Tips on how to win at meal prep
How many times have you come home from a long day at work and decided to heat up an unhealthy, frozen dish? How many times have you bought fast food to save you time? Sometimes we even just eat snacks in place of a meal. That’s okay once and a while, but if you know you’re going to be busy, plan in advance! There’s no better time than spring to start changing the way you eat. Below are some tips on how to win at meal prep:
- Decide what meal(s) you want to plan in advance. Maybe breakfast, lunch and dinner is too ambitious. Try prepping for only the meal you struggle with most.
- Make a list of your current ingredients. Figure out what spices, oils, flours, grains, sugars, & cooking supplies you have. The secret to re-purposing food is to have a variety of these ingredients so you can make new variations, and always have what you need on hand.
- Start a list. Compile freezer-friendly or meal prep friendly recipes so you don’t always have to re-look up a recipe or scramble online to find one last minute. Organize it by meal type or ingredients.
- Make larger quantities. This is perfect for food that will last 4-5 days such as rice or pasta. Come up with a few recipes you can reuse the grains with throughout the week.
- Cut your veggies. Take the time to wash and cut your vegetables to save time on a busy day. You’ll be thanking yourself when you have your peppers ready-to-go!
- Never go to the grocery store without a plan. This mistake will leave you stressed at the store while you frantically look up recipes. You’ll end up buying too much or too little. Make sure you always have a list!
- Buy durable, long lasting goods. Consider purchasing freeze dried fruits or vegetables since they typically have a shelf-life of 1+ years. You’ll be able to keep healthy ingredients year round that you can easily add to a recipe. Check out Brothers All Natural Freeze Dried Fruit. Another example is purchasing wraps instead of bread, Unopened wraps can last for 2-3 weeks in the fridge and opened can last approx 1 week.
- Get proper storage containers. Invest in quality containers to keep food fresh for bringing on-the-go. Nothing is worse than being an awesome meal prep and then having your lettuce wilt due to improper storage.
- Buy bulk. It will save you money and time when purchasing the basic items you always use or are planning to use a lot of that month.
The main lesson is to take time to plan in advance. If you want to make your own meals, you’ll have to sacrifice time somewhere. It’s better to do so before you’re stressed for time!