Happy Friday Ladies! Can you believe that we’re almost through January? Although I know there’s still a lot of winter ahead, I’m excited to see light at the end of the winter tunnel!
Today I wanted to briefly discuss meal prepping and give some of my tips and tricks that help me prep weekly.
In my house we prepare lunches, mid-morning and mid-afternoon snacks for my husband and me every Sunday. The same tips can be used for breakfast and lunch.
Meal prepping can be easy and satisfying or hard and frustrating. It mostly depends on how well you plan. Either way, an effective meal prepping strategy will help you avoid the drive thru!
Here are some tips to make your Sunday afternoon go smoothly.
- Every Friday, make a habit of planning next week’s meals.
This is my #1 tip to remove frustration from meal prepping. I know that usually on Friday we’re thinking about the weekend and all the fun things we plan to do. Set aside 20 minutes to plan next week’s meals. Make your ingredient lists and grocery lists. Don’t wait until Sunday! Your odds of getting everything done are much less! Having your plan set on Friday allows you to get any ingredients you need over the weekend and be 100% ready when you start to cook!
- Prep Your Snacks Too!
Prepping healthy snacks can usually be done while your main meals are cooking. Something simple as hard-boiled eggs and cheese cubes are a cheap and healthy way to keep you on track during the week. (If you’re not having snacks in between meals and have a hard time with portion control, this can be a game changer!)
- You Can Cook Large Batches and Freeze for Later Use.
Have a meal that you love? Cook 10 servings instead of 5. Portion and freeze the other 5 and you’ll have a backup plan for when life gets in the way of prepping (this has been a trial and error process for me…you don’t know what keeps well in the freezer until you try.)
- Prepping for two? Cook two meals and have variety in your week!
If you’re prepping for more than one person you can cook two meals and switch it up daily! (since my husband and I have VERY different taste, this is rarely an option for me…maybe you’ll have more luck!)
- Use The Right Containers.
There are a ton of quality affordable meal prep containers. For most meals I recommend something with a divider to separate your protein from your carbs and veggies. You can buy sets of 25 or more on Amazon for about 50 cents each. I bought a group of 50 two years ago and still have over 30. They’re reusable and cheap enough that you don’t feel bad throwing them away if needed. I have also found that glass meal prep containers keep the food fresher for a longer period of time. We have a set of 5 that we use as well.
- Use a Meal Prep Website
I use www.meallime.com. It’s free and will give you 100’s of recipes to try. You even have the option of entering the ingredients you have on-hand and it will tell you what can be made without going to the store! There’s a paid version as well which will give you nutritional information and additional recipes. This is a huge help on Friday when I’m planning next week’s meals. (This is a non-paid endorsement. I have no business relationship with any meal prep company/website)
- Meal Prepping Doesn’t Only Include Pre-Cooking Meals For the Future
Preparing your meals for the rest of the week is great. In my house we cook our dinners fresh each night. When I meal prep, I plan my meals for every night. I get the ingredients when I shop for lunchtime prep. Doing this allows me to plan which nights I’m busy with the kids (crock pot meal night) and which nights I have more time to cook! This avoids those last-minute crunches and above all…keeps me out of the drive thru!
After a couple months of meal prepping, you’ll find which recipes you love. I have about 8-10 go-to meals which I keep in a rotation so that I don’t get tired of any certain meal.
Put a few of these tips to use and you’ll be well on your way to eating healthier, feeling better and have less stress around food! At Fit Girl Fitness, exercise is only a portion of what we offer. There’s a reason why under our logo we proudly display our core offering: Fitness-Nutrition-Accountability-Community. They’re equally important.
If you’d like some help getting started with a meal prep plan I can help! I have hundreds of personally tested recipes that I know you’ll love! I can always be contacted at [email protected] or www.fitgirlfit.com