Meal prepping is not an easy thing to do. It can be feel like a disaster is happening in the kitchen which is how I use to feel! It can be difficult to decide where to start or how to plan things out orderly especially if you’re new to meal prepping. Here are some tips that I always do before any meal prep. Hopefully they help!
My meals usually do not last the entire 7 days of the week. I prep for 2-4 days because I like my food more fresh. I split my meal preps into 2 days a week, so I never spend too long prepping each time. I usually have Sundays & Wednesdays as my meal prep days lasting 1-1 1/2 hours each time.
Also, my meal preps are only for lunch and dinner. For breakfasts I always have 10-15 minutes in the morning to prepare. I usually have toast, omelettes, fresh fruit, overnight oatmeal heated on the stovetop, waffles or pancakes. Omelettes, waffles & pancakes are for when I have more time. When I’m more on the go, I’ll prep overnight oatmeal the night before and take it with me in a mason jar!
1. Get some inspiration or ideas of what recipes or foods you want to make.
I find my recipes from Google by typing “clean eating” after my searches. For example I would type, “Tomato Basil Chicken Clean Eating”. You can also use the words “easy” or “healthy” to find a more specific recipe. I also find some recipes from Pinterest. They have so many delicious recipes! I have folders divided by desserts, snacks, chicken recipes, quick meals & clean eating foods. Bookmark your recipes.
2. After looking up some ideas, specifically decide and write down what recipes for protein, grains and veggies want – as well as the cooking method.
I decide at least 2 of each, sometimes 3. If I have a bit more time, I will choose up to 4. If you choose only 1 that is your choice but I usually like to change things up and not eat the same protein at every meal. Include the sauces, seasonings and herbs you will use as well.
Protein: All Baked in Oven
-Lentil Curry Chicken (Olive Oil, Lentil Curry Sauce)
-Tomato Turkey (Olive Oil, Tomato Basil Sauce, Fresh tomatoes)
-Lemon Garlic Herbed Tilapia (Olive Oil, Lemon Juice, 24 Herbs + Spices seasoning,
Garlic Salt, Salt, Pepper)
-Quinoa (Cooked in rice cooker)
-Whole Wheat Pasta (Boiled)
-Zucchini, Broccoli (Steamed)
Cut up raw veggies:
-Sweet Potatoes, Cauliflower (Roasted)
3. After deciding your recipes, write your grocery list divided up by food groups.
This will make shopping more easily so you won’t be running all over the grocery store.
Grains, Veggies, Fruits, Protein, Dairy.
4. After buying all your groceries, organize it before starting.
Put the herbs, spices and sauces you will use for the recipe right next to your food item before you begin preparing anything. Group them up. This prevents you from running all over your kitchen to grab 1 ingredient here and another ingredient there only to remember you forgot something when it’s too late.
5. Decide on what you want to start first.
Make a list of what foods you will cook first if it helps you. I usually start on my protein, then veggies, then grains. This is because protein takes the longest to cool down before boxing it up. Veggies are pretty quick and simple. Grains are quick as well. If I make quinoa, I usually make it first because I use a rice cooker. I always cook it in a rice cooker since I don’t need to monitor it!
6. Wash, cut up & box.
Sometimes, I don’t cook my veggies all at once. It depends on if I’ll have time to cook it fresh at a certain meal. If I do, I’ll have it washed and cut up in containers to be stored in my fridge. When it’s time for that meal, I just throw it on a baking sheet and roast my veggies. No need to wash and cut them up. This helps save a lot of time since it’s already washed and cut!
7. While your food is cooking, organize your containers.
When the food is done, let it cool for a while. I let my food cool for an hour before I put it in the fridge. When done cooling, put it into your to-go containers, put leftovers in another larger container and refrigerate!
Here are my lunch & dinner meals for Mon-Wed. Wednesday night I’ll be prepping some more other new recipes! I’m not pro at meal prepping since I just started several months ago but I hope this helped. Let me know if you have any more questions regarding meal prepping or anything I didn’t cover!