Formula Meals

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Leftovers for breakfast.  A beautiful thing.


Zucchini Quiche Cornbread tastes even better after a night in the fridge.


With plenty of peaches.  I’m trying to tear through an entire box before they go – I think I’m the only one in the house who really likes peaches. I’ll accept responsibility for saving all the peaches.  Someone’s gotta do it! Winking smile


Meals by the Book


I saw this easy ‘recipe’ – really a formula – on Runners World this morning and wanted to share.  I’m always a fan of formula meals because they are so flexible, and if you don’t have all the ‘right’ ingredients, that’s more than okay.  This dish is simply a combo of protein, beans, tomatoes, spices, and greens.  The idea is you make a big batch once and have lunch all week long.  Score!




The style of the recipe reminded me of this great page on No Meat Athlete – a general formula for an excellent smoothie, no matter what your ingredients.  He also has a formula for the perfect energy bar.

strawberry smoothie



Most of my dinners are formula meals – stir-fries!  All you need is a base (rice, quinoa, etc.), a protein (cast iron tofu, lentils, beans, or meat if that’s your thing), veggies, and a sauce.  Easy, easy.  There’s a chart of veggie bowl combinations in the Healthy Tipping Point book, too.  Clearly, I love formula meals.  Do you?



  • Amber K September 5, 2012, 10:52 am

    All of my meals are very specific. I need to create aime formula meals to mix it up!

    • Amber K September 5, 2012, 10:53 am

      *some. Geez silly fingers, tiny keyboard.

  • Katie @ Talk Less, Say More September 5, 2012, 10:52 am

    I LOVE peaches! I would gladly have plenty of peaches with my breakfast. 🙂

  • Stef September 5, 2012, 10:53 am

    Formula meals are great! I love that you can pretty much switch anything out with something else and have an entirely different meal. Plus, you make sure you get all of your “food groups” in that way!

  • Alex Elisabeth September 5, 2012, 11:01 am

    living in colorado, a peach-growing state, has been amazing this summer. i am pretty sure i will never get sick of them. peach smoothies, peaches on the grill, peaches in salads…

  • Janae @ Bring-Joy September 5, 2012, 11:18 am

    Yes! Formula meals are pretty much all I do most days. I *usually* save the recipes for weekends or for when I have extra help.

  • Julie (etsy stalkers) September 5, 2012, 11:32 am

    This post just made me extra hungry. Thought you should know.

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat September 5, 2012, 11:43 am

    Yes yes yes!! I’m a big smoothie and stir fry eater and most of mine follow the same general formula – For stir fried dishes, it’s heaps of veggies, some lean protein, and some healthy fat to cook it all in. As for smoothies, almost all of mine have been containing buckets of greens these days!

  • Erin A September 5, 2012, 11:53 am

    Im doing the same with a box of peaches! My hubs won’t eat them and I don’t want them to go bad!

  • Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed September 5, 2012, 11:55 am

    Yes, I totally just did this! On Monday I threw whatever I had into my crockpot and made a giant batch that is today’s lunch! My mix was chicken, onions, fire roasted tomatoes, artichokes, some spices, and some cream cheese. Yum… is it lunch time yet?!

  • Laura @ She Eats Well September 5, 2012, 12:06 pm

    I am a formula cooker too. I love to do it for dinner especially. My favorite is TJs Tomato Soup, then I’ll add in a bunch of steamed veggies and some tofu or chicken. It becomes hearty and delish!

  • Kendra @ My Full-Thyme Life September 5, 2012, 12:10 pm

    Formula meals are the best! As long as you have the base, the world is your oyster! 🙂

  • Tania @ Run To Radiance September 5, 2012, 12:20 pm

    Those peaches look amazing! You could always peel them, chop them up and freeze them for smoothies if you have extras!

  • Annette@FitnessPerks September 5, 2012, 12:49 pm

    I’m pretty much a simple person –so having a good base is always a must. Lots of protein & veggies on my plate 😉

  • Alex @ Raw Recovery September 5, 2012, 1:03 pm

    I love “one pot” meals as I call them. My favorite is udon noodles, green beans, lightly fried tofu, and peanut sauce on top. It takes less than 30 minutes to make, ingredients can be switched out (I like adding edamame for protein if I don’t have tofu), and it can last for days as a meal or small side dish once the supply dwindles 🙂

  • Brigid September 5, 2012, 1:28 pm

    Almost everything I make is a formula, since I like to substitute with whatever I have on hand a lot. I have a chili “recipe” that I’ve made a million times, and every pot is slightly different — I change up the beans, add extra chipotle, use fresh peppers or canned green chiles, throw in a handful of barley, etc.

  • Karen September 5, 2012, 1:46 pm

    This quiche looks amazing! I can’t wait to try it. I’m also going to give this formula cooking a shot, sounds fun and easy!

  • Kate @ life's precious moments September 5, 2012, 2:29 pm

    Those peaches look amazing!! I need to go buy some more– I just ran out!

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin September 5, 2012, 5:53 pm

    I’m a big fan of formula meals too – I love making one bowl meals of a grain + a protein + veggies + flavouring (herbs, sauce, cheese, vinegar, etc). It always makes a good meal!

  • Hillary September 5, 2012, 6:25 pm

    Now that you mention it, formula meals are pretty much all I ever make! As long as my dinners have a protein, veggie, and whole grain, I’m a happy camper.

  • ChattyNatty September 6, 2012, 10:19 pm

    Too weird- I’m making a dish from I’m pretty sure the same Runner’s World post- One-Pot Recipe Right? Too weird!

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