Being prepared isn’t just for boy scouts. Preparation relieves us of the decision making, hard work and excuses that trip us up in times of stress, hunger, tiredness or when we’re simply short on time.
WHY THE BUZZ ABOUT MEAL PREP?
Meal prep is all about making hay while the sun shines, so even when it’s raining, the animals won’t go hungry! Using time, resources, energy and focus in bulk and when you have it can help you:
- Save time across the week
- Save money by not buying at cafés or takeaways
- Stay on the wagon and stick to your plan
- Avoid emotional eating and poor choices when in a weak moment
- Take the effort out of decisions – make decisions once and the rest is autopilot!
Sounds good right?!
SO HOW DO I DO IT?
Meal prep can be as varied as the meals you create, but there are some fundamental aspects that’ll turn you into a meal prep master:
- Shop – Save time standing in queues or going to the supermarket on the way home each night. Shop once a week and shop good -there’s nothing quite like a gloriously health packed pantry and fridge! Bulk shopping has the added benefits of less packaging, it’s usually cheaper and you can order online and have it delivered to your door. Online shopping also cuts the temptation of impulse buys and you can save shopping lists to reorder each week saving EVEN MORE time – simply revolutionary!
- Cook – precook chicken, meat or even rice, chickpeas and lentils to easily dive into throughout the week. This cuts cooking times and could mean a ready-made salad in seconds! You can also get your bake on for treats, muffins or loaves for healthier snacking (This chickpea flour banana bread is my personal go-to!).
- Slice/dice/chop – whether its veg, fruit or meat, bulk pre-chopping saves on time and washing up. If you’re chopping for one meal – why not chop for 2 or 3!?
- Portion – portion out your lunches for the week into separate containers so its literally “grab and go” in the morning. Quicker, cheaper and healthier than any supermarket on-the-go option!
- Love your leftovers – if you’re making a meal, make double and put the rest in the freezer. You may not want to eat the same thing two nights in a row, but by the end of a long week, that frozen feast will be a shining light at the end of the tunnel. Just take out in the morning or the night before to defrost on the counter or fridge.
- Snack Attack – Prep is for snacks too! Get that nut and seed mix bagged up; pack a knife to slather that nut butter; put some fresh berries, seeds and yoghurt in a snack-sized jar (check out Ikea for adorable and convenient glass jars in all sizes!); boil and peel those eggs and pre-slice some carrot sticks or seasoned chicken strips.
Whether you’re a strict meal planner, or if you like to go with the flow, meal prep days can significantly improve your success rates. Not to mention giving you more time and money to do the things you love with the people you love.