8 Tips For Learning To Meal Prep
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8 Tips For Learning To Meal Prep

Fresh food is always better.

8 Tips For Learning To Meal Prep
Katie Smith - Unsplash

Recently, I've gotten really into meal prepping my lunches for the week. I've been learning how to quickly get a lot of food in the oven and then pack it up neatly. There are plenty of ways to get meal prepping under control and only spend a few hours to have fresh food each day.

I started meal prepping because I believe in knowing exactly what goes into my food. Yes, I still eat the occasional prepackaged junk from the store because it's hard to avoid, but I'm striving to make most of my meals. Eating healthy is the best way to feel good and look good. So far, the benefits of meal prepping far outweigh the struggles I've faced.

To make your meal prep journey hopefully a lot smoother than my own, I'm sharing my best tips on how to get into meal prepping and be successful. Keep reading to see my top meal prep tips.

1. Plan ahead of time

If you know exactly what you're going to cook and all the ingredients you need a day or two in advance, things will be much easier. I typically list out a few meal options and pick what I need. Usually, I stick to whole food options like fresh chicken or steak with veggies. Add in some small portions of rice and potatoes if you need to feel fuller or want to indulge in some carbs.

2. Invest in quality oven pans

I started with one small pan that held about one meal. While I made it work, I'm much happier with my massive, professional pan from Target that holds two meals. Now I throw three in at a time with my two pans. I can't wait to go get a second pan so I can do four at once with just two pans. Use foil underneath, and you'll barely have any clean-up to do.

3. Speaking of pans, stick to one-pan meals

One-pan meals are basically God's gift to those who love quality food. You can throw everything on there and cook it at once. However, do be warry of items like carrots or potatoes that take a little longer. Cut those first and bake them longer while you cut the rest of your veggies. Throw everything altogether after a while and finish cooking the meal.

4. Swap oil for butter

Using olive oil is much healthier than butter, and in the oven, it keeps your veggies and meat from drying out. It's simpler during oven meal prep and has an incredible flavor that goes with all types of meals.

5. Keep it simple stupid

There's no reason to act like a gourmet chef when you're just making lunch. Plus, many meal prep options taste more flavorful but require less work. Don't try to complicate things. Just make what you want the simplest way possible. If you make it too difficult, you won't stick it out every week.

6. Don't only eat chicken every week

It's also important to stick to a variety of different options. You'll definitely get tired of chicken every day. You can cook sausages, steak, fish, shrimp, and more in the oven too. Be sure to mix up your meals so you don't get bored and what to quit meal prepping. Hang in there and try a few new things here and there.

7. Sauce meals are the best

For meal prepping, I tend to stick to meals in sauce or casserole like dishes. They usually reheat better and keep their flavor more. Cook more adventurous options for dinner and stick to the easy options for meal prepping lunch. You just have to see what works and what doesn't for your taste buds. I know for me, anything I want to be crunchy shouldn't be meal prepped. I save those delicacies for dinner.

8. Don't give up

Meal prepping is definitely a lot of work. I started off spending about 4-5 hours on a Sunday before I knew what I was doing. Now, I've narrowed it down to 2-3 hours at max. With a little dedication and some clever thinking, you'll find ways to be more efficient and now feel like it's ruining your whole day. You'll thank yourself later when you open those containers at lunch rather than eating fast food or junk every day.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.


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