I'm an Olympian. Here are 8 of my favorite easy dinners.

·4 min read
side by side photos of tacos and a shrimp salad
I let myself eat whatever I'm craving, in moderation. Gemma Acheampong
  • I'm a Ghanaian Olympian and semiprofessional athlete who loves meal-prepping my dinners.

  • Adding vegetables to tried and true favorites like pasta is an easy way to make a well-rounded meal.

  • Allowing yourself room to eat what you want, like burgers or tacos, can help keep you on track.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Burgers are filling and easy to throw together.

plate with burger, broccolini, french fries, and ketchup
I can switch up the protein of my burgers. Gemma Acheampong

Burgers are super easy to throw together and even easier to prep.

I usually buy ground beef and make my own patties rather than buying the pre-formed ones because I prefer seasoning them to my own tastes.

To switch things up, I sometimes swap ground beef for ground chicken, ground turkey, or salmon.

You can pack a lot of flavor into fried rice.

pot of kimchi fried rice
I like to make my fried rice with kimchi. Gemma Acheampong

Fried rice is one of the tastiest and quickest one-pan dishes.

If I have kimchi on hand, I'll make kimchi fried rice. If not, regular fried rice works just as well.

I also make sure to throw in some sort of protein (eggs, steak, chicken) and veggies on the side.

I haven't always been a salad fan, but I've found some flavor combinations that really work.

hand holding bowl of salad with greens, corn, shrimp, and green dressing
Salads don't have to be boring. Gemma Acheampong

Salads aren't my favorite meal, but I'm trying to experiment a bit more to change that.

My go-to salad has always been a classic Caesar, so I looked up salad recipes and ideas and tried some new combos. I found that adding a new protein like steak to something familiar is an easy way to change things up.

I also thought about the flavors I love and tried them in salad form, like a taco salad. I make mine with grilled shrimp, grilled corn, tomatoes, carrots, crushed tortilla chips, and homemade cilantro-lime dressing.

Salads sound time-consuming, but the only hard parts are cooking the protein and deciding on a dressing.

When I want to make a big batch meal, I turn to soups and stews.

bowl of stew with clams and a side of bread
I can make a big pot at the beginning of the week so I have leftovers. Gemma Acheampong

Soups and stews are great if you want to make a gigantic batch for the week. Plus, there are a million recipes online to gather inspiration from.

This week, I was craving seafood, so I made a simple stew with mussels, shrimp, mahi-mahi, and scallops.

The first few days I had it with breadsticks, and I made it last longer by adding some pasta to it later in the week.

Pasta is a crowd favorite, and it's super easy to make.

bowl of pasta with veggies and cheese
Pasta is filling, and it can be super flavorful Gemma Acheampong

Pasta is always a family-favorite meal, and it's an easy one for those who struggle with cooking.

The key is using a jarred red sauce that tastes great and needs very little cooking time. Then just mix and match proteins and vegetable add-ins. My favorites are spinach and ground beef or chicken.

For a refreshing change, you can also use store-bought pesto. This requires even less cooking because you just have to toss the finished pasta in it.

There are endless taco-filling possibilities.

two tacos on flour tortillas with veggies, sour cream, and salsa as toppings
I like to switch up the protein in my tacos. Gemma Acheampong

I love meals like tacos where the protein can be whatever I'm in the mood for. I can change the flavor depending on my cravings for the week.

I don't get a ton of greens with this meal, so I try and make my fillings healthier by using spinach, avocado, and fresh tomatoes.

Protein and veggies with rice is a staple meal formula.

dinner plate with rice, meat, and asparagus
This meal doesn't take a lot of prep or extra thought. Gemma Acheampong

Sometimes I run out of ideas for the week. In those cases, sautéing or grilling some protein and steaming some vegetables is good enough for me.

My protein of choice is beef, but chicken and turkey are leaner options. For vegetables, broccoli or asparagus steam quickly and never fail in flavor.

I can't survive without carbs, so I usually add a side of whatever plain or flavored rice I have on hand.

Every once in a while, I'll order a fresh meal kit to make dinner planning easier.

blue apron meal kit box on a kitchen counter
Meal kits are great for busy nights. Gemma Acheampong

From time to time, I'll use a meal-kit delivery service. I think they're great for people who don't cook often, hate leftovers, or are in a rut and want to try new things.

There are so many different types of services these days. I recommend choosing one that fits your goals and diet.

Since the ingredients and recipe all come together, you don't have to plan ahead or do a ton of prep work.

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