It’s nearing the time of year when people commit to ‘being better/eating healthier/working out more’ in the new year. Might I suggest a totally different approach, and get you to think about joining in with me for the second year of Back To Basics January?
Last year, many of you joined in the challenge to have a Back To Basics January: one where we go “back to the basics” in an effort to reduce our grocery bills and dining out, incorporate healthy ingredients, and commit ourselves to cooking meals at home. Curious about last year? Check out food prep + quick meal ideas and my recap!
During the month of January, I will be posting more go-to easy meals, how-to recipes for basic items, and my favorite ways to prep for healthy eating and budget-mindful meals.
Behind all of this, the point of Back To Basics January is to live more simply. We have every type of restaurant available at our fingertips, with competing lunch specials and to-go prepped meals taking up more real estate at the grocery store. Cooking shouldn’t be frustrating or time consuming, but a fun and inspired activity with the outcome of tasty meals and good health.
Back To Basics January is to appreciate the art of cooking, to save money, and to realize what conveniences are worth it and what aren’t. The components of the challenge are below!
In January, I’ll be posting two simple recipe posts per week to help give you new ideas of how to turn basic ingredients into simple, delicious meals! I have linked additional options below, and you can use my recipe index for ideas as well. If you need an idea for how to stock up at the grocery store too, see a sample grocery list in this post, my pantry essentials, and my freezer essentials. This goal includes eating leftovers too!
Meal Resources: Food Prep + Quick Meal Ideas / Potato Leek Frittata / 5 Ingredient Overnight Oats / Crockpot Honey Soy Chicken / Mexican Veggie Quinoa Bake / Chickpea Salad with Apples, Celery and Walnuts / Supergreen Power Salad / Turkey Orzo Soup
MAKING SNACKS FROM SCRATCH
Prepare yourself for those moments when you’re hangry, whether that means having trail mix and fruit on hand, hard boiled eggs in the fridge, or homemade granola bars in the freezer. I have kept this up at the end of this year, and want to continue it into the new year. I’ve linked some of my favorites below to give you ideas – reach out to me if you need help substituting some of your favorites!
Snack Resources: Lemon Goji Energy Bites / Nut + Seed Granola Bars / Daily Green Smoothie / 5 Ingredient Trail Mix Cookies / Savory Granola Bars / Lemon Hummus / Ginger Pistachio Energy Bites / Pumpkin Seed Trail Mix / Stovetop Popcorn Tutorial
EATING AT HOME
While I love to explore Berkeley and Denver through the food scene, eating out adds up quickly – and I am hoping to get back on budget by eating at home as much as possible for the month of January. It’s a great way to reset the new year!
This is an expense that I am constantly working on reducing, so I’m including it for my challenge again this year! I can easily spend $10 a week on coffee, and that’s when I’m just buying a basic drip coffee. This includes tea too, if you like tea!
Resources: Check out my stovetop espresso tutorial, as well as my favorite coffee makin’ devices at the bottom of that post.
WANT TO JOIN?
A quick recap of what Back To Basics January challenge entails:
- Cooking basic items from scratch (i.e, homemade tomato sauce or chicken stock)
- Reducing dependence on prepared foods (i.e, making granola bars or mason jar salads)
- Eating 100% at home (I am excited to invite people over!)
- Making coffee at home
HOW TO PARTICIPATE
- Leave a comment on this post letting me know that you’re in for the challenge (whether for part of it or the whole thing!)
- Take photos throughout January of any part of the challenge listed above and post them to #backtobasicsjanuary on social media
- Win prizes! I have teamed up with some of my favorite natural food companies to bring you guys some goodies for participating (keep an eye out for the prizes!).
Any questions? Are you in, starting January 1?
Let me know how you’re planning to tackle one of these or all of these challenges in the comments below.
I would love to have you along for the ride! Use the hashtag #backtobasicsjanuary so we can all see each others’ hard work!