I am going to teach you how to enjoy healthy meal prep, the process and the food itself! “Healthy meal prep”… in the past when I heard those words I stopped listening. If we’re being honest, I stopped listening just at the words “meal prep. I thought, not only does it take forever but the food is gross at the end of the week and “healthy eating” is just a turn-off in general… I’ll grab some Wendy’s or McDonald’s. Yep, I LOVE McDonald’s. Go ahead and judge, I am not ashamed! Here is what you need to know if you are anything like what you just read about me.
Meal prepping can be fun and you can enjoy what you are eating if you do it right. Oh! Did I mention it doesn’t have to take all night either? Sound too good to be true? I would have thought so too if I hadn’t tried it for myself. What made me try healthy meal prep again, you ask? I was spending WAY too much money on unhealthy fast food and since we’re being honest, I hate the gym. I know, all you health fans and gym-obsessed ladies are giving me the stink eye. Who knows? Maybe you will find some meal prep tips here that you find helpful too!
Healthy Meal Prep with a Friend
This is vital if you want to enjoy the healthy meal prep process. If you live close enough, I suggest grabbing your mom (as you can see I did in the picture above) and mixing up a cocktail to sip while you work. Not only is this good quality time but if you’re lucky enough you will have someone with real cooking experience. Having someone makes meal prep faster especially if you are making the same meals. Although meal prepping obviously takes a decent chunk of time it saves you time throughout the rest of your busy week, especially if it is your responsibility to feed others. Turn on some music, dance around the kitchen together, and chop those onions… just not all at the same time! If you can’t find a friend that wants to meal prep you can still sing and dance around the kitchen to make the prepping process more enjoyable.
Cook Food You Enjoy
There is nothing worse than eating healthy food that you don’t like. Healthy meal prep is more than spinach and kale, I promise. Now I’m not saying you should put a few Big Mac’s in plastic containers and call it a day (I wish). My point is that finding the healthiest recipe on Pinterest and forcing yourself to eat it, is a surefire way to grow an aversion towards meal prepping. That is what happened my first go around. For example, cutting out carbs is next to impossible. I. LOVE. CARBS. Eating clean can be done by watching how much of each food group you are consuming. You will have to lay off the junk food though, sorry Charlie. I suggest cooking bulk amounts of certain foods, ingredients, and toppings rather than planning each individual meal or eating the same meal 5-7 days in a row. A girl needs variety! I cook big batches of chicken, rice, and potatoes and I clean and chop a variety of veggies and fruit, that I enjoy eating. Don’t give me the excuse that you don’t like any fruits or veggies, there are so many to try.
In order to not be overwhelmed, and therefore give up, I suggest grocery shopping one day and meal prepping the following day. You do not want to devote every task required to meal prepping to one day. You will dread that day the entire week leading up to it and most likely not stick with it because it has become a burden. Here are some food options. I’ve italicized examples of what I would buy (all on one trip) to last one week. You can mix and match to fit your taste-bud preferences! Obviously this isn’t all the food you can prepare. These are examples of food that can be prepped and ingredients needed to prep. Feel free to add your own favorites that are also clean eats.
boneless skinless chicken breast – 2 packages
lean ground turkey (or beef) – 2 packages
fajita steak strips (pre-cooked) – 1 package
lentils – 1 bag
tofu – 2 packages
bell peppers (any color) – 3 peppers total
frozen green beans – 1 package
fresh brussel sprouts – 1 bunch
romaine lettuce – 1 bag
mini carrots – 1 bag
onions – 3
red potatoes – 4 or 5
sweet potatoes -2-3
strawberries – 1 container
blueberries – 1 container
raspberries – 1 container
(to name a few)
white rice – 1 bag (this will last a while)
tortillas – 1 package
granola – 1 bag
greek yogurt – 1 tub
lactaid free milk (tastes the same) – 1 gallon or a 1/2 gallon
shredded cheese – 1 package
I did not provide actual combinations needed to make a meal with each food, that is up to you. Mix and match the food you prepare all week long so you don’t get burnt out. I’m not going to tell you how to cook each food because we would be here all day, but if you have ANY questions about the prep process for the food or about the process in general, please drop a comment below! A happier, more energetic, you is just around the corner. Tell me about your successes and failures with healthy meal prep I would love to chat, laugh, and share mine with you!