Everyone knows the age-old quote “failing to plan, is planning to fail” and this is particularly true when it comes to meal prep. It can be tricky and time consuming to get your food organised for the week, especially when you’re squeezing in trips to the gym, food shopping and trying to keep your social life in tact; we know it’s not easy! There are lots of things to keep in mind and keep you on track, so here are some of our top tips to up your meal prep game…
Keep it contained
Containers are going to be your new best friend when it comes to meal prep, so make sure you invest in the good stuff. Multipurpose containers that you can freeze and reheat are ideal, and by getting various different sizes you can easily portion control. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to break the bank either – you can pick up a set of 17 food containers from trusty IKEA for just £3.50!
Research your recipes
If you’re a foodie and like to cook, one of the best ways to keep the day-to-day exciting is by exploring new recipes. This doesn’t necessarily mean sitting down with a cook book after work, have a browse through Pinterest or websites like BBC Good Food and just save links and screenshots to your phone – come the weekend you’ll have a whole backlog of recipes just waiting to be cooked.
Don’t make things complicated for yourself by trying to cook hundreds of different meals – simply double up on the recipes you’re already making and freeze the extra portions (once completely cooled) for later in the week. This way you’re saving time and effort, and making your shopping list considerably easier to follow.
Just list it
Speaking of shopping lists, write a detailed one before heading to the supermarket – it will help you avoid unhealthy impulse buys and keep you on track for your meals throughout the week. Although it may take a little time to jot down, it will save tonnes of time once you’re in the shop, particularly if you do things like writing the date you’ll be cooking next to each ingredient to ensure nothing you buy expires.
Take all the shortcuts you can
If there is ever an opportunity to save time, take it! Using kitchen gadgets like a slow cooker can be a real life saver for meal prep, all you have to do is throw in your ingredients and leave it to do its thing unattended, winner! Pre-cut vegetables and fruit will become your saviour for snacks, and pretty much anything else that saves time in the kitchen – gone are the days of slaving over a hot stove.
Meal prep doesn’t have to be plain meat and vegetables every day – spice it up a little! Get creative with sauces, spices and seasonings to add favour to every meal, it will keep the boredom at bay and add a different twist to similar based foods. Luckily, there’s loads of awesome brands like us that can add guilt free flavour, which is exactly what you need if you’re on a calorie-controlled diet or just want to cut out the bad stuff.