I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I have a love & hate relationship with meal prep.
You see, I LOVE to eat fresh food and create new dishes, make something interesting, accidentally cook up something delicious. And we all know that you do end up getting a little restricted if you meal prep. To create meals you can eat the whole week, you have to have balanced meals, that will still be yummy and provide you with the necessary nutrients you need on your day-to-day life.
On the other hand, here are some very good reasons I found for why you should meal prep:
- It helps reduce waste since you’ll prepare your meals ahead and should have no leftover produce rotting in the fridge
- You’ll buy less processed food since you’ll be making nutrition-dense meals
- You will eat healthier meals (!!!)
- The time you spend in the kitchen is reduced significantly (if you customarily cook whole meals from scratch daily)
- You won’t have to do dishes for a whole week (I rest my case)
Simple Guide to Meal Prep & Waste Less
To me, prepping meals should be easy, like everything in life, so I tend to stick to delicious, nutrition dense meals that I know will be pleasant enough to eat again and again throughout the week.
So my meal prep looks something like this:
- 1 part carbs
- 1 part vegetables on a delicious saucy meal
- Dip & veggies + bliss balls for snacks
And that’s it.
Instead of prepping several different meals, I make 3 meals (plus 1-2 carbs) a week, so there’s enough variety to keep things interesting and they are all very nutritiously dense so we get enough vitamin/minerals and overall macros.
Here are some suggestions for your meals:
- Vegan Feijão
- Panang Curry
- Yellow Pea Dahl (recipe coming soon)
- Persian Khoresh from Exotic Bazaar
- Soups (like Cauliflower or Pumpkin Soup)
- Mixed roasted vegetables
For all these recipes I always add a considerable amount of extra vegetables to add variety and different nutrients.
For carbohydrates I usually go for these: brown or white rice, quinoa, couscous, barley.
If that doesn’t really float your boat, I do however have other few other ways you can meal prep. Here are some suggestions:
- Wash, cut and store the ingredients so you can quickly whip up a meal during the week (best for hard vegetables and fruits)
- Prep a whole meal and store in the fridge or freezer to eat during the week, like a big batch of lasagna, soup, pasta, curry, etc…
Also, to help with meal prep, here are some really handy tips.
- Plan your meals so you’ll know how much to buy, prepare and cook for
- Wash, clean and cut all your ingredients
- Cook your carbs and beans first (as they take longer to get ready, you can do other tasks before getting to cook your other meals)
- Schedule time out of your evening or weekend to meal prep, so you can get organised with enough time for it.
- Use what you have in your fridge so you won’t leave any leftovers behind and waste precious food
- Store your meals correctly and freeze anything that you won’t eat in a week, avoiding anything to go off
As for snacks, I’m super bias on a good dip and cut up veggies, like carrots and celery. I also make bliss balls so Jean can satisfy his sweet tooth during the day.
Here are some other snack suggestions:
And that’s it! I’m not particularly great at meal prep but I’ve been real good with making sure we don’t waste any food and stay well fed for the whole week.
What are your main struggles with meal prepping? I’d love to hear from you!
Peace and love,