Step-by-step guide to meal prep
Meal Prep 101
Having food ready in advance is the most reliable way to stick to your plan. Making it up as we go tends to lead up to make choices that we regret later. More often than not though, meal prepping gets a negative stereotype of bland chicken, rice, and steamed broccoli, all neatly organized in individual containers in bulk.
Meal prepping does take time and it does take your forethought and desire to plan for the week or weekend ahead.
That does not mean that your foods needs to be bland or boring! I personally plan out my grocery list on Friday or Saturday, go to the store and do the cutting/cooking/organizing on Sunday, so that my Monday-Saturday for the following week is set.
When planning your grocery list, think about your foods in terms of meals – not sections of the grocery store. I always plan my meals on the back of my grocery list so I make sure that I figure out what I already have at home and what needs to be purchased. Once the three main meals are figured out, then I think about my work and workout schedule for each day and how snacks can be fit into those.
Sample meals and grocery list:
- Breakfast: 2 eggs, 1/2 cup asparagus, coffee
- Lunch: 3oz crockpot chicken with packaged seasoning, roasted Brussels sprouts, carrots, and potatoes
- Dinner: Pulled pork tacos with cheese, onions, bell peppers, and jalapeños on corn tortillas
- Snacks: Peanut butter oatmeal with blueberries, coconut water protein shake
- Asparagus x 2 bunches
- Chicken breasts x 1lb
- Seasoning packet
- Brussels sprouts x 1lb
- Carrots x 1lb
- Potatoes x 2lbs
- Pork shoulder
- Corn tortillas x 20 count
- Low fat shredded Mozzarella
- Onion x 1
- Jalapeños x 2
- Bell pepper x 2
- Peanut butter
- Almond Milk
- Blueberries x 2 cartons
- Coconut water x 2
- Protein powder
When it comes to knowing how much of each item to purchase, that just comes with trial and error. You may have too much some weeks and too little for others. The amount you eat each day will differ depending on your stress and workout levels. The amount you buy will also differ if someone else in your household will eat what you’ve purchased and prepped.
As for ideas/recipes, Pinterest is always my go to app for searching. The key with meal prepping is to never get bored with your food.
Change up your meats and veggies each week, and make sure to be creative with at least one of your meals so that you look forward to eating it.