Eating Well: Tips for Busy Families

By Channaly Oum
Channaly Oum
Channaly Oum
March 12, 2013 Updated: October 8, 2018

Busy families everywhere, take note: It is possible to eat well even you are stretched for time. Here are a few tips from Mareya Ibrahim, a mom of two and featured chef on ABC’s  “Recipe Rehab.”

Prep on the Weekend

Ibrahim takes a few hours on the weekend to wash and cut produce, or cook meat for the week. “It makes a world of difference.”

Stock your Kitchen With Healthy, Balanced Food

Keep your kitchen stocked with fresh produce, lean protein, and good quality fats. Use whole grain. “I can bake with stevia or whole grain and produce the same results, so why would I use white flour?”

One of her pantry staples is egg whites, which she adds to meatballs for binding and protein. Another ingredient she likes is sunflower milk, for parents whose kids have nut allergies.

A good shortcut is buying pureed fruits and vegetables. You can make different sauces, or add them to oatmeal, baked goods, or smoothies.

Don’t Allow Junk Food Into Your Home

“If you can see it, I don’t care if it’s on the top shelf and you’ve got to get a ladder to get it. You will find it at 2 in the morning. Don’t bring it into the house.”

Turn Your Fridge Into a Salad Bar

Ibrahim preps whatever is seasonal, and puts it into plastic containers. She just pulls from them, mixes and matches, and makes stir fries and salads.

Have Breakfast for Dinner

These make for fast cooking. Ibrahim likes to play around with ingredients and makes a green omelet (her Dr. Seuss eggs, she calls it) that her daughter loves by pureeing egg whites and fresh basil and arugula.

Ibrahim offers advice and resources about healthy eating and living on her website, including weekly tips through her Cleaner Plate Club.

Channaly Oum