Lentil and Rice Salad with Lemon Dressing

I recently made this super refreshing lentil and rice salad with lemon dressing and loved the flavor explosion. Lately I have found myself bored with what I have been eating and this tasty side dish was a breath of fresh air for my taste buds. Yum yum!

I need to add more fresh herbs to my salads and meats because it makes such a difference in the flavor. Only 1 out of the 4 kids liked this but that child had 4 separate helpings. That doesn’t qualify this recipe as kid friendly in my book but it is a recipe I will make again because I enjoyed it.

INGREDIENTS

*This recipe can be made with cauliflower rice instead of basmati rice.

Lentils

  • 1 cup lentils
  • 3 cups water

Rice*

  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • dash of sea salt

Salad

  • 2 medium carrots
  • 1 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 cups fresh basil, chopped

Dressing

  • 6 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

DIRECTIONS

  1. To make lentils, place water and lentils into pot and bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat for 15 minutes, or until lentils are tender. Once lentils are cooked drain in a strainer. (I used red lentils)
  2. To make rice, place rice, water, and salt into a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered for 45 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 20 minutes.
  3. Transfer lentils and rice to large bowl and add carrots, parsley, green onions, and basil.
  4. To make dressing, whisk together all ingredients in a separate bowl and then for over mixture and toss to coat.

Yields: 6 generous servings

MUTU SYSTEM FLASH SALE ANNOUNCEMENT

Have you been waiting to enroll in the MUTU System program? Now is your chance to jump on this flash sale and grab 25% off using this special promo code OCT25! You can read about my experience with MUTU HERE.

Start your MUTU System journey to feel more body confident, to help flatten your tummy, to kiss goodbye to annoying postpartum symptoms and stop leaking when you exercise or sneeze.

This awesome discount will run from Monday October 1st – Friday October 5th, wherever you are in the world, whatever your timezone.

Click this link to go straight to the shop to grab 25% off by using this special code OCT25 at the checkout now.

Share

My Favorite Instant Pot Recipes from Once a Month Meals

Disclosure: The following post contains affiliate links. This means if you purchase an item from a link I provide to those shops, I might receive a commission. I only share products and services that I would personally use and think are a good fit for my readers. Thank you for supporting the brands that support our family. All opinions are 100% honest and my own.

I thought it would be fun to share my 3 favorite Instant Pot recipes from Once a Month Meals. I began using Once a Month Meals a little over a year ago to prepare my freezer full of food in anticipation of baby Jesse’s arrival. Once a Month Meals gives you everything you need to shop, prep and cook the bulk of your monthly meals in just one day — and freeze those meals for when you want to eat them.

In order to get your grocery shopping list, labels, prep sheet, and everything else you need you do need to pay for a membership, but if you are just wanting recipes they have many that you can browse on their website.

Once a Month Meals has two membership options for you to choose between. You can select either a $16 monthly subscription or a $170 yearly subscription. Regardless of whether you choose the monthly or yearly option, your membership will give you the ability to mix and match recipes from different menus and to create your own custom menus in MenuBuilder.

Without further delay here are my three favorite Instant Pot recipes I have found on their website. I also included the links for the same recipe but made in the slow cooker.

Due to the nature of pressure cooking there is always room for inconsistency. The times given here are based on 4 servings fresh. If you are using more servings you may need to increase your cooking time.

Instant Pot Jalapeno Popper Chicken Chili

I left out the jalapeno’s because I am not a huge fan of things being overly spicy. My husband jokes that I think ketchup is spicy. Anyway…this is really, really, really good and each time I have made it I double the recipe so we can have leftovers.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ¼ cups dice Onion
  • ⅔ cups seed and dice Jalapeño
  • 3 teaspoons mince Garlic, Cloves
  • 3 ⅓ cups cook and dice Chicken, Boneless Breasts
  • 2 teaspoons Chili Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin
  • ⅛ teaspoons Salt
  • ¼ teaspoons Black Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Oregano, Dried
  • 2 cups Chicken Broth/Stock
  • 10 ounces Diced Tomatoes with Green Chiles
  • 14 ounces Whole Kernel Corn, Canned
  • 1 cup cook and dice Bacon
  • ¼ cups Pepper Jack Cheese, Shredded
  • ½ cups crush Corn Chips
  • ½ cups cook and dice Bacon

Directions:

  1. Combine onions, jalapeno, garlic, chicken, chili powder, cumin, salt, black pepper, oregano, chicken broth, diced tomatoes and corn in the inner pot.
  2. Lock cover into place and seal steam nozzle.
  3. Choose the soup setting and adjust to 10 minutes or set manually for 10 minutes.
  4. Release pressure.
  5. Set on warm and stir in cream cheese and half of the bacon and cook for 3 minutes.
  6. Serve topped with cheese, chips and the remaining half of the bacon.

If you don’t have an Instant Pot you can find the slow cooker version HERE.

Instant Pot Philly Cheesesteak Sloppy Joe’s

For this recipe you can pre-cook your ground beef in the Instant Pot!

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups cook Ground Beef
  • 1 teaspoon mince Garlic, Cloves
  • ½ teaspoons Black Pepper
  • 2 ¼ cups slice Onion
  • ¾ cups slice Bell Pepper, Green
  • 1 ½ cups slice Mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon Flour, All-Purpose
  • 10 ½ ounces French Onion Soup, Canned
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups Mozzarella Cheese, Shredded
  • 4 individual Hamburger Buns

Directions:

  1. Place the frozen contents inside the inner pot. Saute for 5 minutes.
  2. Lock the lid into place and seal the steam nozzle. Select the the manual option for 8 minutes.
  3. Quick release the steam. Remove the lid and add the cheese, allowing it to melt.
  4. Serve on buns.

If you don’t have an Instant Pot you can find the slow cooker version HERE.

Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches

My husband loves French Dip Sandwiches so this was an instant winner in our house.

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds quarter Beef Roast
  • ½ teaspoons Bouillon, Beef, Granules
  • 1 teaspoon Black Peppercorns
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Rosemary, Dried
  • ½ teaspoons mince Garlic, Cloves
  • ⅓ cups Soy Sauce (I use Coconut Aminos)
  • 4 individual Hamburger Buns

Directions:

  1. Cut as much of the fat off the roast as you can and place in inner pot.
  2. Mix together soy sauce, bouillon, peppercorns, rosemary and garlic.
  3. Pour mixture over roast in inner pot.
  4. Add enough water to cover roast.
  5. Lock cover into place and seal steam nozzle.
  6. Cook on beef setting or set manually on high for 35 minutes.
  7. Release pressure.
  8. Shred roast with a fork and serve on buns.

If you don’t have an Instant Pot you can find the slow cooker version HERE.

Ready to start saving time in the kitchen by prepping your meals for the month? Once a Month Meals has everything you need to get going. When you have created your meal plan you will print out a grocery list, recipes, prep sheet, cooking instructions, and thaw sheet. It couldn’t be easier!

The Instant Pot and Once a Month Meals have saved me so much time in my kitchen so I can now spend more time with my family! If you make any of these I hope you enjoy them as much as we have!

everything-you-need-728-bags

Share

Once a Month Meals & Instant Pot Review

Disclosure: The following post contains affiliate links. This means if you purchase an item from a link I provide to those shops, I might receive a commission. I only share products and services that I would personally use and think are a good fit for my readers. Thank you for supporting the brands that support our family. All opinions are 100% honest and my own.

In the less than a month our family will be growing from a family of four to a family of five. Our baby is due to arrive in the middle of November, if not a little before, but as of right now, in just under a month we will welcome this new baby to our family.

I knew that I wanted to try to stock our freezer with several meals before the baby arrived so I would have nutritious food available for myself and my family. The problem was I had absolutely no idea how to go about making meals ahead of time or what type of meals I should even attempt to freeze.

Several months ago I bought an Instant Pot and it has been my favorite purchase in the last year. If you aren’t familiar with the Instant Pot it is a programmable pressure cooker that can dramatically cut the time you spend in the kitchen and allows you the ability to not have to monitor the oven or stovetop. Special thank you to my friend Jeanette for sharing how much she adored her Instant Pot which led me to purchase my own!

instant-pot-brown-rice

I have been attempting to streamline my kitchen over the last few weeks and decided to take the gigantic bag of rice we purchase monthly from Costco and divide it up into individual 2 cup bags. In case you were curious, out of this 12 pound bag of rice I had 14 two cup bags and 1 one cup bag. It is so much cheaper buying rice in bulk and cost just under $15. Cooking rice in the Instant Pot is the easiest thing to do. You simply need to place 2 cups of brown rice inside the Instant Pot with 2.5 cups of water and set it on manual for 22 minutes.

The way I cook our dinners now has drastically changed thanks to the Instant Pot. This got me wondering if maybe I could find a few recipes that I could freeze and put directly into my Instant Pot. A quick search on google led me to discover a website called Once a Month Meals.

everything-you-need-728-bags

When I started searching the website it was like the clouds above my head parted open and light from heaven streamed down on me as angels sang Hallelujah. Ok, so maybe it wasn’t that dramatic, but in all seriousness I knew I had just hit the freezer meal jackpot.

Once a Month Meals gives you everything you need to shop, prep and cook the bulk of your monthly meals in just one day — and freeze those meals for when you want to eat them. To start you can pick a meal plan that is based on 7 different dietary preference or you can customize your own.

I decided to customize the meal plan for our family only because we like to eat gluten, dairy, and egg free as much as possible. I also wanted all of our meals to be able to be cooked in the Instant Pot.

Currently, Once a Month Meals has 50 recipes specifically using the Instant Pot but their entire recipe library is huge and they have over 600 meal plans that you can choose from. If you decide to use one of their menu plans you can always swap recipes out to create a menu that best fits your needs.

I also want to mention that the recipes are easily able to be adapted to the needs of your own family. For example, our family stays away from soy and two of the recipes I selected called for soy sauce which I swapped out for coconut aminos.

When your menu is finalized you print out the shopping list, prep instructions, cooking day instructions, recipes, labels, and thaw sheet. Everything is organized for you to be able to succeed in prepping meals ahead of time for you and your family!

once-a-month-meals-freezer-labels

once-a-month-meals-freezer-label

My customized menu included…

  • 2 Breakfasts: Cherry Date Breakfast Bars and Sweet Potato Apple Hash
  • 7 Instant Pot Dinners: French Dip Sandwiches, Chicken and Rice Soup, Healthy Roots Chili, Honey Bourbon Chicken, Paleo Mongolian Beef, Paleo Tacos el Pastor, and Thai Chicken Thighs
  • 2 Snacks: AIP Pumpkin Bites, and Almond Butter & Bacon Energy Balls
  • 3 Side Dishes: Peas, Cauliflower, and Broccoli

Each recipe serves 4 and was doubled. When I was finished prepping all my meals my freezer was filled with 14 dinners!

There is no way I would have been able to have done this without Once a Month Meals. Everything was laid out perfectly and the directions were very easy to understand.

It took me a total of 8 hours to make, bake, and freeze all of these recipes. Not all of the recipes needed to be baked ahead of time which saved hours of prep work for me in the kitchen.

I feel so accomplished and proud of myself that at 35 weeks pregnant I was able to fill my freezer with healthy meals and snacks for myself and my family that are made with real food. The 8 hours it took me to complete this menu plan left me super tired and my body was ready to sit down after having been on my feet all day but it was so worth it!

I love that when I ready to make a meal I just need to let it thaw enough to remove it from the freezer bag and it can go into my Instant Pot frozen! Yes, you read that correctly, it can be cooked from frozen in the Instant Pot. Plus it will be fully cooked and ready to eat in an hour!

When I froze my meals for the Instant Pot I froze each meal in a freezer bag that was placed in a bowl, pot, pan, or anything else I could find in my kitchen that would fit inside my Instant Pot. I wish I could say this was my brilliant idea but it came from the Once a Month Meals website. They seriously have included everything to make you as successful as possible when prepping your meals.

freezer-meal-prep-for-instant-pot

Thankfully all the meals fit into my freezer to freeze. I was a little nervous to see how they would fit. 14 was the magic number of meals to make at once for the size of my freezer.

freezing-meals-for-instant-pot

The next day I removed the meals from the freezer so I could take them out of the containers.

once-a-month-meals-instant-pot-meals

Amazingly they all fit back into the freezer perfectly and I even had the top shelf left empty!

freezer-meals-for-instant-pot

The total cost for all these recipes was $300. I purchased organic meat and produce and had to go to several stores to buy everything that was needed. Depending on the menu you choose, the region you live in, how you shop, and how big your family is the cost of your meals will vary. Once a Month Meals reports that shopping for a monthly menu can average between $150-300.

The shopping trip happened a day before the prep work and two days before the recipes were put together. When you are doing freezer meals you want to think of the process as more of a marathon than a sprint. Shopping, prepping, and freezing are best done in phases and not on the same day.

With a four year old, two year old, and newborn this will be the best gift to myself! Having a fully stocked freezer with meals and snacks ready to go makes me so happy!

I can see myself making more meals and snacks ahead of time for my family especially in the month or two after the baby arrives if these recipes are successful. The day spent in the kitchen is worth the time if it allows me to prep so many meals at once.

I obviously didn’t cover everything but hopefully this gives you a good idea of what I did to plan ahead for our meals. Let me know if you would like me to post an update on the meals after they have been cooked. I would be happy to do that if it would be helpful.

Once a Month Meals has two membership options for you to choose between. You can select either a $16 monthly subscription or a $170 yearly subscription. Regardless of whether you choose the monthly or yearly option, your membership will give you access to all nine menus and associated documents (shopping, recipes, instructions, etc.) as well as the ability to mix and match recipes from different menus to create your own custom menus in MenuBuilder.

I would love to know if you have ever made freezer meals? Do you own an Instant Pot?

Share