables blend (also from Costco) per lunch/dinner.
Breakfast: 545 kcal, 2.5g carbohydrates, 0g fiber, 40g fat, 41g protein
Lunch: 360 kcal, 9.0g carbohydrates, 4.0g fiber, 11g fat, 53g protein
Dinner: 448 kcal, 9.4g carbohydrates, 4.2g fiber, 27g fat, 42g protein
For a daily total of: 1354 kcal, 12.2g net carbs, 78g fat, 136g protein
It’s worth pointing out that you may want to consider taking a multi-vitamin with this meal plan. It is very low on Vitamins B1, D, E, and K. Calcium, Magnesium, Manganese, and Potassium are also very low, but we need to manage those as part of our electrolyte strategy anyways on keto.
The meal plan has a good amount of calories for a woman of average height and a healthy weight, but will likely be on the low side for taller women and most men. The almond strategy mentioned on the wiki will help a little with increasing the calorie count. You may also want to consider adding these calorie boosting strategies:
- Cream in the coffee.
- Put a tablespoon of mayonnaise on the chicken while it’s baking. Tasty and it will fit your macros!
- Top the vegetables with some cheese before reheating.
- Cook more beef. Who doesn’t want more beef?