Meal prep doesn’t have to be a chore. In fact, it can be one of the best ways to eat better, save time and be Foodie Fit, as well as lose weight. But it can be time-consuming to assemble all of your ingredients, and once you get them lubed, you still have to take the time to cook them. Plus, all that cooking takes time, too. The good news? You can meal prep in just a few minutes, and your prepared meals will stay fresh for several days.
While meal prep has come a long way in recent years, it’s still not perfect, so if you’re looking to maximize your efficiency, here are some of the tips for meal prep success:
- Create a list of your favorite go-to dishes. Meal prep is a great way to eat healthy throughout the week, but planning out your meals becomes a lot harder when you have to think about what to eat. That’s where having a go-to list of dishes comes in handy. Having a list of go-to meals is one of the top tips for meal prep success. This strategy is an easy way to prepare healthy meals all week long. Premade meals can be convenient, but they don’t always offer the healthiest choices. Recreating a favorite family recipe or preparing your own favorite dishes at home can be a healthy alternative. Though healthy eating and meal prep are often viewed as a chore, they can actually be a lot of fun. This healthy, delicious, and simple dish is a perfect example of a tasty and satisfying meal that can be made ahead of time. That way, all you have to do is select something from those options, and you’ll have healthy meals on hand.
- Practice smart shopping. Meal prep, the act of preparing each meal ahead of time, can be a great way to save time and money. Prepping meals in advance is one of the best ways to start eating healthy. While meal prep is a great way to save time, avoid the drive-thru, and eat healthily, it’s also a way to save money. How? By shopping smartly. For instance, by making simple swaps and substitutions to some of the ingredients in your meal prep, you can save big. For example, instead of spending $6 on a bottle of salad dressing, try making your own with just a few minutes of prep time and common ingredients. As an added bonus, making your own dressing will typically result in fresher ingredients, which equates to more nutritious and delicious meals.
- Ask someone to do the planning for you. Prepping food for the week is one of the simplest and most effective ways to eat healthily and save money, and many people are doing it, but not everyone is getting the results they want. If you’re among the latter, part of your problem may be that you’re not too keen on doing the planning yourself—and that’s okay. Meal planning is a great way to save time, money, and calories. Your best tip for meal prep success? Ask for help! Ask your spouse, partner, or roommate about it. You can also ask a friend or family member to do the meal planning. It’s a win-win.
- Fill up your pantry. Prepping your meals for the week is one of the best things you can do to eat healthier and save money, and this meal prep guide will help you make the most of it. Stock the pantry is one of the tips for meal prep success, so head to the store to get your weekly staples. A well-stocked pantry can not only make meal prepping easier, but it can also save you money on expensive foods. You probably already have a lot of the items you need for a well-stocked pantry. Just throw them together to make a tasty dish. If you don’t have a lot of food at home, stock up on healthy staples like fruits and vegetables, and also stock up on nonperishable items like salad dressing, nuts, and the like.
- Use your freezer for efficient meal prep. While some people prefer to spend their weekends in the kitchen, others prefer to spend their time enjoying the outdoors or spending time with family and friends. If you’re one of the people who prefer to spend the weekend outdoors, it’s a good idea to start prepping your meals ahead of time and packing them in your freezer. This will prevent your weekend from being interrupted by meal prep, which can save you time and energy.
- Take the night off from cooking your meal. When it comes to meal prep, one meal during the week has to go by the wayside. If you’re doing meal prep every week, chances are your evenings are already pretty busy. So, how do you meal prep on weeknights? One simple trick is to cook two meals on Sunday, then freeze one. That way, you’ll have a complete meal ready to reheat on a busy night. And you’ll find you really like the flavor combinations of raw fish with a raw veggie salad.
Meal prep is all the rage. According to a survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 53% of working Americans eat out more than they prepare meals at home. With typically 2-3 meals per day and 7-8 hours of sleep, that leaves very little time to prepare a full meal, especially if you are only cooking for one. In these cases, meal prep is a good idea because it helps eliminate the headaches of eating out from your diet.
Whether you’re trying to save money, eat healthier, or simply be more organized, meal prep is all the rage. And it’s not hard to see why. Meal prep allows you to make time- and money-saving meals ahead of time, ensuring you always have something healthy to eat. But, like most things in life, meal prep isn’t perfect. Sometimes meal prep can be a huge chore, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
Other Things to Consider + Meal Prep Alternatives
If you’re struggling to stick to your meal prep plan, there are plenty of things you can try. One strategy is to change your environment. If you’re struggling to set yourself up for success, maybe you need to remove distractions, like your TV, from your space. Also, you’ll likely find that eating mindfully will improve your overall diet, so try to focus on your food when you eat. If you’ve tried meal prep in the past only to find it’s too time-consuming, try planning for the week. That way, you can remember exactly what meals you have to prepare. Lastly, don’t panic if you don’t stick to your prep plan. Life happens, so if you can design a flexible meal prep schedule, you’ll be better off in the long run.
For busy individuals and families, meal prep can be an effective way to save time and money while eating healthier. Meal prep generally involves dividing food into single servings and freezing them for later use. A meal prep service, like the one offered by Meal Prep Pitt Meadows, can also help you prepare a weekly meal plan and divide all of the food into single servings. You can then use this single portioned food to prepare each meal during the next few days.