Healthy Meal Plan Ideas

When I started Sand Kitchen, I knew I wanted to share good, healthy recipes, especially recipes that are an updated and more nutritious version of traditional Bahraini and Iraqi cuisine. However, I have also stressed from the start that I am not a nutritionist or a dietician, and as a result, cannot offer nutritional information.

Here, I want to share two week-long meal plans — one veggie/vegan, one not, to help with meal prep and how to jumpstart if you’re someone who hasn’t done it before!

Almost all include links to recipes on Sand Kitchen. Those that don’t are self-explanatory, or I haven’t made a recipe yet. Please click the links to see the recipes, and check out my Recipe Index for all my recipes.

Any questions, please leave them below! 

Some general tips:

  • Dedicate an afternoon on Saturday or Sunday (depending on which part of the world you’re in) to doing meal prep. I usually estimate it’ll take 2-3 hours.
  • A slightly obvious one: check your pantry to see what you have. You could find that you’ve got things to use up and can make meals with it.
  • Make 2-3 meals to last the main meals, and prep certain things to help with breakfast and snacks.
  • Don’t be discouraged, the first few attempts will take longer than you expect, but you will shave down your time
  • Divide up your meals when you cook them, so that during the week it’s as simple as grabbing it out the fridge
  • For green smoothies: cut and freeze your bananas for creamier smoothies, and to ensure you always have those ingredients on hand

Meal Plan 1 (Non-Veggie)

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  • Energy Balls
  • Dried Fruit (I prefer dates, raisins and mango)
  • Nuts
  • Veg (carrot, celery, peppers) with Hummus
  • Boiled Eggs

An example of what a week’s food can look like:

Screen Shot 2018-01-19 at 16.55.13

Meal Plan 2 (Veggie/Vegan)

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  • Energy Balls
  • Dried Fruit (I prefer dates, raisins and mango)
  • Nuts
  • Veg (carrot, celery, peppers) with Hummus

An example of what a week’s food can look like:

Screen Shot 2018-01-19 at 16.57.38

There you have it! I hope this has been helpful, and please feel free to ask any questions below.

As always, bilafiya
(well wishes and wellbeing)

GF Sugar-Free Pancakes, Workouts & a Relaxed NYE | Hello, 2018! | What I Eat #53

I had a really relaxed and wonderful New Year’s Eve and Day with friends and family. It honestly couldn’t have gone much better — I didn’t want a loud NYE this year and I had such a great day of eating, plus working out. It was a gorgeous start to 2018 and I hope it means more good things.

People mentioned: Dana Zubari | Mahmood Janahi

Fluffy, GF & Sugar-Free Pancake Recipe | Gooey Oat, Pecan & Raisin Cookies Recipe


As always, bilafiya
(well wishes and wellbeing)

Fluffy, GF & Sugar-Free Pancakes

I woke up late on New Year’s Day, and lazed around in bed wondering what I could whip up for breakfast that would make for a nice brunch for my family and I. Once pancakes popped into my head, there was no getting them out — especially as a I rarely have them. This recipe, though, is a favourite because it’s devoid of any sugar, just naturally sweetened with a banana.

ingredients for gluten free banana pancakes shown banana chocolate chips eggs buckwheat flour and soy milk

Keep scrolling for the recipe

The best thing about this recipe is how simple it is. You just whisk the wet ingredients together (including the banana), then add in the dry.

Once your mix is done, you can add whatever you like, whether its chocolate chips as we went for on New Year’s Day, or my usual mix of handful of walnuts or blueberries.

Fluffy, GF & Sugar-Free Pancakes
Gluten-free, vegan (if egg subbed out) and naturally sweetened, these are a great weekend brunch recipe that I love whipping up
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 9
  • 1 cup buckwheat flour*
  • 1 mashed banana
  • ½ cup soy milk**
  • 2 eggs (or flax egg)
  • 2 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ⅓ cup chocolate chips (optional)
  1. The recipe is simple! Whisk your wet ingredients together (including the banana), then add in the dry.
  2. Once your mix is done, you can add in the chocolate chips if you're choosing to indulge, but I usually prefer to add in a handful of blueberries and walnuts.
  3. Once the mix is ready, use a cup-measurement to scoop them out if you want uniform pancakes. I use a ¼ cup and it usually makes 9 or 10.
  4. Once you see bubbles begin to form, flip your pancake over and cook the other side. Usually this takes 2-3 minutes per side on a medium heat.
* You can use plain flour if you like, spelt flour and rye flour are also good options

** You can substitute with whichever milk you prefer

Stack those babies up and enjoy! My brother chose to have his with Nutella and sliced banana, whereas I preferred to have blueberries, banana, and maple syrup drizzled over mine.

Whichever topping you chose, these fluffy, delicious pancakes will go down a treat! Ready in minutes and hugely satisfying, I find they really keep me happily full for hours. If you, like me, make them for yourself alone sometimes, the best way to heat these up is actually by popping them in a toaster for a bit, rather than a microwave. You keep the crispiness that way!

As always, bilafiya
(well wishes and wellbeing)

Desert Bonfire Picnic on Bahrain’s National Day | What I Eat #52

Big bonfires, chocolate chip cookies, chicken chargrilled on the BBQ, and lots of laughs and conversation. This was SUCH a wonderful day, I think you can tell from the vlog how happy I was. This is probably one of my favourite vlogs and I’m so glad it’s the one that rounds off a year’s worth of vlogs!

I can’t believe I’ve made 52 vlogs so far, it’s crazy to think how much has changed in my life since I’ve started. I really hope you guys have been enjoying them.

As always, bilafiya
(well wishes and wellbeing)

Superfood Porridge, Plant-Based Salads & Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate | What I Eat #51

Quite a good day of eating, especially looking back on it. It was a pretty hectic day in the office and I worked late even after I’d gone home, but I’m glad I took the time to put together healthy, nourishing meals as it genuinely makes SUCH a difference when I’m running on empty.

I also made hot chocolate for the first time in a long, long, long time in this video — and it was so gratifying, hit the spot perfectly. That mix of eating nourishing foods and including things that nourish your mind and soul, that’s where the sweet spot is.

Let me know if there’s anything specific you’d like me to share!