Meal Prepping 101: Tips for Beginners
My best tips & tricks for beginners
If you're new to meal prepping and just starting out, it can be pretty intimidating and stressful.
Trust me, I get it and I've been there myself. BUT, like anything else, it takes practice and you'll get more comfortable with it and learn from your mistakes.
Let's keep the stress to a minimum & the benefits at a maximum.
Below are 8 tips that I highly recommend that will help your MP routine run much smoother and save you time.
My Top Tips:
Tip #1. Start small.
If you're new to #mealprepping, don't overwhelm yourself by trying to do too much too soon. Going balls to the wall from the get-go will only result in you throwing in the towel real early. Think about it like when someone decides to go on a 'health-kick' and goes from a sedentary lifestyle to running, yoga classes, group fitness classes, eliminating sugar, goes vegan, etc. all at the same time. Adding a ton of new things all at once almost ALWAYS leads to crashing, which results in giving up.
So, start small. Begin by prepping one meal, or maybe for two days, and work your way up to prepping more as you get the hang of things. Try simple, quick #recipes to keep it efficient and easier to stick to for your first few go-rounds.
Tip #2. Pick a day.
Choose a day that works best for your schedule to bang out all your prep work. Block out enough time to grocery shop and prep what you want to have for the week. Put it on your calendar and follow through with it.
Tip #3. Plan out your meals.
Sit down and write down what you want to make for the week.
If you're in need of some inspo or simple recipes to make life easier...the Internet is your friend! Or, even more specific...Pinterest!
Tip #4. Make a list.
List out everything that you will need from the store. Food, utensils, etc. Be v detailed and don't leave anything out...there's nothing worse than getting home from the store and forgetting the most basic thing and having to go back...waste of time and inefficient—and we don't like inefficiency. So, make that list, and check it twice. ;)
Tip #5. Invest in reusable, quality containers.
This is important, and is based on your own, individual lifestyle.
Example: If you're looking to make meals to just pop into the oven for a reheat, glass, oven-safe containers may be more ideal for you than metal. There's so many options and you can even order them from the comfort of your own home and have them in two days (shout out to Amazon Prime). Choose which will work best for you and think about if you want ones that have dividers, what size, etc.
Tip #6. Embark on a love affair with an Instant Pot.
Okay, after having been in the MP game for a few months, this one changed the game for me. These Heaven-sent machines are insanely versatile and can save you SO much time. Or, if you like slow roasting, they do that too!
You can find an easy, #healthy lunch recipe to make yourself for the week...like a Buddha bowl, for example. Adjust the recipe to make however many servings you'll need, and toss everything into the Instant Pot. Let it slow cook, and forget about it for 4+ hours. Easy!
Tip #7. Start your cooking with meals/foods that take the longest.
Proteins, grains, anything going into the oven, etc. take longer to cook than foods like potatoes or beans. So start by cooking those that take the longest, first.
Pro tip: If you're not a fan of pre-cooking proteins, try to prepare them by
marinating and storing them so that on the day you plan to eat, it's easily
accessible and ready to throw on the grill, in the oven, or into a stir fry.
Tip #8. Become a multitasking GODDESS (or God).
Have your sweet taters roasting in the oven? Quinoa boiling over the stove? Protein on the grill? Clean and chop your veggies while those things are going. Stay focused and keep it movin' so you can get everything done ASAP!
Hope these tips help ease the process of this beautiful, time & money-saving craft.
If you have any questions, leave them in the comments! Or if you have any tips of your own, feel free to share as well!