Meal prep is great for so many reasons! It helps if you have a busy schedule and don’t have time during the week to cook. It also prevents you from eating unhealthy throughout the week. How much easier is it to eat clean if your meals are prepared and packaged?
How Do I Meal Prep?
I meal prep every Sunday. I’ll cook my protein, grains and vegetables for lunch and dinner to last me through Thursday. If I’m planning eggs for breakfast, I’ll cook those quick the night before. Then I will portion out and bag my snacks. Then I will cook on Friday for the weekend, and start the routine again on Sunday.
Meal Prep Tips & Supplies
- Invest in meal prep containers: you can find containers just about anywhere. I found some great 2 compartment and 3 compartment containers on Amazon for cheap! (Prime eligible if you’re a member!)
- Get organized! You can find a lot of meal prep templates online. I use this magnetic planning chart on my fridge (Amazon again!)! I have one for me and one for my husband since we have slightly different tastes in food when it comes to clean eating. Find what works for you!
- Purchase a food scale – again, you can find one here on Amazon (clearly I like Amazon just a little bit…). Electronic scales are ideal. You can put the container on it and easily zero it out to weigh your food. This is especially important for your proteins as the weight changes once it’s cooked.
- Use measuring cups – don’t try to eyeball amounts, measuring is best.
- Cook first, then assemble – once all of your food is cooked, place it almost in an assembly line so you can fill each container quickly.
STEP ONE | Create Your Menu
The first step is to choose your food for the week: Your meals do not have to be crazy! To simplify it, choose 1 item from each list, and make it a meal! Or a great place to find recipes is Skinnytaste or Pinterest. If you have a busy weekend, consider easy one-pot or crock-pot meals!
Chicken (Breast or Thigh)
Vegetable (1 cup)
Starch (1/2 cup)
Whole Grain Pasta
Healthy Fat (1 tbsp)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
STEP TWO | Grocery Shopping
Once you’ve decided on your meals, it’s time to make your grocery list and shop. I personally think it’s easier to separate your list by food category. You can also find some great printable grocery list templates here.
STEP THREE | Cooking
Now it’s time to start cooking! Prep whatever you can before you start to cook (measure out herbs and spices, peel & chop vegetables… whatever is going to make the cooking process easier).
STEP FOUR | Portioning & Packing
Portioning & Packing: Take out all of your containers and line them up like an assembly line. First, place a container on your scale and zero it out, then add 3oz of your protein. Once you add your protein to each container, continue by adding 1 cup of your vegetable and ½ cup of your starch to each. Once your meals are done, you can portion out your snacks for the week.
STEP FIVE | Label & Store
Labeling your containers is optional, but it’s something that helps in my house. I’ll put a small label on each snack or container with mine or my husband’s name & what meal it is (ex. Leah: Breakfast, Mike: AM Snack, Leah: PM Snack). Then neatly store your containers in your refrigerator, and snacks either in the refrigerator or cabinet, depending on what the snack is
That’s it! Now you are a meal prep pro. It’s all in the planning. Fail to prep, prep to fail. Create your menu today & start your journey to a healthy lifestyle!