Have you ever bought a chicken breast at the supermarket and wondered what else to do with it besides your go-to recipe?
Let the Do Good Chicken co-founder and former White House Chef Sam Kass come to the rescue. A passionate advocate for childhood nutrition, Kass is also a genuine lover of chicken. It’s nutritious, versatile, and downright delicious — perfect for the whole family.
But if you’re stuck on how to work healthy, climate-change-fighting chicken into meals for you and your kids, look no further. Kass offers five tried-and-tested tips to ensure you and your children never get bored of eating chicken.
1. Plan your meals
Planning your meals for the week is one of the most underrated but important steps of sticking with a healthy lifestyle.
“If it’s Tuesday at 5:30 and you realize you don’t have a plan to get dinner on the table, that’s when you might start reaching for hyper processed, pre-done meals or do takeout from a restaurant you shouldn’t,” said Kass. “Without a plan, things go awry.”
If we all took just 20 minutes of focus, to sit down and write ideas for a week of meals, we not only save money at the grocery store, but we also save money by opting not to give in and get take-out.
2. Stay on track at the grocery store
After you write down your week of meals, it’s time to write out your list for the grocery store. Most importantly, you have to stick to that list.
“When you don’t have a plan at the grocery store and you’re just meandering through, you become susceptible to marketing and product placement,” said Kass. “You might make decisions that aren’t good for yourself or your family.”
Kass urges everyone to stay focused at the grocery store as much as possible. Just an hour of focus at the supermarket can end up saving you countless time and stress throughout the week.
“If you don’t stick to your grocery store plan, you’ll be thinking about it and dealing with it all week long, and eating a lot of things you wouldn’t otherwise,” he said. “If you just focus that one hour, you can just follow the plan the rest of the week and not have to think about it.”
3. Feed your kids what you eat
Throw your notions of “kid food” out the window. When kids aren’t getting a diverse range of flavors, that’s when they tend to gravitate toward the “kid food” we often see in supermarkets and on TV commercials.
“The idea that there is ‘kid food’ is ridiculous. It’s just food,” said Kass. “When people say ‘kid food,’ what they really mean is junk food. It’s usually just unhealthy.”
But if they’re not eating “kid food,” what do they eat? One of Kass’s top recommendations for parents: Serve your kids the same thing you’re eating.
“Kids’ palates are changing rapidly and constantly. What a food will actually, physically taste like will be really different for them in a few months,” said Kass. “ You can revisit food every few months and see. That’s how you get them to get lots of different flavors over time.”
4. Don’t be afraid of the grill
Want chicken that’s simple, easy, and requires little to no cleanup? Throw it on the grill, advises Kass.
“The grill is your friend,” Kass said. “It simplifies your cooking, it’s a really easy way to get a lot of great flavor, and it’s a healthy way to prepare chicken.”
But the grill is not only for chicken. It also makes for great veggies…and we’re not just talking about corn. From eggplant to zucchini to broccoli, Kass says grilling your veggies can keep them colorful, flavorful, and crunchy.
“I put any vegetable you can imagine on the grill,” Kass said. “Sometimes I’ll boil potatoes and then finish them on the grill with some celery and a vinaigrette. It’s killer.”
5. Utilize leftovers
Chicken is an extremely versatile ingredient, and it can be repurposed in all sorts of ways that don’t feel like eating soggy “leftovers.”
“I never, ever cook chicken for just one night,” said Kass. “You can work your extra chicken into your weekly meal plan. It saves you time, but keeps you eating well.”
Kass suggests that, when making dinner, cook two or two extra pieces of chicken that you can later turn into a stir fry, fried rice, or barley soup. Chicken salad is another favorite.
“Chicken salad is great for school lunches, your own lunch, or even another dinner,” said Kass. “Just pull the rest of your chicken and add a bit of mayo, celery, and whatever else you like.”
If your mouth is watering at the thought of whipping up some tasty, nutritious chicken, look no further than Do Good Chicken. Available at many local grocery stores, Do Good Chicken is good for plate and planet, keeping your family healthy while simultaneously combating food waste and climate change.
Want more tips from our very own Sam Kass? Check out all our articles here.