People live busy lives. No matter your age, most people are operating with full plates of responsibilities every day. Due to this, it can be hard to have the time, energy, or motivation to fulfill all your responsibilities and then cook yourself or your family a meal from scratch.
This is why prepping your meals in advance can be so helpful. By preparing your meals in advance when you have the spare time to do so, you can save yourself time and energy as you bring yourself closer to eating some delicious home cooked meals. If you are new to meal prep or are looking to improve, here are some tips that can help improve your meal prep plans.
When it comes to meal prep, you should find a methodology that best fits your preferences and lifestyle. Some people prefer to have every meal planned out and prepared so that all they have to do is grab it out of the refrigerator and heat it up. Some prefer to prepare their ingredients rather than their meals. By cutting vegetables or preparing meats for further use, one can add some spontaneity by being able to take the already prepared ingredients and combining them for quick meals that suit what they’re hungry for in the moment. It comes down to finding a style that works for you.
Don’t Forget Snacks and Dessert
While it may be obvious to prepare your three main meals for the day, it is also important to prepare yourself a snack for the afternoon and/or a dessert for the evening. Keeping these other eating opportunities in mind can make sure you always have something prepared when your body needs that extra bit of fuel or you need your sweet tooth satisfied.
Cover All the Food Groups
Remember those food pyramids that you saw in school or online? The reason those exist is because our body functions best when our body has all of the categories satisfied. While your circumstances may change the amount of each category you need, all of them are still important to keep in mind and prepare for. Always try to balance your meals with protein, carbs, healthy fats and vegetables.
Don’t Make Too Much Food
Try to aim for the correct amount of food that you’ll be eating. While it may be obvious that you want to make enough food so that you will have something to eat at the end of the week, it is also important not to prepare too much food in order to prevent waste. A reason that many people meal prep is because it is cheaper to make meals at home than ordering from a restaurant. By keeping waste as low as possible, you can help maintain that economic benefit.
Most people get tired of eating the same food every day. To make sure that you are always enjoying your meal, try to avoid making a lot of a food you will get bored of quickly. Try making different meals out of the same ingredients to keep your palette exposed to new tastes as often as possible. The saying goes that variety is the spice of life, so vary up your spices as well as your meals. Using different seasonings and spices can help a standard meal taste like a new one as well as allowing for some culinary experimentation.
Humans can be forgetful creatures. By labeling all your prepped food you can always remember what you have, but another idea to keep in mind is labeling when they were prepared. Doing this allows you to better discern when an ingredient or meal is past its prime and is better off being tossed. Taking a few seconds to label can help ensure that you’re combining the correct foods that are still good for consumption.
Meal prepping shouldn’t ever be a frightening process. In fact, it should excite the culinarian in you to see what you can create. By planning your meals ahead of time, you are also avoiding falling into the trap of unhealthy fast food. In the long run meal prep is your best option for improving your health as well as improving the health of you wallet.