Prepping meals makes it easier to stay on track with your health goals. By buying ingredients and making meals days in advance of when you’ll eat them, you incentivize yourself to use the groceries in your fridge and reduce the temptation to deviate from diets. For those of you on The Eat Clean™ Diet, this means better progress and faster results. But some people struggle with meal prep motivation, so what can you do to simplify the process?
I’m here to help. Below, I’ll cover 8 of my top tips for meal prepping so that you can do it faster, have more fun, and streamline your transformation into a leaner, more energetic version of yourself. Let’s get started!
Base Your Grocery Shopping On a Good Meal Plan
Creating a solid meal plan is the cornerstone of efficient meal prep. It gives you a structured routine to follow that leads to better and more consistent results.
- Planning meals around a theme or goal makes grocery shopping more efficient and helps your ingredients go farther by giving you more places to use them. This can help you save money as well!
- A well-thought-out meal plan also keeps you focused and less likely to succumb to impulse buys that don’t align with your health and wellness goals. Find meal plans for The Eat Clean™ Diet.
Choose One Day Per Week for Food Prep
Choose a day that works for you and your schedule, then prepare the meals that will sustain you in the week ahead. There is immense satisfaction in having envisioned, planned, and created your nourishment, fully knowing the clean ingredients that went into each meal.
- Try to keep your prep day consistent each week. Establishing a routine with some structure helps you turn prepping into a habit.
- Set a dedicated time of day to prep as well. Aim for a window where you know you’ll have a couple of spare hours—if this seems like a lot to ask, just remember all the time you’ll be saving throughout the rest of your week by having meals ready in advance!
Wash & Cut Raw Fruits & Veggies Right After Grocery Shopping
Pre-preparing your fruits and vegetables right after shopping can save you a significant amount of time on prep days—since you’ll already be finished with peeling, chopping, and slicing!
- Wash, dry, and chop your produce, and store them in clear containers. This not only makes them more accessible for snacking and cooking but also helps you visually track your veggie intake and stay on track with your health goals.
- Pre-prep anything that can be kept easily in the fridge. This includes dark leafy greens, root vegetables, and most fruits.
Cook in Batches
Batch cooking is a game-changer in meal prepping. It involves cooking larger quantities of a specific recipe, which can then be divided into portions for several meals throughout the week.
- Focus on versatile dishes that can be easily reheated after a few days without losing flavor.
- Choose foods that can easily be divided into multiple servings—then store individual portions in separate containers.
Try Large-Volume Recipes
Embrace recipes that can easily be scaled up—it’s easier to make double portions of stews, casseroles, or stir-fries than it is to make something like a giant quiche! These dishes have the added benefit of often tasting better the next day once their flavors have had a chance to meld. Try my busy night stir-fry as an example.
- Stir-fries, casseroles, soups, and stews are ideal for freezing and reheating.
- Label frozen meals with the date and contents for easy tracking.
Use Mason Jars & Muffin Tins for Storage
Getting creative about the way you store food by using items you probably already have around the house not only helps save you money—but also makes meal prep and storage more enjoyable.
- Mason jars are great for layered salads, overnight oats, or smoothie ingredients, keeping them fresh and convenient.
- Muffin tins are perfect for portioning out snacks or making mini-frittatas, which are great for grab-and-go breakfasts or quick snacks.
Eat More Raw Food
Of course, one of the single best ways to save time when meal prepping is to eat foods that require next to no preparation at all! It’s also a great way to up your nutrient intake and make progress towards your Eat Clean™ goals.
- Fresh salads, vegetable sticks, and fruit salads require minimal preparation and can be a refreshing part of your meal plan.
- Raw foods retain more nutrients and help keep your diet varied and colorful. Find your guide to a whole-food, plant-based diet.
Lean Into the Fun of Food Prepping
Finally, turning meal prep into something you actually enjoy is the key to staying consistent. The more enjoyable the process, the more likely you are to stick to it, transforming it from a chore into a delightful part of your weekly routine.
- Listen to your favorite music, podcast, or audiobook while prepping.
- Invite family members or roommates to join in, making it a communal activity.
Preparing meals should remove time and effort from your schedule, not add it—and when you take a few steps to smooth out and simplify the process, you’ll find that it’s much easier to make prepping a ritual you eagerly anticipate every week!
I’ve shared my suggestions to help you get started—now it’s up to you. For extra support on your Eat Clean™ journey, explore my wellness programs and find the tools you need to make the changes you want to see in your life.