Does meal prep feel daunting and stressful? Does the thought of spending hours slaving away in the kitchen, portioning out meals into millions of containers, make your blood boil? Do you hate the idea of eating the same food day after day? The good news is meal prep doesn’t have to be a drag! We’ve got 3 easy tips to save you time and make the process both easy and enjoyable.
Rather than take on a full week’s worth of prepping, set aside maybe 20-45 minutes on a day that suits you, and start with just one or two meals or snacks for the week. For example, a curry that makes 4 serves to spread across lunches and/or dinners, or a batch of healthy bliss balls for snacking. You could even prep a single ingredient, such as marinated chicken breasts, a pot of herbed quinoa or a tray of roast pumpkin, and use in a variety of ways throughout the week. How about pre-chopping a range of different vegetables for the week, that you can snack on raw with dips, throw into a salad, stir fry, or bake in the oven? This will take you no more than 20 minutes, but will save you precious time during the week (and ensure you meet your veggie quota for the day).
When you do decide to cook during the week, why not make the most of this opportunity, and bulk cook? Bulk cooking involves taking the recipe you are cooking, for example, a Thai beef stir fry, and doubling the quantity to make double the serves. This won’t add much to your cooking time, but will give you a day off sometime in the future, when you really need it. You can freeze your leftovers, or refrigerate them for 1-4 days depending on the dish you are preparing. Think about the days of the week where you may have time to bulk cook, and when you may enjoy a day off from cooking. Then start planning around this! For example, if you want to squeeze in a gym session after work on a Tuesday, do you have time on Monday to turn your dinner into a bulk-cook opportunity for the next day?
If the above options don’t appeal to you, or if your time availability for cooking is unpredictable and short, utilising convenience options may be your best option. Ready made meals like My Muscle Chef offer a wide range of meals to suit any goal – whether it be losing body fat or gaining muscle mass. You can order full portion-controlled meals (the variety is endless), or specific ingredients such as bulk-cooked proteins, vegetables or carbohydrates to save you time, and allow you to mix and match with ingredients you have at home. They even have breakfasts, snacks and protein drinks to complete your day. They also let you order meals online, or pick up directly from the meal fridge at your local gym or speciality store. For more info https://www.mymusclechef.com/
Meal prepping is a great way to make healthier choices and save time and money. Though it may seem hard at first, it really doesn’t have to be. There are so many strategies and techniques you can use to fit meal prep into your life, and with a little bit of planning, make it an easy habit that saves you time and keeps you on track with your goals.